I’ve been experiencing general burnout with work over the last six months, but the show must go on.  I decided to just stick to a daily routine of writing 500 words a day and when the demo’s done, the demo’s done.  I’ve written a handful of the post-demo scenes and just need to edit/test five of the seven demo chapters.

I expend 110% of my energy at my job and I don’t want to double burn out by giving myself too many expectations outside of work. But I also want this to be a thing that happens. So if I can get the rough draft out on dashingdon before the end of next weekend (9/15), I will be very happy.

Here are some rough sketches and mood boards for the villains of “brindle.”


Still Kicking

After being sick for a couple of weeks and switching into “gotta mentally prepare to cover all of my coworker’s work on top of my work for 2-3 weeks” mode, I didn’t have any creative energy left at the end of the day.

Here’s a small bit of a f!Cav scene.

Ehud Neuhaus, Unsplashed

I already knew from experience that I could crush Cavrielle in battle without breaking a sweat. There was really no need to size up the competition. Yet, I found myself drawn to the airy sound of cheerful humming echoing through the halls.

Maybe it was curiosity. The silly knight wouldn’t be able to remember my face or voice, all thanks to Lachi’s skill in enchantment. But she was so optimistic! I was starting to believe that she couldn’t remember the humiliation of being defeated by me, the infamous Breedle the Crusher. Surely I had left a small blemish on her sunny disposition. Maybe if she opened up to her new pal Brindle, I would be able to uncover it.

Or maybe it was annoyance. After all, tricking her was the final scam I ran with Lachi. Before Lachi left…before…she betrayed me. There was no way I could accept that Cavrielle could be unscathed. Not if I wasn’t. Not after what I’d been through. There is no way that I’d be that easily forgotten.

Either way, I found Cavrielle poking around in the pantry. I leaned against the door frame, silently observing her. The knight’s face was scrunched up deep in thought as she compared the labels of two bottles of spices. Her intense contemplation didn’t seem to interfere with her humming, her fluffy orange hair bouncing as she bobbed her head a bit to the beat.

A jar of preserved peppers caught her eye.  Evidently proud of her discovery, her humming grew brighter as she returned the bottles of spices back to the shelf and reached for the jar.

I cleared my throat.


The Trial- Guide

I’ve been sick for a week 😦

The last scene in the demo will involve the PC preparing for the trial, which is a friendly competition to prove that they are worthy of being the Mark of Jorino. During the trial, the PC will have to face both Cavriel/Cavrielle (the Other Chosen One) and Jarich/Jarrah (the Dark Rituals Inspector) in the arena to test their combat skills.

You will have a chance to train with two characters to prep for the trial. Depending on your background you may unlock a special scene:

The Ex-Militia Dancer: Engage in a dance-off with Jarich/Jarrah.

The Shadowsweeper: Marls has a special edgy present for you.

The Exiled Knight: Suna/Solaris teaches you about dangerous plants (aka which plants to grind up and blow into the eyes of your opponent)

The Grinder: Elith/Elodie teaches you some warped offensive spells

The Bardspawn: Cav baked you cookies?

The Seer: Cav’s enchanted dagger wants to be your new best friend.

Each character has a regular scene too:

Jarich/Jarrah: Combat training

Marls: Runes

Suna/Solaris: Weight training/punching trees

Elith/Elodie: Psychological warfare

Cav: Friendship!

Weekly Status Update (1-13-19)

Current Demo Word Count- ~24K/ Demo Word Count Goal- 25K- 30K

Current Status: The demo will include 11 scenes.

  • The Wanted Poster – Character Creator
  • Rescue the Ambassador!
  • Captured by Bounty Hunters
  • The Academy – The Benefactor
  • The Academy- Sometime Later
  • Dream #1 An Old Foe/An Old Friend
  • The Journey Begins
  • The Tavern
  • The Trial- Arrival
  • The Trial- Prep
  • Dream #2 A sky full of waves/ A sea full of stars

2/11 scenes completed. 7/11 scenes almost complete- need revising. 2/11 scenes need to be written. Prologue variables are complete.

Goal: All scenes written by 1/20. Revisions and beta testing done by 1/27. Demo release 2/1

yellow flower near pillars
Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash
  • Decorative skulls that go “ooOOOh.”
  • All romanceable characters will appear in the demo
  • Customize your scoundrel:
    • Select a name, a past alias, and a current alias
    • Choose from human, elf, orc, half-orc, half-elf, Plithodonion (Amphibious swampfolk that get a little bioluminescent when nervous) or Kovian (mountain-living folks with goat eyes and horns)
    • Choose gender and orientation
  • Create a backstory:
    • A former member of the militia with a passion for interpretative dance
    • A shadowsweeper from the forests of Lemente who was raised by shadowbeasts
    • A humble adventurer with a burning hatred for bards
    • A former thief with a knack for prophetic visions
    • A knight who was banished after failing to protect their kingdom
    • A dungeon grinder who always wanted a shot at being a mighty hero


Character Intros: The Other Chosen One


Old Character Art

Name: Cavriel (M)/ Cavrielle (F)

Alias: Melano Lukas

Race: Human

Physical Description: Cav surely looks the part of a courageous warrior as they are a total beefcake with beautiful flowing orange hair. It’s really a shame that Cav is so clumsy. Likes to wear really shiny armor with a cool cape (although sometimes they end up tripping on the cool cape or the cape gets stuck on some branches or someone else steps on their cape by “accident”). Is almost always smiling. Tries their best. Oh man, do they always try their best.

