Image for the poem The Secret of the Quicavi Tome

The Secret of the Quicavi Tome

- The Secret of the Quicavi Tome -

Being a faithful relating of a spiritual vision within a dream I had on the night of May 28th, 2022...

  Sleep did not come easy for me when it did come, and through the surreal portal of dreams I found myself within a realm far beyond. I walked across a stone floor, in a great columned hallway. Through various windows set into the walls on the right-hand side I could see a road that ran next to a pleasant countryside of pastoral meadows filled with green grasses and flowers of many colors. In the distance were woodlands, and small cottages and houses, and all lay beneath a beautiful azure sky across which lay white fluffy clouds. It was an idyllic landscape. I knew that this place I walked in lay in the foothills of a great mountain range, and that just behind the structure was a great pine forest. I knew this place, and yet I also knew it not. The hallway before me was lit with electric lamps hung upon the left-hand walls, and behind me there had been a doorway with stairs leading up to the second floor. Before me, the hall led into a great library and study area with a most elegant chandelier that lit the large chamber. Various people sat at tables reading from books they had open before them, and some smiled when they saw me. I recognized a few of those people... and yet, how could I? I had, after all, only just met them.

  A woman walked towards me, who looked like a secretary. She was a head shorter than I, with light skin with a slight pinkish tone to it, and of a slender build but with evident curves. She had her straight brown hair tied back in a ponytail and wore a pair of glasses on her serious but pretty face. She wore a tight black skirt that came to just above her knees, and a white button-down blouse was tucked into the skirt. The blouse was open only just enough to show the woman's cleavage. On her feet were a pair of black high heels, and around her neck was a white pearl necklace. The woman held in her hands a black binder filled with papers. "I need to talk to you right away, if you don't mind!" she exclaimed on seeing me standing there. I had the distinct impression that I knew her too, and was distressed at being unable to quite recall how and from where. “Oh, alright then!” I exclaimed, and walked over to meet with her. “So... what is it that you want with me?” I asked. She then rather excitedly said: “Well, I am currently working as a secretary for a law firm run by a couple of lawyers you probably never even heard of.” to which I quickly interjected: “What a moment, a law firm? That is a good paying job! So what would you need from me, than? Law... is not exactly my field of choice.” She then looked at me, and then at her binder, and then back at me again before explaining: “I'm sorry, my friend, but I forget that you are not all that into the job I do. That wasn't what I wanted to talk with you about though... I just was super excited to tell you more about it is all. We had talked so little of it the last time we spoke.” to which I stated: “And I am happy to hear about your success! I was just wondering what brought you here today, and what I could do for you.” and that made the woman smile. “Thanks! But in any case, I am actually at this library today to study up on the best of William Shakespeare's works... so that I can get a degree in English Literature. I am also studying language and trying to get better at speaking English.” I had noticed she spoke with a bit of an eastern European sounding accent, that sounded vaguely Romanian. “Emilia...” I said to her, realizing I knew her name after all, before so asking: “Do you need more help with your English lessons? I would be happy to be of assistance to you with that.” She then went on, elaborating a bit more on her life: “As you know, I was interested in Law ever since I was ten years old but was not happy with being just a receptionist... my sister is the assistant manager at the office right now in fact. She speaks way better English than I do though! I need help with other matters though, as much as I would love some... private... language lessons from you maybe later tonight. Around eight, works for you?” to which I assented that it worked for me very well. She continued: “Here... have a bit of a look through my binder. It contains information of a sensitive nature though.” I asked of her: “How sensitive?” and she confided: “Things I cannot tell anyone but you about. Not related to my job at all!”

   The first page of the binder was simply a cover... a distraction from what lay beneath it in the rather large stack of papers below. It was Emilia's cover letter for work, telling how she was a good candidate for positions such as secretary due to her having an orderly mind, good communication skills despite difficulty grasping the meaning of certain phrases in the English language, the ability to type fast and remember details photographically, and many, many other things that presented her in a glowing way. All of that, I knew, was true of her... and more! Then, I turned the page and saw what she wanted me to have a look at. What I saw was disturbing, to say the least. It was a manuscript of a book that contained the knowledge of every demon known in existence, written in various human languages. Now, when I say that it was disturbing, it was not the content that made me feel thus, but the way the handwriting seemed to crawl across the page in an almost living fashion. As if the lines of each and every letter had been serpents made of black ink. This was not an ancient parchment either, the paper was new and the ink was fresh in places. It had mystical diagrams within it, arcane seals, images of various creatures and beings, illustrations of demons and devils, and whole sections that seemed to be written in blood rather than ink. I looked up from the book, went to hand it back to Emilia, and was shocked to find that she was gone. I reasoned simply that she must have hurried off while I was reading it, and was not worried.

