Chapter Eighty-One: Serin’s Library
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After we had finished with dessert, Jill came and cleared the table after us. Then the two of us headed back upstairs to Serin’s personal library. As soon as we stepped inside Serin busied herself looking for books that she thought I might find helpful in my search. After a few minutes she presented me with three books to look through.

“Here, I think you will find these useful. Even if they don’t have what you are looking for, they will teach you a lot about our world.” Serin said as she passed me the books.

“Thank you.”

I glanced over the titles of the books. The first was called “The Formation of the Great Alliance”, the second was called “Histories of the Speaking Races” and the final book was called “The Birth of the Gods and the Creation of Lithsea”. The first two looked like they could have important information that I was looking for, but the third, it seemed to be this cultures creation myth. I suppose they still believed things like that here as facts. I was a little surprised by Serin including it in her selection, but I suppose it could still provide valuable insight.

“You sit and read those for now. I’ll go and see if there is anything else that might be of interest.” Serin suggested before continuing to scour her bookshelves.

“Okay, thanks.”

I did as she suggested and took the books to one of the seats next to the window. I decided to start with the “The Formation of the Great Alliance” as it seemed like the best bet. The book detailed how many of the races were often at war before the alliance was formed. It seemed that some fifty years before the arrival of the Demon Lord in Lithsea, after a particularly bloody war amongst all of the speaking races that had lasted for over a hundred years, peace was made. The Elves and their allies were victorious.

In the aftermath of their victory, instead of laying heavy demands on their enemies they called a great council of the heads of each of the races. It seemed that the king of the elves didn’t want to see any more bloodshed. He had the foresight to know that the best way to prevent a repeat for the previous war, was for the many races to work together. This was the birth of the great alliance.

What followed was a period of stability and peace, the likes of which had rarely been seen here before. Sadly, it wasn’t going to last. The Demon Lord appeared barely a generation of men later and what must have seemed like no time at all for the elves. The hard fought peace was soon shattered with war worse than had ever been experienced.

The book went into the appearance and rise of the Demon Lord, but the details were sparse. It seems there were no direct witness accounts. It tied in with what the girls had told me before. There was some information on the early battles, not that it mentioned how the nobles soon deserted the fight. The book outlined the current state of affairs, with the Demon Lord firmly dug into this world and their realm constantly expanding.

“How are you getting on?” Serin asked, sitting down in the empty seat next to me with a couple of books of her own.

“I’ve just about finished this one… It’s all pretty interesting and informative, but I don’t think I’ve found any clues yet.”

“Well, you’ve only just started.”

“Yeah… What have you got there?”

“A couple of volumes I haven’t read before. They looked promising, I thought I’d give them a quick look through to see if they were worth your attention.”

“Right, thanks. Do we have time to sit here like this?”

“Yeah, we can continue for a little longer.”

“Great… Um look, I’m sorry, I’m sure you probably wanted to spend your day off doing something more exciting than this.”

“No… If I didn’t want to do this, I would have said so. I enjoy a little research and besides, it’s more fun with the two of us together like this.”

“It is.”

“We should continue…”

“Yeah.”

I opened the second of the three volumes that Serin had brought me to look at “The Histories of the Speaking Races.” This book went into great detail about the many wars that the races fought against each other before the forming of the great alliance. The historian that had put together the work had gone through great lengths to bring together documents from each of the races and tried to explain the motivations of each of the different sides. It was a rather interesting book and quite eye opening for the customs and beliefs of each of the races.

Like the first volume that I read there was no clue to what was meant by taboo breakers. If anything, it made me a little more confused. Just like on earth the taboos changed from culture to culture and only a few were universal amongst them all. I didn’t expect that was what the woman was talking about. There was no information on the Demon Lord and there wasn’t a single mention of the summoners. I was starting to wonder if I would ever come across clues to the answer, or perhaps I was just missing them all together.

I looked up and seeing that Serin was still busy reading away, I figured I had time to look at the third and final volume that she had given me. “The Birth of the Gods and the Creation of Lithsea.” I wasn’t expecting much from this volume, but I was still going to look. It was much like I thought, it detailed the creation of this world and went into the many gods that its people believed in. It seemed that they believed that the gods once walked the land with the many races, before they became too populous.

There were lots of gods. I didn’t keep an exact count, but there had to be at least fifty of them described in the pages of the book. They believed that the gods gifted mana to the races of the world and first taught them to use magic. After thousands of years of living on Lithsea, with the races that they created, they finally decided the move into what they called the realm of the divine. It was at this point that I started to lose interest, until I noticed one detail before the gods left the mortal realm.

It seemed that each of the many gods created a special, magical item that they left behind on this plane. They each poured a portion of their essence into the item and left them on Lithsea, so their followers had a means of communication with the deities. These items were revered and worshiped throughout the lands, but there was no mention of where these items were now.

“Hey Serin. I think I might have found something!” I blurted out suddenly as I read the passage.

“What is it?” She asked slightly startled at suddenly being pulled from her reading.

“These trinkets that the gods left behind. Could they be related to the relics that the heroes are bound to when they’re brought here?”

“No, I don’t think so.”

“Really, why?”

“Because they are revered by all on Lithsea. No one would dare to try and use them for their own purposes like that. Anyway, each of the items are held in their own shrine, no one can remove them. Only the high priest from each of the shrines is allowed to touch them.”

“I see…”

But it seemed to fit. The number of the gods and the number of heroes that can supposedly be summoned here. But if what Serin said was true, there would be an outcry if anyone tried to take or use the items. We also thought that all the relics were held somewhere secure at the capital. I would have to see what the others thought of the idea and Liz, when I saw her next.

“I suppose I can see why you are interested in that, but there is no way anyone would get away with using them like that.” Serin explained further.

That would definitely fulfil the taboo breaking as well, but maybe I was just reading too much into it.

“You don’t think the guild could have taken them?”

“No… They haven’t. If even one of them went missing, there would have been a massive outcry.”

“Okay, I must be on the wrong track then.”

“Sorry Theo, I think so… There’s no reason to think that they could be used like either.”

“I suppose, it doesn’t say anything about that here. I guess I will just have to keep looking.”

“We will, but it is going to have to wait. I didn’t realise the time. We should go and get ready. The guests are going to start arriving soon.”

“Sure. Err, what do we need to do?”

“Don’t worry just follow me.”

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