1. Yume No Okami
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    Yume No Okami Member

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    Setting Up the Semi-Villain?

    Discussion in 'Character Development' started by Yume No Okami, Feb 26, 2015.

    Ok, so, first off, thanks to anyone coming here, and double thanks if you're willing to help out.

    My predicament is below, in the spoiler box.

    I have this character for my brain child story, and he's the Dragon to the Big Bad. He's also the evil(ish) older brother to the (male, as there's also a heroine) hero. I'm giving the two a friendly relationship where they actually care about each other, but I want to a) present him as a competent villain, b) make him eligible for a Heel-Face Turn with his brother as his Morality Chain, and c) make him sinful with the capacity for good, as he's a (Christian) demon and is automatically sinful as per the setting.

    Yeah... I'm having some trouble developing him...

    Oh! And despite being the Dragon, he hates the Big Bad because of a case of Abusive Parents, if that helps any...

    Again, sankayuu.
     
  2. AlannaHart
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    AlannaHart Contributing Member

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    Wait ... what's the problem? You don't know how to make them friends if he's a baddy?
     
  3. Yume No Okami
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    Yume No Okami Member

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    No, the character needs to be more sinful than virtuous, be a capable villain, and also can't cross the Moral Event Horizon because I need him to pull a Face-Heel Turn- while still being more sinful than virtuous.

    Trying to figure out how to finagle that... :(
     
  4. Alley
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    Alley Member

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    Wow, that sounds like it's going to be a complex character.

    Would it be an option to try to go back to the beginning and try to figure out why one of the brothers who were raised in the same family turns bad while the other one becomes the hero?

    It might be rooted in them being treated unequally in their childhood, say, the hero-brother always felt slightly unfavoured and strived to gain favour, thus working to improve himself constantly and never feeling quite enough, while the bad-yet-not-intrinsically-evil brother was never critiziced and thus never learned that nothing was more important than his own needs - turning him into an insufferable egocentric who will hurt other people thoughtlessly due to a lack of empathy.

    That might also give you a good angle for converting him later, if that's what you want to do: he could just learn empathy and thus see the wrongs of his ways.

    As to the aspect of intrinsic sinfulness: Maybe you could use that as a way to contrast the brothers? I guess they'd both be tempted by sin equally, but the bad brother just gives in, or, after learning empathy, struggles much more than the good brother.

    Just a few quick thoughts - hope that helps!
     
  5. Shadowfax
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    Shadowfax Contributing Member Contributor

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    It's quite common for one child to be "favoured" - or at least, for him to be perceived as such by his siblings. Typically, a first son will be "the heir" of whom great things are expected, so the parents will be hard on him so that he will be successful in his studies, etc., while the second son will be "the baby" who is always favoured, who always gets the last slice of cake, whom the parents aren't so hard on.

    Alternatively, take two of my children, the older of whom was more academically gifted whilst at school. Her younger sister was always being criticised by the teachers for NOT being like her sibling.

    Or my son-in-law, the youngest child (and only son) of four. His sisters referred to him as the "blue-eyed boy" - because, being the longed-for male heir, he could do no wrong in his parents' eyes - or so they felt.

    Any of those scenarios - or any other based around some sort of sibling rivalry for parental affection - would work.
     
  6. Yume No Okami
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    Yume No Okami Member

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    Yeah, that helped some, I think- I can't use everything you suggested because of the setting/backstory, but I think I have a clearer idea...

    Haha, I guess I should've probably explained that their dad is um, Satan... Neither is too eager for dad's approval. Before the hero's Heel Face Turn in the beginning of the book, they'd bail each other out of "discipline" (child abuse) constantly. Thanks, though!
     
  7. Shadowfax
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    Shadowfax Contributing Member Contributor

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    And why wouldn't Satan's children want his approval? If he's the only father you've ever known, wanting to be loved by him is the default position. Even if he's been strong on discipline. It can take quite a lot of abuse before you realise that it's something that you shouldn't have to put up with.
     
  8. Bryan Romer
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    If you were raised in Hell, I would assume that everything the children are taught from the day they were born would be "evil" in our eyes but absolutely vanilla normal for them. So it is quite possible for such a person to do evil (and even enjoying it) without being the incarnation of evil. In fact, the hard part would be explaining how anyone would ever come to think that there is any alternative in the first place.
     
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  9. Yume No Okami
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    Yume No Okami Member

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    Hmm... Yeah, you're right. Never thought of that before... I was going to have them raised briefly by a mother figure... (Much less evil and twisted and horrible and more good) If I go down that sort of path, would that interfere too much with the character motive?

