You can read the Origin Story of Book 1: Roanoak here.
Book 2 was an accident. I had always intended Roanoak – originally called Big Hearts and Dark Arts *shudders* – to be a standalone story. A single novella-length or short-story to fit an anthology call. But, once I was done, I saw so much potential for the side characters I just couldn’t leave it alone.
I planned another half dozen books – one for each of Emil’s brothers, one for a servant, one each for the two Lords he befriends – and gave them vague titles, plots and designed covers. I was ready for this to be my next Surviving Vihaan-esque endless series.
I began Book 2 planning to write a lovesick story of one Lord being in love with another, how society would never accept them, and a dangerous attack left one near-death, inspiring the other Lord to finally confess their love. It was all very tragic and straightforward. Until I started writing it…
Once I began writing, it became even more lovesick than I expected. And, when the attack came, it was in the first 5% of the book, leaving me to question how I was going to spend the rest of the book. Would the deadly-sick love interest go away to recuperate? Would I use forced proximity, with one Lord caring for the other, as a way to inspire a confession? And then, as I was writing it, it just sort of happened. One Lord realised the other wasn’t quite as perfect as he thought, still his best friend but no longer the ideal husband he’d dreamed of.
Then, in walked Avrilac. The strong silent type, chiselled and fantasy-good looks. He was everything I didn’t plan for the Lord to like, but he had other plans. Avrilac was a walking dream, for him. A shipyard owner, a working man, with no social status. A man who towered over him, muscled and brutish. He’s everything the Lord could never admit wanting in a husband, because the Lord is everything society would never let him be – a homemaker, a preternatural creature, and a family man. The Lord craves a quiet, simple life with family and love, and it’s not until he meets Avrilac that he realises he can have most of that, even if ‘love’ might not be possible.
And, thus, I came up with the arranged-marriage aspect of the plot. In return for saving the near-death love interest, the Lord would agree to marry Avrilac. Both with their own reasons to accept the marriage, it’s arranged and…well, let’s just say that I fell MADLY in love with their story. And you’ll have to wait until it releases to find out what happens next. And whether the love interest survives. 😉