BREASTPLATE of NARMER



CHAPTER ONE:

Gabriel Izzard. PhD, BTh, MA (dip physics) stood outside the front of his new office admiring the shining plaque  which represented twenty years of intensive study. He felt decisively weary for someone just beginning a new endeavour, or enterprise as he liked to think of it, going where nobody had before and seeking out new frontiers. The office was small enough to be considered a ‘Tardis’ and he was so unknown in his fields of expertise that it wouldn’t be unusual for him to be referred to as ‘Dr who’?

He walked up the narrow staircase, opened the frosted glass door, and went into his first floor cubical which was furnished with a small desk, a chair and a couch. A state of the art laptop computer was the only modern intrusion into an otherwise antique room. Decorations consisted of a few painting which seemed to be of some value, a beautiful bookcase with an extant of well thumbed books, a record player and a couple of old musical instruments. A smart wardrobe behind the door completed the picture; sadly however the rest of his personal processions inside the wardrobe, completed the man.

Buzz, as his friends like to call him, walked over to the open window and stared out onto a sea of red tiled rooftops studded with aerials and satellite dishes. There was a certain ease which came with the anonymity of a suburban nest and the chance of some annoying customer walking in unannounced was kept to a minimum. Everything was clean including himself, who was looking unusually business-like, in anticipation of his first client of whom he had hand picked and had been putting of for sometime.

As if right on cue a blue Toyota Prius pulled up directly out front and a striking woman alighted from the driver’s side. She popped the hatch, removed a briefcase and ascended the stairs with the air of someone on a mission.

‘Nice to finally meet you Ms McHale.’ Buzz said meeting her at the top of the stairs

She didn’t respond to his outstretched hand, instead slipped past him and moved into the room, placed the briefcase on his desk and removed her coat.

‘Let’s cut the crap Izzard, if I am going to pay this outrageous hourly rate of yours, let’s get straight to work.’

He was surveying the little black dress she was wearing but quickly diverted his eyes to hers as she turned, with a dossier from the briefcase and handed it to him.

‘You familiarize yourself with that while I make myself coffee.’

‘Oh, O.K,’ stammered Buzz ‘Do you mind if I smoke?’

‘Only if you have to, where’s the coffee?’

‘I only have tea and it’s in the flask under the desk.’ he said as he plopped himself down on the coach and began to read. After a moment or two of flipping though the papers he expounded.’This is all about one of the oldest Egyptian artifacts known as the Narmer Palette. I learnt all I needed about it in first year Archeology.’

She sat down on his office chair, crossed her legs spectacularly and said ‘How cleaver of you Dr. Izzard but I am willing to bet you don’t know the one thy have in the Cairo Museum isn’t as old as they claim it to be and that it’s golden counterpart is missing.’

‘That’s unbelievable.’

‘That’s what the Museum authorities said until I persuaded them to have it re-dated.’ she said uncrossing her legs, leaning forwards and looking him straight in the eyes.

‘Why haven’t I heard about this, a scandal as big as that should have been all over the media.’ said Izzard as he stood to pace the room and take the view of her out of his focus

‘They must have turned it over to National Security because they threatened me with imprisonment if I mentioned it to anyone. ‘

‘Except me, please tell me they said except me.’

‘No.’ She said carelessly

‘Well why the  hell are you telling me then?’

‘Because Mr. Izzard that’s what I want to employ you for.’

‘I don’t comprehend, what is it exactly you want me to do?’

‘Find the original.’

‘If I go around asking questions they will lock me up.’

‘Not if you don’t leave this office.’

‘Do you mean see if I can find out about it on the Internet?’

‘No,’ she said alarmed they’d be all over you.’

‘Then what should we do then?’

‘Your a Psychic Detective……Psychically detect!’

“Do you understand what you’re asking of me and what it entails?”
“Yes. You can go into a trance and travel to specific locations and report what you see.”

“That’s correct,” he said. “You’ve researched me and my abilities well, Ms McHale.”
“You have abilities such as those of the famous Edgar Cayce.”
“Ah yes, America’s greatest sleeping prophet,” said Izzard, trying not to appear flattered.
“He never left his office whilst researching; he just lay on his couch and conversed to his secretary.” she surmised.
“So if I understand you correctly, you want to be my companion, ask me questions while I am in a trance, directing us to the perpetrators and not involve anyone else.”
“Yes.” she stated.
“Do you think it’s as simple as that out there on the astral plain, dodging government agents, slipping past Edger Casey followers, ducking around Majestic 12, well let me tell you it’s certainly not. It’s a minefield out there, the authorities have their people all over it, they own it just like they own the net,” he said in his most fatherly voice.
“So should I take my money and go elsewhere?” she asked.
“Well,” he postulated, “what I can do for you, in my own way is kick it around, take a look at it and see what I can dig up. Call me sometime around midnight tonight and I will give you a definite, if it’s a goer, you can come again tomorrow and we will take it to the next level.”
“O.K.” she agreed.
He watched her close the briefcase, put on her coat, walk out the door, go down the stairs and open her car. It was the look she sent him just before driving off, that said, she knew she’d hooked him.
He walked away from the window over to his computer and booted up, opening up his own secured files. The first thing that came up was ‘DON’T PANIC,’ good advice.
Punching in ‘list pharaohs’ the first name to come up was Narmer [see Noah] this was one of the knowns; Narmer was associated with Noah, at least it was a starting point.
He wanted a smoke, but he knew he couldn’t if he wanted to do this properly. Normally he would while he was studying, it kept him in the moment, grounded him, like tea and coffee. If he wanted to leave this moment and travel to a point in time different to the ‘now’, he would have to abstain until his return. As it stood, that would be some time later when he would be awoken by the prearranged call from Ms McHale and by then he would know exactly what to tell her. For now, he would study all the material he had at his disposal until entranced by it, then astral-travel to that point, revealing something that would help him in making that decision.

Ms McHale had chosen well, his personal interest in this field was well established, it was part of his obsession. His previous studies had taken him back to the beginning of our current era giving him a different perspective than others in his field, who tended to polarized their knowledge into compartments rather than studying the whole train. Gabriel would springboard towards the time of Noah and his great flood, immerse himself in the period and come up grasping the necessary twig. Recent archeology had retrieved the proof needed to establish the flood as a real point in time; excavations of the Sumerian basin have reviled cities built on cities covered with clay. Civilization gestated there, the first cuneiform of written language was printed there on the very pieces of clay we study today. On these clay fragment we have our best clues on what was going on and they tell a far more complex story than the Hebrew-Christian scriptures of the world around the time of the flood.

In the work known as the Epic of Gilgamesh, Noah and a female companion are depicted as Enki and Ninmar, genetic pioneers re-establishing life in the fertile basin after the deluge. These ‘gods’ manipulated the local flora and fauna into domesticated crops and herds, they were accredited with the genetic restructuring of mankind as Ninmar ‘took the seed of Enki and planted it in the suitable womb. Gabriel was sure he was on the right track and with what he already knew about this couple, tying them to Egypt and the first dynasty artifact the Narmer Palette, would expedite his enquiries and lead him to the information required.

The piercing sound of the expected phone call jolted him back into the familiar surrounds of his room.

“Hi, what time is it?” he asked sleepily.
“Half past twelve,” she replied.
“Do you have an answer for me?” she asked.
“Let’s do it, don’t forget to bring coffee.”
“I’ll see you in nine hours or so, you can get back to sleep now.”
“No way, I’ll be staying up pondering Mrs. Noah.”
“Who’s that?”
“You know, Noah’s wife, she was the cook on the ark.”
“What’s she got to do with it?” She questioned
“Everything, my dear Nut;”
“What did you call me?”
“Nat, that’s your name isn’t it?”
“It’s Natalie, but you can call me Ms.McHale.”
“Whatever, I’ll see you tomorrow. By the way- bring your bible.”
With that he hung up the phone and logged on to his computer determined to swat up on all he had on Egyptian mythology, from the Tep –zepi or first time period, zeroing in on Nut and Geb, the mother and father gods of the Egyptian pantheon. He wanted to establish a connection between them and Mrs. and Mr. Noah. This first dynasty Pharaoh and Consort couple are the key to finding the real palette of Narmer also there may be a connection between it and the Hebrew burse of judgment.
“Good morning,” came the greeting as he opened the door to the well dressed Ms. McHale, this time she was carrying a picnic basket in one hand and a large book in the other.
“Come on in and make yourself at home.”
“Why thank you Dr. Izzard, I will.”
“Please call me Buzz, most people do.”
“Ha, I like that, is it a nick-name?”
“Yeah I picked it up at school and it sort of stuck.”
“Well Buzz, what do you have to tell me that you didn’t know yesterday?”
“Heaps, but it’s going to be a long session. So kick your shoes off and help yourself to the tea and bickies.”
“Thanks for the offer but I’ve brought my own munchies and some rather good coffee on your advice.” She said starting to unload the picnic basket, beginning with a rather ornate cup followed by a Glad-wrapped plate of fine pastries.
“Would you like one?”
“Very much,” he smiled, “but I will have to refrain till later, if I am to do my thing.”
“Which entails what exactly?” she asked with a quizzical look on her face.
“You know, getting horizontal on this coach here and filling you in on lasts night’s efforts, hopefully drifting off, while you keep talking to me like you are my hypnotist.”
“Oh,” she said whilst crossing from the open window to the seat beside the couch, popping a chocolate-coated morsel into her mouth as she went.

He propped himself up on one arm and asked “Have you ever associated this Palette of Narmer with the Hebrew breast attire of the chief priest of the tabernacle?”
“No, there’s thousands of years difference in the time periods,” she said.
“Yes, that’s right, but I believe it’s what it represents that connects the two.”
“Go on.”
“When Moses led the Hebrews out of Egypt and into the Sinai desert, sometime around the thirteenth century B.C.E, one of the first things they did, was to manufacture the Tabernacle and its sacred objects. Besides the Ark of the Covenant, the Breastplate of Judgment was the most important. It was a two-piece, back and front breastplate that Aaron was instructed to wear whenever he entered the Holy of Holies. It represented the authority of the twelve tribes of Jacob and empowered the wearer to talk directly to God.”
“So, how are they connected again?” she asked.
“I believe its predecessor was worn by the Pharaoh of the time and its authority dated back to the first pharaoh, Narmer, and that the Palette is just an artistic impression. Similarly Aaron, was from the tribe of Levi, who had direct lineage back through Jacob to Noah, who also spoke directly to God.”
“That’s astounding, if you are correct along with the Ark of the Covenant, the Breastplate would be the most important artifact this side of the flood.” she said
“How does this knowledge help us with locating the thieves who stole this antiquity of incredible importance?”
“I will answer that,” he paused “when you can tell me honestly, what your interest in it is?”
She stood up, took a long slow draw on her smoking device, extinguished it and walked over to the open window before exhaling a thoughtful answer.
“My father gave me many things besides this fine Falcon pipe; his job entails locating and acquiring artifacts for various auction houses, mainly the more famous ones of London. He is an honest man; everything he deals with has to have providence, that is to say, documentation of its origin. He receives a commission on items that pass hands for prices in the thousands that sometimes sell for millions when passed in at auction. Although he has an office in the Fulham Road, London, he mainly lives at airports and hotels all over the world.
I lived for the times when he would visit me here in Australia, my fondest memories are of times when we would sit together and he would tell me stories of ancient civilizations, gods and goddesses and their possessions; sometimes showing me the actual things we were talking about, before he would send them off to London and go off looking for more.
The last time I saw him, he showed me this breastplate of gold, encrusted with twelve precious stones, topaz, emerald, sapphire, jasper and amethyst amongst others. He said it had authentication back to the digs of Colonel Howard Vyseand that it was the best thing he had ever dealt with and was personally taking it back to London himself. I didn’t know any more about it then than that, my specialty has always been Etruscan and Mycenae vases.
Anyway not long after we said our goodbyes, he rang me with a rushed call on his mobile saying that he was being abducted because of the palette of Narmer and if I didn’t hear from him soon to contact his associates. His call was cut short with something about men in black, so I rang the police, reported it and when they finally rang me backs all they said was that his rental car was parked at the airport and the airline couldn’t confirm whether or not he was on his flight. I rang his London office and they had not heard from him for some time, nobody seems concerned. Now my only hope of finding him or what happened to him is you and this investigation.”
“Wow that’s some story.” he exclaimed.
She had circled the room whilst telling her story and had ended up sitting next to him on the couch. Holding his hand and with tears welling in her eyes, Natalie asked the question
“Will you help me?”
Instead of answering, he embraced her in a way that allowed her head to nestle into the curve of his neck. After an appropriate amount of time he lent back and holding her shoulders at arm’s length, looked into her eyes and asked
“Do you believe he is still alive?”
“Yes, in my heart I know he is still alive and that he needs us to find him or he is doomed.”
“O.K then, let’s get to work. What we have to do is work out who would go to such extremes to acquire this Arbitrament, why they would need it and what they intend to do with it.” He said, becoming animated.
“How do we do that exactly?”
“The easy way would be for me to focus on the item itself, astral travel to it and report to you the details but I have already tried that and just as I suspected, there was a firewall around it. We will get nothing but trouble by trying the direct approach.
What we need to do is locate it at some time in the past, when it was unprotected and follow it through to where it is now. We will work out the problems as we go in through the back door, completely associated with it, to such an extent that we won’t arouse the suspicions of those we want to avoid. We will do a series of deep meditations that will end up with us being there to witness your father’s abduction.”
“Why can’t we just go to that point now?” she asked
“Because they would be watching, see us and follow us back here and we would be in no better position than your father.”
“I see.” she said
“No you don’t, not properly but by the time we finish this session I think you will. Do you have any meditation skills?” he asked
“I did do some T.M courses a few years back but I dropped out mainly because I didn’t like the people I was associating with.”
“Did you study a technique where back to back chakra alignment allows two people to experience the same inner vision?”
“We did do a group meditation where we all concentrated on the same place and when we finished we all talked about what we saw.”
“Were you any good at it?” he asked
“Yes I did have a lot to say “
“Was your retention any good?” he continued his line of questioning
“Yes.” she replied
“Well that’s how we are going to do that then, I’ll take you there and your job will be to be the reporter, do you think you can handle it?”
“Yeah, let’s do it!”
“Patience, we can’t go at this like a bull-at-a-gate, you have to sidle up to it, create the mood, set the scene and just slip into it,”
“I’m in your hands.” she breathed
“Let’s light the candles and incense, close the curtains, put on some appropriate music and test drive this magic carpet ride.”
—————————
A couple of hours had passed when he opened his eyes to her beaming face,
“That was incredible”
“Do you remember what happened?” he asked
“Everything”
“Then you must tell me over lunch, there’s a nice little café just around the corner and I’m famished,”
“Great I’ll get my coat on.” she said whilst doing exactly that.
“It’s just a short walk; you can begin to remind me as we stroll.”
He locked the door behind himself; they descended the stairs and were entering the street when she began telling the most amazing story.
“We were flying, you and me, on the wings of a dove, high over a large expanse of water. It was a glorious day, not a cloud in the sky, the water was pristine, marine life was abundant and totally visible from the sky above. We were bee-lining towards a dot on the horizon which gradually became a ship. As we approached the old style sailing vessel, I noticed an old man standing on the deck, looking straight towards us. Landing on the railing right next to him revealed a kindly smiling face and the bird didn’t flinch as he reached out to retrieve a green twig from its claws.
We next flew to nestle on the mast as activity and noise broke out all over the ship. Sails were being set, conversations enjoyed and as this was happening, the wind stiffened the sails billowed and we moved off towards the direction from which we had come.”
The menu was delightful and ordering was over quickly as they relaxed into the café’s ambient décor. Natalie resumed her dialogue, with an attentive Gabriel hanging on her every word.
“Before long we were approaching land and the tips of the mountains became more and more evident. Anchorage was found at the base of the highest peak and as camp was being set up, two of the younger men were readying themselves for what looked like a mountain trek. After a night of celebrations, the trek began at first light and as the men traversed the countryside, we flew high above eventually noticing where they were heading, a large cave high up the mountain slope. We perched and watched as they entered the cave and with what seemed like very little effort, were displaying beautiful golden temple items, lamp stands, headdresses, ceremonial knives and amazingly enough the very breastplate we have been talking about.”

‘We were flying,you and me on the wings of a dove, high above a large expanse of water. It was a glorious day not a cloud in the sky, the water was pristine, marine life was abIt didn’t seem to long before we were approaching land and as the tips of the mountains became more and more evident, anchorage was found at the base of the highest peak. After a few days and nights of celebration a trek began, we flew high above eventually noticing where they were heading, a large cave high up the mountain slope and after what

e ’Bull’s-eye!’ exclaimed Buzz ’Do you remember anything else?’

‘When they had arrived back at the boat, the items were fawned over and talked about for days. Eventually an alter was built and on a special day when all the work was done and everyone was cleaned up, they gathered in front of it. The obviously eldest and thinnest woman of the small tribe seated herself on a chair that had been place especially for her and the others sat crossed legged, seemingly quiet and content as she spoke to them for a very long time. At what seemed an appropriate time the old sailor went to the alter, picked up the Golden Breastplate and placed it upon the still seated woman and a chant began, firstly by the old man and then the others joined in OM-NA-MA, OM-NA-MA.

This went on for some time when gradually all went silent and the woman started speaking again, this time in a loud and authoritative way. The rest of them prostrated themselves in front of her until she stopped, the old sailor lit a pit fire opposite the alter and they roasted a prepared lamb. The all stood in a circle around it, raised their hands to the sky and began singing in a reverential way. Gradually they quietly relaxed around  a glowing scene, ate and drank till well after nightfall. It was the first sabbath since the rain had stopped falling and they were prepared to do this every seven days from then on in, doing so marked the passing of time. They extended the camp, explored the surrounds and  created paths all along the ridges making it possible to travel north and south for many days always returning in time for their sabbath over which Mrs. Noah presided.’

Chapter Two

“Not a bad mornings work, hey?” questioned Buzz
“Not bad at all Dr. Izzard. It seems your worth your money after all.”
“Should we head back to my office for an afternoon session or have you had enough for today?” asked Buzz
“I have a better idea, if you like you can accompany me back to my place and I will make you dinner after we finish, it will be how I can repay you for this lovely lunch you are about to pay for.”
“Why thank you Mam, don’t mind if I do,” and with that he pulled out a large note from his pocket, placed it on the table ,waived to the waitress and said to Nat,” I’m in your hands, let’s go.”

After a short stop to pick up his lap top and lock up, they were zooming along the city bound freeway happily chatting about the mornings meditations and filling in the appropriate gaps. Natalie’s apartment block was in a very trendy inner city precinct, the heartland of yuppy style accommodation, coffee shops, boutiques and swanky wine bars. When they arrived in the area it was swarming with smart cars, motor scoters and smartly dressed people. As she swiped her card to gain access to the underground car park, Buzz commented on the obvious affluence of her lifestyle by muttering under his breath, ‘It’s very clean, have you tried the veal?’

“What?” she exclaimed
“Nothing, which floor do you live on?”
“The third.” she answered
“Do you have to get out of your car to get there?” he prodded
“Yes. Why?”
“No reason, just asking.”
They alighted from the car and he obligingly helped with the parcels while she swiped again for the lift, as the doors opened for them the elevator politely asked them which floor they would be traveling to and what style of music would be required, to which she replied “three, classical.”
After a short rendition of Brahms, the doors opened again to an elegantly decorated lounge room, modern but sparse, complete with a grand piano. As they stepped through the door he asked “which way?”
“You can put those things in the kitchen if you like; it’s just through that archway there.” She said pointing
“Oh, common kitchen is it?”
“No it’s very modern and extremely well equipped.”
“Yeah, but you share it.”
“Who with?” she asked, puzzled
“The others”
“What others?” she further quizzed
“The others that live here”
“Nobody else lives here”
“Nobody else lives on this floor, hey that’s lucky having trouble renting them out are they?”
“Nobody lives on any floor and I don’t rent anything out to anybody.” she stated
“What, you mean you own the whole building?”
“Yes”
“Planning on having a big family are you?”
“No, this is my business as well as my residence”

By the time they were standing in her extremely well equipped kitchen, which looked like something out of an exclusive restaurant, he brought it up again by asking, ‘so your a catering service are you?’

‘No I told you my interest is in Mycenae and Etruscan vases.’

‘Yeah, my interest is in Pyramids but I don’t own the Melbourne Cricket Ground just to keep a couple in.’

‘Look it not that bad the first floor is my showroom and the second is my office, I have a small staff and responsibilities to my clients. This meets all of my needs and provides me with a comfortable life with out having to drive all over the place; my father, whom I’ve employed you to help me find, set this up for me and it has served me very well.’

‘O.K, I give up very nice and very sensible.’    do you mind if I have a look around?”

“I don’t mind at all, browse, just don’t go up to the roof, I want to take you up there myself as it’s my personal space. Introduce yourself to Judy my receptionist on the ground floor and she will give you a card that will grant you access to all areas. I’ll ring through and let her know that you’re coming and then I will join you later wherever you are.”
He thanked her turned and walked back to the lift, politely asked for the ground floor and was entertained by a short rendition of Beethoven’s fifth after which he entered a cavernous foyer that intruded into the first floor space. In the middle of the marbled mausoleum was the reception desk with a smiling Judy heading straight for him with an outstretched hand
“Hello-o-o, I’m Judy please don’t hesitate to call on me for any of your needs. Here is your access card and may I get you refreshment, Champagne maybe?”
“Do you have any beer?”
“Holstein, Grolsh or Corona with a slice”
“I’ll have the Mexican thanks.”

She disappeared and reappeared as if by magic with a beautifully carafe pale ale and lemon.
“Would you care to peruse the collection?” she asked handing him the brew
“Yes please”
“Walk this way” she said pivoting and striding off to a stair case which led to a first floor mezzanine style showroom. He followed, mimicking her feminine walk while balancing his fluted beverage. The apex of the staircase plateaued into a marvelous display of individually positioned and lit vases of obvious age and value. They were surprisingly few in number, although there was a catalogue of associated pieces with every specimen, as Judy was quick to point out. She excused herself allowing him to “saturate himself in the exhibit” and appropriately disappeared.

He seceded to her suggestion and went to peruse her collection and after an indeterminable amount of time, she rejoined him on the mezzanine of the first floor and said, ‘beautiful aren’t they, are you familiar with the period?’

‘I’ve always considered it the time of the Greek gods, Zeus’ offspring, something to do with the city of Troy and maybe the Hittites. It was a cusping period coming between the Taurean age of the bull and the Arian era of the Ram; not Egyptian, not Sumerian, not Phoenician but a mixture of all of them.’

‘I never thought of it like that, you must tell me more. I’m all ears,’

‘as well as many other wonderful pieces.’ He digressed, she blushed ‘Before this culture became established on the northern side of the Mediterranean, Egypt flourished on the south. Before the Ramose’s period the bull was worshiped by a divided kingdom, the Tuthmosis and Amenophis pharonic lines took turns in ruling until Akhenaton and Nefertiti were expelled for upsetting the priestly establishment by changing the religion towards monotheistic practices. So here’s the rub, this was about the time the Hebrews were appearing on the scene in Palestine and the roots of the Ramesses Cult were becoming established, both these were ram worshiping in essence and ushered out the bull worshiping cults, relegating them to the previously uncivilised areas where the Mycenae and Minoan cultures began to flourish hence why they have bulls all over their pottery.’

“Brilliant”
“That’s what I keep telling everybody.” He quipped
“Does this have anything to do with the breastplate or our case?” she asked
“Not really”
“Come with me upstairs for coffee I’ve asked Judy to prepare it for us.”
“Can I smoke afterwards?” he asked
“You can smoke during if you like, I do”
“Do you have a spare pipe?”
“Yes, Turkish alright”
“Perfect, as long as you have something to put in it”
“An authentic Ottoman blend” she replied
“You really know how to impress a guy”
After a short walk, appropriate instructions to the lift and this time a little Vivaldi, they reemerged into the lounge room with steaming coffee and a Hubble bubble waiting for them on the table besides the grand piano.
As she began to pour he asked “Do you tinkle the ivories?”
“I was trained as a child but I don’t play much these days, I used to enjoy playing for my father”
“You must play for me when you feel like it”
“I’ll look forward to it, but why don’t you give it a go?”
“O.K, I’ll need some backing though, do you have any Pink Floyd to spin on that impressive stereo you have there?”
“Sure, just turn it on, press menu and dial up P, it’s programmed with just about everything.”
He strolled over to it, fiddled with the dials for a moment and walah, “Wish you were here” filled the room with perfect surround sound. He played for awhile but before he was halfway through ‘Dark side of the moon’ she couldn’t help herself and joined in. Afterwards they smoked a little, drank some coffee and with the lights dimmed they drifted off on the plush lounge for another adventure in time, ————————

Natalie returned them to the moment by shaking him and saying ‘Wake up! I’ve got so much to tell you and I can’t wait. Let’s go up to my roof for dinner and I will fill you in on the most extraordinary tale. I love this thing we do together, if you don’t mind me saying so but I’m hooked. I hope you feel the same, I mean it doesn’t matter if you don’t. What am I saying, of course it does , oh bugger I feel like a stupid girl on her first date. I’m excited, I’m elated, I’m babbling aren’t I?’

He agreed, embarrassing her further and creating a moment similar to saying goodnight on your parents front porch. Eventually they broke apart and she lead him towards the friendly lift which politely asked which floor “Roof please” they intoned together

Mozart serenaded them as they ascended; stepping out under a perfect night’s sky, complete with full moon, Buzz exclaimed earnestly “Wow I love this place!”
After wandering around in a bit of a daze for a while, looking at the moderately sized swimming pool and excellently crafted B.B.Q area, Buzz asked “Were did that come from?”
“I had Jenny prepare dinner for us; I knew you’d be hungry”
“Who’s Jenny?”
“She’s my housekeeper”
“Is there anyone else I should know about?”
“Only James he comes on at ten o’clock and does security until Judy arrives in the morning”
“So you have at least one person here at all times” he quizzed
“Yeah, but people come and go during office hours”
“All very orderly I suppose”
“Very” she confirmed
“I’m getting the picture”
“Good, no need to be in the dark”
“I noticed all the candles, its great.” he concluded
“O.K so let’s eat, Jenny makes the best crêpe Suzettes”
“Of course she does” he said
“I’m dying to tell you about our adventure in the past”
“Go ahead, I’ll pour the wine”
“We returned to the same place as before but it had expanded into a small town with many more people and lots of children. There were roads in and out of the town and well made carts pulled by little horses. They were still practicing there Sabbath, in the most ornate building, a real temple, with all the golden artifacts and Mrs. Noah presided in front of the alter.
The others, which were there the first time, sat in the front row like respected elders, and they hadn’t changed a bit. The rest of the hall was filled with younger people and their children spilled out onto the forecourt, along with many others.
The water had receded far from the town but the old boat was still there and it looked like it was being used regularly for fishing. They had many domestic and farm animals, the forest had been pared back drastically and crops of a great variety were growing all around.
Early one morning, after the Sabbath, a large group gathered and began preparing wagons and provisions for a long journey. Once readied, they headed off with great fanfare and one of the original men led the expedition, we traveled with them for many a weeks and they still celebrated the Sabbath but without the breastplate or anyone presiding like they did in town. Eventually they arrived at the most southerly point to which they could travel, stopped by a large body of water and there they began to set up a new permanent camp until it began to look like the first one. After some months or so it seemed, I’m not too sure because time was passing so quickly for me, the elder led a small party back to the original town and were welcomed with great ceremony. The old boat was then packed up with the old crew, including Mrs. Noah and her breastplate and sailed around the mountains to the new camp where much to the residents’ approval; she regularly headed the weekly ceremony.”
“That’s an amazingly good account of the events we witnessed” Buzz interjected “you’re the best I’ve ever worked with, a real natural talent.”
“Why thank you Sir”
“The original town would have been Nineveh” he ventured to say
“Yes I would say so to because I am beginning to understand their language and I think they have been calling it Nin-nah-mar”

                                                       The Time of The Great Flood
“That’s quite a revelation; I can see why you were so excited” he said admiringly
“That’s not what I was excited about, wait till you hear the rest of the story.
Sit back and pour yourself a brandy, you are going to need it.”
“Thank you, I will; as for dinner, it was a gourmet’s delight” he complimented
“Now where was I? Oh yeah; after a while at the new camp, which was quickly turning into a thriving town just like Nin-nah-mar, the men who were taking the boat out on fishing expeditions returned all excited; after a particularly long one they insisted that the elders all come with them on their next voyage. Soon as they were restocked and boarded by passengers they set sail in the southerly direction that they had come in on and not far from their point of debarkation we sited land on the left hand side of the boat. Hugging that coast line for a day or two, after which I noticed there was land on the right hand side as well and then another day or two of that we arrived at the point where I knew what the fuss was all about. Sticking out of the water just in front of our final anchorage was the stone head of the famous Sphinx looking slightly different than how we know it today. It was slightly bigger and looked surprisingly similar to our Mrs. Noah, as everyone on the boat was at pains to pointing out. Eventually they built a town just across the river from it and she began presiding there.”
Buzz was looking suitable impressed, and blurted out” That’s incredible, in only two sessions we have located the antiquity we were looking for and tracked it down to the very place where we presumed it would be in reliable history. So while Noah and his ark first turn up at Nineveh, he relocates to the Mediterranean before the flood water totally subsides then ultimately moves to Egypt and begins the first dynasty of pharaohs to eventually be known as Narmer.”
“Very interesting Mr. Izzard” the intruding statement of a man in a black suit cut through the mood of the evening like a hot knife through butter.
“Who are you and how did you get in here?” shouted Natalie, as she jumped to her feet sending her chair flying backwards.
“I’ll be asking the questions here, but I will give you your answers if you and your friend agree to co-operate.”
“Why should we?” Buzz demanded to know
He simply raised his hand and displayed an ominous looking hand gun.
“O.K you have our attention, now please explain yourself.” said Buzz looking slightly more reticent
“Well Mr. Izzard, if I pulled out a badge and told you I was working for truth, justice and the American way and that Miss McHale was a threat to national security. Would you assist me in the way you have been assisting her?”
“I would need to know more information, like how do you know me and how can I confirm what you tell me is true?”
“ Fair enough but surely you would realize that if your friend here was legitimately a security risk then the government would have her under surveillance and the moment you turned up we would pull your file, ipso facto.”
“That doesn’t explain how you got in here” stated Nat.
“It does if your house keeper actually works for us”

Thump!
As if by magic the agent was lying on the floor and another man was standing in his place holding a blackjack instead of a gun.
“James, thank god you’re here. Did you hear what he was saying?” asked Nat.
“Yes I did.” James replied.
“What if it was true?”
“Its not, He killed Jenny.”
“Oh my god, how?”
“He broke in through the side door, she heard him, confronted him and he just shot her there was nothing I could do,
it happened so quickly so I followed him up here and waited for the right moment to jump him.” Said James summing up
“What should we do now?” she asked shakily
“ I suggest you get out of here and away for awhile incase he has friends; I’ll tell anyone that asks that you went away for a romantic undisturbed weekend and after you left this thug broke in and I dealt with him. Make sure you’re not followed and I will clean up here and then contact the police; Judy won’t mind looking after the business for a while and I will contact you when everything has been settled.”
“O.K James we will do as you suggest thanks a lot. Let’s get going Buzz.”

