The Best Erotic Stories.

Prey For Me
Pt. XI: The Queen of Hearts
by Dvora Sosan

Hours later when Jack, Kim and Sam arrived back in Las Vegas, Jack wanted to meet with Thomas Peterson immediately if not sooner. He did. But Peterson wasn't talking. He was dead.

The three left immediately for the police impound garage where Peterson's vehicle had been taken. Detective Jimmy DeDad of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department met them there.

"Hello, Jimmy," Sam said in greeting. "This is Jack Davis and Kim Wright."

"Hey, Kim," Jimmy replied, "long time no see." They had met before while Kim was an investigative reporter with the Review-Journal and had a mutual respect for one another. "Mr. Davis, my pleasure. I certainly have heard a lot about you. You are the best so they say."

Sam interrupted, "So Jimmy, I guess you are now officially in charge of this Lilith situation?"

"Yeah, Sam. The shit has hit the fan now, what with Peterson's murder. This is big-time. Chief wants to talk to you as soon as you can shake loose. He thinks we are going to have to give some statement to the press."

"So what's the story here, Jimmy?" Sam asked.

"Let's go back and look at his car. Peterson's body was found in the car in a parking lot at McCarran International. He was booked on a flight to New York City but never made it inside the airport."

The car was a 1979 Lincoln Continental. All white with a white interior with red trim.

"Now here is a car, Sam," Jack noted. "A Lincoln that looks like a Lincoln made back when a Cadillac looked like a Cadillac. Unlike yours which you can't tell from a Chevy."

The blood was quite visible on the white front seats. Jimmy explained, "The blood was drained from Peterson's body and his penis was amputated. Probably by teeth so the coroner told me although he won't commit to that on the record until the autopsy has been completed."

"Just like the other Lilith murders," Sam sighed.

"Yes, Sam," Jimmy agreed. "But there is something else. Peterson's heart was removed from his body. Very brutally ripped out. The heart, like his penis, was nowhere to be found. And a playing card, the Queen of Hearts, was found on the front passenger seat."

Kim gasped, "This is just too bizarre!"

"Bizarre is right," Jimmy agreed. "That's it in a nutshell. I'll get all the reports to you soon, Sam. The autopsy is top priority and should be completed in a few hours. Do you want to take a look at the corpse?"

Jack frowned. "No, we probably wouldn't learn much more than what you have told us. My best guess here is that Peterson got wind of Lewiston's murder, became scared and was running. I suspect that this Lilith's assignation with Governor Bridge arranged by Peterson was a ploy on Lilith's part to maintain tabs on Peterson. He had no idea what Lilith was really up to, that it was the Golden Wedge of Ophir she was after, until he heard about Lewiston getting offed and that she was involved. Then he knew. Then he ran. He feared her."

Jimmy asked, "What is this all about with Governor Bridge?"

Jack responded, "Jimmy, I am going to set up a conference call from my hotel room with some others involved in this investigation as soon as I can. Would you like to join us? It will help you begin to fit the pieces of this puzzle together."

"Damn right I would, Jack. Thanks for asking."

"OK, Kim you stay with Jimmy and fill him in on everything we know. Tell him everything up to when we got to Reno; no point in going into that. He can hear the same story we tell Brett and Caitlin. Sam, you drop me off at the hotel and then you better go talk to Chief. The conference call will likely take place in a couple hours, so you all meet me back at my hotel room, say three hours from now."

The conference call took place a little over three hours after Jack left the police impound garage. Jack used the speaker-phone and decided to introduce Kim to Brett and Caitlin and Jimmy DeDad. This was a long story and he did not want to do all the talking. He wanted the others to do some of the reporting.

Jack began, "Brett, I assume Caitlin has told you of our conversation when I stopped to call her on the way to Reno."

"Yes, Jack, she did."

"OK, there are many new developments since then. Kim, you begin please. Tell Brett and Caitlin what we learned in Reno."

"Dr. Michael Lewiston was murdered by our Lilith in his suite in Reno. Not only was the blood drained from his body and his penis bitten off, his heart was ripped from his body. The evidence, including that from his computer files and from the witnesses, reveals some interesting connections."

"The late Dr. Lewiston was talking with our other murder victims." Kim went on to unfold the entire sequence of events as they occurred in Reno. Sam interjected comments as she spoke.

Finally, when Kim and Sam had finished, Jack spoke. "This is the way I see it. We should explore this Golden Wedge of Ophir from two directions. Number one, we talk to the yakuza, the late Miyuki Huang's people, and find out where they got it. Number two, we try to determine where this thing originally came from. Caitlin, any ideas where to start?"

"Yes, Jack. The Aztecs, Montezuma and Cortez seem to be the logical place to start. That was referred to in the e-mail messages. The Aztecs gave many such valuable artifacts of gold, jade and emeralds to Cortez and his men. Some of these riches made it back to Charles V and Spain and some didn't. If the Golden Wedge of Ophir was given by Montezuma to Cortez, then where it has been for almost 500 years becomes another great mystery."

"That makes sense, Caitlin," Jack responded. "How about giving us a history lesson on the Aztecs. I'm not all that familiar with their culture."

"Sure, Jack," Caitlin agreed. "First, let me mention an interesting issue that may or may not have some relevance to all this; cannibalism. It was practiced extensively by the Aztecs. It was also practiced by my people the Iroquois; It is also perhaps being practiced by our Lilith. At least she delights in feasting on at least one particular part of her victims, their penis, and now we have a missing heart. Is she eating these body parts? The Olmec, who lived in and around Mexico City long before the Aztecs did, practiced cannibalism. And long before the Olmec, the Neantherthal practiced cannibalism.

"Actually, the correct name for eating human flesh is anthropophagy. The Spaniards coined the term ‘cannibal.’ They observed the Caribs, a West Indian and Southern American people, making meals of their captives."

"Hey, Caitlin," Jack interrupted, "Would you like to hear some of Kim's Jeffrey Dahmer jokes?" Kim frowned so Jack continued. "Question: What did Dahmer say when the cops came to arrest him? Answer: 'Come on guys, have a heart.' Sounds like our Lilith does it not? Question: What did Jeffrey say to Lorena Bobbit? Answer: 'You gonna eat that?' Sounds like our Lilith does it not?"

"Shut up, Jack!" Caitlin demanded. "I'm trying to be serious here."

"Me too!" Jack insisted. "Kim is working on a book about serial killers. Only point I wanted to make. Where is your sense of humor, girl?"

"OK, OK, where was I?" Caitlin continued, "Mohawk is actually an Algonquin word which means 'eaters of men' and they ate men because they believed it gave them the added strength of their conquered enemies. The cannibalism practiced by the Mohawk was sort of a religious rite like that of the Aztecs. The other five nations adopted the cannibalistic rituals of the 'eaters of men' once the Iroquois became a confederacy.

"Not to deviate from the subject matter at hand, but Mark Twain wrote an essay entitled 'Cannibalism in the Cars.' Actually it was a satire directed at the legislators of his time and very, very humorous, at least I thought so.

"The best documented case of Neanderthal cannibalism is that of the bones found in the Moula-Guercy Cave site in southeastern France. The bones clearly reflect butchery marks and that the bodies were cut apart to obtain meat; large bones dented by stone hammers. Brain cases had been broken into fragments and tongues were cut out. Clearly not the work of animals.

"Incidentally, I recently read a research paper entitled 'Neanderthal and Nephilim -- Are They the Same?' by John Denton. You know, the Nephilim, the giants. The paper maintains that during a time Neanderthal, or Nephilim, lived side by side with humans. In fact, the paper makes extensive use of corrected Carbon 14 dating and maintains that Neanderthal, or Nephilim, coexisted with humans, 4,400 years ago. Very interesting, 'eh?

"Now for the Aztecs. Ritualistic cannibalism began early in the fourteenth century, about two hundred years before Cortez. Cannibalism became more and more prevalent as the Aztec Empire expanded. Religious ceremonies were closed with quite a manly meal.

"Generally the ritual went something like this. The prisoner was led to the sacrificial stone, a gigantic jasper block with a slightly convex surface. The prisoner was stretched across the stone and the priests secured his head, arms and legs. Another priest opened the chest of the victim with a razor made of itztli, a flint-like substance, and inserted his hand into the wound and ripped out the still beating heart. Hey, didn't you just tell me Lilith ripped out the heart of our latest victim, Thomas Peterson? How coincidental.

"I might add, Jack, I found that Dead Sea Scroll fragment pertaining to Lilith. It is from 4Q Songs of the Sage / 4Q Shir, 4Q510 frag. 1.4-6a // frag. 10.1f, and goes like this ...

And I, the Sage, declare the grandeur of his radiance in order to frighten and terrify all the spirits of the ravaging angels and the bastard spirits, demons, Liliths, owls and jackals ... and those who strike unexpectedly to lead astray the spirit of knowledge ...

"You will note the word ‘Liliths’ is plural. Well, I wonder if she doesn't have some sisters, don't you?

"Back to the Aztecs and dinner. The body of the sacrificed victim was then dressed up and served banquet style to the warrior who had captured him in battle. Of course the warrior's entire family enjoyed the festivities. These Aztec warriors were so fond of their enemies they tried to capture them alive rather than kill them in battle. And then they brought their enemies home for dinner.

"In a work entitled Aztecs: Reign of Blood and Splendour, Diego de Duran, who witnessed one such banquet said the river of blood ran down the temple steps and 'reached bottom and cooled they formed fat clots, enough to terrify anyone.' Bernardino de Sahagun, a Spanish missionary, reported , 'The celebrants flayed and dismembered the captives; they then lubricated their own naked bodies with grease and slipped into the skin ... Trailing blood and grease, the gruesomely clad men ran through the city, thus terrifying those they followed ... The second-day's rite also included a cannibal feast for each warrior's family.' Gives an entirely new meaning to, oh, never mind. No more cannibal jokes. This isn't funny.

"Regarding the numbers of those sacrificed, it is certain it was hundreds of thousands as substantiated by skeletal remains. At the dedication of the great temple of Huitzilopochtli in 1486, a procession of more than seventy thousand captives were said to have perished over the course of several days. Special buildings were constructed to store the skulls of the victims. Cortes' men counted one hundred thirty-six thousand skulls in one such building. Here's an excerpt from an account in a book I was reading, Fingerprints of the Gods, by Graham Hancock, 'It is recorded, for example, that Ahuitzotl, the eighth and most powerful of the Aztec royal dynasty, celebrated the dedication of the temple of Huitzilopochtli in Tenochitlan by marshalling four lines of prisoners past teams of priests who worked four days to dispatch them. On this occasion as many as 80,000 were slain during a single ceremonial rite.' Some of the women of the more fanatical Aztec warriors were said to delight in eating the penis of the sacrificed captive and drinking his blood.

"Let's get to Montezuma and Cortes. The Spaniards led by Cortes landed on the Yucatan Peninsula and in the days of the fall of 1519 moved inland closer and closer to Tenochititlan, now known as Mexico City. Montezuma of course had advance word of their impending arrival. Montezuma's initial concern was the Cortes was a god, Quetzalcoatl, who it just so happened was scheduled to return to earth soon, in fact that very year.

"It is important to understand Montezuma's mindset which explains why Cortes and his men were not immediately brought home for dinner but instead were treated as supernatural visitors. Because of Montezuma's apprehension, there were preliminary 'negotiations' between he and Cortes before they ever met. Many riches and gifts were delivered to Cortes as he and his men approached Tenochititlan.

