171 thoughts on “Jurisdiction

  1. Okay, someone update TV Tropes…

    I hope he just shrugs and says “how interesting” and stays the course. Rose isn’t worth the trouble.

    1. The Negro Guy actually thinks Rose and Nate are a good pair. I will give Nate props for covering his ass even when he didn’t know the law though.

      1. who is the Negro Guy?

        1. never mind, just read your name

        2. @The Negro Guy, i’ve been wondering why on earth you feel the need to always refer to yourself in the third person… towards the strip though, that’s why i far prefer living in England. much simpler, 16 is legal and that’s that

    2. Hey, now, Rose is a good chick! A little immature and (indirectly) vengeful, but her personality jibes with Nate’s. Even broken-up they’re good -to- each other, and they could be good -for- each other.

      But he shouldn’t jump into her arms/bed, either.

    3. Who ever is, though?

    4. Thank you, North Carolina! 😉

  2. 16 is the age down here too.

    Damn, Nate must be blue-balling like a bitch now.

    1. Well he did “sleep with” Tracy several times, though I suppose there’s little comparison to Rose. Anyway first time commenter, gotta say I love Treading Ground and can’t wait for more of this wonderful comic.

      1. Thanks for the kind words. Glad you like it!

        1. I fecking love that the writer talks to his fan’s. I feel like a fangirl going all SQUUUUUUIIII OMG SIGN MY BOOBS!
          *coughs* Except I wouldn’t do that.

        2. For the record, boob signage is still on the table!

        3. How about mine?

        4. Damn, this TG’s comment section is funnier than the comic sometimes. .
          No offense Nick, the amount of witty conversation down here is just priceless.

        5. wait, this is wit? wow, i have to say i’m underwhelmed… 🙂

        6. You would sign a pair of moobs ?

          Dang !

        7. Talks to his fans? This guy got drunk with them on New years

        8. More accurately, watched THEM get drunk. 😉

        9. I didn’t make it to full-on drunk that night. Remember, i was the one picking up the fireworks and pegging the guy in the balls with a spent roman candle after he set that chick’s dress on fire.

          However, tonight I am rectifying the matter. I have just watched Repo: The Genetic opera while consuming a fine Belgian Saison. We are leaving momentarily to go watch Rocky Horror, and my wife is wearing an outfit that will make it difficult for us to make it out the door tonight…

          So…if you will excuse me, it would appear I have better things to do with my hands then type….

        10. OH really? And how does one get in on this new years drinking fan thing?

        11. My wife is called Kim. Please let this comment be hers (even though I know it isn’t)

    2. The Negro Guy would be blue balling if I had the chance and didn’t take it.

      1. HE! If HE had the chance!

        Thou art a heretic and traitor to third-person speech. I herby sentence you do death by hanging, burning at the stake, and drowning at the same time. Forthwith.

        1. You misspelled “hereby.”

        2. Failed English Major

          Irony, Thou art a bitch as welll.

        3. Full. Of. Win.

          (“Well” has only two Ls, but you’re a FAILED English major so I guess that was going to happen no matter what.)

        4. ^^^Same person…^^^

        5. who the hell are you people?

        6. The Negro Guy looks down upon you because you are asking a bunch of people with screen names who they are.

        7. Failed english major

          Oh, hell, I’ll come clean:

          I am Pink Freud and Dickweed the Elder

          I actually caught the extended version of ‘well’, and decided to retain it in order to keep the irony coming.

        8. What, Herby isn’t misspelled… He just swings that way.

        9. Surely, he didn’t mean it that way.

  3. Texas is 17 with her consent. But Texas will fry you for just about anything so…good luck.

    1. The Negro Guy is thinking about getting some in Texas now…

      1. do they fry you for refering to youself in the third person?

        1. …probably…

        2. No, otherwise they would have fried Rick Perry years ago.

        3. Lawlz.

          Also, Nick, great job with the comic thus far. It’s fantastic.

    2. With her consent? How about “without her consent”? What’s the age for that? 😉

      1. In North Carolina? The exact age is inversely proportional to the degree in which the people are related. immediately family gets first crack, then first cousins, aunts / uncles, grandparents, second cousins get sloppy seconds, and everyone else has to take a number and wait in line.

    3. stating the obvious

      “with her consent”??? when is that not part of the law? a little surprised it had to be stated…

  4. O.o I HAVE to ask…is that actually true?

    I can see 16 being okay (I believe that a good portion of the country uses it), but specifying that it’s missionary position with the blinds pulled?

    1. The internet seems to think so. Can’t find the actual law cited anywhere though.

      1. the age part is very true. the part about the blinds and missionary im not so sure about anymore but i do recall a time up until about 1-2 years ago in NC that anything other than consenting sex with your spouse in the military position with the lights off and blinds closed was considered illegal. this included blowjobs as well as anal and all that. some of these laws have started changing though.


        that is a link to the age of consent as well as penalties for the states.

        1. Spouse
          On the bed
          under the covers
          Blinds down
          and a dog at the foot of the bed

        2. You forgot:
          In the Billiard Room
          With the Candlestick.

        3. kinky…..but I think I’ll pass.

      2. Sadly, some of the laws on those links HAVE to be wrong. On several pages, it states that oral sex in California is illegal. If that’s the case, most of the porn industry (a good portion of which is filmed out of the San Fernando Valley) would be shut down. They have PROOF of these people giving and receiving oral sex.

        Now, it might have been illegal at one time, but I would have to assume that these laws have been struck from the books now because it’s so goofy.

        As for Nate and Rose, well, that could be legal…I just wonder if Rose is really mature enough for a solid relationship with Nate and that she can really be with him on something other than a sexual level.

        1. I think the idea on those sites is that it’s “crazy laws no one enforces anymore,” but I honestly have no idea.

        2. Well, yes. It is like the “why is this still a law?” kind of deal. For example, Kansas has a law about eating vanilla ice cream on cherry pie. Kentucky (I believe) has one where you cannot hide your donkey in your bathtub. Most states have obscure laws like that, written from times past that make no sense what-so-ever, yet they’re still oddly, a law. Go figure.

        3. The thing about CA is rather than go back and change all the “blue laws” that are decades old they passed one new one. Anything between consenting adults that dosn’t cause death or serious injury is legal.

        4. I know that in most places, NC I know for a fact, cause I live here, that anything other than missionary, etc. is considered sodomy and it is the sodomy that is illegal. This might be true for the state of CA as well, however I still think that would be kinda dumb, as you would run into the same problems.

      3. So Alaska, HJ’s are cool no matter the age?

        1. On further reading they’re safe in most states, at least from rape charges.

  5. They live in NC? I had no flippin idea. Is it Charlotte? Tell me they live in Charlotte.

    1. Long Point, actually. It’s along the coast and fictional. Sorry to disappoint!

      I actually lived in Charlotte myself for a couple of months though, so there’s that.

      1. The Negro Guy laughs at the thought of this comic being in Long Point.

        1. Dammit, And here I thought I could visit that supermarket for real (obviously without meeting the very fictional cast). I live in Charlotte and it’s nice to know you did at some point. It’s neat when things are based in your state. My sister freaked when she found out they film One Tree Hill here. And Yes, my fellow negro. Long Point is a hilarious name,

        2. The store is based on various Food Lions I’ve worked at in South Carolina (they’re basically all the same.)

        3. So… they all have vampires?


        4. Yeah, but the bastards all sparkle now.

        5. I always suspected the store was based on Food Lion. Most of my family and several friends worked for the local Food Lions here on the mountainous end of NC.

        6. Heh… good ol’ Food Lion. They tried a massive expansion into Texas in the early 90s but that went nowhere. It’s interesting to see how many former FL buildings are out there – they’re all easily recognizable – and what they’re used for now (anything from Goodwills to ethnic grocers to charter schools to office space to libraries).

      2. HA! That’s awesome he lives in NC, I used to live in Newport but ended up moving back to Minnesota… freakin’ walking freezer of a state…

        1. At least there’s things to do in Minnesota. When I relocated from the cities to South Dakota I kept all of the cold and lost pretty much all of civilization.

      3. So, you lived in NC, worked at a crappy grocery store, and amusing art imitates life, banged an underage, but legal girl there, and now live in Atlanta….

        Nick, I really must know, have you been stalking me? or are you just my long lost twin that only now surfaces to haunt me with my past? Even down to the “looking back in anger” storyline of losing the girl because of a lack of ambition you have accurately described the details of my life.

        Or did Scifi Guy tell you all about me and give you ideas? I don’t remember telling him much detail about my pre-N9 days, but if I was drunk enough, who knows…..

        1. Heh, the Nate/Rose stuff isn’t based on my personal experience, and I’ve only known TSFG since about 2004 (after I started TG).

