A schizophrenic archaeologist is told give life to any kind of inanimate human figure.
“I hope we get it soon. It is disrupting my job.”
“I can’t imagine.”
“No one can. Being schizophrenic and an archaeologist of antiquities is bad. My profession demands full mental clarity.”
“I’m putting you on a new drug called Clozapine. I’ll see you in a week.”
The doctor stood and so did Erin. “See yah in a week doc.”
Instead of going home, Erin drove to the Metropolitan Museum of Art to study a new artifact. He parked his car and walked through two double glass doors and immediately went to the main studying room.
On a table were several photos of pictograms on a wall of a cave in Cairo Egypt. On top of the pictures was the artifact: a small spherical orange gem which had been embedded in the wall.
Erin studied the picture with a magnifying glass. Thirty minutes later he deciphered the message displayed on a photo. speak the incantation to give life to any likeness of men. Erin read silently. Ra Anubia.
“Peculiar. This is an Egyptian talisman then. Hmm…if only it could be true. A golden statue of Anubis being alive would top the news charts.” Erin yawed. “Time to go home.”
The archaeologist drove home and immediately went to bed. Erin was terrified when he woke up with a hallucination of monsters roaring at him in bed. He shut his eyes, trying to force away the non-existent tormentors to no success. He went under his covers and prayed. The roaring stopped. He lifted his blanket. They were gone. With a pervading peace he quickly fell back asleep.
He awoke at 8:30 A.M. He grabbed a thermos of coffee and a bagel then drove to work. He walked to his study space and went about examining another artifact: a small golden ewer.
The rest of the week went by in like manner. He drove to work and deciphered Egyptian hieroglyphs, dusted off clay jars, chiseled away stones, dated artifacts and did more tasks. He had no hallucinations. The new drug was working!
One night, he lay down with a deep, relaxing sigh. Thirty minutes later, he was startled by a still small voice in his head. Erin. He tried on the lights and looked around. The voice spoke again. Erin. This is the voice of the talisman.
“Go away!” Erin shouted, covering his head with his pillow.
You must use the gem stone so that new lives may be born that I will command.
“I’m not listening! Leave!”
Erin, you will obey.
“Why are you doing this to me? Why me?”
The voice was soft and disturbingly cordial. “Your perceptive mind allows you to hear me.”
That is what men of this age have called it. If you wish for this to stop, do my will and I will leave you.
“Okay, I’ll do as you ask!” Then the voice was gone. “I have to talk to the doc about this. No voice has ever been so real. It couldn’t have been real though. It’s madness!”
I am real Erin. Do as I say.
“Okay! Just, please go away!” Minutes went by with no voice. “Real or imagined, this may be the only way.”
Erin got into his car in the black of night and drove to his work and got the gem with a key to the study room. He went to clothing store with mannequins. He would have chosen a statue, but that section was locked up. He looked at the plastic human figures behind the glass window. “Ra Anubia,” he said.
Seconds later, they began to move. There were three of them. The center one spoke in a deep voice. Now, I leave you.
The mannequins that had become human broke the glass and stepped onto the sidewalk. .All three gave a long cackle.
A lone old man was side eyed in terror. “They’re alive!”
The mannequins rushed the man and struck him in the head. He fell and the living abomination laughed.
“What have I done? None can tell what they’ll do!”
The living puppets broke the windows of stores and cars, overturning the vehicles with great strength. Erin took the top of trash can and bashed one of the living mannequins in the head. It stood there decapitated as nothing had happened.
Erin had to fix this. He ran his hands through his hair. “Think Erin think!” He ran to his car and pulled out photos from the back seat. He rummaged through them. In a photo he saw something similar to the incantation that brought the figures to life. “Maybe, Just maybe!”
He drove up to the human mannequins about a block away. Erin got out and read from the picture. “Ra Anubia Horus eye.”
The three human figures faced Erin and were nearing him. They were moving jerkily. Their actions were stiffing up. The voice cried out. Nooo!
The opposite incantation was turning back into plastic figures again. They were lifeless.
Erin did not hear the voice and he slid down against his car. “It’s over.” What if someone like me acquires the gem. That can’t happen. He stood and entered his car then drove to the George Washington Bridge. “No one will ever go through what I did.” He took the orange gem and hurled it into the water.
No one found out where the gem had gone. Erin had fooled the camera by concealing the stone in his sleeve.
“So what do you think happened to the artifact?” asked a colleague of Erin’s.
Erin grinned. “Perhaps it was a ghost.”
“Do think we’ll ever find it?”
“Not likely, not likely.”