Wow oh wow, thank you, Champions, for all the love you’ve shown Royal Magic with the slew of reviews you’ve left! (I appreciate the feedback, and it helps me a lot!) Please enjoy the first Royal Magic extra: a scene told from an alternate point of view, Ben’s. (There’s actually a lot of new content in this one as for much of the scene Benjimir is apart from Gwendafyn.) I hope you enjoy it, and now let’s continue on with the post!
When you all voted the “Villain turned good guy” as the most wanted hero in the 2018 aptly named “most wanted hero poll,” I sweated a bit. I already had plans for Benjimir (previously a villain) and Gwendafyn to star in their story together, but I really didn’t know how I was going to pull it off, so I kept delaying it. But once “villain turned good guy” won the poll…I knew I couldn’t–or perhaps shouldn’t–wait any longer.
So I’m going to start off the fun by putting Benjimir in the hot seat and say he deserved his multi-year exile and removal of the “Crown Prince” title for his less-than-honorable actions in Red Rope of Fate when he actively tried to separate Tari and Arion. (You Champions seemed to take special offense to it, as Arion in particular never fails to be in the top ten–and usually is in the top six–heroes of my annual hero poll.) So knowing that what he did really was wrong, and that Arion is highly beloved…I was pretty nervous about trying to redeem him.
Thankfully, Benjimir’s saving grace is that the passion and protective instinct he used against Tari and Arion could be (eventually) turned around to work in my advantage by having him do the same for Fyn. You see, even though he didn’t care much for her–personally, anyway–Benjimir was prideful enough (And secretly honorable enough) that he wouldn’t actively sit by and let Gwendafyn’s aunt pick on her. And when he warned off Lorious he unknowingly won big bonus points with Fyn, and that’s the turning point.
Fyn is Benjimir’s redeemer. She sees the real him–she’s intimately familiar with it as she was read into the details about it. And yet she still chooses to reach for him, which in reality is what Benjimir wants more than anything.
So, ironically, you have the hero that is treated like a villain (Fyn) falling for Benjimir because he will stand with her and doesn’t flinch at her magic or large personality, and on the other end you have the villain who is treated like a hero (Benjimir) falling for Gwendafyn because she doesn’t blink an eye at his past or see a problem with his cunning personality. They’re seeking the same thing, but what makes Gwendafyn the hero is that despite what she faces, she never gives in to the temptation to use her strength for selfish or dark purposes. Benjimir is redeemed from his past because now that he has seen Gwendafyn’s love he knows why doing what he did was so wrong. (You can see it in the very public way he takes Lorious out compared to the shady techniques he used on Tari and Arion.)
Hopefully the new extra will give you a little added insight to his character! I hope you enjoy it, and enjoy the rest of your weekend. Thanks, Champions, for reading, and an extra big thank you to everyone who reviews!
Thank you Kitty for and amazing story. After I finished your book I really wanted more. So when I found this it was brilliant. The redemption are was very well done. I love that you didn’t change his personality, but changed his priorities and motives for his behaviour instead that he grew as a person. I hate redemption arcs where I’m not sure it feels like the same character! This however felt very genuine and real. Thank you for doing the extra bits. It obvious you care about your fans!
Leyna Laurel says
Okay, so I’ve read Royal Magic through twice now, (still loving it!), and I just finished rereading The Twelve Dancing Princesses, and now I have a question. (or two). Could the elves of the Alabaster forest be the High Elves of Lessa? and if they are, what has happened over the centuries since they sailed away to change them into what the kingdoms in the Timeless Fairytales know them as? Also, are there any plans for their return, could they be related to asking for help from the Lesser Elves, and how would they prove to the Evening Stars that they had changed BEFORE all their leaders were dead? (and I just realized that I had more than two questions)
Loved the bonus scene! It’s so much fun seeing from Benjimir’s perspective, and it adds depth to his character.
Also, just got my paperback copy of Endings in the mail; THANK YOU for including Date Night and The High King – if you hadnt, I would have printed off the pdfs and stuck them in!!!
Wow I can’t believe how well you redeemed Benjimir! Haha I think he’s kind of like Stil in the way he flirts with Fyn but even more obvious. It’s really nice how we got to see more of his personality and motivations! Also, I was wondering if you plan to expand on this world the same way you did with the timeless fairy tales, because there is major potential for another overarching storyline with the high elves and other human kingdoms! Thanks for the wonderful book again Kitty!
Does Lorius have the same kind of magic Fyn does? She acts like she hates Fyn for having the same traits she herself has and since she hates it in herself she also hates seeing it in Fyn. But since she hates it in herself, she has crushed it out of her so that it would go against her character. Unlike Fyn, who actually, loves her magic and loud personality. I also love how both books end with the kings acting like kindly gossips who love to see others happy, and love being able to correctly guess or help in the achievement of that happiness.
I also think a few other scenes from Benjimir’s perspective would be interesting, like the wedding. I really enjoyed Unleashed from his perspective. Thank you for that.
I confess I was wondering the same thing about Lorius…it would explain a lot. It also leaves an interesting opening for her response – she’s as determined as Fyn, but much more bitter, and I wonder how she’s going to handle exile…
I was up ’til two yesterday waiting for the book to pop-up on Amazon. I’ve realized with the last few books, that they don’t release until much later. I’m not sure when the book was finally available, but I ended up purchasing once I woke up. Benjimir really managed to redeem himself and he might have made it into my top 5 heroes. I don’t think I fallen this hard for a character since Farrin. LOL. I was also so happy to see so much of Arion and Tari, I thought the most I could hope for was a small cameo so that was a very pleasant surprise. I actually forgot about unlocking extras, so I was really happy to see this one, loved the alternate view from Ben’s side.
I agree: Benjimir totally deserved the judgment King Petyr meted out for his actions against Tari and Arion. BUT he has such a wonderful redemption arc and, as you said, deals with Lorious in a fundamentally different – and better – way. You should be very proud, Kitty! <3
Btw, I didn't mention this in my review, but I find it so funny that you've ended both books in the series with a scene in which the kings act like gossipy old ladies. XD
Thank you for this alternate-POV scene! 😀
Yes I really loved how I ended Red Rope of Fate, so I resolved to do the same with Royal Magic (and hopefully future books as well!) I really love King Petyrr and King Celrin–particularly when they are together!
That aside, I’m so glad you agree with Benjimir’s redemption arc! 🙂 He really was a fun character, but in many ways also a little nerve wracking for me. I felt like a mother standing by her delinquent son going “he’s an upstanding citizen now, I promise!” Ahahahah.