I thrust my scimitar into its sheath and picked up one of the books. After the mystics' warning, it was almost too much not to open it. I set the book down again but too close to the edge, and would you look at that, it accidentally opened up. My eyes scanned the pages and came away thirsty. The text was dry. It had something to do with the intricacies of paper-making. I kicked the book into the corner and started digging. The books could wait, but my shriveled insides couldn’t.
When the boy opened his eyes, his finger was gone, the flesh sealed over it as if it had never been. Then the temple wall bucked and groaned, and a hairline crack appeared in its surface. Light came pouring out through it—a strange sort of light he could not describe. “Yes,” said his father. “It is opening. You must give more.”