From the Book of Ti-Orgoat, Chapter Fifty-Six, Verse One Beginning:

1. In the days of yore when men strode unchallenged through the green hills of the Diamond Isle and the petty wonders of rune and witch spread like ticks across the land, in the time chronicled so ably by Yollinada the Rememberer in her satire “Dead Are Dead,” there came to a traveler a notion. One world-wise and learned merchant-explorer felt himself inspired.

2. This world is filled with secrets, he said; what one man does not know of another dwarfs the pittance he holds in his mind. Every culture is ignorant of every other; they spread slander and lies without malice but rather out of ignorance. Only a few such as I experience first-hand the land beyond the hills; most litorians think of the sea as some kind of fearsome water-monster set to eat their children.

3. His name among his own people was Gathering the Sheep At Sunset, And Guarding Them Through The Fearsome Night; they called him Gathering the Sheep At Sunset, And Guarding Them Through The Fearsome Night as a sign of respect. Among the humans he was called Tarrerreb; they assigned him that moniker. The faen knew him as Taelessigapa; he was as a native to them. The verrik of the islands did not name him; he did not travel to their lands.

4. With profit earned he penned a tract; he spent money hard-won to spread his words. “Let no one be ignorant of geography; that which I know I pass to you.” The Tarrerreb Geography in the Library of the Saints became known; the book spread slowly through the ancient world, and reached Old Habadad. There let it lie, until the end; it was judged neither needful nor joyous.

5. When we came to them, down and in and proud and mighty, we found it; sifting through the ashes of the Library of the Saints rendered it up to us. We dissected its subtext; its secrets became known to us.

6. We would not repeat the mistakes of the past; our future was to be bright and glorious and clear and clean.

7. There would be no secrets. There would be no hoards of uncommon wisdom. In Ka-Rone we would know everything, and all would be ripe for plucking. Great was our pride; our folly shouted to the mountain-tops.

(The Book of Ti-Orogat is located in the Under Library in the Tower of Tongues. It is a Type Seven volume, and therefore restricted to Class Four scholars with signed-and-dated slip from the Office of the Most Highness or Class Five scholars in good standing. Unauthorized access of a Type Seven volume is a capital offense.)


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