Personality: Cav is not the sharpest brick in the shed. For what they lack in street smarts, they make up in diligence, patience, and hard work. Just wants to be everybody’s best friend and cares a lot for the people around them. Also not the best bard, but trying their hardest to improve. Cav is definitely a hopeless romantic and optimist.

Character Inspo Spotify Playlist

Likes: Their best friend Juniper (the really cool enchanted blade who talks to them), everyone that they are traveling with, DELIVERING THE SWIFT AND DECISIVE STRIKE OF JUSTICE TO THEIR FOES, TALKING LIKE THIS AND USING WORDS LIKE ‘SWIFT” AND “JUSTICE,” cookies, heroic posturing, singing, the Knights of Jorino.

Dislikes: Tripping over things, tripping over people, when the bad guy gets away, tripping over animals, walking into things, walking into people, walking into animals, weird dreams.

Character Intros: The Dark Rituals Inspector

Old Character Art

Name: Jarich (M)/Jarrah (F) of the Merusine

Alias: “Inspector Spooky Times” (Elith/Elodie, probably)

Race: Plithodonian

Physical Description: Jar has jet black sclera and pupils, bluish-gray skin, and bluish/purplish (and fantastic) hair. Standing at just under six feet tall, it’s no wonder that others find Jar a bit intimidating. Their hair always looks a bit damp (not because Jar is nervous because Jar is always nervous) and can glow a bit in the dark- cool Plithodonian facts. Jar likes to wear dark colors and hide away in corners behind tall potted plants to avoid frivolous small talk.

Personality: Jar is most comfortable when they are alone and comes off as aloof or condescending in social situations (especially since no one likes to have their ritual audited, pfft auditors, am I right?). Jar is completely dedicated to their job; however, they are still reeling from being sabotaged by a former coworker and friend which nearly cost them their career. Has a bit of a competitive streak.

Character Inspo Spotify Playlist

Likes: Regulations that don’t leave a lot of grey area, Cillian (the world’s best intern), the calm between inspections, rain, finding cheap office supplies with cute patterns, creating process flow charts, a good duel.

Dislikes: Elith/Elodie, small talk, mandatory office parties, sloppy sigils, traveling to locations with dry climates, their ex-friend who betrayed them, uncertainties about their career, being told to get a hobby, being told that their face is going to get stuck like that if they keep scowling, hot summers.

Character Intros: The Cleric

Old Character Art

Name: Elith (M)/ Elodie (F)

Alias: “Not You Again”

Race: Human

Physical Description: The first thing you’ll notice about El is that they look like a combination of tired (which is remarkable for a person who sleeps so much) and bored. El has gray eyes, medium length black hair, and their face is covered in freckles (just like their mother Iris Sabine). Wears the gold and white robes of the Clerics of the Gilded Dawn. Always leaning against something or standing a bit slouched.

Personality: While assisting their mother at the academy, El is absolutely professional and courteous. Otherwise, they are a fairly cold and snide individual. With the exception of their mother, Marls and the PC, El avoids the others unless they have some kind of mischief planned. Has mastered a rare form of healing in which they draw power from their dreams, and uses that as an excuse to take frequent naps.

Character Inspo Spotify Playlist

Likes: When others find them off-putting, making situations awkward, sleeping, napping, MOM, cool weather, pranks and other forms of acceptable mischief (often at the expense of Solaris/Suna or Cavriel/Cavrielle), finding excuses to shirk responsibility.

Dislikes: Meddlers (JARICH/JARRAH), extremely hot or cold weather, the responsibilities involved with being associated with Rollis-Maven Academy and the Gilded Dawn (not being able to live their life and do their own thing).

Character Intros: The Bounty Hunter

Old Character Art

Name: Marlowe (M)/Marlena (F)

Alias: Marls

Race: Elven

Physical Description:  Marls is relatively short (about 5’4) with pointed ears, orange eyes, and wavy reddish hair. Although Marls is a beloved celebrity in Hervos, they like to keep a low profile. After all, it’s quite difficult to sneak up and apprehend a bad guy if you’re surrounded by cheering fans. Marls prefers practical lowkey clothing but likes to add their own artistic touch (like a floral headband). Probably the strongest character in the group (all thanks to a century of hardcore bounty hunter training).

Personality: As the most famous bounty hunter and top magical scholar (focusing on forgotten languages), Marls is a very busy person. They like to unwind with their latest artistic endeavor (which is currently oil pastels). Sometimes they like to drag her bounty hunter partner Veerbis to the theatre. Very friendly and laid back with a great sense of humor. Can conjure really scary looking daggers. Definitely one of the most marvelous people you could ever hope to meet (unless your face found its way onto some “Wanted” posters somehow).

Character Inspo Spotify Playlist

Likes: Working out tricky conjugations in “dead” languages, arboreal geckos, jokes that end up being really bad puns, a good sunrise, having a great confidante like Veerbis, puppies, the smell of the forest after a good rain.

Dislikes: A certain ex-friend who betrayed them, selfish people who use or hurt other people, bandits, sometimes Elith/Elodie can be annoying.