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     The Sevenwaters Family: Generation I 
Consisting of Lord Colum, his first wife and the seven children.

Lord Colum

Chieftain of Sevenwaters in Daughter of the Forest. Marries Lady Oonagh.
  • Action Dad: Has seven (later eight) children, and he is known as one of the most fierce chieftains fighting in battle. Even Lord Richard is wary of him.
  • Adult Fear: Has a huge one in Daughter of the Forest, when all of his children go missing. It's this loss which breaks him and he does not stop mourning them.
  • Awful Wedded Life: Though at first life as Oonagh's husband seems lovely at first soon after the wedding (especially after losing the children) Colum begins to realise just how evil Oonagh is and attempts to free himself from her control, without success. Because he can't, he starts to hate himself and blames himself for his children's loss. By the time Oonagh flees with Ciaran Colum is a shadow of himself and sunk deep into despair.
  • Badass in Distress: He is trapped by Oonagh's spell, and it takes the breaking of the swan-curse for him to be freed from it.
  • Blood Knight: After his wife's death Colum turns to war and campaigning to deal with his grief.
  • Break the Badass: Oonagh succeeds doing this to him, by keeping him under her spell and making all of his children disappear. He is never the same afterward.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Lost all of his brothers and his father in the feud with Northwoods, leaving him (the seventh son) to inherit Sevenwaters.
  • Determinator: Is set on finding and rescuing his youngest son from Lady Oonagh, and does not stop until he does so.
  • The Dreaded: Is one of the most feared Irish fighting chieftains in Erin. Even Lord Richard is wary of him.
  • Fighting from the Inside: He tries breaking free from Oonagh's spell many times but fails.
  • Guess Who I'm Marrying?: He springs the news of his betrothal to Oonagh on his children, who are not happy about it since they can sense that she has evil intent.
  • Happily Married: To Niamh, his first wife, before her death.
  • Heroic BSoD: Is completely broken by the loss of his children and what Oonagh does to him. It is only thanks to Finbar that he recovers from it.
  • Hot-Blooded: Not so much now, but more so in his younger years.
  • It's All My Fault: Blames himself (and not without cause) for what happened to his children and household and cannot forgive himself for it.
  • The Lost Lenore: Niamh is this for him. He can't get over losing her.
  • Marry for Love: What he thinks he is doing with Oonagh. It turns out to be a lie as Oonagh has bewitched him into thinking he loves her.
  • Pride: Has a lot of this, at least before Oonagh gets her hands on him. After he is free from her he becomes more humble and wizened by his experience.
  • The Quest: After recovering from is Heroic BSoD, Colum sets off to find his sons Diarmid and Cormack (who had been gone for months by this point) and rescue his infant son Ciaran from Oonagh's clutches.
  • Remarring For Your Kids: Father Brien suggest that aside from being bewitched into loving Oonagh, the reason he seeks a new wife is that he knows that his parenting skills are lacking and his children need a motherly figure, especially a daughter on the verge of womanhood.
  • Starting a New Life: After rescuing Ciaran, he spends the remainder of his life in the nemetons with him.
  • The Stoic: He rarely shows what he is feeling, especially after Niamh's death.
  • Tranquil Fury: Shows a measure of this when Finbar questions him about his campaigning and tells him that he should try to understand his enemies and make peace with them.
  • Widow Man: His beloved wife Niamh died giving birth to Sorcha, and he spent the rest of his life mourning her.


Lord Colum's first wife.
  • Death by Childbirth: Dies giving birth to her youngest child, Sorcha.
  • Happily Married: To Colum before her death.
  • Missing Mom: She died before the events start, but she is well remembered by most of her children and endlessly mourn by her husband.
  • The Lost Lenore: Is this for Colum.
  • Seer: According to Sorcha, it was rumoured that Niamh had the Sight, which she passed onto Finbar.


Sorcha's eldest brother. He is heir to Sevenwaters in the first book, and is betrothed to Eilis Redbeard. However, during the curse the betrothal is cancelled. In Son of the Shadows Liam is Lord of Sevenwaters. He is killed by a Briton's arrow while travelling to a secret meeting.
  • Absence Makes the Heart Go Yonder: After Liam disappears Seamus Redbeard betroths Eilis to Colum's neighbour Eamonn of the Marshes, as he thinks Liam is gone forever. It is made clear that the wedding is not of Eilis' wishes, but she goes through with it anyway because her father wants her to. Liam and Eilis' hearts never truly stray from one another.
  • Arranged Marriage: Liam is betrothed to Eilis Redbeard in Daughter of the Forest. It doesn't work out, due to Oonagh's interference.
  • Badass in Distress: He and his brothers are put under a curse by Oonagh which Sorcha works to free them from.
  • Baleful Polymorph: Is this while under Oonagh's curse.
  • Big Brother Instinct: He always knows when Sorcha or any of his brothers needs him.
  • Died in Your Arms Tonight: During a battle for the Islands, his brother Cormack is fatally wounded and dies in his arms.
  • Character Death: He is killed by a Briton's arrow while travelling to a secret meeting which not many of their allies knew about.
  • Heartbroken Hero: After he learns of Eilis' marriage to Eamonn of the Marshes.
  • Involuntary Shapeshifting: In Daughter of the Forest, Liam and his brothers are cursed to be swans except at midwinter and midsummer.
  • The Lost Lenore: Eilis becomes this for him after she dies in childbirth.
  • Nerves of Steel: Can always be relied upon in a dangerous situation and never loses his cool.
  • Perfectly Arranged Marriage: Or rather, 'perfectly arranged betrothal'. Liam and Eilis never make it to marriage because of the Lady Oonagh's interference, though they truly love one another.


Sorcha's second eldest brother. Falls under the influence of Lady Oonagh, and later spends the rest of the novel feeling bitter and wanting revenge on Oonagh. After the curse, he helps Lord Colum resuce Ciaran from the Lady Oonagh. He dies during a daring battle for the Islands after seeing his brother Cormack killed in battle. Diarmid goes to avenge him and is captured by the Britons, who have some sport with him before leaving him in the ocean to drown.
  • Badass in Distress: He and his brothers are put under a curse by Oonagh which Sorcha works to free them from.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Always knows when his siblings need him.
  • Blood Knight: He is as dedicated to campaigning as Colum is.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: He is bewitched by Oonagh into lusting after her.
  • Character Death: He is killed during a battle for the Islands, in an attempt to avenge his brother Cormack.
  • Hot-Blooded: Very much so.
  • Involuntary Shapeshifting: Is cursed to be a swan except at Midsummer and Midwinter.
  • It's All My Fault: Feels guilty and bitter at how he was used by Oonagh, thinking that if he had been strong enough to resist her things would have turned out differently.
  • Mugging the Monster: Is one of the brothers who goes after the rapists who assaulted Sorcha.
  • Rape and Revenge: After Sorcha is raped Diarmid and his brothers mug and murder her rapists out of a need for vengeance.
  • True Companions: With his brothers and sister.
  • Weak-Willed: Compared to Colum, anyway. While Oonagh finds it difficult to keep Colum in control she has no such trouble with Diarmid.


Sorcha's third eldest brother and twin to Conor. Not very affected by the curse, due to his 'live-in-the-moment' mentality. After the curse he helps Lord Colum rescue Ciaran from the Lady Oonagh. He dies during a daring battle for the Islands. His brother Diarmid dies avenging him.


The fourth son of Lord Colum and twin to Cormack. He is destined to become a druid in Daughter of the Forest when he is turned into a swan. Because of his druidic skills, during the curse Conor can keep both human and animal consciousness within him. In Son of the Shadows, Conor is Archdruid and sees the family on ritual days. In later books he becomes a sort of advisor to the current Lord of Sevenwaters.
  • Big Brother Instinct: He always seems to know when his siblings need him, especially Finbar and Sorcha.
  • Druid: Becomes one at the end of Daughter of the Forest, though he was already well on his way to it.
  • Elemental Powers: In Son of the Shadows is seen to conjure fire out of thin air, during the ritual of Imbolc.
  • The Empath: Conor can feel the emotions of others, especially Sorcha and Finbar.
  • High Priest: In later books.
  • Intelligence = Isolation: Conor is frequently consulted and is considered the most knowledgeable of the Sevenwaters folk, and he lives in isolation from other people.
  • It's All My Fault: Conor holds himself to blame for Niamh and Ciaran's affair, Ciaran leaving the nemetons and the old evil returning, as it was he who brought Ciaran to Sevenwaters.
  • Like a Son to Me: Ciaran is this to Conor.
  • The Medic: To a lesser extent than Sorcha, in Daughter of the Forest. Conor is the one who treats Sorcha's starwort-injured hands both when she is a child and also when she is sewing the six shirts to save them from the curse.
  • Parental Abandonment: His mother died in childbirth; his father became a cold shell who let the servants raise them.
  • The Storyteller: As a Druid, this is one of Conor's main roles. In Son of the Shadows he tells a number of tales which prove to be important in regards to the plot of the novel and usually have hidden and cryptic meanings.
  • Telepathy: Conor can communicate mentally with both Finbar and Sorcha, and later with Sorcha's daughter Liadan.
  • True Companions: With Sorcha and his brothers.
  • Wise Beyond Their Years: The wisest of his brothers, and the most knowledgeable. At age 16 he is already an authority to deal with in Sevenwaters.


