Characters & Places
Descriptions and sketches to help you imagine your own versions of the characters. If you create something and you want to share it, please send me a link!
The cute main character drawings on this page are commissions by Magma Doodle.
Look out for spoiler warnings!
Tsoci, AKA The Spirit of Crescent Island (they/them, age 4.5B)
Tsoci is the superorganism that connects all the living organisms in Edge's world.
Edge (she/her, age 12)
Art by Magma Doodle.
Edge is a type of Forax called a scout.
She grows up in North Crescent with her mother, Mana. Edge is brave and independent, and she love science. She values honesty, and will do anything for her friends.
Edge is three shades of brown, with light markings across her face and two dark stripes from her nose to her tail. She's bipedal, but when she wants to move quickly she runs on all fours. She can climb well, and can fly.
Her design is inspired by a combination of a martin (paws, face), a bat / Momo from ATLA (arm wings), and a chipmunk or sugar glider (stripes). Her fur is plush, like a chinchilla's, and she stands about 1m (3.3') tall. She has visible paw pads on her hands and feet, wide feet and hands, and long claws for climbing. Her eyes are dark brown. She has a wide black nose.
She wears a green hooded tunic with a gold belt and gold leaf insignia. She also carries a pack that straps over her shoulders and attaches to the belt, allowing her to spread her wings when necessary. She carries a fishing rod and she eats mainly fish, berries, nuts, roots, and eggs when she can find them.
Jessop (he/him, age 14)
Art by Magma Doodle.
Jessop is an Avian. He maintains a positive attitude and readily takes on leadership responsibilities. He's utterly fearless when it comes to height and speed, and his favorite passtime is flying.
Jessop wears a green robe and pants tied with a sash. He also wears goggles sometimes, and carries a pack full of camping and hunting equipment.
Jessop is three shades of brown, with an orange beak, orange arms and legs, and yellow eyes. He has a dark brown crest on his head. He's completely bipedal and stands about 1.5m (5') tall. When he gets excited, he hops like a sparrow. His design inspiration is a falcon or hawk (face), the Rito from Zelda (torso and legs / overall vibe), and a gryphon (having six limbs total).
His clothing should be simple, functional, and should look homemade. He wears a utility belt and carries the tools of a hunter and trapper. He eats small animals, fruits, seeds, mushrooms, and fish, and he loves pastries.
Art by Magma Doodle.
Apparent age before transforming: around 7 - 10, after transforming: around 16-17, actual age: over 600)
Xalma is a baby Amph. She is lonely, jealous, creative, and funny in a snarky way.
Xalma is glittery pink with big, pale green eyes that reflect light like a cat's, three gill frills on either side of her head, and a finned tail. Everything about Xalma is soft and round. She is approx. 75cm (2.5') tall. She has bioluminescent skin that can create patterns like a glowing cuttlefish when she's underwater. Her design inspiration is an axolotl (gills / tail / general vibe), and Toothless (teeth / wide mouth). She has a short, wide snout.
Xalma wears a simple dress made of leaves and a shell necklace (which she made herself). She spends most of her time swimming, but when she's on land she alternates between walking on her hind legs or scampering quickly on all fours. Her hands and feet are webbed. She has loosely spaced baby teeth and a large mouth. She is an excellent swimmer and all her favorite foods are extremely poisonous.
Art by Krimmins.
After transforming, Xalma is 1.85m (6') tall. She's black with bright red stripes, claws and horns. She has gills hidden under a neckplate. Her eyes remain huge and green, but her bioluminescence is replaced with an ability to smoulder like coals or literally catch on fire. When she does, her eyes glow white. She can raise and lower her spikes. She is completely bipedal as an adult.
Xalma's clothing as an adult has not been decided.
Art by Magma Doodle.
Rover is designed for rapid adaptation and interfacing with multiple species. Their age and personality are a mystery.
They are described as 'a sketch of an Insect'. Rover is all white with red, unblinking eyes and two simple wings. They are the same size as Edge (1m tall).
After transforming, Rover becomes Sole. They choose to present as a mixture of all the sentient species. Sole is white with red eyes rimmed in long white lashes. They have fur all over their body, and feathers from the crown of their head to the small of their back. Sole's hands and feet are webbed, and they have a webbed tail. They also retain iridescent insect wings (two pairs, like a damselfly, which can be folded when not in use), and moth-like antennae.
Direct quote from the book:
"The upgraded rover was still white, but their soft fur and feathers had a rainbow sheen. They had webbed hands and feet, and a finned tail. Two sets of shimmering Insect wings sprouted from their feathered back. Their eyes, while still red, blinked behind long white lashes, and two moth-like antennae sprouted from a shock of feathers on top of their head."
Sole does not wear clothes. They are genderless.
Mahali is an Avian exile who lives in Ruins outside Cowrie. He is inspired by an owl. He wears rags of what was once a nice robe, tied by a sash, and rags wrapped around his feet.
