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26 March 2010 @ 10:59 pm
The Book of the Others issue 2  

The thousand eyes that watch from space

Let us record the events which took place on the hot summer of 1913, on the Navarre's Pyrenees, Spain.

When professor Bermejo invited me to stay at his house on the Pyrenees, I thought it would be just a nice spell for two friends keen on investigation. But when he picked me up at the train station of Pamplona, I knew something was wrong, for his face showed the fear of someone who has seen beyond the veil...

How familiar this feeling was for me.

All along the journey to his house in the mountains, professor Bermejo seemed to be absent. An unusual silence inhabited his lips so accustomed to hours of talking about the theories of the Englishman he so admired: Charles Darwin.

Any attempt to obtain more information, was replied with a “you have to see this”, in a very poor pronunciation. His accent wasn’t good to begin with, and now that he was mumbling an hybrid between English and Spanish, it was even more difficult to follow him.

It was already dark by the time we arrived at his place. I was surprised to see two men waiting for us. They were, like Bermejo, Spanish liberal intellectuals, evolutionists, men of science who rejected the catholic customs of their country.

I felt fortunate since the American pragmatism that characterizes me is often unwelcomed by religious fanatics.

Bermejo introduced me as Professor Jervas Jermyn from the University of Miskatonic, an expert in Hugo de Vries and his mutation theories. I was laughing on the inside; it’s not hard to be an expert in monsters when you are a monster yourself.

Despite my clear signs of exhaustion, nothing would convince these gentlemen to wait until morning. We equipped ourselves with gas lamps and walking sticks, in order to set foot into the dark mountains.

Bermejo looked scared; his partners, on the contrary, where quite excited.

After a two hour walk through a winding path, we came to a narrow entrance on the rocks. We entered in a row, one by one, and then one of the scientists, a man called Sánchez-Bengochea, who were the strongest among us, took the front position.

We walked inside that cold cave for almost an hour, guided just by the light of our lamps which drew dancing shadows on the stone walls

Then we came to a small hole near the ground. A man could only pass through it by crawling. And again, without further debate, the scientists began to crawl one by one through the hole, until Bermejo said that it was my turn; and just like in my days of youth, I crawled through the entrance, hoping to find something which would be worth the effort and trouble. What we saw on the other side didn’t disappoint me.

We were on a wider cave, where I could stand fully erect, and even when I lifted my arms I couldn’t touch the ceiling.

There were a series of elements in the place: a grotesque figure carved in the rock and an improvised altar in front of it; images painted on the walls, with a strong red pigment; and, over the altar, a rusted knife.

But none of those things were the most impressive in the cave. Lying on the center of the room was an exoskeleton which belonged to something that could easily be more than 5 feet tall. Bermejo and the others stood still in front of it, ignoring everything else around us.

Professor Sánchez-Bengochea told me how he found all this while exploring the cave in search of geological evidence to determine the Pyrenees age. Bermejo later continued by saying they were shocked by the discovery, since they couldn’t find an evolution chain that could explain the existence of such a rare species.

The exoskeleton gave me the impression I was standing in front of a giant lobster, only its head was filled with hundreds of eyes. What didn’t make any sense was the long distance from the cave to the ocean; nothing could explain the presence of that thing there.

It was clearly not a fossil, and I also knew it wasn’t a carcass; it looked more like some sort of shed skin, belonging to an unknown being not of this world. Another disturbing element was the image carved on the rock; it clearly depicted the creature whose exoskeleton we were watching.

What worried me the most was that the cavern was obviously used to worship the creature.

For a long time I silently heard the discussion held by those men of science. They were all determined to show their discovery to the scientific community. They were sure of having discovered an evolutionary missing link, which would give them world fame. All they said seemed to me nothing but a bunch of nonsense.

I focused my attention on what was painted on the walls, and discovered, to my displeasure, that it was the language of the ancient ones. “We can’t avoid the thousand eyes looking at us from space” was written on it. And when I read it out loud, a cold chill ran down everyone’s spines, including me.

Bermejo asked me if I knew what that creature was. My answer was simple: whatever it may be, humankind should be kept ignorant of its existence. My answer angered them, and like vultures thirsty for glory, they assaulted me when I gave the idea of setting that place ablaze.
Poor unwary fools.

Sacrificing part of myself I caught them, and I saw them cry and tremble before my power. Darkness covered the place, and the stone began to shine, as if accustomed to that sort of interventions from Chaos.

Then I realized that the best course of action was to destroy all the evidence.

With a scream Bermejo asked what was I doing. With a smile, I thanked him for bringing me to that cave. Sánchez-Bengochea struggled to release himself from my bindings, but that was impossible. When despair overcame him, he began to scream hysterically, calling me a monster over and over again. I couldn’t help but laugh grimly.

I looked at Bermejo and said: “It’s a shame, my friend, that it was you who found this”. Thereupon, I set fire to the temple, thus muting the immortal voices that inhabited that foul place, alongside the voices of those scientists who dared to jeopardize our mission.

I tore down the cavern entrance and set my steps towards Pamplona. I had to leave Spain quickly, to avoid raising any suspicion.

On the train to the port of Sevilla, where I would set sail to my dear America, I reflected upon what had just happened. I sacrificed the life of an old friend, but with it I managed to save the mission that binds me to this book. Satisfied, I fell asleep under the starlight.

Under the light of those thousands of eyes watching us from space.