An Accidental Ascension

“Hey you.”

Jessica had a way of intoning those two words that somehow made them only for Stephan, in a way that communicated her love to him, and immediately took him back in his mind to when they had met 3 years earlier. He flashed on how engrossed he’d been in his book, but for some unknown reason that still eluded him, his attention was suddenly broken, and he looked up just as Jessica entered the classroom. Their eyes met, and the smile that passed her lips was a timeless as the Mona Lisa herself. He suspected, but did not truly grasp at the moment, how intertwined both their intellectual and romantic lives would become.

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Three Times Three

In a boat on the foggy ocean. Looking ahead. No oars, no motor, but moving forward. Ocean still. White-grey, white-blue. Rocks beneath surface, some rising out. An island. The shore hard, pebbles. Hovering lights: green, yellow, blue, white. Faeries? Following lights. Grassy hill rising up. Fog clearing. Tall trees-Rowan. One tree, larger-Ash. Two crows in the branches. They say, “we’ve been waiting.” I turn to run. Two hags in my way. “Stop!” They hold up hands. Triangles carved into flesh of palms. “No!”

#

I woke up sweating, heart pounding. My books were spread out over the bed. The lights were still on. When I started work on my thesis project I had been falling asleep, and I always woke up from a nightmare.

My housemates said it was because I read creepy stuff and ate candy. They said it was the bad food that brought on the nightmares. (Speaking of which, my research led me to the origin of the word nightmare. Mara was a Crone-Goddess, bringer of death. She was found among many religions from Europe to India. The Slavs said she drank blood at night and called her Nightmare.) At the time I thought that was probably why I dreamed of hags that night, Crones-Nightmares.

My thesis project was on female figures of the divine in Pre-Christian Europe. I was focusing my study on Norse, Druidic, and Celtic religions. I have to admit I was having fun with it. The only thing I did not like was the Nightmares.

I thought a great deal about what I was going to do with this project. I wondered what to do with a degree in religion. My advisor was an active feminist and she had been encouraging me to use this thesis to start a WomanChurch, as she called it. She said the world was ready for a feminist church. And that was how it all started, with the Nightmares and the WomanChurch.

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The Stone

…excerpts from the journals of Dr. Robert Justin…

“I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end.  To the thirsty I will give from the fountain of the water of life without payment.”

Revelation, 21.6

25 December, 1980

I have at last drank from the cup of God and now I shall have life eternal.  Through all my life I have scoffed at the words of God, how strange it is that through Him I have stumbled upon immortality.  I have been a disbeliever myself, and do not expect you to listen to my words without skepticism.  The story I am about to tell, however, is as true as the earth is round.  There is immortality upon this planet.  I have met her and her name is Glacia Dion.

I had my first glimpses of immortality on February 6th, 1978, when Tobias Thorn, a good friend and a writer stopped by to talk.  He had just completed his graduate thesis on “The Search for Immortality in Western Literature,” at Harvard.  That night he explained to me that his research had led him to seek the expertise of a woman named Glacia Dion.  Dion was then a mystic and palmreader living in Boston.  He was raving about her endlessly–obviously in love.  “She is a real alchemist,” he exclaimed, “my God, Robert, she has the elixir of life, do you understand?”

“Yes, Tobias, I do understand, but I do not believe.”

“You will, when you are forty years old and I am still twenty-five, then you will believe.”  (I was then only twenty-seven.)

“If that should happen, which I very much doubt, only then I shall believe you.”  Little did I know how soon I would believe.  Glacia had apprenticed my friend, and he had already drank the elixir (which must be done twice), and thus begun his pathway to eternal life.  I proposed that I do a biological study of his reaction to the elixir, and he agreed.  First, however, I was to meet Glacia.

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