Character Profile: Melanie

On Mondays I generally post background material for my planned series of fantasy novels, the Shine Cycle. This largely consists of profiles of important characters. The previous profile was of Seth.

Melanie – Visiting Scholar and a high-ranking advisor to the King in the Imperial Service. She is widely known for her biting wit, but underneath she shows a deep compassion. She has been very successful on the Academy forensic policy debate courts.

A somewhat tall woman with brown-black hair, she tends to follow the fashion trends among the Academy student body—sometimes favoring robes, sometimes something else—but in darker hues rather than adopting the brightly-colored semi-formal robes that form the unofficial uniform of much of the Imperial Service. But when on the debate courts, she is often the most formally dressed competitor.

Soon after her arrival, she applied for an Imperial Service position and was placed in the Parliamentary Services Office as a junior researcher. She quickly became known in the department and among some of the MPs for her competent, accurate, and useful research abilities, but once her position was secure and she had developed strong friendships among her colleagues she became fondly known among them and notorious in other circles for an almost acerbic wit, which slowed her advancement in the department. She was transferred to a higher position in the Justice Department when Faith, whom she had known before their arrival, became Minister of Justice in 140, and followed her the Ministry of the Interior in 150.

After that transfer she found herself missing the adversarial nature of the Justice Ministry’s work, and so began first attending, then participating in, forensic policy debates at the Academy. Her career there was hampered by the lack of a regular partner, a somewhat spotty background on local political history, and a limit on her possible time commitment, but some of her briefs brought her to the King’s attention. He intervened by gradually increasing her pay grade, then in 167 named her a Visiting Scholar and asked her to submit any policy proposals to him personally.

The next profile is of Fidelia.


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