To celebrate publication of The Dusk Watchman and completion of The Twilight Reign, I thought I’d do something a little different to my usual fare and let you hear from the characters themselves. It’s their story after all so without further ado, here’s Isak Stormcaller himself to give you his views:
I’m told in your world, when something called a ‘movie’ comes out, the stars are asked to sell it to the world. And I guess this is my story so I’m the star; even if the bastard who wrote it down isn’t sharing any of the money, I could talk about myself for a bit easily enough.
So… I’m Isak. If you don’t think I’m trouble, you probably haven’t met me.
The Twilight Reign, that’s what I’m here to talk about. In lots of ways it’s the story of my life, mostly the crap others have put me through, but as my friend Carel’s always happy to point out, no one likes the most favoured of the Gods when they’re bitching. Fact is most folk don’t like us at the best o’ times and some might say that’s where my problems started.
In stories, half the time the hero’s some farmboy living in the middle of nowhere. Then some prophecy turns up and everything changes. On the face of it, you could say that’s what happened to me, but in those stories you never get to hear who wrote the bloody prophecy in the first place, let alone why. Trust me – if folk were more careful to ask that question and then put the bastard’s head through a wall first chance they get, everything’d go a lot better for the rest of us.
Speaking o’ stories – one of the servants at Gollancz gave me one of their other books to show me what they did all day pretending they weren’t sitting around talking rubbish and drinking tea. It was called The Name of the Wind – pretty good I guess, but the main character was a bit full of himself for someone with such a silly name. Reckon I could take him easily enough despite all his talk. I would have given him one bit of advice though – you turn up to a place like that university and immediately make enemies with one o’ the posh boys, don’t let the little bastard live. Mebbe you can’t run him through like I did in that situation, but you kill him first chance you get. Solves most problems I find.
So anyways, the prophecy wasn’t quite the start for me – I was more the answer to a problem. Our Gods aren’t exactly nice and between you’n me, they’re not so clever either. So they give control of the Seven Tribes of Man to people like me – white-eyes. Warriors who’re bigger and faster than any normal, but we can only have children with our own kind and among the humans of the Land we’re few and far between. So the Lord of the Farlan was never going to have an heir and instead, I got picked by the God of Storms to do the job instead.
So far, so bloody marvellous. Money. Power. Weapons to make me half-invincible and a title that meant I didn’t have to give a shit about much. It’s amazing how quickly a humble wagon brat like me can get used to living in palaces, let me tell you! But like everything else, you start enjoying yourself too much and life kicks you in the crotch. Before long half the bloody Land seemed to want me dead, an invincible warrior’s marching our way and there’s this shadow having altogether too much fun pushing us around like pieces on a Heartland board.
What’s more, there’s something in my head that’s causing trouble of its own, I’m dreaming about a beautiful girl whose got a temper like you wouldn’t believe and, ah, well – turns out I don’t always make the best decisions.
But you lot probably don’t care about that. I know what entertainment the grubby masses like, till recently I was one of ‘em! So this is what you want from the story – there’s blood, a whole damn lot of it, and more secrets than any of us know what to do with. Dragons and other monsters, battles and the fall of cities – schemes within schemes and traitors playing three sides at once.
As Gollancz describe it – the future of the Land will be decided now written in the blood of men. Quite a lot of it’s my blood. I’m pretty pissed off about that bit.