A Novel by
"To love would be an awfully big adventure."
J.M. Barrie (Peter Pan)
Antonio slid in on the sleek black leather interior of his new
2011 CTS-V-Coupe. He put on his sunshades and started the engine.
"Awesome," he said aloud. He was driving the New Mexico scenery
As an anthropologist, a SUV had always been an essential. Keeping
the SUV, he was unable to resist the temptation. "Motortrend"
called it "Cad-thriller", "The most desirable Caddy in decades."
This was his first sports car. In fact, he had not had a car
since he left Miami fifteen years ago. He waved to the salesman.
"See you, Dr. Dominguez," the salesman called out.
He was taking his Raven Black Beauty out on the open road to see
what she could do. They were heading out of Santa Fe down the Rio
Grande to Hidden Mountain where he was hoping to organize an
excavation there someday. The idea remaining in the back of his
mind, planning to consider it when he was ready to stay home
reducing his trips overseas.
Hidden Mountain was a magnet pulling him as if he were steel.
On his first visit to the university, he found himself at Hidden
Mountain. It was home to an ancient inactive volcano with
evidence scattered throughout the site as proof of an ancient
Hebrew occupation. On the way up the summit, a large Decalogue
stone sets with a Paleo-Hebrew inscription of the Ten
Commandments' Exodus twenty Version. The stone was the subject of
considerable controversy over the years, now meeting with
acceptance of a range dating from around 1000 BC. This would
coincide with the reigns of King David and King Solomon during
the only time Israel and Judea were one United Kingdom of Israel.
Another stone depicts a solar eclipse. On the east side, going up
towards the summit a stone had a bearded man was praying. A few
feet from the Ten Commandment inscription sat two stones were
setting acting as a gateway to the summit. The summit itself
shows signs of an ancient campsite or military hold, or perhaps a
mining camp. On the south, end of the summit, at the highest
elevation stands an inscription YHWH Eloheynu meaning "Yahweh,
our mighty one". Antonio had a strong interest in the site's
The mid-morning sun was peaking out from behind the mountains. It
was the perfect time to hit the open road in a new ride. Unable
to avoid thinking of his brother José's jealousy over his new
Black Raven beauty, later he would call José to brag about Raven.
He was smiling at his brothers' envy.
José was able to afford a 'Black Raven Coupe' of his choice.
Jose' was one of Miami's leading attorneys. Unlike himself, still
single at the upper part of his forties, due to circumstance, and
choice, José was the ideal husband and father.
José assuming Pop's role, Hell, he was Pop's clone, often José
was more Pop than Pop. Not actually knowing if that were still
true he had not seen or spoken to Pop, the infamous Judge, in
fifteen years. Eight kids, but he was the one who was always
disappointing Pop, with his "hippy" career, which at best would
give him a mediocre standard of living. He was proving Pop wrong
with his innovative analysis and doing damn good skill playing
high stakes Poker during his time in the States. The poker play
would drive Pop, the Judge over the edge.
His cell ringing it was the Poker tournament organizer, Max,
interrupting his thoughts.
"Antonio, what's up?" Max always bellowed with enthusiasm.
"Not much Max," Antonio muttered knowing Max never waited or
listened for the answer.
"Hey, I noticed you are going to have someone new playing against
you this week. I am not sure how you two have missed one another.
She has two years of play time. I sent you video copies of her
game via email.
Antonio, she plays incognito but I have the info, if you know
what I mean. You two have some common interests outside of poker.
I am betting if you are not an idiot you might hit it off with
"Is that right?" Antonio grunted.
"No joke, Antonio, watch them today. Call me back," Max,
"Bye Max," Antonio ended the call.
Max was a terrific person but annoying, a real pain at times. Max
was the one person that knew everything about the players. Many
players including him tried to keep a distinction between
everyday life and poker life. Antonio had never heard a complaint
about Max breaching a player's confidence.
At last, he was approaching the ramp to get on the interstate. He
looked around, "Okay Raven, the road is ours. Can you dance?" he
bellowed as he 'stomped it'.
Gasping as her sheer force threw him back in his seat he felt
alive, electrified. Accelerating as the ramp gave way to the
interstate, breaking her into the left turn Raven took it as if
she were riding on rails.
"Yes, Raven you dance." They had 58 miles of the open road to
Albuquerque. Not giving a damn about a ticket, the thrill would
be well worth the price of the ticket.
"Raven do you feel the need to speed?" Antonio did not consider
backing down until he hit the magic century mark. At 100 mph, the
other cars seemed to stand still when he was racing down the
Near Albuquerque after waking from his trance he shook his head;
time had escaped him. The Mountain was about thirty-five miles
Parking Raven near the railroad tracks, he grabbed his small pack
out of her trunk. The day was too perfect not to take some time
to kick around up on the summit. He crossed the rancher's land he
followed the path; it was a short hike to the Decalogue stone.
