On the wings of a dragon - Dekafox's excuse to post art


Fabulously Foxy Dragon
And now my somewhat traditional Halloween Argonian piece:


Given her gift for working with the dead, Speaks-With-Bones would sometimes find herself acting as an impromptu gravesinger during her travels. This was how she ended up with her Tamrielic name - learning the stories of the dead directly from the deceased, then freeing them to return to the Hist.
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Fabulously Foxy Dragon
Won a raffle and got another commission done for a character I'd long wanted to see done by that artist.

But first, the blep:

Finally, I'd always liked the dynamic and energetic style of Neotheta and this time around I actually had a character that would work well in her style. I love how it came out:


My Pathfinder wuxia cheetah warrior, finally demonstrating her connection to all 4 elements in an actual image, rather than just fire(which to be fair tends to be the default most associate with weapon magic).
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Fabulously Foxy Dragon
Actually got this one right before Halloween. Since I've been getting regular art of Speaks, I'd been wanting to get a good reference sheet for a while for her. Screenshots are great for getting any angle for reference, but they're horrible for lighting and colors. It took a while to find an artist who does this level of detail, willing to do a character derived from another IP, and at a price I could budget for.


I decided to make the facepaint more optional as we worked our way through the process, since it doesn't work with the skin I use in-game, and there's a IC justification for it(she learned it makes dryskins uneasy) she uses it when doing her thing mostly, so it can still be used in the Halloween pics. Like other referance sheets, I try to get unclothed figures as well to make it easier on the artist if I want to get something with her in a different outfit other than her main one.

This one was a bit extra-complicated too at finding an artist because the scales are a bit iridescent, like snakescales, and give it that slight purple or green sheen(depending on lighting). Now that I have this, I might actually get some non-spooky pieces too - I've got an idea for one, but we'll see.

This artist for this is https://www.furaffinity.net/user/silgiriya.mantsugosi/
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Fabulously Foxy Dragon
Well first snow fell last night.. perfect time to get my winter icon! I'd tried three or four different artists over the past 2 years but they either all got too busy and couldn't do it or they had a waiting list and never got back to it. Finally managed to get it and from an artist(Fellfallow) I'd wanted to be drawn by. Only quibble is I picture my scales as smoother than this, but it still looks good overall and that's something I can keep in mind for next time.

LlewelynDekafox UPLOAD by Fellfallow.png

Also acquired an icon for Speaks(from the post above) for use when making profiles etc. Planning on getting more of these for my other characters for the same reason. Artist for this one is https://twitter.com/sykamoor
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Fabulously Foxy Dragon
So I wrote a letter from Speaks to some Mage's Guild acquaintance, and I thought it would be neat to throw it onto a letter or lorebook template to look like in-game writings. Only problem is if I use the right font size, it's too many pages to post it like that, short of making a PDF(and Google Docs won't let me use the proper custom font). Really makes you realize how short the actual writings in-game are.

On Bone and Soul Magic

Putting words to paper at great length is not something many Argonians prefer to do. Sithis reminds us that all things change, and the past should be left behind. I am not a typical Saxhleel though, and a favor was asked, and thus it shall be done. As such, I hope you find this letter educational.

First, on the matter of Necromancy. Some call what I do by that name; they are not wholly wrong. It is a a name, a label, a categorization, in much the way ojel must label and put everything into small boxes that fit their worldview. Sometimes they are useful, such as when distinguishing Alteration magic from Illusion. Sometimes they are merely academic, such as when comparing Alteration and Restoration - which as a member of the Mage's Guild I am sure you are well aware of.

