My name is Barte son of Moshere. And no, there are no commas. That name, my friend is my title, though I believe my guardians should have included more surnames just to make it difficult for the common people to remember.
Which book/world do you live in?
I live in the books the author titles Sword of Cho Nisi. She really should have called it Sword of Casdamia as my empire is larger, stronger, and much more fitting than that tiny little island in the middle of the Nisi Sea. Did you know the natives walk barefoot on that island? I was there once but I don’t remember much. I was blind at the time—under the curse of that evil wizard Skotádi, the murderer of my parents. I’d rather not talk about it.
*Fiddles with his falcon’s breast feathers and kisses the leather helm over its head.
Too traumatic for me. Too much blood. They know I get sick at the sight of it, yet they made me go there anyway. *shudders.
Tell us about yourself:
I’m the emperor of the greatest nation in the world. Casdamia is my charge and someday I hope to conquer all the lands. Perhaps. Well, maybe not. Seems like such an effort. I would like to have Tellwater Valley within my borders though. No finer wine in all the land comes from Tellwater and I hate to say it’s ruled by Potamia and that young scallywag son of a king, Barin. He’s not an altogether rotten chap, but the commoners speak way too highly of him.
My father was the emperor Moshere. He was the grandest of all warriors and provoked fear throughout the land. Part of that was Skotádi’s doing. They were in cahoots for most of the battles, but something happened, and the dark wizard changed. He cursed my father and my mother and when I was an innocent young child barely out of my nightcap, he burned them to a crisp. Magic did it. A cruel inhumane bolt of magic. *He breathes a sigh and fans himself* I will never forget, nor forgive. And I trust no one because of it. Only my Allat. *Kisses the falcon again.
What are your greatest strengths and weaknesses?
Strengths? *He laughs and takes the falcon’s headdress off. Strengths, the man asks. Yes. Well, my strength is in my army. They’re a cruel lot. I’ve been working on them. You should see their black Armor and green plumage. One look and you’ll be quivering in your boots, my dear fellow. No one messes with the Dark Army!
As for weakness, well, I must admit I retch at the sight of blood, but that shouldn’t make any difference. I don’t really need to be on the battlefield, you know. That’s what soldiers are for.
Name three important people/creatures/institutions in your world (such as lovers, pets, government institutions, leaders, gods etc).
Does me, myself and I count? Oh, I know. You’re looking for something beyond Rigelstaff.
I heard a rumour that Barin the king of Potamia, has a lover, the daughter of one of his barons he exiled. Seems that her father was slain in my kingdom. I’m not sure whether to laugh or cry about that one.
And his wizard Kairos made a pet of a skura. Had me fooled for months. I’m the one that taught him falconry and to think he took advantage of my blindness and tricked me into thinking he was training a falcon. No wonder the man stunk every time he came around.
King Tobias’ gods died with him. That’s what I’m told. They put a monument for them in the palace garden.
And the fool who married the Tobian Princess, the man who was once king of Cho Nisi? Gossip is spreading that he handed his throne to the village elders. Imagine that! A whole conglomerate of natives sitting on a throne. Barefoot, no doubt. *Snickers and kisses Allat. The Fool will lose the island.
What does ‘heroism’ mean to you?
Heroism is what Allat is to me. *He holds the falcon close to his heart. My hero. The only friend I have. The only creature I can put my trust in. Allat is my hero. He hears my deepest thoughts and keeps them secret. He does what he’s told. He even found the murderer of my parents for me, and nearly lost his life doing so.
What do you think of your ‘creator’?
Hmpf! Poor choice of main characters.
Give us your favourite piece of advice:
Stay to yourself. There’s not a soul on this planet you can trust, not even the trustworthy ones. Unless of course they have some fashionable Armor to sell you or some delicacy for your kitchen. Still, don’t trust them.
Links to book