A blonde peon walking in the snow

The writings of Elisabeth Crane – Dev Blog 77

Part 1 – A beginning

My name is Elisabeth Crane. I doubt human eyes will ever read these writings, but it is in my nature to make them – for there is a chance that one day they may be recovered and I truly fear the situation that will involve their discovery. I have taken a journey I may never return from and to think, the first step of this journey was nothing but a sequence of dreams and fractured images.

It was less than three months ago that I had the first dream – an unusually consistent set of events and locations which occurred during my slumber. A fantastic landscape of floating frozen islands filled my mind. Unknown sigils and eldritch creatures flashing before my eyes. There was one sigil that kept recurring so often that when I awoke I immediately scribbled it down in the dream diary I kept on my nightstand.

Reflecting now I regret putting pen to paper. The date that day, was the 13th August 1931. A day the same as any other. I rose early and rode to the public school I teach at. In the evening consulted with a knowledgeable colleague about my dream – showing him the sigil that I had drawn.

How I wish now that the fellow had not recognised it. He couldn’t place the symbol exactly but handed me one of his books, a modern translation of an obscure Latin text called “Outside the Spheres”

Thanking him, and returning home I read that eldritch book. It told the tale of another dimension which exists at strange angles to our own. Of the ancient aspects that rule that place. Of the interactions between the two places. Of the magic and mythology of this strange universe.

It was that fateful night, that I decided to find out more about this place. A decision I will regret for the rest of my life.

Part 2 – A letter arrives

My name is Elisabeth Crane. And I think I am going to die.

After I had that first dream, and after reading that damnable book “Outside the Spheres” my curiosity took the better of me and I become obsessed with The Void, seeking out information about it. Trying to learn as much as I could. I even took a brief sabbatical from my job to visit some of the older libraries in London.

Researching these ancient myths and legends was fascinating. Scattered amongst half a dozen well known works of the occult were references to this strange and ancient universe – always just fragments of information like someone was trying to hide a truth in plain sight.

The letter came on the 5th September – it was typed, and had no signature, but had been hand delivered to my home. Inside was a simple message, warning me not to delve any further into my current research.

I am not one to be scared easily and the letter did not scare me – but it did make me both curious and angry. Who had any right to determine what I studied? What was trying to be hidden from the world? I had to uncover these mysteries.

I wish, in retrospect, I had heeded the letters warning.

Part 3 – Another universe

The events of the 21st September will be etched forever in my memory. For it was when all sanity left my life and I ended up in this frozen place.

My name is Elisabeth Crane and I am no longer on the planet Earth. In fact, I am not even in the same dimension as the one I was born in.

I have recorded these entries in the hope they may be discovered, and more truth be known. I had discovered fragments of occult lore hidden amongst ancient texts. Some unknown agent had written me a letter, trying to stop my research. I ignored it.

The more I learnt of this place, known as The Void, the more I dreamt of it – which lead to an even greater thirst for information about it.

I had retired early on the night of 21st and sat in bed reading a voluminous book about supposedly imaginary creatures that inhabit the realm of dreams. Some of these creatures I was very familiar with, because I had seen them in my dreams.

Without a warning, my bedside lamp flicked off. After trying the switch a few times I determined that the bulb was at fault, so left the warmth of the bed and opened my bedroom door. I think that was my last sane act.

As opened my bedroom door, I was greeted with an alien scene. My familiar landing had vanished and instead I was greeted with a frozen landscape, covered in snow, a harsh wind blowing through my bedroom door. I don’t know what possessed me, but I took a step through the doorway. Feeling the snow crunch under my slippers. Looking up into the black sky I saw the strange clouds I recognised from my dreams. This was it! This was The Void!

And then my bedroom door slammed behind me, and as I turned around I watched it fade to nothing. I was trapped.

Part 4 – Surviving the cold

My name is Elisabeth Crane. I was born on Earth on the 29th February 1896. I no longer exist on that planet any more, I have become trapped on a snow covered island which seems to be drifting through infinity.

It is hard to describe the sheer terror I experienced when the doorway to my bedroom vanished into thin air. It was several moments before it registered just how cold this place was. The next few hours are a bit of a blur. I wondered seeking shelter. The snow was crisp underfoot, but there were no buildings anywhere.

Thankfully, somehow I found a cave, and inside some wood – which had looked like it had been cut and deliberately placed there at some point. I was thankful for my luck – and immediately built myself a fire to try and keep warm – I was shivering intensely at this point.

My exhaustion was complete at this point and I must have drifted off to sleep while warmed by the fire.

I awoke myself with a start, the reality of my situation slowly dawning on me. It seemed much brighter outside the cave and looking outside I could see the sun slowly rising through the eldritch clouds.

I had shelter, the next course of action was to find food – which proved a simpler task than I had imagined, as I located several cherry bushes close by.

For the first week I was very busy. Gathering supplies, chopping wood and exploring the area around me. I grew used to the roaring silence around me as I kept myself busy. I even fashioned myself a door for my cave, giving me some measure of security.

When I was busy, things weren’t so bad. What was difficult was during the downtime, when I had closed the door to my shelter and tried to sleep – my mind racing through the possibilities for escape.

The last thing I expected was to hear a knocking on my door.

Part 5 – I am not alone here…

My name is Elisabeth Crane. I’m trapped in a different dimension. I doubt I will ever escape and return back to reality – but at this point I’m not sure I would be able to return to normal society. This place has changed me. I’ve done things no sane person would ever do.

The knocking at my door terrified me when I heard it. But suddenly a very human voice told me not to be scared, he had seen me foraging and had been shocked to see another person here.

I opened the door and was greeted by the sight of a very sun burnt man in his early 20s, dressed in rather shabby attire. I invited him in to the cave and we started to discuss our situation. He had been a sailor, and during a terrific storm he had smashed his head against the hull of his ship. When he had awoken he had been covered in a fine layer of snow. He had no idea where we were for there were no stars he could navigate by – the poor fellow still thought he was on Earth.

I explained the reality of our situation to him. At first he scoffed, thinking I was mad. But the more I spoke the more he started to understand, and the look of dismay on his face gradually increased.

We had been pooling our resources together for a few days, it was nice to have someone to help and converse with as we tried to make our lot better. We spoke about our “past” lives, me about the children that I taught and he spoke about his time aboard the Brizo.

Everything almost seemed routine. We were surviving in this frozen place. But everything changed when we discovered the rune carved portal…

A glowing portal in the snow

To be continued …

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