One such theme is Balance. Barakiel, my male protagonist, is Covalent, a race of ancient beings who live at the still center of reality. In this passage from the prologue, he ruminates on why he has to leave the Saxons, a brave and loyal people among whom he's lived for 80 years. From the 8th to the 9th centuries, the Saxons were at war with the Franks. Barakiel had been fighting on their behalf, but there were consequences.
To continue in that way was a perversion of his purpose. He could not fight on one side or the other of internecine human battles. If he continued to slaughter the weak, he would lose Balance. He would become weak himself.
Balance was the wellspring of Covalent power, the equilibrium of Creation and Destruction, order and entropy, attraction and repulsion, love and hate. Balance allowed Barakiel to gather any energy he encountered, to bring it inside himself and transform it into unassailable strength and speed. His enemies fell before a hatred so strong and pure it guaranteed the sureness of his blade. His Saxon family enjoyed his love and loyalty, equally strong, equally pure.
Barakiel was born to slaughter the demons Lucifer sent to kill him, but physically weak humans were not worthy enemies. He had to choose. Leave his Saxon family or abandon Balance to live as a crippled warrior, good enough for the Earthly Realm, but a mere shadow of what he was meant to be. Abandon Balance and risk dying at the hands of demons.
As a Warrior of the Rising, Barakiel’s power called to him as surely as he knew the world through his senses. He did not wish to betray his nature. In the mornings, he looked at the fine woman with whom he shared his bed. He would have to leave her.
Barakiel sees violence as the solution to every problem. He is compelled to fulfill his duty to fight, but he is capable of loving with the same intensity he brings to battle. As he gets older and more powerful, he needs to express that side of himself. He wants love. And just as Balance demands a worthy adversary to fight, it demands a worthy woman to love. He finds her in Zan O'Gara, the female protagonist in The Passion Season.
I love the concept of Balance in our internal world as well as the external. I think we need to accept our flaws along with our qualities. We need to accept the yin and the yang. Bad temper? Maybe this aspect of your personality is inseparable from the strength of will you need to accomplish difficult tasks. Maybe it’s inseparable from your courage. Get down on yourself because people tend to push you around? Maybe your talent for conciliation could defuse a tense situation and help find a solution. The idea is to stop making value judgments and see things as more integrated. It’s an aspiration. I’m no Zen master.