Fifth son of Lord Colum. He is a seer, and shares a special bond with Sorcha, which allows them to speak mind-to-mind.
  • Pacifist: Finbar is initially a pacifist, believing that there are methods other than violence that can be used to defeat one's enemies. He thinks that Colum's campaigning and prejudice against the Britons for the Islands is wrong, and that they should make an effort to understand their enemy's motivations and position rather than attack them blindly.
  • Shapeshifter Mode Lock: Sorcha didn't have the time to finish his shirt ,(she was almost executed by Richard) and he's left with a single swan wing.
  • Psychic Link: He has a psychic bond with his sister Sorcha.
  • True Companions: With his siblings.
  • White Sheep: Finbar rescues Simon from being tortured by his father Lord Colum. He also later hints to Sorcha at having saved previous captured Britons in a similar way.


Sixth son of Lord Colum. Very adventurous and practical. Likes creating new objects and healing animals. He is the least affected by the curse, because of his sense of adventure and eagerness to try new challenges. After the curse he becomes an adventurer, and rarely returns to Sevenwaters. He eventually settles in Galicia and has six children.
  • Babies Ever After: Padriac has six children altogether: Aisha (by Samara), Fernando (by Maria), and Carmen, Dolores, Luis and Juan (by Mercedes).
  • Baleful Polymorph: He and his brothers are turned into swans by Oonagh.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Always knows when his siblings need him.
  • Cheerful Child: Nothing seems to get him down. Even during the curse years, he is the most jovial and least bitter of the brothers.
  • Friend to All Living Things: Padriac likes to heal and care for animals. He is furious when he sees what Cormack does to Linn and refuses to speak to him for a while because of it.
  • Happily Married: In 'Twixt Firelight and Water, it's discovered that he was married three times, to three different women.
  • Involuntary Shapeshifting: Is cursed to be a swan except at Midwinter and Midsummer.
  • Starting a New Life: Padriac begins a life of adventure and sailing to get away from Sevenwaters and the memories of Oonagh and the curse that dwell there. He eventually settles on Galicia, marries three times and has six children, and becomes renowned as a trader (and even owns a trading fleet).
  • True Companions: With his sister and brothers.


The protagonist of the first book, 'Daughter of the Forest'. After her brothers are turned into swans by the Lady Oonagh, Sorcha is tasked by the Fair Folk to sew garments of starwort to free her brothers from the curse. Eventually she falls into the hands of a Briton, Hugh of Harrowfield, and falls in love with him (although she does not realise it until much later). In Son of the Shadows, although she is ill, Sorcha's opinion is highly valued. Her brothers and husband try to keep from distressing her in her final days. She dies in Son of the Shadows.
  • Babies Ever After: At the end of Daughter of the Forest, Sorcha is pregnant with her first child, Niamh. By the time of Son of the Shadows, she and Red have three almost grown children— Niamh, Liadan and Sean.
  • Big Brother Worship: Sorcha adores her older brothers. It's hardly surprising, since they had a large hand in raising her. She is especially close to Finbar, who she shares a special Psychic Link with, and also Conor.
  • Break the Cutie: Both Lady Oonagh and the Fair Folk ask an awful lot of Sorcha. The poor girl’s only thirteen when the madness starts.
  • Burn the Witch!: Richard tries to have Sorcha burnt as a witch in Harrowfield, at the request of the Lady Oonagh. He would have succeeded, too, if it weren't for Red's timely arrival and Sorcha's breaking of the curse over her brothers.
  • Bad Liar: Sorcha is often described as this. Conor tells her at one stage in Daughter of the Forest that her thoughts are written clearly on her face.
  • The Caretaker: Sorcha, first to Simon then to her brothers.
  • Character Death: In Son of the Shadows, from uterinary cancer.
  • Determinator: Where to begin? After her brothers are cursed she is quick to agree to the Lady of the Forest's terms for the breaking of the spell and sets about sewing six shirts of starwort which gives her agonising pain and makes her hands be ugly and covered with sores. Even through all the heartbreak and doubt, Sorcha almost never gives up and just keeps going. The only time she seems to fall into complete despair is after she is raped, and even then it is only temporary— the Lady appears to tell her to get a move on and guides her to a safer location to continue her task in. Even when Sorcha is condemned to burn at the stake, she doesn't give up her task, thinking rightly that as long as she is alive there is still hope, so she must continue whatever the cost to herself.
  • Earthy Barefoot Character: As a child, Sorcha refuses to wear any shoes.
  • Famed in Story: The events of Daughter of the Forest cause Sorcha to be well-known and respected as the girl who endured terrible hardship to save her brothers from the sorceress' curse.
  • Family Eye Resemblance: Sorcha has fey-green eyes like her mother Niamh.
  • Famous Last Words: 'Red, tell me a story.'
  • Hand Signals: Though Sorcha is unable to speak because of the curse, she manages to communicate effectively through use of gestures.
  • Happily Married: In Son of the Shadows.
  • Hates Being Touched: After her rape, Sorcha becomes afraid of men, and refuses to even hug her brothers.
  • Heroic BSoD: Sorcha has this in a big way after she is raped. It takes Finbar's gift of healing the mind for her to recover from it.
  • Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: Sorcha looks like a toddler compared to Red.
  • Incorruptible Pure Pureness: Sorcha is assaulted, manhandled and forced to witness a shocking amount of violence before turning sixteen. Yet instead of cursing her situation, she focuses on saving her brothers and returning home. Even when people like Richard attempt to destroy her, she refrains from fighting back so as not to burden Red. The only person she shows any outward animosity towards is Oonagh, and for good reason. Through it all, she maintains her innocence and purity to the point where even the Fair Folk are impressed.
    • She stays just as pure later in life. It’s astonishing, considering what continues to happen around her.
  • I Would Say If I Could Say: Sorcha is forbidden to use any form of communication to explain her situation.
    • During her trial for witchcraft in Daughter of the Forest Sorcha is unable to declare her innocence because of the terms of the curse (and the breaking of it).
  • Last Request: Sorcha's last request to Red before she dies is for him to return to Harrowfield to find out what happened to Margery and her baby Johnny after he left.
  • Legendary in the Sequel; See Famed in Story.
  • Love at First Sight: How she falls in love with Red, though she doesn't realise she loves him until months later.
  • Magical Seventh Son: Seventh child in this case. Sorcha is the seventh daughter of Lord Colum. Her six brothers are bound in a curse to be forever swans by her stepmother that only the seventh child can lift.
  • Marriage Before Romance: Sorcha does not realise that she is in love with Red when she weds him. She only knows her true feelings after Finbar tells her, and comes to accept them when the Lady of the Forest appears to her and reveals that Red does indeed love her and was not compelled to be that way by the Fair Folk. It's only after Sorcha and Red begin their life together at Sevenwaters that the real romance starts.
  • Marriage of Convenience: Sorcha only weds Red to keep herself safe from Lord Richard while Red is away searching for his missing brother. It doesn't work, in that regard. When Sorcha is seen embracing Conor Richard is quick to arrest her and use it as an excuse to burn her for witchcraft.
  • The Medic: From a very young age (soon after her first encounter with starwort) Sorcha taught herself the art of healing and herb-lore, and was so dedicated that she surpassed Father Brien in her knowledge and capability. She would often help the father treat his patients, even as a small child, and soon he and others in the village came to her for medical help and advice.
    • In Daughter of the Forest, she acts as The Medic to Simon, at Father Brien's request.
  • Mistaken for Cheating: Sorcha meets up with Conor outside Harrowfield on one of the nights her brothers are human; they are caught embracing by Richard, who (since she is married to Red at this point) instantly accuses Sorcha of adultery and uses this as an excuse to get rid of her.
  • Mutual Sibling Instinct: Sorcha always knows when her brothers, especially Finbar, need her. In her own words, she would feel it strongly if any one of them perished. This is how she knows that Finbar did not drown himself at the end of Daughter of the Forest. Sorcha's brothers have the same instinct in regards to her own needs and suffering. As soon as Sorcha sees her destroyed garden, Conor and Finbar sense her pain and immediately come to comfort her.
  • Nature Hero: Sorcha is a downplayed version of this. She likes playing in the forest but isn't a recluse as such; the long time she spent living in the forest alone was for a specific purpose and she returns to humanity when that is complete.
  • Oblivious to Love: Sorcha doesn't realise that Red loves her, or that she loves Red, until the very end of the novel. It's been obvious to everyone at Harrowfield for months that Red and Sorcha are in love.
  • Peaceful in Death: At her funeral, Sorcha's expression is said to be peaceful and girl-like.
  • Picky Eater: How does Sorcha survive with so little food?
  • Prone to Tears: Sorcha is described as a frail child, very thin and delicate. Although her weight changes slightly after her move to Harrowfield, she’s still tiny compared to the rest of the household. The men treat her like she’s extremely breakable. It also doesn’t help that she constantly injures herself.
  • Raven Hair, Ivory Skin: This applies to Sorcha, although among the fair-haired Britons she tends to be cast as an Eerie Pale-Skinned Brunette.
  • The Speechless: In Daughter of the Forest, and for good reason.
  • Starting a New Life: Multiple times in Daughter of the Forest. First, Sorcha is forced to flee the keep and go into hiding in the forest while she begins her life-saving task. Then, after her rape, she leaves the forest as per the Lady's instructions and falls into Red's keeping, and ends up going to Harrowfield with him to live for a time. Then, at the very end, Sorcha's brothers are saved and Sorcha returns with them to Erin to set everything to rights. Red soon follows her, thus fulfilling the first step of the Fair Folk's grand plan. By Mean Fomhaire Sorcha has a baby, Niamh.
  • The Storyteller: Sorcha is well-known as this, though Conor is the major story-teller in the first three books.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: She is very like her mother Niamh in physical appearance, so much so that it hurts Colum to look at her.
  • Tomboy Princess: Sorcha prefers running around in the forest and playing with her brothers to being dressed up like a doll by Oonagh.
  • Too Good for This Sinful Earth: Sorcha dies young, at age thirty-four, of uterinary cancer, according to Word of God. She is incorruptibly pure when she is alive, as well.
  • True Companions: Sorcha with her brothers.
  • What Is This Feeling?: Sorcha doesn’t realize that she’s in love with Red until Finbar tells her. Cue her Love Epiphany and a flood of tears.
  • Youngest Child Wins: Sorcha is the youngest of the original Sevenwaters siblings, and she is the only one of them (aside from Padriac) who truly moves on from the horrors of the cursed years and has a happy life with husband and children.