   I walked up the stairs that led to the second level of the library, and at one of the tables Emilia sat and appeared quite nervous. Even so, she looked up and smiled at me as I approached her. “Hello there! I see you have had a look through my binder.” she said cheerfully, to which I responded: “Where did you get that manuscript, honey?” I realized she and I had an intimate relationship and a long past together. I sat down next to her, set the binder on the table, and Emilia grabbed my hand tightly as she explained: “Darling, it was not something I sought after... believe me... I found it on my desk just yesterday, and I had a mind to take it to you since this is more your field of study than mine. I know it must be... how is the phrase going... a hot commodity, because it had originally been in a strange looked jeweled chest. I sold the chest at a pawn shop... and they gave me a ridiculous amount of money for it! It was centuries old, and yet no one could tell me from where it originated. But ever since I got it, I have felt like there were unseen eyes watching me! How did you feel when you had a look at it?” I put my arm around her and held her comfortingly as I said: “I felt like the words were crawling upon the pages, like they were not natural somehow. It disturbed me, but I could not understand why.” I asked if today was her day off and she said that it was, but that she had various errands to do. “Come to my house around eight tonight so that we can catch up on old times.” she whispered to me, adding: “I have missed you so much!” and she kissed me on the lips, very passionately. I caressed the side of her face, and promised that I would not miss our date. “I love you, Emilia!” I said... to which she replied: “I love you too.” and, after that I took the manuscript... and walked off, down one of the hallways that lay between the upper and lower floors of the library. I was not in any hurry to go home just yet, and so I decided instead to head towards the back exit of the building and take a walk for a while. On the way out, a young androgynous looking man dressed in a long white Greek goddess-style gown belted with a golden sash walked past me, his gold sandals tapping on the tiled floor as he hurriedly walked along. He had long curly golden hair that bounced about his shoulders... and I found it was difficult to look him in the eyes. “You have seen the book, yes?” he asked me, and I spun around to confront him. “Yes, I have seen it!” I exclaimed. “Is it yours?” I inquired, and the man answered: “It is not, and for that I am grateful. Go outside, and you will find what you are at present seeking. I cannot go with you, or I would. Be well, and be not afraid!” and after that he simply vanished as if he had never been there at all. I decided to take his advice, however, since I was planning on a walk outside no matter what. It was a beautiful day outside, and I thought that perhaps the late spring air would agree with me. Had I seen an angel, a god? I needed to clear my head. I was never one prone to hallucinations, and every time I saw something... it always proved to be true.

   Soon, I found myself walking through the pine forest, in the foothills of the mountains. The height of the trees was such that they seemed to me, to touch the sky. Off the trails were mossy stretches, and the scent of pine hung heavily in the air. I was wearing a long black low cut sleeveless maxi dress, a pair of black sandals, and on my left wrist was a black beaded bracelet. My skin was very light, but not at all pale. I enjoyed going for long walks like this a lot, and so that year I had very good color to me. I held the binder in my left arm, and my right swung freely as I walked along trying to pretend that there was purpose to the excursion. I reached up and felt that my head was shaved bald. Feeling a bit fidgety, I reached for the pendant I wore about my neck. It was in the shape of a serpent that had an “S” shape to its' body, with tiny red stones for its' eyes, and I wore it on a long black cord. I had my black gemstone earrings on, I knew. I was remembering things more and more as I walked along. I still did not know at all who I was in that other world... but I did know that I was a woman who was an expert in the occult. I had an average build, rather small breasts, and facial features that people had often told me were rather unique. My cheekbones were high, my eyes almond shaped, my nose aquiline, and my lips thin. I had always wore my lipstick in a way that made my lips appear fuller than they otherwise were, and tended to favor dark purple eye shadow, black mascara, and black eyeliner. My eyelashes were very long, and my eyes had a doll-like quality to them when I had my mascara on. So that was how I looked! Not very different than how I look in the prime reality as well. It was likely that I was intersex in that world just like here on the prime Earth, since clearly, I was in the body of a parallel me which felt identical in all respects. It was getting towards midday by now... and, I found that this time in the woods being alone with my thoughts was actually beginning to annoy me, making me feel quite lonely. Perhaps even sad.

