Why non-human protagonists?
That is the question I often ask my imagination, and always with a tone of accusation. After all, it’s much more difficult to write non-human protagonists. Whenever I do, I have to work that much harder to help the reader relate to them.
So what makes Guillaume the Gargoyle like us? What makes his story worth our time? A few things. First, he has an insatiable desire for novelty. I once read an essay about early human sex differences. It talked about the male tendency to push out into the unknown even in times of relative peace and comfort. That's weird, isn't it? And while it's not exclusive to males, it does speak to a certain impulse that makes our species unique.
Second, he's selfish, but in a particular way. He has an idea of what he wants and he makes the deadly mistake of assuming others want the same. Worse, he acts on it. If Guillaume wanted to hurt others, especially Benoit, then he'd be a flat, boring villain. Instead, his fundamental goodness becomes corrupted by a subtle and devious Ego. Sound familiar?
Third, and finally, he’s trapped in the Cycle of Trauma. Tauri the Stoneweaver created the Stonekin to suit his own needs. Guillaume created Benoit to suit his. Is Guillaume not perpetuating the same harm as before? He is, at first. He only escapes the cycle by sacrificing his own happiness for the autonomy of his new friend. Of course, that very decision earns him a second chance.
And if a weatherbeaten gargoyle can find his redemption, can't we all?
Very intersting! Thanks, Sean! Check out all the stories on May 31, 2021!