CHAPTER THREE

A few hours later they were cruising down a narrow country road and had finished discussing the evening’s events. Natalie had convinced Gabriel that she knew of the perfect place that they could head for and how an old friend of her fathers had a discrete estate hidden in the eastern slopes of the hinterland north of Coffs Harbor. If they drove all through the night, a hearty breakfast and a warm welcome would await them; Buzz had agreed and after a few stops to pick up things that they might need for a brief stay in the country, they were more than half the way there. With the calming effect of the night drive, the conversation had once again turned to focusing on the ancient past and the plight of the people of the ark.

Gabriel allowed himself to fall into a deep trance like state, as he was the passenger, began describing to the driving Natalie, his vision of being a falcon flying high over a new Egypt.

“The Nile delta region is brimming with life, agriculture dominates wherever the eye turns; fishing boats stud the waterways and people mill around the docks and granaries. Ox carts and four wheeled chariots traverse the well defined roadways, following the general direction of the traffic I am moving over the outskirts of a large city on the western side of the Nile. In the center of the suburban sprawl of well built two story town houses is a large people’s area with market places, temples and statues. There is one building taller than the rest; I am flying directly towards it and on a balcony near the roof top area stands a well ornamented man with an outstretched hand, I land on it and he utters one very clear and understandable word, Horus!

I turn to face east, the direction from where I have flown from, as the sun goes down behind me, I see the day’s regular activities slowing down. The nights people are making their way into the temple complex forecourt with lanterns lit and begin firing up the alters, this must be a special evening some kind of celebration. A woman dressed as an Isis Goddess joins us on the balcony with her entourage of priests, priestesses and servants hovering behind. The people below notice us and a great roar goes up along with a hoard of doves, I have an immediate urge to fly but I am tethered now to a golden perch. I am still by the side of the man whom I gather is my master and consort to the queen; soon the crowd begins to sing, raise there hands and then all bow down. Proclamations are being made by orators down at street level and sacrifices are being burnt on the alters.

As a group all those on the balcony descend a magnificent internal staircase and emerge at the top of the stairs that lead to the street, the people part like a sea revealing a fleet of golden carriages and chariots pulled by exquisitely adorned horses. We descend the remaining stairs and board the transport as the crowd lines the path we are about to travel with lit torches in hand. Majestically we journey to the Nile where a royal barge is ready for what is obviously going to be a journey up the sacred river. The crowds line both sides of the river for as far as the eye can see as we move off and head in the direction of Heliopolis.

The nights cruise was timed perfectly and as the royal barge docked on the eastern side of the Nile the pathway leading up to the temple of the Phoenix is lined by the priests of On, discernible by the five pointed star on their tunics and visible by the golden light of the sun rising out of the primal mound of Heliopolis. Isis and her Horus lead the procession up to where the head priest, who is wearing an ibis headdress, is standing in front of a huge column with a cone on top. This is the most sacred Ben-Ben stone representing the point of ascension, where Horus becomes Osiris, where Isis attests to the weight of the heart before Thoth who is representing the absent Set. This is done while the telling of the story of how Set had killed Osiris and of how Isis had reassembled the dismembered parts of his body and had brought it here to On; she is now presenting his and her son as the resurrection of their king.

The morning ceremonies give way to the rising of Ra to his midday throne high over the Nile, as the Bark of the crossing is readied for the official trip to take the new Osiris to the seat of his power. The crossing goes smoothly and as the royal couple prepare to enter the Sphinx temple situated at the foot of the Sphinx, Horus who has now become Re-Osiris is exulted above all others as the crowd chants ‘Life to thee, O thou who art over darkness! Life to thee in all thy majesty! Life to thee Osiris…Hail to Osiris, Lord of all the living’ and as the sun begins to set and the new day officially begins Osiris dons a ram headed crown and enters the courtyard of the temple chanting ‘I am Re who is in the heavens, I enter the twilight shadows, I open the gate of the sky in the west, Welcome me with your arms. Behold! I know your place in the Duat; I know your names, your caverns, your secrets.’

Standing in the middle of the alabaster temple, in front of the alter, is the old lady wearing her breastplate but it is somehow different, newer with Egyptian hieroglyphs instead of jewels; She speaks the words ‘O bitter in your cavern, terrifying one, the greatest of the Duat, bow down, draw back your arm, behold me, I am entering the land of the west to attend to Osiris, to greet those who are with him.’ And with that she takes off the fake breastplate and places it on the fake Isis who is standing beside her Horus and they turn and face the priests of the Sphinx, then Horus bellowed the words ‘It is done’!”

“Well here we are” said Nat breaking the silence that had allowed them to finish their journey and ponder the amazing scenes that Buzz had described.

“Where are we exactly?” asked Gabe, still waking

“We are at the gatekeepers house of the estate of Sir Hamish Grant, Wing Commander R.A.F. retired. He is my godfather and a long time best friend of my father, who lives a very private life here miles from nowhere. He’s a bit of a recluse since the death of his wife but I’m sure we will be safe here; he will be keen to hear of our investigations. I told him about the disappearance of daddy, he made me promise to keep him updated and said he would help in any way he could.”

Just then a spotlight came on and a loud voice came over the intercom next to the car,

“State your business”

Natalie explained who they were and immediately the large security gates opened. They proceeded along the long, wide, flat tree lined driveway up to a colonial style house that seemed to be built into the side of a small mountain.

“Very impressive” stated Buzz as they pulled into an undercover car park.

A large moustached man came bounding down the wooden staircase, hauled Nat out of the car and began dancing some kind of jig with her feet dangling way off the ground,

“Glory be its Natalie, come all the way to visit me” he was singing as he whirled a couple of rounds of the car park finally placing her down next to Gabe.
“And who is this fine young gentleman you have brought with yee” he asked in a loud Scottish brogue
Nat did the appropriate introductions and then they were ushered up the stairs and on to a grand veranda with an amazing view through to the eastern seaboard. Tea was poured and shortbread was broken to the sounds of bagpipes coming from the discretely positioned Bose speakers. Sir Hamish presided over the conversation for the next few hours asking question after question in his broad Scottish way, until he knew as much about their situation as they did. Rising dramatically and turning to direct his attention towards Buzz and with changing intonation he demanded
“Mr. Izzard I would like you to summarize what you have learnt from your strange investigative method and what ye intend to do about it now.”
“Certainly Sir Hamish, but first I would beg your indulgence by allowing us to freshen up, recoup a bit and I promise you will have your summary by dinner time tonight.”
“Of course, you must be very tired from your long journey, how rude of me. I’ll have my man get your things”
While they were being shown to their respective rooms, Gabriel had impressed onto Natalie the immediate need for them to have one more session before they were to report to Sir Hamish. Nat agreed and suggested that after showering they should meet in the library in the back of the mansion; half an hour later that’s exactly where they were.
“So what’s the scoop, Sherlock?” asked Nat while she was perusing the items on the many shelves.
“Grab that large book on Egyptology, open it at the Kings and Dynasties list and I will explain.”
“Done, now what’s the mystery?”
“When we first started to discuss this back in my office, you said you had approached the authorities about the dating of the Narmer artifact.”
“Yes I remember”
“Why were you so sure it was a fake?”
“Because, it didn’t look right.”
“Exactly! The one that they have has hieroglyphics all over it on both sides and no precious stones and the one that you have described had twelve precious stones front and back and no hieroglyphs.”
“Correct”
“Well here’s my theory then. We followed the path of this sacred object through history from the time of the flood till the time of the construction of the pyramids and temples, from about 5600 B.C.E. to 2200 B.C.E, the end of the Old Kingdom and the beginning of the First Intermediate period. In my last vision I saw the transfer of power and kingship in the newly constructed temples of Heliopolis and Giza”
Buzz moved around the room and positioned himself in such a way as to resemble a preacher about to give a sermon,
“What I believe I was witnessing was one of the most crucial events in ancient Egyptian history and the key to understanding this mystery we have embarked on. Up until this point in time civilization had been ruled by the direct descendants of Noah\ Narmer the first pharaoh. This left a list of dynastic leaders; Djoser, Sneferu, Khufu, Djedfre, Kafre and Menkaure but above all this reigned one Queens name, Mereneith! One could easily assume that Mereneith, or her incarnation, ruled as an Isis\ Queen over well run kingdoms installing rising Horus\ Princes as replacements for her missing Osiris\ King, and that the symbol of her authority to do so was the original bejeweled breastplate, the very one that we are looking for.
Now at the end of the Old Kingdom, if Mereneith was being usurped by an unsanctified Isis and Horus, a divided Kingdom would emerge and as history would record it this is exactly what happened in the First Intermediate period. What we have today in the palette of Narmer could be the mould that a fake breastplate was fashioned on and a message from the past of how a wise Mereneith tricked an incoming regime. With her own words as recorded in the Egyptian Book of the Dead, Mereneith, the wife of the first pharaoh, Mrs. Noah, Nut, the brilliant one of the sky, the great lady, the divine one, the god mother, the Queen of all gods, the female Re, the Queen of the Earth, the great lady of magic, lady of warmth and fire, She who is greatly feared in the Duat and the wife of the Lord of all went to be with her Osiris in the West.
The thing that we have to find out is, did she take the original bejeweled breastplate with her?”

Timeline of the Pharaohs
Pre-Dynastic and Early Dynastic Period - 3150 B.C. – 2686 B.C.
• Dynasty ’0′ – 3150 – 3050 B.C. -
• 1st Dynasty – 3050 – 2890 B.C. -
• 2nd Dynasty – 2890 – 2686 B.C. -
The Old Kingdom – 2686 B.C. – 2181 B.C.
• 3rd Dynasty – 2686 – 2613 B.C. -
• 4th Dynasty – 2613 – 2498 B.C. -
• 5th Dynasty – 2498 – 2345 B.C. -
• 6th Dynasty – 2345 – 2181 B.C. -
The First Intermediate Period – 2181 B.C. – 2040 B.C.
• 7th & 8th Dynasty – 2181 – 2161 B.C. -
• 9th & 10th Dynasty – 2160 – 2040 B.C.-
The Middle Kingdom – 2040 B.C. – 1782 B.C.
• 11th Dynasty – 2134 – 1991 B.C. -
• 12th Dynasty – 1991 – 1782 B.C. -
The Second Intermediate Period – 1782 B.C. – 1570 B.C.
• 13th Dynasty – 1782 – 1650 B.C. -
• 14th Dynasty – 57 years, dates unknown -
• 15th Dynasty – 1663 – 1555 B.C. -
• 16th Dynasty – 1663 – 1555 B.C.
• 17th Dynasty – 1663 – 1570 B.C. -
• The New Kingdom – 1570 B.C. – 1070 B.C.

Natalie moved away from the table with all the books and charts that she had been flipping through while Gabriel had been expounding his theory and poured herself a drink from a handsome crystal decanter that sat on the fire place surround.

“Could we go over that again, this time in English, I think I am getting what you are saying but pretend I know nothing about Egyptology and lay it out for me in simplistic terms.”

Buzz took a deep breath, pulled his reading glasses out of his top pocket and while putting them on he moved over to the table. He shuffled pages of the exposed texts, selected maps and diagrams and slowly began to re-explain his theory while pointing to the appropriate symbolisms.

“Firstly, what we are doing is establishing the existence of an artifact that we will call ‘the Breastplate of Narmer’, that is older than what they have in the museum system at the moment. This we have done by pointing to the hieroglyphic symbols on what we will call ‘Breastplate No.2’ as dating to the First Intermediate period of 2200 B.C.E, citing the main character of a Horus wearing a divided kingdom crown, slaying a man. Now if it was the genuine ‘Breastplate of Narmer’ it would be dated to the First Dynasty period of 3000 B.C.E and the hieroglyphs on it would describe an Osiris wearing a United Kingdom crown and presiding over a peaceful time.

Secondly, if we can establish that this older breastplate is pre-dynastic and empowered the wearer to appoint Pharaohs to up and coming candidates or that any potential world leaders like Julius Caesar, Napoleon Bonaparte and even Hitler for that mater was interested in it, then we can begin to narrow down who might be interested enough in it to have kidnapped it and your father.”

Natalie put down her glass and grabbed him planting a kiss squarely on his blushing cheek, she stood back and proudly announced,

“Well, Dr. Izzard PhD bla- bla- bla you certainly are proving your worth. Where do you suggest we go from here?”

“Let’s draw the curtains, get settled on that lounge over there, begin one more quick guided meditation and see if we can come up with what we need to progress this mystery on to the next phase.”

Before long, Buzz was entranced and describing to Nat that he was once again a falcon flying high over Egypt.

“It was the same period and place as the last vision and people are filing into Giza, mainly from the east. They are bringing their possessions with them from as far as the eye can see, an invading Sumerian civilization ready to make the Nile theirs. Out of the western side of the temple complex I am witnessing a speeding four wheeled chariot, obviously fleeing the city in the shadows of a setting sun. I follow it as it careers along its north western path keeping the Nile and its people far to its right hand side. Staying with the journeyers all night, we arrive at a large ship moored in the Mediterranean and when the sails billowed with the stiffening morning easterly wind, hooded figures rush from the covered chariot to the embarking vessel. Keeping the coast of northern Africa to the port side, we travel for many days in the direction of the Atlas Mountains and the Gates of Hell, which we eventually pass through and into the mountainous seas of the Atlantic Ocean. After what seemed an eternity of bad weather, land to the north is spotted and a prehistoric England becomes our obvious destination. The seas settle and we clean sail for another day or two till we dock at a small stone village, where all the passengers and crew kiss ground and enjoy their first days and nights on land after a long and arduous sea journey.”

“The local peoples are very friendly and offer a myriad of comforts and luxuries to the weary travelers; eventually after days of pleasantries, the travelers move off again this time in ox driven carts loaded with their possessions hauled from the ship they had traveled there on. After a few more days travel inland they begin to set up a semi-permanent camp and after bathing and donning special white ceremonial robes, they move on out of the camp in a walking procession that goes on all night lit by hand held torches. The destination becomes apparent as the morning sun rises over an amazing scene of a crowd surrounding a ‘wooden’ Stonehenge with an alter in the middle. As one of our companions moves into the center of the event and as all eyes are intently focused on that spot and moment in time, in front of the alter, the hooded white robe is removed to reveal Mereneith and her bejeweled ‘Breastplate of Narmer’ for all to see.”

“Woah-Woah” interrupted the voice of Natalie

“Time out let’s take a reality check; are we talking about a woman, presumably the same woman, thousands of years and half a world away from the one we first mentioned. How can that be?”

Gabriel shook the haze of the vision from his mind, took stock of Nat’s interjection, rose to his feet and slowly began to piece together the plausibility factor that she required.” Firstly, my dear Miss McHale, I have already said to you that this might not be the same person but a reincarnation, or direct descendant, of her. But let’s put that aside for a minute or so and let our investigative or scientific mind deal with the data without the prejudices of what we think we know to be fact. The ancient peoples we have been investigating seemed to believe in the immortality of this woman and the bible, as source of infallible truth to billions of people alive and well on this planet of ours today; it documents the longlivity of the ancients so don’t presume to assume anything at this stage, just keep an open mind on the subject.

Secondly, on the matter of relocating her to the British Isles around the time that Stonehenge was being built, I find it more absurd to think that a civilization of megalithic monument builders sprung up there that didn’t have any connection to what was going on around the Mediterranean. The reliable and well documented ‘Egyptian book of the dead’ quoted her as saying she was going to the west and the pyramid builders of her day were known to have boats capable of the journey and minerals, ores and gemstones were brought back to Egypt from the four corners of the earth. So I put it to you, why not?”

“O.K then, let’s say we’re on track, please explain to me why you think this would have happened and what relevance it has to our cause.” answered Nat

“Pour me a drink and I will try my best to,” he said while gathering himself and moving to the table with the maps and books of the era they were discussing.“Central to the beliefs and documentation of the ancient Egyptian culture was the fact that Set killed Osiris, just like in the Biblical story of Cain killing Able. This set the scene for a divided kingdom, while Set began a violent rule in Egypt, Isis went to Palestine to rebirth Osiris and in the form of Horus began a battle with Set over who would rule a united kingdom. What Set would never have was the blessing of Isis or the legitimate heir that only she could provide. What Isis had that gave her the authority to provide the blessing or the heir to the throne, was the Breastplate of Narmer. Without this blessing of ultimate authority, Set’s longlivity of reign was limited no matter what his military might. What we witnessed in the last vision was the transfer of power to his illegitimate heir and chosen queen; where a fake breastplate was handed over to unsuspecting ruling elite, while the real Breastplate and Isis Queen were removed to a land far away in the west! She and her followers would patiently wait for the day of her return.”

“So this is what you are going to tell Sir Hamish tonight”

“No, that is what you are going to tell him, if you wouldn’t mind giving him my apologies, I am going to bunker down in my room and follow this story through to a more appropriate place and join you for breakfast tomorrow morning. I’m in the right frame of mind to put in a mega effort and propel us to a point far closer to our eventual goal, so if you will excuse me I am off for a night’s adventure in the past and I promise you a major breakthrough by morning.” With that Buzz turned and left the room.
“Arch man, good morning to you I hope ye slept well, I didn’t sleep a wink in anticipation of the continuation of your most amazing story. Ye have my blood pressure up in excitement, now pour yourself a cup of tea and enlighten me with more of yee wondrous tale.”

“I wouldn’t mind partaking of some of that fine looking bacon and eggs you’ve got there while we await the arrival of Natalie so I don’t have to go over the same ground twice.”

“Are well, yaw see she won’t be joining us for breakfast as she has not been to bed very long; she sat up with me jawing about your adventure and catching up with auld times but by all means help yourself to the fine fare and take your time, I want to savor this morning’s tale.”

“Allrighty then, pass me the gravy while I load up this plate and I must say Sir Hamish this is a wonderful breakfast nook you have for yourself, such a fine view through your French windows.”

“Aye it is, it is, now please last night’s connection to Stonehenge had me shimmering in my kilt so tell me more, tell me more.”

“Well there’s not much more to say about that, for where I picked up the story they were leaving an unfinished Stonehenge behind and were venturing off in a fleet of boats to what turned out to be northern Spain or Portugal. A small party traveled over the Pyrenees Mountains and into the south of Gaul or France as we know it now, were they re joined with their boats which had followed the coastline around Spain to a small port in the vicinity of Marseille. After a short stay there, the boats moved on to Northern Italy while the land party ventured over the marbled mountains of Tuscany. Anyway, they all met up in Greece where they stayed for a long time and quite a civilization began springing up all around them. On a regular basis Queen Mereneith would appear in her breastplate and celebrations would occur. Eventually they opened up roads through Turkey and traveled as far as Babylon but wherever their group traveled their culture remained simple and uncomplicated. It was on one of their trips to the Tigris and Euphrates area that something extraordinary happened. Mereneith had been in her ceremonial garb complete with breastplate on top of a ziggurat, when the sun turned red and then the sky turned black. Some natural disaster had occurred and many thousands died and leaving behind the dying a small party escorted Mereneith out of that area and up into the mountains near Lebanon.”

“So what do you make of all this?” asked Sir Hamish

“Well,” replied Buzz “all that I have told you and much, much more had seemed like lots of time had passed and I was having trouble fixing it in any particular era; nothing had jumped out at me as a definite, it all felt vague and unsubstantiated. The landscapes were familiar but the languages and daily stories were not and I was beginning to get the feeling that I was going nowhere, solving nothing but after awhile when the language started to sound more familiar, it all clicked for me. It was on a day in the mountains of northern Lebanon or Syria, at the funeral of one of the men who had been with Mereneith for a long time. She was wailing his name ‘Thera, Thera, Thera and a small crowd began addressing her as Shara, suddenly I realized when and where I was. It was the beginning of the long told and familiar story of Abraham and Sarah and we were about to see Egypt once again.”

“That’ll do laddie, that’ll do. You have confirmed to me that you are indeed what you claim to be, Mr. Unique smarty pants and I’ll   tell you I’m very impressed because what ye are telling me is that which I already know. I am a grand master in the Scottish tradition of Masonry and we do know a thing or two about what you speak of but what you don’t know would fill volumes.”

Buzz jumped to his feet, staggered a bit and proclaimed, “You’re Secret Service you bastard and we’ve been duped. What have you done with Natalie?”

“Calm down and sit down before ye fall down. Yer in no danger, I’m yer fairy godfather and you’d be fucked without me, the other bastards would have yer guts for garters by now. You, laddie, have stumbled upon a game that’s been going on for longer than you’ve been alive and I’m just a pawn in that game but by the time you wake up you are going to meet the queen, you and my precious Natalie. So while you are still awake, I’ll tell you a bed time story, if you can stay awake that is.”

Buzz steadied himself, plopped back into his chair and residing himself to his fate, said “go on then.”

“We are all going on a plane ride and you won’t know where you are when you wake up, but that’s the way it has to be. All your questions will be answered then, what you need to know now is that I’m an ex-commander in the R.A.F but I’m more than that, I was in the Cameron guards, S.O.E ‘special operations executive and they don’t have a retirement plan until yer dead, so that’s who you’re dealing with my boy. Natalie’s father was my friend and that’s how he knew about the breastplate, we were looking for it and have been for a long time now. Hitler knew about it but didn’t manage to get his dirty hands on it, thank god. The Queen, not the one you see on the television, the real one, god bless her soul, She knows about it, She wants it back, She, you might say, is Mereneith.”

Chapter Four

The small experimental jet sped down the driveway from Sir Hamish’s pad and banked skyward over the Pacific Ocean, it climbed to an altitude way over that of a commercial airliner, bang, bang, bang went the sound barriers as his jet catapulted towards Europe and sooner than you could possibly imagine he was landing somewhere in the north of Scotland. A beautiful castle isolated by the Scottish highland became the setting for the scenes that were about to follow. Hamish alighted in his traditional garb and a couple of his flunkies carried the unconscious bodies of Nat and Buzz into the medieval mansion. No military presence was apparent but the confinement of the area was reminiscent of Patrick Mcgoohan’s ‘The Prisoner’ and flashes of Inverlair, the infamous British 2WW gulag entered the imagination.

By the time of their awakening they were alone, fully clothed on a large four poster bed; Nat was nudging Buzz and saying. “Are you awake, wake up, speak to me, where are we, what the hell has happened, are you coherent, do you understand what I am saying?”

“Yes, yes, I am awake, stop punching me.”

“What’s going on?” she questioned further

“It’s all coming back to me,” said Buzz “were probably in Scotland.”

“What!” exclaimed Nat.?

“Sir Hamish explained it to me just before I passed out.”

“Explained what?”

“That we would be awakening in a foreign land,” continued Buzz

“And that it would be for the best.”

“What’s best about being deceived, knocked out and renditioned?” asked Nat

“I don’t know where to begin.”

“How about starting where I was knocked out?”

“When I met Sir Hamish for breakfast, he was most insistent that I told him everything I knew and by the time I had finished bringing him up to date, I was starting to feel the effects of whatever it was that he drugged us with. I confronted him about it; he just went into a rave about how he worked for some aspect of British security and how he and your father had been working on acquiring ‘the Breastplate’ for the current incarnation of the eternal Mereneith for a long time when we have stumbled into their scenario.”

“Wow!” exclaimed Natalie

“Yeah, wow” echoed Gabriel, “and not only that we were going to be flown out of the country but that we were going to meet this mysterious woman.”

“Why did he drug us?” she asked

“I think it was just a matter of convenience, expedience or a security procedure.”

“Tell me more of what you and Sir Hamish spoke about.”

“I told him of how I had traced Mereneith from Stonehenge to Spain via another sea voyage, on through France and into Greece

over the Tuscany Mountains. This would have been consistent with the spread of the Beaker peoples throughout Europe during the beginnings of the second millennium B.C.E. Are you familiar with them?”

“Yes, I have seen and own clay pots decorated with spirals from all over those areas but I had never understood what the connection was up until now.”

“I think they finally settled in the land of the Hiveites or what became known as Anatolia.” said Buzz

“Wasn’t Anat a deity that was known in Egypt?”

“Yes and I would presume to say that she was Mereneith.”

“Is that what excited Hamish?”

“No, there’s more, they had connections to the peoples who were ruling Babylon at the time and that there was some kind of natural disaster that forced them up into the Syrian Mountains somewhere around Harran and that from that time I began associating her with Sarah, Abraham’s partner from the Biblical story.”

“That was what landed us here?”

“Yes.” Concluded Buzz

The door burst open and a dark suited figure loomed in the portal saying, “So you are finally awake.”

“Yes, why …?”

“Don’t ask questions,” the man boomed back
“Your presence is required, dress for dinner, you will find everything you need in the ensuite. I will return in three quarters of an hour to escort you to the dining hall, please be ready.” He espoused, turned and with a click of his heels left the room.

“After you.” Gestured Buzz, alluding to the ensuite

Natalie nodded and moved into the adjacent room while Gabriel checked out the wardrobe, selecting for himself an appropriately sized tuxedo and an array of evening dresses for Natalie’s perusal. He laid them on the bed, making sure the most alluring one was on top. Later, after he had showered and shaved, he re-entered the bedroom to find Natalie looking absolutely stunning in the preferred ensemble, an emerald green bouffant that would have made a beer maid blush.

“I’ll put my make-up on while you dress Mr. Izzard.” She stated as she strode passed him in his bathrobe. He had only just finished dressing when she re-entered the room followed by a knock and reappearance of the man who had previously attuned them to their immediate future.

“Follow me.” He said

Buzz looked at Nat and mouthed the same words and with a click of his heels they marched off , down the medieval hallway to enter a grand dining room.

Sir Hamish sat at the near end of a long table, laden with all the niceties of a formal dinner. He stood to greet their arrival and in his Scottish tuxedo complete with kilt and ceremonial sporran, looked all the part of a magisterial lord. His voice boomed a Scottish welcome and he praised the appearance of his guests, he gestured widely seeking their approval of the surrounds which consisted of magnificent paintings, glorious statues, impressive suits of armor and endless ornaments that looked as if they had come as gifts from dignitaries around the world. The food had already made its way to the table and Gabriel had noted a lack of staff or musicians to provide the gastronomic masterpiece and musicwhich was permeating his senses. Natalie commented to this fact and Sir Hamish belly laughed ensuring them that soon they would be audienced to her majesty and all their questions would be sated as well as their appetites. They began eating and before they had finished a small hooded figure unobtrusively entered the other end of the room and as she seated herself, they noticed the radiant quality of the magenta cape and its occupant.

Sir Hamish leapt to his feet, motioned to them to remain seated and rushed to assist the new arrival at the head of the table. They spoke quietly together for a few moments and then he returned to their end of the table to brief them with the following instructions.

“She would like to speak to you first Natalie.”

Natalie pushed aside her crockery, wiped her mouth daintily with the provided napkin, excused herself and slowly made her way towards the head of the table and the mysterious figure. Buzz looked on in awe at the scene that was unfolding before his very eyes but Sir Hamish returned to the remains of his desert, chuckling as he did so.

Gabriel continued to sit quietly transfixed with the sight of Nat in communion with this enigmatic figure of whom he presumed, with all the affirmation of his gut feelings, was the real life connection to the lady of his dreams and visions. He wasn’t guessing at what they were speaking about, his mind, for a change, was strangely at peace. If he could have verbalized what he was thinking at the time, he would have likened it to the Buddhist teachings of ‘no mind’. However his feelings were peaking at a level unprecedented in his recent memory, love entered the moment, not the love a man has for a woman, nor the love a parent has for a child, not even the love that empowers a person to do great things for their fellow man but a love that seemed to combine all those mentioned and much, much more.Euphoria engulfed him although he remained clear headed and relatively unmoved by the flood of emotion that had engulfed him. He was fully prepared to embrace the return of Natalie to his side after what was an indeterminable amount of time, he didn’t ask her what was said, he didn’t even notice that Sir Hamish had removed himself from the table, he just absorbed what it was that she had to say to him.

