I’m going to type out the entirety of Chapter 13 of Windswept House in which Klaus Schwab appears so that it populates onto search engines. It is my sincere hope that this will spur people to read the entire book, because it is certifiably jaw-dropping the extent to which Windswept House continues to NAIL current events… and it was written nearly thirty years ago. Its accuracy over the past nine years has gone from merely “wow” to “there are no words….” That HAS to count for something.
What you will see is that the entire usurpation and installation of an Antipope thing that I have been screeching about for nearly six years is 100% intertwined and connected with EVERYTHING going on today that is deemed “secular”. Everything going on with the financial system, CoronaScam, GloboHomo, Washington DC/NWO warmongering, ALL OF IT is connected through the keystone of the satanists’ attempt to destroy and replace the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church by attempting to usurp and destroy the Papacy.
Whether or not you believe in Jesus Christ, His Holy Church, and the Office of the Vicar of Christ makes not one bit of difference as to the EXISTENTIAL OBJECTIVE REALITY of these things. You can deny God’s existence all you like – it takes nothing away from Him. You can deny that the Catholic Church is the One True Church founded by Christ in the Upper Room nearly 2000 years ago all you like – it takes nothing away from the fact that it is exactly that. You can deny that Christ instituted a Vicariate and that His Vicar on Earth has any meaning or authority all you like – it takes nothing away from the Absolute Monarchy and negative supernatural protection that the Vicar of Christ holds. If you are trying to parse current events without the keystone of what has happened and is happening in the Church, if you chock this all up to “tinfoil hat conspiracy theories”, you are going to end up on the wrong side. And the consequences will be eternal.
Take the few minutes to read this. I promise, once you start you won’t be able to stop. Then, when you are done, you’ll want to buy and read Windswept House, and if you already have read it, you will want to read it again. And remember, EVERY WORD OF THIS WAS WRITTEN NEARLY 30 YEARS AGO.
After the text, please watch JP’s excellent video, “Is Klaus Schwab the most dangerous man in the world?”
(Setting the scene: In the previous chapter, top-level satanists have just met with their comrade satanist prelates inside the Church and confirmed to move forward with plans to usurp the Papacy and then destroy it by forcing the Pope to resign and installing one of their own as a squatter upon the Petrine See, who will then attempt to destroy the Papacy by dissolving its authority, and will put the Vatican completely at the service of the New World Order. Again, Windswept House was published as “historical FACTion”, a roman à clef, in ARSH 1996. The only thing Martin got wrong was his assumption that they would execute this plan against Pope John Paul II given his Parkinson’s diagnosis. It turned out that the target was his successor, Pope Benedict XVI Ratzinger. Malachi Martin died under very suspicious circumstances in ARSH 1999, six years before Pope JPII’s death and Pope Benedict’s election. Here now is the beginning of Chapter 13. Klaus Schwab’s codename which Martin revealed before he died is “Jacques Deneuve“. Martin thinly veils Schwab by calling him a “French banker” when Schwab is, in fact, a Swiss economist who has been steering central bank and global financial system policy for decades. After the Windswept House passage, please watch JP’s excellent video on Klaus Schwab and his overtly satanic agenda to “be like unto God” and to “eliminate human free will.” And then remember, once more, that Windswept House was written almost thirty years ago.
The scene opens in New York City as satanism’s analogue to the Twelve Apostles, “the Concilium of 13”, Schwab/Deneuve prominent among them, meet to discuss plans to move forward. Remember, everyone in this passage is a top-level practicing satanist. This is a meeting of the supreme heads of satanism in the world. Confessing, practicing, literal satan worshippers.)
Beginning on page 123
Nicholas Clatterbuck never changed. Whether directing Vatican and other guests into the once-in-an-age meeting in Strasbourg or directing the far-flung everyday operations as CEO of Benthoek’s London headquarters, he was always the same. Always grandfatherly, yet with a peculiar presumption of authority.
Even the late-afternoon rush-hour traffic on New York City’s Upper West Side seemed unable to ruffle him. No doubt Dr. Ralph Channing and the others would be waiting for him at Channing’s Cliffview House. But not even Clatterbuck – not even the devil himself – could do anything about the sanitation truck grinding its way along the upper reaches of Riverside Drive, or about the volume of traffic that crept behind it, horns blowing, all the way north from Ninety-sixth Street.
“Here, driver.” In his usual kindly voice, Clatterbuck directed his driver toward a row of limousines already double-parked in front of his destination. “Pull up here.”
