Prologue. The Rainy Morning Headline: 'Edmond Dantes, Jr. Returns, The Count of Monte Cristo Rises, and America Triumphs'

Gordon was sitting at a cubicle in a skyscraper in Manhattan staring dumbly at his computer screen.

He turned away from the glowing screen and looked down at an old newspaper clipping from 1998. It showed a picture of Edmond Dantes, Jr. standing in a tuxedo and smiling with Corrine at his side. There was a tenseness behind the prince’s eyes and his face’s micro-expressions—a pregnant anticipation of something that occupied his mind.

Gordon turned away from the newspaper and looked out at the rain.

He was lucky because, though he had worked in the same office for years without a promotion, he had a corner cubicle against the window—a huge wall of smooth, cold glass that allowed him to look out from the middle of his skyscraper to the other skyscrapers nearby. Sometimes he absent-mindedly touched the glass with his hand while he worked just to feel its coldness and to remind himself there was fresh air and a huge sky waiting for him beyond the cubicle life.

It was raining hard that day, but he didn’t mind. He liked the way the rain beaded on the window.

He pulled his eyes reluctantly away from the window, rubbed his temples, then forced his fingers to start typing. His piece about the “son of America” had to be done by the end of the afternoon, and he had to catch a flight to Ireland—to Dublin, he was pretty sure. He wrote a sticky note to himself to double-check the flight itinerary.

And then he started typing:

‘Edmond Dantes, Jr. Returns, The Count of Monte Cristo Rises, and America Triumphs’

Dear reader,

If you know my column, you may be shocked to discover actual emotion in this week’s article. Many of you have generously compared my emotional intelligence to something on par with C-3PO.

Fair enough. I admit my columns don’t have the warmest bedside manner.

But not this week. Not today.

I feel like running out into the streets of Manhattan and shouting, “America’s son has returned!” and then throwing my arms around the first stranger I see.

Why?

As I announced in my last column (which proved very controversial), and as I reiterate in this one: I believe Edmond Dantes, Jr. faked his death in 1999, went into a witness protection program with the help of powerful friends in order to stay safe from potential assassination attempts, then began to work on a plan similar in spirit to the one found in the classic novel “The Count of Monte Cristo.”

Yes, that’s right, a real life Count of Monte Cristo story. Not kidding.

If that sounds a little over-the-top, consider the facts:

1. As covered in my column last week, the details surrounding Jr.’s plane crash are highly suspect.

2. There was a strong motivator for him to fake his own death. Besides the many corrupt, powerful elites who had already showed signs that they were planning to assassinate him, the couple might have found a certain rest and normalcy that had not been possible previously. It can be shown in various interviews that he and his wife were weary of the paparazzi and relentless spotlight brought by his fame. Going off the grid might have brought a much needed haven for their relationship.

3. Dantes had the means to plan and execute a sophisticated operation to successfully fake his and his family members’ deaths. Besides his own wealth, he had powerful, patriotic friends among civilians and in the US military who saw how this plan of maintaining his and his family’s safety could benefit our great nation in the long-term.

Yes, he was doing it for the ultimate safety of his family and himself, but he was also doing it for America. I have found ample evidence from open sources (as I documented in the previous column) that Edmond is not only still alive, but he and his allies have been working on an incredibly intricate plan to expose corrupt elements among the most powerful elite in the world—in both the highest tiers of government and society.

The people who wanted him dead happened to be a part of the same international cabal who killed his father. They were also responsible for reaping unimaginable, horrific levels of corruption, murder, theft, and other acts of depravity in society through their plots hatched behind the closed doors of shadowy towers and carefully guarded castles away from the eyes of the public.

Maybe my headline sounds a little too dramatic or Andy Griffith patriotic for the ears of my dear New Yorkers. Well, allow me to remind you of the following actualities:

1. The depraved acts of the corrupt powerful elite are beginning to come to light. The headlines are beginning to match the premise of my theory above.

2. Although Edmond Dantes, Jr. has not yet appeared, there were numerous sightings at the various campaign rallies of our President during the summer of 2018. These sightings have been photographed and analyzed by multiple researchers.

3. It would not make sense for Edmond to return to the public eye until all criminal elements and threats to his safety have been neutralized.

My prediction: The Son of America—the nickname for him that I’ve coined—will return to public life soon, along with his family.

Maybe I’m crazy, but that’s where the evidence leads me.

Considering everything above—and considering the fact that I love my country and don’t care if that offends you—I am so emotional about the return of Mr. Dantes and his wife and family and so happy for what it might mean for America, that even though it’s a rain morning I feel like singing a song like this one:

It’s the kind of good news our country has needed.

It’s the kind of good news I’ve needed, doggone it.

Why not? Why can’t I be happy about it?

I know, depending on who you talk to, there is a wide range of opinion in our country about the Dantes clan.

In fact, I should add, the enthusiasm of my column is not a blanket endorsement of everything the Dantes family does and teaches. I don’t know them personally. This is not a comprehensive assessment or an automatic approval of the Dantes worldview and character. (So don’t write me complaint letters. I get enough of those already for my own views.) It’s simply an observation of a significant and joyous historical moment.

