THE GARDEN part two

THE LAW OF AGE AND KNOWLEDGE

Once in the land of time, there lived a woman of no extraordinary beauty or lineage, but of increasing beauty through curiosity. Her love for all things brought her on a walk one day to a garden far away, where she met a strange talking Serpent to whom she made a promise. The woman was nineteen then, and unbeknownst to the Serpent, she was with child. 

The land of Time was a land where innocence lived hand in hand with age-old wisdom. Things such as death and the body were of no concern to its inhabitants. But the Serpent who lived in the Garden was increasingly distraught by the visit of the Woman from this land, and the ideals she brought with her. He expanded out from the Tree in the middle of the Garden, and over a period of three and a half years over took the land of Time, until all that was innocent was replaced with all that was cynical, and age-old wisdom, slowly became age-old knowledge, and eventually age old myth. Time, which was a gift for the inhabitants of its land, became a bell that took a life on the hour, every hour. The land of Time slowly transformed into the Land of Death. And the original land of the Garden, once ran by the Serpent, was abandoned to become a wasteland for forgotten Dreams, and useless pursuits.

Twelve years had passed since the woman was nineteen and with child, and her child was strong, and meek. He grew with the wisdom of his mother, in the way of his mother; not extraordinary by appearance, or lineage, but by tenacity and curiosity. His way of thinking, and speaking gained fast appeal amongst the people of the Land, and whenever he spoke the people of the land took great delight in listening. To those who remembered the days before the Serpent, it was as if they were living them again through his words. And when the boy spoke, his words made time into a gift by which to experience the thoughts and events around him, as opposed to a clock of death that the serpent had made it into. 

Where as once, the Land of Death was ruled by the Harmony of Innocence and Wisdom, it was now ruled by the Law of Age and Knowledge. The Serpent had built for himself a system of Laws, which exemplified knowing all things. As he expanded out from the tree in the middle, he would proudly proclaim his anthem that Knowledge is to be sought out at all costs. He created a system of ideals expressing this singular thought, and eventually chose a handful of men who would go out learning about the land of Time. Their job was not just to learn about the land, but also to teach the Land the Knowledge of the Garden. These men did so with much force, taking extreme measures to exemplify the ideals of their serpent master. Among them was a Man of the Law named Carthasian. 

Carthasian was a man of integrity above all things. He prided himself greatly upon his abilities to orate and win crowds of people to the following of the Law. Now when Carthasian was sent out into the area from which the Woman had come from, news of his arrival spread like wildfire, and caused a great stir of pride among the people. “Carthasian has chosen our small village to display his great knowledge,” they would say. When Carthasian arrived, he did not find a place to stay, or even to rest his feet, tired from the journey. Instead, he went straight to the town meeting place and began to speak.

“People of the Land of Time, Hear me, for I bring you news of a great joy. A joy of which you have been chosen to partake in.” his words rang out in the city, and the air seemed to carry it, even into the houses of the people who now opened their windows to hear him speak.

The elder of the town made his way to the front of the crowd gathering around Carthasian, and raised his hands and voice acceptingly, “Teacher of the Law, we are eager and hungry for your wisdom. Tell us of the joy which we are missing, and perhaps we will find it again.”

“People of the Land of Time, you are lost. You live your life day in and day out for what reason, other than to benefit each other? But when you retire from each other’s presence, do you not live by yourself, for yourself. Why do you labor for a greater cause when the effects of your work are your own. Those who work in the mine… if the great mountain rumbles while you clean out his trenches, does the world you work for receive any of the gold or diamonds you find… It does not. Instead, the world you labor for is no more the richer, and you have only succeeded in dying. Therefore the death of one for another is meaningless. 

How many of you give freely that all might benefit equally, and how many of you are there who benefit equally? My brothers and sisters, is there not always someone who is in need? No matter how often you give, do you not see that you cannot remove the need?” The crowd began to murmur to itself.

“What then is correct Teacher?” asked a muffled voice from the crowd. The crowd began to echo the question with growing impatience. Carthasian stepped up to the crowd and lifted his had to his mouth, motioning the crowd to be silent. They fell quiet, and the Man of The Law began to speak again.

