The Forgotten War: Chapters 25 – 30

25

John Campbell sat on his father’s bed. He looked around the room, dawning back on memories he thought he’d forgotten. It had been so long since he last looked back on the intimate details of his childhood. It was granted that there were some things that he wished he wouldn’t remember, but there were more that he came to revel in.
He remembered coming into the room to play chess with his father. He’d always lose. Checkmate. His father was a master at chess, or so it was in Campbell’s eyes. He now saw that the board had been put away, the box lying under the little beside table. The label was fading off of the cardboard.
This was also the room where he first snatched a kiss from Kate when they were little. It had been playful. They had sneaked up there to get some privacy from Grant but soon realized that they shouldn’t have been in that room without permission. That intimate moment had not lasted long, but he had made up for it later on…
Not really.
Sure they were now in a relationship, but ever since marriage invaded his mind his standard had reached new peaks and he wasn’t sure that he would make it to the top. How many men climbed the top of Mt. Everest?
He stood up and walked over to the window. Looking out he watched a car go by that seemed familiar to him. If he wasn’t mistaken it looked like his roommate’s.
There came a knock on the door frame because he had left to door open. He turned around.
Kate stood there in the light from the hallway. John had left the lights in the room off.
“Hey,” she said.
He sat on the bed, his back facing her. “Hi,” he said.
She came across the room and sat next to him, rubbing his back up and down, going lower toward his belt a few times. Then she laid her head on his shoulder, her hair falling in waves and resting on him.
He put his arm around her, but didn’t caress her in return.
“What’s the matter, John?” she asked. “Something’s been bothering you for a while, ever since the month started, but tonight, after your mom left, whatever it was hit you harder than before. I want to know what it is. Maybe I could help.”
“I don’t know,” he lied. How could he tell her now when his father was missing, probably dead? He knew the front would not hold. It was a lie that she could detect a mile away.
She sat up in response to the fib. She looked at him and said, “It’s not your father. It’s something else, I know it.” He placed her hand on his cheek. “It has something to do with me, doesn’t it?”
Does she know?
Before he could reply there was a rapping on the door. It was loud and urgent, he could tell. Then there was the sound of someone rushing down the hall to the door and he knew it was his mother. He could remember the way she walked about the house, how the floorboards creaked when she tread on them.
She opened the door and said, “Oh, Inspector. You’re back. Please come in. And who’s this… Oh, Bishop. I’m so glad to see you…”
The Archbishop is here with the police?
He shot up from the bed and quickly went past Kate, who lowered her head, disappointed.
Campbell zoomed down the upstairs hallway and descended the steps at lightning speed until he was at the front door with his mother.
In the doorway stood the prominent figure of the inspector. He stood tall and looked muscular. His hair was well trimmed and brushed back. He wore a spring jacket where a badge hung on a pin near the one lapel. He had an air of authority and skepticism.
Behind him was a man John was all too familiar with.
Archbishop Nathaniel Pitt was well known to him and was good friends with his father. They had spent numerous hours up at the Cathedral doing something that Campbell could never find out about. He never asked his father. He sensed that it was a very personal issue with him so he felt it best not to bother him about it. If his father wanted him to know he’d tell him.
The old clergyman wore a black cassock that was trimmed in magenta thread. A large cross hung from a large chain around his neck. His hair was white as snow, but there weren’t any deep wrinkles on his face. He looked like a man who’d seen much very early in his life, a man who’d once been under much stress.
John and his mother backed out of the way to make room for the two men to enter the house.
“Please come into the living room,” she said.
John followed them in and his mother ushered them to sit upon the couch. Lestraude politely declined the offer, but the bishop took to courtesy, flattening his cassock once he sat so that there wouldn’t be any wrinkles.
“Mrs. Campbell,” said Lestraude. “I’m afraid that we have a problem. A big problem.”
“What is it? What’s wrong?” She sounded on the verge of panic. “Did you find him? Where is he…”
“Please calm down, Ma’am. There may be yet a way to help him.” He looked down at the bishop with a worried look on his face. “The bishop came to my office and attested to some certain things that are debatable, but we both concluded that your husband may be murdered in the next hour at twelve tonight.”
“What?” She started to collapse but caught herself on the back of the couch. “Murdered?”
A tear trickled down her face.
“Mom,” John said. “You need to sit down and relax. They’ll find him.”
“And you are?” asked Lestraude.
“Brian Campbell’s son, John.”
