Who is Hampton Rourke? (from the Dream of Asarlai trilogy)

Today I have a fun and fascinating interview with Hampton Rourke, from Nicole Murphy’s, the Dream of Asarlai trilogy.

“Hampton, please, just pretend that humans know about us and we have to be straight about everything. We need to practice this, so we are ready if it does happen.”

“But it’s not going to happen. Is it, Ceamir?”

“Of course not. I won’t let it happen. But just in case…”

“All right. But make it quick. Charlotte’s not well and I want to be with her.”

“Sure. Right, here we go. Thank you for joining us today. Firstly, for our audience, can you please explain a little of who the gadda are and your role within the gadda. “Certainly, and thank you for inviting me to speak with you. It’s a pleasure. The gadda are a race that arose in Ireland, around the same time that human beings were developing in Africa and spreading around the world. We were created with a unique link to the energy and power in the world around us, and can use that to perform a variety of tasks, such as healing, travelling and so on.”


Cearmir (pretending to be an interviewer) – You mean magic? “That is what humans call it. We simply say we have power, and we must be trained in the use of it. Some gadda have more talent or more dedication than others, and so can do more with their power. Others can do very little. I am the Sabhamir, the protector of the gadda. The spirit of the Sabhamir chose me for the role. It is my sworn duty to do all that I can to keep every member of the gadda safe.”

What does that entail? “My duties can vary widely. Sometimes, it’s as simple as helping someone stop an errant incantation. Sometimes, it’s as complicated as hunting down someone who stole something important, such as I had to do with the woman who called herself Asarlai.”

Ceamir – And sometimes, it’s dangerous? “Mags, I don’t want to go into that. I don’t think humans should know that power is something that can be dangerous.”

Ceamir – But they need to know you’re a hero. They’ll react well to that. *Rolls eyes* “I’m not a hero, Maggie. I was just doing my job. Sometimes, not particularly well.”

Ceamir – Don’t start that again. You did a fabulous job, far better than your father would have done in the circumstances. “That’s something else I’m not going to go into, even with you.”

Ceamir – Fine, fine. So, tell me why have the gadda kept themselves a secret for all these centuries? “Initially, it wasn’t a secret – there weren’t any humans around. When humans did come to Ireland, the gadda didn’t see any need to keep it a secret and that’s undoubtedly where a lot of Irish human mythology comes from. But there came a point, about five centuries ago, when a group of young gadda got out of control. They started using their power against humans, for their own gain. The vast majority of gadda were very against that, so they formed the bardria, the ruling council of the gadda. The number one rule of the bardria was that the existence of the gadda must become a closely guarded secret, both to protect vulnerable humans from gadda with no conscience, and to protect vulnerable gadda from humans who would seek to use them. That became the foundation of gadda society and a part of everything we did.”

Ceamir – So what happened? Why were the gadda revealed? Silence. Hampton, you have to answer that. “I will, I’m just considering the answer. Give me a moment.” A long pause, during which Hampton stands and paces up and down the room. Finally, he sits. “A woman who called herself Asarlai, which is Irish for sorcerer – a nice touch, I thought – took it upon herself to reveal the secret. I will not go into the reasons why she did so, but it was not a decision of the bardria. The six guardians, who are tasked with protecting the secret, did all they could to hunt Asarlai down and stop her. As is evidenced by my being here, we were unable to do so before she set up the website that revealed the presence of the gadda.”

Ceamir – So it was against the will of the bardria that you were revealed? “Maggie, that’s not an appropriate question.” I’m asking you what an interviewer would say, Hampton. You’ve made it clear this wasn’t the gadda’s idea. They’re going to be wondering – what does that mean? “All right. No, it was not the will of the gadda that we be revealed, but now that we are, we are determined to work with humanity, not fear or fight you. There is a great deal that humans can teach gadda – for example, the internet has become a very popular tool amongst some of our people. And there’s a great deal the gadda can do help humans. Many of your diseases, for example, may well be able to be dealt with very effectively by power. And power can help solve issues such as famine and poverty. The Ceamir, the guardian responsible for human/gadda relations, will be the person spearheading the integration of gadda and human society.”

Ceamir – You can’t dump me in it! *Hampton smiles.* “Can’t I? As I was saying, Ms Interviewer, many gadda have lived very productive lives well within human communities, and I am sure that we will be able to make that happen on a larger scale. I for one look forward to learning more about human society.”

