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A Knight Without Armor in a Savage Land/5

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  • Author: Laveaux, PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2005 4:49 pm

The charts he grappled showed an equally impossible and startling image. It was an extaordinarily accurate map of the world. The entire world. North and South America displayed in brilliant details, even including islands of the Caribbean and more, rivers such as the Mississippi and Amazon. The map was dated 1267 and drawn and the distinct English name "Roger Bacon" appeared next to the date.

Robert the Bruce's letter was even more compelling,

"To be read by Henry Sinclair 1st Earl of Orkney, Baron of Roslin, and Lord of Shetland,

I'm glad you can at last lose your name Lombard. It was a terrible name that likely an advisor made up for you. Sinclair is far more suited and as I expressed before Black Friday you should be proud of your namesake. Your father was a true warrior for Christ and a leader of the Christian world.

These men in Rome know only their greed. They have no service to man or God. I'm sure it does not surprise you that I have been excommunicated, but with an ever growing Anglican presence in Scotland I fear my religious allies are changing for the better anyway. Forgive me, I did not write you to discuss politics. Your mission is far too important.

Do not fear for the knighthood. Those that survived said nothing before Phillip took their lives. Even Molay, upon his deathbead, passed a curse upon Phillip and the Pope. I've received news that the Pope has fallen ill. I know not what mystical forces are at foot, as you know, I've never been invited into the knighthood. This to my own pleasure, as I now have a kingdom to run. Besides this, I will help reestablish the knighthood in Scotland under Scottish Rites. Using your knights' eternal knack for building with ancient secrets, we shall be a society of masons. There are already plans afoot for creating lodges throughout Europe and our reformation can, at last, begin.

I must express eternal gratitude for God's work in the battle. The very sight of the red cross caused the British to turn and flee. They knew you wuld have Edward's head on a platter if you came near. Scotland owes her freedom to you.

Now to more serious business. I trust that by now you've found mappamundi. This was passed on through your lodges in London and given to me in secrecy just before Black Friday. I believe that some of your knights anticipated it and knew they could only trust the Bruces. Their trust was not in vain. I must admit, it surprises me that there are lands far west. I hope that with this map you can establish a new colony for Scotland and the Templars. A place where you can keep your secrets safe and the treasure hidden.

After you arrive please tell me of this New Scotland so that I may assist you by any means necessary.

I hope this New World will embrace you and that Scotlands name will triumph in history.

Yours in arms, Robert the Bruce 1327


  • Author: Orbost, Location: Melbourne, Australia PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2005 9:21 pm

Charlie sat back in his sate, dumbstruck by what he had just read. It scarcely seemed possible. That Vikings may have discovered North America was easy to believe, but this? The entire western continent discovered, explored and mapped two hundred and thirty years before Columbus!

I need a drink, he thought to himself, and looked around for a bottle of something?anything!...to help sharpen his mind.

Did this actually happen, or is this a different past? History as it may have been in a different world under different circumstances? Perhaps this [i]did happen, but my ship is going to sink in a storm off Newfoundland, with all hands, the treasure and this map lost forever.[/i]

Now there was a cheery thought, and a good reason to resume his hunt for a bottle of whisky, rum or whatever strong liquor would normally be found in a Captain?s cabin. He found himself consumed by the same confusion that occurred with all of these episodes. Ultimately, in this time and place, he had no means of confirming the reality of where he found himself. Dream, hallucination, or mystical flashback ? he could not tell. All he could do was go with the flow and see where the story took him.

Treasure! He imagined a hold full of gold bullion, exotic jewels, ivory horns and silver plates. There was something that he could focus on. He climbed unsteadily to his feet, determined to make his way to the hold to see what they might be carrying.

He opened the cabin door, stepped out and closed it behind him. He followed his nose up to the deck, and stood their taking in whatever sights confronted him, and waited in the hope that an eager seaman would approach and offer to help him.


  • Author: Laveaux, PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2005 10:36 pm

The cabin had ample supplies of rum or at least some sort of sugar alcohol, as well as Scottish ale and spirits. Having no problem at all with discovering the drink, he was also immediatley met with a crew member as he stepped foot on the deck.

