Courtesy of Rochester Artist Sarah Peck, I now have portraits and profiles for the characters of my novel, The One Taken from the Sea of Stars. To start off, here’s Martin Keating, the main protagonist!
Lianna is born in the Shulu Village to the High Priest Ku and High Priestess Yay-na. Her name means “Fire Light” in her native language and with and reason. She is a rambunctious child with a tense focused look in her eyes, as if she often knows what she wants. An only child, she adopts many friends within the village---Denush being one of them. Of all the children, Lianna plays with him the most, nicknaming him “Undu,” meaning “Brother.”
Because her parents are Leaders of the Spiritii (Spiritual) Counsil, Lianna is entrenched in Shuluan customs and spirituality. She is taught the stories about the Moon Goddess and Sun God and the many powers each god has. But she especially loves the stories about Thro, the demi-god who has protected the Shulu tribe. It is because of these stories and her parents support that Lianna vows to become a member of the Orlotae Warrior Council.
At the age of 13, Lianna and a few other youth undergo the Orlotae’s mandatory Joo Lii (Long Journey), a survival training/spiritual journey for those wishing to become an Orlotae. Those who survive will return to the village after nine stones (nine months). During her journey, Lianna not only survives, but has learned how to utilize her empathic and telepathic abilities against her enemies and animals.
Soon after she returns to the village, she begins rigorous training to become an Orlotae Warrior. Her phenomenal fighting and leadership skills and ability to learn quickly catches the attention of the Council leaders. At the age of twenty-four, Lianna becomes the youngest warrior in the Council. Despite her impatience, she is level-headed and disciplined enough to earn the respect of most of her peers.
Lianna and other Orlotaes are guarding the entrances of the Sacred Moon Circle during the Gooktos Lundai ceremory when the tribe is ambushed by “Hooniis,” or giant humans. She and many tribe members are thrown in cages and shipped off the various exotic pet shops on planet Earth. She and her people are sold at an auction. Lianna is sold to Stewart Wayland, the owner of one of the successful exotic shops in the London area. In the middle of the night, she slips out of the cage Stewart places her in and escapes from the back room. She then hides until she is able to sneak into Martin’s bag.
His life changes when, during a production of “I Love You, You’re Perfect…Now Change,” Charlie collapses on stage. With Martin by her side, she is immediately taken to the hospital, where they both find out that she has a rare form of cancer and has only four months to live. Over time, the cancer spreads throughout her entire body. On September 5, 2035, Charlie passes away peacefully.
Since her death, Martin has withdrawn from friends (with the exception of Chess) a life in general. He cancels all of his gigs and soon stops DJing altogether—though he still listens to music (dubstep especially). He has no interests in dating other women, always declining offers from women who are interested in him. He keeps to himself in the flat he once shared with his late fiancée, drinking heavily and watching her favorite programs. He even talks to a picture Charlie has taken of them while they are in the park.
At 32, Martin is still grieving. Chess tells him about Stewart’s Exotic Pet Shop and encourages him to purchase a pet. What he doesn’t know is that one of the pets has snuck into his bag.
Martin Keating is born and raised in Edenburough, England to Rose and David Keating. The Keatings lives on Crowley Road, which is a working class neighborhood known for its brick houses.
As a child, Martin is mistaken for being shy due to his quiet and observant nature. Unlike his older sister Lorne, Martin is, for the part, introverted. Though he has no difficulty making friends and maintaining friendships, he prefers to spend hours reading about and taking apart computers. He also listens to his collection of records donated to him by his late grandmother and sister’s namesake, Lorne Marie. Martin is known for retreating to his room after returning home from school in order to decompress.
This routine changes when, at age 11, he meets his new neighbor, Charlotte Pryor. From the very beginning, Martin is somewhat overwhelmed by the energetic, outspoken and inquisitive 12 year old girl and avoids her for about a week. But one day, the Pryor family is invited over for dinner and Martin is strongly encouraged to entertain Charlotte. While in his room looking around, Charlotte notices his record collection. Martin finds out that she is familiar with records and the musicians who recorded them. They begin talking and Martin finds that the two have much in common. Since then, they have been inseparable.
Over the years, Martin and Charlotte (nicknamed “Charlie” by Martin) have done almost everything together—much to Rose and David’s delight. They have often supported one another. At the age of 16, Martin realizes that he has fallen in love with her. To his relief, he finds out that Charlie feels the same way and they begin dating soon after.
At 17, Martin graduates from Secondary school and soon attends the University College London to pursue a Computer Science degree. During orientation, he meets Albert Winchester, a loud yet cheery 18-year-old with a crass sense of humor. He is nicknamed Chess because of his last name, but also because he, Martin learns, is an expert chess player. The two become instant friends and rely heavily on one another to survive college.
Meanwhile, Martin’s reputation as an incredible DJ and computer wiz spreads. He is invited to spin at parties and is soon making extra money building and fixing computers and doing party gigs.
After graduating from college, he and Charlotte move into a quaint flat together in the city on London. Martin is able to land a well-paying IT tech position at Gencore Inc. while Charlie’s theatre career begins to take off. Though he is not building computers as much, Martin is still Djing and, with Chess’s help, is able to secure gigs at local dance clubs. At the age of 27, he becomes Charlie’s fiancée. With a new job, nice flat, a budding DJing career and a beautiful bride-to-be, Martin feels that life could not get any better.