(There is a note in the margin, written by a different hand:
ojel - non-Argonian)

What you call Necromancy, I call the magic of Bone and Soul. The two may appear similar to the uninitiated, but they are not the same. To wit:

The Soul is sacrosanct. The truest essence of a person lies therein, and to interrupt its journey is a travesty and a crime. Our souls return to the Hist, and yours, well, I pity you lack our certainty. But sometimes these souls are trapped, or have something they must complete before moving on. Our gravesingers are responsible for making sure that our souls move on safely; I just choose to embody that role a little more directly than most. I do not compel or command obedience, like your disgusting Worm Cult. I act as ku-vastei; I merely ask them their story, and help them on their way. Those who do not wish to move on, those who fall to shunatei; those I will not force. Eventually they will come to terms with their change, as all things do.

(More notes in the margin, seemingly by the same author as before:
shunatei - feeling of loss and regret.
ku-vastei - one who brings needed change)

Sometimes, I find but shattered remnants of souls, blasted by the power of magicka, unable to even recall a portion of who they once were. For them I grant Sithis's peace, sending them to his embrace and allowing them one last act of service in my own magics. You might be surprised to find how common this is - but then again, considering your own exploits, perhaps not.

Least of all are the animal's souls. They are a part of the cycle as well, but unlike ours, they have much growing to do before they may reach the level of the least Argonian. They are small, ephemeral things, but quite useful. My pet contains one such soul; that of a sep-adder that for Hist-knows-what reason had taken a liking to me. Most animal souls will not hold together for very long after being re-bound to a new form, but this one, he surprised me; even years later he shows no sign of weakening. All things must die however, thus I have lain an enchantment on his form so that when I finally rejoin the Hist, the construct will return to its component parts and free him to rejoin the cycle, wiser than he once was.

Before I move on there is one last category I must address: the daedra. Rather than souls inhabiting bodies, they are their souls. They are not of the Hist, nor of the cycle, and as such there are a handful I have claimed and bound for my own usage. I imagine the face you must be making, but do not your Guild compatriots summon fully formed daedra from the very mouth of Oblivion? I raise the spine of irony. These ones I merely bind to temporary physical forms, with just enough energy to serve for but a minute or less before the contruct loses its integrity. In this way, even if they were to slip their bindings it would do them little good, as they would shortly lose cohesion and be banished back whence they came.

This brings us to the magic of flesh and bone. Once the Soul has left the body, it becomes merely a shell. A source of materials, much like a fallen tree or the hide from a successful wamasu hunt. All these years later and I still cannot grasp why you dryskins find the corpse so sacrosanct, yet abandon it to the slow decay of dry ground! The Marsh takes its due, but out here bodies remain for years, decades, maybe even centuries, unchanging in defiance of Sithis's will. It is such a waste, to abandon their remains rather than honor them with every day usage, or even in one glorious burst such as that of the spell you named as Blastbones. If the soul no longer remains, then what harm is there? It is enough to lash my tail in frustration!

If your people could embrace the release of shunatei, as my people did, you might find a much larger world opening up before you. But then, I am no nisswo, and I should not be preaching Sithis's word at you when you did not ask. I raise the spine of apology.

(Another note is found here:
nisswo - priest?? disciple?? missionary??
Needs more research!)

To return to the matter at hand: unless a man or mer has some talent in magicka, to them a tortured soul bound to a fresh corpse seems the same as an empty daedric-powered skeleton used to honor a fallen warrior's life. Thus I cannot say they are wrong to call me a necromancer, but I refuse to call myself one. I do not traffic in tortured souls or seek immortality; such would be an affront to myself and all I believe in!

As a final note, just as not all dryskins think alike, or even all Saxhleel, the Hist itself may have multiple opinions within its branches. Some tribes honor their dead by placing them among the roots of the very Hist itself, letting it nourish itself from their former brethren's flesh and bone. This, I acknowledge, is also honorable, in that it allows them to perform one last service for their Hist. It is not the way of my tribe, but it is a parallel path, and I will not gainsay it. It may be only the will of their Hist, but the Hist is the Hist, and I will not reject what made us what we are.

