Running his long slim fingers along a piece of the yellow crime scene tape, Father Meyers was cautious not to tear it. The tape was cordoning off a
small section of trees deep inside the rural Georgia county ‘s largest park. Three white sheets covered what one would have to assume were the
bodies, small yellow cards with numbers on them were carefully placed around the scene and a tall thin man with a camera was carefully taking pictures
of everything from every conceivable angle. A small crowd had begun to gather and watch as the police and crime scene investigators went about their
work. This was a close knit community and it didn’t take long for news to spread especially when it was news of such a grim nature. A fourth murder
in as many months and this time it appeared there was more than one victim. It was shaping up to be a bloody terrifying summer. Father Meyers closed
his eyes and continued to stroke a small length of the tape, he tried to clear his mind for moment, and began to allow the sounds and the smells of
the area fill his senses. “It’s odd,” he thought to himself, “Such a beautiful summer’s day God has given us and yet such tragedy man has
created with it.“. He had done this many times in the past and hated it every single time, loathed it, but his old friend Detective Williams had
summoned him to the scene and he knew it meant that someone was needed to comfort the families. As Father Meyers was standing there trying to clear
his mind a smell caught his attention, it was a familiar smell, cheap aftershave and cigarettes. Someone brushed against the side of his arm and he
knew who it was immediately, it was Detective Williams. He turned to acknowledge his friend’s presence smiling slightly. Neither man spoke for a
moment, but instead stared at the gruesome scene and the men and women working behind the yellow tape.
“I’m glad you could come Father.” Detective Williams said in a soft voice.
Father Meyers responded, “I can always find time to help an old friend, John.”.
“Are the families here or are we going to their homes? Do any of them know anything yet?”
Detective Williams turned toward Father Meyers and put his hand on the priest’s shoulder, “I didn’t call you for that today Father, I have some
deputies out notifying the families now. What I called you for was,” Detective Williams paused, “was because I need some help.”.
“ There’s some things I’d like you to take a look at, some symbols. I think you might know what they are.”.
“We recognized some writing, some Latin writing, but there are symbols we don’t recognize. I’d like you to see if you can tell what they are or
what they mean.”.
Father Meyers spoke in a shaky voice, “I’m just a priest, I’m not a detective, I don’t know anything about crime scenes or murderers.”.
“ I don’t know if I can help you, isn’t there a lab or some experts you could send pictures to and let them analyze it, figure it out.”.
“We may not have time,” stated the detective, “we haven’t released the info to the press so I know you wouldn’t have heard but there have
been other murders and we think they’re connected. There were symbols and Latin writing in those cases too.”.
“An expert in cults from California was able to give us some clues in the other cases but she’s out of the country on a book tour.”.
“The symbols are religious in nature Father, from what I remember you did a lot of study on ancient religious cults when we were in college.”
“I think you might be able to give us some help, I wouldn’t ask if it wasn’t important.”.
The priest was stunned, he had no idea what to think. In almost thirty five years of police work John had never asked him for help in a case, he had
only asked to help with families and officers who’d had problems. “This” Father Meyers thought, “is out of my league.” “I’m a priest not
a detective!” “But John wouldn’t have asked unless it was really serious.” He pondered for a moment and looked at the scene one more time, he
realized he’d been holding on to the yellow crime scene tape the whole time he and the detective were speaking and quickly let go. He started to
take a step backwards when Detective Williams lifted a portion of the tape up next to him. Father Meyers felt his heart sink even further and lump
began to creep up his throat.
“Right this way Father,” the detective said, “over to the bodies.”
Father Meyers ducked under the tape and stepped forward the stopped and turned around to look at the yellow tape.
“In all the years I’ve been coming out to accidents and crimes I’ve never been behind the yellow tape John.” He said.
“I appreciate you doing this and I know you’re a little uncomfortable Father.” The detective spoke soft and slowly, “I really do think it’s
urgent to get this figured out.”
“Please John, we’ve been friends since we were teenagers, call me Ted.” “You don’t have to be so formal with me.” The priest said.
It was a typical hot summer day in this rural part of east Georgia, the air was thick with humidity and insects were buzzing about all over the place.
