Halliron is the Masterbard of Athera when the events of the stories begin. He is at least eighty years old and is described as ascetically thin, with a narrow face, topaz eyes, and widely spaced front teeth.
Halliron was born in Innish in Third Age 5556 to Al'Duine and Stacia. He married his wife, Dame Deartha in Third Age 5591. When Halliron inherited the office of Masterbard from Murchiel in Third Age 5597, he left his wife and small daughter, Hettia behind to travel Paravia.
Role in the Story
|Spoiler warning: Contains plot elements from multiple books in the series.
Curse of the Mistwraith
Third Age 5638: Following an unsuccessful audition for an apprentice in the town of Ward, Halliron is taken prisoner by Jieret and Idrien, who are "playing at raids". He is escorted to the camp of Steiven s'Valerient, who releases him. During the storm which was diverted from Etarra for Arithon's coronation, Halliron shelters with the clans of Deshir. He is present when Jieret has the vision of Arithon being pursued by Etarran lancers.
Halliron is present when Arithon arrives, and decides to stay with the clans through the upcoming battle. He plays for the women and children as they travel to Tal Quorin, and notices that Arithon is deeply interested in his music. When Arithon is distracted in mage-sight by the fall of a tree, Halliron discovers that he is not the overbred dandy he pretends to be. He wagers with Elwedd over Arithon's sword skills. After Arithon's scrying, Halliron hears the voice of his lyranthe and returns to berate Arithon for a wasted talent. His words drive Arithon to leave the tent in search of Caolle or Steiven. He is also present during Arithon's recovery, but cannot assist with his Masterbard talents. According to the author, "Halliron could have done something to ease a passing if Arithon died. He could have helped anyone conscious, and perhaps bolstered a failing life -- but mitigate a tienelle poisoning, no. His opening statement if you recall, was that Arithon's talent would one day surpass him."
On the day before the Battle of Strakewood, Halliron plays for the clans -- ballads and bright songs from better days. Halliron is not seen again until after the Battle of Strakewood. He assists Caolle and the clansmen who tend to the dead and wounded on the battlefield. When they come upon bodies peacefully rearrranged in the grotto, he realizes that Arithon is redeeming the dead, and forces Caolle to listen to the Ballad of Falmuir. Afterwards, he and Caolle continue to tend to the wounded while Arithon takes care of the dead. Halliron performs the ritual to sing Deshir's dead into memory just before the clansmen's flight to Fallowmere. Afterwards, he catches up to Arithon and offers him the position of apprentice. Arithon accepts.
Ships of Merior
Third Age 5644: Halliron spends the next six years travelling across Rathain, performing and teaching Arithon in the guise of Medlir. By late autumn, he reaches a backwater tavern in the Skyshiels, along the coast between Highscarp and Jaelot, where he encounters Dakar. The trio travels towards Jaelot, intent on reaching Innish so Halliron can reconcile with his family, but are delayed by Halliron's failing health. When they finally reach Jaelot, Dakar is arrested because of the antics of his horse, Faery-toes. Halliron attends Dakar's trial, where he's insulted by the Mayor of Jaelot, who suggests that he perform on midsummer solstice as part of Dakar's fine. He agrees to stay with Arithon in Jaelot until then. In the months leading up to solstice, Dakar works for Halliron, gathering gossip.
Third Age 5645: On solstice, he is escorted to the Mayor's palace by Arithon and performs his satire. In response, he is struck unconscious by a guard. Arithon's subsequent performance raises the Paravian mysteries, and they escape from Jaelot in a wagon. During the flight from Jaelot, Halliron senses his declining vitality and passes the position of Masterbard onto Arithon. After evading several packs of guards from Jaelot, the group is intercepted by Asandir who leads them to a safe cave. Asandir makes him comfortable and agrees to escort him back to Shand by way of the lane focus in Jaelot. Halliron survives the transfer, but passes away in the Desert of Sanpashir before reaching Innish.
- E-mail with Janny Wurts, February 18, 2010
- E-mail with Janny Wurts, February 3, 2008