Middleworld Chapter Summaries

Chapter summaries & Maya concepts

Preface - The Dream

One moonlit night two thousand years ago, in a palace in Central America, a Maya king called Lord 6-Dog dreams he is a monkey. While the king is horrified at this prospect, his widowed mother is delighted and says she’d welcome the freedom to swing through trees in the rainforest. There is tension between the two as they discuss family matters. Trouble is brewing with Lord 6-Dog’s half-brother Tzelek who covets the royal throne for himself.

Maya concepts:

- The importance of dreams to the Maya (p15).

- Maya notions of beauty: crossed eyes (p 18) and cranial elongation (p 14).

- Brief mentions of the Maya calendar, blood sacrifice, the moon rabbit, Maya architecture - royal palace, temple pyramid, & plazas.

Chapter One - Bad News:

In Boston, Massachusetts, 14-year old, pizza-loving, video-gamer Max Murphy is immersed in a game called Pyramid of Peril (foreshadow of things to come). Failing yet again to reach the end of the level, he throws his controller down in disgust and goes to get a snack. His archaeologist parents Frank and Carla Murphy return home from work early with an urgent announcement.  They’ve unexpectedly received rare permits to do an archaeological dig in the central American country of San Xavier (author’s note: based on the real country of Belize) and they must leave tomorrow. Not only will they miss Max’s end of the year concert and drum solo, they will also have to cancel the highly anticipated summer trip to Italy. Max is furious. He was really looking forward to the trip and this sort of behavior he believes is all too typical of his parents. Max is left at home sulking under the care of their enigmatic live-in housekeeper Zia. The two reach an uneasy accommodation until Zia hands him a ticket to San Xavier and cryptically says “Go - You must not keep them waiting”.

Maya concepts:

     -     The Moon Goddess and the Moon Rabbit (p 33).

Chapter Two - The Curse of the Maya:

Max’s plane lands in San Xavier during a torrential downpour. He is unnerved by the inflight magazine’s description of San Xavier  - home to a large array of highly poisonous snakes, with a history of human sacrifice. He is stopped and questioned at Immigration. The hostile official has heard of Frank and Carla and suggests they bribed someone to get their dig permits. He tells Max that “some things are better left alone”.

Once Max reaches the arrival hall  he is disappointed and angry to discover that his parents are not there to greet him, and instead he’s met by their colleague Oscar Poot. Oscar tells Max that, with all the stormy weather, Frank and Carla have been out of contact for some days. The plan is for Max to take a day-long bus journey to the coastal city of Puerto Muerto, where his Uncle Ted has a banana business. Oscar takes Max to a grim cafe at the bus station for drinks & tamales (Max’s least favorite food). Oscar tells Max some history about the Bahlamtuun’ob. (The Jaguar Stones). At the bus station, Max is pushed aboard a crowded “chicken bus” and sets off for the coast.

Maya concepts:

     -     San Xavier (ie Central America/Belize) is covered in Maya ruins, rainforest, exotic flora and fauna. (p 37).

     -     The Spanish conquistadors, and Friar Diego de Landa in particular, mistreated & tortured the Maya and burnt all their books (p 45).

Chapter Three - Puerto Muerto:

The bus drops Max off in the rundown city of Puerto Muerto. Once again, nobody is there to meet him. Uncle Ted and the Maya driver/bodyguard he calls Lucky Jim arrive just as he's about to be mugged by a couple of shady characters. Uncle Ted tells Max he has a business meeting to attend to before they can go home. They drive to the Gran Hotel de Las Americas. While waiting for Ted’s client to arrive Max learns that his uncle was worried enough about Frank and Carla to have asked the police to send a helicopter to check on them. Max eavesdrops on Ted’s meeting with the villainous, cape-twirling Antonio de Landa. The spaniard is a descendant of the infamous Diego de Landa who burned the Maya books. He demands that Uncle Ted sell him something called a Jaguar Stone. Max watches secretly as Landa threatens Ted and reveals that he is collecting the stones and already owns the Black Jaguar.

Maya concepts:

     -     The fickle Maya goddess Ixchel - aka Lady Rainbow (p 56-57), bringer of storms and floods.

Chapter Four - Villa Isabella:

After a long sleep Max wakes up at Villa Isabella - Uncle Ted’s colonial mansion on the coast. Maya looks around the house and, in the great hall, sees two enormous carved stone heads. Uncle Ted’s butler Raul enters and tells Max that the carvings are of the great Maya King Lord 6-Dog & his brother Tzelek who battled for the royal throne. Max snoops in Uncle Ted’s empty office before Raul kicks him out - but minutes later, Ted mysteriously appears out of the office door.

