Monday, September 27, 2010

The Savior

Part 30

“A picnic?” Adam was annoyed.

“Why not?” said Al. “It’s a nice Sunday afternoon, just perfect for a picnic in the park.” He clapped his hands together and a moment later the limo appeared. “We’ll drop you off at your place so you can change and we’ll pick you up in half an hour.”

Jules held open the door and Adam got in. As soon as the door was closed the lime started and in a few moments Adam was at his apartment building. He said “Thank you” to the driver and closed the door. The limo drove off and Adam entered his apartment building. He was expecting to find something different about his apartment but it was the same as he had left it. He was so used to the unexpected taking place that it seemed strange not to see some change. He hoped he wasn’t getting jaded and blasé about everything. There were too many unanswered questions still goading him.

He quickly changed into comfortable clothes. He went into the bathroom to wash up and noticed that the blood on his hands had disappeared and so had the marks on his forehead. He had no evidence of his hour at Saint Joseph’s except a bloody handkerchief and the fire and brimstone sermon of sin, pain and destruction from Archbishop Califano still ringing in his ears.

He sat down at his table to wait for his ride and flipped open “The Returning.” He glanced down and read “…and the prophets were sent to speak proleptically. They were accepted but not believed as was usual for the slaves. Alas for the minimal king. When it is written….” The phone rang.


“Your ride awaits you, Zelf.”

“Thank you.” He hung up, closed the book and went downstairs. He looked around for the limo but instead a voice hollered “Over here Adam” and he saw Ron Levine waving to him from the back of a pick up truck.

(To be continued.)

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The Savior

Part 29

The priest spoke “I’m sorry gentlemen but you’ll have to leave now.“

“That old archbishop is a fool” said Jules.

"Please” said the priest, motioning to the door.

“Gladly” said Adam. His wounds had completely healed over. He clutched his bloody handkerchief and opened the door. The three men, led by Adam left the room and headed for the front of the church.

On the way Adam overheard snatches of inane conversation from the people who were still at the tables.

"How’s Sally?"

“Oh, she’s dong okay. The doctor said she might come home next week.”
"You goin’ finshin’ this afternoon?"

“Yeah. You wanna come?”

“I’m trying out for the bowling league. I hope I make it.”

Nothing Adam heard would dispute the idea that Archbishop Califano with all of his talk about sin, pain, death and disaster was truly an old fool. None of his congregation seemed to have paid any heed to him.

Once outside Adam turned to the two other men and said “Look. I’m tired of this. Nothing makes any sense to me. Why was I brought here to this church that isn’t a church to listen to that old jerk talk about death and destruction who wouldn’t even bother to consider my bleeding palms? I have to go back to my place and think this through.”

“I have a better idea” said Al.

“Yeah, what?”

“Let’s have a picnic.”

(To be continued.)

Sunday, September 19, 2010

The Savior

Part 28

“I don’t understand any of this” said Adam

“But you prophesied it. You don’t remember?”

:I did not prophesy any of this.” Adam felt a sting in his left hand and looked down to see a small patch of blood slowly forming in his palm. He reached inside his pocket, withdrew his handkerchief and held it against his palm. “I’m bleeding” he said.

With that Jules stood up and said “I’ll get the priest.” He walked toward the back where Califano had been and disappeared behind the wall.

“Well Adam, this is it” said Al. “Check you other hand.”

Adam looked down and saw that blood was seeping from his other hand, so he pressed both hands together against his handkerchief,

A moment later Jules came back with the priest who looked at Adam strangely and asked “Has this ever happened before?”

“Yes” Adam replied, “but only with my feet.”

“Come with me.”

The priest led Adam, Al and Jules behind the wall to a small lavatory with a toilet and sink. It was dim, undecorated and cold. The priest turned on the water in the sink and said “Wash off.”

There was a small bar of soap at the side of the sink. Adam took it and washed his hands. The blood was still on his hands when he finished and now some wounds appeared at the back of each hand which were not bleeding.

“Wait here” said the priest. “I’ll bring His Eminence to see this.”

