Wednesday, August 1, 2018

The Briton and the Dane: Timeline - character interview

Interview with Dr. Gwyneth Franger

 Commentator (C): Thank you for agreeing to this interview, Dr. Franger.
Gwyneth (G): Please call me Gwyneth, and I appreciate this opportunity for my fans to know the “real me”.

 C: Let’s start with where do you live?
 G: London, but the year is 2066. It is an exciting city, rich in history, but also progressive, blending the old with the new. One challenge, however, is the recruitment of talented men and women to study the past, not only in the classroom but on archeological sites. There is nothing more exciting than discovering ancient artifacts buried in rubble after spending hours, days or even years, removing centuries of dirt and debris.

C: You appear passionate about history. Did you always feel that way?
G: Since I was old enough to hold a shovel. I would spend hours in the park, “excavating” possible sites. It didn’t bother me that I never discovered a relic, I was learning my craft. One day I struck an object; you can imagine my excitement when I unearthed pieces of Roman pottery. Of course, I didn’t learn until much later that my parents were behind my first find.

 C: What is your favorite archeological site?
 G: Excavating the ruins of the Wareham citadel. Thankfully, the fortress had been reinforced with stone, since the wooden structures suffered the effects of not only time but of natural disasters, such as fire. The Keep, which is the tower, still stands as it once did during the reign of Alfred the Great. The view is breathtaking, and I never tire of summer evenings watching the waves crashing gently upon the rocks below.

 C: Has your belief in God helped or hindered your investigations?
 G: I definitely believe in Divine Intervention. There is no other way to explain how I was transported, unscathed, back in time to the eleventh century. My life definitely changed from the experience, and without this Divine Intervention, I would not have returned to my timeline, and we wouldn’t be having this conversation.

 C: What was it like living in the eleventh century?
 G: It was quite a challenge, and I was very concerned about doing something that would change the course of history. I had seen the old Star Trek shows and was very aware of the dangers of interfering. I found having to take a submissive female role disconcerting, but I threw myself into the role of my character. What helped was having studied drama one summer at Stratford-upon-Avon with the Royal Shakespeare Company.

 C: Who provided for you during that time?
 G: Lord Erik of Wareham, my husband. Again, this is where Divine Intervention comes into play. The night I arrived in Wareham, Erik was waiting for me in the chapel; yes, we were married that evening. He had been expecting me, which I found unnerving. However, he didn’t know at that point that I was from the future. I need to interject that I have had an obsession with him since I stumbled upon a rare painting at a Renaissance Fair. The portrait is still on the wall in my office.

C: Fascinating. When did you take Erik into your confidence? And were other people privy to your true identity?
 G: It was disturbing, initially. However, Erik’s belief and trust in God was strong; everything he could not understand was attributed to Divine Intervention. Remember, religion played an important role in everyday life. While Erik accepted I was from the future, he never pressed me for information about how events turned out. There were a select few who were taken into our confidence, but as far as everyone else was concerned, I was Lord Erik’s wife who was not from these parts.

 C: Would you change anything if you were able to revisit the eleventh century?
 G: The thought is tempting; how different would the world be if William the Conqueror had been defeated at the Battle of Hastings? Oh, my gosh, we could discuss what ifs for hours on end and still be unhappy with the results. I am grateful for having the opportunity to live during a time that people can only read about in history books, and I count my blessings every day that I have been so blessed.

C: Thank you, Gwyneth, for your candor. We look forward to reading about your adventures in The Briton and the Dane: Timeline.


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