What is Magnus's story?

I’ve decided to occasionally focus my weekly journal entry on a character from Book I of the Gone Dragon series. It makes sense to start with Magnus. He is, after all, the primary protagonist of this journey.

So what is Magnus’s story?

In my last journal entry (“How do you plan an epic fantasy?”) I discussed how learning about a hero’s backstory may be as intriguing as the expanding journey they face. 

Magnus is from the Fire Realm of Allumbreve. If you take a look at the map of Allumbreve, you will see the Fire Realm is situated to the west of the land of Allumbreve which is marked with the symbol of the Realm as shown in the map’s key. More specifically, Magnus grew up in the Western Margins, away from the more populous region of the Uydferlands and the larger town of Nuyan, East of the Nuyan River.

A child of the Fire Realm... and the Ice Realm...

Even though Magnus was born and grew up in the Fire Realm, his background is of mixed heritage.

Magnus’s father—Bonstaph—is from the Fire Realm. Bonstaph takes on the typical Fire Realm features of olive skin, brown eyes and dark hair. In Book I you learn all about the Western Margins along the western coast where Bonstaph’s family lands (the J’esmagd lands) are.

Magnus’s mother—Alavia—is from the Ice Realm.  She was formerly one of the Rhydermere. The Rhydermere come from the very north of the Ice Realm, beyond the Ice Breach (see if you can spot the Ice Breach on your map). Typical of the Rhydermere, Alavia has blonde hair, ice blue eyes and fair skin. As the story unfolds, the reader learns how it is that Alavia came to live in of the Fire Realm, therefore making this Magnus’s home.

In appearance, Magnus is a lot like his mother. Indeed, early in Book I, Bonstaph makes the observation, “Blonde hair… blue eyes. Who is your father again?” Bonstaph’s jest aside, Magnus is actually more a mixture of his parents. As I was writing, I always picture Magnus as having ash-blonde hair rather than the more striking blonde hair of the Rhydermere. Perhaps the fire influence gave his hair the ‘ashen’ tone it has…

Forging your own destiny.

In your own life, your background only forms a part of who you are. What you aspire to be and how you respond to adversity when it is thrust upon you shapes the person you become. And so it does to Magnus. The pitch to Book I on this website's homepage states:

“A young swordsman risks everything to save the life of a dragon. In return, he is gifted with the strength to change the world.”

What would make a person put his life on the line so save another? It certainly doesn’t seem to be in everyone’s nature to do so. But would you put your life on the line to save a dragon? One of my readers made the following interesting comment about Magnus’s nature:

“I like that Magnus is always resisting an almost reckless impulsive nature of righteousness.”

I think this is a great way of describing Magnus. To throw yourself into a challenging situation because you believe what you're doing is right takes courage. For Magnus, this is an impulsive urge and is a decision he faces repeatedly. In one instance, well, it changes the course of his life. 

The theme of righteousness is mentioned in Book I in reference to another key character whose motives are not dissimilar to Magnus’s. I guess that is why she and Magnus have so much in common…

Click here (or Right Click & select 'Download') to open a printable PDF version of this Journal entry.

Here are links to other 'Eye on a Character' journal entries:

Eye on a character - Catanya

Eye on a character - Bonstaph

Eye on a character - Lucas

Eye on a character - Ganister

Eye on a character - Sarah

I hope you continue to enjoy the journey!

T.P. Sheehan