Updates for Sunday, April 2nd [2006]

The Return Home Pt. 3: To the Shores of Tripoli


I only have moments to recount the events of the last few days; unfortunately the situation has taken a turn for the worse. Let me begin to recount the events as they unfolded, a few days ago, upon our arrival into New York in accordance with the Agent N's dangerous demand.

Daniel: Dude, what the hell are we going to do? You haven't heard word back from Julius yet? 48 hours is just not enough damn time. We should screw this and hide, I mean, Natalie will be okay, right? For all we know Julius doesn't even check his email and may not show.

Me: Listen, you should sit here at the hotel. I sent Julius our full flight and hotel bookings, as well as every degree of information and several contingencies. I can only hope he acquires the information in time to arrive at the meeting point.

Daniel: Well, fuck. I don't want to stay here, I'd feel like an asshole. Can't we just call the cops or something?

Me: I don't know. It's hard to say without knowing who this "N" really is. The authorities could be in his pocket, for all we know we could be the ones getting arrested.

Daniel: This is some crazy Illuminati shit going on here, man. Seriously. I'll go with though, but I can't sit here cooped up, it'd drive me nuts. I can see why this Julius dude ran away from this guy for so long, I would too, fuck that.

Me: Daniel, your friendship has meant a lot to me for the last two years. Thank you for sticking with me. Not one thing that has come between us has ever gave me a personal moment's displeasure. I hope that with you, this is to someday be a good world... I steer my bark with Hope in the head, leaving Fear astern.

Daniel: Well, take these keys and go warm up the rental car. I've just got to do a couple of things and I'll be down to drive us over to Ground Zero. I got the map off Google Earth so I think we should get there in plenty of time.

As it drew closer to midnight, my tensions and nervousness got the better of me. It was closing in on the minutes of midnight, a cross of steel overlooked the terrace where the remains of two buildings once stood. The words "NEVER FORGET", posted at both sides, it was 11:55 PM.

Me: I need you to stay here, Daniel. If something were to happen, you need to be ready here. I was told to meet him alone.

Daniel: Just be careful out there, man.

As the night's darkness pierced every corner, even with the lights to illuminate my way, it was a private night for a private meeting. From the figures and shadows of the rear of the cross, the abductor met me. This man at a distance had before bore the appearance of being short but in fact was rather of an average height and somewhat balding, the menace on his face no longer threatening to me.

N: Well, thank you for coming. As you well know, from the former heights of these buildings, forty centuries look down upon us. That is why I am here, you know, and why I chose this site. The woman is unimportant to me, it is the scientist I need to complete my plans. Forethought we may have, undoubtedly, but not foresight... it was my mistake to not capture the scientist when I had the opportunity, upon realizing his importance in the scheme of things. But even you do not seem to know that, so let me explain myself some so that I might make this situation perfectly clear.

Remember this: glory is fleeting but obscurity is forever. I have lived my life in this Jew-ridden, Communist cesspool... knowing that there are certain forces in play in the world. Certain things that governments hide from us all. It is these things that could grant me more than the moment's glory, but you people have stood in my way for too long. You ignorant masses cannot stand to correct the world from the homosexuality and denigrations. Alas, if you want a thing done well, do it yourself. That is why I am here tonight.

Me: You are little less than another great scoundrel who thinks he can get his way through means of force. It appears nature has denied you moral sense, the first excellence of well organized man. Julius will surely arrive soon, at which time you had best ask what you please of him, and release Natalie, and then leave us alone.

N: You make demands of me? Silly fool, if you want peace, you need to avoid the pin-pricks that precede cannon shots. I have the woman and will not release her until I am satisfied, until I have my means to long-lasting glory. Where is the scientist now?

Me: Surely, he is on his way, although he may not arrive tonight. The time span you allowed us was not sufficient to summon him. I have his address that I had previously acquired, here.

N: What? You cowardly fool. This is all you have brought to me, an address? What are you thinking? Do you not value the girl's life?

