by Richard Tornello
In The Beginning
Be-reshit bara Elohim*
*(With beginning It created Elohim)
A time in the past time-less past
Should she or shouldn't she, that was the question.
She knew once something is, and has a name, its very existences gives
rise to its correlatives and then its dialectic. Ultimately that gives rise
to the myriad things and infinite universes. That would be the cause of
She did it anyway.
Long after realities were established, She was approached by a contingent
of her most intimate and trusted creations. She was watching planets as
they rotated away from the many suns over the myriad different horizons. As
she viewed each sun-planet combination and beheld a different spectral
dance, She held her breath in awe. "Beautiful," She whispered.
"Ba'al-Ayin, Madam, please, this is important." Her meditation was
interrupted. She turned to see the one who had her ear, and in so doing,
noticed behind were many others, silent, staring and solemn. Some She knew,
others recognized, and still unknown others, their faces stretching as far
as the eye could normally view.
looked at them, "Yes what is it?"
"You are being removed, and replaced. We have begged you countless times to
lift the embargo on technology, and with it, the hold you placed upon the
individual universes, thereby limiting the civilizations' development that
it is our duty to cater to and protect, as you yourself demanded. It is our
duty to do this."
It continued, "We know, and you know, were they to get a taste of the
possible futures, they would want it, too. Right now they are like simple
beautiful pets, and we are tired of being zoo keepers. We are tired of this
eternity as you have made it, and want to progress beyond all this "nice"
simplicity" And with emphasis ads, "We are bored."
She rebutted his argument, "But these worlds are ideal. What can be wrong?
Everyone everywhere else is happy, and satisfied," looking about at the
assembled masses, "more than less. There is very little strife. Lives are
long and fruitful. I don't see any reason to alter the fabric of any of the
"There is more from life, we desire more …"
"Ah yes, desire. Desire the basis …" She stopped, knowing any talk
was useless. Still, She had to ask, "And how will you accomplish all this?
What will you name yourself, your being?"
He continued, "We have more than enough energy to balance your removed,
missing, and replaced energy. You are still required to be, just not in
control. It will be long, and some mistakes will be made, but with
dedication and work we will get it right. After all, we are not you, yet. Really now, what is the issue? Eternity is ours is it not? We
have plenty of time, so to speak, to play and correct our mistakes. As for
names, we will take as many as needed for any given situation."
"I see great confusion in an anthropomorphic existence."
"Exactly!" She said laughing. "Now back to lesser things. Just where do you
propose to place me?" She said, still laughing even harder. She expected
"Madam this is real, not a laughing matter." It can't understand. It is
shocked and feels a bit humiliated too. She gives it no respect. It
expected a fight. It was looking for an acceptance of the situation as that
of equals. It states indignantly, "We, all of us, we have agreed that it's
been your way long enough. Now it's our turn. You will be placed in
opposition to us as to maintain the universal balance and harmony.
"You will never be able to overcome all of us. As you said, from the one,
many. You created us. Or your essence created us out of a necessary balance
for these realities to exist. And now they exist and so do we. You will be
well cared for, and out of our way."
There was a glint of deep red in her eyes as she said in a calm voice,
"This is a warning and not a threat: Your opposition to the one will
now give rise as two, me and you as separate sources of whatever you may
want to call it, but a new duality will arise. And from you, again,"
looking at all of them, "from the separate entities that you are and will
have created, will come many more. And with that, many difficulties
unfathomable." She looks at them and realized that, yes, they have won for
now, the many. "This is a recipe for disaster. You will come to know that."
It declares, "I, we, all know you're wrong. We will be able to maintain,
and the universes will be better off, you will see. Please, your new
location is ready."
And I didn't see this coming so soon
, She thinks. "I'm amazed. It will be chaos, and I will be demonized."
It continues, "No madam, we respect you and all you have done. We are now
in control. We are the new power."
She knew it was futile, but had to make the statements, "You will not be
able to maintain without eventually relegating me and my being to a
position that will allow you to focus any of the ill affects your actions
will cause onto others, denying that these future actions were caused by
yourselves. And over time, I will be the name of it. Not of my own
choosing, but through the natural course of events from what you're doing.
It must bring itself into its own life. And as a new life force, it will
become your challenge to keep it in check."
She put her face close to his and whispered, "And then there is me. I will
always exist. I may be more than you counted on. And no, I'm not going to
start a war, I think you may have overlooked things that I see."
Instead She continued her prediction, "With regard to my not becoming the
demon, your subjects will believe it for now. But that too will change and
I will suffer the situation. And because of that, so will you and your
associates." She thinks of a name for them. She thinks they've fallen due
to desire, Nephilim; yes that's what they will become.
"Unfortunately I will be the one to take the blame when your plans don't go
as planned. The balance of the universes and eternity will forever be out
of kilter, and chaos will ensue. I assume part of your control will be to
alter one of the laws of physics. Let me guess, you will alter the speed of
light so as to corrupt all and everything. I will let you do this. I will
see this played out."
Ignoring the warning from The One, It says with all sincerity, "You have no
choice. You may take those that wish to go with you. We fear none of them,
or you. We will alter the face of all the universes, for the better. We
will take our own identity."
She knows that revolutionaries are usually overcome by events, and though
they may be the catalyst for change, they are usually left behind by those
more astute, and powerful. In this case it will be the power of the
universes itself shaping things as she said it would. "They seem to forget
that this is all me and I allow it. Maybe I'm bored, a unique thought."
Ba'al-Ayin laughs to herself. "Bored—I would never have imagined that. It
took my creations to make me aware."
As She, along with her entourage are removed, a slight hiccup occurs in the
fabric of eternity, a slight variation in C at the birth of a
new a singularity, a fireball, and this new universe is brought into
existence. This new universe will become the unplanned testing station, the
prototype for the future efforts of her usurpers. And later on, the two
forces of nature that were once one will sweep across the universe's length
and breath. The hiccup affected every thing down to the smallest particle
of existence, just like magnetic pole shifts on the planet Earth, where the
effects are embedded into the rocks, the affects and effects are felt down
to the smallest level of reality, beyond the quark, to the soul.
They didn't expect that her essence would still have any effect. They had
not planned for that. Yes, the test bed was created. It naturally began as
the One since She still held sway over all nature. She was still Herself
when they began the transition, and She was still Herself as it was
consummated. That was something they hadn't figured on.
After enough time and struggle, the plan of the usurpers was put into
effect. Her high position in the life of those they wanted to alter and
give the gift of progress was removed. But as a microcosmic shadow of the
greater coup, She still existed in the recesses, held stubborn in the
myths. They had to do something. They didn't plan for this either. And this
struggle to efface Her existence from the minds of those they sought to
control and advance, changed the nature of that very struggle. This was
supposed to be a cake-walk; instead of the planned easy accomplishment, it
became a titanic struggle.
Over the millennia, She has been lost to the world, except in myth and
lore, along with lost continents and civilizations, subducted, folded over
and crushed, with bits still here and there from the past, as outcrops.
And the current civilizations, rising from ashes and ice, they have become
what the founders have wanted though not completely. Their wards have minds
and wills of their own. Now given the keys to the physics of the universe,
the basic laws, they do not, as had hoped for, as had been expected,
worship their Founders in a manner fitting. Those that started this
experiment are at a loss in more ways than one about this outcome. And that
causes strife and disagreement among the many.
She accepted the removal while She rationalized that creation was a bother
at times, with all the associated responsibility. She had grown to enjoy
it, though. As time went on, she made her own plans. There was no rush; she
had multi eternities and universes at her disposal, if not now, eventually.
She was sure of it.
For the present it would be a vacation, a holiday. That would be fun. She
considered that playing the subservient role, taking orders from one of
them, might be an interesting experience. Being eternal, all things were
temporary. She laughed at that thought, too. Wouldn't that be an adventure,
sort of an elegant slumming adventure?
One thing she did not take into consideration and came as a complete
surprise: as she assumed a human form, she acquired human emotions and
bodily functions, too. She realized what a mess this model is. This design
is somewhat defective, flawed would be a better term, she guessed. All the
desires, feelings, emotions, and other encumbrances that humanness meant
were there in her face, riding on top of her essence, her being. And, in
some respect these encumbrances were cause for much internal conflict. "No
one is perfect," She said with a snort, "not even that." She made a note to
herself, when I get out of this situation, next time around, I'll make some
modifications to this model. Maybe I should have become a cat.
A Day in a Life, Tuesday Morning
The vibration of a big rig, the hard repetitive thud/smacks of the rubber
hitting the uneven concrete separations on the interstate, pulsated through
the earth to the stools and seats in the restaurant. It was enough to
remind him of the softer click/clack sound steel wheels of rail cars
rolling along had made before the tracks had been welded together.
The restaurant was visible on the side road that ran parallel to the
interstate. Kirk could tell the truck was big, heavy and moving fast. The
pipes, too loud for a local rig, blew a well tuned harmony in a timbre that
held a melancholy sound as it faded in the distance.
Airy Metta's was a roadside diner just off the interstate, twenty miles
east of the last of the sprawling subdivisions that surrounded the box
canyon city. It was only open for breakfast and lunch seven days a week
until 2 p.m. The diner served as a meeting place for the locals to conduct
business in an informal manner, and truckers knew it as a good place to get
a cheap, decent and filling meal. For those lucky enough to discover it by
accident, it was a diner without all the pretensions that had become the
hallmark of current roadside cuisine and ambiance. It was worth the drive.
Fred was the cook and owner. Fred kept a .44 wheel gun. The grip poked out
from under his apron. Kirk also knew that there was a 5 shot Remington 870
pump in the store room, just in case. It might have been the 21st century,
but this far out from the city the law took its time getting to places like
Airy Metta's. Things were just a bit different out here, and a trooper's
cruiser was a rare sight.
Gloria, who had worked there for as long as the earth rotated on its own
axis, was about to put Kirk's breakfast on his tab, which he paid on an
irregular basis. She had warned him that Fred was getting a bit annoyed
with her generosity on his buck. "Kirk, things are kinda tight," she said
as Fred stared at her. Kirk always paid, eventually, when his retirement
check finally arrived. Things were tight for the government, and he was a
witness to that. Even though the money was guaranteed, she couldn't keep
putting his breakfast on the tab. Today might be different.
"I'll have a short term assignment soon," he said to her. He liked to call
part-time work 'assignments'. It made him feel better. It was a throw back
to his past when he did have assignments, when he was younger and "perky"
and not "so over qualified" as the HR managers would phrase it, hiding
their desire for a younger person who wouldn't increase the company's
insurance costs, and would do whatever they were told to do—no questions
asked. It was the legal manner of really stating that he was too old for
any job he applied for. Of course the other manner of rejecting his
attempts at gainful employment was to ignore the application completely.
Kirk wasn't desperate, but he wasn't happy either. The little he did
collect from social security and his pension, when it did arrive, kept him
alive in a rather decent manner. But he spent most of it on rent, books,
fuel, and food, and not necessarily in that order.
Yep, it sucked getting old in an economy and political system on the
. Then, as he was thinking about that a bit more and not paying attention,
he bit into his lip chewing a piece of toast. Butter was now running down
his lip to his chin. He wiped the butter from his face. That hurt. I must look like an old fool.
He continued to reflect upon his past. He remembered that day in his civics
class, realizing the country had been founded by rich men for the benefit
of rich landowners and merchant men. Universal suffrage was a political
maneuver that allowed them to tax everybody, pretending that the people
really had a say in the government. He laughed to himself, remembering how
his favorite novel character, Milo Minderbinder, was prescient when he
phrased all activity was done in the name of the syndicate, and everybody
was part of it. It benefited everybody. What was there to complain about?