     The Sevenwaters Family: Generation II 
Consisting of Sorcha's children (Niamh, Sean and Liadan), and Colum's eighth son Ciaran.


Son of Lady Oonagh and Lord Colum. Originally a sorcerer, he reverts back to the druid ways after Child of the Prophecy.
  • Evil Sorcerer: Subverted, in that Ciaran is a sorcerer but not an evil one.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: In Flame of Sevenwaters Ciaran gives up his place in the human world to become Prince of the Otherworld, so that Cathal won't have to sacrifice his own place and life with Clodagh (who he loves dearly) and his two children. Ciaran's reason for it is particularly heartwarming— he wants Cathal and Clodagh to have the years of love and marriage which he and Niamh never got to have.
  • Incest Is Relative: Ciaran is Niamh's uncle, for all he is only three years older than her. It's the reason the Sevenwaters men prevent Niamh and Ciaran from wedding. It doesn't work. Once Niamh and Ciaran are reunited after Niamh's escape from Sidhe Dubh, they decide to throw caution to the wind and continue their relationship, because they are deeply in love and it doesn't matter to them whether their relationship is against the laws of nature or what other people think about it.
  • It's All My Fault: Ciaran blames himself for Niamh's death because he believed his love was not enough for her to want to live.
  • Love at First Sight: Ciaran falls in love with Niamh when he sees her dancing in the firelight at Imbolc, during his very first outing from the nemetons to Sevenwaters.


Eldest daughter of Sorcha, and is very beautiful. She falls in love with Ciaran, but is sent away to marry Fionn of the Uill Neill instead.
  • Awful Wedded Life: With Fionn, her abusive husband.
  • Blue Blood: She is a daughter of Sevenwaters.
  • Break the Cutie: Her family's rejection of her and Fionn's abuse hurts her so badly that she is an emotional wreck afterward.
  • Dead Guy Junior: She is named after Sorcha's mother Niamh.
  • Death by Despair: Subverted. See below.
  • Drivento Suicide: Subverted. Ciaran and Fainne believe that Niamh killed herself by jumping off the Honeycomb, but really Lady Oonagh murdered her.
  • Fiery Redhead: Before her marriage to Fionn, Niamh is proud and fiery, but afterwards not so much. She certainly has red hair.
  • Happy Marriage Charade: In Sevenwaters, it can be seen that Niamh is not happy with Fionn, but both she and Fionn act as if all is well, to keep up appearances.
  • Heroic BSoD: Niamh has a major breakdown after her family sends her away to be married, as she believes that Ciaran abandoned her and that her family doesn't care about her. It doesn't help that Fionn acts like a complete Jerkass towards her, physically and emotionally abusing her and making her believe that it's her fault. When Niamh returns to Sevenwaters later in the story, Liadan is shocked to see how changed she is.
  • Incest Is Relative: Niamh falls in love with Ciaran, a druid-in-training, who also happens to be her mother's half-brother. As a result, their union is forbidden. Niamh and Ciaran continue it anyway.
  • Marry for Love: What Niamh and Ciaran choose to do after Niamh is rescued from Fionn.
  • Nervous Wreck: After her marriage to Fionn.
  • Parental Marriage Veto: Niamh's family veto her union with Ciaran, as it is forbidden by blood.
  • Pride: She is very proud of her beauty, though she complains about how Briton she looks a lot of the time.
  • Shrinking Violet: After her marriage to Fionn.
  • Starting a New Life: After being rescued from Fionn, Niamh moves to Kerry to live with Ciaran there, and they eventually start a family together.
  • Trophy Wife: What Niamh is to Fionn.
  • Unwanted Spouse: Niamh never wanted to marry Fionn, and as a result can't find it in herself to make love to him properly. This angers Fionn and leads to his abuse of her.


Liadan's twin, and Sorcha's son. He is heir to Sevenwaters in Son of the Shadows, and becomes the true lord part-way through the novel. In later books he is middle-aged and acting in full capacity as Lord of Sevenwaters.
  • Action Dad: Is the chieftain of Sevenwaters and has all the badassness which goes with it. He is also a father to seven children.
  • Adult Fear: Has quite a few doses of this in the series, much more so than his predecessors. First of all, at some point in the past he and Aisling lose twin boys only a day or so after they are born, which hurts them both badly, especially since Aisling had always been longing to give Sean a son. Secondly, his baby son is abducted just days after his birth, which is another blow because of the aforementioned longing for a son, and it's later revealed that the Prince of the Otherworld had planned it to force his own son to return to him and become Prince in his place one day. Because Clodagh has fallen in love with the said son, she is forced into hiding with him on Inis Eala, with the likelihood being that she will never be able to see her parents or her siblings ever again. Years later Sean has to deal with the tricks the Lord of the Oak is playing to lure Cathal to Sevenwaters again which results in important people going missing and a possible war and danger to Sean's family and household.
  • Babies Ever After: He has six daughters and one son with Aisling.
  • Childhood Friend Romance: With Aisling.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: Sean and Bran (the Painted Man).
  • Good Parents: Both he and Aisling are this to their seven children, raising them in a safe and happy environment and giving all the love they can to them.
  • Happily Married: To Aisling, in later books.
  • Hot-Blooded: Very much so, in his younger years.
  • It's All My Fault: He blames himself for Maeve's injury in the fire at Samhain, thinking that if he had done something different (like making sure Bounder didn't sleep where the fire started, making sure Maeve didn't sneak away like she did and keep a closer eye on her) it would never have happened the way it did.
  • Marry for Love: Ends up doing this with Aisling.
  • Perfectly Arranged Marriage: Sean and Aisling and very much in love, and theirs was an arranged marriage.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Is this for the people of Sevenwaters.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: He is very similar in personality to Colum. He also has some of his physical features as well.
  • True Companions: With Liadan.
  • Twin Telepathy: With Liadan, his twin sister. It becomes especially convenient when Liadan moves with Bran to live at Harrowfield, thousands of kilometers across the sea in Briton.


