Short-spoken but thoughtful, stoic but caring, strong but womanly.
She’s the very first character that Cole meets, but also one I feel I have not given as much story time as she deserves. And because of that, I never imagined she’d be the one to top off the charts.
Everything about her; appearance, name, personality, speech pattern and behavior, were designed completely on the fly on those few sentences where she is introduced. Even her alien speech was put down at random at the beginning (although later I created a more logic method to write it in a way it looks like an actual language, and not just gibberish).
No word sums up her character better than the ”Alien”; Both in the sense of a foreigner, and a creature from outer space. Her size, her tongue, her accent, her strikingly different looks to anything Cole had ever seen, but also different from every other character he meets later. She is an initial source of culture shock for Cole, but at the same time, she is the very first friendly face he encounters in a most hostile and equally alien environment, which I believe sets the baseline tone for the story.
However, unlike the rest of the characters, I am still not clear on what was that inspired her design. I have always liked strong women, and quad-arms, but I believe there is much more than that at work here. Mayhap my brain just did some kind of on-the-run character kit-bashing, but I also like to think that there was something more complex behind her. One thing I have it clear on, however, is her accent.
In my own personal experience, no matter how well you learn a foreign tongue, you will always carry some kind of lisp. And even if it is a foreign country that speaks your native language, it will never be the same; you will ALWAYS carry that foreigner’s accent with you. So, what would happen if the difference between your native tongue and a foreign one you speak is not the different pronunciation or words, but the physical means which your body uses to produce it? How would that affect your skill to communicate? Would learning such language be even possible? That was the main thought behind Zalura’s accent and linguistic limitations.
So, now I ask the questions: What is that you found interesting on her? Was there something specific that was your main point of interest? Do you have any questions about her? I’d like to hear your thoughts on this at the comments.