In the meanwhile, we have author Kate Hill visiting today with an excellent post about the price of power. What are your thoughts? Authors? Readers? Let's discuss.
Often in stories involving the paranormal, characters have powers that give them an advantage over others. Characters who use magic, for example, can perform tasks quicker and with more efficiency than normal humans. Mediums have inside information about the afterlife and shapeshifters aren't limited by their bodies as humans are. Vampires have the gift of long life.
Characters with special powers add an interesting layer to a story, but should those powers come at a price to at least help level the playing field between them and average people?
If a character is all powerful, they run the risk of being less interesting. As humans, our flaws are part of what make us unique and because we all have them, it's easier for us to relate to flawed characters. If everything came easily to paranormal characters, they would probably have no interest in us and vice versa. Since most paranormal romances deal with the very human emotion of love, character flaws are especially important because part of real love is accepting each other's imperfections.
In general, most paranormal creatures have their own set of trials to overcome. In many werewolf movies, for instance, the werewolf endures quite a bit of pain when shifting shape. For some shifters, the change might not be painful, but a natural occurrence for their species. When that happens they usually have other issues to deal with. Maybe they come from a strict pack and if the rules are violated, a member might be cast out or worse.
Vampires have long lives, but the price they pay is that they much leech off others, absorbing either blood or energy. In a romance, that flaw can actually be an important part of the love relationship. Instead of stealing blood or energy, their partner offers it willingly, creating a bond between them.
Many characters are born with their powers, but must develop them. Witches and others who use magic often take years to learn how to control their gifts.
In my novel The Red King, the antagonist, Hypatios, has some otherworldly gifts. He can speak to animals and to the dead. His powers have come at a price, however, and because of this he is known as the mad prince of Zaltana. He is a powerful enemy of the hero, Areus, and doesn't hesitate to use his powers against him. The excerpt below features a scene with a wounded Hypatios dealing with his powers in the presence of his love interest.
Do you think characters with otherworldly powers should pay their dues for these abilities? If paranormal characters are flawed, do you find them easier to relate to?
by Kate Hill
Erotic Fantasy Romance
Available July 01, 2015
Torn from her beloved convent home, Delia is forced to marry Areus of Lortia. The contract states she must deliver an heir within a year or the marriage can be annulled. Delia vows to control her fate by ensuring there will be no child--until she is mesmerized by Areus, the proud, virile warrior king.
Areus agrees to marry Delia to gain her father's army to continue his fight against Hypatios, the mad prince of Zaltana. He doesn't expect to fall in love with a convent-reared mouse, but from the first, Delia rouses his lust and touches his heart.
Their life together hangs in the balance as the war with Zaltana advances and Areus discovers Hypatios is far more than just his sworn enemy.
“Hypatios!” Mira stepped inside. She dropped her armload of firewood and ran to the bed.
“Mira, no, stay back!” he bellowed, momentarily forgetting that she could neither see nor feel the spirits.
As she neared, the spirits continued fighting, rolling across the floor.
“What happened?” Mira asked, taking his hand and cupping his cheek. “You’re hot. I hope your fever isn’t rising again.”
“No, I’m fine,” he said, catching his breath. He closed his eyes for a moment and when he opened them, the spirits were gone.
“You must have been dreaming.” Mira reached for the mug of water and offered him some. “What was it about?”
His brow furrowed and a quirky smile touched his lips. “You want to know what I dreamed?”
“Do you want to tell me?”
She nodded and stood to collect the scattered firewood.
“It wasn’t a dream,” he said.
Still squatting on the floor, she glanced at him. “What happened then?”
“You wouldn’t believe me if I told you.”
“Don’t be so sure. I’ve always had a wild imagination.”
He grinned. “That sounds enticing.”
Mira’s smile faded and she turned away, picking up the wood.
“I apologize,” he said. “I didn’t mean that how it sounded.”
She stood, her hands on her hips, and held his gaze. “Didn’t you?”
Purchase Links: http://kate-hill.com/theredking.html
Always a fan of romance and the paranormal, Kate Hill started writing over twenty years ago for pleasure. Her first story, a short erotic vampire tale, was accepted for publication in 1996. Since then she has sold over one hundred short stories, novellas and novels.
When she's not working on her books, Kate enjoys reading, working out and spending time with her family and pets.
She enjoys hearing from readers and she can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org. Kate also writes under the name Saloni Quinby. Find her online at http://www.kate-hill.com, http://www.twitter.com/katehillromance, and http://www.facebook.com/katehillsaloniquinby.
Lynda Again --
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