Since the launch of its digital reader beta in December, the hottest new indie publisher in comics, DSTLRY, has released a host of goodies for its readers. On Wednesday, January 31, it will keep the party going with an online-exclusive variant cover from artist Vanesa R. Del Rey for Somna #2, the next installment in the haunting series by Becky Cloonan and Tula Lotay.

Somna: A Bedtime Story follows Ingrid, whose faith is tested when a shadowy figure tempts her to leave the path of righteousness. Her awful husband, Roland, is the town bailiff and chief witch hunter, and his obsession with burning every witch in the village increases when a town leader is murdered. Ingrid is determined to find the true murderer, but accusations fly fast. And then there’s that figure who wants to deliver her from her terrible marriage…

The Beat can exclusively reveal Del Rey’s variant for Somna #2, seen below.

Somna #2 digital-exclusive variant cover by Vanesa R. Del Rey

Somna is a real labor of love for me and Becky,” Lotay told The Beat at New York Comic Con 2023. We are so in love with this book. So we have been talking about it for 10 years. It came about when me and Becky were talking about sleep paralysis because Becky had experienced it. Then, we were talking about Witchfinder General and the movie The Entity.

“Becky said, ‘I would really love to do a story about a shadow man but it gets sexy and spooky.’ Because we were both talking about our love of Witchfinder General, we thought it should be set in the world of Witchfinder General, set in a time [the 1600s] where it was just so horrible being a woman and you were just persecuted. You had to be a certain way to fit into society. You were not allowed to experience the normal feelings and desires women would have, so Somna is really all about that,” Lotay continued.

“Women were not allowed back then to be sexual beings since, you know, no one was in that era. Women were persecuted because of that and the shame comes in when you start experiencing these things. How that manifests itself in this life entity is something we are very, very proud of.” 

Del Rey’s cover of Somna #2 will be available in digital and physical format at 12 p.m. ET on Wednesday, January 31 at Other physical variant covers are available at your local comic shop.