“What’s happening to me?” asked Adam.

“You are a native. You posses the land. And you are about your father’s business.”

Adam saw a flash of something in front of him, a split second of a scene he seemed to recognize. It was bright red and black.”

The Archbishop entered the room with the priest. He looked at the three men with suspicion. The priest indicated Adam and Califano said “Show me your hands.”

Adam held out his hands, palms up and then turned them over.

“No” barked Califano. “It’s not a stigmata. It’s a hoax. He’s injured himself somehow. He’s an imposter. Get him to confess and then kick him out of here.”

Califano turned and left the room.

(To be continued.)

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The Savior

Part 27

“This is crazy” whispered Adam.

“Yes” replied Al. “It’s insane.”

Califano continued. “Oh Lord of all creation my secret heart is filled with joy today, with the sanguine expectation of your judgment. Your mightiness has been revealed at last and you have chosen me to reveal it to me. I am humbled and relieved. While others disobeyed your commandments, your ordinances and the pleading of our ancestors, the prophets, we have maintained the flame of true faith and have remained blind to the temptations of the flesh. And now we are blessed to be the receivers of your final strokes of discipline.”

“What’s he talking about?” asked Adam.

“We worship you in dirt, because we are dirt” Califano continued. “There are those among us who will worship you in blood, the blood of innocence.” Califano stepped down on to the dirt floor and kneeled. “We spread the ashes of your creation on our heads to signify the end. We rend our clothes to bare our souls to your mighty scourge.” Califano tore open his robe to reveal a bare chest with what looked like barbed wire surrounding it. “We crown ourselves with the ashes of guilt and regret.” He picked up dirt from the floor and poured it on his head. “And now I await the flash of your power, the flame of your benediction to remove me and all here to that sacred place where no evil befalls us and no plagues comes nigh our dwelling. Thank you Father for allowing me to partake in the anguish of your chosen people.”

“He’s talking about the end” said Al.

“The end of what?”

“The end of the world.”

“And now Oh Almighty One, let the wars start, let the worm come, let the fires flare up. We are ready.” Califano rose and went back behind the wall followed by the other priests.

“Is this a joke” asked Adam.

“It’s no joke. It’s the day of judgment, the end of all time and space, the last days, Armageddon, the Apocalypse, the Destruction of Babylon. It’s why you’re here.”

(To be continued.)

Sunday, September 12, 2010

The Savior

Part 26

Adam was thinking to himself that this was no kind of church and especially no kind of Catholic Church he had ever heard of.

After splashing the goat’s blood on the table the Archbishop removed his hat and handed it to one of the priests. Then he began to speak.

“Brothers…” Adam looked around and saw that there were no women in the church. “My secret heart is filled with sorrow today and also with joy. I am full of sorrow because this is the end, the last days, and so many have not repented of their sins. These are the days our brother prophets have spoken of through the tumbling disasters of the world’s history. This is the return of the great talking serpent who beguiled our brother Adam through the ignorance and sly manipulation of his damned and doomed wife, Eve. Oh, Adam, Adam. Why did you listen to your wife?”

Adam was beginning to feel even more uncomfortable.

“My secret heart is sad to day because there will be so much suffering such as has never been on the earth before. There will be no place to run, there will be no place to hide. There will be no forgiveness. There will be no mercy. The days of mercy and forgiveness are past and what is left? My brothers, what is left is disaster, pain, screaming in pain as the great fire of the Apocalypse burns the chaff away from the wheat, the sin away from the sinner and the decadence away from the righteous. My brothers, it will not be peaceful. Peace is dead.

Don’t let the scientists fool you, God’s Great Worm, Romos, is turning even now, as I speak, and heading for the only planet that has turned it’s back on Him, the Great Creator. We will be visited and then we will be no more. Some of you are being held even now over the fires of Hell and will be dropped into it to your everlasting pain and anguish.

