- "I know at last who I am. And who I am not. I was born of a haggish owl, and though her blood flows through me I am my own owl. My gizzard is mine. I am a king, but more important, I am a Guardian."
- ―Coryn, Exile, page 202
|Species:||Barn Owl (Tyto alba)|
Blythe, Bell, Sebastiana
|Appears in:||The Hatchling, The Outcast, The First Collier, The Coming of Hoole, To Be a King, The Golden Tree, The River of Wind, Exile, The War of the Ember|
|Son of the tyrants Kludd and Nyra; an owl with a good gizzard; young king of Hoole|
Coryn was a male Barn Owl, or Tyto alba, formerly known as Nyroc, and was born on a lunar eclipse as the son of Kludd and Nyra, leaders of the Pure Ones, and the main protagonist of the second half of the series, books 7-15.
Coryn has a spotless white chest with brown back feathers, and his face is notably large and moon-like, similar to Nyra's. Also similar to his mother, he has a scar running from left to right on his forehead, the opposite direction from hers. Some characters, such as Mist, have remarked Coryn to also look very similar to Soren.
Coryn can read the flames of fire, as he has firesight, and also has obtained the powers of the Ember of Hoole.
Shortly after the Battle of Fire and Ice in the St. Aegolius Canyons, Kludd and Nyra's egg, the Sacred Orb, hatched under the eclipse. Nyra named the hatchling Nyroc, which is the name given to male owls hatched on the Lunar eclipse, and promised that he would grow up to be like his father.
A few months later, Nyroc had his First Flight ceremony, and, within a few nights, was practicing figure eights and power dives. His elder Pure Ones praised him, calling him "perfect," while the other young owls were painfully envious, except for a lower-ranking Sooty Owl named Phillip, also known as Dustytuft, who was made Nyroc's companion by Nyra.
Soon after, his father's Final Ceremony took place, and Kludd's bones were burned. Nyroc saw dire wolves in the flames, as well as the legendary Ember of Hoole, but he did not know what it was. However, Gwyndor, the rogue smith who made the fire, knew it, and realized that young Nyroc had firesight, a gift granted to only a very few. Meanwhile, Nyra fed him false tales that his uncle Soren murdered his father in a hope to spark hate in him, which she hoped would grow until he became like Kludd. In reality, though, it was Twilight who killed Kludd to save Soren's life.
Gwyndor returned from a trip from Silverveil where the rogue smith there revealed that the next ceremony, Nyroc would go through with the Pure Ones would be the Tytonic Union of Pure Ones Special Initiation, or Tupsi, which would require him to kill another owl. He pretends that he wanted to make fire claws for Nyra, but in reality showed Nyroc another fire, where he saw the truth about his parents. Getting the message, he retreats to his hollow to think.
The next evening, Nyroc persuaded Phillip to leave with him, saying that he was on a "quest for truth." They met some crows, but Nyroc tricked them into giving the two a permanent pass into their territory. However, Nyra noticed their absence, and sent a search party to search for them. Doc Finebeak, the greatest tracker in the owl universe, was with them, so they threw themselves into the dangerous winds of the Shredders. They were stunned when they emerged and were easily recaptured by the Pure Ones.
When Nyroc came to, Nyra showed him Phillip, bound to a tree, and revealed that for his Tupsi ceremony, he had to kill him. However, he refused, so Nyra killed him instead, ripping out Phillip's heart. She tried to make a deal, saying that if Nyroc did everything perfectly from now on, she would pretend that he was the one that killed Phillip. Nyroc ran away, but not before being clawed by Nyra in the same spot Nyra had been clawed by Otulissa years before, only facing the opposite direction. Soon after, he met his father's scroom (ghost), telling him that he had to return, but he refused once more and, to hide from the Pure Ones, lived in a fallen tree (or "dead drop") for weeks, sleeping at night and hunting in the day. One night while he slept, he dreamt that a Spotted Owl named Otulissa was coming to meet him, but he dismissed it as just a dream.
One day, he tried to kill a plump rabbit, but found out that it could talk and let it go. It revealed that it was a mystic "web reader," and could find patterns that reflected the past, present, and future in spider webs, just like Nyroc could in fire. He could not reveal his name as that would mean the loss of his powers, so Nyroc called him "Rabbit." Rabbit revealed that Nyroc would someday encounter someone or something called Fengo. Shortly after, Nyroc left for Silverveil.