   In the distance, I could see Emilia near a stream that ran down from the mountains. I called to her but she did not seem to hear me. I called again, and she turned her head and said to me in an odd monotone that was not at all like her normal tone of voice: “Do you think this is really a good idea? I do not! But it is the only way to understand the book I gave you.” All about us were shadows... this was a dark part of the forest, I realized. I had walked for longer, and farther, than I had intended to. She then pointed to the babbling water and said: “How far, this stream goes! Perhaps a half a mile, maybe even two miles.” But she was not making any sense, singing songs in her native tongue in between each sentence she had spoken to me thus far. I felt a fear within me that I could not name. I tried to go along with her peculiar conversation, asking: “Where does the water flow out of?” to which she replied: “It flows out from the mountains, of course! And down to meet the river far below the hills, the woods, and all that we might see from here. Shall I take you to its' source?” and I nodded in agreement. She then exclaimed happily, in a singsong tone of voice: “Okay then! I will take you there... just follow me, my love... just follow.” And I did as she bade, followed where she led. It was a long trek up further into the hills, before we at last arrived at a massive cave which was set into the rocky face of the lowest point of the mountainside. The forest was darkest of all in this place, where the stream flowed out from the mouth of the cave. I asked Emilia what was inside, and she said innocently: “It is pretty dark in there, isn't it! I would very much suggest staying away from the interior of that cave... if I were you.” Her eyes were wide, and she was skipping about like a child after telling me that. It seemed as though she had totally lost her mind. I stepped into the cave entrance, and saw that deeper inside there was a faint warm light. Emilia crept up close to me, and motioned for me to go ahead. We walked along together... I walked, and she skipped... as I began to notice torches upon sconces set into the natural rock of the cavern wall. The scent of moist earth was heavy in the air, along with a more floral scent that I could not quite place. “This feels almost familiar to me.” I said, and Emilia replied: “It should, my sweet one! It should indeed.” The cavern ran deeper and deeper into the mountain. From someplace far ahead I heard the sound of drums, but after a while they ceased. It was damp and humid inside the cavern, and I felt very ill at ease as we descended.

   “This was what I did not want you to see... and yet I did, at the same time.” Emilia told me as we had approached a truly massive, cavernous chamber... which lay in the deepest recesses of the subterranean tunnel we had descended. The room was decorated with cave paintings that depicted strange creatures and alien looking landscapes. There was a set of large wooden double doors set into the wall opposite of the entrance, and guarding the doors was a gruesome looking creature. It was a deformed thing, the size of a normal human being but shorter than average in height. Its' head was twisted backwards, and its' arms were also very twisted looking. It walked using one foot and its' two hands, because it's other leg was grafted unto the back of its' neck. It turned around... and, I saw that its' face looked like a man that was in excruciating pain that was never ending. It could not talk, instead making harsh and guttural sounds that were beyond horrible to hear. Its' skin was lacerated in places, and its' flesh was covered in all manner of scars. The creature... for a creature it truly was... was covered in dried blood and smelled of strong herbs and strange spices. The floral scent I detected earlier was nowhere to be found. “What is that thing! Is that what I suspect it is?” I cried out, visibly surprised, and Emilia told me: “That creature no longer has any name at all... if it ever was given one. Now, it is simply an Invunche... and so, that is all it shall ever be. You know much of these things, and of darker things still! So yes, it is exactly what you suspect it is. Do not seem so surprised, dear one! You are steeped in darkness, after all.” This had a darkly familiar feeling to it, all that I was now witnessing and living through. On the ground near to the Invunche was a broken wooden crucifix that was covered in blood. The sound of drums came from the other side of the double doors... and there was chanting. Suddenly, both stopped again after continuing for several long moments. “Who lives here?” I asked Emilia, who replied in a frightened sounding tone of voice: “The locals say that the Devil dwells in this cavern! And that witches and warlocks come to these halls... in order to make pacts with Hell, in exchange for the blackest magical powers.” I knew of such legends, knowing far more of them than I should have. I was silent after that, there was nothing to say. I walked past the deformed guardian and opened the double doors before me. They creaked loudly on rusty hinges, as the doors clattered forward. Beyond them was a huge room with smooth walls. The room appeared filled with bookshelves, and there were three large round tables in various corners of the chamber. Each held piles of large tomes. Black and red candles were lit upon the tables, and as the wax dripped down the red candles I was reminded of droplets of moist blood. I saw human skulls on some of the bookshelves, and crude wooden idols as well. There were barrels filled with herbs and plants of all sorts, and an alchemy laboratory within an alcove off to the side. Another door was set into a wall across from the double doors... and the pleasant floral scent could be detected emanating forth from it.

