12 days of Winter is back for 2019!

A yearly tradition I do each year celebrating the hobby each day up till Christmas day, with posts ranging from hobby projects, art, stories and random stuff.

This year I’m going bolder with my plans for the 12 day challenge! I’ve got some big posts that I’m currently working on, which means November will be very quite from me.

So what to expect for the 12 days of Winter? Well, I can’t reveal all of what I’ve planned, but here’s what’s in store.

  • A three part post on the lore of the Astral Bears, including artwork!
  • My top ten books of 2019
  • Fan fiction of the Fly on the Wall podcast, Post Apocalypse story part 1 (unofficial and fan fiction)

There’s a lot more to come, but for now mark your calendars for December 13th!

Because I like treating you guys with sneak peaks, I’ve got this WIP artwork of a certain Chapter Master who will be featured in my Astral Bears lore series.

Until next time,

-Bjorn

Butchers tea party

Now for some freaky **** art work I’ve done in celebration of the Fly on the Wall podcast (hosted by Luke and Woz, not the other political podcast one) with their Post Apocalypse special.

So what made me want to do this artwork? Well it was around the time when the series started to build up, after the first appearance of the Butcher I thought I’d do some art for how I’d imagine the series would look like. I left the sketch awhile ago as I had other stuff to do with College and my hobby projects.

It wasn’t until my fan fiction story was mentioned on the podcast that I thought I’d go back to the sketch and do something to celebrate the podcast.

Here’s my sketch which I used as a template for building up my colour layers on the Procreate app. I took a picture of my sketch and added filters to make it sharp in black and white. Then I used the photo in the app and filled any gaps in the artwork in black line brush, which will help me fill drop colours without crossing areas that aren’t supposed to be filled.

Here’s what the basic first layer looked like with a few details done in airbrush for basic details and lighting.

With the Butcher needing more colours and making Luke and Woz look more dirty with the wasteland make. Blisters, blood, scars, sweat and tears of old age and diseases are the marks of what the wasteland has to offer!

looking much more grim and horror now that the Butcher and the hero’s are fitting into the post apocalyptic theme. I decided at this point to add more shading to the Butcher as he looked too visible and less threatening, having him in shadow would really help make him have the mysterious killer visual. As for Luke and Woz I wanted to add more grime to them to have emphasis on the rough life and physical toil that the apocalypse can have on people.

I’ve included a black and white version of the final artwork for the old horror aesthetic.

The final outcome was the best that I felt I could do to my fullest after days of working on this artwork. It’s a long process of building up layers of detail and colour to illustrate a simple artwork. I could’ve gone crazy and added explosions, mutants, zombies and mad max style vehicles. But I wanted to illustrate a basic artwork of the major players of the first arc of the series.

So there you have it, an artwork that I’ve done to celebrate Luke and Woz’s podcast series! Well done chaps!

I would recommend listening to the Post Apocalypse special which is full of content, including interviews, ethical questions, the ongoing story of the post Apocalyptic story and Woz doing an excerpt of my fan fiction story I wrote on my blog. If your new to this whole thing and wondering who or what is this post apocalyptic nonsense, check out episode six or seven of the Fly on the Wall podcast (not the politics one, it’s the one with the cool graffiti artwork of a fly).

Now then, I wonder if I should do that other sketch where the gang gets spooked by a group of killer flesh eating mutated Clowns………

Until next time,

-Bjorn

Fly on the Wall podcast Post Apocalypse series: The Road Ahead, prologue [fan made story]

Fly on the Wall podcast Post Apocalypse series: The Road Ahead, prologue [fan made story]

Fan made prologue to the finale to the Post Apocalypse series featured on the Fly on the Wall podcast. None cannon story that takes place years later following the events from the podcast, following Woz, Luke, Keith and Glenn as they finally discover the source of the virus.

Inspired by the podcast, I wanted to create a non canon story using story elements that were laid out by Luke and Woz. Crafting these story lines into a conclusion that ties up many plots and events with a few twists (you’ll be shocked what I’ve got in mind for the main finale story if this prologue story gets a few positive feedback and the Luke and Woz seal of approval!). Imagine this as an alternative timeline.

