Character Design – The Sentinels
Greetings fellow readers.
Welcome to Arcana Magi Behind the Scenes.
Today I’m going to share with you my characters designs of the Sentinels. Now I know that Chisame Murakami and Danica Leandros are less then five chapters into the story, but I will make sure not to spoil too much from them or Alysia Morales and Brie Williams. I might not be able to cover everything so I’ll do my best to give you all I got.
Sentinel of Suzaku
Element – Fire
Birth Date – June 22, 2000
Age – 13
Magical Item – Bracelet
Weapon – Mist Wing Staff
Weapon Name – Saga
Jewel Color – Teal
Interests – Sports
Alysia Morales actually originated from Alysia Perez from Arcana Magi Zero. When I had planned to turn the Zero series into the Main Series, I really had no idea where to take Alysia Perez and Megumi Miyazaki. So when I decided to make an entirely original Alysia character, and this version came to fruition. Then I took the brainwash plot device from my De x Maquina Universe and applied it to Alysia.
I wanted Alysia to be a strong character. Put her through so much that if she whined about how nobody understood what she went through, no one can challenge her angst. But I also did not want to reduce her to some weak character incapable of overcoming the adversity.
I chose the fire element for her because fire represents freedom, strength, and passion, which are some of the feelings she expresses thrghout the story. I want her to have the determination to overcome all of that. Her mist wings help assert her sense of freedom, purity, and innocence. I wanted her wings to have a mystic to them, by having them burst into mist and reforming.
Despite her love for sports and athletics, I tried not to depict her as a tomboy, an easy stereotype some stories lay on a female. I chose hockey as her favored sport, mainly because I found it annoying seeing females in stories always playing soccer or softball. As if that’s the only sports females could play. It’s not to act as some masculine feminist, I just feel a soccer girl or a softball girl is cliché and played out. There are barely any movies featuring female hockey players and I wanted a little originality for Alysia’s interests.
Sentinel of Byakko
Element – Metal
Birth Date – September 22, 2000
Age – 12
Magical Item – Pendant
Weapon – Heavy Metal Hammer
Weapon Name – Legacy
Jewel Color – Yellow
Interests – Science
My approach with Brie Williams is a cheerful child, always happy and hyperactive. She has cuteness to her and is nice to everyone.
She is the youngest of the Sentinels and is the daughter of heroes. I wanted her to want to be a hero to follow her parent’s footsteps. Never to accept killing another human being and let justice run it’s course. I also did this to counter Danica Leandros and her villainous nature.
I wanted her to be the genius of the group. Since metal is her element, it was easy to make her an inventor. Earth, ground, metal they are all minerals. Spell casting was a little difficult at first. This was due to the fact that Danica’s element is wood and usually in the western storytelling wood would be part of the earth element. Since I chose the eastern model for the Four Gods, I thought of another approach, which was scientifically logical. Sound based Spells. Since sound can travel through metal, rock, and the ground, this made it easy to explain how Brie could make the earth split apart or rise up from the ground. Also since Sound could travel through air, it would conflict with the wind element of Danica. So I tried my best not to let any of the sound spells rip through the air and instead impact the air as if slamming into the ground itself.
Brie is the least physically trained Sentinel in the whole group. She tends to wing it when she fights and relies mainly on her smarts than combat. I wanted her to be a genius. Normally the earth element would represent patience and wisdom, but I wanted to go against the grain. I felt it would be more fun if she were hyperactive and always moving instead.
Sentinel of Genbu
Element – Water
Birth Date – December 22, 1999
Age – 13
Magical Item – Brooch
Weapon – Spiral Shell Gauntlet
Weapon Name – Fable
Jewel Color – Lavender
Interests – Art
I never had a well thought out design for Chisame. I fact, I had no idea what to make her back-story. Originally, I wanted her to contrast Alysia’s fiery nature and challenge her angst. But since I was so slow bring her, Brie, and Danica in the first ten chapters, her conflict of Alysia’s angst would make Chisame look like a jerk. So I chose to contrast her through other aspects. In this case, she has parents who don’t have mana, but she was born with it, or at least had it activated at an early age.
I also added to her persona of not understanding what Alysia, Brie, and Danica were going through. After all, she still has parents and stable life. By making her partially blind, though, I made sure that was going through something the other three would not understand. This disconnect, I hope, would develop into all four Sentinels learning about each other and become stronger together as the story progresses.
I wanted Chisame to be the oldest and the leader of the group. I know it seems weird since Alysia is the focus of the story, but water and fire don’t mix well and I want to explore that contrasting conflict. Since I haven’t gotten deep into the story with Chisame yet, there are many possibilities to go with her.
Since water is fluidic in nature, I’m looking to have Chisame personality to be one of exploration and understanding. Start her path to being a leader as an empty cup and filling it with experience. This is why I had her receive training from Mage Karyn Mayweather.
