THE BOOK OF MANUSCRIPTS
THE TREASURY OF LIFE
Compiled from writings preserved by Amos, an Egyptian; Claudius Linus, a Roman; and Vitico, a Gaul.
Chapter 1 – THE SCROLL OF EMOD
Chapter 2 – THE SCROLL OF KAMUSHAHRE
Chapter 3 – The Destroyer – PART 1 – FROM THE GREAT SCROLL
Chapter 4 – The Destroyer – PART 2 – FROM THE GREAT SCROLL
Chapter 5 – The Destroyer – PART 3 – FROM THE SCROLL OF ADEPHA
Chapter 6 – THE DARK DAYS
Chapter 7 – THE THIRD OF THE EGYPTIAN SCROLLS
Chapter 8 – THE FOURTH OF THE EGYPTIAN SCROLLS
Chapter 9 – THE HALF SCROLL OF JASOP
Chapter 10 – THE SCROLL OF KULOK – FOURTH SECTION
Chapter 11 – THE SIXTY-FOURTH EGYPTIAN SCROLL
Chapter 12 – THE EIGHTY-SEVENTH SCROLL
Chapter 13 – THE NINETY-THIRD SCROLL
Chapter 14 – THE NINETY-SIXTH SCROLL
Chapter 15 – THE SCROLL OF KULOK – SECOND AND THIRD SECTION
Chapter 16 – THE THE ONE HUNDRED AND ONE SCROLL (SCROLL OF HOREMAKET)
Chapter 17 – THE SCROLL OF NETERTAT
Chapter 18 – THE PRAYER OF HAPU
Chapter 19 – THE ONE HUNDRED AND THIRTEENTH SCROLL
Chapter 20 – THE COMMENTARY OF FRATER ASTORUS
Chapter 21 – A SCROLL MARKED ‘THE NIGHTFIGHT’
Chapter 22 – THE LADY’S SCROLL (SCROLL OF NEFERMAKET)
Chapter 23 – THE ONE HUNDRED AND TWENTY SECOND SCROLL
Chapter 24 – AN EARLY EGYPTIAN SCROLL
Chapter 25 – THE SONG OF SACRIFICE – FROM THE BOOK OF SONGS (part only and confused with other writings)
Chapter 26 – THE SCROLL OF KABEL – FIRST SECTION
Chapter 27 – AN UNNAMED AND UNNUMBERED SCROLL
Chapter 28 – TWO COMBINED PORTIONS OF AN UNNAMED SCROLL
Chapter 29 – THE SECOND SCROLL OF KISON
Chapter 30 – THE SCROLL OF PANUBIS
Chapter 31 – THE SCROLL OF THOTIS
Chapter 32 – THE SCROLL OF HARMOTIF
Chapter 33 – THE ANNEXED SCROLL 1
Chapter 34 – THE ANNEXED SCROLL 2
THE SCROLL OF EMOD
The writings from olden days tell of strange things and of great happenings in the times of our fathers who lived in the beginning. All men can know of such times is declared in the Book of Ages, but the Gods had their birth in events and things which were in the beginning.
It is told, in the courtyards, that there was a time when Heaven and Earth were not apart. Truth echoes even there, for Heaven and Earth are yet joined in men. It is written that God once walked the earth with man and dwelt within a cave above a garden where man laboured. God encompasses all that is and cannot be contained in a cave.
Look to the Sacred Writings for Truth. It is told that woman made God angry and He took Himself into the sky, removing Heaven from man because of his disgust for woman. It is also told that man offended God by imitating Him. These are tales made by man. This is not wisdom, for the Sacred Writings reveal the Plans of God and these things cannot be as told. It is the talk of the courtyard, it is the knowledge of the outerplace.
Men talk of the land of Oben, from whence they came. Not from Oben towards the South came men, for the great land of Ramakui first felt his step. Out by the encircling waters, over at the rim it lay.
There were mighty men in those days, and of their land the First Book speaks thus: Their dwelling places were set in the swamplands from whence no mountains rose, in the land of many waters slow-flowing to the sea. In the shallow lakelands, among the mud, out beyond the Great Plain of Reeds. At the place of many flowers bedecking plant and tree. Where trees grew beards and had branches like ropes, which bound them together, for the ground would not support them.
