Meet Some Side Characters


I’ve always loved side characters more than POVs.

If done well, they can bring fantasy worlds to life and make stories feel real–as if every nod, wink, smile, or quirk has a backstory.

They may not get a lot of real estate between the pages, but their actions can have just as potent an impact as any main POV.

Misty vapor emanated from Cauldron’s eyes. Coils of eerie luminous smoke roiled up his arms in waves. Snow melted in the air around his clean-shaven skull, turning it into an aura of light rain. His self-inflicted scars began to seep–half liquid, half gas. Where the corrosive substance dripped from his scars, the ground melted, not just the snow but the earth itself. Fire spit to life at the edge of the holes it left.

“Bring them all!” Wolst roared in answer. “Come! Stand in the fire!”

A man screamed. A man died. Wolst hewed and stabbed and sent them all into the endless dark.

“Not even a gasp.” The demon’s voice was high, gravelly. “You’re supposed to be terrified. Come, let’s try again. I raise my sickle–” He raised it, maniacal rage tensing across a broad, ghostly face. His voice became strained, more fitting of an elderly crone than a demonic executioner. “And When I bring it down, you scream. Then I end the scream by cutting your head in two. See, if you hit it just right, you split the voice box and it makes a little sound. Well, I mean, I hit the voice box. You just kinda…” the Madness shrugged “…fall apart.”

“Do you think our power came to us free? Do you think I’ve ceased to long for home in my mountain temples watching the children of my children, and their children, wrestling and laughing in the dirt? I miss them, I wish to tell them stories of the Kurgs from before, when we alone were sacred guardians of Unturrus. But I am here with you instead, telling you to perform one of the most vile acts you’ll ever have to. If I could take the burden from you, I would, for it might bring me one step closer to rest, to the next horizon where peace awaits.’ “

Stirrma scoffed. Just as her mother drew near, she stepped close and dropped her voice to a whisper. “Then you, Princess, have never felt the desperation that comes to those living in the shadow of another’s glory. It is a misery only death can satisfy. Yours or theirs. Your Warnock boy knows it all too well.”

“I’m an Ironlight,” Ishoa said. “I was born into the shadow of my betters.”

Stirrma’s brow seemed to soften as she picked over Ishoa with unconcealed judgment. A smile crept up one side of the Omenfaen twin’s mouth. ‘Then you above all should know the lengths one will go to feel worthy. Be wary of him, Highness.”