Ma'at's Feather

Book 7 in the Wyrdwolf series

Book 7 in the Wyrdwolf series

At the end of their summer with the family in France, Izzy and Michael are looking forward to three days by themselves. The last thing they expect is to have to deal with a burglary that results in the theft of the precious showstone. Let alone coping with a couple of Egyptian gods looking for a lost feather. With Michael's heart held hostage, and Declan missing or dead, Izzy needs help. And that involves a descent into the Egyptian underworld.

With increasing desperation, Izzy realises that saving Declan could mean losing Michael - and it might be down to her to make the choice. While they search for the missing feather, the clock is ticking. To have any chance of saving her mates, Izzy and Sam have to work with the dead to find a centuries-old sentient sex toy.

In this fast-paced action thriller, Izzy is threatened with losing more than her mates. As her sire fights to remain as Halfking, her daughter's life hangs in the balance. Will anything remain the same at the end of the three days?

The seventh book in the Wyrdwolf series uses a large dollop of ancient Egyptian mythology and rites, mixed with Were neonatal development, some principles of magic, a pinch of real world amgical history and a dab of substance abuse. All set in a very picturesque part of the English countryside.

What more could you want?

Ma'at's Feather - on sale in Kindle or print editions, via Amazon.

  • Author: Alexa Duir
  • Set in: England, 2010
  • series number: Book #7
  • Where to buy: Amazon US
  • Where to buy: Amazon UK
  •    For other countries, click on the UK link and substitute your country's domain for the in the url
  • True BitsIf you want to know which of the folklore and history in the books is true

True Bits in the book

Chapter 1
Declan’s questions are drawn from interpretations voiced within modern Heathenry. Garm is a dog or wolf in the underworld who breaks free at Ragnarok to fight Tyr. It may be another name for Fenris.

Chapter 2
In 2010 August bank holiday was Monday 30th. The moon reached full on Tuesday 24th.

Ah, bon is French for ‘oh, really?’

Chapter 3
Hospitality and being a good guest were obligations in pre-Christian Heathenry. They form a basic tenet of modern Heathenry.

Benret’s name is an authentic form for an ancient Egyptian name and each part of the name is authentic.

Kemetic is a modern adjective used to describe the people, language, religion and culture of ancient Egypt.

In ancient Egypt, Sem priests were those who attended the newly dead. They were a mix of undertaker, magician and psychopomp.

Chapter 4
The name Bleiz means ‘wolf’ in Breton.

The first iPad was released on April 3, 2010, four months before this story.

The slander that Jewish people make Passover bread from the blood of Christian babies is called the blood libel. It spread through Europe in the 12th and 13th centuries and continues to occur.

Chapter 5
Izzy’s dream has snatches of Kemetic mythology. The great god Ra (identified with the sun) sails the Sun Boat through the underworld at night. During the journey he battles Apep (represented as a snake), the force of chaos. In Spell 17 of The Theban Recension of The Book of Going Forth by Day, he is described as a cat, using a knife to kill Apep. The ‘feather’ is a misinterpretation of the depiction of the knife in a wall painting in Thebes.

The god Djehuty takes the form of a baboon and the god Yinepu the form of a jackal or a wolf.

Henbane and monkshood are poisonous.

The secret locked room is a reference to the tale of Bluebeard.

Chapter 7
In sufficient quantity, lobelia causes nausea and vomiting.

Est-ce que tu me comprends = do you understand me?

Smelling salts irritate the mucous membranes of the nose and lungs. Canine noses require a little mucus to work better.

In ceremonial magic, (from the 14th/15th century grimoire The Key of Solomon) asafoetida is used to evoke and bind demons. Witch bottles as described by Marnie are evidenced from the 17th century.

Chapter 8
je suis désolé = I’m sorry.

Chapter 9
John Dee was court magician to Queen Elizabeth I.

‘Pfff’ is the French vocal equivalent of a shrug. Bon = good. Hein is a filler word with varied meaning, often used like ‘innit’ in English.

Chapter 10
Isfet is an Ancient Egyptian word meaning evil, disharmony or troublesome. It’s the opposite of ma’at. Kemetic culture strived to maintain ma’at: harmony and balance. Ma’at is also a goddess.

Thoth is the Greek name for the Kemetic god Djehuty. He is represented as a baboon or an ibis. Kemetic mythology assigns him the invention of writing. All the names and titles used for him or other Kemetic gods are from Kemetic mythology.

Anubis is the Greek name for Yinepu or Anpu. He is the primary psychpomp in Kemetic mythology.

The Kemetics usually squatted rather than using chairs.

