Using my ‘voice’ to talk about social issues.

If you’ve read these books you know a common them is Protect the Weak. This is something I hold near and dear to my heart and have tried to put something relevant in each book so far. This is even more important to me at the time of this writing. I am including an excerpt from Rebellion-Dragonborn Book 4 and one of the ways Alister wrestles with the issue of racism told from Aileene’s perspective. WARNING-this excerpt may contain spoilers if you haven’t already read Reunion-Dragonborn Book 3.

Protect the Week June 19, 2020

Aileene

I wanted to find Alister but rather than call out, I followed the mate bond and found him near the fountain in the center of the castle garden. We were staying in the northwestern part of Marsupia in the duchy of Tarwa. This was the final stop on our month-long tour to root out oppression against any of the fae folk. Fortunately, the worst of the oppression was contained in the southern part of the kingdom near the capital city of Farhana. 

Alister was in deep discussion with Dutchess Falenas Omalen, the governor of Tarwa. Falenas was a tall, stately elf with smooth brown skin and depthless brown eyes the color of dark umber. She easily smiled and her laugh was infectious. 

“Ah, Lady Aileene,” Falenas bowed when she saw me walk up behind Alister, “I take my leave to check on the preparations for the farewell feast.” 

“How are you?” I asked as I smoothed Alister’s hair away from his face when he turned to face me. His green eyes sparkled with humor as he looked at me and for a moment I was lost in his gaze. He took my hand in his and kissed the back of it and we sat together on the lip of the fountain. 

“I’m doing better now that I know not all elves are jerks,” Alister said with an edge, “but I still can’t believe the Farhana’s allowed the injustice to continue for so long.”

“I know, and that breaks my heart too.” I said but then added with a smile, “it’s pretty obvious they were self-centered because they named the capital city after themselves.”

Alister laughed and I leaned my head against his chest and he put his arm around me. I loved to hear him laugh and was pleased I could ease some of the pain he’d been under.

After a minute of silence, Alister began to talk. “Even though I didn’t realize it at the time, my parents, and the other members of the Inner Circle, were teaching me how to be a just king when we lived on Earth. Whenever there were examples of injustice in the news, we would discuss why it was wrong to treat people differently based on skin color, religion, gender, or even who they loved. I was taught that it was important to love people and treat them the way I would want to be treated. 

“There was a large mirror in the hallway in our house and it was the first thing I’d see when I came in and the last thing I’d see when leaving the house. Next to the mirror was a framed quote by a man named Edmund Burke. The quote is, ‘The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.’ Every time I looked at the mirror, I saw the quote and wanted to be the type of man who would do something to stop evil.”

I sat back and looked Alister in his troubled eyes. “You are that man, Alister. You may be High King because An’Ceann crowned you but you are worthy of the crown. Since we met, you’ve been relentless in stomping out evil wherever you find it; even to the detriment of your health. I know you’re disappointed that some of the elves actively oppressed the fae folk and others stood by and did nothing. But, I also want to remind you of others, like Falenas, who actively worked against the laws passed by Celand Farhana.

“She protected her people and allowed fae folk from other duchies to settle in her territory. She banded with other governors so there were actually fewer duchies to follow the unjust laws than those that did.”

Alister sighed deeply, “I know but I was hoping that the shifters of Theria were above such behaviors.”

I couldn’t help laughing as I thought of all the things we’ve already been through, “Oh love, I’m not laughing at you but I think you’re forgetting how many shifters have tried to kill you or oppress others since you found out the truth about your heritage.”

Alister hugged me and chuckled and I imagine he thought back to everything he’d seen so far as well. “You’re right, but–you know–elves. I was hoping for something different from elves. In all the stories the elves are always the good guys.”

“Well, there are a lot of good elves,” I stood up on my tiptoes and kissed him on the chin “and they jumped at the chance to be part of the coalition government to reform the laws on Marsupia.”

“And since Queen Brooklyn contacted other rulers of the fae folk to be part of the government as well, I do feel we’ve left Marsupia better than we found it,” Alister admitted.

“Now all we have to do is root out the traitors who want to kill us and take over Theria, no big deal,” I said with a wink. “Are we heading to Metatheria next?”

“I’ve changed our plans a bit, but I think you’ll like the surprise,” Alister said with a grin.

“You know how much I love surprises,” I giggled.

“Yep,” Alister agreed and kissed me.

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