Who caused the virus? What will happen to Keith and Woz in the future as mutants? Will Glenn redeem himself? And is Luke as fine as he says he is in the story?

All will be revealed in my fan made non canon prologue, with some artwork I did to better describe the four weirdos of the wasteland.

Please support the official Fly on the Wall by following IRO blog (ImperialRebalOrk) or check out the podcast on your favourite podcast station.

Just before you read this story, I recommend listening to Mitch Murders EP album, Hardwired. It fits well as a background music for reading this story, a bit of dark noir synthwave to immerse yourself in the post apocalyptic world. The single of the same name as the EP, Hardwired, is a must to listen to, a mix of synthwave and 80’s horror style. I listen to it when I read James Herbert’s books, including The Rats Trilogy.

With that, I hope you’ll enjoy this story. Enjoy!

(Be warned, I’m not the greatest story teller……….)

____________

In the dry deserts of Australia, there were four dark silhouette shapes walking across the blazing heat and dry earth. The post apocalypse had turned this once grassy and forested area into a desert corpse. Once there were trees as healthy as the highlands, grass as vast as the eye can see, birds, crocodiles, Horses and kangaroos making noises in a living and breathing nature paradise.

But the virus took that away, all of it. The trees were dead and hollow as a carcass, grass so grey it could be confused as grey clouds and the animals either killed, extinct or mutated into horrible abominations of perversion. It didn’t just affect the human population, it affected nature itself like a freak climate change that couldn’t be averted in time.

The mutated crows with two heads and four wings encircled high above watching these dark shapes move through the wasteland, like phantoms in daylight. Hoping for a tasty snack of dead meat, the birds wait until the time was right to feast on the corpses.

The dark shapes were in the far distance and Shimmering like water. Then the unidentifiable dark silhouettes slowly formed into humanoid shapes of different shapes and sizes, half looked human, the others odd shaped.

Soon they were clear as day, the sight would either make you gag until your intestines run dry, or your sanity gets messed up just by seeing the odd looking freaks. The first of the four was the sore thumb of the lot, a big muscled ape like man with four arms and two tusks. It’s body was covered in orange fur, skin as dark as a ripe grape, eyes golden green, ape like in looks. It walked on all six limbs as it carried crates of supplies, tents, food, and other supplies on its broad back.

This mutant was once known as Keith, now he’s known as Krakstrong, pack leader of his mutant family and ally of the roaming gang he now follows. The virus infected Keith and his family during the initial stages of the outbreak, falling prey to the illness with fever, headaches, pale yellow looks and as Luke would point out, “a rash ass”.

Luckily Keith survived the infection along with his family, recovering quite remarkably despite the blood loss that Keith had lost. But soon it was obvious that he and his family weren’t in the clear, for Keith had started to mutate with one of his arms getting swollen with muscle and strength.

The changes would result in Keith and Glenn, his long time friend, being spilt apart by Keith’s sudden primal outburst. He took a bite out of Glenn’s wife’s shoulder, blood dribbling down his chin as he chewed on the warm flesh. Glenn already being affected by the apocalypse went ape shit, swearing to kill the mutant that was once his friend. He nearly did too at gun point with his shotgun aiming at Keith’s head, but he couldn’t kill him in the end as he could still see Keith behind the mutants eyes.

Since then, both have not spoken to each other for awhile, six years to be precise. His relationship with Luke and Woz is a mixed bag of stable and absolute hatred. Luke, Krakstrongs man slave (translated to advisor and human ambassador), is the closest to retaining any verbal communication. Luke believes that Keith still lives inside the mutant ape, hidden behind the primal and primitive persona of Krakstrong. His efforts to bring Keith back as of yet are going nowhere.

As for Woz, Krakstrong despises Woz for his symbiotic bonding of man and machine, part man, part bike, part vibrating dishwasher, part anything electrical. He hates the sight of this abomination for it was not by nature’s design nor the virus’s doing, the machine is the enemy of the mutants and should be destroyed.