The protagonist of the second book, 'Son of the Shadows'. The year she is sixteen, Liadan discovers that she is a seer and may have an important part to play in the plans of the Fair Folk. She witnesses as an ancient darkness comes over Sevenwaters once more and secrets threaten to divide the Sevenwaters family.
  • Action Mom: She battles her way out of Sidhe Dubh with her baby son strapped to her back.
  • Bad Liar: Liadan comments multiple times on how bad a liar she is. When Eamonn questions her about Niamh's disappearance from Sidhe Dubh, she is terrified that he will see the truth in her face and words, though she tries to hide it.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: Liadan says this to Niamh when Niamh wishes for a more adventurous life.
  • Betty and Veronica: Liadan is torn between the 'boy-next-door' Eamonn and bad-boy Bran. She chooses Bran.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Liadan travels to Sidhe Dubh and bargains with Eamonn to force him to let Bran, Gull and Aisling go.
  • Brother–Sister Team: Sean and Liadan share a strong bond as twins. Niamh and Liadan are a Sister-Sister variation.
  • Brutal Honesty: She is not afraid to speak her mind when she feels the need to.
  • Calling the Old Man Out: Liadan does this to Conor when she realises that he deliberately hid the truth of Ciaran's parentage from Niamh and Ciaran, forcing Niamh into an abusive marriage and letting her believe that Ciaran had abandoned her because he did noy love her, and causing Ciaran to leave the nemetons and seek out his mother, the lady Oonagh.
  • Converse with the Unconscious: Liadan speaks to Bran to bring him back from the dead.
    • She also talks to her unborn child frequently.
  • Daddy's Girl: She has a very close relationship with her father.
  • Dude Magnet: Men seem to be drawn to Liadan. Bran is attracted to her from the moment he first meets her. The same goes for Dog, and the entire band (though not in a romantic way). Eamonn of the Marshes makes it clear to Liadan that he loves her and will have no other for his wife, even after Liadan has told him multiple times that she's found another man and that he should move on with his life already.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: Liadan with Bran and all of his men.
  • I Choose to Stay: After rescuing Bran from Eamonn and saving him from death, Liadan refuses to return to Sevenwaters, saying that her place (and her son's) is with Bran. Bran does not argue with this.
  • Happily Married: After Son of the Shadows, to Bran.
  • Immune to Fate: Liadan's birth was not within the plans or predictions of the Fair Folk. Because of this Liadan has the power to change the pattern.
  • Incest Is Relative: Averted. Bran and Liadan are related distantly on Red's side of the family, but it's distant enough that it doesn't count as incest.
  • Law of Inverse Fertility: Liadan and Bran conceive Johnny during their very first night together.
  • Legendary in the Sequel: To the people of Inis Eala.
  • Marry for Love: Does this with Bran.
  • The Medic: Like her mother, Liadan is a gifted healer.
  • Mercy Kill: As Liadan is returning to Sevenwaters after being released by Bran, she comes across a group of Eamonn's soldiers who brutally beat one of Bran's men, Dog. After the soldiers leave Liadan, coming out of her hiding place, goes to Dog to try and heal him, but he asks for the knife instead. Realising that killing him is the only option, she does so, though it pains her to do it.
  • Mistaken for Cheating: After meeting Liadan in Sevenwaters Forest, Bran is surprised to see that she has a baby with her and immediately jumps to the conclusion that Liadan has married another and the baby is that man's child. Liadan is not happy at his assumption that she would discard him so easily and tells him plainly that the baby is his.
  • Nice Girl: She's generally a nice girl, unless you get on her bad side.
  • Oblivious to Love: Liadan doesn't think that Eamonn would truly love her when he could have Niamh, and is more than a little surprised when he proposes to her.
  • Official Couple: With Bran.
  • Opposites Attract: Liadan, the girl who loves healing and is most comfortable with her mundane life at Sevenwaters, falls in love with Bran, an outlaw with a very dark past.
  • The Determinator: She just never gives up. It's a quality all the female protagonists seem to have. Her single-handed release (through bribery among other things) of Bran and Gull from Eamonn's hands in Sidhe Dubh is perhaps the most famous Determinator example in the whole series.
  • Properly Paranoid: In Child of the Prophecy she is wary of Fainne almost from the moment she first meets her, because of a vision Liadan had involving her and her sorceress powers, even when Sean refuses to cast suspicion on her. She accurately deduces that Fainne caused the fire at Samhain which scarred Maeve and tries to convince Sean of this, though he refuses to listen to her, and afterward is very wary of her. Later on Inis Eala, when Coll falls ill Liadan instantly blames Fainne, as it's clear that Coll's malady is supernatural and that Fainne is the only sorceress on the island and quite capable of performing such a feat of magic. Liadan is also afraid that Fainne is working as a spy for Oonagh and is a tool for her revenge, and much of her suspicions regarding Fainne centre around this. Fainne herself admits privately that Liadan's fears about her are well-founded, as she is secretly working for Oonagh (though unwillingly), she was directly responsible for the fire in Sevenwaters, and indirectly did cause Coll's illness as it was because of Fainne's closeness to Coll that Oonagh decided to harm him in order to motivate Fainne into working on Oonagh's revenge plan.
  • Rebellious Spirit: Liadan refuses to be a puppet at the Fair Folk's hands and vows that she will make a life for herself which will include both Bran and Johnny in it (though everyone tells her that this is impossible). She is described in Heir to Sevenwaters as one who refuses to play by the rules, instead choosing to flout convention.
  • Ruling Couple: Bran and Liadan, once they are Lord and Lady of Harrowfield.
  • Screw Destiny: Liadan defies the Fair Folk to their faces and takes her son away from the forest, essentially taking him out of the prophecy.
  • Secret Relationship: With Bran in Son of the Shadows. She eventually does tell her family about it, when the time is right.
  • Silk Hiding Steel: She may be small and fragile-looking like her mother, but boy, does she have steel. Unlike Sorcha, her strength is more obvious to others in her forthright nature, her bluntness and her determination, and her refusal to play by the rules and be used as a tool in anyone's (most notably the Fair Folk's) grand plan.
  • Single Woman Seeks Good Man: As Liadan tells Red, she'd rather wed an ugly, penniless old man who is inherently good than marry a rich, handsome Jerkass who cared nothing for anyone or anything.
  • Starting a New Life: At the end of Son of the Shadows, Liadan chooses to stay with Bran and his band, even if it means defying the Fair Folk. They end up travelling to Inis Eala to set up a fighting school there, and later to Harrowfield, where Bran and Liadan become lord and lady.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: She is the perfect picture of her mother, Sorcha, from her small height and wild dark hair to her pale face and fey-green eyes.
  • Surprise Pregnancy: Liadan's pregnancy with Johnny is this, in a way. Though the surprise comes when the Fair Folk tell her straight afterward that she is pregnant with Bran's child and should therefore stay in the forest.
  • Team Mom: Liadan to the mercenary group after her capture. Her status increases to Action Mom after she fights her way through Sidhe Dubh with her son strapped to her back.
  • Parental Substitute: To Maeve.
  • The Promise: To herself, though not openly to Bran, Liadan promises to keep him safe and not let anyone (not even the Fair Folk) keep them from being together. This promise is what drives her throughout the novel.
    • In exchange for Eamonn setting Bran and Gull free from Sidhe Dubh, Liadan promises to keep his treacherous actions secret (unless he endangers Sean and the alliance).
  • Seer: Liadan is a seer, which means she can scry, see into the future and into people's minds, and also have a hand in the healing of a person's mind (though that takes a large toll on the body). As to be expected, these set of skills come in handy at various points during the events of Son of the Shadows.
  • The Storyteller: Liadan tells three tales to Bran's men during the nights that she stays with them.
  • Took a Level in Badass: In Son of the Shadows.
  • True Companions: With Sean, her twin brother (who she shares a mental link with), and also with Bran and his men.
  • Twin Telepathy: Liadan and Sean can communicate through their minds.
  • You Are Not Alone: Liadan and all of Bran's men tell stories of all the good deeds he has done, in order to show him how much he is loved and cared for and needed in the world.

     The Sevenwaters Family: Generation III 
Consisting of Niamh and Ciaran's daughter Fainne, Aisling and Sean's children (Muirrin, Clodagh, Deirdre, Maeve, Sibeal, Eilis, Finbar).


The protagonist of the third book, 'Child of the Prophecy'. Fainne is the daughter of Ciaran and Niamh, Liadan's sister, and is also a sorceress and raised in a druidic lifstyle. When her father sends her to Sevenwaters to meet her mother's family, Fainne is tasked by the Lady Oonagh to do anything to make sure the prophecy does not come true.
  • Babies Ever After: In the Child of the Prophecy epilogue, it is said that Fainne and Darragh have two children together, Danny and Niamh.
  • Beneath Suspicion: After the fire in Sevenwaters it does not occur to Sean that Fainne may have started it, though he knows that she is a sorceress.
  • Blue Blood: She is descended through Niamh from Sorcha, and is technically a member of the Sevenwaters family. She's also descended from a branch of the Fair Folk.
  • Break the Cutie: In an act of desperation, Oonagh tries to completely break Fainne’s will by killing Darragh. This backfires in the most epic way possible.
  • Last Request: Fainne's last request to Ciaran before she leaves to stand watch at the Needle is for him to return to Sevenwaters and rejoin the druids and become Sibeal's tutor.
  • Missing Mom: Fainne's mother died when Fainne was a baby.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: This happens to Fainne when she accidentally causes the death of a girl she was jealous of in Kerry by changing her into a trout, and again when she starts a fire at Sevenwaters which seriously injures Maeve and some of the druids and kills one elderly druid. All of this was done while she was under Oonagh's influence.
    • After the discover that Oonagh had been duping her, Fainne gets a clear shot of the destruction she’s caused during her journey. Really, it’s laid out in the span of two or three sentences. This realization does not go over well with her.
  • Not Me This Time: Fainne says this to Liadan on Inis Eala when Liadan accuses her of cursing Coll into illness.
  • Oblivious to Love: Fainne has no clue that Darragh truly loves her.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: She bears a strong resemblance to her mother, Niamh, in personality, but physically takes after Ciaran.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Fainne certainly does a lot of questionable things during Child of the Prophecy.


