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Category: Character Insights

Insights into characters and how they act or react.

Your queen is risking her life. Show some respect #Excerpt The Last Vhalgenn #Fantasy #MFRWhooks

 

 

The Last Vhalgenn

Duty.

Honor.

Ritual.

One of these things
may kill her.

The Vhalgenn is the last of her kind, a companion bred to serve the king. Duty and honor burn in her blood.

When the queen begs for a secret blessing to save the newborn prince, the Vhalgenn answers.

But when she takes the babe to the queen's homeland for the ritual, what she discovers could topple the king and overthrow the kingdom.

To save them, she must abandon every last thing she holds sacred, and do the one thing that will destroy her own heart...

Excerpt from The Last Vhalgenn

Duty has shaped the Vhalgenn's life since birth, but to protect the newborn heir, she must betray all she holds sacred.

In this scene from The Last Vhalgenn, the heroine, Raik, has just bathed and eaten, and is alone with King Orix. They grew up together, but his new queen barred Raik from the palace. Raik is back to deliver news of a battle and while delighted to be with Orix, is nervous about his queen discovering them.

---

Orix set his fingers beneath my chin, and turned my face up to his. "You're more than pretty. You're magnificent. My queen has never once sat near the fire with me and talked."

It had been our nightly ritual. "Never?"

"Never." He brushed my hair back from my face. "I've learned to get along with her, Vhalgenn, but I never had to learn anything with you. We grew up with one another. You were my partner in everything I did. My lover, my sister, my sparring partner, my best friend. My everything."

I lifted my head to look up at him. As I did, his mouth came down on mine. A feverish chill coursed through me at his touch. I'd wanted his mouth from the moment I'd seen him on his throne. Orix could not help but be languid and sultry and hot. I felt desire emanating from him like heat from an oven with its door ajar. It scorched my face and I drew in a shallow breath, afraid of being burnt.

Resisting him was something I had never done, except in play. He thought I meant it that way now and made as if to pressure me, until he saw my eyes were brimming.

"Please, Orix. Don't." I pushed myself away from him. "I can't."

He frowned, confused. For him, life was simple. A need? Fulfill it. Thirsty? Drink. Hungry? Eat. Lusty? Love.

"Half the palace must know I'm here. Do you think your queen will let this go unnoticed? She'll have someone in here to check on me before the night's through and I won't be thrown out again, Orix. I couldn't bear it."

"Vhalgenn, I promise. She'll never know."

"No!" I moved away from him. "She's no fool. She's your queen and she's risking her life to have your child. The least you can do is be faithful."

The look of horror on his face tore out a piece of my heart. Then I realized he was looking past me.

His pregnant queen stood in the darkness, right outside the door.

Publisher Romance Lives Forever Books
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JOIN US FOR BOOKHOOKS
Book Hooks is a weekly meme hosted by Marketing for Romance Writers as part of the MFRW Authors Blog.
It's a chance each week for you the reader to discover current works in progress or previously published books by possibly new-to-you authors.
Thank you for stopping by. Please say hello or leave a note in the comments.

Pietas ap Lorectic was introduced in the book For Women Only. He’s a physically beautiful immortal male who appears young, despite being over twelve thousand years old. He and his twin sister were the only naturally conceived and born Ultras.

The name Pietas comes from the word “pieta“, meaning “representation.” A famous statue by Michelangelo called “The Pieta” represents a dramatic event in Christendom. Another word for “pieta” is “creation.” Pietas was considered (at his birth to two supposedly infertile immortals) to be the highest creation, the epitome of success. His mother, Helia hid her pregnancy from all but a close circle of others, fearful of what might happen if humans discovered she was fertile.

Unknown to Helia, she carried twins. A female child was delivered only minutes after Pietas, and she was considered a delight, and a good omen. She was named Dessy from the root word decet (dess-say) meaning good or proper. We know her today as Empress Rheyn Destoiya, or the Conqueror. She detests being called Dessy. Pietas makes a point of calling her that to irritate her.

Pietas and Dessy’s father is Mahikos. Those who’ve read Surrender Love had an opportunity to meet him. Helia will appear in an upcoming book.

Other names for Pietas in human history are Marauder, Impaler, Hammer of God, Soul Ripper, Destroyer of Worlds, Slayer of Innocents, and Hound of Hell. He is mentioned in the Tales of the Chosen series, and Surrender Love. There is a love-hate relationship between Pietas and Luc Saint-Cyr, whom Pietas insists on calling by his Sempervian name, Cyken.

I prevail over the breath of my enemies - quote from Pietas, Bringer of Chaos

"I prevail over the breath of my enemies" - quote from Pietas, Bringer of Chaos

Prevail (definition):...

