Shiny Things by Orin Drake | Shiny Things Gallery | Dragons | Plush | Evalis

Evalis, while still being considered a rather young and technically "immature" Decce, acts as Guardian of the South Sea Temple.  His desire to protect the temple is out of gratitude to the servants for raising him after having found him seemingly abandoned as a hatchling.  He's well-suited to the lifestyle, as far as he's concerned, spending most of his time enjoying the sea breeze, watching over the temple servants and enjoying whatever gifts of food the devoted bring for him.  (He likes cherries, clearly.)  Fierce as he may look, it will take another hundred or so years for his horns to mature in full, as well as the stinging barbs on his tail and the backs of his legs to be at their most potent (though it should be noted that the barbs are only activated in defense; otherwise they're perfectly harmless).

Some have come to believe that the Decce are actually related to the Celestial Turtle.  While their "shells" aren't fully hardened structures, the longer the Decce live, the more hard gem-like structures grow onto their shells.  They don't normally fuse and become fully hard until after a Decce dies; this is where the tales of heroes using Decce shells as shields come from.  Rather than the hero fighting and conquering a Decce, a Decce tribe or family unit would grace someone they felt worthy with ancient artifact so important to them that it is literally a part of their history.  While they were once linked with mages, these days they've become exceedingly rare to the point where not even the great mage circles know whether or not a whole tribe of them still exist.  It's a sad fate, but some argue it's also smarter to hide until humans figure out how to stop destroying themselves.

Evalis was one of those off-and-on projects that I worked on in large pieces interrupted by a week here, a commission there, and a necessary break so that I wouldn't wind up getting stabby here and there and everywhere.  So... what I know is that he took some number of weeks to complete.  Not quite a month?  But definitely more than two weeks.  About three?  Maybe a little more?  Time, what is it?  I did a lot of new things with the internal structure, and I'm sure you'll notice the paws/claws.  I'm so happy with how those turned out, you have no idea.

I can't even express how much work went into this.  I knew I was crazy before, but geez.  The entire length of his body from head to tail, legs, and each toe are individually wired and poseable, and boy is he a big fella.  From tip of his nose to the tip of his tail, he's about 20", standing casually at about 8" to the top of his horns.  His claws and horns are polymer clay, and his eyes are a gorgeously red-dyed jade stone.  There are plenty of glass beads and painted highlights using iridescent pigments, as well.  I mean, you know... shiny.

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