Over brunch, Ted gives Max bad news:

     1)     The police have not found Frank or Carla, only Frank’s jacket stained with what looks like blood.

     2)     Max is going to have to work for his keep in Uncle Ted’s banana business.

Maya concepts:

     -     The Maya believed centotes (sinkholes) were entrances to the underworld (p 72).

     -     Maya elites drank chocolate (p 73).

Chapter Five - Max goes Bananas:

Max is put to work cleaning the storm debris off the beach. He is not a motivated worker and while hiding from scrutiny under the shipping dock, he overhears Uncle Ted and Lucky Jim talking. He is intrigued to learn there's to be a mysterious shipment in the early hours, then angered to discover that his work on the beach is merely Ted’s plan to keep him from snooping around the house. Max decides to find out just what Uncle Ted is hiding. Late that night he sneaks back into Ted’s office, and finds a trapdoor that leads to a series of tunnels below the house, full of high tech gear unnecessary for a banana business. Max then finds an Aladdin’s cave of looted Maya artifacts including a red Jaguar Stone. However, he is caught red-handed by Lucky Jim.

Maya concepts:

     -     The ethics of Looting vs Archaeology. (p 85)

Chapter Six - Family Secrets:

Uncle Ted and Max strike a deal that Ted will explain what’s going on, if Max promises to stop snooping. Ted tells Max the family history, about how Grandpa Murphy came to San Xavier and got involved in the banana business, how Ted & Frank grew up in the jungle, and particularly the day that they discovered Diego de Landa’s hidden journal - which describes the ancient Jaguar Stones and how to use them. Ted goes on to explain, the financial pressures that led to his becoming a smugger of looted artifacts, and the discovery of a wrecked Spanish galleon that held two Jaguar Stones.

Chapter Seven: Thieves in the Night:

Using a pair of Ted’s night-vision goggles Max surveys the jungle from his room. He watches amazed as two howler monkeys sneak into the compound, break into the house and make off with a Jaguar Stone. Max wants to go and tell Ted what he’s seen, only to discover that he’s been locked him in his room. Furious that Ted evidently doesn’t trust him, Max escapes out of the window. He follows the monkeys into the jungle where he watches them deliver the stone to a black clad figure. The mysterious figure heads off into the jungle. Max follows with difficulty. He is bitten by leaf cutter ants and falls into a river. Miserable and alone he almost gives-up, but gets himself together and follows the trail as best he can. Dead tired, he eventually goes to sleep in a large tree.

Maya concepts:

     -     The sights and sounds of the rainforest (throughout).

Chapter Eight - The Monkey Girl:

The monkeys wake Max up and one of them steals his baseball cap. They lead him to a smoldering campfire in a clearing. As he surveys the scene, the black clad figure of the previous night sneaks up behind him and takes him by surprise. The thief is a Maya girl nicknamed Lola who already knows who he is. She was at the excavation with his parents and a local archaeologist called Hermanjilio before the storm hit. When the monkeys alert her that men are coming, she and Max swim across a pool of water, into a cave. The cave has a shrine to the Maya rain god Chahk, and there are hundreds of broken pottery offerings as well as a calcified skeleton.

Maya concepts:

-     Natural sinkholes called cenotes in Yucatan area

     -     Max spouts common misconceptions and internet nonsense about how the Maya mysteriously disappeared - possibly whisked away by aliens. Lola informs him that the Maya did not disappear - there are still 6 million Maya living in Central America today. Maya cities were abandoned due to deforestation, drought, overpopulation and conquest (p 124/125)

     -     During dry spells & droughts the Maya entered caves to pray to the storm god Chahk for rain, and offer sacrifices of pots and, occasionally, people (p 130/131)

Chapter Nine - Shooting the Rapids

Antonio de Landa and his men close in on Max and Lola in the cave. Lola inflates a rubber raft and they launch themselves down an underground river. Things go from bad to worse as the planned escape route is impassable as the storm has raised the water level. They end up in a huge underground lake. The only outlet is underwater. They swim down and are sucked under by the current. Max’s last thought is strangely of Zia’s tamales

Maya concepts:

Geology of Yucatan - few rivers and lakes on the surface, but many limestone sinkholes (cenotes) and underground caves and rivers.

