Last year, author J.C. Cervantes introduced readers to Maya mythology in The Storm Runner. Now, for the earth-shattering follow-up to Zane Obispo’s first adventure, it’s time to meet another set of ancient Mesoamerican gods. You know, in case you thought Zane wasn’t in enough danger with just one pantheon.
What’s in a Name?
The civilization that succeeded the Maya is often referred to as the Aztec, but that’s actually a misnomer. The people themselves used the term Mexica. Tragically, there are no more of them around to correct this common mistake.
The Coming of Cortés
By now, we should all be familiar with the unfortunate fall of the Mexica empire. Like so many civilizations before and after them, the Mexica were conquered by explorers and colonizers—in this case led by a particularly nasty Conquistador by the name of Hernán Cortés. When most of the remaining population of Mesoamerica converted away from the Aztec pantheon, the gods lost a significant source of power and retreated to a mythical realm known as Aztlán. You might want to keep that bit of information to yourself, though. The Mexica gods shun publicity.
A Very Exclusive Club
Speaking of Aztlán, rumor has it that this place is about to become way more crowded. There are reports that worshipers of Tlaltecuhtli, the Mexica earth goddess, have been abducting young godborns for a mysterious purpose. That’s bad news, because as we all know, earth goddesses can be as destructive as they are creative. We have a feeling the godborns aren’t being recruited for summer camp. . . .
Ghosts Gone Wild
Following the fall of their civilization, most Mexica souls went to their underworld, known as Mictlan, to chill out in the afterlife. A few select royals chose to remain in our realm, where to this day they are protected by the Maya gods. Have you ever met a Mexica king or queen? They would do anything to live forever, even if only as a ghost. But of course you haven’t. The only way you could commune with them would be by subjecting yourself to a temporary death spell.
And no one is dumb enough to do that to themselves, right? Right, Zane? Right???
Curious to learn more about the Aztec, er, Mexica gods? Be sure to pick up The Fire Keeper, on sale 9/3!