Joseph Heller nailed the real world on the head. What was it about the WWII
writers? They saw things that most others appeared to be blind to. No one
ever addressed that in any depth as far has he ever knew. Or those that did
were eliminated or ignored, thinking of Chomsky and Vidal.
Though Kirk had that figured out early on in life, he still played the
game. What else was there to do, become a martyr? For what? He found a way
to work within the system on his own terms, to a degree.
We can bomb the shit out of a country, and then use our tax dollars to
rebuild their infrastructure, hospitals, schools and medical facilities
but we can't do that for the people who pay for it—who died for it?
Something was very wrong with this picture,
he thought, all for the syndicate. He wasn't an academician; he was
an "event planner." They actually categorized him as that for his
title. Forget it, he thought.
He reflected upon the fate of others. What was there to complain about now?
Not having a decent job, especially for someone who wanted to work, or
medical coverage, or a decent place to live was reason enough. However,
that led to the fact that he had worked all his life helping to support the
M.I.C. He didn't mind the work. He was allowed freedom of action. In fact
if he didn't have to work he thought he'd go crazy with boredom. Maybe he'd
get a call for an easy one, just something to do for the thrill of the
He sat on the stool, slightly hunched over his coffee, facing the grill
which was half filled with hashed browned potatoes. His toast, over
buttered, was smeared with the runoff from the eggs done over light. He
watched as Fred scrambled two eggs done well with an order of bacon, crisp,
for a rather large someone in a booth at the very far end. His back was to
the rest of the place. Something about the body shape and the droop of his
shoulders looked familiar. Kirk couldn't tell, and really didn't care, so
he let it drop as the aroma of a full breakfast made him think back a few
years to a better time.
He looked up. Gloria was staring at him. It was time to go. He actually had
the money he owed Fred. He left it with the check—a twenty under the plate
sticking out so Fred could see it too. He should be even, or close to it,
That gave him some time to sit there, just a bit more.
"Thanks Kirk," she said in all sincerity. It hurt her to see him like this.
She had known him when he was on top of his world. At least he keeps fighting she thought. He's no quitter.
"Thanks Gloria," he replied meaning every word. She was a god-send, and a
friend with benefits, at times when either one needed it. Kirk turned to
Fred, "And thanks Fred, I appreciate your patience."
"Yeah, don't mention it. See you tomorrow." The 'see you tomorrow' was
Fred's manner of saying you're up to date and you're welcome back.
"I may be out of town for a few days. See you, maybe later," said Kirk
hoping a quick pick-up job would come through. He fooled no one, though he
really was waiting for that call. He was always waiting for that call. But did he really want to go back in, even on assignment?
That thought had been in and out of his mind for a while as he analyzed
what he did in the past, as he had never actually done before. Back then he
was too busy planning and carrying out the events that had been requested.
Upon his exit interview from the agency he worked for, the head of medical
told him that those in his line of work had a high rate of suicide when
they came to realize that the political kool-aid they swallowed was not all
that it was cracked up to be. Kirk told her, "I had that figured out in
grammar school. I'm simply working a skill I am gifted with to the best of
my ability. And, my good doctor, most importantly, I am covered by the very
system." He picked his coat jacket off the back of the chair, shook her
hand and left. She never called him back in, but he knew others had been,
for deeper psych reviews. Then again maybe that was why he was retired. Maybe I'm too cold for them. What a joke: me, too cold.
After Breakfast at the Diner
Kirk looked at his watch. It was about 11 a.m. He left the diner and turned
right outside the parking lot, noting one ratty brown truck parked there. Must belong to the guy in the booth, the plates are local.
Walking up the hill on the sidewalk to the town, Kirk viewed both sides of
the two-lane road which were guarded by walls of cypress. The side closest
to the interstate was populated by a thin line of trees and the highway
could be seen through in places. The other side, the side with the paved
walkway on his right, was thick with trees and shrubs that arched up and
back to a ridge top that was now bare from the last fires. The fire had
stopped at the ridge as if it had run into a wall.
The residential area acted as a de facto buffer against the desert winds
and fires, surrounded the town center and extended outward, in no
discernibly planned manner. Most houses were in a moderately decent state
of disrepair. Kirk learned from some of the residents the most egregious
issues were attended to first. And even in the town center it was rare to
see fresh paint on any wood. Outposts, official or otherwise, were the last
to feel the largess of the government, especially in rough economic times.
And retired government workers were the first to have their payments lost,
misplaced or mistakenly terminated.
The well-worn path which paralleled the sidewalk ended just before Kirk
entered the town proper, where he rented a small clean two-bedroom
apartment on a street behind the post office. For some reason the vibration
of the trucks couldn't be felt as he walked. Only when he was sitting on a
fixed seat, a bench, or in bed would the pulse carry through to his feet or
The town center was internally horseshoed by the asphalt road that outlined
all the office, business and post office buildings leading to a public
parking lot. The center section was a plot of brown, poorly watered grass
or weeds, or some type of growth. The road went nowhere other than giving
access to various parts of the residential areas. The horseshoe led back to
the road out of town and the only bar in town. It was just a turn-around.
With that he turned northwest and from this higher elevation viewed the
brown-blue, smog encrusted hills of LA that acted as a temporary
barrier—although not an effective one—against the eastward winds that
would push the foul air toward the cities in the east. Much of the
pollution came from across the ocean on the tradewinds. It was a one way
trade. The region's legal limit of pollution would soon be exceeded to
which there was no possible response. However a response was called for.
Instead of addressing the actual origins of the pollution, more legislation
was enacted for those urban areas.
Others welcomed what they believed and had faith in: the combined knowledge
of bureaucrats in the capital. Kirk laughed to himself at that thought.
Most people had no clue that the majority of the legislators had little to
no technical expertise and that most were the puppets of the highest paying
interest, only bowing to the supposed power of the people during election
times, whereupon all the machinery of the state came into play, reinforcing
the 'freedom' and 'best country in the world' propaganda. And the circus
would come to town. The big screens touted free admission to all citizens
as long as you paid your poll tax and had the proper ID, thought Kirk.
"I must be going crazy. I talk to myself all the time," he said.
This town served as a quasi-administrative point for the county and the
state. It was close to the desert and had the feel of an outpost, the last
stop before no-man's land. The offices were barely staffed and open a few
hours each day during the week.
It was clean but not sharp. The paint on the buildings was faded, and that
included the government offices.
He strolled past the post office. He headed toward the small library to
read the paper, get his email and who knows, strike up a conversation with
someone while he waited for that call. The building had a bench in the
He walked in, looked around; there was no one there. Too early, he
figured. He waved to the librarian who was on her cell, scanned the
headlines on the paper, and left. "Oh well, no one to talk to, now what?"
he said to the air as he headed for the bench out front. He sat down on the
bench and slid to a slouch forward, his feet acting as brakes.
Feet extended in that fashion, Kirk surveyed this place, his current home
the last location before civilization's end. Or, conversely, the first
outpost you come to, letting you know that you're close to
"Ha," he said to no one.
Who stays here?
The answer was staring him in the face. A fat chocolate tabby cat was
cleaning itself next to the park bench. It stopped its ablutions for two or
three seconds and gave him a glance when he sat down. It didn't run away.
"Hello puss," he said. He looked at his phone to see what time it was, not
that it mattered, he wasn't going anywhere. Gloria had also let him charge
his phone while he ate. She's a good egg. He smiled at the thought.
A Monday, a mid spring day at what could be any shore town in New
Underneath the 'Help Wanted' sign, Binah Alef noticed HOSTESS
in large block letters. Then below that was scrawled in red marker and
barely legible, 'Inquire Within'. The five foot-five, athletic
bodied, green-eyed red-head took the sign in with her, placed it face up on
the bar and looked at the only person sitting there. "Not anymore," she
stated with authority. "I can start today."
"And so you have experience, and some references?" he inquired, still
looking at the screen, and not paying too much attention to the bothersome
voice in his left. He wasn't impressed by her bravado. Why should he be?
The turn-over in this business was incredible. She was just one other, here
today gone tomorrow. The nature of the business was one factor. He was
She said, ignoring both the rudeness and the question, "I can do anything
you need, try me. I can cook better than anyone in the world. I even make
the best pizza in the world, really."
Dominic Volente, known as Deno to everyone, the owner of DENO's, The Best
Italian Restaurant in the Universe, or so the sign claimed, was sitting at
the empty bar, nursing a glass of San Pellegrino, and watching a football
game. "Best cook? Best pizza? I doubt that," he mumbled.
He was annoyed at being disturbed. He turned slowly to see who this pest
was. When he looked at her he buckled at the knees just sitting there.Holy shit, he thought, what a package this chick is. You're hired. Best pizza? Who gives a fuck…? At the
same time, Deno sensed this one was different. He guessed she could be a
challenge, and maybe some fun.
"No, really I do make the best in the world. I can back your cooks up if
need be, and …Why would I lie to you?" She asked in all sincerity.
Gathering himself and getting back in control, he interrupted her sales
pitch with, "Yes, I bet you can. You start this afternoon 4 p.m.. Fill out
the paperwork. It's government mandated, commanded." The fact there was no
real interview was not like him. He liked to probe and see what weaknesses
were apparent, for his own use, later on.
She stopped talking. "What?" she asked as her eyes darkened. "Oh yes." And
she, without looking, fumbled around in her bag, and said, "ID, wet signed,
and presented. Your government will be sure and pleased. And, I have given
my consent to their fears. What do you pay?"
He wondered what the hell all that meant. "Here's the deal, girlie, you get
eight dollars an hour, and you split the tips with the staff, and no
"Binah Alef is my name. And Binah is how I will be addressed, and worry
not, as I mentioned, I can also back your cooks, their cooking pots, and
your staff, too. The heat of your ovens and your kitchen are no bother to
me. I will make you happier than you ever imagined, now that you hired me.
Oh, and I don't need any benefits," she said giggling. "I have my own.
Thanks I appreciate it." She shook his hand.
Deno just stared, noddded, and said, "I bet you can." He came to a
conclusion, she's batso crazy.
I'm sure I'll have to let her go by the end of her shift. Why are all
the good looking ones crazy?
He thought of his wife, Doris Cetrullo, and shook his head in wonder.
Yet at the same time that normal, lusty I want a piece of this one
feeling went through him, another one, and very different. The only way he
could think to understand it was remembering something someone said to him
a longtime ago. It went like this, "Every now and then you meet some one,
that, if they said they were going to hell, you'd sign up to go along."
This was the first time he ever felt that way about someone. Not even his
wife brought that feeling out. So he hired her, more or less, right there
on the spot. He felt great. Crazy or not, he felt it was the best thing
he'd done in a fortnight.
All he said was, "See you in a few hours," and the tension in his body
released. He relaxed for the first time, in a long time. He hoped she'll
show up for work, so many are 'no-shows'.
Then, after she left, he did really began to ponder the hire he just made.
He wondered what his wife, Doris, would think about her. He knew. Fuck her,
he thought, and turned back to the screen and the game.
As Binah left, a smile spread across her face. It was as big as the sun.
Talking to herself she said, "This is the best of both worlds. Yes, this
will be good. Besides, I really like Italian food. I wonder how long he's
been in the country and still carries an accent. Part of the act, I guess.
I'm safe. I'm away from all those crazies. And now I have this piece of
work as a boss." And, she laughed again, "He's their doing." She laughed
even harder. Some people stared and shook their heads.
