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The Sad, Sad Song of Widow Johnson, Part Three is a comic episode of Sparks Nevada, Marshal on Mars.


Purchase at Simon and Schuster.



In the flashback, the training simulation at the USSA Academy continues. Cadet Alec Fippen objects to Cadet Sparks Nevada's insistence that he can win this no-win scenario against the Reflekticon enemies, and attempts to relieve Sparks of command. Mercy Laredo punches Fippen, in order to stop the mutiny. In the observation booth above, Stacy Kerns-Nevada tells Caiaphas that Sparks is just like he was at that age, though Sparks' father disagrees.

Back in present day on Mars, Sparks, who had undergone some sort of martian hallucination at the end of the previous episode, awakens. He, along with Felton, Mercury, and the Johnsons, are back on the surface of Mars instead of the martian undercity. All present had hallucinated while the martians transported them out of their home. Two of the bounty hunters are also present, whom Sparks shoots and stuns on sight, then puts under arrest.

Sparks asks Croach to disarm the bounty hunters, but Croach refuses. The damage Sparks caused in the undercity is punishable by death, but Croach talked the elders out of killing Sparks and the other humans. The amount of damage caused not only wiped out Croach's personal onus, but the onus the entire tribe had to Sparks, and put Sparks under onus to Croach.

Upon hearing Sparks' name, one of the bounty hunters shows his face, it's Alec Fippen, The other bounty hunter refuses to hang up his comms, which he'd been on the entire time since before going to the undercity. He says he's been speaking with Orna Peganu, who is coming to claim the quarry and take over the operation.

Upon hearing Orna Peganu is coming, Sparks orders the shields of the space-coach up and goes on high alert, but it's too late -- Orna's ship has arrived and stolen the space-coach in her tractor beam already, with Felton, Wendy and Mr. Johnson inside. Mr. Johnson activates the space-coach's force field, which causes Orna to leave her ship and fly via her spacesuit to the coach. Orna attaches a beep-boop robot to the coach, which starts deactivates the force field. Orna shuts off the tractor beam as well, which causes the space-coach to fall towards the planet.

The coach lands, and Sparks peruses it, despite Croach's objections, as Croach is now the primary onus-holder. Orna shoots at them, disintegrating Croach's hoversaddle, but is caught and saved by Sparks. Croach takes over riding Mercury while Sparks jumps on the space-coach and begins fighting Orna.

The intense fight between the two continues, while Croach rescues Wendy and Mr. Johnson. Felton refuses to be rescued by a martian. Meanwhile, the out of control space-coach heads for the Lava Fields. Orna reminds Sparks that martians can't enter the lava fields alone, and Croach has already left with only two of the three other humans. They continue to battle atop the coach while dodging lava spurts.

Meanwhile, Croach drops off Wendy and Mr. Johnson with Mercury, and heads back into a decorative triangle with an entrance to the undercity inside. Before he can leave, Wendy pleads with Croach to save Sparks and Felton as well. Croach refuses, as Sparks refuses to even begin to fulfill the onus he is under to Sparks, so he has no obligation to help Sparks.

Back on the space-coach, the battle between Sparks and Orna continues, with Felton inside the coach. She pins Sparks down, with her bootheel on Sparks' neck, but Sparks reaches up and snaps the antenna off the beep-boop robot. The space-coach slams into the ground, throwing Orna off balance, and she falls, hitting her head and going unconscious. The controls begin to melt, so Sparks drags Felton to the roof of the coach. Felton tries to communicate with the beep-boop robot, but his beep-boop is too rough.

Sparks calls out to Croach, saying he understands how serious his onus is after being wrapped in the martian cocoon and seeing the hallucination. He begins to swear that he will fulfill his onus to Croach if Croach saves him, but just before he gets the words out, Croach swoops in and saves them on two hoversaddles, saving Sparks from finishing his sentence. Croach tells Sparks his onus has increased substantially.

Croach tells Sparks that his people only go to the lava fields in groups, and only to hunt lavabeasts, due to how dangerous they are. Just then, a lavabeast attacks. Croach successfully navigates them away, and out of the lava fields.

Back on safe land, Sparks attempts to arrest Orna, who is awake again. Orna says that Sparks is in the presence of the most dangerous criminal in twenty solar systems, and transports out anyway. She tells Sparks she's leaving him a parting gift. Just as she teleports out, someone else teleports in.

Sparks is shocked at the new arrivals, who are there to apprehend the dangerous criminal.




  • Writers: Ben Acker and Ben Blacker
  • Illustrations & Cover: J. Bone
  • Color Art: Omi Remalante
  • Letter Art: Marshall Dillon
  • Sparks Nevada: Marshal on Mars Logo: Chris Eliopoulos
  • Packaging & Editing: Nate Cosby
  • Book Design: Nate Cosby & Vincent Kukua