Hello there readers. Here a fun interview with the lead characters of the Under Ground series by Alice Rachel.
*Chi, Thia, and Stephen all take their seats in the room, along with Alice*
Chi: *gives a warm smile* Hi, Rose! How are you? Thanks for the interview.
Thia: *waves at Rose and smiles*
Stephen: *winks at Rose* Hey, sweetheart!
Alice: I saw that the interview contains a lot of spoilers, so I would like to warn the readers NOT to read this interview unless they’ve read Standing Ground. Is that okay, Rose?
Rose: Thia, why didn’t you notice the difference between Chi and Stephen the moment you escaped?
Stephen: *smirks* ‘Cause I’m just that good.
Chi: *shakes his head*
Thia: Well, it was dark when we left, so I couldn’t see him for a while. Then when we arrived, things happened so fast. We were meeting all those new people. And well, as you know, Chi and Stephen look exactly the same. I could tell something was off, but I just assumed he needed to recover. What happened was awful and I just thought we were both really shook up.
Stephen: To be fair to Thia, I do look exactly like Chi. And I tried my best to pretend.
Thia: I do feel really stupid, though.
Chi: *squeezes her hand*
Thia: *gives a faint smile*
Alice: Besides, the story would have been really boring if she had found out right away. *laughs*
Rose: Chi, why can’t you trust or believe anything Stephen tells you?
Chi: *sighs* When Stephen and I lived with my parents, I was always caught in between. I wanted to support Stephen, but he was always so angry. Have you ever seen him when he’s having a fit?
Stephen: Chi doesn’t trust me because our sweet mother has brainwashed him. You need to realize that Chi spent ALL his time with her. And to be fair to him, when there was a fight, our mother always did her best to make it look like it was my fault. And I can’t say I was the nicest to him, either. Imagine having a mother dotting on you all day and a brother who lashes out at you all the time, who are you going to believe?
Alice: Stephen never gave Chi a chance. And he can be very mean sometimes. It’s kinda hard to trust someone or listen to them when they lie to you all the time or constantly attack you.
Stephen: But Chi only saw what he wanted to see. Kids will do everything it takes to convince themselves their parents are good people. Chi included.
Chi: Okay, well, now I feel like an idiot… *makes a face*
Rose: Chi, did you think Stephen enjoyed being the first-born and not the unwanted?
Chi: Stephen sure made it sound like he hated me because he had to share stuff with me. It wasn’t about him being happy to be the first-born, it was about him resenting me because I was born at all.
Stephen: *sighs and shakes his head* *mumbles* I never resented you ’cause you were born. What the hell, bro?
Rose: Stephen, why are you so perfect and not at the same time?
*a few minutes pass by*
Stephen: *looks at her* What?
Alice: Are you going to answer the question?
Stephen: Oh, sorry, I didn’t think I was actually supposed to answer…Uh. *looks at Rose* Sweetheart, surely, you don’t think I’m perfect. I mean…I don’t know how to answer that, sorry.
Chi: You definitely aren’t perfect! Like at all!
Stephen: *rolls his eyes* I’m more perfect than you, and we both know it. *smirks*
Chi: *huffs* Right! Whatever, man!
Rose: Stephen, would you fall in love with Thia if you hadn’t met Willow?
Stephen: *narrows his eyes* Thia is dating Chi, why would I fall in love with her?
Rose: Chi and Stephen, would you rather date Willow or Thia? And why her?
Stephen: Again, Thia is dating Chi, why would I want to date her? I’m gonna let Chi answer that, though. If he knows what’s good for him, he’ll be real careful what he answers.
Chi: *shakes his head and rolls his eyes* I cared about Willow very much, but I’m in love with Thia. I just can’t explain it. My relationship with Thia is different.
Stephen: *pats him on the back* Good boy!
Chi: *pulls away* Cut it out, man! You’re annoying!
Rose: To the three of you, if you were to change something in the past, what would you change? And why? Would you do the same thing again if given a chance to go back in time?
Stephen: I wouldn’t give a damn about anyone but Willow, and I would tell her the truth about my family. Then I’d take her away. It’d be just her and me. And to hell with everyone else.
Chi: I would have told Taylor we should free the camps earlier.
Alice: Remember that Chi doesn’t know the truth about Stephen so we’re gonna keep it this way for the interview… He’d probably have a different answer if he knew…
Thia: I would tell Mother she can’t get involved and I would sneak out of the house to join the Underground without telling her what I’m doing.
Rose: Alice, why do all the characters have awful pasts?
Alice: Well, they do live in a dystopian world…I doubt any of them can be happy in that situation (except for brats like William, of course). I believe that everyone goes through some trauma at some point in their lives. Life is good, life gets bad, life is good again. It’s the same for everyone, and I wanted to show that in my stories. I wanted to show that everyone goes through some bad things. People get sick, people are bullied, people get depressed, it’s a reality for most people out there. We often fail to see that. We judge others without knowing anything about them. We just assume those around us are happier than we are and that they have everything, but that’s just not true.
My entire series is about “don’t judge others before you truly know them.”
Also, as far as Standing Ground is concerned, I wrote it at a time when I was really not feeling well at all. I don’t want to talk about what happened at that time, but my depression definitely shows in my writing of that book. I also started writing Dangerous Ground during that time period, so you can expect Chase’s story to be devastating. I’m not done with DG yet, but it’s too late to change the main direction of Chase’s past now.
Out of them all, Stephen and Chase have had the most heartbreaking lives.
Rose: Alice, what made you decide to have that huge plot twist at the end of Standing Ground?
Alice: The story just writes itself, really. But I also wanted Thia to grow without Chi’s influence, and that wouldn’t be possible if he was still by her side at that point. Also, Breaking Ground will be written from Thia’s POV and Stephen’s POV so I had to make sure Stephen was present from the very beginning of Breaking Ground.
Alice, Chi, Stephen, and Thia: Thank you so much for the interview!