Saturday, December 30, 2006

Chronicles of the Magi: part 6

"He's lying," Hormoz said, glancing over at his companions who were likewise indisposed, sifting through racks of scrolls in the royal library. "He's got an incredibly powerful will, so I was only able to sense surface thoughts, but those were enough to tell me he isn't at all interested in worshiping the child. He'll kill him as soon as he knows the identity."

"Why were we brought here then?" Gushnasaph asked. He had just cast a spell over the scroll he was holding, and the letters on it were changing from Hebrew characters to Pharsee. "This isn't helping us find the child at all."

"Our purpose was not singular," Larvendad reminded him. The old man had no need to change the lettering on the scrolls he was running his hands over. As he touched them, huge reams of knowledge were poring into his mind. It was a wonder he could carry on a conversation at all. "Our awareness of Angra Mainyu's plots to destroy the child made us responsible for keeping him safe as well. Little good it does the world if we find this child of light a corpse."

"There's so much about the Hebrew Messiah in these writings," Hormoz said. "But to make any sense of it without being one of these sheep farmers or their priests...blood sacrifices and smelly festivals. I can't make any sense of it at all."

"Difficult to do without knowing the whole of their scriptures and the rabbinic writings," Larvendad said, running his hand over another scroll. "But I am beginning to get a clearer picture."

"So what are we here for then if you're planning on ingesting all the knowledge in this room before I've even read one scroll?" Gushnasaph asked, exasperated.

"Even I cannot carry on a conversation across hundreds of feet with many ceilings, floors and walls between," Larvendad replied. "And I want us to stay together. I wouldn't put it past this mad king to kill us or throw us in his dungeons." His hand scanned over a very old and fragile scroll...and his eyes rolled into the back of his head.

"Ahhhh..." he moaned. "Here it is...'But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times.'"

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