"as they watched over the northern approaches"

Frank refers to them on page 10 as "totems", which are entities or objects that keep watch over and give assistance a group of people. The definition states that a totem supports only large groups of people, so in this essence, the word is not correct. However, in modern times, an individual can choose an animal helper that has personal significance to them, and this is referred to as their totem. Frank seems to employ various animals as his totems.