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Myles of Olau
Baron of Olau
In Own Right
Style Sir Knight
Heir Apparent Alanna the Lioness
Heir Presumptive
Bequeathed by
Date Bequeathed
Style '
Teacher of History and Law
Reigning Monarch King Jonathan IV
King Roald V
Years of Service
Biographical Information
Birth Name
Mage Name
Maiden Name
Honorific '
Codename Father
Nationality Tortallan
Physical Description
Gender Male
Hair Brown, streaked with gray
Eyes Green-brown
Other Plump
Family Information
Noble House Olau family
Adoptive Parents
Wife Eleni Cooper
Adoptive Children Alanna the Lioness
Grandchildren Thom of Pirate's Swoop
Alan of Pirate's Swoop
Alianne Crow
Descendants Ochobai Crow
Junim Crow
Ulasu Crow
Other Family George Cooper (stepson, son-in-law)
Patron God
Rank Nobility
Estates Barony Olau
Residence Tortallan Royal Palace
Bazhir Tribe
Sponsored by
Sponsor to
Training Master
Knight Master
Year Knighted
Squire Owen of Jesslaw (briefly)
Military Affiliation
Military Branch
Squad Leader Sergeant
Combat Tusaine War
Provost's Guard
Guard District
Guard Watch
Bibliographical Information
Tortallan Universe character
First Mentioned '
Only Mentioned '
First Appeared Alanna: The First Adventure
Last Appeared '
Latest Appearance Trickster's Queen
Only Appearance '
Last Mentioned '

Sir Myles of Olau (pronounced MIGH-lz of oh-LAU) was a knight, scholar, and the Baron of Olau. Myles was Spymaster and adviser to King Jonathan IV, and teacher of History and Laws of the Realm to the pages. He later married Eleni Cooper, George Cooper's mother, and adopted Alanna the Lioness as his daughter not long after she became a knight and revealed her true sex. He was generally referred to as a desk-knight, and had well-established philosophical issues with the concept of Chivalry.


Early life

Myles trained to be a knight and passed the ordeal of knighthood at some point. When Myles had inherited Olau, it had been financially struggling. Myles entered trade in order to recover Olau's debts. It is unknown when but at some point Myles became the teacher of History and Law of the Realm. 

Teaching at the palace

Page Alan

When Alanna first arrived at the Tortallan royal palace Myles was generally known as the "court drunk"[1] and didn't appear to have an important role in the running of Tortall. Alanna was assigned to wait upon Sir Myles on dinners. Whenever he had drunk too much he asked her to walk him to his rooms.[2]

He was probably the pages' most favorite teacher, who had engaging debates with his students, especially Alex, which sometimes lead to the pages falling behind in the history they were meant to learn. This also brought him some rebuke from the Duke of Naxen, who preferred the pages to learn proper history to them debating with their teacher about the Code of Chivalry. Myles had his classroom decorated with maps and charts on the walls and also had a board with large sheets of paper to write on.[1] Myles was a knight, although the first time Alanna saw him don armor and weapons was during the Tusaine War.

Adopting Alanna

Myles was influential in Alanna's life during her years as a page and squire. Over Alanna's years as a page and squire, Myles befriended her and became her mentor, a father-figure. He took Alanna to Barony Olau when she was a page. They traveled to the ruins there where Alanna found Lightning, a magical sword. She often spent nights playing chess with him instead of with her friends Jon, Gary, Raoul and Alex. Alanna was drawn to his wisdom and understanding, and turned to him when Coram wrote of a particularly difficult problem with Trebond (she acted as Lord of Trebond when she was a squire). Myles often commented that Prince Jonathan reminded him of the "old king", Jasson III of Conté, and claimed that he drank to ignore the state of the court and Tortall. He officially adopted Alanna when he and she were with the Bloody Hawk tribe of the Bazhir.


When Halef Seif's friend entrusted Alanna with the map to the Dominion Jewel Alanna used Myles' trading connections during her travels to the Roof of the World. While she was gone, Myles helped George Cooper by taking Eleni Cooper into his house to protect her from thieves who followed "Claw" (Ralon of Malven). He later fell in love with Eleni, and they were married after the coronation.
Myles entered trade in order to recover Olau's debts, and it was through these connections that he built on a spy network when Jonathan became king. 

He was grandfather, although not actually related to the children by blood, to ThomAlan and Alianne of Pirate's Swoop, Alanna's three children. 

In 452 HE, Myles offered Keladry of Mindelan a hand of friendship when she began her years as a page, although Kel never appeared to take this offer up.