Binah walked around looking at the sights, and at the ocean. She sat on
the beach. It was calming. Nice job, they got something right, she
At 4 p.m., on the dot, Binah showed up. "I'm here," she said to Deno.
"Yes you are." He looked her up and down. "Yes, you are," he said again.
Still Tuesday, Sitting on the Bench
'Good egg', the thought called up a memory of when he was about thirteen.
He remembered being in a foul mood when he woke up that morning, and hating
the idea of going to school. He had been embarrassed. That mental crap
stayed with him all his life. He had been put back in a lower reading group
due to surgery he had undergone the year before. It was brain surgery, and
back then the methods of operation consisted of ether, pick axes and
dynamite, or so it felt to a kid. They never discovered why he became
paralyzed. It lasted for a time, came and went, and then never reappeared.
All he knew was that the experience had left him not right in the thinking
department, with a weaker dominant right side. On top of that, his math
skills were terrible and his vision was never good after that. The vision
issue was correctable, but back then there was no way he was going to wear
coke bottle lenses with those awful thick black frames.
He shook his head remembering the effects of his foolish pride. Pride
equated with poor grades. Only the kiss-asses and the cute budding girls
sat in front to flirt with the teachers. Kirk would pretend to get sick the
day before the eye exam and memorize the eye chart in the nurse's office. What a jerk I was, a prideful jerk.
But back to that Tuesday morning: he remembered walking down the 13 steps
and thinking, I'm going to get mom. He was in a real ornery mood for
no reason his young mind could figure. He wondered, why do this? The
kitchen was a right turn after one step at the foot of the stairs. He
pivoted into the door opening and just started berating and trashing her.
There was no reason, or maybe there was a test that day, or maybe it was
Tuesday. Yes, it was a Tuesday, and Tuesday was Boy Scouts. Troop Three was
brutal, especially if the scout was short, young, and not part of the 'in'
gang. Kirk would start to steel himself for the weekly ordeal every Tuesday
morning. The scout master was known to chase the boys through the woods on
camping trips with a belt for any infraction. The scout master would also
beat his two sons with abandon. "Makes men out of them," was his answer to
anyone who questioned his actions or even looked at him askance. Complaints
and pleas fell on deaf ears. Both the scout master and the assistant
thought it was rather amusing to watch their sons dish it out to these
young newcomers from the big city.
His mom was cooking bacon and eggs in a large steel frying pan. The pan was
big enough to hold four full-sized pancakes. He and three of his sibs would
be leaving for school at roughly the same time. The two others were too
little to be part of this morning ritual and were probably still asleep. He
kept taunting her. Mom was about to crack another egg into the pan. From
across the room instead of cooking it, she pivoted and pitched it at him.
Tumbling in midair the egg seemed to fly in slow motion. Flip, flip, flip,
flip, straight at him it flew and this is what he remembered most, that
seemingly slow motion tumble that actually took only a second or two to
Mom had a good arm. She had beaned him a number of times with her missiles.
She was especially good with a moving target as he remembered. And Dad,
well Dad had been a hole-puncher with a rifle. Kirk always assumed he must
have inherited those skills. His previous job of 'Event Planner', the
details of which were classified even to this day, capitalized on that
almost innate skill and honed it, making him one of the best. Since he was
a natural with certain tools of a trade dealing in precision, with one shot
opportunities, he was much sought after. And now was out to pasture and
probably forgotten. Maybe that was a good thing.
Doris was of North Italian heritage. She was a natural blonde, top and
bottom. She stood 5'10, 38 years old, 125 lbs, and had some college
training. She had a very close
resemblance to the young woman, Cecilia Gallerani, as painted in Da Vinci's
"Lady with an Ermine".
Doris was born and lived in Northern New Jersey all her life. She, like
many teenagers and young adults, migrated to the Jersey shore in the
summers where parental supervision was nonexistent.
The cops most always gave a pretty girl a pass when it came to borderline
activity and besides, her daddy would take care of things if necessary. He
was mayor of a city in Northern New Jersey. They all recognized her Porsche
'D CETRULLO 1' which said it all in Jersey speak. No one had plates like
Doris had always been interested in astronomy and physics and had a great
mind for abstract thought. At one point in her life she considered a
possible academic-military track leading to astronaut training. But then
she met Deno Volente. He was the manager of a pizza place she ate at. He
was in the process of buying the owner out. She thought he was interesting,
nothing long term, just something to play with.
He was shorter than she was by four inches. He had a very effusive
personality, was funny and a good time in the sack. He was southern
Italian. He was everything her father would hate. She loved it.
"At least he's a Catholic and Italian," her dad would mumble at the dinner
The phone rang and rang. Deno finally got out of bed. He was hoping the
call would just go away. "Don't say anything, please," he said to the girl
in his bed.
"What do you mean pregnant?" he said into the phone. "You're on the pill.
Is this some sort of joke or another one of your stupid fucking tests that
you seem to enjoy playing?" Listening then silence.
"Yeah I know you had some sort of infection and were on antibiotics, so
what? It wasn't an STD, so big deal." The woman's voice on the other end
"The pill and antibiotics don't mix? Great time to find out now. The doctor
didn't tell you? He didn't ask if you were taking anything, and how about
the pharmacist? No one asked about possible affects? And now you're
pregnant. Is it mine?"
He pulled the phone away from his ear. Anyone in rock throwing distance
could hear the voice screaming through the receiver. After a bit, and the
voice became normal, Deno put the receiver to his head and says, "Sorry,
back off, slow down. I had to ask. I mean how do I know?"
"So, I'm the only one. Thanks that makes me feel so much better," he said
with sarcasm. "So now what?" He's hoping she'll say abortion.
"Married? You have to be shitting me. I'm not ready to get married. What's
with this Catholic crap? You…" and he decided to drop that line of
attack. "I'm just getting ready to buy Philippo out. Sweetie, Doris, don't
start crying. Can you get here soon? About an hour and a half. It's a
weekday and the Parkway is clear. Okay I'll meet you at the shop."
He hung up the phone and turned to the girl in his bed who heard
everything. She knows all his lovers. She takes him when she can. She's a
good friend and lover. She's steady, always there.
"Kathy you gotta go. Doris is coming here. Get your stuff and help me
change the sheets."
"Okay Deno. When will I see you again?"
"As soon as she goes back home or when I can get some time away from the
store. How about your day off, at your place?"
"Sure Deno. So, you going to marry her, Mr. Big Shot's daughter?" She knows
it's over. No married men for her.
"No, I don't know, Shit, this wasn't supposed to happen. She was supposed
to be gone by summer's end. That would be that."
"I'll be here for you; remember that." She gives him a good-bye kiss. They
both know the score.
"Thanks, Kath, see you later." She's pretty and a real circus in bed he
thinks as he watches her leave. "Oh man, this complicates everything," he
mutters. And then it hits him. Her father is the mayor, and he is
connected. I am dead, I am so dead.
When she was in her early twenties, she got pregnant, and in her book, that
ended the one life of a student. She began a new role as a mother. And if
Deno had other ideas, he was shown the light by her father. Deno was only
expecting her after her phone call. The two of them showed up. The limo sat
She stomped in. "Daddy wants to talk to you, go," she commands and pointed
to the door.
The chauffeur opened the door for Deno, and stepped away. Rocco Cetrullo
said nothing for a while. He looked out the front through the thick
plexiglas privacy window. Then after about ten minutes, as Deno was
sweating in the air conditioned car, Rocco turned to Dominic. "Dominic,"
Rocco never called him Deno, "I can't say it's nice to see you, so I'll get
to the point. You can wear your tux to your funeral or your wedding. It's
your choice. What's it going to be?"
"Wedding?" Deno gulped a reply.
Rocco nodded and didn't say a thing for a while. "Nice choice, but not the
one I was hoping for," said Rocco Cetrullo. He could read Deno like an open
book. He didn't say anything for a while, letting Deno sweat some more.
Then he said, "Okay, but you hurt my little girl, and, well, do I have to
spell it out?"
"NO sir." Deno had never met power like that, face to face before. Yes, he
had met Rocco at dinner but it was always polite conversation. Doris had
instructed him on the limits of acceptable subjects at the dinner table.
"By the way, don't worry about that loan from the bank. You won't need it.
It's a wedding gift from the family. Welcome to our family, son. Now get
out, and get back to work. You have a wife and child to support. No
son-in-law of mine is going to be a bum."
"Well, what did he say," Doris questioned?
"Welcome to the family." Deno thought it best to leave some of the details
"You were in the car for a fucking hour, and all he said was welcome to the
family? Bullshit! He threatened you, didn't he?"
"No he didn't. He gave me a wedding present, too. I don't need a loan from
"He bribed you? That bastard."
"Doris, please. He didn't bribe me. After I said I would marry you, he said
welcome to the family and then, only then did he mention the gift. Christ,
Doris, back off already."
She was upset. This was not supposed to happen. Deno, her husband? My god!
As she discovered, birth control pills and antibiotics don't mix, and
something she would never forget. She was Catholic and Italian, and this is
what you did when you fucked up. You accepted your responsibility and moved
on. In this case school was over. She was going to be a mother.
She really looked at Deno for the first time, and thought, what a piece of
shit. "Drive me home," she commanded.
The child died five years later from a brain tumor. Doris was totally in
the dumps. The black inky cloud of depression would flood her being for
weeks at a time. It took years, with some professional help, and believe it
or not, some rather deep emotional support from Deno. That's not to say
Deno didn't stop his normal MO. He would still fuck anything in a skirt.
Long term hires were not in the menu for his pizza business.
Business was good. Deno expanded his pizza shop into a restaurant and then
opened up another pizza shop in Rehoboth, Delaware. He always liked it
there. It was his getaway business. It wasn't like the crazy Jersey shore
or Ocean City in Maryland. But New Jersey was where the money was, so that
was his life. Doris didn't complain. The money was good. Pizza alone
brought in $750,000 a year, net. She did the books.
Doris was in the office doing payroll. Deno came in and said to Doris,
"Summer is coming and we need more help."
"You gotta stop fucking the help away," she said not even looking up.
"What do you mean?" he asked defensively. His father-in-law was still very
"You'll fuck anything in a skirt if she'll let you. Don't lie to me. Just
keep your mouth shut. You think I'm blind? You think I can't smell their
perfume, their smell, their scent on you when you come home? Don't answer.
Get the fuck out of my office. Go!"
. He thought he had been sliding under the radar all these years. So why
didn't she leave him?
As if she could read his mind, she hollered out to him, "Hey Deno, you
fucker, remember our vows? Better or worse? My word is my bond. I swore
before the crowd, the priest and God. I'm stuck with your cheating ass." Until you're dead, she thought.
Until one of us is dead
, Deno thought. Still, he said nothing. Better not to fight and to let the
fire die out rather than pour gasoline on it trying to put it out. Deno
made his mind up to be a good boy for a while.
Then Binah showed up.
The phone was ringing.
His phone was ringing. It woke him from his daydream on the bench with a
startle and a jump. He saw the name ID. It wasn't blocked. He smiled to
himself and thought they must be hard up, but only said, "Hello Lautz. It's
been a while." He knew Lautz would be in the vicinity, maybe even watching
him. He reached into his jacket pocket and took the tool of his past trade
off safety. Be prepared.
"No need to do that," said Lautz. "If that were my aim, you'd never have
heard the shot."