"One recorded account of the preliminary peace offerings from Montezuma to Cortes includes a large alligator's head of gold, a large wheel of silver weighing forty marks, two birds made of green feathers with beaks, eyes and feet of gold, many jade sculptures and a plethora of emeralds. By all accounts Cortes was awestruck by the magnificence and priceless value of the gifts.

"On November 8, 1519, Montezuma and Cortes finally met. Cortez had two interpreters, Aguilar and Marina. The latter was an Indian slave given him by a Tabscan chief. Cortes hung a colored crystal necklace around Montezuma's neck. After a brief mutually respectful meeting, Cortes and his men were led to their quarters. Cortes later met Montezuma again, this time in his palace courtyard. Montezuma hung a collar of shells set in gold around Cortes' neck. Cortes' departed for his quarters where Montezuma later visited him. After Montezuma asked many questions of Cortes regarding the intentions of the Spaniards, many gifts were bestowed upon Cortes and his men.

"The next morning, November 9, Cortes paid a visit to Montezuma in his palace. The first order of business was to attempt to convert Montezuma to Christianity. Cortes gave him a fire and brimstone spiel about worshipping false idols and sacrificing humans and he better change his ways or he would burn in hell. Montezuma listened patiently and before dismissing Cortes and the Spaniards, again distributed many gifts of gold and jewels.

"There is a story that one of those gifts which Montezuma personally gave Cortes was referred to as the 'leshonah.' Right, the 'wedge.' Was this the Golden Wedge of Ophir? Quite possibly. Quite likely. The description of the object is similar. Cortes was familiar with the Hebrew word 'leshonah' and was amazed that Montezuma would use such a word.

"OK, let's explore this possibility. What happened to the Golden Wedge of Ophir? Where has it been for almost 500 years? For one reason or another, many of the riches given to Cortes never made it back to Charles V and Spain. Some of the riches were lost as the Spaniards fled shortly after the death of Montezuma.

"A little over a week after that first meeting, Montezuma was taken captive by Cortes as part of his plan to capture the city. The incident began with Montezuma again giving the Spaniards gold and jewels and even offering one of his daughters to Cortes to wed. Several hours later Montezuma was in the Spanish quarters and in iron chains. One of the more incredible events in history in that this small group of men led by Cortes could kidnap this great Indian chief from his palace, while in the midst of his men and thousands of Aztecs.

"Eventually the Aztecs became fed up with the imprisonment of their chief and stormed the Spanish quarters, the palace of Axayacatl. The Spaniards were in danger of being overwhelmed and Cortes employed the assistance of Montezuma in quelling the assault by promising him the Spaniards would depart. Montezuma dressed in his royal garb and addressed his people. In his speech he told his people he was with the Spaniards of his own free will and they would soon leave. The people began to demonstrate contempt for Montezuma and bitter taunts were soon followed by a rain of stones and arrows. Montezuma was wounded several times and was severely injured by a rock that struck him on the temple. The people, shocked by their own actions, dispersed in panic. Montezuma had not only been rejected by his people, he had suffered injuries which would prove to be fatal, in part due to his own refusal to be treated for the wounds.

"In late June 1520, the Aztecs occupied the great teocalli of the god Huitzilopochtli. This was a pyramid of over a hundred and fifty feet, an elevated position overlooking the Spaniards' quarters, the palace of Axayacatl. Several buildings that contained idols and such surrounded the pyramid. The Aztecs continued to siege the palace of Axayacatl with their arrows. The Spaniards had no choice but to counterattack and several attempts to storm the pyramid were made and tremendous battles ensued. Cortes was wounded and many were killed but the Spaniards were victorious, destroyed the idols of Huitzilopochtli and burned the buildings. The Aztecs were in awe and horrified that their great temples had been obliterated.

"The skirmishes between the Aztecs and the Spaniards continued. On June 30, 1520, Montezuma died from his wounds. This was a great setback for the Spaniards. They should have kept the matter quiet one might critique. The Aztecs now had no reason to further tolerate the Spaniards.

