Escape From The Temple of Jing!
Major Oswin Breaker, The Sundering Alchemist
A military state alchemist from the Central Division.
Oswin is a tall, fair skinned Amestrian youth. Like many of the people from the Central region he has blonde hair and blue eyes. He keeps his hair cut short in keeping with military standards and is well-shaven. Oswin, who also goes by OB, keeps himself busy with his research and does not participate in much physical activity, leaving him very slender. Being in the military he is required to wear the standard uniform at all times that he is on duty, so it is not uncommon to see him in the standard blues of the Amestrian army. When he is going to civilian events, he dresses in a formal manner. The only time he dresses down is when he is working at the shop, doing automail maintenance.
A link to his character sheet.
Excerpts from the Diary of Oswin Breaker.
December 3rd, 1915 – Age 9
Father says the alchemists have been breaking more and more stuff all over the city. When the alchemists break things it is bad, but I still like them. They always fix it by drawing circles on the ground! Mother is an alchemist too, but she fixes people not buildings. She doesn’t break buildings either though. I fell off the swing and landed on a sharp rock. It hurt alot and there was lots of blood! She drew a circle on the ground and my cut got all better. Father fixes people to, but he can’t make the circles he just uses bandages. Maybe she can show him how. When I draw circles nothing happens but it is probably because I draw them so bad. One day I will be better and an alchemist just like her. She says that I can hold onto her watch so that I can feel like a real alchemist!
January 8th, 1916 – Age 10
January 1st is my birthday. Mother wasn’t there. Father told me she wasn’t going to be there but I didn’t believe him. Mother hasn’t been home since the day with the loud noises. Father and I hide in the basement all day when the banging was happening. Sometimes the noises were so loud that the house was shaking. Mother let me hold her watch that day. She hasn’t come home to get it yet. I hope she didn’t get in trouble without it. A nice man came to see us. He talked to Father for a long time. He had a blue coat just like Mother. Maybe he was an alchemist to. Father cried for a long time. He said mother is never going to come home. He said that she died in the loud noises. I don’t think she died I think she is lost but she will come home some day.
October 21st, 1917 – Age 11
A lot of people got hurt during the revolution. Father wants to help them. So many of them don’t have arms or legs anymore. Father has started to make automail. They are arms and legs made out of metal. They are great, they help people walk and carry things again. Father says I get to be his assistant. He is teaching me all about fixing the arms and legs. We have a good time doing it too. New people come in everyday. Sometimes they are sad, but Father fixes them up and they leave happy. Father always says, “even if they can’t walk in, they will always walk out.” I wish Mother could see all the happy people that Father helps. She would be happy, she always wants to help people.
June 14th, 1921 – Age 15
Business is steady as ever. Father says that we are the biggest and best automail shop in all of Central division. We have regulars coming in everyday for tune-ups or repairs. Father talks about hiring another mechanic, but we manage just fine by ourselves. I can’t install yet, but I do better tune-ups and repairs than Father does now. No one does the installation and rehab better than him. Normally it takes other shops two or three years to rehab a customer fully. Father can do it in just one. That’s why people love us so much. I don’t have much time for school or playing, but the regulars have become my friends. Sal is a painter who lost his arm in the revolution. It got blown off by a tank shell. He was so sad when he first came in. He couldn’t paint or bath himself. We fitted him with a state of the art arm and now he is painting again. Our office is filled with his work, he even made us a sign. While I am tuning up his arm he teaches me about composition and symmetry. I see those things all the time in my automail! Then there is Selma. She lost her right leg below the knee when bullets came through her wall. She is always grumpy, but I know that she is really kind, because after she leaves I always find candy on my workbench. She came in today and father fell over while fitting her with a newer lightweight footing. It looked like he fell asleep on accident, Selma said he fainted (and that he should wake up because she doesn’t pay him to sleep). This has happened before and he always tells me that he isn’t sleeping enough. I know he is lying, he is sick. I made his schedule look busy on the 17th, but really the doctor will be coming by to see him. He will be mad, but I will deal with that later.
June 18th, 1921 – Age 15
Father was very angry when the doctor arrived. He shouted until he was blue in the face and tried to throw something at him, but then he fainted again. Me and the doctor got him into bed. The doctor examined him until he woke up. Father looked embarrassed but agreed to listen to the doctor. He did some tests and the doctor sat with him on the bed. Father asked me to leave, but I just went into the bathroom and pressed my ear to the wall. I could hear the doctor pretty well. He thinks my father has a cirkulation problem. He has to do more tests to see if there is anything we can do.
