The Four Of Pentacles
A Power that Exists peacefully and without any aggression.
Xuang rematerialized within the king's chamber and found his way through the tunnels to the Sphinx.
Very few knew the secret way and Xuang easily made his reappearance to Egypt unnoticed by anyone. As "high priest to Isis" no one ever would obstruct Xuang as he walked amongst the nobility. Cloaked, no one took much notice of him, and if they challenged him, then they would immediately retreat excusing themselves for disturbing him. All knew him now as Ay, the chief of staff who served Queen Tiye, and he was also the chief priest who acted for her power. Crown Prince Amenhotep detested Ay, but needed the cooperation of Ay’s abilities if he intended to rule. His frequent plots to assassinate Xuang were always thwarted, and uiang always laughed at the feeble attempts mocking Prince Amenhotep in the process. "Someday little one, perhaps you may rule, but I would pity your subjects. You Pharaoh “want to be’s” are all alike"
Xuang had child by Tiye’s grandmother, another Queen Tiye, who had become Pharaoh of Egypt. He was not known as Ay then, but had another name, but still acted as the high priest for Isis. His granddaughter Princess Tiye, birthed in Egypt, was a good hearted child and her mother would have intended her to rule Egypt instead of her foster father, Pharaoh Thutmoses IV , but the men still resented the rule of women and were eager to have a male Pharaoh and their old false gods once again. Xuang’s daughter, and also granddaughter, Princesss Tiye was pure Amazon blood. Princess Tiye had also taken a fondness for a child which she had fished out of the river. Tiye would never discover the child was Hebrew. Amenhotep hated his foster brother Moses as well. After Moses had killed one of his brothers, Amenhotep would convict Moses even though it broke her daughter's heart by doing so. Xuang had liked Moses and befriended him, but at the time he was visiting Greece with his half-sister Nefurer, and thus unable to plea for his friend.
Moses was gone now and Xuang felt so alone He had wondered what had happened to his friend and if he would ever amount to anything. Jim had told him that Moses was alive and would play an important role in Egypt's future. He wasn't specific. Besides Moses, the other members of the court were simple minded fools with not an ounce of integrity amongst the lot of them. They all feared him because of his power. None of them knew that he, Xiang, was the son of their beloved Isis.
He knew himself not to be a god, and he knew his mother not to be a goddess. They were simply beings from another space and time.
Finding his way back to the palace he found Queen Tiye who was ready to have him in her chambers once again.
"Where have you been off too, my dear Xuang? I've missed you."
"I saw my father."
Tiye raised her eyebrow a wee bit.
"Your father? Now that's impossible, but perhaps we need to discuss this in greater privacy."
She put an immediate end to court business in spite of the nobles' objections and retired to her chambers.
Alone, she turned to him. "Now what is this about you seeing your father. Are you suggesting he is here now. Does Isis know?"
"Isis is gone. Father returned her to Artemis. We are alone now."
"Alone! How are we to control the masses without the Pegasus? They'll massacre us when they discover we no longer have our power. Certainly Qblh would not abandon Nefurer to such a fate."
"It seems that I can see you both safely to Artemis, and leave the throne to Horemheb."
"That irreverent and conceited squirt? I'd just as soon kill him off, and leave Egypt to another."
"Father suggests that is not our concern and he is offering you a way home. He suggested very strongly that you accept his offer. This way you can serve Isis again. He will not guarantee our survival for long."
"Do you mean that he is here now?"
Xuang demonstrated a power link with Genie as he drew a hologrammed model of the Giza complex.
"Yes, I'm on-line with the Box for now and we have a little time before we must depart."
ueen Tiye reflected on her affair with Qblh and her blood rushed with anticipation of seeing him again.. Certainly he would forgive her for involving herself with his son, in spite of the fact she had promised to love no other. For Tiye thought nothing of having affairs with both father and son. Such behavior was not that uncommon in either royal Egyptian or Amazon culture. Qblh had involvement's with many mother daughter combinations. Sophia was a prime example. Jim did not have affairs with his own daughters however; it went against Amazon tradition..
"With us gone who will keep Horemheb under control?"
"Moses will deal with him."
"Moses has long since fled Egypt. He killed one of Thutmoses' favorite brothers. I could not spare the death penalty that the law would demand. Perhaps if you would have been here, you could have done something. He was as a son to me. My daughter loved him, Jim's daughter, and she wanted Moses to rule Egypt with him and free the slaves. She was a little like Jim, impractical. Free the slaves, such hogwash!"
"That might not be such a bad idea."
"Xuang, what is wrong with you. Who will do the work?"
"Perhaps we'll think of something. It is what father wants."
"Qblh wants us to free the slaves? That is impossible."
"You won't have to do it. Horemheb will."
Tiye laughed. "You are crazy Xuang. If I know Horemheb, and I know him well, you will never get him to free the slaves. That would be completely out of his character."
"Nevertheless, I repeat, father has assured me that such will happen and it would be best if we were not around when it does. He did not say what will happen and when it will. He is very secretive about it, but he did say Egypt will begin its decline from power when you leave."