Cliffview. The name was etched on the brass doorplate, but the Englishman barely glanced at it as he entered the thirteen-storey mansion. He knew this turn-of-the-century landmark as well as he knew its proprietor. In fact, almost anyone familiar with New York’s Upper West Side knew Cliffview – if not by its name, at least by its distinctive eaves capped by that easy-to-spot glass dome overlooking the Hudson River.
“Ah, Clatterbuck. My dear man.”
The gravelly voice that greeted Nicholas as he joined the others already gathered in the penthouse studio was as unmistakable as everything that went with it: the utterly bald head; the high, straight forehead; the piercing blue eyes; the goatee beard; the force of authority and sureness that neither Clatterbuck nor any man here had ever gainsaid. All of that Belonged to Dr. Ralph S. Channing.
“Sorry to be behind time, Professor. Traffic.”
“Your timing is perfect. We were just talking about you, in fact. I was filling everyone in about your triumph with Benthoek at last week’s Strasbourg meeting. But I seem to have set off some sparks. Our French colleague here finds the whole Roman proposal to be distasteful in the extreme.” Channing set his wineglass firmly down on the marble side table by his chair and looked at his full complement of eleven colleagues, each in turn, until he let his laser eyes fix on Jacques Deneuve as the subject of his patronizing indulgence. “Deneuve thinks Rome is a cesspool, Clatterbuck. What do you have to say about that?”
Clatterbuck took his time before answering. A general glance at the ten men already seated at their ease around the studio with Dr. Channing sufficed as greeting. He poured himself a glass of wine from one of the decanters on the credenza.
“Why, of course it’s a cesspool.” He turned his kind eyes on Deneuve. “No one here likes Rome, Jacques. The whole papal outfit is the worst cesspool of antihuman plots and plans and inhuman machinations ever devised by grubby little men with grubby little ideas. We all know that. But that’s not the point we need to focus on. Opportunity has not merely knocked on our door. It has provided us with a Vatican passport.”
His point conceded at least in essence, Deneuve was satisfied. His pride was intact. Channing could always count on Clutterbuck to calm injured feelings. Glass in hand, the Englishman made his way into the circle of men and settled his tweeds into a solidly upholstered wing chair. Between him and Channing, a thirteenth chair remained empty – except for a red leather folder resting on its seat. That place always remained empty, as if for an invisible presence among them that added force to the combined presence of the group itself; a presence that made the group more than the sum of its twelve animated bodies and lively minds. This was always such a comfortable place for Clatterbuck. A deliciously tasteful retreat – “piper and books and male,” as Virginia Woolf once characterized the private study of one of her admirers. From where he sat, he could enjoy the view of the evening darkness and a thousand lights across the Hudson.
Quickly caught up in the discussion of world events that always preceded whatever business might bring these twelve colleagues to Cliffview from time to time, Clatterbuck needed no briefing from Cyrus Benthoek, as he had at Strasbourg, to know about the members of this group. In fact, though Benthoek had met Channing and some of the others here in the normal course of his affairs, even he might be surprised to know all that Clatterbuck knew about them.
On the surface, Ralph Channing’s guests at Cliffview made up a Who’s Who of power and success. Jacques Deneuve, for example, whose feathers had been ruffled by the Roman proposal out of Strasbourg, was Europe’s all-important banker. Gynneth Blashford was Britain’s most powerful newspaper magnate. Brad Gerstein-Snell cut the dominant figure in international communications. Sir Jimmie Blackburn ranked as South Africa’s sole ruler of the diamond market. Kyun Kia Moi was master of all Far Eastern charter shipping.
Those five alone were the kingmakers of the New World Order who daily play with scores billions that slosh around the international money markets in Tokyo, London, New York, Singapore, Paris and Hong Kong, the dominant figures regulating the flow of capital and capital goods. Ultimately, therefore, they were the arbiters in the life and death of individual governments and the welfare of nations.
In such a group as this, Dr. Ralph Channing might have been considered the odd man out. Instead, however, he was clearly something more than a peer. Born into a long-established Huguenot family in Maine, Channing had done his studies at Yale in comparative religion and theology. Renowned for his encyclopedia grasp of the records of the Knights Templar, of the Holy Grail tradition and of Freemasonry – in particular, the Order Templi Orientis, or OTO; the Eastern Temple – he had become a noted archivist for diverse groups of humanist scholars. As tenured professor at a top American university, his influence extended around the world through a well-received litany of books, pamphlets, articles, lectures and seminars.
