It comes out tomorrow!! *bounces* I am so excited, you guys! So, today and tomorrow are your last chances to comment here and enter to win a free copy of A Sign in Blood!
Today we're going to talk about the characters!
A Sign in Blood started with Chadri Seforis. I can't remember when I came up with her, it's been a while, but she started the whole thing rolling. I liked her because she was so flawed. She already had so many of the things she thought she wanted, but like most people she didn't see it. She gets blinded by her hurts, the way we all can, by the things in life that suck, but she still strives. Still tries so hard, telling herself that if she just works hard enough, or long enough she'll be able to get what she wants. I liked her for that, for moving forward in spite of everything, for taking a sacred oath to find her father's murderer, despite the 15 intervening years and the fact that it will mean leaving behind everything she knows and loves.
Liral Nothiani is queen of Malithior in name only, since her mother's death. At twenty-four, she is a year too young to take the throne, and rumors of her instability and weakness of mind have been circulating. But once she reaches her majority, she becomes a threat Factor Hillian, who has been the most powerful of the highborn because he weaseled himself into the position of regent. Liral has managed to scrape together enough support to get her case for early ascendancy before the Factors' Council, which even Hillian can't defy. In doing so, she's showed her hand, revealed herself to be a threat to his power, and she's sure that if she can't get the support she needs to put her on the throne now, she won't survive to see it at all.
Nathias Deam'Earin is a very complicated woman. In her past she was an activist among her people. Bound to the temple of Barakou by her godlines--she is distantly descended from Barakou--she was forced to serve the temple as a priestess. But she wasn't the kind to sit quietly while the high castes were harming people, and that got her in trouble over and over again, until she decided to leave the temple and live her own life. She pulled it off, too, for almost a decade. She had a husband and three boys and a life of her own, until after her husband died and the temple caught her scent. Their attempts to get her back left her oldest son dead and Nathias on trial. It is sacrilege to execute a godline, so she was exiled from her country, but to save face the temple told everyone she was killed while trying to escape back into the city. She wandered for a long time, until she came to rest among Chadri's people, among the Bensas, and there met Chadri who was just as lost as she was.
Bastian Deom'Earin, Nathias' son, has been brought up with that legacy. Like her, his godline binds him to the temple, and he serves as a priest. Bastian is devoted to the Apostasy, to the rebellion which seeks to bring down the temples and the military. Surrounded by his enemies every day, knowing the penalty for his actions is exile (Or death. He believes they killed his mother, after all), he manipulates events to help shield the Apostasy, and it's leader, Carial Deom'Tetra.
Carial Deom'Tetra's ancestors were Sovereigns, ruling Tredalor with the help of three councils, but the priestly council and the military council turned on the last Sovereign. Carial's mother was obsessed with bringing down those councils, and she used herself as a rallying point to create the Apostasy, but she died before she could manage that goal. Carial, as the oldest of her children, took up the mantle, but he only did it to protect the apostates, the poor who were treated as discardable. The thought of being Sovereign, of looking after an entire nation, terrifies him.