“She said she had reached a point in the great cosmic game of conscience were the walls of reality had pressed in to such an extent that the mind resembled a black hole. No externalizing was now possible, only the long journey of reduction lay ahead for her, compaction of all that was into a single point. The most comprehensive search of outward reasoning in the known was reduced to this; the kingdom of God is within. Jesus knew this, taught this, pointed the way but she had continued on the search regardless. Thousands of years of searching every possibility led to the ultimate realization that there is no point in it all more important than the center of ones being. It’s not that there’s no point in the search worth coming to, it’s just that when you have exhausted all, there’s only one way home. Through the worm hole of conscience we return to our creator for reassignment, taking all our experiential knowledge as our only prize. This is wisdoms gift, the peace of mind that no other possibility exists, that we all enter this world with a short simple job to do or a long complicated one or something in between. This applies to a one celled amoeba or an angle of light. When the life force is spent the conscience goes on in a never ending cycle of existence all working for God. Whether our time here is well spent or wasted is the product of our choices, whether we return here as an amoeba or an angle is Gods will.   We can go through life blissfully ignorant of this fact or if you can handle it, painfully aware it’s up to you. Enlightenment is the realization of the enormity of the task before us. Being bourn again is the ability to go about it in an enthusiastic way, putting aside destructive ways and operating as a child of the creator.”

She finished quoting her mentor and said directly to Buzz,” Now it’s your turn.”

He virtually floated into her presence and as she raised her head to meet his gaze, his eyes filled with tears as he was overcome with the combination of age, wisdom and beauty. His mind filled with instructions on how to fulfill her will, his heart filled with desire to commit to that end and as he was waking up the next morning, next to the fully clothed Natalie, he knew he would never be able to explain to anyone what he had experienced. Although awestruck and somewhat perplexed, he knew he was now fully equipped to complete this complex task they had undertaken and that Nat would understand what they would have to do as he would unfold it to her. He took a moment to admire her before he began shaking her awake.

“Was that a dream?” asked the awakening Nat

“No I don’t think so,” he said pointing to the gravy stain on his tuxedo.

“I feel like a different person this morning somehow older and wiser.”

“That’s understandable; it was certainly an enlightening evening.”

“I don’t remember much about it; how did we get back to our room?” questioned Nat

“I think we meandered back quite late.”

“Do you think we were drugged again?”

“I’m not sure but I feel good to good to be waking from a drugged stupor, how do you feel and what do you remember?” he asked as he moved away from her and over to the side board with the tea and coffee making utensils.

She propend herself up with some pillows and pulled a shawl over her naked shoulders and with a quizzical look on her face she began to explain,” Strangely enough, I remember the story of Sarah, Abrahams Sarah and their journey to Egypt. She was being presented to Pharaoh and he was very impressed with her and her stories. He positioned her above all other women in his court at a time when the entire main pyramid complexes seemed to be in place and Egypt was running at its peak. The majesty of the place was awesome as it was the time of the ‘Second Kingdom’, which put an end to the troubled “first intermediate Period’ and established the worship of Osiris as a permanent cult. The temples at Karnack and Abydos were being built and the ‘Labyrinth at Harawa’ was becoming the center of rule. Sarah fitted right in, becoming a spearhead of religion, culture and a master of the maze which was a huge temple complex, consisting of hundreds of chambers all dedicated to the god Sobeck.

This was a crocodile deity that was attributed to always returning to collect its rightful due. At the center of the complex, existed a chamber carved out of a single massive block of quartzite and on special occasions Sarah would don her magnificent breastplate and make her way into that chamber. Here she was at her most impressive and considered at one with God, eventually she became known as Sobeckneferu.”

“Wow, take a break. I need a moment to take all that in, what you have related is quite a revelation that I think can be substantiated,”

“But there’s so much more,” she said

“And I really want to hear it but drink this tea first.”

She took the tea, sipped as requested and almost immediately returned to the coalface by asking, “Is what I was saying feasible, I mean does it make sense and fit with what you know about Egyptian history?”

“Not only that but I believe it fits with what we know about Sarah from the Hebrew Scriptures.”

“How could I know these things when I have never studied them?”

“Maybe she told you last night,” answered Buzz

“No, I remember what she told me now and it wasn’t about history, it was more like philosophy.”

“Well maybe you dreamed it.”

“No, I remembered it, what I was telling you were from memory, from Sarah’s memory.” She stated.

“Tell me more of what you remember then.”

“I remember making many trips back into Cana and staying with Abraham,Laban and a Melchezdek priest named Abimilech, but always returning to Egypt. Then there was the destruction of Sodom and Lot with his daughters but most amazingly I remember as Rebecca,”

“What!” exclaimed Buzz?

“I remember as Rebecca meeting Isaac, I was riding on my camel. He took me as his bride back to the tent of Sarah and told me of her death. I thought of him as a child but I told him how much I loved him and that I would never leave him. I never told him about my sorties into Egypt, or my plan to incorporate our family into the ruling class.”

“Now you’re scarring me,”

“I’m scarring myself.” countered Nat

“Do you remember as Rachael?” asked Buzz

“Yes and I remember scarring the hell out of  Joseph as  Potiphers wife when he thought I was making a pass at him and when I met his brother Benjamin I was dressed as an Isis queen and he ran a mile before we could catch up with him.”

“So you would have been responsible for Joseph rising to the highest office in the land?”

“Yes and as Yuya and Thuya, worshipers of Yahweh, presiding over a new dynasty, a new peoples and a time of stability in the land of two kingdoms. Mereneith had returned and with her chosen Osiris, ruled for a very long time.”

“We need a break,” cut in Buzz, “I’m having a shower and changing out of this tux. I think we should find out what’s going on around here and who’s in charge.”

After he had finished showering and Natalie was having her turn, the revitalized Gabriel turned the ornate doorknob and pulled on the large oak door half expecting it to be locked, it wasn’t. He was prepared to yell the house down if it was, but seeing that it wasn’t he stepped forwards into the empty hallway. Its many doors were its main feature and he opened a few on his way back to the main hall, they were empty bedrooms. The dining room was also empty and had been cleared from last night’s meal; he crossed the room and opened the door that the hooded woman had stepped from. It creaked open to a short hallway with another large door at its opposite end; he preceded forwards and knocked on it presuming it to be her bedroom.

When no one replied he entered the room somewhat tentatively and immediately felt his assumption was correct as although no one was there her feel overwhelmed him. The four-poster bed looked as though it had not been slept in and the sparse decorations in the otherwise impressive room further confirmed what he was thinking. He turned and retraced his steps deviating only when he noticed a stairway at the end of the main hallway. Being somewhat grand he made his way down it stopping halfway to admire a painting, it was her, a much younger version but her never the less.

Her presence or lack thereof, presided over the grandeur of this estate; there was no doubt about that. The bottom of the stairs opened up to a foyer that would have been appropriate for many an old museum or art gallery. He wandered through with more than a little head swirling momentarily forgetting his task of finding someone to ask questions of. Putting aside his desire to swing open the large double doors that barred his way to the outside world, he proceeded onto an enclave that receded back from the opulence of the gallery like foyer and down another smaller stairway that led to a subterranean lair for servants. The possibility of a kitchen and other life forms loomed as he smelt the welcoming odors of a breakfast being cooked. A double hinged swinging door stood between him and his target, he pushed trough into a modest room with a kitchen table in the middle and two occupants midway between diverting their heads between him and their meal.

“Good morning Dr. Izzard, I hope you and Ms. McHale slept well?” said the man that they had met the day before when he barged into their room.

“Yes.” Replied Buzz “Now who are you again?”

“I am sorry I didn’t introduce myself, I am Laurence and this is my associate Dorothy.” He said as the woman stood up and asked in a slightly Scottish accent, “Can I get you and your friend some breakfast?”

“Just some toast and marmalade would be fine.” He thanked her as she turned to comply with his request.

“Tell me Laurence are you empowered to answer my questions on what is going on around here?” asked Buzz

“What would you like to know?” he countered

“For starters, are we prisoners here?”

“Goodness me no, have you been treated like a prisoner?”

“No, not exactly but we were brought here against our will.” Answered Buzz

“Was it really against your will?” asked Laurence

“I suppose not but why did Sir Hamish drug us?”

“He’s a bit old school and he has a penchant for the dramatic. I am sorry if he put the wind up you but we do have a policy of information on a need to know basis and he wasn’t sure if it was safe to tell you about us. We do have our enemies as you well know.” He replied

“Fair enough, but whom exactly are you?”

“We are a remnant of old secret service retirees and an offshoot of masonry drawn into the service of the Lady of this castle, whom you met last night.”

“And who exactly is she?”

“I think you know the answer to that.” Said Laurence

“Just pretend I don’t and tell me who she is in your view.”

“Well I first came into contact with her when I was a young man fresh out of university and newly conscripted into the bureaucratic procedures of the secret processes of the Government. I was in charge of the payroll and expenses of the men that were guarding her here. I’m still in that position now only we don’t have any connection or commitment to any government agency, we are self funded.”

“Why was she being guarded?” asked Buzz

“She provided information crucial to the defeat of Hitler.”

“So in a sense she is a national treasure,”

“Except, she doesn’t see herself as that, she likes to see her self as a mother to nations; always on the alert to help all peoples of all nation whenever she gets the chance.” Added Laurence

“Does that happen often?”

“Yes, more often than anyone would know or imagine, now finish your tea and toast and I will show you around the estate, there is much to see and you will enjoy it.”

“Thanks but I should be getting back to Natalie, she will be wondering where I’ve got to.”

“Don’t worry she will be alright Dorothy is with her.” Assured Laurence

“O.K, lead on.” Said Buzz as he packed up his dishes and deposited them in the kitchen sink

They moved through a solid external door and up a small stone stairway alighting on to a bitu-pave driveway that seemed to encircle the building. After crossing it and walking to a halfway point between a heavily pined forest and the castle, they turned and faced what was a stunning example of eighteenth century architecture.

“Superb isn’t it?” quipped Laurence, as he strode off again, this time parallel to the castle walls, “This is my daily walk, it does wonders for the constitution. I highly recommend it if you’re going to stay here for any length of time.”

“Why would I want to do that?” Asked Buzz

“Well, Dr. Izzard, there in lays the rub. Because of your unique skills and your association with Ms. McHale’s quest, you have made yourself a target for those who do not have your best interests at heart.”

“And who would they be, and what distinguishes them from you?” further quizzed Buzz

“They,” intoned Laurence “would be a powerful junta of secret government officials whose tentacles reach into people’s lives all over this planet of ours; ruthless army intent on control, dogmatically going about it, systematically exterminating any opposition.”

“We,” he continued “would be a counter-balancing force who conscientiously objects to that level of control, a kind of opposition party. If you like to think of them as big brother, we are the rebellious little brother, allowed to exist because of family considerations. We can negotiate on your behalf and you with your talents can assist us towards that end.”

“What if I don’t want to, what if I just want to go back to my old life and forget any of this ever happened?” he pleaded

“Sorry, your life as you knew it is over. If you don’t accept our offer of protection the only future I foresee for you is down a very dark hole being force-fed and milked on a regular basis, I’m sure you don’t want that. Anyway I have a feeling about you that you are going to fit right in around here, you’ve been favored and empowered to achieve much, isn’t that what you’ve been doing all that study for, isn’t that what you want?”

“I suppose so, what if I wanted my computer, could you get it?”

“It’s already here; Sir Hamish had the forethought that you might need it.”

“What if I said to you that I wanted to personally interview a certain Fulham road antiquities dealer?”

“I would say that I have a chauffeured Bentley in that garage over there awaiting your instructions. You can plug your computer into the modem and access a direct secured line back to me if you need any assistance or information.”

Natalie waved goodbye as Gabriel’s limo sped down the long driveway that exited the estate. She had agreed to his reckless escapade and also that her presence would complicate and compromise his plan. For now, she was looking forward to continuing her conversation with Dora who had been explaining similar things to her as Laurie had been explaining to Buzz. She had said how she had become involved in the intrigue Natalie was now embroiled in.

It had begun for her when she was a young woman in pre-world war two London. Her studies had qualified her as a filing clerk at the Egyptian department of the British museum under Sir Wallace Budge, keeper of antiquities. She specialized in the findings of Flinders Petrie and Margaret Murray, who had become world leaders in understanding the big picture of Egyptian Beliefs. Since the excavations of the Osirian at Umm-el-Qu’ab had unearthed the tombs of the first and second dynasty Pharaohs, they had become experts in translating from ‘the book of the dead’ and that which was carved in stone upon the walls and Stella’s of the complexes of Abydos. After becoming fascinated with their findings, she packed herself of to Egypt where she met the Lady of the castle of whom she still serves.

When Nat found Dora again she was doing laundry in the area of the castle that was set aside for that purpose and in order to continue their conversation she said to her, “Please tell me more of your initial encounter with the Lady. When was it exactly and what did she look like then?”

Dora finished hanging up some items she was fiddling whilst remaining quiet; she picked up a darning needle and an item to use it on, seated herself comfortably and began.

“She was beautiful then, probably at her best and her countenance radiated. She drew people towards her, not like a leader sprouting doctrine or rhetoric but like a mother hen concerned with the wellbeing and the individual needs of her chicks. I became one of those chicks happily pecking around her foot, which was an amazingly accurate description of what we were then, mainly trainee archeologists picking through the remains of what was once her beautiful kingdom, Upper Egypt. We gladly brought our best finds to her and she would instinctively know what it was and what we should do with it. Some things were not meant for this world and we would rebury them, usually in a safer spot; the Breastplate and the Ark of the Covenants really came under this category.”

“Whoa!” Nat cut in and stopped Dora in her tracks. “Did you see those things personally?” she asked

“I did see Oma in her breastplate and she spoke often about the Ark, but I never saw it.” Answered Dora

“Tell me about the breastplate, what did it look like?”

“It was a beautifully crafted, well rounded, highly refined golden bodice in two parts, front and back. Each side had twelve different colored semi transparent stones and when worn, if you drew a line through each matching color you would have twelve lines going straight through the heart.”

“That’s what I saw, that’s what my father showed me.” Said Nat

“We know, he contacted us telling what he had and what he wanted to do. We advised him to come straight to us but he must have wanted to show you first.”

“He mentioned the Narmer Palette and how this find would prove some kind of fraud. Do you know anything about that?”

“You are very direct and to the point Natalie. The controversy you allude to has perplexed certain scholars since it was unearthed in 1898 at Hierakonpolis. Those at the British museum, who were aware of it and its importance, surmised it was an artistic interpretation of a long lost symbol of authority but there were those that fervently disagreed. An actual breastplate was worn by the unified kingdom leader of the first dynasty named Narmer by some, Menes by others and because of the work of Champollion and Thomas Young on the translation of the text unearthed byAmelineau and the Flinders PetrieMargaret Murray work in 1903, we were able to put together a theory of the most likely explanation of the controversy.

The findings from the tomb of Mereneith, ‘beloved of god’ at Umm-el-Qu’ab, ‘mother of pots’ indicated that She had ruled the Old Kingdom and worn a bejeweled breastplate and the warlike interlopers of the Intermediate Kingdom, when overthrowing her, had demanded that She hand over the symbol of her authority to rule. It was then that a ‘fake’ breast plate was made, emblazoned with hieroglyphics depicting the warlike nature of its intended recipient and Mereneith removed herself to a western kingdom with the ‘original’.

“That fairly well sum up what I have been learning about all this so far, but for now I am seeing her as Sarah from the bible, waltzing back into Egypt as a matriarchal figure, central to the beliefs of Christians, Muslims and Jews. The ramifications of this aspect of our history are awesome, so how come we haven’t been taught these things in school?” questioned Nat

“There have always been and are now those who would oppose her, those that would rule without authority, who would seize power with a war machine. They have no room in their hearts, nor in their minds for a Mereneith, a real Jesus or even a Gandhi. Their symbol for authority to rule is an abomination of desolation or a nuclear bomb if you like.”

“How can I retrieve this breastplate and make a difference, I mean why me? What do I have to do?” she asked

“Let others worry about these things, you my dear could busy yourself with the pursuit of higher ideals that would qualify you to wear such an item.”

With that Dorothy packed up her darning and said, “I have to prepare lunch, would you like to join me?”

“Yes I would, but shouldn’t I seek out the Lady of the castle?”

“Precisely, my dear girl, precisely as for now come with me, you will enjoy it.”

Chapter Five

Gabriel had been busying himself with his laptop in the back of the Bentley and only looked up when they started to get close to London. It hadn’t taken any were near the amount of time he had imagined, the driver had been doing a superb job expediting them on their mission.

“What’s your name?” Asked Buzz

“James.’ Replied the driver

“How appropriate.” Retorted Buzz

“Yeah, like I haven’t heard that before.”

“I’m sure you have. Do you know the way to the Ashmolean Museum?”

“Yes,” replied James “it’s in Oxford.”

“Could we go there first and still get to London by closing time?”

“Sure, why not, just because we just missed the turn off, no problem, besides London never closes, don’t you know that?”

“Good, I have a long time uni-friend there; he might be able to save us a lot of trouble.” The Bentley turned off the ‘M1’ motor way, on to a service road and before long, after a series of ‘A’ road detours, pulled up in front of the Oxford University.

“I’ll come with you, just in case.” Said James

“Just in case of what?” asked Buzz?

“You know, these old places can be creepy.” Stated James

“O.K just hang back when we get there though, I don’t want to explain who you are, not that I really know.”

“O.K” he said, “I’m cool.”

Gabriel knocked on the door of the small office of Dr. Rodger Tockley, or so the gold leaf lettering said; as the door opened he flung himself through it and on to the occupant of the room.

“Rodger, Rodge how ya going, mate?”

A stunned man reeled backwards, going “Buzz, you old buzzard. When did you get here, I mean how, why? I didn’t know they let convicts out of Australia.”

“Didn’t you hear we over run the guards?”

“Seriously mate, what are you doing here?”

“I’m on a fact finding mission and I don’t have much time; can you help me?”

“Sure, if I can, what do you want to know?”

“Just some info on stolen Egyptian artifacts and who the current villains are.” said Buzz

“Oh is that all, would you like my balls as well? Cause I could get them cut off delving into that can of worms.” Reeled Rodger

“Come on Rodge cough up for an old mate.”

“Well I suppose so; you’d know all there is to know about Jahamo Medici and if you don’t, Hardy Grants have put out a book on it, I’ve got a copy here if you want to borrow it.”

“No that’s a bit old, I need new names.” Probed Buzz

“Do you know about the case that Dickey Ellis from Scotland Yard is working on; the Thomas Allcock collection?”

“That’s perfect, who’s in on it?”

“Well there’s Fred Shultz from New York and the Aboutan Brothers based in Geneva, not to mention a certain dealer in the Fulham road.” Said Dr. Tockley

“Yeah, that’s where I’m off to now but I need a name, something that’s going to get me a foot in the door.”

“Now you are getting serious; you could tell them you are interested in the recovered items of Ali Farah or the Phoenix Ancient Art collection and that you are making inquiries for Nasser Karlili or George Ortez, they have legitimacy in working with stolen artifacts. Don’t forget it would only take a few phone calls to blow that cover, so be careful.”

“One more thing; who would I have to worry about if I had a hot item on my hands?”

“No doubt about that one, Kevin Donovan F.B.I, you could find yourself locked up in Fort Dix real quick if you cross him.”

“So the Yanks are the ones to watch out for?”

“Yeah, since Iraq they have been all over stolen artifacts, the Saddam Hussein collection is up for grabs at the moment.”
“Thanks mate you have been a great help, when this bit is over for me I will buy you a beer.” Said Buzz

“Thank you for not calling me about this, I wouldn’t have told you anything anyhow.”

“Yeah, I know, I’ll catch ya latter.” And with that he hugged him again, turned, walked out the door and strode off down the hallway towards the exit closely followed by James.

“London next stop and don’t spare the horses.”

“Like I haven’t heard that before.”

A half an hour later, as they were entering the outskirts of London the car phone rang.

“Hello, Laurence here I was just ringing to se how you were getting on and if I could be of any assistance, I could pull some strings and get you an appointment if you like.”

“Not necessary.” Stated Gabriel “I have made all the arrangements I need, thanks to your wonderfully equipped mobile office and James has been most useful, he seems to know his way around.”

“Good, excellent enjoy the rest of your trip then.”

“I intend to, thanks for your concern, bye.” He said as he hung up the phone and leaned back into the plush leather surrounds of the Bentley and for the first time allowed himself the luxury of entering London first class knowing that everything that could be done had. In what seemed no time at all, James pulled into an underground car park, parked besides the lift and got out to open the door for Buzz. “Would you like me to come up with you?” he said

“No thanks,” said Buzz “you can keep the engine running, just in case we have to make a quick get-a-way.”

As the lift doors opened and Gabriel was entering, James let go with one more short quip, “Don’t press any buttons while you’re in there.”

“I’ll try not to.” Muttered Buzz

Soon as the doors closed, he was expressed to the top floor and then some. They opened to, what could only be described as, an elite gentleman’s club style penthouse suite. An elegant man was making his way towards him with an outstretched hand,

“Pleased to meet you would you like a scotch while we talk?” he gestured as he opened the way to seating and a table with an open bottle of Chivers Regal centered between two glasses.

“Don’t mind if I do.” Replied Gabriel

After seating themselves and pouring drinks, the elegant man leaned back, crossed his legs and said “so I understand you have something of value you would like to dispose of and would like me to make the arrangements for you.”

“Yes.”

“Could you give me a description of the goods and a price we could work from?” He asked

“It’s a two piece, front and back, solid gold breastplate; hand embossed with hieroglyphics identical to the ‘Palette of Narmer’. It’s been dated to the ‘Old Kingdom’ of Egypt, pre two thousand B.C.E, it’s in perfect condition and we want six million Euros for it, no offers.”

That seemed to stun the man; he’d thrown his head back and was staring at the roof for some time, which suited Buzz as it gave him time to work on the large scotch he had been given. After awhile he came around and asked

“How would we go about the exchange?”

Gabriel reached forward and handed him a slip of paper and said

“This is the password to gain access to a bonded storehouse in Zürich. One man will be given one visit inside a vault where he can view the item, if all is satisfactory and a transfer of funds completed on a system set up within the vault then he will be allowed to leave with the item.”

“And my fee?”

“You’ll have to sort that out with the custom.”

He finished off his drink, stood up and strode into the still open lift. Soon he was back in the limo and exiting the building.

“All went smoothly?” Enquired James

“As silk.” Replied Buzz

“So, where to now?”

“Home James,”

“I know and don’t spare the horses.”

“On the contrary, let’s take the scenic route.”

Meanwhile back at the castle, Natalie had enjoyed lunch with Laurie and Dora having managed to keep the conversation to a general family friendly banter. Dora had suggested wandering and freely around the castle connecting with the various items adorning the walls and shelves, assuring Nat she would find them most educationally interesting, and she did. Nat found that by touching the pieces, sometimes unimpressive by sight, exciting by feel. Her mind was piecing together a giant jig-saw puzzle and even the smallest details could send her gasping towards the next. After hours and hours of pouring over the treasures, she refused dinner and expressed her desire to retire early. Collapsing on the grand bed, she immediately fell into a deep sleep and dream time took on a whole new meaning. Visions of the past flowed into her mind as glorious, full colour, panoramic masterpieces of dreams.

The Nile was magnificent that time of year; the water was clean, clear, glistening and little sail boats dotted the scene. It was the fourteenth century B.C.E and all was well in the kingdom, the Hyksos had been removed, the Asiatic’s had been pushed back beyond the Euphrates and the Nubians were in the south. Yuya and Thuya had weathered the unsettling era of foreign intervention and were in semi- retirement because of their great age. Amhose the great had rid the kingdom of trouble makers and his heirs were ruling over a peaceful world.Hatshepsut was young, beautiful and was strutting her stuff far and wide; she ruled majestically. Natalie was seeing life through the eyes of this woman, who was truly in control, with her personal hero Senmut by her side. Her canal works had managed to connect the boats from the Nile and the Mediterranean to the Red sea and as far as India or Punt; this filled the kingdom full of new treasures from the four corners.

Music and art was high on the list of things to do, as Hattie and Senmut entertained at their Akhamin or Akhetaten home on the east bank, which was a traditional retreat away from the hustle and bustle of the temple city of Abydos. This family home, half way up the main trunk of the Nile, had served them well and had been the center for the worship of the fertility god Min since the time of Ben-Jah-Min. Today they were leaving with a fleet of ships, servants and provisions to travel up the offshoot of the Nile known as Joseph’s canal to visit the home of Yuya and Thuya. Their plan was to consult with them about the new city of Tell el-Amarna that they were planning to build at the intersection of the canal with the Nile. They stopped briefly to survey the site and then continued up the offshoot, looking forward to once again seeing her grandparents; Thuya had presided as the head of Sobeck worship at Crocodilia and the maze atHawara, Hattie was excited by the prospect of exploring the enormous old maze as they still kept crocodiles there. Senmut was keen to meet with old Yuseph to pour over ancient stories and new plans, he was sure he would get his approval for the new temple at Amarna and the one he was planning for the mountain site in the old home area near the Dead Sea. With the old viziers’ approval and the promise to dedicate it to his God, he was sure they would eventually get built.

 

Mummy of Thuya Mummy of Yuya

The journey was going well as the winds were favouring them; they had been keeping themselves busy by fishing from the moving boat, the fresh fish was keeping everybody happy and there was still a festive mood on the vessel. Music was being played continuously, wine was not rationed to anyone, Hattie and Sen. displayed their love for one another openly and all approved.

They had been presenting themselves to the people’s as Happy and Min two of the most loved god’s of the Egyptian pantheon, worshiping them ensured the prosperity of the Nile and it’s people. Josephs’ grain silos had ensured, even through the lean times, no one would go hungry although Thuya had always insisted it was her idea. As they were finishing the boating part of their journey, crossing the large lake and pulling up at the docks of Hawara, the whole community had turned out to meet them. The majesty of the day was apparent although gaiety seemed to be the main concern with tambourines, harps, flutes, drums and horns sounding out loud and everywhere there was dancing in the streets.

The ceremonial chariots had been dragged out and dusted off, after initial greetings the much loved travellers were loaded onto the pharonic train and transported with much fanfare up to the home of the beloved Queen mother and her Yuya. As they approached the porch, we get our first glimpse of ancient couple; there they stood in full Pharonic regalia surveying the oncoming hoard and the scene of the old necropolis that they had come from. The frail birdlike frame of Teti-Sheri, as she had become affectionately known, stood arms outstretched obviously anticipating the embrace of her beloved Hattie, who dismounted her chariot long before its final resting place and ran into the royal embrace.

Senmut waited until the procession came to a halt and then made his way up the stairs to the palatial porch greeting the seated Joseph, who also seemed most pleased to grasp the hands of the man whom he had been hearing so much about. He thought that his Hattie had chosen well, this Horus would make a fine Osiris even though he was a little short. His connection to the people of the Blue Nile and their neighbours across the red sea would ensure peace and prosperity for many good years to come, not only that but his exploits in Palestine, as a warrior, were legendary, even though he tended to play them down and give all the credit to the god of Joseph. This above all pleased Yuseph the most and put the stamp of his authority on ruling his own people as well as the co-regency of Egypt.

Senmut was introduced to the entire impressively dressed court one at a time while Hattie and Teti had disappeared into the palace. Everyone had wanted him to talk about the defeat of the Philistines and Naphtali that had fought with them in Canaan and how he had returned the land to the descendants of Jacob, but all he wanted to talk about was the temples he had planned for Amarna and the place of New Peace in the territory of Benjamin next to Judah. The plans for these temples he carried everywhere and spoke to anyone who would listen although it would be a generation before they would be built. In the meantime he would rule beside his Isis Queen singing song of praise to her and his God whilst playing on his seven stringed harps.

In the feasts that followed, the singing, the dancing, the honours that were bestowed, the promises that were made became the topics of conversation for many a years to come and the words to the songs that were sung were written in stone and placed between the paws of the Sphinx for eternity and for God.

Long and prosperous was the reign of Hatshepsut and her consort Senmut; as for their building projects, well they are still controversial to this day. Their descendants, Akhenaton and Nefertiti were accredited to building the temple at Amarna and reducing the worship of a plethora down to the first practice of Mono-theism in history. It was truly a beautiful era of art, music, writing in alphabetical script and religion practiced in an open and down to earth way. Everyone was happy, peaceful and productive in the new system, but trouble was brewing and the grumbling’s of the old power brokers of the various cults that had been superseded, got together with the Generals that weren’t being funded and before long members of the royal families were being murdered, exterminated and run out of Egypt.

Moses, Miriam and Aaron became the leaders of the new Monotheism and looked towards the half built temple at Jerusalem as a center for their worship. They tried everything in their power

to move themselves, their artifacts and their peoples into the land of the new peace but it was not to be a reality until the time of Solomon. In the meantime they would practice their religion of one God as nomads in the tabernacle, the tent of presence. To see Miriam in front of the Arc of the Covenant was only ever going to be for the eyes of Aaron. Even Moses was relegated to the confines of the outer-sanctuary, but the people remained faithful and the Sabbath was celebrated regularly just like in the old days.

Moses did his best to form them into a nation; he divided them into twelve tribes, provided them with water and food, no mater how sparse, gave them rules to live by and formed an army for their defence. They lived like Nasseritesin the land of the Ammonites, based at the great rock of Petra, observing their enemies Egypt in the southwest, Babylon in the northeast and in front a heavily fortified Canaan barring their access to the Mediterranean. Those who were military minded moved forward across the Jordan and fought under the command of Joshua son of Nun for the mountain kingdom of Judea. Those who were more inclined towards peace, pulled back into the deserts of Arabia to be led by the Queen of Peace, Queen of the south or as she became famously known as The Queen of Sheba.


Chapter  Six

“What an Exodus!” proclaimed Gabriel; sitting at the breakfast table with Natalie as she recounted her dreams from the previous night’s nocturnal flights. “You continue to amaze me, your revelations are once again, spot on. Are you sure you haven’t studied up on these things and are trying to con me?”

