THEBES — 1,290 B.C.
Glaring out over the city at the setting sun was a handsome, muscular man with intense, evil eyes. This man was Imhotep, High Priest of Osiris, Keeper of the Dead. Thebes was his home.
A gorgeous, olive-skinned goddess entered the outer foyer. Thebes was her home as well. It was her birthplace. As she gracefully walked, one who saw her would have believed she was wearing a skin-tight dress, though it wasn't, in fact, a dress at all, but rather her entire naked body that had been painted in the ancient Egyptian manner. She was a stunning sight to behold. This woman was Anck-su-namun. She was the Pharaoh's Mistress. No other man was allowed to touch her.
She made her way through the ornate statuary. Behind a cracked stone face, there was a man, watching the Pharaoh's Mistress and the Priest. The man was really strange looking, his body covered in tattoos. After the beat of a second, his eyes nearly popped out at the sight before him. Several more of these hideous, bald men stood nearby. They were the priests of Osiris. Imhotep's men. Their eyes watched Anck-su-namun vanish through the bedroom curtains. Anck-su-namun embraced her lover, and then they kissed passionately, feverishly. Imhotep's hands roamed over her perfect body, smearing the paint. The action was so full of love and passion but it would soon come to an end, because for their love, they were willing to risk life itself.
And so it was as they had not known that the man who had once been watching through the cracked stone face wasn't the only one watching them... but he was the only one unaffected.
On the other-side of the curtains, the bald Priests rushed over and closed the doors. But just as they did, the doors suddenly burst open. Pharaoh angrily strode in and looked at the Priests.
"What are you doing here?" he demanded.
The Priests backed away, scared shitless, obviously his arrival was unexpected. Pharaoh strode for the curtains and threw them back.
Anck-su-namun stood alone. She tried to put on a fake act by smiling at him seductively, but the Pharaoh did not fail to see the smeared body paint.
He pointed at it angrily. "Who has touched you?!"
From behind him, his sword was ripped out of its scabbard. Pharaoh spun around. It was Imhotep. Pharaoh was shocked.
"Imhotep? .... My priest."
Behind him, Anck-su-namun lifted a dagger and plunged it into his back. Pharaoh screamed. Imhotep raised Pharaoh's sword. The hideous bald Priests slammed the doors and bolted them tight. Through the curtains, they saw the shadows of Anck-su-namun and Imhotep stabbing away at Pharaoh. Suddenly, the doors were rammed from the other side.
WHAM! Imhotep and Anck-su-namun turned and looked.
WHAM! The doors were rammed again. The two lovers shared desperate looks.
WHAM! The bald Priests ran up and grabbed Imhotep and tried and pull him towards the balcony.
"Pharaoh's bodyguards!" they shouted at him to make him understand why he had to leave.
Imhotep tried to break free, but Anck-su-namun ripped Pharaoh's sword out of his hand and pushed him towards the balcony.
"You must go. Save yourself. Only you can resurrect me," she told her lover.
Imhotep's face filled with despair. The doors finally exploded open. Men with blue-tinted skin and strange puzzle-tattoos over their bodies strode in, armed to the teeth. These men were the Mumia. The Priests hustled Imhotep out onto the dark balcony just as the Mumia ripped through the curtains.
Anck-su-namun pointed at Pharaoh and hissed, "My body is no longer his temple!" And she plunged the sword into her own heart.
Out on the balcony, Imhotep's mouth opened into a horrible silent scream...
For murdering Pharaoh, Anck-su-namun's body was to be cursed. And it was Imhotep, the High Priest, whose duty it was to curse it.
Imhotep led a torch-lit procession across the dunes. Anck-su-namun's mummy was carried by Nubian Slaves. Her body was mummified, her vital organs removed. They put her down in the sand along with five jewel encrusted jars. Imhotep, filled with dread, read from a book made out of pure gold. This was the Book of The Living. This book contained sacred incantations that would send the evil dead on a journey into the dark underworld.
Strange light suddenly flashed across Anck-su-namun's body and across the faces of the slaves and the Egyptian soldiers. Suddenly, everyone's fear-filled eyes all rose, as if watching Anck-su-namun's body rising. Then, one last huge flash, followed by a blast of wind, and it was over. Anck-su-namun's body now lied twisted on the ground. Imhotep's Priests place the body into a stone sarcophagus. The Nubian slaves lowered it into a hole and buried it with sand. Imhotep then signaled to the Soldiers, who threw their spears at the Nubians. Killing them.
The slaves were killed....
Imhotep's knife-wielding Priests attacked the now unarmed Soldiers, hacking at them in the flickering darkness as Imhotep and the Mumia solemnly watched.
.... and the soldiers who killed them were also slain, so that no unholy person should ever know the exact location of the burial site.
The Mumia walked off across the sand and then, one by one, the Priests stopped their frenzied stabbing and stared off at the vanishing Mumia. As the last Mumia disappeared over a distant dune, Imhotep nodded, and the Priests leaped onto Anck-su-namun's grave and begin digging it back up with their hands.
That night, in the desert of Sahara, chariots raced out into the moonlit desert. Imhotep led the way. A 'hearse' carried Anck-su-namun's mummy on their way to a city...
There was another book there. The Book Of The Dead, which was never to-be opened, never to be read, for it contained the incantations that could bring a dead body back to life a most unholy thing. They raced up the stone ramp and in through the city gates.
