A modern grimoire

The Magic Circle Disaster: Forensics (Part 2)

Jed walked back to his truck. The mighty 1984 F-150. When people think of farm trucks this fit the description. The straight six cylinder fired up with its loopy sound. And then he turned it off. He sat there for a few minutes, took a long drag on a bottle of water and said to himself, “Get your balls together man. Do the forensics on this right.”

Jed got out of the truck, went around the back and grabbed an old tan backpack out of the silver bin in the bed.

A magician’s toolkit can be fairly simple, or in this case, an eclectic collection of tools. The bag contained a variety of spagyrics, a diving rod, a small trident about two feet long, various forms of incense linked to the planets, a bunch of stones, a squeeze bottle of holy water, large bottle of salt, chalk, some malas programmed for different functions, and a notebook. The most important things in this case were a large paper sack of asafoetida, an equally large bag of Dittany of Crete, some charcoal briquets and a propane lighter.

Asafoetida, otherwise known as “devil’s dung” has an interesting set of properties. The biggest of which is its ability to completely strip things of their energetic charge. Most magicians into evocation use it to banish things quickly by setting it on fire in the event something goes wrong. Of course, it also smelled like a three-week-old case of crotch rot as well. Not pleasant, but useful.

Now the Dittany of Crete was oddly what had brought him out here in the first place. Dittany of Crete is considered an etheric condenser. It makes physical evocation, which is generally a dumb idea in the first place, much easier to perform. It is also ridiculously expensive. The good stuff goes for up to $100 an ounce. Someone had tried to buy several pounds from Wallace. And that was when Wallace gave him a call.

In the esoteric community few things raised a red flag. The fact that the alchemists all made their money off of hallucinogens the FDA hadn’t gotten wind of yet was no small part in why people didn’t really like talking to conventional law enforcement. Sure, the weirdos who were into baby parts sourced via Planned Parenthood and the like would result in someone saying something, but most people had a live and let live approach to things as long as it didn’t involve children, endangered animals and hard drugs.

One exception to this existed. Dittany of Crete. Walking into hoogedy boogedy store and asking for a large amount of this stuff would be akin to going to an FFL and inquiring about where to acquire radioactive grenades.

Several years back a pack of fools outside Tucson attempted to evoke one of the major arcana from the Tarot into physical form. The only thing left of that attempt was a huge smoking hole in the ground and a wildfire that lasted for three days. Suffice it to say they were never heard from again. Jed did wonder what was happening to them as he suspected they had been physically ripped into the other side of reality. But he was not curious enough to actually explore the issue further.

If you want to learn about how to do any of this outside of fiction, check out the Master Course at Perseus Arcane Academy: Master Course (perseusarcaneacademy.com)

He put the ruck on his back, shifted it into place and grabbed a well-oiled dark brown hickory staff out of the back of the bin.

A magician’s staff is an odd thing. One-part archaic weapon one part focus. His had a large silver knob on the top. While you had to burn asafoetida to make it work, smashing something with an etheric body with a ball of silver, or iron, tended to work pretty well too.

His had a variety of carvings representing the planets and Zodiac on it. It also had a few thousand hours of chanting Kabbalistic letters pushed into it as well. Oddly, he could plop it in the middle of a room and people would walk in circles to avoid going near it. Even when people had no concept of subtle energy, their bodies could feel it and this thing practically sang with power.

He started walking back to the circle of broken stones. He drank a scorpion spagyric quickly and shifted his vison into the subtle world chanting a B-H letter combination to strengthen it. Kabbalah certainly had its uses in this kind of situation.

Once he got there, he placed the ruck on top of one of the broken pillars and started his spiral walk out from the center of the circle. The energetic signature of what had happened was largely gone.

Small pieces of fabric, probably clothing, no bigger than a quarter were here and there. Nothing big enough to get a read off of. Odd pieces of metal as well. He remembered looking into the circle the night before and thought he had seen at least three, or four figures, inside. Very little remained of that. Of course, how many of those were human figures posed a good question.

Then he found it. A leather-bound journal with burns on the cover. It looked like some skin from someone’s hand was burned onto one edge. Crispy. Gross.

He picked it up and thumbed through it. While he did so, he looked up frequently to make sure nothing else came to surprise him.

It was in English. That would make things much easier. He continued to walk outwards.

By the time he had made it about a hundred meters out, he had found a set of car keys for a car that wasn’t there, a wallet someone had dropped, what looked like a part of someone’s skull and a few fingers.

He hoped the keys meant somebody had made it out alive. They could be questioned. The human remains he put into gallon sized zip locked bags along with the boot. All of them looked like they had been exsanguinated in a lab. Bone dry. He wasn’t sure what that meant.

He went back to the F-150, put everything into the bin in the bed of the truck and left.

The Mountain View Diner was his next stop.

Francis gave him a booth in the back. She knew to do this when he came in rough. Coffee and iced water were already on the table waiting.

He drew the notebook out of his satchel and turned the cover.

“Well, that’s not what I expected,” he said.

If you missed part one, you can find it here: The Magic Circle Disaster: Jed the Magician (Part 1) – SixtySkills

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