There were butterflies like birds and spiders as large as the outstretched arms of a man. The birds of the air and fishes of the waters had hues which dazzled the eyes, they lured men to destruction. Even insects fed on the flesh of men. There were elephants in great numbers, with mighty curved tusks. The pillars of the Netherworld we unstable. In a great night of destruction the land fell into an abyss and was lost forever. When the Earth became light, next day, man saw man driven to madness.
All was gone. Men clothed themselves with the skins of beasts and were eaten by wild beasts, things with clashing teeth used them for food. A great horde of rats devoured everything, so that man died of hunger. The Braineaters hunted men down and slew them.
Children wandered the plainland like wild beasts, for men and women became stricken with a sickness the passed over the children. An issue covered their bodies which swelled up and burst, while flame consumed their bellies. Every man who had an issue of seed within him and every woman who had a flow of blood died.
The children grew up without instruction, and having no knowledge turned to strange ways and beliefs. They became divided according to their tongues. This was the land from whence man came, the Great One came from Ramakui and wisdom came from Zaidor.
The people who came with Nadhi were wise in the ways of the seasons and in the wisdom of the stars. They read the Book of Heaven with understanding. They covered their dead with potter’s clay and hardened it, for it was not their custom to place their dead in boxes.
Those who came with the Great One were cunning craftsmen in stone, they were carvers of wood and ivory. The High God was worshipped with strange light in places of great silences. They paid homage to the huge sleeping beast in the depths of the sea, believing it to bear the Earth on its back; they believed its stirrings plunged lands to destruction. Some said it burrowed beneath them. In Ramakui there was a great city with roads and waterways, and the fields were bounded with walls of stone and channels. In the centre of the land was the great flat-topped Mountain of God.
The city had walls of stone and was decorated with stones of red and black, white shells and feathers. There were heavy green stones in the land and stones patterned in green, black and brown. There were stones of saka, which men cut for ornaments, stones which became molten for cunning work. They built walls of black glass and bound them with glass by fire.
They used strange fire from the Netherworld which was but slightly separated from them, and foul air from the breath of the damned rose in their midst. They made eye reflectors of glass stone, which cured the ills of men. They purified men with strange metal and purged them of evil spirits in flowing fire. We dwell in a land of three peoples, but those who came from Ramakui and Zaidor were fewer in numbers. It was the men of Zaidor who built the Great Guardian which ever watches, looking towards the awakening place of God. The day He comes not its voice will be heard.
In olden times, when men lived in the ground, there came the Great One whose name is hidden. Son of Hem, Son of the Sun, Chief of the Guardians of Mysteries, Master of Rites and Spoken Word. Judge of Disputes, Advocate of the Dead, Interpreter of the Gods and Father of Fishermen. From the West, from beyond Mandi, came the Great One arrayed in robes of black linen and wearing a head-dress of red.
Who taught men the secret of writing and numbers, and measurement of the years? Who taught the ways of the days and months, who read the meaning of clouds and writing of the nightlights?
Who taught the preservation of the body? That the soul might commune with the living, and that it might be a doorway to the Earth?
Who taught that light is Life?
Who taught the words of God, which spoke to men and hid things from them, which stood in the place of Truth for those with understanding? Which spoke to the priests, the scribes and the people differently according to their enlightenment.
Who taught that beyond the visible is the invisible, beyond the small the smaller and beyond the great the greater, and all things are linked together in one?
Who taught the song of the stars, which now no man knows, and the words of the waters, which are lost?
Who taught men to grow corn and to spin, to make bricks and fashion stone after a cunning manner?
Who taught men the rituals of sea shells, and the reading of their mysteries and the manner of their speech?
Who taught men the nature and knowledge of God, but in the years left to him could not bring them to understanding? Who, then, veiled the great secrets in simple tales which they could remember and in signs which would not be lost to their children’s children?
Who brought the Sacred Eye from the distant land and the Stone of Light made of water, by which men see God, and the firestone which gathers the light of the sun before the Great Shrine?
He died in the manner of men, though his likeness is that of God. Then they cut him apart, that his body might make fertile the fields, and took away his head, that it might bring them wisdom. His bones they did no paint red, for they were not as those of others.
