Vell of Otharn is a prince who became a slave; a fall from grace so complete and devastating that he never though he would be happy or safe again. We meet Vell in Prince for Sale at a low point in his life – he is trapped by a magical bond and forced to obey whatever commands his master gives him. Worse, he is also forced to please his master in intimate ways in order to eat, speak, or even sleep. How did he come to this lowly station? To understand, we need to unpick the layers of secrets that wrap the royal family of Otharn in their web. Mild spoilers for Prince for Sale and The Prince’s Fate below!
Vell’s life as a prince of Otharn may not have been perfect, but he thought himself happy. He was a respected warrior as well as a scholar and mage, working with his family for the good of the joined realms. It all fell apart when he realized that his parents had been hiding a shattering truth from him – he was elskan, a rare Otharnian man capable of bearing children. A shameful secret in the royal family line, Vell knew nothing of his true nature until his father tricked him into drinking a cup of poisoned tea, intended to end the life of the child Vell was unaware was growing in his belly.
In his ignorance and panic, Vell did not let his child die. He saved her in her spirit form – a golden-green snake – and sent her to live in the forests of Otharn with her father, the nameless ranger with whom Vell had spent many pleasant nights and days.
Vell named the tiny snake-child Jormuna. He has not seen her since the day of her forced birth, but Jormuna found her father in the forest, and she did not stay as a tiny, vulnerable spirit for long.
Furious, Vell’s parents demanded Vell give up Jormuna’s location, but he refused and fled Otharn instead. Desperate to find a safe haven for himself and his daughter, Vell attempted to seize control of Earth by opening a portal to the void between worlds, allowing the void creature to flood through. He did not succeed. The combined forces of Earth’s military and Vell’s brother Lonn ended his invasion, and David Thomen, a human scientist, was able to close the portal. David and Lonn joined forced to distract and defeat Vell, while the Earth’s military put an end to the void creatures.
If Lonn thought Vell would find justice for his crimes on Otharn, he was mistaken. The king finally revealed the reason for his actions – a prophesy that Vell’s children would be responsible for the unraveling of the joined worlds, resulting in chaos, destruction and death. As king of Otharn and protector of the billions who live on the joined worlds, Covl could have no mercy on his son. When Vell again refused to give up his daughter to Covl’s axe, the king sent him to be enslaved on Vaaladir, under the brutal and lascivious ownership of Lord Hriedmar. Covl expected Vell to quickly submit to his demands, and give up his daughter in exchange for his freedom from that torment, but he did not.
We take up Vell’s story two years later in Prince for Sale, after his bloody rescue from Valaadir by his brother Lonn, who had never stopped looking for him. Saved by Lonn and freed from slavery by David Thomen of Earth, Vell began to find some stability again, enjoying his time with David and exploring their mutual desires. But Vell still kept his secrets close to his heart. Jormuna grew up in the forest with her father and Vell never spoke of her, fearful of the king’s listening ears as well as David’s judgment, should he find out Vell’s true nature.
After letting his guard down, Vell is met with a terrifying surprise in The Prince’s Fate, and once again he must face his father’s fury, only this time, he has David on his side.
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