I hope this answers your questions regarding Argonians and necromancy, at least from my own perspective. There are those of my brethren who do indeed become crazed, or never knew the ways of the Hist, and may become the sort of abominations that most dryskins think of when they speak of necromancers, but no proper Argonian would condone such. On the other claw, your ways are not our ways, so you should not be surprised when we see separations that your kind does not.

May the waters of knowledge ever flow over you.



Fabulously Foxy Dragon
Another icon down. Waited a bit to post this, specifically for Werewolf Wednesday!


I'd liked the stylized art of Safiru but didn't really have any character I thought would work well... until I realized that her glowy-line style(for lack of a better word) actually would work perfectly with a werewolf who's already glowy. My first choice artists for Luanria's icon also have not been doing icons so when she opened up this time I gave her a whirl and I think it came out great.

Second, the reference sheet of Speaks made me want to get more art of her, and writing the letter above(plus another one regarding SIthis) really kicked in some inspiration as to what, so I've got some off-season art of her now:


Just enjoying a quiet autumn evening in front of the fireplace in the stone hut in the swamps she acquired, reading the first Investigator Vale novel. This one came from Kirena-Kaya who did the image of my kitsune character a while back.

And then I just got this one back yesterday:


Just like Lunaria has her crafting and Speaks is inclined towards books and lore, Jasmine's a card shark. Better hope no one looks too closely at her bracers, but then drawing the eye elsewhere is all part of the game...
(And let's not forget that wings make a great shield to keep people from glancing over your shoulder when passing by!)
This one's from a artist I hadn't tried before, over at https://furaffinity.net/user/buckovskiart or https://twitter.com/PBuckovski
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Fabulously Foxy Dragon
Another icon down. This one was for Sharilar, the eldritch-powered kitsune fortuneteller I posted previously. Just need to find appropriate icon artists for the last two of my "major" characters now. Funnily enough both are the only felines also.

Anyways, snazzy icon/portrait from https://www.furaffinity.net/user/ahro/

Comm - Dekafox_500x500.png
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Fabulously Foxy Dragon
Unexpectedly got a double dose of cheetah the past two weeks. I threw Rahna into a raffle on a whim, and not only got that, but a commission got finished as well!

First, the raffle piece from https://furaffinity.net/user/buckovskiart - you might consider it a "spotless rendition" ^..~


And secondly, my finished commission from https://www.furaffinity.net/user/artofreina/ - I really like how this one looks like it would fit in perfectly in a Pathfinder book.

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Fabulously Foxy Dragon
Got another new image to share here!


A portrait of Jasmine, actually set in Sigil! Though she started in NWN and the Forgotten Realms setting, once I left those behind Sigil and the Planescape setting pretty much became her adopted home. It's just about a perfect match for a being of her nature:
  • She a (part-)planar being herself and comes from planar origins
  • Primes(aka someone from one of the Prime Material Planes) also come and go all the time, so if someone notices the mortal part of her ancestry, it doesn't raise any questions
  • Pretty much every iteration of her background involves her jumping through an untuned portal, which is a common way to end up in the City of Doors
  • A victorian-influenced urban setting gives plenty of things to do for a rogue-type infiltrator, besides the usual adventuring type jobs that can send her anywhere on the planes and various Prime Material worlds
  • Speaking of the above, it connects to every other setting, so she has an excuse to pop up wherever I want her to!
  • If the demonic side of her family ever does decide to look for her, there's so many -different- kinds of planar beings wandering Sigil that someone with her unique characteristics still blends right into the crowd, even without shapeshifting. Assuming they're willing to believe that a proud (former) rakshasa noble would be willing to take a streetname like Tigerlily and slum among the thieves and ne'er-do-wells of a place like Sigil of their own volition and without it being part of a larger plan
  • If they DO find her despite that, Sigil is known as the City of Doors for a reason - any opening might become a portal, if you have or know the key, or even at random
  • Not to mention the accent and slang are just fun to use!
Pretty much the only "plot hole" as it were is that her revised background involves her spending some time as a part of a pirate crew as her first taste of freedom from the restrictions and obligations of being a rakshasa noble AND a bargaining chip for her step-father's alliances - since the supposed advantage of her dragon blood didn't pan out, her next best use as far as he's concerned is to marry her off. Unfortunately for him, she fled only after he made such an arrangement, which left that arrangement in a precarious position. Of course, she was far from a perfect daughter well before that, but deception comes naturally to their kind.

