Nick is a 50 year old English-born Hedge-Fund manager who has lived in California for most of his adult life. In his school days as a teenager in England he excelled in Rugby, but his ambition for success and analytical nature drove him to pursue business studies in the U.S. and resulted in a successful career there.
Nick is handsome, witty and loved by everyone. He has a very specific and unapologetic view of work and life, where everything is calculated down to the dot per its statistical value. This made Nick successful in business, but a failure in personal relationships. He wants to, but seems to be unable to really be there for his loved ones when it truly matters. This has been the recurring theme of his life.
In his early twenties he left his loving family in England, moved to America and has gone back to visit only for his parent’s funerals. This has torn a painful wound between Nick and his immediate family with whom he hasn’t been in touch for years.
In 1994 during his masters degree in UCLA Nick spent 4 months in a student exchange program in Hamburg Germany, where he had a beautiful love affair with Anna - a young free spirited local girl. Their personalities were direct opposites which made it into a beautiful yet impossible relationship. Some months after his return to the U.S. he learned that his young lover was pregnant, but chose to take a position offered to him in a successful firm and not go back to Germany to support the mother and child. Over the years he has kept a friendly connection with Anna, and visited his daughter Claudia a few times in Germany, but those were estranged and somewhat uncomfortable encounters for him.
For the past fifteen years Nick was married (no kids), but he was never there for his wife when it mattered and now it is all falling apart in a nasty divoce.
With that, and him just turning 50, Nick decides to take a real break from his calculated and cold life and make some drastic changes. To start he takes a month off of work (something he hasn't done in 25 years), and his next mission is to make amends with the closest human being he has on this earth - his now 25 year old daughter Claudia, who has been traveling Asia over the past months following her university graduation.
Nick will travel to join Claudia for a few weeks of proposed father-daughter bonding in India, and will encounter life changing experiences - spiritual, mental and physical - that will set a new and unexpected course to his life. As things unexpectedly take a turn for the worst, he will have to reinvent himself to save his daughter's life, even at the cost of losing his own.
25 year old Claudia was born and raised in Germany, by her single mother in a hippie-like community near Hamburg. Spitting image of her mother when she was young, and just as free spirited, Claudia loves life, laughs a lot and is just as witty as her father, which she has only seen a handful of times in her life. They are clearly alike - Claudia and Nicolas - same facial expressions, same sense of humour, but Claudia also possesses the free spirited view of the world and strict vegetarian way of life - same as her mother yet totally different from her uptight father.
Fresh out of College with a masters degree in history and philosophy, Claudia takes off on a backpacking trip across Asia, together with her best friend Yulia. Her father uncharacteristically suggested that he join her for a few weeks during her travel route in India - a father/daughter bonding trip to make amends for their awkward relationship, and his continuous screw ups as a father all these years. Claudia is fully skeptical about her dad’s “new wave” approach - she’s always seen him NOT being there for her - but is happy to accept his offer. They will meet in Goa for a few fun weeks on the beach.
Claudia will discover in Nick the father she never knew she had and never knew how much she’s missed. As things take an unexpected turn for the worse - Claudia will have to trust that her dad will be there for her - for the first time of his life. Both will have to excel over their habits and beliefs in order to survive.
37 year old Shena is a former field operator of the Indian Police, specializing in human trafficking and other women related abuses. She comes from a long line of esteemed police and military officers in India, well educated, speaks several languages, and knows her way around physical combat and handling of weapons.
Shena is a fun loving, happy and progressive person, yet her commitment to her work is all encompassing. Her marriage of 12 years to a well respected lawyer in Mumbai recently ended, due to the fact that she wasn't ready to commit to having children because of her all-consuming work. That wound never healed, kids never came, and this led to their drifting apart. A modern day clash between woman and man and the roles they are expected to take in a family. Over the years Shena began regretting her choice to not have children and became tourmanted by it.
Following a work-related incident where Shena went after some powerful politicians due to their trafficking related ties, Shena was framed and accused of some wrongdoing, and was discharged from her job. With that and the fresh divorce she decides to join her two best girlfriends on a soul searching road trip across India, which ends up in Rishikesh for a two week Yoga retreat. She really needs that time off to figure out her life.
In Rishikesh Shena and Nick will accidentally meet. As things take an unexpected turn for the worst for Nick and Claudia, Shena will find herself compelled to help them: in Nick she will find romance and by helping both him and Claudia she will find amense for her own flawed personal life.
