One can thank my desire for clarity for the silliness that is panel six. Given certain previous comics involving Ashley, I felt I needed to make an extra effort to make clear that Ashley's admiration of Susan was of a platonic sort.
Specifically, she thinks Susan is cool. I know the comic is pretty vague on that point, and for that, I apologize.
On a less silly note, while Ashley thinking Susan is cool was not inspired by fan feedback, Susan taking the time to say what she says in this comic was. It's helpful to the story, as it gives Ashley all the more reason to think highly of Susan, but it was originally just going to be the fact that she saw through Tom.
The inspiration was that some people were questioning Ashley's intellegence, and some really did wonder if she was an idiot. Some responses seemed to imply that they felt if Ashley fell for Tom's lies, then she deserved to fooled.
These responses bothered me. I didn't think it was fair to call Ashley an idiot, and I especially didn't think it was right to place blame on her when Tom was the one being manipulative. I'm sure most of these responses (if not all, hopefully) were hyperbole in response to Tom's utter failure with Susan and not meant to be taken too seriously, but they're reflective of attitudes that are all too real in regard to people placing blame on victims.
In short, I felt it was worth addressing.