Eldest daughter of Aisling and Sean. A healer, she is married to Evan and lives on Inis Eala. In Seer of Sevenwaters she finally becomes pregnant after six years of trying.


The protagonist of the fourth book, Heir to Sevenwaters. She is the daughter of Sean and Aisling and the twin sister of Deirdre. When her mother gives birth to a male babe, Clodagh is tasked with caring for him until Aisling is well. However, Finbar is snatched from his cradle by the Fair Folk, and a changeling is left in his place. Clodagh soon finds herself on a quest to bring home her baby brother from the Otherworld, with an unlikely companion at her side.
  • Action Girl: Shows her Action Girl side when she fights off a mass of bird-like creatures during her and Cathal's trek across the river into the Otherworld.
  • Babies Ever After: By the end of Seer of Sevenwaters, Clodagh and Cathal have two twin children, a boy and a girl, who they call Ronan and Firinne respectively.
  • Deal with the Devil: Clodagh offers to spend a night with Mac Dara just so she can gain access to Cathal’s room, knowing that she might have to make good on her promise if she doesn’t escape.
  • Family Eye Resemblance: Has green eyes like her mother and four of her sisters.
  • Fiery Redhead: Clodagh is red-haired like her mother, and she is certainly fiery in her own way.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: With Cathal, who she detested before their trip to the Otherworld because of his rudeness toward her. Though they do end up being more than friends, and even marry after their return, so this is more of a played-with example.
  • Guile Hero: Attempts to evoke this when she returns to the Otherworld to rescue Cathal, and actually succeeds despite her fears that Mac Dara can see right through her ploy.
  • Happily Married: At the end of Heir to Sevenwaters, to Cathal.
  • Heroic BSoD: Clodagh has this briefly when Cathal is trapped in the Otherworld and Becan is killed by Mac Dara. She collapses to the ground, shaking and in tears, deeply distressed at what happened in Mac Dara's hall. Only the news that Becan can be saved and the urgency of it is enough to spur her into action once more.
  • Interspecies Romance: Cathal is descended from the Fair Folk and the Sea People. Clodagh doesn’t seem to care.
  • It's All My Fault: Clodagh lays much of the blame for Cathal's entrapment in the Otherworld on herself, because she was the bait used to lure Cathal and she failed to see through Mac Dara's manipulations at the very end, manipulations which caused both Becan's death and Cathal's captivity. Though, she couldn't have known, or even guessed, anything of Mac Dara's tricks as he was that good a manipulator (he was one of the Fair Folk and probably had centuries of practice at it, whereas Clodagh had none of his skill or experience). Mac Dara knew Clodagh's weaknesses and played on them, making Clodagh believe that the human nursemaid was sweet and kind to lure Clodagh into giving Becan to her, and then making her scream by throwing Becan into the fire. Mac Dara knew that Clodagh's scream would bring Cathal into the hall, thus sealing his fate. Not to matter that it was Cathal's choice to enter the hall, and that he made it knowing what would happen to him if he did. It was no fault of Clodagh, though it certainly felt like it to her at the time.
  • Marry for Love: What Clodagh does with Cathal after the events of Heir to Sevenwaters.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Clodagh's general reaction after realising that she'd been manipulated into giving Becan to Mac Dara (and thus sealing his death warrant) and doing the very thing which caused Cathal to be trapped in the Otherworld.
  • Near-Rape Experience: In Heir to Sevenwaters, Clodagh is nearly raped by Mac Dara, the Prince of the Otherworld and Cathal's father, as she and Cathal are attempting to escape back to the human world.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: It is Clodagh's handing Becan over to Mac Dara which inadvertently leads to Becan's Death By Fire and Cathal's entrapment in the Otherworld, as Mac Dara uses Becan's death to make her scream, which he knows will summon his son. Clodagh beats herself up about it afterward, but she really couldn't have done anything differently, since Mac Dara was a master manipulator and probably would have concocted another way to trap Cathal if Clodagh had seen through his trick with Becan.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: Her twin sister, Deirdre, is the exact opposite of her, being more of a 'free-spirit' and more unpredictable with her emotions. They still love each other just fine.
  • The Promise: Clodagh promises Cathal that she will come back for him after he is trapped in the Otherworld by Mac Dara. She follows through on that promise.
  • Starting a New Life: After returning from the Otherworld, Cathal and Clodagh are forced to hide away in Inis Eala to be safe from Mac Dara's reach.
  • The Storyteller: Seems to have some talent in tale-telling, as seen in Heir to Sevenwaters when she comes up with her own ending to Wolf Boy's tale. Willow is certainly impressed by it, and gives Clodagh the respect due to a true storyteller.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Clodagh starts off as a normal child, interested in household duties and taking care of her family. She then journeys to the Otherworld, bargains with a multitude of powerful and magical creatures, saves her brother, then goes back to the Otherworld to save Cathal. The two of them then proceed to trick Mac Dara, the king of tricks and lies. Twice.
  • Twin Telepathy: As they are twins, Clodagh and Deirdre can communicate with their minds.
  • Unto Us a Son and Daughter Are Born: At the end of Seer, Clodagh gives birth to twins, a boy and a girl.
  • Unwitting Pawn: Unbeknownst to Clodagh, Mac Dara uses her as bait to lure Cathal into the Otherworld by abducting Finbar and leaving Becan in his place disguised as a manikin which only Clodagh can see is alive. This and the need to help her family and atone in a way for what she feels is her mistake is what compels Clodagh to embark on her quest to rescue Finbar from the Otherworld. Her and Cathal meeting in the forest is primarily due to Mac Dara's meddling. Mac Dara predicts and plans for every single move Clodagh and Cathal make, manipulating their characters to his advantage, putting Clodagh in danger to keep Cathal with her for every step of the journey, and later tricking her into giving him Becan and murdering the babe to make her scream, as he knows that her scream will summon Cathal. By the end of it, once Clodagh realises Mac Dara's manipulations and gambit plan she is horrified at how she (and her family) had been used as tools in Mac Dara's plan to trap Cathal.


Fourth daughter of Sean and Aisling and twin to Clodagh. In Heir to Sevenwaters she marries Illan, a chieftain of the Uill Neill, and they have two children, Oisin and Emer.
  • Family Eye Resemblance: She has green eyes like her mother and four of her sisters.
  • Fiery Redhead: Like Clodagh, she has red hair and can be very strong-minded, though she is more temperamental than her twin.
  • Happily Married: To Illan, after Heir to Sevenwaters.
  • Mood-Swinger: Much like Niamh, she can turn from irritated to content in a matter of moments.
  • Perfectly Arranged Marriage: In Heir to Sevenwaters, to Illan. According to Clodagh she was bubbling with excitement from the moment she met him.
  • Twin Telepathy: With Clodagh, her twin sister.


The protagonist of Flame of Sevenwaters. In Child of the Prophecy she was badly burned in a fire, and lost the use of her hands. She was sent to Harrowfield to recover and spent the next ten years there. At Harrowfield, Maeve found that she had a gift for taming wild animals. She returns to Sevenwaters in Flame of Sevenwaters and goes on a quest with her young brother Finbar to rid the world of Mac Dara.
  • Fiery Redhead: Maeve has red hair like her mother and sisters (all except Sibeal and Muirrin), and she is armed with all the bravery and forthright attitude she has learned from Liadan and Bran during her ten-year-stay at Harrowfield.
  • Friend to All Living Things: Maeve has a special affinity to horses, which she can calm using just her voice. Dogs also seem to like her. In general, Maeve cannot bear the thought of any animal being hurt.
  • Facial Horror: Maeve has a burn scar on her forehead which she usually covers up because of its ugliness.
  • Interspecies Romance: Maeve falls in love with Bear, one of the dogs she had been caring for during the course of Flame of Sevenwaters, who happens to be an ensorcelled human. He is a dog for the entire novel; it is only at the very end that he is changed back and asks Maeve straight away if she would like to marry him. She accepts, of course.
  • Near-Death Experience: Maeve almost died in the fire which scarred her face and crippled her hands. It was mainly thanks to Liadan's care (and Muirrin's) that she survived.
  • Starting a New Life: Maeve goes to live in Harrowfield with Bran and Liadan so that she can receive expert care for her injuries and learn to live with them. In Flame she returns to Sevenwaters to confront her fears and embarks on a quest into the Otherworld, which eventually leads to her falling in love and wedding. By the end of the novel she and Artagan plan to go to Tirconnell to live and start a family.


