Snapshot: Male, age 26, short hair, tall for a rider
Home: Neutat, Montas Realm
Occupation: Dragon Rider, Champion Rank
Q: What is your most embassarasing moment?
You mean besides what happens in my first scene in the book? It would have to be the story the kids of Neutat are always trying to get me to tell for bedtime tales. I captured the Outlander chief during a raid one summer. I had him cornered, my dagger pointing at his throat. The other riders were inbound, less than a minute away. Then the chief said in that horrible Outlander accent, “What’s that on your chestplate?” So I looked down at my chest to see what he was talking about and he clubbed me across the head and escaped—sheesh. I was only nineteen. How many other nineteen year olds do you know who managed to capture an Outlander chief?
Q: Is really it true dragon riders have no fear?
Yes. Dragons sense fear, so I would be sitting in a dragon’s stomach right now if I had any.
Q: How can you control fear? It’s subconscious.
So is the awakening. The stronger a rider’s connection to his awakening, the weaker his connection to fear. One undoes the other. It’s like if you’re wearing a belt, your pants don’t fall down. Um…that didn’t really make any sense, did it?
Q: What was your first experience with the awakening?
I was eleven years old. I slipped on some mud and fell off a megalith. There was this moment where I was in mid-air, looking down into the fog of the deep. But I had been training for the awakening—we all do—and I guess it worked. Rather than panicking, I reached out to the horizon—to the place beyond—and suddenly everything was happening very slowly. I somersaulted and caught an ivy stem between my legs and climbed back up before anyone knew I had fallen. Then I sort of…fell over. Fainted. Whatever. Stop laughing. Anyway, that’s when I learned to move and fight as fast a dragon. I kind of wish the awakening lasted more than a minute or two—it takes a lot out of you.
Q: So it is about what you are wishing for when you first connect to the awakening?
That’s right. Montazi girls usually connect to the awakening a lot earlier in life, and usually though mental focus rather than an accident, so their ability tends to be more sophisticated, like Enala’s soul-singing or Lilleth’s visions. Guys usually end up with whatever they needed to get themselves out of a load of trouble: strength, speed, vision, hearing, tracking by scent, that sort of thing.
Q: What is your favorite part of Fall of the Dragon Prince?
Have you head of the Montazi challenge? It’s a cross country dragon race that determines the next ruler of the Montas Realm—that’s really epic. Another favorite part of the book is the defense of the bridge at the crossroads. It has some really great action. …kind of hurt, though. A lot.
Q: Pert is a dragon rider, but his awakening isn’t mentioned in the book. Do you know what it is?
Oh, yeah, you had to bring up Pert! Ah, well, he has the ability to see his opponents’ weakenesses. It’s kind of like Lilleth’s visions. He has glimpses of moments when his opponents will be vulnerable. He does it when you aren’t looking—that’s why I never seem him actually using his awakening. That or I don’t have any weaknesses—oh, I saw you roll your eyes. Don’t think I didn’t see that.