Chapter Ten - Strange Weather:

Lola and an injured Max have escaped from the underground lake into a deep cenote (sinkhole). The walls are high and steep with only a small opening at the top. The rope that Lola and Hermanjilio had left in place so that they could climb out has been cut. There is no way to get out. In the rock wall at the centre is a doorway that leads to an ancient map chamber with a stone map of the region. They discover that the map is activated by the red Jaguar Stone that Lola has stolen from Uncle Ted. The activated map allows them to manipulate the weather outside. They decide their only option is to escape through the creepy passageways that lead from the map chamber up to the top of the pyramid which sits alongside the cenote. Making their way through zones of wet, cold and heat they finally arrive at a mural-covered room in the top of the pyramid. There is still no way out.

Maya concepts:

-     Maya pyramids are not like Egyptian pyramids

     -     The Maya had straight roads/causeways between their cities (p 147/148).

     -     (The five colored jaguar stones relate to the colors the Maya gave to the five cardinal directions: N, S, E, W and Center).

Chapter Eleven - Rat on a Stick:

The heat begins to rise to an unbearable level inside the pyramid and Max and Lola struggle to discover a way out. Max use his gamer eye to look for clues. Eventually they wipe blood from Max’s injured hand onto the bowl held by Chahk, the storm god which is painted on the wall. The door springs open and they escape. They make camp in the jungle at the foot of the pyramid. Lola’s two monkeys arrive having traveled through the trees. Chulo, the larger monkey, has taken a dislike to Max and causes him no end of trouble. Lola teaches Max some rainforest survival tips. Next morning, they all set off through the jungle to Lola’s village. When they arrive they are met by Chan Kan, the village elder and shaman.

Maya concepts:

     -     Maya kings were expected to give a little of their own blood to keep the gods happy and the crops growing (p162/163).

     -     There are 30 different Maya languages (p 170).

     -     Rainforest ecology: the water vine (p 163) Jackass Bitters for cuts (p167) dangerous snakes / fer-de-lance (p 168) and the Give-and-Take palm (p 170/171).

Chapter Twelve - The Feast:

Chan Kan welcomes them. He tells them that Hermanjilio has surfaced, but Max’s parents are still missing. Max meets two Maya kids Och & little Och who take a shine to him. Chan Kan asks to see Max and after using Maya divination techniques, he announces that the legions of hell are after Max and cryptically tells him to “trust the howlers”. Conch shell trumpets blow and everyone gathers for a feast, Max is ill-mannered from the start. When the villagers play a joke on him with a spicy soup, he has a sense of humor failure and stomps off angrily. The next morning, Max wakes up in a sulk and has an unpleasant scorpion encounter.

Maya concepts:

-  Naming traditions for children

     -      Maya shamanic divination with seeds and tokens (p 182).

Chapter Thirteen - Monkey River:

After Max escapes the scorpion, he pours away Och’s offering of a soupy breakfast, thinking it’s another practical joke. Och and little Och are not happy. Lola tells Max they'll catch a boat ride with Eusebio, a pepper farmer, upriver to the Maya site where Hermanjilio lives. The monkeys will go overland. Chan Kan gives them an old rooster named Thunderclaw to take to Hermanjilio and literally “showers” Max with blessings which doesn’t improve his mood. In the boat Max and Lola argue and things come to a head after Max eats half of Eusebio’s lunch. Eusebio stops the boat and takes the two of them into the rainforest and shows them how everything is interconnected. Back on the boat Max mulls over what Eusebio has told him and has a moment of clarity which sets him on a better path.

Maya/rainforest concepts:

-     Big scorpions aren’t usually as dangerous as little ones (p 192).

     -     Mutualism in the rainforest, how everything is connected: black orchids are like a good guest, trumpet tree & ants help each other out, poison wood & gumbo limbo grow side by side, and the strangler fig that takes without giving (p 199-201).

Chapter Fourteen - Itzamna:

They arrive at the Maya site of Itzamna. Hermanjilio greets them dressed like a Maya king, and explains he wants to create a closer connection with his ancestors. (description 210). They settle in at Hermanjilio’s amazing treehouse on the site. We learn some of Lola’s backstory - that she was found as a baby in the jungle by Chan Kan and doesn’t know who her parents are. Hermanjilio lets slip that Max’s parents vanished into thin air at the pyramid of Ixchel, but will say no more.

Maya concepts:

     -     Maya inventions: they had the wheel for toys, but not work (no draft animals), the Maya calendar, the concept of zero, rubber balls, chocolate and chewing gum (p 209).