“No, certainly not,” retaliated Nat emphatically “are you sure you have studied these things sufficiently enough to assure me that what I am envisioning is a plausible alternative to what we have been led to believe by our religious and academic leaders?”

“Yes,” emphasized buzz, just as insistent “I have obsessed over these things more than anyone else I know and I assure you that the way you are explaining history answers more questions than it poses.”

“Well then Mr. Izzard, tell me what amazing exploits you have been up to.” Natalie digressed

“Do you remember how we surmised that the ancient Mereneith devised a plot to throw off her detractors by making a fake breastplate, like the Palette of Narmer, in solid gold?”

“Yes,” replied Nat “I had confirmation of that yesterday, with my conversations with Dorothy; she is quite the expert as well.”

“Really? Well I have come up with a plan to use the wisdom of Mereneith and employ our recent contacts in Switzerland to create a similar device, with the view to ensnaring the villains who have your father and the original bejeweled breastplate.”

“How, what, where, when?” stammered Nat

“Who, is what you should have asked, between Laurence and I, we have devised a version of the old shell game and have contacted all the players, who individually believe they will be the winner and get what they want. Greedy, crooked, ancient art dealers are going to think they are going to make a lot of money, maniacal collectors are going to think they are going to get a prized piece of booty, Scotland Yard detectives are thinking of the promotions they will get by bagging a hoard of crooks, art forgers are busying themselves making the pieces we will be playing with and security forces on three continents will be clocking up over time.”

“And what will we be doing?” asked Nat

“Waiting,” replied Buzz “waiting for the trap to spring and see who will be left holding the bag, in that bag should be your father and our treasure.”

“Brilliant.” Commented Nat

“That what I thought, now tell me more about this Queen of Sheba of yours. I’ll set the scene with what I know and then you can take over.”

“Once the Hebrews had escaped the clutches of a corrupted Egypt and placed themselves in Gods hands away from the sweeping arm of an expanding Babylon, they began to prosper again. Joshua’s forces had established themselves in the Holy land under Asher in the north and Judah in the south, the Ark of the Covenant remained at the Rock of deliverance. There were reports of constant fighting between the tribes and squabbles over who would be king; this kept them separated from the peaceful people of god who were continuing to grow as a great trading nation in Sheba. Eventually when Solomon the wise consolidated the wealth at the newly refurbished temple at Jerusalem and had the Ark placed at the center of worship, the Queen came to visit them.”

As he finished speaking, Natalie’s demeanour changed and a regal look appeared in her eyes. She stood, began gesturing with her arms and recalled the following events. “It was a glorious day when she finally sailed up the eastern fork of the Sinai Peninsular on the Red Sea, the pride of her fleet. Her entourage was quite small considering her importance but as she was entering by the front door of the stabilized kingdom of Solomon, the wise and just ruler, she felt they would be safe and welcomed; which they were. She had brought with her much treasure to lie at the feet of Solomon and had cautioned her whole caravan and guard to be constantly on alert as they were entering a brood of vipers. If they all played their parts well, they would all leave alive and with a treasure greater than the one they were carrying.

Although Solomon had heard of her journey to meet him and had sent men and envoys aplenty to assist in expediting her safe arrival, she insisted in moving at her own pace and camped outside his gates one final night before presenting herself and her delights to him the following day. His kingdom was at a time in history that would never be overshadowed, all was at order and all was in its place, his rule was never to be bettered.

The Hebrews had carved for themselves a place in the grand scheme of things; they sat squarely between two empires, not to be out done by either. Solomon was intent on displaying it to the world and the world was coming to him, by the time she walked into his presence, he had polished everything within his reach. Everyone who served him had done their job well; the palace glistened like a diamond set in pure gold and all the tribes were lined up in order of importance. Twelve tribes and a priestly caste presented themselves with Solomon at their center and he seated her at his side, on that giant stage.

She began the dialogue loud enough for all to hear, asking questions that were designed to allow him the space to display his wisdom, of which she praised at every opportunity. Every word and every gesture was like a part in a scripted masterpiece worthy of a Shakespearian epic. They parried with the expertise of two master swordsmen putting on a display for an adoring public, each cut and thrust crafted not to injure but to allow the opponent the opportunity to wow the crowd. The pandering and opulence went on for days and nights, what with gifts to exchange, banquets to be savoured, artists to be admired and beauty to be swooned over there was hardly a moment for them to share alone. Finally that moment arrived when Solomon dismissed all the others and had her totally to himself.

He wooed her like no woman had ever been wooed before and after he had known her for some time, on a balcony overlooking the temple; he proposed the concept of joining their nations together in Holy alliance. She deferred the moment suggesting that she would like to give him her answer in front of the Ark, alone before God. This stopped him in his tracks, for as far as he knew no woman had ever entered the Holy of Holies, he didn’t know how the head priest would respond to that request. Given a moment to think and not wanting to appear weak or restricted in his own kingdom, he reluctantly agreed.

Later that night, after he had removed all the people from the temple and its surrounds, he sent for her to come alone into the temple.

He met her outside the two massive doors that barred entry to any one who wasn’t sanctified. She was wearing a red cape and he was attired as only a king was allowed, they walked hand in hand through the empty temple and slipped passed the veil that protected Israel’s most precious sacred item from the prying eyes of all but the elite. As they stood there in awe at what they were looking at, he began to recite for her the words that would be recorded in the Song of Solomon.

By the time he had finished his recital, she had slipped off her red cape and was standing in front of the Ark wearing nothing but the astoundingly beautiful breastplate of Noah’s wife. Sparks flew and the sacred chamber immediately filled with lights of many colours as the Beloved of God was lifted up by light and held as if pinned by twelve shards of Technicolor above the Ark. Solomon passed out and by the time he had awoken, she had gone and so had the Ark. He wasn’t sure how long he had been out but he had left orders that they were not to be disturbed and they weren’t for what turned out to be a very long time.

As he left the temple his head guard ran up to him asking for instructions, he managed to indicate that no one was to go in there as he made his way into the palace and summonsed his personal advisers. After they had sufficiently yelled at one another for an appropriate amount of time, they managed to come to the agreement that Solomon was far to wise to be ripped off by a woman and that sending out spies to quietly to access the situation was the way to go. When they finally realized they were getting nowhere with their inquiries, they covered it up and it wasn’t spoken about again.”

——————————————

“What do you think?” sparked up Natalie, now in the grand old library of the castle.

Gabriel was furiously flicking through the pages of brick like text books, when he raised his head and said “I don’t know what to say, I’m, I’m awestruck, just continue, I mean please continue, if you can, if your all right with that.”

“Yes,” replied Nat “get me going again with what you know.”

“Well, it wasn’t long after the death of Solomon that the kingdom fell into disarray eventually being divided into the southern tribes of Judah and Benjamin, led by Jehoshaphat and The northern tribes led by Ahab. ThePhoenicians had become great and powerful at that time because of their ability to dominate the oceans of the world. They had brought back to their home in the Mediterranean, treasures from the four corners, spices from Java, precious stones from India, gold from Africa and even cocoa products from South America. Their main trading items were cedar and hashish from Lebanon and of course olive oil. They were a highly cultured people whose daily trading script gave us the alphabetical style of writing that we still use to this day. Their man in Lebanon was King Hiram whom had made available tradesmen and materials to Solomon, so he could furbish his temple.

Their Goddess and Queen were known to them as Eli and her image was carried on all of their vast fleet of Arabian style boats in the form of brass statuettes. The thin woman’s image has been dug up by archeologists all over the place. They were a ferocious people when it came to protecting what was theirs and their kingdom extended as far as Ethiopia and India. Their warships were figure- headed by the warrior Goddess, the war cry was Eli, Eli, Eli repeated over and over and if you heard it you ran in the opposite direction as fast as you could. The Polynesian’s claim to be their modern day descendants and I wouldn’t want to argue with them about it. They have been around since the glory days of Egypt and have participated in the building of all civilizations at some level.

Jezebel or Yeshubel was a princess to the Phoenician’s, her mother the Queen of Tyre had been a monarch in the Syro-Phoenician Empire for longer than most could remember. She was much loved by the Syrian people, who occupied most of Arabia and Mesopotamia, but she was despised by the mountain dwelling worshipers of Yahweh who saw her as the evil Babylonian goddess Ashtoreth. Her father was lord or king over the Syro-Phoenicians and honoured as the deityBaal. Jehoshaphat, the leader from Judea and his priests of Yahweh were dedicated to their extermination.”

Natalie started speaking and took over from Buzz in such a smooth way that it was hard to tell were he finished off and she began.

“Ahab, Asa’s or Asher’s other son, who was king of the northern tribes of Israel wanted peace more than his brother; when it was suggested that he could stabilize his kingdom and therefore dictate terms to Jehoshaphat by marrying Jezebel he willingly agreed.

Little did he know the trouble it would cause and the extremes that the priests and prophets of the southern tribes would go to in their war against Baal!

Jezebel had grown up in the privileged surrounds of the purple clad ruling class of a vast empire but her loyalties belonged to the religious cast.

She considered herself to be a priestess in the time honoured religion of her Matriarchal forbearers and desired nothing more than to unite all peoples under one god, the god of her mother and father, but to the mountain men from Jerusalem that made her their number one enemy.

She had prepared well for her journey into the poor, dusty kingdom of her betrothed and had received from her parents a caravan of riches to supply her and the hoards of beautiful young priestesses that she was taking with her from her father’s coastal city of Sidon. If she was going to rule these backward, poverty stricken people then some colour was going to be brought into their gray lives and with a company of well trained soldiers to protect them, she intended to tour the land of Israel and introduce herself to them personally.

They parked their caravan of delights outside the walled cities of the lowlands, setting up like a modern day rock concert drawing the people out to see her and her entourage perform music, fine arts, light shows and semi-naked belly dancing. Most were suitably impressed but the priests of Yahweh always managed to have a representative there yelling out abuses, generally degrading her and her religion. Eventually Ahab heard what she was doing and realizing how it must have been offending Jehoshaphat, rode out of his fortified city of Samaria to plead with her to stop what she was doing and come with him into the safety of his home where they would be married and live. He was not well prepared for this task and when he arrived dirty and unshaven from his hasty journey, was arrested by the impressive guard she had surrounding her camp. He was brought before her for sentencing and when he had finally convinced her who he was she ordered that he be taken away, bathed, shaved and when suitably attired be returned to her presence where they would begin discussions on their future.

This was done and over dinner, before the evening was out, his initial concerns were put to rest and although he was falling totally in love with this goddess from Tyre he was flabbergasted by her intentions.

Not only was she planning a feast for their wedding but proclaiming a public holiday for the celebration of the wedding of her goddess Ashtoreth to his god Yahweh. What she didn’t explain to him was that this would be a reenactment of the old Egyptian tradition of Isis wedding Osiris.

Nobody said that it would be easy, the known world was about to erupt into war. The Mede’s, Persians and mighty Assyrians were pushing in on the North and North-Eastern front, Egypt and Judea would be attacking them from the South. Their prophets and priests were to be murdered by Jehoshaphat, her parents people were pulling out of Tyre and moving to Libya to begin building Carthage and although they managed their rule for forty years Ahab and Jezebel where destined to go down in history as a failure. Eventually the whole area was swamped by the awesome might of the Assyrian Empire as it established it’s domination over all and ruled from Babylon with an iron fist. Not only did they defeat the Jews and take the Ark and all the Temple Items back to their headquarters, making all pay homage, but they overran Jezebels temples and took for themselves the ultimate prize of the goddess her self and her beautiful breastplate. She was taken as far as the Assyrian Kings home town of Susa, near the Persian Gulf, where she became known as Esther to her enslaved peoples and Scheherazade to Arabs. The tales of a thousand and one Arabian nights were about to begin along with the Jewish tales of a woman from their stock who went on to rule Nabuchodonosor’s Babylon.

“Wow!” exclaimed Buzz “I bet nobody has put those two together before.”

Natalie got up from where she was sitting and started pacing around the castle library shaking off the dreamy feeling she was experiencing. Stopping in front of Gabriel she asked

“ Why am I seeing all this now, when I feel like I should be tracking down my father’s abductors, speaking to the Lady personally to understand what I should be doing or at least finding out what’s going on with my business?”

 

“Well, it all seems massively important to me and I think you are doing just fine, handling all this.” Said Buzz in a very reassuring way. “I’m sure you’re on the right track and it’s going to be very important that we know these things when the time comes.”

 

“What is it that we are learning?” asked Nat, thinking it was about time that they reviewed “Can you put some order to it for me? I need to understand better why we are going down such a long winding path to get to this unknown destination.”

 

Gabriel took a long sip of the coffee he was holding and primed himself for what was obviously going to be a long winded explanation. “When we first met, we initially decided to do a series of guided meditations, leading us to tracking down your father and his abductors and although that still remains on the agenda, I think we have gone on to the larger canvas. I’m sure that if your father was here now he would tell you that we have become important players in a game that he and his associates have been playing for most of his life. There are things at stake here that are important to the greater humanity; you have tapped into a source of wisdom that has been driving academics, scholars, archeologists, historians, philosophers, theologians and even occultists for thousands of years. A lot of them dedicated their entire lives to understand just one of the pieces of your giant jigsaw puzzle and without their efforts we wouldn’t have such a good understanding, in acquired knowledge, of what you seem to be given as a gift. Even if what you are recounting is only half correct, its value as an alternative theory is of immeasurable worth. We have drawn a thread through the tapestry of history that you could call herstory; a viewing platform that allows for a totally different perspective and stands centralized to all cultures cutting through Christian, Jewish, Moslem, Hindu, Buddhist and many more. We could be pioneering a way of seeing history that could help unify mankind, placing the feminine back into the Godhead where she seems to be sadly lacking. I can’t say for sure but I think your dreams are divinely inspired wisdoms that if correctly interpreted could help unite mankind in a world where we seem to be ripping ourselves apart over discrepancies on what happened in the past. So don’t sell yourself short in this intrigue of ours and don’t trivialize what we are learning, it could be the most important work you’ll ever do.”

 

Nat had finished circling the room and had seated herself down in front of buzz like a student ready for her next class.

 

Buzz responded appropriately “Now let’s review what it is that we have learnt so far; if we think of the time of Noah’s flood as the beginning of the current era then our view differs by placing Mrs. Noah in a position of importance like no male dominated religion has ever done. We have ascribed to her the longevity that has previously only been given to the men in her family; we have given her the authority over who, in her lot, were to be rulers of their people; we have associated with her an artifact of her authority that places her at the head of the Egyptian Pantheon of Gods from the power days of Egypt and laid witness to the passing down of that authority to her female descendants; we have associated her with the pre-civilized Celts of Europe and aligned herself with Sarah the Hebrew, Moslem matriarchal figure; given her more influence over the Middle Kingdom of Egypt and seen her descendants evicted as her fame grew in the Arabian world as the Queen of Sheba; now we are beginning to understand the importance she must of held for the Persians, Medes, Assyrians, Indians and Asiatics as the Syro-Phoenician princess who affected so much of their history and culture. That’s quite a list of achievements my dear Ms. McHale and I for one cannot wait to hear the next episode.”

 

Natalie jumped up off her chair and through her arms around him giving him the biggest hug he’d had for a long time. She said “That was the right thing to say Professor Izzard; it sounds so perfect when you say it and I’m so glad I’m going through this with you, I don’t know what I would do without you.”

 

Gabriel stood back a little embarrassed and stumbled through the moment like an awkward young boy, eventually pulling himself through it by saying “I think I will seek out Laurie and Dora to see if we can get a little lunch going.”

 

“That would be great,” said Nat “I’ll get myself in the mood to tell the next part of the story while we are having that lunch.”

 

 

Buzz returned to a much more enthusiastic Nat who was at this time reclining on the sofa that was conveniently placed in the corner of the study.

 

“Dora will bring our lunch in on a tray.”

 

“Good,” said Nat champing at the bit, ready to launch into the explanation of her most recent dream “what do you know of this Scheherazade?”

 

“Not much,” replied Buzz “only that she is the supposed author of the fabled ‘Thousand and One Arabian Nights’ and that she had been brought before a great king who had demanded of her a story every night that would hold his attention until he fell asleep. If she could do that he would grant her chastity and life.”

Natalie took over and continued her recollections “In the days when the whole of Israel and Judah was being taken into captivity by a dominating Assyrian Empire, Assuerus ruled as a mighty king in Susa. He had behind him Persian warriors, Median nobles and was honored in one hundred and twenty seven provinces from India to Ethiopia. The fame of the Queen who wouldn’t be ruled by any foreign power had spread to his ears, they called her Queen Vasthi and he wanted her for his own pleasure. Edicts and orders had been given to all his accomplices, as a top priority, to find her and bring her to him. Holofernes one of his top generals had lost his head over her and many had brought him women from various destinations to spend the night with him but as they couldn’t live up to her reputation. He would have them executed, that is until a Jew in exile from his still resisting homeland brought with him the one they called Esther.

 

The nephew who had abducted her from the ‘Palace in Tyre’ became known to the Assyrian Lord as Mordecai. He waited at the city gates in rags to be rewarded for his compliance with the royal decree to bring in the Queen. In the meantime Esther had to be tested to see if she was the one Assuerus had heard so much about; to prove herself worthy she had to be cleaned up, suitably attired and tell the stories of her rule to the King. This became a regular nightly occurrence and soon she and her stories became famous in all the lands. She won her favor with all and if it hadn’t been for her great beauty, wit and stories persuading Assuerus to offer her half his kingdom then Mordecai and his Jewish peoples wouldn’t have been in exile; they would have been exterminated.

 

Esther further secured her place in the Assyrian Kingdom when she showed Assuerus how to use Mordecai and his mates to defeat the Armenians and secure the Northern border. This allowed them the freedom and power over all of Babylon to move their residence closer to the Mediterranean and rule like Gods for many hundreds of years. The Assyrian Empire became the greatest Empire since the heydays of the Egyptians. She ruled beside Asher from Mt. Ararat in the North to the source of the Nile in the South, from India in the East to Italy in the west. Even though the spirit of Mereneith, Isis, Ashtar or Ishtar ‘Esther’ had saved Israel and Judea from extinction, protected them while they were in exile, encouraged them to become educated whilst they were there and had overseen the writing and compilation of most of the Old Testament; whenDaniel was saved from the lion’s den, Meshach, Shadrach and Abednego from the fire and Ezekiel had his visions, they still look back to that as being the worst time in their history and remember her to this day as the ‘Whore of Babylon’.


CHAPTER SEVEN

“I’m sorry to cut this short,” interjected Laurence “but I have just been informed that your journey to London yesterday did not go unnoticed by the powers that be. A search warrant has been issued and it would be to our advantage that we are not here when they arrive.”

“What?” quizzed Buzz?

“You must have been tracked on your return. I don’t think they know who you are and I’m sure they don’t know that Natalie is here but I have notified Sir Hamish and he will be here soon. We should make our way to the airstrip and then they can search the castle to their hearts content but they won’t find us or what they are looking for.”

“And what might that be?” Asked Nat and Buzz together at the same time

“Stolen artifacts,” replied Laurence “it seems as though you did your job to well Mr. Izzard and I must stress the urgency that we cut this discussion short and head to the airstrip without delay.”

“I’ll just run up to my room and get my computer.”

“That’ll be at the back door by now along with your other things, were I suggest we should be, let’s go.” Insisted Laurie


That was exactly what they did and leaving behind the castle they virtually ran out towards the long, flat and wide driveway just in time to see a small jet planeappearing appear over the hills, landing in spectacular style and pulling up right were they were standing. The hatch popped open and Sir Hamish was there ushering them in with a loud “all aboard.”

By the time they were settling themselves into their seats Hamish was back beside his co-pilot and taking off, this time they stayed low, very low. This time they were slaying under the radar.

“Where are we going?” asked Nat

“We will be crossing the coast of France and without entering their air space, following the border between France and Spain, through the Pyrenees Mountains and into the Mediterranean to pinpoint a villa on the Riviera that used to belong to Sadam Hussain. It has its own air strip even though it’s a bit overgrown now, since he hasn’t been using it lately, but it should serve our purposes adequately.”

 

“And what is our purposes, just out of curiosity?” asked Nat

“We will be interviewing a man who was the last man we know who saw your father Ms. McHale, before he jetted off to see you in Australia.” Replied Laurence

“So might he know something about the breastplate as well?” asked Buzz

“And why weren’t we told about this before?” asked Nat

“Yes and we have only just managed to track him down to this very villa.” Replied Laurence

“Does anybody else know about this place?”

“Oh yes, it was searched just like our castle is being searched right at this minute.” He replied

“Did they find anything?” Buzz continued asking

“Many priceless artifacts that they considered stolen by the Hussain family, Iraq’s heritage; they confiscated anything that seemed of any value and left the place a mess, it has been idle for sometime.”

“Will there be anyone else there?”

“Only us, it was our security forces that were given the job after the Yanks and that was how Joe McHale got on the job.”

“So there could be some important piece of evidence there that could help us solve this mystery and help get my father back.”

“Exactly Ms McHale, exactly.” Finished Laurence

The small jet came in low over the water and had barely crossed the coastline when the wheels touched down; it taxied towards the overgrown villa and pulled up right behind it, just like parking a car. As they alighted, a crumpled man appeared at the back door and waved a semi-friendly wave towards them. Laurence waved back in what was more of a salute, rather than a wave and then proceeded to enter the villa without any visible luggage. They all ended up in a Mediterranean style kitchen that must have been magnificent in its day.

“This is Andre.” Stated Laurence pointing towards the crumpled man as he directed his comments towards his fellow travelers

Gabriel stepped forward with an out stretched hand to introduce himself, which the stranger accepted and shook as if it was a wet fish. Buzz felt a shiver go up his spine but proceeded with the appropriate discourse anyway.

“My name is Gabriel Izzard, this is my traveling companion Natalie McHale and if you don’t mind me being expedient, did you know her father?”

“Yes I do.” Replied Andre

“What mind or know him?” quickly followed Nat

“I know him”

“Could you tell us about the last time you saw him?”

“About a month or two ago” he said in a slow heavy French accent

Speaking to this man was the equivalent of going to the dentist and Buzz had to spear a glance at Laurence who promptly looked at Andre in such a way that his attitude immediately improved and without further ado he volunteered the next statement.

“We have worked together at various times for over twenty years and the last time I saw him was no different than the rest, he did his thing and I did mine.”

“Where have you worked together?” Buzz interrupted

Andre paused annoyingly and lit up a Gauloise and after a long drawback exhaled “Egypt, Syria, South America, Ethiopia and the heart of Africa.”

“What was the purpose of your business in those places?”

“Security, I have saved your father’s life many times Ms. McHale, that was my job and it allowed him to go about doing his. The visit he paid here a few months ago was similar but was without incident; he went about his business in his usual way.”

“What was it he was doing here, precisely?”

“He was systematically going over all the artifacts that are still here, cataloging, making diagrams, photographing ruminants and making many notes. I will show you.” He said extinguishing his cigarette and walking off with a purposeful stride.

Laurence spoke up and said to Nat and Buzz “you go with him, I will check in with Sir Hamish.”

They quick stepped together to catch up with the disappearing Andre and soon found themselves in a very interesting part of the villa; it was a large room like a library that had been converted to contain pottery fragments and many small intricate items of no obvious value. In one corner there was a desk with open manuscripts and pieces of paper strewn all over it.

“This was where he was working, when one day he just jumped up saying he was leaving.” Intoned the Frenchman

“Did he take anything in particular with him?”

“Just the folder he had in front of him at the time.”

“Did he say where he was going?”

“No, he just got in his Cessna and took off; I thought he would be back because he did not take all his belongings.”

“Where are his things?”

“In the room where he was staying, I will take you.” He said as he turned and strode off again

After a few twists and turns they ascended a very wide marble staircase and entered a corridor of mirrors and doors, it was hard to distinguish which one was which. Andre didn’t seem to have any trouble picking out the correct one and after pointing it out he told them they could look around as much as they liked. He abruptly informed them that if there were any more questions he would be in the kitchen where there is coffee.

Nat and Buzz stood in the middle of the one time beautiful room now decorated only with the essentials of a traveling academic. They were feeling quite stunned that they had come so far, so fast and were looking at the pieces of the puzzle manifest in real time. Natalie walked over to the French windows that opened onto the veranda that overlooked the big blue of the Mediterranean; she stared in the direction of Egypt.

“Don’t worry, we’ll find him” reassured Buzz

“If only I could dream the moments of his abduction we could know exactly where he is” wished Nat

“Don’t fret; I know we are going about this in the right way. If you want to dream something up just grab a piece of the past that he was so interested in and go there, that’s where the answers lie. Think of the big picture and where it fits in, while I go downstairs and rustle us up some of that coffee. Start to make yourself comfortable, get over our rushed trip here and before you know it the answers we require will become so obvious you’ll wonder why we didn’t think of it earlier.”

He was standing quite close to her as he was speaking and she was still staring vacantly out to sea; she pivoted on the spot, kissed him squarely on the mouth and just as quickly pushed him away saying,

“I’ll be a good girl and do exactly as you say” and pointing to the door she finished with “now go get yourself a cup of coffee.”

He immediately left the room, closed the door behind himself and headed back to the kitchen where he must have beaten Andre to it, that and the fact that there was no Laurence or Sir Hamish in sight, had him brewing up for himself. When he was at coffee in hand stage he wandered off to the artifact library, sat himself down at the desk in the corner and started to go through the paper work that Joe had left strewn upon it. It had to hold the clues that he required, he made himself comfortable in the swivel chair that laid back in a way that you could easily put your feet up.

Outside Andre had teamed up with the others to hook the jet up to a forklift and drag it into the well camouflaged hanger. After they had achieved their aim, the four men seated themselves in the plane and began a discussion that if Nat and Buzz were there would have shone some light on their dilemma

“What do you think they will do when they find out?” asked James

“If all goes to plan they won’t have to find out.” Answered Hamish

“Nat will never believe that her father is a criminal.” Said Laurie

“He is not a criminal.” Chipped in Andre

.

“According to the C.I.A he is”

“They’re not saying anything to anybody, don’t forget they have broken international law by renditioning him.”

“They don’t care if they break the law”

“They are the law”

“If this thing in Zürich doesn’t work out, we could all end up in the same boat and up shit creek without a paddle.”

“It’ll workout, that boy’s got a head on his shoulders, none of you would have thought of it.” Said Laurence

“That’s right I told you so.” Chipped in Sir Hamish

“When do you think we will know?” asked Andre

“It’ll be a day or two before all the pieces fall into place and in the meantime let’s hope we don’t have to hightail it out of here. Now James I want you to fuel this baby up to the max, just in case and Andre, you can keep a constant watch on the radar to make sure we don’t have any surprise visitors. Hamish I want you to entertain the needs of our guests while I keep working on the Zürich plan to make sure all the chips fall our way.”

“Aye, aye Captain” came Sir Hamish’s broad reply

“Yes Sir.” Sounded the others at the same time

Gabriel wasn’t sure how much time had passed since he had finished his coffee; when he clapped his hands together, leapt out of the chair he had been sitting in and started running in the direction of the room he had left Natalie in. He burst through the door, startling her and almost yelled “He’s left us a map.”

“What?” Questioned a still startled Nat

“I think I can work out exactly what he was working on when he left here by following the notes and the method being used to catalogue. That’s got to tell us something about where he disappeared to and what it’s got to do with the breastplate.”

“Excellent, now you must listen to what I have learnt.”

“Go ahead I’m all ears.” Said a settled Buzz

“Remember when we first started doing this, we travelled back in time to Noah and the flood and the place we alighted at was called Nin-nar-mah or what we assumed was Nineveh; that place became the capital of the Assyrian empire. Ninmar was always their main deity, she and the two brothers Enki and Enlilsplit the world up between them, Enki had the south, Africa or Kish as they knew it back then and Enlil had the north ruling out of Nineveh. Ninmar was always going to fluctuate between the two; when she resided in the south Egypt flourished and when she resided in the north Babylon did.

The Breastplate was the symbol of she who carried that authority; some people have always been aware of that fact while others haven’t or have forgotten. In the past the rulers of Egypt knew it, the Babylonians did too. The sea peoples called Phoenicians knew it and the Greeks found out about it when Homer wrote of the search for the Golden Fleece.

When Troy was in its prime that’s where she and her breastplate resided, whenHelen of Troy moved to Grease they went on to become world leaders. WhenJulius Caesar wanted to rule the world he moved to Egypt and marriedCleopatra V11, a Greek Ptolemaic Queen who ruled from Alexandria. You can bet she had the Breastplate because she certainly had the appropriate temples, first in Alexandria with Julius and then in Jerusalem with Mark Antony.

The broad spread of information that has been made accessible to me has the power to overwhelm; the clarity that comes from focusing on one period is like a pressure release in a boiler that has been fully primed. Tempted as I am to leap forward to solve our problem, Mr. Izzard, I think what we have to do is focus on what is right before our eyes. Here we are thousands of kilometres away from home sitting in a modern day Mesopotamian despots abode surrounded by artifacts and fragments of the very past that we have been exploring. We have done the hard yards, we have studied the facts of the job at hand but what we have neglected is the heart of the matter. By seeking the actual breastplate of authority we have limited our end to being in a particular place and by concentrating on my father we have bowed to time constraints. What we have learnt already is sufficient to understand the association between the breast plate and ultimate physical power regardless of what time or place it is in. I assume it is not a magical power and that it is subject to the normal laws of physics. A rational explanation of the phenomenon is required if we are not going to slip into primitive superstition and that is precisely what I intend to devote my time to.”

I, for one, am impressed professor McHale, you have journeyed well; can I be of any further assistance or should I just beetle back to Australia and leave you to it?” asked Buzz

 

“Don’t be like that,” said Nat “you know I need you; in more ways than one.”

 

“What? Like a baker kneads the dough”

 

“Very funny,” she said whilst moving towards him “we are in this together Gabe whatever happens; besides I think I am falling for you.” She continued closing the gap between them.