“Mr. Campbell, let it be none that your father’s situation is tighter and more threatening than I could have at first thought.” He paused. “Your father and five others are planned to be killed between the hours of 12:00 pm to 6:00 am.”
“How do you know this,” said Kate as she entered the room finally, joining John on the couch and hugging his arm, pressing it close to her.
Here the bishop interjected. “Actually,” he said. “It was I who found this information.” He explained to them how he came across this information. Addressing John and grace he said, “I’m sure he has not told you any of this yet, but Brian and I were deeply engaged in studies relating to the brotherhood of the Freemasons. Cardinal McConnell, he theorized, was a member of low rank, but is, in fact, a master of a lodge out in Harrisburg.”
“I’ve said this before,” said Lestraude. “This theory of the bishop’s is quite ambitious and needs more proof.”
“You’ll get your proof, inspector,” said the bishop. “All in good time.”
“If we have only an hour left before these killings begin,” said John. “Then we need to get a move on. If I were you, inspector, I’d take the bishop’s word for it. If he says there is an email pertaining to the structure of the murders then that should be enough evidence to convince you of the murderer. I’m sure there was a specified date along with the starting time of the murders.”
“There is,” said the bishop.
“Then there you have it.”
Lestraude let out a sigh. “We may not even know if it is the Masons who are doing this. I may be one of them, and a low ranking one at that, but I can assure you that they would never do anything of the sort. The Masons stress benevolence and Christian values…”
“There are no such values,” interrupted the bishop, now beginning to get frustrated. His tone carried the uneasiness throughout the house. “They only quote Christ and they are none of the quotes that really matter. If they were Christian, as you say, then why would they seek to keep their actions secretive? The Church may have secrets, but only because there are flaws. Not all the flaws of the Church are ever seen in the light of day, but there are enough that are examined and forgiven. Just look at the New Order of the Mass concocted by Cardinal Bugnini – a cardinal excommunicated from the Church under the suspicions of being a Freemason.
“We do not hide behind rituals of mysterious nature. Our rituals are understood by any lay person who has the time to sit down and learn. We do not use symbols to hide from the eyes of others; we use symbols to signify holy persons and other things. If the Masons are so benevolent and Christian in values then why do they hide, why they are secretive, what are you hiding?”
Lestraude was caught off guard by the crescendo of the bishop’s conviction. The man may well have studied, but he wasn’t going to let that lower his guard. The clergyman had just insulted his brotherhood. Would he stand for that? How would he combat it?
“Bishop Pitt,” said the inspector. “You may have your opinion about my brotherhood, but let’s not cause it to guide us away from our common goal. We are trying to save six individuals from dying.”
“I assume then, that you have not learned all there is to learn from the differing ranks?” asked Pitt.
“No, I have not. I’m only, as you guessed, an Entered Apprentice.”
“Then may if be sufficient for me to say that you have no idea whatever about what you’ve gotten yourself into.”
“But how is your theory going to save Mr. Campbell?” demanded Lestraude. “How will conspiracy theories help us find him?”
John wanted to know the same. It was an answer, one he’d been looking for. It was a reason for his father’s disappearance, but there was something that was off. The inspector had a point. How did the Freemasons fit in to all of this? If his father was working with the bishop of the subject was it fathomable that it had something to do with what the Masons’ necessarily didn’t want acknowledged?
“Bishop,” said Grace. “Brian never entrusted any of this to me and I doubt that he would. But why would he do that to me? I’m his wife. We confide in everything together. It just doesn’t make any sense to me.”
“Brian told me,” said Pitt, “that he didn’t want anyone in his family involved in our research. I honored his request in the hopes that you’d all be safe. But now all my expectations have gone awry. However, I should have known that he’d be the one to go. I wished it would have been me, but I think that they’ll come for me later when they need more.”
“You’re saying that there still victims that haven’t been taken yet?” asked Lestraude.
“It’s a possibility. If they know of Brian Campbell’s prying then they’re bound to discover mine.”
“That’s if they are the Masons,” the inspector said.
“Correct.”
“Well, how can we find out if it’s the Masons?” asked John, eager and ready to help find his own father and save him.
The bishop leaned forward, his cross hanging over the floor now. He said, “Then we’d have to make a quick stop at the rectory.”
Lestraude interrupted. “This is insane! We need to find out whether there is a murderer, and if so, then where he will kill Campbell. Does it really matter if the killer is a Freemason?”
“In a way, inspector, it does,” said Pitt.

