Tomorrow I begin writing the next series: War of Nytefall. This introduces Clyde and the rest of his Dawn Fang gang who will pave the way for the vampire society that was briefly introduced in Legends of Windemere: The Mercenary Prince. It’s a big step, but it has a wrinkle that I just considered.
I haven’t really touched Clyde, the main character, in almost 20 years. Nothing beyond outlines, character bios, and explaining him in passing. This is a guy who took on my dark side while Luke Callindor was my light. He was monstrous, cocky, and brutal, which is why I usually use a picture of Alucard from ‘Hellsing’ for him. I haven’t accessed those traits entirely in a while even though I’ve edged near them with Lloyd. It isn’t the same either because Clyde evolved to not be a random source of destruction, but a meticulous killer lurking the shadows. Many of his odd kills in the games was because somebody challenged him or the GM wanted to keep him out of the action. Clyde always found a way to get his target even if it was bare-handed. He was nearly unstoppable and remained on the edge of losing his humanity for most of his existence. One push is all he needed to go full monster and never return.
I’m waxing poetic here, but it’s more out of stalling. Wiping the dust off Clyde and pouring some blood into his mouth has been a long time coming. It has to be done since I’ve had him wait in the shadows too long. Maybe I’m being strange, but I can’t figure out if I can handle him or get him right. What if I let him go too monstrous and he comes off more as a villain? What if he comes off as too weak because he takes too much of a beating or shows compassion too often? This is such a different vein than my previous heroes because Clyde does border on villain at times. The things that Luke would never dream of doing are on Clyde’s option list because he’s a monster battling other monsters. I’m left wondering what I can do to make sure I don’t make him a vampiric copy of Luke or, considering power levels, Nyx. Do I use tomorrow to sit and meditate on what makes Clyde different? Do I just dive right in?
Maybe this is pre-project jitters since this is the opener and I won’t really get to the true Clyde until Chapter 1. He has to get buried in the prologue and then Mab needs to convince Prince Tempest to let her dig him up. Might up it from 50 to 100 years that Clyde has been trapped. 500 too much? I’m rambling now to distract from my own doubt and worry. It’s possible that I release him and find myself trying to wrestle a rabid tiger on steroids too. He’s been itching for his chance and I can always feel him poking around out of boredom. Clyde even managed to slip a bit into The Mercenary Prince if you pay close attention.
So, what do other people do when they’re about to take on a long overdue character or one that kind of scares them? Is this a unique problem for me?