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THE DOUBLE LIFE OF
JAMES BRANDON45
standthereasonforthecrisesthatperiodicallyarise
intheworld-political,economic,orsocial-thatseem
tooccurwithoutanyspecificcause .Iwantedabove
alltoknowwhoaretherealrulersoftheworld
pullingthestringsfrombehindthescenes .
"Youwonderwhatsetmeonthistrack ? Well,it
waspartlyafellowImetinVienna,amanwhohad
oncebeenaCommunistandmixedwithallthe'Reds'
inLondonandNewYork
.Hetoldmehewentinto
itmoreoutofaspiritofenquirythanfromanysettled
convictions
.Hesimplywantedtofindoutifthere
wasanythinginit,andcameatlasttotheconclusion
that Communismwasnottherealthing,
that,inaword,
therewassomethingbehinditallhecouldnever
discover .Thatwaswhatsetmethinking,andI
determinedtofindoutallIcouldabouttheoriginsof
themovementthatwasconvulsingthewholecivilised
world .SoIbegantoread
.Duringtheyearsthat
followedonthewarItravelledfromcitytocity,
readinginallthegreatlibrariesofEurope-inParis,
inBerlin,inRome,inPrague-andatthesametime
talkingtoeveryoneImetinrestaurants,cafes,or
railwaytrains .It'samazinghowmuchinformation
onecanpickupinthatway ."
" Goodheavens,oldman,doyoutalkallthese
languages ? "interposedKavanagh .
" Oh,well,IwasbroughtupinGermany,yousee,
soIcouldpassasaGermanquiteeasily .FrenchI
knewofcourse-hadaFrenchgovernessasakid .
Butitmeantmuggingupafewothers . Russian,
Polish,Spanish,andsoon .Nobrainsrequiredfor
that-thousandsofwaitersdoit
.AfterawhileItook
uppaintingagain,whichmadeanexcellentexcusefor
movingfromoneplacetoanother-sittingaboutat
46
THE SECRETOFTHEZODIAC
streetcornersorinvillagesquaresandgettinginto
talkwithpassers-by .Noonesuspectsanartistof
anyulteriorpurpose .
" Iwaslucky,too,inhavingaperfectlypriceless
servantcalledRigby thefellowwhoopensthedoor
whenyoucomehere .Hehasanextraordinaryflair
forsleuthwork,and,ashe'shalfFrenchandwas
aprisonerinGermany,he'saprettygoodlinguist .
PickedupsomeItalian,too,whenIwaspaintingin
Venice.
" Well,RigbyandIhadallsortsofadventures
together,andwhenIcamebackatlasttoEnglandI'd
gotthehangofthewholethinginmymind .Then
IcameintotouchwithsomeoftheSecretService
people-excellentfellows,mostofthem,butbound
byroutine .Atthesametime,theyhadsourcesof
informationinaccessibletome-GoodLordIwhat
revelationstheycouldmakeifonlythey'dgothrough
someoftheiroldfilesandtherecordsinGovernment
officesforthelastfiftyorhundredyearsIButit's
nobody'sbusinesstodothat,asIsaid-it'sonlythe
lastfortnightthatcounts .Ishouldn'tbesurprised
ifsomeofthemostimportantdocumentshadgone
longagointothedepartmentalwaste-paperbasketI
They'venoideaofthevalueofalotoftheirstuff .
Duringthepastfiveyearswhilstwe'veworkedinco-
operation-forIkeepintouch-I'veseenreportsthat
meantnothingtothem,butwhichfrommypointof
viewwereabsolutelypriceless
."
" Inthatcase,"saidKavanagh, " it'sprettydreadful
tothinkofallthisinformationnotbeingutilised ."
" Publicity'sofcoursethelastthingtheywant .
TheirinformationisonlyfortheirDepartments,not
forthebenefitoftheworld .ThePresscanmisleadthe
THE DOUBLE LIFE OFJAMES BRANDON47
countrytoanyextentandtheSecretServicelieslow
andsaysnothing . It'snottheirbusinesstoenlighten
publicopinion .That'swherethefurtherdifference
betweentheirworkandminecomesin ."
" Thenwhatusedoyoumeantomakeofitinthe
end,Jimmy ? "
" ImeantogoonworkinguntilI'vebeenableto
buildupawholeconsecutivetheorywhichwillexplain
agreatdealthat'shappeningintheworldto-day.
AndwhenI'vedonethatandthelastbitofevidence
hasbeencollected,Imeantogiveitthewidest
publicity.TillthatmomentcomesI'vegottolielow
andmaintainthestrictestsecrecy ."
Iunderstand .Butyou'vetakenonagigantic
task .Isitreallypossible ? Whendoyouexpectto
getdone-ifever ? "
"Whocansay? Therearelinksstillmissing,links
thatmaytakeyearstofind .Thegreatproblemthat
occupiesmenightanddayistheidentityoftheindi-
vidualsbehindthemovement .Doyourememberwhat
Rathenausaid : 'Threehundredmen,allacquainted
witheachother,controltheeconomicdestinyofthe
Continent '? Butwhatabouttwelvemenwhocontrol
thedestiny,notonlyeconomic,ofthewholeworld ? "
" Youthinktherearetwelve ? "
"
I'mnearlysureofit .Butmoreofthatanother
time-it'salongstory .Still,perhapswhatI'vetold
youto-nightmayhelpyoutounderstandwhatyou're
upagainst .Yourealisealreadythatthingsaren't
whattheyseem,thatenteringpoliticallifeisn'tplain
sailing,andthat,asyousaid,thestrongestopposition
youmeetwithcomesfromyourownside . You've
foundout,too,thatBolshevismisn'tawarofthe
Have-notsagainsttheHaves,aplottodoawaywith
48

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
allCapitalism-otherwisethewholeCapitalistworld
wouldhaveorganisedaunitedfrontagainstitand
nippeditinthebudatthebeginning ."

Yes,that'sexactlytheconclusionI'dcometo
."
" Whichofcoursemakesyouverydangerousto
theotherside . PeoplelikeGeneralBrighornandthe
cartoonistsinthepopularPresswhorepresentthe
Bolshevistregimeasbeingrunbyalotofhairy
mouj iks aredoingitnoharm . Onthecontrary,
they'rehelpingitbykeepingupthefictionthat,
howevermisguided,it's a genuineworking-class
movement . Butonceyousay,orevenfindout,
anythingaboutwhat'sreallyatthebackofitall,you
candoitenormousdamage .That'swhyyoufind
yourselfupagainstit . Andthat'swhyIdetermined
toletyouintomysecret ."
.Kavanaghsatstillandthoughthard . Afterafew
momentsheturnedtoBrandon,whowasobviously
movedbytheintensityofhisownfeelingstowards
hisself-imposedtaskandwasstaringmoodilyoutof
thewindow.
I'mverygladyou'vetoldmethis,Jimmy,"he
said. " Ibelievewecouldhelpeachother . All
you'vedescribedexplainsagreatdealIcouldn't
understandbefore ."
AndtohimselfKavanaghadded : "Itexplains
Jimmy,too .
NowIseewhyhetalksinthewayhe
does-ifhe'sbeenreadingforyearsinthelibraries
ofEurope,nowonderhetalksratherlikeabook ."
Aloudhesaid

Isupposeyoumusthaveatremendouscollection
ofdatasomewhere ? "
" Ofcourse .
Liketoseeit ? Comeupstairsthen ."
Brandonledthewayuptoadooronthesecond
THE
DOUBLELIFEOFJAMESBRANDON49
floorofthehouseandopeneditwithaYalekey .
Insidewasaroomcompletelylinedwithsteelshelves
andcupboards ; theformerfilledwithbooksandpam-
phletsinanumberofdifferentlanguages ; thelatter,
resemblinglargesafes,providedwithspeciallocks .
Openingoneofthese,Brandon,disclosedapileof
documents,neatlyarrangedandlabelled .
" Thecollectionoffourteenyears,"hesaid,pointing
totherowofthesesteelcupboards . " Notes,reports,
photographs,dossiersofpeopleeverywhere-allco-
ordinatedbythis"-andheindicatedavastcard
indexalsocontainedinlockedsteeldrawers .
"NooneexceptRigbyisallowedintothisroom,"
heexplained
. " ThisiswhereIsitquietlyanddo
myrealwork
."
" Likeahumanspiderinhisweb1 " laughed
Kavanagh ." Spinninganetworkthatreachesall
overtheworld ."
" Yes,butunfortunatelyfrail,likearealspider's
web-madeonlyoftheories .Whatcanitdoagainst
thegoldenwebspunbythemonstroushumanspiders
thatgoverntheworld ? "
4
CHAPTERIV
AN
EVENTFULWEEK-END
AFTER thisKavanagh'slifebegantotakeonmore
colour.Uptillthenightofthedinner-partyatthe
HouseofCommonsithadseemedtohimstrangely
drabforallitsoutwardgaiety .Thepeoplehehad
metinSocietywerenomorethanshadows,orrather
animatedpuppetsallrepeatingthesamecatchphrases
andmachine-madeopinionsturnedoutforthemby
politiciansorthePress .Butnowwhenhisbrainwas
inneedofexercisehehadonlytoturnintothehousein
SmithSquareandlaunchintolongdiscussionswith
JimmyBrandononthemostenthrallingworld-
problems .InothermoodshelookedupRosamund
andtookhertotheplay,theopera,oruptheriver .
Andthoughshestillmystifiedhim,hefelthewas
graduallygettingnearertoher,breakingdownthe
wallthatseemedtostandbetweenthem
.
Oneafternoonhecamebacktohisroomstofind
TomCragg, M.P ., onhisdoorstep .
"
Youtoldmetolookyouup,Maj or,"hesaid, " so
hereIam ."
"Yes,comeinandhaveadrinkandsmoke . I'm
gladtoseeyou,"saidKavanagh,leadingthewayin .
"HowdoyouthinkthingsaregoingintheHouse? "
hewentonastheysatdownandlitup .
ButCraggwasnotcommunicative .Neveraman
ofmanywords,heseemedto-daytohavebecome
unaccountablysilent . Kavanaghbegantowonder
50
AN EVENTFULWEEK-END

51
whyhehadcomeatallifhecoulddonothingbutpull
athispipeandsay " That'sright " toeverything .
Coulditbethathewasdiffidentofopeningouttohis
one-timesuperiorofficer ? Kavanaghdidhisbest
toputhimathisease,talkingofthepoliticalsituation
andtheneedformenwithcouragetofacethedangers
threateningthecountry .
" That'sright,"Craggsaidagain,takinghispipeout
ofhismouthtospeakandinstantlyputtingitback
againassoonashehademittedhishabitualrej oinder .
"
Wellnow,Cragg,tellmewhatyoureallythink
aboutthings,"Kavanaghsaidatlastalmostindes-
peration,determinedtosaysomethingthatcouldnot
bemetbythisinevitablereply .
ButthistimeCraggwasperfectlysilent,keeping
hispipeinhismouthandlookingstraightinfrontof
himoutofthewindow .Thensuddenlyheremoved
thepipe,tappeditout,putitbackinhispocket,and
leantforward .
" Lookhere,Maj or,"hesaid
. " IfIsaysomething,
youwon'tletitgetbacktotheParty
? "
" TotheLabourParty ?
Ofcoursenot ."
"
Wellthen,it'slikethis .I'mafraid."
" Afraidofwhat ? " Kavanaghaskedinsurprise .
" Youusen'ttobeafraidofanything."
" Oh,notformyself,Maj or
; fortheoldcountry .
WhenIwentintoParliamentIthoughtIcoulddomy
bittohelpit .ButIfindIcan't .There'ssome-
thing" hepaused .
"
You'reupagainstittoo ? Likemanyofus,"
Kavanaghadded .
" That'sj ustit .Upagainstit .AndIdon'tknow
whatitis
.There'ssomethingbehinditallIcan't
makeout ."
52

THE SECRETOFTHEZODIAC
" BehindtheLabourParty ? "
" Aye.That'sit .Somethingpushingit-from
behind
.Severalofusfeelthat,butwedaren'tsay
anything ."
" Ithinkwe'reallinthesameboat,Cragg .There's
somethingbehindallParties .It'soddyoushould
feelittoo ."
" Well,that'swhatIwantedtosaytoyou,"Cragg
said,gettingupandholdingoutahornyhand . "
Now
I'llbegoing.Gladtohavehadthistalkwithyou,
Maj or ."
Andwithanodhewenthisway .
" It'sinterestingheshouldhavesaidthat,"Brandon
remarkedwhenKavanaghtoldhimoftheconversation
.
" I'vealwaysfeltthatifonecouldconvinceany
politiciansofwhat'sgoingoninthebackground,it
wouldbesomeoftheLabourPartybackbenchers
.
They'renearertorealitiesthantheConservativesor
Liberals .GetCraggtocomehereonedayandbring
someofhispalswhothinkashedoes
.I'dliketohave
atalkwiththem
."
Kavanaghhadnodifficultyinarrangingthis
.Five
LabourPartybackbenchers,includingthreeminers,
ledbyCragg,assembledoneeveninginBrandon's
studio .Butthemeetingledtonothingdefinite
.
Therewerethesamesilenceswhilstthemensmoked
anddrankcopiousdraughtsofbeerandanswered
" That'sright
"
tonearlyeverything .EvenBrandon's
skilfulquestioningcouldelicitlittlemorethanCragg
hadsaidonhisfirstvisittoKavanagh-thatthey
weredisappointed,hadhopedtobeabletodosome-
thingforthecountry,tohelptheirmates,andsoon,
butwerealwaysside-trackedontosomethingdifferent
-foreignquestionsandsoon .Thereseemedtobe
AN EVENTFULWEEK-END

53
somethingbehinditall ; theyallfeltthat,butcouldn't
saywhatitwas .
" We'renotouttohelptheRussiansortheGermans,"
saidone, " we'reouttohelpBritishworkers ."
" AndallthistalkoftheGermanfellowMarx,"
saidanother
.
"Deadlongago,isn'the? " headded,
turningtoBrandon .
" Yes
.KarlMarxdiedsomewhereabout18 8 3 ."
"
Thenwhat'shetous
? "
answeredthefirstman .
" Let'sgetonwithourownj ob,that'swhatIsays ."
Thisremarkmetwithachorusofagreement .Then
anothersilencefellonthem .
" That'stheworstoftheBritishworkingman,"
Brandonsaidaftertheyhadgone, " assoundandhonest
asyoulike,butquiteignorantofpoliticsandcompletely
inarticulate .Thesoundertheyare,thelessthey'll
talk .It'sonlythewrong'unswho'vegotthegift
ofthegab ."
" Idon'tbelievethey'vegotanythingmoretosay,"
saidKavanagh ."Thesefellowsj ustfeelintheirbones
there'ssomequeerpowerbehindthem,butcan'tunder-
standwhatitis ."
" Andhaven'ttheinitiativetofindoutortodo
anythingiftheydidfindout .I'mafraidweshan't
makeanythingoutofthem,Terence ."
" No .It'sapity,forthey'reindeadlyearnest .
Takepoliticsmoreseriouslythanourpeople .
" Yes,it'stheirwholelife .Noweek-endsandgolf
totaketheirmindsoff ."
" Thatremindsme,"saidKavanagh, " I'vebeen
askedforaweek-endbyMrs .MurrayBatemantomeet
thePrimeMinister .ShallIgo? "
" Byallmeans .Mrs
.MurrayBateman'smovements
arealwaysworthfollowing ."
54

THE
SECRETOF THE ZODIAC
" And I suppose I oughtn't to miss a
chance of
meetingParbury,asI'mgoingtostand ."
ButperhapsthefactthatRosamundDarewasto
beinthepartyweighedmorethandutyinKavanagh's
mind .
Accordingly,FridayafternoonfoundhimatWater-
loo,withhisluggage,tryingtospotanewspaperboy
withalateeditionwhichmightbeexpectedtogive
theresultoftheMiddlesbroughby-election
.Middles-
broughwasakeypositionfortheConservativeParty,
anduptothe
1929
electionhadbeenregardedasan
absolutelysafeseat,butthemillgirls'votehadseriously
loweredtheTorymaj ority,andeventhePartyorgan-
isershadshownsomeconcernlestthistimeitshould
passoutoftheirhandsaltogether .
Ah !
Therewasanewspaperboy .

Gotalateedition
? "

Getitinaminute,sir,there'sonej ustcomingin ."


Thetrainwasmovingoutastheboythrustthe
paperinatthewindow
. Kavanaghglancedhastily
atthestoppress .
" ByJove,we'velostit ! " hesaidtohimself .
Yes,
thereitwasinblackandwhite-Labourmaj ority
2,ioo,andArchbold,oneofthebestmenintheCon-
servativeParty,downandout .Itwasatragedy .
Kavanaghfeltimpelledtouttersomeexpletive,but
theonlyotheroccupantofthecarriagewasasoldierly
lookingmanofaboutsixtywhowasapparentlycom-
posinghimselftosleep
.Puttingdownhispaper,
Kavanaghsatlookingoutofthewindowatthepeace-
fulscenesofcountrylifethatflashedpasthiseyes .
Happy,yes,stillhappyEngland
! Haymakersen-
campedincircleswithheartyteasspreadoutbefore
them
; rosychildrenrollinginthehay
; gardensfilled
ANEVENTFULWEEK-END

55
withgayflowers ; meninwhiteflannelsplaying
cricketonthevillagegreen ; motors ; farm-carts
bicyclesthrongingalongtheroadsbetweengreen
hedges-whyshouldtherebepeopleanxioustodestroy
thiskindoldcountry ? Ofcourseinthebackground,
andinthebigcities,therewasthemiseryofwhichTom
Cragghadspoken-therewerethemountingfiguresof
unemployment-yetwhatwerethesebutbadpatches
inafairgardenthatmustbedoneawaywithincourse
oftime ? Kavanaghglowedtothinkthathehimself
mighthavesomehandinthecreationofabetter-a
stillbetter-England .
Afterawhileheturnedagain,tolookathistravelling
companion . Whowashe ? Somehowhisfeatures
seemedvaguelyfamiliar
.
Wherehadheseenhim
before ? Surelyonaplatform-atsomepublicmeet-
ing ? Suddenlyitallcamebacktohim . Ofcourse .
HewasGeneralBrighorn,PresidentoftheBritish
DreadnoughtsLeague,whohadspokenatthegreat
Q ueen'sHallmeetingin1925thatwastoinaugurate
thenewmovementtosweepBritaincleanofBol-
shevism .KavanaghrememberedhowtheGeneral's
entryhadstirredallthatvastaudiencesothatitroseas
onemantohailhisadventontheplatformandagainto
roar " He'saj ollygoodfellow " asheresumedhisseat
afterhisaddress .Thatwasyearsago . Whathad
happenedtotheLeaguenow? Wasthereanything
leftofthatgreatmovementitpromisedtobecome
exceptadustyofficeinVictoriaStreet,aharassed
secretaryeternallysendingoutappealsforfunds,and
ananaemicclerkwhohandedoutpamphletswitha
listlessair.AndtherewasalsoGeneralBrighorn
slumberinginthecornerofafirst-classrailwaycarriage .
" Doesn'tevenbothertolookatapaper1 " thought
56

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
Kavanaghdespairingly .
Buthewaswrong. After
awhiletheGeneralopenedhiseyes,andtakingupa
copyofthe DailyTelegraph, proceededtoturnthepages,
foldedthembackwards,andsettleddowntoread .
" Good . He'ssittingupandtakingnotice .Better
still,he'sactuallytakingnotes ." FortheGeneral,
afteranimpatientsearchinsevenpockets,haddrawn
outapencilandwasmakingcarefulmarksonthepaper
heheldupbeforehim
. Kavanaghlookedathimhope-
fullyandcaughthiseyefixedonhim
.
Shouldhe
speak? ButtheGeneralforestalledhim
" Whatisacanineailmentthatishalfapudding
? "
hesaiddreamily .Andhepointedtothehalf-filled-in
squareofacrosswordpuzzle .
" Sothat'swhathewasdoing ! " thoughtKavanagh .
" Itwouldbefunnyifitwerenotsotragic . Butitis
funny,"headdedtohimself,forhewasnotanIrishman
fornothing,andheburstintoashoutoflaughter .
TheGenerallookedastonished .
" Excuseme,sir,"saidKavanagh, " butyourques-
tionreallyrathertookmebysurprise ! "
" Myquestion ? Ididn'taskyouanyquestion ! "
" Youaskedmewhatwas ` acanineailmentthat
washalfapudding .' Iconcludeit'saclueinyour
crossword ? "
" Dear,dear . DidIreally? Imusthavebeen
thinkingoutloud . It'sawayIhavesometimes.
Well,as I did askyou,perhapsyoucansupplythe
answer
? "
"Certainly . Icandothatinone . Mange,of
course."
" Mange? Howdoyoumakethatout? Ah,
blancmange
.
Of course. Halfapudding. Yes,yes .
Veryquickonyourpart . Youseemtobeacrossword
ANEVENTFULWEEK-END

57
expert . Doyoudomuchofit ?
No . Ican'tsayIdo,exceptwhenayoungnephew
ofminecomestospendahalf-holidaywithme
. Fact
is,I'mstandingforSouthMershire,soI'veagood
manyotherthingstothinkof-myname'sKavanagh,
bytheway
.ThisisabadthingaboutMiddlesbrough,"
headded .
" Middlesbrough ? HavewelostMiddlesbrough
? "
" Yes ; withadropoffivethousandvotes .
The
LabourPartyareinwithamaj orityofovertwo
thousand ."
" Dearme,that'sunfortunate .WhatIalwayssay
is,thatwhatwe'reupagainstis apathy
. That'sthe
trouble-apathy . Onefeelsiteverywhere
."
Kavanaghsmiled . "
HowaretheBritishDread-
noughtsgettingon,General
? Yousee,Iknowwho
youare .
IwasatthatmeetingintheQ ueen'sHall
nineyearsagoandheardyouspeak
. Itpromisedto
beafinemovement ."
GeneralBrighornsighed
. "Ahyes,butthetrouble
hasalwaysbeenthefunds . Ifwecouldhaveraised
themoney-"
" Ithoughtyouraisedagooddeal ."
" No,no.Amerematterofthirtythousandpounds .
Whatcanyoudowiththat ? Now,ifwecouldonly
raisehalfamillionwemightdosomething
. Perhaps
youcouldhelpusinthisway,Mr
.-er-er."
"Maj orKavanagh ."AndscentingthattheGeneral
wasabouttotouchhimforachequewhichhewasnot
intheleastinclinedtocontribute,headdedhastily
" Doesn'titratherdependonwhatone does withthe
moneyonecollects
? "
"Perhaps,perhaps,"GeneralBrighornanswered
impatiently.
Hehadevidentlyhadenoughofthe
58

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
subj ectandwaslongingtogetbacktohiscrossword .
" AreyougoingbyanychancetostaywiththeBate-
mans? " heaskedabruptly .
Yes ."
Ah,thenweshallhavefurtheropportunitiesfor
conversation ! "
AndnoddinggeniallytheGeneral
tookuphispaperagainandcontinuedfillinginthe
squares.Thatword "
mange " hadenabledhimto
finishalltheright-handcomer,andbythetimethe
traindrewupatLingfordStationonlyonemoreword
wasneededtomakethepuzzlecomplete .
Mrs .MurrayBateman'ssmallhouse-partyturnedout
toconsistofnolessthantwentyguests,including
besidesthePrimeMinister,thenewGermanCharge
d'Affaires,LadyCarolineWentlock-aleadingCon-
servative hostess-and several other prominent
membersoftheParty . Mostofthemhadarrivedby
carandwerefinishingteawhenKavanaghandGeneral
Brighornwereshownintothelounge-hall,whereMrs .
MurrayBatemansatensconcedbehindalargesilverurn
.
Aftergreetinghishostess,Kavanaghlookedround
quicklyforRosamund . Ah ! thereshewas,dressed
inacoolsummerfrock,droppingbitsofcakeintothe
mouthofasmallwire-hairedterrierthat,withthe
saintlyexpressionofhiskind,satgazingupintoher
face.
"SoyouseeI'veobeyedthecall
ofdutytomeetthe
PrimeMinister,"Kavanaghsaid,sittingdownbeside
her.
" Ihopeyou'll,berewarded . Mr .Parbury,"she
wenton,droppinghervoicediscreetly, "isinhismost
rusticmood .He'sbeenroundthehomefarmalready ."
Kavanaghlookedacrosstheroomtowherethegreat
ANEVENTFULWEEK-END

59
manstood,lightinghispipe,onthehearthrug,sur-
roundedbyarespectfulcircle .
" Ah,Alfred,"hewassayingtohishost,
" you're
luckytobeabletostaydownhereaslongasyoulike-
nohurryingbacktotownforyouonMondaymorning
.
There'snoplaceliketheSussexWeald,Ialwayssay
.
Ifonlyonecouldsettledownhereinpeaceandwatch
thesheepalldaybrowsingonthehill-sides! "
" Let'sgooutintothegarden,"saidKavanaghto
Rosamund,whogotuplanguidly .
Togetherthey
wanderedalongthesmoothgrasspathsbetweenblazing
herbaceousborders .
" TheP
.M.'sright,"Kavanaghsaidafterapause,
"
thecountryistheplaceatthistimeofyear ."
"Doyouthinkso? I'dratherbeinLondon ."
"Forsociety ?
Ididn'tknowyouweresofondofit ."
" No,notforsociety . But"
shehesitated,then
saidhurriedly
: "Thecountryleavesonetoomuch
timetothink .
Onemusthaveamindperfectlyatrest
toenj oypeaceandquiet ."
Andseeingaquestion
springingtoKavanagh'slips,sheaddedwithalaugh
"LikeMr
.Parbury,forexample! Hismindalways
liesonasofaofcomfortablethoughts
."
" Yes,andhardlyeverputsitsfeettotheground . I
wonderwhetherhe'dreallyliketowatchsheepall
day ? "
" No .
Ithinkevenhewouldbeboredbytheend
ofanhourortwo . Butit'sthethingj ustnowfor
politiciansofallPartiestomakeoutthattheirreal
interestsareeitherruralorliteraryorartistic-any-
thingratherthanpolitical . Theybear` theburdenof
office 'fromapuresenseofdutywhilstyearningallthe
whiletofleefrompubliclifetosomecalmretreatwhere
theycanpursuetheirrealavocationsinpeace ."
6o

THE SECRET OF THE ZODIAC


"
Theoldposeofmusicalcomedystars ! " laughed
Kavanagh. "
Theyalwayslikedtohavethemselves
photographedforthesocietypapersinsunbonnets,
makinghayorweedingtheirgardenasapiquantcon-
trasttotheartificialityoftheirstageappearances ."
"
Well,nowthefashionhasspreadtothepolitical
world
.Haven'tyounoticedthePressisalways
featuringtheHomeSecretaryfondlinghisfavourite
pig,ortheLeaderoftheOppositionasaRedIndian
ataLabourPartyfancy-dressball
? "
"
Isupposetheideaistomakethepublicfeelthese
exaltedbeingsarehumanafterall-j ustmenlike
themselves,lovablecreaturesatheart
! "
"
Yes,andthatit'sreallyverykindofthemtobother
aboutaffairsofStatewhenthey'dsomuchratherbe
doingsomethingpleasanter
."
"
Still,itwouldberatherniceforachangetohave
aPrimeMinisterwholikedbeingoneinsteadoflonging
tobeafarmer
.Theremustbelotsoffarmerswho'd
liketobePrimeMinister .
Itseemsratherawasteof
opportunity
."
Thesameeveninginthesmoking-roomatcocktail
timeKavanaghwasintroducedtohisChief
.
"GladtowelcomeyoutotheParty,Maj or
Kavanagh,"Mr
.Parburysaid,extendinghishand
genially . " IhopethingsaregoingwellinSouth
Mershire ? "
" Yes,sir
.Onlythere'sagooddealofheadwayto
makeup
.Thepresentmemberhasletthingsgoto
sleepabit,whilsttheSocialistcandidateisalways
active
.Hewasaconscientiousobj ectorinthewar,
bytheway ."
"
Ah,well !
Butbecarefultoavoidpersonalities .
Iunderstandyou'reabitofaDie-hard,Kavanagh .
AN EVENTFUL WEEK-END

6i
Soletmegiveyouawordofadvice .Don'tbecarried
awaybyyourenthusiasm
.Cultivatetheteamspirit .
LearntosubordinateyourprivatefeelingstoParty
principles .LoyaltytoParty,thatcomesfirstwith
us
.Andofcourse,loyaltytoyourleaders . .Beready
tobeguidedbythem,totrusttheirj udgment
."
Kavanaghlistenedrespectfully .
Itwasevident
thathewastobemerelyacoginthePartymachine,
apatientrotatingcogonthewheelturnedbythe
masterhandofNelsonParbury .
"
Butdon'tyouthink,sir,"heventuredtosayat
last,
" thatSocialismisadangertobefought
? "
"ExtremeSocialism,yes .
Butwiththemore
moderateSocialistswehavemanyideasincommon .
Wemustavoid,aboveall,antagonisingthem ."
JustwhatOscarFranklinhadsaid ! Strangehow
thesamephrasesseemedtobecomecurrentcoinin
politicalcircles
. Itwasessential,however,toavoid
antagonisingMr
.Parbury,soKavanaghcontinued
tolistenmeeklywhilstthePrimeMinisterdiscoursed
inbeautifullanguageontheachievementsofthe
LeagueofNations,theneedforanunderstanding
withSovietRussia,andthelegitimateaspirations
oftheIndiansforself-government .
" Wehavegottomarchwiththetimes,"heended
impressively ."
Wecan'tsettheclockback.We
haveto realise
thatthedayhasgonebyforusto
dictate ."
"
Thenyoudon'tthink,sir,thatthereisanydanger
ofourbeingdictatedto
? "
"
No,no,"Mr .Parburyansweredwithatouchof
impatience ; " andifweare,wemusttakeitingood
part .Wecannotarrogatetoourselvestheroleof
absoluteautocrats ."
6z

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
Itwasevidentthathewasgettingtired . The
dressing-bellprovidedawelcomediversion .
TheConservativeset-backatMiddlesbroughdid
nothingtodampthespiritsoftheBatemans'house-
party,thenewsintheeveningpaperbroughtby
Kavanaghhadevokedonlyafewpassingcomments-
"Itwasunfortunateofcourse" ; " Still,Archboldwas
ratheraturbulentkindoffellow,veryunpopular
withtheOpposition ; andthenTurnbull,theLabour
man,wasagoodsort,itwouldbej ustaswelltohave
himintheHouse,"etc .
Kavanagh,fallingunderthespellofthishappy,
carelessatmosphere,beganbythenextmorningto
wonderathisownenthusiasmforapoliticalcareer .
Wasn'titreallyratherfoolish,afterall ? Whyshould
oneworryabouttariffsortheindustrialcrisisorthe
LeagueofNationswhenthislazysummerworldlay
opentoone? Astopropaganda,theveryword
seemedponderousandabsurd .
Whatwasthereto
propagandagainst?
Trees,birds,andflowersseemed
toanswer : " Nothing ! "
TherewasthePrimeMinisteronSaturdayafter-
noon,withthewholeweightofthenation'sdestinies
onhisshoulders,playingcricketwiththeHouse
elevenagainstthevillage,andbeinghappilybowled
outbythebaker'sboy . AstoGeneralBrighom,
evencrosswordpuzzlesappearedtoprovidetoo
greatamentaleffort,andthe DailyTelegraph
lay
unopenedonhiskneesashedozedunderthecedars
afterlunchwithahandkerchiefoverhisheadto
keepofftheflies .
Mrs.MurrayBatemanwasanexcellenthostessand
lefthergueststoseekamusementorreposeasthey
pleased. ButfindingKavanaghaloneinacornerof
ANEVENTFULWEEK-END

63
thelawnsheinsistedontakinghimroundtherose-
gardenandtellinghimallaboutthemarvellousnew
systemofphilosophyshehadj ustdiscoveredofwhich
acertainCountessZapraksywhohadrecentlyarrived
inLondonappearedtobethechiefexponent .
" Youreally must comeandhearher,she'ssimply
wonderful . I'mhavinghertospeakatmyhouseone
afternoon .WillyoucomeifIsendyouacard? "
" Well-philosophy'snotmuchinmyline .Inwhat
doestheCountess'swonderfulnessconsist ? "
" Oh,Idon'tknow,it'sdifficulttoexplain,you'll
j ust feel itwhenyoumeether . She'ssuchamarvel-
louspersonality . Shesimplyradiatesthelife-force ."
"Soundsmostinvigorating,"Kavanaghagreed
heartily ; " I'dlovetocomeandbegalvanised ."
AfaintflickerofannoyancepassedoverMrs .Bate-
man'scountenance .Shewasnotaccustomedtohave
herdiscoveriestreatedlightly .
"Ah,youmustnotcomeinamockingspirit,"she
said, " oryouwilllearnnothing
! "
"Indeed,no . Iwillcomeinallhumility,prepared
tositattheCountess'sfeet-metaphorically,atleast ."
AndwiththatMrs
.Batemanhadtobecontent .
AtthemomentKavanaghhadnointentionof
acceptingherinvitation ; " cults " andprophets
ofnewgospelsheldlittleattractionforhim,butto
acceptseemedthelineofleastresistance ; itwastoo
hottostruggle . Besides,histhoughtsweremainly
occupiedwithRosamund .
Somewhattohissurprise,Kavanaghhadfelthis
heartbeatingquiteuncomfortablywhenhefoundher
atthetea-tableinthehallonhisarrival .Hewondered
whatitwasthatmadeRosamundsodifferentfrom
othergirls . Ofcourseshewasbeautiful-thesmall
64

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
headwithitsburnishedwavesofred-brownhair,the
palebutluminousskin,theredcurvesofherlips,
wereallcharmingenough,butitwastheveiledlook
inthebiggreyeyes,thelanguorinhermovements
andinherlowmusicalvoicethatparticularlyfascinated
him . Hewonderedwhetheritwasacaseofthe
attractionofcontrasts-hewasessentiallyanout-
doorman,whilsttherewassomethingexoticabout
Rosamund-shewaslikeagardenia-yes,thatwasit,
abeautifulwhitegardeniasetindark-greenleaves .
Hewasgladtohavefoundasimiletosuither .
OnSundayeveningastrangethinghappened .
Theywereouttogetherinapunt,andRosamundhad
insistedontakingthepolewhilstKavanaghlay
backamongstthecushionswatchingherslender
figurebendingtoandfro . Suddenlyastheypassed
undersomeoverhangingtreesabranchcaughtinthe
neckofherdressandtoreitoffhershoulder
.
Isay,hasithurtyou ? "Kavanaghexclaimed,
leaningforward,foronthesoftwhitefleshared
markhadflashedout .
ButRosamundansweredalmostangrily : " Oh
no,there'snothingthematter-don'tbother,Terence ."
Rosamund,there is somethingthematter ! "
Kavanaghpersisted,hiseyesfixedontheplace,and
althoughRosamundthenhastilycoveredituphe
.had
timetonoticethatthiswasnofreshwoundmadeby
thej aggedendofadroopingbough,butadullred
scarintheformofacirclewithadotinthecentre
whichseemedtohavebeenbrandedintothepoint
ofhershoulder .
Seeinghisbewilderment,Rosamundsaidwithan
attemptatunconcern : " That'sanoldmark ; it's
beenthereforages ."
AN EVENTFULWEEK-END

65
" Butwhatisit ? Itlookslike-"
" Don'taskmeaboutit,"sheinterrupted,andhe
sawshehadturnedpale-ahuntedlookhadcomeinto
hereyes . "
Don'taskmeaboutit,"sherepeated
tremulously .AndatthequiverinhervoiceKavanagh,
cuttotheheartandhardlyknowingwhathewasdoing,
puthisarmsroundherandcried
" But,darling,don'tyouunderstand,Iloveyou !
Tellmewhatitisthatmakesyoulooksometimesso
sad-tellmeeverything,Rosamund ."
Shepushedhimgentlyaway . " Ican'ttellyou .
Andyoumustn'tloveme,Terence .Idon'twant
love ."
" Whynot ? "
" BecauseIdon'twanttofeelanything,tohave
anyemotions .Idreademotions ."
" Ah,you'vecaredforsomeone ! "
" Yes,once-longago .Butthat'sallovernow ."
"
Ishedead ? "
Kavanaghcouldnothelptrying
todiscoverwhetherhehadalivingrival
.
Rosamundansweredwithafaintshudder : " No,I
wishhewas ! "
Then,readingKavanagh'sthought,
sheadded : "
ButI'veputhimoutofmythoughts,
I'vedonewithallthat-forever ! "
SilencefellonthemasRosamundpuntedslowlyto
thelanding-stageandtheymadetheirwaybackto
thehousethroughthedarkeninggarden .
Afterdinner,astheysattogetherinacornerofthe
hall,theytalkedofKavanagh'splanofstandingfor
Parliament,andRosamund,whohadbecomeher
normalselfagain,suddenlysaid
" Lookhere,Terence,I'vehadanidea
.Iheard
yousayingatdinnerthatyouwantedasecretaryfor
yourpoliticalwork ."
5
66

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
" SoIdo . D'youknowofone ? "
"Whatkinddoyouwant? "
" Oh,capable,methodical,nottooplain-headedif
possible . Still,notavamp ."
" Well,doyouthinkI'ddo ? "
"You,Rosamund ? "Kavanaghsaidinsurprise
.
"
Youdon'tmeanit?
"
"Whynot ? Iwantaj ob."
"SomehowIcan'timagineyouhammeringatype-
writer.
Itseemsabsurd,"demurredKavanagh
.
" Oh,butyoudon'tknowhowIcanwork
. Iwas
atcollege,yousee . Dotakemeon,Terence,"she
addedwithanearnestnessthatpuzzledhim .
" OfcourseIwill . I'dlovetohaveyou ."
" Good . We'llstartworkdirectlywegetbackto
London ."
Kavanaghsmiledathereagerness ; buthecouldnot
understandit . Hismindworkedonverysimplelines
wherewomenwereconcerned,andhewonderedwhy
sheshouldbesokeentobehissecretarybutnothis
wife . Well,onemustbethankfulforsmallmercies,
andperhapsintime-whoknew
?
ThenextmorningtheytravelleduptoLondonby
thesametrain,andonpartingatWaterlooRosamund
saidgaily
"
Well,then,it'sallsettled
? "
"
Certainly,asfarasI'mconcerned . Andthe
soonerwebeginthebetter ."
ButtheyhadreckonedwithoutLadyDare . Rosa-
mundwasherfavouritedaughter ; Claire,herelder,had
marriednonetoowelltwoyearsearlier,andLadyDare
hadcountedonRosamundtomakeareallybrilliant
marriage,especiallynowthattherewasnoquestionof
ANEVENTFULWEEK-END

67
hermarryingyoungPeterMarkham,towhomshehad
beenengagedsevenyearsago . Thestrangeillnessshe
hadhadatthattimewas,LadyDarefeltconvinced,as
muchtobeaccountedforbyoverworkingatcollegeas
bythesadendingtoherengagement ; whythenshould
shewanttogettoworkagaininsteadofenj oying
societylikeothergirlsofherworld ?
ButavisitfromKavanaghhadtheeffectofdisarming
LadyDarecompletely . Althoughasmuchpuzzledas
hermotherbyRosamund'scravingforwork,Kavanagh's
Celticimaginationcametohisrescue,andhefound
himselfeloquentlydepictingtheurgethatsuchagirl
asRosamundmustfeeltofindascopeforherenergies-
afterall,publicaffairsmustnowbeofinteresttoevery
thinkingmanorwoman .
Hisvoicewithitsfaint
suggestionofabrogue,hischarmingmannersand
goodlooks,hadtheireffect,andbytheendoftwenty
minutesLadyDarehadfallencompletelybeneathhis
spell.
Terence,ashisfriendssaid, " hadawaywith
him "
thatfewpeoplecouldresist .
Itwasnot,however,amerematteroffascination .
Afterall,LadyDarereasoned,herewasaman,young,
rich,andcharming,ineveryrespectamostdesirable
parti ; ifRosamundweretobeconstantlywithhim,
whoknewtowhatitmightlead ? Theconclusionwas
identicalwithKavanagh'sown . Soitwassettled .
Theverynextmorningthedoor-bellofhisflatrang,
andRosamundappearedinaneatwashingfrockof
crepedeChinewithanewleatherattachecaseinher
hand-"Q uitetheefficientsecretaryI "
asKavanagh
observedwithalaugh
.
Thenshegottoworkonhispapers,arrangingthem
inneatpiles,affixinglabels,collectingnewspaper
cuttingsfromoddcornersofhisdesk .
68

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
" Haven'tyougotabooktopastethesein ? " she
asked,holdingupabundle .
"No. Ij ustj amthemintoenvelopes,"hesaid,
pointingtoaburstingpacket .
" Well,wemustbuyabookstraightaway
.
Andyou
haven'tatypewriter,Isuppose ? "
"Lord,no . Wemustgetone ."
Itendedbytheirgoingofftogetherandspendinga
gloriousmorningatastorethatspecialisedinoffice
equipment .
Andbecausetheyreallycouldnotwait
fortheirpurchasestobedeliveredbythefirm'smotor-
van,theyreturnedatoneo'clockinataxibearing
triumphantlythelatestthingintypewriters,files,
clips,labels,andalltheparaphernaliaofareally
perfectlyequippedoffice .Whentheyhaddeposited
alltheseintherightplacesaroundthesmoking-room,
Kavanaghsaidwithasmile
" Well,that'sdone . Nowlet'sgotolunchatthe
Berkeley ! "
ButRosamundshookherhead . " No,thesecretary
doesn'tlunchwithheremployerthefirstday
. That
comeslater . Youdon'tevenknowwhetherI'msatis-
factoryyet .Imaygetthesackinaweek ."
SoKavanaghhad,tobecontentwithalonely
luncheonathisclub .
Buthewasveryhappy .Asthedayswentbyhe
marvelledmoreandmoreatthetransformationin
Rosamund
.Allherlanguorhadvanished,therewas
nolongertheveiledlookinhereyesnorthedragging
noteinhervoicethathadsointriguedhim
. Atthe
sametimetherewassomethingfeverishinherenergy,
asifshewereworkingsoasnottothink . Andsome
daysthereweredarklinesbeneathhereyesthatmade
Kavanaghwonderwhethershehadlainawakeatnight .
AN EVENTFULWEEK-END

69
SometimestheywenttogethertoBrandon's,or
BrandondroppedinatHalfMoonStreetattheendof
theday'swork.
" Funny,"hesaidtoKavanaghwhentheywerealone
together," howoneseespeoplewithouttakingthemin .
I'vemetRosamundDareatpartiesoftensincetheold
daysinthesquare,andonlythoughtofherasapretty
girl.NowofcourseIseethbre'ssomethingmore,some-
thingmuchmore .Thatgirl'sverycurious,Terence ."
"Youthinkso? Iusedtofeelthattoo-atfirst ."
" There'sbeensomethinginherlife .Ican'tthink
what
.Notsimplyanordinarylove-affair ; something
morecomplex
."
AfterawhileBrandonwenton
"It'stimeyousettleddown,youknow,andfounda
chatelaineforthatoldbarnofyours ."
"Speakforyourself,Jimmy
."
Brandonlaughedbitterly . " Mydearfellow .What
girlwouldlookatme-amanwhoneversmilesand
whosefacetakestopieces ! Besides,myworkkeeps
mealwaysonthemove-hereto-dayandgoneto-
morrow .NicesortofhusbandIshouldmake .It's
quitedifferentforyou,Terence ."
"
Well,ifRosamundwillhaveme-"andKavanagh
toldBrandonwhathadhappenedinthecountry.
Brandonlistenedsympathetically .
" Thatgirl'sallright,"hesaidslowly . " AndI
believeshecanbetrusted ."
" Canweletherintothesecretofyourwork ? "
" Notyet .Wemuststudyheralittlelongerfirst .
Butitwouldbeworthwhileputtingoutafeeler .I
haveanidea,averydistinctidea,thatsireknows
somethingaboutthelinewe'reon
.Inthatcaseshe
mightbeveryusefultous,Terence ."
CHAPTERV
THE
ZODIAC
AN incidentthatoccurredafewdayslatergavethem
therequiredopportunity. Theyhadallthreefore-
gatheredinBrandon'sstudiolateoneafternoon,when
arollofdrumssoundedfromthestreet
.Brandon
crossedtothewindowandlookedout
. ACommunist
processionwasapproaching,composedoftheusual
crowdofdegenerates,mostofthemmereboys,wearing
thefamilylikenessthatcharacterisestherevolution-
ariesofallagesandallcountries,andholdingaloft
dingyredflagsandthebannersoftheN .U.W.M.
" Poorfools,"saidBrandon, "cannonfodderforthe
classwar ! "
" Whatdotheyhopetogetoutofthesedemon-
strations ? "saidKavanagh,lookingoverBrandon's
shoulder .
" Toputthewinduppeople . Theirleadershave
toldthemthatallLondonquakesattheirapproach .
Andinonewaytheyserveapurpose ."
"How? "
" Byconcentratingtheattentionofthepublicon
theoutwardmanifestationsofBolshevisminsteadof
onwhat'sbehindit ."
" Ah ! "saidRosamund,withacatchinhervoice,
" youunderstandthen ? "
"
Understandwhat ? "
askedBrandon .
"ThatBolshevism'sonlytheoutwardmanifestation
ofsomethingfardeeper,farmoreformidable . It's
70
THEZODIAC

71
likethelavathatoverflowsavillage,buttheearth-
quakethatshakesawholecountryistherealevidence
oftheforcesatworkunderground ."
Thetwomenlookedateachotherinsurprise .
"Howdoyouknowthat,Roasmund ? " said
Kavanagh ." OfcourseIrealiseit,becauseI'mup
againstitallthetime ."
" Ah ! " saidRosamund . " Iwonderwhetheryou
understandwhatyou'rereallyfighting,theterrible
poweroftheforcesagainstwhichyou'vepittedyour
strength ? I'mnottalkingofcourseaboutthemere
organisationofBolshevism-thoughthat'smarvellous
enough-butofthesecretpowersbehindthewhole
worldmovement,themastermindsdirectingit! "
"Andwhoarethey? "saidBrandonenigmatically .
Inavoicesolowthatitcouldonlyj ustbeheard,
Rosamundmurmured
"
TheHiddenChiefs ."
Brandongaveastart
: " Whatdidyousay,Rosa-
mund ? "
"
TheHiddenandSecretChiefsoftheInnerOrder,"
thegirlrepeateddreamily
.
"Youknowthat? " saidBrandon,tensewith
suppressedexcitement .
Rosamundmadenoreply,butmovedtothedoor ;
thensuddenlysheturned,andgoinguptoKavanagh
laidherhandonhisarm
.
"
Terence,"shesaidearnestlyandhervoicetrembled
slightly .
"You'refightingforagreatcause . And
rememberI'mwithyouinthefight ."
Thenextmomentshewasgone .
" Whatcanitmean
? "
saidKavanagh .
"
ItmeansthatRosamundhasbeenverynearthe
heartofthings . ShespokeoftheHiddenChiefs1 "
72

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
" Yes. Butthatconveyednothingtome ."
" Ah ! Butit'softhe -firstimportance . You
rememberwhatIsaid,whenwefirstdiscussedthis
question,aboutthereal_ rulersoftheworld ? "
" Yes,andyousaidyouthoughttheyweretwelve .
I'vealwaysmeanttogetyoubackontothatpoint ."
" Well,I'lltrytoexplain . ButImustbeginwitha
roughoutlineofthewaytherevolutionarymovement's
organised. Broadlyspeaking,it'sontwolinesthe
politicalandtheoccult,eachdividedintoanumberof
differentgroups.Theoccultlot,thatistosaytherank
andfileamongstthem,usuallyknowsnothingabout
thepoliticalsideofthebusiness,andthepoliticallot,
theavowedrevolutionaries,knowsnothingaboutthe
occultside .
Andeventhegroupsonthesameside
oftenknowlittleabouteachother . They'recarefully
keptapartinwater-tightcompartmentslestthey
shouldcomparenotesandfindoutwhat'sbehinditall .
" Totaketheoccultsidefirst
.
Therankandfile
consistmainlyofharmlessindividualswithaninnocent
loveofmysterywhoimaginethey'rebeinginitiated
intoallthesecretsoftheUniverse-usuallypeople
whowouldnotbebotheredtostudydeeplyontheir
ownandwhoreallyimaginethatallthewisdomof
GreeceandEgyptisbeinginstilledintheirminds .
Thatthere'sanyconnectionbetweentheirgroupand
therevolutionarymovementprobablyneverenters
theirheads ; they'recontenttobeledbytheirown
particularteachers,andtoknowthatbehindthese
teachersarewhattheycalltheHiddenChiefs,or,in
full,theHiddenandSecretChiefsoftheInner
Order ."
" Ah,thentheyknowthereisthissecretcouncil ? "
askedKavanagh .
THEZODIAC

73
"Certainly .
Theexistenceoftheseunknownand
exaltedbeingsliesatthebackofallocculttradition
andisacardinalpointintheteachingofeveryoccult
group."
"
Butdoyouthinkthattheyreallyexist ? "
"
Notinthesensethattheirwould-bedisciples
imagine-asdepositariesofsupernaturalwisdom .
I
don'tbelieveinthepretensionsoftheseventeenth-
centuryRosicruciansanymorethanIbelieveinthe
threesagesofAgartthaofwhomthePolairesspeak
to-day. ButIdothinkitpossiblethattherehave
beenandstillarepeoplewhohaveinsomeway
masteredtheartofproj ectingthoughtandfloating
ideasinawayunknowntotherestoftheworld
. And
I'vealsowonderedoftenwhetherpersonalmagnetism
isn'tmoreusedinpoliticallifethanmostpeoplehave
anyconceptionof.
"
Nowthepoliticalsideofthemovementisrunon
thesamelinesastheoccultside,thatistosay,onthe
oldsecretsocietysystem . TheCommunistPartyin
eachcountryisinrealityasecretsociety-fewmem-
bersknowwhoaretherealheadsorwherethedirection
comesfrom .
Moreover,inthesecretcorrespondence
ofleadingCommunists-notthesortof` secretdocu-
ments ' thatthePressoccasionallyproducesasa
marvellousscoop,butthereallysecretcommunications
thatI'vegotholdoffromtimetotime-thephrase-
ologyusedisabsolutelythatofthesecretconspirators
knownastheIlluminatiintheEighteenthCentury .
Thereisthesameplanofusingacalendaroftheirown,
muchliketheoneadoptedduringtheFrenchRevolu-
tion,thesamesystemofclassicalpseudonymsfor
placesandpeople ; therearethesamereferencestoa
secretcouncilwhodirectthemovementintheback-
74

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
ground. Now,twelveisthenumberonefindsinthe
pastcontrollingoccultgroups-andtwelveisstillthe
numberoftheHiddenChiefs . Comeupstairs,andI'll
showyouevidencethatitisalsothenumbercontrolling
therevolutionarymovement ."
Onceintheroomwherehekepthiscollection,
Brandontookapaperoutofafileofdocumentsand
handedittoKavanagh .
" Doyounoticethesignaturetothisletter,addressed
byoneleadingCommunisttoanother ? "
Kavanaghreadthefollowingtypewrittenwords
" Thecauseisprogressing . ThebrethreninMace-
doniahavemetinconclaveanddecidedtoallocate
ioo,ooofortheworkinMemphis
. Damocleswill
bringinstructionsfromtheTwelveandpreparations
havebeenmadetohastentheGreatDay ."
1 1
" Signed M.," Kavanaghsaidreflectively.
" That'swhatIthoughtatfirst . Butit'snotanM
atall . Thisiswhatgavemetheclue . See ? " And
Brandonpushedforwardanotherslipofpaperon
whichwaswritten
" Damocleshasarrivedinsafety ."
VS
Well,you'vegotmebeatthistime,"Kavanagh
said
. "
Whatonearthisthathieroglyphic ? "
" AsignoftheZodiac-Capricornus . Andthe
first,likeanM,isthesignofScorpio . Nowdoyou
begintounderstand? "
" Ofcourse . TherearetwelvesignsintheZodiac .
Sotheremustbetwelvebehindtherevolutionary
THEZODIAC
75
movement,andthatisevidentlythenamebywhich
theyareknown ."
" AndifI'mright,"saidBrandon,
" theZodiacis
dividedintotrigonsorfoursetsofthree,representing
earth,air,fire,andwater
.Eachtrigonnodoubthas
itsownparticularfunction ."
"
Andyouthink,"saidKavanagh, " thattheTwelve
composingtheZodiacandcontrollingtherevolutionary
movementarethesameasthoseknowntotheoccult
groupsastheHiddenChiefs ? "
" Yes,sincebothacknowledgetheexistenceofa
secretdirectorate,whichinbothcasesisseentoconsist
oftwelve,andsincebothareworkingtowardsthesame
end,itseemstomehighlyprobable ."
" Butiftheoccultgroups,atanyratetherankand
fileamongstthem,arenotconsciouslyworkingfor
revolution,whatistheircommonaim ? "
" Theabsolutedestructionoftheexistingorderof
things . Onemightdescribeitasthephilosophyof
the tabularasa . No doubtsomeofthemaregenuine
idealists ; theybelievethattheworldatpresentis
allwrong,thatthehumanracehasgotoffthetrack,
andthateverythingmustbesweptawayandstarted
afresh . Othersagainaresimplyoutforthemselves .
Onemustrememberthattoworkforthedestruction-
istsisaverypayingj ob . Asoap-boxoratorwho
mightgettwopoundsaweekspeakingfortheConser-
vativescanmakefourorfivetimesthatsumpreaching
Communism . Anauthorwhoglorifiesviceorridicules
patriotismiscertainofabigboostinthePressand
consequentlyofsalesrunningintothousands .
Asyou
once said-all themoney'sonthatside. Aslongas
they'llhelpintheworkofdestructionanywriter,
speaker,orpublicistofaverageabilitycanbesureof
76

THE SECRET OF
THE ZODIAC
funds. Withthisendinview,theyworkalongdiffer-
entlines .Someareouttodestroyourpolitical
institutions,sometodoawaywithwhattheycall
`
conventionalmorality,'otherstoreverseouraccepted
canonsofartorliterature,othersagaintoundermine
patriotismandthenationaltraditionsonwhichour
civilisationisbuilt
.Andall,practicallyall,whether
onthepoliticalortheoccultsideofthemovement,
areouttodoawaywithChristianity
. Inthiswhole
schemeofdemolition,whichtheycallthe
` Great
Work,'allseetherealisationeitheroftheirphilosophic
dreamsoroftheirownracialorindividualambitions,
forwhilstactuatedbydifferentmotives,ononepoint
theyareallunited-thenecessityforthe
cleansweep.
Untilthey'vebroughtthatoffthey'llworktogether
andenlistsupportersallovertheworld .Thecallto
destructionmakesatremendousappeal."
" Still,"saidKavanagh, " Ican'tconceiveofavast
worldmovementorganisedmerelybydestructionists .
Theremustbesomemoredefinitemotiveattheback
ofitall ."
" Ofcourse,thedestructionistsareonlytheinstru-
ments-thedynamicforcesetinmotionbythe
controllingbrainsoftheZodiac .
They
haveadefinite
enoughmotive
."
" Whichis

"
" Worldpower.Alreadypowerful,theywantto
sweepawayeverythingthatstandsbetweenthemand
absolutedominationoftheworld ."
" Andwhoarethey
? "
" Ah1that'sthegreatmystery-themysterythat's
puzzledeveryinvestigatorforahundredandfifty
years .WhatJosephdeMaistrecalled` thegreat
Europeansecret 'perhaps .Onlyit'snolonger
THEZODIAC
77
European,it'sworld-wide . .
.Ifwecoulddiscoverthat,
thewholeconspiracymightbelaidbare
. Their
secrethasbeenmarvellouslywellkept ."
" Doyouthinkit'sbaffledeventheSecretService ? "
" Idon'tsupposetheSecretServicehasevergoton
toit .
AsIsaidtoyouoncebefore,it'snottheirj ob
toenquireintohiddencauses,butmerelytofollow
currentevents . They'renotout,asIam,togetto
thebottomoftheworldmovementofwhichBolshe-
vismisonlyonephase ."
" Andyou'venoideayourself ? "
" Nothingdefinite-onlysurmises .Theonething
Ifeelcertainofisthattheycontrolcolossalwealth
.
Remember,Isay control,
notpossess . It'snotacase
ofmerelyrichmen,evenofveryrichmen,withmillions
investedinnationalindustriesthatbringthemin
giganticincomes
. Whatwe'vegottorealiseisthe
existenceofmenwhocontrolvastsourcesofwealth,
notsingleindustries,notevenaseriesofminesor
factories,butlargesharesinmanydifferentindustries
intheirowncountries,togetherwiththeiraffiliated
interestsabroad-partofthecoalhere,partofthesteel
here,partoftheshippingelsewhere,sothattheir
resources are
beyondreckoning . TakeLudwig
Schneewald,forexample,whoseoperationsextendover
thewholeworld . Heownsrailwaysinonecountry,
fiftypercent
.oftheironandsteeltradeinasecond,
sothatnooneelsecangetamonopoly -he'salways
j uststrongenoughtodefeatthem . Thenherunsthe
armyofacertainsmallrepublic,thenavyofanother,
controlsarmamentworksindifferentcountrieslikely
tobeatwarwitheachother,sothatwhicheverloses
LudwigSchneewaldstandstowin . Ifonecoulddraw
asketchofSchneewald'sspiderweballoverthe
78

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
worlditwouldmakeyourbrainwhirl
. AndSchnee-
wald'sonlyoneofthesespiders
.Theremustbehalf
adozenormorecontrollingasmanyinterests-Geld-
beutelofFrankfurt,AaronFuchsbeinofthe
U.S.A.,
OscarFranklinofNewYorkandLondon,Nahum
ZimarkaraallovertheeastofEurope,andFritz
Chaikoffalloverthesouth .
Thenofcoursethere's
SirPaulGreenworthy,formerlyGrunwald,oneofthe
menmostinterestedintheartificialsilktradeof
London,abankortwoabroad,besidesowningbig
interestsinships,aceticacid,cottonandforestsin
differentpartsoftheworld ."
" Yes,ofcoursethepowersuchmenwieldmustbe
terrific . Youthinkthey'remembersoftheZodiac ? "
" Whocansay ? Onemustn'tj umptoconclusions .
Butgiventheexistenceofavastreservoirofwealth
onwhichtherevolutionariescandrawfortheirwar
chest,Idon'tseewhoismorelikelytoprovideit . In
fact,Iseenootheranswertothequestionyouonce
askedme :
` Wheredoesallthemoneycomefrom ? '
Itcan'tcomefromnationalcapitalistswhocouldhave
nointerestinpromotingwarsorrevolutionsandwho
dependonstability ."
"Buthowcanrevolutionsprofiteveninternational
financiers ? "

Onecanmakeprofitoutofanythingprovidedone
knowsbeforehandwhat'sgoingtohappen ."
" Anddotheyknow ? "

Yes . TheirIntelligenceServiceisthemost
marvellousintheworld ."
Brandonpausedforamomentandthenwenton
IfI'mrightinidentifyingthesemen-orsomeof
thesemen-withtheZodiac,I'minclinedtothink
thatmoneyisnottheironlyasset . Inotherwords,
THEZODIAC

79
IthinkthatsomeoftheZodiacmay,notbemenof
vastwealthbutofvastintelligence,providingthe
organisingbrainsbehindthemovement .
Andalso
themasshypnotismthat'sexercisedovertheminds
ofthepublicto-day .
Howelsearewetoexplainthe
factthatfornoapparentcause,indefianceofall
reason,wefindeveryonerepeatingthesamethingat
thesamemoment,eventhoughitcontradictsallthey
saidyesterday-swayednowinthisdirection,nowin
that,asatthewaveofaconductor'sbaton
? The
directionmustcomefromsomewhere
."
" Don'tyouthinklargelyfromthePress
? "
Yes .
ButwhocontrolsthePress ? Whatmakes
so-calledconstitutionalpapersboomeverysubversive
theoryandsuppresscontrarypropaganda ? There
mustbesomepowerfulinfluenceinthebackground
working,notonlythroughthePress,butthrough
everymeansofpublicity-broadcasting,thecinema,
andsoon ."