As the two men approached the white sheets the priest could see blood had began to soak through on some spots. He was getting more and more nervous
about what his friend was asking him to look at. Father Meyers began to think of things to ease his mind quickly and thought of a short prayer he
liked to say when he was a child that would keep him safe in the dark. After reciting the prayer over a couple of time to himself he realized that
they stopped at the side of one of the bodies. He noticed some long locks of blonde hair sticking out of the top of the sheet. Sun streaks cutting
through the tree tops overhead made the hair seem to almost glow. A surreal sight and one the priest was sure would stay with him for a long time. He
had seen dead bodies before but usually it was in a funeral home or church and they had been prepped for viewing, this was going to be totally
different, something unsettling. He wondered how the police could do it over and over and keep their sanity.
Squatting down next to the body Detective Williams asked “Are you ready Ted?”
“This is what I wanted you to have a look at.” He said, pulling the sheet back and pointing to some markings on the chest and abdomen.
“It’s been branded into the skin and looks like it was done after she died.” “It would have taken a long time to do this so it must have been
important to whoever did it.”
“This is the Latin text, but these are what we need to know about.”
A female officer who had been paying attention to the detective and the priest walk to the bodies handed Father Meyers a pad of paper and a pen.
“Write down anything you think of please, Father” she said politely.
“Ok, thank you” he replied.
Looking over the markings the priest first noticed the precision in which it had been done, then began to read the Latin text.
“The Latin,” he said, “it’s telling you to answer a riddle or test of some kind or the killing will continue.”
“For as long as it takes you to reply the killing will go on and escalate.” “The innocent will pay for your ignorance.”
“It’s the same on all the bodies so far Ted” spoke the detective, “so are these symbols.”
“What do you make of them?” “The cult expert said they were religious in nature, have you seen them before?”
Father Meyers stared at the markings for a moment, they didn’t seem familiar at first, but the more he looked the more he started recognizing
something. After a few minutes a light bulb came on in the priests mind and he noticed that he had indeed seen the markings before. He smiled for a
second, then like a lightening bolt straight from the hand of God himself, a feeling of utter horror struck him. “It can’t be!” He thought to
himself. Father Meyers began to feel dizzy and light headed, he couldn’t believe what he was seeing. Only once had his eyes seen these symbols but
the messages they are meant to convey were enough to stick with him for the rest of his life. Messages of evil and death, prayers and incantations,
they are horrible in their nature. He tried to speak but found it almost impossible for a moment.
“This, this can’t be!”
“These are codes, they are meant for conveying messages to priests, evil priests.”
“They are the codes used by a secret society that died off hundreds of years ago, before Columbus came to America.”
“The person who did this had to be a priest!” “I can’t believe this!”
“Why do you think it’s a priest Ted?” Asked the detective.
“The only way to learn these symbols is to be a priest studying ancient cults in Christianity.” Said Father Meyers.
“The book they come from is locked away in a vault at the Vatican and is not allowed to be viewed by anyone but priests and only with special
“John, this is bad, really bad.”
“Are you sure that’s what it is?” Asked Detective Williams.
“Well yes, unless” the priest spoke.
Then another terrible thought crossed his mind. One that didn’t quit make sense. “Could it be?” He asked himself.
“Unless what Ted?” Queried Williams.
“Unless the cult never died off, unless it carried on somehow, but remained inactive until now.”
“It would still have to be a priest who did this, that’s what the cult was all about.”
“A secret society of priests who’d sworn allegiance to the devil, to Satan.” “Men who wanted to hide among the church and commit evil acts and
influence others to commit evil unwittingly as well.”
“It doesn’t make sense, why now, why here?” Asked the detective.
“Why would someone do this knowing it could be traced back to a priest?” He continued.
“Tell me what the symbols say Ted.”
Father Meyers began writing on the pad of paper. He took a few moments to remember what the meaning of each symbol was. Slowly it began to flow back
to him, things he hadn’t thought of in years and things he hadn’t seen in even more years. It became obvious to him that the human mind retains
much more than one would think it does, he was almost shocked at how much he remembered. After about ten minutes he finished writing the last word
down and stopped to read what he had written. He got a shiver down his spine when he was finished reading.
He spoke in a trembling voice, “Here John, read this.”
