ryan, 24, uk. ve/ver/vis preferably or any neutral pronouns. i do art. i love oddworld and neoscum and i have too many original projects to list
Everyone (including the GM) has been making NeoScum zines lately and I wanted to hop on the train so this is what I'm doing with my summer... not all of it is gonna be comics but they are gonna make up a substantial part of it. I'm having fun using some different brushes and colouring methods from my usual tools
What's up I haven't posted anything for like two months because I Have Depression Babey but I drew all of my Transitverse/Shadowrun/Scumverse/whatever characters for pride month
I also did a ton of other shit but let's start off with this
Aubrey has horrible, horrible survivor’s guilt and it may ultimately be what kills her. She would never take her own life but it could and likely will drive her to do something incredibly dangerous to try and atone for it eventually and if that means risking death... it’s a risk she’s willing to take
don’t forget us - relica
sometimes you sit down to draw comics and sometimes what actually happens is a song that makes you emotional for reasons unknown comes on and you accidentally spend your night drawing angst instead. aubrey never forgets the other children who lived, fought and died alongside her.
Time to face the unavoidable aftermath.
Eggshells is back!!! and I am really excited to get the last few batches of illustrations done because I'm really in the swing of things again
I pivoted halfway through these and decided to go for a more muted colour palette to suit the mood and I really like how it turned out. I get hyped up on vivid colours when I think about "strong" colour palettes a lot and forget that less saturated colours can be just as powerful
I think a lot about what happens when Aubrey is inevitably forced into a corner and has to confess her actual life story to Kaveh and Iloya
How clean it is depends on her circumstances and state of mind (there are a number of factors that could affect this…) but when it does happen she believes she’s at a point of no return where even acknowledging the surface-level details of what she’s been hiding is going to irreparably damage her life so she really just. goes for it. spills everything. What she was part of was so fucked up that the delivery doesn’t make a ton of difference
As for reactions… Iloya is very quick to come to the conclusion that the things she did during her time with LoA don’t bother them for all the obvious reasons but Kaveh takes longer. Kaveh is more of a law and order guy and Aubrey was like this scrappy kid he let live in his home for a month and a half within a month of being introduced to her and he has this very close dad/brother kind of relationship with her and it’s like. He can very very easily imagine the scope of destruction and death that these conflicts cause and it really fucks him up to know that Aubrey has killed hundreds of people
It puts so much else into context for him, too. When they get into physical combat on the job Aubrey can flip that switch and let her training take over and she is very fucking good at what she does, and there are a few times when she’s been forced to kill people, and she can be weird after that bc it does require her to flip some switches in her brain and she has to reconcile that with herself after the fact and now he knows why. and it’s so much worse than just gang violence.
He still loves her though. Because he does know who she is now and he’s seen all the trauma she’s been left with, and he knows she had absolutely no choice in the matter outside of just… dying. He can’t turn his back on the relationship he’s built with her over the last four years when she’s so obviously trying to build something good out of a life that other people kept running through the shredder for 17 years
So it takes him a while to process it and he’s kind of distant for a while but he comes around. I think it changes their relationship but in a good way. Aubrey doesn’t have to lie anymore and that includes no longer hiding knowledge and skills that she’s kept hush about because it would seem super sus for someone with her background to know about and I think that like. Rebuilding their relationship with Kaveh fully understanding who she is and what she knows and where she’s been puts them more on equal footing rather than the kind of mentor/kid thing they had going before.
Iloya is super grounded in the present throughout this whole thing. They get mad at Kaveh a number of times for his myopia wrt seeing Aubrey for who she is now rather than who she was then and I think he needs that kind of push. Iloya fully understands the gravity of Aubrey’s situation but they also fully understand that Aubrey could not possibly be more repentant for the whole thing and that despite the lies she is still very much the person she has been trying to be for the four years they’ve known her and she obviously wants to leave her past behind
An Aubrey I drew in like 60 seconds because I was trying to remember how her face works and a Hanz who I did not expect to be so easy to draw. I took a shot at him last year and did NOT like the results but I want a pic of him for my new plot map and this just kind of happened. 1000% better
Part two of the illustrations! Getting the palette right for that nighttime scene took forever but I really really love how it turned out in the end.
Christmas is emotionally difficult when you were raised as a tool of war and you're still learning, in context, exactly how bad your past abuse was, but also: Christmas is good.
Hey good news I finally finished that fic I've been working on since fucking DECEMBER. It ended up being way longer than I anticipated and I drew more for it than I planned but it turned out so well and there's a lot of good first-person Aubrey exposition in here that I haven't tapped into (publicly) before now
Part one of the illustrations, part two coming probably tomorrow
I said I would do some intros for the characters I draw most atm so! Here they are
They're TECHNICALLY Shadowrun characters but they live in the NeoScum podcast's iteration of the shadowrun world and their GM's favourite thing about shadowrun is, to quote, "deviating from it", and I don't actually play these guys in an active game or anything so I don't really follow the rulebook too closely lmao. This is all "present day" info, AKA it more or less lines up with the canon NeoScum timeline right now
Some more info under the cut! History (what the hell is LoA, anyway) and how these guys relate to one another.
Preface: Legacy of Adam is a NeoScum-canon corporation which essentially raises kids to be human weapons. There's a LOT I could go into but the important info is: one of the player characters, Zenith, was raised by them (and when deemed unsuitable for further service due to PTSD and hir general mindset, mind-wiped and dumped into a civillian life), and they are absolutely performing drastic cybersurgery on children (obtained through as-yet-unknown means) and sending them out to fight wars.