AndthatpoweristheZodiac ? Twelvesuper-men
likesortofwirelessstationssendingoutmessagesall
overtheworld ? "
Yes .
Idon'tmeanthatIthinktwelvemenalone
couldsupplythewholeforceofthemovement,but,
giventwelvecontrollingmindswith,perhaps,atrigon
ofthreeasaninnerdirectorateandoneSupreme
HeadabovetheTwelve,itispossibletoimaginehow
throughtheouterringsofagentsrunningintothou-
sands, all overtheworld,vastcurrentsofthought
maybesetinmotion . Andif,inoppositiontoall
this,thereisnobodyofdominatingthoughtnorany
organisationworthyofthename,if,onthecontrary,
theopposingforcesarealldisunitedandquarrelling
amongstthemselves,whatistheretostoptheZodiac
8 o

THE SECRETOF
THE ZODIAC
obtainingcontrolofthewholeworld ? "
" Iwonderwhytheyshouldwanttobemorepower-
fulthantheyarealready ."
" Oh,atpresenttherearelimitstotheirpowers
.
Aslongasnationaltraditions,privateproperty,and
religionexist,aslongasthereareKings,Presidents,
andCabinets,theycan'tbecometheabsolutemasters
oftheworld .Theywantacompletelyfreehand
.
Believingthemselvestobesupermen-astoacertain
extentthey
.are,ifonlybytheirmanipulationof
financeandtheirpowerofcontrollingopinionsby
carefulpropagandaandmasssuggestion-theyfeel
themselvescalledupontocontrolthedestiniesofthe
humanraceandtoremodeltheworldaccordingto
theirownideas ."
"
Thenyouthinkthatinasensetheyareidealists ? "
"Notforamoment
.Theyaresimplyoutfor
power
.Butregardingthemaj orityofthehuman
raceasmerecattle,theybelievetheirroleshouldbe
todrivethem
.Andtheymaypossiblyreasonthat
thecattlewouldbebetteroffundertheircontrolthan
whenallowedtogoreeachotherorrunamokasthey
doatpresent
.Democracyofcourseisthelastthing
they'veanyusefor ."
"
Thoughtheyworkthroughdemocraticmove-
ments ? "
"
Yes,inordertoturnthecattleagainsttheir
presentdrivers ."
" Isee. It'singeniousandhorrible
.Diabolical,
infact .SodiabolicalthatIcan'thelpwondering-
don'tthinkthisidiotic,Jimmy-whetherthere's
notsomesupernaturalpoweratthebackofitall
.
Youdon'tbelievethat? "
" Yes, Ido,"Brandonsaidslowly
.Hewassilent
THEZODIAC

8 r
foramomentandthenadded : " Iquitebelievethe
PowersofDarknessarebehindit . Howelsecanone
accountfortheanti-religiousfrenzyoftherevolution-
ariesfromtheJacobinstotheBolsheviks ? Still,the
devilmustworkthroughhumanagents . Onecan't
imagineSataneditinganewspaperorrunningacinema .
TheZodiacarehisministers,readyforloveofwealth
orpowertocarryouthispurpose ."
" Andthere'snowayofdefeatingthem,"said
Kavanagh, "butwiththehelpofthePowersof
Light . That'swhyweoughttoinvokethem,and
organise . Theonlyhopewouldbeamassthought
movementonourside . Buthavewegotany
dominatingmindstostartitortocontrolitonceit
hasbeenstarted ? "
" Ithinkwehavemindscapableofdominatingbut
notworkinginunisonandwithouttheknowledgehow
tousetheirpower . Theothersidehavemadea
definitestudyofhowtoworkonthemindsofothers,
tocapturethemandmakethemservetheirpurpose .
Wehaveneverattemptedtomastertheartofmass
suggestionandpropaganda
."
"YetthemassesinEnglandremainremarkably
sound au fond," saidKavanagh ." Lookhowthey
respondedtothecountry'scallin1914. Thewhole
nation,withtheexceptionofafewSocialists,wasone
blazingmassofpatrioticfervour . Thesamething
beganagainduringtheGeneralStrikein1926 ; ifit
hadgoneontendayslongerIbelieveBolshevismin
thiscountrywouldhavebeenkilledforever ."
" Whichisperhapswhyitwasbroughttoahasty
andinconclusiveending
! Theoccultforcesfound
themselvesupagainstagreattidalwaveofnational
feelingtheyhadnotreckonedon
. Asyousay,the
6
8 2

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
Britishpeopleareperfectlysound au fond.
Butthey
arenotgiventothinkingoutproblems,whichmakes
themexcellentmaterialfordominatingmindstowork
on . Toooftentheyaresubj ectedtoinfluencesfrom
theotherside . Butbecauseoftheirinherentsound-
nessthey'requitereadytofollowtherightleadwhen
it'sgiventhem . In1914,forexample,itwasgiven
them . Thedominatingmindsonoursidethenwere
unitedandorganised .Confrontedbyatangibleand
physicaldangerthebestbrainsinthearmy,navy,and
elsewhereformedthemselvesintoabodyand,supported
bythepopularPress,wereabletogeneratethewave
ofpatrioticfervourthatsweptthecountry . Forthe
timebeingthesecretforcesatworkwerepowerlessto
withstandit
. Thisdevelopmentofthewarwasa
frightfulblowtotheirplans
.Theyhadcountedon
Englandnotcomingin
. Buttheycontinuedtowork
inthebackgroundinthewaythatcametobeknown
astheHiddenHand .
"
Since1914thedominatingpersonalitiesonourside
haveeitherbeenkilledofforhavegrownoldandtired,
orinsomewayoranotherhavebeenrelegatedto
obscurity-themassforcetheyonceexercisedwas
brokenup .
ForwiththeArmisticethenation's
destiniesceasedtobeinfluencedbymilitaryleadersand
passedintothehandsofpoliticians-withwhatresults
weknow .
Thenthehiddenpowerscouldmustertheir
forces,raisinguponlythosestatesmenwhomthey
couldcontrolandplacingtheiragentsineverykey
position . It'strue,asyousay,thatforafewdaysin
1926somethingofthespiritthatanimatedthenation
duringthewarrevivedagainundertheinfluenceofa
freshsetofpersonalities,lesscommandingthanthose
of1914,yetcapableofgivingtherequiredleadinview
THEZODIAC

8 3
ofthenationalemergency . Butthemomentwastoo
brieftoturnthetide ."
" Yes, to-daythepublichasabj urednearlyevery-
thingitthoughtin1914.
Itcollectsinmassesround
theCenotaphonArmisticeDay,itwearsitspoppies
dutifully,butitrepudiateseverythingthemenit
mournsdiedfor,"Kavanaghsaidbitterly
. " Ithas
becomethefashiontomakeheroesofpoliticianswho
betrayedusthenandwhoto-daywouldsacrificeevery
interestoftheBritishEmpire ."
" Theeffectofmasssuggestionandunceasingpro-
paganda . Onecan'tbelievethatintwentyyearsthe
characterofthenationcanhavechangedfunda-
mentally ."
" Thenitwilltakeafreshcrisistoproducecounter-
masssuggestion,sinceinbetweenthecrisesourforces
aredisbanded ."
" Yes, whilstthoseoftheothersideremainper-
manentlymobilised . Theyneverceasetocarryon
theirworkofdisintegration ; weonlystandtogether
whentangibledisasterthreatens . Whatisneededis
apermanentgroupofdominatingmindsonourside
tosendoutcounter-currents ."
" Asortofcounter-Zodiac !
saidKavanagh .
" Justso
.That'stheveryideaI'mworkingupto .
Oncewe'vegotthefactsabouttheplotand,ifpossible,
thenamesoftheTwelveformingtheZodiac,wecan
putthewholethingbeforethecountry ."
CHAPTERVI
ROSAMUND'SSTORY
THE
nextmorningRosamundarrivedatKavanagh's
roomspalerthaneverandwiththedarkshadowshe
hadsometimesnoticedroundhereyes .
Ican'tthinkwhat'sthematterwithher,"hesaid
toBrandonastheywentofftolunchtogetheratthe
CarltonClub. " Sheswearsitisn'tsimplythatshe's
beendancinglate ."
" No,anditisn'tphysicalfatigue . She'sgotsome-
thingonhermind,Terence ."
I'vealwaysfeltthat . ButIcan'tforthelifeof
memakeoutwhatitcanbe ." Tohimselfheadded
" Butit'sconnectedinsomewaywiththatoddmark
onherarmInoticedinthepunt . Whydidshegetso
hotandbotheredwhenIaskedaboutit ? "
" DoyoumindifItrytogetitoutofher ?
said
Brandon ." Iknowalittleaboutpsychology,andI
thinkImightbeabletohelpher ."
" Goaheadthenbyallmeans ." Anythingtolay
theghostinthathauntedroomofhermindabout
whichshehadspokenontheterraceoftheHouse !
AsifbychanceBrandondroppedinthateveningat
Kavanagh'sroomsj ustasRosamundwastidyingup
theday'swork .Shewaslookingstillsoshakenand
madesolittleefforttoappearherselfthatnO,diplomacy
wasrequiredtoleaduptothesubj ect .
"Well,Rosamund,"Brandonsaid,goingstraight
uptoher,
" notfeelingwell ? Beensleepingbadly ? "
8 4
ROSAMUND'SSTORY

8 5
Rosamundmadenoanswer,butcrossedtothe
windowandlookedout .
Then,turninground,shesaid
inastifledvoice
" Somethingdreadfulhappenedlastnight
."
" Ah ? "saidBrandon .
" Idon'tknowhowtodescribeit
.Perhapsyou'll
thinkmemad .Butbut "
" Goon . Whateveritis,weshallunderstandand
trytohelpyou ."
"Well,whenIwentuptomyroomlastnightI
suddenlyhadthemostterriblesensationofevilall
aroundme .
ItseemedasifallthePowersofDarkness
wereattackingme-itwashideous
. I'vehaddreams
likethisbefore,butneverfeltanythinglikeitwhenI
wasawake."
Shepausedandwenton
" Ithinkitallbeganwiththetalkwehadhere
yesterday
.D'youremembersomethingIsaidto
Terencej ustbeforeIleft ?
"Yes,"saidKavanagh ."
Yousaid : ` You're
fightingforagreatcauseandI'mwithyouinthe
fight .'"
Rosamundnodded .
" Thatwasit
.Thatwaswhatbroughtthingstoa
crisisandmadethemmusteralltheirforces
. I'd
definitelygoneovertotheotherside,yousee,andthey
weredeterminednottolosetheirholdonme
. Sothey
gatheredinoneterrificonslaught
. Ifeltasifallhell
wasclosingroundme ."
"Butwhoare'they'?
"Kavanaghaskedbe-
wildered .
"
Waitaminute,Terence,"saidBrandon
; " Ithink
Iunderstand
.
Comeandsitdownandtrytotellus
quitecalmlyaboutit ."
8 6

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
Rosamundsankdownobedientlyonthedivanbeside
himasifexhausted .
" That'sall . There'snothingmaretotellyou,"she
saidfaintly .
" Ohyes,thereis,"Brandonsaidinavoiceatthe
sametimepracticalandsympathetic . " There'slots
moretotell . You'vehadthesedreamsalongwhile,
Rosamund ?
" Yes,forsevenyears ."
"Eversinceyou'vehadsomethingonyourmind? "
Howdoyouknowthat ? " Rosamundaskedin
surprise .
" Becausethebaddreamsandexperiencesyouhad
lastnightdon'tcometosaneandnormalpeoplelike
yourselfwithoutsomereason . There'ssomethingin
yourlife,somethingyou'vedoneinthepast,you
bitterlyregret . Youcan'tshakeoffthememoryofit .
Itliesthere,deepdowninyoursubconsciousness,and
risestoyourmindindreams . Let'shaveituptothe
surfacenowandseeifwecan'tgetridofitonceand
forall ."
AndasRosamundstillhesitatedBrandonwenton
" Youmustmakeaneffort . Tellushowitall
startedandhow` they,'whoever'they'are,cameto
haveaholdoveryou ."
Rosamundwassilentforamoment
.Then,asif
makingasuddendecision,shesaid
" Yes,Ibelieveitwouldhelpme-andyoutoo,
perhaps . Butit'salongstory . Haveyoutimeto
listen ? "
"Allthetimethereis,"saidKavanagh .
" Well,sevenyearsago,"beganRosamund, " Iwas
upatthe'Varsitygoinginforadegreeinphilosophy
andhistory . I'dalwayshadacravingtostudy
ROSAMUND'SSTORY

8 7
metaphysics,andthoughMotherthoughtitwasasilly
whim,shegaveinatlastandletmego . Ifonlyshe
hadn't ! "
Rosamundpausedamomentandthenwenton
" Philosophy'sariskysubj ecttoembarkon,shakes
yourfaithineverything,startsyouquestioningall
thesettledsolidthingsyou'vetakensofarforgranted .
GraduallyIgotdrawnintooccultism . Yousee,when
you'vehadyourmindsweptandgarnished,thenit's
thechanceforthesevendevilstogetin .Sowhentwo
friendsofmine,PeterMarkhamandJackEdgingly,
tookupoccultstudy,Iturnedtoitwithasortofrelief
fromthematerialismtowhichpsychologyhadreduced
me . PeterwasaboywhomI'dknownslightlyall
mylife,butupatOxfordweoftenmetandatlastwe
gotengaged . We'dalotincommon,andnowoccult-
ismseemedtodrawusclosetogether ."
Rosamundwassilentforamoment,evidentlyab-
sorbedbythememoriesherstorycalledup . Then
brushingthemaside,shesaid
" Therewasasmallsetofpeopleupatthe'Varsity
whowerekeenonthatkindofthing . Thecentreof
-thisgroupwasDoctorHensley,aFellowofSaint
Stephen's-amanwithastrongmagneticpersonality .
Theotherslookeduponhimwithgreatrespect,sowe
werenaturallyflatteredwhenheaskedallusthreeto
dine .Afterthatwewereoftenathishouse,wherewe
metallsortsofwhatwecalled` interestingpeople'-
writers,artists,politicians,foreignersaswellasEnglish .
TheonethatimpressedmemostwasDoctorOttoBrink-
dorff,theGermanphilosopher,ashewascalled-in
reality,asIseenow,simplyapropagandistworking
onoccultlines . OfcourseIdidn'trealiseitatthe
time ; Ithoughthimwonderful,aseveryoneelsedidin
8 8

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
thatset .DoctorHensleyhadgothimdowntoOxford
tolecture,andeverybodycrowdedtohearhim . I
don'tknowwhathesaidthatimpressedthem,for
afterwardsonecouldremembernothinginparticular,
butIsupposeitwasasortofmasshypnotismthatmade
themalladmirehimastheydid . ThereasonDoctor
Hensleypickedusoutforattentionwasevidently
becauseourinterestinoccultismmadehimthinkwe
shouldbeeasilyopentothatsortofsuggestion . That
waswhyheandhiscirclewantedtoropeusin,andrope
usintheydid !
" Lookingbackonitall,Iseenowthatthewhole
thingwasmixedupwithpolitics .
Theygradually
underminedallourideasofpatriotismaswellas
religion .ItwasonlyafterwardsIheardDoctorHensley
hadbeenpro-Germanduringthewarandhadtriedto
checkrecruiting
.
Agoodmanyoftheundergraduates
atOxfordwerePacifistsandSocialists,andallsorts
ofthingsofthatkind .Atheiststoo,ofcourse . They
seemedtobecomelikethatautomaticallysoon
aftertheyarrived
.
I'veseenboyscomeuptothe
'Varsityquiteordinary,cheery,patrioticboys,andby
thetimethey'dbeenthereamonthortwothey
hadchangedcompletely . Thisdidn'tstrikemeso
muchatthetime-it'sonlynowIrealisewhatitall
meant ."
BrandonnoddedatKavanagh .
" Yousee,Terence,thetwolinesItoldyouof-
thepoliticalandoccult,bothleadingtothesame
thingintheend."
" Yes. Iwonderhowmuchoftheanti-patriotism
intheOxforddebatingsocieties-resolutionsnot
tofightforkingorcountry,andsoon-aredueto
influencesweknownothingof .
Apartfromtheideas
ROSAMUND'SSTORY

8 9
pumpedintothembyHensley,iftheyhaveanalien
ofthetypeofBrinkdorffdowntolecturetothem,
it'snotlikelytofirethemwithmuchenthusiasm
fortheEmpire ."
"
AndBrinkdorffwasn'ttheonlyone,"saidRosa-
mund . "
Therewereothers .Krovsky,forexample,
whotalkedaboutthewondersofSovietRussiaand
ranasettlementhimselfnearAmiens .Theyall
seemedtohaveacuriouskindofassuranceasif-I
don'tquiteknowhowtoexpressit-theywerenot
mereindividualsexpressingtheirpersonalopinions,
butmembersofsomepowerfulorganisationthatwas
boundonedaytogettheupperhand ."
Rosamundpausedreflectivelyandthenwenton
again
" Afterawhilewebegantofeelthattherewas
somethingbehindthisgroupofDoctorHensley's-some-
thinglikeasecretsociety,infact
.Atfirsttheyonly
droppedhintsaboutit,butgraduallytheybecame
moreexplicit,andonedayDoctorHensleydefinitely
toldusthattherewasanoccultsocietycalled` The
OrderofthePhoenix,'towhichheandhisfriends
belonged,andaskedifwewouldliketoj oinit
.Of
coursewesaidwewould-wewereyoung,yousee,
andgameforanyadventures .Andtobelongtoa
secretsocietyseemedfrightfullythrilling ."
"LikelongagointheSquaregarden? " Kavanagh
saidwithasmile .
Rosamundsmiledtoo,forthefirsttime
.
" Yes .Ratherchildishofusreally,wasn'tit
?
ButweweresodominatedbyDoctorHensleythatwe'd
havedoneanythinghetoldus-followedhimintoa
lion'scageifhe'dorderedit
.Sothefollowingweek
wewereallthree-Peter,Jack,andI-initiatedinto
9o

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
thefirstdegreeoftheOrderofthePhoenixinHolland
Park. AcertainCountessZapraksywasoneofthe
leadingmembers ."
" Ah ! "saidKavanagh ." That'sinteresting ."
You'veheardofher ?

Yes .
Butgoon .

Partoftheceremonyconsistedinbrandinguseach
withthesealoftheOrder-acirclewithadotinthe
middle . Itwasdonewithasmallred-hotiron ."
Therewassilence . ThenRosamundsaidinavoice
thattrembledslightly
"Nowyouunderstand,Terence,whyIdidn'twant
youtoseethemarkonmyshoulderthateveningin
thepunt ? "
Andwithasuddenmovementsheslippedoffthe
shoulder-strapofherfrockandshowedtheredmark
onthesmoothskin
.
Kavanaghturnedawaywithaninvoluntaryshudder .
Thesightj arredonhimunaccountably .Rosamund
sawthis,andquicklyreplacinghershoulder-strap,
wentonwithherstory .
OfcourseintheTempleeverythingwasmadeto
appearverybeautiful-thedimlights,theincense,
theweirdsortofEasternchantsseemedtocasta
spelloverourminds,andformonthswhenweattended
themeetingsattheTempleweneverdreamttherewas
anythingmorebehindit . TheChiefstoldusthat
ifwestudieddiligentlythebooksandmanuscripts
theygaveustoread,meditated,anddidtheprescribed
exercises,weshouldgraduallydeveloplatentfaculties
-thatwouldgiveuspowersofwhichordinarypeople
knewnothing . Andthepromiseofpowerisvery
tempting,especiallywhenone'squiteyoung . Soin
thiswaywegotledonfromonethingtoanother .
ROSAMUND'SSTORY

9!
" Ican'ttellyouwhathappenedatsomeofthese
ceremoniesintheTemple .
Idon'tevenremember
veryclearly-onlyanoddsenseofunreality,ofbeing
inadream .Therewasahorriblepersonwhoused
tocometheresometimes-GustavMervine .
Normally
Ishouldhaveloathedhim,butsomehowallone's
naturalinstincttorecoilfromsuchacreatureseemed
witheredup--doyouwonderthatIhatedtotellyou
allthis,Terence? -butthat'stheeffectofoccultism,
itturnseverythingupsidedown,changesallvalues,
sothatyoulovewhatyouoncehatedandhatedwhat
youusedtolove . Itdestroysallsenseoftruth,too .
Peoplewho'vegoneinlongforoccultismhavelivedso
muchinthatunrealworldthattheycan'tdistinguish
truthfromfalsehoodandliewithoutknowingit
.
PerhapsIdidn'tgetsofarasthat,butImusthave
gotprettyfar,forafteraboutayeartheChiefsofthe
Temple,evidentlyfeelingtheyweresureofus,letus
knowtherewasaninnerOrdertowhichwecouldbe
admittedifwewished . Weweretold,however,that
forthispurposeweshouldhavetogoandstayat
Charentoninordertostudyunderahighinitiate
calledRaskoff
. Weallagreedtogoandspent
somemonthsthere .Raskoffwascertainlyanextra-
ordinaryman, averypowerful
occultistwhose
systemconsistedmainlyinlowdietandhardmanual
labour."
Brandonnodded . "
Inordertoinduceanaemia
ofthebrainandmakeiteasierforhimtogaincon-
trol ."
Rosamundlookedsurprised .
" Doyouknowabouthim? "
" Yes,butgoon ."
" Raskoffreallyisasuperman-moresothan
92

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
Brinkdorff,theGermanoccultist,whomwemetagain
atCharenton. Well,Raskoffthoughthehadgotus
allcold .We'dgoneobedientlythroughhiscourse,
agreeingtoeverything,submittedtohisplanofbend-
ingourwillstohisbyspoilingtheworkhe'dmadeus
do. Oneday,whenhe'dorderedustomakeagarden
bench,andwe'dtoiledfrommorningtonighttoget
itfinished,hebrieflyorderedustobreakitupfor
firewood! Wediditwithoutamurmur
. Andso,
notunnaturally,hethoughtwewerehis-body
andsoul-likealltheotherwretchedcreaturesat
Charenton,whomhe'dreducedtomerespineless
automatonsreadytosayordoanythinghetoldthem .
"
Soonemorning-itwasGoodFriday,Iremember
-Raskofftoldusweweretobetakenastepfarther
bybeinginitiatedintothemoresecretOrdertowhich
hebelonged,attheheadTempleinParis . Wewereto
gotherethatnightbymotor,andallthatday,in
preparationfortheceremony,weweregivennothing
toeatanddrinkbutalittlebreadandwater . Itwas
alreadydarkwhenthecararrived ;
weallthreegot
inandRaskoffwithus . Duringthelongdrivenoone
spoke-weweresupposedtobeengagedinmeditation
.
AssoonasweenteredthefortificationsRaskofftook
outthreeblacksilkhandkerchiefsandboundthem
overoureyes,explainingthateverynewinitiatemust
entertheLodgeblindfold. Weweretoomuchunder
hisdominationtomakeanyprotest,butIremember
thinkingthattherealobj ectofthiswastoprevent
usseeingwherewewerebeingtaken .
Sowhenthe
carstoppedIcontrivedtoslipthebandagefrommy
eyesforasecondwhilstRaskoffwashelpingtheother
twooutofthecar .
Isawthenthatwewereina
narrowstreetinfrontofanold
Forte-cochUre, atthe
ROSAMUND'SSTORY

93
sideofwhichInoticedasmalltobacconist'swhichI
triedtomemorise .
Ihadonlytimeforthisone
glimpsebeforepushingthebandagebackintoplace .
ThenIfeltmyselfledacrossthepavement,andby
thefeelofcobblestonesundermyfeetIguessedwe
werebeingtakenthroughthe porte-cochere acrossa
courtyard,wherewewerehaltedandcouldhear
Raskoffopeningadoor . Afterthatweseemedtobe
goingdownapassage,thenanotherdoorwasopened,
andatthesametimethebandagesweretakenoffour
eyes.
"Wefoundourselvesattheentranceofalong,low,
narrowroom,feeblylitbyafewwaxtapers. It
lookedlikeasortofchapel,withatawdryaltaratthe
endandapriestwithaveilacrosshisfacestanding
beforeitintoningsomethinginLatin . Therowsof
prie-Dieu werefilledwithpeople,andwetookour
placeswiththerest . Someofthemlookedqueerand
decadent,butothersquiteordinary .
Therewasan
oldmanwithabeautifulface-nobleandbenevolent
looking. Idon'tknowwhetheritwastheoppressive
smellofEasternincenseorthehorriblesenseofevil
intheairthatmademefeelfaintlysick
. Gradually
Irealisedthattheceremonywhichwasgoingonwas
aparodyoftheCatholicMass . Afterawhilethe
priestbegantoutterincantations,firstinLatin,then
inHebrew .
FromthefirstIunderstoodthatthese
wereevocationsaddressedtoSatan,thePrinceof
Darkness .
Thenfollowedterribleimprecationsin
whichthe " congregation " j oined,cursingGodand
ChristandtheHolyVirgin-theso-calledworshippers
workingthemselvesupintoafrenzyofhateandfury .
Theoldmanwiththebenevolentfacewasoneofthe
loudest ."
94

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
Rosamundpaused,paleandtrembling,andcovered
herfacewithherhands .
" Butthatwasnotall,"shesaidatlastinastifled
voice . " Therewasworse,farworsetocome
. At
last,withthehorrorofitall,Ifainted
. Atanyrate,I
remembernomore .
Ineverwentthroughthecere-
monyofinitiationforwhichwehadbeenbrought
there,andIknewnothingmoreuntilIfoundmyself
backinmybedatCharenton .
ThenextmorningI
wasveryill,butRaskoffinsistedonourallthree
appearingbeforehim
. Aswewenttowardshisroom
PetermanagedtowhispertomethatafterIhadbeen
takenoutoftheTempletheblackmasshadbeen
celebrated,followedbytheceremonyofinitiation,
thathehadrefusedtobeinitiated,butthatJack
Edginglyhadgonethroughwithit .Andheadded
` We'vegottogetoutofthisasquicklyaspossible .'
Raskoffwaswhitewithragewhenweentered,buthe
controlledhimself,andsaidthatnowwehadgoneso
faralongtheroadofoccultknowledgethetimehad
comeforustomakeourchoiceastowhichturningwe
shouldtake
.WehadtochoosebetweenthePowersof
LightandthePowersofDarkness,betweentheWhite
LodgeofwhichwehadvisitedaTemplethenight
beforeortheBlackLodgesinwhichwehadbeen
broughtup .
Weknewenoughofhisperverted
phraseologytounderstandthatbythepowersoflight
hemeantwhatwecalledthepowersofdarknessand
bytheBlackLodgetheChristianChurch
. Heended
bysayingwithacontemptuousglanceatPeter
: ' If
youareafraid,Ihavenofurtheruseforyou-other-
wisegreatpowersmaybeconferredonyou . SoI
askyoufinally
: DoyoustandforGodorLucifer ? '
"
Isupposeitwasthisdirectchallengethatbrought
ROSAMUND'S STORY
95
ustooursenses .PeterandIlookedateachother,
thenwithonevoicewecried : '
WestandforGodand
weleaveyouforever .'Raskoffflashedonelookof
furyonus,thenquicklyrecoveringhimself,hesmiled
adiabolicalsmileandwavedustothedoor
.Wretched
JackEdginglysaidnothing .Welefthimtohisfate
andcameaway .Afterwardsweheardhewasonthe
streetsofParis-ashatteredwreck,forRaskoff,having
testedhiminvariousways,andseeingthathehadn't
theforceofcharactertobecomeanexpertoccultist,
hadnofurtheruseforhimandthrewhimover,ruined
bodyandsoul .ThatwaswhatmadePeterseered-
forhewasalwaysfondofJackinspiteofhisweakness
-andassoonaswegotbacktoEnglandhetoldme
he'ddeterminedtoembarkonacrusadeagainst
occultismandshowthewholethingup .
" Hetriedtoenlistthehelpofseveralparsonshe
knew,buteithertheydidn'tcareortheydidn'tdare
tostandbyhim,sohewentovertotheChurchof
Romeandgotalltheencouragementheneeded .Then
hestartedin-hiredhallsandgavelectures,towhich
peoplecameoutofcuriosityandmurmured,
'
Isn'tit
toodreadful ? ' thenwentawayandforgotallabout
it .Nopoliticianswouldtakethematterup ; the
HomeOfficeandthepoliceweretoobusyseeingthat
peopledidn'tbuychocolateorcigarettesaftereight
o'clocktobotheraboutsecretsocietiesorevenblack
masses .Forblackmasses-notperhapssohorrible
asthoseinParis-dotakeplaceinLondonunder
thedirectionofhighinitiates .Butmembersofsecret
societiesaretobefoundinGovernmentDepartments
andevenholdingresponsiblepostsintheChurch .
OfcoursetheywereallterrifiedofPeter'srevelations,
andtriedtostophimbyridicule .Thenwhenthat
96

THE SECRETOFTHEZODIAC
failedtheystartedawhisper-drivethathewasmad,
thattherewasinsanityinthefamily,thathe'dbeenin
anasylum,andinafewweeksalltheparrotsofthe
LondonandOxforddrawing-roomswererepeating
thatlie.Peterwasassaneasyoutwoareto-day-
notasoulinhisfamilyhadeverbeenmad-butfrom
thatmomenttheytriedtoworkonhismindbyoccult
methods .They'dalwaysboastedtheycouldmake
peopleillandevendiebymeansofwhattheycalled
punitivecurrentssetinmotionbythought ; the
heartandthebrainweretheirspecialpointsofattack ."
Brandonshookhishead . "Theymaysayso .But
theirrealweaponisfear ."
" Well,anyhow,itwasthebraintheywentforwith
Peter,becauseyouseetheywantedtoprovehimmad .
Atfirstheheldout,butthepowertheyhadoverhim
wastoogreattoogreat ."
" Howwasthat ? " askedKavanagh . " Surelyby
thattimehe'dbrokenawayfromthem ? "
" Physically-yes .Heneverwentnearthem .
Buttheyhadaholdoverhimastheyhadoverallof
us .Yousee,we'dtakentheoathatourinitiation
intotheOrderofthePhoenix
."AndseeingKavan-
agh'spuzzledexpressionshewenton
" Perhapsyoudon'tknowwhatthatmeans-the
occultpoweroftheoath .It'sthegreatestweaponof
allsecretsocieties .Outsiderssometimeswonderwhy
oneshouldbemadetotakeanoath-wouldn'ta
simplepromisedo ? Whattheydon'tunderstandis
thatit'sthefactoftakingthesolemnoathofsecrecy
andblindobedienceunderpainofterriblepenalties
thatgivessecretsocietiesthepowertheyexerciseover
theirmembers .It'sbythattheyholdthem
.That's
whyit'ssuchfollyforpeopletothinktheycangointo
ROSAMUND'SSTORY
97
occultsocietiesinordertofindouttheirsecretsand
come .outunscathed . Peterhadn'trealised their
power. Hethoughtthatashe'dbeentrickedinto
j oiningthesesocietiesbyfalsepretenceshehadaright
toexposethempublicly . Heeventhoughthecould
defythem .
Butbydegreesachangecameoverhim .
Inoticedthathismindwasbecoming confused-
hismemoryseemedtobefailing ."
Theninalowvoice,staringstraightbeforeherasif
lookingatsomedistantvision,Rosamundsaid
" Atlast-intheendPeterwentmad . OnedayI
wascalledtohim hismindwasablank. He'sbeen
inanasylumnowforfiveyears-ahopelesscase,
theysay. SometimesIgotoseehim,butIdon't
thinkheknowsme . Onlyonceinalucidintervalhe
seemedhisoldselfagainandsaid : ` Rosamund,what's
thematterwithme ? ' Isaid : ` You'vebeenilla
longtime,Peter .' Thenhesaid
:
` Yes,Iremember,
anditallhappenedthroughDoctorHensley
.'After
thathismindwentagain . That'stheendofthe
story."
Therewasalongsilence . Kavanaghsatbewildered,
hiscleanoutdoormindrefusingtograspsuchthingsas
these . Thenhesaid
"It'saterriblestory,Rosamund . Itwasgoodof
youtotellus.
ButI'mafraiditmusthavebeenvery
painfulforyou,goingalloveritagain ."
"Iwouldn'thavedoneitfortheworldifithadn't
beentohelpyou . ButnowIknowwhatyouand
Jimmyaredoing,Ifeltyououghttoknowmoreabout
whatyouareupagainst . It'snotreallyapolitical
battle,butawarbetweenthepowersofgoodandevil ."
"Butthepowersofevilcan'thurt us,"said
Kavanagh.
7
98

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
"Notyou,perhaps .You'veneverestablishedany
contactwiththem,theymightsitroundforever
directingpunitivecurrentsagainstyou,andyou'd
neverfeelit . Still,they'lltrytogetatyoubyother
means .
TheytriedtodownmeassoonastheyknewI
hadturnedagainstthem .
Sometimesthetelephone
bellwouldring,andwhenIansweredit,voiceswould
say :
'Don'tthinkyoucanescapeus ! We'regoing
toruinyou-toruinyou.
Weshallpursueyou
whereveryou go tothelastdayofyourlife
! ' Think
whatthatwouldmeantoyouinyourpoliticalcareer,
Terence
! Forthey'llruinyouiftheycan,onceyou
comeoutopenlyagainstthem .
Remember,they
havetheiragentseverywhere ."
KavanaghlookedacrossatBrandon .
Wasallthis
possibleintwentieth-centuryEngland? Forthe
momenthecouldn'thelpwonderingwhetherRosa
mundhadbeencarriedawaybyherimagination .
ButBrandonnoddedassent .
"Therearesomequeercasesofthissortonrecord ."
hesaid . "Italmostseemsasiftheyhavebeenable
sometimestoinj urepeople .
Remembersomeofthe
mysteriousdeathsandillnesseswe'vediscussedthat
haveseemed,tosaytheleastofit,tooopportune
.
Butofcoursetheremaybesomenaturalexplanation
.
Poison,forexample . Anyhow,whateverpowers
theymayprofess,thegreatthingisnottofearthem
.
Fortheso-calledpowerofoccultismandblackmagic
isreallyasortofhypnotismworkingonmindsweak-
enedbyfear . Ifreallythey'vebeenabletoinj ure
peopleitisthosewho,asRosamundsays,have
establishedacontactwiththembytakinganoathand
j oiningsomeoccultgroup,andwhoarethenafraidof
theirvengeance . Believeme,Rosamund,there'sno
ROSAMUND'S
STORY

99
`
occultpower'intheoathitself,there'sonlythefear
ofwhatmayhappenifyoubreakitthatcanhurtyou .
ItwasthatthatpreyedonPeter'smindandsenthim
offhishead ."
" ButPeterdidn'tseemtobeafraid ."
" No .Butdeepdowninhissubconsciousnessfear
waslurking .It'sthesamewithyou,althoughyou
maynotknowit .That'stherealcauseofthedreams
thattroubleyou."
Rosamundshookherhead .
" Ican'tstopmyselfdreaming ."
" Yes,youcan .Q uitesimply. Listen,Rosamund,
you'vegottogetallthisoutofyourmind
.Comeand
talktomeaboutitwheneveryoufeelinclined,and
I'llsoonshowyouhowthesedreamsandexperiences
likeyouhadlastnightcanbeprevented
. It'sreally
thatyou'reafraidtofacethingsinyourpastlife .
Buthaven'twealldonethingsinourpastwe'resorry
for,thatwe'reashamedof ? I'msureIhave-done
worsethingsthanyouhave .Ifyou'llletme,I'll
makeyouseethatthere'snothingtobeafraidof .
It'salloveranddonewith . Putitbehindyouonce
andforall,andyou'llfindthatthesedreamsand
memorieswillceasetotroubleyou ."
" Ah,ifonlyIcouldfeelthat ! " Rosamundsaid
withasigh .
"
Youcan,mydear,believeme-andtrustmetoo,"
saidBrandon,withafeelinginhisvoicethatsurprised
bothhiscompanionsandhimself . " I'vehadsome
experienceofthissortofthingbefore,andIbelieveI
-anhelpyou .Remember,theobj ectofoccultismisto
enslavethemind,sothecureistosetit-freebythinking
foroneself ."
" Ah,you're
.rightthere,Jimmy . I'drealisedthat
ioo

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
already . That'swhyIwantedtoworkforTerence
.
Yousee,I'ddiscoveredthatpartofthecureformyself
.
IfeltImustgetrightawayfromthewholething
. But
morethanthat,Imustn'tloveorhateorfeel-Imust
havenoemotions
. Imustonlywork."
"
Thereyou'rehopelesslywrong,mydearRosa-
mund! "criedBrandon ."
Youmustloveandhate,
butintherightway,asyou'llseeintime ."
Rosamundsmiled,halfsadly . "
Well,who knows? "
CHAPTERVII
KAVANAGHHUNTSFORDRAGONS
ROSAMUND'S
storyhadtheeffectoffurtherchanging
Kavanagh'soutlook
.Hispoliticaldevelopmenthad
advancedinthreestages
.Atfirsthisinterestin
worldaffairshadbeenquiteimpersonalanddispas-
sionate
.Hehadfeltithisdutytoofferhimselfasa
parliamentarycandidatetotheonlyPartyhebelieved
tobecapableofstoppingtherotthatwasspreading
throughthecountryandofdefeatingtheBolshevist
conspiracy .Fortohim,atthatdate,astoothersof
hiskind,itwasBolshevismasasystem,organisedby
thepresentrulersofRussia,thatconstitutedthe
menace ;
oncetheSovietregimefell-asitmustdo
soonerorlater-hehadimaginedthatthetrouble
wouldbeended .
ThenhistalkswithBrandonhadtakenhimastep
farther,andshownhimthatMoscowwasonlythe
visibleheadquartersoftheworldconspiracy,and
consequentlythatthefightagainstBolshevismwas
onlyapartofthewartobewaged
.Butstillhehad
continuedtooccupyhimselfmainlywiththepolitical
sideofthesituationandtoregardthesecretforces,of
whichBrandonhadspoken,asa " sideshow,"the
veryexistenceofwhichwasmoreorlesshypothetical .
ItwasnotthatheunderratedthevalueofBrandon's
investigations,forheknewtheamazingindustryand
exactnesshebroughttohiswork,onlyhefeltvaguely
thatBrandon'sinterestinthisparticularlineof
1031
102

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
researchmighthaveledhimtoover-estimateits
importance .
ButnowRosamund'sstoryhadbroughtthewhole
thinghometohiminawaynoamountoftype-
writtendocumentsorsecretfilescouldhavedone .
" TheHiddenPower hadceasedtobeavagueterm
denotingsomethingthatneednevercomewithinthe
rangeofhisexperience,butaveryrealforce,aforce
sopotentthatithadbeenabletoblastthelifeofthe
womanheloved . Andashethoughtofallshehad
passedthrough,hiswholesoulroseinrevoltatthe
systemoflegislationthatcouldletsuchthingsbe
whilstD.O.R.A.interferedwiththemostharmless
distractionsandamenitiesofeverydayexistence .
Well,ifthedefenceoftherealmdidnotconsistin
defendingyouthandinnocenceagainstthesediabolical
influences,itwasuptoeveryonewhocalledhimselfa
mantoriseandfightthemonhisownaccount . In
hisattitudetherewassomethingoftheknight-errant
aswellasthecrusader . Itwasnolongeronlyasacred
causetowhichhewantedtodevotehimself,helonged
alsotogooutandslaythedragonsthathadlainin
hislady'spath .
Butwerethedragonstobefound ? Howwashe,a
simplesoldier,whohadneverdabbledintheoccult,to
findhiswayintoaTempleofthePhoenixorstrikethe
paththatledobscurelytotheHiddenChiefs ?
" IfonlyRosamundcouldputusonthetrackof
someofthesepeople ! " hesaidtoBrandon
.
" By
theway,nowthatshe'stoldusherstory,don'tyou
thinkthetimehascometotakehermoreintoour
confidence ? "
Brandonthoughtforamomentandthenanswered
slowly
KAVANAGHHUNTSFORDRAGONS
103
"Yes,Ithinkithas . It'sterriblydifficultof
coursetoknowwhomonecantrust .Lotsoffellows
inourlineofbusinessgoonthetackoftrustingno
one .
It'seasytodothat,butitgetsyounowhere .
Ifyou'reacompleteclamyou'llfindeveryoneelsea
clamtoo .
Thethingistoknowj usthowmuchone
cansayandtowhomonecansayit
."
" Exactly .
Itseemstomethatonemayloseas
muchbysayingnothingasbysayingtoomuch . It
wasthelittlewedidsaytoRosamundthatopenedher
lipsandledtohertellingusallshedid
."
" Andshemustknowagooddealmore
. Yes,I
believeshecanbetrusted,andshemightbeveryuseful
tous . Thelineshe'sbeenonistheoneI'mj ustnow
keenestonfollowingupbecauseit'sthemostdifficult
togetonto . TheCommunists'gameiscomparatively
easytokeeptrackof ; theymakenosecretofwhat
they'reoutfororofthefactthey'rerunbyMoscow,
andinvestigationsleadnofartherthanthat ."
" No .
IsupposeonemightcallMoscowmerelythe
G.H.Q
.onthefrontoftherevolutionarymovement .
WhatwewanttogetatistheWarOfficeorthebrains
atthebackofitall ."
"
Idon'tthinkIshouldgiveMoscowevenasmuch
importanceasthat
. IshouldcallitmerelytheG .H.Q .
oftheclasswar,whichisonlyapartoftherevolu-
tionarymovement ."
"Butwhichsurelyincludesthewaragainstre-
ligion ? "
"Asanaccessorytotheclasswar . Youcan't
maketheworkingclassesseeredaslongasthey
believeinaHereafter
. Convincethemthatthislife
isall,andthey'rereadytoturnandpillageevery-
thing-weallwould,it'shumannature
. Inhibitions
104

THE SECRETOF THE ZODIAC


producedbygenerationsofreligiousbeliefandreligious
teachingareallthatstandbetweenusandthej ungle
.
Therevolutionariesof all ageshaverecognisedthat ."
" Butdon'tyouthinkthatthere'sarealwaragainst
religionforitsownsakeaswell?
Wagedforthepure
loveofevil ? "
" Yes,andthat'snotdonebyviolence
.Peaceful
underminingofallreligiousbeliefsisfarmoreeffectual
thantheravingsoftheBezboj nikiofRussia
.It'sthe
brainsbehindallthatsortofthingwewanttogetat .
Andone'smorelikelytodoit , byfollowingupthe
kindofpeopleRosamund'sbeenintouchwiththan
bytrackingdownCommunists .They'remuchnearer
thecentreofthings . Idoubtwhetheranyofour
native'Reds'knowanythingabouttheZodiacor
everheardofitsexistence .Idoubtwhethereventhe
presentrulersofRussiahaveevercomedirectlyinto
touchwithit .ButmenlikeDoctorHensleymayvery
wellbeincontactwithoneormoreoftheHidden
Twelve .That'sthesortofclueRosamundmighthelp
ustofollow.
Let'sringherupandaskifwecandrop
inthisevening-thenwecantalkitalloverwithher
."
ThethreehadoftenforegatheredlatelyinRosa-
mund'ssitting-roomonthegroundfloorofthelittle
houseinHertfordStreet,whereshelivedwithher
mother
.AndsometimesKavanagh,feelingthat
BrandoncoulddomoretohelpRosamundifthey
wereleftalone,kepttactfullyaway,andthetwo
wouldsitonintothenighttalking-Rosamund
unburdeninghermindofthememoriesthattormented
her,Brandonshowingherstepbystephowtheselatent
fearsmightbemetandconquered
.Itwasextra-
ordinary,thegirlfelt,thewayJimmyseemedto
understandandtogiveherstrength .
Gradually
KAVANAGHHUNTSFORDRAGONS 105
dreamsceasedtotroubleherandherpeaceofmind
returned .
Sothiseveningtheymetagain,andRosamundwas
letintothesecretofBrandon's " doublelife
" andof
thequestonwhichheandKavanaghwereengaged .
" It'sfrightfullyinteresting,"shesaidatlast,
" and
frightfullyimportant .
AndifallI'vebeenthrough
canbemadeofusetoyouitwon'thavebeenin
vain ."
Foramomentshesatlookingatthemthoughtfully
andthensaid
" Nowthatyou'vegotontotheoccultsideofthe
business,Ithinkyououghttoknowmore ."
" Yes,whatwewantmostisdocumentaryevidence,"
saidBrandon ." Allyou'vetoldusisextraordinarily
interesting,butwewantnames,dates,factsthatno
onecandispute ."
" Thenwouldthesehelpyou ?
Andgettingup,Rosamundwenttoacupboard
fromwhichshetookoutalargepileofdocumentsand
placedthemonthetable
.
" ThepapersoftheOrderofthePhoenixandsome
othergroupsofthesamekind
."
" Capital,"saidBrandon . " That'sj ustthesortof
thingwewant ."
Isuppose,"Rosamundwentonmeditatively,
" thatsomepeoplemightsayitwasabreachofcon-
fidenceformetoshowthemtoyou
. Forofcourse
they'reabsolutelysecret-onlyfortheeyesofmem-
bers .
ButPeterandIbothfeltthatconsideringthe
wayweweredeceivedonenteringtheOrder,wewere
j ustifiedintreatingourobligationsasnullandvoid .
Whatdoyousay ? "

Isaythatofcourseyou'rej ustified,"saidKava-
io6

THE SECRETOF THE ZODIAC


nagh . "
IfIpayforacourseofProfessorRobinson's
MemoryTrainingwhichIpromisetoregardascon-
fidential,andthenfindit'saschemeforblowingupthe
HousesofParliament,I'mnotboundtokeepitdark,
amI ?
Youwentintothisinallgoodfaith,and
foundyouhadbeentrapped
.Innocentpeoplewho
aretrickedintoanoathofsecrecynottorevealwhat
theybelievetobeharmlessmysteriesandthendis-
coverthatthey'vebeenropedintoaconspiracy,have
everyrighttogivetheshowaway .Infact,it'stheir
dutytopreventothervictimsbeingcaughtinthe
same
way."
"
Exactly,"saidBrandon . " Solet'shavealook
atthedocuments,Rosamund
."
" Right .Heretheyare
.Thelittlepaperbooks
arerituals-youcankeepthemifyoulike,Jimmy
."
" Thanks,"saidBrandon. "
They'llbeanaddition
tomycollectionofmasonicmanuals
.It'sbeena
hobbyofmineforyears
.I'vegottheritualsofthe
oddestkindsofOrders
.TheUnitedStatesteem
withthem .Bytheway,dothesegiveanysigns
andpass-words ? " headded,pickinguponeofthe
booksandturningoverthepages .
" Yes,afew
.AndIcantellyouothers,"said
Rosamund.
" Good
.It'salwaysusefultolearnanewgripor
sign
.Oneneverknowswhenonemaywanttouseit ."
"
Butsupposinganyonegivesyouasignthatyou
don'tknowtheanswerto? " askedKavanagh.
"
ThenIinventone,andtheyimagineI'vereached
ahighergradethantheyhave,andrespectmeaccord-
ingly
.Oh1there'slotsoffuntobegotoutofsecret
societies ."
"
Yes,aslongasyoukeepoutsidethem,"Rosamund
KAVANAGH HUNTS FOR DRAGONS 107
saidwithafaintshudder . It'snoj okewhenyou
getintotheirpower .They'lltrytodosomething
prettyhideoustomeiftheyeverfindoutI'vegiven
themaway ."
"
Theonlythingistoexposethembeforetheycan
dothat,"Kavanaghsaidfirmly .
"
Terence,ifyouvalueyourpoliticalcareer,don't
attemptanythingofthekind,"saidRosamund
.
" Nevergivetheslightesthintthatyouknowanything
aboutoccultmatters
.Aboveall,don'tbreathethe
words ' secretsocieties .' "
" Butwhy
? Publicityistheonewaytokillthem ."
Ofcourse
.Butpeoplewon'tbelieveyou .They'll
onlythinkyou'remad
.Andthosewhoknowbetter
willmakeoutyouareinordertodiscredityou ."