April 10th, 1922 – Age 16
Yesterday father got two brand new automail legs. He had lost all of the feeling in his legs. The doctors think that now that he doesn’t have the legs he will have enough blood pressure to increase his circulation to his arms. We made the automail, but someone else had to install it. They did a fine job, I will tune it and help him with his rehab. Father was all smiles today. It was a hard decision to remove the legs, but Father said, “if I can’t fix myself, how can anyone trust me to fix them.” That doesn’t make much sense to me, but he is happy and who am I to disagree. The doctors seem hopeful after the procedure, but I am not. His spirits might be lifted now, but I have seen customers who get a temporary boost of happiness after a procedure. Then sometime later, maybe weeks or years, they crash. They give up. We used to have a man named Byron a few years ago. He lost both arms when a roof collapsed on him. Once he got the new arms he was all smiles. But a few years later he killed himself. We found out from his wife that not having a sense of touch was driving him mad. Eventually he couldn’t take it, and he ended his life. I started thinking that these doctors can’t actually help my father. I went up into the attic to search for a better solution. Father couldn’t get rid of Mothers stuff. He had put her whole library up there. She has over 200 books on medicine and alchemy. My mother was the only Alchemist I had ever heard of that used it for medicine. Maybe there is an answer to my problem in these books. When I was young my mother regrew skin on my leg from a bad cut. Not just the skin, but the muscle that was cut as well. If she could regrow that, perhaps she could regrow a whole lost limb. I am sure she could have fixed father’s circulation problem as well. I will find the answers in these books, no matter what it takes.
February 27th, 1924 – Age 18
My studies are moving swiftly now, but I must push myself harder. My father lost his right hand today! If I continue at this snail’s pace of understanding there will be nothing left of him but a head on a stump neck. I understand the principles of alchemy and my transmutation circles are clean and precise, and yet I still lack the power to even close a simple wound. I found a stray wounded cat last week. It had a gash along its abdomen and could hardly move. I drew my transmutation circle and attempted to fuse the muscle and intestine back together properly. I did succeed at closing the wound, but ended up collapsing the poor beasts lungs in the process. It was horrific to see it struggle for breath. In the end I had to put it out of it’s misery, I could not stand to see it struggle anymore. I tell myself that I was granting it mercy, but was it not I who killed it because of my actions? Its wound may have killed it eventually, or it may have recovered in time. My actions certainly damned it. That was merely a simply cut on a cat, and I plan to regrow a whole human body? The complexity of these equations makes my head spin. Every time I believe I understand my mother’s notes I realize that I am only partially correct. This frustration is only made worse by the fact that the store is losing customers everyday. Father has lost the ability to do installations or manufacturing. I am still doing maintenance, but with my studies taking my time and sanity I have not been attentive to my customers. I have found, however, that my alchemy can be incorporated into my duties to the advantage of all. I may not be able to heal skin yet, but I can do wonders in repairing automail. But repairing automail will not save my father. I must remain focused on my mission, even if my work falls to the wayside. My mother’s notes will solve this problem, they are not at issue. It is my lack of understanding that is holding me back. I need to be a better alchemist in order for her notes to do me any good. Central district is replete of alchemists and libraries. The resources are at my fingertips, I simply need to reach out and grab them. I must work secretly though. The military alchemists would frown on my self taught alchemy and bar me entry to their materials. I must do this on my own
March 18th, 1924 – Age 18
What a fool I have been. Today I embarrassed myself, my father, and my mother’s good name. I tried to gain access to the Central City library today. There is a wing reserved for alchemy that is closed to all but the state alchemists. Determined to get past the guards I took my mother’s state alchemist pocket watch with. I had always kept it in good shape, polishing it and keeping it running, so it shone like brand new. It got me into the alchemy wing, pretending to be a state alchemist. How foolish I must have looked. I had only just found 3 of the books I was looking for when I was approached by a bald man with an enormous curly blonde moustache. In a quiet tone he asked to see my watch. Without hesitation I pulled it out and recounted the same lie that I had told the desk clerk. He looked at me with sad eyes and asked how I had really come upon this watch. I lied again, telling him that I was a state alchemist and that I was allowed to be there. He shook his head in disappointment and reached