While I try to keep a basic storyline when I’m writing, even I have to admit that some things I just don’t see coming. Cassadern not being fully unicorn was one of those things.
In my first book, A Prophecy Forgotten, I differentiate Cassadern, the unicorn seer, from the other unicorns by his eyes.
Suddenly Davian felt Cassadern’s horn touch his temple. It tickled, and Davian pulled away. Cassadern stared at him, and Davian returned the stare. Then he noticed that even though the pupils in Cassadern’s eyes appeared round from a distance, they were actually shaped like large stars with more than twenty points. Davian felt his feathers stand up straight. Only one line of unicorns had eyes like that.
He put his lips to Cassadern’s ear and whispered, “You’re a seer, aren’t you?”
—A Prophecy Forgotten, Chapter 18: The Seer
In the Out of the Shadows, we discover that Cassadern differs from unicorns in more ways than just his eyes. He turns out to be Jaliel’s apprentice. I haven’t fully developed the mythology behind Jaliel’s and Cassadern’s species (for lack of a better word) yet, but I can tell you two things:
- Unlike cherubians, they can enter more than 2 dimensions.
- I did not realize Cassadern one of them.
Cassadern was only supposed to be a unicorn with cool eyes. I had no idea he was something different until I was developing this scene in Out of the Shadows:
Gabriella began to sob between coughing spurts. The flogging had dislocated her wing, and pain ran up and down her spine. She crawled to the wall, and flung herself against it to push her wing back into place. After letting out a stifled yell, she collapsed to the ground. Even her skin ached. She eyed the stale piece of crust and the water the soldiers had left her that morning. Normally, she would have eaten them, but she had no appetite. She reached for the water and dragged it to her. She lifted the cup to her mouth and sipped, then spit it back. It tasted bitter and metallic. She looked at the window, hoping for a bit of moonlight, but none shone through. She turned her head back to the door and closed her eyes, her thoughts wandering to the two things she had worried about since her capture. First, she hoped Tom was okay, and she also worried for Davian, hoping Picante would not find him.
A small animal cheeped outside her door.
Gabriella opened her eyes and saw a sparrow looking through her cell bars. The sparrow cocked its neck, hopped through the bars, and landed in front of her.
Gabriella gave it a weak smile. “How did you get in here?” She closed her eyes.
“Through the door, just like everyone else.”
Gabriella’s eyes shot open. The sparrow had turned into a balding cherubian with a goatee, dressed in a white cloak. He put his finger to his lips and knelt down beside her. His eyes reminded of Gabriella of Jaliel’s, the pupils like stars instead of circles. “Jaliel?” she whispered.
“No. I’m Cassadern, Jaliel’s apprentice.”
—Out of the Shadows, Chapter 26: Reinforcements
I write like I am watching a movie and I’m recording what I see. In this scene, I didn’t know the bird was special until he turned into a cherubian on me. I didn’t know who he was until he told Gabriella.
I love it when the subconscious mind totally creates something like that!
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Fantasy, steampunk, and paranormal novelist M. B. Weston is the author of The Elysian Chronicles, a fantasy series about guardian angel warfare and treason. Weston is also the hose of The Final Cut In Movies radio show that airs on TMV Cafe Monday nights at 8:00 EST. For more information on M. B. Weston, visit www.mbweston.com. To receive notification of M. B. Weston’s book releases click here to subscribe to Dark Oak Press & Media’s e-newsletter.