It was night time and oceanic briskness penetrated his skin. The sky was clear however and a steady wind brought haze away enough to see a staggering array of stars. The sails were stiff with the wind and a red cross was painted from top to bottom on the master sail.

The crewman was a young boy, perhaps twelve, dawning worn and unwashed clothing.

" 'ello Cap'n, up so soon? Dawn won' be here for an hour, sir."

Another crewman stepped up, this one more smartly dressed and at least in his twenties. A worn uniform with the Campbell tarton wrapped around his chest. Kilt and all, he looked as if he stepped directly from the highlands.

"Cap'n, we're six knots, up from last evenin'. The wind keep up, sir, we'll be swimmin' at 8 by high noon."


  • Author: Orbost, Location: Melbourne, Australia PostPosted: Thu Dec 08, 2005 9:43 pm

The Scotsman?s words meant little to Charlie, but he made the pretence of understanding. He cast what he hoped was a wise-looking glance up at the sails and rigging. Seeing the canopy of twinkling lights above, he wished that he had learned the constellations and could gauge their position from studying the stars. Heaven help them if he were in charge of the boat for too long ? he could not navigate, could not read a sea chart, and could barely remember his starboard from his port. Well, the bluff would have to continue?

?Good, good?.we?re making good progress.? He guessed that the sailor was playing an important part in running the ship, and chose not to take him from his post. Instead, he gestured to the young lad.

?Grab a light lad, and escort me down to the hold?.if you?d be so kind.? Let?s see what treasure awaits?.


  • Author: Laveaux, PostPosted: Sun Dec 11, 2005 3:21 pm

The bluff was sufficient and the Scotsman went back to work believing he was in good favor with the captain. The cabin boy was ecstatic to be of service and gripping a nearby lantern reeled across the deck toward the bow. The hold was just below the third mast.

Lifting up the hatch, the boy crawled down the ladder and held the light up for his captain.

Waiting eagerly he said, "Time for more wiskey then? I spied a crate just over here, last eve."

As he went back for the spirits, his lantern lit up the hold. There were two dozen very large stone crates lined up on one side, while the other side only held typical wooden crates and barrels. Upon closer inspection, ornate hieroglypics marked the sides of the crates.

One nearby crate was slightly askew. A pile of ancient scrolls could be spotted inside.

Come around, then. Come along.

A gentle thwap on his cheek brought a new world into view. Gothic arches spread out above and he was once again in the comfort of a bed. This time, the concered face of Father Ambrose came into focus.

A pounding thud resonated inside his head.

"You fell straight back," Ambrose said, "hit your head on the floor. Are you alright?"


  • Author: Orbost, Location: Melbourne, Australia PostPosted: Sun Dec 11, 2005 9:26 pm

The episode had finished again, revealing a few more clues to the jigsaw, but leaving him with more questions than answers. It was becoming frustrating, these little glimpses of the past, and the constant blows to the head certainly were not doing him any good. Charlie looked up into the worried looking face.

?Are you sure you didn?t punch me out again, Father?? It was a cheap shot, and he knew it. Seeing the look on Ambrose?s face, it was hard to suppress his satisfaction that the verbal punch had landed where he intended it.

Enough silly games though. Before he went?wherever it was he had been?there had been important business to attend to.

?The initiation ? is it over? How long have I been out for?? He looked for a window, hoping to gauge the time of day by the light coming through. Despite the headache, he propped himself up on his elbows. The throbbing in his head complained at the movement, but it was hard to be taken seriously in a conversation when you were flat on your back. The additional height he gained from the manoeuvre at least raised him on a level with Ambrose, and better able to speak with some authority.

?One thing to be said for your friendly cardinal ? he knows lots of long, scary words, and he?s certainly not afraid to use them. I imagine I probably fainted in sheer naked terror of the man. I fear that if I sneezed without permission, he would set a pack of ferocious inquisitors on my tail to hunt me down.?

He closed his eyes as a wave of dizziness passed.

