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The following article/section is from the Storm Runner/Shadow Bruja continuity under Rick Riordan Presents and not the Riordanverse canon.

Do you like it? It’s one of my private chambers in Xib’alb’a. It used to be so drab and depressing, but I’ve really livened it up, don’t you think? The gold wallpaper is all the way from India. And see that skull painting? O’Keeffe, from your neck of the woods.

–Ixtab showing her personal quarters to Zane Obispo in The Storm Runner.

Ixtab (pronounced "essh-TAHB") is the ruler of Xib'alb'a after Ah-Puch. She is the goddess (and often caretaker) of people who were sacrificed or died a violent death and the keeper of the souls of warriors and women who died in childbirth.


After Ah-Puch was imprisoned in the Beast, Ixtab took his place as the ruler of Xib’alb’a. She had to battle a few other gods to win the throne of the dead, which made those gods good and mad. Someone learned of the Prophecy of Fire, despite the one who revealed it being erased from history, and told Ixtab all about the Storm Runner.

In Series

At one point she broke the oath and had twins, Adrik and Alana, with a man in the military.

When nawal named Quinn was forcibly engaged to one of the hero twins to "keep her family's bloodline pure." Since she despised him, Quinn and her sister, Brooks, found Ixtab and begged her to end the engagement. The goddess agreed only if Quinn spent a few months escorting souls to Xib'alb'a. She agreed, but after seeing how powerful a shapeshifter Quinn was, broke the deal and was said to have enslaved her. But in reality, she was in training as a spy, and Ixtab allowed Quinn to have supervised visits with her sister.

Storm Runner Trilogy

The Storm Runner

When Ah-Puch was released by Zane Obispo, Ixtab was one of the reasons why the gods wanted to go to war. Some like her as the new ruler of Xib'alb'a but others wanted the old ways where Ah-Puch was in charge.

Ixtab appears before Ah-Puch in the Old World to kill him and calls Quinn a traitor. She throws a fireball at the death god but Zane saves him. She then summons two hellhounds, one of whom is Rosie. She unleashes her demons but is quickly knocked out by Quinn with a lightning bolt to the spine; as it was revealed later on, this was done to make it look good. When she recovers, she prepares to tell him who Zane is, but is stopped by Hurakan. After the god claims him in front of the council, Ixtab convinces them to let him fight Ah-Puch.

After Zane defeats Ah-Puch in the Empty, Ixtab greets him in his cell and tells him to write his story to serve as a warning to all gods who break the Sacred Oath. Before she leaves, she confirms that Zane is dead and he will forever pound stone.

After he finishes writing she takes him to a room and tells him that he is really alive, but he must hide to ensure the gods think he is dead. She reveals that the truth paper given to him was made from Itzam-yée, the Serpent Bird, who doesn't want to see the gods go to war. She tells him that she has been working with Hurakan for weeks to make sure he had a fighting chance against Ah-Puch. With all his groupies rounded up by Nakon, the potential war has been averted, and the hero twins are also getting their just desserts for lying about defeating Ah-Puch. She reveals that she took Brooks' shape-shifting magic away to prevent her from drawing any attention, the demons (her best actors) were sent to the Jack in the Box because she knew the gods had spies everywhere, and a demon will be put in Zane's place in Xib’alb’a. The alux she sent on him when attempting to prevent the Prophecy of Fire went rogue, as they do that sometimes, and she would've killed it if Brooks hadn't. She also told her about Quinn's job as a spy. She turned Antonia Caballero and the other seers into chickens as they couldn't have them running around knowing what they were up to.

Ixtab explains that everything she did to him was to ensure that his true status as a godborn remains hidden. She tells him that other godborns existed before him, but they have since been hidden away and died. She tells him they must leave to meet his friends and family. She takes him to Isla Holbox and gives him back his cane and Rosie, his new home is very secluded and surrounded by water. The water messes up signals, wavelengths, and the gods' ability to see clearly, as it is also protected by her shadow magic. Ixtab tells Zane that they will inevitably meet again before having the cab take her to a dreadful Aztec king.

The Fire Keeper

As soon as she learns Zane Obispo has entered Xib'alb'a, she has them brought to her. She cheerfully greets Rosie and angrily asked Zane what he is doing there. He explains that a Mud Person tried to steal his powers but she dismisses it, saying it would never work. She then has Itzel make new clothes for them and explains that she knew Ren Santiago was a godborn when she saw her. She then has a telepathic conversation with Ren and learns that Zane sent out a call to other godborns, she then reveals that by doing so he exposed other godborns to the gods. She asks to speak to Zane alone and shows him images of godborns being abducted over the last few days that she only now understands. Zane points out a golden cuff in an image and she recognizes it as the symbol off Tlaltecuhtli, the Mexica goddess of the earth. She tells Zane that the Mexica Gods went extinct along with their worshipers when Hernan Cortez fought the Mexica with only a few ghosts of royals remaining. She considers the possibility of a Mayan god working with them. When Quinn arrives and tells Ixtab she has a call. When the goddess returns she tells the pair "It has begun."

