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    Issa grumbled and rolled over. He’d been awake since first light, but had been pretending to sleep. Hoping to shut out the daylight. It was bad enough that he’d been waking with the sunrise for the last week, but this was the first day of the Sun Festival. It was all anyone talked about for the last month. Even in school, they’d been instructed to make decorations and prepare presentations or.. ugh.. plays. Insufferable.

    “Ben! Up you get, or you’ll miss your first class!”

    He shut his eyes tighter. Why did she have to call him that? He’d been ‘Issa Darkflame’ for a whole month. It wasn’t the name he’d been born with, but it suited him better than ‘Benjamin Carpenter’ ever would. And it wasn’t that hard to remember.

    “Come on, sleepy head,” his mother called again. “I made eggs for breakfast, but your father will eat them all if you don’t hurry!”

    “I’m awake,” Issa muttered, listening to her leave. He sighed deeply and pushed himself up. Heavy curtains blocked out the daylight, except for a single sliver sneaking in to illuminate a line of dark-carpeted floor. Avoiding that ray of light like the plague, Issa moved to his clothes cabinet. An array of neatly hung or folded dark-colored shirts and pants greeted him. The more colorful clothing his parents insisted he wear on “special occasions” were all in their own boxes, at the back of his cabinet. Also neatly folded, but out of sight.

    It took time to prepare for the day, but that was fine. He’d rather not leave the house this week, much less go to classes where everyone else would be celebrating light and all its virtues. The best thing light did, if you asked Issa, was create shadows. He smirked at that thought, buttoning his shirt. Nearly finished, he went to the small mirror on his wall and ran his fingers through his hair. It was long and dark, though not the rich midnight black he wished it were. Oh well, he could try staining it again later. A small pot of ashes and grease he’d mixed himself sat on top of his clothes cabinet, along with a small brush from one of his father’s old woodworking kits, and some silver jewelry. Time for the finishing touches.

    Ten minutes of fussing later, Issa looked at his reflection once more to make sure everything was right. One silver spiral hung on a dark cord from his neck, another from a braid in his hair, beaded with green and amber stones. He had no fur to shave in intricate patterns, like the sira did, but he did have his dark grease-paint. Small black flames graced his wrists, just hidden under dark, fingerless gloves, and a spiral was drawn onto his collar bone, right where his shirt collar would cover it. Delicate dark lines traced his eyes, making them stand out and look more angular and darker than they actually were. Only the marks on his face would be visible to the general public, which was how he liked it.

    By the time he made it down to breakfast, the eggs were cold, but his plate sat untouched. Apparently the threat of his father eating all the food had been an empty one. The man wasn’t even in sight. Probably left for work early.

    His mother turned from where she was washing the dishes in a basin at the far end of the kitchen. “Finally,” she said, then raised an eyebrow. “Really, Benjamin? Black clothes for the first day of the Sun Festival?”

    Issa sat down and stared at his plate, answering dispassionately. “It’s Issa now, Mother, and I wear what makes me comfortable.” He continued to stare at his plate until his mother took notice and peered over to see what the matter was.

    She grinned. “Sunny side up.” It was apparently her mission in life to remind him constantly of the impending doom that awaited him in town.

    Issa rolled his eyes, but stabbed the pair of ‘suns’ on his plate and began to eat. Eggs were a good way to start the day, usually. Somehow, today it just felt wrong.
Festivities
Poor Issa. He's got some issues.

Story beginning for BishenRealm's first clutch on dA~  (This will be edited into a webpage later, but I was running out of time, thank you work, and wanted to get it up before the deadline. *die* I'll link to the page as soon as it's up, so you can continue reading if you so desire.)

Dragons from bishen.indyslair.net/ (Because it's been so long since I've been here, I've forgotten how to link text. *die some more* XD)
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deviantID

unyko
Imagination > Reality
Artist | Hobbyist | Varied
United States
Just another imperfect creature, trying to make her own way.