A man and his family whom the nation thought was dead has been found to be alive and well. That is a happy event—just as happy as when the world watched with breathlessness as the boys trapped in the flooded cave in Thailand were rescued. We did not stop to evaluate their grand motives in life or weigh every element of their character before celebrating their rescue.

We simply celebrated.

For the most part the general public looks back on the days of Dantes and his father who with appreciation and nostalgia. Our hearts still hurt from the terrible travesty of 1963. It affected America deeply.

That’s a wound that’s never really healed for America.

As it says in The Count of Monte Cristo: “Moral wounds have this peculiarity - they may be hidden, but they never close; always painful, always ready to bleed when touched, they remain fresh and open in the heart.” 

Well, maybe it’s finally time for that wound to start healing. Maybe it’s time for a lot of other wounds to start healing too. Maybe it’s time for America to come together a little more and start treating each other like human beings again.

Some of my audience on both sides of the political aisle will undoubtedly look down their noses at my article. That’s okay. I’m not here to promote some kind of personality cult. Frankly, if you don’t give a hoot about the news about Dantes, that’s fine by me. It’s a free country (finally). No one has to like anybody if they don’t want to. This isn’t imperial Rome with an imperial cult, and hopefully it never will be.

And I’m not necessarily falling apart at the feet of the Dantes family like a crazed fan at a Beatles concert. I’m simply saying this: what has happened is historical. It’s very significant. It’s not something you see every day. We should be paying attention.

We should be sober-minded and very alert.

A new storm could break upon us at any moment. As it says in The Count of Monte Cristo:

“Life is a storm, my young friend. You will bask in the sunlight one moment, be shattered on the rocks the next. What makes you a man is what you do when that storm comes. You must look into that storm and shout as you did in Rome. Do your worst, for I will do mine! Then the fates will know you as we know you.”

I’d like to wish my best to the House of Dantes as I perceive it to be standing (assuming all my hopes and theories are true). May their House be like a “house, awakened from its long sleep, like the sleeping beauty in the wood,” as it “lives, sings, and blooms like the houses we long cherished.”

I write all these things on good faith that this family has stepped on the world stage not to serve some hidden agenda kept away from the eyes of the public (like the previous elite of America who proved to be wickedly corrupt) but to simply help others, honor God and the sanctity of human life and liberty, and maintain earnest humility. That’s something we desperately need after the utter shock and trauma this nation has been through with all the corruption, indictments, and trials that have come to light.

No more hidden agendas. No more secret fallen angels behind the scenes. Please. That was the exciting, glorious hope that welled up in my heart when I first learned about the “Son of America” and this grand plan they have achieved.

I should add: it is intriguing and astounding to consider that the US military in partnership with Dantes and his friends had been planning for years the justice now (finally) being accomplished in our world, though I suspect there is still much work to do.

It really is the Count of Monte Cristo story come to life, it seems, and it’s difficult to look away once you realize what’s happening.

(It’s also difficult to sleep at night. I’m not a fan of that part of it. The shocking nature of the whole story has almost been like a trespasser who tries to sneak through your house in the middle of the night and won’t let you sleep. I do not appreciate that element of it.)

But one thing is certain: it will be interesting to see how things develop from here. There is much joy ahead for our wonderful nation, but still great storms to come too, I believe.

We must be strong and bold. In the middle of a great storm, sometimes it takes all the courage we can muster to endure the slow passing of time and the strife of tongues.

As it says in The Count of Monte Cristo, “…wisdom is contained in these two words: Wait and Hope.”

That’s what I’ve been doing, and that’s exactly what we all will be doing in the days to come: waiting and hoping for the tide to finally turn.


”Well, that’s done,” sighed Gordon. “Finally.”

He looked out the rainy window once more, then saw the sticky note on his computer monitor reminding him to double-check his itinerary. He quickly typed on his keyboard to pull up a browser and log into his airline.

“Yep, Dublin.” He smiled to himself. The warmth of a small pleasure filled his chest. I could use a bit of Ireland right now, he thought.

***

In the cab ride to the airport, just as the cab driver slammed on the breaks to avoid a truck, Gordon’s phone rang and buzzed loudly like a restaurant pager when the table’s ready.

It was his dad’s cell phone number, but when he picked up it wasn’t his dad. It was his brother.

I’ve got really bad news, said his brother.

Gordon’s pulse quickened. He didn’t like the sound in his brother’s voice.

Dad’s really sick. He wasn’t answering any of my calls. I got inside the house and found him on the floor, too weak to get up. I’m in the ER right now. We got him in an ambulance. I’m waiting to go back to see him. You need to come home right away.

***

Gordon sat in an empty wing of the airport. There were no other passengers nearby because he was sitting in a terminal that didn’t have any flights. He had been forced to cancel his flight to Ireland and book a new flight to a city in rural California called Haggardsville, near the little farm town Goldberry where he grew up. But there was no flight available for a long while.

