Shine Cycle Character Profile: Amanda

It’s been a long time since I’ve posted something substantive, but here’s a recently-completed character profile. You can also read the others.

Amanda – Princess at large, in the King’s service in the Imperial Service. She has a record of consistent but not stellar excellence in academics and athletics but is well-known for having recommended others for the vast majority of promotions available to her. By the end of the War of Power she was writing many of the daily briefings for the royal family.

A tall, striking, slender woman with waves of light brown hair flowing down her back. As her responsibilities in the Service have grown she has chosen increasingly imposing gowns and formal robes, but she spends much of her time on the Academy’s athletic fields dressed in a simple athletic costume.

Amanda is known for her drive to improve herself and for her scrupulous attention to detail in her assigned tasks. Among her colleagues in the Imperial Service she is renowned for her patience and self-sacrificing concern for their welfare, her neighbors in the Capitol districts near the one in which she lives know her as quietly generous, and both the Palace residents and staff and her neighbors prize her discretion with what they have confided in her. Each day she rises well before dawn to ensure that the daily briefings are complete and distributed, then gets a few more hours sleep before beginning the rest of her duties. She also spends several hours each day on the Academy’s athletic fields to balance the time she spends sitting at her desk.

After considering her options for some months after her arrival, Amanda decided to begin an academic career at a school that aimed to prepare its students for the Academy. After a few years there, she transferred to the Academy, where she took her time deciding but eventually settled on a primary concentration in history, with a secondary emphasis on athletics.

In each of the three years following her graduation from the Academy, she qualified for, trained for, and competed in the Empire’s Cup competition in several track and field events, and did quite well, but she never placed higher than twenty-fifth. After her third Cup appearance, she decided to retire from sport for at least the time being.

She then applied for and received a position in the Imperial Service as the aide to a shift manager in the Palace service. She settled into the position happily, building a strong rapport with her coworkers and superiors.

Over the next decade, opportunities for higher-ranking and higher-paying positions appeared somewhat regularly. Most of them she ignored, for one reason or another, but for at least three of them she successfully recommended others in her shift rather than applying on her own behalf. Eventually, one of her superiors two levels above her heard about this, asked her why she hadn’t applied for a promotion, and persuaded her to accept an increase in her official rank and pay. She was finally given nominal seniority two years later.

Over the next decade and a half or so, having passed out of the view of her formerly immediate superiors, she continued to pass those promotion opportunities that she paid any attention to on to her peers and subordinates rather than taking advantage of them for herself.

At length, however, this came to the attention of the Queen, who asked her to enter her personal service. Amanda’s duties primarily consisted of research and organization asistance to a higher-level aide who was responsible for preparing regular briefings. With her advancement coming now at the pleasure of her superiors, instead of when she applied for promotions, she earned her seniority there within three years.

Two years later, the Queen transferred her to the King’s service, where she was asked to help prepare the daily briefings that the Palace staff gathered for the Palace residents. After seven years in that post, when her supervisor resigned, she was given the responsibility for creating the daily briefings. And after four years there, at the King’s request, the Parliament voted to make her a princess at large to honor this service.


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