Book 1, Chapter 3: The Legend
I woke on a dusty, rocky cliff.
With a jolt I realized that it had been long since I had closed my eyes and awaited His wrath. But the smiting had never come.
I did not understand, I had already assumed banishment for my insolence, but it was not like the All-Father to let such an act go unpunished.
I must have fallen, banished from my home. But where would the All-Father exile me? His was the land in all existence. Even the All-Father couldn’t banish me from existence. For He Himself had tamed Death and granted me and my brethren the gift of everlasting life with Lady Eternity as witness!
I must have fallen across Creation, right down to its edge. It seemed like that fateful day was so close, but obviously that must have been weeks ago. But I don’t seem to have any memory of anything that has transpired in between. I still have my eyes closed!
Anger and rejection flowed through my veins now. I began to dislike everything I once held dear. I cursed them all. I cursed my brothers; cowards, every single one of them; and Father, so self-righteous that He would not even lend ear to His son.
I wiped the red dirt from my eyes. I spit it out of my mouth. It tasted like vengeance. I heaved myself up and stretched. My body creaked. I took a deep breath and opened my eyes to my new home.
A small hut stood on a vast barren red wasteland.
I remember the Hall of Prophets. Long ago, I used to sneak in there as a child, pouring over every forbidden book it held. When I was growing up my thirst for knowledge was endless.
Even though I would have been allowed access when my education began, I had driven myself to finish each of them as quickly as I could before others began. As a result, I had grown wiser much before the rest of my brethren.
There was a reason I was the most beloved of Father, and it was not because I was the firstborn; it was because I was the wisest. I had more knowledge than any of my brothers, and with wisdom, I had great power.
I was the mightiest of them all. I figured out that my Father could bend time to His will. I understood how Death came to be His son even though he was older than Father, and how Michael came to be the oldest, even though I was the firstborn. They seemed like actions of a teenager trying to please everyone and His own whims, rather than a Master of the Universe.
Memories washed over me, a déjà vu, as I entered the lonesome hut. Everything was claimed by red dust. The hut was made of rotting wooden planks with a three-legged chair and a writing table at the center. There were no rooms, no inner walls, nothing in fact, except the table and chair.
Upon the table was resting an old withering book. It was heavy set, rough, leather bound, with pages made out of skin and words written in blood.
I was revolted but my curiosity got the better of me. I flipped it open and stared at the title.
‘The Journal of Lady Death’
Lady Death? Wasn’t Azrael Death? Was this someone else; someone older than Azrael perhaps? But what could be older than Death itself? Was she one of the Ancients? I shrugged off the question. I did not have time to waste pondering irrelevant philosophies.
I sat down on the fragile chair and began reading the journal.
‘Beyond the Edge of Creation, lie the Fields of Perdition, the red realm of Satan. He claims to be a farmer, but I know he jests with me, for he is something else for sure. His power is too controlled and contained for me to understand it, let alone decipher it, but it could safely be assumed that it matches that of the All-Father of the blue realm.
‘The Three Realms – red, blue and green, the fundamental colors of existence – are all that exist.
‘Blue is ruled by a Creator, it is the entire Creation.
‘Red borders around the blue, known as the Edge of Creation. It is said to contain nothing, a space void of any existence.
‘The green realm is a metaphor. For it is I, I am the green realm. And I run like life-blood along the veins of the blue realm.
‘I signify the end of creation and the end of existence. Everything that passes on from the blue realm to the green ceases to exist.
‘It is hard to describe the shape of the universe. Think of reality as a disc, surrounded by a void that extends evermore. Now take the disc and twist it around the center, thus forming a shape:
‘The two bulbs cross at a central point, which indeed is as small as a literal point. Hence, the universe is Sempiternal. Its beginning coincides with its end, and therefore it has no beginning and no end. The symbol represents the blue realm; everything else is the red realm; and the green realm courses through the veins of Blue.
‘Today I discovered that the red realm is not really a void. The very fact that I am here means that something exists here, something that has been hidden so well from us that it looked like void.
‘I met with this unfriendly character today, who fashions himself a farmer. He claims to have existed for as long as we have, and been here alone, minding his own business, lost in his thoughts and tending to his fields; waiting, for me!
‘I know he lies, just like I know that lies exist, and he is responsible for their existence. He seems to be the exact opposite of the ruler of the blue realm, a sort of negation. And that would explain why his fields were hidden till now from us.
‘Everything we know or can begin to imagine is a part of Creation, the blue realm. Hence it follows that the red realm, blue’s opposite, would seem to us like a void, a nothingness we can never comprehend; something outside our sphere of perception. Like certain colors that we cannot see, certain sounds that we cannot hear.
‘Furthermore, he could not have been as old as us. We know we are six siblings. We would know if we had a seventh in our midst. He cannot be an Ancient one.’
So this Lady Death was one of the Ancients. But I thought that Azrael was the Ancient Lord Death. But this Lady was wrong. We have always been told about seven Ancients. Perhaps the ‘farmer’ really was an Ancient? Perhaps it was after this event that we came to know of the all the seven Ancients?
I remember the crimson slabs from the Hall of Prophets. Creation (All-Father) and Destruction (Azrael) were two Ancients who still wore on for their duties. The rest, War, Love, Judgment, Calamity and Salvation, were in deep slumber.
In the absolute rule of the All-Father, there was neither need for judgment nor any role of destiny. War was unknown and love was a given amongst brothers. There was complete control over reality; there was no calamity, and therefore no need for salvation.
The Ancients were made obsolete by my Father and my brother. I felt excitement growing as I read on.
‘There is great power here. And this man is no farmer. His name is Satan and he is as powerful as my brethren. I suspect he may be one of us, a brother we did not know about. Ah, the games of Destiny.
‘His fields are barren wastelands. Not a soul flutters here. But there is some weird electricity in the air. He is too much in control. Being alone here makes him the master as well as the realm itself, something like me. Perhaps more powerful, for he has tangible realm! Every molecule of this place answers to him. It is the perfect rule. I suspect it makes him the Judge. Lord Judgment the Ancient.
‘He is too mighty to be revealed or exposed to the blue realm. For the Soul must exist here too, and if the Soul were to be divided equally into the three realms, it would make Satan at least as powerful as me and more powerful than the All-Father of the blue realm. In worst case, he could be more powerful than either of us, for the void exists forever on from where Creation ends.’
And that was it. The journal ended abruptly. The rest of it was just blank pages. There had to be more to this. I had just been transported by an Ancient to the abandoned realm of another, who was supposedly never going to wake up.
I have occupied the hut for the time being. I still look like I used to. There has been no transformation. The banishment has not taken away my Grace. So the stories were exaggerated. An immortal’s light could only be taken away only by his choice. No banishment or ‘forced fall’ could undo his being.
Already the lies of my Father started falling apart. I am not banished, I am free! I can explore the ends of reality and see everything with my own eyes.
And I would start by unfurling the mysteries of this Ancient land, which I’m confident holds many secrets. This is my new home, the Fields of Perdition.