I could spend hours talking about what I found behind that door. To be honest, the things in that room are more of a testament to the burden that I am under than anything that I could write here. That room, and the secrets it holds, even from me, even now, are the heart of it all, the origin and the solution to a nightmare that reaches far beyond me and my family. But this is my story, not the story of the house.
So, suffice to say that although I was nearly overwhelmed by the things I saw that first time in my Great Uncle’s laboratory, I did not even scratch the surface of what was there to be found.
How should I describe that room, that all-important room? Well, let’s start with the physical. It was large, but not huge, and it looked like it was carved from the stone under the house by some very precise machinery. That is to say the walls were natural stone, but completely smooth, except for a few places where there were carvings. Although it was hard to see most of the walls or the floor…there were shelves covering nearly every inch of wall space, heavy, wooden freestanding shelves of a variety of designs, and the floor was mostly covered by a patchwork of rugs, wildly varying in style. There was a long table in the middle of the room, almost like a workbench. Pushed against one wall was a large wooden desk, with a chair.
At the far end of the room was a wide area that was clear of everything, rugs and shelves included. In the center of that space was a circle of metal, inlaid in the floor. Other than that clear space, the room was absolutely cluttered. Every square inch of shelf and table space was covered by an assortment of objects so random that my mind had trouble picking out what exactly each thing was.
There some rather normal things, like books, and sheets of paper scattered around, covered in notes, and even some things I could recognize as lab equipment from my college chemistry classes, little vials and beakers and such. There were a lot of little, and some not so little, machines, but I was definitely not able to pick out a purpose for each one. There was a lot of brass, copper, and wood, and there was nothing that looked like it had been made after 1900. And there were lots of…well, goth or hippie stuff. I would have called it Wiccan, but one of my co-workers was a rather outspoken Wiccan so I knew better. Bones, and crystals, and sticks covered in carvings. Some of the books had strange symbols on them.
The rest…well, there was a shelf with a row of animals in glass jars, but the animals were not familiar to me. I looked at one – a cobra in formaldehyde, only the cobra had a scorpion stinger at the end of its tail, and dozens of little feet in a row along its body. There was a bleached white human skull with four eye sockets. There was something that looked like an electric hand-powered generator, from the 1800’s, but…well, I was not sure I wanted to know why the wire leads from it were connected to the base of a tiny bonsai tree. There was a jar overflowing with marble-sized crystals, each a different color and all shaped like tiny toy soldiers. There was something that looked like a flintlock pistol, but made brass, and covered in some kind of intricate clockwork and tiny bits of blue glass.
And all that was just my first glance around the room. There was…all kinds of weird shit.