Me: If you truly want the scientist, you will leave her be, and allow us the opportunity to meet under better circumstances. Is that a deal?

N: Deal? The best way to keep one's word is not to give it, and I always keep my word. She will be... wait, what is that? Police officers! You contacted the authorities?

Me: I did no such thing!...

N: They are coming this way! You fool! You are way over your head. What will happen when there are no police officers to summon upon? When I have won? This meeting has reached its conclusion, adieu!

Me: Wait!

It was at this moment that Agent N leaped into the shadows and began to flee the scene. I did not stammer or wait a moment more, I pursued, hopefully being able to catch him down before the police could intervene. They, noticing our flight, ran, shouting at us both to stop. Agent N apparently had a plan of action, as he ducked down into an alley into an opened subterranean passageway. He tried to shut it before I could leap in, but I was far too close. The door clashed shut and locked, as police struggled with the latch yelling at us that the public were not allowed into the sewers. After my leap into the tunnel, I had sprained my ankle, and saw N running through the passageways ready to escape. Drawing on my trusty training, and my intuition, I pulled the gun Julius had given me from its holster and took aim. With several cracking shots echoing down the halls, one bullet pierced N through his shoulder blade, temporarily pausing his escape. He screamed in pain and fell to the ground, and turned his attentions back to me.

N: You listen here! I am sometimes a fox and sometimes a lion, and the whole secret behind the world today is knowing one from the other. I could kill you for what you've done, but because of the circumstances I see it is wiser to retreat to my foxhole. You will find in the morning a message left for you at your hotel indicating our next meeting point will be delivered. This time it will be a site secured by me, personally. Do not defy me again!

It was at this point he wandered into the dark tunnels. While the police beat the hatch above me, I knew it was not long before I too needed to escape, but with my ankle sprained, I could not pursue nearly as fast. So I traced his path, via blood from his open wound, as far as I could, to another unlocked doorway leading back up to the street above. A few blocks of walking I found Daniel in our parked car. Daniel was frantic from the scene, wondering what had happened to both of us, and I explained the situation on the way. Then, we arrived back at the hotel, and walked in the door to our room...

Julius: Hey, I got the message. What's going on? Did he really kidnap someone to get to me? My flight was late, by the time I got to the meeting point, there were cops everywhere. I decided to come back to the hotel. Are you okay, why are you limping?

Me: I'll be fine, the situation is dire. He does have Natalie, and he wants you. I don't know what he has in mind, but we must find him, end this madness and get everyone to safety. There will be a message in the morning.

Julius: This is all my fault. If I hadn't run from him for so long and been playing this sick game between us, if I had just fought him to the end or agreed to his demands, we wouldn't be in this situation. Now other people are going to get hurt. I'm sorry.

Me: N's domineering temper deafens him to the dictates of interest, of honor, and of morality. We will have to hope that we can find him at an off moment, and put his soul to rest.

Daniel: What? You seriously mean, kill the guy? What the hell?

Me: He's not foolish. The next location he meets us at, he will bring Natalie. It is the entire bargaining chip that he has. He probably is fleeing with her now from here. When we arrive there at the next spot, we kill him, take her back and flee.

Daniel: Man, that's breaking the law.

Me: Whoever he is, he has no regard for the law or justice, and whether he is in leagues with higher officials or merely capable of deceiving them, he acts as though he is above the law. You'll see, young man, what life is like dealing with tyrants, trying to domineer their will upon you. I have sworn upon the altar of god eternal hostility over every form of tyranny over the mind of man, I have seen too many men like this and it must stop somewhere. Normally I stand to quiet reservation but this is a call to arms.

Julius: Listen, we should wait till morning before getting riled up. He said he'd leave a message telling us our next course of action, right? I've been traveling through hours of airport delays, you both have been under a lot of stress, and we need to rest now. Alright?

Daniel: No, fuck that, I'm going to a bar and getting plastered. I'll be back at 4 AM.

Me: I regret that I cannot join you Daniel, but my sprained ankle causes me too much discomfort. I must lay to rest, myself. We will gather ourselves for the events of the coming morning.

