Beautiful People is a monthly blog meme hosted by Cait @ Paper Fury and Sky @ Further Up and Further In. Every month they pose 10 questions for writers to answer about their writing and give readers the opportunity to learn more about the writer’s characters.
When Sky and Cait announced that this month’s edition was all about siblings, I immediately knew I was going to write about Aurek and his younger brother Drasten. Then again, they’re the only siblings in The Keeper’s Curse, so it was an easy choice. 😉 I hope you enjoy getting to know the Kolsteg brothers a little more!
(Quick reminder: Aurek is the eventual love interest of Eva, the protagonist of The Keeper’s Curse.)
1. What is the first memory they have of each other?
[NOTE: Drasten and Aurek’s birth order have switched since this post first went live, so this answer is no longer canonically “accurate.” However, it still reflects each brother’s personality well.]
Drasten’s first memory of Aurek was the day Aurek was born. Once their mother was resting, 7-year-old Drasten held his baby brother for the first time. He wasn’t all that impressed, especially since Aurek wouldn’t stop crying. Their father Hagen chuckled at Drasten’s disgust and said, “You might not like your brother much now, Drasten. But there might be a day when your mother and I are gone, and you’ll be all he’ll have left. You must look out for one another, starting today.” Perhaps that advice sounds dire, but at that time the Kolstegs were slaves on a mining plantation, and death often came swiftly and violently there. Drasten had already witnessed this, so he knew what his father was talking about. He grimaced and said, “I’ll do my best, Father.” A little while later, Aurek quieted and fell asleep in Drasten’s arms.
Aurek’s first memory of Drasten happened about 4 years later. Drasten and two other slave boys had been whipped for stealing food from their master’s kitchen. As a result, all three families were forced to go without dinner. Later, while their mother was healing Drasten’s wounds with her gem-magic, Drasten gestured for Aurek to open his belt pouch. “The Overseer never thought to look there,” Drasten said. “Go on. It’s for you.” That meager supper of nuts and smooshed berries was the best one Aurek had ever had in his boyhood.
2. Describe their relationship in 3 words.
Only three words? Oy. A three-word phrase or sentence won’t do, so I’ll use three separate words that fit their relationship:
- Protectors, since they look out for one another
- Equals, since some of Aurek’s strengths are Draten’s weaknesses and vice versa
- Conflicted, since they don’t always see eye to eye on things
3. What kind of things do they like to do together?
That’s a hard question to answer. They have very different personalities, interests, and hobbies; and considering they’re on a quest for most of The Keeper’s Curse, they don’t have much downtime. They like to scrimmage against each other, though, since it helps them maintain their strength and skills with weapons. I can also picture them setting aside their differences once in a while so they can sit down at a table and have a “brotherly” conversation while Aurek smokes on his pipe and Drasten drinks a pint of ale.
4. What was their biggest fight?
They’ve had plenty of arguments before… But their biggest one ever happens during The Keeper’s Curse, so my lips will remain sealed for now. 😉
5. How far would they go to save each other?
As cliched as it sounds, Aurek and Drasten would do anything for each other, including fight to the death. I don’t think there’s more to say about that.
6. What are their pet peeves about each other?
Both brothers can be stubborn, which is a trait of their race (Mountain Folk). And when two stubborn brothers disagree on something, they can irritate each other very quickly. Also, Aurek’s not thrilled about Drasten’s hotheadedness, but he knows his brother won’t let that go anytime soon.
7. What are their favorite things about each other?
Both brothers value each other for their bravery and their loyalty to their people. Also, what one brother lacks, the other compensates for it. Drasten appreciates Aurek’s calmness and steadfast morals, and is floored by a certain risk Aurek has chosen to take on their behalf. (I can’t elaborate more for spoiler-ish reasons…) Aurek, on the other hand, admires Drasten’s eloquence as a speaker and ability to inspire others into action.
8. What traits do they share? Mannerisms, clothing, quirks, looks, etc?
Most of their similarities are in their appearances. Mountain Men tend to be tall, rugged, and muscular; and both brothers share that physique. They both have long hair, though the color is different (Aurek’s is dark brown, Drasten’s a dirty blonde). They also have their father’s brown eyes. Both brothers are also skilled with swords.
9. Who has the strongest personality?
Drasten. No doubt about that. He’s outspoken, gregarious, and charismatic. And as I mentioned earlier, he can also be confrontational. He’s not afraid to threaten someone, especially if they mean trouble for Aurek.
Funny thing is, guess who’s the better fighter of the two Kolstegs? (Hint: It’s not Drasten!)
10. How does their relationship change throughout your story?
Since neither brother is the actual protagonist of The Keeper’s Curse, readers will see of Aurek and Drasten’s relationship through Eva’s perspective. In her eyes, the two brothers are constantly on edge. She’s been told that’s Aurek’s responsible for the Mountain Men in their travel party, but their constant head-butting (figuratively speaking) make her wonder who’s truly in charge. Also, as Aurek grows closer to Eva, Drasten finds more reasons to distrust her. That creates a hell of a complication between the brothers.
That’s it for this month’s edition of Beautiful People. What do you think of Aurek and Drasten based on the answers given above? Feel free to share your thoughts by commenting below.