For my blog today, I have as my guest Philip Hamilcar, hero of Earthman's Bride. Welcome, Philip. Thank you for coming. I hope speaking to this many unseen people won't be a daunting project for you.
Philip (The Governor of Tusteya is a tall, blond Earthman. He wears a dark blue uniform similar to the ones : Thank you, Mistress Blackstone. As Governor of Tusteya, I've spoken to the entire population of a planet, so I'll just pretend this is more of the same. (clears his throat) I suppose I should introduce myself. I'm Philip Hamilcar, Junior, and I'm the Earthman in Mistress' Blackstone's novel Earthman's Bride.
ICS: And you're the governor of the planet Tusteya.
Philip: That's right.
ICS: Pardon me for mentioning it, Philip, because I’m sure you get a lot of this, but you’re awfully young to be governor of an entire planet. I understand you became governor at a very early age.
Philip: That’s kind of you, Mistress Blackstone, for I’m fed up to here (waves a hand above his six-foot-three-height) with people pointing out my age! I was fifteen when I inherited the position from my father and I’ve been governor for five years now. Actually, no one else wanted the job. The men calling themselves my father's friends refused to accept the responsibility--even my Uncle Alexander. So...it was dropped into my adolescent lap. I became governor by default.
ICS: Uncle Alexander. That would be Alexander McIntyre? Your father's ensign?
Philip: Yes. He's not really my uncle but he helped my father raise me. I'll have to admit he's been a great help. (smiles with fondness) He managed to help a lot of the weight off the shoulders of a young boy who hadn't the foggiest idea how to rule a conquered planet. In fact, Uncle Lex and I got along fine...until I learned how to think for myself!
ICS: Give us a little background here. How did a man from Earth become governor on another planet?
Philip: It's not a pretty story, and--being an inhabitant of Earth, you may not like it but...here's goes: The Earth I know isn't a very nice place. They've used up all their resources and have started conquering other planets and sending their natural materials back to Earth. They call it "taking them into protective custody." The planets called it “invasion.” When it happened to Tusteya, they fought back but they were conquered anyway, and my father... Well, he protested the invasion and for his trouble, he and his men, including my Uncle Alexander, were left on the planet. To maintain Terran control, they were told. (looks angry) In reality, they were marooned!
ICS: That's awful! Was your mother marooned also? Did she chose to follow your father to the planet?
Philip: The Federation doesn't allow women in its ranks, Mistress. Every child born to the Terrans has a Tusteyan mother. There isn't a purebred Terran in the second generation and I'm one of them. I guess that's an old story where invaders are concerned but my father made certain every couple who got "involved" was lawfully married by a Tusteyan priest. Unfortunately, where the others had been love matches, my mother hated my father, hated the child she bore him and ran away to join the rebels in the mountains three days after I was born. She died in those mountains, killed by a wild animal.
ICS: Philip, I'm so sorry. So there your father was--stranded on a hostile planet, a widower with an infant, and--
Philip: --a planetful of natives wanting to kill him. Is it any wonder he died early? But please, let's not dwell on the sad part of this story. I loved my father, he did what he had to do. He raised me as an Earthman and I suppose I might have turned out as he did if Alcin Spearman hadn't decided to call a truce.
ICS: How long had this war with the Tusteyans been going on at that time? Thirty years or more, wasn't it?
Philip: Yes, thirty years. I was born ten years after it started and I was near to celebrating my twenty-first birthday when Alcin sent his representative to me. An honorable gentleman named Dr. Martin Celcius.
ICS: So Dr. Celcius came to you with an offer of peace...?
Philip: (smiling broadly) Oh, he brought more than an offer of peace! He told me Alcin had sent me his most cherished possession to keep until he himself could arrive to go over the terms of a peace treaty.
ICS: His most cherished possession! That must have been something very valuable.
Philip: It was...most valuable...(studies his hands a moment) and it also came my most cherished possession and one I'd die to protect.
ICS: My goodness, what was it?
Philip: My wife. Rebeka. He offered Rebeka to me as part of the peace agreement, and I-- (laughs in embarrassment) --Well, I was a twenty-year-old and not married and... (face reddens slightly) Do I have to go into detail? Let's just say that I fall in lust with her immediately.
Philip: And within twenty-six hours of meeting Rebeka, that lust turned to love, though I didn't realize it for another twenty-six! Meeting Rebeka Spearman was the luckiest day of my life--and of the Tusteyan people's.
ICS: How do you mean? I think I understand how it was lucky for her people. After all, you apparently signed the peace treaty but how was it lucky for you?
Philip: Because Rebeka encouraged me to rebel. Don't think I was a wimp or anything but I was still fairly young to have such authority and I'd come to lean rather heavily on my uncle, but for a couple of years I'd been questioning the way we were treating the Tusteyans. And then Rebeka came along. She was the catalyst. You wouldn't think it to look at her rhat she could stir up everything so. I mean, she's so tiny, and delicate...with the most beautiful blue eyes and hair that's like black silk...and when she moves...(stops, coughs slightly) Excuse me, didn't mean to get so poetic. Guess you can tell I love the girl. Anyway, Rebeka kind of tipped the scales, make me recognize the fact that I wasn't an Earthman and I wasn't a Tusteyan but a combination of both. I was part of the conqueror as well as the conquered. She gave me the courage to do the things I later did.
ICS: And what were those things?
Philip: I think, Mistress Blackstone, that at this point, I'll have to be a little coy, and suggest anyone wanting to know about that part of our story should read your book. For a native Terran, you've been a very accurate historian, by the way, recording our struggle with total truth and a great impartiality. I'm hoping you'll stick around to report anything else that happens to us and to Tusteya, also.
ICS: Thank you for saying that, Philip, and that's a great segue for me to announce that Earthman's Bride, the first part of your and Rebeka's story, is available from Lyrical Press as an ebook.
He held out his hand, and she took it without hesitation, and when he smiled at that, she smiled back. They continued to walk.
They were behind the high hedge, now, out of sight of the android. Philip glanced towards the terrace. He couldn't see Darius and he was certain the robot wasn't able to see them, either.
Without warning, he caught her by the arms, pulled her towards him and kissed her, thinking as he did it, Fool! Idiot! She'll call for Darius and he'll pound you into the ground and you'll lose your life and your chance to make peace just because you're getting a hormone itch for Spearman's daughter!
But she didn't move, didn't fight, didn't do anything as he pressed his mouth against hers. All he felt was her warm breath floating gently onto his tongue.
When he released her, Rebeka's hand went to her mouth. She was breathing in little gasps.
"I know I shouldn't have done that," he began, thinking he'd better ward off the hysterics he expected.
"You're the first man who's ever kissed me."
He was startled at the--Oh God, was that awe?--in her voice.
Since she didn't appear to be about to yell for her bodyguard, he asked, "Then may I also be the second?" and kissed her again.
This time, her arms went around his neck and her mouth opened slightly, and, he felt a warm, soft tongue brush his lips before darting back into her mouth like a frightened little animal scurrying for its hiding place.
This time, when he released her, they were both breathing rather heavily.
The man who gets you is going to be a lucky devil! Philip thought. He'd felt just a brief hint of the passion Rebeka possessed, probably was holding in check for the man she'd marry. God, he thought, if I could be the one to unleash it! If keeping the girl untouched weren't so important, if only there was some way he could have her and the treaty, too!
Earthman's Bride is available as an ebook from www.lyricalpress.com. See the trailer at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EIXWZuGtgHU