Victor has appeared on the A to Z several times – in 2015 when I was about to launch his book Bravo Victor (Book 6 of the Princelings of the East), my theme was the phonetic alphabet. That gave me ample opportunity to plug the book! Guinea pig Victor also ran George’s Guinea Pig World, the blog currently run by Kevin and Percy, who are blogging from A to Z this year, as Victor did in 2012, and Dylan and Dougall (who star in Book 8 of the Princelings of the East) did in 2015.
Victor the character
Victor is the bar-keeper of the Inn of the Seventh Happiness in the Princelings of the East series, although he’d rather make his name as a business guru. Like all the characters, he’s grown up over the years. Here are a few snippets from the books about him…
Book 4 [Narrator Lord Mariusz is at the Inn of the Seventh Happiness with his sidekick Willow]
I had just suggested another round of drinks when Willow asked casually if Argon could smell smoke. Argon looked up, on full alert, and got to his feet as if to go to the kitchen, but was stopped by a flying bundle of young person screaming “Daddy-Daddy! Fire-fire!”
Book 1 [Fred and Hugo have just arrived at the Inn after coming up the tunnel from castle Marsh]
A young person, with a cute face, greyish coloured hood covering hair that went everywhere at once, and wearing a smart white jacket, was springing about from customer to customer. He waved cheerily at them and finished serving the customer he was with.
Book 2 [Victor, along with several others, were kidnapped by pirates but escaped in a shipwreck. He is now in a group of army types aiming to capture the pirates on the cliff]
Victor ran along with the others, trying not to bump into things. He was enjoying the adventure but trying to work out how long he’d been away from the Inn and whether he was due to start his course work in a few days or had a little longer. He was studying a Masters in Business Administration and he didn’t want his career in commerce to be cut short by a pirate.
Book 3 [Victor only has about three lines in this book, although he’s busy working on George’s new energy project, as you’ll see]
The coach had hardly drawn to a standstill before George was out of it and on the way to his laboratory. He looked through page after page of plans Victor showed him for the development and launch of the strawberry juice power plant while Victor stood there, shifting from one foot to the other, anxiously waiting for approval.
Book 6 [Victor narrates this one, which is entirely his own adventures (with some background put in by an all-seeing narrator)]
I’ve been cleaning off my dad’s old velocipede. It’s an antique, an idea that never caught on. I don’t know why, as they are handy if you need to go a long way, don’t have time to walk, and can’t get a stagecoach. I could finish it today. Show it off to people. It would be a good business interest, if I could find someone to make them. We could form a company and sell them. Many people can’t afford to rent a carriage but still need to travel. We could call it Victor’s Velocipedes.
Book 7 [Willoughby narrates; he is trying to work out what good the new vacuum post (like a telegram system) will do for people]
“What about the people?”
Victor took a breath, then let it out. “Some people don’t care. Other people care a lot. They see chances, chances to escape. Others see chances to get things they’ve never had. Others see chances to be forced to work even harder. But most people don’t see.”
Q&A with Victor, owner of the Inn of the Seventh Happiness and several other enterprises.
Q: We’ve seen how you’ve developed through the books, what are you doing now?
A: Oh, I’ve got the inn, and a family now. You know I married Callisto? She builds all the velocipedes as people order them. I do all the sales and promotion.
Q: I heard you’re doing well.
A: The inn is as busy as ever, although we have problems with lots of the refugees. We always feed and house them, but we don’t often get any payment for them. Some of the castles help out – you can guess which.
Q: Marsh, Buckmore, Dimerie…
A: Yes, and Wash and Fortune usually too. The ones with younger or more modern kings, really. But the velocipedes are doing well. Send them all over the country.
Q: Who buys them?
A: Some go to castles. They are popular with the ladies. They can go further on them in parties big enough to be safe. Also in the small communities that don’t get stage coaches. And if they are off the post network. They can ride messages somewhere instead of sending a runner.
Q: Ah, so young Dylan will be out of a job.
A: From what I hear, he’ll have a new job by the time you finish his book. I’m not in that one am I?
Q: Not at the moment. I checked.
A: (he sighs) Only the second one I’m not in. I suppose I’m level with Fred and George then.
Q: I hadn’t thought of that. I suppose you are. Prince Lupin must finally be in the lead.
A: Ah well, I suppose we had to let him win, really.
Q: So; you’re at the centre of things, hear all the gossip. What do you think is going to happen next?
A: Well, if the Kings’ Council sorts out the three southern castles the way you’ve done it in Book 8, a lot of people will be very unhappy. A lot. I’m going to make sure Calli and the boys are safe. That’s the first thing. There are lots of angry people around. People who are clever and who hate the rich. And most of the time they reckon anyone who works hard is rich. So even us poor folks here could be targeted.
Q: I hadn’t thought of that. Don’t you think you’re over-reacting?
A: We all have to look after ourselves and our families, you know.
Q: Of course you do. It’s worrying you think you might be attacked though.
A: Well, think about it. Meanwhile, try this new drink we’ve made.
Q: What’s it called?
Q: Cheap and refreshing?
A: Exactly 🙂
© J M Pett 2017