Increasingly valued in certain circles for his correct historical information and his ability to appraise organized religion as a sociocultural and political factor in the world, he had been borrowed from his university by one Washington administration and had successfully managed the planning of the Department of Education. Somehow he also found time to spend a couple of months abroad each year as a consultant for various humanist organizations in Europe and the Far East.
Never mind, then, that Ralph Channing wasn’t a banker or master of shipping interests. There wasn’t a man in this distinguished group who would – or could – challenge his credentials as a leader.
In reality, what bound these twelve men together wasn’t entirely a matter of banking or shipping or diamonds. Having drunk deeply from the precious wine of success, each man present had searched for another goal. And each had found that service to the Prince of This World was the only goal that satisfied. Each had passed through the tests of Fire, Pain, and Death. Each had received the Seal of the Final Utterance on his soul. All here were bespoken men. That was the Unifying Force at Cliffview House.
Still, while devotion to the Prince was the distinguishing trait of Ralph Channing’s little gathering at Cliffview, such devotion had nothing to do with a goat like figure sprouting pointy ears and cloven hooves and smelling like a polecat on holiday in a garbage dump. Each of these men had long since learned that reality was far different. What everyone here had discovered and committed himself to was an intelligence each had found to be supreme among human beings as such. Their increasingly intimate involvement in the Process had taken on a special cast; had enabled these men – against all odds, and out of all men in the world – to recognize the lineaments of that supreme intelligence at work in the Process, to bow to that intelligence in every practical way and thus to follow the footprints of history.
No one at Cliffview would be reckoned as an evil person as that word is understood nowadays. A handshake from anyone here was as good as a contract. In matters of politics, they were correct; which is to say, they were never extremist. In social matters, they were acceptable; which is to say they had shown their humanitarian concern and their philanthropic generosity. In matters of marital fidelity, all adhered to the currently accepted norm of respectability.
Nor could anyone daub this group with the insulting label of conspirators. Rather, they were men who happened to feel the same way about human affairs. In this – as any one of them could attest, for they sat as directors on corporate boards around the world – they were not much different than, say, the trustees of Harvard or the board of directors of The Times of London. Not much different than the Commissioners of the European Community, if it came to that.
Like those and many other groups, these twelve men operated within the recognized bounds of democratic freedom to see their cherished ideals implemented. Admittedly, this group enjoyed certain advantages that few could equal. The supreme success of each man enabled the group as a whole to engage in social engineering and political molding on a vast scale. But power and success were not what provided them with their greatest leverage.
Their true advantage, as any one of them would attest, stemmed from one this only: the dedication of each to Spirit as such. To that personage they all described as the Prince. The advantages afforded by that abiding interest seemed infinite to them. The simple fact that their interest did not conform to the interest asserted by the major religions meant they were able to think in a more universal way than they would have as Jews or Christians or Muslims. They were therefore more tolerant. More human.
A second advantage lay in their ability to understand the Process. Their special qualifications ranked them as master engineers. They knew themselves to be among the the few ever privileged to understand the superhuman quality and progress at work in the Process. Their vantage point allowed them to understand that the Process is not a matter of one generation or of one century. And though they themselves had risen so high above its day-to-day, year-to-year workings as to recognize the very face of the intelligence behind it, they accepted the reality that for most of the human population – even for most adherents and propagators who functioned at inferior levels – the Process is only known in its workings.
The point for them as master engineers was that those workings themselves must always change. The Process must always grow towards its ultimate goal. In theory, it was something like a chain reaction, with society as the reactor.
It was capital for the Process that change had now become the dominant trait of human society. Minds were being changed. Living language itself was being molded by changing minds. The vocabulary of politics and geopolitics was the vocabulary of change. “Internationalism” had made way for “multinationalism,” for example. Then “transnationalism” took center stage. Very soon it would be “globalism.” At every level of life, minds and society itself were being molded and remodeled by the never-ending chain reaction of change. Society had come to the brink of recasting its basic structure, shedding its cocoons of separatism. Universalism would soon bring all men and women into one family. One embrace.
When change becomes the slogan and watchword of society at large, the evolution that is the Process becomes ever more acceptable. Ever more respectable. Ever more inevitable.
“All right, gentlemen.” Like a gavel sounding a board meeting to order, Ralph Channing’s rough-edged voice ended the chit-chat. “Let’s get down to the crux of things.” As everyone knew, the crux of things was to be the reading of the Categoric Report. As everyone expected from experience, however, Channing had a few remarks to offer first.
