Cordell Danvers never claimed to be anything other than extraordinary. At three, he could read, write, add, and subtract. At six he could perform lightening calculations in his head and memorize long strings of numbers... backward. Strange phenomena happened all around him; things appeared out of nowhere and as quickly disappeared, and items mysteriously popped out of people's pockets and wound up in Cordell's hands even when he was all the way across the room. His second grade teacher dubbed him Mr. Wizard as a joke.
He never knew how strange he really was, though, until he was sent to a summer camp for gifted children near his home in Richmond, Virginia. He was supposed to be at the camp to learn higher math. He ended up undergoing his Chrysalis and falling in love. Tevel Ashe, one of the few Jews at camp, was a year older than Cordell and accounted one of the most brilliant students there. The two young men met and immediately clicked.
Wanting to escape notice for an hour or so, they snuck out of camp and into the nearby woods. They should have known that exclusive camps don't like their meal tickets giving them the slip. Searchers were sent out. As they came near the area where the boys were hiding, Tevel used Glamour to hide their presence from them and inadvertently set of Cordell's Chrysalis. During the next hour, while Cordell thrashed and moaned in the throes of his Dream Dance, Tevel held him fast, helping him through it.
Cordell emerged as Cormac Daithi of House Eiluned; more than appropriate for Mr. Wizard. Tevel introduced himself as Ashe of House Dougal. Cormac held the rank of duke, while Ashe was entitled to a barony. The two laughed at the thought of either of them ever gaining such titles. instead, they swore oaths of fealty to one another, promising to always remain friends.
Their relationship became very strained when Ashe's parents moved to Boston where his father had a wonderful job offer. Not knowing their son's true nature, Tevel's parents also hoped they would be able to get their boy into MIT. The boys wrote long letters to one another for almost a year until suddenly Cormac stopped writing. Unknown to Ashe, the Duchess of Dogwood had spotted Cormac among the new young Kithain at court and singled him out. Having investigated the young wilder, Duchess Meregrinne invited him to become her heir... contingent on his moving into her freehold and devoting himself exclusively to learning his duties for six months. Astonished that he was even being considered, Cormac agreed. He forgot how fast time could seem to move outside versus the time spent inside a freehold.
Almost a year later, Meregrinne abdicated and named Cormac her heir. King Meilge lackadaisically confirmed it, and the Eiluned wilder became the Duke of Dogwood. Though Cormac wanted to rule the duchy as well as possible, many of the Kithain there held grave doubts that a half-trained wilder (and worse, an untrustworthy Eiluned) would be as effective as the duchess had been. Both Meregrinne (who wanted new blood in the duchy) and Cormac underestimated just how conservative the changelings of Virginia could be.
After several months of snubs fro his subjects, Cormac was desperate for pleasant company. he finally wrote to Ashe and asked him to move in with him, in the Freehold of Dogwood in Richmond. He didn't mention that he was now the duke. Ashe was overjoyed. He left Boston and drove to Richmond. Cormac had told him how to find the freehold, a stately old mansion on a quiet backstreet north of the river.
The two lovers greeted each other and spent a few days exploring their relationship again before bothering to pay any attention to the rest of the duchy. Finally, Cormac explained things. Ashe was amazed that his lover was the duke, then overwhelmed when Duke Cormac made Ashe the Baron of Richmond. From such a small political misstep, Cormac almost lost his duchy.
The conservative faction among his subjects disliked Cormac to begin with; they were outraged that he created a barony for his lover without even consulting Count Rual, whose County of Jamesriver the barony lay within. Despite proving that Ashe's claims to a barony were legitimate according to the Dreaming, the Old Dominion Guard would not forgive their duke.
A different problem also faced the young duke. Gwrhyr of House Gwydion claimed a freehold in West Virginia, an area that had traditionally been a part of the Duchy of Dogwood. Citing the separation of the states as precedent, he now demanded (though politely) that it be given to him as a separate duchy. The conservatives had a fit. Adamant that no inch of the duchy be ceded to the "commoners and rabble" of West Virginia, they were even willing to accept Baron Ashe if the duke would move to cruch "those upstart hillbillies."
Cormac disagreed. He believed that his subjects would respect him more if he showed some backbone and made his own decisions. He announced that Ashe would keep the barony granted to him and, further, he intended to allow Gwrhyr a trial period to rule West Virginia as a separate duchy. Ashe counseled him to be more prudent and to at least make some show of listening to the other nobles of the duchy, but Cormac had had enough.
Hoping to win at least some nobles to his side, Cormac has recently scheduled a series of balls and outings for the court: picnics, special entertainments, hunts, and races. since most of the nobles are ultraconservatives, he believes that traditional amusements will both mollify them and reassure them of his fitness to rule. He hopes that once he has established himself in their social circles, they will support him in his political decisions. After all, he is a mathematician; he thinks he knows how to play the odds.
Cormac is extremely intelligent, though not always as wise as he might be. He relies on his skills in the Arts of Soothsay and Sovereign to help him rule. He hides his skill in Legerdemain, especially as he knows his use of it would gravely offend the Old Dominioners. While he has learned the forms of government, he is still too young to use them well. For an Eiluned, he is woefully deficient in Manipulation skills.
Just a hair over 6' tall, Cormac has long golden blond hair and robin's-egg blue eyes. He most often wears modern-style clothing, though has lately begun to dress as a medieval noble so as not to offend the conservatives within the duchy.
Cormac was chosen from among all the candidates to become the duke. Sometimes he wishes Meregrinne had never asked him to take on the responsibility or that she had stayed around longer to help him ease into power. If it weren't for Ashe's love and support, he'd probably just give up. Somehow, he has to win over the old fogies without surrendering the advances that have occurred over the last centuries. That is, after all, why the former duchess chose him as duke. He just hopes that he can hold his duchy together long enough to make a difference.