‘Entrance to this holy ground depends not on fame or the ability to shape world events. To enter the Elysian Fields, all that is necessary is to have shown bravery born of a love for others. Here there are many delights for such heroes.’
John Stanley – 21st June 1355
John was on his way to the Elysian Fields to join other warriors such as Achilles, Odysseus and Heracles. For a long time he had ridden on clouds but now he was riding Helios. He swayed in the saddle but was supported by the Dioscuri, Castor and Pollux, one either side. At the entrance to the sacred grounds, other Gods awaited him.
To John, it seemed wrong, very wrong. ‘What right have I to join these great heroes? My deeds are insignificant when compared to theirs.’
One of the Gods moved forward. John recognized him. It was Amun. Or was it the Earl? His voice sounded like thunder in a narrow valley. ‘Entrance to this holy ground depends not on fame or the ability to shape world events. To enter the Elysian Fields, all that is necessary is to have shown bravery born of a love for others. Here there are many delights for such heroes.’
Zeus approached, accompanied by Aisa, who held John’s life in her hands.
Amunet then came forward. John could see the serpent wrapped around her body; he could still see the silver/blue scarves, the necklet and the snakes squirming around her head. Amunet addressed Zeus. Her voice was totally different; it was like the running water of a mountain stream. ‘It is not time for John to enter the Elysian Fields, there is still much work for him to do on earth.’
Zeus nodded. ‘I agree. His courage, honesty and virtue will assist in achieving the best possible result at a time of great difficulty. He must fulfil his destiny. He turned to Aisa. ‘I order you, do not cut short his life.’
Amunet mounted Helios behind John and guided him back to earth, but it was a dreadful, dangerous journey. Rocks fell from mountains, huge scaly bats with razor sharp claws dived at him from orange skies, and dragons breathed fire from their lairs. But for the attention of Amunet, who used her magic powers to protect him, he would never have completed the journey. Finally, the horrors faded away and Amunet lifted him from Helios’ back and laid him down to rest.
Amunet looked down at him, still protective. She was unimaginably beautiful but slowly she transformed; she no longer looked like Joan of Kent, she looked like Ximene. John called out her name. As the dream merged into reality he became briefly aware of the real Ximene, a somewhat dishevelled Ximene, anxiously looking down at him. He heard her voice and replied. ‘I will survive.’