To be valid, applicable, true, superior, or to persuade successfully.

Said of Pietas.

During the first few months of exile, every day, Pietas worked on his compulsion ability. He had no one to target but Six, a human.

Prior to imprisonment, for practice, Pietas would ask for some item he needed, such as a stylus. He wouldn't say which one or what type, but instead, as whoever was near reached for one, Pietas extended a wave of compulsion to choose the desired item. It never failed. Each person always picked the one he wanted. People who entered his presence would turn around and leave without Pietas saying a word. Practicing with small things made the big things second nature.

He had once turned a whole division and made them attack their comrades. But coerce Six? Might as well ask the sun for ice. Was it because he was reanimiated? A ghost? Or was it inherent in his nature?

Pietas sent Six a strong wave of compulsion to come to him, but the ghost continued filleting a fish without the least pause.

Casting himself back onto the grass in a fit of pique, Pietas stared up at the sky. He'd had more control as a child! Would he have to start over and relearn everything? Was the gift lost? He'd honed it for centuries. Surely, it was not lost. Please, let it not be lost...

No matter how hard or how long it took, he would reclaim every power, every gift, and every ability. He would own everything he'd lost. No one robbed Pietas ap Lorectic, First Conqueror, War Leader of the Ultras and got away with it. Humanity had tried to rob him of his birthright, but they would not prevail.

Check the links below to find more authors in this blog hop.

Pick up the first story in the Bringer of Chaos series, Lights Out, free by joining a reader group!
https://kayelleallen.com/reader-groups

Origin of Pietas

Origin of Pietas: Bringer of Chaos #SpaceOpera #SciFi

Forged in Fire

Forged in Fire: Bringer of Chaos #SpaceOpera #SciFi

Lights Out

Lights Out: Bringer of Chaos #SpaceOpera #SciFi


JOIN US FOR BOOKHOOKS
Book Hooks is a weekly meme hosted by Marketing for Romance Writers as part of the MFRW Authors Blog.
It's a chance each week for you the reader to discover current works in progress or previously published books by possibly new-to-you authors.
Thank you for stopping by. Please say hello or leave a note in the comments.

Bringing Pietas to Life #Voiceover @voicesbyzack #Cosplayer @nitsvetov #PietasFans #SciFi #MFRWhooks #MFRWorg

Discovering Pietas through a voice actor and a cosplayer

Bringing Pietas to Life

Watching Nik Nitsvetov perform as Pietas during the Ritual of Strength cosplay, I understood my character and saw nuances I'd never caught when I wrote the character. I'll share those insights in a later post. Because I had hundreds of images to choose from, I saw things in the background that readers never see. It opened my eyes to my character in ways I never expected.

Here's a quick video to introduce Pietas.

An interview with Pietas, the immortal king during his initial period of exile on Sempervia, from the Bringer of Chaos science fiction series.
Pietas voice actor - Zack Black
Pietas model - Nik Nitsvetov

What's your experience?

Have you ever worked with a voice actor? How did it go? Where did you find them? I'd love to hear your comments and questions. Please leave a note in the comments.

Check the links below to find more authors in this blog hop.

Pick up the first story in the Bringer of Chaos series, Lights Out, free by joining a reader group!
https://kayelleallen.com/reader-groups

Origin of Pietas

Origin of Pietas: Bringer of Chaos #SpaceOpera #SciFi

Forged in Fire

Forged in Fire: Bringer of Chaos #SpaceOpera #SciFi

Lights Out

Lights Out: Bringer of Chaos #SpaceOpera #SciFi


Book Hooks - a blog hop sponsored by Marketing for Romance Writers

JOIN US FOR BOOKHOOKS

Book Hooks is a weekly meme hosted by Marketing for Romance Writers as part of the MFRW Authors Blog. It's a chance each week for you the reader to discover current works in progress or previously published books by possibly new-to-you authors.

Thank you for stopping by. Please say hello or leave a note in the comments.

Nik Nitsvetov as Pietas Bringer of Chaos from books by Kayelle Allen

 

 

When cosplaying Pietas, Nik Nitsvetov revealed aspects of the character's transformation I had never considered. Here are before, during, and after shots as Nik transformed Pietas into the Bringer of Chaos.

Pietas transforms

Watching Nik cosplay Pietas opened my eyes to how the character himself might have envisioned the change from "normal" to "superhero." To be clear, the ritual changes nothing but mindset, but it is effective. It's a clear way for Pietas to accept the mantle of leadership in the face of battle. Watch the video to see the full transformation with music and a voiceover by voice actor Zack Black.

