The beginning of the autumn has always been a time of celebration in Fiery Creek. It is traditional to hold markets and to thank the Author for ending the September heatwave without killing us all out of boredom – I mean, summer and winter are interesting and intense seasons, but autumn is that kind of so-so in between season where authors tend to get writer’s block and kill their projects with one final, unoriginal blow in which they don’t even make sure that the end is satisfying and answers all of the mysteries, so it’s important to thank the Author for not doing exactly that -, with celebrations that are usually held in the Temple – there have been no more fireworks since the town burnt five years in a row in the 1967-1971 period.
But at the end of September 1853, an unexpected incident interrupted the celebrations that were being held in the Temple. It is not known exactly what happened, and several different versions have been recorded. These do not agree with each other, and though historians have tried to make sense of the declarations of the witnesses – oddly, quite a few witnesses are still alive -, with little to no success.
Right now, only two things are clear:
- The fact that there was an explosion inside the Temple.
- The fact that none of the people who had been inside at the time of the explosion survived.
Mary Clark had been at the entrance to the Temple when the explosion happened, about to walk into the building. The shock-wave caught her and everyone else by surprise, and she was thrown to the floor. She run into the building to save whomever may still be alive, and her description of the situation has been saved in her diaries:
“The smoke and dust covered my view, and I could barely see a couple of feet away. There were corpses everywhere, and a terrible sense of power filled the room. Some shadows moved in back of the Temple, but when Ba’al and I got to the place, there was nothing but corpses there. I had seen worse than that in my lifetime, but I had never sent such sense of powerlessness”.
Ba’al, the Pince of Hell, had been with Mary Clark the whole time, and his version mostly agrees with that of Mary Clark. There are, however, certain details that Mary Clark did not record in her diaries, and when asked through the ouija board, she never remembered them, either. Ba’al’s version reads as follows:
“It was not the explosion that caught me by surprise, but an ominous feeling. Something paralyzed me in that instant, and when I saw Mary run into the Temple, I ran behind her, trying to stop her. There was dust and smoke everywhere, and the floor was covered with corpses. Something seemed odd about these corpses, though. It looked to me as if their souls had been stolen before the explosion, as if their physical deaths had just been a mere formality”.
At that moment, Merlin had been flying towards the Temple, so he saw the whole thing from far away. What he saw, however, was completely different to what the rest described:
“There was no explosion. A human looking silhouette was floating on top of the Temple, hovering through the use of magic. It was as if that person was carrying out a ritual, and at the moment in which the flying being disappeared from the top of the Temple, a lot of people dropped dead inside”.
This has created quite a debate among historians. Was there, or was there not an explosion? It is difficult to know, since the people who were near the building all agreed that there had been an explosion, while the one that were far away did not see it. The fact that the building was intact is a point that seems to confirm that there was no explosion. The corpses, however, had been charred and thrown around like it happens when there are explosions.
Most of the stories around this day are centered around these two different versions of the story, with several variations that have probably been added later on into this legend. There is, however, a third and even more mysterious account of what happened that day, belonging to Diane Vines, oracle of town. Her cryptic sentences contain a message that has yet to be understood:
“Everything was what happened. These people were harvested for a greater purpose. This was just a way to let the Author know”.
The reference to the Author, who rarely intervenes in the Multiverse that he has created, is the only one. None of the rest said anything about him, even though the incident happened in his Temple. In fact, not even the people who were near Diane Vines at the time of the incident had versions that could explain what she meant.
Whether we will ever know the truth about this incident or behind Diane’s words, nobody can tell.