These are the words of the Scared Writings, recorded after the old custom. As they are, so let them be; for that which is recorded remains with you. The stone of Light and the firestone were stolen in the days of disaster and none now knows their resting place, therefore the land is empty.
THE SCROLL OF KAMUSHAHRE
In this fertile black land there are those who worship the sun and they call it the greatest and the most bountiful among all Gods, the Seer of Heaven, the of the squalid manner in which men dwelt before the Golden One led his people hence.
He came to this fertile land. Now it is a pleasant place with many great cities and contented villages; there is the great broad river of fresh water which rises and falls in its due seasons. Channels there are and waterways which lead the fertilising waters unto the growing things, the herbage and the trees. There are flocks of sheep and herds of cattle on the green pastures.
It was not ever thus. In the days before Harekta came all was barren and desolate. Nought divided the wilderness from the swamplands filled with reeds. Then there were no cattle or sheep and the land knew not the hand of man, it lay untilled and unwatered.
No land was sown, for they who dwelt in it knew not the making of waterways, nor did they know how to command the water and make it flow at their behest. There were no cities and men dwelt in holes in the ground or in places where the rock was cleft. They walked in their nakedness or clothed themselves with leaves or bark, while at night they covered themselves with the skin of wild beasts.
They fought with the jackal for food and snatched dead things from the lion. They pulled roots from out of the ground and sought for sustenance among things that grew in the mud. They had none to rule over them, nor had they leaders to guide. They knew not obligation or duty. None spoke to them about their manner of life and none knew the way of Truth. They were truly unenlightened in those days.
Then came the servant of the Sun and he it was who brought the people together and put rulers over them. He set Ramur up as king over the whole land. He showed them, man and woman, how to dwell together in contentment as husband and wife, and he divided their tasks between them.
He instructed men in the sowing of corn and the growing of herbs. He instructed them in the tilling of the ground and the manner of cutting the waterways and channels. He it was who showed men the ways of the beasts of the field. He instructed men in the working of gold and silver and the making of vessels from clay. He instructed men in the hewing and cutting of stone and the building of temples and cities. The making of linen and the dying of cloth that forms garments ever pleasing to the eyes, he did not teach. Neither did he instruct them in the making of bricks or the working of copper.
Then, when he departed he bade the people not to weep, for though he went to his father, the sun would adopt them as his children and all could become sons of the sun. Thus many became sons and servants of the sun and they believed what they had heard, that the sun was their father and the light of goodness overlooking the whole land. It is this light that sustains all living things, but within it is the greater light which sustains the spirit. It is the light that enlightens the hearts of men. There are lesser lights that guide men about their daily tasks and shield them from harm, there are unseen lights that influence men for good or ill, but it is the Great Light that banishes coldness and makes all men warm. The warmth it bestows ripens the harvests of man and makes his herds yield their increase.
It oversees the whole activity of men on Earth as it journeys the skies from one end to the other, thus it knows the needs of all men. Therefore, be like the sun, be far-seeing and foresighted, be regular in your comings and goings while about your daily tasks.
When their guide and leader left, the people knew themselves as children of the sun. They were warlike and subdued other people in its name, and brought them under its rule. Then great temples were raised up to it and for a time it displaced the greater Gods which the people of this land had set up in their ignorance. The One True God it never displaced, for the True God was ever hidden from the eyes of the profane and ignorant.
Then some priests among those who followed the rule of the sun stole its spirit and brought it down, so that it enlivened the statues and images of their Gods. Thus the spirit which enlivens all the lesser Gods is but the one spirit held in captivity, and not many as the people think.
Then came the Wise Ones from the East and they caused the people to have other thoughts. They were men who knew the ways of Heaven and asked of the people, “Is the sun spirit indeed supreme, is this not a thing requiring much thought? Consider its movements, are they not more like those of one who is directed in his comings and goings? Does it move about freely as it wills, or is it restricted and held to its appointed path, like a yoked ox, or as the ass treading out corn? Does it rise up from the Netherworld as it wills or go down into the cavern of darkness by its own decree?
Is its path not more like that of a stone hurled forth by the hand of man? Is it not like a boat controlled by the will of a man, rather than a free-ranging God? Is it not more like a slave under the direction of a master?” These things disturbed the hearts of people, some pondered upon them, but others, in the manner of men, cried death to those who deny the truth of these things.
