Sara Dae O'Shea
First Appearance : Tales of Reign
When it comes to internal conflict within a character we often turn to the real world for how we ground their rescue. It doesn't get much more grounded than the love of a lifetime being available to celebrate every victory but most importantly, to cushion the reality that life isn't fair sometimes and when it isn't, they are there for you.
Enter into Reign's world, Sara Dae O'Shea. Per usual spoilers do follow if you haven't read the novels. You've been warned!
"...This won't hurt. Hopefully you won't heal again before I pull this needle out." Dae Tor Chapter 8 Gilded Cage
To dream up Sara Dae O’Shea I thought of one part Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman and many parts Hedy Lamarr. Men normally get the idealized treatment, think 007, any male captain from Star Trek and so on and on. It was rare that those characters showed true vulnerability as in the old days of punch first, cry never times. I wanted to reconcile that with Reign’s strongest advocate and most fierce opponent to have both.
We first meet Dae, as she is known by choice, on the interplanetary carrier of the Orbital Guard acting as a doctor researching with the aforementioned space navy. Very early we realize she is a reluctant player in the mad Dr. Molnar’s hunt for Allotrios. Allotrios being code for proof of alien life and a connection of said life to the Halfer condition. Dae has been up until this point near captive within the confines of this shady operation. Carrying a distaste for the mistreatment of Halfers, meeting Reign as she does triggers her instincts to run.
Dae becomes the moral compass for Reign, as well as his lover, and push to avoid abandoning hope in Sol. Dae is an uncelebrated genius (as of Tales of Reign) in the field of biology and is certainly the foremost expert on all things Halfer and Mor’h, the alien beings responsible for a great many happenings within Tales of Reign.
During ‘A Day in the Life’ following the main story, we garner a window into how Dae came to be who she is. The story is an intimate journey through loss, sexism and honing the steely spine Sara Dae O’Shea comes to be known for. Attached to her story are various individuals who help line out the Halfer struggle and are actively trying to solve the condition and eliminate it. In this story I create the foundation for Dae to guide herself into the destiny of playing such a major role in Reign’s story.
Dae is a fully capable basic soldier having trained to work with the Orbital Guard and the Crimson Cross off world. Before that she graduated Harvard in her teens and studied the life of Halfers with renowned Professor Diana Drakos on Mars. Born in Ireland to a jazz musician and a home-maker mother with a heart of gold, Dae probably never knew she would eventually become one of the most powerful women in history but given her determination, she was well on her way.
Reign’s unique story and even more unique biology is such a center piece to the story that I wanted a deep connection with the people from Sol helping sort that out. Dae was always intended to be his love interest but throughout writing the first rough draft I kept advancing her authority into what the future held. By Tales of Reign’s end she is a force to be reckoned with. By Tales of Reign Dominion, Sara Dae O’Shea is fiercely adjusted to her role and indeed feels that weight.
Dae and Reign are thrown together in a fight for their lives that leads them on a lifelong journey of connection and commitment to their cause. Reign's unique biology both strengthens and threatens their bond. As one story begins, another will always start anew-no matter how attached we are to our favorite parts.