The Legend of Alma
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tl by molokidan
Table of Contents
The Legend of Alma
The Philosopher's Stone
In medieval times, after the Catholic Church failed in their Crusades, society was in turmoil due to repeated religious crises and the prevalent spreading of the Black Plague. In order to conquer this unrest, the church shifted the blame to heretics, and from the end of the 12th century to the beginning the 18th century, a mass inquisition was carried out in the form of a witch hunt.
The inquisition's violence was intensified during end of the 16th century and the beginning of the 17th century, during the end of the Protestant Reformation. The number of witches burned up during this period is said to total in around 9,000,000.
The Old Testament - "Exodus"
Chapter 22, Verse 18:
"Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live."
In order to determine whether a witch has made a pact with the devil, they were to be stripped naked and had every hair shaved from their body. Private areas that were normally not seen by the naked eye were inspected with great diligence. Then, if they were stabbed with needles and felt no pain nor shed any blood, they were considered to be witches.
Following this, the thumbs of their right hands were tied to the big toes of their left legs, and they were to be thrown in rivers. If they sank, they were innocent. If they floated, they were guilty. This sorting method was thought to be very accurate, since the children of Satan were believed to be repelled from water.
Women suspected of being witches were often prosecuted based off secret information and rumors. After their trials, they were cruelly tortured and forced to admit their sins, then burned at the stake.
Witches (An image of witches during a Black Mass)
-Jean Bodin, "De la demonomanie des sorciers"
1. They deny God and all religion.
2. They curse, blaspheme and provoke God with all despite.
3. They give their faith to the devil, and they worship and offer sacrifice unto him.
4. They do solemnly vow and promise all their progeny unto the devil.
5. They sacrifice their own children to the devil before baptism, holding them up into the air unto him, and then thrust a needle unto their brains.
6. They burn their children when they have sacrificed them.
7. They swear to the devil to bring as many into that society as they can.
8. They swear by the name of the devil.
9. They engage in incestuous adultery with spirits.
10. They boil infants (after they have murdered them unbaptising them) until their flesh be made potable.
11. They eat the flesh and drink the blood of men and children openly.
12. They kill men with poison.
13. They kill men's cattle.
14. They betwitch men's corn, and bring hunger and barrenness into the country; they ride and fly in the air, bring storms, make tempests, et cetera.
15. They engage in venery with a devil called Incubus, even when they lie in bed with their husbands, and have children by them, which become the best witches.
Chapter I - The Legend of Alma
B: At the end of the 16th century, Jean was acting as a doctor in the countryside of the French province Lorraine, currently boiling his blood over research on the disease known as the Black Death which was plaguing people all around.
B: Just around that time, his beloved wife Madeline fell victim to the plague, leaving him to curse his own uselessness while lamenting his loss.
B: As he wandered through this abyss of despair, he eventually caved in and resorted to signing a pact with the devil, through the help of the forbidden art of black magic.
J: Satan, my demonic emperor!
J: Please write my name into your black books.
J: If there is any hope of saving my wife Madeleine, I shall offer my life to you.
rooster sfx: Morning!
B: The next thing he knew, Jean found himself in the middle of a barren field.
B: The massive goat, the witch, the vapors that had made him feel like vomiting, the farm women who had invited him in to the Sabbath...
B: They had all vanished like mist...it was as if it had all been an illusion.
J: Was it real, or was I merely dreaming...?
B: Several days later, though, after returning home, Jean was greeted by his wife Madeleine, who had completely recovered from her illness.
B: While welcoming this unforeseen turn of events, he also realized that this meant his life would soon be taken, and cemented his resolve.
J: So the sabbath that night really did happen...
B: However, after that, no sign of any demons coming to claim his life appeared, and peaceful days continued on just as always.
B: Finally, despite having given up any hopes of pregnancy long ago, Madeleine found out she was to bear a child,
B: and so Jean was tortured by constant nightmares.
upper left text (right side): The child will be born as an offspring of the devil!
upper left text (left side): The child will be born as a devout servant of the devil!
B: It was, without a doubt, the condition the devil had placed upon Jean's pact.
B: Unable to bear it any longer, he called upon three pious monks to perform an exorcism.
B: The exorcism only appeared to aggravate the demon's condition, though, and Jean's wife Madeleine ended up dying at the end of a painful, abnormal birth.
B: And so, as if to clearly prove the reality of the situation, a demonic seal that looked like a scar in the shape of a snake appeared across stomach of the child, who had had a healthy birth and was making noise in high spirits.
B: Jean, suffering in misery of the weight of his sins, had all his energy sapped away by his own agony, and left this world forever.
J: Do not allow the villagers to suspect that you are a witch...
B: This happened on his sole daughter Alma's 10th birthday.
B: The days and months went on, and the matured Alma took up her father's job serving the sick in her village.
B: That wasn't all, though -- through alchemy, she produced gold and secretly distributed it to starving farmers.
B: This, coupled with her beauty, caused rumors of Alma to spread all through the Lorraine region.
B: It was no surprise, then, that word of this woman reached the ears of Nicolas Remy, the region's magistrate.
B: In 1575, Remy was promoted from the position of Lieutenant General of Vosges to secretary to Duke Charles III of Lorraine. After making a name for himself through his service to the duke, he gained the seat of magistrate and chief public prosecutor.
B: Having acquired a virtual license to kill, Remy devoted all of his energy to the exposure of witchcraft, and fully exercising his unscrupulous, fanatical arm toward brutal witch subjugation.
B: Before long, Alma was suspected of being a witch after healing all of the sick in her village, and was imprisoned until the day of her trial was decided.
B: Alma's fortune was seized and split between the inspector, the priest, and the magistrate himself.
B: In this way, witch hunts were also a profitable business venture.
R: It is my dream to one day see every witch in this land burning to death all at the once.
R: Mmmmm...how beautiful.
F: Don't be fooled by outward appearances!
sfx: biri biri
F: Look here!
F: This scar means that she is a witch who has signed a pact with the devil...
F: And the fact that when she's stabbed here with a needle, no blood comes out, is all the more proof!
B: There was a trick to using these pins in a way so that they would only sink into the flesh.
B: It is said that pinners would master this technique in order to sell off women as witches and make fortunes in return...
R: Strip her down and strap her onto the table!
M: Yes sir!
F: Witches raise their familiars using their own blood, so the instrument she uses should be hidden somewhere in her body.
F: If we can't find it on the surface...
F: This place looks suspicious!
R: But I doubt a mere finger will reach all the way inside...
R: Well, Alma...? There is now longer any reason to doubt the suspicions surrounding you.
R: If you still insist on claiming your innocence, though,
R: we'll just have to torture the witnesses we already gathered up.
B: Through the black magic witches possess, escaping from such disgrace was thought to be an extremely easy task for them.
B: If that was to happen, though, the authorities were prepared to crucify innocent people as punishment.
B: Alma allowed herself to be made into a witch, and this self-sacrifice and love that filled her mind was, on the contrary, something much more similar to white magic.
B: In the end, the witch Alma bid an eternal farewell to this era.
B: After all, no matter how one acted in a time like this, where the average person was controlled by absolutist theories and delusions, it always came down to a matter of fire and oil.
B: Trouble like this wasn't anything Alma had wished for.
B: To witches, though, physical "death" is truly like the gestation that gives birth to new "life."
B: After escaping through a spiritual body, they go retroactively upstream to the primordial world, and become one with a universal consciousness.
B: In other words, they leave on a journey that transcends the intricate simulacra of both time and space...
Chapter I - The Legend of Alma / End