JOAL: Today, we have with us Arianwyn, heroine of the Totems book series. Thank you for being here, Arianwyn.
Arianwyn: Thanks for having me.
JOAL: Let's just jump right in. You're engaged to King Rael now, is that correct?
Arianwyn: It is.
JOAL: How did you two meet? I thought you weren't in the nobility.
Arianwyn: Technically, I'm not. Or maybe I am. I Bonded with a dragon, which makes my nobility status hard to place. I first met Rael when Tess had me bring him lunch. I was just a servant at the time. He was meeting with the daughters of his thanes, hoping to choose the best one to be his wife. I accidentally discovered the entrance to the Dragon's Cave, a secret closely guarded, and met his dragon. Rael recognized me...well, his dragon recognized me through Rael's eyes...and Rael threatened to kill me if I tried leaving.
JOAL: Love at first sight, huh?
Arianwyn: Absolutely not. He was serious about killing me. It was one of the more terrifying moments in my life.
JOAL: Speaking of your life, what would you say was the catalyst for putting you where you're at now?
Arianwyn: I didn't accept what others were going to give me. I had grown up an orphan in my village. I made my living doing whatever odd jobs I could find. Unfortunately, one of the men decided he deserved more from me than I was willing to give. I decided that I wasn't going to be the victim any longer and took a leap of faith. Sometimes, fate decides our future. Most of the time, we decide our fate.
JOAL: What's Parvati, your dragon, like?
Arianwyn: She's very independent. She grew up in the wild, after all. She only Bonded with me to save her own skin. She's made up for her selfishness, of course. We're very close now...even without the whole Bond.
JOAL: How has the Bond affected you?
Arianwyn: Well, I had already started down the path of independence. I left my village before meeting Parvati and was just deciding to search for work in a village. Bonding Parvati gave me a boost to have a little more confidence in myself and it made me feel safer. I took work in places I might otherwise have avoided, knowing Parvati could save me if I needed her to.
JOAL: What's one thing about the world you would change if you could?
Arianwyn: Child abuse. I was orphaned, and subsequently abused, as a child. In my world, there isn't anyone who champions the orphaned or abused children. I plan on changing that as soon as I'm queen.
JOAL: Where do you see you and King Rael headed in the relationship department?
Arianwyn: Well, we're getting married, aren't we? (chuckles) We seem to get along with each other fairly well. So long as Rael keeps his temper and I don't get into more trouble, I think we'll make an effective team ruling our kingdom.
JOAL: Is it true that there was an attempt on your life?
Arianwyn: It seems to be the only constant in my life, the possibility of death. There was a deliberate attempt, however. Thankfully, Rael employs a very skilled healer and I'm doing fine now. We're still working on tracking down the ones responsible.
JOAL: Let's end this interview on a lighter note, shall we? Tell me about the friends you've made since becoming the king's fiancé.
Arianwyn: First there's Lady Alyssa. She's going to be my lady-in-waiting after we are married. For now, she is my main advisor. She's a sweet little girl, eager to please. We get along really well. Next would be Lady Blythe. She's the daughter of the northern thane. She's one of the most honest, straight-forward people I know. And she makes me laugh. Finally, I would have to put Sigurd, Wymond, Edmund, and Halvard on the list. Those four are my body guards. You don't spend that much time with someone without getting to either like them or hate them. Luckily, I enjoy having them around. They don't just watch my back from physical danger, but they've helped me navigate some of the political dangers as well.
JOAL: Thank you again for joining us, today! It's been nice getting to know you better. Can't wait to meet you in your story.
Arianwyn; Thank you for having me.