Hello! I never know quite what to put in these things so this is me just wittering on, I hope at least some of it makes sense.
I'm not a shippy sort of person. By which I mean, I'm more interested in the story than any particular pairing. So yes, I am quite happy for you to show any of these characters in a relationship with another canon or original character if you like, but I'm not very interested in what they do in bed. I love friendship stories, so if your characters want to spend their time exchanging chariot-racing tips or working out a design for a fox-proof henhouse or telling tall tales about mythical beasts or rehashing old battles or boasting about the girls they kissed at Clusium rather than going to bed, that's absolutely fine by me.
Eagle of the Ninth : Cottia
I just finished writing a story for smallfandombang about Cottia as a very old woman. It's such a late setting that it doesnt' really address her personality as a younger woman, but it made me wonder about how Cottia might develop as she grew up and whether life on the farm would really be enough for her!
In Eagle of the Ninth, she's not really much more than a child, and so going off from Calleva where she felt shut in and imprisoned would seem like enough of an adventure. But what about when she's twenty and has young children, or perhaps once the kids are growing up and don't need her so much?
Perhaps she takes farm produce to market and meets someone unexpected there, or maybe she attends a local festival? Is there a bath-house she likes to visit? Perhaps she decides she wants to make some money, rather than being entirely reliant on Marcus, and is involved in setting up a shop or some other business in a nearby town? (yes, I know that running a business may have been considered low-status. I'm not convinced that would bother Cottia much!) Or perhaps she gets into gambling? Cottia's Iceni identity is important to her, but in the Downs she's in Regni / Atribates country. Maybe she brings horses 'out of the royal stables of the Iceni ' to the Downs? And I wonder what Marcus and Esca will think of it all!
I think any of those ideas could make interesting art too: Cottia meeting friends at the bathhouse, or Cottia with her first Iceni foal ?
Shining Company : Cynan ap Clydno
Cynan is a character that we only really get to see through other's eyes. If you are writing, I'd love to find out more about his perspective on things, particularly what happens to him at the end of the book in Constantinople. Or if you are drawing/painting, what about Cynan the warrior in his barbaric splendour arriving at the great city?
Lantern Bearers : Ambrosius
I will read anything at all about Ambrosius, really, and ANY art with Ambrosius is good art! But perhaps something about his early life, maybe the appeal for help to Aetius, and how he felt when no help came? Or about his coronation as High King (which I would love to see as art too!) Or maybe something about him and his brother Utha, Artos's father?
Ambrosius is one of my favorite characters in Lantern Bearers! I'd love anything showing him: the young king full of hope or the old one, eaten by pain. He seems a figure out of fading Rome, rather than one of Dark Age Britain : perhaps something showing that side of him?
Sword at Sunset : Ygerna
I really want to know what motivates Ygerna, and I think this one is *probably* more of a story than an art prompt, although I'll take art if you are drawn that way!
Ygerna is such a mysterious character. We see her exclusively through the eyes of Artos, who hates her. I've always wondered if Medraut was really so 'warped' by his mother that he was the walking weapon that Artos sees him as, or if Ygerna was perhaps a little more complex in her motivation, and if Medraut became Artos's enemy because Artos couldn't accept that he or Ygerna could ever by anything else? Or was Artos right, is she driven entirely by evil? If so, how did she get to such a dark place?
Artos seems to have similar views of Cerdic's mother Rowena (Artos, I love you, but nobody would argue you don't have woman issues), and I wondered if Ygerna and Rowena ever met...
How did Ygerna learn her magic? Even if you take a very pragmatic view of things and assume Artos is imagining the magical elements of Ygerna's story, she seems at the very least to be able to brew up a rather effective date-rape drug, which for the period seems like quite an achievement ( I note that in Lantern Bearers, Aquila's sister Flavia is also able to drug the Saxon guards effectively but not lethally, allowing her brother to escape. Again, I feel this suggests someone somewhere has a really good grasp of knock-out-drops...)
This prompt might just possibly be an exception to my general 'don't want: porn'. Ygerna seems to be canonically a practitioner of sex magic, so it is possible that you might feel something relatively explicit would be plot-relevant, in which case, please don't let me stop you!