This is an interview with Maximilian “Blaze” Ward, the hero of my novel The Coven: Fire and Ice. Blaze is a warlock and is the leader of the Brotherhood, five young warlocks charged with defending witches and humanity from a demonic adversary named Seth. Blaze falls head over heels in love with Kat Grey, a ballsy gal with a smart mouth and a few demons of her own.
First of all, why do they call you ‘Blaze’? Kind of an odd nickname.
You sound like my girlfriend Kat. It’s because of my speed – I’m faster than the speed of light. That’s my special power. I’m also a wide receiver on my school’s football team.
Boxers or briefs?
Wouldn’t you like to know.
What is your favorite book?
Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley. When I read it in English lit, it wasn’t at all what I was expecting. I mean, yeah, there’s a monster in it, but it’s not a horror story at all. It has a lot of themes, but what I got from it was the importance of knowing what the limits of your power are. I think it has a lot of parallels for using magic and witchcraft. Just because you can cast a spell doesn’t necessarily mean you should. We witches and warlocks can grow to be extremely powerful, but we can be twisted by that power if we aren’t careful. It can destroy everything that’s precious to us. It’s an important lesson that we all have to learn. I think that’s why I liked the book so much.
What’s the best gift you’ve ever received?
Kat knows how much I love to draw, so she gave me a sketchbook once. But at the top of each page, she had written suggestions for what to draw, things that really challenged my skill or stuff I wouldn’t have thought of. My girl is thoughtful like that.
Also, I don’t know how she did it, but Kat managed to get me an autographed game ball from Tom Brady for my birthday. I almost died when I opened it.
Which Brother would win in fight with no magic?
Me, obviously. Etienne is strong but he’s stupid too, so…
What’s the most fascinating place you’ve visited?
Hands down, Cambodia. It’s a really amazing country and the people are so friendly. My family and I got to tour Angkor Wat. It was incredible. Kat’s never been, so I hope to take her one day to see it.
Where do you dream of traveling to and why?
There aren’t a lot of places I haven’t visited but Machu Picchu is high on the list. It’s one of the wonders of the world, plus it’s really challenging to get to. And there’s nothing I like more than a challenge.
Do you have a recurring nightmare or dream?
Actually, we don’t dream like humans. Ours are more like visions, and they usually foretell the future or solve some sort of problem that we’re wrestling with.
What’s your favorite spell?
The cloning spell that I created. It basically splits the caster into several copies of himself or herself. It’s great for when the Brotherhood needs to cover a lot of ground, but it takes a lot of energy to maintain. My dad was impressed with it, so you know it was badass.
Who is your best friend?
It would definitely be Q [Quintavius Grier]. He’s a super genius and he’s my right hand man. I can talk to that guy about anything. You would think someone that smart would be weird and awkward but he’s the coolest dude I know.
If you could apologize to someone in your past, who would it be?
[Sighs deeply] It would be Anna Thomas. She’s a girl I couldn’t save from Dark Ones when I first became a Brother. They ambushed her one night while she was running. I heard her screams because I was out on patrol near where she was, but I didn’t make it in time. I think of her almost every day. I was depressed for weeks after it happened, but I vowed she’d be the first and the last one they took without a fight.
If you could meet one historical figure, who would it be?
Nobody famous. It would be my great, great grandfather, Sherman Ward. He was a ‘station master’ on the Underground Railroad. He hid runaway slaves in his barn and his house as they escaped to Canada.
What is your most prized possession?
Definitely my black stallion Baltazar.
What is something people would be surprised to know about you?
I love musicals. Please don’t tell Etienne or Sebastian. The Montgomery brothers have big mouths.