Is it too late to repent? It is too late. The only hope is to throw yourselves face down on the image of God’s goodness, if you have any faith and understanding. You are not free. You are guilty. There is no hope, there is only sacrifice. Tear your clothes. Tear out your hair, pluck out your eyes, tear the skin from your bodies, castrate yourselves, break you legs, burn your children in the fire. The only sacrifice the Great Judge will accept now is intense pain.

Let us pray.

(To be continued.)

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

The Savior

Part 25

Jules didn’t answer that.

Just then a young priest came over to them and said “Good morning gentlemen. A pleasure to have you here. Good to see you again Mr. Zelf.” Then he walked to another table leaving Adam stunned.

“Don’t worry Adam” said Al. “We will not abandon you.”

Adam was just about to get up and walk out of the church when some priests appeared from behind the far wall. Two of them carried wooden saw horses which they set up against the wall. A third priest acme out with a wooden plank which he placed on the saw horses. The three priests then went behind the wall and reemerged with a folding table which looked to Adam like a card table. The third priest was holding a plastic bag. Two priests set up the table on the dirt floor away from the plank of wood.

A cold breeze blew across Adam’s face and a moment later a man emerged from behind the wall dressed in an elaborate robe with a tall hat on his head. Adam thought that must be Archbishop Califano.

Califano walked with a stride to the wooden plank, knelt down and put his head to the plank, then stood and started intoning something in Latin which Adam couldn’t hear. But he noted that Califano had a high, nasal voice, not pleasant to the ear.

After a while Califano turned and, with a stick looking object, reached into the plastic bag while the priest held it open. Adam knew the object was an aspergillum, but he didn’t know why he knew that. When the Archbishop brought the stick out he splashed a red liquid on one corner of the card table. He repeated that action. Flinging the red liquid at all four corners of the card table.

“The blood of the goat” said Al.

(To be continued.)

Sunday, September 5, 2010

The Savior

Part 24

He expected to see pews, an altar at the back with candles and an cross on the wall. But instead he stepped into a large room with a dirt floor and walls and a ceiling that were painted black. Although Adam could see no light source the room was well lit. Along the sides there were tables and chairs. People had gathered around the various tables, some sitting, some standing, in quiet conversation.

Adam saw one empty table so he went and sat at it. In a few minutes a man came and sat with him.

“Hi Adam. I’m Al Easten. I’m on your list.”

“Are you the voice on the phone?”

“No, that’s Murray brother Ben. You’ll meet him.”

“I hope so.”

“So” said Al “a big day, eh?”

“Is it?”

“Yes Sir’

Just at that moment the sour faced stranger at the front door came and sat with them.

“This is Jules Isko” said Al. “He’s also on your list.”

Adam and Jules stared at each other for a moment. Finally Jules said “The ram and the unicorn will not appear tonight.”

“Is that some kind of password?” asked Adam.

No” was Jules’s blunt reply. “Have you come here to make trouble?”

“No. I came to find out who I am and what is going on”

“You know what’s going on. You’re responsible.”

“Am I?”

“I suppose you think these things happen by accident.”

“What things?”

(To be continued.)

Saturday, September 4, 2010

The Savior

Part 23

The boy looked up at Adam and smiled. The girl said “Thanks Mister.” Then she took the boys hand and they walked away.

Adam looked down at his hands and wondered what was happening. This was the second time he saw some awful injury just disappear in his hands. First an injured dog and now this. He also wondered who those children were and if they were somehow a part of the chain of events that was happening to him, events that had no explanation.

He walked on toward the church still uncertain as to what he would find there and what would happen to him. He had a strange feeling of being a victim and yet somehow in charge of his own imprisonment. He wished one of those men he met would give him a reasonable explanation, one he could believe and accept. Maybe I’ll learn something at the church, he thought.

There were three stone steps leading up to the door of Saint Joseph’s. He walked up them and through the door into a lobby. Across the lobby were two swinging doors similar to a bar entrance. Standing in front of them was the strange man, the one had given him a mad dog expression when he walked past the church a few days ago. The man was staring at him with an intense expression.

“May I enter?” asked Adam. The man stepped aside and allowed Adam to open the swinging doors. When Adam stepped into the church he was not prepared for what he saw

(To be continued.)