Rosamund'sright,"saidBrandon . " It'smuch


bettertokeepthissortofthingtoourselves-towork
undergroundastheydo .Then,asI'vesaidbefore,
whenwe'vegotthewholeplotwithproofsthatno
onecandispute,we'llgiveittotheworld ."
" Thefirstthing,"saidKavanagh, "issurelyto
findoutwhosomeofthepeopleare .Istherealistof
membershipamongstthesepapers,Rosamund ? "

Yes,herearesomeofthemembersoftheOrder
ofthePhoenix ."
" Ah ! " saidBrandon . " Namesandpseudonyms .
That'llbej ollyuseful
.Hereweare : ` CeleradAstra
'
alias
DoctorHensley, ' Oraetvigila,'Mrs .MurrayBate-
man-Isuspectthatgoodladydoesmorewatching
thanpraying,Terence-andhere'sIsidoreFranklin,
' Cavendotutus
.' "
Yes,IexpectIsidoretakesj ollygoodcareofhis
skin,"laughedKavanagh ." Bytheway,"hewent
on,lookingoverBrandon'sshoulder,
"
Iseethere's
io8

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
Countess Zapraksy
alias ' Q uaeroLucem,'which
remindsmethatI'vej usthadaninvitationfrom
Mrs
.MurrayBatemantogoandhearherspeakat
herhouse on Thursday .
ShallIgo ? "
" Ithinkitmightbeworthwhile,"saidRosamund,
thoughIdon'timagineshe'saveryhighinitiate
.
Ionlymetheronce .Shelivesabroad,inItaly,I
believe,andonlycomestoEnglandonvisits
."
"Gobyallmeans,Terence,"interposedBrandon
.
" FromotherthingsI'veheard,Iimaginethelady
mightbewellworthstudying-especiallyifMrs
.
MurrayBatemanishelpingtorunher
."
AccordinglyahotafternoononthefollowingThurs-
dayfoundKavanaghstrugglingupthemarblestaircase
ofMrs .MurrayBateman'shouseinCurzonStreet
withtheusualcrowdofcuriouswomenandodd-
lookingmenwhohabituallyflocktomeetingswhere
anynewcultistobediscussed
.
CountessZapraksy,arobustladywithredhairand
singularlypiercinggreeneyes,wasstandinginthe
windowshakinghandswiththefavouredfewwhom
herhostessheldworthytobeintroducedtothe
prophetessoftheNewPsychism
.Amongstthese
Kavanaghwasnotincluded,forwhichhefeltthankful,
ashewasthusabletoslipintoaplacenearthedoorway
whencehecouldmakehisescapeunobservedshould
theatmospherebecomeunbearable . Herehefound
himselfseatednexttoLadyCarolineWentlock,who
greetedhimwitheffusion .
"
I'msogladyou'vecometoheartheCountess,
she'ssimplywonderful . HaveyoustudiedtheNew
Psychismbefore ? "
" Ican'tsayIhave . ButI'mlongingtohearall
aboutit ."
KAVANAGHHUNTS
FOR DRAGONS 109
Kavanagh'seyeswanderedroundtheroom . There
wastheusualcontingentofoldladieswhohabitually
frequentdrawing-roommeetingsforwhatevercause
theymaybeheld,andinevitablydropofftosleepas
soonasthespeakerhasgotunderway
. Butthere
wereafewyoungpeopletooandquiteanumberof
men . AmongsttheseKavanaghrecognisedIsidore
Franklin,lookingonattheproceedingsthroughhalf-
shuteyeswithhisusualderisivesmileplayingaround
hislips
. Amiddle-agedmanwithasingularlyhigh-
souledcountenancewasstandinginthebackground,
surroundedbyagroupofadmiringwomen . Avery
remarkableface,thoughtKavanagh . Whocouldhe
be? HedecidedtoaskLadyCaroline .
" Why,don'tyouknow ? " sheansweredinsurprise,
" thatisDoctorHensley,theFellowofSaintStephen's,
Oxford . Amarvellousman,absolutelyinspired,Maj or
Kavanagh . Imustintroduceyoutohim ."
SothatwasDr .Hensley,themanwiththesaintly
faceandthediabolicalpowersofwhomRosamundhad
spokenI Kavanagh,thrilledatthediscovery,was
abouttoacceptLadyCaroline'sproposalwitheagerness
whenthebuzzofconversationsuddenlyceased . For
theCountesshadascendedasmallplatforminfront
ofthefireplaceandwasbeginningherdiscourse
.
Fromthisitappearedthataboutthreeyearsago,
whenshewasrecoveringfromtyphoidfeverinBuda-
pest,theCountesswastransported--ontheastral
plane,ofcourse-intoamonasteryintheveryheartof
theGobiDesert,whereshewasinitiatedintoallthe
mysteriesoftheuniverse .
" Ratheralargeorder,"Kavanaghcouldnotrefrain
frommurmuringtoLadyCaroline . Butsheonlyput
herfingerstoherlipsandwhispered
iro

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
Sh
! it'sallperfectlytrue . Listentowhatshe
hastotell us ."
Asaresultofthisinitiation,CountessZapraksywent
ontosay,shewasadmittedintotheinnercircleof
thatancientfraternitywhichhadexistedfromthe
verybeginningoftime,thoughshroudedthroughout
theagesinsecrecyandsilence . Inconsequence,
marvellouspowerswereconferredonher,anditwas
heronedesiretousethemintheserviceofhumanity .
Ofcourseshecouldnotdisclosetothemthesecretof
thesepowers,sincethatwasamatteroflongand
strenuousinitiation,andonthatpointherlipswere
sealed,butshewouldexplaintothemhowbysimple
processestheycouldlearntodevelopcertainlatent
facultiesto a surprisingdegree . Kavanaghlistened
bewildered,whilstshedescribedasystemofdeep
breathingtobepractiseddailyattheopenwindow
facingeast,withonehandplacedonthecrownofthe
headincontactwiththepinealgland,whichwasthe
seatofman'sundevelopedpowers . Thentherewere
variousformulaetoberepeated,hourstobespentin
meditation,animalfoodtobeabj ured,andpulsepre-
ferredasastaplearticleofdiet . Itwasalsohighly
desirabletowearastringofblueglassbeadsround
one'swaist,nexttotheskin-butthey must beblue,
noothercolourwouldhavethesameeffectofcharging
thesolarplexuswithmagneticforce . Thebodyof
adeptsoftheNewPsychism,thusfortified,wouldbe
abletoexerciseanimmenseinfluenceonthedestinies
ofthehumanrace,notonlyinthesphereofscientific
andintellectualprogress,butintherealmofpolitics,
fortheyalonewouldbeabletopresentanobstacleto
thetideofBolshevismthatthreatenedtoengulfthe
world . AtthispointevenKavanaghfelthimself
KAVANAGH HUNTSFORDRAGONS iii
carriedawaybytheCountess'seloquenceasshe
describedthemenacethatthedestructivetheoriesof
Moscowofferedtothecivilisedworld .
Butbeforeendingherlecture,CountessZapraksy
wentontosay,shewishedtodrawtheattentionof
heraudiencetoawonderfulexperimentthatwas
beingmadeintheartofhealing. Sheherselflivedin
avilla-theVillaPaxMundi-atBogazzo,onthe
ItalianLakes,andonlyhalfamileawayontheSwiss
sideofthefrontieraclinicnamed "Nirvana" had
beenrecentlyestablishedundertheauspicesofthe
NewPsychism,whereremarkablecureswereeffected
bydoctorswhohadstudiedthelatestmethodsof
osteopathyandelectrictreatmentcombinedwiththe
psychicmethodsofdevelopmentshehadalready
described . Funds,however,wereneededtocontinue
thisgreatwork,andsheappealedtoallpresentto
contributegenerouslytothecollectionthatwould
nowbemadeinaidofthehospital . Aplatewasthen
handedroundandreturnedtotheCountesspiledwith
notesandsilver.
Throughoutthelecturetheaudiencehadlistened
spellboundand,asthespeakerdescendedheavilyfrom
theplatform,womencrowdedroundherbeggingfor
furtherdetailsofhersystem .
Kavanagh,anxioustogleanmoreinformation,made
hiswayclosertothelady,andsuddenlyfelthereyes
fixedonhimwithparticularintentness . Disregarding
theclamorouswomenatherside,shestretchedout
herhandand,beckoninghimnearer,observedabruptly
" IsawyoulisteningveryattentivelytowhatIhad
tosay
.Isthereanythingyouwishtoaskme ? "
FacedwiththisdirectappealeventheIrishman's
readywitmomentarilydesertedhim . Therewere
112

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
plentyofthingshewouldliketoaskher,buthow
couldhethrowabombintothemidstofthefaithful
byapracticalenquiryofthekindthatrosetohislips ?
ButCountessZapraksywasaccustomedtobe
obeyed . " Isee,"shesaidfirmly, " thatyouhavea
questiontoaskme
.
Whatisit ? "
"
Well,sinceyoupressme,"beganKavanaghwith
someembarrassment,"
Ishouldliketoask,ifitisnot
animpertinentquestion,What are thepowersthat
havebeenconferredonyou ? Imean,"headded,
noticingtheshockedlookonthefacesaroundhim
andthequicklyrepressed flash ofannoyanceinthe
eyesoftheCountess, " Imean,whatsortofpowers
arethey ? Aretheymuscular--or -"
Ofcoursetheyarenotmuscular,"thelady
answeredsharply . " Theyhavenothingatalltodo
withthephysicalplane,thoughundoubtedlythey
contributetobodilyvigour . No,thepowersIpossess
arepsychic-spiritual,ifyouwill ."
" But,"persistedKavanagh,nowdeterminedtogo
throughwithit, " whatdotheyenableyouto do ? "
Atthisamurmurofdissentarosearoundhim .
Oh,Maj orKavanagh,"saidLadyCarolineWent-
lock, howcantheCountesstellyouthat ? Don't
you feel howmarvelloussheisI "
CountessZapraksyflashedagratefulglanceatthe
speaker . " Ofcourse,"shesaid,lookingagainat
Kavanagh, " thatisamatterIcannotexplain . You
muststudymysystemforyourselfandthenyouwill
understand ." Andturningastalwartshoulderon
himshemovedaway,escortedbyanadmiringthrong
inthedirectionofthedining-room,whereteawaslaid .
" Thatwasverynaughtyofyou,Maj orKavanagh,"
saidavoiceathisside,andKavanaghlookedround
KAVANAGHHUNTSFORDRAGONS 113
toseeMyraGreenworthysmilingupintohisface .
Hehadmetherseveraltimesatdancessincethe
dinner-partyattheHouseofCommons,andrather
likedher . Shewassoalive,sofullofeagerinterest
ineverythinggoingonaroundherthat,providedone
didnothappentobefeelingbelowpar,onefeltex-
hilaratedbyherconversation .Kavanaghwasquite
gladtofindherhere,amongstthiscrowdofqueer
people .
"Comeandhavesometeaorstrawberriesand
cream,"hesaid,noddingtowardstheladenrefresh-
menttable . Myraneedednopressing .
" I'msogladIwasborngreedy,"shesaid,sinking
intoachairinacornerofthedining-roomand
beginningtoattackthepileofstrawberrieswrested
byKavanaghfromapassingwaiter.
" YourememberVoltaire'smaxim : ` Soyezgour-
mandetgai.' Doyouthinkthat'sthesecretof
happiness ? "
saidKavanagh .
"
Yes,butVoltairecouldn'tputhismaximinto
practice .
Hehadawretcheddigestion . Perhaps
thatwaswhatmadehimsoimpious . Tellme,what
didyoureallythinkoftheCountess'slecture? "
"Well-er-franklyIthoughtitthemostunmiti-
gatedbunkum ."
" Ofcourse ."
"
Ah,youthoughtsotoo ? ThenIwonderwhy
youcametohearher ? "
"
IcamebecauseAuntSarah-Mrs .Schutzheim,
youknow,insistedonbringingme . She'soneofher
coadj utors .
Andafterall,I'vebeenamused ."
"Youdon'tbelieveintheCountess'ssoulbeing
transportedintotheGobiDesert
? "
"Ofcoursenot . Butthen,yousee,Idon'tbelieve
8
114

THE SECRETOF
THE
ZODIAC
insoulsatall.I'macompletematerialist ."
Kavanaghwasconsciousofaslightj ar .Myra
perceivedthisimmediatelyandadded
" HaveIshockedyou ? "
" No,notexactly
.But-"
"Butwhat? "
Well,IwasthinkingofwhatNapoleonsaidabout
amaterialist---! WhatcanIhaveincommonwitha
manwhosaysheisalumpofmud
? '"
" Sayclaythen ; itsoundsnicer
.Afterall,that's
whattheBiblesays :
` Clayyouareandtoclayyou
shallreturn
.'I'dratherthatthangoonbeingre-
incarnatedastheCountessdescribes-somethinglike
beinganoldumbrellare-coveredandre-covered
. I'm
surethespokesaren'tworthit
."Thendroppingher
toneoflightbantershewenton "
Allthesame,I'm
interestedinCountessZapraksy .Shehascertain
powers ."
" Youthinkso ? "
" Yes, sheunderstandssomethingofwhatispopu-
larlycalledtheinfluenceofmindovermatter-an
absurdexpressionreally,becausemindismatter,only
matterofadifferentkindtothebody .Bothare
equallyworkedbynaturallaws,onlywehaven'tyet
learntmuchaboutthem .TheCountesshas,Ibelieve
.
Butitisn'tthroughthe'NewPsychism'
thatshedoes
hermostimportantwork-that'sonlycamouflagefor
therankandfile ."
" Howdoessheworkthen ? "
Myrasankhervoicetoawhisper
. " Haveyou
neverheardoftheOrderofthePhoenix ? "
" Whatdoyouknowaboutit ? "saidKavanagh,
evadingthequestion .
" No,well,don'tsayImentionedittoyou,forit's
KAVANAGHHUNTSFORDRAGONS
115
asecretsociety,butthat'stherealhubofCountess
Zapraksy'sactivities-she'soneoftheRulingChiefs .
AndAuntSarahisanother . Itsometimesholdsmeet-
ingsattheOlympianClub,whichgoesinspecially
forthatsortofthing ."
" Andareyouamember ? "
" Heavens,no ! Theytriedtoropemein,though,
sothat'showI'veheardaboutit .
Butyouwon't
breatheawordtoanyone,willyou
? Ionlytoldyou
becauseyouseeminterestedinthissortofthing
."

IndeedIam . Ishouldliketohearmore
."
"
Well,comeanddineoneeveningandwe'llhave
anothertalk .
AndI'dlikeyoutomeetFather ."

Ishouldbedelighted
."
" Good .
NowImustbegoing . IseeAuntSarah
beckoning,
We'vegottogoontothe ` AtHome '
at
ioDowningStreet
." AndwitharadiantsmileMyra
vanished
.
Themerelycuriousamongstthecrowdwerenow
driftingtowardsthedoor,butanadmiringcirclestill
remainedaroundtheCountess . Kavanaghashe
approachedcouldhearthemrepeatingrapturouslyto
eachother

Isn'tshemarvellous ? "-"
Yes,mydear,too
wonderful ! "
" Marvellous,
wonderful ! " said Kavanaghto
himself ; "
buttheyneversaywhathermarvelor
wonderconsistsin .
Idon'tbelievetheyknowthem-
selves ."
ThenMrs .MurrayBatemancouldbeheardsaying
" Wemustgiveaballintheautumninaidof
'Nirvana'"-aproposalthatmetwithrapturous
applause . Afterthatafreshchorusarose
"
DearCountess,dosayyouwill1 " andLady
116

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
CarolineWentlock'svoiceroseabovetherestsaying

Yes,indeedwe must haveaportraitofourTeacher


fortheOlympianClub .Mrs .Bateman,do try and
persuadeherI "
TheCountessmadeamodestgestureasiftosayshe
wasunworthyofthishonour,butherhostesseagerly
tookupthetale,exclaiming : " Yes,Countess,do
consent
. Welongtohaveapictureofyoutopreside
overourmeetingswhenyouhaveleftusI "
" Well,ifyouwishit
! "saidtheCountesswitha
shrug .
Achorusofsatisfactiongreetedthisconcession
" Whoshallwegettodoit ? "-"
GrindellSmith ? "
-" Razenko ? "-" Mollinari ? "-"
WhataboutCap-
tainBrandon ? "-" Oh,ofcourse,Brandonwouldbe
thebest,buthe'ssobookedup ! "-" Yes,andso
difficulttoget . Ifonlywecouldpersuadehim ! "
Everyoneseemedtoagreeonthispoint .

IfonlyCaptainBrandonwoulddoit ! "-" Does


anybodyhereknowhim ? "
Kavanaghsawhisopportunityandseizedit

IknowBrandonwell . IthinkIcouldpersuade
him,ifyouwishit,toundertaketheCountess's
portrait ."
Everyoneturnedappreciativelyinhisdirection .
CountessZapraksyherselfnowsmiledgraciouslyand
said
" Ah ? So ?
IshallbepleasedtosittoCaptain
Brandon
. Butthepicturecannotbemadehere
. To,
morrowIreturntomyvillaatBogazzo
. Doyou
thinkCaptainBrandonwouldconsenttocomeand
paintmethere ?
Itwouldbebetterinmyownatmo-
sphere .
Heretheairistoofullofdisturbinginfluences ."
"
Icancertainlyaskhim,"saidKavanagh,anxious
KAVANAGH HUNTS FOR DRAGONS
11 7
nottoappeartooeager .Brandon,heknew,would
j umpatthesuggestion ; paintingaportrait,hehad
oftensaid,offeredthebestopportunityforfindingout
moreaboutapersoninwhomhewasinterested ;
" especiallywhentheygettired,"hewouldsay, "
they
areapttotalklessguardedly
."AndItalywasthe
placehelikedmostforaholiday .
Kavanaghdepartedamongstachorusofthanks,and
madestraightforBrandon'sstudio .
" Well,theafternoonhasnotbeenunfruitful,"he
saidtohisfriend,whowasbusycleaninguphis
palette ; "
I'mnowquite personagrata
intheCoun-
tess'scircle,andtheywantyoutopaintherportrait ."
Jimmygavealowwhistle . " Good .You'veman-
agedsplendidly,Terence .Whenarewetobegin ? "
" You'llhavetogotoBogazzo ; sheisleaving
Englandto-morrow,andsaysshemustbepaintedin
herownatmosphere ."
" Betterandbetter .BogazzoistheonespotI
shouldliketovisit ."
" Ah,thenyouknowallaboutit ."
" No,that'stheworstofit . Idon'tknowallabout
it-onlythatinsomewayitseemstobeafocusfor
Bolshevistactivities
."
"
GoodLord,buttheCountesswaseloquent
in her
denunciationofBolshevismthisafternoon ! "
" Verylikely .Shedepends,asyouknow,foragood
dealofhersupportontheConservativeParty .Anti-
Bolshevismisthebestwindow-dressingshecanpro-
vide.DenouncingBolshevismdoestheBolsheviks
noharm-providedthatonedoesn'thintthatthere's
anythingbehindit .Alotoftheirbestagentsarein
thatlineofbusiness ."
" DoyouthinkCountessZapraksyworksthroughthe
118

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
OrderofthePhoenix ? " andKavanaghrelatedwhat
Myrahadtoldhimonthesubj ect .
Brandonlistenedattentively .
" Veryinteresting,"hesaidatlast, " you'vedonea
goodday'swork,Terence . ButIdon'tthinkthe
OrderofthePhoenixisconsciouslyBolshevistic .
Beingpartoftheoccultsideoftheshow,itismoreor
lesscutofffromthepoliticalmovement . Butitacts
asasortoftraininggroundwherelikelysubj ectscan
bechosenforindoctrinationintomoredefinitely
destructiveideas . ThedangerspotthereisDoctor
Hensley."
"
Ah,hewasatthemeetingthisafternoon ."
" Hewouldbe . DoctorHensley,"Brandonwenton
afterapause, " is .arealinitiate-oneoftheTwenty-
FiveandveryneartheZodiac . Asapowerful
hypnotistheexercisesanimmenseinfluenceoverthe
mindsoftheundergraduates-apositivelydevastating
influence . That'samantowatch,Terence ."

I'llcultivatehisacquaintance . Andwhatabout
diningwiththeGreenworthys? "
Oh,gobyallmeans . I'minterestedinthatold
man . Infact,Ishouldn'tbesurprisedifhewere
actuallyamemberoftheZodiac . He'scertainlyone
ofthetwelverichestmenintheworld,andwithhis
internationalconnectionshemightwellbeexercisinga
powerfulinfluenceontheeconomicsituationofthe
world ."
Mrs .MurrayBatemanlostnotimeinringing
KavanaghupabouttheCountess'sportrait,andwas
overj oyedtohearthatCaptainBrandonhadagreedto
undertakeit . Allarrangementswerequicklymade .
ItwasnowtheendofJuly ; inafortnight'stime
KAVANAGHHUNTSFORDRAGONS ii9
BrandonwouldstartforBogazzo,andKavanagh
wouldgowithhimtoenj oythesceneryandthe
societyattheVillaPaxMundi
.AstheVillawas
smallandtheywouldbetogether,itwasdecidedthat
theyshouldstayattheinninthevillageandBrandon
wouldgodailytopainttheCountessinhergarden
.
Itwasacharmingprospectandonethatoffered
interestingpossibilities .
MyraGreenworthymeanwhiledidnotforgether
promisedinvitationtodine,andoneeveningaweek
laterKavanaghalightedfromataxiatthedoorofthe
millionaire'smagnificentmansioninKensingtonPalace
Gardens .
Aboutadozenguestswerealreadyas-
sembledinthevastdrawing-room,whereMyra,looking
reallybeautifulinanorange-colouredgownandalong
ropeofmarvellouspearls,wasdoingthehonourswith
herusualanimation .ShegreetedKavanaghwitha
radiantsmileand,undercoverofthebuzzofconversa-
tion,saidinanundertone
" IfonlyFatherhadn'tinsistedonhavingallthis
crowd ! Ishan'tbeabletositnexttoyouatdinner,
I'vegottobetakeninbyLordMendlestone,butwe'll
haveatalkafterwards .Father,thisisMaj or
Kavanagh,"shewenton,goinguptoashortthick-set
manwhostoodafewpacesawayshakinghandswith
fresharrivals .
Gladtowelcomeyou,Maj orKavanagh,"hesaid
withaslightGermanaccent . "
Mydaughtertellsme
youaregoingintoParliament
."

Ihopeto ."
DidaderisivesmilecrossSirPaul'sdarkfeatures
?
Kavanaghcouldhardlytell .
Buthetookaninstant
disliketohim
.Theheavynoseturningdowntowards
120

THE SECRET OF THE ZODIAC


theratherthicklips,thelowerofwhichprotruded
slightly,givingabitterandsneeringexpressiontothe
wholeface,thehardeyeslookingoutfrombeneath
beetlingbrows,asifestimatingone'svalueandsetting
itataverylowfigure-allcombinedtoconveyafar
frompleasingimpression .
"
Sinister,"Kavanaghsaidtohimself .Yes,thatwas
thewordforit .Butashewatchedhimturningtoother
guestsherealisedthatthecontemptuousexpression
whichhadsorepelledhimwasnotreservedforhim-
self,Kavanagh,alone ; itwasdirectedoneveryonein
turnandseemedtobetheformintowhichhisfacehad
set .Throughoutdinneritneverchanged,evenwhen
hesmiled .Forwhilstseatedattheheadofthe
tableplayinghispartasthegenialhost,hismouth
widenedfrequentlyintosmiles,butthebitternessstill
lingeredroundthecorners .
Kavanagh,boredbetweentwoneighbours-onewho
talkedtohimofalltheGrandHotelsshehadvisited
ontheContinent,theotherofthegaietiesshewas
enj oyingthroughtheLondonseasonhadleisureto
studyhisfellow-guests .Lookingroundthetable
henoticedthatmostofthemhadacertainfamily
resemblance.Asiatics,hesaidtohimself,andthough
thefactinspiredhimwithnoantagonism,forhewas
entirelyfreefromracialprej udices,hewasstillfresh
enoughfromIndiatofeelthat "
EastisEastandWest
isWestandneverthetwainshallmeet ."Themistake
thesepeoplemadewastotrytooccidentalisethem-
selves .Afterall,hereflected,it'sreallyourWestern
clothesthathandicapandvulgarisethem
.All
Orientals-Chinese,Japanese,Indianorwhateverthey
maybe-appearatadisadvantagewhentheyadopt
ourwayofdressing .
Oncebackintheirnativedress
KAVANAGHHUNTSFORDRAGONS 121
they'dloseatoncethatsortofcommonairthatmakes
ussmile . Putthemassivemiddle-agedwoman
oppositeintoEasternrobes,withj ewelsglitteringon
herforehead,andshe'dbemarvellouslypicturesque,
whilstGreenworthyhimself,whoinhisblackdress
suitlookedillatease,wouldappearalmosthandsome
anddignifiedclothedlikeaHebrewprophetofthe
Sundaypicture-books . OnlyIsidoreFranklin,sitting
oppositehim,Kavanaghcouldnotvisualiseundera
pleasingaspect ; healone,inblackcoatorkaftan,in
tophatorintarbooshmustbeequallyrepellent .
Kavanaghhadneverfeltsostrongafeelingofaversion
towardsanyhumanbeing .
Afterdinner,whenthemenj oinedthewomeninthe
drawing-room,thepartybrokeupintolittlegroups,
andKavanagh,feelingratheroutofitamongstthese
peoplewhoallseemedsomehowrelatedtoeachother,
walkedtotheopenFrenchwindowandlookedout
atthegardengrimlyadornedwithgreystatuesand
clumpsofspeckledlaurels
. Suddenlyhefeltalight
touchonhiscoatsleeve . ItwasMyralookingupinto
hisfacewithagleaminherdarkeyes .
" Comeoutintothegarden,"shesaidsoftly,
" they'reallbusytalking .Weshan'tbemissed ."
Andsheledthewaythroughthewindow,asubtle
anddeliciousperfumefloatinginherwake .
Theymadetheirwaytowardsasummer-houseand
satdownuponastoneseat .
"Tellmewhatyouthoughtofthedinner,"said
Myra .
" Ithoughtitexcellent,"Kavanaghanswered
heartily ; " youhaveafirst-rate chef."
" Ididn'tmeanthefood,"Myrasaidwithalaugh,
" butthepeople .Notveryexhilarating,werethey ? "
122

THE SECRET OF THE ZODIAC


" Oh,Ilikedthem
.Theyseemedso-so-well,so
satisfied ."Hecouldn'tthinkofanyotherword
.
" Nodoubttheywere .Yousee,theywereeating
.
But,befranknow,youdidn'tlikeIzzy ! "

Izzy? "
" IsidoreFranklin .He'salwayscalledIzzy .And
youcan'tbearhim,youknow ! "
" Whyshouldyouthinkso ? " saidKavanagh,
hedging .

Oh,Isawitinyoureyes.Besides,noonecould
reallylikehim ."
"NeedwetalkofIzzy?
Surelytherearepleasanter
topicsofconversation ."
" Ah,butI'vegottothinkofhim ! Yousee-"
shepausedandaddedabruptly : " Well,theywantme
tomarryhim ."
"GoodLord ! " Therewasgenuineconcernin
Kavanagh'svoice .Itseemedtohimhorriblethatthis
youngand,yes,charminggirl,shouldbedestinedtobe
thewifeof " thatlittlereptile,"asKavanaghmentally
designatedhim . " Butwhoare'they'
? " heasked .

Oh,hisfatherand,Isuppose,mine .Oscar
Franklin'sverykeenaboutit,andthoughFather
doesn'tlikeIzzyitwouldbedifficultforhimtogo
againsthim ."
" Whydifficultifhedoesn'tlikethefellow ? "
" Well,OscarFranklinisoneoftherichestandmost
influentialfinanciersintheworld,andasFatherhas
noheir,theideaistounitethetwofortunes .Of
courseIzzyisconsideredaverybrilliant parti."
" Butyouwouldn'tlikeitabit,wouldyou,Myra ? "
saidKavanagh,unabletocheckthenoteofaffectionate
sympathythatinevitablycreptintohisvoicewhenhe
wasconfrontedbyawomanindistress.Buthewas
KAVANAGH-HUNTSFORDRAGONS 123
quiteunpreparedforMyraslippingherhandintohis
andmurmuringasshelookedupintohiseyes
" Oh,Terence,whatdoyouthink ? "
Kavanaghfelthorriblyembarrassed
. Therewasno
mistakingMyra'smeaning
.Herglossyblackhead
wassoclosethatitalmostrestedonhisshoulder,and
thatstrangeseductivescentrosetohisnostrils-six
monthsagohemighthavehaddifficultyinkeeping
hisheadunderthesecircumstances .
Butthethought
ofRosamundsteadiedhim . Besides,ifhehadtheIrish-
man'ssusceptibilitytofemininecharms,hehadalso
theIrishman'sreadywit .
So,quicklyrecoveringhis
presenceofmind,hepattedherhandwithhisfreeone
whilstreleasingtheoneshehadimprisonedandsaid
cheerfully
"OfcourseIthinkyoumustn'tdreamofmarrying
him-ifyoudon'tlikethefellow . Andhecertainly
isn'tnearlygoodenough . Youmustwaituntilyou
meettherightman,Myra,"headdedinafatherlytone .
" But I have methim ! "wailedMyra ; thenext
momentshehadflungherselfintohisarms,whilsther
slenderbodywasshakenwithsobs .
" Hush,Myra,youmustn'tgivewaylikethis ! "
saidKavanagh,gentlydisengaginghimselfandrising
tohisfeet . " Someonemaybelistening . I'msureI
heardasoundinthebushes ."
Myrastoppedinthemiddleofasobandheldher
breath
. "Yes,thereissomeone,"shewhispered,and
suddenlybreakingawayfromKavanaghshedarted
tothefrontofthesummer-houseandpeepedout .
Butnothingwastobeseen .
Thedistraction,however,hadprovidedawayout
ofaveryawkwardsituation . Kavanaghnowledthe
wayfirmlybacktothehouse,continuingtotalkinthe
124

THE
SECRET OF
THE ZODIAC
same fatherlytone he had adoptedbefore
Myra's
outburst .
" Youmusttakeapull,keepatightholdonyour-
self.You'restillsoyoung,andyou'vegotlifebefore
youlifeandhappiness-lotsofhappiness ."
Myralookedupathimthroughhertearsand
answerednothing. Inthiswaytheyreachedthe
drawing-roomsafetyandfoundthepartybreakingup .
Myra,controllingherselfadmirably,shookhandswith
thedepartingguests,andKavanagh,havingalsotaken
hisleave,strolledouttotheopenfrontdoor . Itwas
toofineanight,hefelt,tobeboxedupinataxi,sohe
decidedtowalkbacktohisroomsandsetoffalongthe
roadtoKensingtonHighStreet .Lookingupatthe
stars,hebreathedadeepsighofrelief .Ithadbeena
"
verynearthing " thisevening,buthehadreallygot
outofitratherneatly-thatbirdinthebusheswasa
marvellousbitofluck .Butwhatawasteitall
seemed ! Somefellowswouldhavebeenonlytoo
thankfulforacolossalheiresstoflingherselfintotheir
arms1Whycouldn'thehavebeenapenniless
subalternandnotinlovewithRosamund? Myrawas
reallyverysweet,herdarkeyeswetwithtearsandher
whiteshouldersquivering
. . . .
Butsuddenlythesoundofamotorapproachingfrom
behindrousedhimfromhisreflections,andashe
steppedasideontothefootpath,thecar-asmall
Bentley-suddenlyswervedinhisdirection .Hehad
onlytimetoskipagilelybehindalamppostbeforeit
hadrushedpasthimwiththeroarofanopenexhaust .
" Whatanextraordinarybitofdriving ! " hesaid
tohimself."Thefellowinsidemustbedrunk! "Yet
theBentleywasnowpursuingaperfectlystraight
thoughrapidcourse,andclearedthegate-postintothe
KAVANAGHHUNTSFORDRAGONS 125
HighStreetwithwell-timedaccuracy . Well,this
seemedtobeaneveningofnarrowshavesforhim,and
hewasluckytohaveescapedsosuccessfully
. The
unfortunatepartofthewholeaffairwasthathewould
havetoseelessofMyrainfuture,andBrandonhad
countedonhisvisitstothehouseinKensingtonPalace
Gardenstofollowupcertainclues . Theoldmanwas
certainlyworthwatching,stillmorewasIzzy,and
whereelsewasthelittlereptiletobemet ? And
howwashetoexplainthesituationtoJimmy ? For
eventoone'sbestfriendonecouldnotgiveawaya
woman .
Butheconsoledhimselfwiththethought
thattheywouldsoonbestartingforBogazzo,andfor
atimetheGreenworthy menage neednotoccupytheir
attention .
CHAPTERVIII
THEVILLAPAXMUNDI
EARLY inAugustapartyoffivesetforthforBogazzo
.
Rosamund,whoalwaystookchargeofhermother
duringthesummermonthstheyspentoutofLondon,
hadnodifficultyinpersuadinghertovisitthatdelight-
fulspot .
TohergentleworldlysoulRosamund's
absorptioninherworkforKavanaghwasimmensely
gratifyingandcouldsignifyonlyonething-this
youngmanwiththecharmingmannersand
"
aplace
inthecountry
"hadsucceededinrousingherdaughter
fromherusuallanguortothekeenestenthusiasm,
andnowsheactuallywantedtofollowhimtoItaly !
NaturallyLadyDarewasready,asKavanaghwould
haveexpressedit, " togolepping ."
ThefifthmemberofthepartywasRigby,Brandon's
faithfulservant,withoutwhomheneverundertooka
Continentalexpedition,forRigbycouldeasilypassas
aFrenchman,andhadmadeafineartofdropping
intocafesor
buvettes andengagingpeopleincon-
versationonpointsofinterest
.
Beforestarting,Brandonmadeacarefulassortment
ofhispapers,pickingoutanythatwerelikelytobe
useful-dossiersandphotographsofpeopleandof
coursetheritualssuppliedbyRosamund-tobe
packedinadespatch-caseandcarriedbyRigby .
Bogazzo,whichtheyreachedinthefreshnessof
earlymorning,provedtobeevenmoreenchanting
thantheyhadpicturedit,asmallvillagej ustonthe
126
THEVILLAPAXMUNDI

12 7
Italian sideoftheSwissfrontier,lyingattheedgeof
aclearbluelakesurroundedbysnow-cappedmoun-
tains .
BrandonandKavanaghputupatanoldhotel
onthebordersoftheforest,andRosamundandher
motheratamoremodemoneoverlookingthelake .
ThisarrangementhadbeendecidedonsothatRosa-
mundshouldnotbeassociatedwiththetwomen,
helpingthemonlyinthebackground ; besides,itwas
highlyprobablethatmembersoftheOrderofthe
PhoenixmightturnupattheVillaPaxMundi,and
onceintroducedtothatcircleshewouldbeliableto
comeupagainstthem .Shehadnowishtogetonce
moreintotheiratmosphere .
ThesameafternoonBrandonandKavanaghsetoff
onavisittotheCountessZapraksy .
TheVillaPaxMundi,perchedontheslopeofthehill
amidstthevineyards,certainlyliveduptoitsname
withitssunnyterracesandpergolasofclimbingroses .
TheCountessclothedinanembroideredgarment
ofrussetsilkreminiscentofanEgyptianfresco,
receivedthenewarrivalswarmly,andintroduced
themtotherestoftheparty-theDeanofBarminster
andhiswife,MervynO'NeiltheIrishpoet,andFrau
Schnorrer,amiddle-agedGermanofampleproportions
who,astheCountessexplained,hadbeenPresident
oftheWomen'sSectionofthePrussian " Returnto
NatureMovement
" untilitssuppressionbyHitler,and
whoappearedtobeattiredonlyinabath-sheetkept
togetherperilouslybyalargebroochononeshoulder .
"
DearFrauSchnorrer,"theCountessobservedto
Brandonastheywanderedtogetherroundthegarden,
" sheisamostremarkablewoman .Outofdeferenceto
certainprej udicesshedoesnotappearinpublicina
completestateofnature,butofcourseduringthe
128

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
earlierpartofthedayweencouragehertofollowthe
systemshehasfoundsohealth-giving ."
" Andtowearnothingatall ? "
" Precisely. Ialwayslikemygueststodoexactly
astheyplease
.Inhibitionsarealldeleterioustohealth .
Youwilldoj ustasyoulikewhilstyouarehere,I
hope ."
" Thanksawfully
.ButIthinkI'llkeepmyclothes
on .
AndInoticeyouprefertodothesame? "
"
Yes,Ihavenotyetfelttheurgetocastoffall
clothing.Theclimateperhapsishardlywarmenough
.
Now,whatwouldyousuggestIshouldwearformy
portrait ? "
"Well,Ithinksomestrikingcolour . .
.purple,
Ithink . . . yes,decidedlyapurplerobeifyouhave
one."
" Good . Iseeyouhaveperception .
Thatisthe
colourthatbestexpressesmyaura ."
ThenextmorningBrandonsettowork . The
Countess,enthronedonanoldItalianseatattheend
oftheterracewithspraysofscarletbegoniasandpale
mauveplumbagoframingherhead,reallymadea
moststrikingmodel,andbutforherhabitofsuddenly
droppingofftosleepwouldhavebeenafirst-rate
sitter.
" Ifyoucouldmanagetokeepawakeforaboutfive
minutesnow,"Brandonfoundhimselfrepeating,but
theCountessexplainedthat,owingtoherpracticeof
detachingherselffromthephysicalplane,shewasapt
tofloatawayontotheastralatanymoment . Some-
timesindeedsheremainedtheresolongandpresented
sooddanappearancewithhereyestightlyshutand
hermouthhalfopen,thatBrandonwouldputuphis
brushesandwanderawaytoashadycornerofthe
THEVILLAPAXMUNDI

129
gardentoenj oyacigarettewithKavanaghuntila
cryfromtheCountessannouncedthathersoulhad
oncemorereturnedtoearth . Atthisratethepor-
traitwouldtakesometimetofinish,butwhatmatter ?
Inthislandof dolce farniente timewasofnoaccount,
andthelongertheystayedatBogazzothemorethey
wouldbelikelytodiscoveraboutwhatwentonthere .
Atfirstnothingofparticularinterestoccurred .The
Countess'sguests,whosucceededeachotherat
intervalsofafewdays,seemed,withtheexceptionof
LadyCarolineWentlock,unconcernedwithpolitics
ofanykindandnoconnectionwithsecretsocieties
couldbedetected . Mostofthemwerefollowersof
variousoddcults : therewasEdmondVallergues,
thewell-knownauthorofmysticnovels,whichitwas
saidhewasabletowriteonlyundertheinfluenceof
haschisch ; ImogenMeldreth,theAmericanactress,
whobelievedherselftobethereincarnationofSemi-
ramis,andinsistedonbringingwithherapetleopard
namedPtolemythatsmeltabominablyandfilled
LadyCarolinewithnervousapprehensionforthefate
ofhercherishedPeke. ThentherewasHeinrich
Angstrom,theAustrianplaywright,andEugene
Bramber,theeditorofthe Scrutator,
whostudied
Yoga,whichnecessitatedstandingonhisheadforhalf
anhoureverymorning-aprocesswhichhedeclared
hefoundmarvellouslyclearingtothebrain . Andin
thebackgroundthereflittedfromtimetotimethe
silentfigureoftheCountess'ssecretary,MissMcNab,
apaleScotchgirlwithsandyhairwhosepresence
couldusuallybeheard,ratherthanseen,bytheclick
ofatypewriterinasmallroomoffthehall .
When,assometimeshappened,Brandonand
KavanaghremainedtomealsattheVilla,theconversa-
9
130

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
tionusuallyturnedtoliterature,art,orthepeculiar
philosophiesofthosepresent . Ontherareoccasions
whenpublicaffairswerementioned,theattitudeof
thepartyseemedtobethatofsuperiortolerance
towardsthefoolishpeoplewhochosetowearthem-
selvesoutoversuchmundanequestionsasfrontiers,
tariffs,nationaldefence,andsoon ; oncetheNew
Psychismhadbeenuniversallyaccepted,allnational
andinternationalproblemswouldbesettledauto-
matically,andtheworldwouldenteronthemillen-
niumwhichonlyhumanerrorspreventeditfrom
enj oyingatthepresenttime
.Meanwhileoneneednot
botherone'sheadaboutthesethings
. Theonly
topicthatseemedtoexcitesomepassionwasFascism,
whichwasevidentlyabhorrenttothewholecompany .
Extraordinaryincidentswereconstantlyreportedas
havingoccurredcloseby,andasBrandonkept
discreetlytohisroleofportraitpainter,Kavanagh
wasleftalonetodefendMussoliniagainstthesucceed-
ingbarbaritiesattributedtohim
.
" Yes,Iassureyou,mydear,"oneladyobserved
impressively, "itispositivelydangeroustomention
hisnameanywhereinpublic-oneisliabletobe
thrownintoprisonimmediately .
Afriendofmine
wenttobuysomemuslinformosquito-nets,andasked
for ` mussolina
'inashop,andeveryonelooked
furious,thinkingshewasreferringtotheDuce
.And
shewasshadowedbythepolicefordaysafterwards ! "
"
Oh,theterrorinItalyisj ustasgreatasinRussia ! "
saidanItalianj ournalist . " Onelivesinconstant
fearoflisteningearsitislikebeingunderthe
Cheka ! "
"
Yet,"Kavanaghcouldnothelpinterposing,
"
youarenotafraidtospeakyourmindhereandyou
THEVILLAPAXMUNDI

131
yourselfliveinRome .HowmanyRussianscould
talkinthiswayintheprovinces,especiallyifthey
weregoingbacktoMoscow ? Haveyounofearof
beingreported ? "
Tothisenquiry,however,thej ournalistremained
convenientlydeaf .
KavanaghfoundhimselfwonderingwhatAlessandro,
theCountess'sItalianmanservant,thoughtashe
handedthedishesduringtheseconversations . But
perhapshedidnotunderstandEnglishorwashostile
toFascism . Atanyrate,hisdarkimpassivecounten-
anceshowednosignsofeitherapprovalorresentment .
MuchwasofcourseheardattheVillaof " Nirvana,"
theclinicaboutwhichtheCountesshadspoken
duringherlectureinLondon,andbeforeBrandonand
KavanaghhadbeenthreedaysinBogazzo,she
insistedontakingthemtovisitthatremarkable
institution . Itwasanunpretentiousbuildingofwhat
wouldbecalledinEnglandthe "
cottagehospital "
type,situatedintheheartoftheforestataconsider-
abledistancefromthenearestvillageorfromanyother
humanhabitation . Thesurroundinggardenwith
itssparselawnsandnewlyplantedflower-bedshad
evidentlynotlongbeenreclaimedfromtheencircling
woodland .Thehouseitselfwasbuiltafterthemost
modernhygienicfashionwithwidebalconiesdivided
bypartitions,andatoneendacovered liege-halle where
severalpatientscouldbeseenlyingon
chaiseslongues,
" Acharmingspot,don'tyouthinkso ? "said
CountessZapraksyastheydescendedfromthecar
andrangthebellatthegate .
" Yes,delightfulandsorestful ! " bothagreed
butBrandonadded : " Rathershutinbytrees,
though,isn'tit ? Inwetweather-"
132

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
" Thatisj ustthecharmofitI " criedtheCountess
.
" Thearomaoftheforestissohealth-giving1The
verythingthepatientsneedinordertopurifytheir
lungsafterbreathingtheairofcities .Ah ! herecomes
thedoctorhimselftoreceiveus ! " andsheturned
togreetamanwithashortpointedbearddressedin
awhitelinenoverallwhocameforwardfromthe
entrance .
" Welcome,dearContessa ! hesaid,kissingthe
Countess'shand .
" IhavebroughttwoguestswithmefromEngland
tovisityourwonderfulclinic,"shesaid,introducing
BrandonandKavanagh,towhomsheadded : " We
arefortunateinfindingDoctorWeingoldhimselfhere
to-day . Hisworkcallshimtosomanyotherplaces
thatheisonlyabletospendpartofhistimeatthe
clinic-hecomesforafewdays,andisthenobliged
togoonelsewheretoattendtopatientsalloverEurope .
Thereisnooneelse,yousee,whopossesseshismarvel-
lousknowledge !
Thedoctormadeamodestgestureofdisclaimer .
"
Still,Ihaveanadmirable remplacant--and our
matron,laSceurCelestine,isunrivalledinhercareof
thesick. Shewillcomeherselftoreceiveyou ."
SceurCelestine,alargelybuiltwomanofaboutforty,
withanoliveskinandcrispblackhair,wasnotlong
inmakingherappearance,andledthevisitorsintothe
salon-aroomfurnishedwithSpartansimplicity-
wheresheproceededtotellthemofthemarvellous
cureseffectedbyosteopathicandelectrictreatment .
" Woulditbepossibletoseetheroomwherethisis
carriedout ? "Brandonenquired .
" Unfortunatelyno . Thedoctorabsolutelyforbids
anystrangersenteringthoseapartments-theyare
THEVILLAPAXMUNDI

133
liabletodisturbthevibrations ."
"
Iunderstand
.
Youhavenotmanypatientsat
themoment ? "
Brandonwentoninatoneofpolite
interest . Exceptinthe liege-halle
therehadseemedto
benobodyabout .
" No,"ScourCelestineanswered,lookingathim
sharply . "Atthistimeofyearweareneververy
busy
. Andingeneralwedonothaveagreatnumber
ofpatients . Weareveryparticularwhomwereceive ."
" Ah !
Andwhyisthat ? "
"
Becausethetreatmentwegiveissuitedonlyto
thosewhohavereachedacertainstageofspiritual
development,andtheyarefew in number. Those
whoremainonthepurelyphysicalplanecanbeattended
inordinaryhospitalsandclinics ."
" ShouldIbeadmitted
? "Kavanaghcouldnot
refrainfromasking .
ScourCelestine,glancingathisobviouslyrobust
physique,answeredcautiously
" Thatdependsonwhatyouaresufferingfromand
onyourspiritualcondition
. Itisnecessarybefore
enteringtopasscertaintests
." Andthen,evidently
anxioustochangethesubj ect,shebegantospeakof
thewalksthatmightbetakeninthemountainsabove
theforestandthehealth-givingpropertiesofthepine-
ladenair .
"
It'sallveryqueer,"Kavanaghsaidaftertheyhad
returnedtothehotelthatevening
. " Whyonearth
dotheyhaveaclinicstuckrightawayintheforest ?
Itmustbeveryinconvenienttobecutofflikethat
fromcommunicationwiththeouterworld
."
" I1supposetheyhaveatelephone
. Still,thereis
somethingoddaboutit .
WemustgetRigby,"Bran-
134

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
donwenton," todosomesleuthworkintheneigh-
bourhood .HeknowsenoughItaliantopickupa
gooddealthat'sgoingon ."
ButRigbyhadalreadybeenimprovingtheeshining
hoursbydrinkingatcafesandlisteningtovillage
gossipwhichsometimestouchedontheclinicinthe
forest . " Anoddsortofhospital," thevillagers
wouldsay, " forsometimesitappearstobeuninhabited,
andwhenthedoctorandnursesaretheretheygo
theirwaysilentlyandspeakofnothingtothetrades-
peoplefromwhomtheybuytheirsupplies ." The
mosttactfulquestioningcouldelicitnothingmore
definite .
Itseemedalmostasiftheinhabitantsof
Bogazzowereafraidtospeakoutonthematter .
Onemorning,however,Brandon,findingthathehad
lefthiscigarette-caseattheVilla,sentRigbyupat
anearlyhourtofindit
. Hehimselfneverarrived
therewithKavanaghbeforeeleveno'clock-noone,
withtheexceptionofFrauSchnorrer,lefttheirrooms
beforethattime . WhenRigbyreturnedwiththe
cigarette-caseitwasevidentthathehadsomethingto
report
" Whatisit,Rigby ? " Brandonasked .
" Well,sir,therewasaveryoddsortofgentleman
comingoutofthegateasIwentin ."
"Whatwashelike? "
" Adarksortoflittlefellowwithapointedblack
beardandwearingblackspectacles,blackalpacacoat,
andadirtyPanama on hishead . Anuglycustomer,
Ishouldsay,sir ."
" Washecarryinganything ? "
"No,sir
. Nothingbutastick .ButInoticed
thathispocketswerebulging,andhekeptahandin
oneasifhewasholdingontosomething ."
THEVILLAPAXMUNDI

135
" Didyounotethetime ? "
" Yes,sir ; ninethirty-fiveprecisely ."
" Good. Itlooksasifwe'dgottobeupattheVilla
earlierinfuture . Meanwhileyou'dbetterseeifyou
cangetonthetrackofthemansomewhereinthe
villageandfindoutwhoheis . Afterall,hemaybe
onlyaharmlesstradesman ."
Rigbyshookhishead . " He'snotthat,sir. Came
fromtheEastofEurope,unlessI'mverymuchmis-
taken .ButI'llkeepalookoutforhim ."
ThesamedaywhenBrandonandKavanaghreturned
tothehotelforluncheon,Rigbypaddedintotheroom
aswashiswontwhenhehadsomethingofimportance
tocommunicate.
" Excuseme,sir,butthelittlefellerIsawthis
morningcomingoutofthegateoftheVillaissittingin
thecafeopposite ."
"We'lldropinthereforanaperitif,shallwe
Terence ? " Andthetwomenstrolledacrossthestreet
andtooktheirplacesatasmallmarble-toppedtable .
" TwoVermouths,"saidBrandon,lookinground
himcarelessly .
Ah,thatwasevidentlyRigby'sman,
seatedatatableinthecornerdrinking grappa !
Wherehadheseenthatfacebefore? Somehowthose
featuresseemedvaguelyfamiliar . Ah,itwasslowly
comingtohim-wasitpossible
? Couldthisbe
Schwartzmann,theprincipalBolshevikcourierbetween
BerlinandMoscow ?
Yes,itwasSchwartzmann-
therecouldbenodoubtofthat .
" We'reonahotscent,Terence,"hesaidasheand
Kavanaghmadetheirwaybacktothehotel .
"If
Schwartzmannisemployedforthisworktheremustbe
somethingimportantonhand . He'llprobablybeoff
bythefirsttrain ; itleavesattwo-thirty,sowe'renot
136

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
likelytocatchaglimpseofhimagain . Butwemust
keepawatchontheVillaincaseanyotheremissaries
arrive."
Itwasevidentthatonlytheearlybirdwouldcatch
whateverwormsfrequentedtheVillaPaxMundi ;
9
.3oappearedtobethemostlikelyhour . Didthey
comeforsecretinterviewswiththeCountessbeforeher
guestshadlefttheirrooms,orwasthereanyother
obj ectfortheirvisits
? Atanyrate,Brandonand
Kavanaghdecidedthattheymustbetheretosee . It
mightbedifficulttoexplaintheirpresencetwohours
beforetheirusualhourforarrival,butAlessandrowas
theonlypersonlikelytobeaboutatthattime,and
shouldheappearsurprisedtheyresolvedtobluffitout
byremarkingthattheyhadmerelycometoenj oythe
freshnessoftheearlyhourinthegarden .
TheCoun-
tesshadrepeatedlyinvitedthemtodropinatany
momenttheyfeltinclined,andAlessandrocould
hardlysuspectthemofanysinisterintentions .
Accordinglythenextmorningtheywereupbetimes
andarrivedattheVillaat9
.15precisely . Atoneend
oftheverandahAlessandroinastripedcottoncoat
couldbeseenshakingoutmatsandarrangingthechairs
.
"
Ifyoucan,engagehiminconversation,"saidBran-
don . "
I'llstrollroundtothefrontdoorandseeif
anythingisgoingonthere ."
ButtheyhadreckonedwithoutFrauSchnorrer
. On
reachingtheterracetheyfoundtotheirconsternation
thePresidentoftheWomen'sReturntoNatureMove-
mentenj oyingasun-bathinadeck-chaironthepath-
wayleadingtothefrontdoor,intheexactgarbwith
whichshehadenteredtheworld . Withoutatraceof
embarrassmentshebeckonedtothemtoapproachand
takeplacesatherside
. Kavanagh,tooastonishedto
THEVILLAPAXMUNDI

137
refuse,acceptedtheprofferedchair,whilstBrandon,
remarking, "
Excuseme,butIthinkIleftmypaint
brushesinthehall
! "vanishedroundthecornerin
thedirectionofthehalldoor
.
"Coward,toleavemealonetofacethissituation! "
Kavanaghsaidgrimlytohimself
. Howonearthwas
hetogetthrougha tete-d-tete withaladynotwearinga
stitchofclothing ?
However,heresolvedtolook
straightinfrontofhimandnotonceturnhisheadin
thedirectionofhiscompanion .
ButFrauSchnorrersavedhimtheeffortofbreaking
theice
.
"
Yougannotimagine,CommanderKavanagh,"
sheremarkedingutturalEnglish, " whadbeaceone
enchoyswhenonehassredurnedtoNature-der
ubliftoneexberiencesassoonasoneisgombletely
unglothedI "
"
Well,Ican'tsayIhaveeverfeltthat-inaTurkish
bath,forexample,"Kavanaghanswered
.
"
Ach,no,onemustbeoudinderobenair,amidst
dervlowersandderdrees1
Dennoneveelsimmedi-
atelydatoneisabartofNature-avonderfulsensationI
SobureI Soelefating !
"
Stillefenindoors,"shecontinuedafterapause,
"
onceonehassreallygrasbedderinwardnessofder
mofement,dersamesenseofexhilarationbersists
. At
ourdinner-bartiesinvinter,vatfreedomofdought,
vatshparklinggonversation!
IwishIcouldbersuade
youtoj oinourNudistgolonyontheSeine ! "

Iwonder,"saidKavanaghmeditatively, "whether
that'swhatthepoorthingsfeelinlunaticasylums-"
" How ? Votdoyoumean ? Inlunadicasylums
? "
saidFrauSchnorrerindignantly
.

Oh,well,I'msorry .
Ididn'tmeantoberude . I
138

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
wasreallythinkingoutloud
. But,yousee,inasylums
I'vebeentoldthatthelunatics'firstimpulseistotear
offalltheirclothes,andtheyhavetobeprevented
fromdoingsobyforce . However,perhapsthey've
caughtaglimpseofthetruthsyouhavediscoveredand
oughtnottoberestrained ."
" Ofgoursedeyoughtnoddoperestrained,"said
FrauSchnorrer,somewhatpacifiedbyKavanagh's
lastremark . " OneshouldneferrebressNature .
Animalsarehappypegausedeyliffvreeandundram-
melled,apletogifeblaytoalldeirnaturalinstincts
.
Datisvotissopeautifulaboutdem-ach ! "
the
sentenceendedinashriek.
Kavanaghstarted,andlookingroundforthefirst
timeinthedirectionofhisNature-cladcompanion,
saw,beyondherquiveringshoulder,thecrouching
formofImogen'sleopardpreparingtospring .
InaninstantFrauSchnorrerwasoutofherchair
andtearingmadlyalongtheterraceutteringshrill
crieslikethesirenofayacht,whilsttheleopardbounded
afterherinaseriesoflongleaps,eachofwhichbrought
himnearertohisprey . Kavanagh,checkinghisfirst
impulsetoburstintounseemlylaughterattheamazing
spectacleoftheflyingRubensfigurewiththeleopard
atitsheels,waspreparingtostartinpursuit,armed
onlywithawalking-stick,whenaclearvoicerangout
fromtheverandah : ` .` Ptolemy,toheel ! Itwas
ImogenMeldreth,who,withtheotherinhabitantsof
theVilla,hadrushedoutintheirnightclothesat
thesoundofFrauSchnorrer'sscreams . Foran
instanttheleopardpaused,butwasevidentlyabout
tospringforwardagainwhenCountessZapraksy
suddenlyemergedfromawindowandplacedherself
initspath .
THE.VILLAPAXMUNDI

139
Halt1 shesaidbriefly,withawaveofthehand
thatthrewtheleopardbackonitshaunches . Then,
makingarapidpassbeforeitseyessheseemedtohold
itinmotionlessrigidity . Thenextmomentthe
hugecatcreptmeeklybacktoitsmistressonthe
verandah .
Meanwhileahubbubhadarisenthere .
" Itoldyoutheanimalwasdangerous ! " saidLady
Caroline,whohadfollowedinthewakeofImogen,
claspingherPekecloser . " Nowperhapsyouwill
believeme ! "
" Ptolemyisnotdangerous1 " Imogenretorted
indignantly . Heisperfectlysafewithpeoplewhohave
clotheson . Butthesightofthatmassofbareflesh
wouldbeenoughtogiveideastoanyleopard ." And
shenoddedinthedirectionofFrauSchnorrer'sfainting
form,whichhadcollapsedattheendoftheterrace
andwasnowbeingcarriedintothehousebyAlessandro
andtheIrishpoet . "PoorPtolemy! " sheadded,
strokingtheleopard'sheadaffectionately .
TherewascertainlysomethingtobesaidforPtolemy,
reflectedKavanagh . Thelady'sopulentlimbsmight
wellhaveappearedtempting,and,afterall,hadshe
notherselfdeclaredthat a wildanimalshouldbe
allowedtofollowitsnaturalinstincts? Wouldshe
beinclinedtotakethesameviewnow ? Well,ifshe
wantedtogobacktothej ungleshehadhadataste
ofitthatmorning .
MeanwhileBrandonhadnotbeenwastinghistime,
andasthetwomenwalkedbacktothehotelfor
breakfasttheycomparednotesontheirrespective
adventures .
" Iseemtohavemissedathrillingsight,"said
14o

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
Brandon,whentheyhadshoutedthemselveshoarse
overKavanagh'sstory . " Andaninterestingone
too,"headded . " TheCountess'scontroloverthe
leopardcertainlysuggeststhatshereallyhashypnotic
powers. Thecattribearepeculiarlysensitivetosuch
influences . ButnowImusttellyoutheresultofmy
investigations . Undercoverofthecommotion-
forIrealisedthattherewassomethingunusualgoing
on-Iwasabletomakecertainobservations . I
thinkI'vediscoveredtheroleoftheVillaPaxMundi ."
" Whatisthat
? "
"
Itseemstobeahouseofcallforcorrespondence .
Lyingonthehalltablewereanumberoflettersad-
dressedtonameswhicharecertainlynotthoseofpeople
stayinginthehouse
. They'reprobablynotrealnames .
Thecontentsarepresumablytoodangeroustosend
bypostintocountrieswheresupervisionisatall
strict .
Inoticedthatoneortwowereunstamped
andmustthereforehavebeenleftbyhand
. Evidently
thesamecourierwhofetcheslettersleavesthem . If
onlywecouldgetholdofsomeofthem ! "

Youdidn'tthinkofabstractinganywhenyou
hadthechance ? "
" Toodangerous .
Anyletterthathadbeenremoved
wouldbemissedatonce .
Wedon'twanttorouse
suspicionsyet .."

