The Narrator’s Tale #TFDbyRWOz2 D minus 1

I tried to start from the first page, but every attempt was thwarted. With a mind of its own it would fan its pages forward to a spot that I believe was the same on each occasion. 

At last I gave in and went with its ‘suggestion.’

And that was how I was introduced to the writer of this volume, or at the least, the author commencing from that spot. 

If not for the evidence of my own eyes that have seen the writing appear from nowhere on to the page, I would not give any credence to what he claims to be.

The Narrator’s Tale #TFDbyRWOz2 D minus 2

I was not troubled by these dreams. Rather I thought they were reaching out to me. To help me to understand – myself – this book – and the situation in which it had placed me. 

Yet they never seemed to conclude – despite efforts to go back into that dream state after waking. 

Then, a morning came when I heard the voice again. And I realized something that I had not grasped before. It was not any spoken tongue that I have known or studied. But I understood it completely. 

Excitedly I fetched the tiny fat volume from the shelf. And opened it. 

Now I understood every letter and every word.

The Narrator’s Tale #TFDbyRWOz2 D minus 3

Many more times I witnessed the same mysterious writing, followed by the precipitate closing and locking of the book. A couple of times I attempted to mark the place with anything that came to hand, but in each instance the object was expelled – most violently. 

I stopped trying after a paper clip that I attached to the page I was on, simply disappeared. 

That night the dreams came back.

The Narrator’s Tale #TFDbyRWOz2 D minus 4

So much more to puzzle over. I spent hours turning pages, looking for clues or a key to help me translate. I took to counting the pages with writing and lost count somewhere around the two thousand mark, and still more pages with text lay ahead. 

At that point I thought to check out the covers – but they were clean, not even anything I could assume was a signature of ownership. 

Days later I finally reached the last page of written material. Well short of half way through the volume. 

And there before my eyes, in flashes of brilliant light more letters drew themselves onto the page. And when finished the book closed up and the lock relocked.

The Narrator’s Tale #TFDbyRWOz2 D minus 5

The pages were filled with letters and symbols, cramped from top to bottom with what looked like strings of words and blocks of paragraphs. And here and there were larger markings, very much like those in my dreams that gave the clues for unlocking the book. 

As my eye scanned down the first page the letters etc gave off a silver iridescence, indicating exactly where my gaze was focused. 

I flipped to the back of the volume and saw that the pages from there back to the middle were empty. Plenty of room to make additions. 

But I could not read any of it.

The Narrator’s Tale #TFDbyRWOz2 D minus 6

I stumble over my thoughts when I consider how best to explain how I unlocked the book. 

I sat in front of this page a full hour before I set pen to it. 

It was not so much the same five letters that I saw over and over – though I am so familiar with them now. 

But it marks the first time I heard the voice. And I felt myself to be the object of some watching presence once again. 

The voice did not address me. On the contrary the impression grew that I was being allowed to overhear what was said. 

My comprehension was immediate. I saw the “letters” as the steps to manipulate the lock open. 

I followed them. And saw the pages within at last.

The Narrator’s Tale #TFDbyRWOz2 D minus 7

The dreams were such that I did not connect them at all to the book on my shelf. From what I can remember they were ordinary fare in so far as dreams go. They even had twists at the end. But I did remark that they were much more vivid. They lingered like a half remembered fragrance.  

Thus they continued until a day came and they were accompanied by scrolling text. 

I believe that first occurred when my frustration with the lock on the book was at its height. 

The letters of the text were not any I recognized. 

I hang my head and admit my dullness – for it took the longest time for me to understand that the same five letters appeared over and over again above the image of the lock that floated in and out of my dreams.

The Narrator’s Tale #TFDbyRWOz2 D minus 8

As I have related it was some time before I could open the book. I went about my regular life – working, eating and sleeping. But my mind frequently turned to the conundrum on the shelf. I spent hours holding it in my palm and staring. 

I wasn’t sure then but I am positive now that glints of light emanated from its pages whenever my back was turned. (This truth only came later). Obviously I felt something was going on. And my unease grew as the night lengthened. 

It was two weeks after I brought it home that the dreams began.