Krakstrong would soon evolve and change to become a four armed ape who is hardly recognisable anymore unless you knew him before the change. He has become the leader of his mutant ape family clan, beating his rival brothers and sisters in combat. Suited for this new world of the post apocalypse, Krakstrong has faced many dangers including bandits, cannibals, killer clowns, mutant rabbits (the second most dangerous creature in the wasteland), mutant creatures and the mysterious mutant rats.

Lately he has been looking south in a sort of day dream, even his family too in a strange hivemind like connection. Maybe he wants to move on with his clan, to resettle and grow his clan to be big and strong. Or, maybe he still seeks to find his nemesis and the only threat to his clan, the Silverback Chimp Tribe led by Gornicus, the face ripper.

Whoever wins in that war, will decide the fate of the wasteland and the new mankind’s survival.

The man he once was had died years ago, and the ties he had with his friends and none mutants have eroded for a few years now. Krakstrong and the soul of Keith

***

Next there’s the lone warrior of the group, Glenn. He had a serious alcoholic problem during the apocalypse when most of his friends, family and his pet dog, Keith, were perished by the virus. Losing all hope in life, Glenn wanted to give up and die in the wasteland. But he was denied death by his friends, an act that would result in the creation of the legend of the lone bounty hunter centuries later.

His only companion was his wife called Glenn’s wife, no one knows her name for they forget it as soon as they hear it. At one time, Keith tried solving this issue by recording what she said her name was on a recording tape, what came back was nothing but static noise…………..

Glenn would amass a small gang of ex working class construction workers, calling themselves the ‘Fixers’ as they fix the wastelands problems by killing the bandits with construction tools. They would be at relative peace with the caravan group that was set up by Luke and Woz. Although Glenn’s increasing consumption of alcohol and fighting some of the Fixers has caused damage to the small settlement. It was decided that by Luke and Woz that Glenn and his gang be assigned as a scouting party. The front line of both close assault and heavy weapon teams, assessing the enemies strength and weaknesses.

But disastrously, the Fixers were all killed by a mutant surprise attack led by the Butcher, a massive mutant brute who has been longing to kill Glenn and his gang for screwing his plans. In one awful turn of events all the gang members were killed, eaten or ‘bonded’ to the mutants as new sustenance to evolve.

Glenn hated all mutants from that day as well as some of his friends that had been infected by the virus. He would kill them all even if it meant killing Luke, Woz and Keith to rid the wasteland of its taint.

More tragedy would follow as Glenn lost his wife during the groups effort to save his wife from the Butcher, as he sliced her into meaty bits. In rage, he hold no sympathy or remorse as he tore the hood from the swollen deformed monster. Even as he saw the purest face of a youthful man with bright blue eyes and an expression of fear and confusion. Glenn let loose as much bullets as he can into the abominations complexion, 100% confirmed kill.

A man lost of hope, life, love and friendship of old, Glenn left the group to go solo to help the people in need. Bounty hunting criminals, monsters and bandits wherever he went. Years later however by chance, Glenn had an encounter with his old friends when he was hunting down a mutant named Jackson Creeker. Jackson was a serial murderer, pillager and a Slicer. Slicers were a mutant group who worked for the ‘Dark mind’, a mysterious player in organising raids on settlements and safe towns. They would act as the infiltrators poking weak holes inside the cities and towns of pure stock humans, ready for the main mutant army to flood into these well protected places.

There were three outcomes if you were a citizen of said town, you either die, sliced slowly, be a slave or be used as spare parts to produce new mutant soldiers.

Luke, Woz and Krakstrong were helping one such settlements defence against the mutant army, and rat out the Slicer before the chaos could happen. Glenn was on a contract to hunt down Jackson Creeker, and by chance he saw his old friends.

He was a different man than what he used to be for he was now a solider of sorts, gone was the depression, recovering alcohol addiction and letting go of life. Now he was a killer bounty hunter, a moral one at least.

He reluctantly helped the gang save the settlement as it nearly got overrun by a back door entrance. The Mayor had a secret entrance in his office where the mutants can raid at the heart of the settlement. It was only thanks to Krakstrongs instincts and Glenn’s investigations that led them to accuse the mayor of working against the people. With the old mayor dead in his own office as well as his sheriff who also conspired to help the invasion, two positions needed to be filled.