    Well, they weren't raised in Hell, completely amongst demons, as Hell is the realm of eternal punishment instead of Satan's kingdom, so they'd have some concept of what most seem good... But thanks, I think I can use that. :)
     
  10. Shadowfax
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    Shadowfax Contributing Member Contributor

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    First off, I've only just read your complete original post...and you're using way too much jargon, slang and shorthand for me. It's not a problem if your intended readership also speaks that kind of language. The problem here is, I'm probably not in your intended readership, I'm just a boring old fart who isn't down with the kids, so I don't fully follow what you want your characters to be, other than brothers with a decent sibling bond, a fair dose of sibling rivalry, but one's evil and one's good. Now, there's your problem. While it's not unheard of for one sibling to end up evil, you need to explain this with some sort of childhood trauma.

    I don't actually see why a mother figure would be, by definition, less evil than the father, or why a mother figure would explain why one is evil and one not...unless you have something like...for instance, when my father was young, a younger brother was born with problems that resulted in my father being shipped off to be raised by an aunt. Different upbringing, different person than his siblings (and I can recall them giving him stick for his "fancy ways"). Evil sibling could perceive such a "shipping off" as a rejection and grow up bitter and twisted because of it. Or perhaps "good" sibling gets the mother in the custody battle, and grows up soft and fluffy while evil sibling gets brought up by evil father. etc.
     
  11. Alley
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    Well, now, if they are not raised in hell, that might actually open up a whole different path and takes you away a bit from the black-and-white dilemma. How about they don't know the identity of their father and are brought up under slightly brutish circumstances with all the realistic temptations humans face, just that they are not specifically taught to resist them. Their dad could stop by on occasion and be very judgmental, very aloof, thus push them to rival for his approval. When his true identity is revealed, one brother could embrace the evil, still following the pattern, while the other one rejects him and turns towards the good.
     
  12. Yume No Okami
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    >_< Sorry- it's TV Tropes lingo... I forget not the entire internet knows it...

    Translation:
    I have this character for my brain child story, and he's the right hand to the main villain. He's also the evil(ish) older brother to the (male, as there's also a heroine) hero. I'm giving the two a friendly relationship where they actually care about each other, but I want to a) present him as a competent villain, b) make him eligible to switch sides with his brother as the main reason for defecting, and c) make him sinful with the capacity for good, as he's a (Christian) demon and is automatically sinful as per the setting.

    Yeah... I'm having some trouble developing him...

    Oh! And despite being the right hand, he hates the main villain because of a case of abusive parents, if that helps any...

    The mother figure has to be good because their mom (via magics and more magics) is one of the main characters.

    EDIT: As for the child needing trauma, I was thinking of the demons as an all sinful race, b/c I'm trying to follow the Bible as much as I can. (see below...?) I remember reading that demons can/have to procreate with humans because they're infertile? I think the process was turn into a girl and get the sperm, then turn into a man and impregnate a woman... but sorry, that was probably TMI...

    That would be a good idea, but I wanted to kinda reinforce the whole "demons are all sinful" and follow the Bible thing as closely as I could while still managing a story... It was essentially going to be an in-story Hand Wave (AKA cop-out...?) where a God with knowledge of the fourth wall used him to jumpstart the plot and by proxy jumpstart the world they lived in, and trying to use him to keep the story interesting and save it from obscurity and an essential true apocalypse. (No clue how crappy of an explanation that sounds)

    Oh, and thanks to everyone willing to put up with me thus far... I must seem kinda/pretty/really picky right now...

    Mainly what I'd like to know is how to set his personality and actions throughout the middle of story, as that's what I have loose here. I pretty much have all but written the backstory and ending.

    Essentially:

    1: Competent Villain and Sinful
    2: Is Evil but Not too Evil (No clue how to do this)
    3: Defection
    4: "Grey" and Sinful

    I was thinking to maybe aid the defection he starts thinking of good as the stronger side...? How does that sound...?
     
  13. Shadowfax
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    Shadowfax Contributing Member Contributor

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    I think that you're going off an interpretation of part of Genesis "The Nephilim were on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of men, and they bore children to them. Those were the mighty men who were of old, men of renown. (Genesis 6:4, NASB)"

    Incidentally, there may be some confusion because of Matthew 1:18 "New American Standard Bible
    Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows: when His mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child by the Holy Spirit." There, it is quite clear that a human is impregnated by an otherworldy agency.

    Also, bear in mind that the concept of sin was irrelevant before Eve ate the fruit of the tree of knowledge - which had been left there with an injunction not to eat from it - a bit like your mother leaving the cookie-jar on the table and saying "Don't touch" as she goes off to the shops without you!

    Unless you're using a different quotation from the Bible to support your "demons procreating with humans", you're not actually following the book very closely. That being the case, I'd suggest not trying to - this is your story, your world, your rules.
     

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