“We have worked for the experience and the joy of curiosity. For to long, it has been our only reward to pass that experience as if it were of more value than even our own lives. Good hardworking people receive nothing for their hard work other than sweat and tears. This should not be so. We should place values upon the actions of another, so that this person is truly honored for his sacrifice. To take the experience of an elder as wisdom alone, is to say to the elder that his knowledge is equal to the knowledge of every elder, and this dishonors one who’s knowledge is not equal. I swear to you on this day that I will never dishonor my elder by lowering him to my level, for my wisdom lacks his experience, and this means that his experience must be more valid than my own. Thus, the first law of the Serpent, is to honor your elders, for they are indeed of more value than you are.” At this, Carthasian looked around the crowd to see if there was one who would disagree, and as he looked out, his eyes fell upon a young child of about twelve who’s eyes were vibrant and curious, but his demeanor was sad.

“Why do you cry, child?” asked the Teacher.

“Master Teacher, I cry for the elders who are disgraced by what is good of them.” Said the child.

“What is this you speak of Child?” questioned Carthasian.

“Master Teacher, it is admirable for the elders to be held in high regard for theirs is a wisdom that has not yet been experienced by those younger, but it is not a wisdom which is singular to the elders, for Lady wisdom speaks to all who listen. The wisdom of the elders is a wisdom that is for all. What they give to us is not special to them, because to them it is special because it is for all. The elders should cry on the day that Lady Wisdom is said to be a truth of Age, for Lady Wisdom herself is eons older than the elders who listen to her, and they are but children in her eyes. Age is of no consequence in her eyes for she loves us all the same. If an elder believes himself to be imparted with a relationship that is special to his age, than he has dishonored Lady Wisdom, and himself.”

“Who is this child, who speaks with the voice of the One who gave creation Time.” Asked Carthasian to the Crowd.

“My Mother named me Jude, for I am to be a hope for the hopeless.” Said the child.

“When you look out upon the Land of Time, do you see the hopeless young Jude?” asked Carthasian with a sincere look upon his face.

“Although I see the clouds looming in the distance, I know that the Sun will shine again. For though the darkness tries endlessly to comprehend the Light, it cannot for it refuses to be what it is, and it will negate its own existence, but the Children of the Land of Time, cannot escape what they are a part of,  so as the sun comes over the horizon after the storm, so comes hope.” Jude stopped abruptly and looked at Carthasian.

“But Master Teacher, what becomes of a man who runs from his people to become something he is not… is there hope for such a man?” questioned Jude.

“I do not believe in hope, young Jude, for the power of one man is found in himself, and hope is something beyond me.” Answered Carthasian.

“Then indeed there is no hope for such a man, Master Teacher. For if the Serpent is your master, then your hope lies in him, though he lies beyond you.” Jude smiled a familiar smile at Carthasian and turned his back as he went into the crowd. Carthasian called out to the young boy as he was leaving, with a hint of desperation in his voice.

“Young Jude, if what you say is true, then by calling me Master, you claim that your hope is in me, and not in yourself. If you do not believe what I say, then how can you place hope in me.” He questioned. 

Jude stopped in the midst of the crowd and turned toward Carthasian. “Master Teacher, why do we believe that a baby so innocent will survive in this world of darkness?” He waited for an answer, but none was given, and so he finished his thought. 

“The child has hope put in him, not by the measure of what he has, but on the measure of that which has him.” 

“You do not then disagree with my Teacher the Servant?” asked Carthasian defiantly.

“Even your Teacher is under submission to something beyond him, though he will not acknowledge this. How can I deny respect for your teacher when he is the student of my master, even if he doesn’t know it? My hope is in that which has you, and therefore you are an instrument of this, and my hope is in you.” Finished Jude.

At this Carthasian released Jude to go about his way, if Jude would promise to meet him the next day at the same place, that they may converse on the things of life. Jude, having nothing better to do agreed with a grin, and the next day as Carthasian approached the city meeting place, he found a crowd already gathered around Jude. According to the people, Jude had been at the meeting place since the sun came up, waiting for the Teacher. Carthasian walked up to Jude and listened for a moment to the child speaking.

“Consider the sands in the hourglass. Every moment is unto itself a single grain, but every grain is also unto itself a single moment. We take every moment as if it is part of something larger, but rarely do we take something larger and consider that it is made up of every moment. I ask you now, which is more significant, the body of sand which represents the gift of time, or the moments which represent every choice made in that body,” on this note, Jude turned and looked at Carthasian. “Master Teacher, what do you believe?”

“The moment is what is most important, for what is the body of sand, if there is not the tiny grain to make the body.” Replied Carthasian satisfied.

“Then I urge you to take every grain and keep it separate, for this is how you would have them valued, not as a single body.” Said the boy to the teacher. “When you teach the people of the laws of the Serpent, do you do the same? Do you see every Law apart from each other as if their value is their own?” asked Jude.

“Whoever follows the law, must follow the whole law, for whoever breaks one is guilty of breaking them all.” Replied Carthasian.

“Then Master Teacher, why do you separate the moments of life? How can a law which encompasses the whole of life and is itself made of little grains of wisdom, to apply to life which you have said is made up of separate instances? Would that not require a law for every moment, rather than a law for all moments as the law claims to be?” Jude smiled at Carthasian innocently. “It is of little consequence in this moment… you have requested my  presence and I am here. What shall we discuss?” asked Jude.

“Young Jude, the Law of the Serpent teaches that a sacrifice is required to atone for the wrongs that man has committed in this Land, what say you to this?” asked the Teacher.

“Master Teacher, my mother told me once of a lamb who asked why we wore his skin? The Lamb believed that we were pretending to be like him because we were ashamed of what we truly looked like. The lamb was not afraid of what he looked like, for he knew that his shepherd was willing to lay down his life for him no matter what he did… and this is in spite of how he looked to begin with. Why would a shepherd die for a lamb when it inconveniences him by running off, but require that a payment be made for this commitment of his own kind? I would be more willing to die for my brothers rather than my pet. I cannot see the Master of all Masters, the one who gave us time requiring atonement for inconveniencing him. The shepherd does not demand it of his animals, yet the Serpent teaches that the Master of All demands it of me. My mother never demanded that I atone for my inconveniences as I grew. I can not believe that He that is more than the Goodness of a Shepherd to his sheep, or of my mother to me, could ever do less good than them to that which he cares for.”

Carthasian looked at the Child, “Young Jude, whether you believe it to be true does not change its reality.” At this, the crowd started to laugh. “Young Jude, it is a law of the natural that a dichotomy of cause and effect exists. An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. When one life is taken, a life must be paid out. When someone is offended, there must be retribution. This law is not the law of the Serpent, this is the law which the Serpent in his wisdom observed in nature.”

“Where is the dichotomy in black and white? When there is Sun, there is not dark, and when there is not sun, there is simply not light. Taking an eye from one who has stolen yours does not increase how many eyes you have, it only takes the eye from another. If one is offended, does the apology change the history of offense, or is it the actions after the offense that changes the history? It is neither for in all of this, history cannot be changed. The future is the only thing that is moldable. An eye for an eye is an effort to change the past by restoring the physical. Apologies for offense are efforts to change the past by restoring the social. A sacrifice can never change the past, it can only change the future… but cannot a person do this without seeking to change the past. Cannot the offended make right the future by setting aside the past? When has the past ever been made right by a sacrifice? When has the guilt ever gone away when you are forced to relive it in sacrifice? 

Things that are natural do not ask for atonement. They may take the life of another out of vengeance for one they have lost, but when has this ever brought the one they have lost back from the grave? When the Lady of the Creek gives you her water to refresh your thirst, does she ask for atonement for such a sacrifice? When we take the life from the flower of the ground, does the ground demand that one of our children die? All things come from all things. If one takes from another, what is taken will be given back to him in time. The creator of all things gave us all these things in time that we might experience them. Though we may take them, we will give them back to him. This is law that I see in nature. If nothing is lost in nature for all things return, then how can anything be missing. If nothing is missing, than what is there to atone for? What is there that we can take, that we haven’t freely been given.”

The crowd began to buzz amongst itself, as eagerly awaited Carthasian’s rebuttal to this twelve-year-old child. Carthasian stood in amazement at this little boy. After carefully choosing his words, he began. “Little Jude, if I gave you a day’s ration of food and you ate it in one sitting, then when you asked for more, should I not be angry that you ate my food?”

“Master Teacher, if I ate to much of your food in one setting, would you expect that I give it back to you, or even pay for it. You might be angry with me, or even expect that I pay more to get more than the original amount, but what good it would it do to do otherwise?”

“I would expect the food back, or something comparable in return.” replied Carthasian. 

