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Book of Coffin
Chapter 2LN6 infobox
Chapter 2

Episode 22: The Coffin Texts

Japanese Name

柩の書

Romanized Name

Hitsugi no Sho

Volume

6

Release Date

June, 2010 (The Sneaker)

Pages

84

Adaptation

N/A

For the Phantom Book, see Book of Coffin.

"Book of Coffin" is the 2nd chapter of The Mystic Archives of Dantalian light novel, volume 6. It's divided into nine parts and contains two illustrations. The chapter is labeled as Episode 22 in the story line.

Hugh and Dalian travel to search for a mysterious house built by Throstur Orlik. The architect borrowed the Book of the King's Coffin from Wesley, and the Phantom Book must be returned.[1]

Summary[]

Inside a dark room with walls made of basalt and no windows there’s a sarcophagus surrounded by complex mechanisms of bronze and brass. A young girl lays inside it, covered in strips of white fabric with the smell of medicine. She calls for her father. The man tells Iris not to worry. He has a severe coughing fit. He wipes the blood from his lips. Although he's seriously ill, his daughter will live forever. Someday she will come back. He laughs and activates the machines. The sounds coming from the mechanisms become louder. The lid of the sarcophagus falls into place. The man collapses over the coffin. The earth trembles.

Part 1[]

Horse and Dalian

The horse bites Dalian's hair.

Hugh and Dalian explore a small island. He checks his compass, unable to find the destination. Dalian complains. They are using a horse. After all, there are no roads around. The animal approaches Dalian, as if attracted by her unusual appearance. Dalian doesn’t like animals, so she tries to keep the horse away. Distracted, she trips over something. Hugh notices a rope around her leg. She has activated a trap. Perhaps the horse was trying to warn her about the trap. Soon after, the branches nearby are pulled away, revealing an old man and a tall woman.

They introduce themselves. Professor Magnuson and his young student Erna are trying to find something to eat. Hugh, in turn, is searching for the house designed by the famous architect Throstur Orlik. A few days ago, newspapers have written about him, twenty years after his retirement. A house he built for himself had been found by accident. Four men were hired to draw a map of the region. When they saw the house, they decided to go inside. The house was empty, but they saw evidence that Throstur lived there. Mysteriously, three cartographers never returned. The only survivor was found in the mountains, severely burned and in a state of mental distress. He had an unexpectedly fear of dogs. When investigators went to the location pointed out by the survivor, they found only a deserted wasteland. The house had disappeared.

Magnuson reveals that he saw a house in the region. They could reach it in an hour on horseback. Erna agrees in accompanying Hugh and Dalian. After all, the trap had failed, and the weather will go bad shortly. After many complains from Dalian, Magnuson finally frees her. He asks why they are looking for the house. Hugh tells him that Throstur had borrowed a book. The time to return it has come.

Part 2[]

The house has three floors, each one smaller than the previous one, like a pyramid. According to Dalian, it resembles a crypt due to its walls of black basalt and the absence of windows. It’s said that the main part of the house is located underground. Dalian heads to the entrance to protect herself from the cold and the snow. Erna suddenly steps on her feet to stop her. Dalian falls once again. The student had noticed a crack on the ground. Magnuson notices that the fault was opened recently, encircling the house. They examine the rocks, ignoring the protests of Dalian, who’s still laying on the snow. She looks at Hugh, hoping for help, but he's frowning, looking at the house. There’s a car parked next to it, and a couple arguing.

Part 3[]

The beautiful young woman runs to Hugh and grabs his hands, asking him to help her convince the evil man. The freckled girl Shura carries a folding camera from America. The man, Kessler, is the owner of the house. He bought it in an auction six years ago, when Throstur's fortune was lost. Shura had climbed into the trunk of Kessler's car. The photojournalist wants to collect material about Throstur’s haunted house, but Kessler won't allow her inside. Magnuson and Erna approach the group, having finished their investigation about the crack. After exploring the mountains for days, they ask for a shelter. Kessler reluctantly agrees in letting everyone inside the house.