Scanran War

During the Scanran War, Myles and Eleni spent most of their time in Corus with King Jonathan and Queen Thayet.

In 462 HE, their granddaughter Aly was kidnapped by pirates on the way to Port Legann and brought to a foreign country. Sir Myles, George, and other notable people of the realm tried to search for her, but to no avail. Sir Myles and George had to be very careful about this, as enemies would use Aly's disappearance against them, especially if they found it she was the daughter and granddaughter of the two spymasters of Tortall, and the godsdaughter of the two monarchs of Tortall.

Sir Myles and Lady Eleni were present at the naming ceremony of Sarralyn Salmalín.

Physical description

"He was the oddest mixture of disarray and good nature she had ever encountered, and she liked him on sight."
—Alanna's first impression of Myles[src]

Myles was a short man, described as being "plump". When Alanna became a page his long hair was still brown, although already streaked with gray. His beard was also long and "shaggy". His clothes weren't as immaculate as those of many nobles, showing wrinkles and trousers that were bagged at the knees. His nose was "tiny" and "delicate" and he liked to smile. Myles' large eyes were of a green-brown color.[1]

Personality and traits

Alanna: "I liked him a lot. He just seems --"
Alex: "Odd. The word you want is "odd.""
Alanna: "Actually, he seems very wise."
— Alanna and Alex after Alanna's first lesson with Myles as a page[src]

Myles developed a habit to drink because he was too aware of the court intrigues and drowned this awareness in alcohol.[2] Alanna repeatedly tried to dissuade Myles from drinking, but when the Sweating Sickness struck Corus and Myles was one of the few who didn't fall sick he claimed it was because of the alcohol.[3]

But he was also a good teacher in History and Law with the ability to make it "seem real." He was the pages favorite teacher.To Alanna, who waited on him at the daily evening banquets, he was friendly and sometimes gave her sweets or a silver penny when she helped him to his rooms because he had drunk too much.[1] He also gave her advice and became her mentor.

Skills and abilities

He is a scholar. Since he trained as a knight it is suggested that he knows how to use weapons, fight in wars etc. During a skirmish with the Tusiane border, Alanna is shocked to see him jump onto a horse and charge into the fight. Miles is an accomplished drunk, with a reputation at court as one, although this allows him to hear many tidbits of useful information. He is also good at chess.


Eleni Cooper

He married Eleni Cooper, George Cooper's mother, sometime after Coronation Day. They had met through George in 438/439 HE, when George feared for his mother's life and asked Myles if she could stay with him. Myles was glad to help and he and Eleni soon became fond of each other. By the time Alanna returned from the Roof of the World she already saw signs of a developing relationship.

Alanna of Pirate's Swoop and Olau

In 430 HE Myles met the young page "Alan of Trebond", who was assigned to wait on him during the evening meals. They developed a friendly relationship and Myles soon became a father-substitute for Alanna, whose real gender he guessed when she saved Prince Jonathan of the Sweating Sickness but only learned officially shortly before she duelled Duke Roger after her Ordeal of Knighthood. During her time at the palace they played games of chess together and Alanna often asked him of advice.

Later, in 438 HE, he adopts Alanna officially as his daughter and heir in a rite of the Bloody Hawk.

George Cooper

Myles is George's stepfather through his marriage to Eleni as well as George's fathter-in-law through his adoption of Alanna and her marriage to George.

Apart from those familial ties both men have become friends over the years. Myles helped George to find out who "Claw" really was and gave George's mother a safe home when she was in danger. Later they also worked together as Tortallan's spymasters. While Myles held this position officially, George was his second-in-command and did most of the work, because he wasn't as much in the public focus as Myles.

Grandchildren and great-grandchildren

Through Alanna and George Myles was also the grandfather of Thom, Alianne and Alan of Pirate's Swoop. Aly especially liked her grandfather, which was probably at least partly due to the fact that he, like her father, worked in the spy-business. She had visited her grandparents in Corus shortly before she was captured by pirates and arrived in the Copper Isles. Through Aly, and her husband Nawat, Myles had also three great-grandchildren: Junim, Ulasu and Ochobai Crow.


He appears in the Song of the Lioness quartet, The Immortals Quartet, the Protector of the Small and the Trickster duology. A full list of appearances below:

Notes and references

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Alanna: The First Adventure, Chapter 2
  2. 2.0 2.1 Alanna: The First Adventure, Chapter 3
  3. Alanna: The First Adventure, Chapter 4

See also

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