Persephone: First of all, a caution to readers about spoilers. Some contents of this interview will reveal information from the Souls of the Stones series. I do not think there are any major reveals, but I can never be 100% sure and always want to warn readers so they can make their own choice. Now that we covered that, hello Riya! I am so excited to have you on the blog. This is my first blog tour. I am so glad it could be with you. Your story is such an amazing tale. The journey you have been on is fascinating and I hope that others take the chance to share it with you.
Riya: Don't fret, it's my first interview too. We can conquer this first together
R: I've achieved so much, but I couldn't have done it alone. I can't really consider any greater than any other. I faced my mother's killer. I ventured to my mother's land, under hostile conditions. I fulfilled the hope that my ancestors had for me, though I don't think I did it exactly as they intended. I really can't pick just one. Now that things have settled down for me a bit, every time I see a new child born into the world we've changed and molded, that feels like quite an accomplishment too.
P: Tell me your idea of perfect happiness.
R: Well, this will probably sound frivolous, but sometimes I wish I could go back to the way things were. Before I knew of the choices those I care about have made, before I knew I was a Stone. I used to lay in the meadow with Drea for hours, and it was so peaceful. I can't go back to that time, and I suppose I wouldn't want to undo the good I've done anyway. Life is definitely busier now. Sometimes Torian and I get quiet time at Castle Ahlen. Some of those times could definitely qualify as "perfect."
P: If there was a fire and you could only save your treasured possession, what would it be?
R: My locket. It's been in my family for so many generations. It gives me strength and reminds me of who I am, and of all the strong women who have worn it before me.
P: You have endured a long journey. What was your favorite part of it? Least favorite part?
R: My favorite part was when Torian showed me Witch's Falls. I still didn't know all the awful things I had ahead of me, and I finally felt a bit at peace about what Torian and I were going through. I saw that there was some beauty in Thalmas, and I'd been worried there wouldn't be.
My least favorite part was at The Cradle of The Three. It was just awful. I still haven't forgiven them.
P: Can you remember when and where were you the happiest?
R: My happiest moment was also when I was my angriest. Isn't that odd? By The Three, it's true though. I had a very special moment at The Cradle of The Three, and it was an unexpected gift in the form of a second chance. I don't think I've ever been happier. Or more furious. I've had other great moments over the years, and hope to have many more. I guess it was several years ago now, Chariste gave me a painting of all the women in our family together for The Day of The Three. Obviously that can never actually happen, but I cherish it a lot. She's a much better artist than I ever was. It's actually been several generations since there's been a painter in our family, I'm glad to see the talent hasn't been lost.
P: Of all the things in the world, what is it that you most dislike?
R: The Three.
P: Amen to that! What is your greatest fear?
R: Not being worthy of the trust all three of our lands put in me.
P: What is your greatest extravagance?
R: The festival we hold in the capitol each year is very dear to my heart, and is quite extravagant. I will not tolerate any expense being spared. It is a celebration of what we've accomplished, and how far our world has come. Of friendship, family, and the new traditions we are building.
P: What is your greatest regret?
R: You are determined to make me cry, aren't you? Queens aren't supposed to cry, not proper ones anyway. My greatest regret is that I didn't know where my father was sooner. If I had, everything would have been different. I've replayed my conversation with Eshan, the injured man at Neela's so many times, and I realize now that he was trying to tell me the truth, but all I heard was what I expected to hear. If I'd understood him better, our world may have found peace much sooner.
P: It is okay for a queen to cry in front of another queen. If any one chooses to say differently, Hades will see to it they have a change of heart. No one messes with the Queen of the Underworld or her dear friends. Which person, living or dead, do you most admire?
R: My father. I admire him so much, and I understand more about what he went through now. I'm sorry, I can't really say more because it's so emotional for me. But without a doubt, the person I admire most is my father.
P: I understand. Sorry to touch upon so many raw emotions. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
R: I would stop taking things to heart. I feel responsible for each life that has been given for me, and for each citizen who now is counting on me to keep us on a path of prosperity. Sometimes, I make decisions that make people angry, and I feel like they are angry at me. Really I think they are just angry at circumstances, but in the moment, I take it personally.
P: Do you recall your most humbling experience?
R: When the men of Eltar first pledged themselves to me, in my father's name. There were a lot of emotions that day, but humble was definitely part of it. Those men had never followed a woman a day in their life, but they followed me. They trusted me.
P: Will you share your plans for the future?
R: If Torian has his way, rest is in my near future. We're expecting, and he's hoping for a son.
P: I agree with Torian. Rest! Any chance we will see you again?
R: Only knows for sure, but I would expect so.
Leave a comment on this interview and one winner will be chosen June 21, 2013 to receive the Souls of the Stones series!
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