Born Meredith NicEssus, she is the first faery princess born on American soil. She is the daughter of Essus, hence her surname NicEssus, who is her father and Prince of the Unseelie Court of Air and Darkness. Her mother is Princess Besaba of the Seelie Court of Light and Illusion. Besaba was given to Essus to promote peace between the two courts by King Taranis (king of the Seelie Court). The term of the marriage was to last three years but Besaba became pregnant in the first year. By Sidhe law she was bound to him for life.

Essus left the court with his entire household and his mother-in-law Hettie after Queen Andias (queen of the Unseelie Court) tried to drown her own niece for being a mongrel at age six. Queen Andias saw Meredith as a mongrel because she came from two Sidhe parents and the Sidhe didn’t “breed true”. Essus made sure his daughter was educated both scholastically and in etiquette in all Courts. She attended American public schools for academics and followed her father around to learn how to behave in various courts. Unfortunately Besaba had absolutely no interest in her daughter. Meredith is too human looking and her coloring is that of the Darkling Throng. Besaba cared not if her daughter Meredith lived or died.

Essus died when Meredith was only seventeen. Meredith left the courts shortly after because everyone in both Courts wanted to duel her. After a few times of almost dying, she felt the best course of action was to run to save her own life. She took on the pseudonym of Merry Gentry and fled to Los Angeles where she works for The Grey Detective Agency which is owned by an outcast trow named Jeremy Grey.

The Fae and the Sidhe (pronounced shEE) have been kicked out of every continent in the world save for North America. They, the Sidhe both the Light and Dark Courts, have an uneasy peace at the beginning of the series. They must maintain this peace if they want to stay on American soil, and they must. They have nowhere else to go.

Queen Andias manages to find Merry and invites here back home under her protection and her word that she will not harm Merry. She, in fact, has a proposal for Merry. What could it be? Read A Kiss Of Shadows by Laurell K. Hamilton and find out.