Current Residence: Middle of the Wilderness, PA
Favourite genre of music: Good Beat + Catchy Tune = Awesome ^.~
Operating System: Mac OS X, Win (H)8
MP3 player of choice: iPod
Personal Quote: Yay?
Interests
Alright, sorry it took me so long, but I had some serious thinking to do. ^.^;; All of the entries were made of awesome, so it was a tough choice. In the end, instead of picking one and keeping it, I decided to mix and match (something I did say was a possible outcome XD), so the winners were the entries which contributed the most (in actual appearance, or design inspiration) to my final design.

So, without further ado, here are the winners:

----------------------

1st Place
DreamBurst with:
p0rcelainbombshell.deviantart.…
(Those scales, the 'mane', and the thought put into creating those talismans totally won me over. <3 Also, this is an awesome concept for her monsterform. o.o)

2nd Place
indyana with:
indyana.deviantart.com/art/Cha…
(The only entry who combined all of my marking preferences into a cohesive whole. <3!)

3rd Place
UnregisteredCat (FA) with:
www.furaffinity.net/view/58377…
(Those ears~ *LOVE* And the idea to put the double-diamond all the way down the nose. Genius. I also loved the buttwings, but ultimately couldn't use them. Still awesome, though!)

Honorable Mention
Articus-the-tigulf (FA) with
www.furaffinity.net/view/59200…
(Facial markings, scales on the face, and horns - you reminded me that I love horns <3)
karimuffin with:
img.photobucket.com/albums/v33…
(Monsterform: YES)
Stormelle with:
stormelle.deviantart.com/art/U…
(Fluffy feets~ <3!)
ixris with:
ixris.deviantart.com/art/Uny-r…
(Ethereal butterfly wings! *glee* And the creepy snakejaw thing, complete with snake teeth. XD)


Aaaand the raffle winner! (Almost forgot. XD)
*drumroll* *scamper to random.org* *moredrumroll*
evilcarp! (FA) :D Congrats!

-----------------

Yes, there are four honorable mentions. That's what happens when I have too many awesome ideas to choose from. XD

To all winners: Check the prize list (unyko.deviantart.com/journal/4…), then ontact me via note with your ref(s) and paypal address (if applicable). :3

If you won, it means I'll be using some aspect of your entry in my final design. For the most part (except, potentially, the first place winner), you are absolutely free to use or sell the designs that you made for this contest - all I ask is that the silver 'double-diamond' marking be either altered or removed before they're sold, as it is a sort of personal trademark. ^.^;;;; But other than that, you're free to do what you like with them.

Thank you all so much for entering! Keep an eye out for the final design to see your ideas in action~ 8D
  • Mood: Cheerful

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:iconmyuniverseinabox:
Myuniverseinabox Featured By Owner Mar 17, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Happy Birthday!
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:iconlethe-gray:
lethe-gray Featured By Owner Mar 17, 2015  Hobbyist Writer
Hope you have a happy birthday!
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:icondragonheal187:
DragonHeal187 Featured By Owner Mar 17, 2015
Happy Birthday!
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:iconatalix:
Atalix Featured By Owner Mar 17, 2014   General Artist
Happy birthday!:dummy::cake::party:
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:iconmoonkelpie:
Moonkelpie Featured By Owner Mar 17, 2014
:iconcakelickplz:Happy Coming Into Existence Day!:iconyeahplz:
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:iconnotchthegreat:
notchthegreat Featured By Owner Mar 17, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Happy Birfday mate.
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:iconmoonkelpie:
Moonkelpie Featured By Owner Mar 17, 2013
:party:Happy Coming Into Existence Day!:iconcakelickplz:
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:iconshadowmanic:
Shadowmanic Featured By Owner Mar 17, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
AMWG happy birthday!
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:iconlethe-gray:
lethe-gray Featured By Owner Mar 17, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Have a happy birthday!
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:iconforrgotenrose:
forrgotenrose Featured By Owner Jun 9, 2012
Why am I not watching you? I could have sworn I was!
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