“As some of you have surmised, the ultimate directives contained in the Categoric Report itself are based on the significant meeting earlier this month at Strasbourg. Our own Nicholas Clatterback, in fact, prepared the summary of that meeting for Cyrus Benthoek. My hope, gentlemen, is that an understanding of the significance of the alliance proposed at Strasbourg will make your minds more receptive to our proposals.
“Some of the Vatican personnel at Strasbourg might not have understood how far afield the bridges they proposed might reach. Who would have dreamed that the evolution of the Prince’s rule would require what the report the Categoric Report calls ‘a religion phase’ in the evolutionary engineering of the society of nations? The organized religions cannot simply be condemned and bypassed in favor of occult practices. All, of course, are part of the Process. We now realize that religion is a manifestation of Spirit.”
There was a little stirring at that, but as a world-class expert on the world’s religions, Channing was not to be challenged. “Yes, I grant it is a misguided and deforming manifestation. Yet, I insist, truly a manifestation. Progressive Spirit in man means progress in religion – and progress, as we know, always leads from the particular and the local to the universal. Logically, in other words – and simply because religions do exist – there must be a religion phase in the evolutionary Process of mankind.
“What we must understand is that we are faced today with a new stage in that evolutionary Process. The final stage! The creation of a one-world religion. Absent all nationalisms, all particularisms and all culturalisms of the past. Now, in its final stages, the evolutionary Process necessarily implies a mechanism by which the religion phase will be refashioned to suit the globalism – the universality – of that New Order.
“In aiding the Process along, our task is to come to the aid of each major religion in such a way as to enable them all to come into one universal embrace.Into one universal religion, in which no religion will be distinguishable from any other. The perfect handmaiden for the New Order of the Ages! Wouldn’t you agree, gentlemen?” Channing smiled at the smiling faces around him.
“That much understood – and even granting Jacques Deneuve’s conviction that Rome is a cesspool – one further thing must be clear. If we are to bring the religion phase of man to the summit of its evolution – into the full embrace of the Process – then we must consider the role of Roman Catholicism. No.” With a glance at the red folder lying on the thirteenth chair, Channing corrected himself at once. “Rather, we must consider the role of papal Catholicism in general and of the papal office in particular.
“And that point, I am happy to say, brings us directly to the reading of the Categoric Report.” Channing leaned toward the empty chair beside him to retrieve the leather folder, and handed it to Nicholas Clatterbuck. Clatterbuck read in a soft, kindly voice.
“The following is the Categoric Report drawn up by Capstone on the absolutely necessary measures to be taken by Concilium 13 in view of the imminent Ascent of the Prince of this World.”
As if a switch had been thrown, the reading of that opening sentence shifted the mood in Dr. Channing’s studio from affable to surreal. Even on Clatterbuck’s tongue, Capstone’s words were dark velvet, a mantle woven of past achievement and present hope. Lips curled in smiles not pleasurable to see; smiles of death imposed and enjoyed and waiting for a repeat performance.
“Because of the ritual Enthronement of the Prince effected by the in-house Phalanx of servitors within the Citadel of the Enemy – you have always known that it is your privilege to serve in the Availing Time, to facilitate the ultimate triumph of the Prince of this World. The moment has arrived when we must face the obligation to engage the forces of the Enemy in their own stronghold.
“In saying this is an opportunity, we remind you that we have a period of between five and seven years remaining to us before the advantages secured to us in the Enthronement will be nullified. That is our Categoric Persuasion.” At such a warning as that, even the Concilium members – even Clatterbuck – stole a look at Dr. Channing. Such was the Professor’s command, that a gesture of the hand was sufficient to subdue alarm. The reading was resumed.
“Having clarified the urgency of our obligation, we hasten to say that the timeframe made known to us – five to seven years – will be sufficient, on a double condition. First, we must be realistic in our assessment of the major obstacle remaining in the path of our success. Second, we must be equally realistic in the means we engage to remove that obstacle.
“First things first, then: The most ancient and the most recalcitrant obstacle to the Ascent – indeed, the only obstacle to be profoundly respected and guarded against – has been and up to this day still is the Roman Catholic papacy.” Clatterbuck was back on familiar ground now. His voice was level again, pleasing to the ear and dispassionate in tone.
“Let us be clear as well that we do not hold authority in itself to be objectionable. On the contrary, there must be authority. But let us be equally clear about authority so complete as personal infallibility and personal representation of the Nameless One. This personalized authority is alien to us – and finally inimical to our interests – because it is inimical to the Ascent. We remain dedicated to the Ascent.
