This story began long ago. Thousands of years before the museum, before the city of New York, and before ships carried Europeans across the ocean to a new continent, there were the pharaohs of Egypt.
Two children were born into the same family; each one with a prophecy of what they would become. The first's heart quickly grew black with hate while the second was a gentler soul. With a throne on the line, a tablet empowered by Khonsu, and one ambitious to rule regardless of the obstacles, it could only end in suffering.
Before the museum, there was simply Ahkmenrah and Kahmunrah: sons of the pharaoh and brothers.
Essentially, by working out the various clues and hints from the three movies (so spoilers if you haven't watched all of them), Bookworm Gal tries to craft a Backstory for the ancient Egyptian characters, the magic tablet that causes the films in the first place, and even the gate to the underworld from the second film. And they do this while researching as much as possible to make everything sound believable.
Tropes found in Child of Moonlight include:
- Alliterative Title: Some of the chapter titles:
- "Fortunes Foretold"
- "Plans and Plotting"
- "Searching Through Scrolls"
- Ancient Egypt: The setting.
- Animal Motif: Kahmunrah is described vaguely like a snake a few times. He is compared to Apep (a snake-like entity in Egyptian Mythology that tries to devour the sun each night) and prophecy foretells that "hubris, jealousy, and cruelty will drip from him like venom."
- Backstory: The origin of the tablet, the gate to the underworld from the second film, and the lives of Ahkmenrah and Kahmunrah are all explored.
- Berserk Button: Kahmunrah does not react well to anything that he thinks is the slightest threat to his future as pharaoh. And he definitely doesn't react well to suggestions that he is not far greater and more important than Ahkmenrah.
- BrotherSister Incest: It was historically accurate for the royal family in Ancient Egypt.
- Cain and Abel: Kahmunrah and Ahkmenrah, respectively.
- Cheerful Child: Ahkmenrah
- The Chosen One: Ahkmenrah is said to be "favored by Khonsu"
- Cool Sword: The Khopesh
- Death by Childbirth: Inhapi, Kahmunrah's mother and one of Merenkahre's wives. Shepsheret views him as her son anyway.
- Egyptian Mythology: Comes up rather often with both commonly and lesser known gods.
- Green-Eyed Monster: Kahmunrah
- Historical Domain Character: Hatshepsut
- Lunacy: Khonsu is the god of the moon and is very important in the story due to his connection to the tablet.
- Prequel: To Night at the Museum
- Religion Is Magic: Anything that is considered magic, from protective amulets to the tablet, involve invoking one of the gods or goddesses.
- Reptiles Are Abhorrent: Both played straight and averted in regards to how snakes were viewed in ancient Egypt. Some were useful for controlling mice and this was reflected with the goddess Wadjet, who was a protector of pharaohs. But many species could be deadly, which was reflected with the mythological entity Apep, who tried to plunge the world into eternal darkness by devouring the sun. Kahmunrah views snakes as mostly being dangerous to anyone who got in their way; it is a trait he easily identifies with.
- Royal Inbreeding: Marrying siblings, half-siblings, and cousins are all mentioned or shown, which is historically accurate.
- Shown Their Work: Lots of research was done into the various gods and goddesses, a timeline of when the characters would have ruled, different aspects of daily life, and other interesting aspects that are either revealed in the text or the Author's Notes.
- Sibling Yin-Yang: Kahmunrah and Ahkmenrah. One is ruthless, ambitions, and favors combat lessons. The other is thoughtful, friendly, and favors his more intellectual studies. Even the times of their births were drastically different, with Kahmunrah being born just before sunset during a new moon and Ahkmenrah at midnight during a full moon.
- Spare to the Throne: Ahkmenrah, though Kahmunrah holds the belief that they didn't even need his younger brother.
- Troubling Unchildlike Behavior: Kahmunrah beats his childhood companion bloody for making the mistake of saying that Ahkmenrah wasn't that bad.
- Ultimate Blacksmith: The craftsmen who serve Sokar would be considered this. They are the ones responsible for creating the tablet, along with several priests from that and other temples.
- Warrior Prince: Kahmunrah
- Wise Prince: Ahkmenrah