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Reigning Monarch
Biographical Information
Nationality Mbau (former)
Magical Information
Magic Metal
Type Ambient
Ranking Great mage
Institution Unknown
Accreditation Mastery
Student(s) Daja Kisubo
Physical Description
Gender Male
Height 6'1"/6'2"[1]
Hair Black
Eyes Dark
Family Information
Parents father shepherd
Adoptive Parents
Siblings older brother
older sister
at least one younger sister
Adoptive Children
Other Family
Lover Matazidah (former)
Patron God
Rank Fire Dedicate
Occupation Smith
Affiliation Winding Circle Temple
Law Enforcement of
Guard District
Guard Badge
Bibliographical Information
First Mentioned '
Only Mentioned '
First Appeared Sandry's Book
Last Appeared '
Latest Appearance The Will of the Empress
Only Appearance '
Last Mentioned '

Dedicate Initiate Frostpine was a Fire Dedicate in Winding Circle[2] and one of the greatest ambient smith mages[3]. He was the primary teacher of Daja Kisubo and Kirel. Although he was a member of the Fire Temple he didn't sleep in the Fire dormitory but in a small loft over his forge.[4]


Early life

Frostpine, probably born in the late 900s KF, whose birth-name is unknown, came from the country of Mbau, where he grew up in a poor family. He had an older brother as well as an older sister and later got at least one younger sister. His father was a shepherd. The family was so poor that they could only affort to eat bean stew for days at a time. His family's financial situation improved when he was born; the village's shaman (mchowni) had detected his ambient magic and paid his father to siphon it off. Thus Frostpine's father could afford a servant to watch over the flocks and his mother and sisters had several dresses. Although Frostpine helped the local blacksmith and later became his apprentice, Frostpine always felt the lack of his magic without realizing what it was. He only knew that something was missing, like a tool he couldn't grasp. This caused him to seem "moody" and he got easily frustrated from this situation. It only changed after the mchowni died and the magic returned to him when Frostpine was fifteen. The return of his magic wasn't easy for him, because he wasn't accustomed to it and all came back at the same time he felt as if his veins were on fire and at first he couldn't handle any tool or metal without melting it, although the metal now sang for him. Eventually he had no other choice than to leave his home and sever contact with most of his family. It was only years later that he began to forgive, and he forged contact with his youngest sister, who was not aware of the theft of his magic. He still had contact with her in 1035 KF.[5]

Magical education

Around 1015 KF, at that time both were students under the same master, he had a friend who was consumed by a spell too powerful for him. The friend tried to make a lead pattern for a window that was to hold and give light even on the gloomiest days. However, the spell was too strong for him and Frostpine witnessed him being burned alive.[6]

Frostpine's own power got away from him once, when he was trying to put gold ornaments back on a tribal queen's collar. He had been involved with the woman, who had given him her gems. However, she hadn't told him that she was married and now the husband was about to find out that she had given the gems to a lover once he discovered they were missing.[7]

Life as Fire Dedicate

It's unknown when exactly in life Frostpine went to the Winding Circle temple where he was taught how to handle his magic and became a novice. Once he became a dedicate he chose the name of "Frostpine" without being familiar with very cold climates, because he thought it sounded pretty. By 1035 K.F. Frostpine had his own forge on the temple grounds, which was divided in two. One half served him as his forge for working with iron, the other for work with gold. His apprentice for working with iron was Kirel, who had no magic[8]. In spring of this year he got a second student, the ambient smith mage Daja Kisubo. He had been searching for an apprentice who shared his power for twenty years before Daja's arrival[3]. He agreed that Niklaren Goldeye and Lark would be responsible for Daja's most general magical education.[9]

In 1039 K.F. he traveled with Daja so that she could see the work of other smiths and new techniques. One station of their travels was Namorn, where Frostpine had friends, the Bancanor family. There he got romantically involved with the cook, Anyussa. He also helped the local investigator Heluda Salt to track down a counterfeiter. Frostpine and Daja didn't return to Emelan before 1041 KF.

Physical description

Frostpine had dark skin in a colour that was even darker than Daja's. The top of his head was bald but the rest of his wiry, long, black[1] hair and beard grew wildly.[2] His arms--as well as the rest of his body[1]--were muscled and he had strong hands[10], both coming from the heavy work as a smith. Frostpine's eyes were of a dark colour[11] and heavy-lidded. He had full lips which liked to smile.[1] He usually wore the red habit of a Fire Dedicate, although the garnment got easily scorched and sooty due to his work in the forge.