IsupposetheCountessmustknowallaboutit ? "

Idon'tseehowshecanfailto . Thewholething
mustbearrangedwithher . Iwonderwhether
Alessandro'sintheplot . WemustgetRigbyto
cultivatehisacquaintance ."
Butanincidentthatoccurredadayortwolater
settledthisquestion
. KavanaghandBrandonwere
sittingontheverandahafterteawhilsttheother
THEVILLAPAXMUNDI

141
guestswanderedawayalongtheterrace
. Only
Alessandroremained,flickingthecrumbsoffthetable
withanapkin .
"Hullo,what'sthis
? " saidKavanagh,pickingup
the CorrieredeltaSera,
whichhadj ustarrived ." An
attemptonthelifeoftheDuce
! "
" What ? "
criedAlessandro,droppingthenapkin
withastart-therewasnomistakingtheconsternation
onhisface.
" Oh,it'sallright
! "smiledKavanagh ." The
attemptfailed .
TheDuceisperfectly_ safe ."
" Godbethanked ! "
murmuredtheItalian .
" AhI ThenyouareaFascist,Alessandro?
saidKavanagh.
" Sicuro
. WhattrueItalianisnot ?
ButIdo
notsaysointhishouse
."
"Butyoucansayittome
."
"
Iknow,"saidAlessandro,withagleamofhis
whiteteeth. "
IhaveheardtheSignorespeakat
mealsoftheDuce .
IunderstandsomeEnglish,you
see .
Asforme,"headded,withaquickglanceover
hisshouldertomakesurehewasnotoverheard, "I
keepmyearsopenandmymouthshut
. Inthatway
onelearns."
" Youareheretolearn,perhaps
? "askedBrandon,
andasthemanmadenoreplyheaddedtohimself
" AFascistagentevidently-thisisexcellent
! "
"
Listen,Alessandro,"hewentoninalowvoice,
speakingrapidlyinItalian, "
wearebothfriends
.
Youcantalktouswithperfectsafety .
Andyou
noticestrangethingshappeningin-inthisneigh-
bourhood ? "
"Verystrange,"Alessandroansweredcryptically
.
" Perhapsyoucantellussomethingaboutthem
? "
142

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
" Perhaps . Whennooneisnear . Everyevening
at teno'clockIgodowntoposttheletters . Atthe
GateoftheVillaitisquiet .IftheSignoriwereto
walkinthatdirection-" Thenseeingtherestof
thepartyapproaching,hewentonloudlyinacheerful
tone : " Yes,truly,thesceneryinthispartofItaly
issuperb farsuperiortothatoftheRiviera ."
"ItlookstomeasifAlessandrowasourman,"
KavanaghsaidtoBrandonasthetwomadetheirway
backtothehotel
.
"
Yes,hemaybeuncommonlyuseful . Butwe
mustbecarefulnottobeseenspeakingtohimatthe
Villa
.Anditwouldbedangerousforhimtocometo
ourhotel .Thevillageisprobablyfullofanti-Fascist
spiesandhismovementswouldbewatched
.
Ithink
we'lltakeastrollafterdinnerthisevening . Rigby
cankeepguardontheroadoutside ."
Itwasafinemoonlightnightwhenthetwomen,
followedatashortdistancebyRigby,slippedinat
thegateoftheVillaandtookuptheirstandinthe
shadeofsomedarkcypresstreestoawaitthearrival
ofAlessandro
.
TheItalianwasnotlonginmakinghis
appearance,andspottingtheEnglishmenimmediately
tiptoeduptothemwithafingeronhislipsandsaid
inawhisper
" Wemustbecareful . Sometimestheyareabout
atthishour . Oneneverknows ."
"Whoare they, Alessandro ?
" Thepeoplewhocallforletters . Usuallythey
comeinthemorning,butsometimesalsoatnight .
Butperhapsfordaystheydonotcomeatall ."
"
Therewasonetwodaysago,isthatnotso ? "
" Yes,
theSignoreinblackspectacleswiththedirty
hat .
AratofMoscow !
ChemascalzoneI and
THEVILLAPAXMUNDI

143
Alessandrospatenergeticallyintothebushes . "
He
toldtheGermanSignorathathewouldbeback
hereonthefourteenth
. Ifonlyourpeoplecouldget
holdofhim,theywouldsettlehimveryquickly
!
Theyknowhowtodothings ! "
"Ah !
thenitwasSchwartzmann ! " thoughtBrandon
.
" Nowtellme,Alessandro,"hebeganaloud,then
brokeoffsuddenly,turningtoKavanagh . " Isn't
thatRigbywhistling'Ladonnaemobile'atthegate?
Adangersignal
! "
Thethreemenhadonlyj usttimetostepfarther
backintotheshadowswhenthegateoftheVilla
clickedopenandawomannenteredwithavaliseinher
hand
. Inthelightofthemoonherdarkeyesand
Slavonicfeaturescouldbeclearlyseen .
" Thetypicalrevolutionaryfemalethatusedto
throwbombsinthegoodolddays,"murmuredBrandon
whenshehadpassedoutofhearing
.
" Shewillreturnquickly,"saidAlessandro
; " she
hasonlycomefortheletters."
Andsureenoughin
fiveminutesthesamefigurepassedoutofthegate
again .

Iwonderwhereshe'sgoing
? "saidKavanagh .
" There ! "
answeredAlessandro,noddinghishead
inthedirectionofthefrontier ."
Theyalwaysgo
thatway ."

IntoSwitzerland ? Followher,Alessandro,fora
fewmoments,andseewhatroadshetakes ."
Alessandroneedednourging,andwasoutinthe
roadlikelightningandfollowingthenowdistant
figureofthemessengerwithstealthyfootsteps
. For
aquarterofanhourthetwomenwaitedatthegate
untilAlessandroreturnedheatedandbreathless
.

Icouldnotgoalongway,"heexplained,
forI
144.

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
mustbebackattheVilla,butIfollowedherasfaras
theturningintotheforest . Thereshedisappeared
fromsight ."
" Wherecouldshebegoingtointheforest ? " said
Brandonmeditatively ." Thepathwayleadstono-
whereexcept-except,ah ! theclinic'Nirvana' ! "
" Yes,thataccursedhouse ! "saidAlessandro .
" Youthinkthat-why ? "
ButAlessandrowouldsaynomorethantheinhabi-
tantsofBogazzo-strangethingswentonthere,what
heeitherdidnotknoworwouldnotsay .
"Butwhyshouldmessengerssecretlytakeletters
fromtheVillatotheClinic ? " askedKavanagh .
" Forthesimplereason,"answeredBrandon, " that
thefrontierrunsthroughtheforest,andcouriersbe-
tweenItalyandSwitzerlandgetthemacrossthatway .
TheClinicisevidentlytheirhouseofcallonthatside,
theVillaonthis . Iwish,"hewenton,"wecouldget
atthecontentsoftheseletters .Haveyoueverhada
lookatthem,Alessandro ? "
" Onlyattheenvelopes . Ihavenotedthenames
sometimes ."
"
Andtheyareprobablynotrealones
.Haveyou
neveropenedthem ? "
" HowshouldIdothat ? "
Alessandrowasevidentlynotanexpertinthese
matters .
" Listen,"saidBrandon, " wouldyouliketohand
someofthemovertous ? "
"But,Signore,theywouldbemissed ."
Whattimearetheycalledforinthemorning ? "
" Athalf-pastnine . Neverbeforeaquarter-past,
atanyrate ."
Andtheyareleftthedaybefore ? "
THEVILLAPAXMUNDI

145
" Yes . TheSignorawhohasj ustdepartedhaspro-
bablyleftsomenow. ButtheContessagoestobed
verylate,sometimesnottillaftermidnight . They
cannotberemovedtillshehasretired ."
" Good . Thenbringthemdownearlyinthemorn-
ing,notlaterthanseveno'clock,andplacethemhere
inthisholeinthewall,"saidBrandon,removinga
loosestoneinthemasonry ; " replacethestoneand
thencomebackatnineo'clockandyouwillfindthem
theresafe."
" Andwithouttheappearanceofhavingbeen
opened ? " Alessandroenquiredanxiously .
"Withouttheappearanceofhavingbeentouched .
Isthatunderstood,Alessandro ? "
" Itisunderstood,Signore,theletterswillbethere ."
AndAlessandrodepartedwiththeFascistsalutewhich
wasansweredinthesamemannerbythetwo
Englishmen.
ItwasarrangedthatearlyinthemorningRigby
shouldvisitthe cache intheVillawallandbringthe
contentsbacktohismaster . Accordinglyat7.45 a .m .,
thetrustedbatmandulyarrivedwithapacketofsome
half-dozenunstampedlettersandseveralnewspapers
inwrappersbearingthestampsofdifferentcountries,
includingGermanyandRussia .
" Whatarumcollection1 " saidKavanagh .
Itwascertainlyastrangeassortment-envelopes
addressed,someintype,someinvariousforeignhand-
writings,to "
HerrOttoSchmidt,"
" IvanLevinsky,"
" MadameRosalieDupont,"etc .,attheVillaPax
Mundi.
" Evidentlycovernamesusedforcorrespondence,"
saidBrandon,fornonewereknowntohimorwere
thoseofpeoplestayingattheVilla ." Nowwemust
10
146

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
hurryup . Thesoonerthey'rereturnedtotheirplace
thelesschancethereisoftheirlittletripdowntothe
gateoftheVillabeingdiscovered
. Getoutthecamera,
Rigby,whilstIstartontheenvelopes ."
Thethreemenworkedswiftlyandquietly . The
flapsoftheenvelopesweredeftlyraised,andsealswere
slicedunderwithahotpaletteknifesothatnotrace
oftheirhavingbeentamperedwithcouldbedetected
.
Thenthecontentsofeachweretakenoutandthoseof
whichitseemedadvisabletokeepcopiesquicklyphoto-
graphed
. Itwasamatterofhalfanhourtogothrough
thewholecollection .Thentheletterswerecarefully
replacedintheenvelopes,theflapsfasteneddown
again,andthepackagehandedbacktoRigby
. A
quarterofanhourlatertheletterswereoncemore
reposingpeacefullyonthehall-tableattheVilla
.
Thefirstlotyieldednothingofparticularinterest,
butthesameprocesswasrepeatedatintervalsofaday
ortwofornearlyafortnight,bytheendofwhichtime
Brandon,withtheaidofRosamund,hadbeenableto
pickupthethreadsofthewholecorrespondence
.
FromthisitwasevidentthatBrandonhadbeenright
inhissurmisethattheletterswerepassingbetweenthe
twohousesofcall
theVillaontheItalianandthe
ClinicontheSwisssideofthefrontier
.
Rosamund'sexperiencesinoccultgroupshadproved
invaluabletoBrandon,whohadhithertooccupiedhim-
selfmainlywiththepoliticalsideoftherevolutionary
movement . Inthiscorrespondencethetwolines
couldbeclearlyfollowed-thepoliticalconcerningitself
withtheorganisationofCommunismandtheoccult
workingthroughMasonic,Theosophical,orRosicrucian
groupsformoralandintellectualsubversion
.
"
You'llnotice,"observedBrandon, "
thatthetwo
THEVILLAPAXMUNDI

147
sectionsemployaslightlydifferentphraseology,but
eachreallymeansthesame . Forexample,bothmake
useofclassicalpseudonyms,butwhilstinthepolitical
movementthesetaketheformofonepropername-
Damocles,Cerberus,andsoon-intheoccultmove-
menttheyformphraseslikethoseinthelistof
membersamongstRosamund'spapers-'FiatLux,'
` PotensinterPotentes,'etc ."
"Yes,"saidRosamund," andwhilstintheoccult
groupstheyalwaysspeakof` theGreatWork,'the
politicalrevolutionariesreferto ` theGreatDay .'Both
evidentlymeanthesamethingviewedfromtheir
respectiveangles ."
" Whichis? " askedKavanagh .
" Thecollapseofourpresentcivilisation,"answered
Brandon .
"
I'minclinedtothink,though,"Rosamundsaid
thoughtfully, "
thatsometimesthetwolinesoverlap .
Ifeelsurethatsomeofthehigherinitiatesoftheoccult
groupsareconsciouslyworkingforpoliticalrevolution"
."
" Ah ! "saidBrandon
."Thenthatwouldaccount
forthefactthatsomeofthesepeopleseemtohavetwo
orthreepseudonyms .
Evidentlytheseareusedac-
cordingtowhichgroupisinquestion-thesinglename
beingtheonetheybearinrevolutionarycirclesandthe
phrasesthosebywhichtheyareknowninoccult
groups .
` FiatLux,'forexample,seemstobeidentical
withDamoclesintheinnerringofrevolutionaries,
whilstFrauSchnorrer's
alias` SolainSole'-agood
nameforherthat! -isevidentlyalsoAriadne .
But
themostinterestingpointistheidentityofthedoctor
attheClinic-DoctorWeingold-whoisreferredto
variouslyasCatilineand'Omniapossumus
.' Ialways
suspectedthatWeingoldwasanassumedname,and
148

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
hestruckmeasamanwithhighlydevelopedhypnotic
powers . Didyounoticehiseyes? "
" Yes,andtheoddwayhekeptthemfixedonus,"
saidKavanagh .
" Well,listentothis,"andBrandonpointedtoa
passageinoneoftheletters ."` Catilinemustreturn
immediatelytoThebes'-doyourememberhearingthe
Countesssaythedoctorwascalledawayonthefour-
teenthtoParis ? Nowhereisapostcard,datedthe
seventeenth,sayingsimply : ` O.P .hasarrivedsafely.'
ButthepostmarkisCharenton . Doesn'tthatremind
youofanything ? "
Ahyes,ofRaskoff,aboutwhomItoldyouonce,"
saidRosamundbreathlessly . "
Youthinkthedoctor
wenttoseeRaskoff ? "
"
I'mratherinclinedtothinkthedoctorisRaskoff .
WhatdoyousaytotakingastrollroundtheClinicon
thechanceofgettingaglimpseofhimandseeingif
yourecognisehim ?
Itwouldbeeasytokeepalook-
outwithoutbeingseen-theforestcomesrightupto
theedgeofthegarden ."
Rosamundeagerlyagreed . Aslongasshedidnot
havetogetintouchwiththesepeopleshewasonly
tooreadytohelpinsleuthwork . Sothatafternoon
thethreemadetheirwaythroughtheforest,and
stationingthemselvesbehindaclumpofthickbushes
ontheedgeofthegardenawaitedevents .
Theyhadchosenfouro'clockasthehourwhenfood
waslikelytobeservedtothepatientsinthe liege-halle
andthedoctormightbeexpectedtotakeamoment's
relaxation . Sureenough,beforelong,twowhite-
coatedfigurescouldbeseenemergingfromthe
verandahandlightingcigarettesastheysauntered
alongthegardenpath .
THEVILLAPAXMUNDI

149
Weingoldandhisassistant,Isuppose,"whispered
Brandon-"the remplacant ofwhomhetoldus,no
doubt . Whatisit,Rosamund ? Doyourecognise
Raskoff ? "
ForRosamundhadclutchedBrandonsharplybythe
arm.
"
Yes,that'sRaskoffallright .Buttheother
man-"
" Well,whatabouthim ? "
" GustavMervine1 " Rosamundsaidwithbated
breath . " Yes,I'mcertainit'sMervine ! "
Brandongavealowwhistle . " Ofcourse,Mervine
theSatanist ! Ioughttohaverecognisedhimfrom
myphotographs.Comeon,we'veseenenough .We'd
bettercreepawayquietly ."
Onceoutofearshot,Kavanaghsaid
" What'stheexcitement,Jimmy ? IsMervineof
somuchimportance
? "
" No,notofgreatimportanceinhimself
. He's
reallyonlyasortofvulgarblackmagician . Butthe
queerthingistofindhimheremasqueradingasa
doctor . Iwonderwhatonearthhe'supto1 "
"
Itlooksmorethaneverasifthere'ssomething
louche abouttheclinic ."
" Yes . AndI'dliketogetattherealidentityof
SceurCelestine .
IfeelsomehowIknowthatface . . . .
Hullo ! I'vehadanidea ! Waittillwegetbackto
thehotel ."
Arrivedthere,Brandonopenedhisdespatch-boxand
tookoutabundleofphotographs . Fromamongst
thesehedrewasmallsnapshotofawomaninaRussian
fur-cap. Underneathsomethingwas writtenin
Russian .
11 Whatdoesthatmean
? " askedKavanagh.
150

THE SECRET OF THE ZODIAC


Krovavaya Katya-Bloody Catherine-of the
ChekaorRussianSecretPolicenowknownasthe
OgpuortheG
.P.U
.She'sthewomanwhousedto
amuseherselfbyholdingalightedcigaretteagainstthe
eyesofvictims .Doyourecogniseher,Terence ? "

Yes .Withoutadoubt-SceurCelestine .What


thehell'sshedoinghere ?
" That'swhatremainstobediscovered .Andwhat's
therealpurposeoftheclinic ? That'swhatI'dgive
agooddealtoknow ."
CHAPTER IX
WITHIN
THE TEMPLE
THERE wasanewguestattheVillawhenBrandon
arrivednextmorningtofinishtheCountess'sportrait .
Itwasunusuallyhot,andKavanaghhadgoneoffwith
Rosamundtobatheinthelake,soBrandonmadehis
wayaloneupthesteepgardenpathtotheterrace .
Thereintheshadeoflargeyellowbeachumbrellasthe
house-partyhadassembledinanadmiringgroup
aroundagood-lookingmanofaboutfortywho,seated
attheheadofthecircle,wasevidentlyengagedin
deliveringadiscourse .
Drawingnearer,Brandoncouldhearhimsayingin
animpressivetone
" Warswillbecomeimpossiblewhenmenrefuseto
fight-"aremarkwhichwasgreetedwithachorus
ofapproval .
" Ah,CaptainBrandon,Imustintroduceyouto
DoctorHensley ! " theCountesssaid,risingandleading
Brandonuptothespeaker,who,withoutmovingfrom
hischair,bowedgraciously .
SothiswasDr .Hensley,theFellowofSt .Stephen'sI
Takinghisplaceinthecircle,Brandonstudiedthecalm,
clean-shavenfaceofthemanofwhose " occult
"
powersRosamundhadspoken
.
"Dr.Hensleywasj ustsaying,"theCountess ex-
plained, "thatwarswillceasewhenmenrefuseto
fight ."
" No doubt . That-er-seems fairly obvious,
'5I
152

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
doesn'tit ? "
Brandonanswered
.
Dr.Hensleylookedathimsharply .
" Yes,butweourselvesmustsettheexample ."
Aren'twesettingtheexample ? OfcourseIdon't
pretendtoknowmuchaboutthesethings,butIhad
anideawe'dscrappedquitealotofcruiserslately ."
" Butwestillretainarmaments . Aslongaswe
retainanyarmamentswearefurtheringthecauseof
war
."
"
Evenarmamentsforself-defence1 "
" Certainly
.Theonlywaytomeetattackisbynon-
resistance ."
" Isee,"saidBrandon,anxiousnottocrampDr
.
Hensley'sstylebyofferingobj ections ." Isupposeif
theBelgianshadnotresistedinnineteen-fourteen
there'dhavebeennofurthertrouble ? "
"
Precisely,"answeredDr .Hensley,puttingthetips
ofhisfingerstogetherandnoddingsagaciously .
"AndtheGermanswouldj usthavegonehome
again? OrsettleddownpeacefullyinFranceand
Belgium ? "
ButDr.Hensleyhadnointentionofbeingnailed
downtodetailsofthiskind,soignoringBrandon's
questionhecontinuedtoutteraseriesofgeneralisations
inthesameslowimpressivevoice,pausingatlength
betweeneach
"Loveofcountrymustgivewaytoloveofhuman-
ity. . . . Patriotismmustceasetoberegardedasa
virtue . . . . Itisforustohastenthedawnofthe
newera . . . . Lovewillbecomethelawofhuman
life. . . ."
Brandonlistenedwithinterest .Heunderstood
nowwhatRosamundhadmeantinspeakingofDr
.
Hensley'shypnoticpowers .
thosethatwerenotpoisonousweresimplymeaningless
-phrasesthat,producedincoldprint,wouldnot
attractamoment'sattention . Yetthismancon-
trivedtomakethemsoundfullofmeaning . Hisway
ofkeepinghiseyesfixedsoulfullyonthetree-tops,his
slowutterance,thetrickoforatorybywhicheach
sentenceappearedtocontainsomeprofoundtruth,
aboveall,thoselongquiveringsilences,clearlypro-
ducedadeepeffectonhisaudience-almostasifa
spellhadbeencastonthem .
" Likealotofhypnotisedhenswithchalk-lines
drawnfromtheirbeaksl " thoughtBrandon .
Itwasareliefwhenthecirclebrokeup,andDr .
Hensley,remarkingthathewouldtakeastrollby
thelake,theCountesssettleddownagainforher
portrait .
RosamundtookthenewsofDr .Hensley'sarrival
quitecalmlywhenBrandontoldheroftheirmeeting
attheVilla .
" Thenitwashimwespottedontheroadaswewere
comingbackfrombathing,Terence,"shesaid
.
" Yes,"answeredKavanagh . " Rosamundthought
shesawhimcoming,soweturnedoffdownaside-
lane ."
" Notafraidofhimanylonger,Rosamund ? "
asked
Brandon .
" No . Notafraid . Still,I'dratherkeepoutof
reachofhis rayons . OhI Iknowyoudon'tbelieve
inanythingofthekind,JimmyI" sheaddedwitha
laugh.
" Icertainlydon't . Allthesame,Iseenowwhat
youmeanbyhishypnoticpowers . He'smastered
theartofswayingaudiencesj ustasaclevercomedian
WITHINTHETEMPLE
153
" Poisonousplatitudesl
"hesaidtohimself . And
154

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
cansetthehouseinaroarwithoutsayinganything
funnybutmerelybyacertaintoneofvoice .Doyou
callthathypnotism ? "
"
Well,yes,IthinkIdo . Howelsedoyouexplain
it? "
"
Bythefactthatpeoplegotothetheatretobe
amusedandarereadytolaughatanything
. These
peoplecollectroundDoctorHensleytobeimpressed
sothateverythinghesaysseemswonderful .
Hemakes
themfeelhisinfluence-butonlythosewhoarerecep-
tivetoit .
You'rethatnolonger,soyouneedn'tfear
him."
"
Bytheway,"Kavanaghsaidafterapause, " we
seemtobegettingquiteaninterestingcollectionof
membersoftheOrderofthePhoenixhere ; besidesthe
Countess,thereareRaskoff,GustavMervine,andnow
DoctorHensley .
Iwonderwhetherthere'saTemple
oftheOrderhere ! "
"
I'malmostsurethereis,"Rosamundanswered,
forIremembermembersoftenusedtovisitBogazzo .
Iwishwecouldfindoutwhereitis ."
Thequestionwasfinallysettledafewdayslater
.
WhenRigbyarrivedonemorningwiththeletters,it
wasevidentthatheagainhadsomethingimportant
tocommunicate .
"
Whatisitnow,Rigby ? "saidBrandon .
"
I'vebeenhearingafewthingsfromAlessandro,
sir,andthere'sgoingtobesomesortofmeetinginthe
neighbourhoodonenightsoon ."
" HowdidAlessandrodiscoverthis
? "
"
Fromaconversationheoverheardbetweenthe
GermanladyandDoctorHensley
. Theladywas
enj oyinghermorningsun-bathattheendofthe
terrace,andAlessandrohadgoneouttopicksome
WITHINTHETEMPLE

155
herbsatthecorneroftheterrace
; youunderstand,
sir ? "
"Perfectly . Inotherwords,Alessandrowashiding
inthebusheswhilstFrauSchnorrerandDoctorHensley
weretalking . Good . Didtheymentionwhenthe
meetingwastotakeplace ? "
OnTuesdaynext,sir ."
" Well,we'llseeifthelettersthrowanylightonthe
matter."
Mostofthemorning'sbatchcontainedlittleof
interestandoneprovedalmostimpossibletoopen .
ButBrandon'seffortswereatlastrewarded,for
insidelayaletterconsistingofthesefewlinesof
typescript :
Etausis.
FRATRESET SORORES,-
Agreathonouristobepaidtoyou . FiatLux
himselfwillbepresentwithyouintheTempleon
TuesdayeveningbearingamessagefromtheHidden
Chiefs . Hewillarriveaboutmiddaybyroad,accom-
paniedbyhisFidusAchates,andwillstayattheinn
onthelake,wherehewillremainonlyonenight,
returningtoEleusisonthemorrow . Theafternoon
ofhisarrivalhewillspendinrestandmeditation .
Butatioo'clockintheeveningyoumustsenda
messenger,whowillgivetheTausign,toguidehim
totheTemple . Greeting .
PERTENEBRASADASTRA.
" SothereisaTemplehere,"saidBrandon,handing
thelettertoRosamund, " andFiatLuxistobepresent
atameetingthere . Haveyouanyideawhohecan
be? "
" No,"saidRosamund. " I'veoftenwondered .
156

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
Weusedtohearofhimasaveryhighinitiate ; infact,
asthenearestwecouldgettotheHiddenChiefs .
Buthe'sevidentlynotoneofthem,for,asyoudis-
covered,Jimmy,he'salsoknownasDamocles,not
bythenameofoneofthesignsoftheZodiac ."
" No,thereforehe'sinboththepoliticalandthe
occultmovements . Probablyoneoftheouterring
oftheinnercircle-whonumberabouttwenty-five .
Soifwecandiscoverhisidentityitwillbeagreat
stepforward ."
ButnoMachiavellianmethodswererequiredin
ordertofindouttheidentityof " FiatLux,"for
conversationattheVillaPaxMunditurnedquite
openlyontheexpectedarrivalofDr
.OttoBrinkdorff
onthefollowingTuesday . Theeventseemedto
occasion much suppressed excitement,for Dr
.
Brinkdorffwasapparentlyarecluse,apersonagetoo
loftybyreasonofhispowersandoccultknowledgeto
minglewiththehumblerfollowersoftheNewPsychism .
NoonepresentattheVilla,exceptDr .Hensley,had
everseenhim,andallwerelongingtohearthewords
ofwisdomthatfellfromhislips . Itwasdisappointing
ofcoursethathewouldnotaccepttheCountess's
hospitalityandpreferredtoputupattheinn,butthe
asthmafromwhichhesufferedwasliabletobein-
creasedbythepollenfromtheplantsandflowering
shrubsinthegardenoftheVilla-theinnlooking
outonthelakewouldbebetterforhiscomplaint .
Rosamundwasthrilledtohearofthisdiscovery .
" Ialwaysfelt,"shesaid, " thatBrinkdorffwas
playinganimportantpartintheworldmovement,
andofcourseifheis` FiatLux' thatexplainsit
."
" Yes,"saidBrandon, " Brinkdorff'samanwhose
movementsarewellworthfollowing . I'velinked
WITHINTHETEMPLE

157
himupbeforenowwithallsortsofqueercultsand
politicalintrigues .
IbelieveIhavehisdossierwith
me ."
Andopeninghisdespatch-boxBrandontook
outabundleofpapersfromamongstwhichhedrew
alongtypewrittendocument .
"
Havealookatthis,Terence ."
Kavanaghreadtheopeningwordsofthereport
aloud
"Brinkdorff,Otto . BorninSalzburg18 8 o,but
claimstobeanativeofLausanne . Illegitimate
."
" Oddhowmanyofthesepeopleareillegitimate,"
interposedBrandon ."
Thefactseemstogivethem
asortofgrudgeagainstsocietywhichmakesthemwant
todestroyit . Goon ."
Kavanaghcontinued
." Motherwasinemployment
ofArchdukeLeopoldasagovernesstohischildren .
FatherbelievedtobeFleischmann,thewell-known
Frankfurt
banker . Brinkdorff was at Ingeborg
University,wherewouldhaveoccupiedChairof
Philosophyifhealthhadnotgivenwayowingto
occultpractices
. Suffersfromoccasionallapsesof
memoryandaddictedtococaine,otherwisefaculties
unimpaired
. BrinkdorffisaRoseCroix,a33 Grand
Orientandgo'RiteofMisraim ."
FurtherdetailsfollowedwithregardtoBrinkdorff's
relationswiththeundergroundCommunistmove-
mentandcertainPan-Germansecretsocieties . At
thesametimeanumberofdiscreditableincidents
wererecordedagainsthimduringhisstayatthe
University .
HisvisittoOxfordin1928 ,ofwhich
Rosamundhadspoken,wasalsomentioned,andthe
factthathehadenlistedsupportersamongstthe
undergraduates
.
"
Doyouthinkallthisisknowntotheauthorities
158

THE SECRET
OF THE ZODIAC
inEngland ? " askedKavanagh .
"HisCommunistactivitiesareboundtobe,"
Brandonanswered ."Theirfilesinthatrespectare
fairlycomplete
.Buthisconnectionwithsecret
societieswouldnotcomeintotheirsphereofobserva-
tion-thepoliceknownothingaboutthem .Ionce
mentionedtheGrandOrienttotheHomeSecretary
andhehadneverheardofit
."
"
Yet,inspiteofallthatisknownaboutBrinkdorff,
heisallowedtocometoEnglandandropeinrecruits
attheuniversities ? "
" Ohyes,"saidRosamund, "
he'smuchrespectedat
Oxford
.Andhehasanumberofinfluentialsupporters
-theDeanofBarminster,Brogden,whowasMinister
forEducation,nottospeakofDoctorHensley
. In
fact,thePrimeMinisterhimselfhadhimtolunch
."
"
But,goodheavens,whydidn'ttheauthorities
warnhim?
"
"Asamatteroffact,"answeredBrandon,
"I
believetheP .M
.waswarned,butwasafraidofbeing
thought ' reactionary
.'Besides,hewasunderstood
tosaythatsomeonehewantedtodoafavourtoasked
himtoinviteBrinkdorff ."
"
That'someone'beingOscarFranklin,I'llbet,"
laughedKavanagh ." I'mtoldtheP
.M.consults
himabouteverything ."
" Morethanlikely
.Buttoreturntothematter
inhand
.Whatusearewegoingtomakeof
Brinkdorff'svisittoBogazzo
? "
"
IwishwecouldgetintotheTempleonTuesday
andhearwhathehastosay
."
" SodoI
.ButIcan'tforthelifeofmeseehow
we'retomanagethat ."
Brandonwassilentforamomentandthenadded
WITHINTHETEMPLE

159
Atanyrate,let'sgoandhavealookathimonhis
arrival .
Wecanbehoveringroundtheinn-the
CapelloNero,isn'tit? -aboutmiddayandwatch
forcarsarriving .
Ishouldlikeuncommonlytosee
thatgentlemanatclosequarters
."
AccordinglyataquartertotwelveonTuesday
BrandonandKavanagh,strollingalongthevillage
street,becamedeeplyengrossedinstudyingthepicture
postcardsdisplayedforsaleinthesmallstationer's
shopoppositetheCapelloNero
. Buthalfanhour
wentbyandnocarshowedsignsofstoppingatthe
dooroftheinn .
"
Whataboutgoinginsideandorderingaperitifs ? "
suggestedBrandon
.
" Good
. Wecanputinagooddealoftimeover
that,"Kavanaghagreed .
Crossingtheroad,theyenteredtheCapelloNeroand
askedforacoupleofvermouthstobeservedthemin
thehall . Thewaiter,astriking-lookingpersonage
withtheheadofaRomanEmperor,wasfortunately
slowincarryingouttheorder,andthetwomenwere
abletospinoutthedrinkingoftheiraperitifsfor
anotherhalf-hour .Atlast,j ustastheclockwas
strikingoneo'clock,thesoundofamotorcouldbe
hearddrawingupatthedoor
.
Thenextmomenttwotravellersenteredthehall-a
lean,sickly-lookingmaninablackfelthat,withlank
blackhairfallingoverhisforeheadandpenetrating
blackeyesframedinhornspectacles,followedbywhat
wasevidentlyhisFidusAchates,ashortmanwitha
smallpointedblackbeard,wearingaTyroleanhat
.
"Doyouseewhothatis? " Brandonwhispered,
lookingatthelatter .
" Yes. Schwartzmann,isn'tit
? "
i6o

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
Brandonnodded .
" Interestingtofindthemtravellingtogether-
'FiatLux ' andtheemissaryofMoscow . Iwonder
whatnamehe'stravellingunder-listenI "
Fortheinnkeeper,aGermanSwiss,hadhurried
forwardtoreceivethenewarrivalsandwasaddressing
theleanmanwiththewords
"HerrDoktorOttoBrinkdorff,nichtwahr? "
Thedoctorbowedassentand,indicatinghiscom-
panion,answeredinthesamelanguage
" AndmysecretaryHerrEmilWolff ."
Then,havingremovedhishatandremarkedonthe
extremeheatofthej ourney,hewentontoexplain
inapreciseandpedanticmannerthat,beingex-
tremelyfatigued,heandHerrWolffwouldtaketheir
colazione
inhisprivatesitting-room
.Afterthathe
wouldrestandmustnotbedisturbed .
Dinnermust
beservedthematnineteeno'clockinthesamemanner
.
Hehopedthatboththeroomsreservedforhimwere
quietsothathewouldbeundisturbedbythetraffic
inthevillagestreet .
" Ja,meinHerr,"theinnkeeperassuredhim,
"
theylookoutonthelake.Notasoundfromthe
streetcanbeheardthere . IftheHerrenwillcome
thisway

"
Takingacoupleofkeysfromahooktheinnkeeper
preparedtoleadthedoctorandhiscompaniontowards
thestaircasewhen,fromthebackofthehall,there
suddenlysteppedforththefigureofAlessandro
holdinginhishandalargebouquetofflowers
.
" WiththecomplimentsoftheSignoraContessa
Zapraksy,"hesaidwithhisusualgleamingsmileand
bowingashehandedthebouquettothedoctor .
" ShedesiredtopresenttheSignordottorewithsome
WITHINTHETEMPLE

I6I
flowersfromtheVillaPaxMundionhisarrival
."
" PleaseconveymythankstotheSignoraContessa,"
BrinkdorffrepliedinhaltingItalian .
Atthatmoment
Alessandro'seyesfellonhiscompanion,andasthey
didsothesmilefadedfromhisface .Butthischange
ofexpressionpassedunnoticedbythetravellers,who
weremakingtheirwaytowardsthestaircaseinthe
wakeoftheinnkeeper .
Alessandro,watchingthem,remainedforamoment
transfixed,thensteppinguptothewaiterwhohadbeen
standingbythroughoutthescene,saidafewwords
tohiminarapidundertone,whereatalookofmale-
volentfuryflashedoutonthefaceoftheRoman
Emperor.
" Comeoutside,Terence,I'vehadanidea,"
whisperedBrandon .
Thetwomenmadetheirway
intothestreet .
"
Well,whatisit
? "Kavanaghaskedassoonas
theyweresafelyoutofearshot .
" It'sthis
.
I'vebeenwatchingBrinkdorffcare-
fullyandIbelieveIcouldmakeuptolooklikehim ."
" Andthen ? "
" Andthenimpersonatehimatthemeetinginthe
Templeto-night ."
" It'samarvellousidea,Jimmy . Butwhatwill
youdomeanwhilewiththerealBrinkdorffandhis
companion ? "
"That'sj ustit wherewe'vegottogetAlessandro
tohelpus . YounoticedthelookhegaveSchwartz
mannthemomentherecognisedhim ? "
" Rather. Enoughtokillthelittlebeaststone
dead ."
"Justso . AndifwetellAlessandrowhatistrue-
thatSchwartzmannisanactivememberoftheInter-
II
162

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
nationalAnti-MussoliniLeague,he'llbegamefor
anything .
Whenit'sacaseoftacklingananti-
Fascist,Alessandrocanbedependedontoputhis
backintothej ob . Wait,Iseehimcoming .We'll
tacklehimatonce ."
Thestreetwasveryquiet,sunkinitsmidday
slumber,andthereseemedlittledangeroflistening
earswhenthemanservantreachedthespotwherethe
twoEnglishmenwerestanding .
" Well,Alessandro,"saidBrandoninalowvoice,
" soyourecognisedourfriendSchwartzmann ? "
"Yes,Signore-theratofMoscow! "theman
snarledangrily,grindinghiswhiteteethtogether .
" Andyoupointedhimouttothewaiteratthe
CapelloNero ? "
" Sicuro. Carloisafriendofmine .
Healsoisa
Fascista ."
" Ah ! AndwhatdidCarlosay? "
" Hesaiditwouldbeagoodopportunityto "
andAlessandrodrewhishandacrosshisthroatwith
asignificantgesture .
Brandonnodded .
" H'm . Carlosaidthat ? NowIwonderwhether
hecouldmanagetokeepSchwartzmannandthe
doctoraswell,prisonersintheirroomsthisevening
.
Preventthemforciblyfromgoingout,Imean? "
Alessandrostrokedhischinthoughtfully
.
"
Inthatcaseitwouldbenecessarytogagand
bindthem ?
Orperhapstohitthemoverthehead ? "
"
No,nothingsoviolent . Carloperhapswilltake
theirdinneruptothemthisevening ? "
"Yes,Signore ."
"Thenifhecouldmanagetoslipsomethinginto
theirsoup ."
WITHINTHETEMPLE

163
" Poison ? "
Alessandrointerposedeagerly .
"
No,no,Alessandro,notpoison-onlyadrug
.
Somethingthatwillgivethembothagoodnight's
restandensuretheirnotwakingforatleasttenhours
.
GiveoneofthesetoCarlo,"Brandonwenton,taking
twoone-hundredlirenotesfromhispocket-bookand
handingthemtotheItalian
. " Tellhimthatifheis
abletodoasIhavesuggestedheshallhavefivetimes
asmuchasthisto-night ."
" Bene,"answeredAlessandro,slippingthenotes
intohispocket . "
ButiftheSignorecanprovideme
withwhatisnecessary ? "
" That'sallright .
Comealongtothehoteland
I'llfixyouup ."
Brandonhabituallytravelledwithavarietyof
drugsincaseofemergency,andhadthereforeno
difficultyinsupplyingAlessandrowiththerequired
doseofatastelessandinnocuousnarcoticthatcould
bedependedontokeepBrinkdorffandhiscompanion
inadeepsleeptillmorning.
"
Remember,Alessandro,weshallbeonthelook
outatnine-thirtythisevening . Ifallhasgonewell,
Carlowillmakeasignalatthedooroftheinnwith
thenapkinhecarriesoverhisshoulder
. Thenwe
shallknowthatwecanentersafelyandCarlowill
showusuptothedoctor'srooms ."
"
Benissimo,Signore." AndAlessandro,evidently
enteringwhole-heartedlyintothespiritoftheadven-
ture,setforthfortheCapelloNero,tocarryouthis
mission .
ThenextthingwastoenlistthehelpofRosamundin
coachingBrandonfortheevening'sceremony .
" It'safrightfullyboldthingtoattempt,"washer
commentwhenBrandonhadunfoldedhisscheme .
164

THE SECRETOFTHEZODIAC
" Ican'timaginehowyou'regoingtopassyourselfoff
asDoctorBrinkdorff ."
" Ah,youhaven'trealisedthepossibilitiesofmy
adaptableface .Idon'tthinkIshallhavemuch
difficultyinmakingitaveryfairimitationofBrink-
dorff'scadaverouscountenance .Rememberthatnone
ofthepeopleattheVillahaveeverapparentlyseen
himexceptDoctorHensley,whoisshort-sighted .
Besides,itwillbenight-time .There'snoelectric
lightattheinn,andIconcludetheceremonyinthe
Templewilltakeplaceinsemidarkness? "
" Yes.Bythelightofafewblackcandles
."
"Good.UnderthoseconditionsIthinkIshallpass
allright .NowImustmuguptheritualluckilyI
havetheoneyougavemehere .Andyoumusthelp
mewiththesigns,passwords,andanythingelseI
shall
havetoknow .DoyouthinkI shall haveto
takeanypartintheproceedings ? "
" No,Brinkdorffwouldprobablyonlybeexpected
tolookonanddeliverthemessagefromtheHidden
Chiefs."
"ThenI'llhavethatready .Wait-I'vegotanidea! "
Whatisit ? "
" Ifonly,"Brandonsaidslowly, " itwaspossible
tosendanadeptoftheOrderoffonanerrandtoone
ofthesemysteriousbeings,wemight-"
" Isee,"Kavanaghinterposedeagerly ; " follow
himupandseewherethetrackledto? "
Brandonnodded
. "
It'sabitofagamble,but
worthtrying .Inthissortofworkit'sthewildest
chancesthatoftencomeoffbest ."
Thateveningat9.3othewaiterattheCapello
Nerowasseentoappearatthedooroftheinnand
WITHIN THE TEMPLE

165
whiskawaysomecrumbsfromoneofthetablesin
frontofthedoor
.Amomentlater,Brandonand
Kavanaghenteredtheinnand,addressingtheafore-
saidwaiter,askedtobeshownuptoDr .Brinkdorff's
apartment .Carlo,without betraying the
least
emotion
on his imperial countenance, turned
impassivelyandledthewayupthestaircasetothe
firstfloor .
OnlyasheopenedthedoorofDr .Brink-
dorff'ssitting-roomhesaidinalowvoicewithaj erk
ofhisheadinthedirectionofthebedroomopening
outofit
" Hesleeps
."Andwithagesturetowardsaroom
ontheothersideofthepassage,headded
: " The
otherone,hesleepsalso ."
" Good.Youhadnodifficulty,Carlo
? "
" None,Signore
.Thedottoreaftertakinghis
dinnerfoundhimselfovercomewithslumber,and
observingtohissecretarythathewouldtakesome
reposebeforegoingoutthisevening,wenttoliedown
.
Thesecretarydidthesame
.Theywillnotwaketill
morning.See,SignoreI "
andopeningthebedroom
doornoisily,CarloindicatedthesleepingformofDr
.
Brinkdorff-attiredinhisunderclothes-whichthe
rattleofthehandlefailedtodisturb .
" Shakehimgently,Carlo ."
Themanobeyed .
ButstillBrinkdorffdidnotstir .
"
That'sallright,"saidBrandon,slippingfive
hundredlireintothewaiter'shand . " Nowinabout
halfanhourtheywillcomefromtheVillaPaxMundi
tofetchthedoctor-possiblyitwillbetheContessa
Zapraksyherself.Whoeveritis,youwillshowthem
upheretothesitting-room .Soonafteryouwillsee
thedoctorgoingoutwiththem
.Thatwillnotsur-
priseyou ? "
166

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
"
No,certainly,"repliedCarlo,overwhosefacethe
lightofcomprehensionhadbeengraduallybreaking
andwhosemouthnowwidenedintoaj oyfulgrin .
" Itwillseemthemostnaturalthingintheworld,
Signore ."
Carlohavingdepartedwithachuckle,Brandon
turnedtoKavanaghandsaid
" Nowwemustgettowork . Thefirstthingisto
findhisceremonialrobesandinsigniathatIshallhave
totakewithmetothemeeting . Haveahuntfor
them,Terence,whilstIstartonmymake-up ."
Kavanaghbeganransackingdrawersandcupboards .
MeanwhileBrandon,discardinghisownsuitofclothes,
slippedintothelooseblackgarmentsoftheunconscious
" Master,"tiedhisblacksilknecktielooselyroundhis
throat,drewforwardalockofhisownhair,stainedit
withadarkhair-dyehehadbroughtwithhim,and
letitflopoveroneeyeashedrewBrinkdorff'sblack
felthatdownoverhishead . Thenhestartedonhis
features .
" TopeoplewhohaveneverseenBrinkdorffinthe
flesh,"heannouncedatlast, " IreallythinkIshould
appeartobehisspitandimage ! "
Kavanagh,whohadfoundBrinkdorff'sceremonial
get-upandwasbusilystuffingitintoabag,looked
roundtoseewhatindeedseemedtobethedoctor
standingbeforehim-cadaverouscheeksandlarge
frontteethallcomplete .
" Jimmy,it'samazing ; howonearthdidyouman-
ageit? "
"Prachtvoll,nichtwahr? "
saidBrandon,mimick-
ingBrinkdorff'spedanticpronunciation .
" ButIdon'tunderstand-you'vemade both eyes
black ! "
WITHINTHETEMPLE

167
"Yes-afineblackglass-eye,isn'tit ?
Andaspot
ofbelladonnaintheothertoenlargethepupil
. I
don'tseewithitverywell,butBrinkdorff'sknownto
bemyopic .
Bytheway,I'dbetterberatherillto
startwithincaseIgetintoatightplaceandhaveto
betakenworseinordertogetoutofit
. Whatabout
this ? "
andBrandonassumedatragicallysickand
sorryexpression .
" Magnificent,Jimmy
hullo,is that someone
knockingatthesitting-roomdoor ? "
Yes,they'vecometofetchme
. Solong,old
fellow ."
"
Solong,andgoodluck .
I'llfollowwhenyou're
offthepremises ."
Brandonwentintothesitting-room,carefully
closingthedoorbehindhimandarrangingasolitary
candlebehindhischairsothathisfaceremainedin
shadow. "
Herein! " hecalledoutquaveringly .
Thedooropened,andtheCountesswithhersecre-
tary,MissMcNab,entered,makingtheTausignas
theycametowardshim
.
Brandonrespondedinthesamemanner .
"
Youfindmeweakandill,Sorores,"hesaidina
wearyvoice, "yetreadyneverthelesstoaccompany
youtotheTemple ."
Muchtohisembarrassment,bothwomenfellon
theirkneesbeforehim,claspingthehandheldoutto
them
; whilsttheCountessexclaimedrapturously
"
AtlastIaminthepresenceoftheMaster ! "
"
Andthese,"thoughtBrandon, " arethepeople
whotalkaboutfreeinghumanityfromthethraldom
ofthepriesthood
! "Butaloudhesaidinthej argon
ofthecult : "
Sorores,Isaluteyouinthemystictitle
ofAmen-ra . NowleadmetotheTemple
."
i68

THESECRETOFTHEZODIAC
Overcomebythehonourthathadbefallenthemof
guidingtheMaster'sfootsteps,thetwodisciplesled
Brandondownstairs,pastCarlo,whostood,gravely
saluting,inthehall,andoutoftheinn,wherethe
Countesssaidinalowvoice
" Weareleadingyouonfoot,HonourableMaster,
sinceyoudecidedthefatiguewouldnotbetoogreat
foryou.Togobyroadentailsalongdetour
. On
footwecantakeashortcutthroughtheforestby
whichweshallreachtheTempleintenminutes ."
KavanaghhaddeterminednottoletBrandonoutof
sightwithoutdiscoveringwhitherhewasbeingtaken
and,assoonastheystartedoff,followedintheirwake
untilfromthedistancehesawthemfinallyturninat
thegateoftheclinic " Nirvana ."
Throughoutthewalkhardlyawordhadbeenspoken
;
theCountess,havingenquiredafterthedoctor's
healthandreceivedtheanswerthathewasfarfrom
well,relapsedintosilence.
Openingthegatebesidethebrassplatewhich
indicatedthatmassageandosteopathictreatment
mightbehadwithin,theCountessledthewayto
thedoor,onwhichsheknockedthreetimes
. Itwas
instantlyopenedbyaneophytewearingtheinsignia
oftheOrderofthePhoenix .
" Welcome,HonourableFrater,"hesaidinalow
voice,makingtheTausign,towhichBrandonagain
responded
.Beckoningtohimtofollow,theyoung
manledhimdownstairsandalonganarrowpassage
intoasmalldarkroom,where,fromthegarments
hangingroundthewalls,Brandonconcludedhewas
intendedtochangeintohisceremonialrobes
. Left
alone,hedivedintothebagpackedforhimbyKavan-
aghanddrewoutalongpurplesilkgarmentadorned
WITHINTHETEMPLE

169
withcabalisticsymbols,asortofEgyptianheaddress
whichherecognisedasthe " Nemys "describedto
himbyRosamund,acoupleofsilksashesofdifferent
colours,andtheornamentscomposingtheInsignia
belongingtohisrank. Afterslippingintothepurple
robe,heplacedtheNemysonhishead,crossedthetwo
sashesoverhisshoulders,andaffixedtheInsigniato
hisbreast--ononesideaPhoenixrisingfromthe
flamesandontheotheraSerpenttwinedarounda
largeredroseincolouredstones .Thusattiredhemade
hiswayoutofthedressing-roomandfollowingthe
Neophyte,whostoodwaitinginthepassage,walked
towardsthedoorwhich,inanswertothreemore
knocks,openedtorevealtheTemple .
Itwasalong,low,darkchamber,illuminedonlyby
thelightofsevenblackwaxcandlesplacedonasortof
standinthemiddle . Aheavysmellofincensefilled
theair. Aroundthewallshecoulddimlydistinguish
thefiguresofmenandwomenindifferentvarietiesof
ceremonialrobesseatedonlonglowbenches,whilst
twootherssatapartonaraiseddaisattheendofthe
room .
AsBrandonappearedinthedoorway,oneof
thetworose,anddescendingfromthedaiscame
towardshim,makingtheTausign .
Brandonagain
responded,andstretchinghisarmsoutbeforehimwith
theswimmingstrokedescribedbyRosamund,allowed
himselftobeleduptoasortofthroneuponthedais .
Asilenceensued,duringwhichBrandonwasableto
takeinthedetailsofthescenebeforehim . Inthe
middleofthefloorwasavaultmadeofconcretein
whichtheoutlineofacoffincouldbedimlydiscerned
.
Atoneendoftheroomwasthealtar,madeofblack
woodintheformofadoublecube,onwhichwasplaced
alargeredroseinacrystalvase,aredlamp,ablue
170

THE SECRET OF THE ZODIAC


glasscupwithwhatlookedlikewaterinit,andared
crosssurmountingawhitetrianglethatseemedtobe
madeofivory .
In frontofthealtarwasatableonwhichfivewhite
marbletabletsandapackoftarotcardswerelaid .
Incensewasburninginasmallbrazieronatripod
near-by .
Immediatelybeforehimonthedais,Brandon
noticedasmallpedestalonwhichavarietyofobj ects
werespreadout-apairofbellows,aglassofwater,a
clodofearth,andasmallbowlofoilwithaburning
wickfloatinginthemiddle .Whatthedevilwasheto
dowiththese ? Thenherememberedtheirsignifi-
cance-earth,air,fire,andwaterofcourse .Repressing
asmile,hetriedtoidentifythedifferentoffice-bearers
describedintheritual .Yes,theywereallthere-the
Hierophantseatedonanotherthronefacingthedais,
holdinginonehandasceptreendinginaTaucross
andintheotherasilveraspergillussuchasCatholics
useforsprinklingholywater
.Betweentwomarble
pillars,oneblack,onerosecolour,atthewestofthe
altarsattheHegemon,ontheothersidewasthe
Hiereus,whilsttheKerux,theStolistria,andthe
Dadouchossatonseatsapartagainstthewall .
Ofthetwomenseatedbesidehimonthedais
Brandonhadonlybeenabletocatchaglimpse
; in
oneherecognisedDr .Hensley,whilsttheother-a
stoutmanwithashortbeard-seemedtohimvaguely
familiar .Hewasnowunabletotakeafurtherlook
withoutturninghisheadandappearingtostareinto
hisneighbour'sface,sohesatrigidlymotionless,only
allowinghiseyestowanderovertheassembly .
Amongstthefiguresrangedroundthewallshenow
perceivedCountessZapraksy,MissMcNab,andFrau
WITHINTHETEMPLE

i q i
S c h n o r r e r , w h i l s t o n e o f t h e t h r e e b l i n d f o l d e d c a n d i -
d a t e s f o r i n i t i a t i o n s e a t e d n e a r t h e d o o r w a s c l e a r l y n o
o t h e r t h a n t h a t s h i n i n g l i g h t o f C o n s e r v a t i v e d r a w i n g -
r o o ms - La d y C a r o l i n e We n t l o c k .
Dur i n g t h e c o n t i n ue d s i l e n c e Br a n d o n w o n d e r e d
a n x i o us l y w h e t h e r h e w o ul d b e c a l l e d up o n t o b e g i n
t h e c e r e mo n y , b ut h i s me n t a l t e n s i o n w a s s o o n r e l i e v e d
b y t h e v o i c e o f t h e He g e mo n a n n o un c i n g :" Th e
Ma s t e r o f t h e Ga t e w a y w i l l n o w o p e n t h e Te mp l e . "
Wh e r e up o n t h e Hi e r o p h a n t f r o mh i s t h r o n e c a l l e d
up o n e a c h o f f i c e r i n t ur n t o s t a t e h i s o f f i c e a n d d ut y .
A s o n e a f t e r a n o t h e r r o s e a n d r e s p o n d e d t o t h e s um-
mo n s Br a n d o n b r e a t h e d a s i g h o f r e l i e f - e v i d e n t l y
R o s a mun d h a d b e e n r i g h t i n c o n c l ud i n g h i s r o l e w a s
o n l y t o b e t h a t o f t h e p r e s i d i n g g e n i us .
Th e Hi e r o p h a n t n o w l e f t h i s t h r o n e a n d a d v a n c e d
t o w a r d s t h e a l t a r , f o l l o w e d b y t h e K e r ux c a r r y i n g a
l a mp , t h e S t o l i s t r i a b e a r i n g c up s o f w a t e r , a n d t h e
Da d o uc h o s w i e l d i n g f i r e c e n s e r s
. Th e n p a s s i n g t o
e a c h c o r n e r o f t h e Te mp l e t h e C e l e b r a n t p r o c e e d e d t o
s p r i n kl e w a t e r t o t h e f o ur p o i n t s o f t h e c o mp a s s f r o m
t h e s i l v e r a s p e r g i l l us , i n t o n i n g t h e w h i l e a s o r t o f
i n c a n t a t i o n i n w h a t a p p e a r e d t o b e a mi x t ur e o f Ge r -
ma n a n d He b r e w
" Wa t e r d e s c e n d i n g f r o mBi n a h
. . . p ur e w a t e r
. . . w a t e r o f c o n t e mp l a t i o n .
. .
f i r e o f Ge b ur a h
. . . f i r e o f a s p i r a t i o n . . . . "
Br a n d o n , s e a t e d mo t i o n l e s s o n t h e d a i s , f e l t a s e n s e
o f un r e a l i t y c r e e p i n g o v e r h i m, t h e d i ml i g h t , t h e
v o l up t uo us Ea s t e r n s me l l o f t h e i n c e n s e , t h e c h a n t i n g
v o i c e o f t h e Hi e r o p h a n t , t o w h i c h o t h e r c h a n t i n g
v o i c e s r e s p o n d e d i n t h e s a me ke y , t h e b i z a r r e d e c o r a -
t i o n s o f t h e Te mp l e , t h e s i l e n t f i g ur e s i n t h e i r s t r a n g e
r o b e s s e a t e d r o un d t h e w a l l s - a l l s e e me d l i ke s o me
1 7 2

