The Guardians of the Beam are twelve powerful creatures born of magic and fused with the technology of the Great Old Ones in the form of large cybernetic animals. They defend the Dark Tower and its many worlds from the forces of the Outer Dark.
When children in Mid-World are old enough to draw, they learn a rough map of the earth that resembles a clock-face. Around the outside edge, an X is placed marking a portal into and out of Mid-World. Each of these portals has a Guardian which starting at the top and working clock-wise are the Elephant, Rat, Bat, Eagle, Dog, Turtle, Wolf, Fish, Hare, Lion, Horse and Bear. Each Guardian is paired with the one on the opposite edge (Elephant & Wolf, Rat & Fish, etc) and between them stretches a Beam which holds together gravity and the proper alignment of time, space, size, and dimension. At the intersection of the six beams, and the center of the map, stands the Dark Tower, the nexus of the entire space-time continuum.
Role in the Dark Tower SeriesEdit
Eddie Dean, Susannah Dean and Roland Deschain are attacked by Shardik, the cybernetic incarnation of the Bear Guardian in The Dark Tower III: The Waste Lands. By this time, Shardik has almost completely broken down and much of his flesh is rotting.
While Roland Deschain is in Maerlyn's Grapefruit, the voice of the turtle, Maturin, speaks to Roland in Wizard and Glass. Maturin informs Roland that the Tower will be shut against him because he will end up killing everything and everyone he ever loved in pursuit of the Tower.
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