In the mist, he saw his father's scroom once again, and was in the middle of a forest fire soon after. Its terrible beauty transfixed him, and he was fire blinked. However, he escaped, and ended up in a spirit woods, where the scroom of a Spotted Owl, Strix Struma, told him that Otulissa would come and help complete his journey, but when he asked what it was, she said that he had to find out for himself. Soon, Kludd's scroom visited Nyroc for the last time, but Nyroc was ready and shouted that he defied him, and that he had free will. Once and for all, the dark spirit of Kludd disappeared into hagsmire.
Nyroc left for Ambala, but he met three Great Grays who told him that he was not welcome and had to leave for Beyond the Beyond, which was the traditional place for outcasts, but because the day was beginning, they allowed him to stay in the hollow of the dead Brown Fish Owl Simon for a short while. He found Slynella and Stingyll, two flying snakes, waiting for him. He thought they were from Nyra, so he told them to kill him. However, they refused, and took him to Mist and the eagles, Streak and Zan. During his first encounter with them, Mist said he had his uncle Soren's eyes. Mist and the snakes began teaching him the alphabet, and he chose to rename himself Coryn, which was Nyroc spelled backwards.
Coryn soon left for Beyond the Beyond because he realized it is the place he needs to go to discover his destiny, and happened to fly over a family of Burrowing Owls: Myrtle, Harry, and Kalo, their daughter. They had lost an egg to the Pure Ones, who had restarted their egg-snatching program. Since he could guess where the egg cache for the Pure Ones was, Coryn decided to retrieve the egg, and disguised himself as a hagsfiend with bits of moss. The guards, mistaking him for Nyra's hagsfiend because of the scar his mother gave him, fled in terror, and Coryn took the egg back to the Burrowing Owls, who were so grateful that, upon its hatching, they chose to name the chick Coryn in his honor. After staying for a while, Coryn left once more for Beyond the Beyond, and overheard a few Great Horned Owls talking about the part of the legends of Ga'Hoole where Grank, the first collier, who had firesight, rescued the egg of young King Hoole from hagsfiends and mentored him until he retrieved the Ember of Hoole and became king. This left Coryn to wonder if his destiny was to play the role of Grank and be a mentor to Cory the Burrowing Owl, who he thought was destined to become King of Hoole.
Coryn finally reached Beyond the Beyond, and witnessed dire wolves hunting caribou. He befriended Hamish of the MacDuncan clan, a wolf with a lame leg, soon to be one of the Sacred Watch guarding the Ember of Hoole inside the Sacred Volcanoes, and learned about the ritual of lochinvyrr, in which the predator locked eyes with the prey as the dying animal accepted that it was worthy to feed others with its body. He and the MacDuncans saw tracks of a sick wolf, and they carried news of it to the MacHeaths. Coryn also confided in Hamish the secret about his firesight.
One night, Coryn was watching the Sacred Volcanoes when he heard a strange owl coming up to him, and he hid in a rocky cleft, where he got stuck. However, the owl spotted him and pulled him out. He realizes that it was Otulissa, but upon seeing the scar on his face, she swooned and went yeep, thinking him to be Nyra. As she fell, Gwyndor, who also happened to be in Beyond the Beyond, caught her and managed to convince her that Coryn was not Nyra. Later, Coryn went with Hamish when the latter began his training as a member of the Watch and to learn to catch graymalkins (bad owls) who attempted to retrieve the Ember. He also caught three coals on the fly from the sacred volcanoes,which were orange with blue centers, and gave them to Gwyndor, as everyone else, owls and dire wolves alike, watched in awe and shouted their approval. However, he saw a picture in the flames: the image of his mother, whom he suspected was not yet gone from his life.
Otulissa and Gwyndor, meanwhile, had a hunch that Coryn was the prophesied heir of King Hoole, and Otulissa told him that he needed to find his strengths. Coryn replied that he wanted to be by himself for a while, so he went to a river far beyond the volcanoes where he met once again the scroom of Strix Struma. However, their conversation was interrupted by Gyllbane, a she-wolf of the MacHeath clan, who revealed to him that Nyra had allied with the MacHeaths so as to kill him, and that he had to get the Ember of Hoole. They returned to the Sacred Ring, where Coryn circled over each volcano as everyone, including Nyra, watched with abated breath. The volcano called H'rathgar, for him, appeared to turn to glass, allowing him to see the Ember, and he dove and felt no heat as he grabbed it. When he emerged, the wolves of the Watch, all born with a disability, were magically healed by the Ember, and they and the owls sang praises for him.