Glenn became the sheriff, a role he only kept as a temporary position until he and his gang locate and kill the Dark Mind. Luke became mayor of the settlement (turns out Jackson Creeker was actually the mayor of the town named after his alias, Moorton), a role he didn’t ask for but took on the mantle of responsibility, with the help of Glenn as sheriff, Krakstrong as the mutant ambassador and Woz as the Chaplin of the faith of the machine.

Now Glenn has one purpose, a journey that he must complete without mercy, emotion and second thoughts. He and his friends must find the source of the mutant virus and put a stop to it before their world is destroyed. The risks are too great to falter, to find the Dark mind and kill it before it unleashes the Final Apocalypse. Glenn hunter by the horror of the Butcher

***

Luke is Luke, he’s been the same from then to now. The core of the group (not leader, Krakstrong is considered to be the leader, though in name only), his humanity and moral philosophy is still very much alive despite everything that’s happened. He and Woz were the leaders of the caravan escape during the beginning of the apocalypse, taking their family and friends away to safer lands.

After many adventures to find supplies, scouting missions, bandit attacks and growing mutant sightings, the gang had bonded closer now that they had to survive together.

They established a small caravan town that knew relative peace for a time, until the mutants led by the Butcher attacked their settlement. Many would be killed or eaten, including friends of Luke who he knew decades ago. Even in his sleep he can still see the faces of the dead, cursing him and tormenting him for letting them die.

Only a handful of survivors escaped to go in search of a new and safer home. Luckily, they found land that was on a hill side with running pure water. Not the safest spot to settle but better than no water at all. Everything seemed to be finally on track as the community started to recover from the mutant attack.

But behind the facade of his over confidence, jokester jest, eagerness and never backing down, Luke is slowly dying from the virus. The Butcher took Luke on in a brawl during the downfall of the caravan settlement, pinning Luke down as he injected Luke with a degenerative disease of the virus into Luke’s bloodstream. At first Luke thought he was going to become a mutant like Keith, but luckily the changes never came.

However, the interior of Luke’s body fared worse as he suffered nerve loss from time to time, losing his control of limbs and in some cases eye sight. Using medication that’s available, Luke hides his degrading health to ensure he and his family and friends live long enough to find a safe place to live.

Only one person in his family knows of his health problems, and swore not to share this knowledge to anyone, even to Woz. As Luke continues his fight he is surely to pay dearly for what will come once the virus gets stronger.

He became mayor of a settlement after defeating the Dark Minds mutant army and ratting out Jackson Creeker. His new role has loosen his role as a fighter and group leader in supply gathering, which benefited him to hide his falling health. Wearing a pirate outfit with a taxidermy parrot named Frank, Luke would organise and build the settlement to become bigger, stronger and more open for trade with other settlements. He can now assure his family will be safe now that they have found a safe home.

At last, Luke must join his old friends one last time as they travel to a location far east of Australia, to an abandoned testing facility of water purification called ‘H.J Water purification facility’. There he and his gang will stop the source of the virus outbreak and save their homeland. Luke only has scarce supplies left to delay the inevitable as he is soon reaching the point of no return. This may be his last trip………….. Luke

***

Finally there’s Woz, half man half machine infused symbiotic bonding. Once he was the most human of all the gang as he placed his moral duty and belief before aggression and nihilism. A peacekeeper and Lukes twin by a brother to another mother quote, Woz handled the complex side of the affects of the apocalypse to the caravan settlers.

He unfortunately had a fatal incident with the Butcher as Woz had his hand sliced off, leaving a few fingers and a thumb left. But something miraculous happened as his arm bonded to machine parts, reforming his hand as organic and mechanical symbiosis. Woz by all accounts was not a mutant, for no other creature had the strain of bonding, but rather evolving by its own mutation and absorbing organic only.

Woz became half man, half machine, able to absorb from a fall of 8ft and more, reconstructing broken bone into new parts. Soon Woz was seen as a god by the tech nerds who saw him as a machine god. But Woz refused to be seen as a god, just a lucky bugger.

