|Date of Birth:||c. 1780|
Temeraire, first lieutenant
John Granby was charged with the task of showing William Laurence around the Loch Laggan covert, but he initially took a disliking to Laurence. Laurence believed this was due to Granby's friendship with Dayes (whom Temeraire refused to recognize as his captain) while both served on Laetificat. Granby proved to be the most capable of the available officers, and wanting nothing but the best for Temeraire, Laurence appointed Granby as his dragon's first lieutenant. Finally, the two became friends.
Granby served Temeraire very loyally, and saved Laurence's life several times. While Temeraire was grounded out of deference to the Chinese early in 1806, Granby refused a posting as Excidium's first lieutenant to remain with Temeraire and Captain Laurence. At the time, Laurence was dismayed, thinking he had spent his right to promotion and never get another chance. (However, during the course of the journey from China back to Britain, Temeraire's crew came into the possession of two dragon eggs. One hatched before their return, and Granby, being the senior officer, became captain of the dragonet, Iskierka.)
Granby was wounded rather seriously during the Valerie engagement on the journey to China, taking a musket ball in the chest. The ball cracked a rib and he lost a great deal of blood, taking a fever thereafter, but he recovered.
Granby was tall and lanky, with dark hair. He often had a sunburn from spending time outside (on the backs of dragons). In fact, it was unusual for him not to burned on his face.
Granby's family came from Newcastle-Upon-Tyne in northern England. His mother was widowed, and he had two older brothers. He was given to the Aerial Corps at the age of seven because his family could not afford to keep him. He remained close to his family, though, and worried about a French attack on Newcastle, which was a likely target because of its importance in supplying coal to Britain.
Granby never expected to be trusted with his own dragon, but hoped if he served Britain well enough, his children might rise in the ranks. Iskierka's hatching was thus very emotional for him.
Capture of French Prizes
Traditionally the Ariel corps main prizes were dragons of opposing air forces captured through boarding. Given that captured dragons would not be willing to be used in Britain's service, the prize money for these captures was much lower than for an equivalent ship.
During 1807, Iskierka and Granby became the first dragon crew to regularly capture foreign ships, mostly through Iskierka's determination to earn capital to fund the building of a Pavilion. In the process, she made Granby a rich man and forced him to wear extravagant signs of his wealth, such as golden buttons on his coat, golden rings and a gilded sword with a diamond at the pommel.