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The Golden Torch – Part II

15/03/2012

(If you’re looking for Part I, click on this link.)

I woke up feeling as if bludgeoned over the head, and I attributed this to my awaking every hour or so during the preceding night. The sandman kept me at arms length because he doesn’t particularly like people that are all excited and jumpy. After putting on my clothes in a hurry (day’s labour was about to commence,) I started towards the doorknob, and fell over in admittedly comical fashion when it didn’t turn over like you’d normally expect from a doorknob. I jiggled it a few more times, but it wouldn’t budge. Considering I am, in fact, the caretaker of this property, I’d just have to fix the doorknob myself, and so I decided to climb out the window to try and come at it from the other side. Upon seeing me leap heroically from a tree through a window, my master shot a look of disappointment my way, but knew enough not to inquire further. ‘It’s just one of those days, huh?’ Oh, one such day it was, indeed, and during the remainder of my scheduled multitude of menial tasks (a plague all of its own,) the plague of bad luck continued to assail me. Everything from being locked in the tool shed to nearly having eviscerated myself on a scythe used for cutting weeds in the garden.

This was truly the worst case of bad luck in history, if ever I saw it. My father passed down onto me a strong resentment for all theories spewed from the mouths of the superstitious, however, and I wasn’t about to defy traditional wisdom by explaining recent string of unfortunate events as merely that; bad luck. Perhaps all the crime-ridden stories of last night instilled in me a light paranoia, but as they say, it’s not paranoia if they’re actually out to get you – something I’d secretly hoped would not be proven today.

The possibility of being the victim of a series of pranks gone a little too far set aside, the only other reason I could think of as to why somebody would want to mess with me, was that I had been reading a book I wasn’t supposed to. Despite, or maybe exactly because of having severed connections with inglorious past, I always knew my master as a man of honesty and integrity – I took his word for it when he told me he didn’t know anything about any of this. I did, however, decide it better to lie by omission regarding the reading of the book. The same answer was given from all the other members of the family. I knew I never got along with his son all that well, we had shared a few unpleasant conversations before, but him going so far as intending to maim me, I did not think at all possible. In short; I was now exactly where I was this morning, albeit a little more distraught. The realisation that somebody is probably out to hurt you, maybe even murder you, is a deeply disturbing one, even to the strongest of men. Despite not having any real evidence for any of this, I knew in my gut that something was very, very wrong. At any rate, I figured that whatever harm my reading the mysterious book could have done, it had already been inflicted, or so I rationalised it when continuing to read it. And so, I found myself wholly immersed in the fascinating world of Deathport once again, picking up right where I had left it.

The young Linkvist had just, not knowingly, absconded with an item of more than considerable value. It was to be known as The Golden Torch, the golden part of it which revealed itself only upon the torch being fully burnt out, a process that would take several weeks, at the least. He used the torch on his way back to Deathport, a journey that shaved off only one day. He doused the flame upon returning, and stored it away in a dark cellar, figuring it might come in handy someday, and there it remained for many years to come… Until one day, a fully grown man, he returned to the now reduced to ashes and stone ruins of the town. He held no sentimentality for this place in the slightest, but a certain item had very recently been brought back to his memory, this time in the know of its hidden quality. He knew not of the fate of Deathport, and cared little; all he knew was that he’d be spending the next few hours, or more likely days, uncovering the ruins in search of the entrance to the dark cellar. And so he did. Here, the book included a single page from his journal, describing those few days spent dwelling in the ruins of his childhood, which had crumbled to nothingness all the same through his life of crime.

Day 1

It has now been just a few hours in my search of the torch. Even so, I feel I’m already moving along at a good pace towards uncovering it. I scarcely remember this town, although I spent many years here. The fact that ninety-nine percent of it is buried beneath stones and ashes, doesn’t do much to spark my memory. We were on the road, or rather, on the run, so often that I spent at least as much if not more time in another bed as I did in my own. One thing that I could never forget, however, is the peculiar smell surrounding a small, oddly shaped stone building that was next to my residence. I knew that I’d have to operate much like an animal and set my nostrils to purpose, for smelling that vile, rancid smell would be the best indicator of being near to my goal that I was going to find. I never did get the chance to find out exactly the source of this nasty air.

Day 2

Time has done a marvellous job of concealing not only from sight, but from other senses, as well. With no clues to follow up on, I continue to dig at random. Even if I’m completely off base, I can take solace in the fact that I was born in a little town, rather than a metropolis; I’ll hit the mark sooner or later.

Day 3

The past few days have been painfully uneventful. Fatigue and boredom rule in between bursts frustration over not having found it yet. The notion that I was well on my way two days before seems almost ridiculous now. I’m starting to question whether this is all worth it, but I’ve invested far too much in this to cease efforts now.

After short journal entry before was placed, I found myself unable to fall asleep. I decided to go for a short walk in the area, and in all its clichéd glory, there came the turn of events leading me to my goal. I wonder if anyone has ever been this excited over smelling such rancid foulness…

The book here came to a pretty abrupt ending. After uncovering the torch, he brought it back to his new and fully self-built residence, which would later become the house in which I find myself currently. The book, as I half expected, never did say what exactly became of the torch: was it still here? Did he ever get around to removing the wooden layer to reveal the prized gold? If somebody else took it, how did that person come upon the necessary information? And in what way is this connected to recent events?

(Want to know more? You might just find out if you click here.)

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From → Mystery

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