Part 4[]

The dim electric lights barely made the staircase visible. The house is deserted, but the marble floor seems to have been polished recently. The group goes downstairs. Each floor is larger than the one above. Shura take photos of the huge house. They take a break in a large dining room. The place is perfectly clean. Kessler sits on the nearest chair and begins to talk about Throstur’s past. The architect had lost his daughter twenty years ago. Before that, his wife died. Throstur also suffered from a terrible disease. He eventually built the house to spend the rest of his short life in peace and quiet. Hugh reveals that Throstur may have been influenced by the Book of the King's Coffin, the book Hugh and Dalian are after, when he built the house.

Shura raises her camera, apparently interested in the matter. She heard about the Dantalian's Bookshelf and the collection of Phantom Books owned by Hugh’s grandfather. The Book of the King's Coffin may be a Phantom Book. Hugh affirms that they might find the book in the house’s library. Magnuson and Erna appear with trays of food. Soup, bread, tea and sweets have been inexplicably prepared for the visitors. Shura and Dalian start to fight for a cookie. Suddenly, the whole house trembles. It seems like a weak earthquake.

Part 5[]

They divided into groups to search for the library. They find a few rooms, but the corridors are numerous. The house is like a maze. Shura follows Hugh and Dalian, looking for material to publish. The photojournalist believes that humans are born to pursue knowledge. Dalian warns her against it. Shura suspects about Magnuson and Erna’s purpose.

Irida

Hugh sees a young woman covered in bandages.

Shura notices that they’ve seen those corridors before. Hugh seems lost. Shura suggests that Throstur designed those confusing corridors to hide something. Hugh stops to think. Dalian, impatient, goes inside a nearby room. It looks like the room of Throstur’s daughter, but it's empty. After all, Throstur moved to the house after her death. Hugh checks the bedroom behind a partition. He hears a voice, but sees no one. He looks at a mirror and notices someone behind him. A beautiful young woman covered in bandages tells him to leave the house. She quickly disappears. Hugh doesn’t tell Dalian about the encounter. The Biblioprincess stares at him with suspicion.

Part 6[]

Hugh, Dalian and Shura leave the room. The lights suddenly go out. Dalian trips over. She had stumble on another device prepared by Magnuson and Erna. This time, it isn't a trap, but a mark made to guide them. There’s also a drawing of an arrow made with chalk on the floor, indicating the direction they went. Magnuson is an experienced traveler who knows how to find his way. Shura sets off in the direction pointed by the arrow. Hugh picks up Dalian and follows the photojournalist into a spacious library. The walls and ceiling are filled with pipes. Magnuson and Erna are examining some architectural documents. Kessler comes out behind a bookshelf. Many books collected by Throstur are about healing.

Dalian explores the library. She spins around, feeling a presence behind her, but she sees no one. Meanwhile, Erna is looking at an old photo depicting Throstur, his wife and his daughter. Erna tells Hugh that she has no family. Magnuson explains that Erna is an orphan. Her mother died after giving birth. Erna doesn’t know anything about her father. Despite this, Erna devoted herself to study, supported by Magnuson. However, she’s not interested in love affairs. Magnuson tells Hugh to consider having a relationship with Erna. On that moment, Dalian yells, staring at something behind Hugh. However, Hugh only sees a dusty bookshelf. Magnuson and Erna believe that Dalian is jealous. According to the Biblioprincess, there is a suspicious man with an animal mask in the library. Hugh knows that Dalian doesn’t have the habit of lying.

Kessler also screams. He also had seen someone. Shura finds the Book of the King's Coffin in a corner. She prepares to take a photo, when superheated steam appears in front of her. They hear the voice of a giant, telling them that they won't be allowed to leave. The giant won't let them touch Iris. The Phantom Book catches fire. A new rush of steam blocks the way from where everyone entered the library. The group rushes through a second door, barely escaping from the explosion.

Part 7[]

The room is like a factory floor or a scientific laboratory, full pipes, mechanisms, electric cables and puddles of oil. There’s a sarcophagus made of ice in the center, a machine keeping it cold. A three-meter giant comes out of the darkness. The creature is made of pressured steam, with the head of a jackal. Hugh barely dodges the large fist. A wave of hot air hits his back. According to Magnuson, the monster is made of electrified steam, controlled by a magnetic field. It can't live outside that room. Magnuson looks around and finds another door. Before running to safety, Shura notices someone inside the block of ice. Hugh recognizes the young woman covered in bandages. Kessler calls for Iris. He’s hit by the giant’s fist. Shura and Hugh pulls him out of the tomb.

