Yet again, another long time in between journals. I was planning on doing a new one at the beginning of this week but I got distracted and it got put off. So better late than never. Sorry again for seemingly vanishing off the face of the internet for a month and for not much new art or new Demordicai Diamonds pages. I've been having to deal with a combination of family drama, financial problems (worse than the usually grim finances), and on top of that, a bad case of art block.
For the past several, I've been trying to deal with some nasty art block. I don't know what's up but my art mojo just feels really drained. I managed to color a few sketches this month but besides a few other sketches I have yet to color, I haven't been able to produce much of anything. The next page of Demordicai Diamonds, which I thought was going to be a quick and easy one considering it's a one-panel page, has been giving me a heck of a lot of trouble and I've had to restart the drawing process on it several times. Ugh, it hasn't been wanting to come to be and Rune and Dalken just won't cooperate with me on the paper. I took a break from attempting art at all this week and decided to focus on working with Professor Awesome on the story of Demordicai Diamonds from where we are currently at with planning. Crafting the story is by far the funnest part of making Demordicai Diamonds and it's been a while since we've taken the time to continue the story further. The comic is so ridiculously far behind and getting even farther still. To put things in a better comparison, the comic has documented less than a full 24 hours of time in the world following Dalken and Rune around. Story-wise, there is more than 2 years chock full of days of time following Dalken and Rune around with no time skipped. This week so far of work on the story has added almost another week to the mountain of story that has yet to be made into comic. I suppose I can share some of it, nothing SUPER important to the main story plotlines but if you don't like spoilers of any sort then stop reading now even though I'll probably die of old age long before the comic gets this far at the current rate.
So currently, Dalken, Rune and assorted friends have taken up winter quarters in Dalken's homeland high in the Rahmspine mountains. As if winter isn't already cold enough, it's even colder up in the mountains but the drakunes that have lived and mined there for centuries have sturdy and warm shelters in the clifftop mining towns which are currently under the rule of the High Priestess Delilah, one of Dalken's younger and noticeably taller sisters. Despite the added harshness of the environment, what it lacks in warmth outside it more than makes up for in safety. Nestled in between feuding countries isn't a good thing either but being high up and hard to get to (especially if you have no wings) makes it much safer than the lands below for those that have reason to be wary.
In recent times, Dalken and his family (well, much more Dalken's family than Dalken himself who is somewhat sorta ostracized) have been dealing with a recent mine collapsed. Rumors of sabotage are spreading throughout the populace and the temple and speculations of sorcery playing a role are growing. In the meanwhile, the current and hopefully temporary ikeeri population is bored sick and is getting together to throw a festival despite the winter cold. All sorts of preparatory tasks have been taken up by various folk. Some are contributing with cooking, with decorating, with cleaning, with "wine tasting"/getting prematurely drunk, and with other tasks. The drakune priestesses of the temple pay little heed to the festive planning as they mainly focus their attention more on the mines and what aftermath of the collapse.
One task in particular that needed done for the festival preparations was one that came as a bit of a surprise. Turns out the majority of people that live in the Rahmspine mountains are terrible musicians and should rightly feel very bad about that. So Rune decides to take up the job and descend into the lands below to search for some musicians. Specifically and minimally, one muscian who specializes in a string instrument, one in a woodwind instrument, and one in a percussion instrument. Should Rune fail in her epic quest, many people will have only the dreadful sounds of chewing, drinking, and/or vomiting to boost their spirits during the days of festivity. A tragic fate indeed.
For once in a long time, Rune goes on quest all by her lonesome and the title of "shut-in" doesn't quite fit so much. Some folk just don't understand why Rune would rather stay safe in a warm town, with warm-hearted friends, with warm food and drink, than wander the lands looking for new and unique ways of possibly dying and/or having a generally bad time. For some reason, some residents just expect Rune to not mind at all and have to worries or fears or any other cause for hesitation when it comes to dealing with the undead, dragons, various and often hungry beasts, villainous thieves and highwaymen, corrupt persons of particular powers, nefarious nobles, necromancer mimes and their necromancer jester cousins, savage tribes of darkri, creepy fanclub members (not to be confused with the delightful fanclub members), assassins, excessively smelly people who are oblivious to just how horrid their smell is, and other vile horrors that lurk in shadows of the world and in public restrooms. But even Rune gets cabin fever and wants to be helpful and get a little taste of adventure. And this time in peace without Dalken heckling her.
Just having herself and her stuffed traveling pack to travel with, Rune descends down the mountain and starts her journey. Lucky for Rune, she is one of two ikeeri residents on the mountain who grow a thick and extra fluffy fur coat in the winter time though her color stays a depressing little cloud shade of gray (not to be confused with the book that features 50 shades of the color in particular that is currently being read by an equally particular tavernkeeper). Unlike other jealous and envious people who refuse to be in any sledding competition with Rune participating, Rune has an easy and fun time descending down the mountain into the lands below and passes the burnt remains of another township she had residence in for a few months previously. Of course Rune takes a little bit of time to wander around the ruins and stops at the little house she lived in for a time. It is burnt but still stands badly damaged, making it one of the few buildings that can still be considered a building. Golden Meadows, now Somewhat Formerly Bloody Meadows, is just empty and haunting. Could have been worse, other towns nearby has suffered much more grislier fates.
The weather is fair, cold but clear as Rune makes her way down the path. The snow starts to clear off the path due to frequent use as she gets closer and closer to more well-traveled stretches of road. She hasn't even begun to break into the provisions Juna packed for her. In Rune's semi-rushed departure, Rune only now realizes she has almost no idea of just what Juna supplied her with in her traveller's pack. It may have been best that Rune pack herself but sometimes it can be a good thing to be considerate of others who may worry about you and let them pack for you so they can rest assured that at least you'll be prepared. It seemed like sound logic at the time but Rune doesn't really care too much at the moment, Juna is at least a good cook and has a better mind about her than Dalken.
And so Rune travels and stuff happens. The End. Nah, I'm just getting tired of sitting here at 3:00 AM typing for a few hours and I don't want to delay a new journal any longer. If anyone is interested, I'll continue a bit further with a very rough description of the newest bits of story me and Professor Awesome are currently adding to Demordicai Diamonds. Also, expect next journal, probably soon-ish, to have more details on other stuff going on with my life including: Zuko (my cat) has a tooth problem and won't eat, my parents' negligence on bills (even ones they can afford), my brother trying to get my dad to cosign on a $25,000 loan for a crappy flood-prone house that will SUPER COLEGATE BUTTFUCK my family's already horrible financial situation...and my dad is considering doing it too, other stupid drama and crap, not enough food to eat, and some other job news that may be hopeful but at the same time is starting to have the silver lining that I thought that might be there vanish. So yeah, fun stuff for me to vent about. And that's not even getting into politics!
Oh, I do have some more fun things to discuss like worldbuilding stuff, the Demordicai Diamonds variant of Dungeons&Dragons, and some other world design stuff. There are a few things that I'd like to hear some input on when it comes to world design and other design stuff if anyone would like to share their thoughts but that's for next journal. I'm tired, good night for now internet.