Between the Pages: Meet Damien Lisandro
Today I am more than happy to introduce you to your foreign fantasy crush, Damien Lisandro from “Chasing Shadows.” I’m at the castle right now, of course—who wouldn’t like to take a little side trip to the twelfth century if the opportunity presented itself? I plan to interview Damien in a moment, but I just spotted the would-be murderer Cadius and have decided to go all “reporter” on him. Maybe I can get him to reveal his plans and help Karen and Sarah out!
Excuse me, Cadius, but do you have a minute for some questions?
Eyes me up and down with cold, barely concealed disdain. “I suppose I have a moment.” With a faint flick of his wrist, the servant he was reprimanding scurries off. “What is it?”
I wanted to ask you how you felt about all the suspicion surrounding your brother the king’s death?
Feigns innocence. “Suspicion? I haven’t the faintest…”
Well, uh (gosh, he really has creepy eyes), then what about the death of the original queen, Alexis? Do you have anything to say about that?
Eyes soften almost imperceptibly. “That was a long time ago.”
(Hmm. Interesting reaction). Okay, I’m just going to come out and say it. You must be aware that people think you killed your brother, and others are suspicious that you might have done the same to the first queen. . . . Seriously? No reaction?
Blinks. “The peasants may believe what they wish, but wise lords and ladies know to keep their uneducated suppositions to themselves. And little doves who know not of what they speak should learn to mind their elders, lest harm should come to them.”
…. *swallows* Okaaaay. That sounds like a threat to me.
Chuckles lowly. “Oh, my dear, I never dirty my hands. Fear not. What other inquiries would you care to make?”
*Squeaks out lamely* Um, do you have a favorite color?
*Eyes widen* That’s nice! Well, then the last thing I’d like to ask is about the king. What—
Takes a step forward. “Do you know what happens to little doves who ask too many questions?”
*Already booking it down the hall at a clipped pace*
Okay, new plan! We’re now hanging out with Damien Lisandro at an undisclosed coffee house somewhere in present day North America. Damien! How kind of you to join us.
Grins saucily. “Well, you did grab me from my room and beg me to speak with you. How could I refuse such a request?” Eyes his surroundings. “And what interesting décor in this study.”
Uh, yeah. Very interesting. So . . . Wow, you really do have gold flecks in your eyes.
Leans forward, expression cheeky. “It’s your beauty reflected in them, my lady.”
*barely contains giggles* Whatever you say. Um, now back to the interview. Can you tell us a little about your background and interests?
“Oh, well, I was raised as the son of a wealthy tradesman, had a loving mother and a sister whom I adored. My life was quite grand.”
Uncomfortable, he takes a sip of his cappuccino. “Mm, that’s quite good. Well, you see, my father accidentally beat my mother to death one night in a drunken stupor, and my sister Isabella died shortly after we fled from my father.” His smile is wobbly. “Next question, please.”
*Winces* Sorry. Favorite color?
“I have seen so much royal purple since I took up residence at the castle that it has grown on me.” Smiles softly at the wooden table. “And Sarah looks lovely in purple.”
So are you and Will going to duke it out for her, or what? How does that work?
“I’m in no rush to win her heart, but in the end, I will earn her affection.”
You’re a rather confident fellow. Okay, well, I know you grew up in Spain, but how do you like being a lord in Serimone?
“I suppose it has its advantages.” Scratches the perfectly sculpted hair on his chin. “However, living inside the castle walls and being so closely watched has its disadvantages, as well.”
But surely having so much wealth and being well known has its perks.
“Yet everyone is always watching my moves or planning them for me. That is one of the reasons why I sought out the company of Lady Sarah; she made me feel normal—no expectations or preferential treatment because of my station. Being with her gives me something to hope and live for outside of myself—she makes me want to be good.” Grins self-consciously. “But that sounds ridiculous, I’m sure.”
…. People, I just died a little from swooning. But you keep distracting me, you beautiful creature! Back to my questions: You get toxic waste spilled all over you and now have your choice of superpowers. You would pick…?
“To know all. I would never have to question anyone again.”
Does mistrust happen a lot in your field of, uh, lording?
“I’ve dealt with my fair share of betrayals. Everyone wears a mask, as I told Sarah once, and you never can tell whom to trust.”
“Yes, it can be, but there are many activities and events with which to keep my mind occupied.”
Speaking of which, I’ve been drilling everyone who stops by about a certain future event in Serimone. Are there any upcoming weddings that you know of? Anyone in particular?
Grins charmingly, eyes bright. “Are you proposing? Because then I most heartily accept!”
*Laughs* No! I . . . Well, actually, let me consider it. I’ll get back to you in, ohhh, say a thousand years?
Looks confused. “What?”
Don’t worry; it won’t feel long at all. And that, folks, is the beauty of time travel.
“Time travel? You mean you can—“
No! What? No! *laughs* Of course not, you handsome devil. I was just making a joke. *whispers* But, uh, if you could put that blindfold back on while I drive you home, that would makes things go a lot smoother for the both of us.