ANYWAYS, to get back to the pirate thing, it's not a dealbreaker, as all it takes is a misaligned portal or perhaps a badly cast banishment to get her back off the Prime. As far as both she and I concerned, all roads lead to Sigil. It's just too bad the Planescape: Torment plot is so tightly tied to the Nameless One as I would have loved to use Jasmine as the PC and there aren't any other video games set in Planescape, beyond NWN modules. I suppose any non-NWN entries wouldn't wouldn't have mechanical support for her kind anyways though(and NWN only does via the PRC, which is what allowed her to come into being in the first place).
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Fabulously Foxy Dragon
A piece I'd been searching for an artist for nearly a year is now complete.


After Lunaria passed, the werewolf community in the town all pitched in to have this stained glass window made to honor her, and a reminder of what they can be if they have the will. The one point I've not decided on is where it was placed - in the Town Hall is where I'd like to say, but I'm not sure if such a public place would be for the best given they're not openly a werewolf town due to the public's perception of werewolves. Needles to say though, no resident stays for long if they're not a werewolf or at least awoo-friendly.

I sort of wanted an inversion here of the typical howling in front of the moon, as she's a paladin of the Light, and thus the Sun would be the most appropriate, with the Spirit of the Forest looking on, as he still holds domain over all werewolves. And we still included the moons, as that's still part of werewolf symbolism, even if it's not the strongest influence.

The artist for this is Neralis
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Fabulously Foxy Dragon
Part of Jasmine's backstory involved her spending time on board a pirate ship, which is where she picked up her preference for scimitars(at least post-revision - the original NWN/3.x version learned from a drow). Given how most D&D worlds traditionally have been towards anyone who doesn't look like a human with one degree of difference(short/pointed ears/green skin/etc) she naturally has a well-practiced human disguise as well, to keep from drawing too much attention and/or scaring the populace and bringing the town guard down onto herself. Since i neglected to get that done when I got said reference sheet, I figured I'd combine the two things, and get an image of her in human form during her piratical days. It ended up taking over a year, including having to switch artists whem communications fell apart with the first one(thankfully before I had spent any money and before they had actually started work), but I finally have that image from her past.


Having reached the top of the netting, Jasmine, known to her crewmates as "Tigerlily", found herself a seat as she waited for the boatswain's next call. While she missed walking around in her own fur and scales, she was finally free from being a "useless" daughter only fit for political marriage and raising children. She doubted her mother felt anything but relief to have this half-breed albatross off her neck, and her "father" would adjust his plans without missing a beat - after all, you don't get to be a rajah of an entire cube without having backup plans upon backup plans.

Forcefully putting those thoughts aside, Jasmine took a deep breath, gazing out across the endless expanse of the sea as the wind started to pick up, catching her hair in its pull. Soon, she would have to get back to the hard work of guiding the ship's sails, but for this moment, resting between the sea below and the sky above, she was free.

And yes, in modern times a lot of settings are far more cosmopoliton about things, with kobolds, goblins, and other former "enemies" walking the streets without much consequence. And with Tabaxi being far move common than Catfolk were in editions past, she could claim to be one of those and use her dragon heritage as a distration to keep others from prying further. Additionaly, I still see Planescape as her "native" setting and that's even more cosmopoliton in regard to ancestry. Still, there's realms out there that are still not that welcoming(like Greyhawk) and GMs who still may lean into the old prejudices regardless, so gotta be prepared!

