The world of Shining Ascension is occupied by three socially and geographically distinct people (nyx, Na-Denei, and human). The nyx live in northern Kumari-Kadam‏, among rainforests and labyrinthine cave systems  …

Nyx woman (right) sharing a tender moment with her friend. For obvious reasons, Nyx do not kiss. Art by Nick Robles


Nyx cannot cast spells or perform telepathic feats like the humans and Na-Denei. However, with complex runes and metallography, they create and use magical artifacts.

Of the three peoples, nyx have made the most scientific advancements. A combination of rigorous teaching programs and artifact development has allowed them to study everything from distant galaxies to microbes. Accomplished biologists, astronomers, and chemists are highly respected within nyx society. Continue reading


A Mermaid’s Crown


My mother beaded my crown by hand. Do you recognize the patterns?


Diatoms! They’re snowflakes in the ocean, microscopic organisms built from opal, the most beautiful phytoplankton (in my opinion) you’ll ever see. Many of the diatoms in the photograph above (captured by Dr. Robert Berdan) inspired my mom. Just look at the details below!

Princess Crown Details

I was 2012 S.T.I.D.A. Princess during the Twenty-third Annual South Texas (Way South) Pow Wow. At the time, I’d just received a bachelor’s degree in oceanography; my thesis work involved Trichodesmium-wrangling on the blue Sargasso Sea. The crown represents my passion for the ocean – it’s my hope that other pow wow princesses will wear scientific motifs on their heads in the future :3 Hey, maybe some already have! Give me a call, if that’s you …

Here I am with my beautiful mom and grandmother. Check out that cell phone pic quality!

2012 STIDA