The protagonist of 'Seer of Sevenwaters', and a seer. She is studying to become a druid. The summer before she is meant to take her druidic vows she goes to Inis Eala to visit her sisters. Shortly after her arrival, a group of strange people are found shipwrecked on the island. Sibeal finds herself caring for one of them, a man who has no idea who he is or where he came from. Soon Sibeal finds herself torn between her dedication to the gods and her love for Felix.
  • Babies Ever After: Though Sibeal does not have a baby at the end of Seer (or the end of the series for that matter) she does see that she will have a daughter with Felix someday. In Flame of Sevenwaters it is revealed that she is expecting her firstborn child.
  • Because Destiny Says So: Sibeal believes it is her destiny to become a druid because of her meetings with the Lady of the Forest as a child.
  • Being Personal Isn't Professional: This is Sibeal’s mindset for the majority of Seer of Sevenwaters.
  • Can't Catch Up: Sibeal constantly talks about how much more skilled Ciaran is than her, never mind that she uses elemental magic twice (once in a place where no one else’s magic works), can communicate mentally with sea creatures and manages to alert Cathal to her presence from the opposite end of the island without moving.
  • Elemental Powers: Sibeal manipulates fire.
  • Everyone Can See It: Sibeal and Felix are frequently teased about the amount of time they spend together. They do each eventually have a Love Epiphany, although Sibeal’s takes a lot longer to happen than Felix’s.
  • Fainting Seer: Sibeal faints or feels ill if she is around extreme emotion or comes out of a trance quickly.
  • Gut Feeling: Sibeal is a seer, after all. She can’t help it.
  • In Harmony with Nature: Sibeal prefers to be surrounded by nature. She’s also good with the elements.
  • It's All My Fault: Sibeal has this in a big way in Seer, when she is unable to prevent the death of Rodan, which she had seen previously in a vision. She confesses her feeling of guilt to Felix and cries in his arms. It comes with being a seer; one has to accept that one can't prevent all bad things from happening even if you foresee it beforehand.
  • Pint-Sized Kid: In Heir to Sevenwaters and Child of the Prophecy, Sibeal is constantly described as small.
  • Rescue Romance: Sibeal and Felix take turns saving each other.
  • Shrinking Violet: Sibeal prefers quiet and solitude to the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Cue a random shipwreck.
  • Starting a New Life: Instead of taking her druidic vows, Sibeal ends up going to live with Felix in Kerry, among a community of people called the Brethren of Brigid.
  • The Apprentice: Sibeal is mentored by Ciaran in preparation for her entry into the nemetons.
  • The Promise: Sibeal promises to wait for Felix when he goes on a year-long journey back to Armorica at the end of Seer.
  • Wise Beyond Their Years: As a child, Sibeal is considered to be this, due to her strange abilities as a seer.

Eilis (II)

Youngest daughter of Aisling and Sean. She is very mischievous and adventurous.
  • Dead Guy Junior: She is named after Aisling's mother Eilis, who died in childbirth.

Finbar (II)

The longed-for son of Aisling and Sean. He is a seer.

     Sevenwaters servants and other folk 




     The Redbeard/Sidhe Dubh Family 

Seamus Redbeard

Father of Eilis and leader of Glencarnagh. Appears in both Son of the Shadows and Daughter of the Forest.
  • May–December Romance: Seamus with his young wife in Son of the Shadows. Niamh is positively horrified by it.
  • Outliving One's Offspring: He survives his daughter Eilis, who dies is childbirth sometime between the events of Daughter of the Forest and Son of the Shadows.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Can be said to be this, as he is chieftain of Glencarnagh and a good and fair leader overall.

Eamonn of the Marshes (I)

Eilis Redbeard

Seamus Redbeard's daughter and Liam's betrothed.

Eamonn of the Marshes (II)

Antagonist of Son of the Shadows. He is the son of the first Eamonn of the Marshes, who was a traitor to Erin. He falls in love with Liadan, and when she falls for another man (Bran) he becomes obsessed with getting revenge on him.
  • Ambition Is Evil: Eamonn spends the majority of the trilogy trying to achieve power and influence, just like his father (even though he never knew him). He redeems himself later by saving Fainne’s life.
  • Dead Guy Junior: He is named after his father, Eamonn, who collaborated with Richard of Northwoods.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Bran the feared Painted Man and Eamonn's enemy steal the heart of Liadan, who Eamonn claims to be in love with. In retaliation Eamonn abducts Bran and tortures him until Bran is close to death, and also mutilates Bran's companion Gull just to cause Bran even more pain. It's only because of Liadan herself that Bran and Gull aren't killed in Sidhe Dubh and live to escape across the Marshes.
  • Face-Heel Turn: Eamonn seemed like a pretty decent guy until he didn't get what he wanted. Everything went downhill steadily until he decided to try his hand at torture. His villainy is pretty much established by then.
  • Heroic Bystander: At the end of Child of the Prophecy.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: He sacrifices himself to save Fainne's life during the final battle for the Islands.
  • Irrational Hatred: He is surprisingly intense in his hatred of Bran, whose only crime is stealing the woman Eamonn claimed to love. Nothing will stop him from getting his revenge on him.
  • Parental Abandonment: His father Eamonn was assassinated by Liam, Red and Seamus for colluding with Northwoods. His mother died giving birth to Aisling.
  • Revenge Before Reason: He stops at nothing to revenge himself on Bran, even when it would have been far better for him if he just let the whole thing go already.
  • Sadist: Eamonn enjoys torturing Bran and Gull immensely when he holds them captive in his stronghold of Sidhe Dubh.
  • Sore Loser: Eamonn does not take losing Liadan to Bran well. His capture and torture of Bran and Gull is a direct result of this.


Eamonn's sister, and Sean's sweetheart (and later wife). Runs her household in a perfectionist, orderly fashion.
  • Adult Fear: In Son of the Shadows her betrothal to the man she loves is cancelled, and her own brother locks her in her room as if she were a prisoner. Aisling is distraught, and descends into full Heroic BSoD mode. It was even foreseen by Liadan that if the situation continued, Aisling would have committed suicide by falling off the battlements of Sidhe Dubh.
    • Sometime prior to Child of the Prophecy, Aisling and Sean
  • Babies Ever After: Has six children with Sean by the time of Child of the Prophecy, and gives birth to a seventh in Heir to Sevenwaters.
  • Childhood Friend Romance: Hers is with Sean. Although theirs is an arranged marriage they're perfectly happy to be wed, having known each other since childhood and have grown to love one another.
  • Damsel in Distress: After betraying Liam to the Britons, Eamonn cancels Aisling's betrothal to Sean, and keeps her locked away in Sidhe Dubh. Liadan through her visions finds out about this and is compelled travel to Eamonn's holding to set Aisling free.
  • Death by Childbirth: Subverted in Heir to Sevenwaters. For a long time it's thought that Aisling may die giving birth to her baby, as she is past the age of safe childbearing, but she ends up surviving, though she is weak for a long time afterwards.
  • Marry for Love: She marries Sean for love at the end of Son of the Shadows.
  • Starting a New Life: After Liadan frees her from Eamonn's control, she goes to Sevenwaters, where she stays until she is wed to Sean.







     Uill Neill 



     Inis Eala folk 


Liadan and Bran's eldest son. He was born in Son of the Shadows, and accompanied Liadan on her mission to rescue Bran and Gull from Sidhe Dubh. He plays an important part in Child of the Prophecy.
  • Chosen One: He is considered by the people of Erin to be the Child of the Prophecy, the one person who will fulfil the ancient prophecy and take back the sacred islands from the Britons.
  • Dead Guy Junior: He is named after his own father, who is still alive but no longer uses his birth name.
  • Hope Bringer: In Child of the Prophecy, as the supposed hero foretold in the prophecy.
  • Nice Guy: Is very fair and good-hearted, though can become merciless when someone threatens those he loves.
  • Yaoi Guys: Him and Gareth.


Johnny's partner and second-in-command.


