The Adept

He slammed the book shut and threw it across the chamber. It hit the marble floor with a thud. The gruesome cyclopean eye that adorned the cover of the ancient tome opened and stared back at him. Below the eye was a slit that acted as a mouth fashioned by the leathered and tanned human skin that bound the book. It spoke to the adept.

“You are not worthy of the knowledge I hold.” the book talked in hisses and croaks.

“Silence or I’ll throw you into the fire!” the adept spat back, anger and frustration in his voice.

The book laughed and spoke again, “Why the Old Ones let me come into your possession I do not know? You are a weakling and a fool. A pompous fool! An idiot!”

The adept, aggravated by the books words, picked up the ancient volume of La Biblia Obscura and took it towards the fireplace and held it over the flames with both hands.

“Imbecile!” the book touted. “I am eternal, I am indestructible. I am ancient, bound by the omnipotent hands of the Old Ones themselves.”

The adept continued to hold the book over the fire when the flames flared, spouting forth in a conflagration. The flames engulfed the adept’s hands and he stumbled back dropping the book. His hands swelled and blistered spewing smoke and the smell of burnt flesh. The book continued to laugh; the flames did it no harm.

The adept, feeling the pain run through his body and shock settling in, ran to a chest that was in the corner of the chamber. He opened the chest in agony and retrieved a small vial whose liquid glowed and illuminated the room. He uncorked the vile and drank the fluid. He felt a rush of adrenaline and a sensation of healing. Instantaneously his hands began to glow with the same light that the fluid had possessed. Within seconds they were back to their original state, his wounds gone. The adept turned back to the book that was lying in front of the fireplace.

“Damn you demon!” He was infuriated.

“Such loving sentiment from a man I hardly know. You are making me blush.” The book mocked.

The adept raised a hand toward La Biblia Obscura and whispered an arcane phrase, the book floated off the floor and settled back on the table. Another whisper and the book opened and returned to the page the adept had been deciphering.

“Your knowledge will be mine!” He breathed heavily, his adrenaline still pumping from the healing liquid he had swallowed. The adept walked to the table and began to examine the book again.

“You have no knack for magic, adept.” The book spoke, it’s voice muffled against the table.

“Shut your mouth demon!” the adept replied. He ran his fingers over the long forgotten hieroglyphs of the archaic language painted on the pages of the tome in human blood. The cryptic words and phrases eluded him. His brow was arched in concentration and quivering in agitation. Why could he not understand the writings? Why was it not being realized? Was his mind playing games?

“Relieve yourself of this quest you believe you are on. The Old Ones are not part of your destiny. You are meek and not a vein in your body is capable of flowing the soulless blood of evil needed to comprehend the knowledge of the The Great Old Ones.” the book said.

“I have seen the power of The Great Old Ones in my dreams. I have walked the basalt corridors of the sunken city of R’lyeh. I have seen the sleeping god Cthulhu in his horrific glory, dreaming his thoughts of destruction. I am an initiate.” was the adept’s rebuttal.

The booked answered back with a muffled laugh. “You are simply a fool.”

The adept continued to read. He repeated the words beneath his breath. He must have the magic of The Great Old Ones. He felt deep in his black heart that he was meant to waken the sleeping god beneath the ocean. He was the one to usher in a new world of chaos and destruction. He was to be Cthulhu’s initiate. He knew it to be his destiny. He knew it was to be his path in life. As his mind began to wander he came upon a passage that glistened to his touch. He somehow understood.

“Cthulhu demands a sacrifice!” the adept reeled. “But what kind a sacrifice.”

The adept continued on with the passage and he came across another phrase that glistened and he clearly understood.

“Virgin!” he said with intensity and satisfaction “Cthulhu demands a sacrifice of a virgin! Why didn’t I see it earlier? It’s standard practice.”

“Maybe there is hope for you yet adept.” The book said.