Personality and traits

Frostpine: "Sandry has it," Frostpine repeated, eyebrows raised. "I see. You just, you felt generous, and you said, Take my magic, Sandry, I'm not using it—"
Lark: "Don't get into one of your flames."
Frostpine: "One of my—" Frostpine's voice rose. "You strip my apprentice of her power—"
Lark and Frostpine after he realized that Daja had given her power to Sandry[src]

He was a very good-natured person who only very seldom lost his perpetual calm. Daja once described him as the "most easygoing of men."[12] He even stayed calm during the pirate attack of 1035 KF. However even easygoing Frostpine could lose his temper and get angry. For instance he was actually yelling at a Water Temple dedicate when the Water Temple had let the storage of spelt boxes used for handling samples of deseases run low.[12]

Frostpine was also very protective of his student Daja and due to his childhood experiences was very sensitive on the topic of giving away magical powers. Thus he threw a fit when he realized that Daja had given her power over to Sandry for the purpose of mapping and separating the children's magics.[13]


Frostpine had not been shown to have a long-term romantic relationship, but in Cold Fire he was involved with Anyussa. It's also stated that he had once been involved with Matazi.

Daja Kisubo

Frostpine had spent many years trying to look for a smith mage of his skill and aptitude, and is very pleased and grateful when he finds Daja. She becomes like a daughter to him, and he helps her and teaches her with his witty ways. He is angered when he learns that Daja had given his magic over to Sandry to be mapped without his consent, due to his treatment when he was a child. However, Frostpine is a great teacher and great smith-mage, and guides Daja well.


Frostpine was a qualified smith and ambient mage. As q smith mage he was even a great mage and one of the very few who could work all kinds of metal, including gold. The only other smith known to be able to do so was his student Daja.[14] He had some degree of power with fire, since he could hold red-hot metal in his hands and not get burned, and with air, since he could use his lungs as bellows, not only to kindle a fire but also to blow away smoke[5]. His magic also permitted him to walk into burning buildings. The only harm he sustained from it came from the smoke[15], although neither he nor Daja were affected by the smoke produced by the grassfires in Gold Ridge.[16] As opposed to Daja he isn't harmed by lava and he can even create a magical shield protecting others from the deadly influence, too[17].

Besides his magical abilities Frostpine is also able to speak Tradertalk[18]. However, he isn't good at sailing and even gets sick on the still water of Summersea's harbor.[19]


Fun facts and trivia

Tamora Pierce based Frostpine on her writing mentor.[20]

Notes and references

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Daja's Book, Cp. 2 (p. 27; Scholastic paperback)
  2. 2.0 2.1 Sandry's Book, Cp. 5 (p. 80; Scholastic paperback)
  3. 3.0 3.1 Sandry's Book, Cp. 10 (p. 195; Scholastic paperback)
  4. Tris's Book, Cp. 7 (p. 114; Scholastic paperback)
  5. 5.0 5.1 Daja's Book, Cp. 7 (p. 128/129; Scholastic paperback)
  6. Tris's Book, Cp. 9 (p. 146; Scholastic paperback)
  7. Daja's Book, Cp. 2 (p. 28; Scholastic paperback)
  8. Sandry's Book, Cp. 7 (p. 133; Scholastic paperback)
  9. Daja's Book, Cp. 7 (p. 123; Scholastic paperback)
  10. Tris's Book, Cp. 3 (p. 31; Scholastic paperback)
  11. Tris's Book, Cp. 4 (p. 56; Scholastic paperback)
  12. 12.0 12.1 Briar's Book, Cp. 3 (p. 48; Scholastic paperback)
  13. Daja's Book, Cp. 7 (p. 121/122; Scholastic paperback)
  14. Briar's Book, Cp. 8 (p. 128; Scholastic paperback)
  15. Cold Fire
  16. Daja's Book, Cp. 7 (p. 127; Scholastic paperback)
  17. Daja's Book, Cp. 10 (p. 177; Scholastic paperback)
  18. Tris's Book, Cp. 6 (p. 90; Scholastic paperback)
  19. Tris's Book, Cp. 6 (p. 92; Scholastic paperback)
  20. Randombuzzers: Chat with Tamora Pierce - Tortall - retrieved on March 11, 2011

See also