Today we sit down for a chat with Rothgar, the hero from award-winning author Kelli A. Wilkins’ The Viking’s Witch.
What was your life like before your author started pulling your strings?
Before Kelli brought me and my fellow Norsemen to Stronsay, I was living a very different life. Once upon a time, I was known as “Rothgar the Ruthless” and I was a fierce and respected warrior. However, after my wife and son died, I gave up raiding and traveling and was considered “soft” by many of my fellow warriors. I was content to live on my farm and tend to my animals. I’ll admit, when Kelli gave me this mission, I was reluctant to take it. But I resurrected my stronger side and became a warrior once again. I’m glad I did, because sailing to Scotland and meeting Odaria renewed my strength and self-confidence, and gave me a second chance at a happy life.
What’s the one trait you like most about yourself?
I’m most proud of my integrity and loyalty. I’m a disciplined warrior who stands by my word, and I expect the same from others.
What do you like least about yourself?
Sometimes I get too emotionally involved in a situation, and I may react harshly when my temper flares.
What is the strangest thing your author has had you do or had happen to you?
The first time Kelli had Odaria display her “witch powers” to me, I was blown away. I didn’t believe that such things were possible. It was strange to think that this beautiful young woman could move objects with her mind, conjure storms, and more. The other people in the story were frightened of Odaria, but I had nothing to fear from her. I trusted that Kelli knew what she was doing.
Do you argue with your author? If so, what do you argue about?
Yes! Over the course of the book, Kelli put me through several emotional trials. I didn’t want to do some of the things Kelli made me do, but I was under her spell, so to speak. I had to discipline (and battle) my fellow Norsemen, contend with the local villagers, protect Odaria, and still look for my cousin. It was an exhausting few days, but I know that Kelli did it all for a good reason. She brought Odaria and me together and changed our lives forever. We’re both very happy now and quite indebted to Kelli for all she’s done for us. (Although she could have made things a little easier!)
What is your greatest fear?
Losing Odaria. I lost my first wife and newborn son in a fire, and I would never be able to live through losing someone I love again.
What makes you happy?Being with Odaria. Now that we have settled into a peaceful home life, my main goal is to provide for her and keep her safe. Most days, we’re content to live on my farm, but Odaria likes adventure, so I also strive to keep our lives interesting and make sure we never grow bored.
If you could rewrite a part of your story, what would it be? Why?
Over the course of the book, Odaria’s home was destroyed and her beloved cat died. She was heartbroken. Her cat was the only thing she had left in her life. If I could change that part of the story, I would, because I saw how that loss tore her apart. It reminded me of the death of my wife and son, and I knew how much Odaria was hurting. If I couldn’t change that, then I’d change a part of the book where Odaria thought I had betrayed her. I can’t give away more about the situation without spoiling the plot for readers, but it’s a turning point in the story.
Of the other characters in your book, which one bugs you the most? Why?
Odaria, of course! (Laughs) I had never met a woman like her before – soft and tender one minute, then feisty and fighting the next. She’s very strong-willed and opinionated and likes to do things her own way, no matter what. When I first met her, this was very frustrating and drove me crazy, because I knew what was best for her, and yet, she fought me at every turn. Only later did I come to realize that all these traits made me love her even more.I was impressed by her inner strength (she had just been tied to a stake and nearly burned to death), and her ability to cope with tragic situations. Later, when she wept like a frightened girl, I saw how vulnerable she was deep down, and my heart melted.
If Odaria could describe you in one word, what would it be?Sexy? Strong? Virile? Brave? Bold? (Laughs) Although all of those are true, knowing Odaria the way I do, if you asked her the question, she’d tell you: “Mine.”
Of the other characters in your book, which one would you love to trade places with? Why?
I wouldn’t trade places with anyone, why would I? I’m the strong, powerful hero in love with a beautiful woman. Who would want to give that up?
Tell us a little something about your author. Where can readers find her website/blog?
Kelli A. Wilkins is an award-winning author who has published more than 100 short stories, nineteen romance novels, five nonfiction books, and two online writing courses. Her romances span many genres and heat levels, and she’s also been known to scare readers with her horror stories. Readers can learn more about Kelli and her books at her website and blog.
The Viking’s Witch
Scotland, 803 A.D.
About to be burned at the stake by her fellow villagers, Odaria does what any betrayed witch facing certain death would do. She calls down a curse. Within seconds, rampaging Norsemen raid the village, capturing everyone except her.
But her reprieve is short-lived, and Odaria lands in the clutches of the Norse leader Rothgar. Can she remain true to herself and fight her growing attraction to this domineering man, or will she fall under his influence and be used for his ambitions?
After Rothgar witnesses Odaria’s powers firsthand, he strikes a bargain with her. The raven-haired beauty will use her magical abilities to help him with his quest in exchange for safe passage off the isle. But can this cunning woman be trusted, or is she using him to exact vengeance on her village?
Together they must fight bloodthirsty villagers, battle a mutinous band of Norsemen, find a missing Norse ship, and learn to trust each other…before time runs out.