Characters and Creatures
The Edge Chronicles spans more than six hundred years and is a generational series, with all of the five main characters related to one another.
The main characters of the Five SagasGo to other characters and creatures
Quintinius Verginix is also known by his sky-pirate name, Cloud Wolf. He is the son of Orlis (Wind Jackal) and Hermina Verginix, and the youngest of six brothers. A fourthling, he grew up in a large house in the Western Quays district of Undertown. Having sailed alongside his sky pirate father for some time, Quint becomes apprentice to the Most High Academe of Sanctaphrax, Linius Pallitax. He also attends the Knights Academy, though later returns to sky piracy, becoming captain of his own vessel. With his black hair and dark, indigo eyes, Quint cuts a dashing figure. He is a brave and noble individual, prepared to lay down his life for those who matter most to him: father, wife and crew. He can, however, be unswerving in his judgement, prepared to punish harshly those who cross him. He and Linius’s daughter, Maris, have a son together, Twig.
Although he has a Sanctaphrax name, Arborinus Verginix, Quint’s son is known by all simply as Twig. Raised by woodtrolls in the Deepwoods, his black hair, green eyes and fine features set him apart from his adoptive family. Having left the Deepwoods, he joins the crew on board his father’s sky pirate ship and, years later, becomes a sky pirate captain himself – indeed one of the greatest Edge sky pirate captains of all time. He falls in love with Sinew, a slaughterer, and together they have a daughter, Keris. But with the death of his wife and loss of the crew of his sky pirate ship, the Edgedancer, Twig retreats from the Edge world and returns to the Deepwoods. Like his father, Twig is brave, helpful and fiercely loyal, always going out of his way to do what he knows to be right.
Son of Keris and Shem Barkwater, Rook is a fourthling, with much inherited slaughterer blood from his mother’s side. Raised in the newly founded Free Glades in the Deepwoods, he is orphaned at an early age, and ends up in Undertown, working in the Great Storm Chamber Library. Here, his academic ability is recognized and he is sent to the Free Glades to pursue his studies further. He builds his own skycraft, the Stormhornet, and sails off to write his treatise on banderbears. Subsequently, he works as a Librarian Knight, protecting the sacred barkscrolls, and when the library moves to the Free Glades, he becomes a Free Glade Lancer, charged with defending this forest outpost, haven of peace and learning, from any who would seek to destroy it. He marries Magda Burlix, and together they have five children. Rook’s character is marked by loyalty, bravery and an unquenchable thirst for knowledge.
He also appears in The Immortals.
Born many generations later, in the Third Age of Flight, Nate Quarter is distantly related to Rook, his family name being a corruption of the old name, ‘Barkwater’. He is the only son of Abe Quarter and Hermia Lentis, but later learns that he also has a half-brother, Thadeus Quarter. Nate was brought up in the phrax mines of the Eastern Woods, where his father taught him to be a lamplighter. Following his departure from his childhood home, Nate travels throughout the Edgeworld on a personal voyage of discover. Courageous and resourceful, he is an excellent prowlgrin rider and thousandsticks player, and also speaks fluent banderbear. His rejection of authority and love for knowledge leads him to become a ‘descender’, and he joins the professor, Ambris Hentadile, on a dangerous expedition to discover what lies below the Edge.
Nate is the hero of The Immortals.
Cade Quarter is the son of Thadeus and Sensa Quarter. He was brought up in the academic Cloud Quarter of the Free Glades, where his father worked as a senior academic. Cade himself is an able and diligent student in the Junior Academy. Having been forced to flee his home, he travels to the distant settlement of the Farrow Ridges, together with Rumblix, a prowlgrin pup who hatched in Cade’s presence and imprinted on him. There, despite being teased for being a pampered ‘city boy’, Cade proves himself more than up to the task of surviving in the wild. Eager and willing to learn, he builds his own cabin, learns to hunt and fish, and defends himself bravely against attackers. One of his most precious possessions is a spyglass engraved with the initials NQ, which he learns belonged to his half-uncle, Nate Quarter.
