After breakfast Caleb locked himself away in his study. He took out both the journal and white book that he now knew as Eruditus. He set both books on his desk side by side. They appeared the same as always. Picking up Eruditus, he turned it over looking at it with fresh eyes.
There’s no way this book is a God. It’s just utter nonsense. But she was real…how is that possible? He thought silently, still examining the book.
Then he hit upon an idea, what would happen if I fed the book more blood? The first time was accidental and the knowledge revealed gave me what I needed to know in order to take control of an Oracle’s power. The exact information I was thinking about when I spilled blood that time. I wonder…
Caleb took out a small knife and opened the book to no particular page in general. He visualized the woman and the prophecy written on the scroll; with those two images firmly in his mind he cut his finger. A couple of drops landed on the pages and just the same as before they’re absorbed. The writing began to change, Caleb licked his lips in anticipation and excitement at this latest discovery. He turned to page one and started reading.
The story of Eruditus begins at the beginning of the universe; at the time of the creation, the first spark of thought. Eruditus was born of a momentary passing thought. He would be the keeper of all knowledge, the tracker of all thoughts, a timeless repository for all the knowledge ever conceived. Because he was born from a single passing thought he was never worshipped and never grew in power. From time to time he would be thought of in conversation, a passing story from one God to another. Many knew of his existence but all feared his rise to power. Nothing is more powerful than knowledge, especially the kind he held. So he laid dormant for eons.
Other Gods ran the universes helping to create and destroy in their infantile folly. When the earth was still new and uninhabited a few Gods sought its potential. They joined forces with the desire to create a realm where magical beings could live freely. They were minor Gods from other worlds and plains deciding to try anew. They wanted to create a world were their followers could worship without fear or reprisal.
They called upon the Great God of all knowledge, an ancient God even then. So old that only the Gods themselves knew of his existence. Eruditus, a potentially powerful, yet long dormant God whom had not held any power since the creation of knowing. He knew the secrets to the breathe of life.
They went to him, waking him from his dormancy with promises of followers. They offered a place shared with him, the chance to know a waking existence. After listening to eons of history, he had desired to experience it. So he agreed to help. He shared the knowledge they needed and together they created a world of greens and blues, peaks and valleys, snows and deserts. One like no other, a jewel capable of supporting many varied beings.
Eruditus knew of excitement, joy, pride but walking amongst this great world he at long last knew how those feeling felt. As promised, he was given followers and for a brief moment he knew how life felt. His followers were granted knowledge on the condition it was used only to advance his society. Any who thought to abuse that knowledge was instantly dealt with because He knew how knowledge could corrupt.
The other Gods soon became jealous of Eruditus. His worshipers were growing quickly in number and he grew in strength. Even though he was a gentle God, he was greatly feared. A plot was hatched to bind him and forever contain his powers.
During one of the festivals celebrating him, the plot was put into place. Foolishly Eruditus let his guard down. He allowed himself to get swept away in the merriment and drank to excess. In that drunken state, the others coaxed information from him that would lead to his undoing and forever seal his fate.
At the time of the harvest moon the ritual was preformed. It called for a reaping of his followers. They were mercilessly harvested that night. With each reaping his power was bound into the form before you. A God cannot be killed only sealed away. When the events of that long night ended and the civilization awash in blood, the Gods sank the evidence in the ocean. Effectively washing away the evil and wiping its very existence from those of time. Eruditus passed into obscurity to lay dormant once again.
Caleb paused to think about everything he just read. What endless possibilities lay before him? He sat back in his chair, his elbows resting on its arms and his fingers interlaced over his lap. He was deep in thought when he began to feel a little drowsy. Probably from that big breakfast, he thought to himself as he closed his eyes.
He was back at the beach the instant he closed his eyes. She was there waiting for him astride a beautiful stallion with another running next to her along the waters edge. Her long hair flowing in the breeze created from their run. Water sprayed with every hoof beat. The sun made the water droplets sparkle like diamonds falling through the sea air. He was breathless from the vision she created. All he could do was stand there taking in the beauty around him. She pulled the horses to a stop in front of him.
“Hello, Caleb I’m glad to see you came back. I knew you would,” she said as she slid off the horse.
“H-how is this possible? How is any of this possible? I should be not taller then it’s ankle,” he said dumbfounded.
He walked around the horses several times looking them over and under while he spoke.
“Don’t you know?” She said. “You’re making this happen. This is just one small part of the Godly realm. Here everything you desire is yours.” As she spoke, she lifted her right hand sweeping it through the air to indicate all that surrounded them.
He walked back over to her, grabbed her by both arms, his eyes wide, he said, “The Godly realm?! How is that possible?”
“You’ve been chosen; well more like it is your destiny. Your’s and mine, together we’ll become Gods. You did read the scroll I gave you?” She asked, leading him back to were she wanted the conversation to go.
“The…scroll…,” he began not quite understanding her meaning. Then he remembered being back in his room and finding the scroll in his hand when he woke. “Oh yeah, the scroll. I got it. It scared the crap outta me at first. I thought this…and you were all a dream. But then I read the scroll and the book, Eruditus. His story is messed up. But that makes since…,” he continued speaking disjointedly until she interrupted him.
“Caleb, the book Eruditus, what did it say about freeing me?” She asked, trying again to lead him.
“Oh, freeing you? I didn’t get that far. I remember reading about Eruditus’ story. Then I sat back in my arm chair to think about the implications having that book would mean and next thing I knew I was back here,” he recounted.
“So you mean, you’ve nothing to tell me about the ritual?” She asked sounding a little annoyed.
“I guess so”
Taking a deep breath to regain her composure, she changed the focus, “No matter. I’m sure that’ll be the first thing you do once you’re back.”
He nodded yes in reply.
“Good, now that that’s settled; how about a ride?”
His eyes lit up at the thought of mounting the beautiful and powerful beast. As he approached the horse it pawed the ground, laying a hand on it’s strong shoulders he stroked the animal calming it. Once it settled down, Caleb hooked his foot in the saddle, pulled himself up swinging his other leg up and over to mount the horse. The horse moved a half step back adjusting to the weight of it’s rider.
Caleb watched as she gracefully mounted her steed. She was a vision to him, beauty, confidence, strength and grace. His heart pounded loudly in his ears as he watched her. Gabriella steered her horse around to the direction from were she came, to face him.
“Are you ready?” She asked.
“Ready for what?”
“Well…,” She started, leaning forward a bit more then necessary to tease him with her delicate cleavage. “Down at the other end of the beach I’ve a picnic waiting for us. I spread out a blanket, set up some plates and have wine chilling. I thought you would like to spend the afternoon with me on our beach.”
He raised an eyebrow and gave a half smile while listening to her proposal. “That sounds like a splendid way to pass an afternoon.”
Together they rode the horses hard along the shore line to the waiting picnic. He enjoyed the wind and water the horses kicked up as they ran. The salt air filled his lungs. He loved the feel of the beast’s powerful body carrying him along. They way it breathed with the effort. But most of all he loved watching her ride the powerful beast in front of him. She was still wearing nothing but the shear shimmering dress. He watched her ride the beast, the way her hips moved in time. Her long strong back tensing with the effort of the ride and her long hair flowing in the breeze.
Before he knew it, they’d arrived at the picnic. Caleb dismounted first, walked over to her and helped her down. He held onto Gabriela’s waist holding her high above him, while she held onto his shoulders. He spun her around and around. She laughed at his playfulness. Finally, he set her gently on her feet.
“That was amazing Gabriela. I’ve never had so much fun. And you’re simply beautiful on a horse; it really suits you.”
“Well, thank you. You’re not so bad yourself,” she returned. “What do you say, are you ready for that drink?”
“I think I am,” he said, as he placed his hand at the small of her back and walked over to the blanket.
Once they both were seated comfortably, she reached into the whicker basket and pulled out two golden wine goblets. She passed him the goblets to hold while she unstopped the wine’s carafe and filled them.
“A toast!” he exclaimed, as he passed her one of the goblets.
“A toast. What should we toast too?”
“A toast to our bright future, of course,” he declared. “May all our plans play out as foretold.”
“Yes, may they do just that,” she said clanking glasses with him. She took a small sip, watching him drink deeply from over her glass.
“Ahhh…That is excellent wine!” he said, as a wine blush started to bloom in his cheeks.
“I’m glad you like it. Here let me refill that for you.” She took his goblet, filling it nearly full.
He leaned back and stretched his limbs in the warm sun, closing his eyes as a gentle breeze came off the water. He rolled onto his side propping his head up with his hand to watch Gabriela. He accepted the goblet and kiss she offered.
Along the forested edge of the beach, where patches of grass grew, the horses lazily grazed. The gulls flew in the sky, calling gleefully in their ride along the thermals high above head. The breeze carrying along the salty smell of the sea, cooled them as they kissed passionately.
She broke the kiss, sitting up with her legs bent to her side. Gabriela took another sip of her wine looking at him seductively over her glass. Caleb copied her motions drinking deeply of the sweet wine.
His head began to swim from the alcohol. He rolled onto his back tucking his hands behind his head to cradle it. He took in the view then closed his eyes for a moment reveling in the feel of the sun on his face and the brightness beyond his closed lids.
After a few moments he began to falter, like poor reception. Then slowly he became translucent until finally he disappeared from the beach completely. She continued to sip her wine watching as he returned to his realm. Behind her the horses changed from being beasts of burden back into their true form of Kelpies.
“Jeesh, I thought he would never leave,” complained Gee, one of the Queen’s guards.
Gee stood a head taller then his Queen. He was strong and solidly muscular like his stallion form. Gee’s long sable hair contrasted his sun-tanned skin beautifully. Like everyone who served the Queen, his hair was kept braided and secured with a gold band. His eyes were a deep warm chocolate brown. He wore little in the way of clothing. The uniform of the Queen’s guard consisted of a front and back loincloth held in place by a leather belt. The cloth was muslin in color and fell to mid-thigh in length. Gold studs adorn the belt. Gee wore nothing else except for the traditional golden arm bands.
“Oh, stop it Gee, you’re just jealous,” Carra reprimanded. “I could’ve enjoyed him all day,” she continued wistfully, while joining the Queen on her blanket. “Though I’m not sure how I feel about him touching you my Queen.”
“Don’t worry, Carra. He’s just a tool; one I will use to free my bonds to this realm and reclaim my King,” she said with renewed resolve. “He was able to find and follow all my clues to this point. I know he is the one who will free me.”
Queen Phyce went to stand but faltered, falling back down. Her guard Gee rushed to her side, picking her up in his strong arms, he cradled her.
It was Carra who gave the order, “Gee take our Queen to her resting chambers; all of this illusion is draining. I knew it was too soon for her to bring him back. She will need to rest for a couple of days before she tries to contact him again.”
As they walked back to the palace, the illusion of the beach vanished and was replaced by an underwater seaweed field. Gee carried his Queen tenderly through the field up to her underwater palace with Carra following close behind.