SO this is where we start with Aubrey. She was raised in a different facility (Zenith was raised in Thailand) and made her escape when there was a transport incident on her way back from deployment. She and several others managed to fumble their way through the process of getting money and fake documents and split off, at which point Aubrey's life went to hell again. the TL;DR of it is she couldn't hack it as a shadowrunner and just about scraped by being traded off between gangs as an asset until someone who actually cared called in a favour and helped her get her foot in the door at the security company she still works for now
Kaveh and Iloya are pretty much Aubrey's best friends and have saved her ass numerous times. She took a bullet in her first month on the job and freaked at the prospect of being stuck in the medical wing for an extended period of time so Kaveh, being who he is, let her come and stay with him 'til she could comfortably look after herself again (I'm writing this series of events in Eggshells rn). They later end up being long-term roommates for a couple of years. Iloya was already friends with Kaveh before Aubrey was on the scene and kind of adopted Aubrey into their family. Aubrey goes home with them at Christmas WHICH I AM ALSO writing a fic about so I will let that speak for itself when I post it hopefully this coming week
And then we have Nein... Aubrey has always been very empathetic and protective but she really imprinted on a few other kids in particular while under LoA, and Nein was one of them. They're essentially sisters. She was one of the few who made it out along with Aubrey during the aforementioned transport incident but she was very young and found everything so overwhelming that she just turned herself back in to LoA. She's since come to resent Aubrey and they've used her experience as leverage to play her into their own hand, isolating her, outfitting her with a ton of custom cyberware/bioware and convincing her that a) she's literally better than anyone else and b) that she can only be that good while under their "employ".
Where this goes, ultimately.......... we will see. I have all kinds of possible outcomes slinging around in my head and I have a ~true ending~ in mind I guess but it comes down to what happens in NeoScum canon to some degree because Aubrey's whole deal in the first place is to be a counterpart to Zenith. I wanted them to bounce off one another, both of them having gone through something the same and yet vastly different at the same time. If Zenith dies Aubrey goes full murder mode and we get the ultimate bad end
Anyway! I love these guys a lot. there is also June (another ex-LoA operative/sibling) but I'm not entirely sure yet when or how he fits in so he'll get a card later, maybe with some other people
Also: Aubrey’s Matrix persona bc I played Shadowrun: Dragonfall again this week and I got thinking abt it. I wasn’t ever sure what direction I wanted to go with her persona and she hates manifesting in the Matrix anyway for trauma reasons so she never uses this thing but I had a moment of inspiration on the bus on Friday and had to get it out
New NeoScum ep had a Zenith flashback where ze and another operative were wearing masks so I guess that's a Legacy of Adam thing and I went........... a little nuts slapping a bunch of mask designs on baby Aubrey because I REALLY LOVE masks as a character design element
The first time around the other kid was described as wearing (I THINK) a Hallowe'en mask but that was a totally different time and place and given the uhhhh apparent situation it was probably a situational choice to be a little more inconspicuous so I am assuming we have no solid description of the masks they wear in serious combat ops right now and going absolutely ham (but I am really fond of the very last one if only because it finally occurred to me to incorporate the goddamn C&C insignia into the thing like I do with their cybernetics)
AUBREY AND NEIN POST compiled from recent tweets and thoughts spawned from them
Nein is super socially dysfunctional upon exiting Legacy of Adam on account of her initial childhood and then the even more fucked-up second phase of her upbringing where she was even further isolated from other people. She has some really major anger and aggression problems. She tends to turn her anxiety and frustration outwards bc she’s used to having authority over or taking priority over other people and/or at least not having to deal with the fallout of her own mess beyond whatever personal punishment is laid on her
Despite this once she’s back with Aubrey and they start tapping into her compassionate side she consciously doesn’t want to be destructive anymore and ultimately starts doing like, craft work as an outlet. She would rather create than destroy and it’s the first skill she learns post-LoA that she feels is really meaningful to her
(She starts out with scoobies. yall remember those plastic things you could weave into bracelets and keychains and all sorts of shit? they spend a day w/ Kaveh’s family and one of the kids teaches her how to do stuff with them)
Aubrey is great with kids
She was very much the protective big sister during her time w/ LoA and she’s not sure about having kids and going into childcare as a career or something is probably not on the table (it’s not the kind of environment she can just shut off for a while when she needs to and she’s prone to sensory overload) but she likes being with kids and she’s always a hit w/ the foster kids at Kaveh’s parents’ house
Gender is weird for these two because of their upbringing removed from mainstream society
Aubrey is pretty happy Being A Woman but is just like ideologically opposed to the gender binary and calling her a nonbinary woman is probably the most accurate term
Nein is really ??? because she grew up even MORE sheltered and beyond pronouns it was basically not ever a topic that came up during her time w/ LoA so she just kind of went with it and never gave it a second thought. but then she leaves and uh turns out people have opinions on this and there’s also a lot of options to choose from and she doesn’t really understand the difference between anything from an internal identity perspective
That said she semi-frequently gets gendered as non-female on account of being bald/totally flat-chested/broad-shouldered depending on what she’s wearing and her kneejerk reaction is to correct people. but? I don’t know. she doesn’t know. she has a lot of things to work out and this falls pretty low on the list of priorities
If Aubrey ever did leave her current job (and she probably should, eventually, bc for all its benefits it is inherently unhealthy for her mental state) she would probably end up working with animals, in a shelter or as a vet tech or something