I write these words, the last of my account, from the sick bay of the merchant ship SS Rails Bailey. An odd name for a vessel, to my mind, yet who am I to judge any more?
The last day was filled with horrors I can only now begin to think about. I had just finished my breakfast when the strange lights about the Temple of the Great Physician began to glow and pulse once more, shifting colours as they tracked back and forth across the worn stone surface. Then the noises began. Loud thumping drums, over and over, with strange whoops between them, and the voices singing words I could not understand… I have never heard the like, and I pray I never do again. As this all became overwhelming, a great voice came from the heavens, counting “One two, one two…”
The next thing I remember is Professor McCann shaking me awake. All was quiet again, and I was curled up in my tent with my fists balled so tightly that my fingers had cramped. Doctor Widdershins checked me over and we set about breaking down my camp and securing the finds for transport. An hour or so later we were on our way, down the avenue, turning right by the great cats and heading out across the desert. I slept as we rode, awakening only when we reached the sea. A mariner appeared to load everything onto the boat and I was brought here, when I slept peacefully for the first time in days.
Shin-Dig still had one surprise for me, though: as I walked from truck to gangplank, there on the shore, the side of my boot brushed against something hard. I reached down, picked it up and put it in my pocket – and that last find sits upon my bedside table even now.