"It is an event of great importance, is it?"
"And Moses is involved, ahh me. It wouldn't have something to do with revenge for slaying of those children by Thut's father would it?"
"I really don't know Tiyee dear, father would not tell me, and he assures me that Isis knows nothing about it either."
"The great queen has no knowledge? I find that difficult to believe."
"There is no use quizzing me any further Tiye, I don't know what you wish to find out. Are you willing to give up Egypt?"
"That is difficult Xuang, Isis charged me with this office and it would be treason for me to abdicate without her consent."
Xuang kissed Tiye tenderly. "Lover, irregardless of the fate of Egypt, we will be together again on Artemis and you can be my favorite. Father loves Antiope and Helen as well as Isis. I love you Tiye, and I don't want to remember you as a corpse rotting in Earth's past when I am before the golden throne once again. Think of Nefurer, we can't leave her to die in this time."
Tiye thought of Qblh again. He loved her. She could have Xuang, Nefurer and Jim on Artemis. Yet she didn't want to appear easy.
"I'll consider it Xuang. Is there a time limit?"
"I'm sure there is a grace period. He mentioned we might need a little time to make good our disappearance."
"I do have an image to maintain Xuang. I do not want to go down in history as betraying Isis."
"I don't think you will have to worry about that. Father was not too concerned, and he is going through some rather extreme efforts to save all of us."
"Well whatever Qblh does, I doubt that the event will eradicate the slavery which you are so concerned about. It is too deeply rooted in Earth culture to eliminate."
"Just consider this, Tiye. Father is fighting on behalf of the earth people to prevent us from enslaving them. That much he has told me, and heaven help anyone who stands in his way."
"Let me tell you a secret, Xuang." Tiye smiled seductively at Xuang and began an attempt to arouse him. "Isis is wise to all of your father's tricks. I know better than to fight him. We all do, yet he will not win against Isis. She is his equal if not his superior. Look how she managed to use Qblh to conquer Earth. His future star wars battle will mean nothing now that we have conquered earth's past."
"Father assures me that history is not changed, and the efforts of Isis to conquer Earth are doomed to failure."
"Xuang, you are just as pig-headed as your father. Sometimes I can't tell you two apart. It is no use in arguing. I'll go along with this little game of yours and see how you two pull off your next miracle."
Xuang grew silent. He understood that Queen Tiye would follow his wishes. It was now up to him to effect a retreat. The Queen returned pensively to her throne. Xuang followed beside her and stood at her side displaying his staff of power asthe Pharaoh of all Egypt.
Xuang, acting as the Pharaoh Ay to the Egyptian court, was the best magician in Egypt of course, and of course Xuang, a master of disguise, had been around for many human generations, and he never seemed to age. All the Amazons knew him as the son of Jim and Isis, so they naturally gave him the royal respect he was due. Mortal men knew him not for who he was, and he usually did not stay in one place very long. The Amazons would always introduce him to his respective assignment. and would also act as his bodyguards as well. Many men could not understand the hold he held on the women when it seemed that no others could approach the priestesses of Isis not to mention Xuang. Many believed that it was just sorcery on Xuang's part, and were eager to discover the secret to such a spell. He even had the previous Pharaohs under his spell. Horemheb secretly promised a hefty reward for anyone who could dispose of Xuang. Several had perished attempting. Queen Tiye would personally perform the executions and smile at Horemheb as she ate the heart of his accomplice. Horemheb would always grow ill and seek to relieve his tender stomach. Xuang preferred not to witness the execution and always excused himself. The court was generally very nervous when Tiye would hold trials without Xuang at her side, if he was in town.. Quite often it would mean that there was going to be a bloody mess that day.
Today Xuang was returning from a mysterious assignment, and his coming was even more mysterious than his departure. With word of his reappearance, the court seemed to have grown in numbers. Nefurer was oddly absent. Horemheb was there as well, jealously keeping his eye constantly on uiang. To Horemheb, Xuang was a foreigner who held all of Egypt under his power, and the Egyptian General was a little bit racist. He wanted the foreigners either out of Egypt or serving as its slaves. He intended also to conquer a few surrounding kingdoms to restore Egypt to its former glory. His stepmother had made the average Egyptian docile and unconcerned with foreign conquest. Xuang would always grin back at Horemheb.
Tiye's court imitated Xanadu's somewhat, but the ceremonies were much less spectacular, but by Earth standards they were very spectacular. Xuang whispered to Tiye a brief outline of an announcement he wished to make. She frowned a little, but Xuang whispered something else and she smiled, and then agreed.
Xuang then made his announcement. "My lady wishes to visit her temple which has just been completed, and I shall accompany her. Lord Horemheb will act as regent during our absence until our return, and if we return not, forbidden be the thought, then Horemheb will continue on as your lord Pharaoh. As you are aware, our lady Isis is displeased with all the land and Queen Tiye is willing to sacrifice herself and her only daughter to Isis for the better of all of Egypt. If we return not, then know full well that her sacrifice and Egypt will prosper as never before, and we shall go to the stars to join our ancestors."
