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SAN

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One of my latest illustrations / digital paintings / concept arts / character design studies, and the latest addition to the ALPHA-OMEGA SERIES
The ALPHA-OMEGA SERIES is a series of armors I've designed in collaboration witht :icontyphonian-apkallu:, named after letters of the greek alphabet, each of them has a special power, year of fabrication, developer and user in the universe of the IN LAK'ECH Mythos (from a yucatec mayan phrase meaning "I'm another you", the title of my original story project, previously titled "CUETZPALIN" - from the nahuatl "lizard". The story is yet in its initial stages of development, but I plan to release it as a series of comic books & graphic novels)

This armor is called SAN, after the archaic greek letter (that looked like a modern "m"), which was used as an alternative to Sigma for the sound of /s/.
Like the other armors from the series, some of its design is guided by the letter's design itself. In this case, other references from science fiction, comics & tokusatsu are also present (can you name them?) The "cape" is just a detail. And of course, the entire design & color scheme are an homage to an original character I created as a kid and recreated recently - here, here and here

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In case you're interested about its role in the IN LAK'ECH Mythos:
    In 2014, about four years afetr the disintegration of the private owned AXIS military Academy, an international private security agency & school once owned by different corporations, and supported by several governments worldwide, by being secretly tasked with the control (read it as extermination or repression) of any "demon" (different nonhuman sentient and "civilized" races kept in underground realms across the planet, where they performer slave labor in activities such as mining) who escaped from its intended underground perimeter, the Alpha Omega armors have been scattered to different owners, some have been stolen by organized crime, anti-UNA rebels, and the very enterprises that developed the armors' main components - those that give them super powers - were at the brink of self-destruction. One of the corporations behind it, the secret off-world SPECTRO Organization (directly involved in the development of "Digamma"), has taken advantage of the break between ABEL Inc. & Ulhaden corporation to collect several of the other armors.

    Acting through centuries on the planet, the SPECTRO Organization's owner himself has been indirectly involved with the development of every ALPHA-OMEGA armor since the very first Alpha, in 1971, and knows what "secret ingredient" comes into every new armor - pieces of dead individuals from biomechanic races - the Dzolob & the Aluxob - that inhabit the off-world planet of Sothis. These pieces have fallen to human hands through a mysterious provider later known as "Archimedes" - still not his real name -, who has made the heads of Germany-based Ulhaden & US-based ABEL corporations his exclusive clients, and through them, has expanded his views to several powers within the United Nations. Archimedes' actions, however, are well known to Spectro, despite unknown to one of Spectro's longtime clients - Tupaq, the eternal spirit of darkness, whose latest incarnation is the retired political leader of the Republic of Tahuantinsuyu, Tupaq Amaru III. Back when Tupaq ruled, the SPECTRO Organization used its secrecy to enhance the post-revolution Tahuantinsuyuan military (Tahuantinsuyu, named after the Inca Empire, is a State which expanded from Peru to Bolivia, Ecuador and northern Chile & Argentina, following series of revolts led by Tupaq himself - named after Inca rulers and later indigenous revolutionaries - who became its leader from 1979 up to 2000, when he was believed to have been killed. He returned 9 years later, and despite Tahuantinsuyu made amends and its way into the UN, including the INTERPOL, some privately owned death squads still try, to no avail, to hunt him down), involving some of the ALPHA-OMEGA on the way. Beta, the second armor, was sold by ABEL to the japanese military, but was stolen by a member of the japanese mafia who opposed the larger mafia, and exposed its ties with the government and military, before being reportedly captured and executed. What happened, however, is that he was abducted and admitted into the secret police of Tahuantinsuyu, not as Kenshiro Kumo, but now as Ichneumon - one of the four Mallki Cyborg generals. Assigned to the province of Chinchaysuyu, a.k.a the Northern Peruvian Coast, home to Tahuantinsuyu's new capital, the city of Moche (the previous capital was Lima), "Ichneumon" would later get his own squad, the "Insect Syndicate", that would initially operate in securing the capital's administrative region, and later become a secret agent for Tahuantinsuyu alongside his fellows.

