MILO KASATENO: (Milo perches his boot on his knee) I’m breathin’. That’s more than some folks can say.
T: Last we talked, we had just introduced Levee to the audience. I believe you described her as “everything”. What do you mean by that?
M: (A soft smile spreads across his lips, and his orange eyes flick toward his boots as if debating how much he should say) Lev and I grew up together. She’s been a part of my family since she was nine years old.
T: What were those times like, growing up together?
M: Levee showin’ up at our door brought my Ma and I closer. There was laughter in the house again, and smilin’. She kinda glued us back together. We didn’t know what it was like to sit down and share a meal an’ talk. In Sarrokye, my Pa was never home an’ I was out on the streets actin’ like some sorta rebel. She taught us how t’ be a family.
T: So you saw Levee as a sister of sorts?
M: (Milo begins to tap the heel of his boot) No. There was more to us than that. I didn’t see it when I was younger, but our village did. I guess I opened my eyes a lil’ too late.
T: Too late? what do you mean by too late?
M: C’mon, sirrah*. We all know who Lev ended up with, and it ain’t the lowly farmer.
T: Prince Connor? We’ve mentioned Prince Connor a few times already in this interview. What would you describe your relationship to be like?
M: (chuckles) The best way to put it? Prince Connor and I are two posts holdin’ up a single rung. So long as we’re holdin’ that rung, we’ll stand together. But take away that rung… (the Sarrokian shakes his head) We ain’t got much in common.
T: I suppose that rung would be Levee. How did the three of you get to know each other?
M: Ain’t every day a Sarrokian farmer finds ‘emself side by side with the Prince of Nevaharday, is it? (Milo folds his hands, his eyes distant as he looked back on the events that led him here.) We didn’t get along at all. Not at first. I had little respect for the royal brat responsible for ordering New Haven to be knocked down and paved over.
But I was Levee’s guardian, so when she caught his attention the prince had to go through me to get to her. I didn’t think it odd at the time since Levee was the royal horse mistress’ apprentice. It only made sense for her to reside on castle grounds. Shortly after, the war began, and the prince and Levee disappeared.
It wasn’t until they returned that I began to understand. (He strokes the scruff on his cheeks) Jaycent loved her all along… just as I did.
*sirrah [seer-ah] – A term of respect used in reference to a male. Its root comes from the common word ‘sir’ and the rahenyan word ‘rah’, which means horse. At first, it was used only to reference other rahee and re’shahna. However, as the rahee embraced civilized culture, the term evolved and is now used as a formal acknowledgement of any person of the male gender.