Chapter 64: Time.
I sit up and catch a glimpse of my room before more images appear in my mind. Enlil, in all her divine beauty, walks alongside me—Kanti—speaking to various men and women at different times in history: Neanderthals, Cro-Magnons, other cave-like people, and ancient Egyptian-looking humans.
“Since man was capable of seeing us and the cloak, we merely took it upon ourselves to ask if anyone would do us the honor. Naturally, many refused out of an instinctual belief that they were unworthy of such a shroud. Those you see accepted the cloak before Monad.” Kanti pauses and sighs.
“Did they all become Nothing? Even that woman?” I ask, feeling Kanti’s sorrow. They accept the cloak with pride and certainty.
“Yes,” Kanti responds. “Each and every one of them, a bestial Nothing. Because of our ignorance.”
I see them through Kanti’s eyes, fighting themselves as the cloak turns black. Their skin looks like gray sand. Their hair a dull silver. “Make it stop!” I yell. Kanti’s emotions overpower me. A man struggles for Kanti’s hand as his skin flakes off. Half of the cloak bearer’s face dissolves, revealing a twisted, feral astral creature. “Please, Kanti!”
“I cannot,” Kanti laments. “This is the first time since my Enlil died that I have shared my memories with another. Unfortunately, I have forgotten how to restrain the emotions attached to them.”
My face burns from the uncontrollable, incessant weeping.
“Before Monad received the cloak, no being had known your cloak was capable of banishing or devouring souls, nor the effects of either on the host. The divines and ethereal beings were adjusting to Sha-ik’Tael’s enslavement within the divine source. Collectively, we lacked the capacity to comprehend Sha-ik’Tael for lengthy periods of time; the divines who were capable of resonating at different levels simultaneously were destroyed during Te’Viel. Thus, we were only capable of putting together, what, and why the cloaks were.
It pains me to admit that in our ignorance, we had the cloak bearers devouring the souls of the wicked. Enlil, the preceding cloak bearers and I wandered aimlessly toward locations of calamitous rumors, which primarily came from ethereal beings who were in control of separate societies of humans. We would travel where people ate their children, constantly fought one another out of fear or paranoia, or wherever miscreants ran amuck—”
“So when did you—”
“Monad,” Kanti interjects, as Monad flashes in my mind. “His obsession with Th’Rut led to the activation of his Second Sight; it was his focus that taught Enlil and I how to detect the resonance of Nothing in the physical realm.”
“—Which at the time, was only the previous feral cloak-bearers and Th’Rut, right? Since Th’Rut ate the other Nothing? If I understand, correctly.”
“Yes,” Kanti affirms. “Monad’s will was such that it led him to levitate, heal his physical body and go astral. Before then, Enlil and I, cloak-bearers included, did not fully comprehend physical death, save from the separation between the corporeal and physical bodies. We did our best to keep the cloak-bearers out of Olacium, since we did not know what effect their presence may have.
Unfortunately, there was a heavy price for Monad’s incredible will and capability: His sanity.”
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