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
ma d d r e a mf r o mw h i c h un h a p p i l y t h e r e s e e me d n o
h o p e o f s o o n a w a ke n i n g .
Fo r t h e c e r e mo n y - i n p a r t s
l i ke a p a r o d y o f t h e C a t h o l i c Ma s s - w e n t o n e n d l e s s l y
.
Br a n d o n j ud g e d a t l a s t t h a t q ui t e a n h o ur mus t h a v e
g o n e b y s i n c e h e e n t e r e d t h e Te mp l e
. Ho w c o ul d p e o p l e
s p e n d t h e i r n i g h t s i n t h i s w e a r y ki n d o f ma s q ue r a d e
?
No w c a me t h e c e r e mo n y o f i n i t i a t i o n , w h e n t h r e e
c a n d i d a t e s , t h e i r e y e s b a n d a g e d , w e r e s o l e mn l y
p a r a d e d r o un d t h e Te mp l e a n d t h e n l e d up t o t h e
a l t a r , w h e r e t h e y kn e l t d o w n a s ki n g f o r Li g h t , a n d
w i t h t h e i r h a n d s p l a c e d up o n t h e ma r b l e t a b l e t s t o o k
t h e o b l i g a t i o n t o s e c r e c y un d e r p e n a l t y o f e x p ul s i o n
a n d d e a t h o r p a l s y f r o mp un i t i v e c ur r e n t o f w i l l .
Th e Hi e r o p h a n t t h e n s e a t e d h i ms e l f a g a i n o n h i s
t h r o n e a n d a f t e r a d i s c o ur s e o n t h e He b r e w C a b b a l a ,
p r o c e e d e d t o ma ke t h e f o l l o w i n g a n n o un c e me n t
"Fr a t r e s e t S o r o r e s , o ur v e r y h o n o ur e d Fr a t e r
Fi a t Lux w i l l n o w d e l i v e r t h e me s s a g e c o mmun i c a t e d
t o h i mb y t h e S e c r e t a n d Hi d d e n C h i e f s o f t h e In n e r
Or d e r . "
Br a n d o n w a s q ui t e r e a d y .
Hi s p l a n o f c a mp a i g n
h a d b e e n c a r e f ul l y t h o ug h t o ut . Fr o m c e r t a i n
p a s s a g e s i n t h e i n t e r c e p t e d c o r r e s p o n d e n c e h e h a d
g a t h e r e d t h a t a n o t h e r me mb e r o f t h e Tw e n t y - f i v e ,
w h o w a s i n t o uc h w i t h o n e o f t h e Hi d d e n C h i e f s
l o c a t e d i n , Ba v a r i a , a n d r e f e r r e d t o a s S e mp e r Pa r a t us ,
w a s t o b e p r e s e n t t h i s e v e n i n g
.
If t h i s p e r s o n c o ul d
b e d e s p a t c h e d t o t h e Hi d d e n C h i e f o r me mb e r o f t h e
Zo d i a c i n q ue s t i o n , i t w o ul d b e p o s s i b l e , b y f o l l o w i n g
o n h i s , t r a c k, t o d i s c o v e r t h e i d e n t i t y o f a t l e a s t o n e
me mb e r o f t h a t my s t e r i o us c i r c l e .
A c c o r d i n g l y i n a s o l e mn v o i c e h e d e l i v e r e d t h e
f o l l o w i n g o r a t i o n i n Ge r ma n
"Fr a t r e s e t S o r o r e s . Th e S e c r e t a n d Hi d d e n C h i e f s
WITHINTHETEMPLE

1 7 3
o f t h e In n e r Or d e r s e n d y o ug r e e t i n g .
Th e y c o mme n d
y o uf o r y o ur z e a l i n c a r r y i n g o ut t h e Gr e a t Wo r k .
Be f o r e l o n g y o ur e f f o r t s w i l l b e r e w a r d e d
. Th e w o r l d
i s a w a ki n g . Th e l i g h t s h i n e s f r o mt h e Ea s t , a n d s o o n
t h e w h o l e We s t e r n h e mi s p h e r e w i l l b e i l l umi n e d b y
i t s b e a ms . Th e n w i l l d a w n t h e Go l d e n A g e o f w h i c h
t h e s a g e s d r e a me d a n d t h e s a c r e d t r a d i t i o n h a n d e d
d o w n t h r o ug h g e n e r a t i o n s o f g r e a t In i t i a t e s w i l l
b e c o me t h e l a w o f h uma n l i f e . Th e n w a r s a n d
p o l i t i c a l s t r i f e w i l l b e n o mo r e a n d t h e Gr e a t Wh i t e
Lo d g e w i l l r ul e s up r e me o v e r t h e d e s t i n i e s o f ma n ki n d .
Y o ur s i s t h e g l o r i o us t a s ko f h a s t e n i n g t h a t d a y b y
s h e d d i n g t h e l i g h t o n a l l a r o un d y o ua n d b y d e v e l o p i n g
t h o s e p o w e r s w h i c h h a v e a l r e a d y r a i s e d y o ua b o v e t h e
c o mmo n h e r d o f me n .
" But f ur t h e r i n s t r uc t i o n s o f a p r e c i s e n a t ur e mus t
b e ma d e t o y o u . Th e r e f o r e i t i s d e s i r e d t h a t S e mp e r
Pa r a t us s h a l l p r e s e n t h i ms e l f b e f o r e t h e Hi d d e n C h i e f
i n Ba v a r i a w i t h o ut d e l a y
. He w i l l s t a r t t o - mo r r o w
mo r n i n g a n d j o ur n e y w i t h o ut p a us e un t i l h e r e a c h e s
h i s d e s t i n a t i o n
. "
Ev e r y o n e b o w e d a n d a v o i c e f r o ma s h a d o w y
f i g ur e i n t h e c o r n e r a n s w e r e d
"
Th e Or d e r s h a l l b e o b e y e d . "
Wh o c o ul d t h i s b e ? Wi t h a r a p i d g l a n c e i n t h e
d i r e c t i o n o f t h e s p e a ke r Br a n d o n r e c o g n i s e d Gr i i n b e r g ,
a n a g e n t o f t h e S o v i e t Go v e r n me n t a n d a ma n o f f a r
mo r e i mp o r t a n c e t h a n S c h w a r t z ma n n . Th i s w a s
i n t e r e s t i n g , p r o v i d i n g a s i t d i d a d i r e c t l i n kb e t w e e n
t h e o c c ul t a n d t h e r e v o l ut i o n a r y mo v e me n t .
Th e c e r e mo n y c o n c l ud e d w i t h a n o t h e r " p r a y e r "
f r o mt h e Hi e r o p h a n t a n d t h e e x c h a n g e o f my s t i c
s i g n s , a f t e r w h i c h t h e w h o l e a s s e mb l y r o s e a n d mo v e d
t o t h e d o o r .
1 7 4

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
Br a n d o n w a s j us t c o n g r a t ul a t i n g h i ms e l f o n h a v i n g
g o t t h r o ug h h i s p a r t w i t h b r i l l i a n t s uc c e s s w h e n Dr .
He n s l e y a n d t h e ma n w i t h t h e b e a r d w h o h a d s a t
b e s i d e h i mo n t h e d a i s c a me t o w a r d s h i ma n d s a i d
"
It i s o ur d e s i r e t o a c c o mp a n y Fr a t e r Fi a t Lux
h o me t h r o ug h t h e f o r e s t . "
Br a n d o n c o ul d o n l y b o w a s s e n t , a n d a f t e r e v e r y o n e
h a d c h a n g e d o ut o f t h e i r c e r e mo n i a l r o b e s , t h e t w o
me n p l a c e d t h e ms e l v e s a t e a c h s i d e o f h i ma n d a l l
t h r e e ma d e t h e i r w a y o ut o f t h e h o us e
.
"
Y o umus t e x c us e me i f Id o n o t c o n v e r s e a t l e n g t h
t o - n i g h t , Ia mf e e l i n g f a r f r o mw e l l , "Br a n d o n o b -
s e r v e d i n a n e x h a us t e d v o i c e , f e e l i n g t h a t t h e mo me n t
mi g h t b e a p p r o a c h i n g w h e n h e w o ul d h a v e t o b e t a ke n
i l l .
Hi s c o mp a n i o n s ma d e n o r e p l y , b ut a f t e r a f e w
mi n ut e s , w h e n w e l l o ut o f e a r s h o t o f t h e h o us e a n d
a l o n e i n t h e s i l e n c e o f t h e f o r e s t , t h e y g l a n c e d a t e a c h
o t h e r , h a l t e d , a n d t h e ma n w i t h t h e b e a r d s a i d
a b r up t l y
"Ia ms o r r y , Br i n kd o r f f , b ut w e mus t a s ky o uf o r
y o ur p r o o f s
. "Th e t o n e w a s a ut h o r i t a t i v e - t h e s up -
p o s e d Br i n kd o r f f w a s e v i d e n t l y i n t h e p r e s e n c e o f o n e
o f h i s s up e r i o r s .
"My p r o o f s ? I
d o n o t un d e r s t a n d - w h a t
p r o o f s ? " Br a n d o n a s ke d f a i n t l y
.
"Y o ur p r o o f s o f i d e n t i t y
. We mus t t e l l y o u
f r a n kl y t h a t w e h a v e d o ub t s a s t o w h e t h e r y o ua r e
r e a l l y Br i n kd o r f f
. If s o y o uh a v e c e r t a i n l y c h a n g e d
s i n c e w e l a s t me t
. We d i d n o t w i s h t o c h a l l e n g e y o u
b e f o r e t h e a s s e mb l y , b ut n o w t h a t w e a r e a l o n e w e
mus t s ub mi t y o ut o c e r t a i n t e s t s . Fi r s t o f a l l - t h i s . "
A n d Br a n d o n o b s e r v e d t h a t h e w a s ma ki n g a ma s o n i c
s i g n . R e c o l l e c t i n g
Br i n kd o r f f ' s ma s o n i c d e g r e e s ,
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1 7 5
Br a n d o n q ui c kl y a d j us t e d h i ms e l f t o t h e s i t ua t i o n
a n d ma d e t h e a n s w e r i n g s i g n . Th e ma n t h e n p ut
o ut h i s h a n d a n d Br a n d o n g a v e h i mt h e g r i p o f t h e
s a me d e g r e e . Hi s i n t e r l o c ut o r l o o ke d r e l i e v e d a n d
t h e n ut t e r e d t h e s a c r e d w o r d s
"Ne ka ma h b e a l i m . "
" Ph a r a s c h - c h o l , "Br a n d o n a n s w e r e d i n s t a n t l y
.
" C a n y o ug o f ur t h e r ? "
" Fr e d e r i c k, "s a i d Br a n d o n
.
"Of Pr us s i a . Go o d . No w t o t r y t h e p a t h o f
S o p h i a . "
" Is i s . "
" Os i r i s . Th a t i s w e l l . "
Br a n d o n b r e a t h e d a s i g h o f r e l i e f .
He h a d p a s s e d
b o t h t h e Gr a n d Or i e n t a n d R i t e o f Mi s r a i mt e s t s
s uc c e s s f ul l y .
" A l l t h e s a me , "t h e ma n w e n t o n ,
" Imus t a s k
y o uf o r a n e x p l a n a t i o n o f w h a t h a s h a p p e n e d t o - n i g h t ,
Br i n kd o r f f .
Ho w i s i t t h a t y o u, w h o a r e o n l y o f t h e
Tw e n t y - f i v e , a r e c o mmi s s i o n e d b y S a g i t t a r i us t o
d e l i v e r a me s s a g e o f w h i c h I, w h o a ma l s o o f t h e
Tw e l v e , h a v e b e e n ke p t i n i g n o r a n c e ? "
Br a n d o n s up p r e s s e d a s t a r t .
Th i s w a s a n un c o m-
mo n l y a w kw a r d s i t ua t i o n f o r w h i c h h e h a d b e e n
e n t i r e l y un p r e p a r e d
. He h a d n o t c o un t e d o n me e t i n g
o n e o f t h e Hi d d e n C h i e f s t h e ms e l v e s
. A t t h e s a me t i me
t h e d i s c o v e r y w a s a t h r i l l i n g o n e .
If t h e Hi d d e n
C h i e f o f Ba v a r i a w a s kn o w n a s S a g i t t a r i us a n d t h i s
ma n w a s "a l s o o f t h e Tw e l v e , "t h e n t h e Zo d i a c a n d
t h e Hi d d e n C h i e f s mus t b e i d e n t i c a l - a s h e s up p o s e d
.
But h o w d i d a me mb e r o f t h a t my s t e r i o us c i r c l e c o me
t o b e p r e s e n t a t a g a t h e r i n g o f t h i s o b s c ur e s e c r e t
s o c i e t y ? Wh o c o ul d h e b e ?
S c a n n i n g h i s f e a t ur e s
b y t h e f a i n t l i g h t o f t h e mo o n t h a t f l i c ke r e d t h r o ug h
1 7 6

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
t h e b r a n c h e s o f t h e f o r e s t t r e e s Br a n d o n r a c ke d h i s
b r a i n s t o t h i n kw h e r e h e h a d s e e n t h a t t h i c kn e c k,
t h a t h e a v y j a w , t h o s e b ul g i n g b l a c ke y e s b e f o r e .
S ud d e n l y h e r e me mb e r e d - t h i s w a s Os c a r Fr a n kl i n !
A n d Os c a r Fr a n kl i n w a s o f t h e Tw e l v e ! A s t h e s e
t h o ug h t s p a s s e d l i ke a f l a s h t h r o ug h h i s mi n d Br a n d o n
r e s o l v e d t o p ut h i s t h e o r y t o a f i n a l t e s t , a n d q ui c kl y
r e c o v e r i n g h i s p r e s e n c e o f mi n d s a i d h umb l y
"
Imus t a s ky o ur f o r g i v e n e s s ; my s i g h t i s s o me -
w h a t d e f e c t i v e .
Id i d n o t r e c o g n i s e y o ua t o n c e .
Be s i d e s , Iw a s n o t p r e p a r e d t o me e t o n e o f t h e Zo d i a c
i n s uc h a n a s s e mb l y
. "
He h a d h a r d l y t i me t o f i n i s h t h e s e n t e n c e b e f o r e
Fr a n kl i n s a i d h a s t i l y
:" S t o p IDo y o un o t kn o w t h a t
w o r d mus t n e v e r b e me n t i o n e d ? "
" But w e t h r e e a r e a l o n e . "
" Ne v e r mi n d .
Y o umus t t r a i n y o ur s e l f t o c a ut i o n . "
" We l l , t h e n , o n e o f t h e Hi d d e n C h i e f s - "
Fr a n kl i n n o d d e d , a n d Br a n d o n , h a v i n g p r o v e d t h i s
a l l - i mp o r t a n t p o i n t , w e n t o n
"Id i d n o t e x p e c t t h a t o n e o f t h e Hi d d e n C h i e f s
w o ul d b e p r e s e n t t o - n i g h t . "
" No d o ub t t h a t ma y s e e mt o y o us ur p r i s i n g , "
a n s w e r e d Fr a n kl i n . "
But i t h a p p e n e d a c c i d e n t a l l y .
Ia mn o w o n my w a y t o V e n i c e . My c a r b r o ke d o w n
c l o s e t o Bo g a z z o
; i t w a s n e c e s s a r y t o s t o p f o r r e p a i r s .
Th e C o un t e s s b e i n g a
f r i e n d o f mi n e , Ia s ke d h e r
h o s p i t a l i t y . S h e e x p l a i n e d t h a t t h e r e w a s t o b e a
me e t i n g i n t h e Te mp l e t h i s e v e n i n g a n d b e g g e d me a s
a s p e c i a l f a v o ur t o a t t e n d
. Ic o ul d n o t r e f us e . S h e
i s a w a r e o n l y t h a t Ia ma h i g h me mb e r o f t h e Or d e r ;
o f my p o s i t i o n a s o n e o f t h e Tw e l v e s h e kn o w s o f
c o ur s e n o t h i n g . But It h o ug h t i t a d v i s a b l e t o i n f o r m
y o ut h a t Is h o ul d b e a t t h e c e r e mo n y i n t h e Te mp l e
WITHINTHETEMPLE
1 7 7
a n d t h e r e f o r e c o mmun i c a t e d w i t h y o ua t t h e i n n .
Di d y o un o t r e c e i v e my n o t e ? "
"Ir e c e i v e d n o n o t e . "
" Th a t i s e x t r a o r d i n a r y . Is e n t a s e a l e d l e t t e r
s a y i n g :` Is h a l l b e p r e s e n t t h i s e v e n i n g , ' s i g n e d w i t h
t h e s y mb o l o f C a p r i c o r n us . "
Br a n d o n s h o o kh i s h e a d .
" Th e l e t t e r w a s n o t g i v e n t o me . It mus t h a v e b e e n
o v e r l o o ke d . "To h i ms e l f h e a d d e d :"
S o C a p r i c o r n us
o f t h e Zo d i a c i s Os c a r Fr a n kl i n ! " Fo r a mo me n t t h e
e x h i l a r a t i o n c a us e d b y t h i s f r e s h d i s c o v e r y a l mo s t
ma d e h i mf o r g e t t h e d a n g e r s o f t h e s i t ua t i o n .
"
But t h e o t h e r l e t t e r - i n c y p h e r - t h a t Iw r o t e t o
y o ua w e e ka g o ? " Fr a n kl i n p e r s i s t e d .
"A h , o f c o ur s e , t o b e s ur e , "s a i d Br a n d o n , "I
r e c e i v e d t h a t s a f e l y , b ut h a v i n g mo me n t a r i l y mi s l a i d
t h e ke y t o t h e c y p h e r t h e r e w e r e p o r t i o n s Iw a s n o t
a b l e t o d e c o d e c o mp l e t e l y . "
Fr a n kl i n r a i s e d h i s e y e b r o w s a n d l o o ke d a c r o s s a t
Dr
. He n s l e y , w h o n o d d e d h i s h e a d a s i f i n a s s e n t .
" A l l t h i s i s v e r y s t r a n g e , "s a i d Fr a n kl i n .
" V e r y s t r a n g e i n d e e d , "Dr . He n s l e y a g r e e d .
Bo t h me n f i x e d t h e i r e y e s s e a r c h i n g l y o n Br a n d o n ,
a n d a s t h e y d i d s o . h e b e c a me a c ut e l y c o n s c i o us o f
t h e i r p o w e r f ul p e r s o n a l i t i e s - c l e a r l y t h e y w e r e t r y i n g
t o h y p n o t i s e h i m, b ut Br a n d o n w a s p r o o f a g a i n s t
s uc h me t h o d s , a n d ke p t h i s e y e s f i x e d o n t h e l i p s o f
h i s i n t e r l o c ut o r s . Th i s mo me n t a r i l y d i s c o n c e r t e d
t h e m, a n d i n t h e p a us e t h a t e n s ue d Br a n d o n w a s a b l e
t o t h i n ko ut h i s n e x t mo v e . He d e c i d e d t h a t t h e t i me
h a d c o me t o b e t a ke n i l l .
" Ex c us e me , "h e s a i d , "
i f Id o n o t c o n t i n ue t h i s
c o n v e r s a t i o n , b ut s i n c e my i l l n e s s s o me y e a r s a g o I
h a v e b e e n s ub j e c t t o a c ut e a t t a c ks o f e x h a us t i o n .
1 2
1 7 8

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
A n d , "p a s s i n g h i s h a n d w e a r i l y a c r o s s h i s b r o w , "I
a mf e e l i n g f a r f r o mw e l l t o - n i g h t a n d a ma n x i o us t o
r e t i r e t o r e s t . "
Hi s t w o c o mp a n i o n s l o o ke d a t e a c h o t h e r , t h e n
Fr a n kl i n s a i d w i t h a n o d t o Dr . He n s l e y , "Iw i l l b i d
y o ug o o d - n i g h t - y o uw i l l d o ub t l e s s w i s h t o r e t ur n t o
t h e V i l l a
.
Me a n w h i l e , Iw i l l a c c o mp a n y Br i n kd o r f f
t o t h e i n n a n d s e e h i ms a f e l y t o h i s r o o m . "
" Oh , Ia s s ur e y o ut h e r e i s n o n e c e s s i t y f o r t h a t , "
s a i d Br a n d o n , a p p a l l e d a t t h e s ug g e s t i o n
. Wh a t o n
e a r t h w a s h e t o d o i f Fr a n kl i n p e r s i s t e d i n f o l l o w i n g
h i mt o t h e b e d s i d e o f t h e un c o n s c i o us Br i n kd o r f f ?
Be s i d e s , o n a r r i v i n g a t t h e i n n h i s f e a t ur e s mi g h t b e
e x p o s e d t o a s t r o n g e r l i g h t t h a n t h a t o f t h e Te mp l e
o r t h e f o r e s t . But n o t h i n g w o ul d i n d uc e t h e f i n a n c i e r
t o l e a v e h i m . Fo r t un a t e l y , h o w e v e r , t h e i n n h a d
r e ma i n e d e x t r e me l y p r i mi t i v e , a n d t h e h a l l , w h e n t h e y
e n t e r e d , w a s o n l y d i ml y i l l umi n e d b y a s i n g l e o i l -
l a mp .
S t i l l r e ma i n i n g f i r ml y a t h i s s i d e , Fr a n kl i n i n s i s t e d
o n h e l p i n g t h e s up p o s e d Br i n kd o r f f up t h e s t a i r s t o
h i s s i t t i n g - r o o m . Br a n d o n s t r uc ka ma t c h a n d l i t a
c a n d l e c a r e f ul l y , p l a c i n g i t i n s uc h a p o s i t i o n a s t o
t h r o w a s l i t t l e l i g h t a s p o s s i b l e o n h i s f a c e .
"Wh e r e i s y o ur s e c r e t a r y ? "Fr a n kl i n s a i d , l o o ki n g
r o un d t h e r o o m .
" Id o n ' t kn o w . He w e n t o ut f o r a w a l kl a t e i n
t h e e v e n i n g a n d h a s p r o b a b l y r e t i r e d t o b e d . If y o u
w i l l e x c us e me Iw i l l n o w d o t h e s a me , "s a i d Br a n d o n
f a i n t l y . A n d h e ma d e h a s t i l y f o r t h e b e d r o o md o o r .
"No , Br i n kd o r f f , Ic a n n o t l e a v e y o ua l o n e i n t h i s
s t a t e o f e x h a us t i o n . "A n d h e c a me f o r w a r d a s i f
t o g o t h r o ug h t h e d o o r i n t o t h e b e d r o o m .
Br a n d o n ' s h e a d w h i r l e d . It w a s t h e t i g h t e s t
WITHINTHETEMPLE
1 7 9
s i t ua t i o n h e h a d e v e r b e e n i n , a n d f o r a mo me n t h i s
i n v e n t i v e f a c ul t i e s f a i l e d h i m . Th e n r e c o v e r i n g h i m-
s e l f h e g r a s p e d t h e f i n a n c i e r ' s a r ma n d s a i d e a r n e s t l y
" Li s t e n , s i n c e y o u' r e ki n d e n o ug h t o t a ke s uc h g o o d
c a r e o f me , p e r h a p s y o uw o ul d n ' t mi n d c a l l i n g a w a i t e r
t o b r i n g me a g l a s s o f S c h n a p p s - i t ' s t h e o n l y t h i n g
t h a t b r i n g s me r o un d w h e n Ig e t o n e o f t h e s e a t t a c ks . "
If o n l y Fr a n kl i n c o ul d b e g o t o ut o f t h e r o o mf o r
a mo me n t i t mi g h t b e p o s s i b l e t o e s c a p e t h r o ug h t h e
w i n d o w ! But t h e f i n a n c i e r c r o s s e d o v e r t o t h e b e l l
a n d p r e s s e d i t
. " Ic a n r i n g f o r t h e w a i t e r , "h e s a i d
c a l ml y .
Br a n d o n , n o w r e a l l y d e s p e r a t e , s t a r t e d o n a n o t h e r
t a c k . "
A l l r i g h t , "h e s a i d ,
" I' l l s a y g o o d - n i g h t t o
y o ua n d g o t o b e d . " A n d h e mo v e d o n c e mo r e t o -
w a r d s t h e b e d r o o md o o r .
Fr a n kl i n n o d d e d a mi a b l y a n d a n s w e r e d :" Go o d .
But Ir e ma i n t i l l t h e w a i t e r h a s b r o ug h t t h e S c h n a p p s .
Th e n w h e n Ih a v e s e e n y o ud r i n ki t , Ir e t i r e . " A n d
h e s e a t e d h i ms e l f f i r ml y i n a n a r mc h a i r .
" V e r y w e l l , "s a i d Br a n d o n , " t h e n i f y o u' l l e x c us e
me Iw i l l g o a n d p r e p a r e f o r b e d , "a n d h e v a n i s h e d
t h r o ug h t h e d o o r i n t o t h e b e d r o o m, c l o s i n g i t b e h i n d
h i m .
Th e r e o n t h e b e d l a y Br i n kd o r f f , s t i l l s un ki n d r ug g e d
s l umb e r
.
It w a s t h e ma t t e r o f a mo me n t f o r Br a n d o n t o
d i s c a r d t h e d o c t o r ' s c l o t h e s , b ut t h e r e w a s n o t i me
t o p ut o n h i s o w n , f o r w e r e Fr a n kl i n t o ma ke a s ud d e n
i n c ur s i o n t h e g a me w o ul d b e up . S o h a s t i l y r o l l i n g
t h e mup i n t o a b un d l e h e d r o p p e d t h e mo ut o f t h e
w i n d o w o n t o t h e t e r r a c e b e l o w
. Th e n c l i mb i n g o n
t o t h e s i l l h e p r e p a r e d t o f o l l o w t h e m, c l a d o n l y i n
h i s un d e r c l o t h e s . Wh e w ! i t w o ul d b e a n a s t y d r o p
i 8 o

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
o n t o t h e s t o n e f l a g s b e n e a t h , b ut me r c i f ul l y a f e w
c r e e p e r s s t r a g g l e d up t h e s i d e o f t h e h o us e
. S w i n g i n g
h i ms e l f o ut b y t h e w o o d e n r a i l t h a t r a n a l o n g t h e
w i n d o w - l e d g e h e c o n t r i v e d t o g r a s p t h e t h i c ks t e mo f
a w i s t a r i a b y w h i c h h e d e s c e n d e d g r a d ua l l y t o w i t h i n
t e n f e e t o f t h e g r o un d , t h e n w i t h t h e a g i l i t y o f a c a t
h e j ump e d t h e r e ma i n i n g s p a c e a n d l a n d e d o n t h e t o p
o f a s ma l l s h r ub i n s a f e t y .
"Th a t w a s a n e a r t h i n g ! "h e s a i d t o h i ms e l f ,
t a ki n g a d e e p b r e a t h , a n d s n a t c h i n g up h i s c l o t h e s
f r o mt h e g r o un d , h e d i s a p p e a r e d l i ke l i g h t n i n g r o un d
t h e c o r n e r . A s h e p ul l e d o n h i s c o a t a n d t r o us e r s
un d e r t h e f r i e n d l y s h e l t e r o f a n o l e a n d e r b y t h e g a t e
a s t o r mo f l a ug h t e r s h o o kh i ma t t h e t h o ug h t o f t h e
f i n a n c i e r s i t t i n g p a t i e n t l y i n h i s c h a i r w a i t i n g f o r
S c h n a p p s t o r e v i v e t h e f a i n t i n g Br i n kd o r f f . By t h e
w a y , w h a t w o ul d h a p p e n w h e n t h e r e a l Br i n kd o r f f
w a s d i s c o v e r e d ?
C HA PTER X
ONTHETR A C K OFTHEC ONS PIR A C Y
BR A NDON' S
a d v e n t ur e i n t h e Te mp l e h a d l e d t o mo r e
t h a n h e h a d d a r e d t o h o p e
. Fr a n kl i n ' s q ue s t i o n :
"Ho w i s i t t h a t y o uw h o a r e o n l y o f t h e Tw e n t y - f i v e
a r e c o mmi s s i o n e d b y S a g i t t a r i us t o d e l i v e r a me s s a g e
o f w h i c h I, w h o a mo f t h e Tw e l v e , h a v e b e e n ke p t i n
i g n o r a n c e ? "
a n d h i s f ur t h e r r e f e r e n c e t o h i ms e l f a s
C a p r i c o r n us , d e f i n i t e l y c o n f i r me d h i s t h e o r y t h a t t h e
Zo d i a c a n d t h e Hi d d e n C h i e f s w e r e i d e n t i c a l , a n d t h a t
t h e f o r me r n a me w a s kn o w n o n l y t o t h e Tw e l v e a n d t o
t h e Tw e n t y - f i v e f o r mi n g t h e o ut e r r i n g o f t h e In n e r
C i r c l e .
No t o n c e h a d a Zo d i a c a l n a me b e e n us e d i n t h e
Lo d g e , w h e r e Fr a n kl i n , w h o h a d a f t e r w a r d s r e v e a l e d
h i ms e l f a s C a p r i c o r n us , h a d b e e n a d d r e s s e d a s
Po t e n s
i n t e r Po t e n t e s .
Th e i d e n t i t y o f o n e me mb e r o f t h e Zo d i a c ,
a l i a s t h e
Hi d d e n C h i e f s , h a d t h us b e e n d e f i n i t e l y e s t a b l i s h e d
i n o r d e r t o d i s c o v e r a s e c o n d , S a g i t t a r i us , t h e Hi d d e n
C h i e f o f Ba v a r i a , i t w a s o n l y n e c e s s a r y t o f o l l o w
Gr d n b e r g a n d f i n d o ut w h i t h e r h i s q ue s t l e d
.
Th e r e w o ul d b e n o d i f f i c ul t y i n l e a v i n g Bo g a z z o , f o r
t h e C o un t e s s ' s p o r t r a i t w a s n o w f i n i s h e d . R o s a mun d
a n d h e r mo t h e r w e r e t o l e a v e f o r En g l a n d o n t h e f o l l o w -
i n g d a y .
Me a n w h i l e , t h e d e p a r t ur e o f Br a n d o n a n d
K a v a n a g h h a d b e e n d ul y a n n o un c e d a n d a f a r e w e l l
v i s i t p a i d b y t h e ma t t h e V i l l a Pa x Mun d i o n t h e
p r e v i o us a f t e r n o o n . Th e y d e c i d e d , h o w e v e r , n o t t o
l e a v e t o g e t h e r , a s Br a n d o n w o ul d b e f r e e r t o s h a d o w
X8 1
1 8 2

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
Gr i i n b e r g i f h e w e r e o n h i s o w n .
Be s i d e s , i t w o ul d b e
a d v i s a b l e t o a s s ume a d i s g ui s e .
In o r d e r n o t t o b e
s e e n i n t h i s o n l e a v i n g t h e i n n i t w a s a r r a n g e d t h a t h e
s h o ul d g o e a r l y i n t h e mo r n i n g t o t h e V i l l a , d r e s s
h i ms e l f f o r t h e p a r t w i t h t h e h e l p o f A l e s s a n d r o , a n d
t h e n g o o n t o t h e s t a t i o n a n d w a i t f o r t h e Bo l s h e v i kt o
a r r i v e .
A s s o o n a s h e d i s c o v e r e d Gr i i n b e r g ' s d e s t i n a -
t i o n h e w o ul d t a ke a t i c ke t f o r t h e s a me p l a c e a n d p a s s
t h e i n f o r ma t i o n o n t o R i g b y , w h o w o ul d b e h o v e r i n g
a r o un d
. R i g b y w o ul d t h e n r e t ur n t o K a v a n a g h t o t e l l
h i mw h i t h e r Br a n d o n h a d g o n e
. K a v a n a g h a n d
R i g b y w o ul d t h e n f o l l o w b y a l a t e r t r a i n
.
But w h a t a r e y o ug o i n g t o d o a b o ut a p a s s p o r t
? "
K a v a n a g h h a d a s ke d w h e n Br a n d o n un f o l d e d t h i s
s c h e me .
Br a n d o n ' s f a c e f o r me d i t s e l f i n t o t h e c r e a s e t h a t d i d
d ut y f o r a s mi l e .

S e e n t h i s ? "
h e a s ke d , t a ki n g a g r e e n c a s e f r o mh i s
p o c ke t a n d h a n d i n g i t t o K a v a n a g h .
It w a s a Ge r ma n p a s s p o r t ma d e o ut i n t h e n a me o f
J o h a n n S t r a ub e , w i t h a n a d d r e s s i n Be r l i n , a n d b e a r i n g
o n t h e f i r s t p a g e a p h o t o g r a p h o f a f ul l - f a c e d Te ut o n
w i t h a b r us h e d - up mo us t a c h e a n d a s l i g h t c a s t i n o n e
e y e .
" Wh o o n e a r t h i s t h i s ? "
K a v a n a g h a s ke d i n
s ur p r i s e .
" Oh , a Ge r ma n p a l o f mi n e i n Lo n d o n w h o ki n d l y
l e n d s me h i s p a s s p o r t o n o c c a s i o n .
Pl e a s a n t - l o o ki n g
f e l l o w , i s n ' t h e ? "

Y e s , f a r p l e a s a n t e r t h a n y o u
. But s ur e l y y o u
c a n ' t ma ke up t o l o o kl i ke t h a t
? "

Wa i t a n d s e e , "Br a n d o n s a i d w i t h a l a ug h , p ut t i n g
t h e c a s e b a c ki n t o h i s p o c ke t .
In a c c o r d a n c e w i t h t h i s p l a n , Br a n d o n , i n t h e g ui s e
ON THE TR A C K OF THE C ONS PIR A C Y 1 8 3
o f J o h a n n S t r a ub e , a r r i v e d a t Bo g a z z o s t a t i o n i n t i me
f o r t h e 8
. 4 5 t r a i n , a n d a s s o o n a s Gr un b e r g a p p e a r e d o n
t h e s c e n e c o n t r i v e d t o p l a c e h i ms e l f i n t h e q ue ue a t t h e
t i c ke t o f f i c e , w h e r e h e w a s a b l e t o h e a r h i ms a y d i s -
t i n c t l y
" A f i r s t - c l a s s t i c ke t f o r Br a n d e s h e i m . "
Br a n d o n t h e n p r o c ur e d a t h i r d - c l a s s t i c ke t t o t h e
s a me Ba v a r i a n t o w n , p a s s e d i t s n a me o n t o R i g b y , a n d
t o o kh i s o w n p l a c e i n t h e t r a i n
.
Th r o ug h o ut t h e j o ur n e y i n t o Ge r ma n y h e ke p t a
c l o s e w a t c h o n Gr un b e r g , ma ki n g s ur e t h a t h e w a s n o t
d e s c e n d i n g a t a n y i n t e r me d i a t e s t a t i o n . Wh e n a t l a s t
t h e y r e a c h e d Br a n d e s h e i m, Br a n d o n a g a i n p l a c e d
h i ms e l f c l o s e t o Gr un b e r g a t t h e e x i t o f t h e s t a t i o n ,
w h e r e t h e l a t t e r h a i l e d a t a x i a n d o r d e r e d t h e c h a uf f e ur
t o t a ke h i mt o t h e Ho t e l In t e r n a t i o n a l . Br a n d o n ,
e n t e r i n g a n o t h e r c a b , f o l l o w e d i n h i s w a ke , a n d p ut up
a t a n i n n n o t f a r f r o mt h e h o t e l .
A l l l h a d n o w w o r ke d o ut a c c o r d i n g t o p l a n . K a v -
a n a g h mi g h t b e e x p e c t e d t o a r r i v e b y t h e n e x t t r a i n ,
a n d w o ul d c a l l a t t h e p o s t - o f f i c e f o r t h e l e t t e r l e f t t h e r e
b y Br a n d o n t e l l i n g h i mw h e r e b o t h h e a n d Gr un b e r g
w e r e s t a y i n g . K a v a n a g h a n d R i g b y w o ul d t h e n p ut up
a t t h e Ho t e l In t e r n a t i o n a l s o t h a t a t r e b l e w a t c h w o ul d
b e ke p t o n Gr un b e r g ' s mo v e me n t s .
Me a n w h i l e , Br a n d o n ke p t t h e ma n un d e r c l o s e
o b s e r v a t i o n . C a l c ul a t i n g t h a t h e w o ul d c e r t a i n l y
t a ke s o me f o o d o n a r r i v a l , h e h i ms e l f c o n s ume d a
h a s t y me a l a n d t h e n g o i n g o ut i n t o t h e s t r e e t s t r o l l e d
a b o ut f o r a n h o ur , ke e p i n g h i s e y e s o n t h e d o o r o f t h e
h o t e l
. A t l a s t Gr un b e r g w a s s e e n t o e me r g e a n d ma ke
h i s w a y t o w a r d s t h e r e s i d e n t i a l p a r t o f t h e t o w n .
Br a n d o n f o l l o w e d b e h i n d h i ma s h e t ur n e d o ut o f t h e
ma i n s t r e e t , a n d a f t e r a b o ut t e n mi n ut e s r e a c h e d a n
1 8 4

THE S EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
a v e n ue o f ma g n i f i c e n t v i l l a s , e a c h i n i t s o w n g a r d e n .
A t t h e g a t e o f o n e o f t h e mo s t o p ul e n t o f t h e s e , d e c o r -
a t e d f l o r i d l y w i t h w r e a t h s a n d e l a b o r a t e c o r n i c e s ,
Gr i i n b e r g h a l t e d a n d p ul l e d t h e b e l l .
Br a n d o n , w i t h h i s c o a t o v e r h i s a r ma n d h i s h a n d ke r -
c h i e f s p r e a d o v e r h i s h e a d b e n e a t h h i s s t r a w h a t l i ke
a t y p i c a l Ge r ma n t o ur i s t f e e l i n g t h e h e a t , r e a c h e d t h e
s p o t j us t a s t h e p o r t e r o p e n e d t h e g a t e i n r e s p o n s e t o
Gr i i n b e r g ' s p e a l a n d r e c o g n i s e d h i mw i t h a f r i e n d l y
n o d .
" Go o d - d a y . Th e g n a d i g e He r r i s n o t a t h o me . "
" No t a t h o me ? "Gr i i n b e r g r e p e a t e d i n a s t o n i s h -
me n t . " But Ic o me b y c o mma n d . Th e me s s a g e w a s
b r o ug h t me b y w o r d o f mo ut h . Ih a v e t r a v e l l e d f a r i n
o b e d i e n c e t o t h e s ummo n s . "
"Th e r e mus t b e s o me mi s t a ke . Th e g n a d i g e He r r
h a s l e f t h o me . He w e n t a w a y y e s t e r d a y o n a v i s i t t o
t h e Ge n e r a l v o n R a us c h e n b e r g a t S t o l z e n b a c h . "
Wi t h a n i mp a t i e n t g r un t Gr i n b e r g d r e w a s l i p o f
p a p e r f r o mh i s p o c ke t - b o o k, s c r i b b l e d s o me t h i n g o n i t ,
a n d h a n d e d i t t o t h e p o r t e r w i t h t h e w o r d s
"
We l l , t h e n , g i v e h i mt h a t o n h i s r e t ur n . "
A n d t ur n i n g o n h i s h e e l h e w a l ke d b a c ki n t h e
d i r e c t i o n w h e n c e h e c a me .
Br a n d o n s t r o l l e d o n a l o n g t h e a v e n ue . Hi s q ue s t ,
a s f a r a s Gr un b e r g w a s c o n c e r n e d , w a s e n d e d . It h a d
l e d h i m, h o w e v e r , t o t h e h o us e o f S a g i t t a r i us , f o r
Gr un b e r g ' s w o r d s , " Ic o me b y c o mma n d
. . . I
h a v e t r a v e l l e d f a r i n o b e d i e n c e t o a s ummo n s , "c o ul d
s i g n i f y o n l y o n e t h i n g - t h a t h e h a d o b e y e d t h e o r d e r
g i v e n i n t h e Te mp l e t o p r e s e n t h i ms e l f b e f o r e t h e
Hi d d e n C h i e f o f Ba v a r i a . A n d Fr a n kl i n h a d s up p l i e d
t h e f ur t h e r i n f o r ma t i o n t h a t S a g i t t a r i us w a s t h e n a me
b y w h i c h t h a t Hi d d e n C h i e f w a s kn o w n .
ONTHETR A C K OFTHEC ONS PIR A C Y 1 8 5
But w h o w a s S a g i t t a r i us ?
Br a n d o n d e t e r mi n e d t o
d i s c o v e r . It w o ul d n o t b e d i f f i c ul t
; t h e r e c o ul d b e n o
s e c r e t a b o ut t h e o w n e r o f t h i s p r e t e n t i o us v i l l a
. S o
a f t e r t a ki n g s e v e r a l t ur n s up a n d d o w n t h e a v e n ue h e
ke p t a l o o ko ut f o r s o me l o c a l i n h a b i t a n t s uc h a s a
t r a d e s ma n o n h i s r o un d s , w h o w o ul d b e l i ke l y t o s up p l y
t h e mi s s i n g c l ue . A h !
t h e r e w a s t h e p o s t ma n
a p p r o a c h i n g f r o mt h e d i s t a n c e a n d s t o p p i n g a t e a c h
h o us e i n t ur n .
Pl a c i n g h i ms e l f i n a n a t t i t ud e o f g a p i n g a d mi r a t i o n
i n f r o n t o f t h e v i l l a o w n e d b y S a g i t t a r i us , Br a n d o n
w a i t e d un t i l t h e ma n r e a c h e d t h e g a t e a n d o b s e r v e d
w i t h a n o d a t t h e g a r l a n d e d c o r n i c e o f t h e v i l l a
" A f i n e h o us e t h a t !
To w h o md o e s i t b e l o n g ? "
" Y o ua r e a s t r a n g e r t o Br a n d e s h e i m, t h e n
? "
" Y e s . On a w a l ki n g t o ur
. Fr o mBr e me n . "
"
A c h , t h a t a c c o un t s f o r i t .
Ev e r y o n e h e r e kn o w s
t h a t i s t h e h o us e o f t h e g r e a t f i n a n c i e r Ge l d b e ut e l
. "
A n d w i t h a b r i e f " Gut e n A b e n d "
t h e ma n w e n t h i s
w a y .
S o S a g i t t a r i us w a s Ge l d b e ut e l o f Fr a n kf ur t !
Th i s
w a s e v i d e n t l y h i s s umme r v i l l a .
Th e d i s c o v e r y w a s
o f f i r s t - c l a s s i mp o r t a n c e .
Th e r e w a s n o t h i n g t o b e
g a i n e d b y r e ma i n i n g o n i n Br a n d e s h e i m . K a v a n a g h
a n d R i g b y mus t b e s t o p p e d a t t h e s t a t i o n . C o l l e c t i n g
h i s v a l i s e f r o mt h e i n n , Br a n d o n d e c i d e d t o me e t t h e
t r a i n w h i c h mi g h t b e e x p e c t e d i n a n h o ur ' s t i me
.
Th e t w o t r a v e l l e r s d ul y a r r i v e d , a n d K a v a n a g h o n
d e s c e n d i n g f r o mt h e c a r r i a g e s w o r e r o un d l y a t b e i n g
b ump e d i n t o b y a h e a v y Ge r ma n w i t h a r uc ks a c ko n
h i s b a c k .
But t o h i s s ur p r i s e t h e ma n , i n s t e a d o f
a p o l o g i s i n g , l e a n t t o w a r d s h i ma n d s a i d i n a n un d e r -
t o n e
"Ho l d h a r d , Te r e n c e
. C o me a n d h a v e a g l a s s o f
1 8 6

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
b e e r i n t h e s t a t i o n r e s t a ur a n t . "
" J i mmy ! By J o v e 1
" K a v a n a g h s a i d un d e r h i s
b r e a t h . He h a d n e v e r s e e n Br a n d o n b e f o r e i n h i s
r o l e o f J o h a n n S t r a ub e a n d c o ul d h a r d l y b e l i e v e h i s
e y e s
. Th a t t h e s a me ma n c o ul d i mp e r s o n a t e t h e
c a d a v e r o us a n d i n t e l l e c t ua l Br i n kd o r f f a n d t h i s g r o s s
mi d d l e - c l a s s Ge r ma n t o ur i s t s e e me d i n c r e d i b l e un t i l
o n e r e me mb e r e d t h e r e s o ur c e s o f w h a t Br a n d o n c a l l e d
h i s a d j us t a b l e f e a t ur e s a n d t h e e f f e c t t h a t a d i f f e r e n t
s e t o f f a l s e t e e t h , a n e y e w i t h a c a s t i n i t , a n d
" p l ump e r s c o ul d p r o d uc e . But t h i s w o ul d h a v e
b e e n n o t h i n g w i t h o ut Br a n d o n ' s c a p a c i t y f o r c h a n g i n g
h i s e x p r e s s i o n a n d s ui t i n g h i s mo v e me n t s t o t h e p a r t
.
It w a s l e s s t h e p l ump c o n t o ur s i n d uc e d b y f a c e - p a d s ,
t h a n t h e h e a v y Ge r ma n l o o k, t h e c l ums y ma n n e r o f
mo v i n g , a n d t h e g e n e r a l b o ur g e o i s a i r h e h a d b e e n a b l e
t o a s s ume t h a t ma d e h i mun r e c o g n i s a b l e . Ev e n
b e f o r e h i s a c c i d e n t , K a v a n a g h r e me mb e r e d t h a t a s a
mi mi c h e h a d b e e n a b l e t o c h a n g e h i s w h o l e f a c e a t
w i l l .
" We l l , Te r e n c e , h o w d i d y o ul e a v e Bo g a z z o ? "
Br a n d o n s a i d a s t h e t h r e e s e a t e d t h e ms e l v e s a t a
t a b l e i n t h e r e s t a ur a n t .
"Q ui t e w e l l , e x c e p t f o r o n e c o n t r e t e mp s . R o s a -
mun d ' s mo t h e r s l i p p e d o n a r o c kw a l ki n g up a mo un t a i n
r o a d y e s t e r d a y e v e n i n g , a n d i s l a i d up w i t h a b a d l y
s p r a i n e d a n kl e . S o t h e y w o n ' t b e a b l e t o l e a v e f o r
s o me d a y s . Id o n ' t q ui t e l i ke t h e i d e a o f R o s a mun d
b e i n g t h e r e w i t h o ut us . If t h e a f f a i r o f Br i n kd o r f f
c o me s o ut , t h e r e ' l l b e a b i t o f a f r a c a s , Ie x p e c t . "
" No d o ub t . But Id o n ' t s e e h o w i t c o ul d i n v o l v e
R o s a mun d e v e n i f s us p i c i o n f a l l s o n us . No o n e a t t h e
V i l l a kn o w s a n y t h i n g a b o ut h e r c o n n e c t i o n w i t h us o r
kn o w s s h e ' s i n Bo g a z z o - e x c e p t He n s l e y , p e r h a p s . "
ON
THE
TR A C K OF THE C ONS PIR A C Y 1 8 7

Y e s , t h a t ' s t r ue . It ' s l uc ky w e ke p t h e r d a r k .
But n o w w h a t h a v e y o ub e e n a b l e t o d i s c o v e r h e r e ? "
Br a n d o n r e l a t e d h i s e x p e r i e n c e s .
It ' s a g r e a t s t e p f o r w a r d t o h a v e f o un d o ut t h e
n a me o f a s e c o n d me mb e r o f t h e Zo d i a c , "K a v a n a g h
s a i d w h e n h e h a d f i n i s h e d ; "
n o w w e ' v e t w o - Fr a n k-
l i n - C a p r i c o r n us , a n d S a g i t t a r i us - Ge l d b e ut e l
. Wh a t ' s
t h e n e x t t h i n g t o b e d o n e
? Th e r e s e e ms n o o b j e c t i n
f o l l o w i n g Gr i i n b e r g t o S t o l z e n b a c h
. "
" No . But i t mi g h t b e w o r t h w h i l e g o i n g o n t h e r e
. I
s h o ul d l i ke un c o mmo n l y t o kn o w w h a t Ge l d b e ut e l ' s up
t o w i t h v o n R a us c h e n b e r g - v o n R a us c h e n b e r g , o n e o f
t h e K a i s e r ' s mo s t f a mo us g e n e r a l s i n t h e w a r , a n d a
b i t t e r e n e my o f En g l a n d . A n d S t o l z e n b a c h i s s t i l l
i n Ba v a r i a , o n l y h a l f a n h o ur a w a y b y t r a i n a n d q ui t e
a p l e a s a n t s p o t , Ib e l i e v e
. Wh a t d o y o us a y t o
p ut t i n g i n a f e w d a y s t h e r e
? We mi g h t g e t h o l d o f
s o me i n f o r ma t i o n b y a l uc ky c h a n c e . "

R i g h t
.
I' mg a me
. "
S o i t w a s d e c i d e d t h a t t h e t h r e e c o n f e d e r a t e s s h o ul d
g o o n t o S t o l z e n b a c h , ke e p i n g a p a r t a s b e f o r e , a n d
s t a y i n g a t d i f f e r e n t h o t e l s i n t h e v i l l a g e
.
On a r r i v a l , Br a n d o n p ut up a t a n un p r e t e n t i o us i n n
a n d i n s c r i b e d h i ms e l f i n t h e v i s i t o r s ' b o o ka s J o h a n n
S t r a ub e . To t h e l a n d l o r d h e e x p l a i n e d t h a t h e w a s o n
a w a l ki n g t o ur , b ut a s h e h a d h e a r d t h a t t h e r e w a s
s o me e x c e l l e n t f i s h i n g t o b e h a d i n t h e n e i g h b o ur h o o d ,
h e t h o ug h t o f r e ma i n i n g f o r a f e w d a y s a t S t o l z e n b a c h .
But h e f o un d h e h a d ma d e a b a d g a f f e , f o r t h e l a n d l o r d
a n s w e r e d g r uf f l y
"Th e r e i s n o f i s h i n g h e r e f o r v i s i t o r s . A l l t h e
f i s h i n g i n t h e n e i g h b o ur h o o d b e l o n g s t o t h e He r r
Ge n e r a l up a t t h e C a s t l e . To f i s h t h e r e i s s t r e n g
v e r b o t e n . "
1 8 8

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
Th i s w a s un f o r t un a t e , s i n c e f i s h i n g i s a n e x c e l l e n t
o c c up a t i o n f o r a n y o n e w h o w a n t s t o f i n d o ut a b o ut a
c o un t r y d i s t r i c t b y c h a t t i n g t o t h e i n h a b i t a n t s .
Ho w e v e r , Br a n d o n d e c i d e d t h a t w a l ks w i t h a c a me r a
mi g h t p r o v e e q ua l l y i n s t r uc t i v e , s o h e a n s w e r e d
c h e e r f ul l y
"We l l , a n y h o w , t h e s c e n e r y i s ma g n i f i c e n t , Is h a l l
b e a b l e t o d o s o me p h o t o g r a p h y . "
"
Be c a r e f ul t h e n n o t t o p h o t o g r a p h t h e C a s t l e , "t h e
l a n d l o r d s a i d i n t h e s a me g r uf f t o n e , " t h a t a l s o i s
s t r e n g v e r b o t e n
. "
"
A n d w h y i s t h a t ? "Br a n d o n a s ke d i n s ur p r i s e .
" Oh , i t ' s a w a y t h e s e mi l i t a r y f o l kh a v e - r ul e s a n d
r e g ul a t i o n s a b o ut e v e r y t h i n g . A n d t h e n t h e He r r
Ge n e r a l l i v e s i n c o n s t a n t f e a r o f a s s a s s i n a t i o n .
No o n e
i s a l l o w e d t o e n t e r h i s p r o p e r t y w i t h o ut p e r mi s s i o n a n d
t h e g a t e s a r e a l w a y s ke p t l o c ke d . "
It w o ul d e v i d e n t l y b e d i f f i c ul t t o o b t a i n a g l i mp s e o f
Ge l d b e ut e l
. S t i l l , s o me n e w s a b o ut h i mmi g h t b e
p i c ke d up f r o mv i l l a g e g o s s i p . Br a n d o n a n d K a v -
a n a g h r e s o l v e d t o s p e n d a s muc h t i me a s p o s s i b l e i n
c a f e s l i s t e n i n g t o t h e c o n v e r s a t i o n o f t h e i n h a b i t a n t s
.
K a v a n a g h , t h o ug h un a b l e l i ke Br a n d o n t o p a s s a s a
Ge r ma n , kn e w t h e l a n g ua g e w e l l e n o ug h t o t a ke i n a l l
t h a t w a s g o i n g o n a r o un d h i m, w h i l s t R i g b y a s a
p r i s o n e r i n Ge r ma n y h a d l e a r n t t o un d e r s t a n d a g o o d
d e a l .
It w a s d e c i d e d t h a t h e s h o ul d e x p l a i n h i ms e l f t o
b e K a v a n a g h ' s Fr e n c h v a l e t , a n a r d e n t R e p ub l i c a n ,
s o me w h a t h o s t i l e t o En g l a n d , a n d s y mp a t h e t i c t o
Ge r ma n y .
In t h i s w a y t h e t h r e e mi g h t b e a b l e t o f i n d
o ut s o me t h i n g a b o ut w h a t w a s g o i n g o n a t t h e C a s t l e
a n d i n c i d e n t a l l y t o g a ug e t h e v a r i o us s h a d e s o f o p i n i o n
w i t h r e g a r d t o i n t e r n a t i o n a l a f f a i r s
.
In g e n e r a l t h e Ba v a r i a n s s h o w e d t h e ms e l v e s q ui t e
ON THE
TR A C K OF THE C ONS PIR A C Y 1 8 9
f r i e n d l y ; t h e j o y o f a n e w a n d r e g e n e r a t e d Ge r ma n y
g l o w e d i n a l l t h e i r h e a r t s . On l y w h e n i n t e r n a t i o n a l
q ue s t i o n s w e r e t o uc h e d o n l a t e n t a n i mo s i t i e s c a me t o
t h e s ur f a c e . Mi n g l e d w i t h r e s e n t me n t a t t h e p o l i c y
p ur s ue d b y t h e A l l i e s a f t e r t h e Gr e a t Wa r w a s a
c e r t a i n p i t y f o r t h e s e s a me A l l i e s w h o h a d f a i l e d t o
s t r i ke t h e p a t h o f s a l v a t i o n b l a z e d f o r t h e mb y Hi t l e r .
But t h e s e o p i n i o n s w e r e e x p r e s s e d d i s c r e e t l y a c c o r d i n g
t o w h o e v e r h a p p e n e d t o b e p r e s e n t
.
K a v a n a g h a s a n En g l i s h ma n - f o r h i s Ir i s h n a me
p a s s e d un n o t i c e d b y t h e S t o l z e n b a c h e r s - h e a r d n o
h a r s h c r i t i c i s mo f En g l a n d , o n l y r e g r e t s t h a t i n t h a t
c o un t r y Ge r ma n y s h o ul d b e s o mi s j ud g e d .
" A c h 1 t h e En g l i s h ! "o n e w o ul d s a y , " w i t h t h e m
w e s h o ul d b e f r i e n d s . A r e w e n o t b o t h o f No r d i c r a c e ,
b o un d b y a l l t h e t i e s o f b l o o d ? Th e w a r w a s a g r e a t
mi s t a ke ; o ur En g l i s h c o us i n s s h o ul d n o t h a v e t a ke n
up a r ms o n b e h a l f o f Fr a n c e . A n e f f e t e r a c e , t h e
Fr e n c h . Fo r f i f t y y e a r s t h e i r p o p ul a t i o n h a s b e e n a t a
s t a n d s t i l l . "
R i g b y , h o w e v e r , a s a s up p o s e d Fr e n c h ma n h e a r d a
d i f f e r e n t s t o r y .
" Ho w c a n y o ue n d ur e t o l i v e i n En g l a n d , t h a t l a n d o f
w o o d e n - h e a d s ? Th e En g l i s h d o n o t un d e r s t a n d
g o v e r n me n t . Lo o ka t t h e i r un e mp l o y e d , w h o a r e p a i d
t o d o n o t h i n g IA f i n e c o un t r y t h a t ! Th e Fr e n c h ,
n o w , t h e y a r e a s p i r i t e d p e o p l e , c l e v e r , i n d us t r i o us ,
t h r i f t y
; t h e y kn o w h o w t o w o r k . Wi t h t h e mw e
o ug h t t o c o me t o a n un d e r s t a n d i n g . "
It w a s r e s e r v e d f o r Br a n d o n a s a Ge r ma n t o ur i s t t o
h e a r t h e i r r e a l o p i n i o n s o f b o t h n a t i o n s
.
A t a c a f e o n e e v e n i n g a p o l i t i c a l d i s c us s i o n a r o s e .
" Th e Fr e n c h a n d En g l i s h h a v e n o n a t i o n a l s p i r i t , "
o b s e r v e d a Na z i . " Th e y a r e b o t h c o n t e n t t o b e r ul e d
I9 o

