The Ahl-i-Batin

Khalil al-Tabeeba de Cordoba



Khalil had always been an exceptionally bright child. Being raised in a wealthy family in Cordoba, can lead to a bright future. Ever since he was a child, he was exposed to a diverse range of culture and knowledge. He spent time learning the histories of Islamic, Christian, and Jewish culture. He learned from Sufi mystics and jewish Qabbalists. He was able to spend his nights lying on the roof of their house staring at the night sky and at a young age he became hooked with his fascination of it.

So, the moment Muhammed showed any arcane aptitude, he was sent to the Cordoba academy to study. He started training there at the age of 10 and stayed until the age of 20. He was seen as something of a prodigy. He had a natural gift for making connections. Seeing the lines in between all things. The Grand Unity that many in the Ahl-i-Batin professed to be hunting for...and he quickly developed potent magical skills.

He excelled at the math of the universe. His knowledge of astronomy was unmatched. His intuitive nature, made his understanding of astrology unparalleled. He always saw patterns. The connected movement of all things and this pleased his instructors.

Alas, the feeling wasn't mutual. While finishing his upper levels studies at the Cordoba academy, he was staring through a telescope on the roof of the building. He almost blown back against the wall by what he saw...he had seen his path blazoned across the heavens and it showed him he was no longer where he needed to be.

He immediately packed his things, turned in his resignation and tenure as a student teacher at the academy and prepared for his last night at the academy happened.

That's when the blinks started happening.

The next day he awoke next to a desert oasis. There was a single black mare there. The mare lifted it's head and looked at him and cocked the same quizzical expression that Khalil was making. "You wouldn't happen to know where I am would you?" Khalil asked jokingly, not expecting a response. However, much to his surprise..."Persia...somewhere between the Tigris and the Euphrates..." popped into his head as he met the horses gaze. The horse dipped it's head and took another drink of water. "I am Majhawal. I've been here waiting for you. I followed the stars and they lead me on my journey...to you. There is a plan for you. Ananda awaits. You must stop the devils. They are charting the sky and so must you."

Khalil walked over and climbed onto the back of the beautiful black Arabian and in a sudden swirling of sand, they were gone.

Khalil and Majhawal both found themselves in a wood, neither could identify. They heard music and dancing near by and they approached to be greeted by a band of Romani. "Ah...we must be in Macedonia." he thought to Majhawal. "You are here for a reason...they have something for you..."

Khalil waded into the crowd to a few gasps and approached the fire. He sat down and the crowd parted to allow an elderly woman to approach and sit down next to him. "I see you have finally arrived Star Weaver. The fates are finally in motion." Khalil was confused but listened. She motioned to the horse. "Your mare has done well to bring you here...she knows what must be done...there are dark forces moving. Gathering. You must help stop them. You have the skills. They are mapping the sky. They are hunting for the message hidden there. The secret that will help them crack the sky itself and open up the earth to the darkness that hides at the edge of the stars. You cannot let this happen." There was a creaking and a rumbling as a cart was rolled out towards the group. "This...is for you..."

Khalil gasped as he saw what was rolled out. A beautiful travel cart, draped in blue velvet with white stiching. Showing the stars and the sky. "You must use this...you must beat them in this race. Find the sky. All of the sky. Know it and the truths of fate will open to you, as if you were a bee diving into a lotus hoping for it's sweet nectar. It is your fate Star Weaver. You must map the sky. Your companion will help you do it..." she said motioning to the mare. "She knows more than she's letting on..." And with a crypt smile Khalil was lead to his cart. Looking inside it seemed no descript enough, except for the extra door in the back of the compartment. Khalil climbed inside the cart and gasped when he realized that beyond that door, the cart kept going. There was an entire home inside. A place for his books...and what's more...a power he felt. Mana...was flowing into him from within the cart.

He hopped out the cart to notice Majhawal had already been rigged to the front and seemed to really like the blue and silver barding that had placed on her. She was clearly pleased with how pretty she looked.

"I don't know how to thank you enough for this, but I will do what you have spoken to me." Khalil bows with a flourish. "Until we meet again..."

He climbed up onto the seat of the cart and looked down at the elderly woman. She looked back up at him and handed him a book. An empty book. "Start here...make a testament...the devils cannot claim knowledge that has already been taken...stop them...you have our blessings..." She makes several motions with her hands and Khalil feels himself falling asleep.

He awoke to find himself, Majhawal, and the Big Blue Cart, on an empty road. The surroundings are completely unfamiliar, but the night sky was beautiful.

"So is this how it's going to be from now on?" he says to Majhawal.

"Yes...thus is the nature of the understanding of Unity Khalil...you're never any place, because you're already every place..." She said dryly.

"Hmmmmm..." He stroked his manicured beard. "...well...fine then..." He leaned back on the bench at the front of the cart. "You drive...I'll watch the sky..." He put his arms behind his bed and they were all off together. And their adventures began...