By Mykela

Alli’a (Alli’an) Shepherd

Summary

Allia is how the story introduces this character.  Once she becomes a witch and is named in a witch naming ceremony, she becomes Alli’an Mintesh, but she is Alli’a outside of the witch community.

Allia has ‘dirty’ blonde hair, and blue eyes.  She is shy, and kindhearted, and is close to the age of twelve which makes her the second oldest out of eight children. Allia has three brothers, one of which is older, and four younger sisters.

A major family concern while Allia was growing up was her sister’s, Lias’, health.  Since birth her sister was sickly, so Allia grew up learning to care for the sick and to do the chores necessary without complaint and without recognition, and to share what little spare attention her parents had with her other brothers and sisters.

When she dances with Prince Jaarul at Prince Jaarul’s celebration her natural concern comes out as she worries about Mi’atsha.  She is afraid Mi’atsha might be sick and feels that Mi’atsha needs some care.  Prince Jaarul decides since Allia is a caring person, then she is a good choice as a contestant.

Mi’atsha realizes Allia’s witch potential right away and is eager to gain Allia as a student.  Once Alli’an becomes a witch and a student, Mi’atsha assigns her to make vital potions.  Mi’atsha has Alli’an concentrate on potions for healing and curing disease.

Alli’an is Mi’atsha’s first student, and Mi’atsha tells Alli’an that as her first she will always be favored.  While Mi’atsha has affinity towards all her witches, and she will always favor Alli’an as she stated, she tells this to Alli’an to help Alli’an know that she doesn’t need to compete with anyone for that place as Mi’atsha’s favorite.  Alli’an reflects on this knowledge various times in the story to reassure herself.

There are times in the story where Alli’an’s studies are still in the beginning of learning and her skills are not adequate for the task at hand.  She will get frustrated with herself and her seeming inadequacy, so Mi’atsha at this point will take over and aid.  This is when Alli’an realizes that Mi’atsha has studied for a very long time and perhaps it has nothing to do with inadequacy, thus Alli’an watches and learns, so she’ll be able to do the potions the next time, and so she can help more people.

Over and over again Alli’an realizes that everyone has a part to play, but sometimes Alli’an forgets this and she tries to stay and participate in battles when she is needed to retreat with the wounded to make healing potions for them.  This aspect of Alli’an is found in book two when she realizes it in the middle of battle after several wounded witches have retreated.  She then quickly returns to the citadel with the wounded and starts making potions for them right away, as she realizes once again everyone is needed, everyone has a part to play, and every part is important.

For Alli’an she has finally found her place and her calling in Mi’atsha’s coven.  Alli’an is self-conscious and has self-doubt and wants to be Mi’atsha’s favorite student, so though she doesn’t need to, she pushes herself to learn so that she does not let Mi’atsha down.

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