The Darkside of Good

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Summary

Does Jacob have what it takes to face the ultimate threat? Or is he simply caught in the midst of a battle between good and evil that he has no chance of winning? When Captain Jacob Baccus and his platoon are assigned to a Protective Services Detail, for scientists traveling into the heart of Baghdad at the beginning of the war in Iraq, it seems like just another routine job. But their assignment, to secure the ancient body of King Nimrod and escort it to a secret base in Antarctica, leads Jacob and his men into a hellish nightmare. In a place that is run by demon-like entities, whose sole purpose is to resurrect King Nimrod for their own vile agenda, Jacob learns that Evil has plans for him in the approaching Armageddon. Barely surviving his assignment, Jacob is discharged from the army only to be almost immediately recruited by Jesuits with their own plans. And as the final war looms, Jacob must deal with the machinations of Evil as he tries desperately to thwart its plans for mankind.

Genre:
Horror / Fantasy
Author:
Jeff Bacon
Status:
Complete
Chapters:
1
Rating:
n/a
Age Rating:
18+

Chapter 1

The wheels of the C-130 touched down on the runway and I heard the screech of the rubber hitting the hot pavement as we landed, and then begin to slow down. Our destination was Baghdad, and our job was to serve as a security detail for a small group of scientists going into Baghdad for a military research project. The plane came to a stop; my team rose from their seats in preparation to move the equipment out of the plane. As the cargo door opens, an old familiar smell hits me like a brick. The smell of thousands of years of death, fire, smoke, expended gunpowder, cordite, and body odor all combined into one luminous smell that will penetrate everything I have within minutes. I look back at the scientists, they appear like they are about to throw up.

“If you are going to puke, do it in a bag, not on the equipment, please.” I said to them.

The scientists stare at me disgusted; it is obvious that they have never been in a war zone.

My platoon members look sharp, they haul the equipment out of the plane, a thorough inventory is taken, and then they began to load the equipment on to the trucks. The scientists are observing us, trying to endure the brutal heat, “Ladies and Gentlemen, please follow me to building number 3, there you will be provided with the gear you will need for the rest of the trip.” I informed them.

As we begin to walk, one of the scientists approached me, “Hello Captain, I am Dr. Hughes, and behind you are my team members, we were all wondering about that landing, why was it so rough?”

“Dr. Hughes, that was a standard combat landing, and a very good one at that. The plane descends fast to minimize the risk of catching enemy fire. We are in a war zone.”

“Right, thank you Captain Baccus.” The scientist replied as he stepped back from me.

The scientists file into the building and are equipped with the proper clothing and body armor. Once they are dressed and ready, we proceeded to load them into the armored security vehicles. The amount of preparation for this trip was extraordinary, it was obvious the success of the mission was important to the military. There were two other units that had been sent out an hour ahead of us to sweep for bombs and enemy hotspots. We were accompanied by Apaches and had a whole artillery unit at our disposal. The amount of effort being exerted was of such great finesse. The process and effort it took to secure a section of Baghdad and get these scientists inserted into the museum was a sight to be seen.

I watched as we entered the city, there was a path of destruction for as far as I could see. It looked like we blew the hell out of this area and swept every building with a tank. The road looked like a bulldozer cleared the way leaving the wreckage simply pushed to the side of the road. I spotted several soldiers in over-watch positions with sniper rifles, and I hear small arms, fire, and explosions. This was an indication that there are several fire fights happening just some few blocks away. There are large explosions behind us, it is like we are being chased by them. We proceeded without issue until we reach the Iraqi National Museum. In the front of the museum, there were 10 prisoners on their knees with their hands laced behind their heads. There were soldiers all over the place; the museum was the most heavily guarded place in Iraq at present. We drove around to the back of the museum and pulled into a secured loading garage. Once the doors closed, we disembarked from the vehicles and began to sweep the area for any issues. We determined the area is secure and proceeded to unload the scientists from their transport.

We led the group to the stairwell leading to the lower level of the museum where the lab, vaults, and temporary living quarters are located. On getting to the lower levels, we began to make our entrance. There were 3 Iraqi guards standing at the end of the long hallway, once they see us, they pull their pistols, and began to fire at us while yelling something in Varsi. My team fell back, and returned fire, the Iraqi soldiers are easy targets since they are standing in the middle of the hallway, and they are neutralized within seconds.

“Lieutenant, what were they yelling?” I inquired.

“The loose translation is either ‘please, do not do this, or you can’t do this’, that is all I could catch sir.”

“Alright, find out how they got down here and clear the bodies, so we can proceed.”

Once the level was cleared, we took the scientists directly to the lab, at their request. The scientists surrounded a stone casket and began rambling like a bunch of school girls. I joined them to see what had them so excited, and that was when I see the body. The smell was sweet and musty at the same time, the carcass was well preserved, it looked like he died maybe a week ago. The body was also very long, 12 to 13 feet, and dressed in a warrior king’s clothing, complete with twin swords, a battle axe, and several knives that had jeweled handles. The scientists were very excited and asked if they could get to work right away. They also began asking about various items, like Sumerian and Babylonian stone tablets, an old book with sheep skin pages, and a few amulets from the vault.

“Dr. Hughes, can you tell me how long you will need to complete whatever it is you are doing?

“We will need 3 days to prepare everything for travel Captain.” He replied.

“Who is the dead guy in the stone casket?” I prodded further.

“Captain, do you know who Nimrod was, or maybe you know him as Gilgamesh, or maybe Osiris. This is the first king of the entire world. He built the tower of Babel and many of the structures throughout the Middle East. This is a fantastic find.” The scientist had a sparkle in his eyes as he informed me on this and despite my skepticism, his enthusiasm fueled my curiosity further.

“How old is his body?” I asked.

“He was the great-grandson of Noah, so he was born shortly after the great biblical flood. I can’t give you an exact date, but a few thousand years ago.”

“Why does he look like he died last week?”

“I don’t know Captain, but we will soon find out.”

We spent the next 3 days escorting the scientists from area to area in the museum. They continued to gather artifacts and writings that they thought would help in their research.

At the end of the three-day period, we were instructed to move the body to an undisclosed location. The transportation of the body took place at night; we loaded everything into a Chinook on the roof of the museum. I was then informed that our team would escort the scientists and their cargo on a ship to Antarctica. The security detail was extended to cover both the trip and an additional 90 days once we arrived at the base.

On the ship, I became acquainted with Dr. Hughes, we sat down and spoke a few times.

“Dr. Hughes, what is so important about this King Nimrod?”

“Jacob, according to the Bible, in the beginning, Yahweh created the Earth, Sun, Moon, Stars, and man, this was the last documented time that he was truly happy with his creations. The history written after that is a constant battle between the will of Yahweh, Fallen Angels, Nephilim, and Man. Reputedly, one of the most notorious outlaws and enemy of Yahweh was King Nimrod. He built the tower of Babel to enter heaven, kill God and his angels, then seat his own gods on the throne. Nimrod was ultimately killed by Esau, the son of Isaac, and Nimrod’s body was severed into several pieces by Shem and the parts were sent to all the kingdoms of the Earth at that time. Almost all the parts of Nimrod were recovered, reassembled, and buried in Iraq, not to see the light of day until 4 weeks ago.”

“Well, that is a great little history lesson, but why is the Army so committed to making sure we secure the body and you get to study it?”

“You saw the condition of the body, there is some ancient science that we need to rediscover. It has knowledge of how Nimrod was able to change himself into almost a giant-like form and have the healing powers only reserved for the gods.”

That conversation stuck in my head for quite some time, it made me suspect that there was more going on than just some research into the ancient science that made one man what he was to history. Something was just not right, but my job was not to question, but to do as I am told, and that was just what I did.

We arrived at the ice walls of Antarctica and we airlifted the cargo, body, and scientists safely to the helipad in front of the entrance to the base. The base was built into the side of a mountain with only a large circular steel door as the entrance. The door opened, a team of men came out to unload the cargo, and we escorted the scientists into the large steel infrastructure built within. Once everything is brought inside, the large door is shut, and we were all escorted to our respective areas to finish our work for the day. One of the more noticeable features of our new environment was the number of religious symbols, each room had crosses, ankhs, idols, and what appeared to be holy water by every entrance. At the time, I really did not give it a second thought, I have been on security details guarding some very eccentric people, the worst was a DOD programmer who had over 180 different snakes in his work area. As the day progressed, I noticed some of the staff were odd, not just their personalities, but their overall stature. They were taller than average, some had 6 fingers on each hand, some had odd looking hips, it looked like a scene from an old circus poster, we all felt very out of place, but we moved forward with our tasks. That was the training of a soldier, to undertake the assignment irrespective of the situation at hand.

I was approached by several members of my team stating their discomfort with the situation; they asked if we were really going to stay for 90 days. My response was the same to each of them, do your job and follow orders, the time will fly by and we will be stateside soon enough. It was well rehearsed because that was exactly what I was telling myself since I myself was feeling the same unease.

