I’ve always found that these panels have a bunch of subtle things going on.
In the first one you’ve got Sollux doing the confused/awkward arms while Aradia-bot is giving him this heartfelt hug. He still doesn’t understand what she’s talking about. The two of them are so accustomed to being snarky with one another that he played off her grim messages with his typical attitude until she mentions that she’s not just peacing for a brief walk (or float, however being a robot works), she’s leaving—which prompts him to “wait, what?” her. This is one of the few times in the comic that Sollux stops giving lip and is genuinely concerned about what Aradia’s about to do.
So she let’s go and backs up a few steps and starts sparking like a toaster in a bathtub. Sollux’s arms lift and while his face is turned from us, we can guess he’s probably got a combination of Nepeta’s whoa and Equius’s oh god no going on.
Her robot body bursts. Equius and Nepeta’s arms raise to shield themselves from debris while Sollux’s arms go back down. His stance has widened and his mouth is hanging open, eyebrows lifted. He’s shocked and probably still a little confused, but reality dawns on him by the next page.
He pulls his glasses off, and he’s already crying. Eyes are flashing from stress or shock, or some combination of the two. This is the second time Aradia’s died in front of him—the first at his own optic blasts via Vriska’s mind control, and the second just then. There’s a lot to think about when you unpack his reaction. How his snippy attitude takes a backseat to the moment is pretty telling, in my opinion.
If you read their chat logs or dialogue later on, you find that Aradia and Sollux are actually incredibly funny. They’re witty. They both tease the heck out of each other. But that heckling isn’t a sign of weakness or thorns in their friendship—it’s a sign of its strength and level of comfort. Everyone knows that you’ve gotta be close buds with someone if you’re cracking jokes and constantly poking their side. Not to mention they have this implied history of a close friendship—or something more. And frankly, whatever quadrant they filled for each other, I love their dynamic.
Sollux and Aradia have to be one of my favorite duos in Homestuck, if not my very favorite. They give me feelings.
so basically every single word of this is true and everyone should read it
SCREAMS. ACTUALLY THE MOST PERFECT POST I HAVE EVER SEEN.
DUDE ARE YOU KIDDING ME THANK YOU THIS IS EXACTLY THE IMAGES I NEEDED FOR MY ANIMATION!!!
blessing of the dash :’) i couldnt find the pages
thank the dash gods