Belhaven, reputedly the best safe maker in the world, was approached by a magician. The sorcerer asked him if it would be possible to construct a safe that would keep his spell book secured.
Belhaven stroked his beard and polished his glasses. After stretching his jaw and looking around his studio, he told the magician that he was up for the challenge.
The safe was made from iron mined near an earth chakra in Transylvania. The safe itself, while conventional in size and design, was engraved with over 200 runes of containment and power-channels routing back into itself. A mat with spiral glyphs of anti-zodiac charms was rolled out beneath it. An ingot of true ley-stone was embedded into each corner.
Spells could not escape. The wizard’s book of magic would be safe. None of the more dangerous spells would be able to break out and no one but the wizard himself would be able to open it.
Many other wizards came to Belhaven the safe maker after that.
The safety of his own spellbook made that first magician cocky. He played fast and loose with the underworld. In time, he lost a wager. His soul was forfeit. He died.
His safe was found empty. A demon must have tortured the secrets out of him before ascending to this plane and using the passwords to gain entry into the safe.
The demon must have been impressed with Belhaven’s handiwork.
Days after the magician’s death, Belhaven was approached by a Minor Duke of the Infernal. The demon appeared in his shop with a puff of brimstone and asked Belhaven if it would be possible to construct a safe that would keep any ‘extra’ souls (it said this with a sly wink) that it found during its usual rounds. A retirement fund of sorts. This safe would need to be concealed from demonic senses and the ruling class of Hell’s Nine.
Belhaven stroked his beard and polished his glasses. After stretching his jaw and looking around his studio, he told the demon that he was up for the challenge.
This safe was made from the skin of innocents. He had a contact at the midwifery and was able to gain access to the bodies of newborns that didn’t survive. It was like nuclear material to a demon. It was the closest thing to angel skin that Belhaven could find. By braiding the dried skin of sixteen babies together into a deep bowl, he formed a chalice for the demon’s soul collector. To the damned, the bowl of baby skin was invisible. It was a black hole of perception that demons could not see. Beyond taint.
Goggles blessed by a saint and gloves made from the skin of two repented murderers enabled the demon to see and handle his safe.
Further magic gleaned from grateful wizards added everyday concealment charms for humans and sorcerers alike.
This safe was hidden from Hell. One chip from the demon’s horn, freely given and dropped into the bowl, was all that was needed to enable the Minor Duke and no one else to open it. The demon was pleased.
It bragged to its Infernal Court in moments of pride.
Many of the Infernal came to Belhaven the safe maker after that.
The amassed soul-wealth of that first Minor Duke made it play fast and loose with its summoners. In time, it lost its essence to a scientist far in the future. It was torn apart for definition by the science-mage’s future machines.
Its babyskin bowl-safe was found empty. The man from the future must have seen through the concealment charms now that he possessed the demon’s essence.
Days later, Belhaven was approached by a first time-traveling science-mage. The S.M. appeared in his shop with a burst of radio static and a flash of light and asked Belhaven if it would be possible to construct a safe that would keep the history of this timestream intact no matter what changes befell it from other time travelers. By keeping a record free from the paradoxes of change, it would be possible for an alternate self to rebuild his life were his grandfather were to be killed by a rival or some such. It was an insurance policy. The safe would have to be accessible throughout time yet free from it.
Belhaven stroked his beard and polished his glasses. After stretching his jaw and looking around his studio, he told the time-traveling science-mage that he was up for the challenge.
This safe was comprised of compressed tachyons held in stasis by a box of neutrino-drenched papier-mache. The papier-mache would rot after a while but before it did, the quantum equations that it generated as it decomposed would make the universe, in effect, ‘lose track’ of it temporally. A high voltage of alternating current shot through it for the six months is took for the papier-mache to flake apart would keep the neutrinos held in an invisible circuitboard of sorts.
The trapped box of energy would resonate from the dawn of time to the end of the universe. It became one possible but defined safe anchored at both ends of the time stream. It was a thread shining from the very beginning to the very end.
Its genius lay in its lack of material walls after the papier-mache was gone and the current turned off. It became a field within which time existed all at once, which is to say, not at all.
The time-traveling science mage was pleased.
Belhaven was visited by many time-travelers after that.
At this point, by way of favours and services rendered, Belhaven joined the ranks of minor gods in terms of longevity, connections, wealth beyond imagining, and power over the timestream.
Belhaven stroked his beard and polished his glasses. After stretching his jaw and looking around the studio, he told himself that he was up for the challenge.