[Art] Art Fight

Two floofy dragons! I loved these guys, they were so fun. There should be more floofy dragons.

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Lung Weiro – AcidaPluvia

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Noodle – KillerTink99

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[Story] Flight Rising – Father’s Day

[[ I’d hoped my Hugo POP would be done today but it didn’t happen so uh, here’s my two dragon clan leaders becoming fathers. ]]

“What is that?” Wintermoon hissed, craning his slender neck for a better view of the object that rested between the Imperial’s forepaws. “It looks like an egg. It had better not be an egg.”

Haldir drew the egg — for it was in fact, an egg — closer within the speckled coils of his long body. “I found it,” he explained. “I couldn’t very well just leave it out there alone in the snow.”

The Skydancer’s eyes narrowed and his delicate muzzle pulled back into a snarl of distaste. “That’s exactly what you should have done! It’s not our–”

“Not our problem. But it is, because I found it here, in our borders. That means we need to take care of it.”

The feathers along Wintermoon’s crest raised in irritation, which Haldir knew wasn’t a good sign. He gently nudged the Skydancer’s side with his muzzle in an attempt to cheer him. “Come on… it’ll be cute.”

“Hrmph,” Wintermoon grumbled. “Babies aren’t cute. They’re needy. And loud.”

Haldir regarded the egg again, propped between his large forepaws. It was big — likely from a Guardian or perhaps even an Imperial. Wintermoon had seen both nesting in the wooded hills, but whoever had laid this egg hadn’t bothered to tuck it safely into a nest. Or worse, something might have happened to them. Worry tugged at Haldir’s heart at the thought of this — had she died knowing that her egg was unguarded? He had a duty — they both had a duty — to see the baby cared for safely. “I’ll feed it,” Haldir chirped. “And play with it.”

“And clean up its messes, I presume.”

Haldir nodded eagerly, though he was certain that Wintermoon would be won over by whatever sort of baby poked its nose out of the shell once it hatched. He liked to act cold and stubborn, but Haldir knew that persistence would eventually win out. “Besides… I always wanted to have an egg.”

Wintermoon’s head feathers raised and he regarded Haldir with an odd look.

“I mean… we can’t the usual way, so maybe this was — you know — meant to happen.”

The Skydancer took a cautious step forward and sniffed at the egg. Its shell was a thick layer of crystalline ice, cold to the touch yet it did not melt. The edges were faceted, like a crystal, and the thick layers of ice concealed and protected the growing baby dragon that slumbered within. No more than its silhouette could be discerned, but even that was enough to light Haldir’s imagination afire.

“What should we name him? Or her.”

“Hrmph,” Wintermoon said again, settling back onto his slender haunches. “I never agreed to this.”

“We can teach him how to hunt and fly and help patrol the borders. Or her.” Haldir thought he felt the egg tremble at the sound of his voice, or maybe it was just his imagination. But had a crack formed along one of the sides? “I think it’s moving.”

“What? No. Put it back in.” Wintermoon glanced desperately around their lair. Haldir wasn’t sure what he was looking for.

The egg rolled abruptly onto its side and Haldir heard another crack, like the sound of the spring thaw on the frozen lake. “It’s hatching!” cried Haldir, his eyes wide with wonder.

Wintermoon’s protests quieted and perhaps he, too, was taken in by curiosity as the baby dragon worked its way out of its shell. They saw a snout first, then the pale blue front paws — Haldir trembled excitedly, but he knew the baby had to do this alone. It was its first test of many that were to come. Wintermoon’s outlook was sometimes bleak, but Haldir knew that it was realistic. Not everyone who came to these frigid lands survived, though Haldir did his best to help. It was simply the way of things.

A tiny Imperial hatchling rolled out of the shell, kicking the remnants away with its hind legs. It was a stunning shade of pale blue, its eyes bright and clear and fixed onto Wintermoon. It opened its little mouth and uttered a chirp, about the cutest thing that Haldir had ever heard. He hurried forward and curled himself around the new hatchling, brushing away the pieces of shell.

“He’s perfect,” Haldir said, wondering at the tiny horns and tiny claws and little belly.

Wintermoon’s expression was difficult to discern, as it usually was, but Haldir was certain that the Skydancer was smiling. At least a little.

 

[Art] Ice Dragons

Two more Ice dragons!

I did primer on the POPs, and my baby kits arrived today so I can start on those soon too.

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[Art] Ice Dragons

Two more Ice dragons. Slowly working my way through all of them.

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[Art] Ice Dragons – Fala

I’ve got a bunch of new Ice dragons since the last time I drew, so I figured I should start drawing them too. This one is named Fala! You can’t really see the wind on a white background though.

