Meet Adar Picture

November 30th, 2008
Photoshop and drawingtablet

Time to present another one of my original characters. Meet Adâr the manticore! He's also one of my more recent OC's, just like Featherfoot. (Don't worry, I'll also show some of my older ones in due time.) Unlike Featherfoot, this guy is not just a mascot, he also has a background. So here we go:

Name: Adâr
Species: Maticore (originally human)
OC status: Protagonist from an unwritten story, currently titled 'Anata and Adâr'
Age: 14 years old
Height: 1,87 m.
Length: 4,18 m. (tail included)
Weight: 208 kg.
Eye color: Bright blue
Fur color: Red, with the markings of a juvenile, no manes yet
Accessories: Earrings, made of the claws of some predator, cloth bound around one leg
Abilities: Human speech, Manticore speech, feline speed, strength, agility and senses, extremely potent poison sting, can shoot the spikes from his tail at his enemies (spikes (also poisonous) regrow immediately), regenerates fast from most wounds, immune against most poisons (including the poison of other Manticores)
Personality: Cheerful, mischievous, easily distracted, clumsy (yet not, if that makes sense), rash, somewhat vain, noisy, quite rude, kind to those who are kind to him
Family members: Unknown, Adâr was probably orphaned as a child
Friends: Very few, including Anata

Adâr's story is one I haven't fully thought through yet, and I'm also not sure yet if I'll ever write it, or produce a comic about it. But here's the story's basic plot so far. The story of Anata and Adâr takes place in the distant past, in what used to be the Persian empire. It'll be set up as if it were a fairytale in a Middle Eastern setting. The story starts out in a large agricultural village, where the 14-year old boy Adâr lives. A local goat herder found Adâr as a baby in the mountains, where he was presumably abandoned for whatever reason. The goat herder, although he was already an old man, decided to take the boy in and raise him as his own.
Adâr grew up and eventually took to herding goats himself. He wasn't very liked by the other villagers, because of his background and because he was poor (he and his adoptive father do not own the goats they herd), but mostly because he was so rebellious. Adâr is rude to his superiors, has problems with authority, likes to play pranks and generally just likes to mess with people, regardless of their class and social standing. Needless to say, this has often gotten him into quite a lot of trouble.
Adâr particularly dislikes wealthy people of high social rank. However, there is one among them, who he does like very much: Anata, the daughter of the village leader. In fact, he has a bit of a crush on her, but so far he has failed to win her over. I don't know why... What wealthy daughter of an influential aristocrat would not like to land herself a charming young, troublemaker dressed in rags? An absolute catch, I say!

Anyway, Anata does not just not like Adâr back, she also genuinely dislikes him (at first anyway). But instead of just dismissing him, Anata initially just toys with him. Adâr doesn't seem to realize this, but Anata often tells him to do things for her which she knows will get him into trouble. I won't go into the details right now (mostly because I haven't made them up yet), but basically she's just using him to have some fun.
One day, Anata hears of this cave outside of the village, where a witch is supposed to live. She convinces Adâr to go up to this cave with her and retrieve a treasure which is supposed to be inside. Now Adâr does not believe in any of this witch-stuff, but decides to humour Anata and goes with her. And sure enough, they find the cave. When Adâr enters the cave in search of the treasure, he runs into the witch (much to his surprise). The witch punishes the boy for intruding in her home, by cursing him, saying that she can always use 'a new servant'. The spell knocks Adâr unconscious and when he wakes up he finds that he has become a manticore, a creature commonly feared for being a man-eater.

After the initial shock, and after managing to calm the terrified Anata, Adâr quickly grows to appreciate his new form. It has the obvious advantages of strength and speed, and he also learns to like the way people treat him now. They genuinely fear him, whereas they used to just be annoyed with him. Now, when he pulls his pranks as a manticore, nobody has the guts to try and reprimand him, except for his adoptive father. As far as Adâr is concerned, becoming a manticore was the best thing which could have ever happened to him, but does he realize that he is being used?

About the design: This design isn't the final version yet. I had some trouble designing Adâr, and his appearance may still change a little. I'm quite pleased with the tail, but I still feel as if the face and the paws need some more work.
The manticore is a mythological creature, which looks like a big red lion, with a man's head, blue or grey eyes, three rows of razor sharp teeth in a wide mouth, and a scorpion's or a dragon's tail. I didn't make that bit about the shooting tail-spikes up myself. That is really part of the original creature's design. The manticore is a real killing machine. Some artists also give manticores bat-wings, but I haven't found any evidence proving that they are part of the original, ancient design. I think the wings are modern additions, so I've omitted them from Adâr's design. Because Adâr is still a kid (in my story manticores have roughly the same life expectancy as humans), he has no or hardly any manes. These would grow in as he becomes older. He also has some spots and freckles on his body, just like lion cubs. These would disappear if Adâr reached adulthood. Oh, and he also still has a lot of growing to do.
Although he face is certainly more human-like than that of a normal feline, I still feel it looks a bit too snout-like. I'm not sure, but maybe I should still change that. I was also thinking about giving his front paws more hand-like qualities. I wouldn't make them true hands, but I do like the idea of Adâr rataining at least some manual dexterity.
And finally the accessories are also still far from definite. I might ditch the earrings altogether and the bandages are also optional. Because Adâr is not very used to his manticore-form yet, he is very clumsy with it. Sure, he has the insane feline reflexes, strength and agility, but he lacks the experience and the knowledge to use all that stuff properly. As a result he often gets himself hurt and then his adoptive father bandages him up and nurses him back to health.
Oh, and Adâr has a great singing voice now. Manticores are said to have a very pleasant voice, which sounds something like either a flute or a trumpet (I don't know what that means either).

And that's Adâr in a nutshell. I'll add more characters from this story later. Remember, Adâr and his background are mine. So no stealing.
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