Step 1: Before the Ritual

Witness the transformation: Pietas morphs into the Bringer of Chaos @nitsvetov_cos @voicesbyzack #SciFi #Cosplay #MFRWhooks #PietasFans

 

 

Watch the transformation: Pietas morphs into the Bringer of Chaos @nitsvetov_cos @voicesbyzack #SciFi #Cosplay #MFRWhooks

The Ritual of Strength tranforms Pietas into the War Leader of the Ultras -- a fighting machine known as the Bringer of Chaos. He earned the title because his strongest Sempervian gift is Chaos, the ability to create chaotic feelings with no outside source. In battle, it mind-dazes an enemy. But with a lover, his gift renders a partner helpless, inundating them with overwhelming pleasure.

He has worn a mask in battle ever since defeating the First Division, a human special-ops group formed to fight Ultras. It came about because Pietas slew an enemy, and blood splashed across his eyes. Thinking the blood belonged to Pietas, the Ultra troops rallied to him and slaughtered the humans. By the end of the battle, the blood had dried almost black. Stories of how their "bandit king" had conquered the First Division filled the night. To his troops, he was now the conqueror of the First Division, and they gave him a new title to celebrate: First Conqueror, War Leader of the Ultras.

Look at the facial expressions as Pietas lifts the mask into place, hiding his true self and preparing to morph into the Bringer of Chaos.

Step 2: Ritual

Watch the transformation: Pietas morphs into the Bringer of Chaos @nitsvetov_cos @voicesbyzack #SciFi #Cosplay #MFRWhooks

Watch the transformation: Pietas morphs into the Bringer of Chaos @nitsvetov_cos @voicesbyzack #SciFi #Cosplay #MFRWhooks

The expression of utter confidence while Pietas is wearing the mask reveals how much performing the ritual affects him. In the left image, he's removing a small knife used in the ritual. The story behind this knife -- I bought it at OutlantaCon a few years ago. It was made from hand-forged metal, a handle of hand-carved wood, and sheathed in hand-tooled leather. One of a kind. In the story (a Bringer of Chaos book not out yet), Six makes this knife and gives it to Pietas. He has used it for thousands of years and it's so fragile he now keeps it in a glass case. He never parts with a gift from a friend if there is any way possible to keep it.

In the second photo, Nik performs the scene where Pietas makes a small cut in his skin, symbolically shedding blood for his people. He heals instantly, but the point is he is ready to die for his people. Look at those eyes. Nik transformed as much as Pietas.

Step 3: After the Ritual

Watch the transformation: Pietas morphs into the Bringer of Chaos @nitsvetov_cos @voicesbyzack #SciFi #Cosplay #MFRWhooks

Watch the transformation: Pietas morphs into the Bringer of Chaos @nitsvetov_cos @voicesbyzack #SciFi #Cosplay #MFRWhooks

When the ritual is complete, Pietas removes his mask. In Origin of Pietas, he paints on the mask with soot from a fire, and right after, he and Six are caught in a downpour. When Six sees Pietas's face, he bursts into laughter and says Pietas looks like a "weapon of mascara destruction."

On the first photo, notice the focus in those eyes as Pietas begins the transformation back to his usual self. The next picture shows him with the mask off and a partial smile. I love that photo. It's the backdrop for my email program. My interpretation of this image is that Pietas is happy to return to his (somewhat) normal life and be who he really is.

Witness the Next Live Cosplay

Sign up below and you'll be the first to know when the next Pietas cosplay takes place. The date will be between now and October 15th.

Check the links below to find more authors in this blog hop.

Pick up the first story in the Bringer of Chaos series, Lights Out, free by joining a reader group!
https://kayelleallen.com/reader-groups

Origin of Pietas

Origin of Pietas: Bringer of Chaos #SpaceOpera #SciFi

Forged in Fire

Forged in Fire: Bringer of Chaos #SpaceOpera #SciFi

Lights Out

Lights Out: Bringer of Chaos #SpaceOpera #SciFi


JOIN US FOR BOOKHOOKS
Book Hooks is a weekly meme hosted by Marketing for Romance Writers as part of the MFRW Authors Blog.
It's a chance each week for you the reader to discover current works in progress or previously published books by possibly new-to-you authors.
Thank you for stopping by. Please say hello or leave a note in the comments.

Ready: Fight! Choreographing a fight scene #SciFi #MFRWhooks #PietasFans

Choreographing a fight scene is a challenge for any writer. Rewriting it in another story from a different character's point of view is a special kind of madness.

Ready: Fight!

Having written Origin of Pietas first, when I wrote Lights Out, a prequel introducing Six, I had to retell some of the story the way Six saw it. Note: Six was using the name Tornahdo then, a special ops moniker for the way he fought.

What did I do to ensure I got all the hits and bumps right? You can read about it in this post. In Lights Out, Tornahdo (as Six was known then) was one of eight special ops soldiers. They had all been in fights with immortals before this, but none of them had faced Pietas, the immortal king. Here's the scene from Lights Out, Tornahdo's POV.