Indeed, when the morning came, we were delivered our notice. "N" informed me that he intended to check out the address I gave him, which should be vacant because Julius is now with us, and then if it bears no fruits he will leave further instructions for us in Dallas, Texas. It seems he intends on being even more elusive. He states that a note will be posted in a clearly visible location in two day's time, at a spot called the "Grassy Knoll", providing us further instructions. We headed to the airport immediately but as we drove, a bit faster than usual perhaps from the tension, we were slowed down and stopped by traffic police.

NYC Officer: Hey guys, what's the rush?

Me: May I ask what is the issue, good sir? We are rather in a hurry.

NYC Officer: Well it seems that you were speeding, but if you're in that big a hurry, perhaps I could ask all of you to step out of the car for a moment.

Daniel: Great going, Tom, fuckin' great.

NYC Officer: I'm just going to check you guys for any contraband. You don't smoke any dope, do you? You, tall guy, you got anything on you? Hey, what's that in your jacket pocket? Spread your hands on the car and stand still. Give me that.

Me: That's just my firearm. I am a licensed owner, you know. Here is my certificate.

NYC Officer: This permit looks like it's an Oregon permit. You got a New York permit?

Me: No, should I?

NYC Officer: Well Oregon permits aren't valid here so I'm going to have to confiscate this.

Me: What? No, I...

Daniel: Shhh! Don't argue with the cop, dude.

NYC Officer: Well, I think you guys are clean, so I'm gonna let you off with a warning. Next time, drive slower.

Daniel: We will, thank you man.

Me: Why I never! Since when were men treated like dogs? He took my property! This is an intolerable injustice!

Daniel: He was probably just trying to meet arrest quotas, or looking for weed.

Julius: Well, he's gone now and it's not the time for idle argument over principle. We have to get to the airport.

We caught a quick flight out to Texas, on a credit card of Daniel's which is now maxed out, to continue our pursuit. We actually waited one day before we received the next message, stapled to a board at the end of a fence overlooking some site of historical importance. Daniel started telling me about a President who was assassinated here, but for whatever reason, it didn't sound very important. I sat in the car, not wanting to further complicate my foot problems,

Daniel: Here is the note, I found it on the back of that fence over there.

Me: Get back into the car, and we'll read it.

Daniel: Here you go.

Me: Agent N writes, "I have left this message to you in the event that our meeting in New York did not go as planned. This place is a place of great historical significance, it is where a President was killed. If you know any of the history here you'll know the board this message was stapled to was the location of a secret assassin, a second shooter who never was found or arrested. In fact, his existence was plainly denied by our government, who actually hired him. From this spot, at the right time, history could've been changed... the communists could've been driven back. Indeed, perhaps you can help me find the right solution, by cooperation and compliance to my order. Our next meeting will be in an old building called the Alamo, in San Antonio. I shall meet you there on the night of the 6th, in the basement of the Alamo, just before midnight. I shall leave the service entrance in the rear unlocked. - N"

Daniel: That's weird. There is no basement in the Alamo.

Me: Are you sure?

Daniel: Yeah, saw it in a movie once. So, we have Julius with us now, so you didn't need to give this "N" guy that address. He's probably in Chicago now, thinking we gave him false information. Do you think he'll come back still like he says in this note and meet us on the 6th... and then what do we do?

Julius: Wait, you mentioned an address. What address?

Me: I gave him the address you were staying at in Chicago, I thought perhaps after he gave us Natalie back I could contact you again and tell you to flee before he got to Chicago. The home should be vacant though, since Julius is here with us, making it of little consequence

Julius: But... I wasn't there alone... I was staying with Ludwig. Oh no! We have to reach a phone, now!

We've spent all evening attempting to reach my good friend Ludwig. Calls have gone unanswered as the phone is off the hook. It appears now, due to our own unfortunate actions, our abductor has two hostages. Perhaps "N" was right, that we are in this too deep.