 

They melted into an embrace and finally, lost for words, he kissed her with an intensity that had been pent-up since their first meeting; she met his intensity with some of her own but before it became embarrassingly long, Sir Hamish appeared at the door saying. “Will you be joining us for dinner or would you like room service?”

 

“No,” replied Buzz as he broke apart from her embrace “It’s a bit hot up here we’ll be joining you in the kitchen.”

 

“Arch, man, we’ll be on the terrazzo barbequing up a load of fresh seafood with some very friendly local fisher folk that I’m sure you’ll be impressed with. It’ll be yet another delight for your mouth, hee-hee.” He said as he turned and marched off down the hallway.

 

“Shall we?” asked Nat

 

“I’m looking forward to it.” Replied Buzz as he took her arm and walked side by side to the door, where he bowed and allowed her to take the lead.

 

By the time they ventured out on to the terracotta tiled veranda, the food was well and truly on the boil and the fisher folk that Sir Hamish had mentioned turned out to be very attractive people indeed. It was obvious they intended to stay on as not only did they have a bucket load of seafood on the grill but also a bucket load of local wine decanted into very large goblets. The music that was playing seemed to be theirs as well and Sir Hamish was trying to teach them how to do the Highland fling to the sounds of a very modern Ultravox beat.

 

It turned into a very enjoyable evening, just what the doctor ordered; the break from the hectic schedule was much appreciated and the light banter from the locals was educational as well as entertaining. There was much ado about nothing and nothing to do but have some well deserved fun; Hamish lifted his kilt on several occasions and Buzz managed to do a rap version of Hava-nagilawith some pretty spectacular break dancing on the side. Natalie did her bit with a fine version of the chicken dance and even Laurence made an appearance when the 007 theme song was playing. Eventually it was Andre who turned out to be the party pooper when he unceremoniously announced that everyone’s luggage had been placed in their individual rooms and that for security reasons that’s where we all were expected to be in ten minuets when it would be lights out. So it was kisses all around and a very happy and tired crew that went to bed that night.

 

Breakfast was a continental affair, with a help yourself to a cup of coffee and a couple of chocolate covered croissants; Buzz prepared a tray for Nat and himself and took it to her, looking forward to continuing their conversation from the night before.

“Good morning.” He said all bright and bubbly

 

“Please don’t be so chipper, my head is a little sore from that wine last night; it certainly had some kick to it.”

 

“Here you go, this will help with that.” He continued in his chirpiness while pushing the breakfast tray in her direction.

 

“Are the others up yet?”

 

“I’m not sure, though I spotted Andre heading off somewhere; after you have showered and are ready for the day would you like to join me in the library of bits and pieces this morning?”

 

“Yes I would. I am keen to see what daddy was working on and weather it will assist us at all.”

 

“That’s good I’m sure you’ll be surprised how on the ball he is with his work it’s quite impressive.”

 

“I’ll see you down there, then.” She said, dismissing him with a wave.

 

Buzz left her to it, proceeded to the museum like room and began tidying the desk that they would be sitting at for the conversation pending. He then gathered some fragments from the appropriate shelves and put them in order to show Natalie but before she could appear James did.

 

“Laurence has asked me to show you to him as we have had some advancement on the Zürich situation overnight.” He said

 

“Fine,” replied Buzz “I’ll just leave a note here for Nat; how long do you expect we will be?”

 

“Half an hour or so”

 

Buzz quickly scrawled a note and propped it up where she could easily see it and walked off following James. Laurence had a temporary office made up for him on the top floor of the villa; it had once been a penthouse suite but for now it was relegated to a shadow of its former glory. James announced Gabriel then turned and closed the door behind him, leaving the two associates to their private conversation.

 

“We have a nibble,” stated Laurence

 

“Did you manage to get the fake breastplate in place?”

 

“No; but we managed to deflect the buyer until it is in place.”

 

“Do you think it will do the trick, will it fool an expert?”

 

“There won’t be any way to tell without taking it to a fully equipped lab, so to answer your question, yes it will work.”

 

“What about the tracking device, won’t that be detectable?”

 

“It has a neutral signal until we switch it on.”

 

“So what’s the chance that it will lead us to Joe McHale or his abductors?”

 

“Fifty- fifty at least” answered Laurence “but it’s the best odds we are going to get.

 

Gabriel finished his conversation with Laurence and after they had gone over some more of the intricacies he excused himself and began to make his way back to the library, hoping to meet up with Nat, sure enough when he got there she was busying herself with the items he had left on the desk for her.

“What do you think any ideas?” He asked

“It’s certainly systematic.” She replied

“I was particularly impressed with his connecting assumptions about the breastplate and the Parthian’s.”

“Do you know much about them?”

“Just that they were occupying Iraq around the time of Christ; they were an empire in their own right and an opposing force to the Roman Empire who fought them for hundreds of years. There were women who married into the royal families of the Parthian Kings as well as the Roman nobles and the Ptolemaic Greek dynasties were interbred with the Egyptian, Jewish and Syrian ruling classes. It seems as though the Parthian nobles had infiltrated all the cultural groups that we have been discussing around this time period and that they may very well be the ones that offered protection to Cleopatra V11 when she was in exile.”

“This is what I was talking about last night, the interconnectivity of this line of investigation passing through so many cultures that we risk upsetting many different religions. Some of the revelations I have been having in my dreams seem so heretical to most religions that I want to go through them with you and explore the spiritual ramifications.”

Buzz pulled up a particularly well padded chair, propped himself up with a couple of cushions that happened to be at hand and indicated that she should proceed with her current line of thought with the words. “Please expound you have my total attention and I couldn’t be more interested in what you have to say.”


CHAPTER EIGHT

“To start at the beginning, I would pose a few questions and try to answer them in the process; firstly, why did God destroy the earth with a flood and secondly, how did God communicate the desire for Noah and family to build an ark and survive the impending deluge with a cache of twinned species?

When I first thought of this, I looked up that big Bible you had me carting around and in Genesis chapter 4 verses 19-23, it states that Lamech, a descendant of Cain, had a daughter named Naamah but by chapter 5 verses 28-29 it is referring to Noah as his son. If we could think of this as our first references to our Narmer, then a clue to answering my first question could be inchapter 6 verse 4 ‘when the sons of God mated with the daughters of men’ this is when God saved Noah’s lot and destroyed the rest of the worlds inhabitants. So who were the ones God was pissed off with, the sons, the daughters or their children? I would suggest that God was upset with the sons because not only were they knocking up the daughters of Cain’s descendants but they were oppressing them as well; in 6 verse 13 God says to Noah ‘the time has come for me to destroy all men because they have filled the earth with oppression and violence. So why would God save Lamech’s son Noah and not Lamech’s daughter Naamah and what about Lamech’s other son Tubal-Cain who was making all kinds of things out brass and iron, for example swords, why didn’t he get saved? For that matter, why didn’t God save Lamech and why doesn’t the Bible mention the name of Noah’s wife wasn’t she important enough. I would tend to suggest that the Bible was written by men who could not perceive that Noah was a woman, who survived the flood with the help of her sons Shem, Ham and Japheth. The wives bit was just added later and they couldn’t even bother making up names for them.

Anyway after they survive the flood and God gives Noah those instructions not to go about killing one another, as the only commandment, in 9:20-23 Ham is found in the tent of a naked Noah and is expelled from the camp for it; in the meantime his brothers walk backwards into the tent to cover up there ‘fathers’ nakedness. This story makes absolutely no sense, but if Noah was a woman and these boys mother, then this story makes perfect sense.

If Noah, Narmer, Ninmar or what ever you want to call her was a man, then I bet you London to a brick that we would be searching for a sword, not a breast covering. Just the same as if her God was a warring god and not a peaceful god then a sword would be the symbol of authority. Noah found favor with her God because she was interested in the preservation of life not the destruction of life, which is why in the ancient languages of the Sumerians; Ninmar was known as the Lady of Life and was associated with genetic science and agriculture rather than war and pillage.

Similarly in Egypt, the stories that encompass their culture are of a woman named Isis who strives for the peaceful running of her kingdom and the resurrection of her Osiris in the form of Horus, while they battle the murdering Set who represents war and destruction. We have followed her spirit through history as we have seen time and time again, her being involved in the bringing down of corrupt oppressive regimes and the replacement with ones that look after the women and the children as well as the down and out.

The Breastplate represents God’s protection and order, worn by a peace loving monarch that honors that concept. She speaks for the safety and prosperity for those that would bow before it and not force their will on others nor take control at the point of a sword or the barrel of a gun; as for those who would they will have no protection from the breastplate and it shall be taken from them.

Like a phoenix rising from the ashes of a collapsed civilization, the spirit ofMereneith will continue to awaken and seek the end of oppressive regimes and the establishment of God’s peaceful kingdom on earth. She will eventually win out and protect us without the need of a shield and her chosen man will be at her side choosing the potters wheel over the trade of war.”

“Whoa, whoa!” exclaimed Buzz “I’m still trying to come to grips with the Noah is a woman bit.”

“Well, what do you think does it make sense to you?” asked Nat

“Yeah it does but it is just a little hard to digest; I mean my entire life I have thought as Noah as a man with a big white beard, a bit like Santa Clause. Can you imagine how many people you could offend running around espousing that Noah was a woman; I could imagine the Pope himself coming after me personally wanting to nail my ass to a cross.”

“It is a bit radical I will admit, but now after all we’ve seen and understood, I can’t go back to thinking of Noah or Narmer as anything else other than a woman regardless of how much trouble it might cause, can you?” asked Nat

“Now that you mention it all I get when I think of it is a mental picture of a naked old lady dancing around in her tent with a few to many wines in her; I hope you’re happy.”

“Very.” She smiled

“Is there anything else you want to shock me with now that you’re at it?”

“Well seeing that you brought it up I’m not quite sure why Shem and Japheth are shacked up together in the one tent, but I will let it go for now, if you like.” Said Nat

“Oh thanks a lot.”

Natalie was starting to pace around the room a bit too nervously for Gabriel’s liking, but he didn’t say anything he just kept his eyes on her till she spoke again.

“I had another really vivid dream again last night and I don’t know quite how to go about explaining it to you, it’s a bit shocking as well.”

“Just start from the top and let me have it.” Said Buzz

  

Julius Caesar – Cleopatra VII – Pompey

“O.K, I was seeing through the eyes of Cleopatra and she was organizing to have herself to be delivered to Julius Caesar who was living in the old family home in Alexandra on the Nile delta. She had been living in exile in Syria near the Sea of Galilee and had just received the news that her father and husband in co-regency rule, Ptolemy X11 was dead; along with his puppet master Pompey the Roman Consul. It was 48 B.C.E and Julius ruled the known world from Alexandra with no serious opposition. She knew she could win the affection of the ageing general as youth and beauty were on her side. As she was leaving the security of her fortress home at Magdala with a caravan of Persian rug salesmen, success was foremost on her mind and her confidence was high as she possessed the one thing that the Emperor would buy, Immortality. By the time she was rolled out before Julius in his private chambers, wearing nothing but the bejeweled Breastplate and carrying nothing but a treasure of stories from the past, Cleo V11 would rule Egypt once again.

The Emperor swallowed the bait, hook, line and sinker; before long they were honeymooning on the royal barge and heading for the secret ancient temples of Hawara where she would reveal to him the ceremonies of long forgotten rituals, which held within their legionary form, promises of life everlasting. Caesar’s confidence was growing with every mile he traveled with his seductress and as she caressed his ego daily, he was sure he would leave his mere manhood behind and eventually become a living god. They ended up touring all the old temples and monuments; Julius particularly liked wearing any of the old regalia that could be obtained and insisted that Cleo wore her Isis outfit even when they weren’t performing the ways of the past. He didn’t want to return to Rome but after many conversations about their future together he eventually agreed; Cleo was growing large with his child when Julius left for Rome to display his new status and it wasn’t till she had birthed his son that Cleo left Egypt to join him. The final chapter was set to play out on the big stage before all his admiring audience.

“These things are fairly well known, except the bit about the breastplate,” interjected Buzz “but I’m sure there is something that you’re not telling me.”

“It was the content of their conversation at Hawara that has really taken me by surprise; when they were alone at the heart of the old temple complex and the power of the Breastplate was no longer an issue. Julius was hanging on her every word and she was explaining to him how the building of an appropriate temple with the absent Ark of the Covenant at its center, was crucial in the obtaining of the immortality he was interested in. Many years of study with the most learned Jewish scholars of the library of Alexandra and a good understanding of the Greek translations of their Old Testament scriptures had given her the knowledge needed to make that goal a reality. With his assistance and resources she was confident that they could fulfill the ancient plan of building, establishing and ruling Gods kingdom on earth at Jerusalem. They went over and over everything that she was suggesting until Julius finally agreed and said with single minded determination that he would devote himself to that end.”

The second temple at Jerusalem (24 B.C—66 A.D)

“That makes a lot of sense,” commented Buzz “I’ve always wondered why a strategic genius who had just so spectacularly won all his battles with such military precision, would fall prey to schemes of an exiled princess.

The explanations of a sexual nature seem so inadequate when you consider he could have any number of women with the click of his fingers. She must have had something he desired more than anyone else; for a man that had everything, immortality would certainly do the trick but in the end it didn’t do him much good.”

“Or did it?” cut in Nat

“What do you mean?”

“Well the really stunning part of the discussions at Hawara was about the faking of his death. Cleo convinced him that if he was to go down the path she was suggesting that the best way to do it would be with anonymity. You think about it, if he remained ‘alive’ his commitments to Rome would have knobbled his remaining years. The plan to ‘die’ on stage was strategically perfect and just what you would expect from this pair.”

“If he didn’t die what did he do then?” asked Buzz

“What all conquerors do after they conquer, build on a scale that would do him honor and justice. Together they designed and built Caesarea on the Sea, and a brand new fleet of ships to service it.”

   

Herod the Great Herod II Mark Antony Octavian

“But Herod the Great built Caesarea.” Stated Buzz

“Well, why didn’t he call it Herodea then?”

“I suppose you could be right, Herod just means king in Hebrew and in 46 B.C.E he was just a nobody, a backwater Arabic style Jew who had no real claim to fame other than his association with Julius Caesar and then Mark Antony . The peoples he claimed to represent were Maccabean Jews who had family connections to the Ptolemy’s, Cleopatra’s family all with a Macedonian connection. They spoke Greek and their scriptures were studied in Greek. The previous Kings; Phillip, Antiochious and Judas Maccabeus all had connections with the Greek governors of Egypt. When Herod supposedly built the temple at Jerusalem it was with the assistance and blessings of the Ptolemy’s, of whom Cleopatra the seventh was the ruling regent at the time.”

“Whether or not Julius was alive to see the completed temple project is irrelevant to our story but I know this Cleopatra was because Mark Anthony had a residence built into the complex walls and she was supposed to have three children to him.”

“What you are saying is that by the time Octavian destroyed their fleet of Lebanese built boats at the battle of Actium in 31 B.C.E, Cleo was ruling out of Jerusalem and if reports of her death by suicide were exaggerated then she could be associated with Herodias,” commented Buzz.

“Well Herodias was supposed to be married to Philip, a Ptolemy and the brother to Herod II, as well as Herod II; they were living and ruling from Jerusalem not long after the death of Herod the Great and they were from the same family, so as with Julius it doesn’t really affect the continuity of our story. For all intents and purposes, she represented the authority of the Breastplate and she was in a position to use it as it had been intended; at the alter in front of the Ark of the Covenant in the brand new purpose built temple, the greatest one ever built. If Herod and Herodias weren’t Julius and Cleo they certainly were the inheritors of there grand plan.

Anyway things quieted down after that, Octavian the Roman General becameCaesar Augustus the Roman Emperor; then he ushered in the Pax Romana or the Roman Peace and Jerusalem was allowed to flourish until the time of Jesus Christ, relatively free.”

“But as always there are two sides to a coin and while on one side, by the time of Augustus, Egypt and the Carthaginians had been defeated, the Spanish and Gaels subdued and the war with Germanic tribes stabilized. Yet on the other, the Parthians, warlike peoples with Persian backers were presenting an ongoing problem.”

“The religious implications, the breastplate and the authority it represents keep turning up between clashes of cultures. Its presence seems to fluctuate between opposing sides; in the battle over control of Egypt, Isis was trying to rebirth Osiris so he could reunite the two kingdoms, in the battle over who runs Mesopotamia, Esther turns up to bring into balance the powers that contested it. If Jerusalem was being run as a center for world peace and the temple was intact and operating as it should, then the Breastplate’s authority resides there. But as is the case, when Jerusalem is being run by unwise despots then that authority is removed and the temple is torn down. If Rome was prepared to rule honorably and peacefully over our city of the new peace we would find our antiquities there, but trouble was brewing and a war that would last hundreds of years was about to break out and the Jews of Jesus’ day were smack in the middle of it.”

“If we were to look for our item of interest in this period, would we be likely to find it in the hands of the Roman rulers, the Maccabean Jews or the Parthians?” asked Buzz

“With the benefit of hindsight I would say the Parthians because the Romans went on to display the worst of human behavior and the Greek speaking Jewish leaders conspired to crucify the one most likely to bring about peace.

The Parthians were in charge of the Aramaic speaking tribes and ruled their areas out of places like Damascus and Palmyra. They too, were interested in the smooth running of Egypt and Jerusalem as the Romans had just kicked them out of there after hundreds of year’s involvement.”

“That is likely” said Buzz “as in 20 B.C.E Herod II was displaying the same madness that had plagued his father and was reported to have murdered his first wife and her children, preferring to take up with Herodias, who was his brothers wife. Philip had been expelled from Herod II kingdom into Parthian territory and was establishing himself at Caesarea Philippi, a town on the river running out of Mt. Hermon, a tributary that supplied the Sea of Galilee. From that day on Herod II’s kingdom started to fall apart, as all his potential Heirs and inheritors began arguing over who would be the next King after Herod II’s assassination. Earthquakes destroyed some of the building works and the Esseanes theraputate of Old Testament studying scholars, healers and vocal opponents of Herod moved into the Qumran led by John the Baptist. They taught of a new age of peace being ushered in by a Messiah, who turned out to be Jesus; and as we know Herod II and his loyal band of Jerusalem based Sadducees, beheaded John and crucified Jesus.”

Natalie continued her musings about who would have been in possession of the Breastplate around the time of Jesus. Old habits die hard and although the blessing of the Breastplate had resided with the old guard of Julius Caesar’s war machine while they concentrated on building the second temple at Jerusalem, their corrupt nature became an embarrassment to those who knew the truth of temple authority. The wise men of the time, the Magi, resided in the east where the Parthians ruled and while Herod was intent on exterminating any potential inheritors of his kingdom, they were equally intent on the preservation of the line of Aaron.

Elizabeth was a direct descendant of Aaron and the wife of Zacharias, the head Levite in the temple at the time of the death of Herod the Great and the birth Of Jesus. Whilst they were in charge of the temple items, Elizabeth fell pregnant with John the Baptist and was visited by Mary the mother of Jesus, who was also pregnant at the time. Zacharias took a vow of silence, removed himself from the service of the temple and relocated himself out of Jerusalem and closer to the Parthian occupied territories. Besides being in a position to influence the education of the young Jesus they became his number one supporters; at the time they were the only ones that were convinced of His divinity and claim to the title of King of the Jews.”

The tomb of Zacharias, (the father of John the Baptist).

“Strangely enough at the same time the Parthians had a new Queen, Musa; she had been given to their King Phraates IV by decree of the Roman Emperor Augustus over something that had happened during the incursions into Parthian territory during the reign of Mark Anthony. In return for the gift from Caesar, Pharaates IV handed over his four sons from a previous marriages and on his death bed granted Musa‘s young son the right to inherit his throne and title as King of kings. There were coins minted to confirm this as a fact of historical record.” Said Buzz

  

“The Parthians rejected her after she married her son to consolidate

her status as their Goddess Musa (feminine form of Moses).

This would have been acceptable in Egyptian tradition and seen as Isis joining with Horus but to the peoples who occupied the Syrian-Israelis border region of 6 A.D, it was not. So around the time that Jesus was 12 and he and his mother were returning to a quiet life a near the Sea of Galilee, this important woman found herself stateless and between cultures. Musa and her son were forced into a political wilderness where the Aramaic speaking Hebrews’ of the old ways were residing at places like the Nabataean Stronghold’s of PetraBethany eastof the river Jordan, the Dead Sea and the Sea of Galilee.

By the time John was baptizing hordes of people in the Jordan and Jesus was preaching to the multitudes from the mountain tops about the approaching Kingdom of God; Eli-Sabbath, the Syro-Phoenician Goddess of the Sabbath and Queen Musa, the ex-Parthian Goddess, were nowhere to be found. Martha,Mary mother of Jesus and the younger Mary of Magdala were the main female players in the new religious movement that was eventually going to be known as Christianity.

Herod II, Herod Antipas, Herod Agrippa and Herodias, who seemed to be married to all of them at various times, became the main enemies of the new religion; but backed by Rome and led by Saul, the Pharisees and Sadducees of the defiled Temple of Jerusalem; they beheaded, crucified, stoned, imprisoned, tortured and generally hacked their way through John, Jesus, Mary Magdalene, Steven and eventually every disciple they could lay their hands on. After Jesus miraculously survived his crucifixion, the movement relocated itself into the friendlier realms of their Parthian neighbors which extended as far as India and China.

After a ten year rampage of murder and persecutions of the peaceful followers of Jesus and Mary Magdalene; Saul, became Paul, the main authority of the Christian New Testament;

  

Saul — Saul at the stoning of Stephen — Paul

He was eventually stopped when he was captured whilst on a raid into Parthian Damascus.”

Buzz jumped up and out of his chair with a loud unprintable exclamation and started to pace the floor, encircling a bemused Natalie. After he began to settle down and stopped waving his arms around he looked straight at Nat with a piecing stare.

“Do you realize that if that version of those well studied events had of even been uttered in the past that you and I could have been burnt at the stake?”

“Yes” replied Natalie” but that has nothing to do with the truth of the matter, does it?”

“No” replied Gabriel “but you must realize how many people would be offended by the mere suggestion that Jesus and his entourage were anything other than your standard Hebrew – Christian view.”

Before she had a chance to answer the doors of the library burst open and Laurence demanded their attention.

“The bait has been taken and is running; we have the opportunity to intercept now, if we leave immediately.”

“Do we have time to pack any thing before we get back on the plane?” asked Natalie

“We aren’t going on the jet this time, we have a mobile communication van complete with bunks ready to roll. I can explain anything you need to know when we are on the road but for now we must move.”

Buzz gave Nat a humorous look as he saluted Laurence and said “Aye, Aye Sir, lead on.”


Chapter Nine

The doors of the large pantec truck opened and Sir Hamish was standing above an unfolding staircase waving to them as they crossed from the villa to the idling unit; he indicated that they should quickly ascend to his level. As they entered the well equipped modern and technologically advanced mobile communication center, the unseen driver lurched forward beginning their chase. Buzz looked around the ample setting and picked out a place for him to sit, the bottom bunk in a stack of three seemed the obvious. Laurence deposited his stately frame in the swivel chair in front of a group of monitors, Sir Hamish and Natalie shared the couch and table.

“Where are we heading for?” asked Nat

“We have been advised that our pigeon has left Zurich and is heading for the Italian Boarder, we will be trying to intercept him where ever he chooses to stay tonight.” Answered Laurie

“Will we be returning to the villa?” Nat questioned further

Sir Hamish cut in and began to explain the logistics of the plan so far, “All our things will be loaded onto the jet and if we don’t have to return the plane will be flown to wherever we are, so your fathers’ things will be well looked after and you don’t have to worry your pretty head about it my dear Natalie.”

Buzz stood up from his bunk and walked over to where Laurence was now monitoring movements on his electronic equipment.

“So how does all this work? He quizzed

Laurie flipped a few switches and turned his attention to Gabriel

“This monitor here shows us where our target is moving, it’s a combination G.P.S and state of the art mapping device, we can pull up the route of a target and look at it in real time, so as to get an accurate picture of what’s going on at street level. Over here we have a similar unit that monitors our route and feeds back a constant steam of information, ensuring we get to where we want to go with a minimum of fuss. This computer here is linked with all the emergency services for the whole of Europe and scans police activity where ever we go so as can never be intercepted by surprise or wander unannounced into a police action.”

“Very impressive.” Stated Buzz “Anything else I should know about?”

“We have access to all mainstream communications channels as well as a secured network of private agents where ever we are likely to go; a small army of loyal men can be put together anytime, anywhere at very short notice.”

“That’s very handy.” Quipped Buzz

“We have a man that is following our target, at a sustainable distance, since he left Zurich an hour ago. He is travelling at a very subdued pace, almost like a legitimate tourist and he will be available to us by the time we all rendezvous. You can speak to him or the man we have waiting at the border, through this microphone any time you like.”

“It seems as though you have it all well in hand. Seeing we didn’t have time to eat before we left, is there any thing to eat on this bus?” he asked

“Open that cupboard over there and you will find a fully equipped kitchen that is well stocked with some rather excellent microwave dinners.” Recommended Laurence

“Is there any good music to be had?”

“There is a digital system loaded for most music tastes and a set of headphones for every bunk.”

“Awesome dude, do you mind if I smoke?”

“Yes,” said Laurence with no sign of amusement on his face “this is a non- smoking environment.”

Buzz waited till his meal pinged in the microwave oven, collected it, moved back to his bunk and stuck the headphones on.

Sir Hamish and Natalie had been having a pleasant conversation on the lounge about her most recent revelations.

“The last I heard you were connecting with Sarah and her descendants from the bible; how is that going?” asked Hamish

“I have been having a personal panoramic view on the importance of the spirit of Great Lady through out history and I have been trying to verbalize it through a series of conversations with Gabriel. You could ask me about many historical figures like the Queen of ShebaJezebel or Cleopatra and I could relate to you any number of stories from a personal perspective. I could tell you exactly how ultimate power shifted between Egypt and the Sumerians, Assyria and the Greeks or even the Greeks and the Romans. It all seemed to rely on who had the Breastplate or the Golden Fleece as Homer knew it. The Hebrews attributed it to the Ark of the Covenant and although this was partly true, until you have seen Miriam wearing the Breastplate in front of the Arc, you can’t properly understand.” Stated Nat

“Do you know why no-one knew about this?” asked Hamish

“I feel there were many reasons, survival for one, but I think that it was a very personal thing for her; sharing the actual event was only ever going to happen with an intimate partner, her Osiris.”

“What was the purpose and ramifications of her act of worship?”

“Again there were many answers to that question but I think that the most important was enabling her to participate in an eternal ongoing relationship with the creative force behind the shaping of humanity. When all the pieces were in place, when she wasn’t being manipulated by oppressive regimes and when she wasn’t being forcibly separated from the antiquities then her work before the Ark in the temple would provide all the knowledge required for an eternal ongoing Kingdom of peace and equality.” Answered Nat

“Could you tell me what would happen in the temple when she was conducting her work?” asked Hamish

“Have you ever heard of Orbitally Rearranged Monatomic Elements or Meissner fields and how research in these areas have been associated with the Ark of the Covenant?” interjected Laurence

“No.” replied Natalie

“For hundreds of years famous Masons like Isaac NewtonChristopher Wrenand Robert Boyle have pondered the things you are now learning. You could say that an understanding of the workings of the Ark and the scholars that pursued it are the foundation stones of science as we know it today. Modern Freemasonry owes its existence to unlocking the secrets of Solomon and his temple at Jerusalem. Preceding its establishment in the eighteenth century an order of warlike monks known as the ‘Poor Knights of Christ and the Temple of Solomon’ liberated Jerusalem from the Saracens and relocated the Ark to Paris in the eleventh century.”

“I didn’t know these things,” said Natalie “please tell me more.”

“France was the center of western civilization at the time and ‘The Children of Solomon’, who worshipped the Ark at the Paris chapter of the Knights Templar, were the only alternative to a recalcitrant Catholic Church. They eventually warred against one another and by the fourteenth century France was not safe for Templar’s and their treasures so they relocated to Scotland where Robert the Bruce presided as grand master over the “Elder Brethren of the Rosy Cross. The St Clair’s, Barons of Roslyn, became the keepers of the Treasures of the French Templar’s and laid the foundation for the Roslyn Chapel that would house the Ark. William Sinclair and Mary De Guise formalized relationships extending to the Americas along with their fleet of ships that discovered it. They formed The Orders of Garter and Thistle for the protection of women that were associated with their Lodges and that tradition continues till this very day with the Order of the Eastern Star and Modern day Freemasonry.” Declared Laurence

“So what you are telling me is that what I have been learning about the Spirit of the Great Lady and her work in front of the Ark are incorporated into the beliefs of your organization?” asked Nat

“Absolutely, although not many people outside the Order would have ever known that and not all those in the various Orders would have either, it’s been privileged information.”

Arms of the United Grand Lodge of England

Avdi- Vide- Tace is the motto it means Hear, See and be Silent

“So famous women we all know, would have been incorporated in this conspiracy?” commented Nat, continuing her line of questioning

“Worship of the feminine in connection with the Ark and the Godhead of the patriarchal system of mainstream churches have traditionally been rewarded with execution or ostracism at least.

Even heads of government and European royalty have fallen foul of that particular intricacy of an inquisition based regime. The fear of exposure has stifled the sciences as well as the facts of history. What the bulk of mankind has been fed, in the name of religion, has been superstition, propaganda and outright lies; while those that know the truth have used that truth to monopolize their power. By playing their cards close to their chests a privileged class has built a wall to the exclusion of the bulk of the peoples, now that wall has become a prison with no way out and depending on which side you are with, a dangerous game.” Concluded Laurence

“Now that I have been made aware of these things, am I destined to be bound by the same restraints, I mean what good can I do, for that mater what’s the purpose of enlightening me to it all?”

“That is the question, if I could simply click my fingers and change it then there would be no reason for involving you or Gabriel. From what I understand and have observed of you and your abilities, we will be looking towards you for answers. All that I can say is that you have my full support and with the blessing of the Great Lady herself I believe there is a solution. This journey we are on has enriched my enthusiasm and heightened expectations that a new era is dawning; meeting you and hearing you speak so clearly on things that have only been whispered about compel me to be more determined than ever to do whatever I can to help change the downward slide that the establishment has locked onto. My earnest desire to locate the Breastplate and your father has become my quest as well as yours.” Finished Laurence

Natalie stood up from the lounge where she was seated with Hamish and walked over to grasp Laurie’s hands, gave him the loving look of a faithful daughter and kissed him on his balding forehead. “Thank you” she said “now explain to me what you were talking about before on Orbital Rearranged Monatomic Elements and how that relates to the work before the Ark.”

“Oh yes, what I can tell you about is the substance that was termed the philosophers stone and what it meant to the men that sorted out an understanding of it. In the Ancient Egyptian world it was referred to as the bread of life and Sobekhotep, the crocodile headed deity, was in charge of its distribution. It was supposed to be a powder of white gold and when ingested prolonged the life of the user; as far as all the study that was done on the subject and I can assure you it was vast, this was monatomic gold. It’s created in the immense heat of a Meissner field and that’s exactly what we assume is the nature of the Ark. When it’s positioned correctly positioned and suspended so as the energy doesn’t ground then the build up of the Meissner field around it provides the environment for pure gold to be transmuted into a colloidal powder suitable for digestion and this was associated with the wearer of the breastplate and her work in front of the Ark.”

I’ve been seeing that in my visions but up till now I didn’t know what it was about.” Said Nat

“If you were keeper of that secret, would you want it to become well known?” asked Laurence

“It depends”

“The ones that have been charged with that duty have had to consider it and now it’s your turn; I only ask that you search yourself deeply and understand the implications before making your decision, it will be the most important one you’ll ever be likely to make.”

“Please tell me more about those that have been in that position.” Requested Natalie

“What you are asking me to do is explain to you secret rites of Masonry that my oaths, as a Master of the craft and its thirty three degrees, forbid me to do. What we have been discussing, as you already know, has been protected information that has only passed between initiates of the most elite fraternities. The Order of the Rosa Cruces with such distinguished Grand Masters as Sir Francis Bacon, Queen Elizabeth the first’s illegitimate son and James the first, a Stuart King of England carried the secret works of Nicolas and Perenelle Flamel.These Fourteenth century alchemists were reported to have found the secret of the Philosophers Stone and eternal life in an ancient document from Abrahams and Sarah’s time. They were said to have faked their own deaths and lived on under assumed names as was Sir Francis and his lover Elizabeth Hatton two centuries later. These founding Masons thought that the secrets were important enough to put in place a series of codes and devices that are still in place today, it is reported that there are people who are prepared to kill to keep that system in tact; do you understand what I am saying to you?”

Engravings from Nicolas and Perenelle Flamel’s empty tomb (dated 1410).

   

King James I Francis Bacon Elizabeth Hatton Elizabeth I

Natalie only had time for a quick “Yes” to Laurence’s question, when Gabriel cut into the serious nature of their conversation with a lighthearted comment,

“Sounds like you need a little comic relief. Did you hear about the constipated accountant? He couldn’t budget.”

That was enough to ease the tension and bring a roar of laughter from Sir Hamish.

“I told you he was a Mr. Smarty pants.” He declared to Laurence who turned and spoke directly to Buzz

“Don’t you forget to be serious when the time comes and it will come sooner or later?”

“O.K Mr. Master Mason, tell me then, if we were to reveal some of these thing you have been speaking about, would it be you that we would have to worry about?”

“No, lucky for you I am of a more liberal philosophy that would like to see things more out in the open but I wouldn’t like to be the one that pushed it. If you could come up with some solutions for the problems it would create then you’ll have my full backing.”

Buzz paused a minute to allow Laurence’s words to sink in and then came back with, “You mean if every one could extend their life expectancy then we would have a population explosion that couldn’t be sustained.”

“Yes, doesn’t that bother you?”

“No, I’ve heard all the arguments for reductionism, eugenics and I don’t subscribe to them. I think that if as much effort when into educating people than as does keeping them ignorant, then a sustainable level of population could be archived whatever the circumstance.”

“Bravo!” exclaimed Hamish “and what do you say Natalie?” he finished off with

“I don’t claim to be an expert on it, but I tend to agree with Gabriel. I think that if we could educate and assist people to live sustainable lifestyles then a lot of the world’s problems could be solved. If the people that are making fortunes out of raping the world’s resources were to invest in mass producing the technology we need then larger groups of humanity could lead responsible, productive and wealthier lifestyles, narrowing the gap between the rich and the poor.”

“Well said “interjected Buzz “but they have no intention of doing that because it suits their cause to widen the gap, it’s no use being filthy rich unless you can have a morel reason to subjugate the masses into slaving for you and then applauding you for what a good job your doing.”

“Spoken like a good communist.” Stated Laurie

“Spoken like a good cold war warrior.” Said Buzz

“You’re not going to tell me that Russia was right.”

“You know Laurie that’s what’s wrong with your generation, you only see things in black and white, good or bad, Labor or Conservative; let me tell you something about the modern world we see things in color, multi-dimensional thinking verses a bi-polar mentality; no way is totally right and no way is totally wrong, round tables instead of a Westminster system. In my world of thinking everyone has a right to their opinion and everyone should have a vote, real democracy instead of a type of democracy that gives you the choice between tweedle-dee and tweedle-dum.”

There was an uneasy pause in the conversation when Laurence finally said “Finished?”

“Yes.”

“You might be right Mr. Smarty pants but the reality that I live in is bi-polar, you are either with them or you are against them and they hold the gun. So my advice to you is to keep your head down or you just might get it shot off.”

“Well I think we can agree on that, thanks for the advice.” Finished off Buzz

Laurence swung his swivel chair around and returned to his monitors while Hamish decided it was time for him to eat. He moved over to the kitchenette and begun shuffling items. Nat looked at Buzz and shrugged her shoulders in away that satisfied him that she was significantly on his side but didn’t fully understand what it was all about.

“Could we do a bit more work on our sorties into the past while we have the chance? I thought we were on a breakthrough moment when all this interruption began and I would like to get back to where we were.”

“Sure,” said Buzz “let’s focus on Elizabeth.” As he settled himself down on the couch next to Nat

“Elizabeth resided within the fortified walls of Jerusalem since the time of Mark Antony who had been protector of the harem left over from the time of Cleopatra, after the defeat at Actium. She became the head priestess of the Temple and in charge of the Virgins who had been set aside in an isolated part of Herod’s palace. They had remained unmolested since Herod had become paranoid and removed himself to his desert fortress, near Bethlehem in the south. The Sanhedrin of elite Jews were ruling Jerusalem and Zachary had been elected to carry out the duties of Head Priest. On a day when all those involved with the operation of the Temple had gathered, it was his duty was to carry the golden tithes into the inner sanctum as an offering to their God Yahweh. He alone was responsible for the most sacred part of the ceremony that was performed in front of the Ark of the Covenant and would enter beyond the veil where no prying eyes were to gaze. If all went as planed God would receive their gold and return to them ‘Manna’ or the white powder known as ‘the bread of life’ for distribution to the faithful.

He was nervous as he received the golden tithes from the leaders of the twelve tribes, who were there ‘en mass’ to protect their investment and to tell the truth, most of them expected to receive favors for their taxes not the fabled white powder as promised but never delivered. Many had never attended an event such as this before and had only heard tell of it, Zachary too, had often wondered if the legends were true but when it became his turn to lead the others in this ceremony; Elizabeth had assured him that all would go well and he would be remembered for his participation in this momentous event.

Wearing the bejeweled Breastplate of Aaron, he moved slowly into the inner sanctum laden with the hopes of Israel and its’ Gold. The darkness of the room was varied only by the light coming from the Ark, but as his eyes adjusted he realized he wasn’t alone. Behind the Alter stood Elizabeth wearing only the Golden Bejeweled Breastplate of Narmer distinguished by its feminine shape. She spoke softly to him and he moved directly in front of the Ark, placing the offering on it and as he did it began to glow brighter.”

At this point in the telling of Natalie’s story, Gabriel had lost consciousness and was feeling as if he were there in the temple with them. He was witnessing the event firsthand and as Elizabeth began to glow along with the Ark he could see that she had shaved off all of her hair and seemed as though she was wearing the ‘Horns of Isis’. As the intensity of the moment grew her radiance became unworldly and she rose above the Ark, which was exactly where he was viewing it from. Her face, strangely now resembling Natalie’s, leveled with his and as she was looking him directly in the eyes she uttered his name. They seemed to become one but as the light was so bright it was impossible to tell.

Zachary had stepped backwards and had fallen on his bum but his eyes were riveted to the event now taking place high above him, gradually he lost consciousness. When he began to awaken in the dark and empty inner sanctum, he wasn’t sure whether he had dreamt it, although Elizabeth had instructed him what to do when this moment came. What was it he remembered? Get up, leave the temple and speak to no one; he repeated it to himself over and over till he had summoned the courage to do exactly that.

Buzz had snapped back into the moment and awoke to Natalie smiling face; she had her finger to her lips and didn’t say a thing but he knew exactly what she meant. He waited an appropriate amount of time and then said to her

“That was incredible let’s do it again.”

He quickly looked around and realized that Hamish and Laurence were totally unaware of what had just happened, they were busying themselves with their various activities. Nat leaned over and whispered into his ear and Buzz acknowledged her words with a look that could only have meant, ‘I wish that we were alone’, but as that wasn’t the case he said

“What about Mary?”

“Elizabeth’s cousin?” questioned Nat

“Yes.” Replied Buzz

“Well let’s find out shall we?”

“Yeah.”

“Concentrate” said Nat

They both settled back into their corners and began to think about Mary, the woman she was before she was the mother of Jesus. After awhile Natalie spoke in a low tone that just managed to pierce his consciousness.

“Young Mary enjoyed her time in the solitude of the convent like women’s quarters of the palace; she had not known anything else. Daily prayers and ceremonial rituals had not become mundane to her as it obviously had too many of the older Virgins. When the gaggle would begin their sniggering over maters sexual and the women that had ‘tended the well’ offered advice to the ones that had yet to attain that status, Mary would bury herself in contemplation of the sacred secrets that the reverential Elizabeth had confided to her alone.

It was this that separated her from the group and everyone had noticed; her simple dedication to the spiritual matters and her innocence to the world singled her out as ‘blessed among the women’. When the time came to select a special one the choice was obvious. Mary had never had any knowledge of men, except the neutered asexual guards that protected her and the others, so it was a shock to all the women including Elisabeth when the Sanhedrin elders ordered the eunuchs to bring young Mary to them in the temple without the chaperoning of the reverend mother.

The self appointed leaders of the twelve tribes of Israel and Judah had been having regular meetings in the temple to discuss the state of their nation. They represented a privileged class, who up until then had obtained their status by backing the various war lords from the time of Julius Caesar. Now that Herod the Greats time was coming to an end a rebellious attitude presided over their arguments over who would be the next King of the Jews. Herod and his obedience to Rome was an abomination to them, his bastard children were either dead by his hand or as insane as the man himself. They had decided that they alone would choose who their tribes would swear allegiance to in the coming Kingdom of God that they were planning. Seeing that they were never going to agree on whose descendant the honor would fall to, it was decided that they would mix their seed in the womb of a chosen one and allow God to decide.

Mary was led into the temple by the eunuchs she had trusted all her life and she only started to panic when they striped her naked in front of the heavily bearded and ornately adorned group of men. Her heart was thumping as never before when she was laid across the alter; she was sure she was about to be slaughtered and if any of the men present believed that the sacrifice of a virgin would solve their present predicament, then that’s what would have happened. As the first man approached her the fear she was experiencing accelerated into a catatonic state. The wild pumping of blood through her small body overcame her consciousness and her soul momentarily left the scene.”

Gabriel also had a similar effect in the present moment and he found himself again in a pleasant non-descript place where he found he could communicate with the now becalmed Mary. They seemed to be comfortable with one another and he felt as though he had to explain to her that she was going to be all right and that god was going to bless her with a child. He indicated that she would be very proud of him as he would become very knowledge-able and lead the people as a prince of peace.

Eventually she regained her consciousness in the temple and all the men were gone except for one, he waited till she was fully awake and assisted her to her feet whilst gently wrapping a blue cape around her. He explained to her in a very caring way that they were going on a long journey together and that it was his job to look after her.”

Both Buzz and Natalie were sound asleep on the couch and they stayed that way for many an hour dreaming of Jesus and his education while he was being raised in Egypt.

THIS IS THE NABATEAN CAPITAL OF PETRA ON THE WAY TO EGYPT.


Chapter Ten

“Wake up you two,” boomed Hamish’s broad Scottish accent “we are nearly there.”

“Where exactly?” asked a sleeps Buzz

“We are high in the Swiss Alps and about to cross a glassier, soon we will be at the top of an old volcano with a lake in it.”

“Are, yes;” commented Natalie “the beautiful St. Bernard Monastery where the old monks used to send out the dogs with brandy around their necks, to save snow bound travellers.”

“Yes,” confirmed Gabriel “I’ve heard about this place and have always wanted to see it.”

“Well,” added Laurence “now’s your chance.”

They chose their positions in the vehicle that allowed a view of the surrounding spectacular scenery; the awesome views brought casual comment from all of them. As the vehicle zigzagged it’s way up a pointy mountain peak, as predicted by Hamish, the road in front of them disappeared into a cavernous hole in the wall and reappeared on the inside of a crater filled with water. The road circled around the high altitude lake and on the opposite side to where they had entered the red and white striped balustrade of a boarder post stood out. Next to the guard booth was an old stone and brick structure that was the alpine monastery spoken about by Nat and the car park that they pulled into seemed out of place in this ancient site, even though a couple of cars occupied it.

 

St Bernard’s pass in the Swiss Alps.              The access road from the Italian side.

Laurence broke the awed silence by speaking into the intercom system that allowed him to instruct the driver “Go inside and check out the situation before we open the back up.”

After a short moment the driver returned to his cab and intercommunicated back to them that all was secure and that their presence was required inside the monastery. Hamish cracked the back door and the cold mountain air streamed in.

“Lucky it’s summer.” Commented Buzz

“We wouldn’t have made it if it wasn’t.” came a reply

“I hope the monastery has central heating.”

“I’m sure it has.” Said Laurence

From the first moment they entered the cloistered environment you could tell it wasn’t still run by monks; there was more of a military feel to the décor. The man who was behind the front desk snapped to attention as the crew approached and blurted out a pre-programmed response in some European language that Laurence seemed to understand. He indicated that our luggage would be taken to our rooms and that the office was the place to be at the moment. Coming out from behind the desk, he frog marched off in front of the group and led the way to a darkened hallway full of doors; he stopped in front of a particularly large one and knocked. The foreign reply came immediately and loud.

“Enter.”

This man, behind even a larger desk, had a similar military style but obviously of higher rank. He spoke in perfect English, howbeit with a strong German accent.

“We had somewhat of an altercation with the man you asked us to detain for you. He was not pleased when we insisted that he spend the night here and produced a hand gun thinking that it would solve his predicament. However, my men are well trained at handling that type of situation and without too much fuss disarmed him and placed him in the detention cell. You will find him in the lower sections of our establishment if you wish to interview him. Your men, whom have not been here long, are with him now.

Laurence stepped forward to shake the officer’s hand and began to reply to the report he had just received.” Have you searched the mans car yet?” he asked

“Ya.”

“Where are the contents now?”

“We have them secured.”

“My man here, Dr. Izzard, would like to examine them now.”

“Certainly.”

He snapped a command in his own tongue at the man that had led them to him and the corporal pivoted and indicated to follow.

“I’ll come with you,” sprouted Natalie “I have been dying to see this.”

They marched off down a small staircase at the end of the hallway that they had entered by and into a crypt of underground cubicles, housing God knows what secrets. The uniformed guard stopped in front of one of the small iron doors and begun fumbling with a large ring of keys; he selected the appropriate one and unlocked the ancient hatch. Buzz entered the chamber which housed a cardboard box large enough to contain a medium sized T.V sitting on a table in the middle of the small stone room. He folded back the top flaps, reached in and pulled out one half of the golden replica of the Narmer palette; he turned to show it of to Natalie.

“Not bad hey!”

“Not bad at all.” Replied Natalie

“Good enough to do the job.” Said Buzz

“Could you fault it?”

After further inspection of the other half and a small amount of time to ponder the question; he answered “Not without access to a lab and that’s one place I don’t expect this replica to visit,”

Before he could return it to the box, Laurie appeared at the doorway and commented on the golden apparition.

“So that’s what your friend can turn a couple of kilos of gold into within twenty four hours; it’s an excellent investment.”

“It’s gotten us this far but whether or not it will get us any further will be up to you and your goons.” Said Buzz

“Don’t worry, I think we won’t have any trouble turning the carrier pidgin now that he has failed his master; we are his only friends and I am about to go and impress that on him right now.”

“So you won’t be requiring our assistance with him?” asked Natalie

“No, “returned Laurie “You may check out your accommodation upstairs if you like, we should have everything tidied up down here before morning.”

“Thanks’.” Said Buzz as he finished repacking the box; he then took Natalie’s arm and walked to the stairs while the guard locked up and moved off to join with Laurence and the others.

“All is going smoothly.” Commented Nat

“Yes,” replied Buzz “just as we had planned.”

They found their rooms with the help of a uniformed woman who was quick to point out that the suite that they were going to occupy had two bedrooms and a common area. She explained to them that dinner would be a very plain affair although there was an excellent selection of wines and spirits that could be chosen. Buzz was openly excited when his question of whether Benedictine was on the list, was acknowledged in the affirmative and Nat was equally delighted when Moet Chandon got the nod.

They settled quickly into the common room chairs after freshening up in their respective rooms and by the time they were putting their feet up, Madam Uniform was returning with their food and drinks trolley. She lit the gas lanterns and brought the wood fire to life before wishing them a pleasant evening before retiring to hers.

“I’m glad we have been given time aside from the mechanics of this part of our adventure, I don’t think I would like to be in the interrogation process that is going on downstairs.” Stated Buzz

“Thank God for Laurence and Sir Hamish, I wouldn’t like to be going through this with out them.” Said Nat

“Would you like review what we have been learning over dinner?” asked Buzz

“Yes, I am a bit confused how the breastplate changed hands betweenCleopatra and the woman known as Elizabeth in the Greek Christian literature also I am a bit in the dark over how the Marys of the Gospels became intricately involved in the process,

Gabriel took time over the dinner provided whilst he thoughtfully commented on a way to understand the complex nature of the intertwined characters of the period [100 B.C – 100 A.D].

“Your fathers work seemed to be geared to this period and you would know by your newfound intuition that when we look for the spirit of Mereneith, we will find her in-between two opposing cultures weaving her particular brand of reconciliation. I am beginning to understand this and why she would be known by one side as a particular deity and by the other by a different name. If you were to take into account which culture had the upper hand, militarily, at the time then you could discern how one aspect of her personality could be played down.

So as to ascertain the personification of Mereneith at any one particular time or place, you would have to understand the politics of the day; for example: if you lived in Rome at the time of Julius Caesar when he fell from grace and up until then you had honoured his victories by issuing pamphlets, retelling his stories of conquest or as was done at the time minting coins, then if you were to continue after he was stabbed in the back and Octavian was at war with Cleopatra, you to would fall prey to a similar fate. If your business was selling statues of Cleopatra, to promote her as a goddess and had just taken delivery of a large number of expensive hand carved images because you had expected them to rule for many years as divine patrons of Rome then you would have no choice but to change the name of the statues. Similarly, if you were preparing to distribute coins all over the known world with images of Cleopatra on them and your Emperor changed from Mark Antony to Augustus then the name of the image on your coins would have to change, to say Musa.

After Cleopatra and Mark Antony’s defeat at Actium, if they didn’t commit suicide, they would have had to change their names and find somewhere else to live.Jerusalem would have been an obvious choice and if the man that ran that fortress was called Herod then that was just another way of saying King and Herodias would have been what the locals would have called his Queen regardless of what her real name was. Now to answer you concern on how Cleo VII could have been associated with Eli- Sabbath thirty years after her premature demise, I say that by the time of the death of Herod in 4 B.C that if her spirit was still alive and the breast plate had to be passed on then there would have been no other choice than Elizabeth she was in the perfect position and place. Her man Zacharias had just been appointed charge of the temple items and was presiding over ceremonies at the world’s newest and most impressive place of worship that had the Ark at the center. Her name in Hebrew and Aramaic meant Goddess of the Sabbath and as far as I can tell as the Romans moved in to occupy the temple, she and her son John move out of Jerusalem and into the Parthian protected areas of Palestine where she became known as Musa, a Roman refugee who becomes head wife and Queen to the Parthian King Pharaates IV.

She wasn’t a popular choice in the eyes of the people of Parthia because of her Roman connections and after the death of her husband, of which she got the blame, Musa and her son were exiled to the desert regions of the area. The scene was set where the followers of the old ways of Moses, Aaron and Miriam were once again looking for a Messiah to lead them into reoccupying the Promised Land. John began to grow in fame as the Baptist and the ascetic life of the Esseanes monastic practices welled up from the Jordan to concentrate in theQumran communities of the Dead Sea. The prophecies of the ancient and most revered men of God, Elijah, Isaiah and many more were about to be played out on the chessboard of history with two mighty opponents squaring up to one another where the prophesied Prince of Peace and his Queen of the South would take center stage.”

“Jesus!” exclaimed Natalie

“And Mary Magdalene.” Added Gabriel

They both took long sips of their respective beverages; a long silence ensued accompanied by vacant stares at non-specific areas of the large room.

Nat was the first to speak with a slow and careful enunciation, “Martha was an important and enigmatic figure in the early years of the first century A.D Holy Land; stories of her permeated the gospels yet there is no record of her in history other than she was the owner of a property in between the Esseanes haunts of the Dead Sea and Roman occupied Jerusalem. She seemed to be a wealthy patron of Jesus and an anomaly in her own right as land ownership was generally a male dominated privilege; the accepted fact that she gave shelter, succour and moral support to the seditious successors of John the Baptists rebellion, makes it inconceivable that she wasn’t well known to the authorities.

At the time of Jesus’ conception, there were two people who would have attested to his divinity and they were his mother, Mary and her cousin Elizabeth. By the time of his crucifixion there were two or three women that stood beside him equally convinced of his ‘godly status’ and they were Martha, Mary of Bethany and Mary of Magdala. These women were the Mother Superiors, Head Priestesses and Matriarchal Icons of a religion that rightfully claimed association with the ideals of the past but set the standards for the future. They sat squarely between the domineering press of Greco-Roman fascism and Syro-Phoenician mysticism under the guise of Judao-Christian pacifism and were the Zeitgeist of the Mereneith.

  

Martha                        John the Baptist                      Elizabeth

Martha was wise, intelligent and aware of the influence that a woman of her status could wield in the world of her day. She remembered the long reign of the Cleopatra’s, how they had ruled from the time of Alexander’s conquests in 323 B.C. and how Cleopatra VII single handily broke Julius Caesars insane push for world domination; not to forget Mark Antony’s defeats in her home country of Syria. The memories of Herodias’ domineering influence on the men that built the second temple at Jerusalem, Caesarea and Herodium were still fresh in her mind and she had personally known of Elizabeth’s effects on the Parthians.

Many years of study in both Greek and Aramaic gave her the position in life to be involved in the teachings of John the Baptist, Jesus the Christ and Mary of Bethany. No one presumed to be her superior not the Palace, nor the Temple dwelling Sadducees of Jerusalem and certainly not the nomadic desert dwelling interlopers of the Parthian persuasion, who were based at Petra, Damascus,Capernaum and closer to home the Qumran Esseanes.

When John’s head was requisitioned, it was symbolic of the transfer of power and in the tradition of mummifying the remains of previous leaders, totally misunderstood by all. She ruled and Jesus knew it that’s why he presented himself to her and her offsider for his anointing as the Osiris of the age. Her days were coming to an end, she had fought long and hard to establish Gods Kingdom on Earth; Jesus represented all that she could have hoped for in a Messiah and Mary was a suitable candidate for the Isis of her age. After they had performed the ‘walking on the water ceremony’ and the ‘Marriage at Cana’had taken place, Jesus turned ‘water into wine’ and matured into the leader she had prayed for. Lazarus (old Zach) hadn’t amounted to much, even though Jesus had tried to resurrect him as a plausible leader; Simon turned out to be more of a stumbling block than a rock of strength and denied Jesus three times on the crucial night when the murderous Bar-abbas was released;http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul Saul opposed the reign of a son of David as King of the Jews and began a ten year reign of terror instead, imprisoning, torturing and murdering his way through Jesus’ followers before beginning his own faction of Christianity and justifying his actions by teaching that Jesus had to be crucified to fulfil Old Testament prophecy, eventually becoming Paul the main contributor to the New Testament and the self proclaimed Apostle to the Romans, living to an old age in protective custody while he dictated scripture to his physician Lucius. Martha ended her days in exile, with the ones that would have been great if Jesus had of become the King of Kings in the western world as well as the East.

Gnosticism became the knowledgeable alternative to the Paulinian based doctrines of the Roman Catholic church that would use the patriarchal apologists rhetoric to enslave the very people who Jesus intended to liberate with His teaching that ‘you shall know the truth and the truth will set you free’. The artefacts that would have adorned Jesus’ world center of enlightenment were buried along with the documents that the western authorities labelled Heretical. Copies of the Gospel of Mary Magdalene, the Gospel of Thomas, the Gospel of Judas and John the Baptists writings were buried at places like Nag-Hamada in Egypt and caves around the Dead Sea because they disagreed with Peter, Paul and Luke’s versions of events.

Caves at Qumran- where Dead Sea Scrolls were found- Nag Hamada Texts

Paul portrayed himself as the Set of his day, or as the Greek god Apollo’s manufacturing miracles, writing scripture in the name of God, apologizing for his part in the Crucifixion and ensuing crimes against humanity in the vain hope that human sacrifice would be seen as adequate for the salvation of his followers. In the West his writings were adhered to, his doctrines revered, while the true force of Gods presents on Earth was relegated to the outskirts of history to be mocked and reviled as Harlots and Heresy by the mainstream manipulators of the masses.

This in the end was the fulfilment of the prophecy that the evil one would rule this world until the truth of the mater, along with the Logos of the day would emerge after three days in hell or until the abomination of desolation stands where it should not. The rule of the Kingdom of Satan would end and the beast chained and fettered for a thousand years when the Queen of the South would arise to bring about a thousand years of peace with her Prince of Peace, the Messiah of the poor, the Emanuel of the broken, the crucified Lord of God’s Kingdom and the manifest form of the Eternal Mereneith and her chosen Osiris.”

“Time out, time out, time out.” Came the call from the awestruck Gabriel “This is totally blowing me out, I need a moment here, stop and smell the roses; do you realize what you are saying, are you compos mentors? Speak to me Natalie.”

“Yes, I am here.”

“Good,” returned Buzz “I was starting to worry there for a moment, I thought you had flipped out; do you remember what you were saying?”

“Yes.”

“Does it bother you that you just said contravenes all that this reality believes and turns on its head the theology of thousands of recognized scholars of not only the Catholic religion but Protestants, Jews and maybe most importantly of all Masons?” asked Buzz

“I can’t help it; it’s just flowing out. My mind is agreeing with what you are saying but my intuition is overriding and convincing me that all we have been led to believe is a load of shit.”

“Well that’s just great.” Replied Buzz

“I know.” Finished Nat

Gabriel realized he had to consolidate the moment and came up with the appropriate response to equalize. “Don’t panic,” he paused “I think we can work this out, let’s slowly go over what you’ve been saying and pull it apart. On a scale of one to ten this last session has blown the top off what we can realistically assimilate, so settle back in your chair for awhile and let me take the philosophical pruning shears to this overgrown tree of knowledge that you have cultivated in the backyard and we’ll see if I can shape it to fit the known limits of speculation that a sane exponent of critiquing the establishment would feel at home with.”

“O. K” said Nat as she uncharacteristically removed her sweater in front of him and made herself comfortable.

Even if it unnerved Buzz a little to see her in her underwear, he extended the moment by refuelling their glasses. The room had taken on a warm and sensual air and it was difficult for him to remain focused on the intellectual rather than slide into to a more romantic mode. He drew deeply on his reserve of will power and concentrated on the task at hand, finally asking “do you feel these revelations have come from the appropriate place in your reconciliation based ideology, that has driven the spirit of your Great Lady or is this just a feminine rant that is justifiably vented at a male based theology that has traditionally discriminated against the women who have obviously had an important role in these things.?”

“A bit of both I would say.” Answered Nat honestly

“Then what I would suggest is that you become the arbitrator of the two and symbolically don the Arbitrament that we have been seeking. If the breastplate of Narmer has any relevant application in today’s trouble filled world then surely it would be to represent the various parties in disputes of magnitude from the perspective of the Mother of all, male and female, east and west, Catholic and Gnostic, Christian and Muslim, Jew and Gentile. So even though the tendency is to favour the underdog, the pendulum effect can create sanctimonious despots whose revenge filled nature can cause more problems than those they have deposed. For example, the Hebrews were upset because they were being used as slaves, yet forty years after their Exodus they marched into Cana with the intention of exterminating every man women and child in that land.

