First off, I’d like to thank Bitten By Books for having me here today to talk about my new book Rescuing Rapunzel. I have to say, when I decided to do a character interview, I didn’t think it would be so, uh… Deep.
“Wow,” I mutter to myself as I stared at the stone walls, lined with wooden pillars, and hard stone floor, smooth from constant passage. “My first castle.” Noise hummed everywhere–people in and out, horses in the distance. Even the clattering of swords as the soldiers practice outside–there’s this buzz, punctuated by sharp clatters of metal hitting stone, that made me jump.
I knew a character interview would take me away, but sheesh…
“Here we go.” I walked into a study, where I knew Nick von Hohburg would be. The hero of Rescuing Rapunzel didn’t look happy to be doing this. He stood at the fire place, with his back to me, and I could just barely make out the stein in his hand.
When he turned, he had bright blue eyes and dark hair, though worry marred his brow.
“Lord Nick von Hohburg, I presume,” I said, crossing the room and holding out my hand.
“Lady Gilmer, it is a pleasure.” His words were a bit too stiff to believe he considered this any kind of pleasure. He took my outstretched hand, and while I expected him to shake it, like, well, like I would have, instead, he leaned down, placing a kiss on the back.
“Er, um…” I yanked my hand away.
“Is there a problem, my lady?”
I shook my head. “Okay, I’m not a lady, so don’t give me a title. And two, let’s keep this platonic, okay? I’m married.”
“I meant no disrespect. Please, make yourself comfortable.”
I sat down on the settee, noticing that while he was polite, he seemed to be doing it because of duty rather than any true desire to meet with me. I laid my tape recorder and note pad on the table, and dug into my backpack for my favorite mechanical pencil.
“What is that?” He gestured to the recorder.
“Nothing important. Hey, put that down!”
Nick dropped my recorder on the table. “I apologize. It is constructed strangely. I know not what it is for.”
“I told you, don’t worry about it. Now, shall we do this?”
I let out a sigh. “I’m sorry. I mean, this whole character interview thing.”
“As you wish,” Nick said, taking a tug off his stein. “Though I still do not completely comprehend–”
“Just trust me, here, Nick. I just want to ask you a few questions. It’s for the fans.”
“Fans? Like one uses to cool the air?”
“No, Nick, really, just trust me.”
He growled at me. “I have duties to attend to.”
I waved my hand in the air. “Yeah, yeah, I know. Now, let’s pretend I don’t know anything about you.”
“You do not.”
I raised my eyebrow. “Who’s the writer here?”
“I still cannot comprehend how you know everything about me.”
“It’s the whole writer thing. Now, tell me about Rapunzel.” I sat poised with my pencil at the ready.
“If you wish to know about Tressey, then why are you not speaking with her?”
“Because, I’m writing Rescuing Rapunzel. The story’s about you rescuing her.”
“Then, as you know, she has been held in a tower most of her life, never allowed to leave, by a cruel witch. We rescued her, and now she lies in bed, wounded. I would like to get back to Tressey, so please, continue with this interview.”
“Who rescued her?”
“I did, with the help of my friends, Penn and Bryan.”
“Oh, right. The other Charming Nobles.”
“Yes. What else do you want?” Nick crossed his arms over his chest, wincing as he did.
“Oh, right, your side… Sorry about that.” I said, feeling a little embarrassed about what I’ve put him through so far.
“If you are so controlling, was this really necessary?” He touched his side, and I could just make out the bundle of bandages through his clothing. Yeah, that was a pretty bad wound. Awful, even just to write. I couldn’t imagine what kind of pain he was in right now.
“It’s called building tension. Climactic moments, and all of that.” I waved my hand in the air.
He scowled at me.
I sighed. “I’m going to let you in on something, here, Nick. Tressey’s gonna wake up, and she’ll be fine.”
“How do you know?”
“I’m the writer, remember?” I shifted and made a notation on my pad. “So, you fought the witch, got the girl down. Now what?”
And for a split second, Nick’s irritation faded to worry. He wouldn’t look me in the eye.
“I do not know. Not for certain.” He stood, and walked to the nearby window. “She will be returned to her family.”
I watched him. “Why does this make you unhappy?”
“Because it could change everything.”
“For who, you, or her?”
Nick finally glanced at me. “For both of us.”
“You love her don’t you?” I asked.
“Duty is my bedfellow, not love.”
I rolled my eyes. Gah, men were such dorks. “Did it never occur to you that you can have both?”
“If I am wrong, then I lose everything.”
“So you don’t want to risk anything, just in case you’re wrong? You saved the girl, you got her out of her prison. Away from the witch. Why wouldn’t you be happy?”
“Because I love her…”
I made some notes on my pad. “Yes, Nick, I think you do.” I tucked my stuff back into my backpack. “Just keep the faith Nick. I’m the writer here. I’ll do my best to bring you what you want.”
“So all I must do is wait?”
I grinned at him. “No. Just remember, Rapunzel loves you. But she’s also been thrown into a new world she doesn’t understand. Don’t assume she will immediately follow where you lead her.”
“I am duty bound to follow the promises of my realm.”
“Try to remember that Rapunzel is not.”
He blinked at me. “Of course. This will all be new to her.”
I tapped my forehead. “A lot of changes will come. She’ll learn. But so will you. So keep that in mind.”
“You are not going to make this easy for us, are you?”
I grinned at him. “Now why in the world would I do that?”
So who is your favorite fairy tale hero, and why? Did you grow up with a favorite story (fairy tale or not) that you still love to this day?
Candice Gilmer leads a dangerous double life as a mommy and a writer. In between diaper changes and boo-boo healing, she writes stories usually to the tune of children’s television shows.
Growing up in the Midwest, Candice stays close to her family, especially the ones with basements when the tornadoes come around. She also works as a hairdresser, which she’s done for over fifteen years, and brings her laptop to work so she can write between clients.
All in all, she stays very busy, but really, she wouldn’t have it any other way.
Well, maybe a little less children’s television.
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