Magnuson and Erna close the thick steel door. The giant tries to break in, to no avail. Now they are inside a room with giant steam turbines. Magnuson explains that the house uses magma to produce steam in high pressure and temperature and, consequently, a tremendous amount of electricity. The house, with its own geothermal generators, has been supporting itself for twenty years. That’s why Magnuson, a geologist, was so interested in the place. The professor also reveals that the house wanders on the surface of the earth, which explains why it’s impossible to point out its location on a map. This mechanism, the maze of corridors and the dog-headed giant are hiding and protecting the girl inside the icy coffin.

Kessler, while being bandaged by Erna, explains that the person inside the sarcophagus is Iris, Throstur’s daughter. Kessler knows that because he used to be Throstur’s apprentice. More than twenty years ago, Kessler had a relationship with Iris but, since Throstur was against the marriage, the couple ran away. Kessler didn’t have a steady job, and Iris was often sick, so she returned to her father. She left Kessler because she knew her life would end soon. Kessler bought Throstur’s house in order to see Iris again. However, Magnuson affirms that, even with her body preserved in ice, Iris can't be revived with the current technology. Throstur knew that, so he used the Book of the King's Coffin to preserve his daughter’s body until humanity learns how to resuscitate a person.

Dalian wants to leave the place, now that the Phantom Book is destroyed. Magnuson, however, says that they should deactivate the house. After all, it may cause a powerful earthquake, a catastrophe which may reach other countries. They must destroy the coffin, since everything in the house is designed to protect it. Before they can discuss a plan, steam comes out from under the door. The dog-headed giant enters the room. The creature touches the pipes in the ceiling, causing an explosion. Magnuson tells everyone to lie down. He throws a bunch of dynamite at the giant. The steam monster dissolves. The group can see the sarcophagus through a hole in the wall.

Part 8[]

The pipes keep blowing steam, as if trying to revive the giant. The group feels a strong earthquake. They approach the icy coffin. The giant made of steam completely disappears. It seems afraid of ruining the sarcophagus. Hugh requests access to the Dantalian's Bookshelf. Dalian reveals the lock on her chest. Then, she freezes, feeling a piece of glass against her throat. Kessler threatens to kill Dalian because he doesn’t want to lose Iris. On that moment, Erna tells her father to stop. Iris wouldn’t want to be revived in those circumstances. It’s revealed that Erna is the daughter of Kessler and Iris. The latter left her lover because she was very weak. Iris knew that she would die after giving birth to Erna. Throstur didn’t knew about Erna. He would hate the person who killed his daughter. Erna removes a dynamite from her backpack. She places it over Iris' coffin. Shards of ice are scattered everywhere. The soul of Iris is seen one last time, smiling.

Part 9[]

The group leaves the house in the morning. The Phantom Book is destroyed, but they prevented a terrible earthquake and witnessed the reunion between father and daughter. Erna prepares to leave with Magnuson for a new research expedition. She looks back at her teary-eyed father. Kessler wants to go with her, but Erna has work to do. However, Erna plans to see Kessler in the future. She wants to know more about her mother. Shura takes a photo of the touching moment. She doesn’t want to write about the haunted house anymore, nor about the destroyed Phantom Book. But she’s interested about the rumors related to the Biblioprincess and the Dantalian's Bookshelf. Shura points the camera at Hugh and Dalian. Hugh is on horseback, offering his hand to Dalian. The photojournalist notices that everyone will leave her behind. She yells at Hugh and Dalian, telling them to wait.[1]

Trivia[]

