About half way through my novel you start hearing of a character named Akinos--a figure of legendary evil. Unfortunately, as my critique partners pointed out, it was a little late in the novel to first hear of him. Couldn't I introduce him earlier?
But how? An info dump of ancient world history didn't exactly fit into the storyline. And when I say it didn't fit in...it didn't fit in at all.
Akinos' legendary evil came as a result of his murder of his own brother. It was an act of betrayal that brought ruin to the world. Akinos disappeared immediately after the murder and his name became synonymous with treachery and evil.
Several hundred years have passed since Akinos' disappearance, and what's the first thing that comes to someone's lips when they are mistreated?
"Don't be an akinos."
By the time the reader reaches the half way point of Eternal Knight they have heard those words (in one form or another) on three different occasons. And now, when they read of Akinos the Betrayer, they should have an ahh-haa moment. They've read that word before, and always in a negative context. No info dump needed. The reader already knows that Akinos is infamous, important, and bad.
And a few chapters later, the reader learns that legends are legends and the truth isn't necessarily the truth.