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Profile: Myhrad

Created Thu 12 Oct 06 - 2:37 by Mithandir in category Chasing the Sunset


This article describes some of the behind-the-scenes ideas behind Myhrad and some of his thoughts and feelings that are not directly expressed in teh comic (yet). As such it could be taken either as background info or as a spoiler. Read at your own risk.

Part of my pride in Chasing the Sunset is that most of its characters are quite complex. This is, obviously, especially true of the main cast. Even Feiht, who is arguably the simplest of the characters, has some depth to her. It's not about Feiht I wish to talk now tho, but Myhrad, our little drageling.

In the (real world) history of the comic, as it will be taught to rowdy schoolchildren in the year 2044, Myhrad was both the first as the last character of chasing the sunset to be created.

First, because it was a drawing of him that started it all. A drawing Alien made and showed me, and which I thought would make a great character for a comic. It was only several years later, however, that we actually started the strip. Thus, Myhrad is the oldest, teh first.

Last because it was only until we were well into the comic that I finally got a feel for the character of Myhrad. Before this, I simply didn't know who Myhrad was and he was shown little.

In hindsight now, I have to wonder whether this difficulty was because of the complexity of Myhrad's character, or whether the complexity of Myhrad's character is a result of the difficulty I had. Chicken, egg. Egg, dragon. It cannot be disputed, however that during the first hundred strips anecdotes formed around the as-yet unfinished myhrad (a proto-myhrad if you please) that restricted the posibilities and thus gave him shape:

Alright, so we had a thoughtful, lazy, cowardly, playful dragon. Right. We also learned he was a vegetarian and afraid of heights.

Now it should be clear there's some contradictions here: Lazy and Playful? Well, I guess cats manage that one fine. However his cowardly behaviour at some times contrasts with occasional acts of bravery, which is harder to reconsile. Myhrad has many of these apparant contradictions, some of which have been explained (why he's afraid of heights as a dragon, for instance), some of which haven't yet. For me, however, tehse contradictions are the very essence of Myhrad: he is a dragon raised by elves and sometimes his instinct, his dragon, is at odds with his upbringing. He's smart enough to know this, and it doesn't bother him too much.

As a character, he now plays the role of voice of wisdom. While Ayne protects Leaf with physical force, Myhrad does the same thing with cunning and knowledge. Having read a lot (and having more common sense than the rest of the party combined (even without feiht, who has negative amounts of it)) he will, often despairingly, advise and inform Leaf about the world around them. He will not, however, take decissions. Myhrad is not a leader, does not want to be a leader.

At the same time, he's also a joker albeit one with a very different, darker sense of humour than Feiht. His weapons are Sarcasm and sharp (often cynical) insights as well as dark alusions. His relative sanity (compared to the rest of the party) makes him perfect to point out just how crazy the others are (as such he doesn't provide the humour himself but augments that of others).

It's often hard to tell what Myhrad is thinking, because he keeps much to himself. We know he's torn between being a dragon and an elf, but has for now adopted a "laisez-faire" attitude towards it (whatever will be, will be). He knows he'll have to chose, but also knows there's no rush. Privately he'd like to find his parents, but he knows Leaf and the others could not follow him to the dragonlands. he figures that he has time, but does not know how much. In the end he is not sure what to do (does not even know what his options are) and this more than anything else is behind his passive attitude towards plans.


ReinderThe way I see it, Myhrad is not a humanoid. His brain is very different and more similar to non-ape animals than to us. So there's no contradiction between his cowardice and his occasional bravery; most animals will flee from danger rather than fight, because fighting is a lot of work. This, then, is of a piece with his laziness.

As with most animals, sometimes protective instincts kick in. Dragons protect their babies in CTS, so it stands to reason that the babies are born with the same instinct, and/or learn to protect small, weak things from their parents. Again, no real contradiction here. Now Ayne and Leaf are small and weak even compared to this juvenile dragon, so that makes them either lunch or surrogate babies. Just like with cats, really.

None of this even gets us started on Myhrad as an individual, but then that's mostly covered by the sarcasm and the skeptical outlook. He's the guy who questions the wisdom of his friends. And then goes to sleep.
BobmmmMMMmm! Deep, this is.