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P. 1
Place of the Gods

Place of the Gods

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Published by Jerry Hamm
aka: BY THE WATERS OF BABYLON
aka: BY THE WATERS OF BABYLON

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Published by: Jerry Hamm on Feb 07, 2011
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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04/23/2014

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ILLUSTRATEDBrt'HENRY
 
PITZ
 IfYourDreamDoesNotEatYouUp You
Jl fay
be
 
GreatPriest.NowGoonYourJourney 
From
TH
S TURD
Y V NIN POST
July3 937
 
T
henorthandthewestandthesoutharegoodhuntingground,butitisforbiddentogoeast.ItisforbiddentogotoanyoftheDeadPlacesexcepttosearchformetal,andthenhewhotouchesthemetalmustbeapriestorthesonofapriest.Afterwards,boththemanandthemetalmustbepurified.Thesearetherulesandthelaws;theyarewell-made.ItisforbiddentocrossthegreatriverandlookupontheplacethatwasthePlaceoftheGods--thisismoststrictlyforbidden.Wedonotevensayitsname thoughweknowitsname.Itistherethatspiritslive,anddemons--itistherethattherearetheashesoftheGreatBurning.Thesethingsareforbidden--theyhavebeenforbiddensincethebeginningoftime. Myfatherisapriest;
 
amthesonofapriest.IhavebeenintheDeadPlacesnearus,withmyfather--atfirst,Iwasafraid.Whenmyfatherwentintothehousetosearchformetal,Istoodbythedoorandmyheartfeltsmallandweak.Itwasadeadman'shouse,aspirit
 house.
Itdidnothavethesmellofman,thoughtherewereoldbonesinacomer.Butitisnotfittingthatapriest'ssonshouldshowfear.I lookedatthebonesinthehouseintheshadowandkeptmyvoicestill.Thenmyfathercameoutwiththemetal--agoodstrongpiece.HelookedatmewithbotheyesbutIhadnotrunaway.Hegavemethemetaltohold--Itookitanddidnotdie.SoheknewthatIwastrulyhissonandwouldbeapriestinmytime.ThatwaswhenIwasveryyoung--nevertheless,mybrotherswouldnothavedoneit,thoughtheyaregoodhunters.Afterthat,theygavemethegoodpieceofmeatandthewarmcomer
by
thefire.Myfatherwatchedoverme--hewasgladthatIshouldbeapriest.ButwhenIboastedorweptwithoutreason,hepunishedmemorestrictlythanmybrothers.Thatwasright. Afteratime,Imyselfwasallowedtogointothedeadhousesandsearchformetal.SoIlearnedthewaysofthosehouses--andifIsawbones,Iwasnolongerafraid.Thebonesarelightandold-- sometimestheywillfallintodustifyoutouchthem.Butthatisagreatsin.Iwastaughtthechantsandthespells--Iwastaughthowtostoptherunningofbloodfromawoundandmanysecrets.Apriestmustknowmanysecrets--thatwaswhatmyfathersaid.Ifthehuntersthinkwedoallthingsbychantsandspells,theymaybelieveso--itdoesnothurtthem.Iwastaughthowtoreadintheoldbooksandhowtomaketheoldwriting--thatwashardandtookalongtime.Myknowledgemademehappy--itwaslikeafireinmyheart.Mostofall,IlikedtohearoftheOldDaysandthestoriesofthegods.IaskedmyselfmanyquestionsthatIcouldnotanswer,butitwasgoodtoaskthem.At night,Iwouldlieawakeandlistentothewind--Itseemedtomethatitwasthevoiceofthegodsastheyflewthroughtheair.WearenotignorantliketheForestPeople--ourwomenspinwoolonthewheel,ourpriestswearawhiterobe.Wedonoteatgrubsfromthetrees,wehavenotforgottentheoldwritings,althoughtheyarehardtounderstand.Nevertheless,myknowledgeandmylackofknowledgeburnedinme--Iwishedtoknowmore.WhenIwasamanatlastIcametomyfatherandsaid,
 Itistimeformeto
go
onmyjourney.Givemeyourleave.
Helookedatmeforalongtime,strokinghisbeard,thenhesaidatlast,
 Yes.Itistime. 
Thatnight,inthehouseofpriesthood,Iaskedforandreceivedpurification.Mybodyhurtbutmyspiritwasacoolstone.Itwasmyfatherhimselfwhoquestionedmeaboutmydreams. Hebademelookintothesmokeofthefireandsee--IsawandtoldwhatIsaw.ItwaswhatIhavealwaysseen--ariver,and,beyondit,agreatDeadPlaceandinitthegodswalking.Ihavealways thoughtaboutthat.HiseyeswerestemwhenItold
him she
wasnolongermyfatherbutapriest.He
 