          There’s a crazy amount of comments I’ve received over the years where people tell me that I’m basically illustrating their life. Guess that means I’m doing my job here!

        2. a very good job indeed

        3. …And just to make matter seven more awkward, my college roommate at NCSU was a closet furry. After the first week I never went in to the dorm room if “Tiny Toons” was on.

        4. ……………………….what?

        5. go back to yesterday’s strip. bestiality and furries

        6. I myself am a furry to an extent, to the fact I find anthromorphic females hot, but there are limits. Your Roommate exceeds those limits in leaps and bounds from the sounds of it. I would put him on the weirdness level of the people who Yiff in Fur Suits.

  6. No. Freaking. Way.

    Never saw this coming.

    America is so weird.

    1. …No we’re not.

      1. Actually, out of all the weird places to go, Japan takes the fuckin’ cake.

        1. I liked being able to go into a McDonald’s and get a shrimp burger. And the McNuggets were the best chicken I had in Japan, which is kind of sad actually.

        2. Nah, New Zealand is F-ing bonkers.

        3. You ever been to Ecuador doing Carnaval?

          Now, that’s going fucking Bonkers.

        4. You ever watched the porn japan puts out? Shit is weird but hot at the same time.

        5. Of course, I’m well versed in the ways of Hentai. I seen it all and. read it all and played it all.

          I hold a Bachelor degree in Hentai culture.

        6. Hentai’s for beginners, watch the real stuff. Some of it makes tentacle porn look vanilla.

        7. Tentacle porn is for Noobz, You wanna get seriously fuck up? Read Mai-chan daily life. hey, have fun.

          Also Happy birthday to me, I’m finally legal!

  7. Nate’s probably wanting to kick his own ass right now. He could have plowed her cornfield at least ten times by now, and it would have been legit because she was more than willing.

    Also, is Nate’s mom that ugly, or is Steve just taking all the digs he can?

    1. Well, we at least know she used to be fairly attractive, although my old art sometimes makes that hard to quantify.

      1. As we all know, time takes it’s toll. She could look seriously fucked up beyond belief for all we know.

        1. Or she could be the milf we all want to fuck the brains out of.


    =p kinda seen it foreshadowed even called it yesterday in the comments =p

    Oh my what will this do to the Nate-Rose relationship…Although I have to question if that area has a Police officer on call to make sure all underage minor sex is missionary…

    ONE Man…One Position. On the course of Intercourse…The Buck stops Here

    Buck Magnum: Missionary Defender



    1. There’s one Micheal Bay film we don’t ever wanna see…

      1. I just had a vision of a Robot Chicken crossing TrojanMan with the Simpsons’s Duff Man.



        “Does Soemone need a Condom?”

        *Horse Nickers*

        “There, put this extra inside your Wallet”


        “And while you are at it, show me your ID”

        “You are too young to be going Doggy Style”


        You are going All …The…Way….to jail!


    2. That comment was so win, I’m gonna need your address so the trucks will know where to deliver the mountains of cookies and gold stars

  9. Thank you Virginia, you take the fun out of everything.

    1. The Negro Guy agrees.

  10. Yeah, i thought that there were definitely ways to get away with it here. I live in Raleigh, so i was suspicious of it for a while. Nice to see how you tied it in and now we have a hilariously dumbfounded main character! Cant wait for more!

    And BTW, Food baron seems awfully similar to the Food Lion i live by down the road; even has its own pervous and nate and everything. Funny coincidence.

    1. Oh God! I was living in Raleigh and working at the “food dog” when all this shit was happening. If this strip was taking place in the early ’90s and in any way ends up involving Rocky Horror I am going to have to sue for identity theft.

  11. The Negro Guy says this comic is one of the greatest comics he’s stumbled upon, right next to Megatokyo!

    1. Agreed! How about Questionable Content though?

      1. QC has better art (not to say I blame anyone, I draw like crap, and QC has a lot more stuff, y’know, done… practice counts). As far as plot… well, I started reading this about a week ago, and have gotten tot eh point of being impatient for updates already, so it’s way too soon to make a call on plot-quality.
        Questionable Content is a fairly high bar though, y’know. >_>

        1. High bar for a comic that had a Anthro-Pc with a fleshlight strapped to its ass? =p

          Say what you will about will, least Treading Ground updates on time, every time. Not whenever Nick feels up to drawing it, and then does so, then posts it technically the next day =p

  12. Here.
    (a) A defendant is guilty of a Class B1 felony if the defendant engages in vaginal intercourse or a sexual act with another person who is 13, 14, or 15 years old and the defendant is at least six years older than the person, except when the defendant is lawfully married to the person.
    (b) A defendant is guilty of a Class C felony if the defendant engages in vaginal intercourse or a sexual act with another person who is 13, 14, or 15 years old and the defendant is more than four but less than six years older than the person, except when the defendant is lawfully married to the person.