“You and the Serpent might, but nature would not, it knows that what was taken will be returned, and what it gave, it gave freely.” Said Jude.

Carthasian stepped back and looked into the crowd. He could see that the crowd was being won over by the words of this persuasive child, and so he tried another approach.

“Young Jude, let us speak of something more pertinent to the Land around us.” 

“Please Master Teacher, I await your wisdom.” Jude smiled.

“You had said that there is no dichotomy in life. Clearly in its simplest forms, you can divide life into two categories; life, and death.” Carthasian stepped back to see how Jude would deal with this question. To his surprise, Jude perked up and began speaking almost immediately.

“Master Teacher, when you live, you are being. When you die you are not, therefore, these are not the same, though they are connected. Those who die are no longer being, they are experiencing, but not expressing. Those who live are doing both experiencing and expressing, this is the distinction I have made. I say that there is no dichotomy in Life because death is not in life by its very definition.” Said Jude.

“Then living is in death, for those who live will always die, but those who die, will never live young Jude.” Replied the Teacher.

“No master Teacher, it is existing which can transcend death and life for in death there is no ability to experience, and this is required for living. Many people exist through both life and death and call it living, but I say unto you that the one who truly lives can never die for death cannot overpower what it cannot understand, and this is experience in existence.”

“Then if you put anything into death, it would become life, for the existence would experience something and spring forth life?” asked Carthasian.

“Do we not see this in the world around us Master teacher? Does not the flower grow again. Do not the water’s come back though they have been dried up? You cannot kill that which refuses to be done experiencing for his curiosity will always beat out the void of Death.” Replied Jude.

“That is preposterous! Is not your graveyard full of your past. If what you were saying is true, than they would raise up.” Shouted Carthasian. He turned to the crowd and spoke angrily, “See how he blasphemes the graves of your elders.”

“Master Teacher, it is not natural for people to succumb to time by giving up their experience of existence, for time is a gift by which we are to experience existence. If time removes the ability to experience existence than why would it be given to us? People die because they believe, or they are convinced that there is nothing left to experience, but I tell you that if you spoke to the dead a new experience, they would surely rise up and take part in it.”

“Very well, young Jude. I suppose that this is the power of Love over hate and its other dark elements?” Carthasian began to laugh with the crowd at his quip, but Jude continued to answer his questions.

“Love does not oppose hate, nor does it oppose evil, for they are of no threat to it. That which seeks to destroy love is not that which opposes it, but it is that which does not oppose it, for that is the only thing that Love will not act out… Love will not push itself onto another. That which does not care, is the only thing that does not seek love, for hate seeks love, just as the darkness seeks light. Does not the Moon follow the Stars, or the night seek to extinguish the candle. Those who hate have taken love to an extreme perversion, for those who hate cannot bear to live without the object of their hate. It is what they use to define themselves. Those who hate cannot hate Love. It is themselves they hate; while secretly hoping that what they hate will look past their hate and define them, and thus save them from themselves. If one who is hated were to tell the one who hates him that he loved him, his love would beat at the door of his heart like a vibrant pounding until that door opens and the hated becomes the loved. But Apathy does not care that love stands at the door and knocks. The wrapping of love upon the door becomes normal and background and therefore those who succumb to apathy become unable to hear the knock any longer. Those who die can always be brought back, for they only die because they look to death to define themselves. Their ears are still able to hear the knock of Love on the door of existence. Those who cannot any longer hear this become monsters that myths shudder to express, but they are not dead. These people are undead. The power you see here is not the Power of Love over death, it is the Power of Love to give life.”

Carthasian stepped back and looked into the crowd, who stood in silence around their young protégé. Jude smiled warmly at Carthasian, which made Carthasian feel strangely at ease. “Young Jude, we will continue this a different day, for today I must travel out to meet the Serpent. He wishes to be present at our next meeting for he feels that your mighty spirit could be of great use to the people of the land. I will return as the sun rises again on a fortnight from this day, with Master Serpent.” Finished Carthasian. On that, the Teacher turned away from the crowd and began on his journey back to the Garden to speak with the Serpent.

Upon arrival in the Garden, Carthasian found the Serpent resting upon a rock. He stopped and knelt before his master and the Serpent turned at him to speak.

“Carthasian the teacher has returned to the Garden to bring me news of the child Jude. Tell me, did he save your soul? Or did you find what you know to be true?”