Chapter Fifteen - The Oath of Blood:

Max demands that Hermanjilio tell him the full story of what happened at Ixchel. Hermanjilio will only tell Max the truth if Max takes an oath of silence. Max agrees and Hermanjilio pricks him with a stingray spine to draw blood. Hermanjilio tells them that the Jaguar Stones stand for the key attributes of Maya kingship: strength, courage, wisdom, creativity and the enduring spirit. Hermanjilio, Frank and Carla had gone to the pyramid of Ixchel with the white Jaguar Stone to see if the information in Landa’s old journal was true. While they were conducting the ritual they were attacked by bandits. Frank and Carla tried to escape into the cenote, but inexplicably dematerialized before hitting the water. Hermanjilio is convinced that the cenote had become a gateway to Xibalba, the Maya underworld.

Maya concepts touched on::

     -     Stingray spines used for blood letting (p 219).

     -     Strengths of Maya society

Chapter Sixteen: Cosmic Crocodile:

Max can’t sleep for worry. The next morning Hermanjilio tells him about Xibalba and the Maya Lords of Death. He also tells them he dreamed there was a secret passageway off the ball-court. They all go to the ballcourt to investigate and Hermanjilio explains the rules of the Maya ballgame. The secret panel is exactly where Hermanjilio’s dream led them, and they enter a hidden passageway. Inside, the Maya god of wisdom - Itzamna appears. Hermanjilio’s lineage is revealed to him and he’s given the green Jaguar Stone. They can now use it to access the Star Chamber beyond which holds a large and complicated mechanism. Using fake blood and the Jaguar Stone they activate the machine and find themselves in the middle of the Maya cosmos.  Hermanjilio explains to Max the Maya worldview. When Venus appears overhead firing arrows, Max falls off the machine and onto a black jello substance that separates the human world (Middleworld) from the underworld.  Five bony fingers grab Max’s ankle pulling him down to Xibalba. Hermanjilio pulls Max free. The machine shudders to a halt. They are stuck. Max rescues them with his video game skills and they are able to leave the chamber. What they did not see was Tzelek looking up from Xibalba under the black Jello stuff.

Maya concepts:

     -     Maya underworld - 12 Lords of death, 9 levels of Xibalba, Maya view that the dream world and real world are two sides of the same coin (p 225/226).

     -     The Maya god Itzamna (p 228).

     -     The Maya ballgame and the story of the Hero Twins and their father, the Maize God. (Note: shooting ball through hoop & the sacrificing isn’t in line with current thinking). (p 228/229).

     -     The Maya world view: Bakabs, date glyphs, (p 236) Maya cosmos and the cosmic crocodile (p 239), 13 layers of heaven, the Middleworld and 9 layers of underworld (p 240).

Chapter Seventeen - Trick or Treat:

Max ponders if what they experienced in the Star Chamber was real or an illusion. However, where the hand gripped his ankle is bruised and swollen. Hermanjilio studies calendar programs and concludes Ah Pukuh, the god of violent and unnatural death, is in line to run the next time period (bak’tun) which will start in just a week. They talk of the Jaguar Stones origins (the Olmecs) and their use (channeling the power of the life force in everything). They know that Antonio de Landa has the black Jaguar Stone and his ancestor’s journal.They are convinced that Landa will access the black Jaguar Stone’s power on the rising of Venus in seven days. They need help and they decide to summon the spirit of Ahaw Wak Ok (Lord 6-Dog) the long dead king of Itzamna. The next day they make preparations and as night falls they climb the pyramid of Itzamna to conduct the ritual to bring back Lord 6-Dog. There is talk of a sacrifice.

Maya concepts:

     -     The so-called end of the Maya calendar on the last day of the 13th Baktun (p 250).

     -     Ah Pukuh the Maya god of violent and unnatural death (p 251/252).

     -     Maya constellations and the world tree, the road to Xibalba, the Hero Twins (p 253).

     -     The Maya belief that everything animate and inanimate has a life force. (p 253/254).

     -     Kukulkan the feathered serpent. (p 264)

Chapter Eighteen - Chicken of Death:

Hermanjilio conducts the ritual, burns bugs & copal incense, they play drums & flute. Kukulkan - the feathered serpent, comes to life and they call the spirits. Two spirits step out of the light: Lord 6-Dog & unexpectedly, also his mother. The Maya spirits demand a sacrifice. Reluctantly, they consider offering Thunderclaw, the scrawny rooster sent by Chan Kan, but in the end he’s introduced as the fearsome and legendary Chee-Ken of Death. Hermanjilio tells the spirits why they were summoned. The spirits demand human bodies to occupy. When Hermanjilio suggests that they use Chulo and Seri (the howler monkeys) as bodies, things turn nasty. Max jumps up and grabs the Jaguar Stone and threatens to send the spirits back into oblivion. They choose to enter the monkeys.

