Aurora Borealis WIP Picture

PLEASE comment if you fave! I worked hard on this.
All right, I'm going to try to take part in the 100 Picture Challenge, or whatever it's called here. Basically, you draw one picture each for one of 100 themes. I just started learning how to draw human faces about two months ago. I was going to hold off on entering the challenge until I'd gotten bodily postures down better, but figured that if I waited that long I'd never get anywhere. So I know I still need a lot of work. Maybe doing this challenge will help me improve, maybe not. I like to hope that maybe someday I'll be able to redo this picture and it'll look a whole lot better. For now though, it's much better than what I could have done a couple of months ago.
This is a drawing of my character, eleven-year-old Winter Born of Escape From Manitou Island [link] , getting ready to whup some ass!
This is just the inked sketch. I cropped off a bit of the background for now. I'm planning on filling it all in with colored pencil, as that's the only medium I have, that and a photo program which mangles my pictures when I resize and try to up the saturation a bit.
Anyway...the next theme I believe is "Dark" and I already have the rough sketch completed.
This will be scrapped later on when I upload the finished version. Just wanted to put this in my gallery to brag a bit.
Criticism not desired as I already know all the flaws this has, thank you very much.
*****

A strange muffled noise came from above and outside; she couldn't tell what it was, but it got louder, and the manitou froze in place as if listening. She saw his eyes widen and dart to the side--and then with a loud blare he was gone, his left antler just missing cutting open Charmian's chest as he released her. Charmian dropped her arms into the waterhole and propelled herself upward as fast as she could, coughing and sputtering out a lungful of water which splattered over her lap. She began fighting to free her legs, though it was somewhat difficult, considering that her hands were now stuck as well.

"W...water!" she managed to cough, and the water began swirling around her, sucking the mud away. She pulled her hands free with a loud slurping noise and began clambering out, yanking her feet loose and nearly losing a sandal. She tore off her sopping backpack and tossed it on the ground as she leapt to her feet. "Al--all right! L-let's see you try that AGAIN--!"

Her voice died off in a harsh croak and she had to fight not to start coughing again. She blinked and then wiped the water from her eyes, confused to see that apparently all the fighting was over with. Yet...all the mitchi manitous were still there, and Mishosha and Makwaquae still stood near the river, looking on with surprised expressions. Charmian furrowed her brow before thinking to look around for her own manitou.

She finally spotted him...lying at the edge of the river and just now getting to his feet. He staggered a little and shook his head dizzily, blinking as if confused; he glanced around at everyone, saw Charmian, then started scowling and lowered his head as he turned toward her.

"If you even TOUCH her you'll REGRET it!"

The hairs on Charmian's neck prickled at the awful grating voice she heard coming from behind her. She saw Thomas and Stick-In-The-Dirt, nearby, turn to look as well, their eyes as wide as anyone's. It took her a moment to notice how her skin was tingling from some sort of charge in the air, but Kenu didn't look like he was powering up--in fact he looked as stunned as everyone else--and that must have been what had abruptly ended all the fighting around her. The mitchi manitous stared in the same direction as her own group.

She slowly turned around and noticed Puka, Remy, and Winter Born, still standing just outside the range of the fray. Puka and Remy were staring at Winter Born...who was staring at the lead mitchi manitou, her eyes on fire and the weird northern lights glow all around her. Her fists were clenched and her teeth bared, and Charmian almost expected her head to start spinning around.

"What...?" she whispered.

"You mean you didn't hear that...?" Thomas whispered back; when she turned to him his brow furrowed. "She let out this scream when you were in the water...sounded even louder than one of those Thunderbirds getting angry! I think she's going to throw another one of her fits!"

"You mean she hasn't already--?" Stick-In-The-Dirt hissed. "She didn't even MOVE and that manitou was knocked off his feet!!"

Charmian turned back around in time to hear Mishosha say, "Interesting." She glanced at him, but he seemed more intrigued than worried or upset. Makwaquae's look, on the other hand, was livid.

The female wabano clenched her own fists and shook them in the air. "DON'T LET THE LITTLE WHELP BEAT YOU LIKE THAT, YOU STUPID MANITOU! What sort of manitou ARE you to let yourself get knocked around by little girls--?!"

The mitchi manitou ground his own teeth and started walking toward Charmian again, making a point of ignoring Winter Born. He tossed his head. Lucky blow, he muttered as he came. But won't happen again!

Charmian clenched her fists to get ready for him, but couldn't help gnawing on her lip at the same time. She kept peering at Winter Born from the corner of her eye, and saw how the glow around her grew even brighter, the little girl gnashing her teeth as if supremely pissed off. She could tell from the manitou's gait that he was more than a little nervous himself, but apparently his fear of Mishosha and Makwaquae was even greater.

"Last chance to turn back or regret it," Charmian warned. And then thought at him, I don't control her. I suggest you step down before you get her REALLY mad.

A snort. You think a little winter girl can scare me off--? Can deflect YOUR attacks easily enough--can easily ward off HERS!

Charmian let out a small sigh. Don't say I didn't warn you.

The mitchi manitou let out a bellow and reared up onto his hind legs. Charmian braced her arms together and hurled a fireball at his chest as hard as she could. It managed to knock him backwards a bit so he stumbled, but it didn't knock him over. She nearly bit her tongue turning and dodging to the side to avoid his charge, feeling stupid to be running away from him when they were supposed to be fighting, but her feeling of unease was even greater.

I thought they KNEW what she can do! she thought feverishly, glancing at the two wabanos as she ran. So why are they allowing this--?

Wait a minute--"allowing"? Is THAT what this all is--?


She nearly stumbled over her own feet coming to a halt. "Expendable," she whispered, then whirled around to face the oncoming manitou. "WAIT!" she yelled. "Don't you see it? They WANT her to attack you!!"

The manitou just tossed his head and bellowed again, an incoherent noise, and lowered his antlers as he came right at her. Insanely, Charmian's stare darted away from him and toward Winter Born, and she didn't bother turning or running from her spot.

"Charmian!" Thomas and Stick-In-The-Dirt yelled.

The manitou's eyes glowed livid blue, almost madly, his hooves sending hunks of earth flying. He was close enough for her to see his nostrils flare before she noticed a flicker pass through Winter Born's eyes, and the girl lifted her hand and flicked it through the air, as if swatting at a fly.

An awful noise somewhere between a roar and a squeal made Charmian grimace and clap her hands over her ears, hunching over. The manitou veered sideways, then she realized that he hadn't altered his course at all--he went flying sideways, as if a giant invisible hand had just swept him across the ground like someone sweeping a chess piece from a board. In a split second she saw the eyes of everyone around her go wide and their mouths open before the manitou tipped over in midflight, his antler gouging into the ground and his head twisting around as he tumbled head over heels. The noise resolved itself into a terrible squeal like the sound of a pig being slaughtered, then his hindquarters caught up with him and collapsed with a thud that made the ground shake. Charmian and everyone else stood staring at the strange twisted state the mitchi manitou had been left in, his eyes wide and surprised and his tongue hanging from his mouth. He blinked a few times, ribs heaving, then his nostrils flared again and he tried letting out a whistle which just came out as a small pathetic trill. It broke off in the middle and the blue glow faded from his eyes and his sides stopped heaving.


Mitchi manitous, Mishosha, and Peepaukawiss/Puka are from Ojibwa mythology. Charmian, Makwaquae, Thomas Leeds, Stick-In-The-Dirt, Kenu, Remy LaCroix, and Winter Born are © Tehuti.
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