Tag Archives: minor demons

Searching for Auntie Em in Dreadful Poetry

Wizard Kadmeion has just brought his Auntie Em over to say hello to us at the Dreadful Poetry book release party.

Previously: Welcome to the Dreadful Poetry Book Release Party

Auntie Em Wears Fine Fescue Today

Auntie Em Wears Fine Fescue Today

Wizard Kadmeion’s aunt, Sorceress Emily (“Em”), is a renowned magical horticulture practitioner. Her specialty is growing root vegetables into human shapes. Magicians seek out her wares so they can animate the tubers with minor demons. These flora homunculi are popular as garden workers.

Lita: Em, we are so pleased you could join us today at Kadmeion’s affair.

Auntie Em: I wouldn’t miss it for the world. Who is this lovely person you’re with, Lita?

Lita: This is Gentle Reader.

Auntie Em: Enchanted to meet you. Did you two hear that Kadmeion searched for me during much of his Dreadful Poetry story? I was quite the star, and I wasn’t even there.

Lita: I know all about it, Em. Remember that I am Kadmeion’s scribe, and he natters at me using mind voice. The wizard and I have coffee together in the early morning, and I transcribe what he says while we chat. Gentle Reader will learn about your part in the story the normal way by reading the book.

As Daft as Sitting on Stilts While Knitting

As Daft as Sitting on Stilts While Knitting

Gentle Reader: [Methinks Auntie Em is as daft as sitting on stilts while doing some knitting. Ask her why she has grass for hair.]

Lita: Love your new hair style, darling. Usually, you wear mushrooms and leaves on your head. Is that Kentucky Bluegrass you have on today?

Auntie Em: This is Fine Fescue. [Auntie Em pats her head with a manicured hand. The elegant long fingernails are painted pine-tree green.] I don’t need as much water now when I shampoo, because the grass is drought resistant.

Kadmeion and his Auntie Em excuse themselves. They step away to talk with the other guests. Sir Bright comes over, and invites us to join him. We follow him across the room to the buffet table. Hungry? Time to eat something.

Next time: The Dreadful Poetry Cake

Rigging of the AS Patsy Nottle

Cover Reveal Party for Glitter Ponies: Welcome

Welcome aboard the AS Patsy Nottle for the Glitter Ponies cover reveal party. Before we head into the forward parlor for refreshments, Copernicus, the airship’s navigator, explains the specifications of Wizard Kadmeion’s airborne home.

About the Good and True AS Patsy Nottle

An Airship Operating in Its Water-Surface Mode

An Airship Operating in Its Water-Surface Mode

The Airship (“AS”) Patsy Nottle is a carrack class wooden and stone airship invented in the 16th century. The carrack airship comes with six sails: a bowsprit, foresail, mizzen, spritsail, and two topsails. The hull is fashioned from floating rock to give the ship neutral buoyancy in airborne operations. The sails provide wind propulsion and steerage. Perpetual enchantments see to basic operations, defense, and personal comfort of the crew and guests.

Carrack airships are square-rigged on the foremast and mainmast. The mizzenmast is lateen-rigged. They have a high rounded stern. The carrack airships have a large aftercastle, forecastle, and bowsprit. The carrack airship can also operate as a water-surface ship.

Specifications for the AS Patsy Nottle

Airship Class: Carrack

Origin: Agatha Island Aerodrome and Shipyard

Initial Year of Service: 1625

Commissioning Agency: Agatha Island Magic Guild, for operation by human wizards and sorceresses in good guild standing.

An Airship Weathering a Magical Storm

An Airship Weathering a Magical Storm

Captain: (Wizard) Haldemare Kadmeion Dorian Trentworthy sen Magica Vir

First Mate: (Honorable Mage) Wolverhampton Brighton M’Choakenchilde

Navigator: (Minor Demon Homunculus) Copernicus

Crew: 40 (mostly clockworks rig monkeys or demon-inhabited homunculi)

Length: 75 feet

Beam: 25 feet

Draught: 6 feet

Displacement: 223 long tons (minus floating rock displacement)

Machinery: Standard sailing magical clockworks. This vessel has typical below decks gearing and linkage to accommodate the sailing spells.