?So what happens now, Father? Do I go back to my old life until someone calls upon me, or are you whisking me off to some long forgotten monastery in the mountains for further training? Whichever, I could certainly do with something to eat, and perhaps a nice mug of beer to wash it down with?.


  • Author: Laveaux, PostPosted: Wed Dec 14, 2005 1:12 pm

Relieved Charlie was okay, the priest took the jab in stride.

"You've only been out a few minutes. The Cardinal has left me to tend to you. Tell me . . . are these sorts of blackouts common? You've told me before about some strange events. Perhaps I can shed light on it."

"It is a very old ceremony. I wouldn't fear for the inquisition they no longer exist."

But the quip earned Charlie a smile from the priest.

"The truth of the matter is, the oath is a sacred one. The fear of God is one tool to make sure the secrets learned in the knighthood are kept secret. Where would we be if the secular world was abusing God's knowledge?

"And welcome to the Catholic Church, I might add. You'll have to take some lessons on various rituals, but they are easy enough. And although it isn't required, it helps to read the Bible from time to time."

At his last remark the priest sighed, "Well, due to the nature of the recent days I fear you will start work right away. You will meet a team in Scotland on a very important mission. I will give you the night to gather your things and say farewell to your loved ones. You will not see them for a very, very long time."


  • Author: Orbost, Location: Melbourne, Australia PostPosted: Thu Dec 15, 2005 10:05 pm

?Scotland? In the middle of winter?? Charlie snorted in disdain. ?Hardly the glamorous, international, jet-setting secret society work I was expecting, Father! You don?t perhaps have some work on the French Riviera? Or the Greek Islands??

The stony face of Father Ambrose was answer enough.

?No? Well, you can?t blame me for trying can you. Very well, Caledonia here I come. I assume you?ll sort me out with plenty of cash and some vague idea of what I need to do there??

?In the meantime, yes, I have had a number of blackouts recently.?

Charlie rubbed his hands together and pursed his lips while he considered what he wished to disclose. Although his recollections of years gone by were becoming increasingly coherent, he was having a great deal of difficulty reconciling those events with his present situation. The Knights of the Rose appeared to be sworn enemies of the Pope, and yet he had just sworn allegiance to another knighthood who apparently were devout supporters of the Vatican. So who were the good guys here? Bram, Sinclair and The Bruce opposing Papal oppression, or Ambrose and Cardinal Galleon opposing German spies? And why was the Ambrose of olden times against the Pope, but the Father Ambrose in front of him committed to defending the Pope and the Catholic Church? Such mysteries?..Charlie selected his words with care.

?So, I have been having?.dreams?.of Sir Bram and the Knights of the Rose. I?m not sure who they are, whether they are good guys or not. But I know they are connected to that shield that I found. Perhaps you can enlighten me, Father...? And Charlie leant back, resting his head against the cool stone wall, and wondered how much Ambrose would reveal, and whether his words would confirm or contradict the visions that Charlie had been having.


  • Author: Laveaux, PostPosted: Wed Jan 04, 2006 6:19 am

"Rose is a euphemism for the Holy Grail. The men you are dreaming about are the Knight Templars. They are the order that we feel are most abhorrent. Heathens and sodomites."

He looked down, as if trying to figure a puzzle out.

"The shield had one of their many symbols, namely the symbol they chose after the Order disbanded them. You may recall the image of two knights on a horse? That was the Templar's hayday. After they were tried for heresy they fell into a secret world and often described themselves as protecting a rose. Protecting a very secret knowledge. The Holy Grail. You see, it is not a cup at all, but knowledge. A very ancient knowledge and one that the Church tries to protect.

"They took the knowledge without the consequence. Like thieves in the night. The Templars recklessly stomped all over the planet not earning their place in things. We've spent centuries trying to stop them.

"Bram was the Grand Master of the order after Molay was killed."

He paused in distant recollection.

"I too have memories, my son. But, it is because I was there. 633 years ago. So, you see. This knowledge I speak of can be very powerful."

With a smile he added, "I haven't aged a day."


