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The Ophiuchus Manuscript
Book3

Original Name

蛇遣いの遺稿

Romanized Name

Hebi-zukai no Ikō

Author

Asclepius
(アスクレピオス Asukurepiosu)

Debut

Chapter 1 (light novel 3);
Chapter 1 (manga);
Episode 4

Powers

It restores a dead person to life.

User

Paula Dickinson

Status

Unknown

The Ophiuchus Manuscript (Snake Charmer or Snake Bearer Manuscript), by Asclepius, is a Phantom Book used by Paula Dickinson to repeatedly resurrect Lenny Lents and Leticia Serkis. It's also known as Ras Alhague (ラサルハグェ Rasaruhagwe) or Book of Soul Exchange (換魂の書 Kankon no Sho). It's present in the Book of Soul Exchange story.

It’s a heavy and old book with an ornate cover colored wine and yellow containing an illustration of Asclepius and his symbolic serpent-entwined rod.[1] It’s written in a foreign language.[2]

BackgroundEdit

Ras Alhague circle

Asclepius, as seen in the magical circle.

Ras Alhague power

The healing powers of the Ras Alhague.

The Ras Alhague was written by Asclepius[2], a hero and god of medicine in ancient Greek religion and mythology. After his death, his body was placed among the stars as the constellation Ophiuchus by Zeus, the sky and thunder god in ancient Greek religion.[3][4] As seen in the cover of the Phantom Book, Asclepius holds the snake-entwined staff which remains a symbol of medicine today.[3] Ras Alhague is a binary star and the brightest star in Ophiuchus, a constellation depicted as a man grasping a serpent. Ras Alhague and Ophiuchus are named from the Arabic, "the Head of the Serpent collector”, and from the Greek, "serpent-bearer”, respectively.[5][6]

The Phantom Book was somehow acquired by Paula Dickinson and used to punish author Lenny Lents and his lover Leticia Serkis. She kept torturing and killing them for six months to obtain a satisfying ending for the Crown of the Dog Days novel trilogy. Paula made an altar for the ceremony of resurrection on the floor of the barn, in the back of the mansion where Lenny writes. She mentions the Ras Alhague was previously sealed because it provides an incomplete resurrection. The maniac fan usually holds the book while interacting with her victims.[2]

PowersEdit

The Ophiuchus Manuscript brings a person back to life. It requires an altar for the ceremony of resurrection. For instance, strange letters and patterns were drawn on the floor of the barn where Paula Dickinson used the Phantom Book. The altar shines every time its power is activated. The Ophiuchus Manuscript completely heals the once deceased person, making blood flow back to the body and closing wounds, including sliced throats. It reanimates the bodies of people stabbed and shot through the heart. Its drawback is requiring another soul as compensation for the resurrection and the fact that the recovered body will rot away after one day. This power comes from an agreement with Hades,[2] the ancient Greek god of the underworld.[7]

In the anime, Paula doesn’t draw the altar, although a magical circle glowing in green appears around Lenny and Leticia, reaching the floor and walls, every time the Phantom Book reacts. The circle shows a serpent and Asclepius with his staff, reviving a man.[1] In the manga, Paula opens the Ras Alhague to use its powers. It’s seen reconstructing the upper half of a destroyed head and recovering a beheaded and dismembered person. The body floats in the air while the resurrection happens.[8]

Ras Alhague monster Edit

A special result came from the way Paula used the Ras Alhague. For six months, she restrained Lenny Lents and Leticia Serkis to revive one as soon as the other was killed. Eventually, the couple gained resistance to death. According to Dalian, it was like if an insect was adapted to an insecticide, or if a drug became ineffective after prolonged use. The cycle of life and death was equivalent to thousands of years or hundreds of generations of evolution. Their bodies were bathed with the essence of the Phantom Book, their cells filled with magical power. Sharing one soul, they fused together into an inhuman being made of light, twice as high as their original height, with male and female characteristics. The brilliant body reminds the giants from mythological ages. It withstands gunshots and possess huge physical strength, being able of crushing a person under its fist. The monster loses its magical power and disappears when the reader of the Ras Alhague is killed.[2]

Ras Alhague attack

The Ras Alhague monster attacks Paula.