Speed: 6.7 knots (unaided by magic)

Range: Unlimited

A Fairy's Point of View of the Oak Forest on Kadmeion's Airship

A Fairy’s Point of View of the Oak Forest on Kadmeion’s Airship

The airship inside volume is much larger than the outside hull dimensions due to perpetual Inverse Magic spells. The AS Patsy Nottle has spacious crew quarters, private sitting rooms, parlors, galley, spell casting workrooms, and a quercetum for Sir Bright’s miniature oak tree forest. Kadmeion’s fey-folk fairies live in the quercetum.

Next: Refreshments and origin of the Glitter Ponies story

Airships and a Dragon

Bestiarum Vocabulum: Rig Monkey

The Bestiarum Vocabulum is the wizard’s encyclopedia of faerie beasties and mundane crossovers living in the lake and forest near Lita’s castle.

Rig Monkey

Rig Monkey

rig monkey [rig muhng kee] noun, c.1520; < LowGer moneke, equivalent mone- (obsolete Fr monne she-ape) + -ke diminutive suffix; also airship rigger

  1. Denizen of the Clockpunk Wizard world.
  2. A type of small homunculus inhabited by a minor demon, shaped like a miniature fur-covered human, that attends the sails, lines, and superstructure of an airship.
  3. A human or magical hybrid (e.g. a harpy, or the half-human and half-elf narfleet), that performs the heavier tasks of airship rigging that cannot be done by the homunculus rig monkey.
  4. Personages: Sir Bright worked at the Agatha Island zeppelin yard as a Rig Monkey before becoming Wizard Kadmeion’s assistant.
  5. See “Dramatis Personæ: Bright,” “Twice-Seventh Son Elf Magic” and “Monkey Business About Old Bony Blue Eyes
Veldt Island

Bestiarum Vocabulum: Wee Wildebeest

The Bestiarum Vocabulum is the wizard’s encyclopedia of faerie beasties and mundane crossovers living in the lake and forest near Lita’s castle.

Wee Wildebeest

Wee Wildebeest

wee wildebeest [wē wildə bēst ] noun,  c.1835; < Afrikaans  wildebees < Dutch  wildebeest, means “wild”  wild + beest  “beast”; also gnu.

  1. Denizen of the Clockpunk Wizard world.
  2. A herbivore herd animal that eats grasses containing trace levels of ambient magic. Mature females stand six hands high (24 inches) at the withers; males reach nine hands high (36 inches). Males weigh 4-6 stone (55-75 pounds), and females are 3-5 stone (44-64 pounds). Because wee wildebeest are not sentient magical creatures, they cannot cast spells. Predators hunt them for the traces of residual magic in their flesh. Wild wee wildebeest thrive in the sere interior grasslands on large floating islands. Heat demons and wild wee wildebeest congregate for protection from predators. Grassland satyrs were the first to domesticate wild wee wildebeest.
  3. Personages: The wild herds on Veldt Island in Ephraim’s Curious Device, and the domesticated herds on the Raeburn Island ranchland in Old Bony Blue Eyes.
  4. See “Bestiarum Vocabulum: Grassland Satyr
Wager Island Highlands

Bestiarum Vocabulum: Ice Devil

The Bestiarum Vocabulum is the wizard’s encyclopedia of faerie beasties and mundane crossovers living in the lake and forest near Lita’s castle.

Ice Devil

Ice Devil

ice devil [īs devəl] noun, c.900; ON īss < Ger eis < OE īs < ME; c.1100; Sanskrit gurate; dia- + ballein to throw < Gr diabolos < LL diabolus < OE dēofol < ME devel; also ice hate

  1. Denizen of the Clockpunk Wizard world.
  2. A non-sentient magical creature composed of strong, negative emotions encased in ambulatory frozen water. An ice devil stands almost four feet tall, and bristles with icicles. The creature has a head, but no eyes. Ice devils immobilize their prey with a spell that numbs the limbs, and then stabs with the icicles. They feed on the victim’s blood and magic.
  3. Personages: Ice Devil pack in the Wager Island highlands in Old Bony Blue Eyes
  4. See: “Ice Devils
Hands From Hell

Disregard That Bump in the Night

Lita takes Gentle Reader on a visit to fantasy’s scary cousins: Paranormal, Horror, Suspense, and Thriller.

Authors Cave March 2015 Paranormal eZine

Authors’ Cave presents its scary side in the March 2015 Horror/Paranormal/Mystery eZine.

For these stories, it is always ten past midnight on Halloween. Meet disturbing children, live next door to that nice neighbor that somehow makes you feel uneasy, and dress up for a party where everyone wears black.

