An Ancient Tome

I wrote a paper on JRR Tolkien for an independent study while in school in London, this thirty years ago. Time is beating the crap out of me, no doubt. So I wanted to travel to Oxford to have look at a few original sources kept in the University libraries.  I am big on original sources. 

One of my professors proudly supplied me with a pass. However, I did not realize there were limitations to the pass. Much to the horror of the librarians, I was drawn to a restricted section full of ancient tomes. Most were locked behind glass. That should have been a hint. 

There was, among those moldy old books, one left unintended written in a script and language I could not decipher. On impulse, I picked it up thus earning my lifetime banishment from that library. 

It was totally worth it, despite the possible apocalyptic horror it might have unleashed. Oopsie. 

In the  moment I touched that book, I felt a surge of energy pulse through me. Possibly  brought on by the horror of the ruddy security guard sputtering at me, but I rather believe that electrified pulse came from the book itself, the book wanting to impart its contents to someone, anyone. Or possibly it unleashed the apocalypse, given current events. 

All books are magic. I have no clue what was in the book I came across, be it spells of a lost power or possibly a transcription of some church records. I never could find out. My escort, the one that unceremoniously threw me out of the library into the rain, only lectured me on how rude Americans could be and would hear no excuses from me. 

I only had my imagination to go by. I think the script was Gaelic of some kind. It possibly came from a monastary but I don’t even know how old the book might have been. I did not have enough time to examine the vellum. Might it have been crafted of human skin? There was a time… but such parchment would not hold ink for so long. Well, unless there was some evil enchantment at work. Definitely a possibility. 

Yes, all books are magic and so, some are quite dangerous. Magic and truth in equal measure all in black and white. Most people avoid both of these more vehemently than they do root canal. 

My imagination crafted that old restricted book into a grimoire, a spell book for the darkest of sorcerers. And so filled my nights with horrors for years after, some demon force chasing me across time and space. 

Now, I seek a way to defeat the dark magic unleashed on me by that ancient tome, to tame or banish the demons that rose with its powers. Sadly, books of miracles, are so rare. Well, I never could find one equal to the demons that haunt me so I decided I would write one, an Idyll. I am running out of time. I can’t hold off those demons  much longer. They are consuming me so back to it.

 I do apologize if my jaunt into the restricted section of the library ultimately leads to a zombie apocalypse should I fail at my writing. Awkward. 

4 thoughts on “An Ancient Tome

  1. Clearly, your tome was written on bunny skin. PLOT BUNNY skin.

    This post is so evocative! I know that physical sensation of magic from books, and the way it evokes … oh, who knows what, but so many magics!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Plot bunny skin indeed. I really have wondered about that book and the paper it was printed on. It would help me date the thing.

      As embarrassing as it was to be cast out of such a prestigious library, the origin of that tome has fueled my imagination for many years and works prominently into my current book.

      Like

  2. A magical post, Elise. Wonderful stuff. And so visual. I loved wandering deep into that library with you. Alas, sounds like we’ll never be invited back!

    Your post on the Reef brought me over here today. You’re about to turn the page, away into a new chapter of life. That’s exciting material. I both envy you and wish you luck, wherever your travels bring you in body and spirit. Godspeed!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks John. I still suffer embarrassment over my banishment from that Oxford library so it felt good to write about it.

      And I am excited about the new chapter in my life. And I am so proud of my daughter. It takes courage to chase your dreams. Figured it is time for me to do the same.

      Liked by 1 person

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