Sentinel of Seiryuu
Element – Wood
Birth Date – March 22, 2000
Age – 13
Magical Item – Ring
Weapon – Petal Leaf Sword
Weapon Name – Epic
Jewel Color – Red
Interests – Dancing
I really knew what I wanted out of Danica big time. A villain. This is to keep up with the Sentinels purpose of living their life as they choose without interference from the Four Gods. In a sense what I hope to accomplish is an Anti-Villain. A very difficult task to make, because I could end up turning her into an Anti-Hero. She completely contrasts Brie’s heroic nature and her hero parents. I mean there isn’t much for me to explain other than saying she is a villain.
Like Brie, I chose to use the eastern philosophical element of Wood rather than call it Wind. The trick was how to express wind when Wood is used in conjunction with the earth element in the west. The best way I can describe wood with wind was nature itself. Trees and plants need the wind to spread its pollen. Animals use the wind to find scent of prey or a mate. Like nature, Wind is unstoppable and never-ending. Think about it, Earth is limited in motion and wind can fly around rocks and metal, through cracks. Fire may need oxygen to burn but wind can replenish itself after the fire dies out. Water just moves with the wind and help create waves and tides. Perfect for Danica’s persona. A force of nature.
I chose dancing as her interest. It sounds weird since I made her an anti-villain, but the idea of her love for dancing is to give her a sense of humanity. To show that there is something good in her. I don’t know what will come out of Danica as the story progresses.
Well I know there is a lot more to the Sentinels then what I have presented. But I think the best fun in reading Arcana Magi is learning more about them as the story progresses. After all, I don’t want to give everything about them away and ruin the experience.
If you have a favorite Sentinel already, I hope that I have given you better insight on that character. If you haven’t picked one, I hope this Behind the Scenes helped your choice. If you had no idea about the Sentinels, I hope this help you know more about them. Just remember that you can learn more about them in their Character Chapters written in the Arcana Magi storyline.
Until next time…
This is the official home of the Arcana Magi Universe. You will find the Web Novel, Short Stories, Novelettes, and Behind the Scenes posted here. This is so you, the Reader, do not have go through the process of finding each chapter that is scattered throughout Fictionaut.
Table of Contents
-Group Pg 1: Arcana Magi
-Group Pg 7: Arcana Magi Memorial
-Group Pg 10: Arcana Magi Pure
-Group Pg 13: Arcana Magi Cross
-Group Pg 14: Arcana Magi Short Stories
-Group Pg 15: Arcana Magi Behind the Scenes
NOTE: I highly recommend reading Arcana Magi in PDF Format as offered by Fictionaut. Or you can click on Font Size Change Button next to the PDF Option to enhance your reading experience. Both options are above the title of the story.
Also I highly recommend, if you are interested in following Arcana Magi, to link this to your Favorites. This is because my Group Page link fell out of the Fictionaut's Front Page and you would have to click on Groups link first to get to Arcana Magi Group Section. It's better to just Favorite it or link my Groups Page to whatever you got.
Also because of the high volume of traffic on the front page, my chapters don't stay up longer than half a day, so you would not know if I had posted a chapter. And the Site Activity Bar on the side of the front page, doesn't stay up for longer than 30 seconds, so any announcements I make in my Group Page that would post in the site Activity section on the sidebar, falls out as well. Whew.
I encourage you all to take your time reading Arcana Magi. There is no need to rush or feel you have to read it in one sitting. You can view it in PDF Format, offered by Fictionaut, for a more easy reading and relaxing experience.
I thank you all for coming here.
Please enjoy the Arcana Magi Series.
Don't forget to catch The Impossible Man at The Impossible Man Series Group Section here on Fictionaut.
Click here to check it out: http://www.fictionaut.com/groups/the-impossible-man-series
Join me on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Written-Works-of-H-M-Brown/191431734234570
Arcana Magi Title Page Artwork by H-M Brown ©2011.
Arcana Magi Zero ©2009 Henry-Michael Brown
Arcana Magi ©2010 Henry-Michael Brown
Arcana Magi Memorial ©2010 Henry-Michael Brown
Arcana Magi Rush ©2010 Henry-Michael Brown
Arcana Magi Memorial Vol.2 ©2011 Henry-Michael Brown
Arcana Magi Cross ©2011 Henry-Michael Brown
Arcana Magi Pure ©2011 Henry-Michael Brown
Arcana Magi Divine ©2012 Henry-Michael Brown
Arcana Magi Memorial Vol.3 ©2012 Henry-Michael Brown
Arcana Magi Pure Vol.2 ©2012 Henry-Michael Brown
Arcana Magi Pure Vol.3 ©2013 Henry-Michael Brown