However, because of the things said the worship of the older Gods grew in strength, for the people had never turned from Usira who was with them before the first water channel was cut. He was not the God of the high born but of the lowly people.
Thisis a land of two peoples, of two nations, two priesthoods, two streams of wisdom and two hierarchies of Gods. It is a land where the light of Truth burns brightly, thought hidden away from the eyes of all but a few. It is the Land of Dawning on Earth.
The Destroyer – PART 1
FROM THE GREAT SCROLL
Men forget the days of The Destroyer. Only the wise know where it went and that it will return in its appointed hour.
It raged across the Heavens in the days of wrath, and this was its likeness: It was as a billowing cloud of smoke enwrapped in a ruddy glow, not distinguishable in joint or limb. Its mouth was an abyss from which came flame, smoke and hot cinders.
When ages pass, certain laws operate upon the stars in the Heavens. Their ways change, there is movement and restlessness, they are no longer constant and a great light appears redly in the skies.
When blood drops upon the Earth, The Destroyer will appear and mountains will open up and belch forth fire and ashes. Trees will be destroyed and all living things engulfed. Waters will be swallowed up by the land and seas will boil. The Heavens will burn brightly and redly, there will be a copper hue over the face of the land, followed by a day of darkness. A new moon will appear and break up and fall.
The people will scatter in madness. They will hear the trumpet and battle cry of The Destroyer and will seek refuge in the den in the Earth. Terror will eat away their hearts and their courage will flow from them like water from a broken pitcher. They will be eaten up in the flames of wrath and consumed by the breath of The Destroyer.
Thus in the Days of Heavenly Wrath, which have gone, and thus it will be in the Days of Doom when it comes again. The times of its coming and going are known unto the wise. These are the signs and times which shall precede The Destroyer’s return: A hundred and ten generations shall pass into the West and nations will rise and fall. Men will fly in the air as birds and swim in the seas as fishes. Men will talk peace one with another, hypocrisy and deceit shall have their day.
Women will be as men and men as women, passion will be a plaything of man. A nation of soothsayers shall rise and fall and their tongue shall be the speech learned. A nation of law givers shall rule the Earth and pass away into nothingness.
One worship will pass into the four quarters of the Earth, talking peace and bringing war. A nation of the seas will be greater than any other, but will be as an apple rotten at the core and will not endure. A nation of traders will destroy men with wonders and it shall have its day. Then shall the high strive with the low, the North with the South, the East with the West, and the light with the darkness. Men shall be divided by their races and the children will be born as strangers among them.
Brother shall strive with brother and husband with wife. Fathers will no longer instruct their sons and their sons will be wayward. Women will become the common property of men and will no longer be held in regard and respect.
Then men will be ill at ease in their hearts, they will seek they know not what, and uncertainty and doubt will trouble them. They will possess great riches but be poor in spirit. Then will the Heavens tremble and the Earth move, men will quake in fear and while terror walks with them the Heralds of Doom will appear.
They will come softly, as thieves to the tombs, men will no know them for what they are, men will be deceived, the hour of The Destroyer is at hand. In those days men will have the Great Book before them, wisdom will be revealed, the few will be gathered for the stand, it is the hour of trial. The dauntless ones will survive, the stout-hearted will not go down to destruction. Great God of All Ages, alike to all, who sets the trials of man, be merciful to our children in the Days of Doom. Man must suffer to be great, but hasten not his progress unduly. In the great winnowing, be not too harsh on the lesser ones among men. Even the son of a thief has become Your scribe.
The Destroyer – PART 2
FROM THE GREAT SCROLL
O Sentinels of the Universe who watch for The Destroyer, how long will your coming vigil last? O mortal men who wait without understanding, where will you hide yourselves in the Dread Days of Doom, when the Heavens shall be torn apart and the skies rent in twain, in the days when children will turn grey-headed? This is the thing which will be seen, this is the terror your eyes will behold, this is the form of destruction that will rush upon you: There will be the great body of fire, the glowing head with many mouths and eyes ever changing.