out one of his meaty hands asking me to come with him. I don’t know why I did what I did, but overcome with fear, I sprang up grabbed my books and started running. For a big man he moved faster than I could have imagined, and he was bearing down on me immediately. He trapped me in a wall of stone that he created with alchemy. The transmutation circle was drawn on his gauntlet, for some reason he had removed his shirt as well. He began to scold me, but as he did I drew a transmutation circle on the stone and burst out of it. He chased me once again and this time simply grabbed me and threw me over his shoulder. I tried to wrestle out of his grasp, but he was far too strong. He told me that he was carrying me to the local police station. I hung over his shoulder in silence, too ashamed to speak. As he walked down the street bare chested, with me over his shoulder like game, he asked me why I had snuck into the library. I told him my story, of my mother, my father, and my failed alchemy. “So that’s how you got the watch,” he said. He told me I kept it to clean, no alchemist has a watch that well preserved. That is how they knew. When we got to the police station he set me down gently into a chair and talked with the desk officer. After a few moments he came back to me. He told me that I had been turned over to his custody, into military custody, and that he was free to punish me as he saw fit. He smiled at me and told me that my punishment was to become a state alchemist. I was shocked by this, was I even qualified? That was this morning, tomorrow I must be at the recruitment hall at sunrise or it is off to the brig. What will I tell my father?
August 15th, 1924 – Age 18
The last 150 days have been the most exciting of my life. Training as a state alchemist has been both exhilarating and exhausting. So many of my mother’s notes are given new meaning now that I have the proper training. The greatest honor though was to have General Mustang at my exit examination. His stern severity made me so nervous that I nearly broke my concentration, but I passed. When it was over he congratulated me merrily and gave me my official state certification papers. The title he gave me was that of the Sundering Alchemist for my abilities of deconstruction. I have never been so overwhelmed with joy in my life.
It had been so long since I had seen my father though, I rushed home today to check on him. I had been sending him letters every moment I could, but I had not received any in return. When I arrived the shop was closed. I went in and found my father with our oldest customer Sal. My father was bedridden, his automail legs no longer functioned, and both of his arm had been fully amputated. Why has this been happening! I am so close to deciphering the secrets to his cure. Every step forward I take is too slow and leaves me further behind. The doctors assure me that his condition has slowed, in a fit of rage I threw them out of my home. They try to reassure me now? They have taken his legs and his arms, and for what? They say it is a circulation issue, then why are his nerves failing to trigger the automail, why are none of the things they do helping? It is obvious that they have no idea what they are dealing with. The only solution left is alchemy. I must find the cure before he dies. He wasn’t awake when I initially arrived, but with all the noise he stirred. He wept in joy when he saw me in uniform saying I reminded him of Mother. He was weak, but his mind was still sharp. We agreed to shutter the store and use my new stipend to move him to a care facility. Sal told me he would help my father get to the facility. I couldn’t stay at the house, not without father. I am going to stay at the barracks. I began to pack my mother’s research notes, I don’t need all of them, just the relevant ones. As I went through her library I came across something that I had not seen in my 2 years of studying her notes. It was her state issued revolver. It was in bad shape, but I knew I could rehabilitate it. I put it in my pocket and got my boxes ready.
When I got to the barracks I was met by my commanding officer. To my surprise it was the bald man that had confronted me in the library and sent me down this path to begin with. He had never given me his name, but now I am told that he is Lt. Col. Alex Louis Armstrong. He congratulated me on my appointment to central and told me that I was to come with him to meet a senior officer. In yet another shocking turn of events he lead me into the office of General Mustang! I was speechless as they asked me to sit. General Mustang explained that I had actually failed my state examination, but he had allowed me to pass because of my potential and because I reminded him of another young alchemist he had met. He continued to tell me that it would be better that I continue my research, but under the militaries supervision. Under situations like the one I am faced with, many alchemists turn to human transmutation out of desperation. He wants to make sure that doesn’t happen with me. I will be assigned 3 subordinates to stay with me and help me at all times, but they will also observe me and report back to Armstrong to make sure that I break no laws of alchemy.