“Master Serpent, the child Jude is a voice of something unheard. He does not ask for salvation for his soul, nor does he ask for salvation for mine. He speaks of rebirth without emphasizing death, and speaks of Love, without exposing hatred.” Carthasian looked to the Serpent for his response patiently.

“Shall I speak to the Child as I speak to an old man, or shall I speak to the child as respectfully as I would a child? Jude teaches you as if you were a child, because you sit at his feet as if you were his son. What am I to do with you Carthasian? The innocence of a child does not make reality. The Law is not invalid because a child sees life coming at a distance. When life meets him face to face, it will prove to Jude how his innocence is ignorance; and his idealism is idiocy!” snapped the Serpent.

Carthasian bowed his head to the Serpent. “Master Serpent, what then would you have me do, shall I break him by showing him the superior power of the law?” Carthasian waited patiently for the serpent to begin speaking. “Carthasian, have you not learned that the power of the law does not lie in itself. The power of the law is merely an extension of your faith in it. If you bring the power of the law upon this child, and yet you waiver in your own thoughts, how are you to show him the truth? It is more likely that his faith in his own beliefs will be made more apparent and more powerful than yours, for in them, he does not waiver. If you seek to break him, you will only make him stronger.” The Serpent continued. “If the boy does not wish to comply to the law, bring him to his people as an example of ignorance and youth, and let his shame and wanting to belong, bring him to his need for the law.”

Carthasian bowed his head to the serpent, “Master Serpent, you are indeed wise. I had told the child you would accompany me in my return to him so that you may speak with him directly. What would you have me say to him?”

The Serpent smiled. “Carthasian, the attitude you must take can begin with my response. Why should I trouble myself with the musings of a child? Tell young Jude that he can speak to me when he has experience in this world which equals the size of his ego.” At this the serpent slithered off into the Garden, and Carthasian took his cue to start his trek back to meet Jude.

Upon arrival at the meeting place, Carthasian found Jude once again espousing philosophy to the morning crowd. Carthasian stepped up to the crowd and began to speak over the boy who was passionately enthralled in his explanation of pain and suffering to a newly widowed town’s lady.

“Trouble yourself not with the espousing of this child good town’s folk, for the Serpent has decided that a child has a larger ego than his experience can lend to, and therefore his words are neither worth looking into, nor are they worth concerning his time with.” After Carthasian had finished his accusation, Jude looked up from the woman he had continued talking with despite the disturbance, and found Carthasian’s eyes.

“Tell me Master Teacher, why you follow the command of one who cannot keep his own commandments. The Serpent claims that my ego is not an issue of concern or trouble, yet he sends one of his most talented and trusted teachers to concern himself with my ego.” Jude smiled at Carthasian and continued. “Who has more experience of what is good Master Teacher, a child or a Sage with white hair? The experience of which you have is of what not to do. Do not steal for this brings death. Do not kill for this brings death. Do not lie for this brings death. 

Your law of experience is a law of don’ts. A child is filled with curiosity, always seeking to expand and explore. His is law of Do’s. You say that your law is a more valid wisdom, but which wisdom does nature speak to. Nature gives freely. Nature grows freely. It is there for enjoyment and exploration. Is it not possible that your white hair has betrayed you Master Teacher? Your wisdom is not the wisdom of creation. Your wisdom is that which kills creation, for it extinguishes the joy in exploration, and giving, and replaces these with fear. Teach your law, Master Teacher, but be aware of what it is for it is not wisdom, it is a package of the truth, and if you focus on this you are a teacher of lies.”

Carthasian furrowed his eyes in distress. He had not come to begin a discussion with Jude, but instead to put an end to any discussion that may arise from his philosophical ramblings. Instead Jude had seemingly attacked Carthasian using the alleged hypocrisy of his very own teacher the Serpent. He could feel his words forming to match his hopeless thoughts. “What would you have me do child? Justice is required in a world of order, and this is done through consequence! It is unjust for a society not to have a system of laws for the punishment of its criminals. What does the law of nature speak to such things Jude?”

“Master Teacher, criminals are created by the law, not the other way around. The Law is in place as a system to judge what is right, not that which is wrong. Those who live by the law live in fear of it because it has changed into a system to judge what is wrong, not what is right. Animals kill each other freely without exacting vengeance because they kill out of hunger, not lust, or covetousness. This creates order, not imbalance. When one person decides to stock pile their food in such a way that imbalances the order, this is when killing becomes coated in violence and lust. This is when lives become commodities, and are no longer seen as invaluable but now valuable.

