The scroll on the actual Nine Off-Springs as detailed in Chinese text/folklore is forthcoming (in the middle of compiling info now) but I'm releasing it now because this sub is ready to be voted on. The scroll itself shouldn't form part of the graded content- I'm expecting to be assessed on the creativity of my ideas and the quality of my write-up and other aspects that the readers view important, not the quality of my research skills!Go to Comment
This is another
creative adaptation piece with original inspiration in Chinese folklore. In particular,
there was a phrase in an ancient text that translates to “The Dragon gave birth to nine off-springs, each
of them being different” that is the
basis of this particular sub. Note, however, that unlike this particular sub,
the Dragon in this ancient phrase was just referring to the particular Dragon
that it was talking about which is just a common Chinese dragon rather than
this ancient creature whose appearance is unknown as I’ve made the Dragon into. A common Chinese dragon’s outllook is basically
my description of Au Chao in the main sub. To be honest, I didn’t dig up the actual
references on these Nine Off-springs as detailed in Chinese folklore until
after I finished my own set of Nine. Nevertheless, I thought providing the set
of Nine detailed in actual Chinese folklore would be a nice complement to the
version I’ve made up specifically
for the Dragon Empire setting.
There are actually
three different version of the Nine Off-springs according to different texts,
both in terms of what the Nine actually are and their birth orderings:
Qiu Niu- Depicted as a
typical Chinse dragon, Qiu Niu is said to have a passion for music and its head
often serves as ornamentation for the tops of musical instruments
Ya Zi- Depitced as a
creature with the head of a wolf and a dragon’s body, its preference for
killing makes it a common decorative component on sword-grips. Its name also
appears in a Chinese idiom/proverb (the special four-charcter phrases in
Chinese) describing vengeful personalities.
Chao Feng- Chao Feng
itself is considered an incarnation of birds and takes the image of a phoenix.
It is said to like precipices
and therefore figurines of Chao Feng are placed on the four corners of roofs. However, these
figurines are normally of a four-legged beast form.
Pu Lao- Another with
the look of a typical Chinese dragon. Reputedly, it likes to cry. It is
represented on the tops of bells, serving as handles
Ni- A lion-like creature that likes to sit down. Figurines of it are commonly
found upon the bases of Buddhist idols under the Buddhas’ feet.
Bi Xi/Ba Xia- Bi Xi is
a creature similar in form to a Trionychidae (a form of soft-shelled turtle which can be found in Asian diet, viewed
as a delicacy and prized for the its supposedly health strengthening effects)
which is said to be fond of literature. It is put on the sides of grave
monuments. Alternativley, Ba Xia is a big tortoise that likes to carry objects.
Figurines of Ba Xia are commonly the support structures for grave monuments.
A tiger-like creature which likes litigation. Figurines of it are placed over
prison gates to keep guard.
Xi (pronounced with inflections)- Unclear of its entire outlook but it is
certain that it has the serpentine body typical of a Chinese dragon. Fu Xi
looks anything of an artistic nature and is depicted as spiraling in a vertical
sense at the top of stone monuments
Chi Wen- It has the head of a
dragon but has the body of a fish. It likes swallowing and is place on both
ends of the ridgepoles of roofs to swallow all evil influences.
Except for different birth orderings and the 5th, 6th and 9th Off-springs being entirely
different creatures, version B is really quite similar to version A.
Xi (as above)
Chi Wen (as above)
Pu Lao (as above)
Tao Tie- A horned, clawed beast with a tail
roughly corresponding to the relevant body part of a cow, tiger and goat. Its
face decorate a wide range of tools and storage devices made from an alloy of
bronze, tin and lead whose name translates to Indigo Bronze. It is associated
with gluttony and greed. In modern terms, part of its name is used in a term
that refers to food connoiseirs.
Xia (pronounced with different inflections than the Ba Xia in version A)- With
a typical Chinese dragon’s apperance, Ba Xia is said to like water and his
image is sculpted into the foundation pillar for bridges.
Zi (as above)
Ni (as above)
Tu- A conch or clam, which does not like to be disturbed. It decorates door
knobs or the doorstep (in ancient times, door knobs have a flat surface which
is in the shape of Jiao Tu’s face that is attached to a ring of metal which is
used to knock)
*Each of the
Off-springs in this set have two charcter names in Chinese as well (they are
all called xxx Dragon if I translate them across but I can’t since some
characters are basically meaningless by itself) but I can’t find their
pronounications and I surely am not even going to attempt to make them up
myself since my Mandarin just isn’t good enough and also 3 of the characters I
can’t even pronounce in my mother tongue of Cantonese.
dragon with horns on its head (the leader while the rest are in no particular
dragon with scales on its body
dragon with wings
dragon without horns
dragon who cannot fly
dragon who likes water
dragon who likes fire (whose name translates to Fire Dragon)
dragon who likes to call/shout/emit sounds
dragon who likes to fight
Also, I'm not totally done with this sub yet cos I still need to update the scroll on the actual 9 in Chinese folklore. I got my sources already but would u believe it there are 3 different versions of them (all right, 2 are quite similar but still)!
Actually, I just realised that the companion sub to this that will be upcoming, the First and its Descendants, will be the same exact mixture, although this time I'm doing any mixing of animal parts by myself. The appearance of the First are as detailed in Chinese folklore. Anyway, stay tuned!Go to Comment
On your concern over storytelling, I would think Elbin's suggestion of making this an old script by someone describing this race will hit the nail on the head in this regard. I actually thought this was more or less what you are doing now as this is written in 1st person tense but then I would add an extra line at the end to let ppl know they are reading an excerpt from some written work like this: ~ An excerpt from xxxx. However, if you don't want to keep to the conventional structure of grouping content as this will be leading you towards, then you can write it this whole sub in the voice of someone who learnt abt info. on these Crawling Giants bit by bit and then it would justify the current structure of content not being grouped together.
Overall, I really think me and Elbin are saying the same things abt this sub although our votes are slightly different. Happy to revote on it after edit. If I don't see a revised version of this myself, just PM me. You can probably PM Gossamer and Redgre and ask them for a revote now as it seems to me like they are mainly after more info on these Giants and your addition of the Explanations section will have satisfied them in that regard already.