“Some accoutrements can be readily adapted as a facilitating instrument for the Ascent. However, in the papacy itself, we face an obstacle that we must regard was something to be feared. It is lethally fearful because in this papacy we are dealing with a dangerous reality. A reality of Spirit. A lump of Otherness that is unique; that is irreconcilable with the progress of the New World Order we envision; and that is ultimately with the Ascent whose heralds we are.
“It is well to be reminded of just resilient that papal office has been throughout its history. The office itself can be tainted with corruption of every kind. Its holders can be isolated and insulated from the rest of the human race. They can be terminated – gently or violently; in secret or before the eyes of millions. But nobody has ever succeeded in liquidating that office. Nobody and nothing.
“For a lump of Otherness to be so effective and perduring, its force and strength and recuperative power must issue from what is totally alien to us. They must issue from what is totally alien to Capstone and to the Ascent. They must issue from the Nameless One. At this critical moment in our warfare, we who are of the Spirit must stress that we are up against the reality of Spirit. Contrary Spirit – but Spirit all the same.
“In this last glorious stage of the Ascent, out most concerted action now must be directed toward the prime locus of resistance to our aims. Consequently, our Categoric Report itself is centered on one question: What is to be done about the personalized papacy, with all of its stubborn resiliency?
“Our response dictates a turnabout in our strategies. Or, better, an escalation of our strategies to a level that even you of the Concilium may have not considered possible. We have said that the papal office is to be respected, feared and guarded against. Now, however, we have determined that we can no longer be defensive. Rather than guard against the power of that office, we will make it our own.
“Our Categoric Decision – and the object of the agenda over the five to seven advantageous years remaining to us – must be this: To secure the papal office, with all of its resiliency, to ourselves. And to do that by ensuring that the holder of that office be a man on whom we can rely to be adaptable to our needs. We will review for you now the limited options by which we might achieve this goal. Those options are basically three in number: Persuasion. Liquidation. Resignation.
“Consider, first, persuasion. The possibility that the present holder of the papal office himself might be induced or persuaded to such a complacency and acceptance as our sworn purpose requires. Unfortunately, we must report that in the ultimate judgment of our expert cognoscenti – including in-house members of the Phalanx who reside in close proximity to the office – the present holder will never see the wisdom of our agenda.
“Nor do we have the luxury of time to wait him out. On the basis of actuarial and personal health data, we may be looking at four to seven years more of active physical existence for the present holder. Given our Categoric Persuasion that we are working in the constricted and currently running time span of not more than seven years, we must proceed to the next two options: the liquidation of the resignation of the present holder of the papal office.
“In principal terms, either option will yield the result we desire and leave us free to install a new, complaisant holder. As is often the way in important matters, the step that might appear to be the most difficult – the installation of a friendly occupant – is the easier part of our task. We need not remind anyone in the Concilium that we are now enjoying the marvelous facility afforded us by the growing number of our regular Phalanx of in-house supporters. And beyond that, a number of personnel who actually assisted at the Enthronement ceremony in 1963 are themselves still in place, and have ascended to such high posts within the Citadel as to assure our success. Thus we will not merely be forcing Contrary Spirit to vacate one friendly house of its habitation, only to enter into another, equally friendly house. There would be no point for us in that.
“No, the candidate to replace the present holder of the office will be someone acquainted with our aims, acquiescent in them at the very least and even fully disposed to collaborate in achieving those aims.
“The task of removal, therefore, must be the focus of our urgent and unremitting attention. The first of the two alternatives by which to achieve removal would be the most satisfying. On the surface it might even seem the easiest, and therefore the most tempting. We speak of personal liquidation.
“Were Concilium 13 to undertake such a procedure, it would be meticulously planned and immaculately executed. In your hands, we would not be faced with anything resembling the stupid initiative of 1981. Yet, even were we to succeed in an open move against the person of the present holder of the office, the results could still be disastrous for us. We would not be able to hide behind such cover as ‘the nasty Burglars’ or ‘KGB death technology’ or ‘segregated files’ or ‘CIA manipulation.’ None of the extravaganzas of popular commentary that served as camouflage for the 1981 initiative are any longer available.
“Still, is swift and openly executed liquidation is likely to be self-defeating by its nature, one might ask if there are modified but nevertheless effective means of liquidation. We know of concrete proposals along the lines of such gradual and modified liquidation. All of them, however, have been complicated by the security means adopted at the papal office since 1981; means so extensive and detailed that they include security even for all ingestion.