    Notice here that it cuts off at 15.

    More information at
    I am assuming that if Statutory Rape is cut off at 15 then a child in North Carolina is no longer considered Juvenile at age 16 which leads to the age of consent being there.

    1. It has no statements within the sexual offense articles about Missionary or the blinds being closed.
      That is just something someone added for laughs.

      1. Saw that. I figure if there is any factual basis for the laws on these “Crazy Laws” websites, they’re pulling from something older and obscure.

    2. I don’t think being a Juvenile is being cut off at 16 here. However, I am pretty sure that is the age you have to be to be emancipated. It would make sense that if the law thinks it is possible for someone of that age to live on their own, they are of an age to make their own decisions.

  13. So now what they run in slow mo into each others naked arms and have wild missionary sex in a fild of flowers with the shades pulled down?

    1. Portable sex-shade units are available at all North Carolina Wal-Marts.

      1. Do want. That gives me a reason to go back to North Carolina.

  14. Hee hee finally! My silence can be broken! How long ago was it that I asked you about this exact issue Nick? 5 or 6 years? Naw but seriously I didn’t even know when I met my wife I waited for her to turn 18 before I asked her out. When I told her why I waited so long she punched me in the stomach.

    1. Heh heh.. I left hints in the comic, including references to Raleigh and the South Carolina Gamecocks, and this road sign. And back when I was on Comicgenesis I listed North Carolina as the location, which is how I met both you and my buddy Phil.

      1. I believe I shall quit my tech support job and raise titbulls for a living now.

        1. Really changes the dynamic of a bullfight, wouldn’t you say?

        2. umm.. whats a ‘titbull’? do you mean pitbull?

        3. hmmm ok.. now is a bad sign that i’m wondering if it’s milkable??

  15. Yeah I met my guy when I was 16 and he was 21. Looked it up and it was legal in our state. A good portion of states have the age of consent set under 18 nowadays.

    Maybe there is still hope for them after all!!

  16. I was actually expecting the opposite to be true. That Rose’s little ‘weclome to the neighbourhood’ would have landed him an automatic 15 years if anyone ever found out making for excellent blackmail material or something like that.

  17. i was seeing this older lady for a short time when her daughter took a shine 2 me so she passed me off 2 the daughter. good for me right?.. being 3 or 4 yrs older i was reluctant but im a ppl pleaser (or a sucker) she practically raped me until the relationship went sour haha now shes trying to get me for rape even though she was 16 and her mom consented shes telling the police she was 14 and her moms saying she didnt consent. now i could do jail time cuz i went along with whatever she wanted and now shes lying- ppl are cruel. there is no deep or grand meaning to life. nobody wants to believe there life is insignificant. watch ur back you never know whose gonna stick there knife in it next.

  18. Here’s the $10,000 question. Now that Nate knows that he can not only date Rose, but actually ‘plow the red fields’ is he going to do anything about it? Or is he going to keep fucking Tracy and pursue a relationship with Miranda?
    Damn it Nick, you’ve turned your comic into a soap opera!

    1. Yeah. It would be nice if at least one popular strip on the Net didn’t take the sitcom/soap opera route and allowed the main love interests to properly and thoroughly consummate their love for one another, but still give the pair plenty of opportunities to royally screw up in a multitude of other ways as is typical of many real life couples.

      BTW, this is a general criticism of the international entertainment industry (it’s not only an American phenomenon), and is not specifically targeted at Nick.

  19. Meh. Legal or not, she’s still young. He may as well bang his little sister. I honestly think they’re better off as just friends until one of them matures (mentally, I mean).

  20. way to show some love for NC. good to find one that finally is based here. now you need to just make some references about the eventless location that is the town i’m in. XD

  21. America, you’re so fine, you’re so fine you blow my mind, America. Why does part of me want to just say “So long, and thanks for all the fish”? *^_~*

    1. So you like fish sticks?

      1. Well, sure!

        1. By the way where are all the dolphins? and the question is “what do you get if you times 6 x9? “

  22. Just wanna say, “Thanks for the home town shout out!” That’s definitely the first time I’ve ever seen or heard Va. Beach mention in any sort of non-local media

    1. No longer shall Newport News get all the glory!

  23. Thank you, I don’t know how you did it but you managed to put Nate in a situation were it will need effort from him to pursue a relationship with Rose, I have Always been pro Rose*Nate, but always felt that Nate would be on the receiving end.

