Melody of Doom

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Melody of Doom
Start date: January 16th, 2012
End date: June 16th, 2012
# of strips: 132 (22 weeks)
Writer: Fred Fredericks
Artist: Fred Fredericks
Preceded by: "Ghost Town Blues"
Followed by: "The Challenge"

"Melody of Doom" is the 263rd Mandrake daily story. The story was written and drawn by Fred Fredericks.

Plot Summary

One evening, as Mandrake takes a walk, he is abducted by two men and taken to a house on a remote country road. Inside, he meets a mysterious woman who implores him to act like a gentleman and refrain from tricks before removing his blindfold and kissing him. Mandrake wonders why she resorted to kidnapping, suggesting she could have simply asked for help. She explains that she couldn't risk it, as his brothers, Derek and Luciphor, resemble him closely. Her mission, she reveals, is to save the world, and she needed the real Mandrake's assistance.

She has a private jet ready, and Mandrake finds himself at the controls. On the plane, she removes her disguise, revealing herself as Doctor Floto. They had met in Cockaigne, where notes from the "Lost Chord" had been scattered by the wind. Doctor Floto had found some fragments and later discovered that Diska had found more. Now, she was worried that someone else knew about Diska's possession of parts of the "Lost Chord."

Her fears are validated when Mandrake and Doctor Floto arrive at Diska's farm in Cockaigne, finding Diska's friend Lonn beaten and the computer containing the sheet music destroyed. A new email from Diska indicates he is on Gironda Island, prompting Mandrake and Doctor Floto to head south toward Gironda Island.

Upon arrival, they find Diska, who explains that he had been hiding there. However, the same unknown man who had accompanied him in Cockaigne had also followed him to the island. Diska leads Mandrake and Doctor Floto to a safer location he discovered—an old mission station with an intact pipe organ inside the ruins. Luciphor then appears, revealing he also possesses fragments of the "Lost Chord." Together, they have almost the complete sheet music.

A neighbor named Nestor, who maintains the organ, joins them. Luciphor suggests they test the legend that playing the "Lost Chord" could cause the earth to crack. Since they don't have the entire sheet, the destruction wouldn't be catastrophic. Dr. Floto and Diska agree, and Nestor begins to play the organ. However, after a few lines, the organ starts playing by itself. A crack opens in the ground toward the organ, which vanishes into it before the cracks close again. Luciphor, frustrated that the music sheet is gone, challenges Mandrake to a fist fight but backs down when he injures his hand.

After Mandrake, Dr. Floto, and Diska leave Luciphor at the mission ruins, Luciphor discovers a fragment of the music sheet that hadn't disappeared into the ground.


Recurring characters

One-time characters

  • Diska, own a small farm in Cockaigne
  • Lonn, a friend of Diska
  • Nestor, a man at the old mission at Gironda Island


  • New York City
  • Cockaigne
  • Gironda Island, near equator
    • the old mission

Behind the scenes


  • The title for the story taken from the strip of January 16th, 2012 (Beginning: Melody of Doom).


This story has been published in the following publications: