Friday, June 10, 2016

Consume, the Journal of a Dreamwalker: Nineteenth Faroe

A deiphagist accosted me as I wandered blindly near the abattoir mines wherein the city finds its sustenance. Ducking through a beaded curtain of knucklebones, I found myself facing the first female deiphagist I had ever met. The males of the deiphagists are fish-belly pale, their faces misshapen and lopsided, and their arms stretch almost to the knee. This female, and all others I subsequently encountered, was corpse-grey, and though their facial structure is often distorted, it is not to the extent of the male deiphagists. This creature’s husband, it appeared, was one of the flesh-miners toiling not far distant. She informed me that often these miners uncovered dim chunks of some crystalline but malleable material. As the chunks were not the flesh on which they dined nor the bone with which they built, the miners ignored their discovery at first. But one enterprising worker brought out a fist-sized lump and displayed it at market, where a traveler recognized pure memory of a titan. For titans are unlike the beings which serve them. Their memories and their deeds become intrinsically part of their physical form, just as they are sustained and grow ever stronger from the offerings of their slaves.

Soon, other miners brought forth fragments of the titans’ past, even competing to find the valuable lumps or stealing them. For very quickly explorers of the mind’s vast reaches realized that titan-memories allowed dreaming states which no poppy or charm could recreate.
Swayed by the deiphagist’s urgings, I purchased one slim mass of titan-self and departed furtively back to my lodgings. At every junction I glanced around, expecting vengeance from the long-dead titan’s long-dead acolytes. Though I had long abandoned any trappings of religion, and though I dwelled beneath the undecayed corpse of a titan, an indescribable sense of transgression now gripped me.

Alone in my dim room, I studied the crystalline thing. It sat upon my mussed bed, slowly changing hues under the inconstant candlelight. Observed carefully, the titan-self seemed to pulsate with a steady beat. As my vision narrowed and focused upon that transcendent stone, my own heartbeat slowed to match the awful throb of a corpse-pulse

At length, growing bold, I produced my pocketknife and sliced off a thin piece of gelatinous crystal. With a hesitating reverence, I placed the thin slice under my tongue. A bitter copper taste engulfed me. I struggled not to vomit. Immense quiet dropped over the city, yet I heard every breath of every living creature. And then time juddered. Snatches of conversation in tongues forgotten when Egypt was young. Sensations of ecstasy and abhorrence. First one sense, then another, battered by memories of a being ten trillion times my superior, every nerve-ending more acute and alive than the synapses of my brain. A dreadful sense of power consumed me.

I strode amongst great cities and palaces, labyrinthine mazes haunted by unquiet ghosts and far worse fiends, forests and fields fruitful with plants I did not know but recognized all the same, battlefields filled with inhuman screams and inhuman forms. But nowhere was my dreamcity to be found.
Some time later I found myself kneeling on the rough floor of my garret room. My body convulsed with the aftershocks of a phenomenal cosmic power. Sweat ran in rivulets to pool on the bone floor. I stood in the center of a city built from the bones of what I had inhabited mere moments ago.
As the last vestiges of titanic memory left me, I wept. The damp air of the deiphage city wrapped around me like the arms of a drowned lover.

I felt hollow, as I had never felt before. To know titanhood for even an instant, only to return to this bleak existence… A weaker man might have gone mad. Not I. Yet I did not wait to ingest another wafer of the dead titan. Perhaps this flash of memory and glory would show me my childhood dreamcity.