Meet David & Rosalin

I wrote David and Rosalin from a very personal place, another testament to putting your own pain into writing.  These two join the Owens family after the leader of the Blessed, Theo, brings them to the Americas and attempts to convince them that Mages are superior to normal humans.  When David and Rosalin try to leave, or rather escape, Theo orders them dead.  In the fight that ensues, David’s brother, a Light Mage named Drake, rips David’s soul open.

David, a Dark Mage, cannot stop the agony that accompanies having his soul bleed endlessly.  It turns this dashing, funny guy into a raging jerk.  Rosalin, an Air Mage, and David’s wife, watches him tumble down into a pit of despair.  Wendrick, Gigi and Leo, the other members of the family, can’t do much to help.  Leo tries to heal it, but his power doesn’t allow him to “see” the wound, and what he accomplishes is done blindly.  This incomplete healing never holds for long, and the pain returns.

All of this happens before the novel takes place.

This is a section from David’s point of view in LIFE ON FIRE.

He hated himself.  An unknown number of times he’d wished for death.  To get away from this pain, the burning ache he felt, awake and asleep.  David checked sometimes to make sure his chest hadn’t been torn open during the night.  It felt as if his blood should be pouring out, hot and slick down his clothes.  

So, at the beginning of LIFE ON FIRE, David is not a very good person to be around.  Rosalin has left him at this point, and tried to make a life for herself in Europe.  They’re both pretty miserable without each other.

The biggest struggle between these two is forgiveness.  David is very quick to forgive her for leaving, even though he was in horrible, soul-wrenching pain, but she has a more difficult time forgiving him for lashing out at her.  She allows all that bitterness to fester, and it comes out as bitchy anger and jealousy. Rosalin turns harpy on the main character because, as a powerful Life Mage, Anna could both see and fix David’s problem.  So far down the path of loathing, this actually makes Rosalin angrier, not because David heals, but because she couldn’t help him herself.

The arc between these two is far from over at the end of LIFE ON FIRE, though it reaches some resolution.  One of my favorite scenes in the book is from David’s perspective, which includes the passage above, because it was freeing to admit some of the more wretched feelings I’ve had in my life, all the while knowing and portraying them as petty, or hateful.

If a writer must bleed for their craft, the ink in this book is type O.  David and Rosalin spoke to my darker half, while Anna and Wendrick spoke to my hope.  Even after I wrote these characters, I learned from them, more about myself, and about others in my life.

~ by Rachel Francis on August 20, 2012.

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