Your friend and serv't,

- TH. Jefferson

Editor's Notes:

What will happen to Jefferson & friends when they meet up with the enigmatic "N" in the Alamo? How is it all going to end? While you're staying tuned for the next update, here is an excellent letter of Jefferson's past: a letter to Governor John Langdon on the subject of political parties written March 5th, 1810.

Your letter, my dear friend, of the 18th ultimo, comes like the refreshing dews of the evening on a thirsty soil. It recalls antient as well as recent recollections, very dear to my heart. For five and thirty years we have walked together through a land of tribulations. Yet these have passed away, and so, I trust, will those of the present day. The toryism with which we struggled in '77, differed but in name from the federalism of '99, with which we struggled also; and the Anglicism of 1808, against which we are now struggling, is but the same thing still, in another form. It is a longing for a King, and an English King rather than any other. This is the true source of their sorrows and wailings.

The fear that Buonaparte will come over to us and conquer us also, is too chimerical to be genuine. Supposing him to have finished Spain and Portugal, he has yet England and Russia to subdue. The maxim of war was never sounder than in this case, not to leave an enemy in the rear; and especially where an insurrectionary flame is known to be under the embers, merely smothered, and ready to burst at every point. These two subdued, (and surely the Anglomen will not think the conquest of England alone a short work) antient Greece and Macedonia, the cradle of Alexander, his prototype, and Constantinople, the seat of empire for the world, would glitter more in his eye than our bleak mountains and rugged forests. Egypt, too, and the golden apples of Mauritania, have for more than half a century fixed the longing eyes of France; and with Syria, you know, he has an old affront to wipe out. Then come 'Pontus and Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia,' the fine countries on the Euphrates and Tigris, the Oxus and Indus, and all beyond the Hyphasis, which bounded the glories of his Macedonian rival; with the invitations of his new British subjects on the banks of the Ganges, whom, after receiving under his protection the mother country, he cannot refuse to visit. When all this is done and settled, and nothing of the old world remains unsubdued, he may turn to the new one. But will he attack us first, from whom he will get but hard knocks and no money? Or will he first lay hold of the gold and silver of Mexico and Peru, and the diamonds of Brazil? A republican Emperor, from his affection to republics, independent of motives of expediency, must grant to ours the Cyclop's boon of being the last devoured. While all this is doing, we are to suppose the chapter of accidents read out, and that nothing can happen to cut short or to disturb his enterprises.

But the Anglomen, it seems, have found out a much safer dependance, than all these chances of death or disappointment. That is, that we should first let England plunder us, as she has been doing for years, for fear Buonaparte should do it; and then ally ourselves with her, and enter into the war. A conqueror, whose career England could not arrest when aided by Russia, Austria, Prussia, Sweden, Spain and Portugal, she is now to destroy, with all these on his side, by the aid of the United States alone. This, indeed, is making us a mighty people. And what is to be our security, that when embarked for her in the war, she will not make a separate peace, and leave us in the lurch? Her good faith! The faith of a nation of merchants! The Punica fides of modern Carthage! Of the friend and protectress of Copenhagen! Of the nation who never admitted a chapter of morality into her political code! And is now boldly avowing, that whatever power can make hers, is hers of right. Money, and not morality, is the principle of commerce and commercial nations. But, in addition to this, the nature of the English government forbids, of itself, reliance on her engagements; and it is well known she has been the least faithful to her alliances of any nation of Europe, since the period of her history wherein she has been distinguished for her commerce and corruption, that is to say, under the houses of Stuart and Brunswick. To Portugal alone she has steadily adhered, because, by her Methuin treaty she had made it a colony, and one of the most valuable to her. It may be asked, what, in the nature of her government, unfits England for the observation of moral duties? In the first place, her King is a cypher; his only function being to name the oligarchy which is to govern her. The parliament is, by corruption, the mere instrument of the will of the administration. The real power and property in the government is in the great aristocratical families of the nation. The nest of office being too small for all of them to cuddle into at once, the contest is eternal, which shall crowd the other out. For this purpose, they are divided into two parties, the Ins and the Outs, so equal in weight that a small matter turns the balance. To keep themselves in, when they are in, every stratagem must be practised, every artifice used which may flatter thepride, the passions or power of the nation. Justice, honor, faith, must yield to the necessity of keeping themselves in place. The question whether a measure is moral, is never asked; but whether it will nourish the avarice of their merchants, or the piratical spirit of their navy, or produce any other effect which may strengthen them in their places. As to engagements, however positive, entered into by the predecessors of the Ins, why, they were their enemies; they did every thing which was wrong; and to reverse every thing they did, must, therefore, be right. This is the true character of the English government in practice, however different its theory; and it presents the singular phenomenon of a nation, the individuals of which are as faithful to their private engagements and duties, as honorable, as worthy, as those of any nation on earth, and whose government is yet the most unprincipled at this day known. In an absolute government there can be no such equiponderant parties. The despot is the government. His power suppressing all opposition, maintains his ministers firm in their places. What he has contracted, therefore, through them, he has the power to observe with good faith; and he identifies his own honor and faith with that of his nation.

