April 6th, 2009
Photoshop and drawingtablet

I really seem to be on a roll this week. Here is yet another one of the OC's who belongs to the world of Hemos and Keena. (By the way, I've decided that I'll start calling these guys my 'Ethara-characters', after the country they live in.)

This particular character is a young female, called Arith. She is part of an ancient race of lizard-folk, called the Iguarii. The Iguarii are a proud race, well-known for their strength, their intelligence and their fierceness. In the past, these creatures produced many powerful warriors and mages. Despite their illustrious past, the Iguarii are currently struggling to survive, and their numbers are dwindling. This is not because they are being persecuting or anything, but because they are having trouble with living in a modernized world. In a rapidly changing world, the Iguarii prefer to adhere to their old traditions, and many never leave their own domain, a forested province within Ethara where most of their kind live in small towns or large cities. The Iguarii regard the world with an air of condescendence, and prefer not to meddle with the affairs of the other races. However, they are known to adopt particular types of technology from other races if it seems useful to them, and they are perfectly willing to develop trade relationships with other species. Once a 'foreign' trader finally gets past the Iguarii bureaucracy and obtains a license to trade with these reptilians, he or she can expect to do good business, because the Iguarii are generally quite wealthy.

The Iguarii have a pretty strict class system, based on an individual's birth and ancestry. Tradition dictates that an Iguar born within a certain class, will never leave that class, whether it is being ascending or descending on the social ladder. An Iguar's social standing can be determined by the shape, color and size of their body (which is probably due to the fact that most Iguar strictly breed within their own class, thus isolating themselves from the rest of the population and creating very specific looking classes). The way it works is really pretty simple, the more colorful and/or patterned an Iguar's skin is, and the more frills, feathers, spikes, spines, horns, fins, decorative scales and whatnot it has, the higher up it is on the social ladder. Some of the highest ranking Iguarri are among the most flamboyant looking creatures you'll ever see. All Iguarii, regardless of social standing, have the potential to be strong warriors or powerful mages, but this will never allow them to gain high ranks among their own kind. Recently, some of the lower-ranking Iguarii have therefore starting leaving their homeland, in order to build up a future for themselves among the other races, who really don't care how many feathers you have on your head, or how large your spines are.

Arith is actually not a full-blood Iguarii; her mother was an Iguar, but her father was a human. Her mother died during child-birth and the whereabouts of her father are unknown at this point. Arith was raised in an Iguarii orphanage, where she received her education, which is basic by Iguarii standards but quite sophisticated by the standards of most other races.
Due to her mixed blood, Arith doesn't even register on the complex Iguarii class-system. In addition to looking rather plain, Arith also has a few physical characteristics which further distinguish her from other Iguarii; her snout is less distinguished, her tail is rather short and her hands look more like those of a human. She is currently twelve years old. Her body is going through some changes which you'd normally associate with human puberty, but which are totally alien to Iguarii. Having been raised by lizard-folk, Arith is having trouble coping with her hormones, her first periods, and the fact that she is growing breasts (she ties them tightly to her chest, underneath her clothes, which allows her to look flat-chested for now because her breasts are still quite small). All of these changes don't do much to improve her already low opinion of humans. Unfortunately, she doesn't have much of a future among the Iguarii either, since her ridiculously low social status would not allow her to do anything more important than scrub floors.

This is why Arith decided to leave her kind, like so many others before her, and try her luck out in the rest of the world. And this is how she met up with Keena and the gang. Arith is extremely smart. During her childhood, she practically devoured the city library, and as a result she is very knowledgeable about a wide variety of subjects. Like most of the Iguarii, Arith is naturally skilled at hand-to-hand combat, but she truly excels as a magician. In the world of Ethara, there are many different schools of magic. Arith has theoretical knowledge about most of them, but prefers to practice elemental magic (chucking fire balls around, and stuff). This makes her one of the most powerful members of the group, despite her young age. For this reason, and because of her mature attitude, she is treated with much more respect than for instance Lon of Yanko. She is a very serious person, and practically devoid of emotions (which is normal for Iguarii). She also has a competitive streak.

Since Arith was raised by Iguarii, she doesn't understand most of the human emotions, and yet she does. Human behaviour is fascinating to her, even though she considers them to be highly irrational. Extreme emotions such as rage, desperation or exhilaration seem very strange to her, however, when she sees her human companions display these emotions, she can somehow relate to them, even though she'll always say that it is very strange for her.

Withing the group, Arith is a bit of an outsider, although she does try to make friends in her own way. When she initially joined the group, she had her own agenda. She just wanted to find some companions to help her find her way outside of Iguarii territory. As time progressed she grew more attached to her companions, even though this hardly shows. The rest of the gang sometimes wonders why she even bothers to stick around, that's how annoyed she sometimes seems to be by her 'friends'.
Since she is one of the younger group members, Yanko and Ganelon initially tried to include her into their little sub-group of young kids, but Arith wasn't interested in their antics. The guys have since then given up on getting her to join in on their games, but they enjoy pulling pranks on her. Her serious nature makes her a really easy target for their jokes, although they are very careful not to go too far. It's never a good idea to anger an emotionally challenged lizard-girl, who has the ability to set you on fire with the wave of a hand. Most of the adults treat her as an equal, and respect her for her knowledge and power. Arith is particularly interested in observing the humans within the group (she considers Hemos a human, simply because he looks and acts a lot like them), and she often analyzes their actions in a very rational fashion. This is partly because she recognizes a lot of herself in their actions, and is trying to learn more about her human side, by observing humans. She has lately started developing a kind of relationship with Keena, who is basically her polar opposite in just about every way. Keena meanwhile has found out about Arith's ignorance about the workings of the female body, and has taken it upon herself to educate the lizard-girl. So far, this has had mixed results.

N.B. It's funny how little this character has changed since I first made her up. Her clothes, face, body and background have changed very little. The only thing that has actually changed, is her name; she used to be called 'Sage', which was just SUCH a bad name for her. XD

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