The Decalogue was a crest stone weighing eighty plus tons.
Antonio made his was up the trail to the summit. A lot about this
place was fascinating. The summit allowed for a clear view for
miles in any direction; 365 degrees of unobstructed view. Antonio
guessed the summit at 22 acres, the height at 5500 feet above sea
level. Loose volcanic rock and sandy silt covering the area with
much of the rock was crumbling.
Evidence suggested temporary ancient living structures were there
for a significant period. Clusters scattered the area with
intentional holes or dugouts.
On the east side, near the north side not far from the carved
bearded man holding an offering there was a solitary glyph.
Stones surrounding one of the coined dugouts had him skeptical
about the supposed use for the military. Who in the hell would
the enemy be? Standing near he pondered the idea.
Turning taking a couple of steps without warning the place he was
standing on gave way. Falling down into a cavern, a ledge slowed
his fall. He did not get a grip quick enough to keep from rolling
off the ledge; descending deeper into the old volcano. His head
hit something. The stream of sunlight allowed in by the hole
above was blurring.
It was a foggy place, light with a pale fog. Something flashed;
an ancient man appeared in a priest's robe, the man was silent
yet Antonio knew he was communicating. The man disappearing gave
way to the appearance of a woman an remarkable woman. She was
modern, silent yet she was communicating with him. She was
beautiful he felt love for her, experiencing her love for him;
her whole essence permeated him with feelings of wholeness,
surrounding him with love, a passion he had never experienced. He
knew her name was Amanda Messenger, but she was leaving. He
wanted to scream trying but unable to make a sound. Fixated on
wanting to stay with her, he felt a tug; it was a vacuum a force
sending him back into Earth's reality. His head was pounding
reaching up to his head he felt the blood.
He struggling to find his small pack he located a cloth he was
applying pressure. With his flashlight on, he noticed his broken
glasses but still functional enough to help him see to get out of
Scanning the area with the light, he saw an object fewer than a
foot from his head. Reaching for it realizing there were two
objects he knew they were scrolls. The old man, the woman, they
knew he would find them, wait, that was a hallucination. These
were real. The light was horrible he needed to get to the top
with his treasure. The bleeding from his head had slowed but not
stopped. The flashlight allowed an examination of the area he saw
nothing. Putting the Scrolls in his pack, he felt an urgent need
to escape the cavern before he lost more blood dying on the spot,
never found. Looking up he was doubtful there was space enough to
anchor, however, believing he could climb out hoping the rock
would not crumble in on him.
Still bleeding he decided to use his belt around his head to keep
the compress in place as he climbed out. Once the cloth was in
place, he shined the flashlight back. Shaking his head, "Dumbass,
she is not here." The pack went on; he hoisted himself up a level
to a small ledge. He was down only about fifteen feet above was a
larger ledge it was within reach. Gripping he used his feet to
climb his body up swinging his legs around he was struggling to
reach the top of the ledge. Throwing his rope, he was now
anchoring so he could climb out.
One last time he shined the light into the cavern hole. Feeling
he was leaving the woman behind, damn, he must have brain damage.
He gripped the rope climbing out, at the top he was securing the
hole with surrounding rocks he needed to get away before he saw
Raven's trunk popped open, laying the pack down inside the trunk
checking the condition of the Scrolls, he would not investigate
them until later. Checking his head noticing the bleeding
stopped. The bloody shirt came off replaced by a t-shirt from the
He got into Raven, thank God, for his prescription shades his
glasses damaged from the fall. The engine started. "Okay, Raven
get our asses home, we have hit our 'eureka' moment." Damn, the
day was insane with feelings of love for a phantom woman, ancient
Scrolls in the back of his new CTS. It was one hell of a day at
The hour and a half home was an eternity. The woman was still
haunting him the incredible feeling he experienced. She was a
ghost so was the old man. The Scrolls were real making it hard to
buy into the whole accident theory yet what else was there.
Taking out his phone, he dialed. "Joe, listen I need for you to
get me a secure metal box, fireproof, waterproof, whatever-proof.
It needs to be at least twenty-four inches by six inches, say six
inches deep. I am about an hour away."
Joe was his caretaker, his wife Maria took care of the household.
They had been with him pretty much since the beginning.
Raven had to behave on the way home, now was not a opportune time
to have a Trooper pulling him over he was looking the part of a
Cuban street fighter. A Trooper would check his trunk
confiscating the Scrolls before he even inspected them.
The woman filled his head the rest of the drive it was ridiculous
the woman of his dreams was in his dreams. He let out a sadistic
laugh. The phone rang.
"Great that was quick. Hey Joe will you grab the other key to
the workroom out of my desk. I am pulling in the gate we need to
open the work area."
