I've been reading your books since I was like 8 and I still don't know how to phrase this? So 20 years later, looking back I have to ask. The relationship between Daine and Numair and the age difference and power dynamic initially, I now see as having kinda unsettling overtones. She's a teen, he isn't. Any expansion or discussion you'd have to keep real teens from following her footsteps? As a teen I thought it was terribly romantic and all.
The thing I keep having to explain is that this is a medieval period, similar to the edge of the Rennaissance but not quite. This is a period where marriages were arranged or made where the bride was often as young as twelve or fourteen. The way I have it set in my own universe, there are girls and boys getting married as young as fourteen to sixteen in the Lower City. Some of the upper classes may wait as long as eighteen, and their marriages are arranged.
In those days, young men had a hard time finding work that would support them AND a family, so they would often wait until they were older to marry. In the upper classes, in the merchant classes, a man would need to be sufficiently in craft or status to have a wife. Numair was only then of an age, as a mage, to think about taking a wife if he were to ever really focus on such a thing. (He’s usually thinking of other things.) Daine, at seventeen, is teetering on the verge of being an old maid.
It makes contemporary people uncomfortable, but I try to keep the historic elements of my books as close as possible to actual history.