However, Woz would lose something in exchange for these enhancements as he slowly lost his humanity. The one biggest strength that Woz has was his humanity and moral ideals from right to wrong. But as he absorbs more machine parts, the more he has lost that which made him the man he was. His unemotional appearance, cold calculating plans and disregard for innocent life has made him a danger to his friends and family.

His family out of concern tried to get him the help needed to bring him back to normal, but the damage was done and nothing can be done to save him. Only those vague good memories are what keeps Woz from losing the identity he has left. He has now passed on the mantle of responsibility to his next of kin, to carry on the traditions and values that he himself had followed. With that, he left his family with such cold and unfeeling separation like it wasn’t Woz anymore, like a stranger.

He became a Chaplin to the faith of the machine, a cult of worshipers that use barely running computers to pray. Sermons start at 1pm with the first song of binary numbers of 1s and 0s. Members are required to use treadmills to run the computers as the power lines went dark during the apocalypse.

This cult would soon grow old to Woz after much grovelling by the tech worshipers, he only came as he needed to build his mind and machine soul to be stronger. Deification was a distraction from his intent to absorb as much knowledge as he can from the database archives. This was where he found the source location of the virus.

leaving the church to find his family who he hasn’t seen for a year. A hope of the old Woz returning, or just an error in his mechanical logic?

Now Woz joins his flesh mortals (friends) on their last trek to find the source of the virus, and save mankind from total extinct. Somehow after much research Woz found the location to the source of the outbreak at an old water purification site. Strange, he didn’t have evidence to suggest this was the location or even if it was still there. He just has this feeling in his mind that it is there, as if something is calling out to him. Telling Woz to go find it like a beacon transmission……… Woz, the man machine

End of prologue……..

Book reading challenge 2019, progress so far

Back in February I did a post on my 2019 book reading challenge, after last years biggest record of reading books of twelve in total. This year I wanted to beat that record by reading more books, and expand my interests into literature.

So how have I done so far?

Well, I’ve done a lot of reading so far, a lot more faster than I used to read. In fact I’ve noticed how quicker I am at reading books and how I’m more imaginative reading the action/ character developments.

Here’s what I’ve read so far this year.

  • The Rats, by James Herbert
  • Lair, by James Herbert
  • Domain, by James Herbert
  • Chacarodons: The Outer Dark, by Robbie Mcniven
  • The Horus Heresy: Galaxy in Flames, by Ben Counter
  • The Horus Heresy: Crimson Fist, by John French
  • Nagash: The Undying King, by Josh Reynolds
  • Legacy of Dorn, by Mike Lee
  • Elric of Melniboné, by Michael Moorcock
  • A knight and his horse, by Ewart Oakshott

Ten books read so far! It’s only month four of twelve and I’m already near over the record mark! I must admit I wasn’t sure if I could read as much book with enough enthusiasm and interest. But I’m actually enjoying reading books now that I’m using instrumental music as background noise when I’m reading, as well as setting daily/weekly goals to read a certain amount of pages.

I’ve still got many more books to read yet before the year is done, I’m now planning on setting a goal of re-reading books I’ve read years ago. This is a fun way of having a new perspective on books that I’ve read before, and learn things that I’ve missed out on my first read.

For example, I’m currently reading Warhammer End Times: Return of Nagash, by Josh Reynolds, which covers the first of five stories in the apocalyptic event that broke the Old World. Last time I read this book was way back in 2014/ 2015, so there’s been enough of a gap since I’ve read it to consider trying it a second read. Oh Mannfred, such an ambitious schemer and a fool you were!

Until next time!

-Bjorn

Fallout fanfiction: Head-screen

Today I thought I might share a fanfiction story I’ve made during my pass time. It’s a self contained story which doesn’t tie into any of the games main story events. Hope you guys enjoy the story!

 Head-screen

Once, there was a vibrant small town on the edge of Boston, a thriving town that was the dream for many Americans. ‘The future’ they said would be a prosperous and bright one for years to come.

But that dream was not a reality, for America was on the cusp of a full scale nuclear war. After the war for Anchorage was won by the USA, the Chinese had lost all options to claim fuel supply’s that they so desperately need to survive. So it was that they have prepared to ignite their nuclear weapons towards America.