"Yeah, meet me out there." Antonio whipped Raven around the
circle to the back of the guesthouse excited to open the Scrolls.
"Antonio, what happened? Did you win? Nice ride man!"
"Joe, I am going to figure that out right now. Do you think
Maria could locate a pair of glasses for me? I broke mine."
"Sure I will go check."
Antonio unlocked the different locks unarming the security
clearing the table next to his equipment he turned on the
protective lighting. The Scrolls appeared intact and undamaged.
Joe walked in with his old glasses.
"No problem, Maria wants to look at your wound. She says she is
fixing you something to eat."
"Thanks Joe, I will be inside soon, I am going to make some
"Hey, Joe." Antonio threw Joe the keys. He smiled, "Put Raven in
the garage, please."
Unrolling the first scroll with care, my God! Trembling, was it
possible, Ancient Hebrew? He unrolled the second one wanting to
make copies as soon as possible it was best to handle them as
little as possible. The copies would allow him to translate them
without damaging the originals. Perhaps this was the Mother-load.
Photographed, copied, he secured the precious antiques. Closing
the case, thoughts of the woman were entering his mind again.
This time he felt as he did during the hallucination. Her essence
was a wild, incredible feeling. His eyes closed he was breathing
in her essence. Where did she come from? Her eyes were
mysterious, breathtaking, sparkling her arms were reaching for
him. Remember her name, Amanda Messenger or damn, perhaps Amanda
the Messenger; she was making him think she was waiting for him.
Rubbing his head it was pounding hard. She was in his soul. Would
he find her through his soul? Maybe he should go get his head
examined since now he was insane.
Everything put away, taking his copies, securing the place, he
locked up the workroom. He walked across the driveway and back
lawn to the house. Maria ran out of the house.
"Oh my God, Antonia, you need Doctor."
"Maria, I am fine, let me shower you will see the injury is much
better than it looks."
"Antonio, it is possible to have a bump inside your head." She
"We will see after I shower." He thought hell, not a bump; a
woman is in my head. Making his way up the short flight of
stairs, he stopped putting the copies and one of the keys to the
workroom in his desk. In the bedroom, he threw his dirty clothes
by the door and stepped back to the bathroom. The shower felt
terrific, soaping down throwing back his head allowing the water
to run down on him.
It did not matter how ridiculous it was, he felt this woman a
feeling he felt under the area where his ribs made a triangle,
his solar plexus. He needed her; the Scrolls needed her. Earlier
she was telling him to feel her, love it felt intense. It must
have triggered some strange reaction in his brain. If love could
achieve that feeling, heroin and cocaine trafficking would
collapse. No way, it had to be some somatic chemical
Out of the shower, he dried off and dressed. The head injury was
a bruised cut up looking site with a goose egg. Talking to Maria,
he was calming her down. After choking down some aspirin, he
asked Maria to take his food to the office. She agreed but shot
him a worried look.
He chuckled. "Maria, you know I love you, I am fine. I have some
work to do. Tomorrow, I have to get some new glasses since I
travel to Vegas early day after tomorrow." Hurrying to the stairs
taking them two at a time he reached his office prepared to work.
Maria came with his food setting it down by him. He kissed her
cheek. "Maria I am fine. It is late, you two go home. This
project will have me working for hours."
She nodded. "Antonio, call us if you have any problems."
"I will, thanks Maria."
Starting to translate, he was looking down through the magnifier
it jumped right out from the paper. "Unbelievable, it was King
Solomon!" He opened the other scroll. Damn, this may be the real
deal. King Solomon, the Scrolls had different messages from King
Solomon. He began the grueling task of translating each ancient
symbol working for hours his neck was killing him.
Antonio was perspiring more and more with each word translated.
Translating the ancient Hebrew first, later he would arrange
correct sentences. Ancient Hebrew did not always fit with modern
English it was tedious work at best each of the letters also
represented a number. At times, the number was the intention
complicating the meaning of the author.
It was necessary to cover all of the bases sometimes that meant
it needed a cross-reference in English to make the best choice in
the context of the ultimate meaning.
He was taking a drink from his water bottle; his thoughts were
racing as some of the substance began to emerge. The woman the
messenger from his delusion flashed in his mind with every word
The characters sha-mad translated in English Destroy, disturbing.
They were presenting a prophetic note within the instruction. The
message was not explicit it was an eerie component. She-mesh was
the sun. Antonio saw that the scroll was warning of disaster
originating from the sun this might cause harm, tey-vel means
Earth. In the context, he decided it was a warning of a disaster
to the Earth in relation to the suns renewal or rebirth.
The positive element was an answer. Hha-yeel meant a force
Antonio wanted to shout aloud it was an instrument of protection.