"To the stars?" mocked a fellow priest. "What you are saying is that you will return if you find not a path to the stars? "
"This is true. Queen Tiye, Queen of the living, and her beloved daughter, will ascend to the heavens, and I shall accompany her. We are announcing this in advance so that you will not be disturbed by our disappearance."
"To the stars, you say? My lady this is nonsense. Certainly you can't let the outlandish utterances of your high priest sway you into believing such nonsense."
"It is nonsense," cried another. "They are not going to the stars, but they are probably going to the Land of the Dead instead. I say let them go to the Land of the Dead in peace. This is only a sign from the gods that no woman should rule Egypt."
"It is not nonsense, because we are taking the child. Nefurer, as well. You are not yet ready for the journey Thutmoses, I doubt that you will ever be."
Horemheb laughed and was smiling with glee. He could barely believe his ears. She was abdicating and going on some impossible pursuit with her lover. Good riddance then. He would have some of his trusted captains follow and do what they could do see that she never returned.
"Beware, those of you that rule while the Pharaoh is absent. Our sacrifice may not fare well for our land if wickedness prevails during our absence." Xuang carefully slipped in a disclaimer so that Horemheb could bear the blame of his misdeeds in case Egypt did not prosper after they left.
Xuang and Tiye left for her new temple which had recently been completed. The duo desired complete secrecy to cover their departure, and they desired it to be obscured by as much mystery as possible. Knowing full well that Horemheb would now assume the throne and declare the queen, his step-mother dead and no longer pharaoh. Keeping the treacherous captains at bay was fairly easy for Xuang to accomplish. Entering the temple with his queen, it was forbidden for the soldiers to go any further. The priests awaiting Xiang and the Pharaoh Hartshepsut accompanied the duo into the interior. It was explained to the captains that Hatshepsut would be married to Xiang and ascend to the stars. The priests were rejoicing at the prospect of such powerful magic, and the captains just sneered in disbelief. It was more likely that the duo will make an escape through some secret tunnel.
The captains were partially correct, because once inside the innermost chamber, Xuang summoned Genie's power and effected a transfer of them both to the king's chamber of the great pyramid to await Jim.
Genie retrieved the signal and inserted a way-point into the Box's flight plan. It would advise Jim once he was finished with his current business. It also activated a special manifold which intersected the king's chamber to make the living conditions a little more comfortable for Xiang and Hatshepsut. This manifold exhibited spatially distorting effects which was the Box's specialty. It was larger on the inside than the outside, plus it had all the modern conveniences. Xuang delighted Tiye as he showed her the confusion of their pursuers who had not a clue to where they went. They had managed to pursued the priests to show the way to the inner chamber after the priests had observed and reported that Xuang and Tiye had ascended. The captains pushed their way through the priests as they fervently performed their rituals searching for the escape route.
She was also horrified by the immediate tyranny of her son-in-law He enslaved those that would not acknowledge him as their god, just as her step-father had done. Tiye could not see why they would honor such a simple dupe of a man as a god. The humans could be so ignorant at times. The other pharaohs had at least been the sons of Amazon women. This new bastard would claim as a right something which was simply not true. He was not a true descendant of the stellar family. His mother was human, not Amazon. Tiye should have been the mother of the next pharaoh, but she refused to sacrifice any men claiming that it was barbaric. She had also remembered her pledge to Jim. Isis accepted her reason and agreed that Tiye could rule as Queen to Pharaoh while Xuang stood at her side. It would be a good experience for her son. She also approved of her son's attraction to Tiye and considered the possibility that they could make for Egypt a great pharaoh.
Jim would interrupt the plans for such a dynasty by retrieving Tiye out of the past and returning her to her own home space and time on Artemis.
Jim's meditations were disturbed by the Idiot. "Jim, Xuang has activated the beacon. He is ready to be delivered from Egypt. Tiye and your daughter are with him."
"So the Land of the Pharaohs now calls for me. Perhaps I'll need to tell Antiope."
"She has no need to know Jim. She is not cleared for the energy level we will need to navigate."
"What do you recommend, Idiot?"
"I am receiving a very clear flight path window for you and I. It will be open in five minutes."
"Idiot, I am completely unprepared for this flight. Can't I freshen up a little."
"No time Jim. I interrupted you because of the short notice for this window opportunity."
"Very well, Idiot. I suppose I shall continue in this time later on from where we left off."
"You are keeping track of all these interruptions aren't you."
"Of course Jim. Everything is well under control, and frankly my circuits are a little bored. I could use some exercise."
"I just don't know whether I'm ready for another one of these time twists just yet, but I suppose we may as well proceed. Are you awaiting my command, Idiot?"
"Affirmative, Jim. Two minutes left till your window opens."
"Twelve million decibels."
"I suppose that is good enough for starters. Plot another course by Cygnus anyway so we can increase our energy surplus."
"Authorization to open new manifolds?"
"Granted. Open a portal."