  • Author: Orbost, Location: Melbourne, Australia PostPosted: Thu Jan 05, 2006 5:41 pm

Charlie listened as Ambrose described the work of the Templars. It was rather disappointing to hear them described as ?heathens and sodomites?, as their cause had seemed rather noble and heroic in his visions. Perhaps it was his Church of England upbringing that led him to subconsciously approve of any anti-papal activity?.and yet here he was newly admitted to a secret Catholic knighthood. The world was truly an ironic place?.

The talk of secret worlds and secret knowledge exasperated Charlie, and he threw up his hands in frustration.

?Riddles! Father, why must you always talk in riddles? Why will you not tell me straight out what this secret knowledge is? Stop being so vague all the time!?

At Father Ambrose?s last statement, Charlie craned his neck forward in surprise. ?You were there!? he exclaimed.

?What do you mean? How is that possible?? Could Father Ambrose be experiencing similar visions to his own? So it wasn?t all in his own mind. He wasn?t hallucinating, or going crazy ? others experienced the same thing!

?Tell me straight Father. How is it possible that you have memories of events many hundreds of years ago? It just doesn?t make sense.?

--Orbost


Ambrose blinked. His outburst was well taken and it only took a brief hesitation before he proceded.

"Very well. This secret knowledge. I trust your schooling told you once about the Library of Alexandria? Imagine all of those scrolls and tomes compiled and stored in a single collection so valuable the civilized world would start wars over it.

"Maps. History. Rituals. Everything passed down from the world before our own. Documents written by the Atlanteans themselves."

He leaned in close.

"Knowing how to breathe correctly allows one to continue the process beyond your average person. Knowledge in those tomes has kept me alive all of those years. You too will learn how to be immortal.

"But, eh. One thing at a time."

--Laveaux 02:04, 6 February 2006 (CST)


A thoughtful expression crossed Charlie?s face as he digested this information. He had been hoping for a more revealing answer, but this was just as opaque as Amrose?s normal statements.

?So..?, he said sombrely, ?..you are actually 700 years old because a scroll recovered from the lost city of Atlantis taught you how to breath properly. Interesting..??

The heads of the two gentlemen were very close as they discussed these forgotten secrets, and Charlie?s face betrayed a solemnity and gravity he reserved for only the most serious of conversations.

??interesting?but I haven?t heard such a cock-and-bull story since my dear mother told me that the moon was made of green cheese.? He delivered the line as dead-pan as he could, his frustration manifesting itself in acute cynicism

Charlie sat back and frowned as he considered his next question.

?Tell me of the end of the world. How is it going to end and what are you?.us?doing to prevent it.?

?And please don?t mention Atlantis again unless you absolutely have to.?

--Orbost


"Don't mention Atlantis??" The priest gawked, "But that's the whole point!"

Ambrose collected himself and then after a thought tried again, this time much cooler.

"Ten thousand years ago there was a continent in between Europe and America. A very influential civilization lived there influencing not only Meso-America but Egypt itself. They were technologically advanced and spiritually illuminated. That is not to say their rule wasn't ruthless and imperical, but they did have the knowledge that rooted the Greek, Egyptian and Mayan worlds.

The Earth was struck by a meteorite right at modern day Charleston. The impact lowered the global temperature, collapsed the ocean floor, sunk the Atlantean continent into the Midatlantic Ridge, and knocked the Earth's axis 17 degrees. The North Pole moved from Greenland to where it is now and compounded with the fact the Gulf Stream now had access to the Atlantic Ocean, North America and Europe turned from Arctic to Temperate in a matter of hours.

"You don't have to believe me. Look it up. You will find the impact crater just where I described. You will find the evidence of water levels changing and the collapsed ocean floor. You'll even find the global temperature drop and evidence in both the Egyptian and Mayan calendars. There's a reason they've found Mammoths frozen in ice with food still in their stomachs. The polar shift was so sudden the creatures barely had enough time to sit down before they were suddenly in the Arctic Circle."

He paused, taking a breath.