In modern times Germaine Greer starts a movement for the equality of women and the next minute there are signs going up in universities all over the world ‘castrate all men’. I say be careful of what you create, in seeking justice, balance out the perspectives and build on the positives. Sure, every body knows established religions have lied and used doctrine to control the masses they oversee. Centuries of abuses of power have mapped the route of civilizations all over the world and yes, they have mainly been led by men but don’t forget the women who have benefited from those monopolies.

Many of the platforms we stand on, to clearly see these injustices that you speak of, have been constructed by the very institutions you so rightfully point to as perpetrators in the crimes of keeping the masses ignorant of the truths they probably need to know. So while not being able to fault what you have been saying, my plea to you is that you tread carefully on the hallowed ground of time honoured bullshit and make sure that your facts are sufficiently bound together in such a way as to build a bridge to new understandings; don’t just leap the chasm which has opened up before us.”


Chapter Eleven

‘O.K,” conceded Nat “you have convinced me, my view of the events surrounding the passion of Christ, have a latent tendency to be disgusted with men’s obsession with death and the necessity for it. The accounts of those days have been rammed down women and children’s throats for centuries by men who have lauded it over the rest of humanity because of their ability to be enthroned as guardians of all that is holy whilst murdering, raping and plundering the bulk of humanity. The people were not given the opportunity to read and understand the very documents that allowed the clergy to set themselves up as the intercessors between God and man. When we finally get the opportunity to read these documents ourselves and can quite clearly see the errors and fabrications that have been imposed on us, we are told that for the sake of the unity of the corrupt system that has formed around an élite of elegantly clad academics, we should not rock the boat .

Well, I say ‘screw that’ and not because of a feminist rave, as you would suggest, because of a right to object and insist on the real and accurate version instead of a unified boy’s club version, that has only allowed women to join if they shut up and conform to the previously dictated rules that monopolized the system in the first place. I will… don the Arbitrament of Judgment… and sit in a position of one who cares for the whole body concerned, but I will not forgo that which I know to be true for the comfort of those that have lied.”

“Well said,” applauded Buzz “Your appraisal of the situation is spot on, I wouldn’t have you take a different tack on it and what you described about the events we spoke of may well be accurate but my concern was for the consequences, for you, if you attack that Theologically based cabal. They are merciless in their right to be right and have traditionally directed their great resources towards tearing down and persecuting anyone who would disagree with their dogmatic structure. Do not forget that those that you would offend with your alternative view are the most powerful people in the world today. The Pope is not just the head of the largest religion ever but also the friend of the greatest military build-up that the planet has ever known, backed up by the heavily funded security services like the C.I.A and M.I.5+6. It’s not that they care about the truth of the matter but insist on propping up the existing powers because they are the ones that fund their organizations; so if you don’t want to end up like Jesus and left hanging from your particular cross, think twice about your desire to reveal the truth you adequately described. Don’t think for one second I would support their case over yours; if we can formalize it and back it up with a logical thesis, then you will have my total support. It makes a lot of sense and I have faith that the source you have tapped into is authentic and worthy of my heartfelt devotion.”

Natalie melted to the words Gabriel had so honestly poured out onto the pallet of conversation which had become the most physiologically intimate she had ever had. Momentarily all they had been talking about started to recede in importance compared to the emotion she was feeling towards her confidant. She squirmed in her chair and weighed up her considerations on weather she should continue the conversation or circum to the heightened feelings she was having towards this man who was fulfilling all her needs. The sharpness of mind she had been experiencing was not confined to maters theological or political but also how she thought about her personal life. Her logic was weighing up how the very establishment they were coming into conflict with were the ones who relegated people’s sexuality to the classification of sinful and at the moment she had no more respect for that aspect of their belief system, than she had for their interpretation of scripture.

The look in her eyes startled Buzz as he was still thinking in the direction that the conversation had been flowing but obviously her mind had shifted, he crossed his legs accordingly. This stunningly beautiful woman in front of him spoke in a voice he had not been privileged to until then and it did not go unnoticed.

“Have you had many women in your life?” she asked

“What?”

“Have you been involved with many women that you have cared about?”

“Yes, No,” stammered Buzz “I’m experienced with girls.”

“You haven’t been married then?”

“Well no, not exactly”

“Ever been in love?” she asked

“Sort of, kind of”

“So, tell me about the last one.”

“She was a student and until I had to get serious about finishing my degrees, we had an excellent understanding.” He answered

“Did she leave you or did leave her?”

“Neither, we just sort of fell out of love”

“Then it wouldn’t bother you if I did this.” She said as she stood up and straddled him in his chair

“No”

She grabbed his head and kissed him like he had never been kissed before, long and passionately. Finally breaking from the kiss he said “I’m flattered.”

She covered his mouth again with her intoxicating lips and by the time she allowed him to breath again, he was speechless. Feeling the need to put him at ease she said “In the way that you described to me about your experiences with girls, I can say to you the same about boys.”

This affected Buzz more than he could have predicted, he responded by taking hold of the moment and kissed her with all the passion he possessed. She moved herself in such a way that melted any reserve he had and prompted him to confirm his good fortune by asking “would you like us to be lovers?”

Natalie answered him by standing up and moving over to the rug in front of the fire and she made herself more comfortable by removing more clothing, before reclining.

Gabriel had to shake himself into the reality of the moment; he stood up and went to her via the table with their drinks on whilst removing his shirt. She purred and giggled at his nervousness which prompted him to pause and pick up his glass, which became his refuge at times like this.

“Don’t panic” she said, trying to keep it light. “Come over here and let me get a good look at you.”

Immediately obeying, he closed the gap between them and knelt down beside her still clutching his brandy balloon. She purposefully ran her gaze over every inch off his body, touching lightly as she went.

“Now there’s no problem here as far as I can see you fulfil all my expectations.”

This again upped the ante and like an epicurean about to start a banquet, that was laid out to impress, his indecision about where to start gave Nat enough time to override him and take control. She swiftly and smoothly took his Benedictine off him and tackled him into a position where she was hovering over him, in anticipation of what to do next. This time she paused and looked like she was going to pour the contents of the glass all over his naked chest.

“What do you expect from a lover?” Nat asked

“Love”

“Perfect answer and I want to give you love but most of all I want to give you the best experience of love you have ever had.”

“Mission accomplished.”

“Are you saying I could stop right now and you would be perfectly satisfied?” she continued, making it hard for him.

“I have loved you from the moment we first met and it’s been the best experience of love I have ever had.”

“Tell me again how you would back me up against the powers that be even though it would put you in an awkward position.” she said in such away that it brought him out of himself

“Try and stop me.”

She continued to press herself onto him with the words “What if my ideal doesn’t fit your standard?”

She had him in a position where no movement was possible, he had to acknowledge that there wasn’t a lot of room in their relationship for the normal grinds that couples throw themselves into so he said “I don’t have to push my standard.”

This must have been what she was wanted to squeeze out of him before she could relax but not wanting to spoil the moment with premature commitments he remained rock steady and waited for her to fully accept him. So with hands on one another’s hearts, where they could feel the pulsing deep within, without any further words, they came together in understanding that no mater how tight their situation became, for better or for worse, they were in together.

Time melted like a Salvador Dali painting and neither of them could have been sure how long or how repetitive the déjà vu like moment became but eventually Natalie threw back her head with laughter because she had spilt the contents of his brandy balloon all over his naked stomach. She composed herself and found a towel while Buzz just laid there seemingly stunned by the experience, she had to playfully rough him up just to snap him out of it.

“That was unbelievable.” Was the first thing he said as he was coming around?

“I thought you might not be happy with me, it wouldn’t be the first time I spoilt the moment by throwing a drink on someone.”

“I didn’t even notice,” replied Buzz “I was miles away, I felt totally at one with you and the most amazing thing happened you must have felt it too?”

“I felt your heart was beating inside of me,”

“I felt as though I was seeing through your eyes and feeling what you were feeling, at the time.”

“I have never been able to get past that point with anyone before because they didn’t understand what I was feeling, at the time.”

What they had been going through was similar to a private matrimonial confirmation between one another; each needing to be sure in their hearts and minds that their love was genuine. Like an Isis selecting her Osiris, Natalie was weighing the heart of her chosen one and Gabriel was making all the right noises. There was no doubt in either of them they had selected wisely; the bonds that had brought them together were strong; their thoughts were synchronized into a focused application of well considered beliefs. Gabriel had studied long and hard to make himself eligible for partnering the complex Natalie, who had been raised to play the part she was so readily taking on. The unseen forces that had shaped both their lives were pleased with the two; you could feel it in the atmosphere. They were joining in harmony two aspects of humanity, which since time immemorial was acting on the broad canvas of history. Two individual personalities strong in the will and actions that was required whenever a bond of this nature occurred; a pair of egos that would normally clash unless the prerequisites were in place, a kind of union that could be flammable and destructive but when committed to a common goal can become unstoppable in producing positive outcomes.

That was exactly what was happening here and they knew it, a marriage of importance, brought together without ceremony but not unnoticed by those that surrounded them. Their union would produce an effect of ongoing movement towards outcomes required in the arena of international importance they were beginning to move in and the consummation of it would be the start of something that those who oppose them will regret. As their evening progressed, all these things and much more confirmed itself in the fabric of their very being and as they reached the deepest parts of one another, realizations flooded into existence that were previously unrealized. The solutions to their problems saturated the sponge of knowledge they both contributed to and eventually as they fell asleep in a shared embrace, they knew they were prepared for whatever the new day would bring.

The loud knocking on the old oak door brought them back into the harsh reality of the moment and they leapt into action. Happy, revitalized and really ready to get going again, Gabriel moved swiftly to the door but paused before opening it. Swinging his head around he saw the rear end of Natalie disappearing into her room.

“Mornin’ ” was the greeting as Sir Hamish moved through the opening doorway, carrying a breakfast tray

“Enter my good man,” came Gabe’s reply” pull up a chair and join us”

“Don’t mind if I do.” Said Hamish as he placed the coffee and croissants on the small dinning table and sat his large frame in one of the chairs surrounding it.

“Did you have a good evening?” asked Buzz

“Very productive, I’ll tell you about it while you eat. Where’s Natalie?”

“She’ll be joining us in a minute.” But it was less than that before she was sitting down with them eating and nodding while Hamish filled them in on what had transpired downstairs the night before.

“The man we have detained turns out to be an over qualified courier that was sent to Zurich on behalf of some very influential people. He eventually came around to seeing things our way and volunteered all the information we need to know to proceed along with our plan.” He finished off with while helping himself to a cup of coffee.

“We know all that.” Said Nat

“Oh, do you now?”

“Yes,” added Buzz “he also told you he was working for the Vatican.”

“Very perceptive”

“What you are wondering about is how we would use this information in our Quest and how would that differ from what you and Laurence have already planned?” pondered Nat

“Now that you mention it”

Natalie took her time finishing off her croissant, while standing up and leaving Hamish waiting for her to speak. She circled him a bit and then took on a dramatic pose in front of the fireplace.

“We have ascertained were my father is and how we are going to get him back; you will have to follow our instructions to the letter. Do you understand?”

“Yes, but how?”

“Don’t worry about how at this moment, just give me your word you and your accomplices will carry out our plan, not interfere and we should all get what we want out of it.”

Sir Hamish was looking a little apprehensive and had a puzzled expression on his face,” where in the world do you think your father is?”

Tadmor Military Prison,  one of the most brutal prisons ever.

“Syria,” answered Buzz “he is being kept in a very small cell under the Tadmor Detention Center, being tortured into revealing the whereabouts of the original Breastplate but he has told them nothing. They have told him he will rot there if he doesn’t co-operate and we feel time is of the essences in getting him out.”

“I thought they got the original Breastplate when they got him.”

“Apparently not, it seems like he had time to send it to some one before they grabbed him and he is very insistent in not telling them who.” Said Nat

“That’s good then”

“Well not for him at the moment.”

“So what do you plan to do about it?” Asked Hamish

Buzz stood up as well and joined with Natalie at the fire place to present a united front,

“We have to convince them the fake breastplate we have is the one they want.”

“O.K you have my commitment.” Pledged Sir Hamish

“It involves you and Laurence escorting our friendly courier to the meeting with his contact in the Vatican, convincing him the breastplate we have is authentic and the only way they are ever going to get their hands on it is to give us Joe McHale. While you are doing that we will be travelling to Egypt with the fake breastplate and positioning ourselves for the exchange in front of the Sphinx.”

“I think we should all go downstairs and explain this to the others.” Said Hamish

“No, I think you should go downstairs, explain this to the others and if they have any problems with it then they should come up here and we will have it out.”

“Yes Mam.” Came the considered reply

Natalie gave Buzz a delightful morning kiss, as Hamish bustled off through the closing door. She radiated with the glow of a woman who was in control of her environment, her emotions and wasn’t shy in expressing her newfound confidence. Gabriel’s approval and admiration was seeping from him, as he received her advances and matched them with some of his own; both were intent on enjoying every moment alone with one another and happily batted away bantering, that only couples in love would truly appreciate. This set the standard for the day as they readied themselves for the expected second advance of the troops and by the time the whole crew was filling into their suite, the air was decisively in their favour. The shuffling into various corners of the shrinking room accentuated Laurence and James’ sheepishness as Natalie berated them for not being totally upfront with her and Buzz.

“I can understand why you might have felt the necessity to keep certain things from us,” she said “but from now on you will be completely honest with us. I know what you are thinking before you think it and until the completion of our goals you will not be able to hide anything from me; so you may as well get anything off your chests before we go any father.”

“What makes you think you can just change plans, mid stream, without consulting me and expect us to just go along with it without question?” asked Laurence

“Because, my dear man, I have seen the outcome of your plan and I don’t think you would like it. If you don’t believe me, then I suggest you contact Dorothy to confirm what it is I am saying to you.”

Laurence stepped back and shifted his gaze towards his shoes before quietly saying, “I already have, she did predict that this was going to happen and tried to tell me that I shouldn’t argue when it did.”

“I know,” said Nat confidently “now, if there are no more objections, I suggest you ready yourselves for your trip to Rome and arrange for James to have a vehicle to drive us back to the Villa.”

“Yes Mam.” Replied Laurence

It was still early as they were all assembling in the car park of the ancient monastery and packing themselves into the two separate modes of transport they’d be using to leave the mountain retreat. Buzz was checking the communication devices that would be utilized to keep in contact whilst they were heading in two separate directions; the need to co-ordinate and make continual adjustments to their plan was going to be an essential part of the unfolding nature of the journey still in front of them. Hopefully everything would go smoothly from there on in and the cruise down from the Alps of the Swiss-Italian border back to the Mediterranean Villa, they felt so welcome at, would be a pleasant affair.

The easing of the tensions of the last few days were beginning to permeate the mood of this day and both Nat and Buzz were feeling like the cover, they were creating, of a honeymooning couple was more reality than invention and although nothing had been resolved, other than the consummation of their union, the backseat of the car James was piloting carried two very happy people.


Chapter Twelve

From the moment Laurence and Sir Hamish left behind St Bernard’s and began to wind their way down to Rome, following the ancient path of Hannibal, through the marbled Tuscany Mountains of Northern Italy; they busied themselves with the operational aspects of what had now become their assignment. Via the sophisticated equipment they carted with them in their caravan of electronic wizardry, all the bits and pieces of their new plan began to crystallize into place and they started to feel more and more at ease with it.

Sir Hamish applied himself with keeping the prisoner disorientated, convinced of the hopelessness of his situation and sure that his future safety depended on co-operating with his captors. He repeatedly went over what would be required of him when they got to Rome and underneath the blindfolding hood, the captive could hear Laurence on the two-way radio going over details with various accomplices giving the obvious opinion that resistance would be useless. When ever they didn’t want the prisoner to hear what they were saying Hamish would lock him in the soundproof toilet cubical that was neatly tucked into the corner of the truck; when it didn’t mater or they wanted him to hear he would be returned to his bunk and shackled into place. In the end he would be required to deliver a message, that’s all; but in the meantime he would have to be convinced he was surrounded by villains that wouldn’t hesitate to kill him if he didn’t fully co-operate. His reward for doing everything properly, as instructed, would be his very life.

The problems from Otto’s perspective were insurmountable; when he had taken the assignment he was completely assured it would be a simple uncomplicated process and he would have all the back-up he could possibly need. In Zurich it had certainly been the case but because of how easy it had been to acquire the Breastplate, and how sure he had been of himself, he had dismissed the unit that was assigned to guard him and protect the antiquity, in favor of a low profile return to Rome. Big mistake, by the time he realized that things weren’t going his way and Laurence’s men had surrounded him, it was to late to do any thing about it.

He had been thinking it was quite a smart move not to attract attention to himself by going it alone through the out of the way border crossing instead of having a large contingent of security men by his side. They had picked him off at the right time and place because thinking he was home and hosed; he had just notified his controller in Rome that every thing had gone well and he would be making the delivery on time the next day, so as far as anyone knew that was exactly what was happening.

Otto was sufficiently positioned in his organization so as not to have to take orders from anyone except the very top echelons of power. Many forays into the shadowy world of artifact recovery had made him above suspicion, when it came to his trustworthiness but never the less if he was to abscond at any time with the money or the goods, he knew his life would not be worth living.

Now here he was about to enter the offices of the highest bureaucratic authority in the Holy Sea and tells them he had just bungled away six million Euros of their money and was returning empty handed; he didn’t feel as though his life was very certain at all. The promises of his captors to protect him if he could convince his master and controller of the absolute authenticity of the Breastplate and that it was worth letting him go as well as Joseph McHale to get their hands on it, was going to be the hardest thing he would have to do in his entire life. Even though he hadn’t convinced himself he could do it, he couldn’t see that he had any other options at the moment. Sir Hamish had been absolutely relentless in making sure Otto knew exactly where he stood and that successfully completing their requests was the only way out.

Otto was constantly mulling over in his head the facts as Hamish had presented them, either do it as they prescribed and receive a new identity and a job in some safe corner of the world or die by the hands of his now previous employers. With the inevitability of the approaching bind becoming closer every minute, weighing up the pros and cons of this one was a no brainer; if he didn’t want to walk out on the people he had been associated with before this unfortunate episode had been inflicted upon him, what could he look forward to? Not a lot, all the efforts at becoming the expert in his field had amounted to him being the dogsbody for men he despised; years of bowing and scraping to carve for himself a miserable life in the dusty corners of the dark, dank vaults of a cabal of selfish despots, who liked to occasionally view the secret cashes of undocumented finds, important art and items of rare antiquity.

So why not submit to the demands of his captors? It wasn’t like he would be leaving behind a wife and children, he never had the time or opportunity to make that a reality; the times he had left his gilded prison below the Papal castle was usually to travel to obscure destinations and with military precision acquire trinkets to transport back to his mausoleum of hidden delights. Otto had been bourn into an aristocratic family of European nobles whose status in world affairs had been downgraded because of their connections with Nazi-fascism; he had never really felt part of his family as from a very early age he had been handed over to catholic minders who had brainwashed him into a religion he didn’t have any respect for. Intense schooling had led to an extended period in Seminary vocational positioning and eventually him taking his place as an art expert for the church.

Art hadn’t been one of his personal talents but never the less he had managed to accumulate knowledge that allowed him to top all his classes like Art History; the ability to recognize the work of great masters seemed to be genetically inherited, so to the aura of command that allowed him to move into the position of authority he held within the catholic church. Now he was about to throw all that away to placate these people who had captured him during the course of carrying out his duties and suddenly it didn’t seem all that bad. He was ready to unconditionally agree to aid Sir Hamish and Laurence in convincing the fascist, militaristic wing of the Vatican that the breastplate they had sent him to acquire was indeed worth the added price of the release of Joe McHale.

On his release in front of St. Peters Square, Otto was well primed, wired and equipped to complete the essential task he was given by his new associates and was looking forwards to achieving it so he could get on with the new life they were promising him. Sir Hamish and Laurence had satisfied themselves they could trust him although they would monitor him throughout all the phases he would have to complete for them to succeed in the task at hand.

St. Peter’s Square, Rome

While Natalie and Buzz were in transit back to the Villa on the Mediterranean, they had time to go over the revelations they had received since leaving there the day before. Their conversation had an aspect of privacy about it as James there chuffer had donned a set of head phones and was alternating between two-way conversations with the mobile unit and some of his favorite music which happened to be on storage disc in the consul of the car he was driving .

“How do you fell about Jesus now that you have had insights into the nature of his calling and a rethink about his miraculous birthright” thoughtfully asked Buzz

“Strangely enough I feel much closer than I ever have before; I haven’t been a fan of religion in any form, tending to think of them as trouble making organizations hiding behind a semblance of piety, manipulating old stories to prop up their own authority.

So I hadn’t ever really thought of Jesus except in those terms, but now his teachings are starting to make sense to me.”

“Go on” said Buzz

“My limited knowledge had been gleaned from my school days and the standard tales that were told. His miraculous conception to a woman of no particular importance, the birth in a manger at what I imagined was Israel’s tidy town of Bethlehem and a back-water early childhood as a nobody carpenter. I wondered about his exile into Egypt and thought he mush have received some kind of official education there because when he returned he seemed to be so knowledgeable. Why he waited till he was thirty to start his ministry was a mystery to me and then to go around doing miracles until his death and resurrection seemed like it fell into the same category as Greek mythology. So to sum up what I felt about it all would be; why go thorough all that to appease a god who was so mean he required the torturing and murder of his so called son, only to take him away to a mysterious heaven and leave behind a bunch of inadequate apostles to start a church that didn’t seem to do anything for the benefit of man kind except favor a small portion of Mediterranean types. I’m afraid it didn’t do anything for me except make sure I steered clear of anyone who would want to convince me to believe as it was a faith I had no interest in and any study directed towards that area seemed pointless.”

Buzz cut in and requisitioned further comment, “I repeat my question, what do you think now?”

“In perspective to what we have been learning, I can see clearly where he fits in; the spirit he was connecting to was vastly different to the Santa Clause type god I had assumed was the God of the Old Testament. Suddenly his teachings fill my mind with relevance for all peoples of this Earth of ours regardless of their stated religion. I can envisage Him having no more respect for a Trinity or Godhead that absented the feminine than I do. If the Mary’s, that were so predominant in the gospels, were the descended authority of the Breastplate and he had been educated by them in the Ancient Egyptian and Syro-Phoenician ways as well as the Hebrew-Judaism’s he has been accredited with, then the stories of the woman at the well, the stoning of the woman he saved and his association with Mary Magdalene start to make a lot more sense to me, even though he was beating his head against a chauvinistic brick wall that still exists till this day.”

“What about the Miracles?” asked Buzz, as he propped himself up in the corner of the car, indicating he was ready for a long answer and a good story.

“Well let’s take the walking on the water incident; it seems straightforward enough if you take it on face value as reported in the Koine Greek, New Testament Documents; but as you might know they often wrote in a style calledPeshitta, a Syrian Aramaic style that allows the writer to layer the text with deeper meanings for those that have ears. Now I know what it means to have those ears on, I feel as though I can expound on the deeper meaning.

If Jesus was considered a messiah to some of those in the Jewish faction of his entourage, then to those knowledgeable in the Egyptian beliefs he would have been considered a Horus; this would have entitled him to a special education to prepare for the transition towards becoming Osiris. In fulfilling that role Jesus would have been expected to unite the two kingdoms of his day, which we have been learning was the Roman based Greek speaking rulers of the Mediterranean and the Syrian based,

Aramaic speaking Parthians, who had been kicked out of Egypt by Julius Caesar and pursued into Mesopotamian by Mark Antony. Jesus knew that if he was to unite these two long term enemies he was going to have to walk both sides of the river, speak both languages as well as the Hebrew of the Jews who occupied the middle ground and the Holy city of Jerusalem. If he was truly a Prince of Peace, a Horus and was going to become a King of Kings, an Osiris then he would have been expected to walk on the water that occupied the gulf that separated the two cultures as well as raise an army of peaceful disciples and apostles to assist him in bringing about His united Kingdom of God.

From a woman’s perspective, specifically one who had been raised as an Isis, Mary would have seen Jesus as an ideal candidate for the weighing of the heart ceremony. Considering what we have learnt about the authority of the Breastplate and how that power was transferred, Mary Magdalene was perfectly positioned to be that woman and when she anointed Jesus and wiped his feet with her hair, it was symbolic that she had accepted Him as her Osiris.

Now back to the miracle of walking on the water; this was symbolic of his unique ability to walk both sides of the symbolic Nile which at that time ran through the disputed territories of Israel and Judah and even though Jesus and His Osirian mission was destined to be rejected by the western authorities, his presence was welcomed in the east. From the time of His crucifixion the veil of the temple was rent in two, East went east and west went west; this had the effect of pushing Jesus’ followers and the women of the Breastplate deeper into Parthian territory. Confirming this is the fact that Paul, known as Saul at the time, led Military style attacks on followers of the Way into Parthian Damascus for Ten years after the Crucifixion.

Gabriel cut in feeling the need to review what Nat was saying,

“If I am not mistaken what you are saying is, in your opinion, the factions aligned with the European culture surrounding Jesus at the time of His crucifixion robed themselves of the opportunity to be more closely attuned to the teachings and the principles of the authority of the Breastplate by their rejection of Jesus and the women that accompanied Him.”

“Yes” replied Natalie

“So the Greek speaking Roman style Jews like Saul, never had the authority of the Breastplate or the Ark of the Covenant?”

“Not since the time of Cleopatra and Mark Antony’s dedication to the building of the second Temple that Elizabeth and Zacharias withdrew from.”

“Then what follows is if Jesus and Mary had of been received as the Osiris and Isis of their day then they would have been installed as the King and Queen of a united Roman- Parthian peace pact that would have had a correctly operating temple and staff at the heart of a Jerusalem based new world order.” said Buzz

“Instead, when they rejected this by crucifying the Christ, they ignited a war between East and West that we are still feeling the effects today.”

“Do I take it for granted that you think Jesus and Mary Magdalene were married, as is now commonly suspected?” asked Buzz

“I know they were, but as with everything else we have been learning, you have to put that into perspective with what was going on at the time. I would like you to think about the ‘Wedding at Cana’ which was comprehensively documented as the moment Jesus began His miraculous career by turning ‘Water into Wine’. If we look at the record of that event without our rose colored glasses on and listen to the author with ears that are prepared to hear, then it isn’t difficult to imagine what was going on here was bigger than the simple marriage of two unnamed people. The bringing together of important factions was traditionally celebrated by the pairing off of a princess with a prince and the associated harems and households merging into one.

The type of people that Jesus and Mary were hanging around with were hostile towards the Herodean dictator that overshadowed their lives with threats of death, on a daily basis, for any act that they might deem seditious or blasphemous. The Pharisees and Sadducees, who were the ruling class of the time, would not hesitate to arrest, torture, crucify or cut the head off any one they thought might be plotting to overthrow them or their evil system.”

“So, it doesn’t take a genius to work out, if Jesus’ religious party, that had inherited the followers of the recently beheaded John the Baptist, was going to wed the Syro-Phoenicians Princess, Mary of Magdala in Cana that they wouldn’t have been handing out invitations in Jerusalem.”

“No and if you were so inclined as to be filled with the same spirit as Jesus and Mary in regards to their desire for a new ruling class in Jerusalem then you would have had to learn to keep your mouth shut because Herod II had his spies everywhere. If you wanted to inform others about the recent happy event in which many people were filled with the spirit to support a new kingdom that would treat people fairly, then it would have been wise to use the Peshitta technique of talking about a bridegroom turning vessels that were filled with a low octane content into supercharged versions that were filled with the new high octane spirit so desperately desired at the time.”

“Please continue” said Buzz

“If my explanation of Jesus turning ‘water into wine’ has the deeper meaning of Baptism in the Holy Spirit, then when He called for the empty vessels, that were then filled with water from the well, it was symbolic of saying those that had received the baptism of John and had knowledge of the old ways. When he turned them into being filled with wine it was symbolic of making them priests and priestesses in His coming Kingdom of God and from thereon in considered filled with the Holy Spirit.

One of them was singled out and presented to the Master, who on pronouncing ‘the best had been left to last’ bestowed upon her the honor of becoming His high priestess or Isis, depending on how you looked at it. But this knowledge was only for those that had ears because if the powers that be, of the time, had of got wind of what had been going on they would have been hunted down and slaughtered like dogs; probably by Saul of Tarsus the guy who was responsible for producing most of the Greek New Testament and for teaming up with Simon to become Peter and Paul, the founding fathers of the Catholic Church in Rome.

From then on in whenever Jesus was ‘healing the sick’, ‘giving sight to the blind’, ‘raising the dead’ he would be forgiving their previous shortcomings and enlisting them into the swelling ranks of His revitalized movement for political change and when He ‘fed the multitudes’ he would be educating them in ‘The Way’. The Pharisees’ and Sadducees’ found all this heretical to ‘their way’ of worshiping ‘Yahweh’, their god, but as we know Jesus considered them to be ‘Hypocrites, sons of Satan and a brood of vipers’.

Simon Peter was part of the Pharisee’s dispersia of synagogues in the Roman occupied parts of Palestine like Capernaum, on the Sea of Galilee; so as with other Pharisees he could have been called to report to the ruling class Sadducees that occupied the very best of positions in the city of Jerusalem and worshiped at the Temple daily. It was at one such meeting that he denied Jesus three times, leading to His crucifixion even though the day before when Jesus had predicted that Simon, Peter would do this to Him ‘before the cock crowed three times’ and had said to him ‘get behind me Satan’ for suggesting that Jesus was indeed ‘the Christ’ or in other words the one they intended to nail to a cross.”