Male protagonist of Heir to Sevenwaters.
  • Babies Ever After: At the end of Seer of Sevenwaters Clodagh gives birth to their firstborn children, a pair of twins.
  • Blood Brothers: With Aidan of Whiteshore. As children they'd made a blood promise to be friends until death.
  • Frame-Up: Cathal is accused of collaborating with an enemy of Sevenwaters to abduct the newborn Finbar. Though he's clearly innocent to the reader, the evidence is heavy against him, as he distracted Clodagh at the exact moment Finbar was taken, just before leaving the keep suddenly without a word to anyone.
  • Happily Married: In Seer of Sevenwaters, to Clodagh.
  • Human Mom Non Human Dad: His mother was an ordinary, if beautiful, girl from the village. His father was Mac Dara, a Prince of the Otherworld.
  • I Am Not My Father: Says thus quite a few times, in his attempts to prove that he is not like his father.
  • Interspecies Romance: Cathal is descended from the Fair Folk and the Sea People. Clodagh is mostly human, with a very distant ancestral connection to the Old Ones. Both end up falling in love and marrying.
  • Love Redeems: Cathal's mental and emotional transformation is much more remarkable when you consider what could have happened if Clodagh didn’t step in.
    • Think about it: If Cathal hadn’t allowed himself to fall in love with Clodagh (and for her to love him in return), it’s very likely that he would have either wasted away or turned into his father after Mac Dara finally got a hold of him and started training him.
    • He had the personality of a rock in the beginning. A number of people on Inis Eala were probably happy to see the change when he got back.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: Big Bad Mac Dara is Cathal's biological father.
  • No Social Skills: For a child raised in a respected chieftain’s home, Cathal has a hard time summoning any kind of courtesy.
  • Parental Abandonment: Twofold for Cathal. Or so he thinks.]
  • Secret Identity: He is really the son of Mac Dara, Prince of the Otherworld. He is also descended from the Sea People through his mother.
  • Spot the Imposter: Cathal apparently had a number of Clodaghs try and tempt him while the real one was trying to find him.
  • Starting a New Life: After returning from the Otherworld, Cathal and Clodagh are forced to hide away in Inis Eala to be safe from Mac Dara's reach.
  • True Companions: Cathal and Aidan, as they have known each other since infancy and are like brothers. The warriors in Johnny's band are also all True Companions to one another.
  • Uncanny Family Resemblance: Cathal and Mac Dara look so similar that Clodagh mistakes Mac Dara for Cathal at one point in Heir to Sevenwaters.
  • With This Ring: Cathal puts his mother’s ring on Clodagh’s finger to protect her during their Otherworld journey.

     Dan Walker's Folk 


Male protagonist of Child of the Prophecy.
  • Street Performer: Darragh and the group he travels with are wandering entertainers.

     Crew of the Freyja 


Male protagonist of Seer of Sevenwaters.
  • Identity Amnesia: Felix can’t remember anything, including his own name.
  • I Want to Be a Real Man: Felix laments that he’s not a strong or brave man like his brother. That doesn’t stop him from trying to be.
  • I Would Say If I Could Say: Felix slowly regains his memory but refrains from sharing most things in order to protect his new friends.
  • The Music Meister: Felix starts singing while riding on the back of a sea monster to try and keep the group calm.
  • Near-Death Experience: Felix is almost drowned at sea when Freyja is shipwrecked. It's thanks to Sibeal that he survives. There's also the time when Knut tries to kill him while they are on Inis Eala, to prevent him from revealing a secret that Felix himself does not remember.
  • Rescue Romance: Sibeal and Felix take turns saving each other.


Felix's brother.


The Antagonist of Seer of Sevenwaters.
  • The Beard: He even tries to kill Felix to keep his relationship with Svala a secret.
  • Karmic Death: That’s what you get for raping sea creatures, Knut.



The younger Finbar's bodyguard and tutor in Flame of Sevenwaters.



     Harrowfield Family 

Lady Anne

Red and Simon's mother, and Richard's sister. Though very prejudiced toward Sorcha's race because of the feud, she is a fair and competent leader and does not stand to see injustice in her household.
  • Adult Fear: Her younger son goes missing in action in Erin and is presumed dead. Lady Anne is clearly distraught about this when Sorcha arrives in Harrowfield, and is seen to be afraid of losing Red as well, as she questions his decision to search for Simon in Erin and fears that he will be endangered because of it.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Is this to the people of Harrowfield. She also states to Father Dominic that she strives to be this.
    Lady Anne: I cannot expect my own people to act with integrity and courage if I do not show an example.
  • The Stoic: Like Red, she rarely expresses her emotions in front of other people. Even when grief-stricken over Simon's disappearance she shows a calm and collected face to the world, believing that her people need her to appear strong and able to take care of them properly.

Hugh of Harrowfield (aka Red)

The male protagonist of Daughter of the Forest. He is a Briton and Lord of Harrowfield. He rescues Sorcha from drowning in a lake and takes her with him to Briton. He falls in love with her and eventually gives up his title to be with her in Erin.
  • Annoying Arrows: Red takes one to the shoulder and pretty much ignores it.
  • Berserk Button: Every time Richard makes a comment about or advances on Sorcha, Red flips out.
  • Character Death: He dies of pneumonia shortly before the beginning of Child of the Prophecy.
  • Don't You Dare Pity Me!: Red literally says this to Sorcha.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: With Sorcha's brothers. Particularly Liam. It took almost a year of working together for them to reconcile their differences, especially after finding that Red was an asset as he took charge of the land-husbandry part of Sevenwaters which allowed Liam to focus more readily on the military aspects of being Lord of Sevenwaters.
  • The Good King: In Daughter of the Forest, as Lord of Harrowfield. When Richard takes charge of the estate during his absence, the difference is very palpable.
  • Grand Romantic Gesture: Red gives up his whole life in Briton to be with Sorcha in Erin. Even if Sorcha hadn't accepted him as her husband, he wasn't planning on returning to Harrowfield to reclaim his title. It's clear from that single action that he does love Sorcha very much in the same awe-inspiring way she loves him.
  • Happily Married: To Sorcha, after Daughter of the Forest.
  • Hidden Depths: Sorcha is surprised to learn that Hugh of Harrowfield can tell a good tale, and that he has more depth of feeling and emotion than he generally expresses.
  • Huge Guy, Tiny Girl: Sorcha looks like a toddler compared to Red.
  • Love at First Sight: Red fell in love with Sorcha after he rescued her from drowning in a lake in Erin.
  • Love Confession: Delivers an epic one in the form of a story, in front of the entire household and family of Sevenwaters.
  • Magically Binding Contract: It is implied that Red is put under a spell after his first encounter with Sorcha to bind him to her. The Lady of the Forest denies this when Sorcha asks, saying that he would have been her protector even if She hadn’t asked him to be.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: Everyone calls him either Red, 'Iubdan', or the Big Man. Only his mother calls him by his birth-name, 'Hugh'.
  • Out-of-Character Moment: Red, the embodiment of calm and collected, grabs Sorcha’s shoulders and shakes her, bruising her and making her cry after she wanders out on her own. He only does this once (even though she wanders around without telling him continuously) and the encounter is pretty much forgotten afterwards.
  • Papa Wolf: After hearing of his daughter's abuse at the hands of Fionn Red sneaks into his encampment himself and strangles the man in his sleep.
  • The Promise: Promises Sorcha in Daughter of the Forest that he will return to her in the autumn after having found his brother and brought him home.
  • Sibling Triangle: Both Red and Simon fall for Sorcha... hard.
  • Starting a New Life: Red gives up his entire life to be together with Sorcha in Erin.
  • The Stoic: Red hardly ever shows any emotions in his expression.
  • The Storyteller: As Sorcha notes, Red is not particularly gifted at storytelling. However, she is amazed at his beautiful retelling of the tale of Toby and the Mermaid and later at his Love Confession (which is in story form), which he tells to a room full of Sorcha's male relatives and the Sevenwaters household.
  • True Companions: With Ben and John.

Simon of Harrowfield

Red's brother. He becomes Lord of Harrowfield after Red abdicates to be with Sorcha in Erin.
  • Always Second Best: He always feels as if he's second-best to his brother, feeling envious of everything his brother has while he (in his mind) has barely nothing and isn't very loved by his family and Harrowfield. In actuality, as Sorcha finds out he is loved and missed very much by his mother and brother, his brother going so far as to leave Harrowfield search for Simon and doesn't give up until he's found him and brought him home.
  • Florence Nightingale Effect: Simon falls in love with Sorcha while she is treating his wounds in Father Brien's home. Sorcha is completely oblivious to it.
  • Happily Married: To Elaine of Northwoods, eventually.
  • Kissing Cousins: What he and Elaine eventually become. Though it's initially one-sided, with Elaine being in love with Simon and Simon being oblivious to it.
  • The Lost Lenore: Sorcha is this for him.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Becomes this after becoming Lord of Harrowfield in Red's place.

