⚠️ Here be spoilers. You have been warned. ⚠️
The story so far
Conseca maern Azzar first appears in Raven Queen, Arise when Saeverra tempts Illyria with salvation from the slaughter planned for the highland clans. Conseca is a bedslave who is being sexually abused by Saeverra’s older brother, Deffaen. Without knowing who Conseca is, Illyria objects to her mistreatment and proceeds to fight all four of the Chosen of Tyrr, their guards, and the entire Elysian Foreign Legion before she is killed.
When Illyria returns from the dead, Conseca demands to go with her newborn goddess. Unbeknownst to Illyria, Conseca has appointed herself first worshipper and aspiring priestess—which we learn from Conseca herself in her own story, Righteous Disobedience. The pair travel together, chased by the Chosen and the Temple Guard, surviving two ambushes and finally reaching Illyria’s home in Alamar Forte.
Conseca plays a major behind-the-scenes role in Raven Queen, Arise. Though grateful for her service, Illyria remains largely ignorant of the service Conseca renders her during the four days that Illyria lies “dead” in her temple. During those four days, Conseca struggles with her own insecurities and overcomes the resistance of men and gods to convert Illyria’s kinfolk to the worship of the Raven Queen during the events of Righteous Disobedience (a companion story to Raven Queen, Arise).
During her own tale, Conseca meets, woos, and beds the demigod Memad, a thunderbird and scion of the storm god, Vayan. Here you can see the pair together painted in three different versions by two different artists. Left to right: Epic Made and JP Mavinga. I love them all. Epic Made painted the first as a Kickstarter art card. JP painted the second as the original cover of Righteous Disobedience—but after he read the books, he was inspired to improve upon his already amazing work.
Ultimately, Illyria anoints Conseca as her priestess in recognition of her devotion and service. That scene is captured her in two different versions by two different artists. Left to right: JP Mavinga and Epic Made. I love them both.
Conseca is a challenge for me to write because she is so different from me in personality. She’s a loving, peaceful person at heart—which you probably can tell I’m not. She’s been beaten down to be passive by life and adopted it as a survival strategy. I love writing her for that reason, and because she’s so passionate. She is lukewarm about almost nothing. The worst insult Conseca could pay to anyone is to be indifferent about them.
I imagine her as an Enneagram 1 wing 2, a Reformer and a Helper. Her verb is shame: she shames others, including Illyria, into action; she bears her own shame, often wearing it like armor; and she inflicts shame upon her enemies. Her strengths are Belief, Adaptability, Responsibility, Relator, and Harmony.
Because I love her character, I’m always actively looking for new ways to include her and imagining stories of her own.
Where she’s been
What we know of Conseca is that she was born to wealthy parents in the mountainous, hedonistic land of Azzar, famous for its exquisite metalwork, its bottomless gemstone mines, its rare red-haired beauties, and its well-trained bedslaves. Azzar is the only source of priceless purple diamonds.
Her parents were so ashamed of their bankruptcy that they committed public suicide, leaving Conseca the eldest child at age twelve to care for her younger siblings in the ruins of their mismanaged estate.
Rather than starve on the underground streets of Azzar with her siblings in the ruthless and materialistic society of Azzar, Conseca sold herself into slavery to obtain enough coin to buy her siblings into a better life than subsisting as gutter rats.
Traded from one owner to another over the years, Conseca mastered her trade and herself. Purchased by Saeverra to be shared with her brothers during the Spring Festa massacre of the rebel highland clans, Conseca found herself squarely in the path of destiny when the Raven Queen stormed into her life.
Where she’s going
Conseca’s tale is far from over. She is a fiery zealot for her goddess and her struggles to expand the fledgling faith of the Raven Queen beyond the rebel highlands will be the subject of the future book Righteous Indignation.
If you haven’t had a chance to read Conseca’s story, it’s available for free to subscribers of Dark Tidings.
Righteous Disobedience is also for sale at all the major ebook retailers.
The audio book, narrated by the lovely and talented Amy Bentley, will be available in late 2023 wherever fine audio books are sold.