?

Log in

No account? Create an account

Previous Entry | Next Entry

A New Hephaistion

This is posted for queen_bellatrix, who was asking me about Lydias and Hephaistion, and about Fortune's Wheel. This is the first time we see Hephaistion in Fortune's Wheel, the first time our narrator sees him.

It's September of 1796, on the road to Paris from the Rhine....



It was September, and the roads were busy. We had scarcely started when we had to halt to let a column of cavalry pass on their way to join Moreau's camp for the last campaign of the season.

At their head was a magnificent mount, a tall bay stallion with two white socks. His coat was almost blood colored, and brushed to a high sheen. His rider was similarly red haired. He wore tight white trousers that displayed his physique accordingly, and the corded muscles in his thighs were plainly visible. His poise was superb. He rode carelessly, yet straight as an equestrian statue, the reins held lightly while he looked about. His shoulders were broad in his tailored coat, which was open like the cravat and shirt at his throat in the heat. His face could have been graven in bronze, I thought, for the one moment I saw it, alert and solid, the face of a Roman statue. And then he was past. I admired his posterior as it vanished into the dust of the marching column.

The courier at my side chuckled. "Like a well turned out fellow, do you Madame?"

I had the shame to blush. "I do. I can look, can't I?"

He nodded good naturedly. "Lots of people look at Colonel Ney."

"Ney?" I squeaked.

The courier nodded. "That's old Red Ney. He's a bastard and a martinet, but a good fellow all the same."

Comments

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
jun_yumemakura
Jun. 19th, 2011 12:59 pm (UTC)
I still cannot get over with red haired Hephaistion, but I liked how Lydias portrayed him. Another book from you to look forward to. Is 'Lydias and Hephaistion' just a small part of this book? I'm sorry if you have explained it before, but I'm quite an ignorant with this book.
jo_graham
Jun. 19th, 2011 01:07 pm (UTC)
The new book is called Fortune's Wheel, which has just sold to Gallery Books, part of Simon & Schuster. The book will be out next summer and I'm very excited!

Our main character is the same person, our Lydias/Charmian/Gull, now an adventuress named Elza. Yes, our Hephaistion is a major character. It would probably not be exaggerating to say that he's the love of her life, though that really simplifies their very tangled relationship!

This snippet is the first time she sees him, toward the beginning of the book.
linneasr
Jun. 19th, 2011 02:58 pm (UTC)
:)
*squeeee!*
jo_graham
Jun. 19th, 2011 03:09 pm (UTC)
That's our boy! :) And that's pretty much what Elza says: squeak!
queen_bellatrix
Jun. 19th, 2011 05:55 pm (UTC)
I'd be looking, too! And then taking another for good measure.

At least now she knows who he is, for tracking down purposes later, although since she's so central to so many things, I've a feeling he'll be tracking her down.

And I adore how you portray the concept of true love, fierce and strong and true, where people do really stand by one another no matter what comes, and that pulls them together over and over because yeah, who else could ever measure up? But the thing I think is most wonderful is that true love doesn't stand in the way of vocation; you don't have people essentially saying: oh stay home, sit this one out for my sake. Because they understand and respect the other's need to serve and protect, just as they are respected in turn.

This was an excellent description; I love how vividly he's drawn, not so much beautiful or handsome, but striking...a flame to draw the moths...the sort of person who can make you believe as you're going in to a battle with horrendous odds you'll come out the other side.

Thanks so much for posting!
jo_graham
Jun. 19th, 2011 07:00 pm (UTC)
He will track her down -- eventually. But at this point she's a very serious committed relationship with someone else. Which does seriously discourage him!

And I adore how you portray the concept of true love, fierce and strong and true, where people do really stand by one another no matter what comes, and that pulls them together over and over because yeah, who else could ever measure up? But the thing I think is most wonderful is that true love doesn't stand in the way of vocation; you don't have people essentially saying: oh stay home, sit this one out for my sake. Because they understand and respect the other's need to serve and protect, just as they are respected in turn.

Thank you so much! That's one thing I'm very consciously saying, and I'm glad it's coming through.

Agrippa made that mistake once. He was twenty one, and he didn't know her very well. He'll never make that mistake again. If they manage to be happy in this time period, it will be because they share vocation and respect each others' oaths. And they'll have to carve out something very unconventional to have that.

This was an excellent description; I love how vividly he's drawn, not so much beautiful or handsome, but striking...a flame to draw the moths...the sort of person who can make you believe as you're going in to a battle with horrendous odds you'll come out the other side.

Thank you! He's not really handsome, though Elza thinks so. He's striking, and he did indeed inspire in a way that was almost magical. I hope I can capture some of that in a way that's vivid and real to the reader.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )