I take no credit for the pose or outline, I used a cosplay photo I had saved ages ago because I liked the pose. I just wanted to practice painting and did not have the energy to be coming up with a pose myself. Tried to find the original poster but could not, so if anyone wants to claim credit for the original photo, please do.
I learned a LOT from this one. There are still many spots that puzzle me though. *scratches head* Still, it feels like the distance between what I see in my head and what happens in the art is slowly but steadily narrowing. I like that.
I suppose there's a lot more that could be done with this, but I don't think I will do any more. The energy has left me.
Anyway, so it's supposed to be Rock, just after he presses the button to destroy the Ziggurat.
"What...was it all...for?"
The question drifted slowly through his mind, scrolling across a background of red and white explosions. He struggled to think, but it was all becoming so hazy. Darkness was gathering around the edges of his vision. He tried to push it away. He was close, so close, to resting at last. But he couldn't--not yet. There was one thing left to do, and it would make all the difference, whether he had the strength for it or not.
The explosions stopped. The robots had stopped hitting him, or perhaps he could no longer feel the blows. Either way he was grateful, it gave him a few seconds to think, even while he felt under his prone body the first tremors in the floor as the gigantic monster his father had created crouched on its haunches and prepared to launch itself into oblivion.
One more. One more thing, before the world turned to shards of shattered sky and he saw them again, the parents he was barely old enough to remember when they died. One more...if only he could remember what it was he had to do...
Rock stared harder at his hand, grimacing and blinking as he felt blood trickle into his right eye. A robot's broken claw had done that, but he no longer cared enough to hate, even as the image of his parents lying dead under the metal feet of their assassin flashed through his head, because he was going to them...he was going to them very soon, and then none of it would matter anymore.
He gritted his teeth and tried to concentrate. There was no more time. He could hear glass exploding from the windows as the power of the beast filled its swollen belly and it roared...how it roared! Rock trembled a little, afraid for the first time since he had put on his disguise and followed the Duke's men into the Ziggurat. It was coming, coming for him as it had in his dreams, night after night--and he would face it alone--
"Father..." he whispered, choking, and then he knew. Through all the twisted madness of his twisted life, through the frenzied, fleeting joys and the ever-present horrors, he had clung to two things, and it was those that finally came to him, as the floor beneath him shuddered and rose like a volcano of molten metal and glass.
"Gods!" he gasped, as the howling demon under him swallowed the last seconds, "gods, go with him--protect him--protect--my...father..."
Then finally the sky broke open, breaking everything into a thousand tiny pieces with it. The falling stars swirled madly and drew together into one great star, brighter than the sun. It was beautiful, unbearable--it was the sign he had been waiting for.
He smiled a little, and closed his eyes.