27 year old Leo is an experienced German traveler that has been dwelling in and around India for the past decade. He is fun and resourceful - a foreigner with lots of local friends that knows how to get you anything in India - anything at all. Secretly, Leo is a member and experienced recruiter of the Spiti Valley Aryan tribe, whose job is to host and safely deliver young men and women that arrive from across the world to the Aryan Village.
Leo is on a job to transport a few western Aryan girls from Goa to the Spiti Valley village. In Goa he befriends Claudia and her crew, and then they meet again in Rishikesh by pure chance. The two will have a flirty and fun relationship that slowly grows to attraction.
At a pivotal point of our story Leo takes an unexpected turn that puts Claudia’s life in extreme and immediate danger. He will later regret and repent at the risk of losing everything.
Peter, 50, is the leader of the secret Aryan society living in Spiti Valley. He is the oldest person in the village and the grandson of a meaningful Nazi figure that fled Europe after the 2nd World War to seek refuge at the village, and later became its High Preist via a violent coup takeover.
Peter grew up in the village in times when it was a much different place. His older brother was destined to replace their almighty High Priest grandfather, and to marry young Anna - the daughter of the most esteemed pure blooded family in the village. However young Anna and Peter - both life-loving and peaceful tennagers - were secretly deeply in love, and decided to flee the village that was turning darker with every passing year. Things didn’t end well for the young couple. Anna managed to flee, yet Peter had to kill his older brother and stay behind to allow her freedom. Losing his brother and the love of his life tormented young Peter and with the guiding hand of his Nazi grandfather, who knew of Peter’s dark secret, Peter’s soul began blackening and he ended up replacing his grandfather and strictening his rules even further.
Today Peter is the highest living priest of the tribe and has the most extensive knowledge of the secret past of the Aryan cult. He is a ruthless ruler to his people, and in great physical shape, however due to his age he is no longer an impregnator. In his earlier years, Peter was considered the most popular of all priests, and has fathered many babies.
Peter always felt like he never had a father - someone that could have saved him from his grandfather’s influence on him when he was just a heart-broken teenager, and he wants to experience having a child of his own that he actually gets to keep. “A man with no children is a man with no future” is one of his favourite quotes.
As the master gate keeper of the old Aryan Order Peter enforces strict following of the Order’s rules. However this creates an inner battle within him - as according to the rules he is no longer useful as a physical male, while he feels young, strong and vital, and cannot stand the restraints he himself preaches. For a decade he’s been longing a true and meaningful family relation with a child, in direct clash with his own faith. Upon seeing a picture of young Claudia everything changes.
24 year old Yulia is Claudia's close friend and her travel companion across their trip to Asia. Yulia is originally from Croatia and she met Claudia in their freshman year at the university in Hamburg some 6 years back.
75 year old Sanjee is an ex-India Secret Service commander, a close friend to Shena’s family, and a father figure to Shena. Sanjee was her real father’s best friend, and after his unexpected death some 25 years ago Sunjee took it upon himself to watch over Shena (who was then only 12 years old).
During the height of his career he investigated the Aryan Village rumours and was close to finding out some real evidence of foul-play just as the operation suddenly shut down due to government orders.
Now retired and widowed and living in the secluded woods at the foot of the Himalayas, Sunjee will play an important role in helping Nick and Shena find their way in, and out, of the Secret Village.
48 year old Anna was Nick’s young lover during his 4 months as a student in an exchange program in Germany (back in 1994), and is Claudia’s mom.
Anna is a life loving free spirited hippie-like woman. She grew up in Spiti Valley and was destined to marry into the high-Priest bloodline. However Anna was in love with young Peter - the younger brother of her destined husband - and together they planned an escape from the village. She succeeded in doing so yet Peter had to stay to allow her escape. She then migrated to Germany and lived most of her adult life in a hippie-like
community near Hamburg where she raised Claudia as a single mother supported by the community.
Anna was always ok with Nick’s choices over the years, although the undeniable scarring it left with their shared daughter. “For each his own” is the motto of her life, and this is something that seems to have stuck with her daughter as well.
Since her escape from Spiti Valley in 1988 when she was only 16, Anna cut all ties to the Aryan Order. Young Peter became just an old memory of her first teenage love.
26 year old Maria is Leo’s young sister. They were both raised in a family that religiously followed the Aryan Order, and willingly arrived from Germany to Spiti Valley as teenagers.
28 year old Erica is Peter’s top helper. She runs his personal household and supplies his every need. Erica believes she is the chosen one for Peter, and that he will one day realize and acknowledge it. She allows herself to talk to him directly and feels she protects him from outerworld bothers. Peter allows it to a certain degree but sees in her nothing but a tool.
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