Ancient Egypt is commonly referred to as 'km.t' in the language of the time. ‘km’ means ‘black’ and the assumption is that Kemet meant Black Lands.

Deshret (Kemetic language) refers to the desert red lands on either side of the Nile black lands. Deshret carries the usual out-lander associations.

Heka = magic. In Kemetic mythology all things are formed from heka.

One of the titles of Set (Kemetic, Seth in Greek) is the Red Lord. He stands on the solar barge at night and helps Ra defeat Apep.

Chapter 11
What Michael says about Thoth and Anubis is true.

Aleister Crowley was an infamous ceremonial magician in the first half of the 20th century. The press of the time dubbed him ‘the wickedest man in the world’. He was into sex and drugs. What Michael says about his trip to Egypt and the Victorian craze about Egypt are true.

What Michael says about Benret’s name is true. Isis is the Greek name for the Kemetic goddess Aset. Hathor is the Greek name for the Kemetic goddess Hethert.

Chapter 12
The Eye of Horus (wadjet in Kemetic) was a sign of health for the Kemetics. Green was the colour of life.

The Anglo Saxon fylfot was a form of swastika. It was a universal symbol of good luck or good health found in Europe from around 6000 BCE through the 1930s.

The Kemetics split a human being into many parts. The ba was the closest to personality. It came into existence at death and was pictured as a bird with a human head.
Sources from the period are split as to whether the ba was non-corporeal or able to perform the normal functions of a body.

Another part of the human being is the ka, or vital essence. This part was believed to be sustained through consuming the essence of food and drink.

The ka and ba reunite after death to become an akh, if the person has passed all the tests. An akh could eat, drink and make love.

True of Voice is a Kemetic concept of moral righteousness.

The story about Aset and Wesir is a central tale in Egyptian mythology. Wesir was murdered by his brother, Set, and his body cut into pieces. What Michael says about Set and Horus is part of the myth.

What Benret says about Set is part of Kemetic mythology.

Chapter 13
In the early New Kingdom (modern Egyptian dating) Hathor/Hethert was a funerary diety who welcomed the dead into the afterlife.

Sam’s prayer is spell 9 of The Book of Going Forth by Day (the Book of the Dead). This gives a set of instructions for the dead to achieve the status of an akh. All of the prayers recited in this chapter are taken from it. I have just modernised some of the words.

Benret’s rituals and the description of the feast are taken from Kemetic texts.

The main ritual carried out by a Sem priest was called ‘opening the mouth’. This ensured that the deceased became fully alive in the tomb and in the afterlife. The tools used by Benret are the pesesh-kef (with curved flat hooks) and seb-ur (long curved).

Chapter 14
The ren is a part of a human being. Without it, the dead are unable to find their body.

In Douglas Adams' The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, forty-two is the number from which all meaning derives.

Dissolving a spell in a liquid and swallowing it is authentic Kemetic magic.

The description of Anubis/Yinepu is drawn from ancient Egyptian images. My invention is the skin colour, though it is within the authentic range of options. Oiling the body was normal for Kemetics. He is carrying a was sceptre as a symbol of power.

Chapter 15
The descriptions of the clothes, jewellery and headdresses of Djehuty and other gods are authentic to ancient Egyptian images. Djehuty had a close tie with the moon.

All of Isolde’s confessions are either straight from the Book of the Dead or my interpretation of similar modern social offences.

Chapter 16
The scales are authentic.

Ammit’s description and purpose are authentic.

Jury members: Tefnut has the head of a lioness and is identified with the sun. As is Ra, in the guise of the cat, Mau. Horus, the son of Aset and Wesir, has the head of a hawk.

Wesir/Osiris’ wears an Afet crown. Stripped of the uraei (cobra), sun disc and feathers, it’s a Hedjet: the white crown of Upper Egypt. What Izzy describes is a Pschent – the double crown. It’s formed from a Hedjet combined with a Deshret, the red crown of Lower Egypt. Horus is usually shown wearing a Pschent.

Wesir wields the crook and flail. They were Kemetic symbols of authority associated with him. The shepherd's crook stood for kingship and the flail for the fertility of the land.

Shu is one of the Kemetic Ennead – nine primary gods. He is represented wearing between one and four ostrich feathers.

What Michael says about the weighing of the heart is true.

The Field of Offerings (aka the Field of Reeds or A'aru) was Kemetic paradise. It was situated in Duat.

Chapter 17
The view from the inside of a transparent ball is true.

An egregore as a collective magical construct of the sort Michael describes, is a concept dating from the 19th century.

The Silk Road was an ancient network of trade routes that connected the East and West.