Terrible teeth will be seen in formless mouths and a fearful dark belly will glow redly from fires inside. Even the most stout-hearted man will tremble and his bowels be loosened, for this is not a thing understandable to men. It will be a vast sky-spanning form enwrapping Earth, burning with many hues within wide open mouths. These will descend to sweep across the face of the land, engulfing all in the yawning jaws. The greatest warriors will charge against it in vain. The fangs will fall out, and lo, they are terror-inspiring things of cold hardened water. Great boulders will be hurled down upon men, crushing them into red powder.
As the great salt waters rise up in its train and roaring torrents pour towards the land, even the heroes among mortal men will be overcome with madness. As moths fly swiftly to their doom in the burning flame, so will these men rush to their own destruction. The flames going before will devour all the works of men, the waters following will sweep away whatever remains. The dew of death will fall softly, as grey carpet over the cleared land.
Men will cry out in their madness,
“O whatever Being there is, save us from this tall form of terror, save us from the grey dew of death.”
The Destroyer – PART 3
FROM THE SCROLL OF ADEPHA
The Doomshape, called The Destroyer, in Egypt, was seen in all the lands whereabouts. In colour it was bright and fiery, in appearance changing and unstable. It twisted about itself like a coil, like water bubbling into a pool from an underground supply, and all men agree it was a most fearsome sight. It was not a great comet or a loosened star, being more like a fiery body of flame.
Its movements on high were slow, below it swirled in the manner of smoke and it remained close to the sun whose face it hid. There was a bloody redness about it, which changed as it passed along its course. It caused death and destruction in its rising and setting. It swept the Earth with grey cinder rain and caused many plagues, hunger and other evils. It bit the skin of men and beast until they became mottled with sores.
The Earth was troubled and shook, the hills and mountains moved and rocked. The dark smoke-filled Heavens bowed over Earth and a great howl came to the ears of men, borne to them upon the wings of the wind. It was the cry of the Dark Lord, the Master of Dread. Thick clouds of fiery smoke passed before him and there was an awful hail of hot stones and coals of fire. The Doomshape thundered sharply in the Heavens and shot out bright lightings.
The channels of water were turned back unto themselves when the land tilted, and great trees were tossed about and snapped like twigs. Then a voice like ten thousand trumpets was heard over the wilderness, and before its burning breath the flames parted. The whole of the land moved and mountains melted. The sky itself roared like ten thousand lions in agony, and bright arrows of blood sped back and forth across its face. Earth swelled up like bread upon the hearth.
This was the aspect of the Doomshape called The Destroyer, when it appeared in days long gone by, in olden times. It is thus described in the old records, few of which remain. It is said that when it appears in the Heavens above, Earth splits open from the heat, like a nut roasted before the fire. Then flames shoot up through the surface and leap about like fiery fiends upon black blood.
The moisture inside the land is all dried up, the pastures and cultivated places are consumed in flames and they and all trees become white ashes. The Doomshape is like a circling ball of flame which scatters small fiery offspring in its train. It covers about a fifth part of the sky and sends writhing snakelike fingers down to Earth. Before it the sky appears frightened, and it breaks up and scatters away. Midday is no brighter than night. It spawns a host of terrible things.
These are things said of The Destroyer in the old records, read them with a solemn heart, knowing that the Doomshape has its appointed time and will return. It would be foolish to let them go unheeded. Now men say, “Such things are not destined for our days”. May the Great God above grant that this be so. But come, the day surely will, and in accordance with his nature man will be unprepared.
THE DARK DAYS
The dark days began with the last visitation of The Destroyer and they were foretold by strange omens in the skies. All men were silent and went about with pale faces.
The leaders of the slaves which had built a city to the glory of Thom stirred up unrest, and no man raised his arm against them. They foretold great events of which the people were ignorant and of which the temple seers were not informed.
These were days of ominous calm, when the people waited for they knew not what.
The presence of an unseen doom was felt, the hearts of men were stricken.
Laughter was heard no more and grief and wailing sounded throughout the land. Even the voices of children were stilled and they did not play together, but stood silent.
The slaves became bold and insolent and women were the possession of any man. Fear walked the land and women became barren with terror, they could not conceive, and those with child aborted. All men closed up within themselves.
The days of stillness were followed by a time when the noise of trumpeting and shrilling was heard in the Heavens, and the people became as frightened beasts without a herdsman, as asses when lions prowl without their fold.