26

The young man entered the room where the first three victims were kept. The master was sitting in front of Brian Campbell, speaking to him. In the young man’s hand was a syringe filled with the homemade dose of sedative.
When he entered the room the master looked up at him, having been interrupted in a conversation he was having with the man tied to the chair.
“There you are,” said the master. “Quickly, she is stirring.”
“What about Campbell?” asked the young man.
“Leave him alone for a while,” replied the master. “I want to have a talk with him about something. If you could, when you’re finished, bring him into my office. Keep him in his chair, but go ahead and take off the bag.”
“Master,” said the young man. “A word?” He motioned to the door.
“I’m not going anywhere,” said Brian Campbell contemptuously.
The master looked into the young man’s eyes and saw a hint of disdain, something short of disapproval, and he didn’t like it. He needed all of those within his power to maintain respect and listen to orders regardless of any doubt. And yet the young man before him was in doubt the minute he walked into the lounge.
They exited and stood in the hall, the master closing the door behind him.
“What is this about?” he asked.
“Is it such a good idea to let him see where he is?”
“What do suspect of him.”
“With respect,” the young man said carefully. “I find that you have something personal going on with this man. It seems to me that he must have done something to you in the past, something you could not easily forgive. I’m not asking what it was he did or your relation with him. What I am asking is whether it is wise in exposing us to his scrutiny.”
“Your place is not to question my apprentice. It is to listen and obey. Remember that progress is essential tonight…”
“Progress, as stated in the Morals and Dogma, is that those partaking are not ignorant of the truth.”
“You simply do not understand those words.” The master stepped closer. “Do not raise your tone with me ever again, you understand. When the task is completed you will have that knowledge. For now you must listen and obey. Refuse to do that again and you will be replaced.”
“Replaced by whom? There isn’t anyone else who knows of this plot that could carry it out.”
“Don’t be so certain,” the master retorted. “If you need to know, there is another, hired by McConnell to watch over the young Mr. Campbell, and soon, the Archbishop.” He stared at the young man until the apprentice could not hold his gaze and looked downward in shame. “You do well to drop your eyes. Remember that there is nothing and everything to fear. Your failure is irrelevant. The cardinal’s man will take over if you are deemed unworthy of the task. Pray you do not make that mistake. So much depends on it. Now, bring Campbell to my office and remove his bag from his head.”
The master turned away and headed for the stairwell to the second floor where his office was.
The young man stood in the hall for a moment, pondering what had happened. He wondered whether he did something wrong, but his conscience told him that he was in every right.
He opened the door and stepped in to retrieve Brian Campbell.

