• Type: Limbo
  • Origin: Ross Leckie’s novels Hannibal and Carthage
  • Admission: Carthaginians.

When a Carthaginian dies, they must cross two rivers to enter the afterlife.

The first is the River of Ordeal. I don’t know much about it, but you’ve gotta admit, it doesn’t sound inviting, does it?

The second is the River of Forgetfulness – Ashroket, in the Punic tongue – which is much like the Lethe of the Greeks. When you drink from it, you remember all your past lives, something which you cannot pass to your next life until you do.

On the banks of Ashroket stands a great and giant elm tree, under which throng those cowardly members of the undead wait endlessly to have the courage to do drink.

If at all possible, I recommend that you not be a Carthaginian. I mean, for a start, they ceased to exist as a recognizable people over 2000 years ago, so it’s likely that by now, even the most cowardly shades of the dead have drunk from and crossed Ashroket.
Let’s hope so, anyway.