Trade with who asked me to do a native American female fox. I wanted to put a little story to this, the vixen trades her fur with a raven for feathers which she will use for decorating herself and the raven will use the fur for making a nest.
Which, sadly, I'm too late for because I got lazy this week. DX
~~ "It's not devotion, Chin. I'm just not cruel enough to dump him here." The femgenet, Surabi, told her new friend. "Do you know how these hyenas treat a disowned melfur? No? Well, anyway, I don't have the heart to do that to him."
"You go to Ridan." Chin, a melmouse driven from his northern homeland by war, stumbled on the unfamiliar language. "Leave him there. It okay."
Surabi was impressed that he could speak her language as well as he did, knowing he had only learned it recently. He and his family had been displaced by a shadow-war in the northeast, just as Surabi and her husband Noro.
The hyena kingdom of Sarbok was filled to overflowing with strong, ambitious femfurs, the pride of their species. They were a masculine culture, raised on the desert grasslands, fond of war and bickering. It was only at times such as this, when war threatened them all, that the numerous matriarchs would band together.
They used the war refugees as cheap labor. Sometimes it was nearly slavery, but Surabi considered it preferable to dying in a war with no cause.
"He's too soft for this place. You're right about that, Chin." Surabi shrugged her spotted shoulders, scarcely covered by her summer clothing. She took a sip from her water jug and then balanced it atop her quernstone. "But Ridan's as deep in war as everywhere else. I can't go there. Besides, he tries to provide enough for me, even if we don't love eachother anymore. At least he's that strong."
Chin adjusted his mismatched clothing. He wore a shambles of local and foreign attire similar to many other refugees. That they sat in the dust only worsened his appearance. "When he gone, you get hyena? Real melfur."
Surabi shook her head, a joke bubbling to her lips. "If I wanted a manly hyena I'd go for the females." She laughed. In her enthusiasm she knocked over her sack of grain, spilling kernals into the powdery dust.
The melmouse blinked in confusion, obviously unable to separate the words of her quick speech. "Go for what?"
The femgenet made a motion with her golden handpaws as if brushing the question aside. "It was a very rude joke. Forget I said anything."
"Okay. Good." Chin nodded his whiskery snout as if understanding, though Surabi was certain he hadn't.
"Is it normal to be such a suckup where you come from?" The spotted femfur asked quickly, hoping to lead her companion into more heedless agreement.
The melmouse nodded vigorously. "Oh yes. Yes!"
Surabi chuckled. "I bet you're just trying to butter me up, get me into bed. Aren't you Chin?" This comment was only half joke. She had noticed that Chin always agreed with her when she spoke poorly of her husband and suspected he had an interest in the matter.
"Yes. Mhm!" Again the mouse lied, nodding as if understanding her fully. She patted him on the back heartily, her way of apologizing without telling him what she had done. He had been a good friend to her for weeks and didn't deserve such mockery.
She sat and turned her quernstone lazily. She fed a few kernels of wheat under her balanced water jug into the top and watched as they came out the edge of the stone as flour. She wetted her finger and stuck some of the powder to it.
She was surprised how good it tasted. It made her realize just how long it had been since she ate. Her husband would be hungry as well, but she had only ground a single cupful of flour. Not even enough for one of them.
She had been unproductive their entire stay in Sarbok. He was soft and would only chastise her lightly, then do the work himself. She saw no reason she should labor, she had power over him as long as they were in hyena lands.
If he were to displease her she could simply cast him away, make it known that he had displeased his wife. To the matriarchal hyenas that was a great shame. He'd be worse than homeless. They would refuse to help or hire him. He'd be left to his own strength, little as he had, and likely starve.
She knew she ought to feel bad for it, but work was tedious. Especially when one knew they didn't have to do it. It was better in her eyes to be able to relax, even if she was a burden on her husband. If she hadn't left him for someone wealthier she'd help once the war was over and they returned home.
There was a sudden shout halfway down the dusty makeshift road. A tall, broad femhyena was shouting something to a person hidden from view behind a tent. Her ornaments marked her as a person of some standing.
There was a shouted reply and, despite the distance, Surabi recognized Noro's voice. It was unlike her husband to yell. Something serious must have happened.
Genets are average in height and Noro was shorter than most, standing a full foot shorter than the large femfur he was arguing with, but as he moved into view it was plain by his stance that he was ready to fight her, even loaded down with grain as he was. She stood proudly, as if she didn't believe he would combat her.
She forcefully took his sack of grain, her greater strength making it an easy task. He snatched it back from her with surprising strength of his own. Instantly she stole it again, laughing at the small melfur. She turned and began to walk away, vainly ignoring his protests.
Moments later he struck the back of her head with his walking staff, dazing her. The blow was followed by several attacks to her legs which pained her so greatly that she fell to the ground and curled herself protectively.
