Max Griffin was a former student of The Academy and successor of the Elf King. The Elf King declared him his successor. He was a powerful stonekeeper of the past, who was reanimated by the Voice. When his Elf-friend, Layra, died during a failed attempt to liberate her family, Max became determined to wage war against his fellow humans. He died in the end of Escape from Lucien; rejected by Layra and her family,
Max Griffin was born 0+ years before the events of the main timeline. Born to the captain of the Cielis Guard, Roy Griffin, Max eventually became a stonekeeper like his grandfather, and attended the Stonekeeper Academy alongside Vigo Light. He eventually meets Layra, a female elf around his age and they became close friends, with Max frequently visiting her and her family. One visit involves Layra expressing surprise at Max's knowledge of the Erlking, and prompts to show him stories of the elves' legendary king. Max explains his father's disapproval of him reading anything unrelated to his study, with his friend explaining that one still learns plenty from stories, as they usually try to teach something. Layra then tries to reassure Max that his father wants what is best for him, but he disagrees: the only thing his father wants is what would be beneficial to everyone else, even if it would accost his son.
In an undisclosed time, Max is cornered and physically bullied by a trio of students expressing their animosity towards elves and their disapproval of Max's good relationship with one family, feelings driven by the increasing hostility between the two countries. Fed up, he turns the tied on the bullies, causing two of them to run away and was about to asphyxiate one to death but was stopped by Vigo, to prevent him experiencing further repercussions from such pettiness on someone so lowly. They then becomes friends.
In another undisclosed time, Max was entrusted by Silas by his research and information about the shadows before his eventual exile, keeping the knowledge secret for decades to come.
On the later days, Max is accompanied by a lecturer and his classmate Vigo to go to his father, who then inquires about his performance, and to his pleasure, was proven to be a cut above the rest like Vigo. The lecturer then tries to implore Roy to allow Max to join the Council due to his abilities, but his father once again inimically rejecting, trying to force Max to follow into his footsteps. Upset, Max then leaves to go to Layra's, with his father reminding him of his dissent about it. Max then reminds him in turn that Layra is his friend.
However, during said visit, Max notices Layra's despair, before hearing her parents was arrested just that morning; Layra then believing a war has begun. Max expresses outrage, but Layra coldly advises Max for them to remain separate, for both of their sakes.
Confronting his father, the two dissolve into an argument; his father accusing Layra's parents as potential spies, and Max denying them, with an issue of the newspaper between them detailing Gulfen declaring war. Hearing Layra's family was held in Yarboro prison, Max ran with this information, liberating them stealthily and reuniting them with their daughter. He then bribes an airship for them to quietly leave Cielis and into Frontera, upon there they will return to Gulfen, gaining the trust and gratefulness of all three members of the family. Max and Layra then share one last hug before her unexpected death, as the airship was caught by military airship and was subsequently shot down without mercy. In his rage, Max destroys the offending airship in turn, killing all those inside.
As consequence, the Guardian Council unfairly sentences him 50 years in the Ice Prison of Korthan because he aided the escape of supposed war criminals. In the prison, he will face further trial due to his participation in the deaths of four soldiers. They then ask his final words before his imprisonment, he has only one declaration; they will all regret this. They then send him away, Max then sees his father coldly refusing to look at him as a sign of rejection; broken by this act, Max then visibly angers.
Eventually he is able to escape the prison, but did not get far with fatal wounds and the harsh cold environment. Near death, his stone calls out to him, reminding his impending death and offers a way out; preying on his feelings of despair, anger and vengeance. Accepting, Max then heals and retains his youth, therefore starting his path of heinous acts and alliance with the Elf King.
Later on, on orders from the Elf King, Max eventually returns to Cielis and murders every stonekeeper and authority in the place, taking over the city with the intentions to retrieve the Mother Stone. Unfortunately, he soon discovers that it will require two stonekeepers to access the Mother Stone's vault. Max then sets up a trap to manipulate and hopefully convert another stonekeeper to his and the Elf King's cause: Emily.
Max is first encountered at the beacon just after gabilan was defeated, applauding Emily for her skill. He brings a squad of soldiers with him and eventually briefs her and her companions. He releases Trellis on Emily's insistence. They then travel to Cielis, informing Karen of the stonekeeper academy and alluring Emily with the idea of power and ruling through passing it.
Though at first Max appears to be helping Emily, his true goal is realized while competing for a spot in the Guardian Council at the Academy. He is shown to have betrayed the other stonekeepers, such as Ronin and Peirce, several times, but urges them to trust him and work together. It is later revealed that Max, using his powers, had created replicates of the deceased as illusions (Duncan, Ronin, Pierce, and others) to take control of Cielis so that Emily would be tricked into helping him obtain the Mother Stone. Max tried to persuade Emily to join him in his plan to create a new Guardian Council, but she refused. Max then escaped with the Mother Stone, while dodging the amulet blasts from Trellis and Vigo as he headed into the elven helicopter.