What Michael says about Egyptian forms of writing is true.

Chapter 18
The tale of Loki and the stallion Svaðilfari is in the Prose Edda Gylfaginning 42. The tale of him cheating the dwarves in the shape of a fly is in Gylfaginning 35-36.

Chapter 19
According to the Poetic Edda Lokasenna, Loki bedded as many Heathen goddesses as he could.

The speculation about Yinepu/Anubis’ parentage is authentic. There are conflicting attributions in the Kemetic texts.

Chapter 20
They're Coming to Take Me Away, Ha-Haaa! was the only hit produced by Napoleon XIV (Jerry Samuels). It was released in 1966.

The Specialist Operations directorate of London’s Metropolitan Police Service has used the designations SO1 to SO20 for its units. There is no SO21.

Chapter 21
In Kemetic mythology, Bennu (aka the Bennu bird) is Ra’s ba. Bennu is a symbol of rebirth and so associated with Wesir/Osiris. Declan is quoting from spell 13 of the Book of the Dead.

C’est bon = that’s good/that’s great!

Netjeru is the Kemetic word for the gods.

H. M. Bateman’s The Man Who... cartoons featured exaggerated reactions to minor social gaffes. They were hugely popular in the early 20th century.

Chapter 23
John Dee was court magician to Elizabeth I.

You can find the background information I created for the Magicians’ Guild on my website: The Regulation of Magic

What Izzy says about Crowley and his wife is true. The book that his guardian angel Aiwass dictated is known as the Book of Law, which he used to found the Thelemic religion. What Declan says about Crowley ignoring the instructions given with the book is true.

Chapter 26
In Greek mythology, Persephone was abducted by Hades and tricked into eating the fruit of the Underworld, forcing her to stay there.

Night on the Bald Mountain (Mussorgsky) and The Sorcerer’s Apprentice (Dukas) both featured in Walt Disney’s 1941 film Fantasia.

Gloucester Old Spot are an old breed of pig.

Chapter 27
Vraiment = truly.

Ce n'est pas nécessaire. Mais je vais le faire pour ma chérie = It's not necessary. But I'm going to do it for my darling.

Écoute notre femme = listen to our wife

British and Irish folklore has plenty of examples where eating fairie food trapped the eater in Elfhame.

Chapter 28
Edgar Allen Poe’s The Purloined Letter is a story about a stolen letter disguised as a different letter.

‘Smoked fish’ – When herrings are smoked they turn red.

Draugr is the Old Norse word for a malign ghost.

Chapter 29
Polari is a form of cant slang used in Britain by some actors, circus and fairground showmen, professional wrestlers, merchant navy sailors, criminals, prostitutes, and the gay subculture. It dates back to at least the 19th century.

Chapter 30
What Sam says about Rohypnol is true.

Chapter 36
La Chanson des Vieux Amants (The Song of Old Lovers) was co-written by Jacques Brel, a popular Belgian singer-songwriter.

mon merveilleux amour = my wonderful love

Chapter 37
’Events, dear boy’ is attributed to Harold MacMillan (Prime Minister 1957–1963). He may not have said it.

Chapter 38
The French expression revenons à nos moutons is from the 15th century French comedy La Farce de Maître Pathelin. It’s still used in France.

Chapter 40
The Collector’s prayer to Djehuty is a Kemetic school boy’s required text, dating from the 18th dynasty (BM#5656). I have not tampered with it. Merit’s prayer is another such text, known as Anastasi V. I altered one line.

Djehuty’s response is taken from the Book of the Dead, spell 182.

Chapter 41
Blade Runner is a 1982 science fiction film directed by Ridley Scott. It is based on the book Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep by Philip K Dick.

Chapter 42
Izzy’s impression of an ‘underground space, occupied by enormous tree roots and the slither of something in the background’ refers to the roots of Yggdrasil, where the dragon Nigghog lives. So do the Great Norns, who spin wyrd.

Mon doux, mon tendre, mon merveilleux amour/ Je t'aime encore, tu sais, je t'aime = My sweet, my tender, my wonderful love/ I still love you, you know, I love you.

Chapter 45
Aimee Mullins is real. What Rikki says about her is true.

The festivals mentioned by Declan are real. Swedish Cinnamon Bun Day, so how about the Danish Kulturnatte are modern. The Festivals of Chewing Cucumbers for Sekhmet and Eating Onions for Bast are Kemetic.

Chapter 48
Mercury’s feathers is an allusion to the Roman god, who wore winged sandals.

Chapter 50
Declan’s definition of entail comes from Merriam-Webster, a dictionary of American English, not from Chambers. I added the last sentence.