The Heptateuch of Eve - Part 1
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Missive to Issa Antar, as received and notarised by Secretary Rushaim of The Wanderer’s Library

Noble scribe,

I trust you are well. My position is still secure, serpent-forking. I send you this latest report from my new position at the Foundation, where I have recently been assigned Class-D testing capability with a new anomalous entity quarantined after its recovery from the Timor Sea.

The usual precautions were taken in ciphering this message, although it is impossible to be sure. It’s less the surveillance of my Jailor superiors I fear (not to mention the constant presence of Bookburner drones) than genuine interest from our cetacean allies. Double agents from Arafura are hard to distinguish from the friendly, pre-anomalised bands that regularly perigrinate the island at sunset. Their whistles and clicks almost sound like derisive laughter. Maybe it’s just the tropical heat.

Of the new anomaly, I will say as little as possible except that she is human, middle aged, and some initial observations about why I believe her to be a highly untrustworthy source. Some likely Fifth Church paraphernalia were recovered from her person upon arrest, including a boogie-board1 stuffed with contraband hydroponic weed, a plastic Budai charm and an old ‘Osho Chakra Healing’ cassette tape (I played it on an antique boombox that I found in one of the cyclone shelters, for a laugh. It was immensely boring). A five-petalled frangipani tramp stamp tattoo on her lower back is common enough in these parts to mean nothing significant. Or else, it would have meant nothing had I not played that tape again this morning, after my first interview with the entity. Apart from a refusal to engage in conversation or eat the rather nice paella I’d made for us both,2 I witnessed no anomalous experiences during the interview. Just another bogan3 in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Afterwards, I wanted an inane-level white noise source for some poetry memorization rituals, and thought the cheesy tape might be the perfect candidate. But what emerged instead was a sonorous chant in Koine Greek, transcribed here in Glagolitic for your esteemed pleasure.4

I will leave speculation and exegesis alone for the time being. Too many possibilities arise, and my Jailor superiors likely have their own agendas for its interpretation once they get their hands on it. Which, if I am to keep my cover, they inevitably will.

Yours in myriad,

Iskander the Exile

Begin transcription:


The Birth of Eve from the Giantess Masseba

In the time before God was formed in the land of Shem, as is retold by the forebears of Adam one thousand times over threefold, and five hundred forebears of Adam more, there stood a great island in the midst of the southern seas that lies beyond the girdle of the earthly sphere.

This island the forebears of Adam, and our forebears through generations since, have called the Land of Saul for the wide encircling girth of its shores, and also for the long journeys the people were oft to make across its endless plains.

The island that was called the Land of Saul was peopled at one time with many of the people of Adam, who had not yet learned the speech of humankind, nor feared the Lord God their creation, but spoke with the voices of birds.

In the midst of this great island there was a silver lake much admired by the forebears of Adam, for the surface of it shone like a polished mirror, and its waters thronged with fishes, and its skies were filled with fowl, and albeit the middle realm of Saul was all around dry desert, the lake was ever a source of joy and repose like unto a paradise in the wasteland.

All the while thus beneath the waters of the silver lake, there lay sleeping a hidden giantess, called by herself Masseba, for the stone of the earthly substance made up her bones and limbs, and her integuments and vital humours were alike to veins of ore and salt. And while she lay sleeping below the waters, as still and as vast as the stone that first marked the heavenly firmament, the fathers and mothers of Adam and the fish of the lake and the birds of the sky all caroused above in blithe unknowing.

It came to pass that one morning, as the sun was rising above the silver lake, that the fathers of Adam were arranged along the shore and singing love songs with their bird voices, calling to their lovers across the waters. The mothers of Adam answered in their turn from their boats upon the lake, whereon they had cast their nets, and were drawing fish for their sustenance.

And though the giantess Masseba lay sleeping the while, she heard these love calls drifting down to her to the bottom of the lake, to wit, she stirred to waking. And lo, like a mountain she began to rise from the lake-bed, scattering the boats of the women as great perturbations of water cascaded down from her breast like folds of shining silk.

And her rising did cause a mighty wave to crash upon the land, until the lake-bed was but a dry desert, and all the fathers and mothers of Adam hid their faces in fear. When at last they dared look upon the terrible vision, they beheld a woman of red stone whose brow touched the sky, whose limbs rose like the pillars of heaven, and whose eyes and teeth shone with the lustre of pearl. The noble hair of Masseba hung heavy with the perfume of the First Kingdom of Heaven’s sacred oil, and all the people of Adam gathered there fell to awe of this revelation.

And within the wide belly of Masseba, which was broad and round and red as the setting sun, there grew the girl Eve, so named as the herald of evening that follows the descent of our goodly orb into the repose of earth. And yet while Eve slept within the womb of her mother, still she quickened, for she understood the language of every beast and of humankind alike. And in the great mother’s rolling across the earth, the giantess Masseba cried out to the sky in her labour pains and gave birth to her daughter Eve, who thus leapt full-grown and unafraid from the belly of her mother.

Eve spoke presently to the forebears of Adam there gathered in fright on the shore, and in the language of birds that they might understand her, saying,

“Do not be afraid. I am Eve, the daughter of the giantess Masseba, who is the daughter of the earthly sphere, and is anointed with the Chrism of the First Kingdom of Heaven.

“I bring you good news that you may loosen your fears and learn the language of humankind and all the beasts alike.”

And it came to pass that the forebears of Adam saw the perfect beauty of the girl Eve, and learned the languages of each human, fish, bird and beast. And in her age and weakness the giantess Masseba fell back unto the earth her own progenitor and cast her eyes of pearl once and forever upon the heavens. Then it was that her limbs of red stone set into the ground as a mountain rests in Sinai beside the Sea of Jordan.

Whereupon seeing this, her daughter Eve fell to weeping. The forebears of Adam wept along with her, knowing her grief full sore. Yea, their tears mingled with hers and continued thus for forty days and forty nights upon the fallen body of the giantess Masseba, until she became a mountain of red rock cut with deep gorges where their weeping had coursed, and her bones had been rendered into steep cliffs.

The people gathered below then begged of Eve to help them, as their provisions of stored fish was now at an end, and the lake that was ere this catastrophe their sustenance was now scattered to the four winds. To them she replied,

“Fear not, for the provisions of life are not ceased, nay, I have taught you the language of the beasts, and from them you will learn the history of humankind, and your children will carry the seeds of your generation henceforth.”

And so it was that the forebears of Adam gathered new provisions from then Land of Saul, and moreover, from the wandering beasts they learned a great deal further.

In accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License, the character of Issa Antar is attributed to Wanderer's Library author MalyceGraves. More of their work can be found here.

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