It was hidden at Hamunaptra, City of the Dead, inside the statue of Anubis, so that no such sacrilege might ever disgrace Egypt....
Imhotep pulled an ornate chest out of a secret compartment inside the giant statue of Anubis. He opened the chest and lifted out the Book of the Dead, made of black stone.
.... but for his love of Anck-su-namun, he was willing to defy the gods.
Big hairy rats scurried through the mausoleums and over the headstones of the very large, scary, underground Necropolis cemetery. A detritus moat surrounded the cemetery— muck made out of filthy water and human remains. Skulls bobbed in the goop. The Priests had gathered in a circle. Their hooded, lifeless eyes seemed dead to this world. Their bald heads rocked back and forth as they chanted, a quiet eerie hum. Heinous creatures. In the middle of the circle was a strange, twisted altar. Imhotep had unwrapped Anck-su-namun's gorgeous, lifeless body and placed her five sacred canopic jars around her.
Anck-su-namun's vital organs were still fresh, so a human sacrifice would not need be made.
As Imhotep began to read from The Book of The Dead, a large swirling hole started to open in the detritus bog. Several Priests looked over at it, frightened, then quickly looked back down and resumed chanting. A strange mist wafted up out of the swirling hole and over to the jars, it passes through them and into Anck-su-namun's body. One of the jars shuddered, the heart inside began to beat. The chanting Priests, the swirling hole, the wafting mist, the beating heart, Imhotep's reading— they were all reaching a crescendo.
Anck-su-namun's eyes suddenly flew open.
Anck-su-namun's soul had come back from the dead! Now all that was needed, was to return her organs to their rightful place within her body.
Imhotep lifted a sacrificial knife above Anck-su-namun's breast, about to plunge it down. The chanting, swirling and beating heart climaxed. And that was when the Mumia burst in and stormed through the startled Priests. The head Mumia smashed the jar with the beating heart. The mist instantly sucked back out of Anck-su-namun's body and imploded back into the swirling hole. Anck-su-namun's eyes closed. Dying once again. Imhotep screamed in rage but he stopped the second he saw her. By the look in her beautiful hazel green-specked eyes, he knew that he had hurt her the most. He knew he had betrayed her and that she was well aware of it. The Mumia grab him and his Priests.
His Priests were condemned to be mummified alive.
Inside a torch-lit chamber, Imhotep was held by Anubis-headed embalmers. He cringed at the flickering, impressionistic glimpses of his Priests being embalmed and mummified alive. The horrid-looking Embalmers, using knives, needles and thread, calmly perform their ghastly surgery on the screaming Priests, who were going insane from the procedure. A red hot poker was pulled out of a pit of burning coals. A Priest's head was wedged between two strong boards. His eyes widened in terror as an Embalmer moved to insert the red hot poker up his nose. Imhotep was horrified as he watched the Priest scream in agony.
All twenty-one of Imhotep's Priests squirmed inside their wrappings. Imhotep was forced to his knees. His arms were held back. His mouth was pried open.
He was condemned to endure the Hom-Dai. The worst of all ancient curses. One so horrible, it had never before been bestowed.
He looked at the Mumia standing not far away and quickly spoke, before they could proceed any further. "It is true that my love of Anck-su-namun was the cause of this, but I will come back. I will come back for my true queen."
With that proclaimed, his head was pulled back and his mouth pried open once more. Using a pair of tongs, an Embalmer slowly pulled Imhotep's tongue out of his mouth, then placed a very sharp knife on top of it. Imhotep's eyes widened as his tongue was cut out. The Embalmer flung Imhotep's tongue onto the floor where the Mumia's dogs attacked and quickly ate it.
Imhotep was then wrapped. Only his mouth, nostrils and fear-filled eyes were left free of the slimy bandages. Detritus muck boiled inside a black cauldron. Embalmers scooped out the fetid muck and applied it to Imhotep's wrappings as he squirmed. He was then laid in a wooden coffin inside a stone sarcophagus. An Embalmer with a bucket stepped up and looked into the coffin. Imhotep's wild eyes stared back. The Embalmer emptied the bucket over Imhotep's chest: dozens of scarabs, disgusting dung beetles. They scurried across Imhotep's screaming face. Some vanished into his tongue-less mouth and up his nostrils.
By eating the sacred scarabs, he would be cursed to stay alive forever. And by eating him, they were cursed just the same.
The lid to the coffin is slammed shut. Then, using a strange four-sided key, the Head Mumia locked the coffin lid tight. The heavy sarcophagus lid was shoved into place and with a loud Whoosh sealed itself airtight. Once again, the Head Mumia used the strange key, locking the sarcophagus lid tight.
He was to remain sealed inside his sarcophagus, the undead for all of eternity.
The blue-skinned, strangely tattooed man carefully collapsed the sides of the key, turning it into a little puzzle box.
They would never allow him to be released. For he would arise a walking disease, a plague upon mankind, an unholy flesh-eater, with the strength of ages, power invincibility.
Imhotep's sarcophagus was dropped into a detritus pit. The disgusting muck splashed up, drooled down its sides, and then was mysteriously sucked into. It was seamed, vanishing clean.
And if he could raise his beloved Anck-su-namun from her place in hell, together, they would be an unstoppable infection upon this world. The Apocalypse.
What had changed the man's mind at the last emerald before being mummified? No one ever knew.
Imhotep's horrifying tongue-less screams could be heard coming from inside his sarcophagus, centuries later, as grave diggers shoveled dirt onto it.