27

The area that the Cathedral was built over is known as Gospel Hill. It had once been a location where various herders and farmers conglomerated to tell stories to one another and, as the title entails, preach the Gospel. This event was known as a Sermon on the Mound.
The Cathedral was certainly the most eye-catching spectacle the city of Altoona could offer. It was testament to the power of architecture and cooperation between individuals. As with all cathedrals around the world the main design was to shape the building like a cruciform, or cross. The point behind this was so that when God looked down from the heavens he could see the symbol of His Son’s sacrifice. In the eyes of the religious it was a requirement that the entrance to the cathedral be facing East with the rising sun, symbolizing the resurrection of Christ. However, with the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament the entrance faced north toward the pole making the cross sideways in the eyes of God.
Archbishop Pitt rode in the inspector’s Oldsmobile as he had done on the way to the Campbell residence. He was still trying to come up with some other explanation as to why Brian would have been kidnapped, but from the knowledge he had acquired over the years working with Campbell on Freemasonic conspiracy there were little or no alternatives.
It was extremely unfortunate that this had to happened so soon when the Church was so weak to defend itself.
There were certainly cardinals within the College that were still devout to the intimate meanings of scripture and of the Rite of the Mass, but there were yet others that dodge work, became lazy, and caused much troubles for the entirety of Christendom. Bugnini was not the only one to bring trouble. There had also been many popes that displayed personalities that weren’t fit for the Papacy. Gregory IX had no need to call a Crusade. It was a good idea to wage war, but not one with sword but with the written word and the faith of millions.
Gregory reigned in the time of the Avignon Papacy; a dark time for the Church.
Those who live by the sword, die by the sword.
Those were the words of Christ and Gregory never heeded to them. But in the end the Crusades were given justice. They became a bane, a failure for the Church and a shame the Papacy unfortunately now holds. It was a shame well deserved for the Crusades had gone against so many teachings. Sure there were infidels living in the Holy Land, but if God wanted them back the Crusades would have been a success. They weren’t, so it must not have been God’s will.
They past the Cathedral and came to the rectory. It stood beside the entrance into the sacristy where there was a small, narrow passage to it. There were no lights on and the structure was dark and shadowed by the massive edifice above it, towering stories above. Across the road was a school for kindergarteners and the Cathedral’s parking lot. It was empty. Behind the school loomed a tall flagpole where the American Flag fluttered in the weak breeze. Floodlights shone on it so that it could be seen across the city as it was.
They exited the car and the bishop looked up at the flag. Lestraude followed his gaze.
“Unforgettable colors aren’t they,” said the bishop.
Behind the Oldsmobile John’s Neon pulled up to the curb and the engine stopped, the headlights went out, and His mother, Kate, and himself came out, looking about them.
“What do you mean,” said Lestraude.
“They’re so engrained into our brains that it’s hard to forget them. What’s interesting is the order in which we say the colors.”
“Red, white, and blue?”
“Yes. If you didn’t know already through your membership in Masonry you’d have already told me what the colors meant.”
“If you’re so knowledgeable about my brotherhood you’d know that I couldn’t tell you.”
“I’m sorry to say it, inspector, but you are incredibly ignorant of how far many people have been able to penetrate the meaning of your symbolisms.” He paused and pointing up to the flag said, “Red signifies valor, white is for purity, and blue is for justice. Together, and if said in the exact order as the colors, the flag means Valor, Purity, and Justice. This is an old Masonic motto, is it not?”
“It is.”
“You wanted proof, correct?”
“Yes, bishop.”
“Then I must make a further observation. Every color can be represented numerically in gemetria code. When taken into the numerical value of the color’s word you can add them up to the sum of 103 which is found in the Hebrew word for the Stone of Adam and the Hebrew word for builder or Mason.”
“So you’re saying that any flag with red, white, and blue is the flag of a democratic nation?”
“Not so much. Three main flags are known to possess these colors, each nation having been prominent or an expansive empire. These three nations were, and are, France, England, and the United States.”
“That doesn’t really mean anything, Bishop,” said Kate, skeptic as always.
“She’s right,” said John in accordance.