However, Nyra did not join in the celebration, and neither did Uglamore, who had left the Pure Ones, and Doc Finebeak, who had tracked her all the way to the Beyond. Nyra, unaware of their presence, moved to attack her son and claim the Ember, but Coryn tried to trick her into going into the jaws of the foaming-mouth wolf, who had reappeared. Everyone else caught on, and soon Nyra was being forced into the sick wolf's gaping jaws. However, when the sick wolf lunged, scattering the owls and giving Nyra an attempt to escape, Uglamore realized what she was doing and attacked, but the wolf grabbed him. Gyllbane charged the wolf, who fell onto some coals and died. Uglamore died before Coryn's eyes, and he ordered him to be cremated.
Coryn, accompanied by Gwyndor and Otulissa, flew to the great tree, where the former king and queen had just died, and was welcomed by his uncle Soren. The Ember of Hoole illuminated the tree, shining through the coal bucket in which it was contained. He met his aunt Eglantine, and Otulissa saw the scroom of Stix Struma, announcing that she believed.
Ezylryb, the weather chaw ryb, was dying of old age, and he summoned Coryn and his uncle, Soren, to his private hollow and told them to read some special books from the hidden room, the original copies of Ga'Hoolian legends, but before he could finish what he started to say, he died. Coryn, as the new king of the Hoole, prepared the Final Ceremony for him. Soon after, they locked themselves up in the hollow and read the first legend, and Coryn got the suspicion his mother was a hagsfiend.
The rest of the band and Otulissa had been waiting outside, and they asked to read the legends as well, so the next night, they all went to the hollow and read the second legend. Coryn shared an idea with the others that with the Ember coming back, the ether veil, or border between magic and "normality," was being shredded, and magic, good and evil, was seeping back into the owl world.
As they finished the final legend, Coryn read that King Hoole saw a Barn Owl in the flames of the volcanoes who would be next to find the Ember, and realized that it was him. However, Twilight disagreed with the theory that the ether veil is disappearing, saying that "nachtmagen died with the last hagsfiend — centuries ago." Coryn was worried, thinking that perhaps there was still one hagsfiend left, and that nachtmagen had not died off, and would not for a while yet.
Soren thought Coryn needed a break from all the pressure of being leader of the tree, and suggested he and the band go out and about for a while, leaving the Ember of Hoole behind. They visited the beyond, not knowing Nyra was there too, convincing the MacHeath clan to join her to capture the Ember. She and the vyrwolves later attacked Coryn and the band, along with other recruited dire wolves. Coryn was cornered by his mother, and without knowing, his eyes grew the color of the Ember, and he fainted. When he awoke, the vyrwolves had been killed and Nyra had escaped. Coryn and the rest went back to the great tree, discovering it being in bad shape in more then one way. He restored the tree back to its original health.
Coryn, the band, the Pure Ones, and the rest of the great tree found the lost Middle Kingdom.
Coryn, under control of the Striga, the mysterious blue owl from the Middle Kingdom, banned the band from the great tree. Owls were appearing out of nowhere, and things are havoc. When Cory, the hatchling that Coryn saved, came, he recovered from the trance, and soon, the Striga was driven from the Great Tree and the band was allowed to come back.
The great tree had been fully restored, and there had been a year of peace.
Word got out that Nyra and the Striga (also known as Orlando) had joined forces. Coryn knew that the Ember of Hoole was not safe, he tried to get permission from the Middle Kingdom to house it, but at that same time their kingdom were losing their owls to Nyra. The Middle Kingdom had to reject the Ember, so Coryn decided he would return the Ember to the volcanoes. He told no one of his plan except for his dear friend Hamish. Coryn told the owls they would use it for bait. A few owls were sent out to get help from all creatures they could think of. Coryn found out about all the hagsfiend eggs that Nyra had stolen. Coryn sent dire wolves to smash the eggs before they hatched. A few battles took place until Coryn was able to trap Nyra with a fake Ember. Soren followed Coryn and Nyra into the volcano. The Striga also followed. Coryn gave Nyra the fake Ember, that allowed Soren to kill her with an ice splinter. The Striga was terrified and fled, but Coryn went after him. The Striga had cut off one of Coryn's wings. Soren was horrified and killed the Striga by slicing his head off with Ezylryb's battle claws. Soren caught Coryn in his talons and took him to a safe haven. The young king was ready to die of blood loss, and as he was slowly fading away, he heard only the songs of the wolves.
- Coryn is Nyroc spelled backwards.
- In the black-and-white picture of Coryn staring in to the flames in The Hatchling, he is shown with his scar, yet in the book he doesn't get the scar until far later.
- The idea that the offspring of evil is not evil is a theme in many books and movies.
"If I could choose to be any other creature I would choose to be a wolf, Hamish."- The War of the Ember, page 176
= Gender Unknown