Art's by Jocarra


Fabulously Foxy Dragon
Just by pure coincidence, another commission of Jasmine finished about the same time. Trying to imagine what she might wear in other situations had gotten the image of her in an asian-style dress tuck in my head. and well, since Sigil collects fashion from literally everywhere, it's something she could feasibly have stumbled across! And thus came the idea for this image...


It wasn't without a bit of regret that Jasmine pulled herself away from the crowd, where their guardinal host was busy rattling his bonebox about something or other. Not that she cared about the topic - just being among the party guests allowed all these berks to see how lovely she was in this brand new dress, and their approving gazes were sweet as sugar from the slopes of Mt Celestia. For far too long, her own supposed people had called her ugly and misshapen because of her draconic aspects, if not outright deformed. Then she'd caught the attention of a certain naztharune thief...

Ooof, down girl. This wasn't the time to let her thoughts drift in -that- direction. She was here on a job, and it was time to go see it done. After all, how else was she going to make back all the jink she'd spent on this fancy dress in the first place?

I also like to imagine that she has a set of wing and tail jewelry that she once got as a gift from the thief mentioned in the excerpt, and she pulls that out for extra special occasions. Maybe that'll show up in a future image, maybe not... it all depends on landing on the right idea.

This art is by DrawingSofa


Fabulously Foxy Dragon
Well looks like Discord finally followed through on blocking hotlinking of images from their servers... just went through and had to re-upload about half the images in this thread it seemed like. Was a nice excuse to look at some of my older pics though, and it made me realize I never shared anything with my chakat character, Chakat Swiftwind, daughter of Fireflash and Tailchaser.

Star Taur color SFW 1920.png

Hir initial incarnation was a member of Star Fleet(the chakatverse borrows a lot from Star Trek, though it does its own twists on things here and there), with the corset and flight jacket basically being hir default "civilian" outfit. This one was by Chessi.


This one I'm inordinately fond of as it's by Kacey Miyagami. Kacey was basically the default artist for the chakat race's creator(and the chakatverse in general) for YEARS, and having my chakat character depicted by her makes this one of the top images I've gotten of hir for that reason alone. It's like having your own Marvel X-Men fan character drawn by Jim Lee, for a mainstream example.


This one just amuses me more than it should. I saw someone offering "Dating Sim scene" commissions, and couldn't resist. Yes, the bike in the background is hirs, and that's part of the joke. This one was by an artist on Twitter who went by Mochni, but changed from a bird sona to a racoon with a different name, and I unfortunately have no idea what their current account is since I left there.


And this one is another of my top pics. After hir Star Fleet career(or possibly in an alternate timeline/universe where shi never joined up at all) shi became a test pilot for experimental spacecraft. This was also to visualize out an idea I had been pondering - what would be an appropriate seat for a taur-form that wouldn't cause intertia to just break their back? I settled on something resembling a motorcycle for a seat, as shown here. This has the added benefit for chakats of allowing for an additional set of controls, as their lower forepaws can also act as less-dextrous hands. This piece was by Royz who does really awesome and detailed Sci Fi stuff.


Finally, this is the most recent pic, featuring the most recent iteration of hir. This was from a Traveller campaign(think old pulp space opera as an RPG) that had the chakats as an optional race to choose from. Shi became the pilot of our ship, doubled as chief engineer(as shi was an engineer before becoming a pilot, and the one with the most space skills) and once we got power armor, basically became the power-armored equivalent of a four-footed Freedom Gundam, complete with Beamspam(but no funnels or bits). By the time we finished, shi basically retired to become a ship architect, and had established a new colony of chakats in our aprt of thegalaxy thanks to a mad scientist wanting to play with genetics and cloning.