   Emilia walked over to one of the tables, and cleared it off except for the candles. “Set the book down here!” she commanded, and I did as she instructed. She opened the binder, removed the cover page and set it on fire, allowing it to burn until it was no more. Thus, the dark magical manuscript was hidden no longer. The drumbeats echoed loudly again, from an adjacent room beyond the other door, and I could hear men and women singing and chanting in low tones. “Emilia, I thought you did not know anything about that manuscript! What do you mean by these actions?” I asked, surprised. She laughed... sinister in the sound of it... and replied, this time in a voice that had a Chilean accent to it: “Oh, my love! I am not your oh so silly, and oh so naively innocent Emilia... not any longer. My name is Camilla Flores. It is wonderful to meet you at long last, you whom Emilia has told me so very much about! We had been corresponding... for some time, you know. But do not worry, her soul is safe... still within her, in fact. I am merely using her body for the time being, so we can communicate. Thank you for bringing the book here, so that we can make use of it!” and I knew Camilla Flores from a long, long time ago. She was a powerful practitioner of black magic who lived in Santiago, Chile. I myself had corresponded with her in the past, and was at one time a member of her particular coven. Yet, I had never met her face to face.

   “Yes... you knew me in the prime reality! We shared much knowledge between us, did we not?” she remarked, adding: “But I have many homes, on many realities... just as you do. This is one we shared, even if you do not remember it quite yet.” And she indicated the cave all around us. “Come on, have a look at these diagrams here!” she intoned, and I walked over to see what it was she was talking about. As I did, the other door opened and into the room walked a large group of men and women dressed in cloaks that appeared to be made of human flesh, and wearing long green gowns. Their feet were bare, and they carried long gnarled wooden staffs in their hands. The men wore wide brimmed hats... which they took off as they entered... and the women had long raven black hair, as did the men. All had very tanned, reddish tinted skin. Many wore golden jewelry... bangle bracelets, long necklaces, and looped earrings. Several had gold nose rings as well. They all spoke Spanish, but some spoke another language that I did not recognize. A very guttural sounding tongue, whatever it was, with strange words that did not resemble anything in any human language I had ever studied or heard spoken. Camilla... for indeed, she was Emilia no more... motioned for them to stay back from where she and I studied the manuscript. They divested themselves of the fleshy cloaks and sat upon the cavern floor, speaking to one another in hushed, fearful tones that told me Camilla was not someone to be taken lightly. “Now, pay attention... this is the sign of the conjunction!” she shouted, to get my attention fully focused on the page before us. She went on and on speaking of pathways between realities, and between different states of reality... of roads that lead from dreams to other dimensions. She spoke of alternate universes, parallel worlds, and of countless metaphysical, esoteric things. All of which I was already intimately familiar with. I found the talk boring, to be honest. Eventually, she explained that she was seeking after a certain conjunction so that she could gain occult knowledge from various infernal domains. “That is all you seek?” I asked, laughing. “I have actually been there and done that a rather long time ago already.” I told her, to which she elaborated: “Yes, yes I know that you did... but I want to now, myself! I could ask you about these matters, certainly... but it would not let me experience what you did, and see things with my own eyes and from my own point of view apart from yours. No offense! But I need to understand in my own way, without your guidance. I do need your help, however, to conduct the ritual that will make this possible.”

