I started the second version of The Gate at the End of the World pretty soon after I set aside the first. The setting moved from one world to another, and from an arctic country to a country close to the antarctic.
You can see that this map looks like the southern end of South America. I’d been learning about Tierra del Fuego at the time. Kjulaina, the capital of the country of Päitlu, is roughly at the same latitude as the city of Ushuaia in Argentina.
I started writing the script in September 2016 and stopped on the 2nd of October 2017, because I seriously had no idea how to continue the story. I didn’t have an outline for the story and had no idea how it was going to end. I expected that it would last about fifteen chapters, but I only completed nine.
I worked on the comic from January 2nd, 2017 to September 30, 2017 (yes, I keep track of this down to the day). During that time, I drew 54 pages, completing a prologue and two chapters. I was a few pages into chapter 3 when I stopped working on the comic.
This was the main cast of the story. From left to right: Veitlen Tyvokäla, Kallinu Jurne, Ren Fennel, Tjära Kvennirna, Häkirin Maurkäla, and Brithan Thiosciáre. Every single one of them was imported into The Land of Two Moons with essentially the same character design and personality except for Veitlen, who ended up looking fairly different for some reason.
I originally considered bringing Harnur and Sajiiq into this version of The Gate at the End of the World, but that made the main cast too big. I even got so far as to draw a reference sheet for Sajiiq:
There were a couple of countries mentioned in this story: Päitlu (where the story was set, and the home country of Veitlen, Tjära, and Häkirin), Feillu (a country to the north of Päitlu, and Kallinu’s home country), Miryan (a country close to the equator, and Ren’s home country), and Ciniá (the most populous country in the world, a religious theocracy who believed they were blessed by the gods for avoiding the Cataclysm, and Brithan’s home country).
There were also a couple of different languages mentioned: with Päitlunko and Feillunno being the major ones, and Miryani and Ciniáne referenced with respect to Ren and Brithan. There was also a constructed language called International, represented by English (and white speech bubbles with black outlines in the comic) which had been deliberately constructed to that people from different countries would have a neutral language to speak.
Now, what exactly is the Gate at the End of the World in this story?
First, I’ll have to explain a bit of the backstory. 429 years previously, some kind of Cataclysm happened (I can’t find anything in my notes explaining it). Most of the world ended up contaminated with magic (the areas colored black on the map of Päitlu/Feillu). Ever since the Cataclysm, Hellgates started opening and closing randomly. During the time frame of the story, there is only one known Hellgate, which is the titular Gate at the End of the World.
Just like The Land of Two Moons, there were ghosts and demons in this story. There were also spirits:
- Spirits: the “soul”; it’s what’s left of a person after they die. They can typically find their own path to Meil, an intermediary state where they wait for reincarnation. If a person was troubled, that might not happen, and a priest (like Tjära or Kallinu) has to talk the spirit into finding their own path to Meil.
- Ghosts: primarily people who committed bad deeds in life or were extremely emotionally conflicted. Instead of becoming spirits when they died, they became ghosts. Because of their actions, they can’t pass on to Meil on their own. Instead, they had to be guided to Pryvur (Hell) for cleansing, and afterward were went to Meil.
- Demons: the result of the Cataclysm. They were originally humans who gained an extraordinary amount of power. Their spirits became corrupted, and they became demons. Though it is extremely rare, people can still become demons today.
There was also magic in the world of The Gate at the End of the World. It was banned worldwide after the Cataclysm, since people who learned too much of the wrong kind of magic became demons. Punishment for magic use was most severe in Ciniá, and I was eventually going to reveal that Brithan could use a little bit of magic. In Päitlu and Feillu, priests (like Kallinu and Tjära) are the only ones allowed to use magic.
Veitlen came from a mage family who fled into the forest (the contaminated areas) after the ban on non-priests practicing magic. They used their magic to hunt demons. Bits of this got imported into The Land of Two Moons.
I’ll leave you with the character details that I posted on Tumblr years ago (Veitlen does not have one because he was never properly introduced):