"They double-crossed me. All of them. The shrykes, the Guardians, the goblins...But they'll soon be smiling on the other side of their faces."
- -Vox Verlix
Vox Verlix was a villain in the First and Second Age of Flight. He was an adept academic and an influential inventor, going on to become the Most High Academe of Sanctaphrax after deposing Cowlquape Pentephraxis.
Despite his tendency to bully and belittle, Vox possessed a brilliant mind for the weather and for mechanical inventions. He designed many colossal and spectacular structures and mechanisms. However, he also had a highly domineering and greedy personality, and could never stand to share power or let his plans take the back seat. He also held exceptionally bitter grudges, and constantly plotted to get back at those who he believed had wronged him.
Role in the Twig trilogy
In Twig's time, Vox was an apprentice cloudwatcher in Sanctaphrax. Whenever he had the chance, he bullied Cowlquape Pentephraxis. Cowlquape had secured a position in Sanctaphrax with money from his leaguesman father, and such people were usually despised by those who were Sanctaphrax born-and-bred. When Cowlquape's father was killed in a freak accident, he no longer had any money to pay his fees, and the Professor of Cloud sent Vox to bring him Cowlquape. Influenced by a Mind Storm, Cowlquape threw a bowl of stew into Vox's face and ran for it.
Shortly after this incident, Twig appointed Cowlquape his apprentice, thus securing a permanent future for him in Sanctaphrax. The next time Cowlquape and Vox crossed paths, Vox attacked him with a cudgel, but Twig broke up the fight and threatened to cast Vox out of Sanctaphrax if he ever tried to harm Cowlquape again.
Role in the Rook trilogy
Later on, Cowlquape became the Most High Academe of New Sanctaphrax, and enlisted Vox to help him govern the new city. Cowlquape believed that with his own plans for equality and peace, and Vox's brilliant mind for both politics and engineering, the two of them could build for the Edge a great and glorious future. Unfortunately, Vox still bore a grudge against Cowlquape and privately rejected his philosophies. Soon, Vox usurped the title of Most High Academe from Cowlquape, and established the Guardians of Night. He also constructed the Tower of Night, and for a time, he ruled over New Sanctaphrax and Undertown with Amberfuce as his chancellor. But soon, the Guardians of Night grew too powerful, and Vox was cast out of New Sanctaphrax along with the Librarians. Later, he commissioned The Great Mire Road to connect Undertown to the Deepwoods, and paid the Shrykes to help build it through the Twilight Woods, but the Shrykes soon seized the road for themselves. He also constructed the Sanctaphrax Forest with the help of goblin mercenaries, but General Tytugg seized control of Undertown in the so-called Week of Blood, and decided to kill Vox. Completely powerless and in great danger, Vox fled to the Palace of Statues and shut himself up inside it, surrounding himself with booby-traps to keep safe. He became morbidly obese in his confinement, and, despite his title of Most High Academe and High Leaguesmaster, he held no power.
Though Vox could not be harmed by the Guardians, Goblins, or Shrykes in the Palace of Statues, he was trapped, bitter, and desperate for revenge on those who betrayed him. He created a secret weapon, known as Vox's Baby, to exact revenge on all of his enemies, and set it into motion. The Baby exploded in High Sky, creating the Dark Maelstrom, which destroyed Undertown, the Tower of Night, and the Great Mire Road. However, Vox's servants betrayed him, rendering him unable to escape, and he perished in the crumbling Palace of Statues with Hestera Spikesap.
The legacy of Vox Verlix was remembered in the years to come, well into the Third Age of Flight, however, most inhabitants of the Edge forgot about his darker deeds, remembering only that he had been an architectural genius and inventor - for example Vox's Eye, the Great Mire Road and the Tower of Night. Many individuals considered Vox a legendary figure, and his ancient creations formed the inspiration for some Third-Age technology and structures. The academics of Hive's Sumpwood Bridge Academy held Vox in particularly high regard, and considered their own grand architecture second to Vox's Great Mire Road.
Quove Lentis, the High Professor of the School of Flight in the Third Age, claimed to be a distant descendant of Vox, and was particularly proud of this untruth. He later came to own the stone head from Vox's statue in the Palace of Statues, which was given to him by Cirrus Gladehawk, the pilot of the Archemax, as a gift.