   As the ritual began, Camilla was chanting, and seemed to be concentrating on the tone of very certain words. I was chanting with her... I wanted to help her, but I could not understand why... and during the course of our chanting I could hear a voice call out: “She, is seeking a treasure beyond price! She must not be allowed to steal it. Stop this ritual, before it goes too far.” but I did not dare to cease my chanting in order to tell Camilla what I had heard. A black raven flew into the cavern just then, and some of the cultists who were seated upon the floor produced a large platter, which contained a pile of very bloody looking human entrails upon it. The raven began to devour the entrails, and once it had consumed all of them the bird's form shifted into that of a short woman with dark brown skin and raven black hair. She pulled several feathers out of her naked body as she clothed herself in a green gown just like the others all wore. I could hear her say in perfect English, but with a bit of an accent: “Camilla... you must hurry with the ritual! There is a storm brewing, outside... and the energy it carries, will be of a boon in this.” We ceased chanting not long after that, and Camilla took a spherical black jewel from one of the nearby shelves, holding it in her left hand. She placed it upon the table before us and cut her right palm with a sharp knife that was from the same shelf that the jewel had been on. She covered the black jewel with her blood, took some chalk from a pocket of her blouse, and began to draw a large arcane diagram on the floor. It was like an eight-pointed star, but in the center was an inverted pentagram. At each point of the star, she drew a small hexagram of the sort that can be traced with one unbroken line. Once all of this was prepared, Camilla placed the bloody black jewel in the exact center of the pentagram. She took off her glasses, set them on the table, and knelt on the floor before the jewel, uttering wild incantations.

   After working herself up into a frenzy, the sorceress tore off her blouse and bra, revealing her breasts. She then smeared the blood from her palm all over her breasts, and screamed various mystical phrases in Latin and Sumerian, shrieking very loudly at certain intervals. I heard the voice from before, and the voice intoned urgently: “If you open the portal to the infernal domains, it will probably kill you both!” but I ignored the voice, caught up in the ritual we were conducting. “Take off all your clothes.” Camilla instructed me, and I removed everything I had on, discovering that indeed this body also had the same intersex condition that my waking body did. Waking, I thought... but this was no natural dream! I had been brought to this parallel Earth, and it seemed that Camilla had made the same journey. All so that we could meet in this place, at this time, to conduct this dark and terrible ritual. I had fully functioning and normal looking male genitalia, rare for a hermaphrodite such as myself... yet my very small breasts, my feminine shaped abdomen, and my hips that were wider than a man's should have been, all said that I was also female. And those were just the outward physical signs of my condition! Camilla pulled up her skirt, all the way to her waist, and pulled off her white panties, tossing them away. She lay upon the arcane diagram very suggestively, her legs spread wide, calling out in seductive tones: “Come, my love, let us lie together and lend our combined passions to this rite's working!” I climbed atop her, aroused to the point where I needed release, and we had rough, wild intercourse together. She laughed and giggled, moaning like a harlot as she neared the height of ecstasy. I could hear chanting, but this time it was not coming from the cultists, who were utterly silent now. I could hear drumbeats, but no one was playing any drums. And, I could smell a floral perfume-like scent, even though it was nothing whatsoever like the kind of perfume that Camilla had on at the time. “Take me! Take me like a beast!” She screamed, and our coupling was very primal indeed. We both reached the climax of our shared passions, and I felt like my very spirit was pushing out of my body, mingling with Camilla's own. “It is working.” she said, in a low whisper, before exclaiming excitedly: “I can feel it!” and no sooner has she thus cried out, than  the black jewel... which had lain just behind where we coupled... began to shake very violently. We got to our feet, my sorceress lover casting off her skirt so that she too was totally unclothed now, and while the jewel shook... we washed and cleaned ourselves with a sponge and a basin of water that lay nearby. “We must be fully clean at this point!” she explained, and after we were thus purified the jewel actually shattered into pieces. After that, nothing whatsoever seemed to happen. “I was expecting more.” I said in a somewhat ironic tone of voice. “Wait for a bit, and we shall see what transpires!” Camilla insisted.

