This blog series following the creation of Duty from idea to print book is part of an experiment. The first installment was Birth of a Novel: the starting point.
I chose the working title Duty by January 2012. I liked the simplicity of the single word title. I also wanted to focus on that aspect of the storyline as it developed. Both of the main characters are motivated by duty. They react and make choices on that principle.
Duty to country -
Irvaine, as a warrior and noble, is bound by his duty to his king and his country. His service grows from a personal interaction and loyalty to the king. He has fought to protect this man and to support his claim to the throne of Rhynan.
As a leader in her village and daughter of a deceased noble, Brielle feels a duty to the leadership of her country, though her ties are anchored in the people more than the king.
Duty to others -
Irvaine also carries a duty to his people, those who look to him for protection and guidance. He desires to serve them and be a fair, honest, and gentle master. Thrown into the thick of intrigue and deceit, he is forced to choose who to place first.
Brielle is anchored in her village. The women she fought, farmed, and shared with for her whole life call to her heart more strongly than the strangers of the more prosperous and distant Kyrenton. Yet, she must find a balance between her emotional duty and her positional duty as the new Lady Irvaine.
Duty to each other -
Despite the ominous beginning to their marriage, Irvaine intends to make it work this time around. He is accustomed to fighting for respect, thanks to his difficult childhood. Years as a soldier honed his skills as he struggled for his life. Now he is at a disadvantage, though, because he doesn’t fully realize the stakes. This time he isn’t just fighting for respect or life, he is fighting for his heart.
Brielle has grown accustomed to being used. After her parents’ deaths, her cousin took advantage of her leadership skills and management of the village to fund his lifestyle and plans. So, when he handed the village over to the new king of Rhynan, sweetening the deal with her hand in marriage, she isn’t really surprised. She agrees to marry Irvaine out of duty to her king and her people, not love. She quickly learns to respect this man full of strange contradictions, but only time will tell if she will learn to love him as well.
Question: Do these character descriptions tease your interest?