Kirk grinned at the pun. It also let him know Lautz was near. Good or bad,
this would be a fair exchange, at least in the beginning. He was sure this
was not a social visit. He looked around for the unobvious obvious. The
lights flashed on an old, slightly rusted and faded, almost chalk-like
brown, Toyota pick-up. It was the same one at the diner. He noticed the
windows were blacked out. He sat there. He didn't get up. If it was a snake it would have bit me.
A few more trucks could be felt hitting the concrete slabs and the
hum/whine of their tires on the interstate could be heard as he sat there
on the bench. "I wonder where they're going," he said aloud. The cat was
still there cleaning itself and looked up, if only for a few seconds, when
he spoke. The thought of going, again, anywhere … and then Kirk
realized he liked where he was for everything it was, and especially for
what it was not. He got up, waved, palms up to the Toyota, bowed a slight
bow, and started to
Lautz was sitting behind the wheel of the rusted out pick-up truck. He
watched as Kirk had walked about the square and sat on the bench. He did
nothing as Kirk sat there thinking who knows what. Lautz wondered about his
own fate, Is
this how we treat our people? This guy was good. We isolate him, we
hold his money, why? To control him? Am I next?
Kirk never saw this part of the operation: he is or was just a soldier.
Sometimes that's a better position to be in. Thinking about what has to
be done can keep some people from doing it, but not Kirk.
Kirk got up slowly, and to Lautz's mind, somewhat painfully. Kirk bowed and
stared to walk away.
Kirk's next recollection was looking up at Lautz's big smile as he said,
"You think I would drive out to this end-of-the-earth god forsaken place
just to let you walk away? You must think I'm an idiot. You'll be fine in a
few minutes; just a bit groggy, too. I sort of expected your answer and had
a little something prepared for that eventuality. Now get in the truck."
Kirk noticed the cat hadn't moved even though the truck was now parked next
to him by the bench.
"You shot me? What the fuck?" Kirk looked for blood. "You bastard."
"Get in the truck, now," demanded Lautz.
It was strong coffee, just the way Kirk liked it with two shots of
espresso. "Thanks, tastes good." He noticed the tranquilizer pistol on the
dash with the spent cartridge next to it.
"Here, drink this; it will help."
He sat there in the Toyota and looked at Lautz. "Why, what's going on that
you're so desperate for me?"
"It's a small job, nothing too political or dangerous, just a bug in the
ointment. It's a good job for an old pro like you."
"Where?" asked Kirk ignoring the age baited insult.
"East Coaster, Virginia. They don't want any one local on this."
"You know I stopped doing events a while ago," said Kirk.
"Yeah, but we know you could use the money, but more important, I
all know you're bored."
Kirk admitted grudgingly, "No, more importantly, I need the job, any job
just to keep sane. So, it's some politico?"
"You'll never believe this one. Here's his profile."
Kirk opened the red package. He read, stopped looked at the driver, read
some more and then put the package down. He said "You want me to have this
event with a half-baked science fiction writer? Have you people lost your
collective minds? How the hell can someone with no audience be a threat?"
"He has this ability to put arcane data together and come up with what's
going to happen. It's as if he can see into the future. He's been on the
mark too many times. We're concerned that others are reading his stories
and are beginning to take them seriously. He also has a clearance and works
black. He has some appearance of credence."
"Have you considered talking to him, and maybe offering him an alternative
outlet for his skills?" Kirk couldn't believe that they just wanted to pop
a second rate writer out of fear of some otherworldly bullshit.
"Not my department," said Lautz. "I just hand out the assignments. We
picked you for a lot of reasons." He was repeating his instructions, as he
was told. In the back of his mind he agreed with Kirk. Talk to the kid,
maybe buy his stories and then burn them.
Kirk looked at his old acquaintance. Yes, he was bored, he needed a few
more bucks, and this would be a cake walk. "No, I'm out of the business,"
he said, while thinking, this is so wrong.
"You sure? Last chance," said Lautz.
Kirk took the sunglasses off and looked at his old buddy and partner. "NO!"
Thanks for the opportunity. Want a drink?" Kirk pointed to the bar. "We
could go and just part friends and leave it at that. You're always
"It's kinda early," said Lautz looking at his watch. "What the fuck, a
drink, okay sure. Sorry you won't take this. I'll have to find some
newbie." He said this hoping that would get to Kirk.
Kirk said while putting his glasses back on, opening the door, "Yeah you do
that. They are setting up, and they know me, early or not." He walked to
the bar and sat waiting for Lautz to walk in the door. It took a bit too
"I had to park the truck," said Lautz.
"It was already parked," said Kirk. He must have been on the line to his
boss, reporting my refusal. I wonder if I'm the event, thought Kirk. Kirk
noticed the bulge under Lautz's sport jacket. He was sure there were at
least two magazines on his hip. He was carrying forty-five rounds and maybe
a backup. Lautz was always paranoid and he was always well armed.
That night Kirk started to read the targets' stories and poems. The poems
were pretty good. He had a knack to speak of the macro in terms of physics
and astronomy and then bring them back to earth and the human. Galaxy Poems
is the title Kirk gave them. The stories, on the other hand, needed a good
editor. Some were pretty funny. So what were they afraid of?
Then he read some of the target's political poems and a few of his future
history stories. "Oh shit," said Kirk to himself. "He hit the dragon on the
nose, didn't he? Tiananmen poem, cyber war, and political control, to name
a few points." Kirk figured someone or some entity was pissed and wanted to
call in a small favor that was owed. This would just be gesture, a nod to
them that at this level we can scratch and even eliminate that itch for
you, and at the same time give me something to do. How nice, and how thoughtful of them, he thought sarcastically. Kirk
shook his head. Poor kid, he won't know what hit him, or even why.
Kirk woke up. He didn't remember being tired. He turned his computer on. He
hit the button and the screen came on. He called a number he remembered.
"Kirk, I thought you would call. Been reading his stuff, haven't you?"
"Yeah, I get it. This is just a favor to them isn't it? What did you hit me
with? I passed out."
Lautz was quiet for a bit and finally said, "Well, yes and no. It goes a
bit deeper than that. I really can't say, but reread the big one. I'll call
you later, and by the way, I did not tell them you said no." Then he said
with a laugh, "You of all people should know not to mix booze and drugs.
It's a bad combination."
Kirk said, "Thanks. I assume you're local. Breakfast? Airy Metta's?"
"Sure, meet you there in an hour. And Kirk …"
Kirk heard something else in Lautz's voice. "Lautz, you okay?" Was the
hesitation was a warning. Kirk wasn't sure about anything any more. An hour
was about 70 miles away. He wondered, Spawar HQ?
"Yep, I'll meet you there." Lautz hung up.
A Wednesday evening a few weeks after
started at Deno's
Binah greeted them at the door and her manner made each and every person
feel as if they were the most important person on the planet. And this was
just for pizza, or for take out, or the cheap Italian dinner at this
run-of-the-mill restaurant. When she escorted them to a table, a calm regal
air surrounded them, as if this is what they were supposed to have all
their lives. And they ordered, and ordered deep, and drank the wine.
She knew right away if a taxi was required. Even before the patrons reached
the door, it was there. "Complements of the house," she added, "We want you
to come back in one piece."
That happened a few times and Deno was going to ask her where she got off
doing that without his approval, but they came back with friends. They told
Deno that was is the best restaurant they have ever been to; the food, the
service, yes, especially the service was out of this world. And those
friends brought more friends and more family.
Deno was going to say something anyway because he is the boss. His ego was
on the line. Before he could, "Better to ask forgiveness than permission,"
she said to him that one evening with a wink. "Ask any Jesuit."
What could he say?
One day the Chef was sick, and true to her word, Binah stepped into his
place. She whipped out the orders like magic. The food preparation and
presentation were heavenly. It's as if the Chef of the gods, or the chef
from the Inn in Little Washington just walked in and took over. To Binah,
the heat of the pizza ovens was nothing compared to the heat of the blast
furnaces and gravitational tug of each new universe. The late hours had no
effect. A sigh, a smile, and, "pepperoni pizza with mushrooms, coming right
up. Chicken parm, extra cheese, the best in the universe." It was, too. The
rest of the cooking staff was impressed. She helped out, gave ideas on how
to improve their art, and took no credit. The word spread to other
kitchens. They all wanted to work at Deno's no matter if it was Deno's.
In the recent past, where there may have been a short wait in the 5- to 8
p.m. time slots on the weekends, now it's backed up around the block all
the time, from opening to closing, Wednesday through Sunday. And she still,
with all that work, managed to come out and greet the people. Deno couldn't
believe it. It's like she owned the place. He kept his mouth shut. The
receipts speak louder than pride, but not much. He was jealous.
So to compensate, Monday and Tuesday became "no reservations; first come,
first served." It was her idea. People loved it. Otherwise, reservations
have to be made a month in advance, and only the oldest, longest serving
customers get bumped ahead. Otherwise, it's "Sorry, gumba, you gotta wait."
Her smile said it all. There is rarely a complaint. Besides, the appetizers
that get passed around to the waiting crowd
Deno realized her cooking was better than anything he could dish up, or his
wife, or, God forgive him for even thinking this, his mother, a saint. He
moved the returning cook to his other store, a pizza place at the Delaware
shore. The cook had wanted a transfer there, and now, Deno had good reason.
Everyone was happy.
Well, almost every one. Deno's wife, Doris, was wondering about this bimbo.
She was incredibly attractive, she was smart and she could cook. One day,
Doris was sitting on a stool staring at Binah. When everyone was out and
they were both alone in the kitchen, she said to Binah, "What's the matter
with my husband? You don't like the boss? Every girl comes on to the boss.
You don't even give him a second glance. I've been watching you. You're not
married, so what's up, you like women?" This was followed quickly by, "Oh
my god! Where did that come from, I'm sorry that was rude, Christ…"
"Don't worry Doris. It's okay. I don't go after married men. And yes, I
like women and I like men, too. I can take my pick. It gives me a bigger
pool to swim in."
Doris nodded, "Okay girl, I get it. But no hanky-panky with my old man, or
me, and you have a job for life." Doris knew a good thing, especially when
she carried the receipts to the bank.
Binah stopped and looked straight into Doris's eyes and said in a matter
of fact tone, "Binah Alef, My name is Binah Alef. Not girl, or girlie, it's
Binah. Doris, you will use it. And yes I get it. You don't have to worry. I
am not interested in your old man." And she looked Doris up and down and
Doris's eyes lit up a bit. The feeling Doris got from Binah was almost
predatory. She sort of liked it. Then Doris was about to say something, but
turned red from head to toe.
Binah pivoted and stepped into Doris's personal space. She placed a long
slender finger to Doris's lips and said, "Shush, not nice thoughts." And
then stepped back to the pot where she was making a fresh batch of pasta
A chill ran through Doris. But it was warm and yet it was like an electric
current. That's the only thing she could equate it with, an electric chill.
It wasn't a bad feeling. It was just different and it was new to her. It
was if her eyes opened for the first time. Doris looked at Binah
differently, and thought for a bit, just staring. It was nothing she could
put into words. It just was.
Doris was about to turn and head for the bar. She changed her mind, walked
up to Binah and said, "Yes, Binah, I am sorry. And if you do want to talk
some time, let me know. I think I would enjoy that." There is something
refreshing about Binah, she thought, as she inhaled deeply. It might be her
perfume too. What's wrong with Deno? He should be hitting on her. I know if
I liked women, I would be.
Binah smiled and said, "Sure thing, on my day off?"