The people spoke of the God of the slaves, and reckless men said. “If we knew where this God were to be found, we would sacrifice to him”. But the God of the slaves was not among them. He was not to be found within the swamplands or in the brickpits. His manifestation was in the Heavens for all men to see, but they did not see with understanding. Nor would any God listen, for all were dumb because of the hypocrisy of men.
The dead were no longer sacred and were thrown into the waters. Those already entombed were neglected and many became exposed. They lay unprotected against the hands of thieves. He who once toiled long in the sun, bearing the yoke himself, now possessed oxen. He who grew no grain now owned a storehouse full. He who once dwelt at ease among his children now thirsted for water. He who once sat in the sun with crumbs and dregs was now bloated with food, he reclined in the shade, his bowls overflowing.
Cattle were left unattended to roam into strange pastures, and men ignored their marks and slew the beasts of their neighbours. No man owned anything.
The public records were cast forth and destroyed, and no man knew who were slaves and who were masters. The people cried out to the Pharaoh in their distress, but he stopped his ears and acted like a deaf man.
There were those who spoke falsely before Pharaoh and had Gods hostile towards the land, therefore the people cried out for their blood to appease it. But it was not these strange priests who put strife in the land instead of peace, for one was even of the household of Pharaoh and walked among the people unhampered.
Dust and smoke clouds darkened the sky and coloured the waters upon which they fell with a bloody hue. Plague was throughout the land, the river was bloody and blood was everywhere. The water was vile and men’s stomachs shrank from drinking. Those who did drink from the river vomited it up, for it was polluted.
The dust tore wounds in the skin of man and beast. In the glow of The Destroyer the Earth was filled with redness. Vermin bred and filled the air and face of the Earth with loathsomeness. Wild beasts, afflicted with torments under the lashing sand and ashes, came out of their lairs in the wastelands and caveplaces and stalked the abodes of men. All the tame beasts whimpered and the land was filled with the cries of sheep and moans of cattle.
Trees, throughout the land, were destroyed and no herb or fruit was to be found. The face of the land was battered and devastated by a hail of stones which smashed down all that stood in the path of the torrent. They swept down in hot showers, and strange flowing fire ran along the ground in their wake.
The fish of the river died in the polluted waters; worms, insects and reptiles sprang up from the Earth in huge numbers. Great gusts of wind brought swarms of locusts which covered the sky. As the Destroyer flung itself through the Heavens, it blew great gusts of cinders across the face of the land. The gloom of a long night spread a dark mantle of blackness which extinguished every ray of light. None knew when it was day and when it was night, for the sun cast no shadow.
The darkness was not the clean blackness of night, but a thick darkness in which the breath of men was stopped in their throats. Men gasped in a hot cloud of vapour which enveloped all the land and snuffed out all lamps and fires. Men were benumbed and lay moaning in their beds. None spoke to another or took food, for they were overwhelmed with despair. Ships were sucked away from their moorings and destroyed in great whirlpools. It was a time of undoing.
The Earth turned over, as clay spun upon a potter’s wheel. The whole land was filled with uproar from the thunder of The Destroyer overhead and the cry of the people. There as the sound of moaning and lamentation on every side. The Earth spewed up its dead, corpses were cast up out of their resting places and the embalmed were revealed to the sight of all men. Pregnant women miscarried and the seed of men was stopped.
The craftsman left his task undone, the potter abandoned his wheel and the carpenter his tools, and they departed to dwell in the marshes. All crafts were neglected and the slaves lured the craftsmen away.
The dues of Pharaoh could not be collected, for there was neither wheat nor barley, goose nor fish. The rights of Pharaoh could not be enforced, for the fields of grain and the pastures were destroyed. The highborn and the lowly prayed together that life might come to an end and the turmoil and thundering cease to beat upon their ears. Terror was the companion of men by day and horror their companion by night. Men lost their senses and became mad, they were distracted by frightfulness.
On the great night of The Destroyer’s wrath, when its terror was at its height, there was a hail of rocks and the Earth heaved as pain rent her bowels. Gates, columns and walls were consumed by fire and the statues of Gods were overthrown and broken. People fled outside their dwellings in fear and were slain by the hail. Those who took shelter from the hail were swallowed when the Earth split open.
The habitations of men collapsed upon those inside and there was panic on every hand, but the slaves who lived in huts in the reedlands, at the place of pits, were spared. The land burnt like tinder, a man watched upon his rooftops and the Heavens hurled wrath upon him and he died.