So Gentle Reader does not frighten easily? Lita suggests you turn on all the lights, and lock the door anyway. Then read these tingling stories from: Demelza Carlton, Jackie Mae, Graham ‘Grolly’ Bright, Jada Ryker, Kim Murphy, Laura DeBruce, Joe DeRouen, and Joss Landry.

These stories are best read when darkness rules outside. Disregard that bump in the night. Snuggle deeper under the covers, and immerse yourself in these lovely chills.

Plate-Shaped Ocean World of Clockpunk Wizard

Bestiarum Vocabulum: Goon

The Bestiarum Vocabulum is the wizard’s encyclopedia of faerie beasties and mundane crossovers living in the lake and forest near Lita’s castle.



goon [gün] noun, c.1580; < L  gonia < Gr  goneia and gon(e) meaning “that which is borne”; from gony “simpleton” used by sailors for the albatross and similar large birds with clumsy movements; 1921 stupid person; 1938 hired thug; also demon oaf

  1. Denizen of the Clockpunk Wizard world.
  2. Summoning goon demons is the easiest of the Demon Sciences magical discipline. Goon automatons are loyal, and make practical bodyguards. The cost of hiring a wizard to build a goon body, and call its demon, is prohibitive for all but the wealthy or political elite. There are two types of goons:
    • The classic goon is a homunculus made from animal parts. An unintelligent, but biddable minor demon animates the creature’s body. Because animal heads do not have the physical parts to produce human speech, the summoning wizard must add a durable enchantment that allows the inhabiting demon to talk.
    • Wizards grow modern goon bodies in crockery vats. These large creatures have slow-moving human forms. Although the vat-grown body improves the modern goon’s appearance, the inhabiting demons are the same type as in the classic version.
  3. Personages: Lord Hissalumieon’s goons Martook, Cess, Hoytt, and Messen in Ephraim’s Curious Device.
  4. See “Dramatis Personæ: Kadmeion” for the biography of a university-trained wizard who holds a Doctorate of Wizardry in the Demon Sciences.
Monkeys Do the Cooking

True. Monkeys Do the Cooking in Death’s Castle

Lita takes Gentle Reader to the land of Clockpunk Wizard today, with an excerpt from Old Bony Blue Eyes.

Sir Death's Castle on Undying Island, at Rim's Edge

Sir Death’s Castle on Undying Island, at Rim’s Edge

Wizard Kadmeion and his assistant Sir Bright have arrived at Death’s castle. The wizard went to The Library to seek out Charon and his resident magician, Wizard Mephistopheles. Because Death is notorious for setting a poor dinner table, Bright went to the kitchen to fix dinner for himself and the two wizards. He is doing an inventory the pantry. Behind him, three entities shuffle in through the open kitchen door. Without needing to turn around, his magical sense tells Bright that his visitors are demons inhabiting homunculus bodies.

Bright turned and sucked in a breath. The narfleet was a clockworks magician who assembled metal automata to house the minor demons that Kadmeion summoned. Bright’s magical profession had counterparts who prepared plants or animal bodies for the same purpose. Here were three examples of a Meat-Man’s dreadful artistry.

Kadmeion went to The Library to seek out Charon and his resident magician, Wizard Mephistopheles.

Kadmeion went to The Library to seek out Charon and his resident magician, Wizard Mephistopheles.

An orangutan, a chimpanzee, and a tiny Capuchin monkey waited at the doorway. These homunculi wore miniature versions of Sir Death’s livery. The orangutan cracked his knuckles and looked everywhere but at Bright. The other two regarded him with large, awe-filled brown eyes.

“Good day, Sir Magician,” the chimpanzee said. “I am Theodore. The large fellow is Rupert. The wee one is Miss Constantinople. We are pleased to make your acquaintance.”

They looked at Bright with large, awe-filled brown eyes.

They looked at Bright with large, awe-filled brown eyes.

The demons’ respectful salutation required Bright to respond in kind. “Greetings, madam and gentlemen demons. I am Wolverhampton Brighton, the twice-seventh son of Elf-Lord M’Choakenchilde, and assistant to Wizard Kadmeion. You may call me Sir Bright.”

The three simians exchanged nods and grins. Rupert let out a happy screech. Miss Constantinople hopped in a circle and clapped her hands.

“Delighted to make your acquaintance, sir,” Theodore said. “You and your wizard’s reputations are known in the Nether Plains. Our master ordered us to help with your dinner preparations. We know nothing of cookery, but will do as you ask.”

