Download for full size, if you feel you can't live without it.
What's this? Original art? SAY IT ISN'T SO! Too bad it is.
The main cast for my new book, E.D.U.G. Diaries! I'm still writing it, but its a fantasy/parody that follows the antics of a career villainess as she tries to figure out why these danged heroes keep winning. She ends up latching onto a promising woodsman who might just grow to be a hero, and hitches alongside a budding (and very uncharactaristic) fellowship following a suspiciously unclear prophesy told by an old(?) man who may or may not be just plain crackers. Characters from left to right: Kady Waverunner, Crown Prince Glade Locken Farscade, Shaiyl Diblo, Barc Bladeborne, Matilda Honninbrew, Prince Simutem Hetep, Spix the Sprite. See long summary for details.
This took way longer than it should have, given that the lineart was just a sketch and the coloring was SUPPOSED to be sloppy. I just wanted to meet the characters of my book to get a better idea of them. But I ended up going all out with coloring anyways, dang it.
So I decided to finally bunker down and do NaNoWriMo last November (National Novel Writing Month), and got about 50K words done for this book series of mine, called E.D.U.G Diaries. Its short for "Evil Doesn't Understand Good", which is a TV trope. I got the book idea from spending waaay to much time on that site, and I call out a lot of tropes in it.
I put up a longer synopsis that I had on my NaNoWriMo page on my journal: mystryl-shada.deviantart.com/j…
. The Short Summary above has a shorter synopsis, if you don't feel like flipping through the journal entry.
Or you can go here nanowrimo.org/participants/mys…
and read the summary as well as an excerpt from the beginning of the book.
The book itself will be mainly a comedy/adventure in a fantasy setting, but don't let that fool you. I've got some drama planned, and some points the story will get pretty heavy. Oh, and there's romance too, so that'll hopefully cover everyone's bases. Unless you like extreme violence or saucy action; I'm not that kinda writer.
So do you want to meet my characters? I don't want to post too much (for example, backstory and character development will be saved for the book), but I can give y'all a glance. Also, everyone in this world is born with an elemental power, the strength of which is determined by character and also how far up the power tree it is (for example, the primary powers of Wind, Water, Earth, and Fire are the strongest and rarest, then Secondary powers like Sound and Ice, then Tertiary powers like Heat and Granite)
CAST FROM LEFT TO RIGHT:
1. Kady Waverunner
Hailing from an islandic tribe of elves, Kady's the kid of the bunch. He's fifteen and eager to make a man of himself in the world, and is in the middle of an adventure already when he gets swept up by the gang. He's hyperactive and tends to climb anything nearby to get a good view of the world. Kady is a bit of a flirt, energetic, easily excited, and tends not to think before acting. He's rather young in mind but is very optimistic, preferring to think that things will work out somehow than fretting about his current situation. While not the brightest bulb in the group, he is very good with his instincts, and is only matched by Barc and Matilda for wilderness smarts, and rules the pack for streetsmarts. He's also very curious, and is often asking questions, sometimes awkward ones if he doesn't understand the context. If he's missing from the group, its probably because a pretty girl walked by or there's a really cool looking tree that needed climbing or a body of water that needed swimming in.
POWER: Rare Primary gift of Water
2. Crown Prince Glade Locken Farscade
The Crown Prince for the country of Farscade, Glade is the world's leading Hero. He wears a different suit of armor for each campaign he runs (its gold colored this time), and he spares no expense for travel. He also somehow manages to be there to catch a falling child from a burning building, or to sweep an endangered elderly woman from being hit by a runaway carriage, or to stop a burglar from swiping a young woman's coinpurse. He's everything that Shaiyl hates in life, and the two argue constantly throughout their adventure. His arrogance, vanity, and flashy grin just adds further strain. But, he IS the Hero, and the group's leader, so what he says goes. Sometimes. But underneath all that glit and glamor is a rather unsure person who's a lot deeper than the gold plating hints at.
POWER: Rare Primary gift of Fire (a hereditary trait of the Farscade royal line)
3. Shaiyl Diblo
Move over princes and kings, there's a new boss coming to town. Well, there will be soon, once Shaiyl can figure out how those blasted heroes keep tossing down her towers and budding empires. Sarcastic, proud, argumentative, violent, and temperamental, Shaiyl is never one to hold back her opinion on anything. Ironically, she often ends up one of the voice of reason (even if put sardonically). She's seen enough heroes rise up to overthrow her to know something about what to do and what not to do from a heroic standpoint. One day she finally has enough of it and latches onto what looks to her to be a young up-and-coming hero, intent on writing a journal about his progress and finding the weak link in the heroic cycle. Now if only that peacock of a prince will leave her alone, she can do her research. Gah she hates people like him. But that Barc boy; he's got the heroic potential, and isn't nearly so irritating. Yet. But his career's in early days yet.
