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To Come Forth By Day

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INV ONLY To Come Forth By Day

Post by elephantlord May 3rd 2022, 5:12 am

The museum was like a tomb; cold, dry, and dark.  The crumbling scroll lay quiet in the airless glass box; a bit rubbish, a bit sad. Frankly, for all the hype, the Book of Coming Forth by Day didn't look like much.

Materially, it wasn't. Though it may surprise many the fans of old Brendon Fraser movies, ancient Egyptian funerary texts weren't a large book made of gold mystically empowered to raise dead architects. Instead, they were a loose collection of scrolls and other writings, often enclosed in burial tombs, to assist the deceased in their journey through Duat, or the underworld, in order to reach the afterlife. Materially, they were useless scraps of decaying papyrus written in a language that had been dead since around the First Crusade.  

Culturally, however, they were a look back at the beliefs and customs of a period lasting almost a thousand years.  Each piece of the Book was a look back into the origins of humanity; the beginnings of who they were as a people. In that context, it had a much greater value.

Mystically, though... ah, there was the thing.  

Though many of the spells the Book weren't applicable in the present day, many still held sway to the aspiring sorcerer or necromancer seeking to plumb the depths of other worlds.  Though the original works had already been poured over and studied by occultists stretching back to Charlemagne, those old spells still had value to those that did not care for the derivatives.

That made it valuable in a way the Hope Diamond could only aspire to be.  There were many warlocks or wizards who coveted the ancient scrolls in order to unearth some overlooked secrets.  New methods were being invented all the time, after all, and there was no telling what they could find.  

When a new and unique piece was found, many people in mystic societies began to practically froth at the mouth. A quiet war would ensue, trying to wrest the piece away from the public eye and into other hands.  It was quite the coup in those circles to be the first to own or study such a work, after all.

Now, Monte ran in those circles. Though she often found the tottering old idiots more a nuisance than they were worth, but a payday was a payday. It hadn't been hard to bypass they guards and lock up the security system, so the MOUNTEBANK, INTERNATIONAL WOMAN OF MYSTERY (TM) was somewhat bored.  She sat herself on the red velvet cordon rope surrounding the exhibit, freezing it in place as she sighed melodramatically.  

The glare of a flashlight beam blinded her for a moment, causing her to shield her face.  The guard seemed to start, then reached for his gun. Montessa sighed and shook her head.  

"There is nothing to see here." Her voice reverberated slightly, as she sat glumly, looking at the guard. The guard blinked twice, glanced around, and then left, chuckling at himself for jumping at shadows.

Monte shifted in place and began to kick her feet like a bored child.  Finally, she stood and lifted her cane.  She began to tap the bulletproof glass with a steady beat, like she was drumming out Seven Nation Army.  

Tap.  The cane made a dull thud.

Tap.  A louder noise, filling the empty room.

Tap. Crack!  A small crack appeared down one of the corners.

Tap! Spiderwebs of cracks began to form over the glass.  

Tap! The case shattered, sending shards of glass across the room.

Montessa sighed and began to reach for the scroll.  "Beats diggin' ditches, I guess."
elephantlord
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