There we go. A decent page of pencils, finished in a reasonable amount of time (about an hour and three quarters) considering the complexity of the subject. This page not only has the first real, fully developed drawing of the saddle, but another skeletal moa and a tricky figure drawing as well, all in one panel. Plus fitting the conversation into panel one was no picnic either. (Ignore the inconsistency in the lettering sizes. Those seem to correct themselves more or less automatically during inking, when the pen size pretty much dictates the size of the letters.)
The trouble with making cartoon short stories is that once you figure out how to draw something that’s really hard to draw, you’re done with the project and you will probably never have to draw the thing again. The neck of a moa, for example, is made up of four vertebrae that are sort of stuck together right at the base of the skull, then eight sort of elongated ones that interlock, then four big ones with spurs or prongs on them like spine bones. I’m sure anatomists know the names of all these bones and why they look different from each other, but I’m just copying from from references and I know when I draw them that way they look “right”. My cartoon moa skeleton looks like a cartoon moa skeleton and that’s all the further I have to go.
Careful observers will notice that Moab is already moving, very very slowly, as her master approaches. This was more fun than drawing an absolutely unmoving skeleton over and over again, and easier, too. The slight change in position helps disguise inconsistencies in drawing the skull.