The Last Ancestor Character Introduction: President Gregory Sandoval and Jean-Paul Boulos

Art by ArtAnon Studios.

Name: Gregorio Antonio “Gregory” Sandoval Desoto 
Age: 54
Height: 6’1″
Place of Birth: Cádiz , Spain, Planet Earth
Occupation: Coronel (Colonel) in the Ejército de Tierra (Spanish Army of the Land), Colonel in the Canaanite Military Police (MP), Member of the Parliament of the Christian Republic of Canaan, Second President of the Christian Republic of Canaan

Born in the ancient Spanish port city of Cádiz, the sea has always been in Gregory Sandoval’s blood. As a young boy, he dreamed of sailing the world, but although he came of age after his homeland had abolished compulsory military service and made service in the armed forces voluntary, Gregory found himself in the Army instead. All because of a girl.

Gregory sought glory to win the favor of a young woman who fancied both him and his friend. Though she chose the other young soldier, Gregory found himself quite good as a soldier and a leader of men. A decisive man with a quiet demeanor that belies his action-oriented nature, Gregory is a man of duty and faith. If there was a job that needed doing. Gregory could always be counted on to accomplish the mission without second-guessing his superiors or needlessly risking his men’s lives. He quickly rose to the rank of coronel, where he remained by choice. Rising any higher in the Army would have meant a life as a manager and not a soldier, a fate untenable to Gregory. He also found himself one of Spain’s most eligible bachelors, but never found the time or the energy to devote to the fairer sex.

When the Global Union declared war on Christendom and its allies and quickly consumed Europe, Gregory found that his Catholic faith, suppressed by his modern upbringing, reemerge with a vengeance. For the first time in his life, Gregory refused the orders of his superiors, took a large band of loyal officers and soldiers, and fought his way through Europe, rescuing as many of the continent’s faithful as he could en route to Ibrahim Hariri’s safe haven of New Constantinople. Along the way, Gregory’s reputation grew though his modesty prevented him from becoming the leader so many of his followers wished he would. Gregory always found politics distasteful, preferring to be with those who risked their lives rather than those who told them where they should be risking them.

At New Constantinople, Gregory was instrumental in helping refugees board Hariri’s ships. Although only ten of the five-hundred made it off the Earth, those ten would have been few had it not been for Gregory’s leadership and decisive actions. Ibrahim Hariri took note, and once on Yxakh, tried to persuade Gregory to join his nascent Parliament of the Christian Republic of Canaan. Gregory refused, and worked in Canaanites Military Police (MP).

Gregory was a hero of the first war against the Kharvali, which impressed the Canaanites, many of whom did not know who he was before. Reluctantly, Gregory ran for Parliament at the urging of his most loyal friends and advisers and, to his surprise, overwhelmingly won a seat. 

When the second war against the Kharvali broke out eight years ago, Gregory abandoned his position in Parliament and rushed to the front lines, proving invaluable to General Adam Ghazaryan, the MP’s supreme commander. It was during this war that Gregory met Peter Nestor, Garrett Nestor’s father. While ambushed attempting to evacuate Canaanite farmsteads to safety, Gregory’s brigade was ambushed by Kharvali warriors. Only Peter Nestor’s sacrifice bought them time to escape, a fact Gregory feels guilty about to this day. In Gregory’s mind, it was not the job of the rank-and-file to die for their men, but for their leaders to do so instead.

Nevertheless, the citizens of Canaan were so impressed with Gregory’s bravery, inspirational leadership, and rock-solid faith, that they unanimously named him President after Ibrahim Hariri’s untimely death. Unlike his predecessor, Gregory asked for and received a Vice-President–as a condition of his accepting office–selecting the former Lebanese businesswoman and university professor Miriam Touma to be his second-in-command.

