We meet Menane in Part One as a 9-year-old orphan Pennacook boy; Grace's native counterpart. Like Grace, he frequently finds himself getting into trouble. He yearns for the day he will be a grown warrior like his brother Kancamagus (who, by the way, is one of the real-life characters). Tormented by the bullying Wahowah, who happens to be Kancamagus's closest friend , little Menane develops a deep resentment toward the older warrior.
Menane has never had any involvement with whites, and has been exposed to conflicting views about them. His uncle, Wanalancet, urges peace while hot-blooded Kancamagus despises all things white.
Menane's first encounter with white men goes badly, confirming Kancamagus's hateful view of them.
And then he meets his peer, freckle-faced, red-haired Grace.
Her strange coloration surprises him, but her persistent curiosity irritates him. She asks rude questions and demonstrates her whirligig toy to him, as if he would be interested! What part of "leave me alone" doesn't this white girl understand?
And then a grown white woman (real-life ancestress of mine, Elizabeth Hull Heard) shows an injured young Menane compassion, further muddying Menane's opinion of whites. Maybe only white men deserving of contempt?
The sham battle proposed by Major Richard Waldron on Sept 7, 1676, provides Menane a chance to prove himself on the battleground. His ill grandmother warns him to avoid the whites' settlement; she's had a vision of his demise there. But things go horribly wrong, and Menane's certain death seems prevented only by a new-found talisman.
After coming of age, he receives his adult name, Wôbi Skog Wsizokw. He is reminded through visions of the strange white girl, and thirteen years after their first meeting, they are reunited. He is convinced they are twin flames, and becomes Grace's champion against his nemesis, Wahowah.
The main challenge with a character like Menane/Wôbi Skog Wsizokw is not to thrust him into the "noble savage" archetype. Besides presenting me with the always-difficult male POV (Point Of View), I want to make him multi-dimensional and not a caricature.
I hope, after reading my final product, the reader falls in love with Menane/Wôbi Skog Wsizokw and appreciates the complexities of his character.
Next installment; Hero #2, Absalom Hart.