I want to acknowledge, first off, that what I intend and what makes it onto the page are different things. Any reader's opinion is as valid as mine; or more valid, since it's easy to be blind about your own work.
So for the most part... what I think, what I want readers to know about my work--I had my chance and it's the book.
But there is one little tidbit that I think I can share without trying to force an interpretation.
I conceived of Hastings, originally, as a Regency romance hero who didn't get his happily ever after. Imagine him when he was young--handsome, titled, a hero of the Napoleonic wars. He would have been newly confident of his own abilities and also deeply traumatized; comfortable with military command and not sure how to transition back to civilian life.
He's the sort of man who could have gone either way.
That's the potential of all those wounded alphas, isn't it? That without love they'll shrivel up and turn hard. Their window of opportunity will close.
So that's what I see in Hastings. That's why I can't hate him. Though he's awfully easy to hate, I admit.