Thats a good idea. Gotta love Containers! I think I'll end up with two separate sprites anyway. I'll have the Base for solid collisions, and the decoration, which detects collisions for z ordering and fade.
I was a disappointed that nobody pointed me towards any documentation or tutorials on how Effects work in C2. I found plenty of tutorials online about glsl and other shader languages, but I really had to work for it and guess to figure out that GLSL was the language in question, or that the .fx files are fragment shaders, or that when I get the front color it is considered to be in a premultiplied state. I was able to find literally no documentation at all on how C2 handles shaders.
Anyway, here is what I got:
Anyway, I built the shader I wanted, and threw in X axis support for lulz.