happiness blinds, I think, more than pride does.” ~ Dumas Davy de la Pailleterie – by the man who wrote The Count of Monte Christo and The Three Musketeers, Alexadre Dumas. Isn’t it funny how long pen names have been in style? I will admit, his given name doesn’t exactly roll of the tongue.

14. “What good are wings if you lack the wings to use them.” Ashtel Vindari – the head of the Direbane Rangers, Asthel is a man whose past is shrouded in mist and mystery. His life is like an adventure tale with most of the plot burned out at random. This all began when he was the sole survivor of a skirmish between an orc clan and a squadron of rangers. The details that led up to the attack, what happened during, and the morbid field of battle after, are all locked in his memory. He refuses to give more than a summary accounting for the day though the pain of it is so obviously etched in his face.

15. “Two days’ hunger made a fine sauce for anything.” ~ Car’a’carn, He Who Comes with the Dawn – another epic Wheel of Time quote here by the master Robert Jordan. Car’a’carn means king of kings in the Old Tongue and shows just one more layer of incredible world building. On the backs of Giants indeed.

16. “They say necessity is the mother of invention. They’re wrong. Desperation is.” Shin Seong – Despite being the rich child of two business tycoons, Shin has experienced some hard times. In games (with back-stabbing guildies) and in the real world (with his monstrous parents) he has learned to do what he must to survive.

17. “But then a sight she'd never seen made her jump and say ’Look a golden winged ship is passing my way.’” ~ Johnny, The Bard of Towers – Have you heard his more famous song “All Along the Watchtower?” Yes, I did just do that. I made a Jimi Hendrix reference in my fantasy book. How epic is that? Also, the quote is from “Castles Made of Sand,” which is one of the sweetest and saddest songs of all time.

18. “Battle is a mirror. What you see of yourself in its pristine surface is often more frightening than the bloody bits.” Wardahl Sevenhalls – Though less skilled and, by far, less eager than his brother, Wardahl is nonetheless a terrifying foe on the battlefield.

19. “But it is one thing to read about dragons and another to meet them.” ~ Anonymous Benefactor of Genly Ai – an Ursula K. Le Guin quote from A Wizard of Earthsea. The attribution winks at another series that gets a less attention than it deserves. If you like far-reaching sci-fi, read The Left Hand of Darkness.

20. “Not if we hold true to each other.” ~ King Elessar Telcontar – Who other than Aragorn could drop a clean and reverberating line like this?

21. “Destruction cowers to mark what deeds are done.” George Gordon, the 6th Baron – a line from Lord Byron’s “Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage.” The man was the Lady Gaga of his time and traveled the world savaging the social scene of Europe for decades. The poem though, if you are a fan of fantasy, inspired many bards throughout the ages. It is a fragment of truth struck off from a star-shard that fell to the earth so long ago.

22. “Long is the way and hard, that out of Hell leads up to light.” ~ Scion of the Endless Poem – “Paradise Lost” …. Have you read it? Dear God, I have twice now, and neither was my idea. Yay for grad school. It’s the longest poem that should never have been written. Some great lines though, and did you know John Milton accidentally made Satan sexy? Ha!

23. “Nothing like the dire peels of a battle horn to stir the blood to action.” ~ Harnoth Stonescale – this great commander once survived a battle against four armed fafniri wyverns. His claws are sharp enough to rend granite.

24. “A leader is no more than the sum of her followers.” ~Selna Amredor of the Sirrushi Direbane – though older than Judas, who is only in his twenties in the real world, she has found a spark of affection in her heart for the wizard. Can a VR uploaded human and an AI make babies though? They can sure try.

25. “Defense is the best defense. Everyone knows that.” Wardeen Sevenhalls – the blacksmith’s uncompromising pragmatism makes him the finest fighter and the worst of lovers.

26. “And 'mid this tumult Kubla heard from afar Ancestral voices prophesying war!” ~ From the Lays of Laudanum – Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s poems deserve to be considered the seeds of modern fantasy. His wild imagination found a home among the Romantics, and if it weren’t for the “milk of the poppy,” if you will, he would have surpassed them all.

27. “War must be, while we defend our lives against a destroyer who would devour all; but I do not love the bright sword for its sharpness, nor the arrow for its swiftness, nor the warrior for his glory. I love only that which they defend.” ~ Forgotten son of Denethor – who else remembers Faramir? What a rotten hand he was given! Boromir was a jerk, and yet everyone remembers the single moment he died with a dozen black arrows buried in his chest and not when Faramir marched to his certain doom at the behest of a fear-mad father!

28. “History is a cyclic poem written by time.” ~ The Blasphemous Bard – a line by Percy Bysshe Shelly. Wrote some decent poems, kicked it with Lord Byron, and drank enough to kill a circus of elephants. What’s not to admire?

29. “What is there so fearful as the expectation of evil tidings delayed?” ~ Progenitor of the Man and His Monster – written by the finer of the two Shelly authors, Mary Shelly of course, who has given us Frankenstein. Have you read it? I was in college when I did the first time and reveled in the

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