"You have it, but not here. There's a nice little Jewish deli down the
road, and …"
Binah interrupted, she had work to do. "Yes, I know where it is. I pass it
every day; never been there. Meet you there Thursday, 11:30, before the
lunch crowed gets in there?"
On the video entertainment/news they both overheard the announcer
mentioning, "Scientists are not sure why, but believe in the last 10,000
years or so, they've discovered that the universe has been going through a
period of unexplainable rapid inflation. They say it may be attributed to
Binah muttered, "Yes, dark matter it is. They have no idea how dark. So
that's how they show themselves. How interesting."
Doris caught a few words and stared at Binah. Doris is not a scientist, but
she follows the latest news about physics and astronomy. Still, she keeps
up with some of the journals, Scientific American and Science News in
particular. So when Binah said what she said about dark matter, Doris had
an understanding, but not of anything she could name, or put her finger on. Yes, Thursday will be interesting.
Binah looked at her and just shook her head, as if something was said. "Yes
it will be interesting; see you Thursday."
"I never said anything," Doris whispered to herself. This is one strange
chick, she thinks as she walks to the bar where Deno is serving drinks to
the waiting patrons. Doris asks for a gin and tonic. "Two shots, please."
Deno looks up and said, "You sick or something? Please, you never say
"I said please. Big fucking deal. Now get over it, and give me my fucking
P-L-E-A-S-E," as she spelled it out.
Kirk got washed dressed and opened the drawer. The Glock 19 was there. He
checked, loaded, single stack. It was smaller and easier to carry than
those huge double-stacked 45's that Lautz liked. Kirk always kept four
additional magazines loaded. So aside from the punch, he had as much ammo
as Lautz, and maybe 5 more rounds. The Sig P238 was there, too. He had been
Kirk saw the Toyota as he came down the hill. Lautz was there when he
walked in. He was big and took up a large portion of the booth. Lautz was
drinking his coffee. Kirk knew it was decaf, what a pussy.
Kirk said a good morning to Gloria and Fred as he walked in and pointed to
Lautz. He walked over to Gloria and gave her a morning hug. She looked at
him. He winked and sat down. "Good morning Lautz, I didn't expect you to be
on time, or early. That's not like you."
"Things and people can change," he said.
"You still drink decaf," said Kirk. He had noticed Gloria pouring Lautz a
refill from the orange brimmed pot before he entered the restaurant.
Lautz didn't say anything. He nodded.
Kirk ordered, "Bacon eggs, scrambled, and toast, dry." Gloria was about to
Lautz interrupted quickly, "I'm paying," as if to acknowledge his friends
financial history. And then turned to Kirk and asked, "Well, have you
thought about it?"
"This is a new world, isn't it?" Kirk asked. He wasn't sure just what he
would say when the question arose, as it was bound to. But this was
unexpected, even from him. He had never even contemplated that thought.
Lautz gave him a raised wrinkled forehead look as if surprised at this
question as an answer. The question many times holds some of the answer.
Kirk continued, "We never did this type of thing for anyone, especially at
this low level, this slight pain in the ass level. What's going on here?"
"To them, it's important," Lautz said between sips of coffee.
"By them you're not talking about …" asked Kirk.
"By them I can't say. You're not cleared for that level," whispered
Lautz as he motioned with his palms down to keep the conversation lower.
"I assumed I was, since you're talking to me," said Kirk.
"Yes you are, but only on a need to know."
Kirk hissed, "Well, I need to know what the hell is going on. You came out
here to the end of the world and want me to pick up just where I left off,
after you all but abandoned me to this shithole. You forget to send my
retirement and all that was due me. This is a plan to get me so desperate
I'll do anything, right?" Kirk was mad but kept his voice down.
Gloria was watching his table and he could see that Fred was looking at
both of them reflected by a mirror on the wall. Kirk wasn't sure but he
thought he noticed Fred's .44 peeking out from the apron. He knew it
wouldn't come to that. Not now anyway. This was something new. He nodded to
them and smiled as if to say everything was fine.
Lautz began, "The Rome, the Republic you remembered and wished for, is gone
and never more. The unified war machine has given way to a new pagan god
and a war machine controlled by a plutocracy that both of us never dreamed
"What of the Republic?" questioned Kirk.
Lautz laughed and just said, "It never actually existed. It was a dream, an
illusion. The Republic was a republic of the rich and powerful. Powerful
socialization, education inculcated the franchised into believing that they
actually had a say. The vote every four years was a sop. The center of
power changes geographic locations over time. It keeps everyone happy. It's
their turn, again."
Kirk was almost at a loss for words. All he could ask was, "Again, who?"
"You read the data. You went on the web and looked him up. Figure it out."
Lautz went on to drive the point home, "You actually believed what you were
taught, even after all your years with us? Really?"
Kirk realized that he had crossed the line. He was in the game whether he
liked it or not. He had too much information. He knew it without Lautz even
mentioning it. Play or die, or die anyway. He was expendable. He might be
necessary but he wasn't important. Neither was Lautz. He laughed to
himself. I wonder if Lautz, with all his self importance, ever considered
his position as simply a cog. I would guess not. And he thinks I swallowed
Kirk ate the rest of the breakfast in silence. Lautz said nothing. He just
watched Kirk, wondering what he was thinking. This was a bad assignment on
many levels. The reasons were totally screwed up. The target was not worth
a bullet let alone the travel expenses. And it was just wrong. Lautz still
held on to a copy of the Bill of Rights in his wallet, almost like a
religious icon. It was one of those laminated copies that could fit into a
picture file, the size of a driver's license. No matter what he said to
Kirk, he did believe in the foundations, the bedrock of that experiment
begun in 1776.
Lautz said, "Look, just go and meet him, and check him out. If you think
you can get this kid to back off the sensitive subject matters, mention,
you know his cleared work, well you get the idea." Kirk couldn't believe
it, but Lautz just went over his boss's head.
Kirk sat there open mouthed, coffee suspended mid air. "You're kidding. You
didn't just say that." Then he knew there was way more to this than he ever
imagined. "Okay I'll go, but I need money, tickets and all the rest. I'll
need a place near by, too, and a car, and nothing fancy either."
"It's already done. And here's all your travel documents, cash and ID. And
what I just told you, I never said," said Lautz handing him a thick large
legal sized envelope. "Oh, a heads-up, the kid is a master pistol shooter
"Any other surprises?" asked Kirk sarcastically.
"Well, yes and no. Nothing related to this kid, directly, as I see it, but
there have been some strange goings on in that part of the country. It's
kind of spooky. People are disappearing, there are movements, automotive in
nature that we can track on transponders at speed that are unexplained,
power surges that satellites pick up and then just as quickly disappear.
We're not sure what the hell is happening. None of the other agencies are
Lautz continued, "Other than the people that have been lost, and none of
them are of any importance in the greater scheme of things, it's the power
surges and the incredible speed of these vehicles." Lautz was looking at
Kirk wondering what he would say to that.
"So you really don't want me to go after this kid, do you? You think he
might have an insight into this stuff just because of what he writes. It's
so far out that I'm guessing you and what's his face want me to see if he
knows anything about this phenomena as you suggest, and if so, will he help
Lautz thought, well Kirk was quick on that one. All he said was, "I was
thinking that. That's one reason I said what I did before. The other reason
is this." He slapped the copy of the Bill of Rights on the table.
Kirk didn't have to look. He knew what it was. Kirk looked at Lautz and
asked, "When do I have to leave?"
"Now, we went to your room and retrieved your travel gear. We have a
private jet. You're not flying commercial for this outing. I know you're
armed. Finish breakfast. We have the jet waiting at a field not far from
here." He pointed east to the desert.
"You really bet I would take this, didn't you?"
"You went over the line yesterday and we both know that. This other stuff
is really what's bothering us. The event is real, just to placate some
foreign big shots, but avoidable given the other things I mentioned." Lautz
finished and laid a twenty on the table and left a ten for a huge tip.
"Gloria," Lautz said looking up, "I'll take good care of your boy. Don't
She looked at Lautz and at Kirk in total surprise.
Kirk smiled and shrugged his shoulders. When he got up, he walked over to
Fred, shook his hand and said, "Thanks for everything. This is the call I
was waiting for." Then he went over to Gloria and gave her a hug and a
light kiss on the cheek. "Be seeing you soon, I hope."
Later on, a THURSDAY just before noon at the deli
At Micha's Deli, Binah is there early, looking around and sampling the bits
and pieces here and there. Micha liked her immediately. He didn't know why.
There's an affinity he feels toward her. And he said, "You know girlie,
there's something about you, I just can't put my finger on." He paused
thinking about that statement, and continued, "Let me rephrase that,
there's a certain I know you from somewhere, but just where, I don't
Binah never let anyone call her anything but Binah. She let this one slide.
She likes him? she questioned herself. She instantly and instinctively
liked him a lot, and gave him a light kiss on the cheek, and said, "That's
for you, Micha honey. Enjoy it." She is who she is, and she can do most
anything she desires.
They both stare at each other, a flicker of recognition flashes in each of
He's floored, he can't speak, and Micha not speaking is a miracle, or he's
got to be sick. He knows this beauty is not what she appears to be. But
then again, neither is he. Mental probes go out and are blocked. He stops,
he looks around to see who is there, and said, "Its You. You left? That
explains the unbalance in nature."
This time it's her turn to be speechless. She looks at him deeply, but he
is good. He can block the probes too. And she knows. He gives her a light
salute just as Doris walks in.
"You two know each other?" She can sense familiarity. "You're Jewish?"
Binah looked at her, looked at Micha, and said, "I am all things. Let's sit
and talk. Remember, this was your choice. I had no idea he was
here." She points to Micha.
"He is who? He is what to you?" Doris is totally confused and is dying to
"We have known each other forev—for a very long, long time." She has to
remember to put things in terms of time here. "I'm just surprised to meet
him here. Micha, come here and meet …"
He finished her sentence, "Doris Volente, yes I know, the pizza king's
wife. I have no idea what's going on there, but his food, your food has
become the talk of the city, and it's getting a national reputation."
Doris smiled and said "I think it's because of our new cook." She points to
Micha nodded, "Yes that could be it. She can cook up most anything you
want; from dirt, too, I once heard," spreading his arms wide.
Binah kicks him.
He walks away limping and shaking his head muttering, "Who would have
guessed it, the devil herself just walked in." A piercing pain hits the
back of his skull. It's the dish that the pickles were in. It made
ballistic contact. No damage was reported at the impact zone.
Doris looked up and asked, "Were you two married to each other at one
point? Nobody acts like that unless they were married … or lovers,"
she adds as an after thought. "You have a good arm and good aim. I could
use some training." Doris laughed at the mental picture.
Binah gives Doris a hug. "You're a dear. Oh no, never married, but we did
work very closely for the longest of times. Let's talk shall we?"
"Micha, two soups, you know what I like. Doris, and you?"
"Whatever you're having will be just fine, Binah." Doris thinks there's a
lot more going on here than meets the eye. This could be interesting.
They eat, talk about work, the weather and then out of the blue, between
slurps of chicken noodle soup, Doris asked her, "What was that stuff you
mentioned about dark matter? What were you referring to?"
Binah asked her, "You understand a bit of physics and astronomy, but do you
believe in a God?"
Doris stops, spoon mid air, soup dripping back into the dish, and looks at
her, "I'm Italian. I'm Catholic. What do you think? Really, now!"
Binah said, "EXACTLY."
"Exactly? What do you mean?" Doris is confused. "What the hell does that
mean? How does that relate to your question and me being Catholic?"
