‘Yes.’ Jan nodded.
‘What, he was into all that devil worship and raising demons from hell and all that?’ I raised an eyebrow.
‘No, nothing like that.’ She shook her head and half-turned away from me.
‘What then?’ I touched her arm, cool where it lay on top of the bedclothes. ‘Come on, I am interested, really.’
She glanced at me.
‘Yes.’ I plumped up the pillow under my head and propped it up against the headboard behind my back as I sat up.
Jen settled herself, also propping herself up with a pillow behind her back. ‘Of course he wasn’t a devil-worshipper or anything like that. He knew it was all nonsense.’ She looked at me for a moment. ‘In fact, he didn’t believe in god, either. This at the time was far more dangerous. The church was so powerful in his day and it wouldn’t tolerate atheism at all.’ She smiled. ‘In fact it was much safer to be a devil-worshipper than an atheist in those days; at least then they’d only burn you at the stake for being a Satanist.’
‘So, what is this mystery book all about then?’ I was puzzled.
‘Oh, the good doctor knew there was no such creature as the devil, there was no god. In that he’d be quite at home in our world.’ Jen was silent.
‘He discovered what lay beyond all that, beyond the supernatural, the religious, the non-religious.’ She stared at me. ‘He claimed to have discovered what really rules the world, controls the cosmos, created the universe. Something far beyond any mere god. He discovered The Law.’
Jen held a finger out. ‘Watch,’ she said.
She drew a shape in the air and then – somehow, I couldn’t see how – she took the air she’d drawn around into her hand.
She held the clenched fist out to me.
I shrugged. ‘So what?’
Jen opened her hand and I cowered back, almost falling out of the side of the bed, as I saw the tiny universe rotating there in the palm of her hand. She laughed. ‘You may now worship me,’ she said.
‘I’ve created a universe, so I must be a god.’ She lay back on the bed, the tiny universe sparkling in her hand. ‘Come on and worship me.’
So I did.