is the first book in the series of unconnected narratives I call the Roodlands. It was originally published in three chapters in the now-defunct bi-monthly anthology Maple Key Comics (issues 4-6). Its second incarnation was as a collected eighty-page handbound volume with hand-drawn calligraphy on the front cover. After having handbound 200 copies of this book, I've decided to give it a rest. Though currently out of print, there are plans to rerelease the story in a collected edition with several other Roodlands stories.
You can read a review of the collected edition at Suzanne Coley's blog.
The Pestle is about disease, class, medicine, and morality. It takes place at a medical school in the northern reaches of the Roodlands, where a children's plague is cutting down young people left and right. After a summoning ritual fails to dispel the disease, it's up to Artemisia di Pregio and her fellow students to find the cure. The first chapter appears below.