The first day was finally over, and it was time to get some chow and sleep. We turned the security over to the next shift and headed to the mess hall. Our very first meal was roasted boar with every side you could think of, it was fantastic, we all finished our meal and decided this place certainly had its perks. I went to my quarters, exhausted; I fell asleep as soon as my head hit the pillow. As I drifted off to sleep, I started to have nightmares that began with huge fires and hellish scenarios where I die. That first night, I woke up about every half hour in a cold sweat. I have never had nightmares like this before, I have always been able to control my emotions, but after that first night, I felt very unstable and my emotions were out of control. This became my nightly routine, very little sleep, and then waking up very tired and overly emotional. This, coupled with the fact that every single meal consisted of some sort of pork product made me uneasy. I was yearning for a steak, or some other meat other than pig. I asked the cooks about getting some variety, they told me they prepared what was sent to them, typical response, we just have what we have, I am not sure what I am complaining about, we could have been stuck eating MREs the whole time.

During the second week in Antarctica, I met a Catholic Priest named Rod. Father Rod was a tall, slender man that smelled of cigarette smoke and booze. He seemed like a good enough guy, but again, his whole persona fit in with this place perfectly.

Father Rod could see I was distressed, “Captain, is there was anything you need to talk about?”

“No Father, everything is fine, I am good.” I replied even though I was far from being good.

Father Rod persisted, “This place gets to everyone, the only way to truly survive your stay here is to embrace God and use his strength as your own.”

I was not sure what he was speaking about, do I look like I am falling apart, I wondered?

“If you want to get rid of those dreams, you will come see me”, Father Rod walked away with a smug smile on his face.

In the following days, the dreams seemed to get worse, they seemed to be more real, more violent but with a sexual orgy type of component added to them, and I felt like I was losing my mind. I became more agitated and began taking my anger out on my team, they of course took the abuse for a short time, but they let me know when they had had enough. I finally broke down and went to Father Rod for help.

“Captain, let’s start by praying the Lord’s Prayer, then 3 Hail Mary’s.”

We finished praying, and then we proceed to the confessional, there I told him all the vivid details of the dreams and how they made me feel. Father Rod sat back in his chair and let out a large sigh.

“You are being targeted by demonic forces. You need to protect yourself with the power of the church and God.”

I was at the point where I would try anything, so I let him submerge me in holy water; he gave me a special cross to hang around my neck, and prayers to say before bed. That night was the first night of decent sleep that I had since I entered this hell hole.

I continued to have appointments with Father Rod for the duration of the mission, I feel centered and focused after each meeting. Father Rod also spoke to me about being of service to the Jesuits after I left the Army. He called it “Doing God’s work to repay my debts to the church and the Jesuit order”, it felt like the attempts to manipulate me into some sort of servitude at a soup kitchen was continuous.

As the weeks progressed, and our time dwindled down to the very end, my unit started to be disbanded and troops were being sent home two at a time, at least that was what I was being told by my superiors. It was odd nevertheless, because there was no daily schedule of arrivals and departures to this base. Rather my team would be put on transports in the middle of the night, usually at the last minute. I did not get to say goodbye to many of them but decided I would catch up to them when I finally made it home. Father Rod told me that all things happened according to God’s plan, and that I needed to be accepting of things out of my control, but these were my brothers, my team, and it was very hard to accept that they were being randomly sent home in the middle of the night. We began to say goodbye to each other at the evening meal and vowed to catch up once we were all back in the states while on leave. This seemed to be the best we could do while eating our favorite meat, pork, every day, 3 times a day since we arrived.

It was 2 days until our final departure, there were 3 of us left to clean up and finish the work we had started in Iraq. That night was the normal routine, work, eat roasted boar, play some cards, go to bed. At 3:33 A.M. there was a knock on my door, I opened the door, it was Father Rod, and he looked distressed.

“Come with me now, I need you to see something.”

I followed Father Rod to a deck overlooking the labs where Nimrod’s body was being kept; there was a lot of activity happening there and then I saw my last two teammates being wheeled in on gurneys.

“What the fuck is going on Rod?”

“You need to be quiet and watch, we cannot stop them, but you need to witness the great evil here.”