In the anime, the shiny, humanoid monster is translucent blue. A red cross can be seen in its interior and wing-like appendages protrude from its back. It can disintegrate matter. Before disappearing, Lenny and Leticia appear hugging each other, glowing in green and covered by a magical yellow flame.[1]

In the manga, Leticia’s eyes turn black before she transforms. The monster is more macabre in this version, with huge fists and long arms and legs. It seems as if part of its brain reaches its back and shoulders. There is no neck connecting the torso with the large head. The Ras Alhague monster has two small wings coming out of the back of its busty torso.[8]

PlotEdit

Paula Dickinson brings The Ophiuchus Manuscript with herself to check Lenny’s works. The author writes about a strange book in the letter he manages to send to Wesley Disward. Because of that, Hugh and Dalian become interested in the case. Although rumors say Lenny is dead, Hugh notices his presence while meeting Paula. The Phantom Book is also mentioned by Leticia during her first appearance. She says they couldn’t fight against Paula and the book she holds. On that occasion, the body of Lenny is seen inside the barn. Hugh becomes confused when Leticia tells them to return the next day to save the author. Lenny is indeed seen alive during a brief encounter.

Lenny revives

Lenny is resurrected.

At last, Hugh and Dalian meet Lenny and Paula soon after finding Leticia’s body. Hugh cannot understand the swapping between living and dead. Paula, holding a foreign old book against her chest, punishes Lenny for secretly sending a message to Hugh and Dalian using his typewriter. When Paula shots the author dead, Dalian explains how the barn serves as an altar for the ceremony of resurrection. The floor and the Ras Alhague shine while Leticia revives. The Phantom Book was being used to keep Lenny and Leticia in a cycle of life and death. The altar glows when Paula kills Leticia, resulting in Lenny’s reanimation. If Hugh decided to kill the reader of the Phantom Book, Lenny and Leticia couldn’t be resurrected.


Lenny dies

Lenny and Leticia moments before disappearing.

The floor glows once again when Lenny is killed for the last time. Paula notices when Hugh moves closer. He was planning to use her soul to save both the victims. However, the woman explains the power coming from the Ras Alhague is a curse, since the recovered body rots after one day. Only Paula and her sickly love could use the Phantom Book properly. She tries to attack Lenny’s body with a fireplace poker, but the man stops the swing halfway. Contradicting the powers from the Ras Alhague, Lenny and Leticia were both standing. The author moves even when his head is shot off. As explained by Dalian, they have evolved after dying countless times. The creature born from the couple is unaffected by the bullet shot by Paula. The monster crushes the woman under its arm. The Phantom Book doesn’t react to her death. Hugh prays for Lenny and Leticia as they disappear leaving no trace behind.[2]

In the adaptations, Hugh collects the Ras Alhague dropped by Paula. The Phantom Book was probably sealed by Dalian.

  • The Ophiuchus Manuscript reacts to Lenny and Leticia.
  • Lenny and Leticia are filled with the magical power from The Ophiuchus Manuscript.
  • Paula uses the The Ophiuchus Manuscript, as seen in the manga.

TriviaEdit

  • Asclepius was also capable of bringing people back from the dead. Zeus killed him to maintain the balance in the numbers of the human population. Other sources state that the mythical doctor angered Hades for preventing spirits from reaching the underworld.[3]
  • The Nāgārjuna’s Manuscript is also a Phantom Book that resurrects people.[9]

References Edit

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 The Mystic Archives of Dantalian anime, Episode 4.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 The Mystic Archives of Dantalian light novel, Chapter 1, volume 3.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Asclepius. (2017, February 11). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 02:30, March 1, 2017, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Asclepius&oldid=764838178
  4. Zeus. (2017, February 27). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 02:31, March 1, 2017, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Zeus&oldid=767732223
  5. Alpha Ophiuchi. (2017, January 31). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 02:33, March 1, 2017, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Alpha_Ophiuchi&oldid=762840978
  6. Ophiuchus. (2017, February 18). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 02:32, March 1, 2017, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Ophiuchus&oldid=766124004
  7. Hades. (2017, February 10). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 02:37, March 1, 2017, from https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Hades&oldid=764723520
  8. 8.0 8.1 The Mystic Archives of Dantalian manga, Chapter 1.
  9. The Mystic Archives of Dantalian light novel, Chapter 4, volume 3.

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