Bishop Pitt raised his finger to the contrary. “Actually,” he said, “All three of these nations have been influenced by Freemasonry and Freemasonry, in turn, by another group, one that gave the Masons’ their current air of conspiracy.” He smiled at Lestraude reassuringly. “The Masons hadn’t always been as uptight as they are now and certainly weren’t as malevolent either.”
“I thought that they had always been scrutinized by the masses,” said Lestraude.
“Hardly,” replied the bishop. “They were hired by the Church, actually. They were the ones that built all the of Europe’s greatest churches and cathedrals. As they prepared a specific stone for placement they’d etch their mark into it. Some of these marks have become popular with the modern Masons of today. They’d even use astrological symbols for it was a popular form of divination in those days.”
“But who was the other group,” asked John.
“Yes, who was it?” said Lestraude. His tone signified no pleasure in this tour.
“The Illuminati, my dear friends,” Pitt said confidently.
“The Illuminati no longer exist,” retorted Lestraude. “The Bavarian court disestablished them after their plots were discovered.”
“Yes, but there is proof that they still live on today.” Pitt waved his finger in the air.
“Are you going show us something else that can be found out here?”
“Actually, it would be inside, in Campbell’s secret library.”
He pulled a key out of his pocket and went up to the door. He unlocked it, put the key back in his pocket, and opened the door to let everyone in. Once they were he closed and locked it again, testing it.
John Campbell was impressed by the bishop display of knowledge. He certainly got the inspector to mind his words.
Thoughts of his father’s safety now raced through him, having realized only minutes ago that his father was not the only one who would be killed tonight. There were to be six others? Why six? Surely there was something about the number that important to the killer. If this information was found on a Mason’s email account then wouldn’t it be them who would be the ones to carry it out? Surely the inspector knew it to be true. The bishop had shown them all that Lestraude was truly ignorant of his own brotherhood, but the inspector seemed not to want to except it and so came up with excuses to defend his friends which was understandable, but at the moment lives depended on it.
Lestraude, on the other hand, thought that the bishop was being incredible biased and prejudiced. These were two things that he would not stand for. He took up his time tonight to help a family in their time of need and now was being talked down to by a man who somehow knew things that he didn’t. Usually, in his business, whenever someone knew too much about something they were likely to be the ones that had everything to do with it. This was probably the case, after all the bishop had been working with Campbell on something about the Freemasons. It was logical that he should assume the brotherhood to be behind this, but he had never been told anything of the sort by those who had invited him to join into the group. Perhaps there were things that he simply didn’t know about the brotherhood and he hoped that the bishop would be able to solidly explain it to him. He doubted it, but he would listen nonetheless.
Lives were on the line.
Grace Campbell couldn’t believe that her own husband had been so secretive and had kept her from knowing anything about it. A secret library? She had never heard anything of it. Why would he keep this from her? She wasn’t able to make sense of any of it. She had lived with the man for how many years? She knew it was a long time if she couldn’t remember. They had spent their lives together, yet had kept so much from her. There was, however, one thing that he had told her regarding Freemasons. She remembered it was on one of their anniversaries, late at night, when they were in bed together. They hadn’t been able to get aroused because they weren’t really in the mood. She had always wondered why he had married her, but she soon found out, and it startled her. She always feared what might happen if that portion of Brian’s history came back to haunt them and now she knew: He’d be killed, murdered, and God knows what else.
She didn’t know whether it would be wise to tell them about that history, but a voice inside her told her go for it. However, she knew there were innocent people on the other end of this battle, relations that shouldn’t be harmed in any way. They didn’t deserve it. But if they were responsible for his death in any way then perhaps they did. If these relations were the ones pulling the strings she’d want them castrated.
A tear trickled down her face and she wiped it away with a tissue his carried in her coat pocket. Her son put his arm around her shoulder, told her it’d be okay, and they trudged on through the rectory of the Cathedral, following the bishop to a door that he opened. In the doorway a stairwell led down into the basement.
“Now,” said Pitt. “If you would please follow me, we haven’t much time.”

