Report To The Overseers 4

13th of Capricorn, 1944

Exciting Breakthrough Regarding The Codex

To The Council,

In looking over our expedition's prior inventories, you may have taken particular note of a three-sided bronze contraption we dug up about five weeks ago. At first we assumed it to be a kind of Turing machine, intended to perform mathematical operations that would take a mere mortal many hours. Since I translated some new passages of the "codex," however, I believe I have begun to perceive its true function.

(I use the term "codex" loosely. Indeed, the writings we have found within 231 are many separate works, but we may as well refer to them collectively.)

We knew from the moment that we found the device that its uppermost ten symbols were the first 10 integers, 0, 1 and so on, because they were borrowed by the Keepers from the Mekans. (Furthermore, there is a Mekan "maker's mark" upon the underside). We assumed, then, that the remaining symbols were of some mathematical system and discarded the whole thing. After all, we Westerners did not come to Egypt for ancient mathematics, but for ancient magics.

But then Dr. Light pointed out to me that, since Brigit's demise, we had not compared his and my notes against the sections of codex on the artifacts we had cataloged prior to his death, the bronze being a prime example. When I looked back over it, all was clear: it includes all the basic components of the Erikeshan language. If this device were our only sample of their dead language, we could write anything in it. And that is its purpose: to write.

I know the membership of the Council tends toward the scientific, so I will be straightforward in my explanation: the clockwork is made to make certain ideas (particularly religious ones) literally unthinkable in mortal beings. This, of course, spits in the face of all modern alienists have deduced of the functioning of the brain, but it is not possible to disbelieve the codex. Those among you who originally came to our cause from the military, at least, shall see the tactical significance of such a power.

We have labored for a long time in the shadows, Councillors, paying steep bribes and concocting convoluted explanations to cover our activities, but with the Keepers' methods, I believe we may amplify our operations a thousandfold.

There is an experiment I intend to perform with the device. If it goes as I predict, I shall pack it up at once and return to headquarters with it.

— Alexander Teles

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