The land writhed under the wrath of The Destroyer and groaned with the agony of Egypt. It shook itself and the temples and palaces of the nobles were thrown down from their foundations. The highborn ones perished in the midst of the ruins and all the strength of the land was stricken. Even the great one, the first born of Pharaoh, died with the highborn in the midst of the terror and falling stones. The children of princes were cast out into the streets and those who were not cast out died within their abodes.
There were nine days of darkness and upheaval, while a tempest raged such as never had been known before. When it passed away brother buried brother throughout the land. Men rose up against those in authority and fled from the cities to dwell in tents in the outlands.
Egypt lacked great men to deal with the times. The people were weak from fear and bestowed gold, silver, lapis lazuli, turquoise and copper upon the slaves, and to their priests they gave chalices, urns and ornaments. Pharaoh alone remained calm and strong in the midst of confusion. The people turned to wickedness in their weakness and despair. Harlots walked through the streets unashamed. Women paraded their limbs and flaunted their womanly charms. Highborn women were in rags and the virtuous were mocked.
The slaves spared by The Destroyer left the accursed land forthwith. Their multitude moved in the gloom of a half dawn, under a mantle of fine swirling grey ash, leaving the burnt fields and shattered cities behind them. Many Egyptians attached themselves to the host, for one who was great led them forth, a priest prince of the inner courtyard.
Fire mounted up on high and its burning left with the enemies of Egypt. It rose up from the ground as a fountain and hung as a curtain in the sky. In seven days, by Remwar the accursed ones journeyed to the waters. They crossed the heaving wilderness while the hills melted around them; above, the skies were torn with lightning. They were sped by terror, but their feet became entangled in the land and the wilderness shut them in. They knew not the way, for no sign was constant before them.
They turned before Noshari and stopped at Shokoth, the place of quarries. They passed the waters of Maha and came by the valley of Pikaroth, northward of Mara. They came up against the waters which blocked their way and their hearts were in despair. The night was a night of fear and dread, for there was a high moaning above and black winds from the underworld were loosed, and fire sprang up from the ground. The hearts of the slaves shrank within them, for they knew the wrath of Pharaoh followed them and that there was no way of escape. They hurled abuse on those who led them, strange rites were performed along the shore that night. The slaves disputed among themselves and there was violence.
Pharaoh had gathered his army and followed the slaves. After he departed there were riots and disorders behind him, for the cities were plundered. The laws were cast out of the judgment halls and trampled underfoot in the streets. The storehouses and granaries were burst open and robbed. Roads were flooded and none could pass along them. People lay dead on every side. The palace was split and the princes and officials fled, so that none was left with authority to command. The lists of numbers were destroyed, public places were overthrown and households became confused and unknown.
Pharaoh pressed on in sorrow, for behind him all was desolation and death. Before him were things he could not understand and he was afraid, but he carried himself well and stood before his host with courage. He sought to bring back the slaves, for the people said their magic was greater than the magic of Egypt.
The host of Pharaoh came upon the slaves by the saltwater shores, but was held back from them by a breath of fire. A great cloud was spread over the hosts and darkened the sky. None could see, except for the fiery glow and the unceasing lightnings which rent the covering cloud overhead.
A whirlwind arose in the East and swept over the encamped hosts. A gale raged all night and in the red twilit dawn there was a movement of the Earth, the waters receded from the seashore and were rolled back on themselves. There was a strange silence and men, in the gloom, it was seen that the waters had parted, leaving a passage between. The land had risen, but it was disturbed and trembled, the way was not straight or clear. The waters about were as if spun within a bowl, the swampland alone remained undisturbed. From the horn of The Destroyer came a high shrilling noise which stopped the ears of men.
The slaves had been making sacrifices in despair, their lamentations were loud. Now, before the strange sight, there was hesitation and doubt; for the space of a breath they stood still and silent. Then all was confusion and shouting, some pressing forward into the waters against all who sought to flee back from the unstable ground. Then, in exaltation, their leader led them into the midst of the waters through the confusion. Yet many sought to turn back into the host behind them, while others fled along the empty shores.
All became still over the sea and upon the shore, but behind, the Earth shook and boulders split with a great noise. The wrath of Heaven was removed to a distance and stood upwards of the two hosts.
