The First Book of Iaddius Ioahann (Chapter 2, page 2 of 6)

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Chapter 2

When my father, with moist eyes, told me of their decision and his own to let me go I, quite literally leapt for joy. I wrapped my arms tightly around his neck, kissed his cheek and promised to return within a year and to abide by every condition given by the elders.

Three days later I set out with a single horse, purchased by my father for this express purpose, three weeks worth of provisions (for my father had taught me, from an early age, the art of hunting), and a small purse with some money, most of which was provided by the elders, bless their wrinkled, old hearts.

And thus it was that I set out into the world, descending from my mountain home, to explore the world below.

I soon found that the outside world was one of incalculable beauty and infinite light. I saw the colors of the trees, of the flowers. I heard the songs of the birds and the squirrels and the bees, and their songs far exceeded even the beauty of our great symphonies!

I traveled south along the east sea for many days, admiring the nature by which I was surrounded, and the warmth of the land. I slept under the rooftop of the heavens, admiring the bright stars which shone so brightly in the night sky.

On the first day of the fifth week I emerged from the great forests and came upon the ruins of a great city. There were great pillars standing up from the earth and many of them were covered in moss, and all of them were cracked, leaning, or broken. There were swords, shields and spears, littered about on the ground as were also many bones of men still enveloped in their armaments. I saw also the broken remains of large machines of war, which uses I was only able to imagine. There were the blackened remains of what had clearly once been houses, huts, and other buildings, and it was clear to me that there had been a great battle fought here. I moved slowly through the broken streets of this city, keeping my ears alert and my eyes sharp. I soon arrived to a very large building. It stood in a triangular shape rising high into the air. It seemed to me to be taller than all of the trees I had hitherto beheld. The structure was cracked and broken, and the doors had, during the time of the wars I suppose, been broken down - for the ground there about was covered with wooden splinters and broken planks.

After some hesitation, I decided to enter the great structure. It was larger and more spacious than any building that I had ever seen in my own city. It was as though the ceiling was the very sky itself! Despite its size it appeared to be, in form and pattern, much the same as our own judgment halls, however it was in much disarray. There were beams broken and scattered around - one of which fad fallen and broken through one of the large windows along the right wall - the air was full of dust and the sweet smell of freshly cut wood. The gray cement floor was, in many places, broken, cracked, and full of gaping holes and the crimson carpet which had once ran down the center had been ripped and charred in many places. The overall sight and feeling was one of depression and, after a quick glance about, I turned around to leave.

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