“Surprised, Ophis snarled at the nimble warrior, trying to bite him. He flexed the lozenge scales of his extended neck and revealed beneath his chin an iridescent blue dewlap. Mere seconds passed before the dewlap was wholly inflated and guttural clicking sounds emerged from inside the dragon’s demonic belly. Ophis sent forth fire from his mouth and nostrils.”
– Except from THE CRYSTAL CRUX – BETRAYAL
When I originally began writing THE CRYSTAL CRUX, I had several dragon names I toyed around with. During my exhaustive research of mythological tales, I came upon several usages of the term ‘Ophis’. It seems several stories and games have used the term for a variety of “evil” things.
My decision to use the name Ophis for my black dragon came after I learned that Gnostic teachings believed that the serpent in the Garden of Eden was Ophis. He actually meant to elicit the aid of the WORD’s in convincing humanity to disobey the Creator in order to gain knowledge of good and evil – or gnosis.
There are also ancient Greek accounts of another ancient people living near the River Tagus which is now part of Portugal. These people, the Oestrinmi, had been chased out of their former realm by a plague of snakes. There was a convergence of terms for these ‘western most people”, everything from Saefs, Ophis and Dragani. The Oestrinmi or Ophi were said to worship serpents, which many historians now consider could have been as diverse as Wyvern, Griffins and Dragons.
Although many accounts give Ophis wings and the ability to fly, others saw him as chthonic, earth dwelling, subterranean. He was then associated, especially with the ancient Greeks, as dealing with the underworld.
The Egyptians and Indian mythology had an ouroboros ophis, tail eater, creating an infinite circle. While in Norse mythology, the ophis that encircles the earth, or Midgard, one of the nine worlds, separating it from the heavens, is Jormungand, an offspring of Loki.
In the stars themselves, we can see Ophiotaurus or Taurus Ophis, serpent-bull. It is a combination constellation of Taurus and Cetus. This black-skinned creature was said to have been destroyed by a sea Titan.
For my series, THE CRYSTAL CRUX, Ophis a black dragon startled awake by a Norse blacksmith named Taf. Ophis learns of the Bellerophon Crystals and their power and covets them. He will stop it nothing to collect them and use them and rule the earth.