   “We need more blood!” she screamed, and instructed the cultists to take various sharp implements in order to bleed themselves for the ritual. They then came over, one by one... and cast their blood into the very center of the pentagram. “That will suffice.” stated Camilla smugly. All of a sudden, the chamber began to quake and tremble, and everyone leapt back from the arcane diagram. The floor cracked upon where the diagram had been drawn, and just beneath it was revealed a winding spiral stairwell made of rough stone. It descended into utter blackness below. “Finally! This... is what I was looking for. Come with me, my lover... and below, we shall discover the secrets of the infernal realms.” Camilla said in a triumphant tone of voice. We took a lantern with us, and made our way down those ancient steps. This was not a portal to Hell, however... except in various highly obscure legends... instead, it was taking us to a place where the secrets of Camilla's dark magical sect had been hidden in a distant bygone time. It was different here, than on the prime Earth... where the location could be found in a secret complex of caverns, tunnels, and caves in the vicinity of the community of Quemchi. The place was known of old, as Quicavi Cave, sometimes called the Grand Cave. And... it had been there, in which was hid the first version of the unspeakably powerful book that had made our passage below possible. In this way, many things had come full circle! For, in order to obtain the forbidden knowledge, one first had to show they understood something of that knowledge already. This had all been an elaborate test... and we passed it.

   Below, the stairwell ended in a long tunnel that led deeper below the earth. That tunnel opened into a vast underground cavern complex like nothing I had ever seen before. It was created for habitation... as all manner of living spaces, ritual areas, and storage chambers could be found there. Things had a rough and primitive look to them, and everything was countless centuries old... with thick webs and dust over all that lay before our eyes. Spiders, scurried here and there... and the unpleasant smell of damp, rotting wood hung in the air very foully. Various skeletons of people and small animals littered the floor of the cavern complex, and the entire place looked like a long abandoned burial site. However, once this had not been the case! Camilla looked visibly disappointed. “No!” she cried, appearing now to be upon the verge of shedding tears. “This must be why they had sealed it up. We will find no knowledge here!” she exclaimed sadly. But something in a distant chamber caught my eye. “Wait, Camilla... look over there!” I yelled, and she then noticed it too. A glint of gold illuminated by our lantern's light. We walked closer in order to see what it was, and there we found a library chamber in which various old books and scrolls sat piled upon various shelves. Everything looked ready to fall apart at any minute! Everything except two books... one was a leather-bound journal still in reasonable condition despite its' vast age, and one was a massive tome bound in leather and plated in gold, with the cover encrusted with precious jewels and gemstones. There was a lock upon the gold-plated tome, although it appeared to have been broken open long ago. Camilla opened the journal and began to read from it. This was the basic history that the journal told about: In the colonial period of Chile's history, around the year of 1786 A.D., there came to the shores of Chile a renowned navigator named José de Moraleda y Montero... who by either chance or circumstance came upon a certain indigenous Mapuche village wherein dwelt a powerful Machi, a kind of shaman. The shaman was a woman named Chilpilla, who was said to be an accomplished sorceress. Intrigued by this, Moraleda decided to challenge her to a competition of magic and through a clever bit of deception he nearly bested her, only to still be defeated by her sorcery. His pride wounded, Moraleda decided to depart by sea... but the shaman's magic had cursed his ship, causing it to run aground just as he tried to leave the island of Chiloé whereon the lady shaman lived. Admitting defeat, Moraleda gave the shaman a most uncommon gift. It was a magical book, which had originally been written by a man who had lived in somewhere in the Middle East in ancient times. The book had been penned first in the language of Arabic before being translated into first Greek, then Latin... and finally Spanish, during the middle ages. It contained various magical and mystical rites, rituals, spells and incantations which had their origins in ancient Sumeria and later in Babylon, and which it is said were practiced in secret by the darkest of Persian sorcerers. It was the very text... of which the one Camilla and I had worked with was only the merest of copies, the roughest of late translations. Over time, the lady shaman used the book to instruct various other shamans from the tribes of the Machi and the Kalku, in the blackest of dark arts. They combined the indigenous rituals and practices of their lands with the forbidden knowledge present in the unnamed book, and discovered things so terrible that they had to create an entire secret society in order to hide it from outsiders. Moraleda, for his part, would not ever mention in his report having met this sorceress with whom he had presented the arcane tome, only stating that he wanted to make contact with someone from the Machi tribe. The journal went on to detail the creation of this secret society and how it was structured... and stated that the place where the book could be found would be guarded over by an Invunche, who would keep its' secret silently and unknowingly. Camilla remarked... that in all of her time as both a member and later as a leader within that secret society's modern incarnation, she had been led to believe that the only thing which lay beneath the Invunche's cavern was a portal to Hell... in which she had been told, that infernal knowledge could be learned from the Devil. “We kept creating a new Invunche, every time a previous one perished.” she told me, adding: “That manuscript was written by a colleague of mine... who had penned the whole of it while in a trance, claiming she had entered the portal to Hell that lay below this cavern while astral projecting there. The truth, seems less glamorous!”