I don’t know what to think of all this. Being told I wasn’t accepted because of my skill, but because they want to watch me is humiliating. At least I am being given the resources I need to continue my studies. I will prove to Mustang that I deserve my certification as a state alchemist. I meet my subordinates tomorrow. I must rest, this has been a day filled with a wave of different emotions most of which are disappointing. The best thing I can do is keep moving forward.
January 2nd, 1925 – Age 19
It took months, but I think my subordinates finally trust me. Today Arthur made raspberry pie and brought it in for all of us. Gwen didn’t have any, but Gina and I appreciated it. I can’t remember the last time someone made me food like that. The taste of his cooking left something to be desired, but it’s the thought that counts right?
I guess I would be happier to have these soldiers around me if I didn’t know that they were here to spy on me. I am getting over it though, and I think that they are more trusting of me now as well. At first things were rocky, I think we were all unsure about how to interact. But as time goes by our bond grows stronger, we share stories, hopes, and dreams with each other. 1st Lt. Gwen Rath tells me all about her time securing trade routes in Ishval. She is a true leader and an able diplomat, settling arguments between us. WO-1 Regina Crane, had spent her life in the eastern division until recently being transferred to Central. She is an expert marksman and desert ranger. I was surprised to find out that she had an automail leg. At first she was hesitant to show me, but now that she knows me better she lets me tune it and fix it for her. 2nd Lt. Arthur Harthome goes by Hart and and he is an excellent linguist, he is currently helping me with my Xerxian. He doesn’t have many useful skills, but he is very knowledgeable and keeps his nose in his books. None of them are alchemist’s but they don’t get in my way at the lab and can be helpful in getting materials. I am glad Mustang assigned them to me. At first I was upset, to be baby sat in this way. I am starting to see that it is not all bad though. Yes they report on me to Armstrong, but they also follow my orders diligently.
Speaking of my research, it advances slowly. Armstrong has granted me access to cadavers to continue my experiments. I have been successful in regrowing human tissue, but it takes weeks and when I dissect it the veins don’t line up and the tendons appear bloated and misshapen. I am confident that this is only a by product of the fact that I am working on a corpse, but if I don’t hurry that will be all my father is as well…
March 12th, 1925 – Age 19
Failure, again. I was having dinner at the cafe Sang with Gina and Hart. As we headed back to the barracks we saw a cat being attacked by a dog. Gina chased the feral animal away and began to weep over the body of the cat. The dog had taken a vicious bite out of it. For some reason Gina was inconsolable over the animal. Weeping and trying to comfort it. Hart looked shocked too. I don’t think he was used to seeing blood. He was never in the lab when we had cadavers there, when I looked at his face it was a pale mask. I tried to console Gina when she turned to me, crying, and asked if I could fix it. I froze. All I could think about was my first attempt last year. Had it really only been one year. I told her that I couldn’t and she wept harder. Why were we doing all this work if I was never going to try it. Hesitantly I knelt by her, knowing that this was a bad idea. Hart was quiet, his eyes were fixated on the blood. I drew the transmutation circle and began the alchemy. The noises the poor creature made…failure again.
July 30th, 1925 – Age 19
I am afraid to put pen to paper. I have made an historic discovery. My hands tremble even now to retell it. I sit on a train bound for Xing. Along the way I decided to stop in Xerxes. Gina, Hart, and Gwen were interested as well and accompanied me to the hallowed, ruined ground. I took great pleasure in telling them the legends of ancient Xerxes and the first alchemists. They pretended to be interested, but I think they were more impressed with the towering pillars and arches than with my tales. Suddenly a sand storm hit us, Gina noticed it before the rest of us. She instructed us to cover our heads with our handkerchiefs as she guided us to cover. We hunkered down for hours until the storm passed. When we made our way out of cover and back to the city everything was different. Sand had hidden structures that were there only an hour ago, and uncovered others. We stumbled around, trying to gain our bearings and move back toward the train when I saw it. A stone post that we had not seen before, uncovered by the storm. Etched on it was the strangest symbol of alchemy I had ever seen. It was drawn on top of a stone podium. Below it was etched ancient Xerxian script, a riddle.
You need two keys to open me.
One key destroys a forest.
The other key feeds them.
When combined they create it.
It did not take very long to discern that the answer was water. Perhaps this was a riddle that was more difficult 400 years ago. I upended my canten over the transmutation circle and the podium opened before us.