  24. So when this comic first started back in 2003, Rose was legal and Nate was just an idiot and didn’t know his own state’s laws? Man, suddenly I have very little sympathy for Nate. If he cared enough, he would’ve looked into this himself…

    1. Just commenting on the subject of time here and not agreeing/disagreeing with your assessment of Nate – I may have started TG in 2003, but only 8-9 months have passed in-comic. It kind of has that Simpsons Time thing going where I’m commenting on contemporary pop culture and such but at the same time my characters aren’t getting much older. It’s annoying, but it makes the most sense for the type of comic this is.

    2. besides, Rose certainly could have looked it up and shown him. She was certainly motivated enough.

  25. Ignorance of the law is no excuse!

    So now Nate was just being a twat.

    Although he did get to bang Tracy (again), so its not a total loss.

  26. Vindication! Or something like that. Now Nate has choices, and isn’t that all we really want in life?

  27. This makes me want to jump through a time-portal to the strip where Nate is informed of Rose’s age. Just stick my head out and say “Don’t worry man, that’s still legal!”

    The Un-Cockblocker would be my favorite superhero.

  28. Meanwhile in the UK we can shag a lot of 16 year olds…
    This reminds me of a song

    Never smile at a paedophle
    It’s something that you do for even a little while
    Do’nt be taken in by his friendly grin
    He’s wondering what to put his penis in!

  29. I was SO CONVINCED it was Greenville, South Carolina! DANG!

  30. I would like to see Nate’s mom….

    1. You could always click First to see her in her younger days…

      1. I just noticed her name was Natalie…

        BTW, I like his dad’s porno stache…lol

        1. It was a simpler, pornstachier time.

  31. THANK YOU!
    This was probably in the works for a while before I started complaining about the absurdity of the legal argument, but it’s really good to see it show up regardless.

    Also, -lots- of normal countries have district-based age of consent differences 😛

    1. It was a real challenge keeping quiet on that. I love how so many people “innocently” asked where the comic was set expecting to be able to set me up for pwnage.

      This level of region-specific law is in effect in just the US and Australia from what I’ve seen. (http://www.avert.org/age-of-consent.htm)

      1. I bet all the research on laws and stuff for this comic has probably got you flagged on a few law enforcement databases now xD

  32. Clearly the ending of this comic should be Nate banging all three women in his life like screen doors while wearing neon green shades, a blinding white disco jacket, and bell bottoms before riding a pale horse into the apocalypse.

    …that got away from me a bit.

    1. That sounds like a bitch to draw.

      1. Completely worth it, though

        1. Notice Nick doesn’t disagree to that ending, just the idea of drawing it. hmmm…

  33. Yeaaah…he’s right, we don’t live in a normal country, we have on average an unusually high age of consent compared to most of the western world.

  34. I already knew they were in North Carolina because in an early comic Raliegh was mentioned.

    1. Just because they went there in EOC didn’t mean the main comic was set there.

      1. …But it is set there, isn’t it? Or somewhere nearby, at least.

        1. It ended up being right, but it was a coincidence. Just pointing out the mention of Raleigh in EOC didn’t mean that TG was set in North Carolina.

          I worked hard to stay vague all these years, dammit. 🙂

  35. 160 comments!?!?! Am i out of my mind, or is this a new TG record (I suppose it could be both…) either way Congratulations, Nick.

    1. Thanks!

      I think the record is still 272 for The Christening (NSFW).

  36. as i read the archive for a second time, i come realize something:what exactly happen to Nate’s Mom after she had Nate? i mean when the story started she was sorted hot and the next time she’s mentioned, she has 27 cats. as any sane person will tell you , have more 4 cats is a red flag and now this. there’s gotta be a story behind all this

  37. About time he actually learned something about the law that he was depending his whole relationship on. Just really pathetic that he had to learn it from his dick roommate AFTER the breakup.

  38. So, we finally discover where this is set…and indeed, it is a state where the age of consent is 16, and it was mere ignorance that had fueled the plot thus far. Which means…oh my.

  39. Man boobs are really embarrassing! It’s best to get rid of them.

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