Still the host of Pharaoh held its ranks, firm in resolve before the strange and awful happenings, and undaunted by the fury which raged by their side. Stern faces were lit darkly by the fiery curtain.
Then the fury departed and there was silence, stillness spread over the land while the host of Pharaoh stood without movement in the red glow. Then, with a shout, the captains went forward and the host rose up behind them. The curtain of fire had rolled up into a dark billowing cloud which spread out as a canopy. There was a stirring of the waters, but they followed the evildoers past the place of the great whirlpool.
The passage was confused in the midst of the waters and the ground beneath unstable. Here, in the midst of a tumult of waters, Pharaoh fought against the hindmost of the slaves and prevailed over them, and there was a great slaughter amid the sand, the swamp and the water. The slaves cried out in despair, but their cries were unheeded. Their possessions were scattered behind them as they fled, so that the way was easier for them than for those who followed.
Then the stillness was broken by a mighty roar and through the rolling pillars of cloud the wrath of The Destroyer descended upon the hosts. The Heavens roared as with a thousand thunders, the bowels of the Earth were sundered and Earth shrieked its agony. The cliffs were torn away and cast down. The dry ground fell beneath the waters and great waves broke upon the shore, sweeping in rocks from seaward.
The great surge of rocks and waters overwhelmed the chariots of the Egyptians who went before the footmen. The chariot of the Pharaoh was hurled into the air as if by a mighty hand and was crushed in the midst of the rolling waters.
Tidings of the disaster came back by Rageb, son of Thomat, who hastened on ahead of the terrified survivors because of his burning. He brought reports unto the people that the host had been destroyed by blast and deluge. The captains had gone, the strong men had fallen and none remained to command. Therefore, the people revolted because of the calamities which had befallen them. Cowards slunk from their lairs and came forth boldly to assume the high offices of the dead. Comely and noble women, their protectors gone, were their prey. Of the slaves the greater number had perished before the host of Pharaoh.
The broken land lay helpless and invaders came out of the gloom like carrion. A strange people came up against Egypt and none stood to fight, for strength and courage were gone.
The invaders, led by Alkenan, came up out of the Land of Gods, because of the wrath of Heaven which had laid their land waste. There, too, had been a plague of reptiles and ants, signs and omens and an earthquake. There, also, had been turmoil and disaster, disorder and famine, with the grey breath of The Destroyer sweeping the ground and stopping the breath of men.
Anturah gathered together the remnants of his fighting men and the fighting men who were left in Egypt, and set forth to meet the Children of Darkness who came out of the eastern mountains by way of the wilderness and by way of Yethnobis. They fell upon the stricken land from behind the grey cloud, before the lifting of the darkness and before the coming of the purifying winds.
Rageb went with Pharaoh and met the invaders at Herosher, but the hearts of the Egyptians were faint within them. Their spirits were no longer strong and they fell away before the battle was lost. Deserted by the Gods above and below, their dwellings destroyed, their households scattered, they were as men already half dead. Their hearts were still filled with terror and with the memory of the wrath which had struck them from out of Heaven. They were still filled with the memory of the fearsome sight of The Destroyer and they knew not what they did.
Pharaoh did not return to his city. He lost his heritage and was seized by a demon for many days. His women were polluted and his estates plundered. The Children of Darkness defiled the temples with rams and ravished women who were crazed and did not resist. They enslaved all who were left, the old, young men and boys. They oppressed the people and their delight was in mutilation and torture.
Pharaoh abandoned his hopes and fled into the wilderness beyond the province of the lake, which is in the West towards the South. He lived a goodly life among the sand wanderers and wrote books.
Good times came again, even under the invaders, and ships sailed upstream. The air was purified, the breath of The Destroyer passed away and the land became filled again with growing things. Life was renewed throughout the whole land.
Kair taught these things to the Children of Light in the days of darkness, after the building of the Rambudeth, before the death of the Pharaoh Anked.
This is written in this land and in our tongue by Leweddar who, himself, chose it for saving. It was not seen until the latter days.
THE THIRD OF THE EGYPTIAN SCROLLS
This is the manner whereby the Sacred Records shall be kept and their number is twelve books and four hundred and forty-two scrolls.