Ceamir – My producer has just let me know that in fact you know a great deal about human society. Weren’t you once known as Hampton Rourke, a much-sought after harpist? *Hampton’s eyes narrowed.* “They better not bring that up, Maggie.”

Ceamir – People are going to recognise you, Hampton. “Which is why you should be doing the interviews.”

Ceamir – The caelleach doesn’t trust me. “A situation that you take delight in encouraging.”

Ceamir – The bardria want you doing the interviews, should it come to that. They’re hoping that the fact you once had a human profile will help. “Oh, I’m sure it will be very helpful. I do not want to talk about my past. The present and the future are more than enough to deal with. Are we done, because Charlotte-”

Ceamir – Oh, you should so tell them how you met Charlotte and fell in love during the search for Asarlai. They’ll lap that up. *Hampton stands* “I think we’re done.”

Ceamir – No, not done, couple more questions. That was just a suggestion. Sit. Sit. *Hampton sits and folds his arms across his chest.* “Just two more questions, Mags.”

Ceamir – Okay, what did you last say… Right. So does the acceptance of the revelation mean those early fears about the vulnerable being used are no longer of concern? “Star, Mags, that’s one hard question.” Hampton taps his chin. “Yes, it is still a concern, but the bardria are putting parameters into place to protect our people, and humanity. Only gadda of a certain level and ability will be able to openly interact with humans. And the guardians will always be on duty, ready to save any gadda or human that requires saving.”

Ceamir – So you will still keep some gadda a secret? “We must, for their sake and for yours. Our cultures, our societies, our ways of dealing with each other are very different. It is to be hoped that one day, all gadda can be open and honest with any human but that time is many years into the future.”

Ceamir – And if this doesn’t work? If human and gadda cannot live happily side by side? What will happen then? “The gadda will disappear, and you will never find us again.”

Ceamir – Hampton, you can’t say that. Not when you can’t guarantee it. “What makes you think I can’t? Just because you know me and we are friends, don’t think you truly know what the Sabhamir can do. Now, that’s actually three extra questions and with that, I’m going to see my love and you can get on with ensuring I never have to do an interview like that for real.” *Hampton disappears*


BLURB An exciting Urban Fantasy trilogy full of intrigue, action and a hint of romance. For centuries, the gadda have worked to keep their identity secret from the rapidly expanding human race. All this is now at risk – the most terrible of gadda teachings, the Forbidden Texts, have been stolen and the race is on to find them. Asarlai believes the gadda should rule the world, and she will risk everything, and everyone, to achieve her ambition. As the body-count mounts, Asarlai finds a powerful ally and the pressure builds to stop her and retrieve the Forbidden Texts before she can change the world forever. Join Maggie Shaunessy, Ione Gorton and Hampton Rouke on their quests to save what is dear to them … and the world as they know it. Praise for Nicole Murphy: ‘engaging’ DAILY TELEGRAPH ‘compelling’ KIWI REVIEWS ‘fresh and interesting approach to an urban fantasy series’ Bookseller+Publisher ‘a rollicking romp through the space where romance and fantasy collide’ The Courier-Mail


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Now a little about the author: Nicole Murphy

Nicole Murphy

Nicole Murphy is a writer, editor and teacher whose passions include finding great loves for strong, female characters and ensuring they all get to have fun with the men or women they connect with. The Dream of Asarlai trilogy (Secret Ones, Power Unbound and Rogue Gadda) was originally published by HarperVoyager Australia in 2010/2011. She’s had dozens of speculative fiction stories published, with one rating an Honourable Mention in the Year’s Best Horror 2012 and another being published in Year’s Best Australian Fantasy and Horror in 2013 (a book which recently won an Aurealis Award for best anthology). Later this year, a science fiction romance trilogy will be published with Escape Publishing. As Elizabeth Dunk, she writes contemporary romance and erotica. The latest Elizabeth Dunk book, ‘Release’ – a collection of paranormal erotic novellas, will be published by Escape Publishing in June.

Nicole Murphy Website
Facebook Author  and Twitter handle – @nicole_r_murphy

One reply on “Who is Hampton Rourke? (from the Dream of Asarlai trilogy)

  • maryde

    Funny interview. Thanks Hampton & Ceamir & SE. 🙂
    These stories sound intriguing. I love the Covers too .
    Another series I’ll check out and adding to my wish List. Thanks Nicole


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