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[Story/Art] Character of the Week – Auryanne

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[[ This week’s character is Auryanne the sun dragon. She has actually had three incarnations: I originally created her as a character in a D&D game in high school. As the rest of the party were very powerful high-level characters, she was allowed to be a gold dragon who assumed a human form. Then, for many years she became a sort of personal avatar for online and drawings. This is how she appears in the drawing on this post — she is a cross between a traditional western dragon and an eastern style dragon, and is allied to the sun. Lastly, she became the avatar of the sun god in Ka’arthadia, my fantasy setting. That is the version I decided to write about! ]]

“Look, Sacha, she’s coming.” The little kiraal, scarcely old enough to walk on her own, squinted skyward. In one hand she clutched a brightly colored pinwheel, tied with ribbons that fluttered in the warm summer breeze. Their little market was crowded with people, all dressed in white and gold in celebration of the festival. The delicious smells tickled Sacha’s nose — roasted meat, sun-warmed citrus fruits, and sweet fried dough. As the hour approached noon, the brightest point of the longest day, every face turned skyward for a glimpse of her — Auryanne, exalted of Aurilahn.

Sacha had a book which showed a picture of the dragon, her lithe sinuous form wrapped in scales of purest gold. Her shining coils, wrapped around one another, formed the sun, her eyes bright and gentle. This was the first year that she was old enough to go to the festival and see her — really see her, not just in a book. She’d been counting the days for weeks, and now it was about to happen.

A rush of air announced the dragon’s arrival, then her shadow briefly eclipsed the village below, racing over the tents and buildings as she soared overhead. Sacha couldn’t even breathe, so taken was she by the size and majesty of what she was seeing. She didn’t know something so big could even exist in the world, her massive leathered wings outstretched nearly covered their entire village. Then, just as quickly, she was gone, her gleaming form receding into the horizon. The villagers cheered and shouted, waving their banners and ribbons, but Sacha continued to watch the dragon as it flew further away. One day, she vowed, she would become a priestess and her warmth would bless her every day, not just during the summer festival.

High Priestess Sacha lay a hand carefully on the resting dragon’s side. Each overlapping scale was larger than her hand, with the appearance of perfectly burnished gold, the edges fading to brilliant white. A gentle warmth emanated from her enormous body, coiled in and around itself as she rested. At Sacha’s touch, the skin beneath the scales flinched and shuddered slightly. “What troubles you, Empress?”

The dragon’s head lay behind her on the cool floor of the temple, and the eyes slowly blinked their double eyelids to regard Sacha.

“Forgive my asking,” Sacha said, lowering her gaze. “But I thought–”

She spoke, her voice deep and rumbling as a distant storm, yet still gentle. Sacha thought she sounded like her mother’s voice just as she was at the edge of sleep — calming, and comforting. “I cannot hide anything from you, can I?”

Sacha smiled despite herself, and the dragon stretched, her head lifting from the floor to better see the priestess. “You are right. I worry about many things. I worry that my son will not be prepared to take my place when I am gone.”

There had been many meetings among the priests on that subject, many theories and papers Sacha had read attempting to explain the phenomenon. No dragon could bear young, but Auryanne had undergone the Concordance while egg-laden, and thus her unborn hatchling was ascended as well. Arakhet was young, brash, and impetuous, and while some of that was surely due to his age, it concerned many of the priests as well. Where his mother was serene, gentle, and soft, he was harsh and loud. His midnight black scales were tipped in gold, a bold visual contrast to his mother’s as well. Sacha did not wish to appease Auryanne with pleasantries, for the dragon would surely see through them. “Yes,” she confessed. “It troubles many of us as well. I can only hope that age tempers him.”

The great dragon exhaled a sigh, sending the banners fluttering. “Do you know of the situation in the south?” she asked Sacha.

“Not in detail,” said the kiraal. “I know only that the temple of Miraluna stands empty.”

“They scrabble and claw over each other like insects for the opportunity.” The dragon’s bright gaze was focused somewhere in the distance, far outside the temple. “I worry we may not yet have seen the end of it.”

Sacha turned an ear back, puzzled. “But the gods must choose. It doesn’t matter what the uhlkhem try.” At least, that is what she and all the other priests believed, had been recorded for centuries past. But a dragon’s knowledge was far greater than all of theirs; after all, she had lived it first-hand.

“The gods must choose, but that does not mean their hand cannot be forced. There are some among my kin who would stop at nothing to seize hold of the southern plains.”

The kiraal’s eyes widened with the realization of what the dragon was saying. Such an attack was unheard of, would surely escalate to warring among the dragons. “Please, say nothing of this to anyone,” the dragon rumbled, laying her head down upon the stone once more. “It is only the rambling of an old woman. Please, let me rest, Sacha.”

She nodded, bowing low before the dragon. “As you wish, Empress.” She hurried out of the chamber, her heart heavy with worry.

 

[Art] The Last Ice Dragons

With this batch, my art goal is complete! (At least until I get another Ice dragon.)

Trying to decide if I want to try to do an art shop, not sure if there’s a big demand for cute cartoon dragons.

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