Benjamin of Greystones

Red's foster-brother and a very close friend of his. He is one of those who guards and befriends Sorcha during her time at Harrowfield.


Margery's husband, and a close friend of Red.
  • Character Death: He is murdered, though accidentally, by Lord Richard's men while guarding Sorcha during one of her starwort-picking expeditions.
  • The Confidant: To Red. He is the only one Red tells of his love for Sorcha and his intention of wedding her.
  • Happily Married: To Margery.
  • Nice Guy: He is a very kind man. He bears no ill-will toward Sorcha, even though she is a woman of Erin and therefore considered an enemy to Britons, and even encourages her to wed Red as he lays dying.


A Briton who Sorcha befriends in Harrowfield.
  • Hair of Gold, Heart of Gold: Margery is fair-haired and is one of the nicest characters in the series, let alone the first book.
  • Happily Married: To John in Daughter of the Forest.
  • Heroic BSoD: Goes into a major one after John is killed. The only thing that snaps her out of it is hearing of Sorcha's arrest and trial and realising how self-centered she has been in her grief.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Sacrifices her own life to protect her son from attacking raiders.
  • Nice Girl: Doesn't have a mean bone in her body. Even though Sorcha is a woman of Erin she still befriends her and is kind to her when most of the other residents reject her.


The leader of the fianna, and later Lord of Harrowfield. He is married eventually to Liadan.
  • Action Dad: During Son of the Shadows, after the birth of Johnny, though not as much in later books. Bran is the leader of an outlawed band of assassins-for-hire, and his days are definitely filled with danger and action, at least until he and Liadan are settled at Harrowfield. Even afterward, he remains a man who no one would dare toy with.
  • Babies Ever After: Bran and Liadan have four sons together, one of which is conceived during their first night together and is born later in Son of the Shadows.
  • Badass in Distress: Is captured by Eamonn's men when returning from his secret mission, and held captive in Sidhe Dubh. Liadan, once she realises what has happened, has to come rescue him.
  • Break the Badass: Eamonn seeks to do this to him, and nearly succeeds.
  • Brooding Boy, Gentle Girl: With Bran as the brooding boy and Liadan as the gentle girl.
  • Brutal Honesty: Bran is a very honest man, and can be blunt when speaking.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Want to know why the Painted Man acts the way he does?
  • Dead Guy Junior: He is named after John, his father, who was killed by Lord Richard's men while guarding Sorcha.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: Bran and Sean, and also Bran and Liadan (though in a romantic way). Also Bran with each of his men, as he found them in dangerous or hopeless situations and gave them freedom and hope again, thus earning their loyalty.
  • Freudian Excuse: Bran has some serious Mommy Issues.
  • Happily Married: In subsequent books after Son of the Shadows, to Liadan.
  • Heroic BSoD: Has this in a big way after he is captured by Eamonn's men and imprisoned in Sidhe Dubh.
  • Hero with Bad Publicity: Bran is a noble man at heart, but because of his outlaw status and reputation is feared and viewed with suspicion by most of the Irish chieftains. It doesn't seem to bother him, however. After becoming Lord of Harrowfield most of the fear and suspicion goes away, but a few select people still distrust him, such as Aisling (who has a bad history with the man, her being Eamonn's sister) and some of the neighbouring estates in Briton whose lords are uncertain about Bran's allegiances due to his Irish connections.
  • I Owe You My Life: Says this to Liadan after the latter rescues him from sure death in Sidhe Dubh and brings him out of a almost-fatal coma.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Though Liadan find him unpleasant and cold Jerkass at first, he does have a good side. He is a fair and strong leader, and well-respected by his men. He is also very honorable, unlike Eamonn, and would never betray his people and country for any reason.
  • Legendary in the Sequel: To the people of Inis Eala.
  • Marry for Love: What he does with Liadan after the events of Son of the Shadows.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: To most people, he is the Painted Man, also known as Bran to Liadan. His men call him the Chief. No one speaks or even thinks of him using his birth-name.
  • Parental Abandonment: His father was killed by Richard of Northwoods and his mother was killed by robbers while on the way to her sister's village.
  • Parental Substitute: To Maeve.
  • Please Don't Leave Me: Since he's a "tough guy", Bran says it without the "please."
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Is this after becoming Lord of Harrowfield.
  • Rebel Leader: He is the leader of an outlawed band of assassins-for-hire, and he doesn't care much for playing by the rules.
  • Rebellious Spirit: Bran is very forthright and determined to do what is right.
  • Ruling Couple: With Liadan, as Lord and Lady of Harrowfield.
  • Self-Made Orphan: Bran killed the man who was abusing him as a child. Though Rory was not his biological father, it still counts, as Rory had the raising of Bran for a good six years before Bran finally lashed out at him.
  • Starting a New Life: After their escape from Sidhe Dubh, he, Liadan, Johnny and the Painted Men travel north to look at a prospective island to house a school for teaching covert and fighting skills to other warriors. Much later, Bran, Liadan and Johnny go to Harrowfield to become its lord and lady, so that the estate is not overcome by Edwin of Northwoods.
  • The Stoic: Bran rarely changes expression. It's part of what makes him so frightening and mysterious, aside from the body-paint. The only time he shows his emotions is when he is alone with Liadan.
    • Not So Stoic: As stated, the only time he shows his emotions is when he is alone with Liadan. In addition to this, there is also the moment when he breaks down completely in Liadan's arms after waking up from his coma near the end of Son of the Shadows.
  • Undying Loyalty: To his men and Liadan.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Bran is terrified of the dark, and of small enclosed spaces. This comes back to bite him when he is held captive by Eamonn in Sidhe Dubh. Eamonn, having realised what makes Bran tick, decides to kick him where it hurts most, and so imprisons him underneath a trapdoor in a pitch-black space so small that Bran is cramped and curled up like a baby. This causes him to go into a coma so deep that it is only thanks to Liadan that he is brought out of it.
  • You Are Not Alone: Liadan and the mercenaries all say this to Bran to try and bring him back from near death.


Liadan and Bran's second son, and heir to Harrowfield in later books.


Youngest son of Liadan and Bran. Much like Eilis, he is fearless and mischievous.
  • Adult Fear: Coll magically falls ill with a severe illness in Child of the Prophecy; Bran and Liadan are understandably terrified about it.


Richard of Northwoods

Antagonist of Daughter of the Forest. He is the Lord of the estate which feuds against Sevenwaters. He hates the people of Erin. He has quite a sadistic and cruel personality, and likes to gloat and show off.

Elaine of Northwoods

Lord Richard's daughter. She is a much nicer person than he ever will be. She is in love with Simon and hopes to marry him someday.
  • Ruling Couple: She presumably becomes Lady of Harrowfield after she weds Simon, who takes over as lord after Red's abdication.

The Otherworld

     Fair Folk/Old Ones 

The Lady Oonagh

The main antagonist of the original Sevenwaters trilogy.
  • Abusive Parent: And how. She ruins her step-children's lives, curses one of her sons into the form of a raven and uses her magic to physically and psychologically punish Ciaran when he's just a child. Not to mention what she puts Fainne through in Child of the Prophecy.
  • Arc Villain: She is the main Big Bad in the original trilogy.
  • Big Bad: She is the main antagonist of the original Sevenwaters trilogy.
  • Cruella to Animals: Oonagh kills all of the animals Padriac heals and looks after in Daughter of the Forest, just because he cares about them.
  • Final Speech: Oonagh launches into one that, despite a few interruptions, lasts for several pages.
  • Full-Body Disguise: Oonagh is particularly skilled in this.
  • I Will Punish Your Friend for Your Failure: Oonagh uses this threat against Fainne to the point where it starts to get old. She takes it to the next level during the final battle, just to be a jerk.
  • Parent ex Machina: Oonagh spends most of Child of the Prophecy waiting for Fainne to do something terrible so she can suddenly reappear and gloat.
  • Vain Sorceress: Oonagh couldn't be more vain if she tried.
  • You Can Keep Her: Oonagh's reply to Richard's offer of a ransom for Sorcha in exchange for land in Erin.
  • Your Cheating Heart: It's implied that Oonagh was not only using magic to achieve her own ends, but was also sleeping with other chieftains, in particular the first Eamonn of the Marshes, especially while she was still married to Colum. It's something she also tries to instill in Fainne when she prepares Fainne for her new life in Sevenwaters (and also the mission Oonagh wants her to complete).

Mac Dara

The antagonist of Heir to Sevenwaters, Seer of Sevenwaters and Flame of Sevenwaters.
  • A God Am I: Mac Dara certainly believes this. He’s managed to take control of an entire realm and proves to be more powerful than most of the human population.

Caisin Silverhair

One of the Tuatha De who Maeve and young Finbar encounter during their adventure in the Otherworld. She looks as if she wants to help them in their quest, but is really seeking to use them for her own ends.


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