She has Quinn ready her forces and teleports Zane to the blood river. She explains that she sent her forces to destroy the extra pages of the book so that no more godborns are awakened as well as some others to protect K'ukumatz. When she orders Zane to find the godborns, he agrees if she can free Hurakan. She rejects this as she would be killed if she was discovered in helping him and Zane would be hunted down. She tells Zane to put his hand in the blood river to strengthen his connection to the godborns, when he refuses she turns it into Caribbean water throws him over board. She asks the river if Zane is the one to find the godborns and it tells her yes. They then return to her patio and she tells Zane that she must temporarily kill him for three days to hide him from the gods, however if he does not return to Xib'alb'a by then he will die permanently. He tries to get her to free his father but she still refuses and he goes to talk with his team for guidance. After he chooses to take the offer, she appears before him and gives him a blue corn curnal that can open a gateway to Xib'alb'a and leaves Quinn in charge of the rest of the Death Ceremony.

Ixtab attends the executio of Hurakan, looking at her nails during the event. After the twins escape and the gods catch Zane and Brooks, she explains how she helped hide Zane and scans the godborns for someone. She ushers him to Xib'alb'a to keep him from dying. Zane tells her and the other gods everything he learned and they agree to pardon Pacific, K'ukumatz, and any god who broke the oath and their children. They reopen the Shaman Institute of High Order Magic to train them and let Ah-Puch a teacher and claim all the godborns. Zane realizes that she told him about the godborns in an effort to find her own godborn child.

The Shadow Crosser

After Zane finds all the godborns, she calls him to Xib'alb'a to ask him about Adrik and Alana, after hearing Zane talk about their abilities, she seems disappointed. After Zane realizes she is their mother, they get into a brief argument before telling him war is coming and warns him not to tell anyone about his visit or to reveal the twin's parentage to them.

She holds Adrik and Alana’s hands as Saqik'oxol pounds lightning into their legs. When the sparkstriker tells her one of them is stronger then the other, she leaves. After the ceremony she pets Rosie and places a ball of light in her ear before vanishing as Zane approached. This is actually her inside Rosie, however she struggles to get Zane to notice. She is released in the form of a teenager and she, along with Itzamna and Hurakan, explain how five of the godborns went rouge and he is the only one who can rewrite what was lost. Two weeks later she is back to normal and says goodbye to her children and Zane before returning to the underworld, she also allows Rosie to change between boxmatiom and hellhound at will, so that she wouldn’t be defenseless.


In Zane's book, Ixtab was always depicted with a rope around her neck. When first appearing in the Old World, she has long blue hair, pale skin, nasty gray teeth, and eyes of fire. She wears a cloak of bones.

However, Ixtab has a secondary form as a model-like figure with honey brown hair with streaks of blond wearing leather cargo pants with multiple zippers, a white blouse, and a Mayan medallion on a long gold chain. Her teeth were were a sparkling white.


At first Ixtab comes across as deceitful and cruel; however, this is just a front as she is actually a caring goddess and has renovated Xib'alb'a for the better.

However she tends to look out only for herself and takes precautions to save herself, such as adding a barrier to Isla Holbox to keep Zane on the island.

She is also cunning, having others do things for her without realizing it.


  • Necromancy: As the ruler of Xib'alb'a, Ixtab has control over her subjects.
  • Pyrokinesis: Ixtab can throw fire at opponents.
  • Power Erasure: Ixtab can remove the powers of other such as the shapeshifting from ha’nawal Brooks.


  • The name "Ixtab" means 'Woman whose work involves the use of a rope.' That's because most Mayans know Ixtab as the goddess of suicide. Although this may have been too dark for The Storm Runner, the only mention of suicide in the book was when Brooks referred to a double upon Zane suggesting he tell the gods that he released Ah-Puch.[1]
  • Jennifer Cervantes enjoyed writing Ixtab with all her snark and flair.[2]
  • Ixtab is the only Mayan deity who has multiple godborn children.
  • Her Greek equivalents are Keres.
  • Her Norse counterparts are Thor and the Valkyries.


Storm Runner Trilogy
Books: The Storm Runner | The Fire Keeper | The Shadow Crosser
Main Characters: Zane Obispo | Brooks | Rosie | Hondo Obispo | Ren Santiago | Jordan | Bird
Secondary Characters: Mrs. Obispo | Antonia Caballero | Ixtab | Muwan | Quinn | Antonio Marcel De la Vega | Jazz | Louie | Marco | Adrik | Alana
Minor Characters: Mr. Ortiz | Pacific | Saqik'oxol | Abuelo Santiago | Clementino | Itzel | Fausto | Red Queen | Gee | Serena | Sipacna | Kip
Mayan Gods: Ah-Puch | Hurakan | K'ukumatz | Ixkik' | Bakab | Yant'o Triad | Nakon | Ixkakaw | Ixchel | Itzamna | Alom | Camazotz | Chaac | Akan
Mexica Gods: Tlaltecuhtli
Creatures: Demon Runner | Nawal | Alux | Demon | Giant | Hellhound | Mud Person | Ahuizotl
Related Content: Jennifer Cervantes | Shadow Bruja Duology | Rick Riordan Presents