"Cortes now had no choice but to retreat from the city. When and how remained the only question. It was decided to leave via the causeway of Tlacopan, a long route but less likely to be heavily guarded. Much of the treasures the Spaniards had acquired were left behind. The most valuable items were placed in as many chests as they could possibly take with them.

"The Spaniards built a portable bridge to lay over the canals in the causeway. To make a long story short, the bridge was a disaster and many of the Spaniards were left dead in the water, along with most of the treasure. Aztec warriors were distracted by the treasure spilling everywhere, and the Spaniards still alive managed to escape. But it was the worst defeat ever suffered by the Spanish in the New World and July 1, 1520, became known as 'noche triste' or 'the sad or melancholy night.' I won't bore you with more details of the conquest of Mexico. Of course the Spaniards later returned, defeated and subjugated the Aztecs and destroyed their great city and culture.

"This is what I think is a likely scenario. Cortes had possession of the Golden Wedge of Ophir from November 9, 1519, to July 1, 1520. It is quite likely it was lost in the water on 'noche triste.' It is said Cortes often inquired of the object upon his occasional returns to the site but nothing was ever learned by him of its recovery.

"Marina, Cortes' interpreter, mistress and mother of his son, Don Martin Cortes, was eventually given to a Castilian knight, Don Juan Xamarillo. She was wed to him and given estates in her homeland, the province of Coatzacuacco. Cortes returned to Spain in 1528. In July 1529 he was proclaimed Marquess of the Valley of Oaxaca and Captain-General of New Spain. He was given vast land holdings in the province of Qaxaca and in Mexico City.

"Soon thereafter Cortes met and married a much younger noble lady, Dona Juana de Zuniga. One wedding gift he presented her with were five brilliant emeralds that had been cut into the shapes of flowers and fishes and the like by the Aztecs. It was said the jewels were so magnificent even the queen of Charles V was envious. Cortes told his new wife that these jewels were trivial compared to those lost in the tragedy of 'noche triste.' He mentioned the Golden Wedge of Ophir.

"Cortez returned to Mexico in 1530 with his wife and elderly mother. In the next ten years it is said he inquired occasionally about the Golden Wedge of Ophir and engaged several search missions in the water where it had been lost, but to no avail. In 1540 he returned to Spain. He died on December 2, 1547, at the age of sixty-three in the village of Castilleja de la Cuesta.

"One more noteworthy series of events. While this Golden Wedge of Ophir may have had a traveled history, so did Cortes' remains. He was originally buried in 1547 in a vault in the city of San Isidro. In 1562 his remains were removed by order of his son, transported to New Spain and reburied in Tezcuco by the side of his mother and a daughter. In 1629 his remains were moved again to the church of St. Francis in Mexico City. In 1794 his bones were moved to the Hospital of Jesus of Nazareth. In 1823 the vault that contained his remains were desecrated by patriotic mobs celebrating national independence.

"Well, enough about Cortes. It is rather certain he did once possess the Golden Wedge of Ophir but lost it the night of 'noche triste' and was never able to recover it. It is also rather certain he attached some religious significance to it and suspected it was possibly of some Hebrew origin or influence, in that it was called 'leshonah' by Montezuma. Cortez had asked Montezuma from where it came from and was told it was of the Olmecs. One reason Montezuma parted with the object so readily was that it had no religious significance to him.

"Let's talk about the Olmec. Archaeologists and anthropologists agree they were the first civilization in Mesoamerica. But where did they come from? They just 'appeared' fully formed as a culture several thousand years ago. They were concentrated in the southern provinces of Mexico, Veracruz and Tabasco, but without question they also spent time in and around Mexico City.

"The Olmec influence, at the time of King Solomon ... yes, that's what I said ... at the time of King Solomon had spread into what is now Guatemala, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Honduras and elsewhere. Human sacrifice, cannibalism, was found to have existed wherever the Olmec were found to have been.