It came as a sudden horror to the towns folk when it was announced by the military that nuclear annihilation was coming. In an instant the town was teared from history by the great atomic war of 2075. All that was left was the husked wreckage that the town once stood on, except for one building, Posiden energy station.
This story follows a very unusual post war survivor by the name of ‘Head-screen’, a entrepreneur who is known for his unusual headwear. A tale of what an average merchant would to survive in a world that tries to kill you before you could even scream.
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Part 1, Feral Keeper

The land was dry, barren and silent, as the dust blew through the wreckage of the forgotten town, not too far from Boston. If anyone during the pre-war time were still inside the buildings before the bombs fell, than they would be but ash and bone. Nothing living moved in the town apart from the wind blowing tattered flags and shredded curtains.

However, just down south from the town was a gas station down the road. The tar road has crumbled and spilt from lack of attention for nearly 200 years, the technology to repair the roads have long been forgotten. Just as the gas station is in clear view, it’s obvious to see that the building structure was far from being unaffected by the nuclear blast winds. All the of windows have been smashed through, letting the wind howl into the building. Not only that, but the building itself is in a state of disrepair as ceiling panels, metal plating, walls, doors and lighting were either broken or corroding away.
Inside, at the station till stood a tall man in a stripe grey suite with his red tie, black boots and wearing a half working TV box set on his head. This chap was known to travellers by the name of ‘Head-screen’, a cocky entrepreneur who would sell (cheap quality but pricey) junk to wanderers who pass by his shop. His past is shrouded in mystery, very much like the town near by. Some say he’s a ghoul who wears a TV box to hide his melted face, many say he’s actually a rouge robot from out of space, whilst others say that he might be a mutated fly-man that evolved from a Bloatfly, but none can say what he truly is.

He was waiting at the till impatiently as his customer was looking at the junk on display, this customer had been at the shop for almost two hours. She wore a dirty green dress that was in tatters in patchy areas, her shoes were just barely even on her feet, her hair was short messy and grey and her skin seemed old and worn down. She was Just dribbling and starring at the shelf like a hungry day dreamer on radroach meat. Head-screen mumbled as the customer breathed heavily as though she were out of breath from running, but deeper than normal. “Look las, I know your taking your sweet time to gaze at my products, but I haven’t got all day ya know!” Grumbled Head-screen in a static tone from his speakers, as he looked at the customer with irritation. 

However, the customer suddenly turned around at the owner, eyes the colour of sickness, teeth as ridged and yellow as decay, skin melted and worn from radiation and a growl like a sore throat. His customer was sadly a feral ghoul, a regular customer who always came on a Tuesday just to look at the shelf until just after 17:14pm. This ghoul was once the co-owner of the station until the bombs came, the radiation had sadly turned her feral over time. She now lived in the shadow of her former life as nothing more than an animal with no purpose.

Head-screen jumped out of his seat as his screen face formed into a shocked face and waved his hands in peace, the feral ghoul turned back around to stare at the shelf once more. Why she stares at a shelf is a mystery, maybe a fractured memory that she still retains of a moment in the pass, or just staring at the owners nicely arranged display of cheap goods.’This is gonna take awhile’ sighed Head-screen as he looked at the clock, only just gone 14:30pm. 

By the time the feral ghoul left the station, the owner had fallen asleep from boredom of waiting around. His screen face was a static fuzzy screen of crackle, lighting the dark room as night time approached. 

Just outside the station, a group of raiders appeared from the darkness with crude gear and malice in their hungry gaze. One of the members spoke with a gruff but excitingly devilish tone “time to get some goods from the oven boys!”. The raiders laughed as they started to approach the station with their pipe pistols loaded and ready to seek and destroy……….

To be continued.

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I hope you guys have enjoyed this fanfiction story, I’ve had fun writing it in my spare time. If you guys want me to write more on this story, comment below and like the post. 

Thank you for reading this post!

-Bjorndovah

[note: this is just a fanfiction post based on the Fallout franchise, which is owned by Bethesda. I don’t not own any of the characters nor setting of the Fallout franchise, and all property’s belong to its respective creators].