So, you've made it this far, have you? It takes dedication to find this page hidden deep within the Tagonist Knights Website.
As a reward, I present to you five new ways to immerse yourself within this novel. Some of it is insightful, other aspects of it is meant to make you laugh and smile. Hopefully, by the time you're done, you'll be eager to explore the book if you haven't already, or take a moment to read through it once again knowing what you do now.
“You cannot defeat an enemy by acting as he does, by rationalizing murder as an acceptable method in achieving what you desire.” - Aethel
Say Hello - The Cast of Crystal of Air
“I’ve nearly been killed by a demon. I was haunted by a spirit of a murdered woman. I met King Author and a vampire. I saw werewolves…”
“That is the first step towards gaining knowledge, admitting one’s ignorance.”
“We are two spirits trapped in a realm created by energy caught in a fraction of time in the mortal world and you think what I’m doing is weird?”
Spirit in a Teenage Body
“I refuse to cower in fear before this charlatan. My only concern is finding Emma. If he has harmed her, then it is Anubis who will pay for what he has done.”
“What little I know of someone like you is rooted in mythology which is a nugget of truth surrounded by multiple layers of fictional narrative.”
“Where I was seeking home, you are looking for freedom from the chains that have bound you to the past from the moment you took your first breath.”
“Any who preaches that the greater good is more important than a single individual takes that first step towards the acceptance of any atrocity.”
“Close your eyes and make a wish.”
“You must not think of this reality as a finite space with limited forms of existence. All that has occurred since you arrived is taking place in a fraction of a moment.”
“It was real! It was all real! First, he’s King Arthur, his mentor was Merlin, and now Excalibur.”
“Often what is considered fantastic events that take place in our world that have no comfortable explanation becomes works of fiction and folklore.”
“Deep down, humans are easily manipulated, controlled, and guided to do the worst atrocities, all the while thinking they’re the good guys.”
“We’ll be lucky if there is a world left by the time this is over, let alone anyone left to enjoy the victory.” - Scythe
“Names are a way to bind the infinite that is the human soul into a single word.” - Giovanni
The end of the previous novel caught me by surprise in that I had plans for it to move onto the water/Alchemist story. However, I loved the idea and jumped into the concept of a fully spiritual realm. It gave me an opportunity to develop the individauls in the story, address personal issues they had like with Milo, and give the remaining spirit guardians a chance to become fully developed people which was fun.
About two thirds of the way through, I felt like the story needed to move forward, bring back Esper who was cut out of the story, and explore some of the possibilities of the global adventure. What I love so much about the series is that I can draw upon both historical figures, public domain fictional characters like with Alice in Wonderland, and just have fun with the concepts of my own reality.
Originally I had a plan to have one of the spirit guardians leave at the end of each book. However, after the second one, I didn't want to follow pattern and to break away from expectations leading to the events of the fourth book. Also, at the time of writing this one, I thought it was only going to be four books, one for each element. However, I love the series so much, I don't want it to ever end so we'll see where that goes.
It was also becuase of this abrupt shift to "air" and not "water", that "fire" became the third book in the series. So, sometimes what I plan for isn't what always ends up being the final course that a series will take.
“I feel that too much of someone’s individuality fades in the yearning to be like others, to fit in, to belong to a group that they often sacrifice what makes them so wonderfully one of a kind.” - Giovanni
Easter Eggs and Inspiration
The concept of artifacts, those who collect them like Henry, was inspired by the Warehouse 13 TV series.
The plague unleashed by the druids was the "black plague", a pandemic during 1346–1353.
Boy to King
On page 57, the story of Aethel's childhood mimics the opening scenes of Disney's Sword in the Stone.
Aethel's mentor is the inspiration for tales of Merlin in that reality.
Milo is named after the main protagonist in the movie, Atlantis: The Lost Empire.
Carmilla is named after the first female vampire in literature.
On page 63, Quinn refers to a movie where people are trapped in a virtual reality. That movie is "The Matrix".
Orthia was a local goddess only found at Sparta and Messene who was later identified with Artemis.
Sherlock Holmes is a fictional detective created by British author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
John Dalberg-Acton was an English Catholic historian, politician, and writer.
In Chapter 6, there are multiple references to the movie: Willie Wanka and the Chocolate Factory.
On page 115, Henry and Carmilla encounter a scene from the book: Alice in Wonderland.
Airmid is the name of an Irish goddess with connections to herbal remedies and healing.
Truth of a God
Anubis was actively involved in the abolishment of slavery since he was once an Egyptian slave, which he takes his true form before assuming that of the god.
Quinn refers to a man who kills others in their dreams on page 126, referring to Freddy Krueger.
On page 128, Quinn quotes "I am at one with..." This is a reference to mantra spoken by Chirrut Îmwe in the movie: Rogue One.
"The fork is not there" on page 129 refers to the "spoon is not there" quote from the Matrix.
On page 131, Quinn mentions the novel, Knowing Gnowing, an anthology about gnomes.
Who you gonna call?
On page 154, the "gate keeper" and "key master" refers to elements of the original Ghostbusters movie.
The door mentioned on page 181 is a reference to the movie: Monsters Inc.
On page 208, Esper mentions Sebastian and Nathaniel from the Age of Shadows Books.
Page 211, "Warm and fuzzy" refers to a Magic: The Gathering Card - Pacifism.
Genie in a Box
On page 223 Quinn refers to Jambi the Genie from Peewee's Playhouse television series.
Marwood is named after John Marwood Cleese, a British comedian.
Romila is named after Romila Thapar, an Indian historian. She was born in town mentioned in the book.
Images of Life
Diane is named after Diane Arbus, an American photographer.
Murchison is named after Alan Murchison, a Scottish chef.
Arawn is named after Celtic god of Death.
Mary Shelley's Frankenstein is also titled "The Modern Prometheus", which is why he is named that way.
Sanctum sanctorum of infinite possibilities is greatly inspired by the show "Warehouse 13".
And now... My Favorite.
The final scene with Henry is from the original story concept that started it all. One of the "lost" story elements was this man seeking revenge against the vampire that killed his girlfriend. He meets up with a group of amateur vampire hunters who use him as bait. Everything plays out as it did in the original version, except the man fights back against the boy and kills the child himself. Then is led away by what is hinted at as a witch's familiar, a black cat. I didn't want Henry to be a killer, so this was an ideal way to introduce his mother which is what I've been wanting to do since the beginning. Everything fell into place.
“You’ll be alone, consumed by your grief, an emptiness, the sorrow, the self-loathing, the hatred… You’ll become a demon.” - Scythe