The chamber we entered into looked perfectly preserved over time. Stone tablets and writings littered the tables and work benches all over. Paintings depicting various sized eyes covered all the walls. They did not look angry or happy, but always watching, waiting maybe? The eyes were disconcerting but the thrill of discovery drove us forward regardless. Gwen advised that we make our time here short. I tried to contain my laughter, we had just uncovered one of the greatest discoveries in the modern age and she wants to leave? Preposterous! It was at that point that she made me aware that if we did not return to the train we could be stuck here for months before the next one comes, with no rations. I hated to admit that she was right, but she was right. Hart and I immediately starting making etching of all the writing in the chamber. Gwen and Gina basically had to drag us out kicking and screaming. It will take months to translate all of this material, good thing the trip to Xing is a long one.
I don’t know how I will concentrate on my tasks in Xing when I have this distraction in front of me. I will try to keep my father forefront in my mind. He is the reason I am traveling there. I must be the worst medical alchemist in all of Amestris. The name Sundering Alchemist almost seems prophetic at this point. I can disassemble everything I touch, but I can’t put anything back together that isn’t made of iron and steel. I am told that the Xingese alkahestry holds many medical secrets. I hope to learn them while I am out here. Who knows though, perhaps these Xerxian etchings will offer some wisdom.
September 13th, 1925 – Age 19
Everyday I meet with alkahestry scholars in Xing. And everyday I only get more distracted by my Xerxian scrolls. These etchings are the most fascinating writings I have ever read. That said, my guilt is immense. I came to Xing hoping to find new cures for my father, but instead I am wrapped up in ancient writings. I have learned nothing since I got here. At least nothing of alkahestry. These etchings are a treasure trove of information. Hart and I have found a sort of chronological order to them. In what seems to be the beginning, talks about the history of Xerxes. Everyone knows about the Alchemists of Xerxes, but there were other factions in the city. The chamber we visited belonged to once such other faction. They called themselves the Magi. They had discovered a new form of alchemy. The early writings are scant on the details, but what Hart and I have been able to put together is that the Magi were early explorers for Xerxes. On one of their journeys they found a temple? The text is not clear. The writer stresses that the temple is not apart of this world, but merely has an entrance on this plane. I am not sure what to make of that. Father forgive me, I have not given up on you.
December 12th, 1925 – Age 19
Winter is setting in more quickly than I care to admit. Time passes so quickly now. Everyday seems shorter than the last. It’s these damn scrolls. At this point all of my time is consumed within them. I am leaving Xing after 5 months and I am no closer to finding a way to return my father to normal. I will see him in a matter of days when I return to Central. How will I face him? How will I say that I have nothing to show for my efforts? There is hope though, however small. These scrolls have taught me much. The Magi’s alchemy was strange indeed, but not beyond my understanding. They had found a way to remove the need of a transmutation circle from the alchemical process. Not entirely mind you, but in a way that gave them many advantages. Every morning they would wake up early and draw transmutation circles into ledgers. Upon drawing them the alchemical circle would be seared into their mind (not literally, but that is the terminology they used). Throughout the day they could “burn” the symbol from their mind and use it without drawing anything. It is important to note that this is a difficult process. I have been able to replicate it, but only in a minor capacity. I can only fit a few spells in my mind right now, but I can get more in as I practice. The applications of this are remarkable and far reaching, what will the other alchemists think when I tell them? This certainly will prove that I deserve my certification as much as anyone. The Magi gained this knowledge upon entering the temple that they alluded to in the earlier etchings we had read. They also uncovered a different form of alchemy that would allow them to see things the human eye could not. Divination they called it. I do not understand this aspect of the writings yet. What is clear though is that this divination granted them precognitive powers. These powers allowed them to see the devastation of Xerxes before it even happened, giving them time to flee before the cataclysm (though I haven’t the faintest clue where the went). Hart says that in documents he has deciphered they were able to find more than just alchemy in the temple, much more; treasure, power, anything the heart desired (so they said). Could this be the answer I am searching for. No matter how much I practice my alchemy I never seem to get any closer to my goal of being a medical alchemist. I can’t heal a single wound or simple scrap. All I do is break things with my alchemy. I believe Mustang cursed me when he gave me the name of the Sundering Alchemist. All I want to do is reconstruct, but all I am able to do is destroy…
Throughout all of this though my team has stayed by me. I am worried about Hart though. While I have been deciphering the scrolls to learn more about this “divination,” Hart has become obsessed with discovering the location of this temple. He hasn’t eaten in days, his eyes are bloodshot, and his face gaunt. I would order him to stop, but he seems so close to finding the location. Gwen tried to talk some sense into him, but he screamed at her to leave him alone. I have never even seen him raise his voice before this moment. I am worried about him, but I don’t think even I could get him to stop at this point. Gwen and Gina are upset at me for not doing anything. I assured them that I would do everything in my power, but that was a lie. I want, no need, to know the location of the temple as much as Hart. I will not stop him.
