I'm going to pick two of my major characters from Orthion, a planet inhabited by magical and paranormal beings. Eli Atrimife (formerly named Angi), a vampire fairy, and her best friend Nor Mososgerr, a chimera. They both live in the land of the Fae, Kaltewirin, specifically its capital Elfhame.
How often do they smile? Would they smile at a stranger?
Eli barely ever smiles, except when she's trying to freak people out, putting on a mask to disguise her emotions, or exceptionally relaxed (which barely ever happens). No, she would never just smile at a stranger.
Nor would smile at a stranger. It's both a defense mechanism to prevent people looking closer, and because she's just that kind of person.
What is the cruelest thing they’ve ever been told? And what was their reaction?
The cruelest thing Eli was ever told was that she wasn't worth the trouble it was to keep her alive. Her reaction was to make herself so useful that she was never threatened like that again.
The cruelest thing Nor was ever told was that her identity as woman wasn't legitimate. Her reaction was to hide her identity until she was old enough to live on her own, and ran away.
What is the kindest thing they’ve ever been told? And what was their reaction?
The kindest thing Eli was ever told was that she was her mother's most treasured gift. Her reaction every time her mother tells her this is to feel like she's been given a warm hug.
The kindest thing that Nor has ever been told is that she is the best friend anyone could have. Her reaction was to kiss Eli and spin her around, crying happily.
What is one strong memory that has stuck with your character from childhood? Why is it so powerful and lasting?
A strong memory, although it's not just one, from Eli's childhood is of her mother quietly enduring the abuse her other mother did to her. This is so strong partially because it was so traumatic to see, but also because it was the only example of a relationship that she saw for a long time, and it made her determined to never fall in love, because she's seen what could happen if you fall in love with the wrong person.
A strong memory for Nor is of her mother singing her to sleep after a nightmare. This stuck with Nor because it was the last time she was treated like a child, and the last time her mother, or any member of her family treated her with love or kindness. She wants to remember that they aren't completely bad.
What book (a real actual published book!) do you think your character would benefit from reading?
Eli, probably A Wrinkle In Time
Nor, I think would benefit from reading Eon: Dragoneye Reborn
Have they ever been seriously injured? How severely? How did they react?
Eli has been injured badly several times, so many that she doesn't really react to it anymore; she's numbed her pain sensors. But the first time it happened, she couldn't stop crying.
Nor was beaten so badly she lost consciousness when she wouldn't follow what her parents wanted her to do, and kept insisting on her correct identity and pronouns. She, once she woke up, didn't speak for a month.
Do they like and get along with their neighbours?
Eli is liked by pretty much all the people in Elfhame, and she likes them in general. Her personal servants are frightened of her, but don't hate her. She is mostly respected.
All of Nor's neighbors and employees like and respect her; she's an easy person to get along with.
On a scale from 1 to 10 (1 being easy and 10 being difficult) how easy are they to get along with?
Eli is probably an 8. She is often aloof and slightly cruel, but if you can get her to trust you, she is very kind and loving.
Nor is a 1. Except when it comes to her family, and opinions she has as a result of her culture. Otherwise she is the easiest person in the world to get along with. She's welcoming, kind, and extraordinarily laid-back.
If they could travel anywhere in the world, where would they go?
Going with Orthion, Eli would probably travel to Tiamat, the oldest city and civilization on the planet. It is also the center, geographically and politically of the world.
Nor would probably go back to Aylrzha, her home country, because, other than the people, she loved it there.
Who was the last person they held hands with?
Probably each other.
Well, that was rather edifying. I hope you guys are intrigued!
Signing off, Mareike.