Guido Parola

Reformed assassin
university student
Prince Consort of Fortezza[1]
Year of Birth
Place of Birth

Current Residence
an ill father[4]
mother, died when Guido was young[4]
older brother
Lucia di Chimici, wife[1]

Guido Parola is a young man from Bellezza who notably became infamous for attempting to assassinate the Duchessa. He is described as being tall and handsome, and noticeably having red hair.


In City of Masks, Guido is revealed to be a young nobleman whose family has fallen under hard times. Though he should be studying at university in Padavia, his older brother has gambled away the family's fortune and Guido could not attend. Furthermore, Guido has been taking care of his father, who has become very ill, and they cannot afford a doctor or hire a woman to be his father's nurse. Unhappy and desperate, he tells an old school friend of all his troubles and he is reluctantly hired to assassinate the Duchessa during the Feast of the Maddalena. The attempt is thwarted by Lucien Mulholland; after Guido is arrested, the Duchessa grants him clemency when she realizes that Guido has been a tool of the di Chimici. Guido is sent to live with Egidio and Fiorentino Rossi to train as a mandolier at the Scuola Mandoliera in order to maintain a low profile while Silvia deals with the di Chimici.

When Silvia chooses to retire and live as a private citizen in Padavia, she brings her most trusted maid Susanna, and Guido, now reformed, as her bodyguard. She personally pays for medical treatment for Guido's father, who eventually dies, though in comfort. Guido becomes Silvia's devoted servant, accompanying her to Remora during the Stellata and to Giglia for the di Chimici weddings. During the Massacre at the Church of Annunciation, Guido risks his life in order to protect Arianna Rossi, Silvia's daughter and her successor as the Duchessa of Bellezza. During the aftermath of the massacre and the flooding of Giglia, Guido is found comforting Lucia di Chimici, who was immediately widowed on her wedding day.

In gratitude for attempting to save her daughter, Silvia releases Guido from her service, encouraging him to see her as a godmother of sorts and to allow her to fund his education so he can study at a university in Fortezza. Guido reluctantly agrees, though he does not appear to leave for Fortezza immediately, as he needs to resolve some business with his dissolute brother.[5] He briefly appears in City of Secrets to train Marco as a bodyguard to protect Arianna during her anonymous visits to Luciano Crinamorte in Padavia at Silvia's request.

Guido returns in City of Swords[6] in a larger role than in previous books. He attends the university in Fortezza and well-received as a personal friend to Lucia di Chimici and her family, having become acquainted with the Fortezzan di Chimici during the incidents in Giglia. During the succession struggle in Fortezza, Guido becomes Lucia's steadfast protector and confidante, encouraging her to seek the help of the Stravaganti in order to end the conflict in Fortezza. Once Lucia's claim to the Fortezzan throne is established and the rival Ludo Vivoide is forced into exile, Lucia announces her intention to marry Guido instead of Filippo of Bellona in order to secure her position as the sovereign ruler of Fortezza. Guido later testifies at the trial of Enrico Poggi that he was the first assassin hired by Rinaldo di Chimici to kill Silvia Bellini. He is last mentioned as a guest at the wedding of Arianna and Luciano, attending as a personal friend and as the new husband of Lucia of Fortezza.


Guido is tall and gangling with red hair and brown eyes. His red hair is an uncommon feature amongst Talians. He was a natural at being a mandolier[4].

Notes and ReferencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 City of Swords
  2. City of Masks, based on Guido's age in 1578
  3. In 1577; Guido is 19 in City of Masks
    "I am retaining you in my service. You will train at the Scuola and become one of my mandoliers - you aren't over twenty-five, are you?"
    Parola shook his head. "I am nineteen," he admitted.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 City of Masks
  5. City of Secrets
  6. Confirmed by Mary here