So, you may be wondering why no new page this week. Well, I’m in the middle of moving. Finishing up, really. I thought that I’d be done with it all in time, and truth be told I managed to pack up my entire life and relocate it in about 3 days. However, unpacking and sorting through the riff-raff has proven to be far bigger a chore than I imagined it would. And with, Animazement this weekend, I just don’t have the time to get a properly finished page done. There will, however, be a new page next Tuesday, so minimal interruption to our story will occur.
In the meantime, I found some awesome drawings from half a decade ago amongst my papers when I moved. These drawings, and what turns out to be about a paragraph and a half of text give me a brief glimmer of an idea for a story I apparently had before I dreamt up Finder’s Keepers. This story was ominously given the working title of “Project Jericho” and followed a priest/hunter/mage apparently named Malcolm Connelly. This project never went very far at all, as all the notes and memories I have of it are brief world outlines rather than anything resembling plot. Malcolm apparently could see and interact with Angels and Demons who played their unknowable games for the souls and fate of humanity in a city somewhere in Europe that I had code-named “Wall.” Obviously I had just read Neil Gaiman’s Stardust and was using “Wall” as a placeholder to tell me how the city was a crossroads of the real world and a world beyond and was super important. I’d come up with a better name later.
I’m not sure what all the tattoos on Malcolm’s skin are. Possibly they are magic seals or circles necessary to work his magic. Perhaps they are brands. Perhaps they just look cool. I do seem to recall thinking that the elaborate ones across the twin scars running down his shoulder blades might be seals to bind his own angelic properties, having perhaps fallen from grace. Who knows? The girl Rachael, I think was supposed to more or less play the part of being a familiar face for the audience to connect with, but the story (whatever it was) was Malcolm’s and not her’s specificaly.
I remembered the drawings of Malcolm that I did. This man who is somehow a cross between the brothers from the Boondock Saints and Harry Dresden (though I had not read the Dresden Files at the time). And I remember thinking how he was kind of a prototypical Cardinal. Not Cardinal, but enough of the vague ideas that made up this man were ideas that went into the creation of Lord Cardinal, Aspect of the Primary Directions. But what shocked me was the drawings of Rachael and the creature. I had forgotten I had done those drawings. While Rachael doesn’t look particularly like Cailyn, there’s something very much like her in Rachael’s expressions I think. And then there’s the three words that were written next to the drawing of that creature:
Torment of Darkness
I mean, wow. A whole year before I had dreamt up the Umbra I had drawn them for a completely different project. And then forgotten I had ever done it! I know I’ve been obsessed with monsters made of shadow for a very very long time. I personally find the dark quite terrifying if I let my imagination contemplate what might be just out of sight. I have a very vivid imagination. Yet I had totally forgotten I had drawn this thing, this thing which is so very much like the Umbra.
It’s really amazing how you have ideas that lurk in the back of your head, desperate for a chance at getting out. And perhaps the first time is not the right venue. Perhaps they need to noodle around in your subconscious a bit longer before they become the awesome things that they are meant to be. I think this is super cool, and I wanted to share it with you guys.
I hope to see you at Animazement this weekend!