The Book of the Doomed
I. "Let this be, then, an age of men and new men, and let them find their way, as they have learned," said the Guide.
II. And he set sail again, for there were yet many lights upon the endless sea and countless vessels of men and women and new men.
III. The seasons turned, and the Guide set foot upon many new lands. There he inscribed the sign of the Guide, taught men and women, and caused to be fashioned great wonders and splendour.
IV. Yet in some new lands there dwelled not-men of unsightly or bestial lineages. Their ancestors came not from any land of men and women, and they made signs of strange provenance.
V. Where men or new men met the not-men, familiar signs and strange signs tangled to make the sign of War and no other, no matter their wishes. Wastes and wildernesses were made of new lands, their towers and palaces struck to ruin, and the wind of voices spread far across the endless sea.
VI. It passed that upon the endless sea the Guide caught sight of a sleek vessel of the not-men, that sailed beneath the sign that was Doom. He recalled the vessel's shape, and was for a moment a shepherd boy in his heart.
VII. "Why do you sail, knowing, beneath the sign that is Doom?" called the Guide.
VIII. "We have taken the sign, and turned it upon itself, and made it ours," said the wise amongst the not-men. "You have not, and yet you might. You see well, but do you not see what is to come?"
IX. The Guide knew then that the wisdom of the not-men was neither false nor true, but of a different nature. It was not for men and women, for it would send them to the sign that is Doom.
X. He sailed from the not-men, and thereafter where the not-men of the sleek vessels met with men and women and new men, it was always beneath the sign of War, made clear and true.