File 13: Quetzalcoatl Picture

From the notes of Dr. Wilhelmina Lerna:

"My then-intern Laura Westerna and I were in Mexico during the kaiju attack on Vice Basin, yet we weren't completely cut off from the event. We had been researching the recently unearthed remains of what had once been a large Aztec building of unknown purpose. The ruin was in a great state of decay.

"As I am not an archaeologist, it should be obvious that I wasn't there for the pyramid in of itself. Strange seismic activity had been occurring in the area - similar to that found in the few recorded instances of burrowing kaiju. There had even been a sighting of a massive armored serpentine monster - which I suspect may have been Minhaoco, one of the kaiju involved in the Vice Basin attack. Indeed, an underground trail has been uncovered leading from the pyramid to Typhon Island, and finally to Vice Basin itself.

"Yet I did not encounter Minhaoco in that pyramid. As my colleagues and I descended into the anciet structure, we found a huge chamber decorated with statues, carvings, and paintings of feathered serpents and birds, all in far better condition than the rest of the pyramid. Using my own knowledge of mythology (a subject all competent kaijuologists should be at least somewhat familiar with), I quickly realized this was a room dedicated to the feathered serpent deity of the Aztec and Toltec religions - Quetzalcoatl.

"As glorious as the room was - and it was a breath taking sight - nothing compared to what lay beyond it. Connected to the room as an even more gargantuan subterranean chamber. This one was just as elaborately decorated, but the trappings of the wall paled in comparison to the resident in the center of the room. Atop a massive stone nest sat the great feathered serpent himself.

"Or, at least, a kaiju that had been mistaken for him.

"Its shape looked serpentine at first glance, but close inspection revealed it to be a descendant of the dromeosaur family. Its body and neck were longer than any of its dinosaur ancestors, and its head had a more snake-like shape, but its four limbed torso betrayed its true ancestry. Each limb was a functioning wing, even the legs. Its feathers were green and red for the most part, with a more colorful set growing out of the base of the head (most likely for display). It was breathtakingly beautiful animal, and while logic told me I should have been frightened, I could only feel amazement while standing in its presence.

"The kaiju payed little attention to myself and my colleagues, glancing at us for only a brief moment before lying back in its nest. It closed its eyes for a few seconds, breathing deeply. Then, in an instant, the massive creature's eyes snapped open again. With a beautiful call - not quite a chirp and not quite a roar - it rose into a large tunnel in the ceiling of the room and departed.

"I later learned it had flown straight to Vice Basin..."

Character Alignment: Neutral Good
Team Affiliations: Mythic Monsters, Dinosaur Kaiju
Episode Appearances: Battle of the Behemoths, Invasion from Beyond Space
Personality: Quetzalcoatl is quiet, calm, and immensely empathetic. The dromeosaur uses its telepathy to communicate with its fellow kaiju, often implanting feelings of calm into their brains while doing so. As a result it is a wonderful diplomat, capable of swaying all but the most ill tempered of monsters away from violence. One of the few kaiju with a known good will towards mankind (as opposed to the more common apathy or intense hatred), Quetzalcoatl may just help mankind survive the 2nd Age of Monsters.

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So Quet's finally done. I managed to fix the lineart (sorta) in photoshop, and after a somewhat grueling shading session (so many feathers... so many feathers...), the Aztec deity is ready to battle his fellow behemoths.

Quetzalcoatl's always been one of my favorite mythological characters. Seriously, a serpent that's not only in a heroic role, but is perhaps the ONLY sympathetic deity in its entire Pantheon? That subverts the "reptiles are abhorrent" trope so hard that I can't help but love it. So while the other dragons got moved to different stories, I had to keep Quet in the 2nd Age of Monsters. He's one of two monsters that has a supernatural tint in the series. The rest are pretty much just Sci-Fi.

His design is a mix of ancient carvings/drawings of the mythological creature (that head is based on one of my favorite portrayals of him, in fact) and microraptor, making him technically a dromeosaur instead of a snake. But meh, in my mind he counts as both. I really like the four winged look - it's damn unique, and actually fits certain depictions of the mythical snake. Win win!

Up next: Karamtor.
Continue Reading: Lerna