“Truly amazing!” exclaimed Buzz “Please continue”

“Saul was a King in Hebrew tradition, a sleazy individual, with the backing of the Empirical power of his day. David was the honorable young man of the people who rose up with the backing of the Edomites, the Arabic speaking peoples of his day, to eventually defeat Saul and unite the Kingdoms from Babylon to Kush. When the peoples started talking about Jesus as being the descendant of David and the Heir to his throne, it was only natural that anyone named after Saul would have been offended; especially if you had of been in with the rulers of Jerusalem at the time, which Saul of Tarsus was. Tarsus was a Greek speaking, Romanized front line town in the war against Aramaic Speaking Parthians from the Province of Pontius in Asia Minor. Pilot, the Roman backed Governor of occupied Judea, the one that washed his hands over the unjust condemning of Jesus to crucifixion by the Sanhedrin of Jewish leaders, was also from that area and must have know Saul personally. It was in this context that Pontius Pilot was asked to judge between acknowledging Jesus as the Davidic King of the Jews or what turned out to be Saul’s choice of the murderous Bar-abbas [Bar, meaning son of. Abbas meaning the fathers] or loosely translated ‘choice of the church fathers’.

Now I think it is extremely relevant to point out at this time that Saul, who was to become Paul, by his own admitions in his Koine Greek letters to the dispersia of roman Christian churches of the first century, begins a ten year reign of terror against the followers of Jesus by pushing them as far back into Parthian territories as possible. Eventually after being captured on a raid into Damascus, classifying himself as a prisoner of Jesus and a stint in Arabia, he reinvents himself as an evangelist and teams up with Simon, Peter the one who denied Jesus three times on the crucial night and Bar-nabbas his cousin to tour around the Mediterranean collecting moneys for the poor people in his church at Jerusalem; to which he failed in delivering.

Call me silly if you like, but I just don’t get it how this man then gets to dictate letters to the seven churches of his day as if he is speaking as God, for God, about Jesus whom he’d crucified on maters of controversial dogmatic doctrine, while he is in jail awaiting trial for his part in the atrocities that were committed in Judea during his time there. When did the people become so naive that they could mistake a murders apologetics as the Word of God and believe him when he says that the man that he murdered died so their sins could be forgiven? Wake up and smell the coffee!”

“What?” grunted Buzz

“Would you like a cup of coffee?” asked James handing over a flask whilst he was still driving

“Yeah, thanks.” Came the reply as he took the container with screw on cup and poured one for him and Natalie to share.

What had just happened was that a long and sustained pause had descended on the conversation because they had drifted off into another vision off the past. Gabe commented on this and began to recount what it was that they had witnessed. “We had been seeing through the eyes of Jesus and Mary while they were reclining in a room with twelve others. There was a low table in the center of the room filled with bread and various dishes of a Mediterranean cuisine; the wine was flowing and the air was filled with the aroma of a Turkish style hooker pipe, which was being shared by all; the women that had provided the feast were hovering on the outskirts of the room and were tending to favor the kitchen area.

Jesus was speaking, everybody’s attention was focused on what it was He was trying to impress on them; the importance of the moment was obvious to all present as he was attempting to summarize His teachings and in going over what He had been saying, He reached into the center of the table and picked up the largest loaf of bread that hadn’t been eaten. When he held it out in front of himself and asked them to consider it the body off his knowledge, Mary sniggered and indicated to Him that she didn’t think they were getting it. He asked them if they could manage to always remember one thing about him when they spoke of this day and that was He knew the geometry of the placebo sphere, he was holding in front of them, in such a way as He could divide it into twelve equal pieces. He did this while handing each of them a piece and saying it represented many things, like the twelve tribes of Jacob or in a simile of the World, a North Pole, a South Pole and ten kingdoms in-between. His understanding of things was multi-dimensional as opposed to the two-dimensional thinking that would divide up a piece of bread like it was a pizza. He invited them to think about that, whenever they sat down to enjoy a meal with one another.

Before he was finished with the lesson but after he successfully plucked twelve crusty bits from the large ball of bread, He dramatically held on to the soft doughy center for Himself, plunged it into a goblet of wine and finally held it up high with the blood red liquid dripping down his arm. It actually looked like he was holding a severed body part when he explained, to His now riveted audience, this was the heart of the matter. He pleaded with them to never forget He sweated blood over the essence of the message he was asking them to take into all the world; in God’s Kingdom all peoples deserved an equal portion, no piece was more important than any other and if they valued the teaching, they would never share wine with anyone without making a point of it.

Dumas and the ones that spoke mainly Aramaic seemed to totally understand what He was saying because He had spoken to them about it in their language; but Simon, Peter and his mates who had only an acquired knowledge of His language, seemed to quibble about the meaning of His display, in their favored language of Koine Greek, saying that they thought He wanted them to eat His body and drink His Blood. Mary laughed again and said that She thought they would never get it.

Jesus was visibly upset as he instructed Judas to go to the Sanhedrin and tell them he was ready to have it out with them; He said that he would be waiting in the garden of Gethsemane for them on his return and he looked at Simon, Peter with distain as he left the room. Mary tried to follow Him but He dismissed Her and said that He would see Her again after the evenings events were over. She knew what was about to happen as they had discussed it many times; He had always maintained that this rebellious right wing Greco- Judean ruling class, as well as the Romans, had the right to participate in the peaceful Kingdom of God even if they were never likely to embrace it. The fact they would probably crucify Him in His attempts to take them His plans was inconsequential to Jesus as His vision of the future had shown Him He would be together with Mary, in their fathers Kingdom, after this part of it was over.

Simon, Peter and his mates were planning to deny Him before the night was out and in doing so would claim that he was only fulfilling scripture and that it had to happen for the salvation of all. This was assuming God was a God requiring Human Sacrifice, even though on several occasions Jesus had said, ‘He had come for compassion not sacrifice’ but their unreasonable desire for Jesus’ blood to cleanse them of their sin was ingrained in their belief system and could not be shaken, no matter what Jesus said.

As it was, the evening’s events played themselves out just as Mary had predicted and it wasn’t till he was hanging on the cross that she saw him again. She was distraught at His suffering but sure He wouldn’t die and was prepared to stay by His side while all others forsook Him. It was her that arranged for the Opium to be sponged to Him on the end of the spear that would eventually piece His side; it was her that begged the Roman soldier not to put the spear in so deep that it would kill him and it was her that waited outside his tomb for him to be revived and doctored back to good health. She alone told the others that He had survived before she went with him into Parthian controlled Tadmore or Palmyra as the Greeks knew it.

From the ancient trading capital deep inside Syria, the descendants of Cleopatra and Elizabeth would rule beside their respective Parthian Kings until the time of the famous Zenobia, two hundred years later, when she would win back Egypt from Roman control and create the environment for what would become Islam. In that part of the world for the next fifteen hundred years, the western powers would regret the day they crucified Jesus instead of accepting His offer of peace. While the Roman Empire crumbled and the Eastern based cultures flourished, the Golden years of Islam put some kind of Balance in what would have been a World wide dictatorship of misguided Caesars.”


Chapter Thirteen

Joseph McHale woke up to another miserable day in the darkened underground cell he had been kept in for the last couple of months. The confines of the meter and a half square concrete box, that had been his torture, were stinking from the smells of his excrement. His skin was festered with the sores that came with the type of treatment they dished at this arse end of the world detention center that was Tadmore. Somehow or other the people who had grabbed him from Kings Cross, Sydney thought all they had to do to get what they wanted from him was to transport him here blindfolded, in fetters and wait till he cracked but they had underestimated his resolve.

He had long since decided he would rather die in his hell hole than give them what they wanted. It meant more to him than life itself to make sure they never got their hands on the Breastplate or his beloved Mereneith. She would sustain him in his hours of need, filling his head with glorious visions of a world void of greedy manipulating Sons of Mammon; he didn’t know how or when but his minds eye was assuring him he would survive this torturous confinement he was living. His keepers were amazed at the inner strength of the man they were trying to break and they kept saying to themselves and the ones they were reporting to, ‘any day now they would have what they required of him and then they would kill him’.

Suddenly as if by a miracle he was ripped from his tomb, thrown into a shower room and hosed off; his painful skin soaked up the cool water as if it were a balm and when they gave him fresh clothes to put on it was like bandages for his wounds. Even though he was handcuffed, hooded, thrown into the back of a utility and bounced around as they sped off, the fresh air in his lungs brought life back to his body; the very sunlight that would have killed a man crossing this desert by foot, nourished his life force.

For the first time since this ugly incident had begun, he was starting to think things were beginning to go his way. Underneath his hood he was smiling and he could sense his captors weren’t happy about it.

Back in Rome, Laurence and Sir Hamish were welcoming their new compatriot back into the surveillance van and congratulating him on a job well done. It had taken him all night to get in and out of the secure compound that used to be his workplace; after he had done what he was instructed to do, he was quite pleased to use the complicated series of underground tunnels that allowed him to escape unnoticed by the Vatican guards. They thought he was still working in his office but surely by now that myth had exploded along with any further credibility he would ever have in those circles again.

He had communicated to his master and controller via the secured internal internet site operating inside the closed walls of the Holy palace exclusively, that if they still wanted the item they had sent him to authenticate and obtain for them then they were going to have to turn up with Joseph McHale in front of the Sphinx temple, in Egypt, at the stated time or they would never see the Breastplate or hear from him again. You could say he well and truly made his point and then vanished into the night leaving no trace or options for his unsuspecting ex-colleagues other than the instructions he had left them.

As for now, Hamish and Laurie were going to make their way back to Saddam Hussein’s old villa in France from where Nat and Buzz had just left, after staying the night, and pick up their Jet Plane which was still hangared there. They still had a bit of continent hopping to do and a few errands to run before they could all meet up again, this time hopefully with their old buddy Joe. Just maybe they could arrange a few surprises for their adversaries as well as improve their own chances.

The ship that Natalie and Gabriel were booked on was leaving from Marseilles quite sometime before noon and if they were going to meet the sailing time they had to first acquire the paperwork they would need from an associate of Laurence’s at the port. This was done with a minimum of fuss and by the time they were walking up the gangplank of the beautiful ocean liner they were comfortably looking like any other honeymooning couple that were about to embark on a cruise of the Mediterranean.

They had checked their luggage and shaken the hand of the first mate before being shown to their first class cabin by the bursar. After they had made love and showered together for the second time in two days they were starting to actually feel like a married couple and as they confirmed to one another, that it felt good.

Lunch was next on the agenda in the best restaurant on the boat and when they had adjourned, to having drinks on the deck, there was no land in sight and clean sailing ahead.

The bow of the ship was pointed towards Egypt, as was the aim of their discussions and as they took their place amongst the first class deck chairs on the fore deck Buzz said “now this is the life,” putting his feet up and admired the scenery.

“Don’t get to comfortable,” was the comment Nat came back with “it won’t be long before we’re back in the thick of it.”

“O.K,” conceded Buzz “Let’s take this time to review the situation and make sure we’re ready for them when we get there.”

“Lead on, oh mighty one.” Came the light hearted comment

Buzz moved his sun hat ninety degrees and placed the fingers of his left hand between the chest height buttons of his shirt in a comic gesture, making himself look like Napoleon about to lead off at a bad moment.

Natalie laughed at his antics while trying to steal the ridiculous hat off his head; after wrestling over it for some time the crumpled hat went back on in the right direction and Buzz began to speak in a more serious tone.

“We’ve certainly covered some ground, you and I, since we began our endeavor. I’m delighted you chose me to go through it with and what ever comes our way, be sure I have no regrets. These people we will be coming up against are ruthless and if you feel uncomfortable risking your life in the exchange for your father, then you must know I would be happy to confront them myself.”

“No,” said Nat “absolutely not. We are in this together and you know you need me by your side if we are to have any chance at pulling this thing off.”

“Yes I do,” replied Buzz “although I am positive we can achieve our Goals and can envisage us getting through unscathed, there are a few blind spots in our course that worry me and I wouldn’t like it at all if you were to get hurt.”

“Don’t worry, for no amount of it will help us achieve what I know we will be successful in.”

“O.K. we’re locked, loaded and faith will get us through.” he paused a minute after his confirmation and then changed the subject with a question, “Would you tell me what you know of your mother?”

“Sure,” said Nat “as you know I was raised by my father and it was always difficult for us to talk about her because I don’t think Joe really knew what happened to her. He told me he was a young man when they met and that she was quite a bit older than him; they were very much in love, had a lot in common and while at an archaeological dig in Abydos, not long after I was born, she just went missing with out a trace. He did everything in his power to find her but because of a lack of interest by the Egyptian authorities, he eventually returned me to Australia were I was looked after by a series of nannies and a private school system; he continued to look for her in the best way he could while still returning every chance to spend time with me.”

“That’s it hey!”

“Yeah, How about you?”

“Similar story I’m afraid except I didn’t know anything about either of my parents and I was raised by an elderly couple that are dead now.”

“I’m so sorry,” said Nat “well at least we have one another now and I am sure that Joe will love you too.”

They had a brief hug that was equally comforting to them both and when they broke, Nat changed the subject with a question, “Can we go over what we know about the original Breastplate?”

“Sure,” said Buzz, settling back in his seat and realizing Nat’s need to occupy her thoughts with a more work related conversation.

“We know it was a bejewelled golden bodice from the pre-flood era, highly prized in Egypt from the First Dynasty till the end of the Old Kingdom around 2200 B.C.E. It was then associated with a developing Europe and Mesopotamia until some kind of natural disaster saw Sarah and her daughters reinstate its predominance at the center of beliefs and worship in Egypt from the time of Sobeck-neferu in 1790 B.C.E till the exodus of Akhenaton in 1355 B.C.E. It turned up again at the time of Solomon’s Temple and then onto the Queen of Sheba with whom it remained till the time of Jezebel and Esther where-in the influence went into exile with the Assyrian conquest of Israel and Judah.

By the time of the fourth century B.C.E, after the fall of Troy when Alexander the Greats influence was at its peak, he defeated Darius’ Empirical rule in 333 B.C.E at Susa and took possession of all his treasures including the breastplate and the women who wore it. After Alexander’s death Ptolemy Sotor took his incorruptible body and the most precious treasures, back to Egypt to officially begin the three hundred year reign of the Cleopatra’s over the barbaric tribes of Macedonians who chose to live in the Nile basin. Then we see the transfer of power from the Greeks to Julius Caesar onto Mark Antony and through to the Herods around the time of Jesus Christ all under the watchful eyes of the women of the Breastplate. Am I missing anything?”

“No,” answered Nat “please continue.”

“With all that backing him, Jesus pronounces disasters on Herod and the oppressors of the poor, peace loving Children of God; deeming the destruction of their temples, the dispersion of their peoples and the predicted absence of his God ‘Eli, Eli, Lama Sabatini’ till the end of days when the ‘Abomination of Desolation stands where it should not’. I believe there were those that took these words seriously.”

“Explain that for me will you?” asked Nat

“Well, Jesus had offered the rulers of the known world at the time a peaceful, just, Kingdom of God on Earth and they answered him with crucifixion and war. He was the Logos of the Piscean era, hence the sign of the fish, and the spokesman for God for that entire period; so considering that would run from then until the dawning of the Age of Aquarius, represented by the mother of pots and the blending the two oils of humanity into one, this was a prophetic way of saying the peace he spoke of would not arrive until the Queen of the South rose in two thousand years time.

The realization mankind was not ready for what he had to offer, must have come as a great disappointment for Him and his loving partner Mary. They realized then and there, it would not be for a time, a time again and half a time, before peace and a united kingdom would come to mankind even though they had done everything in their power to bring that vision of the future into their own time. They knew it would take the threat of something as awesome as the mutual destruction that could be caused by an ‘Abomination of Desolation’ or as we know it, an Atomic Bomb to shock those who would wage war by preference, into wanting peace instead.

Their decision to vanish into obscurity and hide the Breastplate of Authority from the corrupt inheritors of the era, that would be full of war and strife, was the only way to go. The Great Pyramid of Egypt was the perfect place to hide the symbolically powerful Arbitrament but while a decadent Rome was in control of that area, there would be no hurry. Three hundred years later Zenobia, a Parthian warrior Queen and a descendant of Cleopatra, fights her way back into control of Gaza and completes her destiny by secreting ‘the family heirloom’ into the largest manmade structure on earth, for a time capsule fate. She is then taken prisoner by Rome and had her home town of Tadmore or Palmyra, as the Greeks liked to call it, leveled for her trouble.”

 

Zenobia’s Kingdom (approx. 280 A. D.) The Vatican’s Zenobia

“So there it remained, bricked up behind Davidson’s chamber, in the King’s chamber of the Great pyramid for fifteen hundred and fifty years until Howard Vyse and his British gung-ho mates blasted their way into it in 1837 A.D.” said Nat

“Yes, amazingly enough; a very strange series of events led to not Howard Vysecoming into possession of it, but an Italian sea captain. Caviglia had independently searched Egypt for many years before teaming up with the British and eventually achieving his goal of acquiring the most precious of all artefact finds. He even managed to keep it out of their hands and in Egypt by masterminding a scam whereby a ship loaded with goodies heading for England went down in the Mediterranean and it was ridden off as lost, before they even knew what it was they had.

The discovery that actually led to its unearthing began when Jean-Francois Champollion deciphered the Rosetta stone, beginning a process of understanding Hieroglyphics that wasn’t fully realized until many years later in the time of Wallis Budge, the celebrated British museum curator. Flinders Petrie, Margaret Murray and Dorothy Eady in the early twentieth century began a group of an elite few in the western world that had any idea about this Legendary Breastplate of Narmer.”

     

Champollion Caviglia Wallis Budge Flinders Petrie Margaret Murray Dorothy Eady

“So what Laurence’s Dora, back in Scotland, told me about her seeing The Lady with the Breastplate in Egypt before the Second World War, was quite possible? Asked Nat

“Yes, but what threw the spanner in the works, was the rise of fascism in the nineteen thirties. Dorothy and her friends decided that rather than risk it falling into the hands of Hitler, they would buried it in the unearthed tomb of Mereneith at Abydos. After the war was over, they went to dig it up again and it was gone. They searched for it all through the sixties and seventies and that’s when theAmerican Research and Enlightenment institute took control of all the digs in Egypt.”

“So somehow or other the Sunnis’ dug it up or get their hands on it and it makes its way into the possession of Saddam Hussein.”

“Precisely!”

“Then it could have been the real reason they invaded Iraq?”

“Your words not mine.”

“But you are not discounting it?”

“I don’t think it really matters, your father worked it all out and after Saddam had been executed with out revealing where he had hid it, then he knew he was the only person in the world that had a chance of returning it to its rightful owner.” Said Buzz

“Wow!”

“Yeah, wow.”

It was about then they realized they’d had enough sun and it was about time they retired to their cabin; while the ship steamed towards a destination that was going to bring all this talk to a head, others were plotting, indicating that these things weren’t happening in isolation. The secret communication channels between London, New York and Rome were abuzz with chatter about these topics and much more. The chains of command were systematically removing the Indians and replacing them with Chiefs, who were starting to come into play.

A well known Washington couple met for the first time in months at a plush boardroom setting and all the black suited figures that had been milling around dismissed themselves and the following conversation was had.

“Have you heard the latest from Rome?” he asked as he moved from the closing double doors and over to the large table that centered the room.

“Yes,” she replied “bloody Catholics couldn’t arrange a piss up in a brewery.”

“I knew I should have gone myself.”

“What do you think about the new arrangements?”

“I’m not sure, but what is it about this Aussie- ass-hole that makes him so important in all of it?”

“I don’t know the man that we had on him has gone missing and so did all his files; I don’t know much about him at all.” She said

“How about the people that have it now?”

“Well we know all about their organization, they are those trouble making Brits; what we don’t know is why they would want to sell us this priceless prize for such a palfrey amount and even more worrying is, now that they have it and the money, why would they swap it for this piece of shit Aussie, Joe McHale.”

“I’m going myself this time, no more room for stuff ups.”

“Not with out me, Dirty Dick; I would have to have it dry cleaned after you and your floozies had finished with it.”

“We’ll do it together then,” he said “nothing like a bit of quality time together to cement the family.”

“I’ll notify security.”

By the time their plane was leaving France for Egypt the long way, Laurence and Hamish were busying themselves with the reorganization of their homes and headquarters, full well knowing they were heading for a confrontation that was going to be catastrophic for the way they had been living and operating up until then. It wasn’t like they were unaware that this was coming up as they had a contingency plan all worked out for quite some time so this was just the final straw of many that was leading to a totally new life.

“Does it bother you that you will have to sell your home?” asked Laurie

“No-o,” replied the Scottish Laird “I’ve had buyers bothering me for a long time now and I’ve already built a new place much more suitable for my present needs, how about you?

“To tell you the truth, I’ve been looking forward to getting out of there for some time now; it’s a little too claustrophobic in winter and Dora and I both agree we would be much happier in a warmer climate, we have only ever been caretakers at that castle any way.”

“It’s going to be strange having Natalie and Gabriel so involved in things that have previously only been for you to decide.” Said Hamish

“That’s assuming they get through this unscathed, they are not out of the frying pan yet and they are about to throw themselves into the fire.”

“Well, they seem very confidant they are going to get Joe back as well as the Breastplate.”

“That will have to be seen to be believed; but we will have to be ready and waiting if they are successful, they will be relying on us. So let’s get busy tying up loose ends and getting this bird to where it can do the most good, I won’t be at ease until we’ve got them onboard.”

The men that were driving Joe McHale towards his rendezvous in Giza were having no trouble getting through the many checkpoints that punctuated their lengthy journey from Syria through Jordan. Their status with the United Nations was coming in quite handy and the fact that they had a prisoner in the back of their mobile lock up, didn’t hinder their progress at all; once they reached the Israelis boarder, at the nominated place, he would be handed over and no longer their problem. When the moment actually arrived Joe noticed the difference between the obvious third world conditions that he had been saturated with suddenly changing along with the accents of the guards. The new transport unit traveled smoothly along well made bitumen roads and the air conditioner, cooling the back section of his panel van prison, mainly served to broaden the smile on his now unhooded face. For him it was like a birthing process and although he imagined he was going to breathe free air again, he knew that the tricky bit and the screaming were yet to come.

 

It was a new day dawning that highlighted the Eastern horizon as the magnificent luxury liner pulled down the Nile. Natalie and Buzz were awakened at the appropriate time by a phone call from the accommodation steward to witness the sun rising and because their cabin was on the leeside, they didn’t have to get out of their king-sized bed to see it through the large portals of glass that fed the golden rays into their consciousness; it was reminiscent of the visions they had when they first met and began this fast closing adventure.

They just had time for some morning exercise before showering and dressing in the appropriate way for the morning’s itinerary. As they were passing Heliopolis they strutted the deck and made themselves familiar to the other passenger that would be disembarking with them when they got to Giza

 

Even though they had to board a large modern tourist bus, they still managed to feel quite regal as they were chauffeured towards their first sigh of the Pyramids and even when thy were being organized into two separate groups, the importance of the moment was not lost on Buzz and Nat as they aligned themselves with those who were to visit the Sphinx. The whole Necropolis had a heavy security presence; their only defence was to blend in and do the tourist thing whist being acutely aware that in the immediate area were the people they had to negotiate with to secure her fathers release.

As the tour group split up and began to explore around the pre-flood monolith and its associated temples, our heroic couple inched their way closer to the very spot they had arranged to meet their elusive prey. Natalie could feel the presence and the pain of her much loved parent stronger than ever; when they rounded the front of the Old Kingdom Temple, which was isolated further downhill from everything else and even closer to the sacred Nile, she finally locked eyes on him. A subtle nudge to the ribs of her partner was enough for him to fall into character and start madly photographing everything like a Japanese tourist, giving them the advantage they needed over the men in black that stood, now only feet away from them, ominously guarding their prize.

 

I don’t know what they were looking for but it certainly wasn’t a sweet looking couple like the ones who snatched Joe McHale from under their noses and ran off into the Temple itself, before they could even un-holster their guns. The strategic benefit of the situation they all found themselves in must have been immediately obvious, as the black suited guards seemed to be caught totally flat footed and didn’t like their chances of following them into the ancient stone complex structure.

Intercom systems were immediately activated and before you could say ‘bullshit’ they had put out the call for all their men to come into play, surround the whole temple, remove any non-combatants out of the area and lock into a siege scenario.

Inside, Buzz had produced an all channels communicator and was yelling instructions down it, demanding to speak to the ones that were in charge several times before things settled down to where the couple from Washington were arguing with him over what was going to happen. While this was happening Natalie and Joseph had time to embrace one another before Joe finally spoke up.

“Just what the hell do you think you are doing?”

“Rescuing you.” Replied Nat

“Some rescue.” Commented Joe; but before he could say anything else, the beauty of the old alabaster temple began to illuminate around them in a very unnatural way and while they where standing in jaw dropped awe at what they were seeing an apparition of the Great Lady herself appeared before them. She stood there with her arms outstretched wearing her red cape that all those there had seen her in before.

Nat and Buzz where struck speechless but Joseph knew exactly what to do; he moved away from the others and into the embrace of his Goddess, surprising them with his intimacy of the divine, far surpassing anything they could have imagined. Time froze and the past, present and future melded into one with the four of them back together again and in some unexplainable way, everything was right; they were exactly where they were supposed to be and as they all realize it they were snapped back into the moment with Joe’s words to Natalie

“This is your mother, cherish her forever.”

Nat didn’t know what to say, she just stood there with her mouth open when the lady in the red cape spoke to her.

“Quickly, remove the fake breastplate; we have to make sure they get it, before we can get out of here.”

Natalie began to move quickly as instructed firstly taking off the blue overcoat she had on, covering the hieroglyphic embossed golden representation of palette of Narmer, the forged replica of a similar fake that must have been firstly made thousands of years ago under similar circumstances. It was shaped into a bodice style breastplate that fitted Nat well enough so as to have not drawn attention it, Buzz helped her unfasten the straps that were holding in on and then passed it over to Joe whilst Nat redressed herself.

“Now, get ready to leave via that tunnel there.” She pointed towards an open door in the floor that the others hadn’t noticed before now.

Just then the intercom sparked back into life and blurted out the command, “Identify yourselves.”

On the other side an anxious Washington couple heard the reply load and clear, “I am Re, who is in the heavens, I enter the twilight shadows, I open the gate to the sky in the south, welcome me with your arms.”

“I don’t think you know who you are dealing with,” was the reply

“Behold, I know your place in the Duat, I know your names, the places you hide, your secrets.”

“Come out or we are coming in after you.” They threatened with the authority of those who were prepared to harm them, to achieve there own objectives.

“O’ bitter you are in your cavern, O’ terrifying one, the greatest in hell. Bow down before me, draw back your arms, behold me, I am entering the land of the beautiful south to attend my Osiris and to greet those who are with him.”

Without further ado, the troops were ordered to rush into the temple, followed by their leaders and after an unproductive search of the area to find no one; they stood holding the fake breastplate with the words still ringing in their ears,

“It is done.”


Epiloge

After a complete search of the whole complex and failing to find the opening to the underground, the Washington couple stood once again in the middle of it all amazed at what just happened and questioning one another on what to do next.

“Where did they go?”

“Who cares, we have what we came for and sooner or later we will have them.”

“What did that crazy woman say?”

“Some kind of riddle, but I must say I was thinking that I had heard it before.”

“Did we get a good recording of it?”

“Yes, I’ll have it decoded when we get back.”

“Finally, we have the famous Breastplate; the master will be very impressed.”

“Now we will really be Set.”

They removed themselves from the temple and eventually out of Egypt, leaving behind a contingent of security men to rake over the area in an ongoing effort to find Joe McHale and his liberators, but it was never to be.

Beneath their feet, in the myriad of passages that honeycombed the Egyptian underworld, Natalie and Buzz held hands and followed her father and the enigmatic red robed woman they now thought as mother; they were being led through the darkness by her personal glowing light. She seemed to know exactly where they were going and the turns, stairs and caverns added up to the fact that they would have been hopelessly lost with out her. Eventually they emerged into the most magnificent crystal chamber and as they centered themselves, facing one another, the walls began to glow.

She recited “This is the Heart of Amen, the Chamber of Osiris, Kenti-Amenti; this is our final destination, these walls contain all the knowledge of Tep-zepi, the first time and all the relevant knowledge since.” With a wave of her hand, they were treated to a visual feast of images from the beginning of time as the sounds of creation filled their ears; time became irrelevant again and they filled there minds with all that was.

The imagery culminated in its entirety; Mereneith wearing only the original bejewelled Breastplate, was standing in between two sphinx like creatures facing one another. Instinctively Joseph joined her in removing her Arbitrament, passing it on to Natalie and indicated that she should put it on.

She said, “This is my Osiris and you are our children, we are now joining as one and in your future you will stand here and do the same. We are leaving you now but we will always be with you.”

With that the walls came alive with twelve deities from the past, repetitively chanting, “Hail to you who come out of the earth and enter the Duat….O’ Re, you shine upon us, for our part we pay homage to you, we salute you. The ways of the hidden places are now open to you and the portals are unfolded, the soul that Nut loves will guide your flight to the heights; Hail and make your passage from between the thighs of the Mother, enter.”

While they embraced, naked before God, they began to rise and shine together. The light became so bright it blinded the stunned Natalie and Gabriel who were prostrate before the transfigured couple and because of the darkness that ensued they couldn’t be absolutely sure how they were transported to the light again.

As they were being welcomed back to the world and the familiar sounds of their friends Laurence and Dorothy, they realized they were safe and ready to travel back home in Sir Hamish’s jet plane. Amazingly enough they popped out of the ground at the very Oasis where their crew was waiting for them, many miles from where their enemies were searching for them. The air, the water and the light of a new dawn revitalized them and as they took off towards the south-east from the land of an old era, the comfort of knowing they were perfectly prepared sunk in.

With the original bejewelled Breastplate, well equipped friends and new headquarters to head for they were a formidable force, prepared to fight the destructive nature of Set and those who coveted the authority of the symbol of God’s presence on Earth for their own selfish desires and not for the benefit of the whole world.

Read the sequel…>  http://wayneswordpress.wordpress.com/2009/04/10/the-eagle-of-shambhala-3/