The act of killing becomes an act of securing value, and being given a value that is outside the order disgraces a life that was invaluable as a part of the natural order of things. 

The law of nature is about maintaining a harmonious value. But the law of man is about maintaining a unified value, which is based upon his lustful cravings. The natural law which did not condemn the extinguishing of life, as part of the invaluable order of reality was forever changed by men who decided to place outside value on life. The natural law that claimed, “an eye for an eye,” as a natural check and balance system came to be understood as, “If you remove my eye, I have the right to remove yours.” This law is not the law of nature for it takes the natural order of things and places it in the hands of the individual. It claims that one is separate and above all; where nature’s law claims that one is in, and with all, and places faith in the overall idea that what is taken will be given back to it by the creator. Everything dies. But according to the law of Man, not everything dies for a reason, Master Teacher, this should not be so.”

Carthasian leaned forward. “Young Jude, you say that there should be no punishment for murder. You say that this does not affect righteousness, to those who do not judge by the wrong doing of others. Do you then claim that righteousness and evil are one? I certainly disagree for they are clearly opposed!” Carthasian extended his hand at Jude, motioning for a response from the child.

“Master Teacher, murder is a child of your law. Therefore it is subject to your law. The possibility for Murder is created by the presence of a law against it. Within nature, such a thing as nature is merely an anomaly of the system. It does not require a law, for that which sustains nature will also sustain the order of nature. I say that punishment for an anomaly is pointless, not for Murder. It is therefore not I who claim that righteousness and evil are one, but it is you. For it is your law which spawns a child of evil. What I have said is that true righteousness need not be afraid, or oppose evil, for the natural economy of the creator will sustain the order. Punish your Murderers for they are your responsibility and your children.” Countered Jude.

“Child, I have spent countless years searching this life for the truth and I have found no one so arrogant as you. How is it that you are the only one in all the land who has a corner on truth, yet those of us who are so knowledgeable, devoting entire lifetimes to its studies are somehow wrong?!” Carthasian’s tone began to get stronger slow and steadily until he began to yell. “I will not let you tell me that all that I have known, is a lie!”

Jude smiled at Carthasian. “Master Teacher, I have not told you that what you know is a lie, for in your lifetime you have seen more of these things than I will ever see. You know the truth of this world of Death and Chaos and of the Garden, and you know how to navigate it and lead a fruitful life in spite of such misery. But the truth that you know is the truth of a world that was never intended to be. It is the truth of the anomaly, not the truth of the system in which the anomaly lies. I am not the only one in the land who has a corner on truth, I do not contain truth at all, but truth contains me. It is you dear friend who has a corner on truth, and it is you who has only that.” 

Carthasian could feel something welling up inside of him, it was a question, perhaps even a doubt, but he pushed it down into the bowels of his being, and began to speak. “I will never believe such lies.” And as he said this, a rushing wind swept through the meeting place, and Carthasian fell over, dead. The crowd murmured amongst themselves claiming that this must be a trick, and that Jude had killed Carthasian. Jude looked at the body of Carthasian laying on the ground, and he began to speak.

“My dear Master Teacher, what has the serpent done to you? You have so much left to experience but you have ended your ability to do such things,” Jude looked around him at the crowd as he knelt down to the body, “I tell you on this day that you will see the power of that which created you,” Jude now began to address Carthasian as if he was alive. “Carthasian, awake for there is more in this world than the corner you have explored.” At this Carthasian’s eyes opened, and the crowd stepped back in fear. Jude helped Carthasian sit upright, and began to address the crowd. 

“Did I not tell you that if you spoke to the dead a new experience, they would surely rise to take part in it… so be it. A new experience this sage shall have.”

At this the crowd, swelled up with emotion started to cheer the name of Jude, and danced with Joy, as Jude took Carthasian by the hand into the streets of his city.

As the day grew dark, Carthasian ate supper with Jude and his Mother, and conversed with them until morning. As the sun rose up over the Horizon, Carthasian started back to tell the Serpent of his last encounter with the boy, unsure of what he would say, and unsure of what he would do. Something had happened to him because of Jude, and the seed from that encounter was welling up inside him like a deluge that cannot be contained.

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