Series Information
TitleCromwell Stone
StoryCromwell Stone
StoryLe retour de Cromwell Stone
StoryLe testament de Cromwell Stone
Cromwell Stone
from the article "Andreas prefers not to explain everything (1995)":
Andreas: The second part of Cromwell Stone took so long because the publisher of the first part, Deligne (Michel), went bankrupt. Back then I didn't go out to find a new publisher, because I had so many other things to do. Le Lombard, for example, asked me to pick up Rork again.
Later Delcourt published a reissue of Cromwell Stone and when I had some time I started working on this second part for them. Meanwhile years had passed by.
Wasn't it hard to pick up the thread after such a long time?
Andreas: No, I felt like living it up with the time consuming drawing.
Ten years ago you should have had an idea about this second part. Have these ideas changed in the meanwhile?
Not really. This second part is more or less supplemental to the first part; many questions that remained unanswered in that part, are explained here. The third part will be more autonomous. I always think a long time before writing a scenario. Through this long preparation period I can finish the scenario quickly, so I can start drawing immediately. Hence I seldomly have to adjust my scenarios.
--- part of article left out here ---
There are numerous similarities between the worlds of 'Rork' and 'Cromwell Stone'. They both play in the same time and in a fantastic world.
Andreas: But the personages Rork and Cromwell Stone are incomparable. The first is a bizarre and the second a normal personage, living in a bizarre world.
The ferryman from Rork and the creator from Cromwell Stone look a lot like eachother.
Andreas: That is a lack of imagination from my part.
Both worlds are dominated by the threat of a civilization that existed before mankind.
Andreas: That's a theme from H.P. Lovecraft. I used to read his books a lot at the time I started with Rork. In the first parts you will find many of his influences. It is indeed true that this theme returns in Cromwell Stone, and that's because it fascinates me very much.
I used to read many fantasy books. When I discovered Lovecraft I knew it was that I wanted to make. Since then I read everything of him and haven't touched a fantasy book since. In Lovecraft I found a theme that appealed to me, what I was looking for, a theme with a lot of horror.
In Cromwell Stone you mix those horror motives with metaphysical elements. Why this remarkable combination?
Andreas: I don't work consciously in one specific genre. When I was young I was very Christian. I was very interested in the bible and its stories. Later this got less and I became interested in philosophy, even though I haven't read much about it. Currently I am no believer any more.
When I wrote the scenario for Cromwell Stone, I didn't have the idea in my mind to make a horror story of it. I just let myself go without a clear storyline in mind. I wrote quickly and had no control on what I wrote. I worked the same way at the first Rorks. The latter albums are written more consciously. In hindsight I find these albums too much constructed; they are too much written towards a goal, too much constructed.
--- part of article left out here ---
And the third part of Cromwell Stone?
Andreas: Maybe it takes as much as ten years before the third part appears. After the long work on the second part, I am tired of it for the moment. I do have the idea in my head.
How hard do you work?
I draw all day. I start at eight o'clock and stop at seven in the evening. This suits me. I work all days, weekends included.
You know, I get more and more things on my hands. So I have to make time to do all the things that are still in my head. But I also am more in the mood to do all these things. don't ask me where I get that urge, its just something I like to do. If I'm on vacation, I want to start drawing after five days.
I worked one-and-a-half year on Le retour de Cromwell Stone. At the end I started drawing faster because I have so many other things in my head I want to work out.
Sometimes I am aftraid that I won't have enough time in my life to make everything that I have in my mind. I am 44 and thus past half my life. The next twenty years I will have to work very hard to get everything done.
Are you still looking for that one album about which you are satisfied?
Of course, but I think and hope that I won't ever make it.
from the article "Rork and the fantastic (1995)":
Reading Le retour de Cromwell Stone we noticed that some constructions of the first part recurred. Like the title suggests. The story shows several familiar themes: the main character revisits the same site, again a shipwreck occurs, the prologue and epilogue of both books are similar. You obviously wanted to make a connection between both books.
Andreas: That's because both books form a whole. I wanted to emphasize their connection. The third part will be different. That was clear to me from the start...
There will be a third part?
Andreas: In principle, yes.
from the article "The mystery Andreas (1996)":
Le retour de Cromwell Stone is the sequal to the book Cromwell Stone that was published by Sherpa as well. This cycle can be considered a kind of history of the creation of the universe. The creation is endangered because a sense loses its balance near the earth, which causes a creator with his senses to land on earth. This creator does his utmost to be able to return to the stars again. For this he has made an instrument for him with which he can realise his goal. This key is stolen, though, and 'Cromwell Stone', at first one of the suspects, gets the assignment to determine who has the key in his posession. But the coast is not clear. In Le retour de Cromwell Stone several groups fight for the lost object.
"The story runs for years", Andreas says. "The first part I finished at the end of 1982. I wanted to start this second part directly after the first part, was it not for publisher Deligne (Michel) to go bankrupt. Only twelve years later was I able to finish Le retour de Cromwell Stone. I want to make a third part; maybe it will take me another ten years."
"Le retour de Cromwell Stone has a different angle and a different style than the first part. Cromwell Stone is about a man alone with his fear in oppressing situations ("The oldest and strongest emotion of man is fear", a quote of H.P. Lovecraft is the motto of this book. RS). The second part is the opposite: it deals with a cosmic entity that cannot be controlled by man, things happen that are too big to understand them by man (with the motto a quote of 'Harlan Ellison': "Because we are tiny creatures in a universe that is neither benign nor malign - IT is simply enormous and unaware of us save as part of the chain of life." RS) In the first part Cromwell doesn't see through that cosmic power, he tries to get away from it. In the second part Cromwell does understand and accept it and he lets himself be taken over by the events. The second part is really the explanation of the first part. The third part will in some aspects be the opposite of the first two parts again."