Maya concepts:

     -     Maya rituals burn copal incense, traditional Maya music. (p 267/268)

Chapter Nineteen - Monkey Business:

Lord 6-Dog wakes to find himself in a monkey’s body (reprise of the preface, but this time it isn’t a dream). There are internal struggles between the monkey hosts and the occupying royal spirits as their disparate natures try to accommodate each other. Lady Kan Kakaw decides to rename herself Lady Coco. The Maya royals are shocked at the current state of the city of Itzamna, and at modern gender roles. Hermanjilio recaps the history that has taken place since they died. They plan for their coming battle with Antonio de Landa. The main question on everyone’s mind is where’s Tzelek in all this?


     -     The meaning of names: Lady Kan Kakaw’s and Lord 6-Dog’s (p 284)

     -     The Maya at the time of conquest. (p 289).

     -     The Aztecs’ short and bloodthirsty history vs the Maya’s 3000 years (p 289/290)

Chapter Twenty - Counting the Days:

Hermanjilio, Lola, Max and the two Maya Royals speculate on what Tzelek wants. They decide that Tzelek must be in Landa and that Tzelek/Landa is in league with Ah Pukuh, the Maya god of violent and unnatural death. It seems that whatever is to happen will take place at the Black Pyramid on the day 5-Kimi (5-Death) on the rising of Venus. Lady Coco and her son begin to heal emotional wounds. Lady Coco tells Lord 6-Dog the story of his father’s death and reveals that Tzelek is not his real brother. This adventure is a second chance for both of them. Lady Coco discovers the pleasure of farting.

Maya concepts:

     -     The Maya had straight roads between their cities (p 296)

     -     The Maya believed that studying history provided knowledge of the future - what happens will happen again. (P 297)

     -     The day you were born in the Tzolk’in calendar was supposed to set your character & destiny. Knowing the days provides guidance. (p 297)

Chapter Twenty-one - Preparing for Battle:

Max and Lola practice shooting blowguns and make a sleeping potion to use with the darts. Lady Coco & Max share a moment looking up at the Moon Rabbit. Once they are ready, they set off for the Black Pyramid. When they arrive in the pouring rain, a flash of lightning illuminates the large skull over the doorway of the temple of Ah Pukuh. Lord 6-Dog and Lady Coco head off to spy on Landa’s camp and discover twenty guards and a fearsome “Chee-Ken of Death”. Back at camp, the group make a plan, which involves escaping through ancient tunnels underneath the pyramid. Lord 6-Dog and Lola will sneak in ahead of time to check if the secret tunnels can still be accessed after all these years. At the same time Hermanjilio and Lady Coco will check out Landa's camp and assess the situation. Max will be left to guard their own camp - which suits him fine.

Maya/rainforest concepts:

     -     Blowguns and poison dart frogs (p 301/302)

     -     The moon goddess Ixchel with her two aspects: the mothering young goddess of the new moon with her pet rabbit vs the old moon goddess with a snake in her hair and a bone skirt (p 302/303)

Chapter Twenty Two - The Black Pyramid:

Hermanjilio heads off with Lady Coco. Once he’s gone, Lord 6-Dog & Lola tell Max to come and explore the black pyramid with them. This is not welcome news to Max who was more than happy to stay safe at camp. Sneaking up the pyramid, they send the two guards to sleep using their blowguns. Lord 6-Dog warns Max and Lola that, once inside the pyramid, the Lords of Death will use their greatest fears agains them. They enter the black pyramid and find the secret entrance. They pass through a burial chamber where the undead army lies sleeping. Max gets separated from the others and stumbles upon Carla, Frank, Ah Pukuh & the Death Lords having a party. They invite Max to join their cabal to take over the world. When he declines, his parents say horrible things to him. Max eventually realizes this is all a deception and the mirage disappears. He then encounters a very mean Lola who points out he's wet his pants. Max is filled with shame until he realizes that this too is a deception. The real Lola appears, they find Lord 6-Dog and they all use the escape tunnels to make their way back to camp. At the camp they are captured by de Landa and his men. Lord 6-Dog escapes.

Maya concepts:

     -     The Maya saw pyramids as gateways between the worlds (p 320).

     -     Bonampak style painted murals of war & sacrifice on the walls (p 320).