The adept went to the north part of his chamber where there was a pair of crimson curtains. He pulled the curtains open and entered to the adjacent side chamber. There in the middle of the room was a large cage. Three naked women were in the cage; their hands and feet tide to the bars with rope. The adept retrieved a key from the inside pocket of his tunic and unlocked the door and stepped in.

The women were all very young, taken from a village three days ride west of the castle. They were weak, tired and malnourished, but their beauty could still be seen from beneath their suffering. He went to the first one cupped her face in his hands, looked her in her half-opened eyes and asked, “Are you a virgin my sweet?”

“Please let us go.” She moaned. “We have done you no harm.”

He let go of her face and traced her body with his hands. His fingers ran across her torso, he inserted two fingers inside her. She tried to spit at him but her mouth was dry and she could only spew air. He retracted his fingers and put them to his nose took in a deep breath then licked them He slapped her across the face and her head sunk low into her body. “You are no virgin.”

He continued to the next girl with the same procedure and found her in the same state, deflowered. It was the final woman that he examined that he found his prize. “Aha! A virgin, and a ripe one at that!”

The woman was exhausted from lack of food and water. She was in a stupor and had long forgotten where she was and the circumstances of her situation, she only knew suffering and she prayed for relief. The adept untied her and lead her into the main chamber, stopping only to lock the cage. He walked her to a black altar that was at the center of the room. He motioned her to lie on the altar and she followed his commands unaware of what was about to happen to her. As she lay out on the altar the adept tied her down spread eagle with rope. Her eyes rolled in her head and she began to whisper prayers in her village tongue in hopes the gods she worshipped would save her.

The adept returned to the book and looked over the passages he had comprehended. The words slowly began to come to him. More and more the hieroglyphs began to tell their knowledge to him. He smiled eagerly as he ran over the process of the ritual described in book.

“Read well adept.” The book warned him. “A fool sees things as he wants to see, not the reality that is there.”

“Silence!” the adept yelled slamming his fists on the pages of the book. “I have the knowledge now! The Great Old Ones have spoken to me in my dreams. It is my destiny! I am the initiate!”

The adept began to read with an incredible thirst, gulping down every word and phrase. The words began to spring off the page and into his mind, glistening. Knowledge was what he wanted, the knowledge to free Cthulhu. He would be the one to bring death and darkness to the humanity, chaos and evil to the realm of man.

The instructions for the incantation and sacrifice that the book explained were coming to him. He began to comprehend what he must do. They were instructions for the sacrifice of the human body that lay naked on the altar. A virgin was needed for it to be successful. The sacrifice would open up a rift in the essence of reality. The hole would be a bridge to the sunken city of R’lyeh. The Great Old One Cthulhu would awaken and come through the portal to bring chaos and destruction to the world in all his power and glory.

The adept went to a large wardrobe in a far corner of the chamber and opened it. He retrieved two items and put them on the table beside the book. One item was ceramic container in the shape of a black dragon’s head and the other was large bowl, plain and made of silver. He went back into the side chamber where the two other women were in the cage. He unlocked it and entered, from the corner of the cage he picked up the women’s pot. It smelt of shit and piss. The adept picked it up and took carried it out of the cage and into the other chamber and set it besides the table. He went back into the side chamber and locked the cage. He returned to the book.

“Well, well, adept…” the book said, “what will you do when the dreaming one awakens? Will you demand the payment for all of your sacrifice?”

“Quiet, blast you!” the adept yelled. He lifted the lid of the black dragon and began to pour the gray powder of human ashes from it into the silver bowl. He went to wardrobe and came back with a tin cup. He poured piss and shit from the women’s pot into the silver bowl. When there was enough he rolled up the sleeves of his tunic and stirred the foul mixture into the consistency of paint, adding more piss, shit and ashes when needed.

On the side of the chamber there was a small well, he went and pulled a pail of water up with the crank. He washed his hands and dried them on his tunic. He returned to the book.

“Why aren’t you a dirty little idiot?” asked the book.

He scowled, his heavy brow twitching.

The adept read and read. Finally, he realized.

