David Gerrard is a reporter for the tabloids with principals. He will only publish the ones he truly believes. For 10 years, Mark Long has been giving David stories from history and adding unique and substantial variations to each one. For the first time, Mark has requested a face to face meeting between them.
Together they visit Mark's old friend, Tony Vargas, an expert on the Roman Empire period. Mark presents Tony with an ancient sword asking Tony to tell him exactly what it is. Tony states that it is a first century Roman sword and that it once belonged to a soldier named Casius; the name is engraved on the handle.
When he and David are alone, Mark tells him that Tony was right; the sword had belonged to a Roman soldier named Casius. A Jew named Peter took the sword from Casius, and a Roman centurion took it from Peter.
Mark tells him the centurion's name was Marcus Cartaphilus Longus. He had been stationed in Caesarea when he'd discovered his daughter was close to death. After learning Yeshua had reportedly saved others from death, Cartaphilus went in search him. But, his daughter died before he could reach Yeshua. Desolate over the death of his daughter and the subsequent death of his wife, Cartaphilus vowed to destroy Yeshua.
Pontius Pilate was the Prefect of Judea, ordered extra troops to Jerusalem for the Jewish Passover, led by Cartaphilus. Upon arrival, Cartaphilus was ordered to arrest Yeshua. Led to Yeshua and his followers by a man named Judas Iscariot, a man named Peter grabbed Casius' sword and cut the ear off one of the men while trying to protect Yeshua. Miraculously, Yeshua picked up the severed ear and reattach it to the man's head. Cartaphilus placed Yeshua under arrest and led him to Jerusalem and the house of the High Priest.
Over the next few days, Mark's story continues, reliving the final hours of Jesus Christ's life, and the following years.
David listens carefully and questions often, impressed by Mark's in-depth account of this 2000 year old story. David becomes determined to disprove his story. He compares Mark's details to the Bible, and contacts a professional researcher, a genealogist, and a professor friend, asking them all questions to help him refute this story, but despite their best efforts they cannot. Over a few exhausting days David cannot find any flaws. The problem is, the only way Mark could know any of these details was if he had been an actual eyewitness, which is obviously impossible.
Caught up in the emotion of the story, Mark had accidentally messed up by using the pronoun “we” instead of “they”. David, always vigilant, caught his slip on tape.
Cornered by the recorded remark, Mark admits that he is Cartaphilus. David is angry at the waste of his time and thinks about leaving. But Mark says he doesn't need David to necessarily believe him, he needs him to believe the story; if David believes it, so will his readers and he needs to tell the world what really happened.
David questions him about other events from the past 2000—including his participation in WWII as a Nazi—but Mark stops him, saying the stories must be told as they happened, not by skipping through the centuries. Mark hands him a daguerreotype of two men from the American Civil War, and David has it checked by experts. They all agree that the daguerreotype is authentic. One of the men in the picture is one of General Robert Lee's sons, and David has a very hard time telling himself the other is not Mark.
David and the researchers have failed to disprove Mark's story. David allows himself to believe in the possibility that Mark is actually Cartaphilus. And if that is possible, how many other famous lies or half-truths throughout history could Mark have to share with him?
Mark is called away on urgent business. Two months later, David receives a short email from Mark, stating when and where they should meet to continue. This time David is prepared.
About the Author
Each week on Sunday, I post a new article on my blog. As is smashwords, I am constantly trying to improve the site so it is easier for you to use. If you have a comment, please write me, and thank You! My first book "Titanic, A Search For Answers" was originally written as a fundraiser for a maritime museum where I was the advisory board president and a member of the board of trustees. Historical research is my hobby and influences much of my writing. So far for 2015, I have three new books scheduled for release, which will bring my total to fourteen. The first is "The Cartaphilus Saga: book #1 Amissio," scheduled for release on March 27, 2015. A submarine sailor for almost nine years, I am also an award winning artist. As a scuba diver I have dived sites from New England to the Caribbean. I am into music, art, wood carving, and pretty much anything that sounds like it could be fun or interesting. Once again, thank you very much. Take care and God bless you. Drop me a line ... I am glad to answer any questions you might have.
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