The waiting time was not long enough to leave the airport and return to his condo or office, but just long enough to make the passing of the clock agonizing.

After awhile he had slumped over in the small, uncomfortable airport chair and held his head in his hands. Text messages and phone calls, then more text messages and phone calls from his brother were coming in. As he sat with his tired head in his hands, tears were slipping in between the cracks of his fingers and dripping on the grey carpet of the terminal.

His dad had already died. The official time of death was around 7pm. It was two days after New Year’s.

Both of his parents were now dead. Those words kept running through his mind over and over again. He had trouble believing it was true. Even though his mom had died several years prior, most of his heart still lived in the happy years before everything began to go wrong with her and his dad’s health.

In that moment, in that wing of the airport with the white noise hum that runs through the transitory air of terminals, Gordon was dead too. His body kept moving and breathing for some odd reason, but the Gordon who had occupied that body for so many years since the early 1980s was nowhere to be found. He had vanished into thin air, it seemed, and it was not a faked death. It was a real death.

A part of Gordon was gone, never to be recovered in this finite world—not by the wealth of billionaires or the technology and clever planning of the greatest minds of the United States military.

At least, that was how he perceived himself in that terrible, empty moment. In truth, he had neither died nor lost a part of himself, but something inside him had changed drastically, suddenly (but very quietly). It was like the silent onset of a large storm that begins to gather far off in the distance.

***

Hundreds of miles away on the other side of the country in the little town of Goldberry, a homeless man stood motionless on the cement island of a busy avenue surrounded by two-way traffic. He had a short, stubby beard—more of a five ‘o clock shadow than anything else—and he wore dilapidated jeans, a dirt-stained button-up plaid shirt, a thick jacket with oil stains on it, a large cowboy hat, and a far-off look in his eyes. He carried a worn Bible in one hand and a walking stick in the other. Crow’s feet from who knows how many years of hot summers in Central California wrinkled the ends of his eyes as he stared into the distance.

The sky had clouded over in the afternoon. In the twilight an ominous blue glow backlit the rain clouds.

The next moment, with the slightest gasp and intake of breath, he put his hand over his eyes as if he were shielding them from the glare of an imaginary sun that existed only in his mind. A gust of wind rose up to his face and bit his nose with the news of cold air and the smell of rain.

His eyes suddenly grew wide.

He laughed loudly. It was such a robust burst of laughter that he almost tipped over. It was not from something funny, but something joyous. He saw something in the far-off world he imagined in his half-crazed mind, and he had not expected it.

“He’s coming home!” he shouted to the traffic zooming by. He lifted his hands to the sky and shouted louder. “Gordon’s coming home!”

And then he began singing a strange tune of celebration and dancing in little circles just as the rain began to fall. The cement island where he stood and the streets of Goldberry began to percolate and shine with puddles and streams.

***

At the moment when Michael began laughing, there was a disturbance of movement about a mile or two away in the fields within view of where Michael was standing. If he had turned to the south he might have seen it: a black horse and a hooded rider were standing in the middle of an empty, freshly plowed field.

As the gust of wind struck Goldberry—the same big gust Michael had felt—the horse suddenly reared up on its back legs. After it returned to the ground, the rider calmed the horse and nudged it forward. Under the rider’s steady hand, it walked slowly and methodically in a straight line toward Michael.

***

In the nearby city of Haggardsville, Professor Galilea Sanchez sat at the desk of her office on campus. Her window had been open to let the cool air in while she worked. Papers were spread across her desk, and there were drawings of the Sun and Moon and the five luminous planets among them. Equations and other notes filled the margins surrounding the drawings.

Suddenly a gust of wind, carrying a few stray rain drops with it, swept hard through her window and scattered her papers. Several of the papers floated to the ground. At the same time the pages of her Bible, which had been open on her desk to the book of Genesis, fluttered violently in the wind. She reached her hand to close the Bible but accidentally knocked it off the desk instead. When she kneeled to pick it up, she found the Bible was now open to the Book of Revelation, and there was verse on the page that had been highlighted yellow years ago.

This alarmed her because she had just begun thinking about the Book of Revelation several seconds before the gust of wound. In fact, the verse that was highlighted yellow was the same verse that had been on her mind.

She placed the Bible carefully back on her desk with a look of wonder, then gathered her stray papers on the floor. As she picked up the final paper, one of the notes next to the drawing of the Sun caught her eye. A connection between the note and the highlighted verse in Revelation appeared in her mind—a vital, transformative connection that had never occurred to her.

She immediately rushed to her desk, found her research journal and pencil (she preferred handwritten notes instead of computers or tablets) and began writing furiously. The wind began to pick up again, and it blew some of the papers onto the floor, but she hardly noticed.

In fact, a tornado could have blown through campus and knocked down the walls of her office, but still she would have kept on writing, and she would have held on to her pencil and research journal as if her life depended on it.

Another gust came in, and it brought a rich smell of rain and freshly damp soil and wet pavement to her senses. She paused and closed her eyes for a moment, then prayed with a smile: “Thank you, Lord, for sending me the wind and rain today.”

Kevin Ott