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Duke Balitang
Style His Grace
Start of Reign
Coronation Date
End of Reign
Tenure  ?—462 HE
Regency Council
Predecessor His father
Heir Apparent
Heir Presumptive
Successor Elsren Balitang
King's Champion
Prime Minister
Bequeathed by
Date Bequeathed
Style '
Reigning Monarch
Liege Lord
Years of Service
Biographical Information
Birth Name
Maiden Name
Honorific '
Died 462 HE (stabbed by Bronau Jimajen)
Race Luarin
Nationality Copper Islander
Physical Description
Gender Male
Height 5' 10"
Hair Brown
Family Information
Noble House Balitang family
Ancestors Rittevon of Lenman
House Rittevon
House Balitang
Adoptive Parents
Wife Sarugani Temaida (mid 440s HE - 455 HE, deceased)
Winnamine Fonfala (m. late 450s)
Children Saraiyu Balitang
Dovasary Balitang
Petranne Balitang
Elsren Balitang(deceased)
Adoptive Children
Grandchildren Mequen Hetnim (grandson)
Other Family Nuritin Balitang (aunt)
Patron God
Rank Nobility
Bazhir Tribe
K'miri Tribe
Sponsored by
Sponsor to
Training Master
Knight Master
Year Knighted
Military Affiliation
Military Branch
Squad Leader Sergeant
Rider Group Group
Provost's Guard
Guard District
Guard Watch
Bibliographical Information
Tortallan Universe character
First Mentioned '
Only Mentioned '
First Appeared '
Last Appeared '
Latest Appearance '
Only Appearance Trickster's Choice
Last Mentioned Trickster's Queen
Mequen Balitang (pronounced MEHK-wenn BAHL-ee-tahng) was a member of the luarin nobility of the Copper Isles, and held the title and position of Duke. Mequen was the first cousin of King Oron, and thus a relation of House Rittevon, the ruling family of the Isles, as well as a member and head of the Balitang family. Because he was King Oron's first cousin, his mother would have been a Rittevon princess. After King Dunevon took the throne, he was heir presumptive to the throne, and would have inherited if King Dunevon had died before him.

He was married twice. His first marriage, with Sarugani of House Temaida brought him two daughters: Saraiyu and Dovasary Balitang. After she died, he married Winnamine Fonfala and had two children with her: Petranne and Elsren. After the results of the raka rebellion, Mequen would be the father of the Queen of the Copper Isles, Dovasary.


Early life

Mequen became a Copper Isles knight and soldier, and went through his training with Bronau Jimajen and Bronau's brother, Rubinyan Jimajen. He became good friends with the brothers, and was saddened when their sibling love turned to rivalry. Unlike many luarin nobles and royals, he did not hate and look down upon the raka. Thus, he married Sarugani Temaida, a woman of the lesser raka nobility and a full-blood raka woman. This marriage would have been looked down upon with disdain by the other luarin gentry, but he married her anyway. He had two daughters by her, Saraiyu and Dovasary. He would have been aware of the Kyprish Prophecy proclaiming the arrival of a twice-royal queen, but would probably have not been aware of his wife's Haiming descent. Even so, Saraiyu was chosen by that raka conspiracy to be their queen candidate from her birth. Thus, they were served and protected by Duchess Sarugani's old household, as the Temaida family wished to do their part in keeping Saraiyu and Dovasary alive and away from Crown discovery.

His wife died in a fatal horseriding accident when his daughters were nine and five. Mequen went into a period of great mourning, as he loved his late wife dearly. Nuritin Balitang was the one to force him out of this period, telling him that he owed it to his family to marry again. Mequen married Sarugani's old friend, Winnamine Fonfala. Their marriage was a very happy one. He had two children by her, Petranne and Elsren. Because luarin inheritance laws favored males, his three daughters were skipped over in the line of succession, as Elsren was the duke's new heir.


In 462 HE he aroused the wrath of King Oron and was sent into exile to the estates of his late wife, Tanair. He was forced to pay a large sum of money to appease the King, and was also forced to sell most of his slaves due to this drop in finances. He kept the most important slaves and servants of his household, including Chenaol, and Ulasim Dodeka. When he was about to sell Aly, he was magicked by Kyprioth the trickster god in order to let her remain with them. He and his wife believed that Kyprioth was actually the god Mithros, that Alianne of Pirate's Swoop was his emissary, and that the great god had plans for the Balitangs. Mequen wished to free Aly, telling her that as she is one of Mithros's, it would be unfit to keep her as a slave. She refused, which startled both him and his wife. Aly explained that she could not easily spy as a servant, and Mequen and Winnamine understand her reasonings. He gave her the task of herding goats, so that she may go where she pleases. They also made her their 'personal courier', so that the other servants don't question her roaming throughout the indoors.

Mequen's old friend, Prince Bronau came to stay at Tanair with the Balitang family. As Bronau was the one who warned the Balitangs of Oron's change in temperament toward them, he was welcomed. Bronau came and went and started to woo Sarai, much to the discomfort of both Mequen and Winnamine. Mequen advised Sarai to not let herself be wooed so easily by a man like Bronau, who was well-practiced as a lady's man. Sarai at first could not see reason, but then realized that her father and stepmother were right. She accepted Bronau's later gifts graciously, but did not let herself be caught up by Bronau.

Aly warned Mequen and Winnamine after Prince Bronau attempted to kidnap the newly crowned boy-king, Dunevon Rittevon. Mequen knew it was likely that Bronau would find refuge at Tanair, as did the regents, Princess Imajane and Prince Rubinyan, so they did not pardon the Balitangs.