Other Characters and Creatures
An underhand ghostwaif who worked for Vox Verlix when he was powerful, and later helped Hestera Spikesap by erasing the memories of those she bought at slave markets to work for her.
Although they look ferocious, banderbears are shy, intelligent, gentle creatures who tend to live solitary lives in the Deepwoods, communicating with each other by their loud yodelling cries.
A hideous monster that the First Scholars created by accident in the Ancient Laboratory, deep within the Sanctaphrax rock, the blood-red glister feeds off the wilder emotions of any who stumble across it.
At the top of the trunks of these huge flesh-eating Deepwoods trees are a ring of enormous teeth which ensures that hapless prey, captured for it by the parasitic lassoo-like tarry-vine, can never escape.
A female waif who lived in Waif Glen in the Free Glades, Cancaresse the Silent presided over Xanth Filatine’s Reckoning, where, reading his thoughts, she pronounced the youth to be of good heart.
One of the three Ancient Ones, the caterbird is a large, intelligent creature, created in a glister cocoon, that offers life-long protection to anyone lucky enough to witness its hatching.
Massive translucent creatures with countless eyes and trailing tentacles that live in Open Sky, one of which caused permanent winter to come to the Edge when it became ill and weak.
Sent to Sanctaphrax by his father, a brutal Leaguesman, Cowlquape went from lowly junior sub-acolyte to Most High Academic, only to be betrayed and imprisoned in the Tower of Night.
This is a name given to any individuals who manage to escape the Twilight Woods, their senses and memories already half-destroyed by the treacherous half-lit forest they were lost in.
These colossal winged creatures roost on the mist-swept Edge cliff-face, feeding on the carcasses that are swept over the Edge, as well as any living beings that might stray there.
Characterized by their fourthling-like upper bodies and bird-like legs, tribes of fettle-leggers live in the Northern Reaches, and are well known for the fine material their weavers produce.
When the goblin tribes of the Edge started to inter-marry, the resulting offspring were known as fourthlings; shunned by pure-bred Deepwoods clans, they prospered in Undertown and Sanctaphrax.
These trolls, with their eyes on stalks and long tongues which they use to keep their eyeballs moist, and are renowned throughout the Edge for their healing medicines, potions and salves.
The most evil creature in the Edgeworld, the Gloamglozer is an ancient shapeshifter that feeds off fear and pain, luring its victims to their death with trickery, deception and lies.
More than five-hundred years old thanks to the life-giving properties of the waters of Riverrise, this copperwaif is the founder of the fabled waif city and guards its secrets jealously.
Great Blueshell Clam
This wise creature is the Ancient One of Water, living at the bottom of a succession of Edge Lakes, where, through its thoughts, it imparts knowledge to the webfoot goblins who tend it.
Hairy-Backed Quarry Trogs
Even larger than banderbears, these great lumbering trogs carve surprisingly intricate pieces of stonework from the rock they quarry in the upland region around Gorge Town.
Though largely civilized throughout the Edge by the Third Age of Flight, wild hammerheads with their traditional piercings and tribal tattoos still inhabit the forests around Farrow Lake.
Shryke females are bloodthirsty and vicious, while the males are gentler and more reasonable, and one, Hekkle, helped Rook and his friends to travel safely to the Free Glades.
A notorious poisoner, Hestera Spikesap is Vox Verlix’s assistant, charged with looking after her master, distilling the intoxicating liquor, Oblivion, and ‘feeding’ the deadly weapon, Vox’s Baby.
A long-haired goblin, High Chief of Hive during the Third Age of Flight, who rules the city with an iron fist and wages war on Great Glade – an exploit that brings about his own downfall.
Camouflaged as fallen logs, these huge predators often hunt in packs or ‘cascades’, hovering above the ground, seeking out hammelhorn or tilder herds to swallow up, crush and consume.
Maris Verginix (nee Pallitax)
Daughter of Most High Academe, Linius Pallitax, Maris is Quint’s wife, Twig’s mother and founder of the Free Glades, originally a Deepwoods safe haven for the waifs and strays she encounters.
A powerful and greedy shryke inn-keeper, who runs the popular Bloodoak Tavern in Undertown, and is notorious for the dodgy financial deals she makes to increase her own wealth.