I watched as they took my buddies, put needles in their necks, arms, and legs, to begin draining them of their blood, they were awake and not putting up any kind of a fight. They were asked a question, I could not hear what was said, but they loudly proclaimed their allegiance to Nimrod with their dying breaths. The blood was then transferred into a vat that was being fed into the stone casket holding the body of Nimrod. The bodies and all their belongings were then collected and rolled out of the lab into a smaller cave, they disappeared into the darkness.

“OK fucker, you made me sit here and watch them kill my buddies, I assume they did this to my entire team, they need to all die now!”

Father Rod replied, “Wait, watch the cave entrance, just be patient.”

I watched the blood vat being emptied into the stone casket, the body soaked the blood up like a sponge. I noticed some movement in the cave, and it was two misfits leading my buddies out of the cave, loaded with their gear and walking to the exit.

“What is going on, how is this possible?” I asked.

“Somehow, they are being resurrected in that cave, I watched this happen last night also, I do not know what is happening, but it cannot be good. Did you watch the blood being soaked up by the corpse? That cannot be anything good, it is almost like they are rehydrating the body with the blood of your brothers, but I do not know for what purpose. Look at the body, it almost looks like it is a fresh corpse, this is the body of Nimrod being brought back to life, maybe?”

Father Rod seemed as perplexed as me. I began to assess the situation and look for a plan to kill everyone and escape what I assumed would be my fate tomorrow night. Just as I turned to ask Father Rod another question, I woke up in my bed, sweating, heart beating fast, and ready to attack. It was just another damn dream, well great, at least I can walk around tired all day. I made myself ready for the day and decided to stop by and see Father Rod before I started work, he was not in his chapel, but there was an envelope on the confessional with my name on it. I opened the envelope and began to read it.

Jacob,

I was asked to leave on the very next flight out and return to the Vatican, I hope your last day here is peaceful and you get the answers you are looking for. When you return to the states, please look up my good friend and fellow Jesuit, Father Bill, I have talked to him, and he will help you through the rest of your journey.

Yours very truly,

Father Rod

I went to the mess hall to eat breakfast, and I was the only one left, the last two guys in my team were shipped out last night. I began to wonder if the dream I had last night was real, I began to feel anxious and nervous at the same time. Then Dr. Hughes sat down with me and began to small talk. The rest of the scientists began to join us along with a few of the workers, then one of the larger men with 6 fingers sat down and all conversations ceased. His name was Azriel, and he began to speak to the group.

“I want to congratulate all of you on a job well done. We have made more progress in the last 90 days than I ever imagined could happen. It reminds me of the old days when we all worked together for a single cause and accomplished so much, you all should be very proud of yourselves. Captain Baccus, without you and your team, we could not have accomplished this massive feat, you have single-handedly made one of the largest contributions to the world, but what else should we expect from a descendant of Shem. You will certainly be rewarded for your excellent service and dedication by your superiors, in fact, I will be personally calling them to ensure that happens.”

I replied, “Well thank you and you are very welcome, could you elaborate a bit on what my contribution was, please?”

Azriel replied, “Your entire team were descendants of Nimrod, we were able to match their DNA to that of the one true king, and without them, we would have had to comb the Earth for these people and bring them here individually to help resurrect their ancestor. In fact, the only person in your team that was not a direct descendant was you, you are of a different bloodline, one drop of your blood would destroy the king’s body in its current state.”

At this point, I was a little confused, so I asked a pointed question, “What is his current state?”

“The King will be ready to return once his vessel has been fully repaired, at that time, the King of Kings will return to rule this world as it was in the past. He will bring peace where there is war, and prosperity where there is poverty, he will return the Earth to its previous glory.”

I began to think about what was being said, and the history I had learned. If what Azriel was saying had any truth to it, I helped resurrect the first Anti-Christ, the one true enemy of Yahweh, oh fuck, what have I done, and then the voice of Azriel came across my thoughts.

“You did exactly as you were ordered, your only chance of leaving this place alive is to simply pack your things and board the next transport out of here, then forget, otherwise you will be doomed for an eternity. Shake your head if you understand.”

I looked across at Azriel, he was smiling at me, I shook my head and left the table. I promptly packed my gear and waited for the next transport. It was like, at that very point, I had dammed myself to hell. I was sure my superiors were in on the plan. It was apparent they had set me up. I have no idea where I go from here, but what I do know is it is time to get out of the Army, and attempt to live a good life, forget this happened, and see if I can find a way to gain forgiveness.

As I boarded the helicopter, I looked back at Azriel and as he smiled, I slammed the door shut. I was on my way home, but this was not the same place that I had left. For me, it was apparent that I had changed, and home was now just a word associated with a place on a map.

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