Chapter One:

The Structure And Order Of Evil.

    In Leviathan's war, a war we have defined within the parameter of its goal of the restructuring of chaos; the very essence of flesh; toward a single uniformed whole, there are those who are conscripted to its cause.  Many arrive in Hell to find, as I did in my tenure, that they only qualify as fodder for Leviathan's pleasure.  But there is a second rank found in those brought through their own actions, into Hell's hallways.
    In certain individuals, Leviathan sees the potential for agents to carry his war further.  These individuals are enlisted as soldiers in a Legion of the Damned, and know themselves as Cenobites.  Cenobites are often individuals who, through their own twisted psyches and distorted perceptions have perceived themselves as separate, even above humanity.
    In their transformation, their perceptions are made real, as they are refashioned in chambers, the interiors of which I was never privileged -or damned- enough to view.  Once combined or "steeped" in the darkness of Leviathan, these individuals emerge from the creation chambers with powers and abilities seemingly manifested from attributes possessed prior to the individuals arrival in Hell.  It also appears that the more twisted, the more demented or guilt-ridden the "source material", the "better" or more insidious the finished Cenobite.

The General by Alex Ross
    In Leviathan's War on flesh, if Leviathan is the field General, the Cenobites are It's shock troops, a dark SS carrying out Leviathan's commands.  Theirs is the duty of gaining new ground and souls and recapturing those souls which have managed to slip through the cracks in Hell and escape.  Poor, lost damned souls, like myself.
    Through an obvious logic we may infer that Leviathan's true power is defined and thus confined by the halls of Hell.  Why else would it content itself with such meager morsels that trickle into Hell through complex and convoluted pathways.  Without the power to take what it wants by force, Leviathan must rely solely on the curiosity of the flesh to desire and to seek.  But what animal would attempt to take bait from what it knew to be a trap?  Thus, secrecy becomes Hell's highest priority and explains the importance of the Hunters.
    Unfortunately, we know little about these monstrosities.  They stalk those who have escaped, trapping them, dragging them back before their "stories" fall on ears that are not so deaf.  Their jet-black, armored exterior makes them seemingly indestructible as they pursue their prey with the single minded purpose of a machine.  Perhaps they can exist on this plane because, like the puzzles, they are carved from Leviathan.  However it is allowed access to this world, it apparently remains "blind" to any flesh that has not been tainted by the presence of Leviathan.
    What I write now, I write for those who bear the marks, who wear the scars that testify to the truths within this book.  For you, there can be no peace.  You need only pause to rest, to catch your breath and the Hunter will be upon you.  I have watched their ebony cables snaking, hissing through the air, behind barbed hooks fired from the housings within their armor.  I have seen their prey, men and women, caught on those hooks like fish, thrashing and flailing, coughing thick pieces of blood, trying to tear themselves free.  And I have listened to the screaming suddenly stop, snapped off as if with a switch, followed by a terrible silence marked only by the sharp and distinct sound of the breaking and cracking of bone.
    Understand that what I say, I say not out of despair or desperation.  It is only through meticulous examination and resourceful investigation that we will identify our enemy.  Only after fully dissecting the strengths and weaknesses of our enemy may we begin to assemble a strategy towards its destruction.

"Forum Magnum Leviathan"

"Located near the very center of The Labyrinth, under the constant shadow of the god Leviathan, The Forum Magnum is the central gathering place for hell's denizens. It is here that the Cenobites gather for market days, religious festivals, elections, and other public events. It is the political center where civic and administrative buildings and the more important temples are located. Hell's Great Forum is not only a place for the transaction of legal, political, and mercantile business (there are many slave markets and torture guilds located in this quarter) but it also houses an arena for public games, amusements, theatrical performances, gladiatorial and boxing combats, and races."  

- Isadore Klauski "Of Hell", Leviathan Press, 1928

Chapter Six:

Of Keys, Doors and Tolls

    I  have sought knowledge like other men pursue women, with an insatiable appetite, in search of a new mistress even as I withdrew from the mysteries of the last.  The world seemed so vast, so full of wonders and secrets, that one culture, one science, one religion could hardly suffice; I wanted to sample all.  There was however, one subject that I was always fascinated by and to which I most often return: transmutation, which I still believe, is the very soul of knowledge.
    It was alchemy, a science of transmutation that led me to Hungary.  I had journeyed for months, digging through dozens of forgotten bookstores in search of a single, rumored text.  I'd followed a trail of books, all of which had alluded to this single, lost volume.  BLADES OF THE BOROS URATU, SECRET OF PAIN, DAMNATION'S LAST HOUR; all had touched me upon reading them, and sent me further for this final foot noted history.  BLADES OF THE BOROS URATU, published during the lifetime of Philip LeMarchand, whose history I have outlined elsewhere in this book, had especially pointed to this last book in hell's library.

    Finally, the trail ended at a crumbling apothecary.  The owner, a crone, allowed me to ferret through the shelves and crates of books.  I was sure I would find it, but as I spilled the last box onto the floor, I realized I was wrong; the search here had been in vain.
    I was frustrated beyond my ability to control myself.  I wanted to destroy, to vent my rage upon this helpless, old woman and her worthless, grimy store.  And then, on a shelf that I had searched and searched again, I saw it; the very tome that I'd been criss-crossing the country for.  It was as if my madness, my desire was so powerful it could no longer be contained within me and had created itself before my very eyes.
    I seized the book and elation spread through my body in shivers.  I recall feeling tears upon my cheek, but when the woman called to me, suddenly the thought that she would not sell the book, that I had revealed to her its secret worth, stabbed into my mind.  Again a murderous instinct, like I'd never known, took hold and had she refused to sell it, I saw myself pounding the book against her head, watching her face become a spongy, red pulp.
    I bought the book for a sum that had seemed too preposterous to believe; mere twenty-five cents had been the toll for my soul's passage to hell.
    Through brief exchanges with others of hell, those still possesing their wits and the ability of speech, I have concluded that the keys to hell are so widely varied that they often, as in my case, take the appearance of a fantasy or fetish intended to lure a specific victim.

    However, I have since come to know the most common key, a box of a thousand names, such as the "Lament Configuration" or a "LeMarchand Box."  The box is itself more than just a key to a doorway to hell; the box is a masterfully constructed puzzle box.  It is the embodiment of forbidden knowledge; a secret that can only be solved through obsession.  With its secrets solved and its pieces in final place, the puzzle reveals something that wasn't evident before - the reality of hell.
    In research after my escape, I was able to discern that the puzzle itself is a bastardization of an original design by Albertus Magnus.  LeMarchand's Box was only one of the puzzles.  There are myriad more.  Those which I was able to uncover, or suspect, I will outline in future chapters.
    Yet even these traps seem purposefully laid for certain individuals.  Indeed, hell works with strict adherence to a very particular design and in that light it would appear contradictory to assume that hell casts its lures randomly.
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