Bronau came with a plan to take Tanair by force and to bully Mequen into trying for the throne, as he was Dunevon's heir presumptive. His plan was to force Mequen to raise an army and try for the throne and abdicate in the name of his daughter Saraiyu and her new husband Bronau. When Mequen refused and began to fight Bronau, the prince dealt his old friend with a fatal blow to the stomach. He tried to convince Winnamine and the two girls that it would be easily healed. Sarai attacked him with a sword but he easily deflected the blows and disarmed her, saying more threats. Dove finally shot him with a griffin-fletched arrow, thus killing him.

The wound that Bronau dealt Mequen was fatal and not even Ochobu Dodeka could save the duke. Aly cursed Bronau for not even knowing that the blow was fatal and for not knowing his wounds. Thus Mequen and Bronau died in 462 HE.

Upon Mequen's death, the dukedom passed to his son Elsren. As Elsren was not of age, his lands and treasury would be overseen by his elder relatives, namely Nuritin and Winnamine.

Physical description

Mequen is a luarin, and a descendant of the luarin ruling house, the Rittevons.  He is five feet ten inches tall with a solid build.  He has dark eyes framed by laugh lines, a broad nose, a wide mouth, and a square chin.  His dark hair is clipped short and retreating up his forehead.

Personality and traits

Mequen was a fair man who treated his servants and slaves well and made no distinction between raka and luarin. This is quite remarkable, especially as most other luarin nobles of Mequen's stature are luarin supremacists, and that he escaped the bigotry and hypocrisy of most of his peers.

He was also very intelligent and aware. He believed that the raka were so quick to protect and defend Sarai and Dove because they were half-raka girls who were members of the Rittevon royal family, thus putting the raka closer to the throne and their emancipation. This was half correct, as he was unaware of his late first wife's ancestry and that she was of the Haiming Dynasty, the old raka ruling family. This would make his daughters twice-royal and at least one of them—it was believed to be Sarai at this point—the Queen mentioned in the Kyprish Prophecy.


Sarugani Temaida

Mequen was deeply in love with his first wife, Sarugani Temaida, and had two half-raka daughters by her. As Sarugani was a raka noblewoman, their marriage was looked down upon with disdain by the other luarin gentry. He ignored this, and married her, regardless of the toll that it would have on his luarin family's social image. When she died, her death was especially hard for him. He refused to remarry for years and only the head of the Balitang family, his aunt Nuritin Balitang, convinced him to take a new wife by telling him he owed as much to his family. Thus he eventually married Winnamine Fonfala, one of Sarugani's closest friends.

Winnamine Balitang

He and Winnamine developed a very close relationship and their marriage wasn't only based on the benefit of the family but also on love. They understood each other so well that they could even communicate without speaking, just by looking at each other. They worked especially well as a team, and Mequen's love and respect for his second wife is evident in that he did not adhere to the societal norm that the man is the most powerful in the relationship. On the outside, yes, that was the case, but he consulted Winna about almost everything in the matter of their family.

His children

Mequen had a good, healthy relationship with his children. He was a loving and caring father, and loved all of his children equally. He stood strong in what he believed in, and raised his children in his ways and beliefs. He allowed them to do what they want, and not lead lives constrained by society. He let Sarai practice swordplay with the agreement of his second wife, after his daughter proved herself against a would-be assassin.

Bronau Jimajen

Bronau used to be Mequen's dearest friend when they were boys—along with the other Jimajen prince, Rubinyan. Thus, he welcomed Bronau to Tanair with open arms. However, later Bronau's plot to seize power through King Dunevon (at first), and then a marriage to Sarai, caused them to have a falling out. Bronau killed Mequen, and is in turn killed by Dove in order to stop him.

Aly of Pirate's Swoop

At first, he saw the Tortallan girl as only a slave, but then is tricked by Kyprioth into thinking that she was Mithros's emissary. He is startled by her vast knowledge of the ways of the world and of espionage, thinking her only a simple slave. He later catches on, and assumes she is higher born than she says she is—although, maybe not noble. He also recognized her perfect use of language, something that is odd for a slave that was once a maid.

Family trees


                             ?                                    Rittevon Dynasty
               ┌—————————————┴————————┐                  ┌—————————————┴————————┐
               │                      │                  │                      │
           Nuritin Balitang  unnamed brother ┬ Rittevon princess               Rittevon king or prince
                                             │                                           │                          
                   Sarugani Temaida † ┬ Mequen BalitangWinnamine Fonfala          Oron Rittevon
                                      │                 │
     ┌————————————————————————————————┴——┐             ┌┴———————————————————┐
     │                                   │             │                    │
Saraiyu BalitangZaimid Hetnim  Dovasary Balitang  Petranne Balitang   Elsren Balitang †
            Mequen Hetnim


Note: Dunevon Rittevon and Saraiyu Balitang were mentioned to be second cousins. This means that Mequen is the first cousin of King Oron, and as he is named Balitang instead of Rittevon, his mother must have been a Rittevon princess.

                                                    Marenite House of Lenman
                                                   Rittevon of Lenman
                                                           King Hanoren I 
                                          Unnamed Rittevon King ┬ Unnamed wife
                               │                                 │
                     Father of King Oron                Rittevon princess ┬ Duke Balitang
                              │                                           │
           3 wives ┬ Oron Rittevon                                Mequen Balitang                                                                                                        Jimajen family   
                   │                                                                                                                                                                        │
        │                                          │                                │                        │                          │                         │                         │
Hazarin Rittevon † — Unnamed wife      High Admiral DeniauGeneral ValmarPrince HanorenDunevon RittevonImajane Rittevon (childless)Rubinyan Jimajen


Mequen appeared as a major character in Trickster's Choice.

See also

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