William is descended from the Scandinavian kings of the isles. Because of this heritage he is not only the Earl of Salisbury, but also King of Mann. Every story has it’s heroes. Few stories have a genuine saint. William has lived his whole life in the service of the Black Prince. By being so steadfast in his regard for the Prince’s welfare, he has reached a position of prominence. He is commander of the Prince’s rearguard and that does not mean trailing along at the back of the army. It means being responsible for everything concerned with the Prince’s safety.
He needs to make close contacts with the Princes potential enemies as well as his friends. He is one of those rare people who genuinely puts the interest of his friends and lovers above any consideration of self preservation.He articulates the creed held dear by everyone concerned in intelligence gathering and survailance. “If you don’t need to know then I am not going to tell you.”
William risks undermining his own position, status and emotional stability to help the woman he loves, Joan of Kent, achieve her ambition of marrying the Black Prince. Initially William continues to advance his position by advocating the creation of a physical bodyguard for the prince and becoming its first commander. His position is increasingly compromised by his love for Joan.