     -     The Maya built pyramids on top of older pyramids (p 321).

     -     The nature and behavior of the Ah Pukuh and the Lords of Death: they fart, have owl messengers, wear eyeball headdresses, love to gamble and play tricks (p 325-336).

Chapter Twenty three - Captured:

A speed boat takes Lola & Max to Landa’s yacht. Max has a meeting with Uncle Ted and Lucky Jim who are on the yacht. Max tells him about Landa’s plot and tries to appeal to Lucky Jim, but his story sounds ridiculous, even to him. Uncle Ted tells Max to think things over and Max gets locked into a cabin. Later, Max learns that Landa has dragged Lola away. Ted shows him a zodiac inflatable boat and urges him to save himself - “look after number one”. Ted explains that he tried to be a hero once, but somebody died. Max gets in the zodiac, but heads to shore to save Lola. The captain chases Max with the yacht until Ted pitches him overboard.

Chapter twenty four - The Showdown:

Max eventually makes it to shore. He walks up the beach until he finds de Landa’s boats. The guards on duty have been felled by blowgun darts. Max hears shots and realizes the fight is still on. He eventually meets up with Lord 6-Dog & Lady Coco, and they make their way to the Black Pyramid to ambush Landa. Hermanjilio is waiting, blowgun at the ready, at the top of the pyramid. In a reprise of Pyramid of Peril, the video game from Chapter One, Landa comes out guns blazing using Lola as a shield. Max and Hermanjilio fail to hit Landa with the darts. Landa tells them if they don’t come out of their hiding places, he will shoot Lola. Max shows himself, and Landa takes aim at him, but a flying pineapple thrown by Lady Coco lands on de Landa’s head. This allows Lola to escape and Hermanjilio knocks out de Landa with a sleeping dart. Hermanjilio and Lola run up the pyramid with Landa’s Jaguar Stone. Lady Coco & Max search in the jungle for the injured 6-Dog. When they find him, Max carries the monkey up the pyramid and enters the top room where he is ambushed by Hermanjilio.

Maya concepts touched on:

- Blow guns & sleeping darts.

Chapter twenty-five - Human sacrifice:

Max wakes up with Lord 6-Dog licking his face. Tzelek is not in de Landa as they had suspected, but in Hermanjilio - and he's about to sacrifice Lola. He has used the black Jaguar Stone to activate the altar and is about to open the portal to the underworld and raise the undead army. Lord 6-Dog shoots a blowgun dart at Tzelek/Hermanjilio as Max prepares to pull out the Jaguar Stone. The dart stops in mid air and falls to the ground. Tzelek laughs and taunts Lord 6-Dog telling him that he was the one who killed Lord 6-Dog’s father. While Lord 6-Dog leaps onto Tzelek and bites his nose, Max uses the opportunity to try and take out the Jaguar Stone. Tzelek throws Lord 6-Dog at Max and knocks him over. Tzelek is about to throw Max through the open portal to Xibalba when Lucky Jim appears. Jim takes a flying leap at Tzelek/Hermanjilio and they both go through the portal to Xibalba. Max pulls out the stone and the portal closes. Lord Muan the owl-man messenger of the Death Lords appears. He will release Max’s parents if Max agrees to fulfill an unspecified future favor. Lord 6-Dog tells him not to agree but, with no other option, Max makes the deal. Lord Muan leaves with all the three Jaguar Stones. Frank and Carla arrive.

Maya concepts:

     -     Two means of blood sacrifice: 1) cutting oneself (in this case ears) which was not fatal. or 2. holding blue painted victims down on altars and cutting out their hearts. (p 373-375)

     -     Owls are the messengers of the Lords of Death. (p 378)

Chapter Twenty-six - Morning:

The Murphy family is reunited. Lola is untied from the sacrificial altar. Dawn rises. Ted appears on the top of the pyramid and, after an acrimonious start, Frank and Ted bury the hatchet. Back at Villa Isabella, Raul makes breakfast & Lady Coco helps. The police chief calls to say Landa has disappeared. They are all unsettled when he tells them that Landa has taken photographs of Lola. Uncle Ted invites Lola to stay with him, but she is reluctant to do so because he's a smuggler. He tells her he's given that up now and she relents. Max sees Lord 6-Dog contemplating the statue of Tzelek and Lord 6-Dog tells him that they must make ready - the legions of the underworld will be after them.

Maya concepts touched on:

     -     The Maya underworld is a wet, misty and cold place (p 392).

     -     The Maya drilled their teeth to stick in gemstones (p 393).

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