I’m really falling for the intermingling stories in Changeling. Most of the novels I have written have focussed on one main character, with maybe a few chapters from the villain’s point of view, or those of the main character’s closest companions. For example, in Of the Arbour and Of the Arena, most of the story is written from Sage’s perspective, but there are several points where we enter the head of the villain, Cain, to give a more diverse story, as well as going into the point of view of Briar, Sage’s longtime friend, for scenes that are given much more depth and intensity due to her being totally blind.
Changeling is much different. Most of the chapters are told from the main character’s perspective – this being Aisling, in the first person, which I rarely use and am starting to really enjoy – however there are other chapters written around other characters. I know you’re thinking “Jessica, that isn’t new. People go into the heads of multiple characters all the time.” I’ve never done it to this extent before – there are so many different plots all twisting together, related but without the characters knowing. Aisling and her relationships with Alistair, Leir, Zdenek, the elves of Willowfirth, and even her own parents, and her twisted history; Alistair and his journey to becoming a mage and king, and heal his broken country in the midst of kidnapping and war; Lacramioara and helping Zdenek in plotting to [spoiler] with the help of a pirate ally and his own flock of supermages, and her own internal turmoil over her childhood feelings regarding Aisling; Vincent and struggling to raise a rambunctious ten year old alone as well as remain the strongest de facto leader of Canton, while still controlling his pirate fleet and wage war as Zdenek’s ally; Leto and remaining a true and loyal rider of the elves of Willowfirth, keeping to his faith and quest, his feelings for an untouchable human within his clan, and his deep-rooted suspicions of Aisling.
These are just the characters who have chapters told in their perspective. There’s also the secrets of Zdenek himself, as well as those of the upper echelon of the Willowfirth elves and Aisling’s parents, and the conflicts of kingdoms. Throw in minor skirmishes and conflicts, mythological creatures and random uprooting and relocation – such as moving the princess of Nallis (Alistair’s little sister) to a desert island nation – and this is one of the more complicated stories I’ve ever written.
I love it :3
And as usual, there are some minor characters shoving their way into the spotlight. Vincent’s daughter, Sophia, is so freaking adorable. Her father isn’t the stereotypical dirty pirate lord – in fact, he’s a little neurotic – and because of it, she’s wild and is majorly raised by his right-hand man, Saïd. As shown in a recent post, when she meets Alistair she clings to him straight off the bat. He’s technically her enemy, due to him being the son of the enemy of her father’s ally (confusing!) but she’s so innocent and curious about anything and everything around her that she just doesn’t care. Another character, Morwenna, is similar to Sophia in that she’s minor and stealing the limelight. She’s an elf that ends up being taken under Leto’s wing; she’s too curious for her own good, as well as being clumsy and a little naive when it comes to the world, and Leto treats her like a daughter.
Ah, I’m most pleased with Changeling right now. I keep getting ideas and I’m so excited to get them in. Shit is really starting to hit the fan for Aisling and Co, and they’re going to hate me for it.
“This is the most beautiful room I have ever seen,” she breathed, slowly moving to a mosaic and tentatively reaching with her fingers. It was an image of a beautiful nude woman with flowing golden hair; at her waist started the body of a fish, and her hands were webbed. Her piercing stare was made of two sapphires, flawless and sparkling in the sunlight shining through the room.
“Can you imagine what Mahara Pavanir’s rooms must be like if this is just a guest wing?” I moved up beside her and tilted my head to the side. “What type of gem do you suppose that is?”
“I’m more curious as to why someone would use a gem for her nipples, and not just glass like the rest of it.”
“Perverse fascination, perhaps? It looks flawless, but that might have been overdone.”
“I am really starting to love walking into your conversations,” Adele piped up. Leir and I glanced back at the entrance to the apartments to see her standing just inside the room, a small smile curling her lips. “Most servants censor themselves no matter what, for both conversation content and accent. I see why my brother is so fond of you.”
I flushed and pointedly looked away from the mosaic, embarrassed, but Leir only grinned. “We are most sorry, milady,” she said in her false western accent, sounding anything but sorry.