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The little book

by Brian Zuleta about a year ago in fantasy
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"Tales from the little black book"

Illustrations I made for the "Little Black Book" contest.

Formal Write out below, Enjoy! :)


Once upon a time near the edge of the world, where the oceans fell to oblivion and the moon poured its milk onto the lilac void of eternity. A little black book lay upon an old wooden pedestal just beyond the edge of reality.

This book was imbued with the answers to all of man’s suffering; holding the world’s knowledge within the pulp of its ancient yellow paper.

Its spine was tied and bound by a mythical thread of hair said to have belonged to the first woman who’s own wisdom spilled out onto the depths of its pages.

It is said the owner of the book wrote with the tears of her misfortunes and signed them with the sacred life blood of her dreams, filling it with the immortal stories of countless lives lived. Stories within the realms of men of which she returned forever until her final mysteries could be written in the pages of time.

Man gained knowledge of the book's existence and fought over the rights to its forbidden secrets but none were wise enough to cease their search, for the book, suspended in time was far beyond the reach of the selfish men. The book tempted all with its awesome spells to heal the world but the powers of prescience could corrupt even the noblest doers of good. Thus man’s imperfect nature brought forth a dangerous matter for he who claimed the book undeservingly, doomed himself to lie outside the world for eternity.

Man continued to scower throughout the 4 corners of the world even up to the edges of reality, but it was in this thinking that man failed to find it. Rumours flourished and myths were created by those who sought to pretend a fraction of its truth, but Its mysteries remained floating between the fringes of an eternal darkness.

The wisest of men and woman sat around a table discussing the properties of the book and its likely location; “It has an oily leather sheen!” claimed one, “Its paper is made of gold leaf” said another, but none were closer to finding the treasure with description alone.

Within their minds it pearled like a glowing star, beckoning them to follow the clues and seek it. But upon their growing hunger and ambitious desires, they arranged a devious plot.

The wise came to realize it was not prudent to find the book themselves but to embolden a curious boy alchemist who could claim it in their name. The group promised to requite him with a bounty of precious jewels and shower him with an inheritance of twenty thousand gold pieces.

The young alchemist; a poor bastard in his name, promised his findings to the group, for such a pledge could fix his wretched life and solve the accounts of previous missteps which had made his gold purse light.

He began his arduous quest with the whispers of success arousing his wanderlust. His yearning to know the deepest wisdom of the arcane world brought him far but the lack of clues and ambiguous reports burdened him greatly. Thus his search for more knowledge was met by his inexperience which blinded him of his own naivety.

The book puzzled him to the point of unconscious inspiration, for the young man whose fantasies spoke to him one night, told him to search within the place that no other but him could enter. The riddle bewildered him as he pondered within his small candle lit quarters.

For days he investigated his rarest books. He wrote out his deepest thoughts, speaking them aloud as he continually approached the edge of an ever receding answer.

One night he had a dream which had him falling through the world; falling, falling from the highest mountains of the earth. During his descent, he saw the infinite stretches of life and the innumerable stories yet to be told. Dropping through the clouds he saw every bird and every beast. He saw them mingled and hunt, playing out their roles in the boundless act of life

Further down he sank, plunging through the ocean’s blue within blue water. He felt the depths beneath the waves swallow him as the shadows of fish danced around his body. Slowly he disappeared towards the bottom of the world fading into black nothing.

The abyss howled with ghostly silence. And there he became entranced to a single jewel of light which slowly approached him. The diaphanous fluttering of milky pages revealed it to be none other than the legendary book.

He felt the world hold still and as if all of life awaited his decision. “To know all things” he fathomed, evaluating what exactly that meant. His hand hovered over the cover, his mind feverish and desperate to reveal its esoteric spells, but a penetrating caution filled him to his core. It was then that the sound of soft feminine weeping could be heard behind the ebon curtain which surrounded him. Trembling, he pulled his hand back in understanding. He dared not open it, for to know totality was certain death.

A voice then spoke to him with great authority: “Man who finds the answers to all his troubles petrifies his life. And it is he who opens the pages of time prematurely that ends his journey short, for the one who reveals life at the appropriate time honours the here and now and its mysterious beauty.”

The numinous voice awoke his senses as his spirit surged with a strange clairvoyance.

When the young man awoke he finally understood that the book was not to be found outwardly but within the depths of his own soul.

Many years later, towards the end of his life he would encounter the book once again presented by a mysterious woman who would appear in a telling dream. When he finally read the pages, the words could not destroy him for “A life well lived.” were the final words on the last page of the little black book.


About the author

Brian Zuleta

I like to make things that inspire me and hopefully it affects others in the same way. I Illustrate, write, and other crafts, all for the purpose of genuine expression. Hope you like my work!

Portfolio: www.instagram.com/surreal_movie

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