28

Chris Stanworth pulled up alongside the two cars that were sitting next to the curb in front of the rectory. He’d tailed them from the house to here, wondering what it was they were up to. He debated whether he should let the cardinal know that they were there.
Before he had been given the assignment of tailing Campbell, the cardinal had told him that Brian Campbell had been working on something inside the rectory with the Archbishop. “Whatever is in there,” McConnell said, “it will spell doom for our task tonight. If they go into there they mustn’t come out. They will have gathered all the information they will need to expose our plot.”
Stanworth found it hard to believe, but the cardinal had said that if need be force was required to make tonight a success.
He wondered what was inside the building, but it didn’t matter. It had nothing to do with what he was supposed to do. All he needed to worry about was making sure they didn’t go to the authorities, but he had failed that seeing how the police had come to the Campbell residence. From there they had come here and had now left their vehicles empty, having gone inside to retrieve something. It was the perfect opportunity to do a better job then he had been doing so far.
He got out of the car and walked casually over to the cars. Taking out a pocket knife he jabbed all the tires on the right side. They vehicles descended due to lack in air pressure within the tires. They hissed until they were flat.
This will stall them.
But there was a problem now. If the cops were still with them then they’ll just call up another car to pick them up. In that case he needed to take the cardinal’s orders to the limit. He’d have to stop them from leaving. He just couldn’t risk it.
He went back to his car and got out the gun. After screwing on a silencer he shoved it into his pants having no strap to put it into. He sat in the driver’s seat, rolled the window down, and waited.
They’d come out soon; it was almost midnight.

29

John Campbell was thinking at lightning speed. The bishop might just be right after all. He had reasoned as much as he could in the minuscule time he had before twelve rolled in. He concluded that Bishop Pitt was right. His father had been kidnapped to be killed. But what was the motive? Why would they want to kill him? Somehow he thought that there was a connection between his family and the Masons. It was a stretch, but it was better than nothing. All he had to do was wait for the bishop to explain himself.
He looked down at his watch: 11:11 pm. We need to hurry.
He was excited that he now knew why his father spent so much time here in the rectory with the bishop. What other secrets was he going to discover? What else was there to find?
They all descended down the steps and drop in temperature could be felt. It was beginning to feel like the onset of winter. Their breath fogged in front of them as they exhaled.
Bishop Pitt stopped in the middle of the room where there was a pedestal. On it was an old book with red binding. A golden, two-headed eagle donned the front cover. Above its head was a glowing pyramid with the number 33 in the middle of it. Under the wings were thirty-two stars, each with six rays or prongs. John didn’t have to be a genius to recognize it. It was the sign of a Master Mason of the highest degree. One could not go any higher.
Lestraude, when he entered the room, noticed the eagle at first glance.
“Is that what I think it is?” he said.
“It is,” said the bishop. “Morals and Dogma of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry by Andrew Pike, who is considered the pope of Freemasonry.”
“Yes, it’s true,” admitted Lestraude. “He is considered as such. But members of my rank are not permitted to read from its pages.”
“Correct,” said the bishop. “Because you are of low rank and it was only published to be read by those of the 33rd degree and for the National Council in Washington DC. But I can sum it up for you if you’d like.”
“I have the feeling that you’re going to tell me anyway.”
“Yes, because there isn’t much to learn within these pages. All that’s in it is mystical mumbo-jumbo that dates back centuries before Freemasonry’s time.”
“But Masonry was practiced before the birth of Christ,” said Lestraude. “Remember Hiram Abiff? The architect of Solomon’s Temple?”
“It is nothing more than a legend,” responded Pitt.
“If it didn’t begin with Hiram, then who?” asked John.
“There is no solid evidence as to whom, unfortunately,” said Pitt. “But it has been proved that it began in the 1700s in France. It had once been a group of likeminded individuals who wished to progress mankind’s morality using examples from all religions at the time. They were relatively benevolent as they call themselves today. Not only that, but they had also been more open to the public. Secrecy was not an issue at that time. They did have symbols, but it was only used to signify where they’d been and what they stood for, which they still claim today. It would be true today had it not been for the Illuminati.”
Leaving the pedestal’s side, he walked over to one of the shelves and pulled from it a small volume that was rather skinny. On the front was a copy of an engraving of a clergyman. The title read: Portrait of a Conspirator. There was no author noted on the cover. Pitt put the book down onto a small table that was littered with books.
“This is Adam Weishaupt.”
Everyone in the basement came over to look at the cover.
“Who is this?” asked Kate.
The bishop smiled. “This is the man who started Illuminism. At the time it was not called that. Illuminati came much later. Before that they called themselves Perfectionalists. They strove to bring humanity to its natural state. They wanted diversity to end and bring about equality in all human beings. They believed that civilization was a poison to the true nature of man and thought that they could obliterate tyranny and government by rebelling against it and bringing about Liberty, Equality, and Justice.
“This is Adam Weishaupt. He grew up wanting to be a clergyman in the Protestant faith, but because of his actions he was rejected. At that time he personally vowed to crush religion for what it had done to him. Thus began the philosophies behind Illuminism, Socialism, and Communism.”
“This is all fine and dandy, Bishop,” said Grace. “But my husband might be dead in the next half hour. We need to skip all this detail and get to the bottom if it. We need to find where they’ll kill him.”
A silence came over the library, the books titles screaming back when someone looked at them, wanting to be read. They had so much to offer, so many answers.
John couldn’t take it any longer. He knew his mother was right. They needed to think fast.
“Where would they start?” he asked the bishop.
“That depends…” he was cut off by the inspector.
“I’m sorry, everyone,” he said. “But I will not allow any one of us linger here debating religion and which one is right. At the moment it doesn’t matter. What does matter is that we stop Campbell’s killer from now rather than later.” He turned to Pitt. “I mean no offense to you or your work with him, but it has no grounds in my investigation until there is proof strong enough to convince me otherwise. At the moment there is nothing but speculation, theories. I need results! If we are to save this man we will look elsewhere.”
“But there is nowhere else to look, inspector,” retorted Pitt. “There’s no telling who the culprit is, that much I will admit, but the greater possibility is that it is because of the Masons. They alone would be his only enemies. They have a motive: destroy religion. They have the means and the willpower to accomplish this goal.”
“What if they make demands?” said Kate.
“I doubt that the Masons will do such a thing,” replied the bishop. “What they want isn’t money. They’d want to send a message to the world.”
“And what message is that,” John said, curiously.
“Come with me,” said Pitt, walking past them all and heading back up the stairs to the upper floor. “There’s something I need to show you.”