The other characters are, from left to right:
  • Araegh, our leader, former marine, and explosives specialist. He's a Vargr, a race of canines taken from Earth and uplifted by aliens for unknown reasons.
  • Hlyro, Aslan commando who lost his arm, had it replaced by a cybernetic enhancement, and prefers vibro-weapons. He eventually became the leader of his own Aslan colony via trial by combat. Also the Aslan aren't related to Earth life, they jsut happen to resemble earthen felines.
  • Alexei, a very strange Droyne and very much a Doc Brown type. Droyne are the distant decendents of a ancient race that once ruled the stars, but typically are very hivemind-ish and naturally form into castes. Alexei ended up on a human world of Slavi origin, and effectively casteless through some genetic quirk, so much more like the other races of the setting(but would be considered a mutant and potentially unwell by some of his own kind). Thanks to the first mad sientist I mentioned, he was able to leverage their research and start his own colony as well in the epilogue, of "advanced" droyne.
The picture was actually commissioned by our GM for that campaign, not by me(for once), from BanditCrusader.

Lastly, just to explain a few things about chakats for those unfamiliar with them, they are specifically a genetically engineered race that is fully hermaphroditic, and shi/hir are the pronouns they use(in English) as a race due to this, if anyone was wondering why I was spelling those like that. (I believe they were meant to be prounounced like "shay" and "herr"? I always mispronounce them though, even mentally.) Because their appearance tends to be parsed by others as feminine though, they usually use feminine terms like daughter and sister for family arrangements, though their "father" is still referred to as their Sire. They also don't use last names, sinmply going by a single name that is usually descriptive in some fashion, and if they run into another with the same name, they distinguish themselves via referancing their parentage. Hence why Swiftwind here would be introduced in a formal setting as I did in the beginning.

They were created by Bernard Doove aka Goldfur in the late 90s, and were fairly popular for a while, but kind of faded from general knowledge when Goldfur switched from chakatverse writing to MLP fanfic (and eventually merged the two in ways that not all in the chakat fandom are fans of). They're still out there, but have fallen into kind of a niche compared to protogens, synths, and the like.


Fabulously Foxy Dragon
Well, it took a while, but I now have a referance sheet for the last of my major OCs and TTRPG characters - Rahna, the desert wuxia elemental warrior. I can't remember if I mentioned this in earlier images of her, but she was very much inspired by a combination of the spearwielder in the first season of Thunderbolt Fantasy(he now wields a sword, albeit less effectively, after getting talked into it by his now-wife) and the Force monk from Rogue One, with a dash of another idea I came across(a desert cheetah tribe that worships fire). Add a dash of Pathfinder, stir well, and voila.

Rahna smol SFW.png

One other thing I like about this, besides getting a proper consolidation of everything that matters from all the previous images, is that this artist( https://www.furaffinity.net/user/wolnir/ ) for once DIDN'T focus on the fire aspect, but let her play with water for the portion of the image intended to show her outfit. She's (eventually) a master of all four, but apart from the one I got from Neotheta that put that on display, the fire tended to be everyone's default assumption.

The quote is also the start of a poem - in Thunderbolt Fantasy, every character has one or more short poems that encapsulate the character. It's a bit different than the original quote I had for her when she was first created(which was far closer to said Force monk's own saying), it fits better as a lead-in for one of those poems.

"I am one with the elements, and they are one with me
Their song guides my steps, yet the dance remains my own.
Someday they will guide me to the one I seek
Though I know not what my answer will be."

Explanation: As a hunter/scout in her teens, she found and her tribe rescued a human traveller who had been trying to cross the desert on his own. As they nursed him back to full health, he happened to notice her fascination with his strange "dances"(read: his katas and exercises) and taught her the beginnings of her martial art techniques before simply vanishing one night, presumably returning to the mission he had been on. While he never confided in any of them what that mission was. he did leave her the polearm as a gift to remember him by. She continued to practice and hone her abilities, managing to tap into techniques drawing on the four elements, and a few years later, as a full adult, she left the tribe to go out into the greater world to find him, if he's even still alive. As to what she'll do if or when she does find him, even she doesn't know herself.

And if you're curious about what I'm emulating with the poem:

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