For giggles, I thought I try my hand at responding to one of the “Today’s Cliche” prompts from the RocNaNo blog. The challenge was to develop a character based on the prompt in something like 2000 words.
This is a character from the Herongarde Trilogy that one day I’ll finish writing. I hadn’t developed him very well, and now that I have, I think I need to include him more often. There are bits and snippets about Herongarde here on my blog. This post is also mirrored over on the RocNaNo blog.
Character: Priests who go adventuring.
Father Arin of Herongarde
Arin was born to a merchant, and spent his formative years traveling with is father and mother throughout Herongarde, Aidengarde, and Falgarth (among other nations), visiting noblemen and royalty wherever they went. Arin’s mother died when he was about seven years old, leaving him desperate for answers. Continue reading
He was raised in a single-wide trailer deep in Appalachia by his mother, a single mom. His father is the quintessential deadbeat dad, who walked out when Matty was 9. That night, his father had come home drunk and proceeded to beat the stuffing out of his mother. Matt jumped in to defend his mom and ultimately had to pull a gun on his dad to get him to leave. His dad never came back.
Matt knew there was more to life than this stupid podunk little town of 1500. He had watched enough television to know that if he could just get to the city, he would have it all. He’d dropped out of school at 17, just six months before he should have graduated. But his mom needed him, and at 20 he still lived in that single-wide.
Only nine months ago, his mother had suddenly died. An aneurism took her and left Matt with nothing, except for that crummy old single-wide trailer.
With no cash and no real prospects, he tossed a few things in his beat up truck, gathered his dog, Bo, and started to leave. Then all hell broke loose.
Jason is the son of a blacksmith, born in the village of Artyl, about two hours ride (horseback) from the Herongarde Castle. His father, Gastin, serves the King by providing armor and swords to his Mark-bearers. Jason has spent his entire life surrounded by royalty and the Lords and Ladies of the Court of Herongarde.
Starting at a very young age, Jason idolized Trey of Herongarde, the youngest son of the King. Because of this, Jason sought to join the ranks of the Mark-bearers and entered into training at the age of six. At the age of sixteen, with war threatening Herongarde, Jason serves Trey in protecting Herongarde Castle while Herongarde’s army marches away into battle.
Gilbert of Herongarde is a scholar and a warrior. He has a deep and abiding interest in the sciences, especially physics. He is recognized as among the finest of Herongarde’s tacticians, whose opinion will immediately sway that of the King himself. Gilbert takes great pleasure in improving designs of war machines such as trebuchets, catapults, and ballistas. He is also a master swordsman charged with the training of all those who would one day bear the Mark of Herongarde, and for the continued training for those who already carry the Mark. His swords are among the most polished and sharp among warriors. Gilbert is perhaps the most fastidious of the Mark-Bearers, always of clean and tidy appearance.
Marshall Thomas has an exciting career as an action-adventure star of movies and television. Coming from an acting family, Hollywood life is completely normal to him. He has never really experienced anything but comfort and prosperity. On the outside, he seems a well-adjusted man, but this masks the torment beneath that even he is unaware of. Disconnected, divorced parents left him uncertain how to engage others on an emotional level, which in turn leaves him in his late 40’s still single and unable to form a properly loving relationship with a woman. While considered a perfect gentleman by some, others think of him as a womanizing bad-boy, but the truth is that only once has he caught himself courting two women at once: Allison (his then-fiancee) and Katrine Duncan. His life starts a downward spiral with a car accident, including a DWI arrest, after which his fiancee meets his girlfriend. From there he falls into ever-worsening self-destructive habits, which may wind up costing him dearly.
Marshall is the main character for the novel I’m writing for the National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) challenge this year. The working title of the book is “The Masters.”
Tessa, Queen of Herongarde, is the wife of King Anthony of Herongarde and is Trey’s mother. She is a gentle and loving woman, and has little interest in the politics of men. She does, however, concern herself deeply with matters of the heart.
Markus of Herongarde is the younger brother of King Anthony of Herongarde and Uncle of Trey. Markus is ever the diplomat, capable of diffusing volatile situations with a smile, but quick with his sword and among the best swordsmen of Herongarde. Were in not for Markus’ cool temperament, Herongarde would have plunged into war a hundred times due to Anthony’s fiery temper. Markus is a man who would defend the codes of Herongarde to his death, but has a soft spot for those he loves and has been known to look away if codes are breached in the name of love.
Hanna Tisdale is a tenured academic (in the physical sciences) in a functional, but dull, marriage, facing mid-life with a sense of apathy. She’s busy nurturing her own and her husbands careers and raising their son, but is losing herself in the middle of it. She’s discouraged by the little paunch she’s developed and yearns for the more active, exciting days of her youth.
Trey of Herongarde is a disenchanted Prince. His world has been dark to him since the loss of his beloved wife and son in childbirth ten years earlier. It grew still darker when, soon after, his elder brother – the heir to the throne – was killed. For years, Lord Trey has moved through life, disinterested in everything except for a good duel at tournament and the unconscious hope for his own death. Though heir to the throne of Herongarde, Trey has done all possible to avoid the politics of the realm, preferring to ride wide and dangerous patrols. He refuses to be addressed as royalty. He wishes only to be acknowledged as a warrior and a Bearer of the sovereign Mark of Herongarde.