30

The master sat in his chair within his office, waiting for the young man to bring him Brian Campbell. Ever since he had spoken with the victim he knew that he had started to go soft. He had personal ties to this man and for some reason he was beginning to regret having to kill him.
Though Campbell did not know it yet, they had known each other for a very long time. A long time indeed. They had been close, inseparable even, until the day came.
It was supposed to be a good day, a glorious event for the shrine. But at the last minute the master had learned what Campbell had been up to. He had been visiting with a parish priest out at St. Mary’s near the high school. They had been hitting it off and the priest was poisoning Campbell with lies and superstitions. Campbell said he was going to be baptized a Catholic and the master threw a fit. He wouldn’t have it. He couldn’t let Campbell join the enemy, after all the work they had done already together.
It simply couldn’t have been finished.
Campbell chickened out. He was going to be initiated into Freemasonry and become a valuable ally to its cause. He was a great analytical mind, some said he was eidetic. Sadly he was not, but nevertheless it would be good for the cause that he join the ranks. It was vital not only to Campbell and the cause, but for the master’s status as a Mason. His reputation depended on it. But it was not to be, apparently.
And he hated Campbell for it, with a passion.
It was that day that Campbell was never seen of again. He abandoned his family and friends for some lowly life as a good Catholic.
Catholics were scum, fleas, and parasites. Believers in a used up faith that was losing heat and stature in the modern world. In the coming years, if tonight went as planned, churches, mosques, temples, and monasteries would become empty… for good.
This he would tell Campbell once the young man brought him in. It was certainly a night for revelations.

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