TITLE: Evolution of the Salt-Water Slater Haloniscus searlei
Some time ago, in South Australia:
Panel 1: Two slaters (also known as pillbugs or woodlice) converse.
Slater 1: I think I’m done with this whole “land” business.
Panel 2: Close shot of first slater. It waves one of its antennae.
Slater 2: What?
Slater 1: Do you long for the old days?
Slater 2: Like... last month?
Slater 1: Like the Carboniferous--
Panel 3: Map of the continents in the Carboniferous Period. Ancestral isopods are marching from the sea onto the continent of Gondwana (although this is inaccurate, as southern Gondwana was at this point under an ice sheet).
Slater 1: Before the continents sutured and tore, when we crustaceans slipped the sea's grasp, inuring our copper blood to the choking dryness--
Slater 2: I was born last spring, I think?
Slater 1: And we were rewarded! We feasted on litters heretofore unimagined!
Slater 2: Hold on, you’re like... one molt older than me—
Panel 4: The claws of a southern marsupial mole burst from the ground and grip the panel borders, its mouth wide.
Slater 1: Before--the reptiles--their digging claws!
Panel 5: A finch in flight grasps at the panel border with its talons.
Slater 1: Their talons grasping depuis le ciel!
Panel 6: Front-on view of first slater.
Slater 1: So! I’m out!
Panel 7: The first slater heads towards the water as the second slater watches on.
Slater 2: Bye?
Slater 1: Farewell! I return to mother sea's embrace!
Panel 8: The first slater slips into the water.
Panel 9: The second slater watches from shore.
Slater 1: [Underwater:] oh wow this stings, copepods do this all day?
Slater 2: Isn’t that...
Panel 10: The second slater watches from shore.
Slater 1: [Underwater:] C’mon-ick-c’mon in! Water’s fine! i bet i could get could used to this, given a couple millenia. pretty sure. not too deep, tho.
Slater 2: ...a salt lake?