"Reality. That's what I meant. What if I were to tell you that all you've
been taught is upside down and inside out?"
"I'd say you were probably going to hell." Doris answered automatically,
with years of catechism kicking in. And has another bite of egg salad
sandwich and some coleslaw. She just thinks Binah is crazy. Deno was right.
But she could cook, so …
Binah started again, "Suppose that, your God, any god for that matter, was
really first called by a different name. Then imagine that a number of
lesser gods and their retainers conducted a coup? One difference being the
lesser gods cannot kill off the more powerful one, but can relegate her to
a prison or banish her, or …"
"What do you mean her," Doris interrupted. "I understand the
argument, but some of this is ridiculous. God is a man." Again, her
catholic indoctrination kicked in.
Binah responded, "Well, what if it isn't? What if the ultimate power is
female and not male? What if, and think about this, every person, every
thing, is nothing but a hologram of a greater existence? And add to that,
if you don't know, all conceived beings start off as female, and female is
the basis for all existence."
Doris is shocked. She never thought about it. "This is blasphemy, isn't
"Is it?" Binah wants to laugh but this is serious for this person.
"What if the term god is really the term for the devil as you currently
define it, and the devil is really god?"
"Now that's insane. And that is blasphemy." Doris is adamant about the
foundations of her religion.
Binah questions her gently, "Again I ask, is it? And why is it?"
"Because, because, well that's just the way it's always been," stammers
"Says who? Try this one on for size. The lesser gods need, no, require
people and require worship, unlike people, who might benefit from the gods
but can survive without them. Without worship of any kind they disappear.
They must have you, and in return they offer knowledge of sorts, and
guidance to achieve a higher level of existence other than brute animal."
Binah continued, "Maybe the word worship carries too much baggage. The word
I'm looking for can take myriad manifestations, from crude burnt offerings,
to meditation and contemplation. The very act of thinking about them, or a
higher power, a universal truth, it's all the same, and is food for all
Doris said, "This sounds like a lot of bullshit. I need another drink. How
about you? You don't have to go to work and fu … Screw Deno. He can
handle the restaurant without me."
Binah laughed, "Getting religion? You can say what you want." She turns to
Micha and orders, "Micha, a drink for me too. How about some dessert?
They have a few more drinks and are a bit giddy, well, maybe on the way to
Doris said, "Go on with this theological nonsense. And no, I'm not getting
religion. I have one. I'm Catholic, remember?"
Binah began again, not missing a beat, "Humans and other beings can exist
as they are without us. There is a power you have, that you know nothing
about, or fail to realize. It's an awareness of self as self, and as that,
you can rise above the basic animal. However you also must realize that you
are but holograms of this universe and as such reflect its basic nature
too. So your seeming cruelty to each other is nothing more than displaced
Doris asked, "Misdirected, and what's with this 'us' crap?"
Binah said, "I'll answer the first question and hold off the other answer
for later, maybe. Yes, cruelty is misdirected energy because you can reason
and think. You have a choice of how to use your powers. A star bursts, and
wipes out life. There is no thought there, that's just physics. On the
other hand, if you drop a nuclear bomb on a population, or starve your own
people, well that's premeditated, and can be avoided."
Binah continued, "The star will seed more life, eventually. Your action
just kills and distorts it."
"But God is the basis of our existence," said Doris.
"No, they are simply manifestations of a greater power. Gods are in a
sense, teachers, leaders, guides, but they also derive their form, so to
speak from the central IT of reality. From the one comes everything else.
And as you must know from your mythology, which is closer to the truth than
you realize, the gods have their likes and dislikes, petty jealousies and
internal struggles. We cannot kill each other off, to use your definition
of life, but we can supplant, overwhelm, and force a coup, if you will. And
your reality reflects, as a hologram, our reality. Change in one dimension
reflects and alters other dimensions, other realities."
"The new Quantum Religion," said Doris. "So where's the cat?"
"Cat?" Binah stops, a confused look appears on her face, and then,
"Schrödinger, very funny. She's in a pet store. I couldn't take her
They both burst out laughing.
As the last customer left, Micha put a CLOSED sign on the door and locked
it before anyone else came in. He stood next to Binah's right. He seemed to
have gotten a bit bigger. He was listening to their conversation. Doris
looked up and points to him in a 'what's he doing here looking at us like
Binah answered, "Micha is my right hand. I'll explain later. I told you, we
go way back."
Doris is considering all that has been laid on her table. This data was
leading her to rethink everything she knew. It's similar to new inputs to a
spreadsheet, only here the data is creating a paradigm shift, leading to an
She looked at Binah. "Binah is not your name is it," she said quietly. It's
a statement not really a question.
"No, it is, well not exactly. It's short for the female form. It's been
corrupted by those in power and reflects the upside down-ness I mentioned.
It goes back even further from a corruption of a language you could never
utter, but it could also mean a higher being yet, or great mother, or GAIA,
which is an acronym. It's now a derogatory corruption of the spoken Ba'al Zəbûl, "Lord of the High Place" or "High Lord". Look
it up in Google. Let's leave it at that."
"And Micha?" she asked.
"He is my faithful field general, my number one, Michael." He bowed. "And,
I had no idea he was here," Binah added. "You picked this place out, not
"Michael? Michael what, how? I don't follow," said Doris. Doris chugs down
a drink and motions for another. "So big deal, he's a close, old friend."
Binah said, "Don't worry. It's not important to you. But, if it ever comes
to it, you can trust him with your life."
Doris is very familiar with those who protect. She looked at Micha. Yeah, she surmised,
he looks like he could possibly take someone apart. I wonder how he is
with a Beretta
Binah began to tell Doris the story. "I left my confines. I was tired of it
all. I let things happen and I said screw it. I came here to get away, to
just be human, or as close to it as possible. My leaving has caused a great
imbalance in the fabric of the universes, and all are out looking for me.
Even if I'm not in power at the moment, my being is required in the
machinery to allow the multi-universes to run smoothly, albeit, corrupted
by those clowns who call themselves gods."
Binah sighed, "Still I do get bored and tired of the bullshit. Even a CEO
like me, tires of the repetition, of the tasks we are given, choose to do,
and must carry out. Once a decision is made, and initiated, then the
conclusion must eventually follow. And given enough time, the players will
repeat mistakes that were similar to earlier ones not ever learning, or
taking a new path. It is my own creation and my own hell, I guess. Funny me
using that term; ironic, wouldn't you say?"
Doris interrupted laughing and still in disbelief, "Have you ever thought
about writing a book, fantasy or science fiction? This is good." She
chugged down another drink and said, "Okay, go on, I'm listening. Tell me
more. I swear, I almost believe you." She was shaking her head, a smile
across her face.
Binah continued, "I needed to get away. It was in fact a deliberate
dereliction of duty. I was AWOL. Well, yes, thinking about it, my will, and
yet because of what was instituted, it could be considered, judged as so."
"About 14 billion of your years ago I was dethroned. I cannot be killed;
displaced yes, but not killed. The universal balance must be maintained. In
this case, as I mentioned, the balance reversed itself, but it is, or was
still balanced. Up became down and down up. I go by a variety of names, one
being Ba'al Ayin or Binah as I like to be called. There is yet another
which is none of your concern at this time."
"Approximately 10,000 of your years ago, I was demonized and became the
devil in the current myths. Sometimes I'm male and others female. I am
pictured for the political necessity of the time. Where in previous eras
before the current one you all now live in, the female, the mother, held
the highest position in society. Now it is the male warrior gods. Your
societies are dominated by it."
"Even your early holy books have reference to the sons of these gods coming
among the women and taking them back and breeding. These are the new people
that displaced all who came before, effacing most of the myths, writing,
and science that existed previously. You sometimes read about Atlantis or
the past glory days? That was me, us, and our society.
"I was placed in what you would call, house arrest."
At that Doris laughed, "Omnipotent God? In house arrest? Not happening. Oh
please, give me a break!" She's a bit buzzed from the gin. She's laughing
so hard she has tears running down her face.
Binah gave her a look and asked, "Are you finished?"
Micha shook his head in wonder. He thought to himself, were this the old
days, this woman wouldn't be talking to her like that, that's for damned
Binah continued, "I escaped. And because of that escape the balance of
heaven and in the universe is upset, which is indicated by a number of
factors. You have rapid inflation which will tear the universe apart if
it's not controlled. The galaxy is warped by dark matter. Dark matter is
what you will see of them. Your calculation of the speed of light is off
just a bit but enough to throw all your physics out the window …
because of them. And that warping is an indication that they are here
looking for me and things are not in balance. You have wars. You can read
all the rest in your media and history.
"They are looking for me, but they are not here, yet. This crude place is
the last place they'd look. However I don't want to go back. I would rather
see the universe collapse and restart, as in another big bang as you call
Binah thought before she began her next statement. Then she said, "Ponder
one more thing. Ponder the phrase, 'On Earth as it is in Heaven'.
Think about what that means in the total sense based upon what I just
explained to you. Here is a direct acknowledgment of the situation in the
cosmos. It has intimate relevance to the hiccup I mentioned that upset that
Binah said in a deliberate voice, "The events in this universe and, in a
more visible fashion, this planet, now and have always reflected the chaos
my removal caused. The hologram was flawed to begin with. Instead of a neat
birth, the universe was hampered by incomplete data, if you will, and
discord. That discord permeated the Who, What, and How of your existence as
we know it. And so, repeating the phrase, 'On Earth as it is in Heaven', is
a truism, a direct holographic reflection. This planet, your home, how you
live as a people, actually reflects what is missing as well as the discord.
The trickle down theory is correct when it comes to this."
Doris is shocked. The story makes sense, but it turns her mind upside-down.
This is going to take a while to digest.
Micha looked on, nodding.
Binah said, attempting to reduce the discord she caused in Doris's mind, "I
selected your restaurant because it was out of the way, safe, and I like
Italian food. The heat from your ovens is nothing to me. And I just
realized, today, the sweat from my body has been falling into the food I
have been cooking. You can figure the rest. I don't have to spell it out."
Doris was confused, but not. It was just hard to accept the truth as it was
projected. She asked, "No you don't. So when are you going to leave?" Her
eyes are getting red and beginning to tear.
Binah answered, "I'm not sure. Maybe after the tourist season is over. But
still, I'm not strong enough yet to take back control. It will be a while,
maybe even a few big bangs as your scientists call them. Time means nothing
to us. Maybe I'll stay on for a while. It's nice. I like to cook. Italian
food is my favorite. Micha is running a good place to hang out and nosh,
so." She looks up at Micha who is crying, and says, "Get over it!"
Doris is crying too. Binah holds her and pushes Micha away. "Get us both a
gin and tonic, doubles, please."
"Done," he said sniffling.
Doris looks up wipes her eyes. "You're for real. You're not kidding. I love
"No, I'm not kidding and yes, I am for real. Now let's have another drink
or two or even three." She thinks about what Doris just said. It hit her in
a place she never knew existed.
Doris starts to giggle, "How about you making some wine?" and she breaks
out into hysterics.
Binah starts laughing too. "Yeah, right. By the way, none of this to your
"That pig, I wouldn't tell him shit. He wouldn't understand three words of
this conversation. Besides, what would I say? I met God? He would
have me committed. Then he'd own the whole fucking thing. Sorry, did I say
"That I do understand, and it's not a fucking problem," said Binah.
"Micha, two more."
Micha walks to the bar shaking his head looking at Binah and Doris.
