Thursday, September 19, 2013

Fantasy Fiction Friendships Part 8 Atarek Veta and Madame Rose Fayeth - Good Friends and Great Reads

Follow Her Ladyship's Quest and enjoy my 8-part Good Friends and Great Reads blog series. Every Thursday through September 19th, I'll be sharing insights about powerful relationships between characters from my fantasy series. Join the literary discussion by leaving comments about fictional friends that felt like your friends too.

See also Part 1 Dreibrand and Tytido
Part 2 Dreibrand and Shan 
Part 3 Shan and Taischek 
Part 4 Dreibrand and Faychan 

Part 5 Cruce and Gehr

Part 6 Amar and Urlen 

Part 7 Urlen and Demeda

Part 8 Atarek Veta and Madame Rose Fayeth

Two seekers meet on a voyage across the Atrophane Empire. Their shared path carries them into a rocky relationship. In this final part of my 8-part blog series on fictional friendships, I’ll introduce you to Madame Rose Fayeth and Atarek Veta from The Rys Chronicles.

They appear first in Judgment Rising, the third novel of the series but also a new entry point into the saga for readers who want to jump in. The Empire they live in has recently conquered distant territories and encountered a realm ruled by the magical rys.

Madame Fayeth’s young son is weakened by an incurable disease. Taking the last of her late husband’s fortune she sets out on a voyage with her son and daughter to find the rys and their healing magic. 

Atarek Veta is the heir of a ruined albeit noble house of the Empire. Years ago he lost his brother Dreibrand, whose military record states that he was missing in action in the Wilderness. When Atarek overhears a veteran’s story about what really happened to Dreibrand, he realizes that he must look for his brother.

Atarek chooses to travel under a false name and ends up on the same ship as Madame Fayeth. He gains employment as one of her bodyguards and they continue across the new provinces of the Empire. His drinking and gambling and out-of-control zeppa addiction hardly endear him to Madame Fayeth, but his determination to cross the Wilderness wins her over. Her children also adore him.

Throughout the novel the relationship between Atarek and Madame Fayeth evolves from judgment to sympathy.

Atarek is not a perfect person but for the first time in his life he is pursuing a goal. Madame Fayeth is desperate and finds in Atarek a stubborn ally with a hero’s heart.

Although Atarek and Madame Fayeth are only one element of Judgment Rising, I greatly enjoyed writing their drama. Their scenes and chapters came to me easily. I’m not sure why. I had originally imagined making Atarek less likable and more disappointing, but he won over my hard writer’s heart so I could make him a better person. He had the same effect on Madame Fayeth too.

Enjoy this little excerpt from one of the tougher episodes between Atarek and Madame Fayeth in Judgment Rising.

“Now, I would like to know whose idea it was to have your little holiday last night?” She scanned the men but her eyes hit Atarek more often than the other men.
Atarek was pleased that no one fingered him, and, buoyed by zeppa, he thought he would spare them the interrogation. “Even slaves can get a day off sometimes,” he said.
“Are you saying you started the little insurrection last night, Carl?” Madame Fayeth said.
“Yes. The way you were screaming at your daughter, no one wanted to be next on your list,” he said.
Lydea perked up when she detected a scrap of sympathy.
Although Atarek had ingratiated himself during the trip, Madame Fayeth channeled her disappointment into anger and confronted him. “I remember you promising to stay sober when I hired you,” she said.
Atarek felt a twinge of guilt but did not respond.
“You are fired. You can get off this boat the next time it docks,” Madame Fayeth decided.
He shrugged. “I am going to Jingten whether you pay me or not. So I guess you are stuck with me.”
“Oh, I know how to get rid of you,” she retorted triumphantly. “Grab him!”
The bodyguards hesitated because they liked Atarek. He looked at them with confusion. Madame Fayeth repeated her order and rushed him herself. Caught off guard by her action, Atarek tried to keep her hands off his torso. The bodyguards reacted to the physical confrontation and assisted Madame Fayeth.
As Atarek struggled, Madame Fayeth said, “I will not have some addict distracting my bodyguards from their duties.” She snatched the snuffbox from his vest pocket. His eyes bulged as she lifted the prize and the two bodyguards on his arms had to double their efforts to restrain him.
“You will keep your promise one way or another,” she declared and hurled the snuffbox into the Ramrai.
One watery splook announced the river’s receipt of the silver box. To Atarek, it sounded like the door of a dungeon slamming shut.
“You BITCH!” he thundered and broke loose of the bodyguards.
He lunged at Madame Fayeth but stopped himself before actually laying hands on her. With clenched fists, he ran to the railing of the boat as if he could somehow save his snuffbox from the river. The rippling surface of the water pushed south without any recognition of his loss, and Atarek cursed at the world.

Judgment Rising is an epic fantasy driven by numerous relationships and rivalries. Visit Brave Luck Books to find out more about TheRys Chronicles by Tracy Falbe.