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The Magical Book

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No-one knew where it came from. It merely appeared in the library one day, appearing to be just a simple book left on the table by a careless reader. One of the library assistants tried to shelve it, but he had no idea where it should go. He couldn't read the language it was written in – besides which it was mostly strange symbols and intricate diagrams. He took it to the head librarian who shook her head and said "Magic. I'll file it with the other Occult books."

But the book refused to be shelved. It kept appearing back on the table where it had first appeared. The head librarian put it in a locked cupboard in the finish, and when that didn't work, she said, "I think we should make it a gift to the Sisters of the Light."

The Sisters of the Light could not refuse a gift. They however were not pleased. They liked their magical prophecies on the wall and their prayer and hymn books were all the literature they needed. The magical book was just as troublesome for them, appearing in a Sister's hands instead of her hymn book, or lying in the centre of a room, pages open to some indecipherable spell. In the dark, the letters seemed to glow. It was disturbing.

The Prelate, furious when she found it sitting on her chair one evening, tossed the book into the fire. The flames turned an eerie green and the pages crackled in the heat. Next morning, however, the book was found amongst the ashes, undamaged.

The Prelate decided the book had to go. So she sent it to the Wizard's Tower.

The wizards were no happier with the book. It was clearly full of Powerful Magic. They used all their usual tricks to get the book to behave, but as before it kept appearing in unusual and increasingly inconvenient places. It was once found in one of the Second Wizard's bathwater, but upon being removed, both the leather cover and yellowed pages were utterly dry.

"What does it want?" one of the wizards demanded, frustrated. (The evening before he'd found it in his bed and was still quite unsettled by the experience)

"It's a book," another wizard scoffed. "It doesn't want anything."

But an older wizard stroked his beard thoughtfully and said, "I think you might be right, Aloysius. We need to find what it wants."

"Maybe we should just ask it," sneered the second wizard.

In fact the older wizard did ask the book, but it remained silent.

About a week later a new student came to the Tower, a shy and unassuming young man named Giller. When the book made its way into his bed, the others laughed at him and one of the Senior Wizards took it away and placed it back in the circle of salt (they were running out of ideas by now and sometimes the simplest ideas were the best. The book believed otherwise.)

But the book appeared on Giller's desk in one of his classes. It fell off a shelf right in front of him when he went to the library. It was as if it were following him around. One day he was sitting outside under a tree, trying to memorise a difficult spell, and discovered the book suddenly leaning against the tree trunk.

The other wizards had warned him about the book's Powerful Magic, and said he wouldn't be able to handle it. Every time the book appeared nearby, one of them whisked it away from him.

Today, alone, Giller lifted the book into his lap. Carefully he opened the book. The pages stirred in the breeze. A bright light shone out from the pages. Green tendrils of magic surrounded him. Giller wasn't afraid though. He thought the sparkles of magical energy dancing in his eyes were beautiful, and felt warm and safe.

The book poured all of the knowledge it held into Giller's head.

After that it was a ordinary book that never wandered again, though only Giller could read most of the spells in it. Maybe it was that experience that led to him becoming a First Wizard in Darken Rahl's employ.

Giller only knew that he'd been chosen for great things, and was ever grateful for the mysterious magical book.