The second member of the IS project was "Firefly", using a custiomized Omicron armor, introduced in July 2009. Firefly's identity is equally protected, but there were some AXIS agents back in the day who knew he's their ex-classmate Douglas Ryder, who has grown delusional of AXIS' bureaucracy and dependency of foreigner capital, a thought which brought him closer to his mentor, Dr. Howard Fang, who used to be AXIS staff from 1996 to 2006. After Fang's exit, he would work alongside Tahuantinsuyu's ministry of technological development & engineering, Choque Illa, and Tahuantinsuyu's president, Herrera Humala, and Ryder would leak major information from AXIS to Fang, who'd report it to Tahuantinsuyu. Between 2009 and 2014 much has changed, as the AXIS has been deactivated, the armors have been split, and the IS has so far collected ten armors and agents. The identity of each agent was protected, in a way they didn't even knew their fellows' identities (there were, however, attempts of investigation by one or another. Ryder, for example, knew Ichneumon is or at least used to be Kenshiro, before he began to call himself Ichneumon. The Wasp, ex-AXIS Nina Roux, also knew Ryder's identity and that of the Scorpion, the African American bio-engineer Jacob Mills). For the public, the Insect Syndicate was merely the shock troops of Chinchaysuyu's military police, or the private guards of its governors. For the INTERPOL and UNA, they were relatable elite soldiers used for political reasons. Some remnants of ABEL & Ulhaden corporations' heads claimed these held armors which they got through illegal means, but none had how to prove the IS' armors were the same as AXIS' Alpha Omega, because AXIS was a lost secret by now. Only people like Ryder and Roux knew those were the same. From behind, however, the Insect Syndicate didn't even necessarily served the Tahuantinsuyuan government, but rather the intergallactic corporation which made Tahuantinsuyu's ministry of technological development its own home, not to mention one of its many faces: the secret SPECTRO Organization.

    But by 2014 the Tahuantinsuyu was divided. Tupaq, who reassumed power for a short time starting in the last year, has been taken down by an internationally supported opposition not led, but strategically planned by Howard Fang, after he made a stunning discovery regarding Tupaq's true nature - how he is an immortal god whose ultimate goal is the obliteration of the universe of matter an energy - and how exactly Fang, among many others, were just giving him the means to achieve such goal. This discovery, alongside a series of betrayals within the political structure of Tahuantinsuyu, and the betrayal of powerful immortals directly associated to Tupaq, has led to the attempt of a coup in Tahuantinsuyu, and ultimately to the destruction of Tupaq's most prized Mobile mass devastation satellite, the "Topakhon Mobile II" which construction took the last two centuries, and was designed by Spectro himself, fit to be completed by the resources gathered through the efforts of Tredius' faithful working class - the same that Tupaq would "lead" during the revolution. The process by which Tupaq lost almost everything, including his power of "all-seeing" (or not "all", as he was unable to see the "traitors" coming at him) in the matter of months is quite complex, but in 2014 all that was already the past, and this god made man, this survivor didn't intend to return to politics - he may have lost his official position, but his sucessor, Choque Illa, made sure his longtime plans would prevail over the attempted disintegration of Tahuantinsuyu, and eventual return of Ecuador, Bolivia and northern Chile & Argentina's "sovereignty" (read this as "servitude to global capital", "degradation of public services", "neocolonialism", "poverty" and so on), even though Tahuantinsuyu would have to pay something for the cost of its war on the Amazonian border. Brazil served as a playground for mostly american, british and israeli troops, and while in the beginning of the conflicts Russia supported Tahuantinsuyu, alongside Venezuela, some of its troops have turned their backs - as soon as its prime minister found out Tahuantinsuyu's undeniable link to the secret SPECTRO Organization, thanks to information leaked by Fang. Fang used to be regarded as an enemy of the ABEL Inc in different moments - first in the eighties, when his gravity-warping inventions outmatched ABEL's first Alpha-Omega models, then in the early nineties, when he economically supported the public funds for technological development (which ranged from transport to energy, from energy to communication and from communication to military equipment) in Tahuantinsuyu, and even when he worked for ABEL's partially owned AXIS academy, when some of his decisions conflicted with the staff - what motivated his exit ten years later, even after being crucial to the development of armors such as NI (Ulhaden), OMICRON (Ulhaden) & PI (Ulhaden). His time working with Ulhaden from 1996 to 2000 had him serving as a bridge between the "post-USSR Russia" and Tahuantinsuyu, while his time at AXIS for six years has also granted the institution with generations worthy recruits, but following 2006 he'd leave for Tahuantinsuyu. Fang's intentions were uncovering the secrets of the Darr hidden element for his own purpose of becoming the world's top engineer and human being - Fang firmly believed the worthiness of one's lives is one's capability not to specialize on one thing, but to be able of working with several, the same ideal of polytechnicalism shared by some industrialists. With the properties of Darr, which he learned while attending at a secret project of military technology development from USSR-era Belarus in the late seventies, Fang has "leaked" some information from there as his inventions, and was brought to the attention of competing alien scientists: Spectro, who was hidden in Tahuantinsuyu's underground, and Blar'Hazix, who was hiding as an USSR official, and who'd later become an influential Russian politician. Fang's story would put him also close to Tupaq, the revolutionary whose vast knowledhe and survival skills were seen by Fang as marks of a truly polytechnical individual. It was some kind of loss to see how Tupaq didn't care for life, and was using all the technological knowledge of Spectro to destroy the planet - by sucking its core from inside out, with the help of a mobile station that used to be an ancient city, that was teleported and buried beneath the Death Valley some time in the 20th Century, during an episode of "Terraforming" forgotten by history - or the universe itself, by accelerating the rate of division of matter & energy through the Dark Phantom Energy, while destroying entire galaxies with a mobile Black Hole, that also served as an infinite source of energy and habitation to the chosen few who would make it to the very end. Fang has demonstrated his intentions while in the council of technological development sometime in 2012, what alarmed Spectro about the existence of a conspiracy against Tupaq within several sectors of Tahuantinsuyu and his very organization - supported by outsider and insiders, one of them an individual who used to be Tupaq's right hand, but after this would lose this position - to SPECTRO.