   I went to open the gold-plated tome, but Camilla cautioned me: “Once you see what lies within... it is said that it will change you forever. There are secrets within, that no human eyes have seen since of old this place... was sealed away! When the legendary 'portal' was closed. If you must open it at all, then let us open it together and be damned together for so doing.” I agreed with her, and we clasped each other's hands before together opening the cover of the terrible book. There was a sudden bright flash as soon as we had cast the book open... perhaps caused by the lantern's light reflecting off of the gold on the cover and hitting our eyes just so. That was how I wanted to rationalize it anyway! But something strange had happened following that flash of light. I found myself, in a version of that cavern complex that was full of light and life, all its' inhabitants busy going about their daily routines. They all wore elegant gowns of various colors, green... the color worn by Camilla's followers... being most abundant. I witnessed all manner of magic, mysticism, and spell-craft at work, and I saw various rites and rituals that were being conducted. These people did not wear cloaks made of flesh, but instead wore feathered cloaks of more elaborate design. They ate, drank, lived, loved and were happy as they practiced their ancient ways. No colonialists would come to tell them how to believe or what to do! They had, every one, renounced all vestiges of their Christian baptism... having washed it away in a baptism sworn to the ancient gods and goddesses of old Chiloé... and to the gods and goddesses of the forbidden tome. These, were led by this one woman who was the most powerful of them all, and under whom a great council met... and her title was King rather than Queen, so that outsiders would never learn the truth of who ran the secret society. I did not know the year it was, when this was taking place... only that it had occurred a long time ago. I tried to get a decent look, at the woman who headed this group, which called itself La Recta Provinica, and which was also known as La Mayoria. But the council meeting with her kept getting in the way. In the end, they parted and I beheld the face of Camilla Flores looking back at me and smiling. Looking as she did in Emilia's body, rather than how she may have in her own... wherever that may have been. By a twist of fate... I realized that Emilia, was the reincarnation of this woman who had led La Mayoria prior to the time when the magical tome had been sealed away. I watched those events unfolding, the sealing of the book and the abandonment of the original cavern complex in favor of the new one created above it by the expansion done upon its' old upper entrance tunnels. Various members of the group wished to remain below with the book, and in time they died there with it... and, it was their bones that lay upon the floor where Camilla and I had noticed them. I walked over to the book as it was back then, and I read all there was to read within its' pages, absorbing all of its' forbidden secrets. Then, just as I closed the book there was a second flash of light and I was back once more standing there with Camilla at my side in Emilia's body, our hands attempting once more to open the tome. But just as we opened it, the book crumbled into dust leaving only a pile of golden plates and jewels. Camilla was too shocked to speak, and I said to her: “I could teach you what I discovered within its' pages, you know. For a price!” and the sorceress looked at me unbelieving and shouted: “How! How could you know what was within them, unless you had been there when it was still... possible to be read?” I confided in her all that I had just witnessed, and she appeared shaken and frightened as she whispered: “They said in the legend that only the Devil could teach the forbidden knowledge that lay within this place.” and after that I moved in close to whisper into Camilla's ear: “I am the Devil.” and she screamed, her mind finally breaking as she called out to me: “Keep it! I want no part of it any longer... this, is not for me.” and as she said that her spirit departed from Emilia's body, causing her to slump over with her dark brown eyes rolling up into her head. I rushed over and slapped her lightly about the face in an attempt to rouse her. “Emilia! Emilia, wake up honey! It is me, I am right here, right here for you.” and she woke up from her state of possession at the hands of the dark sorceress, groggily saying: “I could see... and feel... everything that was happening while she was inside of me, but I could not do anything about it. I was a prisoner in my own mind.” I told her not to worry about it. We took the gold plates, jewels and gemstones and so left.

