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2. März 2018

An open letter to John Carpenter

Dear John H. Carpenter,

don't you think it's high time to complete your Apocalypse-trilogy in the only adequate way?

I recall you saying that the writing is the hardest part, but in this case I have to disagree. The following came rather easily. Just continue in this vein.
Olympia, 67 A.D.

A man wearing a neckbeard and holding the reigns of a 10-horse chariot suddenly falls from it. The crowd is aghast.

A man in his 50s looks forlorn at the hippodrome inside of which the unseen spectacle unfolds. A flash. The tip of a rather big nose, seen through the eyes of its owner. Before it a man with curly hair. He begins to speak with a low voice and a somewhat sticky accent: "I think we should go after them directly. We've harmed enough trees already." A flash. Helicopters flying over a jungle, long aerosol trails on both sides of them. On the ends of their rotors is a golden stripe, giving them the appearance of being crowned by golden circles. A flash. Children, dreadfully disfigured, begging on the street. A final flash. The man is afraid. He hastens through the streets of Olympia, finally knocking on a door. Another man opens. The first man says: "I've seen again and heard words in a northern language." The other asks: "What have you seen?" The former answers: "A consultation. Locust-like things over a jungle. Disfigured beggars." The other says: "Describe in more detail. I will write it down. We shall discuss the meaning later."

London, 1925 A.D.

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle stands in front of Selfridge's Department Store looking somewhat pale. People are leaving. He turns around and is heading home as well.

He sits down at his writing desk and opens the Bible towards the end of it.

The scene before at Selfridge's: John Logie Baird is presenting a miracle of modern technology, a box that shows the image of him in another place.

Doyle goes through some files of his.

He sighs and writes "The Land of Mist" on an empty piece of paper. He sighs again.

Olympia, 67 A.D.

It is evening. A group of men have gathered in the aforementioned house. A dispute is going on: "This generation! He, who has fallen today, shall soon fall again and the end shall come! What people are you talking about of strange tongues and powers? Have we not His word? Can you not remember?" - (defensively) "It must happen again. One end and another. I know He is showing me this." - "How can He return and return again?" - "My soul does not dare to answer. But I will keep His signs."

Jerusalem, 70 A.D.

Jewish pilgrims enter the city for Passover. Alarm spreads as Roman legions can be seen drawing near.

A closed room. A military commander cursing: "The pigs! Wait to lay siege until our numbers are swollen. That our reserves must be shared! But we shall make use of our men!"

Athens, 91 A.D.

An old man dictates a book. Tears well up in his eyes. He then goes on: "Then went this saying abroad among the brethren, that that disciple should not die: yet Jesus said not unto him, he shall not die; but 'If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee?'"

Rome, 831 A.D.

Ansgar: "It doesn't stick. Louis has given Harald some of his best men, but to them the man with the strongest fighters is simply a man to be avoided. Who wants to rule them has to promise them loot. Oh, the constant infighting!"

Gregory IV: "The emperor won't launch an outright campaign. Louis can't be drawn that far out. But we must win those lands. Mercenaries the lot of them, you say. I figure you've studied their taste. Gold and glory?"

Ansgar: "Yes. And they're most fond of winding dragons. They've become wary of our ways though and have begun to target us directly."

Gregory IV: "The Lord has many ways. This, then, dear Ansgar, is a teaching more adept for them: 'Ye blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel.' Shower their chieftains in gold, let them buy armies and promise them my recognition, should they establish themselves in any land on God's earth, if they become Christian kings. I know it is painful, but we have to think about the future, we have to make all the lands to the north Christian or with the Saracens in the south we shall lose His promise. We shall talk about this with the emperor only when the need arises."

 Ansgar: "But what if the Norsemen are defeated and their insignia found? Will it not shake the faith in the Church?"

Gregory IV: "We shall simply say they stole them from a Christian king in their land and convince the local king to burry them, for he shall have more support in a fight against a heathen army. Make sure you find respectable men, of whom we can report that such gifts were made. And if you can not, we shall invent illegitimate sons of their kings of such nature."

A road, somewhere in southern Greece, 72 A.D.

A man sitting on a white horse commands an army in some deranged Latin dialect. He's unusually tall and wears scale mail. He's facing a steep incline, from the top of which an opposing army hurls spears, axes and rocks. He takes up his bow and shoots an arrow towards it. A flash. A man is shouting commands in a northern language, when he is struck by an arrow in his right eye. The men around him are confused and then run down an incline attacking a group of archers. A flash. A hall. The tall man is crowned king. A final flash. A man close to his 60s is holding his head, bewildered. He looks at his hands. The skin is dry, almost transparent, the outlines of sinews and bones are increasingly clearly showing. He sits down under a tree and closes his eyes in tense concentration.
You get the gist.

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