Life is often busy for a writer, and we hadn’t even decided to do these character profiles back when our first release, Moonshine, first came out. But recently I’ve been working on some revisions on Last Hope while Donna slaves away at edits on Crux, and it occured to me that we’d never gone back to the beginning to talk about Claire Franklin. Moonshine is the first of three Mystic Valley shorts that provide background on some of the characters of Mystic Valley. Claire and Lars plays a pretty large role in Last Hope, so it’s not surprising that doing revisions got me to thinking about this first couple.
First off, this picture is another of the ones I found on a stock photo site during late night browsing. I stopped right away and sent it to Donna without a word, who replied, “Why hello, Claire.” Yep, it was that obvious. Don’t let those big blue eyes fool you, though. A sweet little library sciences student she may be, but if you hurt someone she loves, Claire will kick your ass. And then she’ll kick your friends’ asses, just for good measure.
Claire Franklin is a young woman who has been fighting herself for as long as she can remember. On the surface, she and Lars are very much the tale of a good little girl who meets a man from the wrong side of town, but Claire would never have been the right woman for Lars if their story had been that simple. Claire is an incredibly strong shapeshifter, the kind of woman who would most likely grow up to garner considerable respect from the supernaturals around her–and maybe a healthy dose of fear.
Unfortunately, Claire was born to a pair of east coast socialites who had gotten so used to hiding their supernatural roots that they continued to downplay them as much as possible, even when magic became an every day occurance. Claire grew up having one command driven home over and over again: pretend to fit in.
Not fun for a young woman fighting to come to terms with the power inside her. Her internal struggle led her to make quite a few poor choices after she rebelled against her parents and went to college in the supernatural capitol of North America. Many people would probably say that traipsing into the Valley’s most dangerous shapeshifter bar in search of a good time was the very worst of those many mistakes.
As for whether it was… well, that’s something you’ll have to decide for yourself.