Serializations of the Hitherby Dragons novels

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Hermetic Mysteries

Hermetic Mysteries

It’s impure. It’s an impure situation. There’s this Department of Esoteric Studies, and once upon a time the cruel demiurge would vomit up cash and grants and all manner of free sodas to keep it in operation, only, now . . . it doesn’t.

“I can’t take up the slack,” says Mr. Gulley. “I don’t mingle my gold with demiurge business.”

He’s afraid of the demiurge getting under his skin.

It was corrupted. The whole academic environment was corrupted, you understand? Money had come in and taken it down. Money had turned it from this thing where kids get to grow up and become better, become heroes, become people who fight off wolves, into this thing where a teacher can’t afford to walk out across the demiurge pits and go to the grocery and buy cup ramen and poison for their students any longer.

The lightbulb god is underfunded and goes out.

The third and seventeenth hermetic mysteries are lost.

And the final paperwork comes in, you know. The thing that says: that’s it. You’re out. It’s all done. Corrupted. Tarnished.

And here was the miracle. Here was the alchemical mystery, the magic ladder, the holy tree. Thatcould stick that paperwork in the middle of that diagram, and hold it under the light of Saturn, and purify those flaws away, and turn that final paperwork into funding.

The aqua regia was effective.

The impurity was cleansed from stuff, and now there is funding, bright and gold.

“But where does it come from?” people ask, like there’s an answer. Like funding comes from somewhere. But here’s the secret. Here’s the alchemy. Here’s the mystery. Funding’s like gold, like purity, like perfection.

It doesn’t come from somewhere.

It is a thing that arises. It is a manifestation of the will; of hope; of dreams; of choice.

That and the light of Saturn, of course, and the aqua regia, and the proper diagrams, which is why, if you’re still undecided on your career path, Esoteric Studies is the definite and proper choice.



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