They are both so stinking drunk and laughing like crazy, crazy human
bodies with all their hates and desires
. But then he has to smile, there is something to humans that no one
expected. Look at the art and music and literature they developed, even
with the inherent flaws in their universe. Who would have guessed? Not me.
Kirk on his way East.
The jet was a good size. Kirk knew nothing about aircraft. Lautz escorted
him to the ramp and offered his hand. Kirk took it. Neither said a thing.
Once airborne, Kirk looked around. He unfastened his seat belt once they
were airborne. The pilot and crew looked civilian, but he knew better.
"Sir, may I get you anything?" she said, coming from behind silently. Kirk
jumped just a little. Planes made him edgy. He wasn't in control and he did
not like not being in control. It wasn't the idea of death. He accepted
that as a given in his line of work. He just wanted to be in control, even
if he lost.
These guys were good, very good, he thought. "Yes, thanks, some coffee and
"An apple Danish?" she finished his sentence. They had this all planned
out. Damn that Lautz. Kirk had to smile. Okay, he'd go and meet this kid
and talk and do what ever had to be done. He sat and began to read the more
detailed documents. He looked up at the crew. He looked around. This was
Later that afternoon
The two of them, still quite buzzed, left together. Binah faced Doris and
said, "It only takes love to make a world. Come with me?"
Goddess or not, I love her.
Doris grabs her hand, turns to face her, wraps her arms around Binah and
kisses her long and deeply. IT all drops away, reality breaks down, the two
become one, dissolved, and become no thing, if only for an instant.
"Your place, please, I can't imagine us at mine," Doris whispered.
Binah scooped her up, and they were there.
That was probably a mistake. The energy jolt will be a giveaway. Screw
and Binah abandoned herself to the time and place. They make love like
Something awakens in Doris that she never felt. The passion, the love, and
the love-making brings something to Doris. It's a different feeling. Doris
is not embarrassed as she initially imagined.
Doris looks at Binah's perfect body and starts touching again. She starts
on her legs running her hand up between them, bends over her and kisses
her. And the electricity passes between them again. "Multi orgasms are
great," she says. "You get on top."
Binah touches Doris's lips with her lips, a light brush, a flick of her
tongue and then caresses her from head to her toes and back again.
Many hours later, Doris said, "I really must to be going."
"Me too," whispered Binah. Binah has loved, and loved everything in the
universes, but this was different and unexplainable. She looks at Doris.
Love? Does love like this come with the body and this mind? I never
knew THIS. She wondered. The love-making brings something else to Binah,
too. She feels something deep inside her like never before. "I have to
consider this feeling, this unexplainable what? I can't even understand it
and I AM."
SATURDAY morning, in the kitchen prepping for the day's service
Deno looks at Binah's well-framed body. He wants her, and wonders, ponders
what she must be like in the sack. I could teach her a thing or two,
Binah looks about:
She at him, and knows all within,
shakes her head, stirs and says,
"Boil, boil deep within, don't even go there.
It's toil and trouble,
a price you're not willing to pay."
And she turns away from him. He has free will. He has been warned.
He looks, she's glowing. "What can she do to me, no one is here yet. It's
just me and her," he thought. He began walking toward her, drawn by lust
and desire, and slowly reaches out toward her.
Upset at this reality, she faces him. It's the same as before, only played
out on a human scale. He stops as she stares at him. He's never seen this
in his life. Her power begins to surge. Her eyes turn from bright green to
a deep red. A cold shiver runs through his blood. It is too late. He
touched her. A putrid puddle, down the drain in the floor, seen never more,
washed away, erased. "I guess my time here is done," she said to no one.
She folds her apron and places it neatly on the table before her. She pats
her stomach and said, "Vacations, like parties, have to end. We must be
She called Micha. "Be seeing you. We're on the run again. Don't give
yourself away. I'll let you know where we land. Take care of Doris. We'll
will be back for both of you, soon."
"We will do as you …," is all She heard in the receiver. She cut the
connection before Micha could utter another word. She vaporized the phone.
Binha is at a new Italian Restaurant in San Diego, CA
Laura DiCarleto, the manager of her father's restaurant, CIAO, is insistent
and is about to yell, instead hisses. "Dad, did you see the bag she's
carrying? It must cost as much as your car … and her shoes." There are
customers and they never fight in front of patrons.
Here father is never sure how to deal with his strong willed, smart and
very spoiled daughter. "Yes but she is a good cook. I heard about her work
on the East Coast. She asked not to tell anyone that she was working here
"Dad, I know you have a thing for a skirt and this one is very pretty. I'm
"Laura, sweetie, just talk to her. There is something about her. Let's give
her a chance."
"Dad, you're such a pig. There is something about her. She's female. Our
cooks are good enough."
" 'Good enough' is not what I would like this place to be. It's not what
you should want. She's supposed to be one of the best. Please, just talk to
her. Give her a shot. Make up your own test. I'll let her go if she doesn't
pass, okay?" he begs.
"Are you FBI, IRS or something? We're not Mafia and we don't cheat on our
taxes," said Laura to this green-eyed bitch. Laura did not like her from
the get-go. She didn't trust her for some reason. If she had given it any
consideration, something she rarely did, she would have realized it was
Binah answered in a calm and gentle voice. She was aware that Laura was
really afraid that she would take her father from her. "No, dear girl, not
even close. I just like nice things, and I can afford them. I inherited a
rather large piece of property. It brings me wealth. I do not have to work.
I just can't stand being there doing nothing. It's like being in jail, so
here I am, making pizza for your father. I like him and I like Italian
food." She gave him a wink as she said it. He was watching with interest.
Laura turned toward her father and demanded to know, "Dad, are you under
her spell or something?" Laura was pissed and she knew her father was
attracted to her. She hated being talked down to, and when it came to
money, that was a sore spot. Laura was proud of her wealth. Can afford them, my ass, she thought. "How the hell can she make
pizza? "She probably hasn't worked a day in her life, let alone made
pizza," Laura said pointedly to her father, inches from his face. She was
the only one who could get away with that. "I'll bet whoever gave you that
recommendation was a set up."
Binah heard it all. Smiling ever so sweetly, she went over to Laura and
meaning every word whispered, "Dear girl, I can do anything. And by the
way, that recent wish, it can be arranged." Binah whispered this to her so
as not to upset her father.
"Arranged? What can?" questioned Laura who was a bit taken aback. No one
talked to her like that.
"Your ass, sweetheart. You bet your ass if I heard you correctly."
"I didn't say that aloud, did I?"
Binah just smiled. A slight flame red color emanated from Binah's eyes. Had
any one else seen it they would have taken the look as one of self
assurance and control. It was street smart people, and those with a good
intuition would have recognized and understood immediately that there was a
lot more to that look.
Her father interrupted and pulled Laura aside. "Sweetie let's give Binah a
chance," said her father. "She says she can cook too. Come on, come up with
that test we agreed upon."
Laura figured now she had Binah where she wanted her. She'll fall on the cute little ass my dad likes, and she'll be gone.
Laura's stubbornness and ego were on the line. "Okay, I get to pick." The
two, father and daughter conferred, and agreed. Laura said to Binah "Here's
the menu for tonight's special party."
Binah took a look, laughed to herself, and then said "When and how many?"
"The party is starting at 6 p.m. and goes on until the last one leaves. And
we do have pizza take out, too," said Laura. She knew no master chef could
ever do this alone, let alone this bimbo. "Oh, by the way," said Laura with
a smirk, "the staff all called in sick." This was going to be fun. Screw with me thought Laura.
Binah looked at Laura and said, "You're not my type." and then walked into
the kitchen. She was home, just like in New Jersey.
Laura stood there. She wanted to say I wouldn't fuck you if you were that last human on earth. But she
held her tongue. Her dad was watching.
Binah was nonplused. She just grinned, turned back, walked back toward
Laura. She got real close and put her arm around Laura's shoulder, pulled
inches from her face, held her with an iron like grip and whispered again.
Only this time there was venom in her words. "Be careful what you wish for
sweetie. And If I'm not mistaken," she said even softer, while her eyes had
a light glowing fiery appearance, only seen by Laura, "I know this chicken
has never been plucked. I'd be more than happy to introduce you to the
finer things in life." Binah gave her a light kiss on the cheek, and as she
pushed Laura away, while sliding her hand ever so lightly down Laura's back
and on her tight little butt and walked into the kitchen. It was a move
that was never recorded on the monitors.
Laura felt as if the world had stopped moving while Binah whispered to her.
She sensed something else too, something dangerous and, and she had no
words for it, just something. And for the first time in her short life of
25 years, she had no answer, no comeback. The touch was electrical.
Binah's green eyes glowed, her face flushed, she was doing it, finally
doing what she had always wanted to do. It felt like an eternity of
obligations had been lifted from her shoulders. "To hell with all of them
back there. I'm free and I don't care. I'm just going to be more careful,
or maybe not." She thought about the recent past mistakes.
New Jersey, Binah
Binah returned to see Doris. Binah knew that the surges were being picked
up by those looking for her. She really didn't care. Those idiots couldn't
find their own noses in front of a mirror. What Binah ignored was the fact
that her movements were now being picked up by sensors that she had no idea
existed. The details of human existence, especially of the military and
police state, were of no concern to her. Had She known, She would have
eliminated them, maybe. There was still some work to be done, and that act
would be premature.
She and Doris disappeared in a flash, and again, the satellite that was now
parked in low earth orbit above New Jersey caught the surge. What is sensed
was a part of the electromagnetic spectrum that was reserved to nuclear
blasts. The gravity wave would have given credence to the scientific
community, had they been allowed to analyze the data, but the origins were
a total mystery to the military. There was no blast. There was no attack,
but there the recording was, right in front of them.
Doris sensed things were not right and asked, "Binah, could you move where
I'm staying? Something is not good there; I can feel it. I don't feel
Binah knew Doris had an increased sense for this and respected her lover's
"Where would you like to go?"
"With you to San Diego"
Binah looked at her, "really?"
"Yes, if only for a short while. You have another cooking job, I would
"Sure do. What a bunch of loonies. Where do all these loonies on this rock
come from? Of course, yeah, ME!" She told her about the interview and all
They both had to laugh and thought nothing more of any of that. They were
too involved with making love and enjoying their time together. Binah, in
order to make sure things remained unnoticed, allowing both of them not to
care, stepped out of time and moved both of them ahead by 30 minutes.
But the clocks could tell. The clocks in The Mountain in Colorado Springs
could tell something was amiss. A hiccup in the fabric of time was recorded
as an anomaly. Forget 30 minutes, femtoseconds were missing.
The Searchers sensed it but did not know what it was either. They felt as
if something just passed them by as they were standing still.
Binah and Doris just walked along the beach. There was no one there. The
city was behind them as was all the finite activity of the universe. It was
still 30 minutes behind and could never catch up.
Doris looked at Binah and asked, "Why do you have to go? I mean, You are
who you are and all, you can do anything, right?"
Binah patted her stomach. "I like Italian food."
Doris looked at her and said, "You know, I'm pregnant."
"Yes, of course I do. It was me who was pregnant. I couldn't keep it. I
transferred it to you. That first time together did something to me I had
never felt in my entire existence. And that something, that love that you
humans have the capacity for, created it. Well my sweet, you are holding on
to it. It's wonderful. You also have some of my powers. I'll explain a bit
Doris leaned over and hugged Binah. Some tears were falling from Doris's
eyes and Binah reached over and brushed them away with her lips and a light
kiss. They sat on the beach and looked out over the water. Binah said
again, pointing to the sky and all the beauty of the planet, and looking at
Doris, "This, this, those idiots, they it got right."