Hideous six-legged creatures with armoured bodies, bulbous eyes and sharp fangs, muglumps live in the mud of the Mire and the sewers of Undertown, and use stealth to attack their prey.
The term ‘nameless ones’ is a general term for the hulking great creatures from the permanently dark forests beyond Riverrise who have not been officially categorized by Sanctaphrax scholars.
One of several species of waif originating in the western Night Woods, nightwaifs’ exceptional hearing means they are often employed as tavern-waifs, to listen in on the thoughts of customers.
Visionary elves with enormous eyes who often sleep in caterbird cocoons, and use their mystical knowledge to help those Deepwoods characters who come to them searching for advice.
With their powerful back legs and sensitive toes, these Deepwoods creatures are adept at leaping from branch to branch in the forest and, when domesticated, make loyal and tireless mounts.
Winged rodents that like to nest in the cargo holds of skyships, these small creatures’ acute ability to navigate around the Edge means that they are often used for delivering messages.
Large, translucent predators found in the devastation of Screetown that, because of their constant thirst, attack any living creatures they encounter, to swallow them up and suck them dry.
Hatched on board the sky tavern, the Xanth Filatine, this pedigree grey prowlgrin pup imprinted on Cade Quarter, the first person he saw, and later grew to be a champion racer.
His mind warped by the sacred vows he made to return to Sanctaphrax with phrax crystals, Screedius Tollinix turns from being a noble Knight Academic to a murderous Mire guide.
Comprising warrior females and subservient males, these ruthless bird creatures ruled the Deepwoods with extreme cruelty, until their mighty empire was defeated at the Battle of Lufwood Mount.
A chiefly nocturnal type of goblin, slaughterers have spiky hair and blood-red skin, the colour coming from the smoke of redoak chippings used in the leather tanning process they use.
These blind, burrowing creatures excrete a slime called mole glue, an essential ingredient in the varnish that Librarian Knights use to make their sumpwood skycraft flight-worthy.
Slip the Scuttler
A simple yet loyal grey goblin from the phrax-mines of the Eastern Woods, his mind damaged by the place, who travels with Nate Quarter on his journeys through the Edgelands.
These aquatic creatures live in the deepest, darkest parts of several Edge lakes, and with their sleek bodies and long snouts, fringed with fangs, are notoriously formidable hunters.
Rescued by Quint Verginix at a slave market, Maugin – a termagant trog who missed her Blooding – becomes a stone pilot, charged with tending the flight rocks that keep sky-pirate ships aloft.
A prowlgrin, raised by Quint Verginix as part of his training in the Knights Academy, Tash got his name from the distinctive fringe of fur that grows beneath his chin.
Underground cave-dwellers, ruled by females who become fearsome warriors at the age of 13 following their ‘Blooding’; a ceremony in which they drink the sap of a bloodoak tree.
Ruthless and wicked, Turbot Smeal was the quartermaster on board the Wind Jackal’s Galerider who started the Great Fire of the Western Quays, which resulted in much death and destruction.
A glass-carapaced spindlebug, Tweezel lives for many centuries; a rich and full life that includes working as a butler in Sanctaphrax and inventing the varnish that led to the Second Age of Flight.
With settlements at the Four Lakes and the Farrow Lake, there are four types of webfoots, the most famous being the Crested Webfoots, whose head crests change colour depending on their mood.
Faithful and brave, Weelum teaches Nate Quarter how to communicate in ‘Banderbear’ and, when Nate needs help, is prepared to abandon his post as a stilt-shop gatekeeper to travel with him.
Large, snow-white ravens, originally from the Mire that roost in the Stone Gardens during the First Age of Flight, and screech loudly when it is time to harvest the flight-rocks that grow there.
Ruled by their formidable queen, the white trogs of the Farrow Ridges are tall and brawny, bear crystal spears, and ride the giant cave spiders they share the caverns with, behind the Five Falls.
Small, fluffy, orange creatures that look cute until they open their mouths to reveal bear-trap teeth, these fearsome predators hunt in packs and devour every last morsel of their prey.