Friday, February 28, 2014

The Monkey (illustrated by Max Rugers)

In Dream Hunters, while the Fox lies ill in the temple, The Monk tells the fox a story from his youth. As a young boy, The Monk found a baby monkey in a broken cage at the marketplace and he took it home as a pet. The monkey grew and lived longer than anyone in the Monk’s family expected.

One day, a local Lord (who turns out to have been the Onmyoji) came to visit the Monk’s father.

The Monkey did not like this Lord and would not let the man approach the Monk’s father.

The Lord ordered one of his servants to kill the monkey, which he did, with an arrow through the chest. The Monk held the monkey and the monkey looked into his eyes as it died.

Later, the Monk’s father was disgraced (for reasons not explained in the story) by this same Lord. The Monk theorized that perhaps the monkey was the spirit of Amida Buddha who would have protected them if only they had listened to the protests of the monkey.

This monkey appears in Dream Hunters (the Amano version) on page 60-63. He also appears in the P. Craig Russell version of Dream Hunters.

Max did a great job with this portrait. He also drew a little sketch on the back and I'm including it here because it's so cute!!!

Poor little monkey….

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