    Fang's attempted coup, which would send the nations of Tahuantinsuyu rocketing into the dated neocolonial policies common among latin american countries for the sake of the ascension of a small privileged class of politicians and allies, has failed as Tupaq has wiped him from the face of the earth, but the civil war which broke on several cities across Tahuantinsuyu, as well the persecution of some Saqraruna (Tupaq's secret agents, based in Tahuantinsuyu, Belarus and Russia, remnants of a secret order of dark sorcerers & warlocks) and the offensive of the US military into Tahuantinsuyuan territory, heightening the support of INTERPOL to the enemy, has prevented Tupaq from seeing clearer after his mistakes. Once again, the god turned man has relied on his new right hand, Spectro, who developed for him an armor designed after the Mallki cyborg general of Antisuyu, the "Inca Cyborg" Pachakuti, who was reputedly designed after the mummy of the father of Tupaq's previous human body (the 15th Century Inca ruler Tupaq Yupanqui). Thus was born the latest of the "Alpha Omega armors", the SAN.

Year of development: 2014
Created by: SPECTRO Organization
Power: the sum of the powers of Eta, Theta, Iota, Ni, Omicron and Pi armors.
Current user: Tupaq Amaru III

EPILOGUE
    Even after the conflicts in Tahuantinsuyu's major cities have stopped, the Saqraruna were free, ABEL Inc closed its doors, and its resources were shared by many more enterprises, it wasn't enough for Tupaq to live the rest of his life in his well earned rest, for him, if he should rest it should be after all other beings have already rested in the absolute darkness. He should be the last to die, he should be darkness itself, as he had (always?) been. With his right hand, Spectro (who knew a lot about his enemies, perhaps even more than Tupaq cared to know), Tupaq planned to regain his powers, and he just realized how he could do it - the hidden elements were the key. As his journey to reclaim his lost powers, or rather to grow some new, continued, secrets about his past and "his brothers", especially their lies, have been made clear. For Tupaq, there's no "redemption" - despite this irreversible solipsist is seen by an awfully huge lot of people as "a born leader", a "saviour", a "peoples' hero", all he want is to rule, until the very end. And he mean to bring it with him
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I've always love artworks with backstory in them.