Though he has a distaste for the life of a desk-jockey, Gregory has proven to be a capable leader, if a bit over-cautious. This seems at odds with his nature, but the last thing Gregory wants is another war with the Kharvali. He knows how close they came to extinction in the last one, and does not want to rely on the High Lord’s daughter, the Princess Dhaxiha, to bail them out once again. Gregory knows that war WILL come again one day, but he wants to make sure his people are ready. Until then, Gregory will do nearly anything to avoid conflict with their aggressive oppressors. 

Name: Jean-Paul Boulos
Age: 69
Height: 5′ 9″
Place of Birth: Beirut, Lebanon, Planet Earth
Occupation: Attorney, adviser and executive assistant to President Sandoval

Lebanon-born and Harvard trained, Jean-Paul Boulos is a sharp-witted eternal bachelor who devoted his entire life to his career as an attorney and sometime lecturer at the Beirut Arab University. Generally even-tempered with a dry sense of humor that covers a sensitive soul, Jean-Paul is calm and observant man who saw the writing on the wall as the Global Union consolidated its power in Europe and hitched his wagon to Ibrahim Hariri’s star well before actual hostilities broke out.

A mid-level functionary of Hariri’s family business, Jean-Paul’s strong Orthodox faith helped carry him through the difficult times that led to Christendom’s last remnant fleeing Earth lest they also face extinction like so many. Unbeknownst to many, Jean-Paul helped smuggle much of Lebanon’s Muslim population out of the country, and the entire region, to safe-havens where they could lay low while GU forces and their proxy warriors finished their task of extinction. This typifies Jean-Paul’s character: he does good works while not caring about the credit.

On Yxakh, Jean-Paul’s well-ordered mind and dispassionate way of viewing problems endeared him to President Hariri. The President made him his executive advisor, a position he retained when Gregory Sandoval assumed the office. Though he is not one to publicly display emotion, Jean-Paul has taken a real liking to Gregory, treating the younger man somewhat like a younger brother, gently needling him when he finds the President’s moods getting too dark or serious. And though he jokes that he has been reduced to nothing more than Gregory’s messenger-boy and coffee-fetcher, Jean-Paul knows the President respects him and relies on his expertise and wisdom. Deep in his heart, all Jean-Paul prays for is the strength to live up to the high regard so many hold him in and guide them accordingly. 


Read about Gregory’s struggle to lead his people with Jean-Paul’s help in The Last Ancestor.

8 comments

  1. Alexander

    I found Jean Paul to be a really super cool character. He reminds me of the old school Mediterranean gentleman. Full of integrity but smart enough to bend rules and stuff for the greater good without the corruption.

    Gregory is a great guy and I understood his prudence even if I disagreed with him.

    xavier

    Liked by 1 person

      • Alexander,

        As one Mediterranean descended guy to another. I do. It’s that hoary hard won wisdom that stretches 4000 years enriched by our Lord’s Incarnation and Resurrection.
        .
        What the Northern Europeans just don’t get and are easily horrorized,

        xavier

        Liked by 1 person

      • Alexander

        One of the things I so much liked about the novel was giving the Mediterraneans their due.

        Too many thrillers always make the Western Mediterranean countries as a mix of needy, semi competent and untrustworthy except Israel of course.

        Notice the Clancys and Thors with their super duper uber tier alpha units are always Delta/Marines/SAS/ Green berets/SEALS.
        Rainbow six had the French guy but he’s a token compared to the Polish guy.

        Anyways need to vent about this trope

        xavier

        Liked by 1 person

      • Vent away! I’m just happy you appreciated the characters.

        I was looking for a unique influence for the colony of Canaan, and I figured why not base it on Middle Eastern Christendom? And why not have a Spaniard as president? You don’t see many Spaniards, or Lebanese for that matter, in North American fiction. So I rolled with it.

        Like

  2. Alexander

    And for that you have both my gratitude in creating original characters and my appreciation as a reader. It was so refreshing to see a new trope. One I hope soon becomes cliched.

    It was one of the factors that’s so hooked me to the story along with the great pulp action coupled with exploring serious themes.
    I can’t wait for book 2.

    xavier

    Liked by 1 person

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