The youngest daughter of King Rhys, with three older brothers proceeding her, the Princess Olwen never expected to be Queen. Given her studious disposition, she spent much of her time at the Lighthouse in Rhianna or the Shadowless in Urdur, studying.
Even when news came that her second eldest brother Maxim had usurped the throne away from their brother Urien, Olwen stayed out of the family politics. But when she visited her eldest brother as he recovered from his madness, Olwen began to piece together the full extent of Maxim's treachery.
Visiting Castell Gwyr, and meeting some of her nieces and nephews for the first time, Olwen was able to get the confession from Maxim's wife that their youngest daughter, Wynne, was actually the bastard child of the new-made Queen and her brother-in-law, Hugh. Worse, Wynne had grown enamored with a rakish youth whom Hugh had made his squire, Iorwrydd - another one of Hugh's bastard children and therefore Wynne's own brother. Olwen begged Wynne's mother to disclose her secret and keep Wynne from incestuous ruination, but she would not and ordered Olwen from the keep.
Rather than returning to her studies, Olwen instead roused her cousins, the sworn stewards of the Kings, most notably Caellach ap Noc, the brother of the fallen Queen Delfine. Together, they raised an army and led it against Maxim, eventually succeeding when Maxim's eldest son and heir, Tristan, joined the cause - having learned how his father secured the throne.
Olwen having been successful, tried to give the crown back to Urien, but Urdur intervened, instead passing the crown to Olwen who took it with a reluctant heart.
Explore the Twelve Kingdoms
(c) Emily C. A. Snyder