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Anthrobar's Scroll

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The third was the greatest loss, I'm told. Nobody ever dared to memorize it, not at least since a priest named Anthrobar turned his brain to a cinder simply by trying to copy the damn thing—and to make matters worse, his partial transcript, which is what we used to get to Rathillien, disappeared soon after our arrival.
Jame, God Stalk,
"Chapter 7: The Feast of Fools"

Anthrobar's Scroll was a partial copy of the Book Bound in Pale Leather, made by a priest named Anthrobar.[1] The attempt was fatal; Anthrobar "turned his brain to a cinder" making it.[2] The partial copy was used by the Kencyrath to get to Rathillien after the Fall, the Book being in the hands of Gerridon.[2] After arrival, the scroll was lost.[3]

It shows up again in Tai-tastigon; Jame is asked by Ishtier to retrieve the Law Scroll of the Kencyr temple, which he says is in the hands of the idol in Gorgo's temple. Jame foolishly promises to bring him the scroll in the idol's hands—but she knows enough to know that the scroll she finds is not the Law Scroll but something far older and more deadly. The attempt to copy the Book could only work if Anthrobar was successful in copying the Master Runes without any attempt to read or understand them, copying them as shapes and patterns only. However, it is clear to Jame that Anthrobar, despite himself, began to see the words forming, and began to rush, faster and faster, sloppier and sloppier pen-work until the strokes cease in mid-word with his death.[1]

Jame is unwilling to bring Ishtier anything of such value, but is bound by her word; Marc, accompanying her, would then be bound by his oath as a City guard to turn her over. The latter conundrum is solved by Marc realizing that he can steal the Scroll; in the excitement, he startles Jame and she topples off into the water. The scroll is ruined; the ink runs, and nothing remains legible.[1]

She realizes that this scroll can be safely returned to Ishtier without breaking her word and without giving him things she believes he shouldn't have. She's surprised, though, when Ishtier's words of anger when he finds out that the scroll is ruined are not to do with losing the chance of escape from Rathillien, but rather regret the chance to end the Kencyrath's long struggle. She doesn't make the connection yet that Ishtier has aligned with Perimal Darkling. Unfortunately, her words back to him led him to conclude she has read the real Book, since they contain words not in the copy.[1]

ReferencesEdit

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 God Stalk, Book II: Crown of Nights, "Chapter 9: A Matter of Honor" — " 'Not unless they've started writing them in the Master Words of High Runic. No, this is something else, older than any temple copy and far more deadly. See how the figures start out crisp and clear, then here, halfway down, begin to falter? Despite himself, the scribe must have begun to see the words forming under his quill point, and the race began to the end of each line. More speed, less control, ink spattering, lines shaking… and here it simply ends, in midsentence, in mid-word. […] Tell me this thing isn't Anthrobar's scroll, the only copy, partial as it is, of the Book Bound in Pale Leather.' "
  2. 2.0 2.1 God Stalk, Book II: Crown of Nights, "Chapter 7: The Feast of Fools" — " 'The Serpent-Skin Cloak, the Ivory Knife and the Book Bound in Pale Leather. The third was the greatest loss, I'm told. Nobody ever dared to memorize it, not at least since a priest named Anthrobar turned his brain to a cinder simply by trying to copy the damn thing—and to make matters worse, his partial transcript, which is what we used to get to Rathillien, disappeared soon after our arrival.' 'In other words, you're stranded here without it?' 'That's about it…' "
  3. The Sea of Time, "Chapter II: A Willow Rampant" — " 'I've told you how much knowledge we lost when we fled to this world. What we had left was largely oral, preserved by singers, with a few rare exceptions such as Anthrobar's Scroll and Priam's Codex, both since lost.' "

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