As you may remember from the commentary on the third page, the adventures of the rival character are based on the experiences of my friend, who started a Nuzlocke run on Ruby at the same time I started mine on Sapphire. Unfortunately, this route is where his run ended. You'll have to wait and see what becomes of his character in the comic.
Fire is definitely something for me to work on more. I redrew the fiery flashback panel about five times, and it looks much better than it did at first, but still not quite right. I may think about switching over to Photoshop for fire effects in the future; most of the tools in Painter seem to muddy together the bright colours.
This page is really only half of this scene. I'm partway done the other half, but I wanted to post something since it's been almost a month, and this was the most natural break point.
By the way, did you see how nice the fourth panel looks? If everything I drew came out that clean, I'd be a very happy artist.