When I observed, however, that the King of England was a cypher, I did not mean to confine the observation to the mere individual now on that throne. The practice of Kings marrying only into the families of Kings, has been that of Europe for some centuries. Now, take any race of animals, confine them in idleness and inaction, whether in a stye, a stable, or a state room, pamper them with high diet, gratify all their sexual appetites, immerse them in sensualities, nourish their passions, let every thing bend before them, and banish whatever might lead them to think, and in a few generations they become all body and no mind: and this, too, by a law of nature, by that very law by which we are in the constant practice of changing the characters and propensities of the animals we raise for our own purposes. Such is the regimen in raising Kings, and in this way they have gone on for centuries. While in Europe, I often amused myself with contemplating the characters of the then reigning sovereigns of Europe. Louis the XVI. was a fool, of my own knowledge, and in despite of the answers made for him at his trial. The King of Spain was a fool, and of Naples the same. They passed their lives in hunting, and despatched two couriers a week, one thousand miles, to let each other know what game they had killed the preceding days. The King of Sardinia was a fool. All these were Bourbons. The Queen of Portugal, a Braganza, was an idiot by nature. And so was the King of Denmark. Their sons, as regents, exercised the powers of government. The King of Prussia, successor to the great Frederick, was a mere hog in body as well as in mind. Gustavus of Sweden, and Joseph of Austria, were really crazy, and George of England you know was in a straight waistcoat. There remained, then, none but old Catherine, who had been too lately picked up to have lost her common sense. In this state Buonaparte found Europe; and it was this state of its rulers which lost it with scarce a struggle. These animals had become without mind and powerless; and so will every hereditary monarch be after a few generations. Alexander, the grandson of Catherine, is as yet an exception. He is able to hold his own. But he is only of the third generation. His race is not yet worn out. And so endeth the book of Kings, from all of whom the Lord deliver us, and have you, my friend, and all such good men and true, in his holy keeping.

- TH. Jefferson

The Ins and Outs is a good description of our parties today. A small tide turns the balance, they are not weighted so much on issues as they are politics. "The question whether a measure is moral, is never asked; but whether it will nourish the avarice of their merchants, or the piratical spirit of their navy, or produce any other effect which may strengthen them in their places." We need to beware these types of politics. It seems like one side is the better and the other side the devil, but to be honest, a system like this is really a matter of picking lesser evils. Picking the lesser evil is not the intention of a sound political system. While our Presidents are perhaps more active than the old kings of Europe, I believe a long list of them in recent history have been fools, idiots, pigs, crazy... and I just can't shake the feeling that most of them deserve their own entries into the Book of Kings.

Also wish your author a happy 26th birthday. Today's date is Jefferson's birthday in the old calender that was in use when he was born, in fact April 2nd is on his tombstone per his instruction. Well, it also so happens to be my birthday. So I hope you enjoyed the update!

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