The Book of Lies was a Faction Paradox dynabook. Since its textual generators were directly interfaced to the unstable nature of reality, it was different in numerous subtle ways each time it was opened.
Unlike most religious texts, the Book of Lies described how the universe wasn't rather than how the universe was; its stories were combinations of detailed alternative histories, scandalously rewritten versions of historical events, fractal poetry, ominous foreshadowing, and historical truth. One such story told of "Life" returning to Gallifrey after ten million years of winter and sterility, (PROSE: Unnatural History) a reference to President Romana's reconciliation with the Sisterhood of Karn and the reintroduction of natural childbirth to Time Lord society. (PROSE: Lungbarrow) According to the story, this drew the scorn of the Great Grey Eminence sleeping in his tomb, who didn't want any passion in his world, so he made a deal with the Devil to "make things unhappen". The Devil's minions changed everything back the way the Eminence wanted, and they took the one who brought Life back and folded his timeline back on itself. (PROSE: Unnatural History) Indeed, Rassilon used the post-regeneration Eighth Doctor to make "one or two small improvements in the patterns of history". (PROSE: The Eight Doctors) However, the Book explained that the Devil agreed to this deal for his own reasons, since he wanted to teach the Eminence the ways of Paradox.
Think about it. If the old guy in the tomb didn’t want any hanky-panky on Gallifrey, don’t you think he’d want to make sure you were paired up with a good little girl, who’d never dare to screw you?
Another story in the Book apparently described the boy returning to the Eleven-Day Empire and the Mothers and Fathers of Faction Paradox pronouncing his work on the Eighth Doctor to be inelegant but beautiful, with fractal possibilities leading to glorious recursion. Threads that had appeared in the Doctor's history several regenerations ago were tying together, and his desires to abandon his past and upset the establishment made him an ideal candidate for the Faction. However, they noted that he was still less interested in the beauty of the pattern than in one girl's life.
The Book always went on to say that its stories had never happened. This disclaimer was a frequent refrain in the Book. The text went so far as to occasionally speculate that it was itself a hoax, even including a section of Watkinson and Thripsted's Introduction to Quantum Esotericism that discusses the Book's unreliability. In the sampled section, the authors speculate that the Book is not actually secret but instead intended for a non-Faction audience as a way to introduce them into the Faction's deconstructivist way of thinking. (PROSE: Unnatural History)
Behind the scenes Edit
- The Book's tale of the Great Grey Eminence and the Devil is an explanation of the events of The Eight Doctors. As a result of the Eighth Doctor's Rassilon-guided changes to Gallifreyan history, Flavia remained in power, and the Eighth Doctor began travelling with Sam Jones instead of Grace Holloway or Bernice Summerfield (as one would expect after the TV movie or The Dying Days, respectively). However, Unnatural History also suggests that this fix was flawed, hence the Doctor's confusion over whether Romana or Flavia was President; these cracks in Gallifrey's history would culminate in The Ancestor Cell.