  • "The Coffin Texts" are a collection of ancient Egyptian funerary spells written on coffins beginning in circa 2,100 BC. It describes ritual actions intended as protection for a blessed existence after death.[2]
  • Dalian calls the horse Perissodactyla[1], which is the name given to the taxonomic order of the ungulates, hoofed animals such as horses, zebras and rhinoceroses, which bear most of their weight on the third toe.[3]
  • The chapter is set on Iceland. As described in the chapter, the island is located in the North Atlantic Ocean, near the Arctic Circle, located northwest of the kingdom, where two plate tectonics meet. The island gained its independence shortly before the end of the Great War. There's a warm current around the island, and it has a high volcanic activity. The population is concentrated on the coast of the island. The center is covered by permafrost.[1]
    • Iceland has 30 active volcanic systems.[4] Iceland consists for 90% of basalt, a dark grey or black rock, formed by solidification of magma.[5] The tectonic plates whose turbulent interactions formed Iceland are the Eurasian tectonic plate and the North American tectonic plate.[6]
    • The characters use horses to travel.[1] As late as 1900 Iceland had only a few miles of roads suitable for wheeled transport, mostly located in the southern regions of the island.[7] Before the first car arrived to Iceland in 1904 there were very few roads in existence. People usually rode a horse if they had to travel long distances or they simply walked.[8]
    • The Icelandic Independence movement was the collective effort made by Icelanders to achieve self-determination and independence from the Kingdom of Denmark throughout the 19th and early 20th century. Full independence was granted in 1918.[9]
    • Throughout the chapter, Denmark is referred as Jutland [1], the name given to the peninsula of Northern Europe that forms the continental portion of Denmark.[10]

References[]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 The Mystic Archives of Dantalian light novel, Chapter 2, volume 6.
  2. Coffin Texts. (2020, May 7). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 19:37, May 30, 2020, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Coffin_Texts&oldid=955462636
  3. Odd-toed ungulate. (2020, June 3). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 22:48, June 3, 2020, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Odd-toed_ungulate&oldid=960556278
  4. Volcanology of Iceland. (2020, April 14). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 13:16, June 1, 2020, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Volcanology_of_Iceland&oldid=950815249
  5. Mariska Moerland. The Wonderful World of Icelandic Rocks and Minerals. In What's On. Retrieved 13:16, June 1, 2020, from https://www.whatson.is/icelandic-rocks-and-minerals/
  6. Tectonic Plates. In Iceland On The Web. Retrieved 13:16, June 1, 2020, from https://www.icelandontheweb.com/articles-on-iceland/nature/geology/tectonic-plates
  7. List of roads in Iceland. (2020, April 7). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 13:28, June 1, 2020, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=List_of_roads_in_Iceland&oldid=949549475
  8. Hulda. (2012, August 23). These roads were not always here. In Transparent Language. Retrieved 13:28, June 1, 2020, from https://blogs.transparent.com/icelandic/2012/08/23/these-roads-were-not-always-here/
  9. Icelandic independence movement. (2020, March 19). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 13:15, June 1, 2020, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Icelandic_independence_movement&oldid=946260287
  10. Jutland. (2020, May 2). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 13:17, June 1, 2020, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Jutland&oldid=954430880
Previous Light novel Next

Volume 1

Gastronomy Worship - Pedigree - Book of Wisdom - The Dictator's Book - Turn-Up Book - Book of Lifetime - Libricide

Volume 2

The Briar Princess - Queen of the Night - The Lovers - Book of Equivalence - Book of Fetus - Winning Strategy - The Mystic Archives of Rasiel

Volume 3

Book of Soul Exchange - Book of Oblivion - Book of Twilight - Book of Sleep - The Magician's Daughter - The Beautiful Woman's World - Book of Atonement

Volume 4

Book of Gap - Phantom Score - Book of Relationship - Book of Hypnosis - The Perfumer - The House-Elf's Rough Time - Phantom Book Thief

Volume 5

Timetable - Waterside Flower - The Cat and the Biblioprincess - Book of Fools - The Logbook - The Observer - Book of Connection

Volume 6

The Template Book - The Working Man - Book of Coffin - The Real Me - Book of Humanization - Paradise

Volume 7

Disaster and Temptation - Catalogue - Book of Wisdom II - The Girls' Long Night - Book of Imitation - The Key-Keeper

Volume 8

Phantom Book of the King - The Last Book - Vignette of Eternal Twilight
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