On an undisclosed period of time, Max awakens after reminiscing about his past. He questions Logi's presence in the tent, who then reveals that the Elf King wanted to keep an eye on him. Desiring to start early, he awakens the troops and returns to travelling the icy mountains. Along the way, he kills a soldier after outraging him with accusations of betrayal and support of their former prince. Then, he along with several Elf troops, later stormed the Ice Prison of Korthan, leading the Elf King in a battle carriage. At the entrance, Max requested the guards to let him visit a prisoner within the prison. One of the guards refused his approval, saying that the prison did not accept visitors. Max used his Amulet's power to strangle the guard with a fount of energy, threatening to let him enter the prison or face death. Granted access, Max and the Elven troops were able to enter the prison. Per agreement between Max and The Elf King, Max freed Chronos, a mountain giant, in order to defeat the other Stonekeepers. Max was given orders to begin their march in the city of Frontera and to annihilate the commoners. On his way to tecimate Lucien next, Max met up with the Stonekeepers during airship travel, leading to a battle in the skies. At the climax of the battle, the combined blasts of Emily, Vigo, and Max caused them all to fall. An injured Max awakened somewhere in the mountains in a large crater caused by his fall, with most of his bones broken. He contemplated giving up, but his Stone's voice coaxed him into believing that Layra would be disappointed if he gave up now and proceeded to mend his bones. Max apologized to Layra, driven to despair, and Chronos flew off with him in hand.
Max later spoke with the Elf King, apologizing for his failure, and asked for a second chance. The Elf King revealed to Max that he had heard Max's stone was guided by a voice and asked if this was true, to which Max denied. Max was then told that the traitor who had given this information would be executed, as the King saw this as a terrible offense to his best officer. Complimenting him, the King went on to say that Max would one day reveal his curse to him, but assured a visibly shocked and nervous Max that it was not time yet and promised to continue his work.
Later, Max flies off with Emily, Trellis, and Vigo Light into the Void in an attempt to take on the Voice. As they enter the Temple of Kings located in Valcor, the Voice swirls in between the statues and appeared in front of them. Before Max can attack the Voice, he is strangled around the neck, but Emily commands it to release him. When the Voice speaks to him gratingly about his actions, a hallucination of Layra appears, with her mother and father. Max tells Layra that he tried to avenge her and that everything he did was for her. Layra retorts that he had done it for himself, before she disappears with her family. Max then shouts to the Voice he is ready to go- and Max begins to age, losing his youthful features. Moments before his death, he tells them to find Algos Island and that Trellis is in fact, the true King.
His last words were important: “Forgive them. Forgive your people. They didn't know... That you are the king."
Max is considerably taller than Emily, though shorter than her mother. His stone is blue, with a design similar to Emily's. He has black hair and blue eyes. His hair spikes, and he often wears a cape, brown boots and a tunic. He seems a little older than Emily, about sixteen years old.
After the battle in Prince of the Elves, the end of his cape is tattered and seared, most likely from the injuries he suffered at the end of the book.
Max is quite single-minded when he wants to achieve a goal, leading to him being quite ruthless, willing to put innocents in danger if it means he will get what he wants. His desire to avenge Layra, which is what influenced his decision to side with the Voice and the Elf King, is a prime example of this. He is also a skilled manipulator, hiding his true self beneath a charming façade. He does come to realize that the Voice is evil, and so he allies with the Guardian council to destroy it, albeit by resorting to threatening their lives unless they do. When his motives are called into question by the Voice, who uses Layra's spirit to prove its point, he realizes that his obsessiveness had made him a monster. In the end, he dies filled with regret for what he had done, finally letting go of his desire for vengeance.
Powers and Abilities
Max is shown to be an immensely skilled and powerful Stonekeeper. As a child, he and Vigo had excelled above the other students in their training academy. When soldiers open fire on an airship intending to smuggle Layra and her family to the city of Gulfen, Max is able to detonate the ships and kill all of the soldiers inside, thus leading to his imprisonment.
Max has shown that he is able to animate stone replicates of the deceased and create the illusion that they are alive.
Using the Stone, he manages to inflict major damage on aircraft en route to Gulfen. The Voice of the Stone is also shown to mend his broken bones after he fell from the sky.
Even without using the Stone, he is shown to have considerable strength, as demonstrated when he grabbed a disloyal Elf subordinate and tossed him a great distance, supposedly killing him. He also seems to have an experience with a sword
Vigo and Max met when a fellow Stonekeeper called Max 'Elf lover' and pushed him down, resulting in Max strangling him with his Amulet. The person said sorry several times-untilVigo then stopped Max's blast and they went on to be friends, which Vigo stated to be like 'an eternity ago'.
Emily- Former Friend and Later Enemy
Max and Emily got off to a rocky start, what with Max tricking Emily and they later fighting after Max's motives were revealed. Then Emily found out about Layra as they went off to attack The Voice. Emily tried to help Max as he died, but Vigo stated that Max 'was already dead'.
Layra- Former Best Friend
Max and Layra were the best of friends, maybe even a bit more than that. Max then helped Layra and her family escape but then the family was killed, and Max tried to avenge Layra's death. Max was shown to have great feelings for Layra, as seen when he reacted to a hallucination of Layra telling him that his efforts to avenge her death where all things that Max did for himself.
- Of the Elf King's subordinates, he is the longest to appear under his command thus far. Both Luger and Trellis chose to leave the King and join Emily.
- While he looks around 16, he is actually over 50 years old.