"This impact made the Earth's axis unstable. We've known that it could fall into another shift, perhaps worst than the last. Recently we discovered evidence that this will happen sooner rather than later.

"Now listen closely. Everything I say is necessary to understand your role in this. If you cannot get past your short-sighted experience on the world we should stop this charade right now. Everything you know is wrong. Especially everything you are absolutely sure about.

"Can I proceed?"

--Laveaux 13:51, 28 February 2006 (CST)


The long, thin cut across Charlie?s palm chose that moment to start stinging, perhaps irritated by the grimy sweat on his hands. Charlie glanced down and rubbed the wound gingerly, taking care not to encourage the bleeding to restart. Seeing the cut reminded him of that knife that he had wielded, the oath he had taken, and the long interminable ceremony that he had endured. Father Ambrose was correct ? he had undergone the initiation to learn about the mysteries he had experienced, and although his scepticism could not easily be ignored, he did owe Ambrose a little more patience.

He looked back up.

?Forgive me, Father. It?s a little difficult to take all this in. Please continue ? you have my full attention.?

--Orbost 23:47, 8 March 2006 (CST)


"That is all that can be said for now," he said resigning to a stifled yawn.

"You must prepare to go to Scotland. There is a document we must find from the Bruce's. A map."

Ambrose began walking from the chapel into the rooms in the back, assuming Charlie would follow as he spoke.

"We believe Robert the Bruce held precise records on where Henry Sinclair hid the Holy Grail. It so happens that some academics from Israel uncovered some of the Bruce's belongings last night. I've assembled a team to recover those items and deter the academics from proceding any farther."

He stopped and looked back at Charlie to emphasize his next statement.

"If we can find the Holy Grail we can discover the exact events of the first Polar Shift. That will be the only way to prepare us for the next one."

--Laveaux 11:17, 13 March 2006 (CST)


Charlie followed Ambrose along the aisle of the chapel, trying to make sense of his mission. The mention of Henry Sinclair took him greatly by surprise, and he inadvertently faltered in his footsteps, before quickly resuming his pace. His memory flashed back through his conversations with Ambrose ? no, this was certainly the first time that Sinclair had been mentioned.

Was the map that Ambrose spoke of the same ?mappamundi? that he?Sinclair?had been given for his voyage across the Atlantic? Perhaps the Bruce had a copy made for himself before entrusting the original to Sinclair?

Charlie?s mind raced as he listened to Ambrose, trying to marry up what he was hearing to the visions that he had. Why was Sinclair now spoken of as an enemy when in his dreams Ambrose had been, apparently, a faithful servant of Sinclair? And was Charlie confusing the Ambrose of today with the Ambrose of yesteryear?

?One moment, Father ? you?ve lost me I?m afraid. Henry Sinclair? He would be another Knight of the Rose I presume. Did you know him also??

--Orbost 18:36, 23 March 2006 (CST)


Ambrose stopped in his steps and looked back with a curious expression. It wasn't quite skeptical nor was it accusitionary, but somewhere in between.

"Not just another Knight of the Rose. Henry Sinclair was the Grand Master of the Knights Templar and one of the founders of the Scottish Rite. He was also the first European to colonize in the New World."

After a pause he said, "And yes, I knew him. I betrayed him. We all did. Sometimes the Lord's work weighs heavy on the conscience."

--Laveaux 21:46, 27 March 2006 (CST)

The sincerity in Ambrose’ voice touched something in Charlie’s soul, and he felt moved to offer some words of consolation. He clapped a hand on the priest’s shoulder and gave a sympathetic squeeze.

“Father, you may be 700 hundred years old and wise beyond words, but let me tell you what I have learnt in my 22 years. Philosophising before lunchtime only leads to indigestion and poor skin. Serious thoughts like that should only be made on a full stomach, or preferably not at all.”

A glint in Charlie’s eye betrayed the good humour in his comments.

“Anyway, how am I getting to Scotland, and who am I meeting when I get there? You will need to give me a thorough briefing so that I don’t make an absolute fool of myself on my first mission.”

--Orbost 21:00, 26 April 2006 (CDT)

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