"The three most important evidences of Olmec culture are found in three ruins, at La Venta, at Tres Zapotes and at San Lorenso. In La Venta, which is on an island in the Mexican Tabasco Province, there is a large pyramid about 300 feet high. What is it with all these pyramids? Almost sounds like Egypt, 'eh?" This is where many of the huge jade heads are."

Kim added, "Caitlin, your friend Nathaniel was just telling us about those."

"Yeah, Kim, but don't believe everything he says. He tends to exaggerate. Anyway, San Lorenzo is in southern Veracruz and is considered to be the earliest ceremonial Olmec site. More of these gigantic heads had been buried there. The site at Tres Zapotes shows clear evidence of class structure and a society similar in complexity, to for example, that of Israel at the time of King Solomon.

"But perhaps the most impressive legacy of the Olmec is the great pyramid called Tlahchiualtepl which is in Cholula, about 60 miles southeast of Mexico City. It is about three times as large, in terms of mass, as the Great Pyramid at Giza. Actually, the archaeologists maintain it was begun by the Olmecs and added to by later civilizations including the Aztecs.

"Now, this is a theory I have heard. Let me reiterate. This is just a theory that is a possible explanation for the Olmec. Some say the Olmec came to Mesoamerica from Europe more than 3,000 years ago. And don't tell me the Atlantic couldn't be crossed back then if that is how they possibly arrived in the new world. I think it has been proven quite conclusively in recent years that the Atlantic can be crossed in rather primitive vessels.

"Spain was invaded by an army of Eqyptians and North African nations in 1883 BC. Gerion led this army. This Gerion was said to be the son of Arba, the father of the giants of Joshua 15:13. The giants! Gerion was slain and his army fled to the New World. According to anthropologists there were two distinct ethnic groups which made up the Olmec culture. I just mentioned one. My Native American friend Nathaniel may have told you about the Red Record and how his people, the Lenni Lanape, drove the Olmec out of North America.

"I personally believe the Lenni Lanape and the Iroquois were of the twelve tribes of Israel, specifically of the tribe of Dan. I personally believe that the other ethnic group of the Olmec were Canaanites. This explanation would explain the Hebrew word 'leshonah.' There is an incredible amount of evidence of the Hebrew language in the Americas thousands of years ago. There is no other explanation that makes sense to me other than Hebrews did come to the Americas way back when."

"Whew!" Jack exclaimed as Caitlin paused. "That is quite some story, Caitlin."

"Jack," Caitlin continued, "you once mentioned the Rosetta Stone. You mentioned it since Danel, one of our Harley riding 'locusts' mentioned it in conversations with the woman he persuaded to mysteriously disappear, Laurie Johnston, and her daughter Rachael and friend and neighbor Joshua.

"Napoleon's men discovered the Rosetta Stone in 1799 near the town of, what else, Rosetta, in lower Egypt near the sea. Now the Rosetta Stone is in London at the British Museum. It is made of black basalt and is older than Jesus Christ by two hundred years or thereabouts. The Rosetta Stone declares, three times, a royal decree praising the Egyptian king Ptolemy V. The proclamation is declared three times, once in Greek, one in hieroglyphic and once in demotic. By comparing the known Greek to the hieroglyphic and demotic, a French Egyptologist named Jean Francois Champollion and a British physicist named Thomas Young were able to decipher the hieroglyphic and demotic. Do you hear what I am saying? Until two hundred years ago not even the Egyptians could read what they wrote thousand of years ago in the Great Pyramid of Giza and elsewhere. A language lost for thousands of years."

"Caitlin?" Sam asked, "how in the world do you remember all this stuff? The names and everything?"

"Well hell, Sam," Caitlin replied cryptically, "I have a photographic memory. It's not my fucking fault."

"Well whatever," Kim added, "keep talking Caitlin. This is absolutely fascinating."

