The Prophet: Resurrection
The final book in The Prophet is ready. Can Earth survive?
Everyone involved with Rachel Veritros felt her influence on a very, very personal level. Indeed, for the people who fought at the Nile River, most never fully recovered psychologically from the brutality they witnessed and participated in.
Four Ministers fought Rachel Veritros. Three survived; the fourth died in the collapse of the Constant Ministry’s capital.
For The Old World’s Pope, Frances XIV—he only served in his position for two years following the war’s end.
During his last week of service, the Pope’s hands wouldn’t quit shaking. When he picked up a cup of coffee, it rattled all the way to his mouth, and more often than not, spilled down his chin. The burns from such unfortunate accidents were bad, but they weren’t the reason he was ultimately asked to step down.
While the Church’s official reasons for the man’s retirement were dignified, the truth was his mind had snapped. At least that’s what the people nearest to him said.
Such things were only whispered about in the beginning.
“The Pope is not well.”
“He’s not sleeping.”
“He’s raving at night.”
The whispers grew louder though, as more voices joined in the chorus. To be fair, they also grew louder because the Pope’s actions … became more severe.
“SHE’S NOT DEAD!” he finally shouted at a meeting of his Cardinals. “VERITROS ISN’T FUCKING DEAD!”
The Cardinals had all sat in silence, most staring at the long wooden table in front of them. None knew what to say, especially not in front of the red faced Pope.
A week later, he was no longer in power and the search for a new Pope began.
Frances XIV only lived another five years after that, dying at the relatively young age of 72. His mental state had deteriorated further, until he mostly remained secluded in a single room. The people tasked with looking after him said that he conversed with himself quite often, though to them it sounded as if he was speaking with Veritros.
They said the conversations were one sided, as if the Pope wanted the apparition to speak, but she wouldn’t.
Frances XIV’s mental state continued deteriorating until he died alone in his bed. The person that found him said that his eyes were open, as if he’d been staring at the ceiling and not sleeping.
The One Path’s Minister also came to an unsettling end, especially for someone with so much power and wealth. Her name—like all of the One Path’s Ministers—was Trinant One. Her breakdown came 15 years after the war, though she was even younger than the Pope, only 55 years old.
Trinant’s hands didn’t shake, but her aides noticed the woman had begun to stare off into the sky for long hours.
She would walk to the edge of her office and then stop, looking outside the Globe of One. Arms at her sides, she would stare out the huge windows until someone interrupted her. A recording showed she did this one morning for five hours before someone finally ventured inside her office. It was an eerie thing to see, watching her stand without moving—a slight sway from time to time—and only watching the clouds pass.
Staring out a window certainly wasn’t enough to remove Trinant One from power, however. No one would even consider such a thing.
Unfortunately for Trinant, that was only the beginning of her problems.
An aide found her naked, standing in the hallway outside of her apartment inside the Globe. The aide had served Trinant for 20 years, yet when she walked up to her Minister, Trinant didn’t recognize her.
“You’re not her,” the Minister said.
“I’m not who, Your Grace?”
The aide did her best to get the woman first inside her apartment, then clothed. To her credit, the aide never spoke of what she found, not even after the horrible affair that took place.
Trinant One quit making decisions, though not with any decree. Her time spent staring at the sky simply took up a larger and larger portion of her day, and her mind.
“Your Grace,” one of her inner consortium said. “We’re growing concerned.”
Trinant One didn’t hesitate. “I am as well.”
“What concerns you, Your Grace?”
“I don’t think she ever really left.”
“Veritros,” Trinant responded.
The One Path never had the opportunity to remove their leader from power. Six months into her growing despondency, Trinant One woke up, went to her office, and began staring just as she had done for the past month.
Recordings showed she stared for two hours.
At the end of them, she walked closer to the window, then began banging her head against it. It started out softly, but grew into a steady drumbeat of whack … whack … WHACK. The office’s recording system captured it perfectly.
This continued for another ten minutes.
Then, Trinant abruptly stopped and stepped back from the window. Blood leaked down her head and the window, though neither seemed to notice.
The windows that lined her office were floor to ceiling—ten long panels.
The recording showed Trinant not moving at all as the panel in front of her slowly descended into the floor. Gusts of wind rushed in almost immediately, ruffling her long blonde hair across her face.
Once the window had completely disappeared, Trinant One simply walked forward—and without pausing—committed suicide. She fell for miles before hitting the ocean. Her body was never recovered.
* * *
The world recovered after Rachel Veritros, though very slowly. It was an odd feeling for years afterward, both for her followers and enemies. Her apostles fled across the globe, doing their best to hide from the constant manhunt. Even as they ran, or awaited trial (some were afforded this luxury), they couldn’t believe their Prophet was dead. Their very bones felt different, as if some portion of their marrow had been extracted.
Her enemies lived in fear that she wasn’t truly gone. That she would return. Because it made no sense. One moment she had descended into the river, and the next she had simply ceased existing.
What truly scared them was that they understood how close they’d been to losing.
“We were lucky,” those in high positions said.
That truth never wound its way down to the laymen, though. No, each Ministry kept up appearances, putting the glory on their respective gods.
Outside of the two deceased Ministers, no one else spoke her name as the years passed. In the world’s mind, she became one with the Black—evil, and unmentionable.
After a while, even those on high stopped thinking about her. They stopped thinking about the Nile River and the war that took place. Rachel Veritros passed from the minds of those who fought her.
Those who knew her, and had followed her, eventually died.
Something happened in that river, though, and humanity’s refusal to face it left a massive hole in their knowledge.
Rachel Veritros had descended into it. She had moved close to the Unformed, understanding that the Union was near. And inside that boiling river, she had finally faced the question she’d refused to ask.
What does It want?
The world forever declared her a traitor and a blood-thirsty rebel. She went down in history as one of the most evil human beings to ever draw breath.
However, the truth was that Rachel Veritros sacrificed herself in hope that she might save humanity.
It would take nearly a thousand years for her to finally have the opportunity.