(Old Bony Blue Eyes excerpt Copyright 2013 by Lita Burke. All rights reserved.)

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Dramatis Personæ: Kadmeion

The Dramatis Personæ is the roster of conjurers and sentient magical creatures staying in the many rooms, grottos, and byways of Lita’s castle. Here is an entry in the guest book for the Clockpunk Wizard Wing.

Wizard Kadmeion

Wizard Kadmeion

Kadmeion [‘kad mē ôn] proper noun, c.1300 BC; Gr> Mycenaean acropolis palace complex at Thebes; lit ‘Son of the East’; also Kaddie (childhood nickname)

  • Profession: Wizard for Hire
  • Race: Human (full blood), male
  • Appearance: brown eyes, dark brown hair, medium build
  • Full Name: Haldemare Kadmeion Dorian Trentworthy
  • Formal Title: sen Magica Vir (“Magic Man”)
  • Honorifics: Wizard Kadmeion, Sir Wizard
  • Education: Doctorate of Wizardry in the Demon Sciences, egregia cum laude, Agatha University of Magical Arts and Sciences
  • Milieu: Wizard Kadmeion is a denizen of the Clockpunk Wizard world.
One of Young Kadmeion's Favorite Flying Machines. A Cat Aviator Sat On a Cushion Under the Balloon and Steered by Pawing At the Strings.

One of Young Kadmeion’s Favorite Flying Machines. A Cat Aviator Sat On a Cushion Under the Balloon and Steered by Pawing At the Strings.

Kadmeion is the only child of Wizard Trentworthy and Sorceress Dorian. His mother’s father, Haldemare, is also a wizard. Kadmeion grew up on the floating island of Gogogogo, named after his family’s popular rest home for elderly magicians.

Kadmeion showed his wizardly tendencies at birth. Trentworthy describes the delivery room drama thusly:

Dorian had just produced that most wonderful of enchantments, our little boy Kadmeion. The babe did not immediately cry. Midwife Mary held him up and slapped his rump to get the youngster to breathe. Kadmeion let out a squeal, and then belched a flaming hiccup that singed away Mary’s eyebrows and bangs.

Kadmeion's Enchantments Kept the Airborne Cats From Harm

Kadmeion’s Enchantments Kept the Airborne Cats From Harm

The wizardling lived a sheltered childhood with his parents, various cats, and the eccentric magicians living at the rest home. Considered a magical prodigy, the retirees doted on the handsome, but introverted lad.

Kadmeion’s boyhood hobbies were ice gliding and building scale models of flying machines. The boy based his replicas on the full-sized versions from Leonardo’s Airborne Contraptions.

No Hurt Feelings--The Seagulls and Cats Were Great Friends

No Hurt Feelings–The Seagulls and Cats Were Great Friends

Kadmeion taught his cats to use the small flying machines. The proper enchantments made the cats float with or without their contraptions, and kept them from harm. The furry aviators zoomed around the cliffs and terrorized seagulls and little dogs. This was done all in fun, for the seagulls, dogs, and cats were great friends. The feline pilots were a must-see attraction for Gogogogo Island visitors.

See “Kadmeion’s Magic” and “Concerning Magical Thingummys, Dodads and Whatnots.” Find out more about Wizard Kadmeion’s many adventures in the Clockpunk Wizard stories:

Carrion Crow at Old Gallows Field

Bestiarum Vocabulum: Mandrake

The Bestiarum Vocabulum is the wizard’s encyclopedia of faerie beasties and mundane crossovers living in the lake and forest near Lita’s castle.



mandrake [man drāk] noun, c.1200; Gr < mandragoras  L < OE < ME mandragora; also nightshade, mayapple.

  1. Denizen of the Clockpunk Wizard world.
  2. A vegetable-based homunculus inhabited by a minor demon. Only mandrake plants cultivated in soil underneath gallows and other places of execution will produce inhabitable roots (wizards can find abandoned gallows fields by consulting with the local carrion crows). The mandrake-summoning spell requires a blood sacrifice, which the minor demon claims with a deadly shriek.  The minor demon uses the life energy of the sacrifice to animate the mandrake plant’s human-shaped root.
  3. Personages: Go Fer’s demon in Forever Boy.
  4. See: “Lita’s Magic Show: Mandrakes and Minor Demons” and “Dig Dog, and Die