THE S EC R ETOF THE


ZODIA C
b y t h e J e w s - Fr a n c e b y t h o s e o f t h e ma s o n i c l o d g e s ,
En g l a n d b y t h o s e i n h e r Go v e r n me n t a n d p ub l i c
o f f i c e s . "
"En g l a n d i s r o t t e n w i t h Pa c i f i s m, "s a i d a n o t h e r ;
h e r y o un g me n d e c l a r e t h e y w i l l n o t f i g h t f o r K i n g
o r c o un t r y
. A r a c e l i ke t h a t i s f i n i s h e d . "
"Y e s , s a i d t h e f i r s t ma n , " C o mmun i s mi s t h e r e a l
f o r c e t h e r e . A l r e a d y t h e En g l i s h r e v o l ut i o n h a s b e g un
.
S o me t i me a g o t h e K i n g ' s Pa l a c e w a s b e s i e g e d b y t h e
mo b . Is a w a p i c t ur e o f i t i n a n A me r i c a n p a p e r a
t o ur i s t l e f t h e r e a t t h e t i me . "
"
A n d w h e n o ur l e a d e r ' s r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s w e r e o v e r i n
Lo n d o n , "s a i d t h e o t h e r , l e a n i n g f o r w a r d e a g e r l y ,
" t h e y
w e r e s ur r o un d e d w i t h C o mmun i s t s w h o b r o ke i n t o t h e
h o t e l w h e r e t h e y w e r e s t a y i n g i n t h e We s t En d a n d
ma d e a n up r o a r .
S h o ut e d a n d kn o c ke d o v e r t h e
t a b l e s w h e r e En g l i s h l o r d s w e r e d r i n ki n g c o f f e e
. Ha n s
S c h a e f f e r , w h o w a s t h e r e , w r o t e a n d t o l d me a l l a b o ut
i t . But n o t h i n g w a s d o n e t o t h e r i o t e r s
. Th e Go v e r n -
me n t w a s a f r a i d t o a c t . "
"
A c h , En g l a n d i s d o n e f o r . We h a v e n o t h i n g t o
f e a r f r o mh e r .
Lo o ka t h e r s t a t e s me n ! A l r e a d y t h e y
h a v e l o s t In d i a . We
h a v e a l e a d e r , a n d w e s h a l l s o o n
s h o w t h e w o r l d w h a t w e c a n d o
! "
"
A n d n o w t h a t o ur Go v e r n me n t i s J e w - c l e a n w e
s h a l l n o l o n g e r b e b e t r a y e d
! "
a d d e d o n e y o un g ma n
mo r e t r uc ul e n t t h a n t h e r e s t , w i t h a t r i ump h a n t g l a n c e
a t a S e mi t i c n e i g h b o ur .
"
We a r e a s g o o d Ge r ma n s a s y o u, "t h e J e w r e p l i e d
me e kl y
; " w e f o ug h t w i t h y o ui n t h e w a r
. A n d w e
c o n q ue r e d R us s i a . "
"
Y e s , y o uw e r e g o o d f o r t h a t .
But y o ur b a n ke r s
s o l d us i n r e t ur n f o r Pa l e s t i n e
. We w e r e n e v e r b e a t e n i n
t h e f i e l d .
If w e g o t o w a r a g a i n w e s h a l l b e v i c t o r i o us
.
ON THE TR A C K OF
THE C ONS PIR A C Y 1 9 1
A n d t h i s t i me R us s i a w i l l b e w i t h us . "
" Th e n p e r h a p s w e s h a l l h a v e a S o c i a l i s t Ge r ma n y ! "
a S o c i a l De mo c r a t v e n t ur e d t o o b s e r v e , w h e r e a t a
b r a w l a r o s e , a n d t h e l a n d l o r d o f t h e c a f e h a d t o i n t e r -
f e r e a n d s e p a r a t e t h e c o mb a t a n t s .
But o n o n e p o i n t b o t h Na z i s a n d S o c i a l De mo c r a t s
w e r e a g r e e d - t h e Tr e a t y o f V e r s a i l l e s a n d t h e Le a g ue
o f Na t i o n s w e r e b o t h a b s ur d . Ge r ma n y mus t b e
a l l o w e d f r e e d o mt o a r m . Et e r n a l p e a c e w a s i d l e t a l k .
Fo r c e w a s t h e o n l y t h i n g t h a t c o un t e d - a s e n t i me n t
w i t h w h i c h Br a n d o n w a s a b l e t r ut h f ul l y t o e x p r e s s h i s
a g r e e me n t .
Ge n e r a l v o n R a us c h e n b e r g a p p e a r e d t o b e un p o p ul a r
w i t h b o t h Na z i s a n d S o c i a l De mo c r a t s
; t h e S o c i a l
De mo c r a t s d i s l i ki n g h i ma s a s up p o r t e r o f t h e mo n a r c h y
a n d t h e Na z i s d i s t r us t i n g h i mf o r h i s l a c ko f a r d o ur i n
t h e c a us e o f a n t i - S e mi t i s m
. " He w o ul d n e v e r c o n s e n t
t o g e t t i n g r i d o f t h e J e w i s h b us i n e s s me n , "t h e y w o ul d
s a y . "
But t h e n h i s g r a n d mo t h e r w a s a R o s e n b l a t t , o f
Fr a n kf ur t , s o w h a t c a n o n e e x p e c t
? "
A t s t a t e d h o ur s o f t h e d a y Br a n d o n a n d K a v a n a g h
a r r a n g e d t o me e t o n a b r i d g e o ut s i d e t h e v i l l a g e a n d
s t r o l l i n t o t h e w o o d c l o s e b y s o a s t o c o mp a r e n o t e s f a r
f r o ml i s t e n i n g e a r s .
Wh a t Ic a n ' t un d e r s t a n d , "K a v a n a g h s a i d ,
" i s
w h y a Pa n - Ge r ma n Ge n e r a l s h o ul d b e f r a t e r n i s i n g w i t h
a me mb e r o f t h e Zo d i a c , w h o i n h i s t ur n i s g i v i n g
o r d e r s t o a r e p r e s e n t a t i v e o f t h e S o v i e t Go v e r n me n t
. "
Y e s , i t ma y s e e mo d d , b ut Ge l d b e ut e l i s o n e o f t h e
p r i n c i p a l c o n t r o l l e r s o f Ge r ma n i n d us t r y , a n d w a s
t h e r e p r e s e n t a t i v e o f t h e En t w a f f n un g s C o mmi s s i o n
o f t h e V . V . I . D . ,
w h o s e a v o w e d j o b w a s t o c a r r y o ut
t h e Tr e a t y o f V e r s a i l l e s , b ut w h o s e r e a l a i mw a s t o a r m
Ge r ma n y
. Th e y w o r ke d i n w i t h t h e Bo l s h e v i ks t o
1 9 2

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
ma ke f o r b i d d e n a r ms , s ub ma r i n e s , p o i s o n g a s , a n d s o
o n . Th e Ge n e r a l b e i n g o n e o f t h e o l d Mo n a r c h i s t g a n g
w h i c h b e l i e v e d i n c o - o p e r a t i n g w i t h Mo s c o w t o b r i n g
a b o ut a w a r o f r e v e n g e , t h e r e f o r e f i n d s a us e f ul a l l y i n
Ge l d b e ut e l . S o me y e a r s a g o a t a n y r a t e h e w a s a
me mb e r o f t h e Dr ui d e n o r d e n , w h o s e i d e a w a s t o h e l p
C o mmun i s t p r o p a g a n d a t o s p r e a d i n o t h e r c o un t r i e s
a n d s o s t a r t t h e r o t . Th e s e p e o p l e t h i n kt h e y ' r e
c l e v e r e n o ug h t o s t o p i t i n Ge r ma n y , w h i l s t t h e Bo l -
s h e v i ks o n t h e i r p a r t f e e l s ur e t h e y c a n o ut - ma n o e uv r e
t h e Ge r ma n s w h e n t h e s h a r e - o ut c o me s . Th e i r r e a l
a i ms o f c o ur s e a r e p o l e s a p a r t , b ut t h e me a n s t o t h e
e n d - w o r l d r e v o l ut i o n o ut s i d e Ge r ma n y - i s t h e s a me .
Th e y ' l l w o r kt o g e t h e r t i l l Fr a n c e a n d En g l a n d a r e
d o w n a n d o ut . "
" Th e n y o ut h i n kt h e Ge n e r a l ' s n o t a l t o g e t h e r h o s t i l e
t o Mo s c o w ? "
" It h i n kh e ' l l b e p r e p a r e d t o us e a n y t h i n g t h a t w o ul d
s e r v e h i s p ur p o s e - e v e n t h e Ge r ma n C o mmun i s t s i f
t h e i r v i o l e n c e c o ul d b e t ur n e d a g a i n s t t h e A l l i e s o f t h e
Gr e a t Wa r . Th a t ' s w h e r e h e a n d h i s ki n d d i f f e r f r o m
t h e Na z i s . Th e y ' r e f o r t e a r i n g up C o mmun i s mr o o t a n d
b r a n c h . He ' s f o r us i n g i t
. Th a t s e e ms t o me h i s
g a me i n f r a t e r n i s i n g w i t h Ge l d b e ut e l . "
" Th e r e i s n e w s t o - d a y , "a Na z i o b s e r v e d o n e e v e n i n g ,
s i t t i n g d o w n a t a t a b l e c l o s e t o Br a n d o n . " Y o ukn o w
t h a t Ge l d b e ut e l t h e b a n ke r i s s t a y i n g a t t h e C a s t l e .
A n d n o w s o me En g l i s h s w i n e - h o un d s a r e t o a r r i v e t o -
mo r r o w . Ih e a r d i t f r o mt h e Ge n e r a l ' s ma n s e r v a n t .
He b e l i e v e s t h e y a r e La b o ur me mb e r s o f t h e En g l i s h
Pa r l i a me n t . "
" No d o ub t t h e y a r e h e r e t o i n t r i g ue w i t h Ge l d -
b e ut e l , "s a i d a n o t h e r . - " We o ug h t t o h a v e g o t h i m
ON THE TR A C K OF THE C ONS PIR A C Y
1 9 3
o ut o f t h e c o un t r y l o n g a g o . "
Br a n d o n me e t i n g K a v a n a g h t h a t e v e n i n g a t t h e i r
us ua l r e n d e z v o us i n t h e w o o d b y t h e r i v e r , t o l d h i mt h e
n e w s o f t h e e x p e c t e d v i s i t o r s a t t h e C a s t l e .
" We ' d b e t t e r ke e p a l o o ko ut t o - mo r r o w e v e n i n g , "
s a i d K a v a n a g h , " a n d s e e w h o t h e y a r e . If y o u
ma n a g e t o b e a t t h e s t a t i o n , I' l l b e s t r o l l i n g a l o n g t h e
r o a d p a s t t h e C a s t l e . We o ug h t t o b e a b l e t o g e t a
g l i mp s e o f t h e ml i ke t h a t . "
But r e c o g n i t i o n p r e s e n t e d n o d i f f i c ul t y
. Wh e n t h e
t r a i n c a me i n , t h e w e l l - kn o w n f i g ur e s o f J o s . Ba g n a l l ,
J a me s Pud s e y , a n d Ge o r g e R e n t o n - t h r e e p r o mi n e n t
me mb e r s o f t h e Br i t i s h La b o ur Pa r t y - c o ul d b e c l e a r l y
s e e n e n t e r i n g t h e Ge n e r a l ' s l a r g e Me r c e d e s , b ut , mo r e
s ur p r i s i n g , t h e y w e r e p r e c e d e d b y a n o t h e r f i g ur e , s t i l l
mo r e f a mi l i a r , a c h a r mi n g v i s i o n i n a l i g h t s i l ko v e r -
c o a t a n d a h a t t o w h i c h o n l y t h e R ue d e l a Pa i x c o ul d
h a v e g i v e n b i r t h - Mr s . Mur r a y Ba t e ma n
.
" Th a t ' s a r ums h o w I " K a v a n a g h s a i d t o Br a n d o n
w h e n t h e y me t a g a i n b y a p p o i n t me n t o n t h e b r i d g e t h a t
a f t e r n o o n . " Wh a t o n e a r t h i s Mr s . Mur r a y Ba t e ma n
d o i n g i n t h a t p a r t y ? "
Id o n ' t kn o w i t ' s a s r uma s y o ut h i n k, "a n s w e r e d
Br a n d o n . " I' v e a l w a y s t o l d y o ut h a t l a d y ' s mo v e -
me n t s w e r e w o r t h f o l l o w i n g . R e me mb e r , Ba t e ma n
h a s a l o t o f mo n e y i n Ge r ma n y . He ' s a n i n t i ma t e
f r i e n d o f Os c a r Fr a n kl i n
. A n d Os c a r Fr a n kl i n ' s a
me mb e r o f t h e Zo d i a c - w h y s h o ul d n ' t Mr s . Ba t e ma n
v i s i t a n o t h e r me mb e r o f t h a t i n t e r e s t i n g c o l l e c t i o n ?
By t h e w a y , Is a w i n t h e p a p e r t h i s mo r n i n g t h a t s h e ' d
g o n e a b r o a d t o d r i n kt h e w a t e r s a t S c h l a n g e n b a d . "
Oh , s o t h i s l i t t l e t r i p i s e v i d e n t l y b e i n g ke p t q ui e t .
I' d g i v e a n y t h i n g t o kn o w w h a t t h e y ' r e up t o a t t h e
C a s t l e . "
I3
1 9 4

THE S EC R ET OF THE ZODIA C


" Th a t ' s w h a t w e ' v e g o t t o f i n d o ut . I' v e b e e n
r e c o n n o i t r i n g r o un d t h e w a l l s , b y t h e w a y , a n d t h e r e ' s
o n e p o i n t w h e r e t h e y s t o p a n d e n d i n a r us t y i r o n g a t e
t h a t l o o ks a s i f i t w a s n e v e r us e d . It ' s l o c ke d o f
c o ur s e , b ut o n e mi g h t g e t i n t h a t w a y . A t a n y r a t e I
me a n t o t r y . "

It ' s a h o r r i d r i s k, J i mmy ; y o u' l l b e s h o t i f y o u' r e


c a ug h t . "
Pe r h a p s IMo r e l i ke l y p ut i n t o j a i l i n Mun i c h o r
s o me w h e r e . We ' d b e t t e r h a v e a c o d e r e a d y i n c a s e
I' mc a ug h t a n d ma n a g e t o s e n d y o ua me s s a g e . It ' s
g o t t o b e i n Ge r ma n o f c o ur s e , a n d h a v e c o v e r n a me s f o r
p e o p l e . "
Br a n d o n b e g a n t o j o t d o w n s o me s ug g e s t i o n s .
" S up p o s e y o ug e t a w a y a l l r i g h t t h i s e v e n i n g , h o w
w i l l y o ul e t us kn o w ? S h a l l w e me e t o n t h e b r i d g e ? "
a s ke d K a v a n a g h .
Br a n d o n t h o ug h t f o r a mo me n t . " No . It ' s q ui t e
s i mp l e - w a t c h f o r t h e l i g h t i n my w i n d o w a t t h e p ub
.
If i t d o e s n ' t g o o n y o u' l l kn o w I' mn o t b a c k . "

R i g h t . In t h a t c a s e w e ' l l b e o n t h e l o o ko ut a l o n g
t h e r o a d f r o mt h e C a s t l e
. S o l o n g , o l d c h a p
. "
A t s i x o ' c l o c kt h a t e v e n i n g Br a n d o n s e t f o r t h o n h i s
e x p e d i t i o n . Th e w a y t o t h e C a s t l e l a y t h r o ug h t h e
v i l l a g e , up a s t e e p l a n e t o t h e r i g h t , t h e n a l o n g t h e e d g e
o f a r a v i n e f o r a b o ut a mi l e . Th e r e o n t h e l e f t , a t t h e
b o t t o mo f a z i g z a g d r i v e , w e r e t h e e n t r a n c e g a t e s w i t h a
p o r t e r ' s l o d g e a n d a p l a c a r d b e a r i n g t h e i n s c r i p t i o n
" V e r b o t e n e r We g
. "
Fr o mt h i s p o i n t , t h e t e r r a c e o f t h e C a s t l e w a s c l e a r l y
v i s i b l e , a n d t h e Ge n e r a l c o ul d b e s e e n w a l ki n g up a n d
d o w n i t w i t h t h e t h r e e La b o ur me mb e r s , t a l ki n g
e a g e r l y . Me a n w h i l e a s o l i t a r y f i g ur e , i t s h a n d s
c l a s p e d b e h i n d i t s b a c k, s t o o d l o o ki n g o ut o v e r t h e
ONTHETR A C K OFTHEC ONS PIR A C Y 1 9 5
b a l us t r a d e t o t h e c o un t r y b e y o n d a s i f s un ki n me d i t a -
t i o n .
R a i s i n g h i s f i e l d - g l a s s e s t o h i s e y e s , Br a n d o n
r e c o g n i s e d t h e s a t ur n i n e f e a t ur e s o f Ge l d b e ut e l .
" K e e p s ' i s s e l f t o ' i s s e l f , d o e s S a g i t t a r i us
! " h e r e -
f l e c t e d . " Y e t h e ' s p r o b a b l y d i r e c t i n g o p e r a t i o n s a l l
t h e w h i l e . A h , t h e o t h e r s h a v e s e t t l e d d o w n f o r a
c o n f i d e n t i a l t a l k! " Fo r a t t h i s mo me n t t h e Ge n e r a l
a n d h i s t h r e e c o mp a n i o n s e n t e r e d a s t o n e p a v i l i o n a t
t h e e n d o f t h e t e r r a c e a n d w e r e l o s t t o s i g h t
. If o n l y ,
Br a n d o n s a i d t o h i ms e l f , h e c o ul d g e t t o t h e o t h e r s i d e
o f t h a t h i g h w a l l a n d c o n c e a l h i ms e l f i n t h e b us h e s t h a t
s ur r o un d e d t h e i r r e t r e a t
! He r e s o l v e d t o t r y .
Ma ki n g h i s w a y r o un d t o t h e r us t y g a t e a t t h e b a c k
o f t h e C a s t l e g r o un d s , h e b e g a n t o e x a mi n e t h e l o c ka n d
f o un d t o h i s s ur p r i s e t h a t w i t h t h e a p p l i c a t i o n o f a
t o uc h o f o i l a n d t h e i n t r o d uc t i o n o f a s t r o n g s t e e l w i r e
h e h a d b r o ug h t w i t h h i mi t c o ul d b e p us h e d b a c k
w i t h o ut g r e a t d i f f i c ul t y
. Th e n o p e n i n g t h e g a t e h e
f o un d h i ms e l f i n s i d e t h e w a l l s
. " Th i s i s t o o e a s y , "h e
s a i d t o h i ms e l f , "
s o me t h i n g ' s b o un d t o h a p p e n . "
A n d s o i t d i d
. Fo r , h a v i n g p a s s e d s a f e l y t h r o ug h t h e
w o o d l a n d t h a t b o r d e r e d o n t h e g a r d e n , h e w a s j us t
a b o ut t o c r e e p t h r o ug h t h e b us h e s a t t h e b a c ko f t h e
p a v i l i o n w h e n a l o ud v o i c e c a l l e d
"Ha l t ! "
Br a n d o n s t o p p e d a s i f h e h a d i n d e e d b e e n s h o t a s
K a v a n a g h h a d p r e d i c t e d , a n d t ur n e d t o s e e a p o w e r f ul
J a g e r o n t h e p a t h o n l y t e n f e e t a w a y p o i n t i n g a r e v o l v e r
a t h i s h e a d
. In s t a n t l y h e t h r e w up h i s a r ms . Th e
ma n , s t i l l c o v e r i n g h i mw i t h t h e w e a p o n , a d v a n c e d
t o w a r d s h i m
"Wh a t a r e y o ud o i n g h e r e ? " h e s a i d g r uf f l y .
R e me mb e r i n g h i s r o l e o f Ge r ma n h i ke r , Br a n d o n
a n s w e r e d
1 9 6

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C

Id e s i r e d a n i n t e r v i e w w i t h Hi s Ex c e l l e n c y . "
" Wh a t f o r ? "

We l l , t h e He r r Ge n e r a l i s a f a mo us ma n . A n d I
h a d n e v e r s e e n h i m
. "
"
Th i s i s n o t t h e w a y t o a p p r o a c h h i m . K e e p y o ur
h a n d s up w h i l e Ig o t h r o ug h y o ur p o c ke t s
. "
Br a n d o n h a d b e e n c a r e f ul t o l e a v e t h e o i l a n d s t e e l
w i r e a t t h e g a t e a n d t o c a r r y n o t h i n g mo r e c o mp r o mi s -
i n g t h a n a c l a s p kn i f e a n d a p e n c i l o n h i s p e r s o n
. Th e
J a g e r , a f t e r a c a r e f ul s e a r c h , s e e me d s o me w h a t r e -
a s s ur e d .
Id o n ' t kn o w w h e t h e r y o u' r e a f o o l o r a kn a v e , "h e
s a i d , " b ut a n y h o w , y o u' l l h a v e t o b e l o c ke d up t i l l Hi s
Ex c e l l e n c y s a y s w h a t ' s t o b e d o n e w i t h y o u
. C o me
o n . "
A n d g r a s p i n g Br a n d o n f i r ml y b y t h e a r mh e ma r c h e d
h i mt h r o ug h t h e b a c kd o o r o f t h e C a s t l e , a n d a l o n g a
s t o n e p a s s a g e , a t t h e e n d o f w h i c h h e o p e n e d a d o o r
i n t o a s ma l l d a r kr o o mw i t h w i n d o w s r a i s e d h i g h f r o m
t h e g r o un d .

In h e r e I
" h e s a i d b r i e f l y a n d , s i g n i n g t o Br a n d o n
t o e n t e r , h e w e n t o ut , l o c ki n g t h e d o o r b e h i n d h i m .
" A n a s t y h o l e t o h a v e g o t i n t o , "Br a n d o n s a i d t o
h i ms e l f a s t h e ma n ' s f o o t s t e p s d i e d a w a y i n t h e d i s t a n c e
.
Th e l o c ko f t h i s d o o r , w i t h o ut a w i r e t o h e l p h i m, w o ul d
c e r t a i n l y n o t b e s o e a s y t o p i c k .
Be s i d e s , o n c e o ut s i d e
i t h e w o ul d c e r t a i n l y b e r e - a r r e s t e d . Th e w i n d o w
o f f e r e d n o h o p e o f e s c a p e . Pl a c i n g a c h a i r b e n e a t h i t ,
h e f o un d t h a t h e c o ul d o n l y j us t r e a c h i t w i t h h i s h a n d s ,
a n d t h e s t o n e f r a me w o r kb e i n g r o un d e d o f f e r e d n o
e d g e t h a t c o ul d b e g r a s p e d w i t h t h e f i n g e r s
.
We l l , t h e r e w a s n o t h i n g t o b e d o n e b ut w a i t a n d h o p e
t h a t h i s n a t i v e w i t w o ul d h e l p h i mt o e x p l a i n ma t t e r s t o
ON THE TR A C K OF THE C ONS PIR A C Y 1 9 7
t h e f o r mi d a b l e He r r Ge n e r a l . If n e c e s s a r y h e c o ul d
f e i g n t o b e a h a r ml e s s l un a t i c a n x i o us t o o b t a i n a
g l i mp s e o f a c e l e b r i t y . Me a n w h i l e me r c i f ul l y h e h a d
h i s c i g a r e t t e - c a s e w i t h h i m .
Ho ur s s e e me d t o p a s s . A s o n o r o us g o n g s o un d e d t h e
d i n n e r - h o ur o f t h e C a s t l e .
S ud d e n l y a ke y g r a t e d i n t h e l o c k, t h e d o o r o p e n e d ,
a n d t h e J a g e r e n t e r e d , c a r r y i n g a p l a t e o f f o o d a n d a
g l a s s o f w a t e r i n h i s h a n d s
.
"
Th e He r r Ge n e r a l i s e n g a g e d t o - n i g h t . He c a n ' t
s e e y o ut i l l t o - mo r r o w .
Y o u' l l h a v e t o s p e n d t h e n i g h t
h e r e
. He r e ' s s o me s up p e r . We d o n ' t w a n t y o ut o
s t a r v e t o d e a t h . "A n d t ur n i n g o n h i s h e e l h e l e f t t h e
r o o ma g a i n .
" Lo o ks e x a c t l y l i ke a d o g ' s d i n n e r 1 " Br a n d o n
t h o ug h t a s h e c o n t e mp l a t e d t h e l a r g e c h un ks o f me a t ,
b r e a d , a n d p o t a t o e s j umb l e d t o g e t h e r o n t h e p l a t e .
Ho w e v e r , h e w a s h un g r y a n d ma n a g e d t o c o n s ume t h e
f a r f r o mt e mp t i n g me a l .
A l l a t o n c e t h e s o un d o f mus i c s t r uc ko n h i s e a r s - i n
t h e d i s t a n c e s o me o n e w a s p l a y i n g Dv o i d k' s " Humo r -
e s q ue " o n t h e p i a n o , j us t a s h e r e me mb e r e d h e a r i n g
Mr s
. Mur r a y Ba t e ma n p l a y i t a f t e r a d i n n e r - p a r t y i n
Lo n d o n . Wa s s h e p l a y i n g i t t o - n i g h t ? Mo v i n g t o t h e
d o o r h e l i s t e n e d a t t h e ke y h o l e , t h i n ki n g t h e s o un d
w o ul d b e c l e a r e r t h e r e , b ut o n t h e c o n t r a r y i t s e e me d
f a r t h e r a w a y
. Wh e r e w a s i t c o mi n g f r o m ? A t t h e
o t h e r e n d o f t h e r o o mh e c o ul d h e a r i t p l a i n l y - a h I
h e h a d g o t i t ! It w a s c o mi n g d o w n t h e c h i mn e y !
C l o s e up t o t h e o l d - f a s h i o n e d f i r e p l a c e i t w a s q ui t e
d i s t i n c t ; s t o o p i n g h e p us h e d h i s h e a d i n s i d e i t a b o v e
t h e f i r e p l a c e g r a t e . By J o v e Ih o w w i d e i t w a s ,
t h o ug h ! Muc h w i d e r t h a n o n e w o ul d h a v e g ue s s e d
f r o mt h e o ut s i d e , w h i c h h a d b e e n mo d e r n i s e d . It w a s
1 9 8

THE S EC R ET
OF
THE
ZODIA C
e v i d e n t l y o n e o f t h o s e q ue e r o l d c h i mn e y s up w h i c h
l i t t l e s w e e p s us e d t o b e s e n t i n t h e o l d d a y s a s i n
Wa t e r Ba b i e s . Wo ul d i t b e p o s s i b l e t o c l i mb i t a n d
e s c a p e t h a t w a y ? It w a s w o r t h t r y i n g - b ut n o t y e t ,
t h e C a s t l e w a s s t i l l a w a ke ; h e w o ul d w a i t t i l l e v e r y -
t h i n g h a d s e t t l e d d o w n f o r t h e n i g h t a n d t h e g r e a t
c l o c kw h i c h s o un d e d t h e h o ur s h a d s t r uc kt h a t o f
mi d n i g h t .
S o o n t h e mus i c c e a s e d . Pe o p l e c o ul d b e h e a r d
h ur r y i n g a b o ut i n t h e p a s s a g e o ut s i d e , d o o r s b a n g i n g ,
e v e r y t h i n g b e i n g s h ut up f o r t h e n i g h t e v i d e n t l y . Th e
ke y g r a t e d a g a i n i n t h e l o c ka n d t h e J a g e r e n t e r e d ,
c a r r y i n g a g r e y mi l i t a r y b l a n ke t .
" Y o uc a n w r a p y o ur s e l f i n t h i s f o r t h e n i g h t , w e
d o n ' t w a n t y o ut o d i e o f c o l d e i t h e r
.
Th e n i g h t s a r e
c h i l l y . Bi s Mo r g e n . "
A n d h e w e n t o ut , t a ki n g t h e e mp t y p l a t e w i t h h i m .
A l l w a s n o w s i l e n t , a n d b e f o r e l o n g t h e h o ur o f
mi d n i g h t s o un d e d . Br a n d o n p r e p a r e d f o r h i s a d v e n -
t ur e . Fi r s t h i s c o a t a n d t r o us e r s mus t b e r e mo v e d ,
f o r s h o ul d h e f a i l t o ma ke h i s e s c a p e a n d b e o b l i g e d t o
r e t ur n w h e n c e h e c a me n o t r a c e s o f s o o t mus t b e f o un d
up o n h i s c l o t h i n g . To h a v e a t t e mp t e d t o e s c a p e b y
w a y o f t h e c h i mn e y w o ul d ma ke h i s s i t ua t i o n w o r s e .
C l o t h e d n o w o n l y i n h i s un d e r g a r me n t s , h e c r e p t i n s i d e
t h e c h i mn e y a n d l o o ke d up . Fa r , f a r a b o v e , t h e s t a r s
w e r e s h i n i n g . Fe e l i n g r o un d t h e c h i mn e y b r e a s t h i s
f i n g e r s g r a s p e d a p r o j e c t i n g b i t o f s t o n e - a h ! t h e r e
w e r e f o o t h o l d s i n t h e ma s o n r y
. Hi s f o o t f o un d a
s up p o r t , s l o w l y h e p ul l e d h i ms e l f up w a r d s . Th e c l i mb
s e e me d i n t e r mi n a b l e un t i l h e r e a c h e d t h e t o p , b r e a t h -
l e s s , w i t h g r a z e d h a n d s a n d f e e t a n d p e r s p i r i n g f r e e l y .
A t l a s t , a t l a s t h e w a s o ut o n t h e r o o f a n d i n t h e o p e n
a i r . S t e p p i n g c a r e f ul l y b e t w e e n t h e c h i mn e y s t a c ks
ON THE TR A C K OF THE C ONS PIR A C Y i g g
h e p e e r e d o v e r t h e e d g e o f t h e r a mp a r t s - n o e s c a p e
t h a t w a y , t h e C a s t l e w a l l s w e n t s h e e r d o w n t o t h e
, v a l l e y b e l o w . We l l , h e w o ul d t r y t h e f r o n t , l o o ki n g
o v e r t h e g a r d e n . Eq ua l l y h o p e l e s s ! A n i n s p e c t i o n o f
t h e t w o r e ma i n i n g s i d e s r e v e a l e d t h e s a me s i t ua t i o n -
n o w h e r e a f r i e n d l y d r a i n - p i p e , a c r e e p e r , a g a r g o y l e , o r
a n y t h i n g b y w h i c h e v e n a c a t c o ul d r e a c h t h e g r o un d .
Es c a p e , h e n o w r e a l i s e d , w a s i mp o s s i b l e . He w o ul d
h a v e t o r e t ur n t o h i s p r i s o n a n d f a c e t h e i n t e r v i e w w i t h
t h e Ge n e r a l i n t h e mo r n i n g .
Th e r e w a s , h o w e v e r , n o h ur r y , a n d s e a t i n g h i ms e l f o n
a c o r n e r o f t h e w a l l h e l o o ke d o ut o v e r t h e s ur r o un d i n g
c o un t r y . Ev e r y t h i n g w a s w r a p p e d i n d a r kn e s s , o n l y
i n t h e d i s t a n c e a f e w l i g h t s i n t h e v i l l a g e s t i l l t w i n kl e d .
He l o o ke d up a t t h e s t a r s s h i n i n g p e a c e f ul l y . Di d t h e y
r e a l l y c o n t r o l t h e d e s t i n i e s o f h uma n l i f e a s a s t r o l o g e r s
ma d e o ut i n t h e i r Zo d i a c a l c h a r t s ?
We l l , h e w a s
c e r t a i n l y un d e r a s i g n o f t h e Zo d i a c t o - n i g h t - i n t h e
C a s t l e t h a t s h e l t e r e d S a g i t t a r i us h i ms e l f
. S a g i t t a r i us ,
t h e A r c h e r , o n e o f t h e Tr i g o n o f Fi r e
. . . .
S ud d e n l y a h o l l o w s o un d f r o mo n e o f t h e c h i mn e y -
s t a c ks n e a r r o us e d h i mf r o m . h i s me d i t a t i o n s
. S p r i n g -
i n g up , h e w e n t t o w a r d s i t a n d l e a n t o v e r t h e t o p .
V o i c e s d o w n b e l o w ! V o i c e s t h a t c o ul d b e h e a r d
q ui t e p l a i n l y ;
e v i d e n t l y t h e c h i mn e y a c t e d a s a s o r t
o f me g a p h o n e , i n c r e a s i n g t h e v o l ume o f s o un d . He
r e me mb e r e d i n a f l a s h r e a d i n g s o me w h e r e t h a t Lo ui s
XV , w a n d e r i n g o n t h e r o o f a t V e r s a i l l e s , h a d o v e r h e a r d
t h e c o n v e r s a t i o n o f t w o o f h i s d i s g r un t l e d c o ur t i e r s
s i t t i n g o v e r t h e f i r e a n d r e w a r d e d t h e mt h e n e x t d a y
w i t h a l e t t r e d e c a c h e t . . . . S ur e l y t h a t w a s t h e
Ge n e r a l ' s v o i c e . Lo o ki n g d o w n , Br a n d o n s a w a g l o w
o f l i g h t f r o mt h e r o o mb e l o w . C r e e p i n g i n s i d e t h e
c h i mn e y h e ma n a g e d t o l o w e r h i ms e l f s o me w a y un t i l
2 00

THES EC R ETOFTHE ZODIA C


t h e s o un d s b e c a me s t i l l mo r e d i s t i n c t , w h i l s t a t t h e
s a me t i me t h e o d o ur o f c i g a r s mo ke f l o a t e d t o h i s
n o s t r i l s .
Go o d , "s a i d t h e v o i c e o f v o n R a us c h e n b e r g , " a l l
w i l l b e d o n e a s y o ud i r e c t . Th e s e En g l i s h me n a r e
r e a d y t o a g r e e t o a n y t h i n g t h a t w i l l b r i n g t h e mb a c k
t o p o w e r . "
" To w h a t t h e y w i l l i ma g i n e t o b e p o w e r , "a n s w e r e d
a n o t h e r v o i c e , w h i c h w a s c l e a r l y t h a t o f Ge l d b e ut e l .
"J us t s o . A n d t h e mo n e y w i l l b e p r o v i d e d ? "
"Y e s . Th r o ug h Fr a n kl i n . Th e f i r s t i n s t a l me n t w i l l
b e p a i d t o t h e mi mme d i a t e l y o n t h e i r r e t ur n . Th e
r e s t w h e n t h e y h a v e c a r r i e d o ut t h e i r c o mp a c t . No w I
w i l l r e t i r e a n d l e a v e y o ut o c o mp l e t e t h e n e g o t i a t i o n s . "
Fo o t s t e p s s o un d e d o v e r t h e p a r q ue t - a d o o r o p e n e d
S c h l a f e n S i e w o h l " c o ul d b e h e a r d
. Fo r s o me
mo me n t s t h e r e w a s s i l e n c e .
Th e n t h e d o o r o p e n e d
a g a i n a n d a h umo f v o i c e s b e g a n , t h i s t i me s p e a ki n g
En g l i s h . Th e r e f o l l o w e d t h e c l i n ki n g o f g l a s s e s , t h e
s o un d o f a s o d a - w a t e r s i p h o n f i z z i n g i n t o t umb l e r s -
d e n s e r c l o ud s o f c i g a r s mo ke w a f t e d up t h e c h i mn e y .
" Th e n t h e ma t t e r i s s e t t l e d , "v o n R a us c h e n b e r g
c o ul d b e h e a r d s a y i n g i n e x c e l l e n t En g l i s h . "
On
t h e s e c o n d i t i o n s t h e mo n e y w i l l b e p r o v i d e d . Y o u
t h i n ky o uh a v e a g o o d c h a n c e o f w i n n i n g t h e e l e c t i o n ? "
" Y e s , "a n s w e r e d a Br i t i s h v o i c e , w h i c h Br a n d o n
r e c o g n i s e d a s J o s . Ba g n a l l ' s . " We a r e p r e t t y s ur e o f
o ur a g e n t s a t To r y H. Q . Th e y w o n ' t a l l o w t h e o t h e r
s i d e t o p ut up muc h o f a f i g h t . "
" Th e y h a v e n ' t g o t a ma n w i t h b r a i n s a mo n g s t
t h e m, "s a i d a n o t h e r v o i c e t h a t s o un d e d l i ke Pud s e y ' s ,
" e x c e p t Ph i l i p A r c h b o l d , a n d t h e y h a t e h i ma s a
Di e h a r d . Th e y h a t e t h e Di e h a r d s f a r mo r e t h a n t h e y
d o us . "
ON THE TR A C K OF THE
C ONS PIR A C Y 2 o i
"Th e To r i e s a l w a y s h a t e a n y o n e w h o d o e s a n y -
t h i n g , "s a i d Ba g n a l l w i t h a l a ug h , "w a ke s ' e mo ut o f
t h e i r c o n f o un d e d l a z i n e s s - t h e y ' r e b o n e l a z y , t h e l o t
o f ' e m
. "
" A n d w h a t a b o ut t h e Ho us e o f Lo r d s , "s a i d t h e
Ge n e r a l ; " d o y o ut h i n kt h e C o n s e r v a t i v e s w i l l g o a s
f a r a s t h a t ? "
" It h i n kIc a n a n s w e r f o r t h e mi n t h a t ma t t e r , "
s a i d a w o ma n ' s v o i c e , w h i c h c o ul d b e n o o t h e r t h a n
Mr s . Mur r a y Ba t e ma n ' s . " My h us b a n d , y o ukn o w ,
h a s g r e a t i n f l ue n c e i n t h e Pa r t y . "
" S o I Th a t i s w e l l . A s l o n g a s t h e Lo r d s r e ma i n
t h e d e s t r uc t i o n o f t h e mo n a r c h y b e c o me s i mp o s s i b l e
.
Ev e n t h e n y o uw i l l h a v e t h e r e s i s t a n c e o f t h e p e o p l e
. "
" Y e s , t h a t ' s g o i n g t o b e t h e mo s t d i f f i c ul t j o b o f
a l l "- t h i s t i me i t s e e me d t o b e R e n t o n s p e a ki n g -
" w o r s e t h a n t h e b r e a k- up o f t h e Emp i r e . Th e p e o p l e
a r e d e a d s e t o n t h e K i n g . Th e y w o n ' t mi n d d o i n g
a w a y w i t h t h e Lo r d s , t h e y w o n ' t mi n d o ur s i g n i n g a n
a l l i a n c e w i t h R us s i a , t h e y ' l l s t i c ka n y t h i n g a s l o n g a s
t h e y ' v e p l e n t y o f c i n e ma s , g r e y h o un d r a c i n g , a n d
f o o t b a l l g o i n g , b ut t h e R o y a l Fa mi l y ' s a n o t h e r t h i n g . "
We l l , t h e Fr e e Tr a n s p o r t Bi l l w i l l h e l p t o ke e p
t h e mq ui e t
. No w f o r y o ur s i g n a t ur e s . "
A l o n g s i l e n c e f o l l o w e d . S o me t h i n g w a s b e i n g
s i g n e d . Th e n h e a v y f o o t s t e p s c r o s s e d t h e p a r q ue t -
t h e s o un d o f r a t t l i n g ke y s f o l l o w e d , t h e b a n g o f a
me t a l d o o r .
" No w , w h a t o n e a r t h ' s g o i n g o n , "Br a n d o n s a i d t o
h i ms e l f . "
S o me b o d y ' s s i g n e d s o me t h i n g , a n d t h e y ' v e
s h o v e d i t i n t o a s a f e . I' d l i ke t o h a v e a l o o ka t t h a t
b i t o f p a p e r . But h o w ? "Hi s t h o ug h t s s t o p p e d
;
s o me b o d y w a s s p e a ki n g .
" Ike e p t h e d up l i c a t e t h e n , "s a i d Ba g n a l l
.
2 o 2

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
"R i g h t . No w t o b e d . "
Go o d n i g h t s w e r e e x c h a n g e d . Th e p a r t y w e r e
b r e a ki n g up . S o o n a d o o r c o ul d b e h e a r d s h ut t i n g a n d
t h e e x t i n g ui s h i n g o f t h e g l o w a t t h e b o t t o mo f t h e
c h i mn e y i n d i c a t e d t h a t t h e l i g h t s h a d b e e n t ur n e d o f f .
Th e p a r t y h a d g o n e t o b e d .
"
S o t h a t ' s t h e i r l i t t l e g a me , "s a i d Br a n d o n t o
h i ms e l f , p a c i n g t h e r o o f . He h a d h e a r d a l l h e w a n t e d ,
y e t h e c o ul d d o n o t h i n g w i t h i t un l e s s h e c o ul d f i n d
s o me me a n s o f e s c a p e f r o mt h e C a s t l e . De s p e r a t e l y
h e l o o ke d d o w n a g a i n o v e r t h e b a t t l e me n t s , o n l y t o
r e a l i s e o n c e mo r e t h a t f l i g h t t h a t w a y w a s q ui t e
i mp o s s i b l e .
Th e r e w a s n o t h i n g f o r i t b ut t o g o b a c k
t o h i s r o o ma n d f a c e t h e o r d e a l o f t h e mo r r o w .
S l o w l y
h e d e s c e n d e d t h e c h i mn e y , p a i n f ul l y c l i n g i n g t o t h e
s t o n e w o r k, p a i n f ul l y g r o p i n g f o r a f o o t h o l d , a n d f o un d
h i ms e l f o n c e mo r e i n h i s p r i s o n
.
Wh a t w a s t o b e d o n e n o w
?
If h e d i d n o t s uc c e e d
i n c o n v i n c i n g t h e Ge n e r a l o f h i s i n n o c e n c e h e mi g h t
c o n c e i v a b l y b e s h o t o r , mo r e p r o b a b l y , b e s e n t un d e r
a r me d e s c o r t t o p r i s o n . In t h a t c a s e , h o w w a s h e t o
l e t K a v a n a g h kn o w w h a t h a d h a p p e n e d ?
Lo o ki n g r o un d t h e r o o m, h e s p o t t e d a n o l d n e w s -
p a p e r i n a c o r n e r
. A h un t t h r o ug h h i s p o c ke t s l e d t o
t h e s t ump o f a p e n c i l , f o r t h e J a g e r i n s e a r c h i n g h i m
f o r a r ms h a d r e mo v e d n o n e o f h i s f e w b e l o n g i n g s .
Te a r i n g o f f a p i e c e o f t h e p a p e r , h e p r o c e e d e d t o w r i t e
i n a mi n ut e h a n d , a n d i n t h e c o d e p r e a r r a n g e d w i t h
K a v a n a g h , a b r i e f s umma r y o f t h e c o n v e r s a t i o n h e
h a d o v e r h e a r d , e n d i n g w i t h t h e i n f o r ma t i o n t h a t t h e
p a c t s i g n e d w i t h v o n R a us c h e n b e r g w o ul d b e f o un d
i n Ba g n a l l ' s p o c ke t . It w a s un l i ke l y , h e c a l c ul a t e d ,
t h a t h a v i n g o n c e b e e n s e a r c h e d t h e p r o c e s s w o ul d b e
r e p e a t e d , a n d h e c o ul d t h e r e f o r e ke e p t h i s s c r a p o f
ONTHETR A C K OFTHEC ONS PIR A C Y 2 03
p a p e r o n h i s p e r s o n i n t h e h o p e t h a t e i t h e r K a v a n a g h
o r R i g b y w o ul d b e o n t h e l o o ko ut n e a r t h e C a s t l e
a n d s o me me a n s mi g h t b e f o un d o f g e t t i n g i t t o
t h e m .
Th e n w r a p p i n g h i ms e l f i n t h e g r e y b l a n ke t p r o v i d e d
b y t h e J a g e r , h e l a y d o w n i n a c o r n e r o f t h e r o o ma n d
s l e p t a d e e p s l e e p un t i l mo r n i n g .
S o o n a f t e r t h e b r e a kf a s t o f c o f f e e a n d d r y b r e a d
b r o ug h t h i mb y t h e J a g e r , Br a n d o n w a s s ummo n e d
t o a p p e a r b e f o r e t h e Ge n e r a l . Th e J a g e r l e d t h e w a y ,
p a s s i n g a l o n g t h e s t o n e p a s s a g e i n t o a g r e a t h a l l ,
d e c o r a t e d w i t h s t a g s ' h e a d s a n d h i s t o r i c a r mo ur . Th e n
o p e n i n g t h e d o o r i n t o t h e Ge n e r a l ' s s t ud y h e s i g n e d
t o Br a n d o n t o e n t e r a n d t a ke up h i s s t a n d b e s i d e t h e
w r i t i n g - t a b l e a t w h i c h t h e Ge n e r a l w a s s e a t e d , c o n -
v e r s i n g i n a l o w v o i c e w i t h a y o un g ma n , a p p a r e n t l y a
s e c r e t a r y , w h o w a s h a n d i n g h i ms o me s ma l l s l i p s o f
p a p e r .
" A n d t a ke n q ui t e w i t h o ut t h e i r kn o w l e d g e ? "
Br a n d o n c o ul d h e a r t h e Ge n e r a l s a y .
" En t i r e l y w i t h o ut t h e i r kn o w l e d g e , "t h e y o un g ma n
a n s w e r e d .
"Go o d . "
Put t i n g t h e s l i p s o f p a p e r d o w n o n t h e
w r i t i n g - t a b l e , t h e Ge n e r a l , t a ki n g n o n o t i c e o f Br a n d o n ,
r o s e , a n d mo v i n g t o w a r d s t h e d o o r w i t h t h e s e c r e t a r y
s a i d a f e w w o r d s i n a w h i s p e r . Br a n d o n s t a n d i n g
c l o s e t o t h e t a b l e g l a n c e d d o w n q ui c kl y a n d s a w t h a t
w h a t h a d a p p e a r e d t o b e b i t s o f p a p e r w e r e e v i d e n t l y
s n a p s h o t p h o t o g r a p h s l a i d f a c e d o w n w a r d s . Dur i n g
t h e i n s t a n t t h a t t h e Ge n e r a l ' s b a c kw a s t ur n e d , h e
c o n t r i v e d w i t h a l i g h t n i n g mo v e me n t t o p ut o ut h i s
h a n d a n d s l i p o n e o f t h e mi n t o h i s t r o us e r p o c ke t .
Th e n e x t mo me n t t h e Ge n e r a l h a d w h e e l e d r o un d
2 04

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
a n d , a f t e r g l a n c i n g a t h i mf i e r c e l y b e n e a t h b us h y
e y e b r o w s , s e a t e d h i ms e l f o n a h e a v y o a kc h a i r a t
t h e t a b l e . Wi t h a mi l i t a r y g e s t ur e h e n o w s i g n e d
t o Br a n d o n t o s t a n d i n f r o n t o f h i m
.
" Wh a t i s y o ur n a me ? " h e s a i d i n a v o i c e l i ke a
p i s t o l - s h o t .

J o h a n n S t r a ub e . "
" Wh e r e d o y o ul i v e ? "

In Be r l i n . "
"A n d w h a t w e r e y o ud o i n g i n my g r o un d s l a s t
n i g h t ? "

Iw a n t e d t o s e e y o u, He r r Ge n e r a l . "
" Wh y d i d y o uw a n t t o s e e me ? "
" Be c a us e y o ua r e a f a mo us g e n e r a l . Iw a n t e d t o
s e e w h a t y o uw e r e l i ke , "Br a n d o n a n s w e r e d w i t h a
w e a k- mi n d e d e x p r e s s i o n .
No n s e n s e , "s a i d t h e Ge n e r a l s h a r p l y , " o n e d o e s
n o t b r e a ki n t o t h e p r o p e r t y o f a f a mo us p e r s o n me r e l y
t o s e e w h a t h e ' s l i ke . Y o uf o r c e d t h e l o c ko f t h e g a t e ,
n o d o ub t ? "

Y e s . "
"Th a t i s n o t t h e a c t o f o n e w h o i s me r e l y c ur i o us ,
b ut o f a c r i mi n a l . Y o uc a me t o a s s a s s i n a t e me ? "
"Ho w c o ul d Ia s s a s s i n a t e y o uw h e n Ih a d n o
w e a p o n s ? Th e J a g e r w i l l t e l l y o uIw a s un a r me d . "
" Th a t i s t r ue . Th e n y o uc a me t o s p y . C o me , t e l l
me t h e t r ut h , i t w i l l b e b e t t e r f o r y o u . Wh o a n d w h a t
a r e y o u ? "

He r r Ge n e r a l , "s t a mme r e d Br a n d o n w i t h w e l l -
s i mul a t e d c o n f us i o n , " Iw i l l c o n f e s s a l l a n d t r us t t o
y o ur me r c y . Ia ma C o mmun i s t . "
" A c h , s o ? Y o ua r e a C o mmun i s t . Th a t i s w h y
y o ua r e my e n e my ? "
" We C o mmun i s t s l o o kup o n a l l t h e l a t e K a i s e r ' s
ON THE TR A C K OF THE C ONS PIR A C Y 2 05
g e n e r a l s a s o ur e n e mi e s - a s t h e e n e mi e s o f t h e w o r ki n g -
c l a s s e s . "
Tur n i n g t o t h e J a g e r , w h o h a d t a ke n up h i s s t a n d b y
t h e d o o r , t h e Ge n e r a l o r d e r e d h i mt o l e a v e t h e r o o m
.
Th e n a d d r e s s i n g Br a n d o n a g a i n , h e s a i d
" S o t h a t i s w h y y o uw a n t t o a s s a s s i n a t e me ? "
Id o n o t w a n t t o a s s a s s i n a t e y o u, He r r Ge n e r a l .
But Ih a v e t o o b e y o r d e r s . Ib e l o n g , y o us e e , t o a
s e c r e t C o mmun i s t g r o up w h i c h d e s i r e s y o ur d e a t h .
Id i d n o t v o t e f o r i t . But i t w a s d e c i d e d t h a t s o me o n e
mus t b e s e n t t o r e c o n n o i t r e , t o s e e h o w w e l l y o uw e r e
g ua r d e d , a n d t h e l o t f e l l o n me . Ic o ul d n o t d i s o b e y
o n p a i n o f "a n d Br a n d o n d r e w h i s h a n d w i t h a
s h a r p g e s t ur e a c r o s s h i s t h r o a t .
Th e Ge n e r a l l o o ke d a t h i mf i x e d l y .
Y o u' r e a b r a v e f e l l o w , "h e s a i d a t l a s t , "b ut
y o u' r e a f o o l . Wh y s h o ul d y o ut h i n kIa ma n e n e my
o f t h e w o r ki n g - c l a s s e s ? "
Br a n d o n n o w p r o d uc e d h i s t r ump c a r d .
Be c a us e , "h e s a i d , l o o ki n g t h e Ge n e r a l i n t h e e y e ,
"b e c a us e b e l o n g i n g t o t h e c l a s s y o ud o , y o ua r e
n a t ur a l l y a n e n e my o f t h e Bo l s h e v i ks . Th e Bo l -
s h e v i ks a r e o ur f r i e n d s
. We w a n t t h e Fa t h e r l a n d t o
b e c o me l i ke R us s i a - a f r e e l a n d f o r t h e w o r ke r s
. "
" But Dummko p f (b l o c kh e a d ) ! "
c r i e d v o n R a us c h e n -
b e r g , "
h o w d o y o ukn o w t h a t t h e Bo l s h e v i ks a r e n o t
my f r i e n d s a l s o ?
On e d o e s n o t a l w a y s t h i n kl i ke
o n e ' s c l a s s
. It o o w i s h t o s e e t h e Fa t h e r l a n d f r e e a n d
h a p p y , b ut h o w c o ul d t h a t b e un d e r t h e b o ur g e o i s
S o c i a l - De mo c r a t s a n d t h e f e t t e r s o f t h e A l l i e d Go v e r n -
me n t s ? No w w e h a v e a Na t i o n a l Go v e r n me n t , b ut
un t i l t h e Tr e a t y o f V e r s a i l l e s h a s b e e n t o r n t o s h r e d s
w e c a n n e v e r b e f r e e
. On l y R us s i a c a n h e l p us t o
r e c o v e r o ur f r e e d o m, t h a t i s w h y I, l i ke y o u, r e g a r d t h e
2 06

THE S EC R ET OF THE ZODIA C


S o v i e t r ul e r s a s o ur a l l i e s . "
Br a n d o n g a z e d a t t h e Ge n e r a l w i t h w e l l - f e i g n e d
s ur p r i s e .