said,
 Thisisastrongdream. Itismine,
Isaid,whilethesmokewavedandmyheadfeltlight.TheyweresingingtheStarsongintheouterchamberanditwaslikethebuzzingofbeesinmyhead.HeaskedmehowthegodsweredressedandItoldhimhowtheyweredressed.Weknowhowtheyweredressedfromthebooks,butIsawthemasiftheywerebeforeme.WhenIhadfinished,hethrewthesticksthreetimesandstudiedthemastheyfell.
 Thisisaverystrongdream, hesaid. Itmayeatyouup. 1amnotafraid,
Isaidandlookedathimwithbotheyes.Myvoicesoundedthininmyearsbutthatwasbecauseofthesmoke.Hetouchedmeonthebreastandtheforehead.Hegavemethebowandthethreearrows.
 Takethem,
 hesaid.
 Itisforbiddentotraveleast.Itisforbiddentocrosstheriver.ItisforbiddentogotothePlaceoftheGods.Allthesethingsareforbidden. ''Allthesethingsareforbidden,
Isaid,butitwasmyvoicethatspokeandnotmyspirit.Helookedatmeagam.
 Myson,
hesaid.
 OnceIhadyoungdreams.Ifyourdreamsdonoteatyouup,youmaybeagreatpriest.Iftheyeatyou,youarestillmyson.Nowgoonyourjourney.
Iwentfastingasisthelaw.Mybodyhurtbutnotmyheart.Whenthedawncame,Iwasoutofsightofthevillage.Iprayedandpurifiedmyself,waitingforasign.Thesignwasaneagle.Itfleweast.Sometimessignsaresentbybadspirits.Iwaitedagainontheflatrock,fasting,takingnofood.Iwasverystill--Icouldfeeltheskyabovemeandtheearthbeneath.Iwaitedtillthesunwasbeginningtosink.Thenthreedeerpassedinthevalley,goingeast--theydidnotwindmeorseeme.Therewasawhitefawnwiththem--averygreatsign.Ifollowedthem,atadistance,waitingforwhatwouldhappen.Myheartwastroubledaboutgoingeast,yetIknewthatImustgo.Myheadhummedwithmyfasting--Ididnotevenseethepantherspringuponthewhitefawn.But,beforeIknewit,thebowwasinmyhand.Ishoutedandthepantherliftedhisheadfromthefawn.Itisnoteasytokillapantherwithonearrowbutthearrowwentthroughhiseyeandintohisbrain.Hediedashetriedtospring--herolledover,tearingattheground.ThenIknewIwasmeanttogoeast--Iknewthatwasmyjourney.Whenthenightcame,Imademyfireandroastedmeat.ItiseightsunsjourneytotheeastandamanpassesbymanyDeadPlaces.TheForestPeopleareafraidofthembutIamnot.OnceImademyfireontheedgeofaDeadPlaceatnightand,nextmorning,inthedeadhouse,Ifoundagoodknife,littlerusted.Thatwassmalltowhatcameafterwardbutitmademyheartfeelbig.AlwayswhenIlookedforforgame,itwasinfrontofmyarrow,andtwiceIpassedhuntingpartiesoftheForestPeoplewithouttheirknowing.SoIknewmymagicwasstrongandmyjourneyclean,inspiteofthelaw.

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