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In the Library

There are 9 large books in the great library of the Labyrinthine Cascade.

Chronicle of an Empire Without Borders
An everyday manual for everybeing

In the centre of the room is a white book. It stands on a pedestal of whitened iron, its pages are white parchment, and its text is written and illuminated in innumerable shades of white ink.

This exhaustively documents the correct behavior for every being and explains its necessity in the light of cosmological facts and theological economics. Formerly annotated by the fallen Markuran the Bear, it is presently the sole effort of Birds-of-Trinity.

The Second Dawn of the Deliberative

Book of Night 1

A cold ring of black iron, tied with a fur ribbon, tells the story of Ymir and Cerin the Wolf. It is told in a deliberately elliptical fashion, and the reader has to deduce the identities of the characters in the stories based on a cipher requiring knowledge of the layout of the thirteen worlds.

Book of Night 2

The white volume has covers of mirror-polished steel, and a soft jacket woven out of salty ibis feathers. It is a bestiary of birds, and each bird is a tale from the life of the hero who named herself Birds-of-Trinity. The illustrations can be read as Old Realm pictograms that tell another memoir, that of Alawhi.

Book of Dawn

This book is a star that opens in eight directions, and it's wrapped in strands of saffron. Its pages are scented with lavender. It chronicles the life and times of Ularis, Rosada and Kai, and incidentally Mishkin, in the form of verse duels between two unnamed narrators who offer conflicting interpretations of events.

Book of Zenith 1

This book is baked into a brick of blue clay. It cannot be opened, and supernatural senses reveal that it has no text.

Book of Zenith 2

This book is an unbound stack of beaten-gold discs, weighted down by a gold sphere. It has two interlaced texts depending on which side of the discs are read and in what order. The one side tells of Lucent Copper Haze; the other side is about Helios Red-Sand.

Book of Twilight

A half-circle with a spine of sandalwood and black-and-copper covers contains Birds-of-Trinity's notes on Wei Dan and Thirteen Blooming Flowers, including several drafts of each section with revision marks. Each page is carefully illuminated in many black inks; by touch one can observe that they are made of different minerals, ground in different ways, to produce a variety of textures.

Book of Eclipse 1

A silver ribbon wound around a crown-shaped spool; when the ribbon is pulled through the fingers it narrates the proclamations and oaths of Talmuda and Zahara Zhan. It gives context and legal reference, but only just enough to understand the circumstances of each bit of law.

Book of Eclipse 2

Three koku-scroll bundles - koku scrolls are made by tying reed splints together into sheets - are tied shut with hemp twine made to look like ship's rope in perfect miniature. Each one is stuffed full of maps and coins. Read at face value, they are a collection of sky-adventures, but the maps and coins encode a cipher that explains how they relate to the life and times of Imrama Stormfound.

Other Books

Scattered around the Cascade there are several other volumes, including:

  • Odes to Zahara
  • Several collections of diagrams, mostly for Cerin's reference
  • Transcribed copies of ancient documents
  • An anthology of the great subversion of Chaya
  • Various cookbooks
  • Paintings of Wars, by Brilliant Child
  • The Invisible Kingdom of Fire
  • Books on sorcery, including Black Dawn, Story of the Seed, and Between Hidden Pillars

The Recipe Vault

Somewhere in the Cascade are hidden many pages of recipes, those famous and secret creations that Birds does not teach just anyone to make.


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