The day is Sef-Al-Hata, in local terms. Sef, is the month. The month of The Sun, appropriate for what I am here to study. Ah is the week. The third and final week of Sef. And Hata in the 4th day of their 6 day week. A simple system, but effective.
I have been travelling with The Men of The March for two whole days, since Sef-Al-Cala. They do nothing but stare and walk, these men. Their feet are swollen and leave behind black footprints of blood and skin. Do they care? It doesn't seem so. I saw one make a mad dash for some unseen goal. He collapsed before reaching it, whatever it was, but no sooner than he had fallen he was up again. Always marching. As they say here "The Men: They all walk on." I'm not sure what metaphor lies in there, but it seems to be the honest truth. Not one of these men has stopped his march in over thirty years, they tell me. They say some come and go, but it is not because they quit or die, it is because they transcend. Something about divine fire and holy combustion. I'm not sure I buy it just yet, but there is definitely something strange here.
- Exhaustedly yours, Jussux LeCrowe.
The Men of The March
These men, nearly all natives or long-time residents of the scorched land known as Jezilan, have been walking in one big circle for nearly half of their lives. It started with a pilgrimage of sorts. To walk a million steps under the burning gaze of Safhala the Sun-Eye. The men, a dozen of them, priests and monks, all dedicated to that flaming ball of hell in the sky. It turned the lands to ash, and still they worshipped it...
Forgive me, I am bitter. Moving on. They set out one day, when i was a young man. They urged me to come with them, to be saved from sin and the temptations of mortality. They said they would walk a millions steps, and return as glorious saints, purged of sin in the eyes of Safhala. I didn't buy it, and I still don't know how or why they're still walking, and I don't care. They aren't hurting anything, best to just leave the men to their walking.
It is the next day, Sef-Al-Gata. And I am ready to give up. These men never speak, they never take their gaze off of the sands in front of them. They are delirious madmen. But, there is another. A young man, he says he is a priest of Safhala come to purge himself of sin. He will be joining the march "When the time is right," he says. But for now, we keep each other's company. I will keep a close watch on him, he may be my key to discovering why a man would undergo such a suicidal task.
- Yours, slightly better, Jussux LeCrowe.
Safhala, The Sun-Eye
Safhala is said to be the most powerful god in the cosmos. So powerful her eye burns the earth beneath it. She has very few true worhsippers, and they are seen as madmen at best and madmen bent of destruction of the land, at worst. Safhala's commands are simple, daily purification under the mid-day sun to cleanse the skin of the evil of mortality, and to spread the joys of light to all, bringing light to the dark of the world. Revealing truths, and such. It is unknown why her most devout walk in a circle through the desert, and none of the locals seem to ponder it much. It's just another aspect of their life.
I saw something amazing today. Something so shocking. So amazing. I can not put it to words. Two of them, they were called to Safhala's side. And now I know, why I am here .I will be joining The Men of The March today. I urge whoever finds this book to, never doubt the powers of faith and the change that can come with a miracle. Because I have seen a miracle. Two men perished today, and two more will join the walk...
The Men: They all walk on.
- Your faithful servant, Jussux.
The truth is hard to believe, and is generally quite unknown, you would either be called a madman, or shrugged off as rambling if you uttered these words aloud. The Men. They are like a crank, friction, power. They power the sun. Safhala has been influencing mortals to generate energy for her for many years, and with each step they take, The- Sun-Eye burns brighter. In her constant war with the other gods, she sometimes has to immolate a soul, in order to grasp a quick burst of power. The mortals are nothing more than a food source to her.