The melgenet beat the thief repeatedly, bruising her and likely cracking several of her ribs. Only when a melhyena, apparently the femfur's mate, threw himself in the way, grovelling, did Noro stop.
The local tended to his beaten wife, helping her to stand and limp away slowly. The pair retreated in shame, beaten by a diminutive foreigner.
Noro took his heavy sack and tromped towards home and Surabi. The dark road was so dusty that even a single person created a trailing cloud. His face pulled tightly into several types of grimaces and glares, as if he was unsure how to feel.
A heavy, distinctive stench followed him like a swarm of flies. He had been forced to resort to the dirtiest labors to earn their food that day. That he had suffered she didn't doubt.
"Hello N--" She began to say in a steady voice, as if nothing had happened. It was an attempt to reassert her control over him. A hidden command to return to his quiet, submissive self.
"Where's dinner?" He demanded uncharacteristically, refusing to calm. He looked around their campsite, his flaming eyes stopping on the spilled wheat and single cup of flour. He spent his hours toiling for the grain which she didn't value enough to gather. Surabi averted her gaze, feeling a little real shame for her laziness.
"One cup!" He shouted so loudly the words must have hurt to utter. His face stretched in emotional pain. "Damn it woman! That's all you've done the whole day?"
Woman. A word from a nearly forgotten age. A derogotory reference for a femfur so strong that the hyena matriarchs punished those who used it. That her weak, puppetlike husband had called her a woman spoke more than a thousand words about his anger.
Chin, the melmouse, hissed in disapproval. "You no to talk her that way!"
Noro sent the mouse sprawling in the dust with a single kick to the stomach. The mouse was as much smaller than the melgenet as Noro was than the hyenas. The small melfur retched in pain.
"Get away..." Unappeased, Noro grabbed the stricken melfur by the back of his mismatched clothing and half threw, half shoved him out of their campsite. "...from my wife!"
He spun around, glaring at Surabi as Chin fled, still heaving and gasping for breath. "And you! You want me to provide for you? Be worth providing for! Or so help me..." He clenched his handpaws so tightly around his staff that she feared, for the first time, that he would strike her. "I'll leave you and put so much show into it that it won't matter you're a femfur, the hyenas won't want you!"
She bowed her head, averting her eyes in submission to his anger. She knew he meant it. Until he calmed there was nothing she could do but pretend to be apologetic.
It didn't please him. "I don't want your sorry looks and whimpering. I want flour and bread. Bread! I'm not wasting my life working with sewage so that I can do your job too."
He sighed heavily. His anger seeming to fly away with that breath. A serious calm flooded into him, settling his voice. He locked eyes with her. "Surabi. Grind the flour, or I won't earn the wheat."
She scooped handfuls of grain and fed them into the quern. Her handpaws moved quickly, rotating the stone and grinding the flour they both desired. He had meant those words. She must work for herself.
She had never expected that he would be willing to leave her. If she left him he would be a slave working for a pittance of grain to eat in the evening. She began to hate herself as she realized that she had already been forcing him to do just that.
He sat, eager to rest his weary legs. He took a long draught from their water jug, refusing to help. His posture, his actions a silent demand that she devote herself to him as he was devoted to her.
~~ Illustrated by . Who's nice to me and gives me pretty colored pictures!
Without the use of black, I've discovered that the possibilities doesn't become fewer, but bigger and more numerous, both while working, finishing and while watching the results. In stead of black, I've used a dark burned brown. It goes perfect with a neutral and warm background and undertone. In other cases, I will probably use a dark murky blue. This is probably clear as day for most of you x3, but for me, this is pleasent news in my progress.
Now to the character. This is Cane, You've probably seen him briefly in the comic as Haze's friend in the army. More exactly, he's the only reason Haze is still in the army. He doesn't have the same view of the world as Haze, but they're as close as friends can be and where Haze goes, Cane will follow. (As long as he's allowed) Cane will help his friends in all conditions, in all kind of weather and every day. He's a force to count on and he could possibly be a match even for Haze in a sparring competition. He respects and loves Haze as a friend and leader. His weapon of choice is the legionair's combat spear.
On this picture, Cane wears the common legionair's armour, with thee-linked shoulder plates, a black lackered steel plate armour and a protective skirt of scale-lamelle. He's armed with the one-hand longsword and a heavy dagger for extreme close combat or as a secundary weapon. With that said, I'm done presenting Cane! :3
EDIT: Better colours now. I think. Fuck do I know, I'm colour blind lol.
A stupid experiment. He turned out a bit too shepherd-like to my liking. The body was very pitbullish until I added the colours and they just magically made him look way too shepherdy. Goddamn uber dominant GSD colours.
EDIT: I added more detail to her mouth c: Well guys, meet Xala!<3 This had NO SKETCH BEFOREHAND. I drew it as I painted it owo ( im so proud ;A; ) I know her markings are not on here, but she will get a proper picture in a bit x3 Im gonna make a special effort to use her c: