The smooth-talking and charming villain of the series, Bishop Waleran is always looking for some way to sway a situation in his favor, and is quick to leap into action as he sees immediate potential. He bargains for Stephen an agreement, in which he will murder the crown prince in a boating accident, in exchange for power and influence within his clerical district. When the boat sinks but the prince does not die, Waleran slits his throat, then implicates the man who witnessed this in theft and has him burned at the stake. He sees a chance, when Philip needs stones and timber to build his cathedral, to use them for himself in rebuilding a magnificent new palace. He makes a deal with Philip that when the archbishop dies, Philip will support his appointment to the position in exchange for Waleran’s help in convincing the king to give him land for the priory. But he does not intend to keep this promise, and when Philip out-maneuvers him at court, Waleran decides for no other reason than his own personal resentment to “ruin” him, and prevent the Cathedral being built. So he sides with the Hamleigh family against Philip, urging them to guard the quarry, beat back the monks’ stonemasons with force, attack and burn the annual fair that brings revenues to the Cathedral, and frame Jack for murder. Waleran sees a chance to implicate Philip in murder, and tells Queen Maude about him being a “treasonous monk,” hoping to get him killed. He convinces others to do his will by persuading them that they are a team, they are in this together, and pretending to extend his support and friendship, without being genuine about any of it. If that does not work, he uses blackmail and the secrets he has gathered about them being sodomites, adulterers, and murderers. He is quite good at knowing how to intimidate people by preying on their fears. Waleran is just using people to achieve his own ends, and assumes toward the end of the story that he can persuade people out of accusing him of murder. Though scornful of others’ beliefs, he punishes his body in the hopes that God will honor his sacrifice and “give me what I want.”

Enneagram: 3w4 so/sp

Everyone knows that his sin is ambition; he is unscrupulous, persuasive, charming, mild in his tone, and opportunistic, finding ways to reassure, charm, and convince people to give him what he wants. He intends to become an archbishop or climb even higher within the Church. Waleran has an incredible ability to come out of any situation unscathed and appear to look good in the process. He’s confident of his achievements and not afraid to use underhanded tactics to get what he wants. He is also merciless upon the people who cross him, and looks for ways to punish them indirectly—so that it will not be traced back to him, or make him look bad in King Stephen’s eyes. He quite calmly and rationally tells people the reasons why things will not work, never becoming emotionally involved with them in the process. It shocks him to be ‘found out’ and exposed, and he assumes that he can still walk away unnoticed and unmolested, due to his high position.