Have you ever wondered about what you’d do if you could go back in time? If you had one unique chance at changing the past? Illis is a character confronted to such a choice…
Illis was born in the kingdom of Locandre, in the lantern trees belt that separates the northern and southern realms. The human king of Locandre had managed to establish peace in this area of constant conflict.
The king had three children he loved deeply: Anae, the elder sister, was an unrivaled diplomat; Jabor, heir to the throne, was a joyful fellow and a great strategist; and Illis, the youngest, was smart and a fantastic fencer. The children did not wish for their father’s death, yet waited eagerly for the day he would designate who was to inherit his rapier, a powerful manasteel sword named Stellar.
These carefree days did not last. The dukes of Locandre formed an alliance to overthrow the king with the help of the Sorcerer Kings. The duke Heto, their leader, pressured the king by inviting each of the royal courtiers to join the rebellion, then putting to death all who refused – including Illis’ fiancee. Wishing to avoid war with the north, the king yielded. His three heirs were sent on a year-long journey to Dis to hand over Stellar as a sign of submission.
Halfway to the Sorcerer Kings’ capital, Heto blatantly taunted Illis about his dead bride-to-be. Illis seized Stellar without a word and cut the man’s throat. His siblings at his side, he cleaved through a good half of the hundred men that were escorting them to Dis, then rode back to Locandre as fast as he could, trying to outspeed the messengers that would alert the Sorcerer Kings. When they arrived in Locandre, the armies were already on their way.
The northern armies entered the capital, burning the lantern trees that had been towering over it for thousand of years, and killing any living soul they encountered.
Prince Jabor and the guards didn’t stand for long, while Anae was slayed before she could escort the children and women out of the castle. The king put Stellar into Illis’ hands and asked him to run; the benjamin protested but his father readied himself for the fight, ignoring him. Illis bowed and ran away.
The prince raced to the forest and seeked refuge under the thick petals of a lantern flower. In his grip, Stellar began to emit a prismatic light and he had a brief vision of his father facing warriors and roaring flames. The ground shook as the king fell to the ground, and Illis let out a cry of anguish as the world went black.
When he woke up, his vision was clouded. Colorful threads seemed to hang in the air in a multitude of tangled filaments. He emerged from the burnt petals of the lantern flower.
The forest was intact, no smoke in the sky, no tree lying on the ground. The birds were chirping and in the distance he could see the castle standing proudly. Three heirs were leaving the gates, surrounded by soldiers and led by a loud-mouthed duke.
He stared at Stellar and the incinerated flower, understanding in an instant the unbelievable truth.
The death of his father bestowed upon Illis the powers of Stellar. We wanted Illis to be the only human included in the cycle of Harmony and Dissonance that rules Thasys – mana had to be involved in the process so we chose a peculiar gift for his sword.
Through Stellar, Illis can see Fate and be seen by it. He sees the destinies of people in the form of threads that tie them together, forming knots where their lives are intertwined. Illis is a character that bears a heavy duty: he sees the consequences of all acts, and comes from a future he wishes to avoid at any cost. The things he lost transformed him into a cynical man with a deadpan sense of humor – and a pathological pursuit of female company.
We took inspiration from theories such as the butterfly effect (and the eponym movie) to make Illis into the perfect counterweight to Elon’s lack of interest in the consequences of his acts.
Being a Watcher, Elon has no set future, but heavily influences the fates of others. He will be the way for Illis to manipulate his own destiny and save Locandre. Whereas Elon has a huge disregard for consequences and does his duty for fame, Illis is driven by his responsibilities and will try to understand how to manipulate fate through the Watcher. But that’s something you’ll discover later!
So what do you think of Illis, now that you know more about who hides between his smirk?
Do you hope that he’ll succeed in his quest? Or that fate cannot be chanded?