The detective took the pad and began to read aloud, “To the Order of The Damned, he has risen and awaits your acts to begin.”
“Now is the time brothers, the time to come out of the shadows and fulfill your pledges.”
“To the authorities, post this to the public and I will stop the killing.”
“Do not post it and innocents will continue to die.”
“The master has risen, the messenger scribes, take from the master his messenger and he finds another.”
The detective was quiet for a minute. “What are we gonna do?”
“If this secret society does still exist we could be giving them the go ahead to do more killing by putting the message out, but if it’s just one
man, one psychotic priest, and we can’t catch him in time the killing will continue.”
“This is a sick game to play, a murderer with an allegiance to the devil, and a church to hide in somewhere.”
Father Meyers spoke up, “John, I don’t know if I can tell you what to do, but, I believe the message is a code as well.”
“You run a big risk by putting this out to the public, if the cult does indeed exist then they are willing to commit the most evil acts and use
their influence in the community to twist minds into doing evil for them.”
“I pray that whatever happens next that you catch this man, he holds a lot of dangerous knowledge that he could be spreading across the globe using
“John, catch this man quickly.”
“I’m trying!” Snapped the detective. “I’m trying.”
“I’ve got to get the FBI involved, someone is going to have to verify what you’ve told me, and I’m going to have to ask that you stay close
and not discuss this anyone.”
The priest agreed, and excused himself. He walked back to the yellow tape and ducked under, then continued to walk until he was back at his car. On
the trip back to his church Father Meyers found it hard to concentrate, he was filled with anxiety and tension. “I wonder what his next move is,
what will he do?” The priest thought. Arriving back at the church he took care to make sure no one was following him or waiting for him there. He
stepped inside and locked the doors.
Later that night Detective Williams decided to stop by the church and check on his friend. The thought had crossed his mind that the murderer might
have seen the priest at the crime scene and want to know what he told the police. Arriving at the church, he stepped out of his car into the muggy
summer night air and walked to the doors of the church. When he got there he found the doors ajar and saw total darkness inside. He immediately
radioed for backup, then drew his weapon and walked inside.
“Father Meyers!” He shouted. “Are you in here?”
“Ted” shouting again the detective carefully continued inside. “Ted, can you hear me?”
“Do you need help?” “Are you OK?”
Reaching the priest’s private quarters Williams found the door locked. Fearing the worst for his friend he kicked the door down and shined his
flashlight inside. What he saw shocked him beyond belief. A feeling of pure panic and terror swept over him. Finding a light switch on the wall near
the door he flicked it on. What he saw was insane, was madness, it couldn’t be. The room was decorated with pentagrams and satanic art works.
Pictures of the victims of the summer’s murders were all over the place and symbols like what were on the bodies had been painted all around the
room. The detective was in utter disbelief and the priest was nowhere to be found. After his backup arrived Williams continued to look around the room
carefully until he found a note on an altar in the corner of the room.
The note read: “John, I knew you’d come looking for me sooner or later. I had to kill them. My master ordered it, my pledge to The Order of The
Damned required it. I am no longer Father Ted Meyers, I am now a messenger for the Master.”
Detective Williams dropped the piece of paper and looked up, he could not fathom it, his friend, a popular community figure, a man of God, was a
killer. He felt physically ill and needed fresh air so he walked out into the warm and humid night where he fought back the temptation to vomit. He
put his fists up to the sky and shook them violently. He was near insane with emotions. He began to feel tears on his cheek and in a moment of
personal weakness, a display of raw emotion so uncommon for this professional man, he let his emotions fly and screamed into the night.
“How could you do this?”
Then the detective, totally overcome with anger, screamed “I hate you God!”
“I hate you!”
“How could you let this happen?”
Williams the turned his back on the church and feel to his knees weeping. Cupping his hands over his face he questioned how he could be so stupid as
to let the priest get away. Then a thought that terrified him to his inner core, “How much of Ted’s story is true?” He stood up and pondered for
second wiping the tears from his face and the dirt from his knees. “What if he is a messenger?” The detective swallowed what felt like a brick in
his throat. “Dear God” he thought. “Dear God!”
[edit on 7/14/2005 by looking4truth]