Monday, January 27, 2014

The characters (part 12)


(This is the twelfth in a series of character descriptions from The Death Wizard Chronicles, my six-book epic fantasy.)

Who are the cave monkeys and what is the worm monster?

Cave monkeys are small creatures (about two feet tall and weighing around twenty pounds) that more resemble lemurs than monkeys. But they were given the name cave monkeys by the Torg, the Death-Knower wizard, because he could think of no other. These clever and wondrous creatures live in caves and tunnels deep in the bowels of Mount Asubha, several leagues beneath the surface.

The colony of cave monkeys that Torg encountered numbered about fifty, though the wizard never knew their exact number. They were furry creatures, with pointy noses and mouths filled with flat teeth, and they had long, bushy tails. Their most striking physical feature was their bioluminescent eyes that glowed in the dark. They were supremely athletic and energetic, but also kind and gentle, and they communicated between themselves and with Torg using a very powerful yet noninvasive telepathy.

Also residing beneath Mount Asubha was a titanic creature called the worm monster, which was most likely the largest living being on Triken. Somewhere hidden far beyond finding was the monster’s core body, but extending from it were hundreds of thick tentacles, each more than a mile long and each containing a fang-filled mouth at its tip that was capable of devouring anything it found in the underworld, including cave monkeys. But the worm monster was not particularly intelligent, more an eating machine than anything else, while the cave monkeys were brilliant creatures by any standard. And in an ironic reversal of fortune, the cave monkeys were able—using stone daggers—to leap about just out of reach of the tentacles’ mouths and carve pieces of flesh from the tentacles. This flesh was quite tasty, and it was the cave monkey’s main source of sustenance, along with mushrooms. With these ingredients and a few others, they made delicious soups that Torg quickly grew to adore.

Cave monkeys also were wonderful artists, and they decorated the stone walls of their underground home with intricate drawings using mineral extracts and worm fats to create multicolored pigments.

Was the colony Torg encountered beneath Mount Asubha the only one in existence? And was there only one worm monster on Triken? Or did each large mountain on Triken have its own version of these creatures living deep beneath the surface? The answer to this was beyond Torg’s knowledge.

Photo by Dreamstime.

Up next: the final installment, which will be a list of other characters, both ordinary and magical, with short descriptions of each.

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The Death Wizard Chronicles is a sexy, action-packed six-book epic fantasy series: Book One (Forged by Death), Book Two (Chained by Fear), Book Three (Eve of War), Book Four (World on Fire), Book Five (Sun God), Book Six (Death-Know).

The DW Chronicles is not for children and teenagers -- or the faint of heart. But if you like graphic fantasy that is bursting with excitement yet still has a lot going on between the lines, I think you'll love my series.

In a groundbreaking paradox, the Death Wizard, a champion of good, derives his power from a source traditionally seen as negative -- death. His nemesis, an evil sorcerer, derives his power from the sun, the benevolent source of all life. Their struggle to control the fate of the planet Triken will take your breath away.

In an original twist never before seen in this genre, the Death Wizard is able to enter the realm of death during a "temporary suicide." Through intense concentration, he stops his heartbeat and feeds on death energy, which provides him with an array of magical powers.

The series also is a love triangle involving two desperate characters attempting to come together despite the machinations of an all-powerful psychopath with incestuous cravings.

Graphic and action-packed, spanning a millennium of turmoil, The DW Chronicles carries readers on a journey they will never forget.

Do you fear death? The Death Wizard does not. Find out why.

-- Please go to for more details.

About Me

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Clemson, SC, United States
I was born in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., but grew up in St. Petersburg, Fla. I graduated from the University of South Florida (Tampa) in 1979 with a B.A. in Journalism. I now live in South Carolina near the Blue Ridge Mountains, a pleasant setting for writing, to say the least. I was an award-winning journalist at the St. Petersburg Times for twenty-five years and I currently work at the Charlotte Observer. I am married with five daughters.

The author

The author
Jim Melvin, a veteran journalist, debuts as novelist.