   No one prevented us from leaving that place, and the Invunche was no longer guarding the entrance to that secret domain. We had retrieved all of our clothes... dressed completely... grabbed the manuscript, along with some candles and a few matches, and made our way on back to the stream in the pine forest. There, we burned the manuscript completely (and carefully, so as not to start a forest fire) and scattered its' unholy ashes upon the waters of the stream so that they might thus be carried away... until they were forgotten. I already had within me the entirety of the knowledge found in its' arcane pages. And I asked Emilia if she wished for me to teach her all that I knew. She was, after all, the rightful inheritor of that ancient knowledge which had once been contained within the tome that had been plated with gold. The very gold whose plates we had with us, as we made our way back towards the library again. The place where this whole journey had started! “I don't mind keeping those golden plates, and I really don't mind keeping the jewels and the gems from that book either... but I am just not ready for the knowledge. I am sorry, but especially now knowing what you really are, I would prefer to keep distant from learning the darker secrets of the universe. No deals with the Devil for me today!” she thus confessed. I whispered in her ear rather naughtily after that: “But what about a night of sex with the Devil, Emilia! Would you be adverse to that?” and she blushed, replying: “Not at all! Why, are you feeling a bit... horny, for me?” and this time her suggestive tone of voice made me blush. We would have a very wild time, that night.

   The me whom I was in that alternate, parallel world would go on to have a profound, deep, romantic relationship with Emilia, and in time she would be ready to learn the secrets that I possessed. Camilla and I would meet again... of that I was certain... for our history together spanned the ages and was not bound by either space or time. There are certain arcane paths, certain mystical roads that can be walked which many in the modern world have never seen the likes of. Go into certain parts of the world... and learn about the secret, hidden histories and traditions in many countries... and you will discover things that will shock you to your very core. Not all are ready for forbidden knowledge, but sometimes it can be waiting for you all the same! Such was the case with myself and that lost book of dark lore. A book that still exists in this prime reality... and, which lies hidden still. Untouched by all, save those who are worthy to look upon it. Each parallel world is like an echo, a ripple... even if certain events transpire in different, often diverging ways... the ripple is always felt, just the same, once certain particular stones or pebbles are cast upon the waters of the multiverse in which we exist. I have cast many such, in my own time, and will cast many more across all the ages to come. Certain individuals are always meant to be catalysts for change, whether subtle or great be the changes they enact or inspire. And there are many such catalysts, on many worlds, all across the storied tapestries of existence. I thought deeply on those lofty truths, and on a thousand more, as my journey on that other Earth neared its' end. Was I called to that place... or had I crossed over, by my own power? I would never learn, the answer to that question.

   My return to this prime reality occurred one evening while Emilia and I were out for a walk under the light of a full harvest moon, one autumn. We had a great love of going for walks during that magic time of the year when the Samhain season was at its' greatest potency. We were living in New England... and were taking in the fall colors for the bulk of the day, and thus had decided that this was the best way to end our evening before going home and having a much more intimate Samhain celebration. It was a lot of years later, long after the events that occurred when we visited that library in Chile and explored that ancient cavern complex not far from it. I never did see that strange man again, the one who looked like he might have been an angel. And in all those years, at least, Camilla Flores had been silent. We chose the most romantic moment to share a kiss, Emilia and I, and I closed my eyes as we did so. I was lost in our embrace, in that kiss... and when I awoke it was as if from a dream. I was back in this world, on this Earth, once again. And once more, it is springtime... almost summer. The dark knowledge is still in me.
Written by Kou_Indigo (Kara Lucielle Pythiana)
All writing remains the property of the author. Don't use it for any purpose without their permission.
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