The Book of Salzared was a book located in the Repository of Learning. It was located in a reading area, all alone, on a black pedestal. A plush carpet woven with imagery of cruel thorns covered the floor. The surface of the pedestal was slanted, so the book rested propped at an angle.

It was bound in human-looking skin with tiny pores, fine hairs and light blue veins. It was also warm to the touch, because the skin belonged to a displacer named Salzared, who yet lived at the time Jason happened upon the book. In addition, there was a displacer eye in the middle of the front cover, to see who read the book.

On the title page, it says the following:

"The Book of Salzared, bound in his hide, scribbled in his blood. Be cautioned, Reader. Some knowledge can never be unlearned. Such is the secret contained herein. Proceed only n defiance of the gravest warning, for dire words that follow will set You in opposition to Maldor evermore.

"I, Salzared, Chief Scribe of Maldor, in a desperate act of betrayal, hereby impart knowledge pertaining to the only vulnerability of my Lord and Master, and do bind these words in my mortal flesh that they might be preserved against those many hands which would otherwise destroy them.

"Behold, Maldor reigns in fearless might, and rightly so, for none may cause him harm, except by a single Word whose existence is His most closely protected secret.

"The Word, spoken in His presence, will unmake Him entirely. None, myself included, know all syllables of the Key Word. However, fragments of the Word are known to my fellow conspirators, who stand upon protected ground, awaiting one of sufficient courage to puzzle the syllables together.

"Speak the Word aloud but once, in the presence of Maldor and at no other time, for its utterance will erase all memory of its existence. Writing down the entire word would prove a similar consequence.

"By reading these words You have nominated Yourself to recover the Key Word, the only hope of deposing my Lord and Tyrant. Move swiftly. The knowledge You now possess marks You for prompt execution.

"The first syllable is 'a.'

"Now depart! Let not my sacrifice be in vain. Away!


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