Insects are large, sentient anthropods who can act as a superorganism (a Hive Mind). They live in Hive, a massive, ancient complex on Far Crescent. They are approximately the same size as sapiens, and they sometimes wear small adornments like sashes or jewelry.
Since Insect language does not include spoken words, names are communicated through movement and scent, so it's appropriate to draw them dancing.
While Insects have similar body types to ‘regular’ insects, they are bipedal.
Common body types:
North Crescent Wildlife
The wild animals who live on Crescent Island are plant hybrids. They can be interpreted quite loosely, as long as it's obvious that they are part animal, part plant.
Here are the names of the species in book one:
Bramblemare - a deer/tree cross. These are solitary unless they're raising young. Males are very territorial.
Junelope - a bunny/bush cross, occupying warrens of around 10 families.
Nettlecrow - a bird/wildflower cross that lives in large, noisy flocks.
Vinecats - In the north, these are the feline fruit of the catvine, and when they mature, they are released from their vines to mate, laying seeds for more catvines. In the south, sapiens have domesticated the vinecat, preventing it from ever maturing, so that the animals can be perpetually juiced to make food for the growing sapien population.
Froggles - frog/rock/mushroom creatures who live in the mountain pools around Grotto Ridge.
Rockmice - These are just mice who live in rocks. They also eat rocks, so their teeth are pronounced.
Thornwolves - a predator that spans the island, with several subspecies. The northern thornwolf is a canine/thornbush cross that travels in small family units and primarily hunts junelopes and bramblemares. In the rainforest, jungle thornwolves travel in larger, more coordinated packs, can climb trees, and they grow to enormous sizes. These are more like a cross between a tropical thornbush and a fossa. There are desert, urban, sea and swamp thornwolves, too, but they are not in the first book.
Jackbears - A cross between a jackfruit and a bear. They have rough, exposed skin on their faces and paws, and they smell. Like Thornwolves, there are subspecies across Crescent Island, but they only vary in size (the further south you go, the bigger they get.) They are onmivores who will eat anything they can find or catch, and they maintain large territories with an overlapping mutual zone where they will come together for company or to find a mate.
Inspired by the boreal forests of northern Canada, the valley is a quiet, secluded area surrounding a glacial lake, with active thermal vents scattered throughout the region's waterways.
An ancient underground lake where The Child Queen lives. The Grotto has two entrances on opposite sides of the mountains surrounding the valley. The main entrance is a large, ornate stone arch carved directly into the rock of the mountain. It opens on a very long passage that leads to the lake. A huge stone dock extends from the entranceway to the ocean.
The back entrance is hidden in a swamp in the valley. A stone courtyard leads to a smaller cave entrance guarded by two ancient statues. A long flight of stairs leads down to the lake, which is bordered by a tiled floor and surrounded by pillars shaped like trees. The cave itself is lit with bioluminescent fungi and plants, and the lake itself is filled with bioluminescent life. Xalma has been creating elaborate works of art, buildings, and other structures at the bottom of the lake for generations.
In the center of the lake are several small islands which serve as the rooms of a house. These are covered with modern items, which Xalma doesn’t use. There are also many locked bookshelves.
An ancient glacial melt system that has eroded complex channels from the mountains and down through the bedrock of the island to the lake in the middle of the valley. The canyon is a useful hiding place for outcasts.
Hive is where the Insects live. It's on the northernmost tip of the island, and looks like a scatter of jewel and dome shaped crystal buildings scattered across the land between the mountains and the ocean. At night, it glows in many colors.
Cowrie is in the rainforest. The buildings look like they were grown directly into the trees and out of the bushes. There are a lot of different plants and trees. It's eternally gloomy, and lit with solar-electric lamps. While the jungle city of Cowrie is safe, the surrounding jungles are full of feirce and dangerous animals.
The southern city-state city formed by sapiens after Tsoci banishes them. A dystopian solar-punk society ruled by corrupt politicians and greedy technocrats.
Marrow is a walled city-state ten times larger than Beijing. It occupies the entire southern tip of the island. The city is divided into three main rings and surrounded by mechanized farms.
The upper ring is the most affluent and least polluted part of the city, and sits at the top of a natural plateau overlooking the ocean. It is surrounded by the inner ring, a factory district (which is actually shaped more like half a donut).
Beyond the inner ring are the homes and businesses of the lower ring. It has the highest population density, and is where most of the Forax live. This ring occupies the largest area of the three, and sprawls for a great distance. Individual neighbourhoods are confined to walled 'pods', controlled communities where sapiens of similar economic and social status live.
Marrow has an overall solar-punk aesthetic, but there are a lot of different architectural styles, and different areas are in varying states of disrepair. While structures and decor in the upper ring are relatively well maintained, many areas are retrofit with cobbled together, often unsafe upgrades. The climate also varies from area to area, with the factory district being heavily polluted and prone to smog, and the upper ring generally experiencing much nicer weather.