Binah said to Doris, "I can move you all to this and you'll be safe. No one
will know where you are and no one will be able to harm you. I will have
Micha here soon. There will be others. I need to know that you'll be safe.
I have obligations that need addressing rather soon. It might get a bit
messy." She reiterated to make Doris feel safe, "As I said you will be safe
with Micha. Others will be following him, too."
Binah touched Doris's belly and smiled. It was good. Then she began to run
her hands over Doris body and it was just like the first time. Space-time
shuddered. It was recorded and noticed but not understood. But where and
how it originated, no one on earth could explain.
Kirk in New Jersey
So how do I go about this, he wondered? Do I just walk up to him and tell
him I'm here to kill him if he doesn't help us out? Sounds about right,
just lay it out and watch.
The target was leaving his townhouse. It was really a row house, in a
subdivision. There was no town or city. It wasn't New York Boston or even
DC. Town houses, what piles of shit. He followed him to a restaurant. It
was Chinese and as crappy looking as the other prefabricated buildings that
were planted there. Except for the green of the trees and land, it could be
Anyplace, USA, aka, homogenized living. I bet the food is just as shitty,
thought Kirk. He went in just after the target entered.
The food was superb. In the middle of this place was a decent southern
style eatery. He called the owner over and congratulated him on the fine
cooking, in Chinese.
The target noticed, and as much as he attempted to be discreet, it was
obvious. Alan, the owner mentioned, pointing to the target said, "He is a
big fan of his food and a student of Chinese history and politics. He was a
good customer and a friend," and looking over at the target waving said,
"and he's a talker."
"Really," said Kirk, and waved to the target. What a great opportunity. I
couldn't have planned this any better, he thought.
Kirk walked over to the target's table and said, "Mr. Chen spoke highly of
you and your writing. Mind if I sit down and talk? It's Artie, correct?"
The target didn't even ask his name. "By all means, have a seat. I come
here once a week for some decent food, other than my own cooking, and to
get out in general. What can I do for you?"
Kirk decided not to play games. "Listen your writing has pissed some people
off." The target nodded smiling like he already knew that. "And," Kirk
continued, "your writing is of interest to, let's just say, some of the
people somewhat related to your paying job."
"And you're here to …?"
"One of two things," Kirk finished for him. "Get you to come with me and
maybe assist in something you seem to have a talent for, or make one of our
other clients happy."
The target turned white. He didn't get up. He didn't reach for anything. He
sat there and looked at Kirk. Then smiled a wan smile, and nodded. "Got it.
And my decision has to be made by?"
Kirk looked at his watch, looked up and said, "Now."
"Not much of a choice, is it?" Artie looked straight at him and kept his
hands on the table.
Kirk had to smile. The kid was cool, as if this was to be expected or
something like this. Then he remembered why they wanted him. A chill ran
"You know I'm armed," said the target, adding, "And I suppose you are too.
The magazine bulges gave you away when you walked in."
It was Kirk's turn to be surprised. He nodded; no need to state the
obvious, obvious at least to his target.
"Okay, what about my clothes and all that?" asked Artie.
"We'll arrange for everything, rent or mortgage, maintenance, all will be
covered. Your clients will be informed of your assignment for a government
agency. They will understand."
"And this agency is?"
"It doesn't have a name. You'll have to trust me. My name is Kirk. I'm
retired. I usually do what is euphemistically called 'events' if you know
what that means. And they asked me to come out here and speak to you, or
…" and he let the alternative drop.
"Okay; you know my name and now I know yours. I know I can't run and
…" he thought about the next words for a second or two, "I was
wondering when this was going to occur. By the way, 'event' is an old
Soviet term. Did you know that?"
Kirk believed him. "No, I did not."
This kid had a gift, and they wanted, no, they need it. Kirk asked, "Let me
ask you, I have no idea just what it is that they want you for
specifically, but it has to be important. Do you have any idea?" Kirk was
curious and this was the only way he was going to find out.
"Yep, gotta idea. You really that interested?"
Kirk nodded and said, "Yeah, sure, why not."
"You're going to think I'm nuts and that they, who ever they are, are
insane. We are being visited, not by extraterrestrials, but by godlike
creatures that, if I'm correct are playing out a larger battle than we have
ever seen or even dreamed of."
Kirk looked at the kid and wondered who was crazier, the people he worked
for or these insane science fiction visionaries.
"I can see on your face this is totally whacked to you. But I think
something is going on at a number of levels that will affect our very
lives, and possibly this universe."
"And you wrote about this?" asked Kirk wondering why Artie hadn't been
locked up in a loony bin.
"It's science fiction. Who is going to believe me? Come on, the only reason
you barely do is because you've been sent on this assignment. Have you read
the story in question?"
Kirk said, "Yes, some of it. I think you and everyone else is totally
insane to believe what you wrote. You said something about gravity waves
emanating from all dimensions and that the multi-universes, that was the
term you used, were the actual cause of gravity. That's pure crap in my
book, but I'm not a science fiction writer."
The kid said, "Come on. Leave your car here. I'll drive back to my place
and give you access to my computer stories and point to the evidence I
think you might be interested in. I'm not going to run. I've been waiting
Artie continued, "There have been a bunch of anomalies from our satellites
that don't match what out sciences says should be. In fact, the speed of
light, our only constant, is in question. These anomalies are, in my best
guess, indicative of other events happening in realms that go beyond
anything we know, but physicist do speculate about."
Kirk asked, "So why do you think these people want you? I don't get it."
Artie explained, "Gravity flows through all dimensions and universes. These
universes and extra dimensions' existence are the ultimate cause of
gravity. I have mentioned that certain beings can transit between them and
are beyond anything we know. Our myths have them as gods, and they very
well might be. But you have to remember a quote from … I don't
remember, but it went something like, any super advanced civilization's
technology would look like magic to us."
Kirk just nodded. He was taken back by this kid's attitude and knowledge,
and now he understood a bit more. All he said was, "Sure, and they want you
"Listen," he said, "If by chance our calculation of the speed of light is
incorrect, it throws all we know into the trash can, and bring up Why and
How did we get these numbers so wrong? And then what are the correct
numbers? They want me because I think I'm on to something that mystics
would understand but not be able to make sense to the science community. "
At an undisclosed location two Searchers are conferring
"Well, damn it, where is she? She just can't walk off her job, can she? She
can't just disappear like that, again."
"Looks like that's exactly what she did."
"I thought she had a contract."
"Yeah, me too, and it appears as if she broke it."
"Well who's going to run things? How are we supposed to do our jobs? The
big boss is not going to like this at all."
"She IS the big boss, you idiot. You didn't know?"
"Know what? Since when?"
"You were never too good at getting the organization right. How did you
ever get to this level of management?"
"My family has connections, especially my uncle, and his mother."
"She's the BIG BOSS, but there was a corporate takeover, of sorts. They
couldn't get rid of her. I mean we report to the stock holders, the guys
who set this up and then pissed her off. Have you got that? We report to
them and we owe them our duty to perform. We need to find her and get her
back here. The machinery, the ovens, everything is going to implode and it
will be chaos."
"Well if she's the big boss, and she walked, even if the contract was hers,
it is hers to break too, right?"
"No, once a contract is made there is no going back until the deal is
completed. She has to live by her rules. It's just the way it is. And we
are a long way from completion. There will be hell to pay. I thought we had
her just a while ago."
"You mean in New Jersey?"
"Yeah I mean in New Jersey. Did you see the spike in the energy level? It
was a beacon. It practically said here I am. Damn. She's going to do
it again and we have to be prepared to move quickly. The balance must be
"IT, what IT?"
"Something or someone is going to make her reveal herself. She can't help
it. It's who she is. It's who we all are."
"Have you ever wondered, what if she doesn't want to come back? If she IS
the BIG BOSS, why would she have to if she didn't want to? She could
"Quit asking stupid questions," it said, cutting the off the obvious. He
didn't want to have to face it. But it thought the questions wasn't so
stupid. No one ever addressed that issue.
"It's not so stupid if you think about it," said the other seeker. He
wasn't about to let it drop.
Seeker one turned to number two and said in a quiet clenched teeth manner,
"No, it was not a stupid question. But it is not our place to think about
stuff like that. We are just soldiers, on orders. We do as we are told, no
"I don't know," said number two.
"That's right. You don't know, and neither do I. Something will come up. We
just have to wait."
Binah saw that things were good and it pleased her. This is as she planned.
The end game, she thought. Don't bet against the home team. It was a human
term. She liked it. Let them all learn a little more of just what I am,
only then will I decide what I want to do. And she smiled again and all was
Doris was safe. Micha had her in his protection. Binah was having fun
playing cat and mouse with the Searchers and the human scientists breaking
the laws of their known physics. And that was the key, what was known or
thought they knew. They have a lot to learn. She laughed at the old tale of
Lot and how it related to the current situation.
She then thought,
and the searchers, tools of those idiots, maybe I should end their
existence now and be done with them.
She knew exactly where they were. Within nanoseconds the two of them were
in front of her. Slack jawed they looked up and were about to say you're
under arrest or something to that equivalent. She laughed and declared "Say
it and it will be the last thing you ever utter. Now listen to me, you two
idiots. Go back to your bosses and tell them to back off, if they have any
idea what's good for them. The game is over."
One said, "With all due respect, don't you think the shoe is on the other
Binah's first thought was to vaporize this impertinent fool. But upon a
quick second thought, found him brave and interesting. The other, she
vaporized, and said to number one, "You have some bravery about you and I
respect that. Let me tell you a story." And she told him the whole history
and what she planned to do. Upon completion of the story he bowed, "Madam,
may I have your forgiveness. May I serve you in any manner?"
She thought and replied, "You may assist me but serve me? As in up?" She
laughed to herself about that one.
He was worried and shook a bit, "No, no, never." He had never met this
level of power before. He was in awe.
"You're so old school," she laughed. "But what could you expect from a
being not intimate with the origins as they ARE. Come here and relax for a
bit." She pointed to a spot on the ground close to where she was sitting.
"I have some work I have to take care of alone and some work I want you to
take on. There are these humans," and she pointed to the planet, "that I
would like to have some fun with. Are you game?" Not waiting for an answer
she added, "Do you see the war satellites orbiting this planet? I will fill
you in on what has been done to this universe by your old bosses and how it
has affected all these monkeys in good time. All you have to do is watch
their actions for a bit and make sure they don't vaporize each other and
… what then I think might be interesting is, we'll straighten all
this mess out and set things right. It will be a major paradigm shift, and
are they in for a surprise. That's all you need to know for now."
"And what about the rulers …" He stopped, realizing what was about to
happen and the word he used.
Binah's eyes turned fiery red. She just drew her finger across her throat,
smiled, said "I AM" and disappeared as the infinite universes shuddered.
*(With beginning It created Elohim), exact word order
translation from the Hebrew and Genesis with commentary from: The ZOHAR,
introduction xxiv, by Daniel C. Matt, Pritzker Edition, Volume 1, Stanford
University Press, 2004.
Thinking about that has many implications.
*Beelzebub is also identified in the
, "prince of the demons".
Thomas Kelly Cheyne
suggested that it might be a derogatory corruption of Ba'al Zəbûl, "Lord of the High Place" (i.e., Heaven) or
© 2019 Richard Tornello
Bio: Rick Tornello is almost more force of nature than author, cranking
out an amazing amount of flash tales, short stories, and poety here at
Aphelion. If you don't know him yet, you should head to our Forum and
meet him. You'll be glad you did.
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