Sho-eyr translated as gate keeper; sha-ar meant gate. It was a
revelation thirteenth gate with thirteen tribal gatekeepers
na-hhah meant inherit. He understood the tribes were the chain of
birthright or inheritance goy was the nation.
Antonio stood he began pacing, rubbing his hand over the top of
his hair. Saying aloud, "The United States of America, the nation
with the thirteenth gate, a home to the thirteen tribes. This was
suggesting it was a womb or an umbilical cord connected with
earth, Damn." He was pacing always knowing or suspecting there
was something momentous at Hidden Mountain. It was a navel; the
damn place was an energy orifice.
Frustrated with himself having an argument in his mind he
struggled with the validity of the Scrolls' message. "Shit," he
shouted. There she was again, Antonio felt as if she were telling
him he needed to pay attention.
Still standing he looked down, ma-qeyn was a shield. No doubt, it
was the key to creating a shield for the Earth ye-sha was rescue;
be-tahh meant safety. It occurred to Antonio he did not have the
luxury of anthropology or his sacred PhD to hide from the
possibility that these Scrolls could save humanity. Again pacing
he rubbed his head seeing her again, "Get out of my head or come
help me. You are a hallucination."
He sat back down hoping his colleague at the University of Texas
put a rush on the small fibers he sent to authenticate and date
the Scrolls. The implications were enormous believing they were
authentic. They still needed the confirmation, having seen the
real thing, masterful fakes, and significantly bad fakes he
learned this after working on teams in Jerusalem several times.
The group encountered some compelling fakes, creations from some
clever bastards; one in particular created several selling them
before the experts figured it out.
With the two Scrolls, there was a lot of translating to do before
completing. A problem was manifesting many of his colleagues
spent their entire careers looking for this answer time was not a
luxury he had, needing a quick decision. Me-lekh shlomo, are you
legitimate? He asked aloud. "King Solomon, damn it, my career is
at stake, were you everything they say?"
In the hallucination, an old Jewish man appeared prior to the
woman, "Was that old man you Sholmo?" At least the old man should
provide him with a sign, something. Glancing at his paper, he was
laughing at the word ba-nah, build a Temple to save the Earth
from danger. He could not forget Adam, humanity a small little
thing to forget.
Hidden Mountain must be the reference on the reg-sheet or summit
the structures described would open the omphalos, navel, or
umbilical as it provides nourishment to na-pha, heal.
The thirteenth gate is the nexus, which opens the navel providing
nourishment to heal earth. The Gatekeepers 13, one of the chosen
should come from each of the tribes. Through the rest of the
translation, he would learn more that much was correct.
Starting to turn his laptop off deciding instead to check his
email noticing Max had sent some game copies.
He took the laptop to his bed after finishing the necessities
with no clue why as exhaustion was taking over his body. Starting
the video he was slamming down a half a liter of water while
glancing at the video as he was gulping down the water he choked,
water was spewing out of his mouth onto the bed, him, and the
computer. Still choking, damn, he was hallucinating again! It was
the woman in his vision! Flipping fast-forwarded, next rewinding
the video back, in disbelief he started one of the others, almost
scared, he fumbled for his cell. Unable to keep his eyes off her,
he dialed Max. This time he spoke first.
"Max, what is her real name?"
"Damn it, no games tell me everything you know."
"Her name is Amanda Messenger." Antonio's heart missed a beat.
"What do you know, Max?"
"I do not know. What is up Antonio? Do you know her?"
"A little," he was stretching the truth.
"Max, I met her, I have been looking for her. You were right, I
am going to...I mean will like her. Tell me what you know,
between you and me. Help me Max," he was pleading.
"She writes and lives in the Midwest where she grows grapes for
"Max, what does she write about?"
"Spiritual things and Life lesson stuff."
"What else? Is she single? I'm guessing she is but how single?"
"Very, does not seem to be looking," Max, informed.
"Max, she is awesome, is she not?"
"She is a great lady, Antonio."
"I cannot think of anything, Antonio."
"Max, anything, you think of anything you call."
"Max, when is she due in Vegas?"
"Me too, adjust my room. I am coming sooner, see you."
He lay in his bed watching the video repeatedly, until he passed
Antonio opened his eyes a few hours later, called about his
glasses; they would be ready for him to pick up on the way to the
airport. He called a bookstore that he could stop at on the way.
They promised to keep the books ready for pickup. The airline
changed his flight with time he started Googling Amanda Messenger
thinking, too. How in the hell was he going to get to this woman?
He could not walk up and say to her, "Hi, I got a concussion and
hallucinated that you love me. Do you want to go out with me? By
the way, old King Solomon wants you to help save the world."
This needed a plan, one that would work, fail proof. She was not
showing up in his dreams only to disappear her ass was his.