“And I knew it would be my undoing the moment I laid eyes upon the cursed thing.”
The book now haunts my dreams, and more so, my every waking moment. Its grotesque nature fills me with such fear, such immense terror. The book is wholly unnatural in appearance—as well as its contents. The damned abomination shouldn’t exist. But it does. And to my dismay—my mournful regret—I was the one who finally found it!
I don’t have much time left, so I’ll write this down as quickly as possible; giving only the most important details. My name is Gregory Norstrom. I’m what you might call an import merchant of mythological antiquities—meaning, I’m contracted by people of great means to search the most nefarious underbellies of the world in search of rare objects of extreme peculiarities.
Sometimes these objects’ origins reside in the mythical tales throughout history: Excalibur, The Holy Grail, The Book of Thoth, and many other great relics of legend. These ancient objects—searched for by countless explorers and adventures throughout time—do not pique my interest. I’m no fool, nor one who gets taken in by delusions of finding the truth in archaic myths.
The objects I do search for are of a different sort of significance. These are the relics of history for which are rarely spoken of out loud. The kinds of things only known to shadow organizations and cloak and dagger cults. These objects are but a whisper in the wind—a single trickle of rain dropped from the enormity of the heavens. And I’m the one man capable of finding them.
Under normal circumstances, I’d be unable to tell of my great findings; for gruesome retribution would come upon me for breaching the secrecy clause bound to all of my contracts. But as I no longer fear death—as it shall be upon me any day now—I feel compelled to share my conquest of these mysterious items, which are only known of by a few.
In the underwater ruins of an ancient civilization far off the coast of the Maldives, I’ve retrieved the golden scepter, Folcine; once belonging to the mighty ruler of Palegus—or what you may know as The Lost City of Atlantis. This of course, was contracted to me by a not so mighty “ruler,” of a modern country I dare not speak of.
Another incredible find was the Julius Goblet; a sacrificial urn used to store the blood of virgin aboriginals during the undocumented trips of the Romans to South America. This piece, found buried in the cavernous tunnels beneath an unknown Mayan-like city, was contracted to me by a group of affluent Americans who did not divulge why they were in such dire need of this blood-tainted urn. But they paid handsomely before and after the retrieval of the item. So, I asked no questions.
I could go on and on about my amazing finds, but I fear I’m already losing strength simply by writing this. Therefore, I will go into the details of my last significant find—the damned artifact which will cause my death sooner than later.
Of course, it’s the infamous Book of Lost Souls I’m referring to. And I knew it would be my undoing the moment I laid eyes upon the cursed thing. To make the whole ordeal even more bothersome, I hadn’t yet even signed the contract stating I’d locate the blasted book.
I merely traveled to negotiate the terms of the contract. The Book of Lost Souls wasn’t reported to be anywhere near the country where the negotiations were held. And I certainly had no plans on finding the book so soon. Yet, I believe it was the cursed book which found me. Like its evil pages awaited my arrival. I was but a mere victim of happenstance.
But enough of these ramblings. Let me now divulge to you how I became entangled in this horrendous affair. How a lifetime of adventure was unable to prepare me for the horror I was to experience. And how an ill-fated trip of routine business would ultimately force the path of my destiny—like a blade on a swinging pendulum, slowly inching its way closer and closer to my neck. And I was unable to move away from oncoming death.