"If you insist, Kim. The Wallum Ollum, also known as the Red Record, like the Rosetta Stone, has unlocked many mysteries. It became known in the 1820's as its prayer sticks of wood and bark were interpreted by archaelogists and anthropologists. Just like the Rosetta Stone. An unknown language became known. Lenni Lenape means 'original people.' It was Captain Samuel Argall who sailed the Lenape River and named the people he found there and the river 'Delaware' after his mentor, Lord De La War.

"The Red Record is a history of almost one hundred generations of Native Americans. No doubt some of it is myth as all histories are. History is according to who wrote it just as truth is according to who tells it. But I have concluded some of it is how it really happened. Particularly of interest to me are the wars with the Talegwi, the giants, which raged over four generations. Finally the Lenni Lenape, with the help of my people the Iroquois, drove the Talegwi away, to the south to Mexico and beyond.

"You can read the Red Record for yourself, but here is an interesting excerpt from another work, Moundbuilders of Ancient America, by Robert Silverberg ... 'The Lenape discovered that the country east of the Mississippi was inhabited by a very powerful nation who had many large towns built on the great rivers flowing through their land. Those people called themselves Talegwi ... Many wonderful things are told of this famous people. They are said to have been remarkably tall and stout, and there is a tradition that there were giants among them, people of a much larger size than the tallest of the Lenape.' Giants you say?

"Here is an excerpt from the Red Record itself. The Lenni Lenape asked to cross the Mississippi River and settle in Talegwi territory ... 'The Talegwi king denied this request, but promised to permit the Lenape to pass through his lands to find homes farther east. Peacefully, the Lenape began to cross the Mississippi. But when the Talegwi king saw how numerous the Lenape were, he became frightened, and ordered his warriors to attack. Talegwi war canoes swept across the river as armored Talegwi regiments massacred the Lenape who had already crossed. Enraged by this treachery, the Lenape voved to 'conquer or die!' and joined with their Iroquois allies in an epic war of vengeance.' Many Iroquois and Algonquin legends tell of the wars against the Moundbuilders, the Tallegwi, whom they called 'the snakes' among other less noble names.

"Here is another quote from Moundbuilders of Ancient America, 'Having thus united their forces the Lenape and Mengwe, the Iroquois, declared war against the Talegwi and great battles were fought in which many warriors fell on both sides ... No quarter was given, so that the Tallegwi at last, finding that their destruction was inevitable if they persisted in their obstinacy, abandoned the country to the conquerors and fled down the Mississippi River, from whence they never returned.' The legacy the Talegwi left the Iroquois and Lenni Lenape was one of cannibalism and torture of captives, including scalping."

"Caitlin?" Kim inquired, "What about the Incas and the Mayans? How do they fit into all this?"

"The story of the Mayan people is not that different than that of the Aztecs. Their culture appeared out of nowhere fully formed and functional and nobody can quite figure out how or why. The ancestors of both the Maya and the Aztec were the Olmec. The Maya and the Aztec shared many of the same gods. Quetzaloatl and others.

"Odin is a hero of Norse mythology. Worshipped by Scandinavians, Germans, Anglo-Saxons and more. Human sacrifices were often offered up to Odin who is also known as Dan, Wotan and Woden. And some say the first Dan founded Denmark and was of the 'Tuathe de Danaan' or the tribe of Dan. As Herman Hoek says in the Compendium of World History, 'It was from Thrace that Odin led the Agathyrsi and other tribes to northwestern Europe when he founded the Danish kingdom. Many of the warriors employed by the early princes of western Europe were fierce, or swarthy skin, naked and often tattooed and painted ... Jerome, writing in one of his letters in the fifth century, characterizes some of them as cannibals.' Oh my, tattooed and painted red men who were cannibals. Now just who does that sound like?