Tornahdo has entered a closed section of a space station. It's been several minutes since all the air has been removed. Pietas is on the ground, but he's where cameras can't get a good look at him. While Tornahdo and the soldiers can hold their breaths a long time, no one is sure just how long the king can accomplish this feat. Immortals can manipulate human emotions, so to protect the ghosts, they've been fitted with a chip to suppress emotion.


Ready: Fight! Choreographing a fight scene #SciFi #MFRWhooks #PietasFansInside, as instructed, Tornahdo stayed near the back. Two of the eight ghosts closed in on the pod.

Pietas lay on the floor behind it. His body showed, not his face.

Tornahdo tingled with a fighter's high. The mix of anxiety and excitement kept his instincts on maximum alert.

Beside Pietas, a ghost stooped. The change in lighting angle showed the Ultra, limp on the floor. When turned, the body flopped. The ghost pressed two fingers against the throat.

With a jerk, Pietas yanked the man down while thrusting a hand up.

A pierce of mindless fear stabbed Tornahdo. He'd faced that snap of terror before. It meant two things. First, the Ultra was controlling their emotions. Second, the chip was worthless.

Pietas tripped the next ghost, jabbed an elbow into his neck.

Another spurt of fear and confusion.

All that training. Days of suffering, learning control. For nothing.

Pietas flashed into speed mode.

Tornahdo's world moved in slow motion.

A blur showed where the Ultra had been. Pietas halted, braced both hands on a pod and kicked a pair of ghosts behind him.

They flew backward. Slow.

Momentum carried the Ultra straight toward Tornahdo.

Stumbling out of the way, Tornahdo went down in a tumble, taking out the ghost beside him, who knocked down the last two.


From Origin of Pietas: Bringer of Chaos

Pietas's point of view, same scene. No air means no sound.

Crowded as the space was between his life-pod and the wall, two ghosts crept into it. Six spots of light showed on the other side. Eight ghosts then. That would be a much better fight. One nudged him with a foot.

Suppressing a smile, Pietas continued to play dead.Ready: Fight! Choreographing a fight scene #SciFi #MFRWhooks #PietasFans

Ghost One bent down, turned him onto his back.

Pietas let his body flop.

The guy came in closer, checked for a pulse.

Pietas opened his eyes.

The ghost's alarm fed Pietas energy.

He yanked him down, hard, while jamming the heel of his hand up. The ghost's head snapped back, and Pietas felt his bones crack. He shoved him aside and went after Ghost Two.

Pietas gripped his leg and tripped him. He jammed an elbow down onto the man's neck. Bones broke. The ghost's stab of dying fear spiked the energy from the first, and Pietas mixed it with his gift of chaos. He flung the vortex of emotions outward, broadcasting confusion and terror.

He activated his ability called zip. The pseudo speed meant he could move at a regular pace, but humans perceived him as a blur. They could not focus on him long enough to get close. To him, everyone moved in slow motion.

He flipped onto his feet, braced both hands on his pod, and kicked Three and Four square in the chest.

He pushed off the pod, and the momentum carried him straight into the arms of Five and Six. They stumbled backward, tumbling Seven and Eight onto the floor.

Writing different points of view

As you can see, the two viewpoints tell the same story, but the emotions reveal levels of attachment that are quite different.

Tornahdo knows he's had.

Pietas has hope he can escape.

Each is facing a person who refuses to quit, no matter how hard the going gets. Which will prevail?

Read the full story in Lights Out: Bringer of Chaos, and follow through with Origin of Pietas and its sequel, Forged in Fire.

If you like Pietas, you're in luck. He's in most of the Antonello Brothers series set in the far future from the Bringer of Chaos series. When you're immortal, you come back over and over and over. But does that mean he wins the fight in this scene? What's the word for damned if you do and damned if you don't? Hmm, how about screwed...

Check the links below to find more authors in this blog hop.

Pick up the first story in the Bringer of Chaos series, Lights Out, free by joining a reader group!
https://kayelleallen.com/reader-groups

Origin of Pietas

Origin of Pietas: Bringer of Chaos #SpaceOpera #SciFi

Forged in Fire

Forged in Fire: Bringer of Chaos #SpaceOpera #SciFi

Lights Out

Lights Out: Bringer of Chaos #SpaceOpera #SciFi


JOIN US FOR BOOKHOOKS
Book Hooks is a weekly meme hosted by Marketing for Romance Writers as part of the MFRW Authors Blog. It's a chance each week for you the reader to discover current works in progress or previously published books by possibly new-to-you authors. Thank you for stopping by. Please say hello or leave a note in the comments.

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