Vote over at TWC and you can see a panel of Malaya explaining 90% of Vincent’s personality.

We won’t see much of Vincent in this chapter, because there’s a LOT of him in the next chapter, but in the meantime, we should talk about him while he’s not around! Malaya doesn’t want to talk about werewolf fighting, so let’s change the subject and make Elias uncomfortable instead :D. Pacing-wise, I didn’t want to jump straight into Charlene’s revelations, both because she said she’d be a half hour, so we have time to kill, and also because there isn’t much downtime in this chapter. So, while things are still kind of light, I gotta shoehorn in a little development for Elias and Vincent to tide us all over.

Vincent is very much the “mysterious loner who’s secretly a huge nerd” archetype, somewhat mixed with the “bad boy who’s actually made of goo” archetype, and the issue with that kind of character is that most of their characterization has to be explained through other characters, because Vincent sure has hell isn’t going to tell you about himself. Luckily, Mal is about the only person who actually DOES know her brother, so she’s the best conduit.

I set out with a goal when I started writing this story to include every trope I could think of, but in a way that also undermined every trope I could think of. So far, so good! There are a lot of tropes that I can’t think of, and that helps cut down the work. But the hardest ones are always romantic plots. A lot of romantic plots in stories come about because “we’re in the same place at the same time, and you’re hella cute” or “everyone else is terrible, let’s form a codependent nightmare relationship and call it love” or “we’re all gonna die, and these harrowing circumstances are breaking down my boundaries quickly” or “I’m attracted to you for ~magical~ reasons, and my weird desperation is read as romantic and fated rather than creepy.” Yeah, like, all that…I will admit that I don’t mind reading romance in stories where the relationship is technically SUPER TOXIC in real life, because it’s fiction and I know better. But since this is my own story, we’re going to take our damn time, and if I’m going to smoosh two dudes together, they’re going to be smooshed together because they’re really into the idea and mutually like and respect each other. THAT TAKES FOR-FUCKING-EVER, THOUGH. Especially when one of them barely makes sentences. Oh well. I’ll get there. The next chapter will really help push all that ahead, but we gotta get a lot of other stuff out of the way first.

Not really a spoiler, but this chapter deals with Who Actually IS Connie?, and the next chapter deals with But Who is Connie So Afraid of? Because both of those things are important to the last concept we have to get to, which is How Do We Deal With Connie? So, buckle in. We have things to do, and it’s gonna be a long ride!