"One of my favorite books is The Two Babylons by Alexander Hislop. To quote, 'the Mexicans celebrated Wodan as the founder of their race, just as our own ancestors did. The Wodan or Odin of Scandinavia can be proved to be the same as the Wodan of Mexico ... the fact that the name had been borne by some illustrious hero among the supposed ancestors of the Mexican race, is put beyond all doubt by the singular circumstance that the Mexicans had one of their days called Wodansday, exactly as we ourselves have.' How interesting!

"I say Odin of Scandinavia introduced human sacrifice and idolatry to Mesoamerica a thousand years before Christ. You say what you want. I also say the Picts of Scotland came to the Americas long after Odin but long before Columbus and introduced a matriarchal society, totem poles, wigwams, tattoos and many other things to the Americas.

"I'm rambling. Let me get to the Incas and there are only a few points I want to make. If the Olmec and the others could cross the Atlantic do you really think they would have much difficulty migrating to Peru and thereabouts? I don't think so.

"The Incas, like the Aztecs, virtually appeared out of nowhere. In 1532 the Spaniards led by Franciso Pizzaro, took advantage of a civil war between factions led by the brothers Huascar and Atahuallpa. Huascar was murdered by Atahuallpa and he in turn was executed by Pizzaro; on July 26, 1533. The Spaniards then took control of the empire. That's all well documented history.

"Let's go back to the first Inca, Manco Capac around 1200 AD. This, of course, is more myth than history. Many legends associate Manco Capac with an object called the Golden Wedge of Ophir. Ophir de Espana, Memorias Historiales y Politicas del Peru is a work written by Fernando Montesinos who lived in Peru from 1629-1642. The theme of his much ridiculed work was that Peru was the land of Ophir referred to by Solomon. Montesinos maintained Peru was first settled by the grandson of Noah, who just happened to be named Ophir. Wild speculation? Perhaps. But we do have some evidence of the Golden Wedge of Ophir in Peru.

"The capital of the Inca empire was Cuzco, located in today's Peru, not far from the border of Brazil. Let's talk about Brazil. Remember Sir Richard Francis Burton and his connection to our case? In 1864 Burton was given a consular appointment to Brazil at his request. He spent the next three years exploring Brazil, often alone. He went beyond the borders of Brazil into Peru, and visited Cuzco. Why? What was he looking for? Not long after Burton's exploration of Brazil, caves were found deep in the Brazilian jungle which contained rocks with Phoenician inscriptions. Which means? Ancient visitors from Solomon's time? Perhaps.

"There are some who say Sir Richard Francis Burton's private papers and letters referred to the Golden Wedge of Ophir. Unfortunately the documents were burned by his wife Isabel after his death. Do you know where Burton was before he asked to be sent to Brazil?

"In 1860 Sir Richard Francis Burton visited the Mormon leader Brigham Young in Utah. The result of Burton's extensive research on polygamy was published in his City of the Saints in 1861. During the time of Burton's visit to the southwestern United States he became acquainted with Albert Pike, the Confederate general. Yes, the same Albert Pike who one of our women who mysteriously disappeared, Candace Pike Martin, claims to be descended from. Is all this coincidence? The same Albert Pike who is said to have been the founder of the Masonic movement in America. And on the subject of polygamy, we have another woman who mysteriously disappeared, Alicia Dunn, who was the third wife of a pseudo-Mormon polygamist and vanished from Salt Lake City with one of our Harley riding 'locusts.' Coincidence? I smell something here. On that note, I'm done. Stick a fork in me. I'm done talking."

"Does anybody have anything else to say?" Jack asked. There was silence. "I am going to talk to the yakuza tomorrow, the late Miyuki Huang's people, and find out where they got this Golden Wedge of Ophir."

Jack indicated he was going to get some sleep in that it had been more than forty-eight hours since he closed his eyes other than brief cat naps on the way to and from Reno. Sam and Jimmy DeDad left. Kim began to remove her clothes.

"What are you doing, Kim?"

"I'm taking a shower, Jack. Why don't you join me?" He did.

To Be Continued...


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