January 1st, 1926 – Age 20
Today is my birthday, it is also the first time I have seen my father in nearly 9 months. His bedraggled, emaciated body looked half a corpse. A corpse with no arms and legs. His sickness had not worsened, but it had drained his spirit from him. I tried to talk to him, but he did not respond, he responds to nothing now…not even light. I wept and I held him. The shame I feel now is deeper than anything I have ever experienced. More painful than the lose of my mother. I have failed my father for the last time. This temple will have my cure, or I will burn it to the ground.
January 12th, 1926 – Age 20
The temple is found. 2nd Lt. Hart has deciphered the location from all of our documents. I have convinced him to rest and eat, and assured him that we will head to the temple as soon as he is fit to travel. In his current state, he can barely sit a horse, and he will need to do much more than that for the journey ahead. The temple lies far to the North, at the Drachman border. Crossing the briggs mountain will be nearly impossible, but we must do it. I gathered Gwen and Gina together to tell them of the plan. I told them that the military would never give us permission to cross the border. If they were going to report me, they should do it now and get it over with. To my surprise they did not. Saying that we started this as a team, and they would see it through to the end. They immediately went to pack their gear and made arrangements. We leave for the Northern Division in a fortnight.
February 8th, 1926 – Age 20
There are no roads between Drachma and Amestris. The traveling has been grueling, climbing mountain goat trails along freezing cliffs. It is taking a toll on everyone, but Hart especially. He recovered about as well as anyone could, but he looks like he aged 10 years in the last few months. I wish I could have convinced him to stay south, but I knew he would never let us leave without him. It is frigid up here, colder than I could have imagined. Gina’s automail was bothering her at first, but she has gotten used to it now. Before we left I retrofitted her with a lightweight, cold composition automail model so that it would not break down in the extreme weather. That is about as much as I can do for her, but if gets any colder we might have to carry her. No automail can withstand any temperature much colder than what we are experiencing now. Gwen appears to be maintaining her composure throughout all of this. She is the rock of this team, holding us together when we are most shaken. I can only pray that we make it over these mountains alive.
February 29th, 1926 – Age 20
Leap year day. We have reached the gates of the temple, but the journey has taken a drastic turn for the worse. 2 weeks ago we were captured by Drachman military. Gina’s automail foot had malfunctioned and forced us to carry her. We were spotted by a local fisherman who alerted the military to our presence. We tried to flee, but with Gina unable to move we were to slow to get away. The Drachman commander known as Mikhail captured us and found my alchemist pocket watch, he claimed we were Amestrian spies. I tried to reason with him that we were not spies, but he wouldn’t listen. I don’t blame him, what else could he think? I am not about to tell him of the temple within his borders filled with untold riches. He locked us up and bound my hands so that I could not draw a transmutation circle. Little did he know that I didn’t need one anymore. I was able to get Gina’s leg working again with a quick repairing transmutation. Then I busted the door off our cell. We quickly found our things and fled as fast as our feet could take us. Pursued by guards from the encampment, we took up a defensive position and fought them. I was nearly out of memorized transmutation when I was ambushed by a Drachman guard. Out of more muscle memory than desire, I pulled my mother’s revolver from it’s holster and shot the man in the neck. His blood sprayed all over me as he fell dead into my lap. I have never killed anyone before. I feel numb from the experience. Writing about it now is the only thing that seems to make the experience real, and yet I can not help but disbelieve it. Gwen got me to my feet and got me moving. She and Gina had taken care of the other guards. We have been eluding Mikhail’s men every since. But we are finally at the temple. I know that Drachman soldiers will be following us in, but it doesn’t matter now. The temple is real, I am staring at it’s monstrous gates even now as I write this. If it is real and what the Magi wrote is correct, then I will surely find a cure for my father’s illness within, or die trying…