If my c o mr a d e s c o ul d kn o w t h i s , "h e s a i d n a i v e l y ,
t h e y w o ul d n o l o n g e r d e s i r e y o ur d e a t h . "
" We l l , t e l l t h e mIa mn o t t h e e n e my o f t h e S o v i e t
Go v e r n me n t . Fo r t h e p r e s e n t Ic a n n o t d e c l a r e my s e l f ,
b ut Ih a v e s p o ke n t o y o uc o n f i d e n t i a l l y b e c a us e ,
a l t h o ug h y o ua r e a f o o l , y o ua r e a b r a v e ma n a n d I
t h i n ky o uc a n b e t r us t e d . If Il e t y o ug o f r e e n o w w i l l
y o up r o mi s e me n o t t o w o r kf o r my e n e mi e s i n f ut ur e ? "
" Mo r e t h a n t h a t , Y o ur Ex c e l l e n c y , Iw i l l d o e v e r y -
t h i n g t o p r e v e n t a n y a t t e mp t s b e i n g ma d e o n y o ur l i f e .
Iw i l l us e a l l my i n f l ue n c e w i t h t h e c o mr a d e s , a n d Ia m
s ur e t h e y w i l l s e e t h e y h a v e b e e n mi s t a ke n . "
"Go o d . Y o uc a n g o b a c kt o y o ur h o me . "
R i n g i n g a b e l l o n t h e t a b l e t h a t b r o ug h t t h e J a g e r
i n t o t h e r o o m, t h e Ge n e r a l s a i d p e r e mp t o r i l y
" Ta ke t h i s f e l l o w d o w n t o t h e s t a t i o n a n d s e e h i m
i n t o t h e t r a i n f o r Be r l i n . "
A n d w i t h a g e s t ur e o f d i s mi s s a l h e t ur n e d b a c kt o
h i s w r i t i n g - t a b l e .
S o y o uh a v e b e e n s e t f r e e ? "t h e J a g e r s a i d , a s
w i t h a s e c o n d J a g e r o n t h e o t h e r s i d e o f Br a n d o n , t h e y
w a l ke d d o w n t h e d r i v e t o t h e C a s t l e g a t e .
" Y e s , Hi s Ex c e l l e n c y un d e r s t a n d s Id i d n o t w i s h
t o h a r mh i m . "
We l l , y o uh a v e g o t o f f v e r y l i g h t l y . Th e l a s t ma n
w h o g o t i n t o t h e C a s t l e g r o un d s w a s s h o t d e a d b y t h e
f o r e s t e r . Y o ua r e l uc ky t o b e a l l o w e d t o g o b a c kt o
Be r l i n .
Th e n e x t t r a i n s t a r t s i n a n h o ur , "h e a d d e d .
Br a n d o n ma d e n o r e p l y . He w a s t h i n ki n g r a p i d l y
h o w h e c o ul d g e t h i s me s s a g e t o K a v a n a g h b e f o r e
b e i n g p ut i n t o t h e t r a i n f o r Mun i c h e n r o ut e f o r t h e
ON THE TR A C K OF THE C ONS PIR A C Y 2 07
Ge r ma n c a p i t a l . Wh i l s t h e p o n d e r e d , l o o ki n g a h e a d
o f h i mh e p e r c e i v e d , j us t a s h e h a d h o p e d , t h e f i g ur e o f
R i g b y a t a t ur n i n g o f t h e r o a d .
Put t i n g h i s h a n d i n h i s p o c ke t h e f e l t f o r t h e s c r a p
o f p a p e r w h i c h h e h a d f o l d e d c a r e f ul l y i n t o a d i mi n u-
t i v e s q ua r e a n d n o w c o n t r i v e d t o g e t i n s i d e h i s h a n d -
ke r c h i e f . Th e n a s t h e y p a s s e d R i g b y h e d r e w t h e
h a n d ke r c h i e f f r o mh i s p o c ke t , b l e w h i s n o s e w i t h i t
l o ud l y , a n d i n r e p l a c i n g i t d r o p p e d t h e s q ua r e o f p a p e r
t o t h e g r o un d , a t t h e s a me t i me s a y i n g l o ud l y :"A t
w h a t h o ur s h a l l Ia r r i v e i n Be r l i n ? "
" A t a b o ut e i g h t o ' c l o c kt h i s e v e n i n g , "a n s w e r e d o n e
o f t h e J a g e r s , e v i d e n t l y n o t i c i n g n o t h i n g . Br a n d o n
h e a v e d a s i g h o f r e l i e f
.
" Wo ul d y o ua l l o w me t o f e t c h my b a g f r o mt h e
i n n ? " h e s a i d a s t h e y ma d e t h e i r w a y t h r o ug h t h e
v i l l a g e .
" We l l , y e s , t h e r e c o ul d b e n o h a r mi n t h a t . "
Be f o r e s t a r t i n g o n h i s a d v e n t ur e , Br a n d o n h a d
t a ke n t h e p r e c a ut i o n o f l e a v i n g a n y o f h i s b e l o n g i n g s
t h a t c o ul d b e i d e n t i f i e d i n c h a r g e o f R i g b y , a n d t h e r e
w a s n o t h i n g i n h i s b a g a t t h e i n n e x c e p t t h e n e c e s -
s a r i e s a Ge r ma n h i ke r w o ul d c a r r y w i t h h i m, a l s o a
s p a r e s e t o f f a l s e t e e t h , a n d , c o n c e a l e d i n t h e l i n i n g o f
t h e b a g , a s p a r e g l a s s e y e . Ha v i n g s e c ur e d t h i s a n d
p a i d h i s b i l l a t t h e i n n , Br a n d o n a l l o w e d h i ms e l f t o b e
c o n d uc t e d t o t h e s t a t i o n .
A q ua r t e r o f a n h o ur l a t e r h e w a s i n a t h i r d - c l a s s
c a r r i a g e s t e a mi n g n o r t h w a r d t o Be r l i n .
Wh i l s t Br a n d o n w a s e n g a g e d o n h i s a d v e n t ur e s i n
t h e C a s t l e , K a v a n a g h a n d R i g b y w a i t e d b r e a t h l e s s l y
f o r h i s r e t ur n . Wh e n mi d n i g h t c a me a n d s t i l l n o
l i g h t a p p e a r e d i n h i s w i n d o w a t t h e i n n t h e y b e g a n t o
2 08

THE
S EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
f e a r t h e w o r s t . If h e w e r e c a ug h t a n d t a ke n
, a w a y
f r o mS t o l z e n b a c h , h e w o ul d h a v e t o p a s s t h r o ug h t h e
v i l l a g e . Th e y d e c i d e d t h e r e f o r e t o t a ke i t i n t ur n s t o
w a t c h t h e r o a d t o t h e C a s t l e , a n d s o i t h a p p e n e d t h a t
R i g b y w a s o n g ua r d w h e n Br a n d o n , w a l ki n g b e t w e e n
t h e t w o J a g e r s , c a me i n s i g h t . Wi t h o ut g i v i n g t h e
f a i n t e s t s i g n o f r e c o g n i t i o n R i g b y ke p t h i s e a r s a n d
e y e s o p e n , a n d c a ug h t t h e w o r d s :" A t w h a t h o ur d o
Ia r r i v e i n Be r l i n
? "
a n d q ui c kl y s p o t t e d t h e s q ua r e
o f p a p e r t h a t f e l l f r o mBr a n d o n ' s h a n d . A s s o o n a s
t h e t r i o h a d d i s a p p e a r e d f r o ms i g h t , t h e b a t ma n
r e t r i e v e d t h e p a p e r a n d c a r r i e d i t t o K a v a n a g h .
" Th a n kh e a v e n , "s a i d K a v a n a g h
; " a t a n y r a t e
h e ' s a l i v e . But w h e r e c a n t h e y b e t a ki n g h i mi n
Be r l i n ? We l l , a n y h o w , I' d b e t t e r d e c o d e t h i s me s -
s a g e . "
Th e s t o r y , t r a n s l a t e d f r o mGe r ma n c o d e i n t o p l a i n
En g l i s h , w a s c e r t a i n l y a s t o un d i n g . But un t i l Br a n -
d o n s uc c e e d e d i n e s c a p i n g f r o mh i s c a p t o r s - a n d
K a v a n a g h h a d n o d o ub t t h a t h i s f e r t i l e b r a i n w o ul d
f i n d s o me w a y o f e l ud i n g t h e m- n o us e c o ul d b e ma d e
o f i t , un l e s s - un l e s s -
"If o n l y w e c o ul d g e t h o l d o f t h e d o c ume n t Ba g n a l l
h a s i n h i s p o c ke t I " h e s a i d t o R i g b y . Th i s h a d
e v i d e n t l y b e e n t h e i d e a i n Br a n d o n ' s mi n d w h e n a d d i n g
t h e l a s t s e n t e n c e t o h i s me s s a g e .
" Lo o ks t o me , "w a s R i g b y ' s c o mme n t , "
a s i f t h o s e
t h r e e f e l l o w s w i l l b e l uc ky t o g e t a w a y w i t h w h o l e
s ki n s . S o me o f t h e Na z i c h a p s h a v e g o t w i n d t h a t
s o me t h i n g ' s b e e n g o i n g o n a t t h e C a s t l e a n d s us p e c t
t r e a s o n . Is h o ul d n ' t b e s ur p r i s e d i f t h e r e w a s a h o l d -
up .
. ,
"Th e n l e t ' s b e t h e r e t o s e e 1 "s a i d K a v a n a g h . "I
w o n d e r w h e n t h e y ' r e l e a v i n g . "
ON THE
TR A C K OF THE C ONS PIR A C Y 2 09
" To - n i g h t , t h e Ge n e r a l ' s ma n s e r v a n t w a s s a y i n g . "
"
If t h e r e ' s a h o l d - up i t w i l l b e o n t h e i r w a y t o t h e
s t a t i o n
. It h i n kI' l l t a ke a s t r o l l t h i s e v e n i n g i n t h a t
d i r e c t i o n . "
Th e t r a i n t o Fr a n kf ur t , b y w h i c h t r a v e l l e r s t o En g -
l a n d w o ul d mo s t l i ke l y t r a v e l , l e f t a t t e n o ' c l o c k, s o
a t 9
. 3 o K a v a n a g h s e t f o r t h i n t h e d i r e c t i o n o f t h e
C a s t l e
. Th e l o n e l y r o a d a l o n g t h e r a v i n e w a s t h e
mo s t l i ke l y s p o t f o r w a y l a y i n g t r a v e l l e r s
. But a l l w a s
q ui e t ; n o s i g n o f l ur ki n g Na z i s w a s a p p a r e n t
. A h ,
t h a t mus t b e t h e Ge n e r a l ' s c a r d e s c e n d i n g t h e z i g z a g
d r i v e f r o mt h e C a s t l e 1 K a v a n a g h w a t c h e d t h e g l o w -
i n g h e a d - l i g h t s a p p e a r i n g a n d d i s a p p e a r i n g a s i t
r o un d e d t h e c o r n e r s , a n d t ur n i n g o ut o f t h e g a t e s i t
c a me r us h i n g f ul l s p e e d a l o n g t h e r o a d t o w a r d s h i m .
He s t e p p e d a s i d e t o l e t i t p a s s , w h e n s ud d e n l y t h e r e
w a s a r e n d i n g c r a c k, t h e l i g h t s s w e r v e d w i l d l y s i d e w a y s
a n d t h e c a r , a f t e r c r a s h i n g i n t o a t r e e w i t h a t e r r i f i c
i mp a c t , t ur n e d o v e r o n i t s s i d e . Th e s h a t t e r i n g o f
g l a s s a n d r e n d i n g o f t h e f r a me w o r kmi n g l e d w i t h a n
a g o n i s e d c r y f r o mt h o s e i n s i d e i t ; t h e n f o r a mo me n t
t h e r e w a s s i l e n c e . Th e r e w a s a l s o d a r kn e s s , f o r t h e
l a mp s o f t h e c a r h a d g o n e o ut , a n d i t w a s o n l y b y t h e
l i g h t o f h i s p o c ke t t o r c h t h a t K a v a n a g h , h ur r y i n g t o
t h e s p o t , w a s a b l e t o v i e w t h e w r e c ka g e . Th e s i g h t
t h a t me t h i s e y e s w a s f r i g h t f ul ; t h e c h a uf f e ur a l o n e
h a d b e e n t h r o w n c l e a r a n d w a s l y i n g f a c e d o w n w a r d s
o n t h e r o a d , b ut t h e t o p o f t h e c a r h a d b e e n r i p p e d o f f
a n d t h e t h r e e La b o ur me mb e r s c o ul d b e s e e n h ud d l e d
t o g e t h e r a mi d s t t h e s p l i n t e r e d w o o d w o r k . Th e
c a us e o f t h e a c c i d e n t w a s e v i d e n t , f o r s e v e r a l s t r a n d s
o f t h i c ks t e e l w i r e w h i c h h a d e v i d e n t l y b e e n s t r e t c h e d
a c r o s s t h e r o a d l a y b r o ke n i n t h e d us t b e s i d e t h e
s h a t t e r e d b o n n e t . S o t h e Na z i s h a d b r o ug h t o f f t h e i r
I4
2 1 0

THE S EC R ET OF THE ZODIA C


c o up a n d K a v a n a g h w a s h e r e t o p r o f i t b y i t ! Th e
v i c t i ms w e r e a l l c l e a r l y un c o n s c i o us , a n d o n l y o n e ,
R e n t o n , w a s n o w g r o a n i n g l o ud l y .
S e i z i n g Ba g n a l l un d e r t h e s h o ul d e r s K a v a n a g h
d r a g g e d h i mf r o mt h e c a r a n d l a i d h i mb y t h e s i d e o f
t h e r o a d
. Th e n kn e e l i n g b e s i d e h i mh e o p e n e d h i s c o a t
a n d p a s s e d h i s h a n d s w i f t l y o v e r t h e ma n ' s b o d y ,
p r e p a r e d , i f a n y o n e a r r i v e d o n t h e s c e n e , t o a p p e a r
t o b e r e n d e r i n g f i r s t - a i d . It w o ul d b e e a s y , h e r e f l e c t e d ,
t o s a y t h a t h e w a s f e e l i n g f o r t h e b e a t i n g o f t h e h e a r t .
A h , t h e r e i t w a s , a s t i f f p a t c h i n s i d e t h e w a i s t c o a t t h a t
c o ul d o n l y b e c a us e d b y a f o l d e d p a p e r ! In a n i n s t a n t
K a v a n a g h h a d w h i p p e d o ut h i s p e n kn i f e , c ut t h e
s t i t c h e s o f t h e w a i s t c o a t l i n i n g , a n d e x t r a c t e d t h e
d o c ume n t t h a t h a d b e e n s e w n i n s i d e i t . Y e s , t h i s w a s
i t - v o n R a us c h e n b e r g ' s s i g n a t ur e a t t h e f o o t w a s
c l e a r l y v i s i b l e . Th r us t i n g t h e p a p e r i n t o h i s p o c ke t ,
K a v a n a g h s p r a n g t o h i s f e e t , a n d s w i t c h i n g o f f h i s
t o r c h r a n h e l l f o r l e a t h e r b a c kt o t h e o ut s ki r t s o f t h e
v i l l a g e . Th e n b y a d e t o ur h e c o n t r i v e d t o a r r i v e a t
t h e i n n f r o mt h e d i r e c t i o n o p p o s i t e t o t h a t o f t h e
C a s t l e .
Me a n w h i l e w h e r e w a s Br a n d o n ? Th e t h o ug h t g a v e
K a v a n a g h c a us e f o r f a r f r o mp l e a s a n t s p e c ul a t i o n .
A s s o o n a s t h e t r a i n h a d l e f t S t o l z e n b a c h Br a n d o n
d r e w f r o mh i s p o c ke t t h e s n a p s h o t h e h a d a b s t r a c t e d
f r o mt h e Ge n e r a l ' s t a b l e . Oh o ! Th i s mi g h t c o me
i n v e r y us e f ul
!
It w a s a p i c t ur e o f a g r o up c o mp r i s i n g
v o n R a us c h e n b e r g s e a t e d w i t h h i s En g l i s h g ue s t s o n
t h e t e r r a c e o f t h e C a s t l e . Br a n d o n un d e r s t o o d n o w
w h a t t h e s e c r e t a r y h a d me a n t b y t h e w o r d s "w i t h o ut
t h e i r kn o w l e d g e . "Th i s h a d e v i d e n t l y b e e n t a ke n
w i t h a c a me r a c o n c e a l e d f r o mv i e w , s i n c e t h e La b o ur
ONTHETR A C K OFTHEC ONS PIR A C Y 2 1 1
me mb e r s w o ul d h a r d l y d e s i r e t o b e p h o t o g r a p h e d i n
s o c o mp r o mi s i n g a s i t ua t i o n
. But t h e Ge n e r a l w a s
c l e v e r e n o ug h t o ma ke s ur e o f h o l d i n g s uf f i c i e n t l y
i n c r i mi n a t i n g e v i d e n c e i n t h e e v e n t o f t h e i r d e f e c t i o n
.
Ha d Br a n d o n h i ms e l f b e e n p h o t o g r a p h e d i n t h e
s a me ma n n e r ?
Fo r a l l v o n R a us c h e n b e r g ' s a p p a r e n t
g e n i a l i t y a t t h e c l o s e o f t h e i r i n t e r v i e w , Br a n d o n h a d
n o t i c e d t h a t t h e J a g e r e x c h a n g e d a f e w c o n f i d e n t i a l
w o r d s w i t h t h e g ua r d b e f o r e t h e t r a i n s t a r t e d
. Do ub t -
l e s s t h a t o f f i c i a l w a s b e i n g i n s t r uc t e d t o s e e t h a t t h e
r e l e a s e d C o mmun i s t r e a c h e d h i s d e s t i n a t i o n s a f e l y , a n d
mo s t p r o b a b l y s o me o n e w o ul d b e s e n t t o me e t t h e
t r a i n i n Be r l i n a n d ma ke s ur e t h a t h e r e t ur n e d t o t h e
a d d r e s s h e h a d g i v e n .
Th e n t h e f a t w o ul d b e i n t h e
f i r e , f o r t h e a d d r e s s w a s t h a t o f a c h e a p l o d g i n g - h o us e
o n c e l i v e d i n b y t h e r e a l J o h a n n S t r a ub e w h e r e Br a n d o n
w o ul d n o t b e kn o w n .
A t e a c h s t a t i o n o n t h e b r a n c h
l i n e f r o mS t o l z e n b a c h t o Mun i c h h e o b s e r v e d t h a t t h e
g ua r d g l a n c e d i n a t h i s c o mp a r t me n t a s h e p a s s e d
a l o n g t h e t r a i n
; c l e a r l y h e w a s b e i n g ke p t un d e r
s up e r v i s i o n .
Wh a t w a s t o b e d o n e ? A t a l l c o s t s h e mus t c o n -
t r i v e t o l e a v e t h e t r a i n b e f o r e i t a r r i v e d i n Be r l i n . But
h o w c o ul d t h i s b e ma n a g e d ?
Br a n d o n b e g a n t o
t h i n ko ut a p l a n
.
Th e o n l y o t h e r o c c up a n t o f t h e c a r r i a g e w a s a n
It a l i a n w h o , a f t e r h i s mi d d a y me a l , h a d s e t t l e d d o w n
i n a c o r n e r , p l a c e d h i s l a r g e f e l t h a t i n t h e r a c ka b o v e
h i s h e a d , a n d w a s e v i d e n t l y p r e p a r i n g f o r a s i e s t a .
Be f o r e l o n g h i s e y e s c l o s e d , h i s mo ut h o p e n e d , a n d a
d e e p e v e n b r e a t h i n g a n n o un c e d t h a t h e w a s w e l l a w a y
i n d r e a ml a n d
.
Br a n d o n ' s mi n d w a s n o w ma d e up . S h o r t l y b e f o r e
r e a c h i n g Mun i c h h e ma d e h i s w a y q ui e t l y t o t h e
2 1 2

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
n e i g h b o ur i n g l a v a t o r y w i t h t h e v a l i s e c o n t a i n i n g h i s
f e w b e l o n g i n g s . Ta ki n g o ut o f t h i s a p a i r o f s c i s s o r s
h e q ui c kl y r e mo v e d h i s f a i r mo us t a c h e , l e a v i n g h i s
up p e r l i p c o v e r e d w i t h d a r kb r i s t l e s t o w h i c h t h e d y e
h a d n o t p e n e t r a t e d . A f t e r c h a n g i n g h i s g r e y g l a s s - e y e
f o r t h e b r o w n o n e t h a t ma t c h e d h i s r e a l e y e , h e r e p l a c e d
h i s p l a t e o f l o n g t e e t h b y o n e h e w o r e i n o r d i n a r y l i f e ,
a n d a t t h e s a me t i me r e mo v e d h i s f a c e - p a d s s o a s t o
r e s ume h i s n o r ma l a p p e a r a n c e .
Th e n j us t a s t h e t r a i n
e n t e r e d t h e o ut s ki r t s o f Mun i c h h e s l i p p e d b a c ki n t o
h i s c o mp a r t me n t , n o i s e l e s s l y p i n c h e d t h e f e l t h a t
f r o mt h e r a c ko v e r t h e h e a d o f t h e s t i l l s l umb e r i n g
It a l i a n , j a mme d i t o v e r . h i s o w n f o r e h e a d , w a l ke d
s w i f t l y t h r o ug h s e v e r a l c a r r i a g e s t o t h e f r o n t o f t h e
t r a i n , s t e p p e d o ut t h e i n s t a n t i t d r e w up a t t h e p l a t -
f o r ma n d w a s p a s t t h e g ua r d a n d t h e t i c ke t c o l l e c t o r
a n d o ut i n t h e s t r e e t b e f o r e a n a l a r mc o ul d b e r a i s e d
.
Th e n a f t e r ma ki n g h i s w a y o n f o o t t o t h e Ob e r w i e s e n -
f e l d A i r p o r t h e b o a r d e d t h e f i r s t a e r o p l a n e w h i c h
h a p p e n e d t o b e b o un d f o r Fr a n kf ur t
.
But h e r e , o w i n g t o t h e p a s s p o r t s y s t e m, a h i t c h
o c c ur r e d . To g e t o ut o f Ge r ma n y w i t h t h e p a s s p o r t
o f J o h a n n S t r a ub e , t h e o n l y o n e h e h a d w i t h h i m, w o ul d
b e i mp o s s i b l e , s i n c e h e n o l o n g e r r e s e mb l e d t h e p o r t r a i t
o f t h a t my t h i c a l p e r s o n a g e p a s t e d o n t o i t , a n d t o
c h a n g e b a c kt o t h e d i s g ui s e o f S t r a ub e w o ul d b e a r i s k
i n v i e w o f t h e p o s s i b i l i t y t h a t h i s e s c a p e f r o mt h e t r a i n
mi g h t h a v e a r o us e d t h e s us p i c i o n s o f t h e a ut h o r i t i e s
a n d s e t s l e ut h s o n h i s t r a c k
. Th e r e w a s n o t h i n g f o r i t
t h e n b ut t o w i r e t o R i g b y t o j o i n h i ma t Fr a n kf ur t w i t h
h i s l ug g a g e , w h i c h c o n t a i n e d h i s o t h e r p a s s p o r t s ,
i n c l ud i n g t h e o n e r e p r e s e n t i n g h i ma s h i ms e l f , a n d
t o w a i t p a t i e n t l y un t i l t h e f a i t h f ul ma n s e r v a n t
a r r i v e d .
ONTHETR A C K OFTHEC ONS PIR A C Y
2 1 3
He h a d s o o n r e a s o n t o c o n g r a t ul a t e h i ms e l f o n t h e
p r e c a ut i o n s h e h a d t a ke n , f o r t h e n e x t e v e n i n g w h e n
s e a t e d i n a c a f e h e h a p p e n e d t o p i c kup a p a p e r w h e r e
t h e w o r d s i n l a r g e l e t t e r i n g " Ha v e y o us e e n t h i s ma n ? "
a p p e a r e d o v e r t w o p i c t ur e s r e p r o d uc i n g t h e f a mi l i a r
f e a t ur e s o f J o h a n n S t r a ub e b o t h f ul l - f a c e a n d p r o f i l e .
U n d e r n e a t h t h e ma s h o r t p a r a g r a p h e x p l a i n e d t h a t a
my s t e r i o us p e r s o n g i v i n g t h i s a s h i s n a me , b e l i e v e d t o
b e a C o mmun i s t , h a d b e e n c a ug h t t r e s p a s s i n g i n t h e
g r o un d s o f Ge n e r a l v o n R a us c h e n b e r g a t Br a n d e s h e i m,
a n d w a s s us p e c t e d o f i n t e n d i n g t o ma ke a n a t t e mp t o n
h i s l i f e ; t h a t h e h a d b e e n s e n t b a c kun d e r s up e r v i s i o n
t o Be r l i n , w h e r e h e s t a t e d t h a t h e l i v e d , b ut h a d
d i s a p p e a r e d f r o mt h e t r a i n s o me w h e r e b e t w e e n
S t o l z e n b a c h a n d Mun i c h
. A d e s c r i p t i o n o f h i s
a p p e a r a n c e f o l l o w e d - f a i r mo us t a c h e , f ul l c h e e ks , o n e
e y e b r o w n , o n e g r e y , w i t h a s l i g h t c a s t i n t h e g r e y o n e ,
e t c . - a n d a r e w a r d w a s o f f e r e d f o r h i s c a p t ur e
.
It w a s l uc ky , Br a n d o n r e f l e c t e d , t h a t h e h a d n o t
a t t e mp t e d t o c r o s s t h e f r o n t i e r ;
n o d o ub t t h e p a s s p o r t
o f f i c i a l s w o ul d b e o n t h e l o o k- o ut f o r t h e mi s s i n g
S t r a ub e .
" A d a n g e r o us f e l l o w t h a t I " a ma n a t a n e i g h b o ur -
i n g t a b l e o b s e r v e d t o Br a n d o n , s e e i n g h i mr e a d i n g t h e
p a r a g r a p h . Th e n e w s h a d e v i d e n t l y c r e a t e d s o me
s e n s a t i o n i n Fr a n kf ur t , f o r t h e Ge n e r a l w a s a p ub l i c
c h a r a c t e r , a n d a n a t t e mp t o n h i s l i f e p r o v i d e d a n
i n c i d e n t o f f i r s t - c l a s s i mp o r t a n c e .
Y e s , h e l o o ks a t h o r o ug h r uf f i a n , "Br a n d o n
a g r e e d .
" Th e t r ue c r i mi n a l t y p e , "t h e ma n w e n t o n . "I
h a p p e n t o h a v e ma d e a p a r t i c ul a r s t ud y o f t h e h uma n
s kul l , a n d Ic a n r e c o g n i s e t h e h e a d o f a mur d e r e r a t a
g l a n c e . Ob s e r v e , "a n d h e p o i n t e d t o t h e p r o f i l e
2 1 4

THE S EC R ET OF THE ZODIA C


p i c t ur e , " t h e f o r ma t i o n o f t h e b a c ko f t h a t h e a d , h o w
i t b ul g e s o ut w a r d 1 "
Br a n d o n n o d d e d . Y e s , i t w a s c e r t a i n l y v e r y
d i f f e r e n t f r o mt h e t y p i c a l Ge r ma n h e a d , g o i n g s h e e r up
a t t h e b a c k, w h i c h t h i s ma n e v i d e n t l y r e g a r d e d a s
t h e mo d e l o f p e r f e c t i o n .
"
Th a t p r o t ub e r a n c e , "h e c o n t i n ue d , " i s t h e s e a t
o f c r i mi n a l i n s t i n c t s
. A ma n w i t h a h e a d l i ke t h a t
w i l l c o mmi t a n y a c t o f v i o l e n c e . Lo o ka t t h e n o r ma l
s kul l n o w , y o ur s a n d mi n e , "a n d h e t ur n e d w i t h a
s mi l e t o c o n t e mp l a t e Br a n d o n
.
Th e n s ud d e n l y t h e s mi l e f a d e d o ut a n d a l o o ko f
s ur p r i s e o v e r s p r e a d h i s f e a t ur e s .
" No , b ut t h i s i s s t r a n g e , "h e s a i d , "y o ur h e a d i s
n o t a t a l l un l i ke t h e o n e i n t h e p i c t ur e ; y o ur e a r s
a l s o , "h e w e n t o n , r a p i d l y g l a n c i n g a t t h e p a p e r a n d
t h e n a g a i n a t Br a n d o n ; " t h e r e i s r e a l l y a n e x t r a -
o r d i n a r y r e s e mb l a n c e . "
" Ih o p e y o ud o n o t i ma g i n e t h a t Ia mJ o h a n n
S t r a ub e , "Br a n d o n s a i d i n d i g n a n t l y , e x p e c t i n g t o b e
me t w i t h a s h o c ke d d i s c l a i me r .
But t h e ma n o n l y a n s w e r e d :" Id o n o t s a y s o . I
o n l y s a y t h e r e i s a r e ma r ka b l e r e s e mb l a n c e . "
" We l l , l o o kh e r e , "Br a n d o n s a i d , t ur n i n g r o un d a n d
f a c i n g h i mb o l d l y , " h a v e Ig o t o n e b r o w n e y e a n d
o n e g r e y o n e w i t h a c a s t i n i t
? "
" No , t h a t i s t r ue , "t h e ma n a n s w e r e d , e v i d e n t l y
r e a s s ur e d . "
Y o ur e y e s a r e b o t h t h e s a me c o l o ur .
A n d t h e y a r e s t r a i g h t . Th a t i s c o n c l us i v e . "A n d
w i t h a g r ump y Gut e n A b e n d h e g o t up a n d w a l ke d o ut
i n t o t h e s t r e e t .
On r e c e i v i n g Br a n d o n ' s t e l e g r a mK a v a n a g h d e c i d e d
t o g o h i ms e l f t o Fr a n kf ur t w i t h h i s f r i e n d ' s l ug g a g e ,
ON THETR A C K OF THE C ONS PIR A C Y
2 1 5
b ut s o a s t o a v o i d t a ki n g t h e s t o l e n d o c ume n t a b o ut
i n Ge r ma n y i t w a s a r r a n g e d t h a t R i g b y s h o ul d g o
h o me w i t h i t t o En g l a n d a n d d e p o s i t i t i n a p l a c e o f
s a f e t y .
K a v a n a g h d ul y a r r i v e d w i t h t h e l ug g a g e a n d
Br a n d o n ' s p a s s p o r t , s o t h a t i t w o ul d n o w b e a s i mp l e
ma t t e r f o r h i mt o l e a v e Ge r ma n y .
Hi s j o y a t h e a r i n g
o f K a v a n a g h ' s c o up kn e w n o b o un d s
. A r me d w i t h
t h i s d o c ume n t a r y e v i d e n c e o f t h e i n t r i g ue b e t w e e n
Ba g n a l l a n d h i s c o mp a n i o n s o n o n e s i d e a n d t h e Pa n -
Ge r ma n Ge n e r a l o n t h e o t h e r , t h e y s h o ul d h a v e n o
d i f f i c ul t y i n c o n v i n c i n g t h e h e a d s o f t h e S e c r e t S e r v i c e
a n d e v e n o f t h e mo s t p l a c i d C o n s e r v a t i v e p o l i t i c i a n s
o f t h e r e a l i t y o f t h e p l o t a n d t h e n , t h r o ug h t h e Pr e s s ,
o f r o us i n g t h e c o un t r y t o t h e d a n g e r s o f t h e s i t ua t i o n
.
It w o ul d b e a s e n s a t i o n c o mp a r e d t o w h i c h t h e f a mo us
Zi n o v i e v l e t t e r w o ul d p a l e i n t o i n s i g n i f i c a n c e .
" A l l t h a t r e ma i n s , "s a i d Br a n d o n , " i s t o f o l l o w up
s o me o f t h e t h r e a d s a t h o me a n d f i n d o ut w h o i s a t t h e
b a c ko f Ba g n a l l a n d C o . Is e e t h e i r a c c i d e n t i s
r e p o r t e d i n t h e C o n t i n e n t a l Po s t a s h a v i n g t a ke n p l a c e
o n t h e i r w a y h o me f r o ma S o c i a l i s t c o n g r e s s i n
Ge n e v a . A n d t h e y ' r e d e s c r i b e d a s n o t s e r i o us l y
i n j ur e d . "
" Th a t ' s s o ? - h ul l o , a t e l e g r a m ! " K a v a n a g h b r o ke
o f f s ud d e n l y a s a w a i t e r c a me t o w a r d s h i mw i t h a
y e l l o w e n v e l o p e o n a t r a y .
" Wh o o n e a r t h c a n i t b e f r o m ? "
s a i d Br a n d o n .
"No o n e kn o w s o ur a d d r e s s h e r e . "
" On l y o n e p e r s o n
. It o o kt h e p r e c a ut i o n o f l e t t i n g
R o s a mun d kn o w o ur w h e r e a b o ut s e a c h t i me w e mo v e d ,
i n c a s e o f e me r g e n c i e s . A s It o l d y o u, Iw a s n ' t q ui t e
h a p p y a b o ut h e r s t a y i n g o n a t Bo g a z z o . By J o v e , I
w a s r i g h t 1 "
2 1 6

THE S EC R ET
OF THE ZODIA C
K a v a n a g h h a d t o r n o p e n t h e e n v e l o p e a n d t h r us t
t h e me s s a g e b e f o r e h i s f r i e n d
" S . O. S . R OS A MU ND . "
Br a n d o n g a v e a l o w w h i s t l e .
"
Th i n g s mus t b e p r e t t y s e r i o us f o r h e r t o w i r e t h a t
.
R o s a mun d ' s n o t a g i r l t o p a n i c . We ' l l b e o f f b y t h e
f i r s t t r a i n , Te r e n c e
. "
C HA PTER XI
THEC HEK A
WHILS T Br a n d o n a n d K a v a n a g h w e r e p ur s ui n g t h e
q ue s t o f t h e Hi d d e n C h i e f s i n Ge r ma n y , e v e n t s h a d b e e n
mo v i n g f o r w a r d i n Bo g a z z o .
Br a n d o n h a d o f t e n w o n d e r e d w h a t h a p p e n e d a f t e r
h i s e s c a p e t h r o ug h t h e w i n d o w o f Dr
. Br i n kd o r f f ' s
b e d r o o m .
Th e s t o r y ma y b e b r i e f l y t o l d .
A f t e r p r e s s i n g t h e b e l l i n t h e s i t t i n g - r o o mOs c a r
Fr a n kl i n s a t d o w n i n a n a r mc h a i r a n d w a i t e d f i v e
mi n ut e s b e f o r e t h e w a i t e r , w h o h a d b e e n r o us e d f r o m
s l umb e r , r e p l i e d t o t h e s ummo n s
. Pe r e mp t o r i l y
o r d e r i n g h i mt o b r i n g a g l a s s o f
S c h n a p p s a t o n c e
Fr a n kl i n w a i t e d a n o t h e r f i v e mi n ut e s b e f o r e t h e
r e q ui r e d r e s t o r a t i v e a r r i v e d
. Ta ki n g up t h e g l a s s h e
t h e n w a l ke d t o t h e b e d r o o md o o r a n d t a p p e d g e n t l y
.
Th e r e w a s n o r e p l y
. Fr a n kl i n kn o c ke d a g a i n , t h i s
t i me mo r e l o ud l y , a n d s t i l l me e t i n g w i t h c o mp l e t e
s i l e n c e h e a t l a s t o p e n e d t h e d o o r q ui e t l y a n d p e e p e d
i n . Th e r o o mw a s i n d a r kn e s s
. Li g h t i n g a ma t c h ,
h e s a w t o h i s s ur p r i s e t h a t Br i n kd o r f f w a s o n t h e b e d
a s l e e p , w i t h h i s f a c e t ur n e d t o t h e w a l l
. Fr a n kl i n
l i s t e n e d f o r a mo me n t t o h i s e v e n b r e a t h i n g a n d t h e n
d e c i d e d t h a t t h e d o c t o r , h a v i n g e v i d e n t l y s uc c umb e d
t o n a t ur a l e x h a us t i o n f o l l o w i n g o n t h e l o n g c e r e mo n y
i n w h i c h h e h a d t a ke n p a r t , t h e b e s t t h i n g w a s t o l e a v e
h i mt o s l e e p i n p e a c e
.
It w a s t h e r e f o r e n o t t i l l n e x t mo r n i n g t h a t a n y t h i n g
un us ua l w a s d i s c o v e r e d
. Th e d o c t o r ' s f r i e n d s , f o r e -
2 1 7
2 1 8

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
mo s t a mo n g s t t h e mOs c a r Fr a n kl i n , o n c a l l i n g a t t h e
i n n t o e n q ui r e a f t e r h i s
h e a l t h , w e r e c o n c e r n e d t o f i n d
t h e d o c t o r l o o ki n g p a l e r t h a n e v e r a n d i n a d a z e d
c o n d i t i o n , f o r w h i c h h i s s e c r e t a r y , "
He r r Wo l f f , "w h o
s e e me d n o l e s s c o n f us e d i n mi n d , c o ul d o f f e r n o e x p l a n a -
t i o n .
Ga t h e r e d a r o un d h i mi n h i s s i t t i n g - r o o mt h e
l e a d i n g me mb e r s o f t h e Or d e r o f t h e Ph o e n i x p l i e d
h i mw i t h q ue s t i o n s a b o ut t h e p r e v i o us n i g h t ' s h a p p e n -
i n g s , b ut f o un d t o t h e i r a s t o n i s h me n t t h a t h e d i d n o t
e v e n r e a l i s e t h a t h e h a d b e e n p r e s e n t a t t h e c e r e mo n y
i n t h e Te mp l e
. Hi s mi n d a p p e a r e d t o h a v e b e c o me a
p e r f e c t b l a n k
.
"
Ir e me mb e r n o t h i n g , "h e s a i d f i n a l l y ,
" s i n c e
d i n i n g l a s t n i g h t h e r e i n t h i s r o o mw i t h S c h w a r t z ma n n
.
A f t e r w a r d s w e f e l t un a c c o un t a b l y s l e e p y , a n d w e n t t o
t a ke s o me r e s t b e f o r e s t a r t i n g f o r t h e c e r e mo n y
. But
Ih a v e n o r e c o l l e c t i o n o f a t t e n d i n g i t o r o f a n y t h i n g
un t i l Iw o ke t h i s mo r n i n g i n my b e d . "
"
Th e n t h e r e h a s b e e n t r e a c h e r y ! "
Fr a n kl i n s a i d
t r i ump h a n t l y . "
A n d my s us p i c i o n s w e r e r i g h t
.
Bo t h He n s l e y a n d Id o ub t e d w h e t h e r t h e p e r s o n w h o
v i s i t e d t h e Te mp l e l a s t n i g h t w a s r e a l l y Fi a t Lux , b ut
h e p a s s e d a l l t h e t e s t s w e p ut t o h i ms uc c e s s f ul l y . No w
t h a t Is e e y o ur f a c e i n d a y l i g h t , Br i n kd o r f f , Is e e t h a t
Iw a s r i g h t a t f i r s t , a n d t h a t s o me o n e h a s b e e n i m-
p e r s o n a t i n g y o u ! "
A c r y o f h o r r o r w e n t r o un d t h e g r o up
. Br i n kd o r f f
h i ms e l f s a t g a z i n g a t t h e mh e l p l e s s l y
.
"
It i s e v i d e n t l y t r ue , "h e s a i d a t l a s t . " Iw a s
c e r t a i n l y n o t l a s t n i g h t a t t h e Te mp l e ! "
"Th e n t h e me s s a g e f r o mt h e Hi d d e n C h i e f o f
Ba v a r i a w a s a f r a ud , "s a i d Dr . He n s l e y . "
A n d i t i s
n o w t o o l a t e t o s t o p S e mp e r Pa r a t us
; h e h a s a l r e a d y
s t a r t e d . "
THEC HEK A

2 1 9
Wo r s e s t i l l , n o o n e kn e w w h a t a d d r e s s w o ul d f i n d
h i m, f o r h e h a d l e f t n o d i r e c t i o n s a s t o w h e r e h e w o ul d
b e s t a y i n g .
" Th i s i s t e r r i b l e , "s a i d Fr a n kl i n , r i s i n g a n d w a l ki n g
f ur i o us l y up a n d d o w n t h e r o o m . " A s p y h a s e v i -
d e n t l y b e e n a t w o r ka mo n g s t us . Wh o c a n h e b e ? "
Ic a n t h r o w n o l i g h t o n t h e ma t t e r , "Dr . Br i n k-
d o r f f s a i d g l o o mi l y , " un l e s s t h i s p r o v i d e s a c l ue . "
A n d h e h e l d o ut a l a r g e h a n d ke r c h i e f s t a i n e d w i t h
p a i n t a n d t h e l e t t e r B . i n o n e c o r n e r . " If o un d t h i s
i n t h e p o c ke t o f my c o a t t h i s mo r n i n g . It i s n o t
mi n e . "
" A h 1 "s a i d Fr a n kl i n , g r a s p i n g t h e h a n d ke r c h i e f
e a g e r l y . "Th e o w n e r o f t h i s mus t b e f o un d . Wh o -
e v e r i mp e r s o n a t e d Br i n kd o r f f e v i d e n t l y l e f t h i s o w n
h a n d ke r c h i e f i n t h e p o c ke t o f t h e c o a t i n t o w h i c h h e
c h a n g e d . No s t o n e mus t b e l e f t un t ur n e d i n o r d e r t o
t r a c kh i md o w n . "
Wh o e v e r h e i s , "C o un t e s s Za p r a ks y o b s e r v e d , " h e
mus t b e s o me o n e f a mi l i a r w i t h t h e r i t ua l o f o ur Or d e r .
Ho w o t h e r w i s e c o ul d h e h a v e kn o w n t h e s i g n s a n d
g i v e n t h e r i g h t p a s s w o r d s o n e n t e r i n g t h e Te mp l e ?
Wh o i n Bo g a z z o s h o ul d kn o w a l l t h i s ? "
" Th e r e i s o n e p e r s o n , "Dr
. He n s l e y s a i d q ui e t l y .
Ev e r y o n e l o o ke d w i t h a s t a r t i n h i s d i r e c t i o n .
" Wh o ? " t h e y a s ke d i n c h o r us .

R o s a mun d Da r e , "a n s w e r e d Dr . He n s l e y .
R o s a mun d Da r e 1 " e c h o e d t h e C o un t e s s . " Th e
g i r l w h o us e d t o b e i n t h e Or d e r a n d l e f t i t w i t h y o un g
Pe t e r Ma r kh a m ? Y o ud o n ' t me a n s h e i s i n Bo g a z z o ? "
" S h e w a s h e r e a f e w d a y s a g o . Is a w h e r o n t h e
r o a d . S h e w a s w i t h a y o un g ma n w h o mId i d n o t
n o t i c e . Io n l y r e c o g n i s e d R o s a mun d Da r e h e r s e l f
. "
" Th e n h e , "Os c a r Fr a n kl i n s a i d f i r ml y , " mus t h a v e
2 2 0

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
b e e n h e r a c c o mp l i c e t o w h o ms h e b e t r a y e d t h e Or d e r .
A n d s h e w i l l i n c ur t h e p e n a l t y , "h e a d d e d s i g n i f i c a n t l y .
" Th e f i r s t t h i n g i s t o f i n d o ut w h e r e s h e i s , "s a i d
Dr . He n l e y . "Th a t s h o ul d n o t b e d i f f i c ul t . Th e r e
a r e o n l y f o ur o r f i v e i n n s a n d h o t e l s i n Bo g a z z o .
En q ui r i e s mus t b e ma d e a t e a c h . "
Th e s e a r c h , a s Dr . He n s l e y h a d p r e d i c t e d , p r o v e d
e a s y . A t t h e e n d o f a f e w h o ur s R o s a mun d a n d h e r
mo t h e r h a d b e e n l o c a t e d a t t h e Ho t e l Mo n t e R o s a .
Th e s a me e v e n i n g Dr . He n s l e y , a c c o mp a n i e d b y
C o un t e s s Za p r a ks y , c a l l e d a t t h e h o t e l a n d a s ke d t o
s e e Mi s s Da r e . But t h e a n s w e r w a s r e t ur n e d t h a t t h e
s i g n o r a b e i n g i l l , t h e s i g n o r i n a w a s o c c up i e d i n l o o ki n g
a f t e r h e r a n d c o ul d s e e n o o n e . Th e t w o c a l l e r s
r e t i r e d b a f f l e d .
R o s a mun d w a s c a r e f ul a f t e r t h i s t o r e ma i n i n d o o r s
a s muc h a s p o s s i b l e . S h e h a d n o t b e e n g i v e n t h e
n a me s o f b o t h v i s i t o r s , b ut s i n c e o n e h a d b e e n a n -
n o un c e d a s C o un t e s s Za p r a ks y s h e q ui c kl y s c e n t e d
e mi s s a r i e s f r o mt h e Or d e r o f t h e Ph o e n i x , a n d f o r a
w e e kn e v e r v e n t ur e d i n t o t h e v i l l a g e s t r e e t , o n l y
b r e a t h i n g f r e s h a i r a t i n t e r v a l s o n t h e t e r r a c e o f t h e
h o t e l .
But o n e e v e n i n g La d y Da r e b e i n g i n p a i n a n d n e e d i n g
a f r e s h b o t t l e o f l i n i me n t f o r h e r a n kl e , R o s a mun d ,
c a s t i n g c a ut i o n mo me n t a r i l y t o t h e w i n d s , h ur r i e d up
t h e s t r e e t t o t h e c h e mi s t . S h e w a s j us t r e t ur n i n g
s a f e l y w i t h t h e b o t t l e w h e n a t t h e g a t e o f t h e h o t e l
g a r d e n s h e f o un d h e r s e l f f a c e t o f a c e w i t h Dr . He n s l e y .
A v o i d i n g h i s g l a n c e , s h e a t t e mp t e d t o t ur n i n a t t h e
g a t e ; b ut Dr . He n s l e y b a r r e d h e r w a y .
"
Ia ms o r r y , Mi s s Da r e , b ut Imus t d e t a i n y o uf o r a
mo me n t . "
THEC HEK A

2 2 1
R o s a mun d s t o p p e d a s i f p a r a l y s e d ;
a l l t h e b l o o d
e b b e d a w a y f r o mh e r f a c e , l e a v i n g i t a s w h i t e a s t h e
g a r d e n i a t o w h i c h K a v a n a g h h a d c o mp a r e d h e r
.

Imus t a s ky o u, "t h e d o c t o r w e n t o n i n t h e a ut h o r i -
t a t i v e v o i c e s h e kn e w s o w e l l ,
"w h e t h e r y o ukn o w t o
w h o mt h i s b e l o n g s ? "
A n d h e h e l d o ut a l a r g e
p a i n t - s t a i n e d h a n d ke r c h i e f .
R o s a mun d g a v e a l i t t l e g a s p o f r e l i e f
. S o t h i s w a s
a l l h e w a n t e d t o kn o w !
Th e h a n d ke r c h i e f o f c o ur s e
w a s J i mmy Br a n d o n ' s - n o o n e e l s e s h e kn e w us e d a
f i n e l i n e n h a n d ke r c h i e f a s a p a i n t i n g - r a g - s h e h a d
o f t e n l a ug h e d a t h i mf o r t h i s s t r a n g e h a b i t
. Th e
r e c o l l e c t i o n f o l l o w i n g o n t h e mo me n t o f f e a r s h e h a d
j us t p a s s e d t h r o ug h , b r o ug h t w i t h i t s uc h a s ud d e n
r e a c t i o n a s a l mo s t t o ma ke h e r l a ug h n o w .
But s h e
h a d s uf f i c i e n t p r e s e n c e o f mi n d t o a n s w e r h a s t i l y
" Id o n ' t kn o w a n y t h i n g a b o ut i t
. Is a l o s t p o c ke t
h a n d ke r c h i e f o f s o muc h i mp o r t a n c e
? "

It i s o f c o n s i d e r a b l e i mp o r t a n c e i n t h i s c a s e
.
Th i s h a n d ke r c h i e f , "Dr
. He n s l e y w e n t o n , l o o ki n g a t
h e r ke e n l y a s h e s p o ke ,
" w a s f o un d i n t h e c o a t p o c ke t
o f Do c t o r Br i n kd o r f f
. "
Of Do c t o r Br i n kd o r f f
? " R o s a mun d r e p e a t e d ,
mo me n t a r i l y p uz z l e d . Th e n s ud d e n l y t h e w h o l e
t r ut h d a w n e d o n h e r
. J i mmy ' s e s c a p e t h r o ug h Br i n k-
d o r f f ' s w i n d o w h a d b e e n g r a p h i c a l l y d e s c r i b e d t o h e r b y
Te r e n c e b e f o r e h e l e f t Bo g a z z o
; e v i d e n t l y J i mmy h a d
s l i p p e d h i s o w n p o c ke t h a n d ke r c h i e f i n t o t h e c o a t o f
Br i n kd o r f f ' s h e h a d p ut o n i n o r d e r t o a t t e n d t h e
c e r e mo n y i n t h e Te mp l e , a n d i n h i s h a s t e t o c h a n g e
Br i n kd o r f f ' s c l o t h e s f o r h i s o w n h e h a d f o r g o t t e n t o
r e mo v e i t
. It w a s un l i ke J i mmy t o c o mmi t s uc h a
b l un d e r , b ut e v e n t h e mo s t e x p e r t s l e ut h i s l i a b l e t o
ma ke a s l i p un d e r a b s o l ut e l y un f o r e s e e n c i r c ums t a n c e s .
2 2 2

THE S EC R ET OF THE ZODIA C


Dr
. He n s l e y w a s q ui c kt o d e t e c t t h e l o o ko f c o m-
p r e h e n s i o n t h a t p a s s e d , t h o ug h o n l y i n a f l a s h , o v e r
R o s a mun d ' s f a c e .
" Y o ukn o w a l l a b o ut t h i s - a b o ut t h e i mp e r s o n a -
t i o n o f Br i n kd o r f f 1 "
h e s a i d , ke e p i n g h i s e y e s f i x e d o n
h e r a s i f t o s e e i n t o h e r v e r y s o ul .

Ikn o w n o t h i n g , "R o s a mun d s a i d f a i n t l y


.
A l l h e r o l d t e r r o r o f t h i s ma n r e v i v e d
: n e v e r b e f o r e
h a d s h e f e l t h i s d o mi n a t i n g p e r s o n a l i t y s o ke e n l y , a n d
s h e t r e mb l e d l e s t i t s h o ul d f o r c e h e r i n t o s o me f a t a l
a d mi s s i o n .
" It i s n o g o o d d e n y i n g i t , "Do c t o r He n s l e y s a i d
f i r ml y ; "
y o uc a n n o t d e c e i v e me . Y o ukn o w a l l a b o ut
t h i s . Th e ma n w h o i mp e r s o n a t e d Br i n kd o r f f i s y o ur
a c c o mp l i c e , t o w h o my o ub e t r a y e d t h e s e c r e t s o f t h e
Or d e r . "
R o s a mun d f e l t h e r kn e e s l i t e r a l l y s w a y i n g un d e r
h e r ; w a s s h e g o i n g t o f a i n t ? Th e n s ud d e n l y p ul l i n g
h e r s e l f t o g e t h e r s h e t h r e w up h e r h e a d a n d s a i d

Ir e p e a t t h a t Ikn o w n o t h i n g , a n d i f Id i d kn o w I
w o ul d n o t t e l l y o u .
Y o uh a v e d o n e e n o ug h h a r mi n
y o ur t i me , Do c t o r He n s l e y , b ut y o uc a n ' t h ur t me
n o w .
Ikn o w a l l a b o ut y o u, a n d I' mn o t a f r a i d o f
y o u
. Th e r e a r e p o w e r s g r e a t e r t h a n y o ur s t h a t w i l l
p r o t e c t me I "
Do c t o r He n s l e y s t e p p e d b a c kp e t r i f i e d
. Hi s c o l d
c a l mf a c e w a s w h i t e w i t h a n g e r
. No o n e h a d e v e r
d a r e d t o s p e a kt o t h e s a i n t l y Fe l l o w o f S t
. S t e p h e n ' s
i n t h i s w a y b e f o r e .

V e r y w e l l , "h e s a i d f r e e z i n g l y , mo v i n g a s i d e t o l e t
R o s a mun d p a s s
. " But y o ukn o w t h e p e n a l t y t h a t
a w a i t s t h e t r a i t o r I
"
A n d t ur n i n g o n h i s h e e l h e w a l ke d a w a y i n t h e
d i r e c t i o n o f t h e V i l l a .
THEC HEK A
.

2 2 3
R o s a mun d ' s f i r s t t h o ug h t o n s e e i n g Do c t o r He n s l e y ' s
f i g ur e r e t r e a t i n g i n t h e d i s t a n c e w a s o n e o f o v e r -
p o w e r i n g r e l i e f . He h a d t h r e a t e n e d a n d s h e h a d
d e f i e d h i m ; f o r t h e mo me n t t h e d a n g e r h a d p a s s e d .
But w a s i t o v e r ? Mi g h t n o t t h e r e b e s o me t r ut h i n
t h e c l a i ms t h e s e p e o p l e ma d e t o h a v e o c c ul t p o w e r s
?
A p a r t f r o mt h i s , w h o kn e w w h a t t h e y mi g h t a t t e mp t
?
Th i s w a s n o t Lo n d o n w i t h a f r i e n d l y " Bo b b y " a t
e a c h s t r e e t c o r n e r ; s t r a n g e t h i n g s h a p p e n e d o n t h e
C o n t i n e n t , a n d s h e h a d n o f r i e n d s i n Bo g a z z o .
If
o n l y Te r e n c e a n d J i mmy w e r e s t i l l h e r e 1
To t h e m
d a n g e r p r e s e n t e d n o t e r r o r s , b ut o n l y t h e s p i c e o f
l i f e . S ud d e n l y s h e c a me t o a d e c i s i o n . Te r e n c e h a d
w i r e d h e r h i s a d d r e s s t h a t mo r n i n g . Wa l ki n g h a s t i l y
up t h e v i l l a g e s t r e e t s h e e n t e r e d t h e p o s t - o f f i c e a n d
w r o t e o ut a t e l e g r a m :" S . O. S . R 0s A MU ND . "
A f t e r t h a t s h e f e l t c a l me r . On c e Br a n d o n a n d
K a v a n a g h h a d r e t ur n e d t h e r e w o ul d b e n o t h i n g mo r e
t o f e a r ; me a n w h i l e , s h e w o ul d n o t v e n t ur e o ut s i d e t h e
h o us e a g a i n . Th a t n i g h t s h e s a t o ut l a t e o n t h e b a l c o n y
o f h e r r o o mo n t h e f i r s t f l o o r , l o o ki n g o ut o v e r t h e l a ke ,
b r e a t h i n g t h e f l o w e r - s c e n t e d a i r t h a t r o s e f r o mt h e
g a r d e n b e l o w . If o n l y p e a c e w e r e p o s s i b l e 1 But
t h e me e t i n g w i t h Do c t o r He n s l e y h a d b r o ug h t a l l t h e
s a d a n d t e r r i b l e me mo r i e s o f t h e p a s t c r o w d i n g b a c k
i n t o h e r mi n d . " Th e y a r e t r y i n g t o r e a c h me , "s h e
s a i d t o h e r s e l f w i t h a s h ud d e r , " d i r e c t i n g p un i t i v e
c ur r e n t s o f t h o ug h t a g a i n s t me . " A n d mo v i n g i n t o
h e r r o o ms h e kn e l t b y h e r b e d a n d p r a y e d a s s h e h a d
n e v e r p r a y e d b e f o r e . A f t e r a w h i l e i t s e e me d a s i f a
g r e a t p e a c e w e r e s e t t l i n g o n h e r , a n d g e t t i n g i n t o b e d
s h e l a y d o w n a n d c l o s e d h e r e y e s .
Gr a d ua l l y s h e f e l t h e r s e l f s i n ki n g i n t o s l e e p . A n d
a s s h e s l e p t s h e d r e a me d p l e a s a n t d r e a ms a t f i r s t ,
2 2 4

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
t h e n s ud d e n l y i t s e e me d a s i f s h e c o ul d n o t d r a w
b r e a t h
. S h e w a s a t t h e b o t t o mo f a d a r kp i t , s t r ug g l i n g
up w a r d s t o t h e d a y l i g h t , a n d e a c h t i me s h e r e a c h e d t h e
t o p h a n d s g r a s p e d h e r a n d p us h e d h e r d o w n w a r d s .
Th e n a t l a s t s h e s a n kb a c ke x h a us t e d t o t h e b o t t o m
a n d b l a c kn e s s c l o s e d a r o un d h e r .
K a v a n a g h h a d n e v e r kn o w n t i me p a s s s o s l o w l y a s
d ur i n g t h e f l i g h t t h a t h e a n d Br a n d o n ma d e a c r o s s
Ge r ma n y . R o s a mun d ' s t e l e g r a m, d e s p a t c h e d a t 8 p . m . ,
h a d n o t r e a c h e d t h e mt i l l t h e f o l l o w i n g mo r n i n g .
On
l o o ki n g up t i me t a b l e s t h e y f o un d t h a t i t w o ul d t a ke
t h e ma t l e a s t t w e n t y - f o ur h o ur s t o r e a c h Bo g a z z o
f r o mFr a n kf ur t b y r a i l , s o t h e y h a d d e c i d e d t o c h a r t e r
a n a e r o p l a n e . But s i n c e t h e r e w a s n o l a n d i n g - p l a c e
i n t h e n e i g h b o ur h o o d o f Bo g a z z o , t h e y w e r e o b l i g e d t o
f i n i s h t h e j o ur n e y b y c a r . It w a s e v e n i n g b y t h e t i me
t h e y r e a c h e d t h e i r d e s t i n a t i o n a n d , d r i v i n g s t r a i g h t t o
t h e Ho t e l Mo n t e R o s a , t h e y e n q ui r e d f o r Mi s s Da r e .
"
A h , t h e n t h e s i g n o r i h a v e n o t h e a r d
? " s a i d t h e
h o t e l - ke e p e r , r a i s i n g h i s h a n d s w i t h a t r a g i c g e s t ur e .
" No . Wh a t h a s h a p p e n e d ? " K a v a n a g h a s ke d
b r e a t h l e s s l y .
"Th e s i g n o r i n a h a s d i s a p p e a r e d . If t h e s i g n o r i
w i l l g o up t o t h e s i g n o r a ' s r o o mt h e y w i l l h e a r t h e
w h o l e s t o r y . "
La d y Da y r e c e i v e d t h e mi n s i l e n c e , o n l y h o l d i n g o ut
h e r h a n d s t o w a r d s t h e m ; f o r t h e mo me n t i t s e e me d a s
i f s h e c o ul d n o t t r us t h e r s e l f t o s p e a k .
R o s a mun d h a s b e e n t a ke n a w a y , "s h e s a i d a t l a s t
b r o ke n l y . " S h e v a n i s h e d f r o mh e r b e d d ur i n g t h e
n i g h t . "

Y o ume a n s h e h a s b e e n ki d n a p p e d ? s a i d Br a n -
d o n .
THEC HEK A

2 2 5
"
Th e r e i s n o o t h e r c o n c l us i o n . R o s a mun d w o ul d
n e v e r g o a w a y w i t h o ut a w o r d . On e o f t h e s h e e t s o f f
h e r b e d i s mi s s i n g , s o i t s e e ms t h a t s h e w a s l e t d o w n
i n
i t f r o mt h e b a l c o n y . Th e r e w e r e ma r ks o n t h e f l o w e r
b e d b e l o w a n d t h e p l a n t s w e r e c r us h e d a s i f s e v e r a l
p e o p l e h a d s t o o d t h e r e . "
" But h o w i s i t t h a t s h e d i d n ' t
. s c r e a mf o r h e l p ? "
a s ke d Br a n d o n .
" A p p a r e n t l y s h e w a s un c o n s c i o us
. A w a d o f
c o t t o n w o o l t h a t s e e ms t o h a v e b e e n s o a ke d w i t h
c h l o r o f o r mw a s f o un d b e n e a t h t h e w i n d o w . It mus t
h a v e b e e n h e l d o v e r h e r mo ut h i n h e r s l e e p . Wh o c a n
t h e y b e ?
Wh o w o ul d w a n t t o ki d n a p R o s a mun d ? "
Br a n d o n a n d K a v a n a g h l o o ke d a t e a c h o t h e r
b l a n kl y
. It w a s d i f f i c ul t t o e n l i g h t e n La d y Da r e , f o r
s h e kn e w n o t h i n g o f h e r d a ug h t e r ' s e x p e r i e n c e s i n
o c c ul t s o c i e t i e s .
R o s a mun d h a d n e v e r d a r e d t o t e l l
h e r , kn o w i n g t h a t t h e y w o ul d o n l y s h o c ka n d p a i n h e r
n e e d l e s s l y .
"
Le a v e i t t o us , La d y Da r e , "Br a n d o n s a i d s o o t h -
i n g l y . "
We ' l l t r y a n d g e t t o t h e b o t t o mo f t h e w h o l e
a f f a i r .
Is up p o s e t h e p o l i c e h a v e b e e n i n f o r me d , b y
t h e w a y ? "

Oh y e s , b ut t h e y s e e me d un a b l e t o d o a n y t h i n g .
Th a n kGo d y o u' v e c o me , "s h e a d d e d f e r v e n t l y .