POWER: Rare Primary gift of Fire (and plain redundant, in Glade's point of view)
4. Barc Bladeborne
If Shaiyl can be called the Leading Lady of the story (even if she is a villainess), then Barc's got Leading Man (despite what Glade might think). Sometimes replacing Shaiyl as the viewpoint character, Barc's the every-man to Shaiyl's crazy opinions. Where she might bring a voice of reason to the party, Barc's got just plain common sense. Brought up by family to be everything a decent man should be, he doesn't like to make assumptions about people, and insists on seeing the good in Shaiyl even when she insists she's a baddie through and through. Despite this, he does have his opinions on the folly or otherwise of others, but he often keeps them to himself. Its him that acts as the group's glue, often pointing out solutions when others get argumentative or confused. Not much angers him, although exasperated might be a good word for the mood the antics of his group frequently puts him in. His capabilities with a bow are second to few, and can swing a sword with the better of them. When Shaiyl first bumped into him, he was on a hunting trip that had taken him a little off the beaten path. Being new to the hero business, he looks up to Glade and is often awed by the things they see and do on their quest.
POWER: Rare Primary gift of Wind
5. Matilda Honninbrew
Rather tall for her mining tribesmen (they are NOT dwarves, they just all have dwarfism; they can fit in the small tunnels better that way), Matilda is the group surrogate mother. Widowed a few years ago, she latches onto the group and treats them as her replacement family, making sure they all eat well by acting as the fellowship cook. And boy can she ever cook; even Glade hasn't eaten such tasty food at his fancy palace. She's a bit of a gossip, and tends to ramble from one subject to another, so the fellowship has no shortage of stories, anecdotes, or rumors to hear while they travel. She's also somewhat opinionated, so don't step out of line around her or you'll get an earful. Her husband was a blacksmith and taught her a lot of the trade, so she surprises people by being able to wield a hammer, and not just in crafting; she can be right deadly with one. She's easily the strongest member of the group by far, a fact which embarrasses Glade more than any other. Being in her late fourties, she's also probably most world-wise of the cast, and can read people better than they'd like to be read.
POWER: Rare Primary gift of Earth
6. Prince Simutem Hetep
Glade really doubts that this stick-and-bones bardic wanna-be is a prince at all, but there's no arguing with his mother, the Queen of Imut, who dumps her third son on the group in hopes that they can make a man out of him and get him out of his darkly lit palace wing. Taking position as the group pessimist, Simutem is glum, cowardly, and humorously glass-half-empty. His flatline sarcasm and capability of pointing out the worst possible solutions have been a source of anxiety for his family, and hopefully going out into the great world beyond might brighten his mood some. Perhaps if he hadn't rescued that Sprite a few years back, he'd be allowed to mope and get it all out of his system. At least he can write some morose poetry and pluck a few sad tunes on his lute to vent his inner drama. Oh, and has he mentioned how much he HATES his elemental gift?
POWER: Secondary gift of Light (a sometimes hereditary power of the Hetep family dynasty), and another reason why Glade doesn't think he belongs in the party. What kind of fellowship member has a SECONDARY power? What on earth can light do?
7. Spix the Sprite
Simutem's (Or Simmy, as she calls him) eternal companion and pest problem, Spix is happy, bubbly, optimistic, hyper, and a trickster through and through. Its unclear to the rest of the group if she's following him because she considers him a friend, or if she's trying to annoy him. But whenever he's managing to pull off a wonderfully dour mood, she always tries to find the bright side for him in her simple manner, much to his further annoyance. Like all Sprites, she's childish, refers to herself in third person, and has an impish manner about her. Unlike other Sprites, she doesn't so much shun prolonged human contact, since for some reason she's latched onto Simmy (again, is it just because he's so much fun to bug, or what?) She is an Ivy Sprite, and wears clothes made from the ivy leaves she grows. She sort of acts like a pet parrot for Simmy, if parrots were sentient and undermined one for kicks.
POWER: Ability to control ivy plants, and carries around a few seeds to plant in case she needs a vine or two. Would be considered a Tertiary power if human/elf.
So that's my cast. I was supposed to draw the group Mentor, but since he's sort of a odd old (maybe?) man who frequently comes and goes without warning, method, or reason, the group really isn't sure if he's an actual member of the fellowship or not anyways.
Art was a quick sketch that was supposed to be colored quicker, with no shading, but I reeeeally got obsessed. SIGH. What should have taken maybe a day of on-off work ended up spanning half a week. I need to figure out Clip Studio Paint; maybe I can work faster on that than in Photoshop.
Background done using a variety of Photoshop brushes set at different opacities; I just experimented and this is what came out. Oh well, it works.