“Furthermore, the mere fact that we know of such proposals underlines another prime reason why we should not ourselves succumb to any temptation along these lines. There is no such thing as a secret. In the final analysis, all is betrayed; all is revealed; all is known. Remember that we are dealing with Spirit – volatile, unpredictable, wild in its ways, blowing and sweeping where it wills.
“It is our Categoric Judgment that that those who hand us any proposition for such a solution are in reality handing us a live grenade, inviting us to pull the pin and explode into the fragments of our own self-liquidation.
“There remains, then, the Chosen Alternative. The Categoric Choice by which we will achieve our goal is resignation. Briefly stated, the present holder of the office will be induced to resign from that office – and without prejudice.
“A voluntary papal resignation, at this crux of divisiveness and disunity among the ordinary RC laity and between churchmen themselves, would be a powerful signal; nothing less than an admission of defeat for important elements who stand against us. It would be a declaration to the remaining defenders of the old order of things that the past is irretrievable. Indeed, the climate is such that there is already a certain sympathy among the old order for our Chosen Alternative. An openly expressed sympathy, we might add, in strategic quarters within the target ranks.
“When we speak of inducing the holder to resign, inducement must be understood in its subtlest form. We speak of effecting all the means at your disposal in the world. For the most powerful inducement will be the pressure of irreversible events and the emergence of irresistible power lines.Events and power lines must be devised to constrict the actions of the holder. The only one course left to him will be the resignation of the papal office.
“In the report recounting for us the events of the recent meeting at Strasbourg hosted by Mr. Cyrus Benthoek, our Nicholas Clatterbuck clearly indicates that we have potential allies not previously identified as secure. Individuals who are highly influential within the Citadel and who have in effect joined hands with those in-house Phalanx members who were also present at Strasbourg. They have said they are eager for radical change change at the topmost level of administration. And in their eagerness, they open to us their own powerful lines of global persuasion.
“Moreover, there is an ancillary and even more important initiative under way in which we have also in effect been invited to cooperate, again through Cyrus Benthoek. An initiative which involves the formation of a close and systematic alliance between virtually every ranking churchman of Europe’s heartland and the European Community. That initiative is to be facilitated.
“All in all, the way has been opened for us, in strict conformity with the Canon Law of the Citadel, for the peaceful departure of the present holder of the papal office. Your charge is to seize upon these two significant advantages that have been handed to us. Your charge is to take in hand the Strasbourg proposal, and the intended alliance between the Citadel and the EC. Your charge is to use those two advantages to create the irreversible events and to evoke the irresistible power lines that will render the papal office useless to the Nameless Other and deliver it into the hands of the servitors of the Prince.”
It remained only for Clatterbuck to fill his associates in on the plans designed to link the bishops of Europe to the interests of the European Community. One of the firm’s talented younger men, Clatterbuck emplaned – Paul Thomas Gladstone – was to be installed in the powerful post of Secretary-General to the Commissioners of the EC. Gladstone’s brother, Fr. Christian Thomas Gladstone, would serve as the Vatican link. Under close direction from Rome, and with his brother as his intimate tie to the Commissioners, Father Gladstone would lead the bishops into professional cooperation with the policies and aims of the EC.
Nicholas Clatterbuck concluded his briefing by emphasizing one final point. Both the EC initiative and the Strasbourg alliance depended for the moment on the reliability of His Eminence Cardinal Cosimo Maestroianni. Father Christian Gladstone was to be his creature. And, while it was true that the soon-to-be-retired Secretary of State had been cultivated by Cyrus Benthoek as a special friend, it was also true that Benthoek was not a member of the Concilium. Since Benthoek was not privy to such a high level of intelligence, it followed that his judgment of the Cardinal’s probity and reliability was not to be trusted as final. Even ordinary prudence dictated, therefore, that one of their number should check the Cardinal out personally.
That much agreed by all, Dr. Ralph Channing selected himself as the man to meet with Maestroianni. “To cement this relationship,” as he expressed it, “and get things moving in high gear.”
If the Cardinal passed muster – if his consent was unquestionable and the contract with him as a working ally could be regarded as firm and reliable – then matters could proceed swiftly. Gynneth Blashford suggested that that Clatterbuck could easily arrange for Cyrus Benthoek to join the professor in paying a visit to their new Roman friend. “Friends of friends always ease the way, don’t you think?”
It was settled, then. If all went well, those in Rome who had reached out for help in securing radical change at the topmost level of power would get more than most of them bargained for.