He took the bowl with the shit paint and went to the woman on the altar. He laid the bowl next to her. He dipped a finger into the mix and began to chant as he painted strange and archaic hieroglyphs on the woman’s body.

Ph-nglui mglw’nafh Cthulhu R’lyeh wgah’nagl fhtagn!” the adept chanted. He repeated it to a rhythm that came to him from another world.

Ph-nglui mglw’nafh Cthulhu R’lyeh wgah’nagl fhtagn!

The chamber around him dimmed to a heavy darkness. Swirls of thunderheads and lightning flashes began to manifest around the adept and the woman on the altar. The adept’s mind began to break from reality and began to see the horror that was appearing around him.

They came from everywhere, within the clouds, within the thunder. The demons, shadows and monsters of darkness and chaos. The children and the spawns, the nightmare begotten. They were waiting for their master to appear. They were waiting for the Great Old One, Cthulhu.

They were waiting for the adept to finish the sacrifice.

The adept covered the woman’s body with a long and forgotten language written in a blasphemous ink of waste and death. Her blood and her body would be used to usher in a new age. He unsheathed a blade that was strapped to his side. The knife had a large crescent blade with a hilt made from a goat’s hoof. He ran it up and down the woman’s body as we continued with his song.

The room was filled with guttural voices and shrieks as the monsters saw the blade dance over the woman’s body. The feel of cold steel running across her body slowly made were mind awake. She began to realize where she was. She remembered being taken from the village. She remembered the cage. She could smell the shit that was written all over her naked body. She began to scream.

The monsters roared.

The book propped itself up on the table and turned around to get a better view. It’s eye was transfixed on the altar, the woman and the adept.

“Do you know what you are doing there boy?” the booked yelled over the sound of monsters, thunder and human screams.

The adept looked at the book with a hateful stare as he continued the chant.

Ph-nglui mglw’nafh Cthulhu R’lyeh wgah’nagl fhtagn!

With one final phrase he thrust the knife into the woman’s body just below the neck at the center of her upper chest. With strength possessed he drove the blade between her breast, across her abdomen and through her loins. Blood spurted, intestines and innards rolled over the altar. The women continued to scream though her life was gone and her soul damned. In gushes and streams blood flowed from the large gash that ran through her body. Then it began.

The gash started to darken. The wound began to ooze forth a black vile liquid. It lifted slowly into the air; over it’s surface sparked orange and yellow. In it’s ethereal mass you could see swirls of galaxies and twisting constellations. The seeping darkness was forming a large fluid cloud over the altar and the adept. Everywhere around the cloud reality began to bend. Life blurred itself into the dark fluid.

This was the portal. This was the awakening. The adept’s time had come. Through the black portal he could see the other side. He could see the sea. He could see the sunken city of R’lyeh. The adept would be the one to awaken a god. He was the chosen, he was the initiate.

La Biblia Obscura laughed.

From the portal there came an enormous green tentacle, dripping with a wretched secretion, suckers breathed in and out, thick as an elephant and moved in sweeping spasms. The tentacle wrapped around the adept and lifted him in the air. There was a roar unlike any other he had ever heard that emanated from the rift. The sound sent wind blowing over his face; a smell of watery death filled his nostrils.

The monsters came out of their clouds and began to cross over into the adept’s chamber. They were answering their master’s call.

The tentacle flung the adept across the chamber and it slammed him into the marble wall. He felt his ribs break as he bounced off the wall hit the floor, the blade still in his hand. He saw the tentacle retreat into the vile fluid that held R’lyeh on the other side. The portal was beginning to recede back into the woman’s wound as if a river had reversed its course. The dark clouds and thunder disappeared, but the creatures remained.

The monsters roared.

They had answered his call.

The adept staggered to get up. He held one hand against the wall to help keep him standing. A rib was sticking out from the side of his tunic and blood was running down his leg spilling on the floor. He could sense the evil of Cthulhu’s minions closing in on him.

“As I was saying,” the book smirked. “You are a fool, a pompous fool and an idiot.”

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