Completing the Codex Gigas

Codex GigasBram’s shaking hand rattled the pages as he offered them to Viktor.

His master snatched them from him, caressed them as he would a delicate instrument or a fragile glass sculpture. “Where are your gloves? Didn’t I tell you to only handle these pages with the utmost care? You fool! You could have destroyed everything!”

Bram cringed before the expected slap, but none came. He cracked one eyelid open to see what caused the reprieve.

Viktor paid him no further attention. He stroked the giant wooden-covered tome, a Cheshire smile on his face, a bright gleam in his eyes. “Stealing you from the royal library in Stockholm wasn’t easy, but I did it. They were none the wiser.”

Bram backed away, fear rippling through him. His master had always been intense, but now he was talking to a book. The book. The man was unhinged.

“I didn’t think I’d ever find the missing pages, but you reassured me. You had faith. I’m sorry I ever doubted you.” Viktor opened the book to the drawing of the devil and bowed.

Bram shivered. He hated that picture—felt the evil emanating from it in palpable waves. Dread washed over him like a tsunami. Nothing good could come of this.

Viktor began chanting. Bram had little time. Groping behind him, he found the doorknob, twisted it quietly, and opened the door just enough to squeeze through. After he closed it, he dashed down the hall. He wasn’t free yet.

Just before he rounded the corner, a flash of light illuminated the hall. Viktor’s shrieks were drowned out by the ominous rumble of demonic laughter.

“At last! I am free!” The deep bass voice reverberated in the hallway.

Bram streaked outside and ran to the woods. But he knew, even as he hid behind tree trunks and evergreen boughs, there was no escape. He’d helped Viktor steal that cursed volume and acquire the missing pages. He’d helped call forth Satan.

There was nowhere for him to go. Nowhere to hide. He was linked to the codex—linked to damnation.

Hot breath tickled his neck. He turned to see the personification of the frightening drawing standing over him. Bram made the sign of the cross and whispered, “God forgive me.”

The beast laughed. “I think you’re praying to the wrong entity.” And he reached for him.

This story inspired by the WordPress daily prompt: Volume.

Photo of the Codex Gigas from Kungl. biblioteket [Attribution], via Wikimedia Commons. 

18 thoughts on “Completing the Codex Gigas

  1. Pingback: Author Inspiration and This Week’s Writing Links |

    • Thanks, Craig. I didn’t immediately think “fun” when I wrote it, but I’ve been wanting to write a Codex Gigas story for a long time now. I actually thought I’d do a novel, but when today’s prompt came up “volume” I didn’t think science, I though tome. This was the logical choice for me.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I thought it was a great direction to take that word. Lots of different ways to use that one. I had an Idea Mill post once with Bald’s Leechbook. It’s full of old rememdies, and modern science even discovered one concoction that kills MERSA.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah, that word does have a lot of meanings. There were quite a few sound ones. Scientific ones, too. And the ones about quantity. Actually, there were plenty that I wasn’t sure of the connection to the prompt at all.

      Bald’s Leechbook sounds like a great jumping off point for a story. You could probably do an entire collection based on what you find in there.

      Liked by 1 person

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