The Cairn (New Ending)

Clark Ashton Smith

The teller of the tale presses so close to the strange vessel, in irresistible attraction, that he is drawn into some sort of trans-dimensional vortex created by its departure, and seems to fall into the sky, losing consciousness. He comes to himself with the sensations of a person recovering from terrible frost-bite, and finds that he is being immersed in a river of rosy flame, flowing through a strange city of semi-crystalline buildings, by people such as he had seen in the vessel. He is in a new world, and his equilibrium, when he is taken out of the river, is so thoroughly upset that he seems to see everything upside-down. In spite of the ministrations of his hosts, he becomes violently ill, and again loses consciousness, to find on recovering that he has returned to the neighborhood of the cairn.

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Printed on: October 29, 2020