sketch-trying to motivate myself. Zio's brakish summer coat (I've changed some of his season's colors)
Zio-I've never really introduced his story, but I've found a way to link it with Kurai's...
LISTENZio is caged in the "Below", which is far away from anything, anyone, contact and communication. Located off the edge of a vast avoided waterfall miles wide and down even farther secrets Zio's self prison. It's an isolated area where he is forced to feed on a poison as a food recourse. (the poison is a paste that naturally thrives in the Below)
Zio happened here after a savage ship battle with a warring enemy and an unknown army. He was a "temple guardian" that housed birds, keeping them in safeguard near the great river. In attempt to defend his keep, soldiers ransomed his keep, and killed all birds in sight in the most grotesque ways while forcing Zio to watch. Where currents were strikingly swift, he was tossed in to drown where the river and edge collided.
The utter alone seclusion that Zio suffers makes him unpredictable and eager.
Indistinguishable visions and dreams repeat themselves with an insignia called the Eclipse, and the freedom it can give him if he finds it. It had freed an archangel from the House, a prison very few escape.
At one point Kurai is told about Zio, and the myth that he holds a relic he would need later. (Travis, another character, is somehow dragged along with Kurai to his world during this time) It takes some time to locate the waterfall, as not many venture toward it in warning of something vile living at the bottom.
Once found, they both must freefall down-if Kurai decides to suddenly take flight during the freefall, the force of wind itself could shred his wings, but does attempt a rough landing near the end. At this point, Kurai is well into the curse's grip, he is desperate just as Zio is for freedom. He instantly knows that Kurai holds the Eclipse and takes his chance. The duo snap and nip and tear hungrily at each other (both are feral during this time). Kurai finds that Zio holds no relic, that he was lied to. Zio does not give, but continues to attack regardless of Kurai swaying him off.
As Zio is not truly canine, he hisses and creates a haunting deep throated shriek.
Travis is kept at bay, and Kurai bares down on Zio, snarling a warning to back away-he ensures himself he would not attack again by snapping several tendons and grading his way towards Zio's jugular veins, tearing into the neck supporting muscles. Zio is left where he was felled, in the faulty knowing that his chance to escape was lost.
Both were lied to; the Eclipse does not offer Zio freedom, nor did Zio possess any relic. Kurai was tricked to destroy Zio and Zio to kill Kurai and leave the Eclipse open for the taking.
Chars and story are mine/Tatchit