The spark of inspiration for the Dragon Knights and the time-period developed many years ago. I’ve always had a fascination with medieval history, but I didn’t realize I would venture so far back in time with my stories. Let me start from the beginning—a place that called out to me…
My love affair with Scotland and Ireland began decades ago. I blame it on my own bloodline—a yearning to return to the land of my ancestors. The land called out to me within the stories of Irish mythology and Scottish history. I'd close my eyes and pretend I was there. When I finally took my first trip to Scotland twenty-two years ago, the birth of a series—the Dragon Knights were born. I was sitting on a boulder in the Highlands surrounded by the magic and the mists of the land. However, on the second half of my trip, I visited Ireland. As I wandered the soft rolling hills in various shades of green, the land spoke to my soul and urged me to place the Dragon Knights here, too. It would be several more years before I decided on both countries—Scotland and Ireland as part of my stories. A perfect solution to a problem I had been debating on for the Dragon Knights.
Of course, there must be a castle in a medieval story, right? It doesn’t matter if it’s real or one we’ve created. I’ve always been drawn to Urquhart Castle, so this was the home I envisioned for my Knights. The castle and surrounding lands are ancient, mystical, and where the Loch Ness Monster dwells within the loch. This site first appeared in historical records in the 6th century. Yet in researching the ownership of the castle, I eventually chose a time when there was a “gray” area of possession—the early 13th century.
I’ve visited twice now, but vow to return to run my hands across the stones again. Perhaps if I close my eyes, I will be transported back in time to the Dragon Knights of Scotland.
A girl can only dream.
Forgive the emotion in the short video clip. Even though I said I will not cry, I had already spilled tears when I spotted the Grant Tower (the centerpiece of Urquhart Castle) through the trees on the bus. This was on our last trip to Scotland in 2017, and the first time I was able to wander through the ruins. Previously in 2009, the trip to Urquhart was a mere photo stop on our tour and we didn't get to stay. To say I was upset is an understatement. Thankfully, we returned and I got a chance to touch those stones.
Until the next Medieval Monday, may your dreams be filled with the mists of Scotland and the Dragon Knights.
And don't forget to check out the other Ladies of Medieval Monday for their posts.
Barbara Bettis: http://www.barbarabettis.com/index.php/blog/
Anastasia Abboud: https://www.anastasiaabboud.com/a-little-romance