It h i n ko ur b e s t p l a n i s t o g o a t o n c e t o t h e V i l l a
Pa x Mun d i , "Br a n d o n s a i d a s t h e t w o me n ma d e t h e i r
w a y o ut o f t h e Ho t e l Mo n t e R o s a . " Th e C o un t e s s
mus t kn o w i f a n y o f h e r l o t a r e c o n c e r n e d i n t h i s , a n d
w e ma y b e a b l e t o g e t s o me i n f o r ma t i o n o ut o f h e r . "

Y e s , "s a i d K a v a n a g h , "R o s a mun d a l w a y s ma i n -


t a i n e d t h a t s h e w a s n o t r e a l l y
' i n t h e p l o t , ' s o i t s e e ms
t o me t h a t i f w e c o ul d o p e n h e r e y e s t o t h e w h o l e t h i n g
s h e mi g h t b e w i l l i n g t o s a y w h a t s h e kn o w s . "
I5
2 2 6

THE S EC R ET OF THE ZODIA C


"Th a t ' s q ui t e p o s s i b l e
. But w e s h a l l h a v e t o g o
v e r y c a r e f ul l y t o w o r k
. It n e v e r w o ul d d o t o r us h
h e r . "
" No . But t h e t r o ub l e i s , t h e r e ' s n o t i me t o l o s e
.
A n y t h i n g ma y b e h a p p e n i n g . A t a n y r a t e , A l e s s a n d r o
i s s ur e t o p l a y up . He ma y b e a b l e t o h e l p us a g o o d
d e a l . "
Th e It a l i a n r e c e i v e d t h e mw i t h h i s us ua l g l e a mi n g
s mi l e o n o p e n i n g t h e d o o r o f t h e V i l l a , a n d t h e C o un t e s s
s e e me d o v e r j o y e d t o w e l c o me t h e mb a c kt o Bo g a z z o .
S h e w a s a l o n e n o w , s h e e x p l a i n e d , a s a l l h e r v i s i t o r s
h a d l e f t ; t h e l a s t , Do c t o r He n s l e y , h a d r e t ur n e d o n l y
t h a t mo r n i n g t o En g l a n d .
But Br a n d o n c ut s h o r t t h e f l o w o f h e r c o n v e r s a t i o n
b y s a y i n g f i r ml y
" We ' v e c o me t o s e e y o ua b o ut a v e r y ur g e n t
ma t t e r , C o un t e s s . A n En g l i s h g i r l , R o s a mun d Da r e ,
h a s b e e n ki d n a p p e d f r o mt h e Ho t e l Mo n t e R o s a
. "

K i d n a p p e d ? "t h e C o un t e s s r e p e a t e d b l a n kl y ,
t ur n i n g p a l e a r o un d t h e r o ug e o n h e r c h e e ks a n d l i p s .
Y e s , ki d n a p p e d - l a s t n i g h t f r o mh e r b e d . We
t h i n ky o uma y b e a b l e t o t h r o w s o me l i g h t o n t h e
ma t t e r . "

I? Ho w s h o ul d Ikn o w a n y t h i n g a b o ut i t ? " t h e
C o un t e s s s a i d i n d i g n a n t l y .

It h i n ky o ukn o w R o s a mun d Da r e , "Br a n d o n


s a i d q ui e t l y , l o o ki n g t h e C o un t e s s i n t h e e y e .
" C e r t a i n l y Ikn o w w h o y o ume a n . Ikn e w h e r
o n c e , t h a t i s t o s a y
. "
" Wh e n s h e b e l o n g e d t o t h e Or d e r o f t h e Ph o e n i x
? "
Th e C o un t e s s g a v e a s t a r t . " Wh a t d o y o ukn o w
a b o ut t h a t ? "

Ikn o w a g o o d d e a l a b o ut i t . Ikn o w a l s o w h a t
a r i s kR o s a mun d r a n i n l e a v i n g i t . "
THEC HEK A

2 2 7
" A h , t h e n i t w a s p e r h a p s t o y o ut h a t s h e b e t r a y e d
i t ?
A n d i n t h a t c a s e i t w a s y o uw h o i mp e r s o n a t e d
Do c t o r Br i n kd o r f f ? A n o t h e r t i me , "t h e C o un t e s s w e n t
o n s a r c a s t i c a l l y , "w h e n y o uw e a r s o me o n e e l s e ' s c l o t h e s
b e c a r e f ul n o t t o l e a v e y o ur h a n d ke r c h i e f i n t h e
p o c ke t 1 " A n d o p e n i n g a d r a w e r s h e d r e w o ut t h e
p a i n t - s t a i n e d s q ua r e o f l i n e n a n d h a n d e d i t t o
Br a n d o n .
Br a n d o n l o o ke d a t i t , c o l d w i t h h o r r o r . Ha d h e
r e a l l y c o mmi t t e d t h i s g h a s t l y b l un d e r , t h e r e b y i n -
c r i mi n a t i n g R o s a mun d ? Th e i d e a w a s s o t e r r i b l e
t h a t f o r a mo me n t h i s p r e s e n c e o f mi n d d e s e r t e d h i m,
b ut q ui c kl y r e c o v e r i n g i t h e s a i d
" Ne v e r mi n d a b o ut Br i n kd o r f f n o w ; t h e p o i n t i s
t h a t R o s a mun d h a s b e e n ki d n a p p e d . Wh a t e v e r s h e
h a s d o n e y o uc a n n o t b e a p a r t y t o t h a t 1 "
" C e r t a i n l y Ia mn o t a p a r t y t o i t . A l l v i o l e n c e i s
h a t e f ul t o me . If w h a t y o us a y i s t r ue , Iw i l l c e r t a i n l y
g i v e y o ua l l t h e h e l p Ic a n . "
" Th e n t e l l us t h e n a me s o f t h e p e o p l e l i ke l y t o b e
c o n c e r n e d i n t h i s . "
A n d a s t h e C o un t e s s h e s i t a t e d K a v a n a g h i n t e r p o s e d
v e h e me n t l y
" Do n ' t y o uun d e r s t a n d , C o un t e s s , t h a t t h i s i s a
ma t t e r o f l i f e a n d d e a t h ? To p ut i t b l un t l y , w e a r e
a f r a i d o f R o s a mun d Da r e b e i n g mur d e r e d b y Bo l -
s h e v i ks . "
"By Bo l s h e v i ks ? "c r i e d t h e C o un t e s s , " b ut w h a t
s h o ul d Ikn o w a b o ut Bo l s h e v i ks ? Y o ukn o w t h a t
Bo l s h e v i s mh a s a l w a y s b e e n a b h o r r e n t t o me . "
" Ib e l i e v e i t h a s , "s a i d Br a n d o n , a n d h e s p o ke t h e
t r ut h , f o r t h e r e c o ul d b e l i t t l e d o ub t n o w t h e w o ma n
w a s s i n c e r e . No o n e c o ul d s i mul a t e t h e p a n i c -
s t r i c ke n e x p r e s s i o n o f h e r f a c e . But i t w a s n e c e s s a r y
2 2 8

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
t o o p e n h e r e y e s c o mp l e t e l y i n o r d e r t o e n l i s t h e r h e l p .
S o c ur b i n g K a v a n a g h ' s i mp a t i e n c e w i t h a g l a n c e ,
Br a n d o n w e n t o n s p e a ki n g r a p i d l y
" It i s t i me y o us h o ul d h e a r t h e t r ut h . Do y o u
r e a l l y n o t kn o w t h e t r ue c h a r a c t e r o f t h e p e o p l e w i t h
w h o my o uh a v e b e e n a s s o c i a t e d ? Do y o un o t kn o w
t h a t y o ur V i l l a i s b e i n g us e d a s a c l e a r i n g - h o us e b y
Bo l s h e v i kc o ur i e r s ? Th a t S c h w a r t z ma n n , t h e e mi s -
s a r y o f Mo s c o w , w a s h e r e r e c e n t l y ? Th a t Gr i i n b e r g ,
o n e o f t h e p r i n c i p a l a g e n t s o f t h e S o v i e t Go v e r n me n t ,
w a s p r e s e n t a t t h e me e t i n g i n y o ur Te mp l e ? "
" Th i s i s i mp o s s i b l e ! " C o un t e s s Za p r a ks y a n s w e r e d
w i t h a c r y o f h o r r o r . "Ic a n ' t b e l i e v e a l l t h i s . "
" We l l , i f y o ud o n ' t b e l i e v e me , a s kA l e s s a n d r o . He
w i l l t e l l y o ue v e r y t h i n g
. "
"C a l l A l e s s a n d r o t h e n t o c o me h e r e i mme d i a t e l y . "
Th e ma n , r e s p o n d i n g q ui c kl y t o t h e s ummo n s , a n d
h a v i n g b e e n t o l d b r i e f l y a b o ut t h e ki d n a p p i n g o f
R o s a mun d , n e e d e d n o ur g i n g t o g i v e h i s e v i d e n c e .
Th e C o un t e s s l i s t e n e d i n d i s ma y . It w a s p e r f e c t l y
c l e a r n o w t h a t s h e h a d b e e n t h e t o o l o f mo r e c un n i n g
b r a i n s . Wr a p p e d i n h e r o c c ul t i ma g i n i n g s s h e h a d
n e v e r d r e a mt t h a t Bo l s h e v i s m, w h i c h w a s r e a l l y
a b h o r r e n t t o h e r , p l a y e d a n y p a r t i n t h e b a c kg r o un d .
" It i s t e r r i b l e , "s h e s a i d a t l a s t , " t o t h i n kt h a t my
h o us e , t h e V i l l a Pa x Mun d i , t h a t Id e s i r e d t o b e a
c e n t r e o f p e a c e a n d e n l i g h t e n me n t f o r t h e w o r l d , s h o ul d
h a v e b e e n us e d f o r s uc h a p ur p o s e . It h a d b e e n
r e p r e s e n t e d t o me t h a t t h e c o r r e s p o n d e n c e w h i c h w a s
l e f t h e r e w o ul d b e c a l l e d f o r b y me s s e n g e r s o f t h e Gr e a t
Wh i t e Lo d g e , s o me o f t h e me mi s s a r i e s f r o mt h e C h i e f s
o f a h i g h s p i r i t ua l Or d e r . Th a t t h e y w e r e e mi s s a r i e s o f
Mo s c o w n e v e r e n t e r e d my t h o ug h t s . Wh y d i d y o u
n e v e r t e l l me a l l t h i s , A l e s s a n d r o ? "
"But n o w y o ud o kn o w , C o un t e s s , "ur g e d K a v a n a g h ,
f r a n t i c t o g e t b a c kt o t h e r e a l b us i n e s s o f t h e e v e n i n g ,
" w i l l y o uh e l p us t o f i n d R o s a mun d Da r e ? A n d w i l l
y o ul e n d us A l e s s a n d r o ? "
" Of c o ur s e
. But w h e r e s h o ul d t h e s e a r c h b e g i n ? "
"
A t t h e c l i n i c Ni r v a n a , "s a i d A l e s s a n d r o , n o d d i n g
h i s h e a d kn o w i n g l y
.
"
A t Ni r v a n a ! "
c r i e d t h e C o un t e s s . " Wh a t d o
y o ume a n , A l e s s a n d r o ? "
"
Th e C o n t e s s a d o e s n o t kn o w w h a t t h e y s a y i n t h e
v i l l a g e ! "
" No
. Wh a t d o t h e y s a y ? "
"
Th e y s a y , "t h e It a l i a n w e n t o n , n o l o n g e r a f r a i d
t o s p e a ko ut o n t h e s ub j e c t a n d p o ur i n g f o r t h a t o r r e n t
o f w o r d s , "t h e y s a y t h a t s t r a n g e a n d t e r r i b l e t h i n g s
t a ke p l a c e a t t h e c l i n i c , t h a t c r i e s h a v e b e e n h e a r d
t h e r e - g r i d i , g r i d i "- a n d h e r o l l e d t h e i s o n h i s
t o n g ue - "a t d e a d o f n i g h t - c r i e s a s o f s o ul s i n p a i n .
Gi us e p p e , w h o w a s o n c e p a s s i n g t h r o ug h t h e f o r e s t a t
t w o i n t h e mo r n i n g , h e a r d t h i s w i t h h i s o w n e a r s .
A n d o t h e r s h a v e h e a r d i t t o o . Th e y s a y a l s o t h a t
p a t i e n t s a r r i v e o n l y i n c a r s , n e v e r b y t r a i n , us ua l l y a t
n i g h t , a n d t h a t n o o n e kn o w s w h a t b e c o me s o f t h e m .
Th e y s a y t h e d o c t o r h i ms e l f i s a d e v i l i n h uma n f o r m,
a n d t h a t l a S o r e l l a C e l e s t i n a h a s t h e e v i l e y e
; t h e y
s a y - '
)
" But w h y d i d n o o n e i n t h e v i l l a g e s a y t h i s t o me ? "
b r o ke i n t h e C o un t e s s , mo me n t a r i l y s t e mmi n g t h e
t o r r e n t .
" Th e y w e r e a l l a f r a i d ! " s a i d A l e s s a n d r o , s t a r t i n g
o f f a g a i n . " Th e y f e a r e d t h e v e n g e a n c e o f t h e s e
a c c ur s e d o n e s . Ol d Te r e s a Ge l o t t i , w h o , a s t h e C o n -
THEC HEK A
2 2 9
" If e a r e d t h e C o un t e s s w o ul d n o t b e l i e v e me .
un t i l t h e s i g n o r i i n g l e s i c a me Ih a d n o p r o o f
. "
A n d
2 3 0

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
t e s s a kn o w s , i s w e l l e d uc a t e d a n d r e a d s t h e n e w s p a p e r s ,
o n c e s a i d s o me t h i n g f e a r f ul a b o ut t h e c l i n i c , a n d
i mme d i a t e l y h e r b e s t g o a t d i e d my s t e r i o us l y a s i f a
s p e l l h a d b e e n c a s t o n i t .
A f t e r t h a t n o o n e d a r e d t o
s p e a ko f ' Ni r v a n a ' e x c e p t i n a w h i s p e r - t h e y f e a r e d
b l a c kma g i c . "
" But y o un e e d n o t f e a r b l a c kma g i c h e r e , "i n t e r -
p o s e d Br a n d o n ; " s p e a ko ut , A l e s s a n d r o , t e l l us w h a t
o l d Te r e s a s a i d ? "
" S h e s a i d , "a n d A l e s s a n d r o ' s v o i c e s a n kt o a n a w e -
s t r uc kw h i s p e r , " t h a t s h e b e l i e v e d Ni r v a n a w a s a
C h e ka ! - a Gh e p e u ! "
" Go o d Lo r d ! " s h o ut e d b o t h t h e En g l i s h me n ,
s t a r t i n g t o t h e i r f e e t . A n d s e e i n g t h e C o un t e s s ' s
b e w i l d e r e d e x p r e s s i o n , Br a n d o n a d d e d :" Th e G . P. U .
o r Og p u- o n c e kn o w n a s t h e C h e ka . It h a s b r a n c h e s ,
y o ukn o w , a l l o v e r t h e w o r l d . C a n ' Ni r v a n a ' b e o n e ?
Imi g h t h a v e s us p e c t e d i t w a s s o me t h i n g o f t h e ki n d
w h e n Ir e c o g n i s e d K r o v a v a y a K a t y a o f t h e G . P. U . i n
S c e ur C e l e s t i n e . "
" Wh a t ? " c r i e d t h e C o un t e s s i n a ma z e me n t , f o r
kn o w i n g R us s i a n , s h e un d e r s t o o d t h e me a n i n g o f t h i s
g h a s t l y t i t l e
. " S c e ur C e l e s t i n e - Bl o o d y C a t h e r i n e !
Ni r v a n a a C h e ka ! A n d Iw h o b e l i e v e d i t w a s a p l a c e
o f p e a c e a n d h e a l i n g ! Th i s i s t o o h o r r i b l e !
To o
h o r r i b l e
! "
Th e r e w a s n o w n o h o l d i n g K a v a n a g h . C ut t i n g
s h o r t t h e C o un t e s s ' s l a me n t a t i o n s , h e g r a s p e d f i r s t
Br a n d o n , t h e n A l e s s a n d r o , w i t h a g r i p o f i r o n a n d
a l mo s t d r a g g e d t h e mt o t h e d o o r , s h o ut i n g l i ke a ma n
d e me n t e d :" R o s a mun d i n a C h e ka ! Fo r h e a v e n ' s
s a ke l e t ' s s t a r t a t o n c e f o r t h e c l i n i c !
Th e r e ' s n o t a
mo me n t t o b e l o s t ! "
"Y o us h a l l h a v e my c a r , "t h e C o un t e s s s a i d , n o w
THE C HEK A

2 3 1
t h o r o ug h l y r o us e d . "It w i l l t a ke y o ut h e r e i n
a
q ua r t e r o f a n h o ur
. A n d Iw i l l g i v e y o ut h e ke y o f
` Ni r v a n a
. ' A t t h i s t i me o f t h e n i g h t i t w i l l b e l o c ke d .
But Ih a v e o n e o f my o w n t h a t w a s l e f t h e r e w h e n Ih a d
t h e c l i n i c b ui l t . Ta ke i t . "A n d s h e h a n d e d i t t o
Br a n d o n .
" Th a n ks . Th e n w e ' l l b e o f f . "
Ha r d l y w a i t i n g t o t a ke l e a v e o f t h e C o un t e s s , t h e
t h r e e me n h ur r i e d t o t h e g a r a g e a n d A l e s s a n d r o s e a t e d
h i ms e l f a t t h e w h e e l .
" If t h e s i g n o r i p e r mi t , "h e s a i d , " w e w i l l s t o p o n
o ur w a y t h r o ug h t h e v i l l a g e a n d p i c kup t w o o r t h r e e
o f my c o mr a d e s t o g o w i t h us . Wh o kn o w s w h a t w e
ma y me e t w i t h a t t h e Gh e p e u ! It i s a s w e l l t o b e
p r e p a r e d . "
It w a s v e r y d a r kw h e n t h e s i x me n d e s c e n d e d f r o m
t h e c a r a t a s h o r t d i s t a n c e f r o mt h e c l i n i c a n d ma d e
t h e i r w a y s t e a l t h i l y t o w a r d s t h e g a t e , Br a n d o n a n d
K a v a n a g h e a c h w i t h a n a ut o ma t i c i n h i s p o c ke t , w h i l s t
t h e It a l i a n s - A l e s s a n d r o a n d h i s Fa s c i s t a l l i e s - h a d
a r me d t h e ms e l v e s w i t h s t i l e t t o s a n d a l s o , i n s p i t e o f
t h e Duc e ' s p r o h i b i t i o n , o f t h a t mo s t p o t e n t w e a p o n o f
Fa s c i s m- a h ug e b o t t l e o f c a s t o r o i l .
Th e h o us e , w h e n t h e y r e a c h e d i t , w a s w r a p p e d i n
d a r kn e s s , t h e s h ut t e r s w e r e a l l c l o s e d , a n d n o t a
g l i mme r o f l i g h t c o ul d b e s e e n b e t w e e n a n y o f t h e m .
"Hus h ! "s a i d Br a n d o n , s i g n a l l i n g t o h i s c o m-
p a n i o n s , w h o w e r e t a l ki n g i n a n un d e r t o n e , " w e
mus t n ' t ma ke a s o un d . No w a r n i n g mus t b e g i v e n
o f o ur a p p r o a c h . "
Th e w o r d s w e r e h a r d l y o ut o f h i s mo ut h b e f o r e a
p i e r c i n g s h r i e kf r o mw i t h i n t h e h o us e r e n t t h e s i l e n c e
o f t h e f o r e s t .
2 3 2

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
"R o s a mun d ! "s a i d K a v a n a g h i n a n a g o n i s e d
w h i s p e r . " I' mc e r t a i n t h a t w a s h e r v o i c e ! "
Br a n d o n n o d d e d g r i ml y , b ut s a i d n o t h i n g .
" Th e y a r e a s s a s s i n a t i n g h e r , c e r t a i n l y t h e y a r e
a s s a s s i n a t i n g h e r , "A l e s s a n d r o s a i d e x c i t e d l y . " Di o
mi o ! "
"K e e p q ui e t , A l e s s a n d r o , t h e r e ' s n o t i me t o l o s e , w e
mus t g e t i n a s q ui c kl y a s p o s s i b l e . "
Mo v i n g f o r w a r d o n t i p t o e t h e s i x me n o p e n e d t h e
g a t e n o i s e l e s s l y a n d c r e p t up t o t h e d o o r , w h i c h , a s t h e
C o un t e s s h a d s a i d , o p e n e d w i t h t h e ke y t h e y h a d
b r o ug h t f r o mt h e V i l l a . He r e a g a i n e v e r y t h i n g w a s
d a r ka n d s i l e n t . On r e a c h i n g t h e h a l l t h e y p a us e d
a n d l i s t e n e d , b ut s t i l l n o t a s o un d w a s t o b e h e a r d .
" Th e s i l e n c e o f d e a t h ! " w h i s p e r e d A l e s s a n d r o , a n d
d i d n o t h i n g t h e r e b y t o r e l i e v e K a v a n a g h ' s a p p r e h e n -
s i o n s .
" Ha l f a mi n ut e , "s a i d Br a n d o n s o f t l y . "
We ' l l g o
t o t h e Te mp l e . C o me o n ! "
A n d h e mo v e d q ui c kl y
t o w a r d s t h e s t a i r s l e a d i n g t o t h e un d e r g r o un d c h a mb e r
i n t o w h i c h h e h a d b e e n t a ke n a s Do c t o r Br i n kd o r f f .
A s s o o n a s t h e y h a d r e a c h e d t h e l o w e r p a s s a g e a d i m
s h a f t o f l i g h t me t t h e i r e y e s . It c a me f r o ma s ma l l
w i n d o w i n t h e w a l l a t t h e s i d e o f t h e d o o r o p e n i n g i n t o
t h i s c h a mb e r , b e i n g us e d p r e s uma b l y a s a p e e p - h o l e
t h r o ug h w h i c h t h e p e r s o n p e r f o r mi n g t h e o f f i c e o f a
" t y l e r " i n ma s o n i c l o d g e s c o ul d ke e p a w a t c h o n
t h o s e w h o e n t e r e d . No s uc h p r e c a ut i o n s h a d e v i d e n t l y
b e e n h e l d n e c e s s a r y t o - n i g h t , f o r a s t h e y a d v a n c e d
t o w a r d s t h e w i n d o w a n d l o o ke d t h r o ug h n o t h i n g
o b s t r uc t e d t h e i r v i e w o f w h a t w a s g o i n g o n i n s i d e .
Th e s t r a n g e s t s p e c t a c l e n o w me t t h e i r e y e s . On t h e
d a i s w e r e s e a t e d t h r e e ma s ke d me n c l o t h e d i n t h e
r o b e s a n d i n s i g n i a o f s o me my s t i c Or d e r - n o t t h a t o f
THE C HEK A

2 3 3
t h e
Ph c e n i x - a n d f a c i n g t h e mo n a s t o o l , w i t h h e r
h a n d s t i e d b e h i n d h e r b a c k, s a t R o s a mun d Da r e ,
d r e s s e d i n a r e d ki mo n o t h r o w n o v e r h e r l o n g w h i t e
s i l kn i g h t g o w n , p a l e a s d e a t h , a n d h e r e y e s w i d e w i t h
t e r r o r - l i ke a w h i t e d o v e , t h o ug h t K a v a n a g h , c o n -
f r o n t e d b y a c o b r a .
" My Go d 1 Ic a n ' t s t a n d t h i s ! " h e w h i s p e r e d ,
a b o ut t o r us h f o r w a r d . But Br a n d o n i n t e r p o s e d .
" S h ut up , Te r e n c e . Imus t h e a r w h a t t h a t f e l l o w ' s
g o i n g t o s a y . "
Fo r t h e c e n t r a l o f t h e t h r e e ma s ke d f i g ur e s h a d
s t r e t c h e d o ut h i s h a n d t o w a r d s t h e g i r l ' s t r e mb l i n g
f o r ma n d w a s b e g i n n i n g t o s p e a k .
"
S o , "h e s a i d i n a v o i c e v i b r a t i n g w i t h a n g e r , "y o u
r e f us e t o r e v e a l t h e n a me o f y o ur a c c o mp l i c e w h o
p r a c t i s e d t h i s i mp o s t ur e o n t h e Or d e r , p r o f a n i n g t h e
p r e c i n c t s o f t h e Te mp l e i t s e l f ? "
It w a s t h e v o i c e o f Os c a r Fr a n kl i n - i n t h e e a r s o f
Br a n d o n a n d K a v a n a g h t h e r e w a s n o mi s t a ki n g t h e
g ut t ur a l a c c e n t s o f t h e f i n a n c i e r - C a p r i c o r n us , o f t h e
Zo d i a c I
R o s a mun d ma d e n o r e p l y .
A t t h i s mo me n t t h e r e mo v e d f o r w a r d f r o mt h e
s h a d o w s a t t h e e n d o f t h e r o o mt w o f i g ur e s , h i t h e r t o
o ut o f t h e r a n g e o f v i s i o n o f t h e w a t c h e r s a t t h e p e e p -
h o l e . Th e s e t w o w e r e un ma s ke d a n d c o ul d b e i n -
s t a n t l y r e c o g n i s e d a s Gus t a v Me r v i n e a n d S o e ur
C e l e s t i n e
a l i a s
K r o v a v a y a K a t y a , o f t h e C h e ka .
" We h a v e q ue s t i o n e d t h e c ul p r i t t h r o ug h o ut t h e
w h o l e d a y , h o n o ur a b l e Ma s t e r , "s a i d Me r v i n e , h i s
s ma l l e v i l e y e s g l e a mi n g f r o mh i s f l e s h y f a c e , "b ut n o t
a w o r d c o ul d w e o b t a i n f r o mh e r . "
"
Th i r d d e g r e e me t h o d s n o d o ub t , "w h i s p e r e d
Br a n d o n , a n d a g a i n K a v a n a g h s t a r t e d f o r w a r d t o e n t e r
2 3 4

THE S EC R ET OF
THE ZODIA C
t h e r o o m
. But a g a i n Br a n d o n c l ut c h e d h i mb y t h e
a r ms a y i n g
" No , w a i t
. We mus t s e e w h a t t h e y me a n t o d o
.
Th e r e ' l l b e t i me t o s t o p t h e m
. "

We h a v e n o t r e s o r t e d t o t h e s e v e r e s t me a s ur e s , "
s a i d K r o v a v a y a K a t y a , c a s t i n g a v e n o mo us g l a n c e a t
R o s a mun d , w i t h c h e r i s h e d me mo r i e s o f t h e Lub i a n ka
e v i d e n t l y s i mme r i n g i n h e r b r a i n ; "i f t h e h o n o ur a b l e
Ma s t e r w i l l p e r mi t w e w i l l a t t e mp t a me t h o d t h a t w i l l
s o o n o p e n h e r l i p s . "
K a v a n a g h s h ud d e r e d ;
n e v e r h a d h e l o o ke d o n a
mo r e f i e n d i s h c o un t e n a n c e t h a n t h a t o f t h e w o ma n
w h o s e c l ut c h i n g f i n g e r s i t c h e d t o s e i z e h e r t r e mb l i n g
v i c t i m .

It i s us e l e s s , "s a i d a n o t h e r o f t h e ma s ke d f i g ur e s
o n t h e d a i s , a n d t h e l i s t e n e r s r e c o g n i s e d t h e v o i c e o f
Do c t o r He n s l e y . " Ikn o w s o me t h i n g o f t h e p r i s o n e r
.
No t h i n g w i l l ma ke h e r s p e a k . "

Th e n , "s a i d Fr a n kl i n , " s h e mus t i n c ur t h e e x -


t r e me p e n a l t y
. "A n d a s s umi n g t h e r o l e o f j ud g e , h e
a d d r e s s e d t h e p r i s o n e r i n t h e f o l l o w i n g w o r d s

Y o umus t h e a r t h e s e n t e n c e , o n c e S o r o r S t e l l a
Luc i d a , n o w a r e n e g a d e b r o ug h t t o j us t i c e
. Fo r
b e t r a y i n g t h e Or d e r a n d v i o l a t i n g y o ur o b l i g a t i o n s o f
s e c r e c y , y o ua r e c o n d e mn e d b y c o mma n d o f t h e Hi d d e n
C h i e f s t o i n c ur t h e p e n a l t y d e f i n e d i n t h e s o l e mn o a t h
y o ut o o ko n y o ur i n i t i a t i o n
. A p un i t i v e c ur r e n t w i l l
n o w b e d i r e c t e d a g a i n s t y o u! Fr a t e r La b o r o p e r
Ob s c ur uma n d S o r o r Ni h i l n i s i Be n e v o l e n s , p l a c e t h e
d e l i n q ue n t i n t h e c h a i r ! "
Li ke s o me f i e r c e b e a s t o f p r e y , h e r e y e s g l e a mi n g a n d
h e r c r ue l mo ut h s e t r e mo r s e l e s s l y , K r o v a v a y a K a t y a
a d v a n c e d t o w a r d s R o s a mun d , a n d g r a s p i n g h e r b y t h e
s h o ul d e r s w a s a b o ut , w i t h t h e h e l p o f Me r v i n e , t o
THE C HEK A

2 3 5
d r a g h e r t o w a r d s a c h a i r p l a c e d o n a s ma l l p l a t f o r ma t
o n e s i d e o f t h e r o o m, w h e n t h e g i r l , o p e n i n g h e r l i p s a t
l a s t , ut t e r e d a n o t h e r p i e r c i n g s c r e a ma n d s t a r t e d t o
s t r ug g l e ma d l y
.
Do y o us e e w h a t t h e y ' r e g o i n g t o d o
? "Br a n d o n
w h i s p e r e d e x c i t e d l y . " Th a t ' s t h e c h a i r us e d f o r
h i g h - f r e q ue n c y t r e a t me n t 1 Th e y ' r e g o i n g t o e l e c t r o -
c ut e h e r l No w a l l t o g e t h e r , c o me l
"
A n d a t t h e s i g n a l f r o mBr a n d o n , t h e s i x me n b ur s t
i n t o t h e r o o m .
Th e r e w a s a mo me n t o f p a l p i t a t i n g s i l e n c e . Th e n
K a v a n a g h , d a s h i n g f o r w a r d , s n a t c h e d R o s a mun d f r o m
h e r c a p t o r s .
Y o ud a mn e d d e v i l s 1 "
h e y e l l e d ; "y o uf i l t h y
s w i n e I "
h e r e p e a t e d , h o l d i n g t h e a l mo s t f a i n t i n g g i r l
c l o s e l y i n h i s a r ms
.
Th e r e w a s n o w n o h o l d i n g t h e Fa s c i s t s . Wi t h o n e
a c c o r d t h e y f l e w f i r s t a t t h e t h r o a t s o f Gus t a v Me r v i n e
a n d K r o v a v a y a K a t y a a s i f t o c h o ke t h e l i f e o ut o f t h e m
;
t h e n r us h i n g t h e d a i s t h e y d r a g g e d t h e ma s ke d f i g ur e s
f r o mt h e i r s e a t s , t e a r i n g o f f t h e i r ma s ks t o d i s c l o s e t h e
f e a t ur e s o f Os c a r Fr a n kl i n , Do c t o r He n s l e y , a n d
R a s ko f f
. Tur n i n g f r o mo n e t o a n o t h e r o f t h e f i v e
t h e y s h o o kt h e ml i ke r a t s , h o w l i n g i mp r e c a t i o n s

S c e l l e r a t i !
C a n a g l i a IMa s c a l z o n i ! Bi s o g n a a m-
ma z a r l e I "
S t i l e t t o s f l a s h e d i n t h e a i r .
But Br a n d o n i n t e r p o s e d

Ho l d h a r d , A l e s s a n d r o . Iw a n t t h e s e b i r d s .
Th e y ' r e mo r e us e f ul a l i v e t h a n d e a d . "
"But t h e y w e r e g o i n g t o e l e c t r o c ut e t h e s i g n o r i n a ! "
A l e s s a n d r o c r i e d e x c i t e d l y
. "Y o uun d e r s t a n d ? " h e
r e p e a t e d i n It a l i a n t o h i s c o mp a n i o n s , " t h e y w e r e
g o i n g t o p l a c e h e r i n t h e e l e c t r i c c h a i r ? "
2 3 6

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
"
Th e n t h e y s h a l l b e p l a c e d t h e r e t h e ms e l v e s ! " t h e
me n s h o ut e d .
" Y e s , y e s ! " e c h o e d A l e s s a n d r o
. " To t h e e l e c t r i c
c h a i r ! "
"
Th i s i s g o i n g t o b e mur d e r , "K a v a n a g h w h i s p e r e d
h ur r i e d l y t o Br a n d o n un d e r c o v e r o f t h e p a n d e mo n i um
w h i c h a r o s e w h i l s t t h e It a l i a n s d i s c us s e d w h o s h o ul d
b e t h e f i r s t v i c t i m
. " S h o ul d n ' t w e s t o p t h e ma n d c a l l
i n t h e p o l i c e ? "
"Y e s , l a t e r
. But Iw o ul d n ' t c o un t t o o muc h o n t h e
p o l i c e .
R e me mb e r , w e ' r e i n S w i t z e r l a n d , w h e r e t h e
Gr a n d Or i e n t i s a l l p o w e r f ul a n d Fr a n kl i n i s a t h i r t y -
t h i r d d e g r e e ma s o n
. A n y h o w , l e t t h e Fa s c i s t s g i v e
t h e mt h e f r i g h t o f t h e i r l i v e s f i r s t . Th e y c a n d o t h a t
w i t h o ut t ur n i n g o n t h e c ur r e n t . Li s t e n , A l e s s a n d r o , "
h e w e n t o n i n It a l i a n , g o i n g up t o t h e ma n s e r v a n t , a n d
g r a s p i n g h i mb y t h e s h o ul d e r , h e w h i s p e r e d a f e w
w o r d s i n t o h i s e a r
.
A l e s s a n d r o n o d d e d c o mp r e h e n s i o n , t h e n w i t h a w i n k
a t Br a n d o n s e i z e d t h e n e a r e s t o f t h e f i v e , w h o h a p p e n e d
t o b e Do c t o r He n s l e y , a n d f r o g ma r c h e d h i mt o w a r d s t h e
c h a i r , w h i l s t t h e o t h e r me mb e r s o f t h e r e s c ue - p a r t y
f o r me d a c o r d o n r o un d t h e r e ma i n i n g f o ur t o p r e v e n t
t h e mi n t e r v e n i n g .
Th e Fe l l o w o f S t . S t e p h e n ' s , w h o
h a d n o t c a ug h t Br a n d o n ' s w h i s p e r e d i n s t r uc t i o n s ,
s e e me d t o o p a r a l y s e d w i t h t e r r o r t o r e s i s t . But
h a r d l y h a d t h e y t i me t o f o r c e h i mi n t o t h e c h a i r b e f o r e
h e g a v e a g a s p i n g c h o ke a n d h i s b o d y f e l l f o r w a r d w i t h
h i s h e a d up o n h i s kn e e s .
"Hul l o , "s a i d Br a n d o n , mo me n t a r i l y s t a r t l e d , a n d
d a s h i n g t o t h e d o ub l e d - up f i g ur e i n t h e c h a i r
. Gr a s p i n g
h i mb y t h e s h o ul d e r s h e r a i s e d t h e mup w a r d s , b ut t h e
h e a d s t i l l d r o o p i n g f o r w a r d , h e l i f t e d i t b y t h e c h i n , a n d
a s h e d i d s o a g a s p o f h o r r o r a r o s e f r o mFr a n kl i n ,
THE C HEK A

2 3 7
R a s ko f f , Me r v i n e , a n d K r o v a v a y a K a t y a .
Do c t o r He n s l e y w a s d e a d .
Th e r e c o ul d b e n o mi s t a ke a b o ut i t , Fe e l i n g h i s
h e a r t Br a n d o n a t o n c e r e a l i s e d t h a t i t h a d s t o p p e d
b e a t i n g .
Th i s w a s a n un e x p e c t e d d e v e l o p me n t . He h a d
n e v e r i n t e n d e d t h a t t h e c ur r e n t s h o ul d b e t ur n e d o n ,
b ut s i mp l y t h a t t h e ma n s h o ul d b e g i v e n a t a s t e o f t h e
t e r r o r h e h a d i n s p i r e d i n R o s a mun d . Th a t o n e mo -
me n t , h o w e v e r , h a d d o n e i t , a n d h e h a d l i t e r a l l y d i e d
o f f r i g h t .
Wh i l s t h i s f o ur a c c o mp l i c e s , a p p a l l e d a t h i s f a t e ,
c r i n g e d f o r me r c y t o t h e r e s c ue - p a r t y , Br a n d o n d i d
s o me r a p i d t h i n ki n g .
Th e s i t ua t i o n w a s r e a l l y un c o mmo n l y a w kw a r d .
He h a d i n t e n d e d a l l a l o n g t o r e s t r a i n t h e Fa s c i s t s i f
p o s s i b l e f r o ma c t ua l l y ki l l i n g t h e c ul p r i t s , f o r muc h
a s t h e y d e s e r v e d t h i s f a t e , h e w a s En g l i s h ma n e n o ug h
t o r e c o i l f r o ml y n c h - l a w me t h o d s . It w a s t r ue t h a t h e
h a d n o g r e a t f a i t h i n t h e S w i s s p o l i c e ; s t i l l , a f t e r
g i v i n g t h e mt h e f r i g h t o f t h e i r l i v e s , h e h a d me a n t t o
h a v e t h e mh a n d e d o v e r t o t h e a ut h o r i t i e s i n t h e h o p e
t h a t s o me j us t i c e w o ul d b e d o n e . But n o w i f h e ,
K a v a n a g h , a n d A l e s s a n d r o w e r e t o b e i n v o l v e d i n a
l e g a l e n q ui r y i n t o t h e w h o l e a f f a i r , h o w w e r e t h e y t o
p r o v e t h e i r o w n i n n o c e n c e i n t h e ma t t e r o f Do c t o r
He n s l e y ' s d e a t h ? Th e f o ur a c c o mp l i c e s w o ul d o f
c o ur s e g i v e e v i d e n c e a g a i n s t t h e m ; t h e y mi g h t e v e n
d e c l a r e t h a t t h e y h a d a c t ua l l y t ur n e d o n t h e e l e c t r i c
c ur r e n t a n d ki l l e d t h e d o c t o r . Wo ul d a n i n q ue s t
r e v e a l t h e c o n t r a r y ? , Br a n d o n c o ul d n o t f e e l q ui t e
s ur e .
Wh a t w a s t o b e d o n e , t h e n ? Le a v e t h e Fa s c i s t s
t o f i n i s h o f f t h e c ul p r i t s s o t h a t t h e r e w o ul d b e n o n e
2 3 8

THE S EC R ET
OF THE ZODIA C
l e f t t o t e l l t h e t a l e ? But c o ul d t h e y b e d e p e n d e d o n
t o d o i t s o s ki l f ul l y t h a t n o t r a c e s o f t h e s l a ug h t e r
w o ul d b e f o un d ? Br a n d o n h a r d l y t h o ug h t s o . Th e n
a n e n q ui r y w o ul d f o l l o w , a n d t h e En g l i s h me mb e r s o f
t h e p a r t y w o ul d b e h e l d up i n S w i t z e r l a n d o v e r a n
a f f a i r w h i c h mi g h t t a ke mo n t h s a n d s e r i o us l y h a mp e r
t h e i r p l a n o f c a mp a i g n a t h o me . No , t h e o n l y t h i n g
w a s t o g e t o ut o f i t a l l a s q ui c kl y a s p o s s i b l e , e v e n
t h o ug h i t mi g h t me a n s p a r i n g t h e w o ul d - b e mur d e r e r s
f r o mb e i n g b r o ug h t t o j us t i c e .
" Lo o kh e r e , A l e s s a n d r o , "h e s a i d , t a ki n g t h e
It a l i a n a s i d e a n d s p e a ki n g i n a r a p i d un d e r t o n e .
Th i s b us i n e s s h a s g o n e f a r e n o ug h . We ' v e g o t t o
g e t t h e l a d y o ut o f h e r e - i n t o t h e c a r . A n d y o ua n d
y o ur f r i e n d s h a d b e t t e r c l e a r o ut , t o o . Le a v e t h e s e
mi s e r a b l e c r e a t ur e s a l o n e , t h e y ' v e h a d f r i g h t e n o ug h . "
"But n o t w i t h o ut a d r i n ka t p a r t i n g I" c r i e d
A l e s s a n d r o , a d v a n c i n g t o w a r d s t h e mw i t h a g l e a mi n g
s mi l e , a n d t h e b o t t l e o f c a s t o r o i l h e l d t r i ump h a n t l y
a l o f t
. Gr a s p i n g f i r s t Fr a n kl i n , t h e n Me r v i n e , R a s ko f f ,
a n d K r o v a v a y a K a t y a f i r ml y b y t h e t h r o a t s , t h e t h r e e
Fa s c i s t s t h e n p r o c e e d e d t o p o ur t h e c o n t e n t s o f t h e
b o t t l e d o w n t h e i r g ul l e t s .
In v a i n t h e y s t r ug g l e d ;
t h e It a l i a n s ' i r o n mus c l e s w e r e mo r e t h a n a ma t c h f o r
Fr a n kl i n ' s a n d Me r v i n e ' s f l a b b y r e s i s t a n c e , f o r R a s -
ko f f ' s p un y b l o w s , o r t h e w o ma n ' s c a t l i ke s q ui r mi n g s
.
Le a v i n g t h e i r w r e t c h e d v i c t i ms s p l ut t e r i n g a n d
h e a v i n g i n a c o r n e r o f t h e r o o m, t h e r e s c ue - p a r t y ma d e
t h e i r w a y up s t a i r s , K a v a n a g h s up p o r t i n g R o s a mun d ,
t h e Fa s c i s t s c a r r y i n g t h e b o d y o f Do c t o r He n s l e y , w h i c h
t h e y t o o ko ut i n t o t h e f o r e s t a n d d e p o s i t e d o n a p a t h -
w a y . By t h i s me a n s i t w a s h o p e d t h a t a l l l e g a l
e n q ui r i e s w o ul d b e a v o i d e d , f o r Do c t o r He n s l e y , w h e n
d i s c o v e r e d , w o ul d a p p e a r t o h a v e d i e d o f h e a r t f a i l ur e
THEC HEK A

2 3 9
w h i l s t w a l ki n g i n t h e w o o d s , a n d t h e o n l y f o ur p e o p l e
w h o kn e w t h e t r ut h w o ul d c e r t a i n l y b e v e r y c a r e f ul t o
ke e p t h e i r mo ut h s s h ut .
Br a n d o n a n d K a v a n a g h h a d t a ke n t h e p r e c a ut i o n t o
ke e p t h e a e r o p l a n e i n w h i c h t h e y h a d f l o w n f r o m
Fr a n kf ur t r e a d y i n c a s e o f e me r g e n c y a t t h e n e i g h b o ur -
i n g a e r o d r o me , s o t h a t i t w a s o n l y a ma t t e r o f a n h o ur
o r t w o t o t r a n s p o r t R o s a mun d i n t h e C o un t e s s ' s c a r
b a c kt o t h e h o t e l t o r e j o i n h e r mo t h e r , p i c kup La d y
Da r e , a n d d r i v e o n a l l t o g e t h e r t o t h e s t a r t i n g - p o i n t
f o r En g l a n d .
Da w n f o un d t h e mw i n g i n g t h e i r w a y a c r o s s S w i t z e r -
l a n d , l e a v i n g Bo g a z z o a n d i t s t e r r i b l e me mo r i e s f a r
b e h i n d t h e m .
C HA PTER XII
c o s mo s
IT w a s ma n y w e e ks b e f o r e R o s a mun d r e c o v e r e d f r o m
h e r t e r r i b l e e x p e r i e n c e s . Th e s h o c ko f h e r c a p t ur e , t h e
me n t a l s t r a i n i n d uc e d b y t w e n t y h o ur s o f c e a s e l e s s
q ue s t i o n i n g b y o n e c r o s s - e x a mi n e r a f t e r a n o t h e r
w i t h o ut f o o d o r s l e e p , t h e h o r r o r o f f e e l i n g h e r s e l f
d r a g g e d t o h e r d e a t h b y t h e c l ut c h i n g f i n g e r s o f
K r o v a v a y a K a t y a , h a d b r o ug h t a b o ut a c o mp l e t e
c o l l a p s e . Fo r t e n d a y s s h e l a y i n a d a r ke n e d r o o m,
un a b l e t o t a l k, a n d h e a r i n g n o t h i n g , b ut a n s w e r i n g ,
c o h e r e n t l y , t h o ug h f a i n t l y , w h e n s p o ke n t o .
But a s h e r s t r e n g t h g r a d ua l l y r e t ur n e d i t b e c a me
e v i d e n t t h a t t h i s c o l l a p s e w a s p ur e l y p h y s i c a l ; t h e r e
w a s n o s i g n o f t h e me n t a l d i s t r e s s h e r e a r l i e r e x p e r i e n c e s
i n o c c ul t c i r c l e s h a d i n d uc e d . In a w o r d , s h e w a s n o
l o n g e r a f r a i d o f t h e p o w e r t h e s e p e o p l e c o ul d e x e r c i s e
o v e r h e r .
"I' v e a l w a y s f e l t s o me h o w , "s h e s a i d t o K a v a n a g h
w h e n a t l a s t h e w a s a l l o w e d t o c o me a n d s i t b e s i d e t h e
d i v a n o n w h i c h s h e l a y , "t h a t i f Ic o ul d o n c e g e t up
a g a i n s t t h e m, me e t t h e mi n t h e o p e n , p ut up a f i g h t
a n d g e t t h e b e s t o f i t , Is h o ul d , b e f r e e f o r e v e r ' f r o m
t h e i r i n f l ue n c e . J i mmy h e l p e d me a l o t , b ut Is up p o s e
t h e r e w a s s t i l l a l ur ki n g f e a r i n my mi n d t h a t a f t e r a l l
t h e y mi g h t b e a b l e t o g e t a t me i n t h e w a y t h e y p r o f e s s
t o b e a b l e t o d o . We l l , t h e y d i d t h e i r w o r s t a n d f a i l e d .
Th e f a c t t h a t t h e y h a d t o r e s o r t t o p h y s i c a l v i o l e n c e
s h o w e d t h a t , d i d n ' t i t ? "
2 4 0
C OS MOS

2 4 1

Of c o ur s e i t d i d . Y o ub e a t t h e ma l l a l o n g t h e
l i n e . "

Y e s . It h i n kId i d .
Ev e n i f t h e y ' d ki l l e d me , I
s h o ul d h a v e g o t t h e b e s t o f i t , r e a l l y
. "
S ud d e n l y s h e b e g a n t o l a ug h , w h i l s t t e a r s i n d uc e d b y
s h e e r p h y s i c a l w e a kn e s s w e l l e d up i n t o h e r e y e s . "
Oh ,
Te r e n c e , i f o n l y Ic o ul d h a v e s e e n t h e mw h e n A l e s s a n -
d r o g a v e t h e mt h e c a s t o r o i l ! It mus t h a v e b e e n a .
ma r v e l l o us s i g h t . "
It w a s . A n d t o c r o w n e v e r y t h i n g t h e Fa s c i s t s
t ur n e d t h e ke y i n t h e l o c kb e f o r e l e a v i n g t h e Te mp l e .
Th e y mus t h a v e h a d a p l e a s a n t n i g h t o f i t . "
A t t h a t R o s a mun d l a ug h e d s o un c o n t r o l l a b l y t h a t
K a v a n a g h , f e a r i n g s h e mi g h t b e c o me h y s t e r i c a l ,
h a s t i l y d r o p p e d t h e s ub j e c t a n d w e n t o n t a l ki n g i n a
c a l ma n d s o o t h i n g v o i c e
" We l l , t h a t ' s a l l o v e r a n d d o n e w i t h
. A n d y o u' r e
n o t a f r a i d o f t h e ma n y mo r e
. "
Ho w c o ul d Ib e ?
I' d o n l y h a v e t o p i c t ur e
t h e m"
h e r v o i c e q ua v e r e d s us p i c i o us l y , i n a
mo me n t s h e mi g h t b e o f f a g a i n i n a s t o r mo f l a ug h t e r
.
R o s a mun d , "K a v a n a g h s a i d s e r i o us l y , "
d o y o u
r e me mb e r s a y i n g o n c e , l o n g a g o , t h a t y o uf e l t y o umus t
h a v e n o e mo t i o n s . Th a t y o umus t n o t l o v e o r h a t e ? "
S h e n o d d e d . " Y e s . Ir e me mb e r . "
"We l l , y o ud o n ' t t h i n kt h a t a n y l o n g e r ?
Oh ,
d a r l i n g , c a n ' t y o ul o v e me n o w ? "
Th e r e w a s a mo me n t ' s s i l e n c e . Th i s t i me t h e r e
w e r e t e a r s , n o t o f l a ug h t e r , i n h e r e y e s .
" My v e r y v a l i a n t kn i g h t I " s h e s a i d s o f t l y .
" No , o n l y y o ur v e r y t r ue a n d l o v i n g kn i g h t , "
Te r e n c e a n s w e r e d . A n d w i t h h i s a r ms a r o un d h e r
t h e t e r r i b l e p a s t v a n i s h e d f o r e v e r l i ke s o me e v i l
d r e a m .
i 6
2 4 2

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
It w a s a r r a n g e d t h a t Te r e n c e a n d R o s a mun d s h o ul d
n o t b e ma r r i e d f o r s o me mo n t h s a n d t h a t t h e i r
e n g a g e me n t s h o ul d n o t e v e n b e a n n o un c e d f o r t h e
p r e s e n t .
Fo r t h e q ue s t o n w h i c h Br a n d o n a n d
K a v a n a g h h a d s e t o ut w a s n o t y e t e n d e d , a n d n o t h i n g
mus t b e a l l o w e d t o i n t e r f e r e w i t h t h e i r w o r kt o g e t h e r .
"Y o ub e l o n g t o t h e c o un t r y , Te r e n c e , "R o s a mun d
s a i d f i r ml y . " Y o u' v e g o t t o s a v e t h a t b e f o r e w e
t h i n ko f o ur o w n h a p p i n e s s . "
A n d t h o ug h h e d e mur r e d , K a v a n a g h kn e w i n h i s
h e a r t t h a t R o s a mun d w a s r i g h t .
On c e ma r r i e d h i s f i r s t
t h o ug h t s w o ul d b e f o r h e r , a n d h e mus t g i v e h i s w h o l e
mi n d t o t h e c a us e .
No w t h e y w e r e b a c ki n Lo n d o n Br a n d o n a n d K a v a n -
a g h f o un d t h e ms e l v e s c o n f r o n t e d b y f r e s h p r o b l e ms o f
a c o mp l i c a t e d ki n d . Th e i r i n v e s t i g a t i o n s o n t h e
C o n t i n e n t h a d e n a b l e d t h e mt o c o l l e c t t h e t h r e a d s o f
b o t h o c c ul t a n d p o l i t i c a l i n t r i g ue s a b r o a d
; t h e d i f f i c ul t y
n o w w a s t o l i n kup t h e s e t h r e a d s w i t h c o n t a c t s a t
h o me , a n d t o f i n d o ut w h o w a s p ul l i n g t h e s t r i n g s
b e t w e e n En g l a n d a n d a b r o a d . Mo r e o v e r , o n l y t w o
me mb e r s o f t h e Zo d i a c h a d b e e n i d e n t i f i e d - C a p r i -
c o r n us o f Ne w Y o r ka n d S a g i t t a r i us o f Ba v a r i a . Th e
r e ma i n i n g t e n , a n d p a r t i c ul a r l y t h e Lo n d o n me mb e r o f
t h a t i n t e r e s t i n g c i r c l e , h a d y e t t o b e d i s c o v e r e d
.
But w h e r e w a s t h e s e a r c h t o b e g i n ?
Do c t o r
He n s l e y , o n e o f t h e p r i n c i p a l c o n t a c t s i n En g l a n d , w a s
d e a d , Os c a r Fr a n kl i n s t i l l w a l ke d t h e e a r t h , b ut h e w a s
r e p o r t e d i n t h e s o c i e t y c o l umn s o f t h e Pr e s s t o b e
e n t e r t a i n i n g a h o us e - p a r t y , i n c l ud i n g t h e Pr i me
Mi n i s t e r , a t h i s g r o us e mo o r i n S c o t l a n d .
Th e Fr e n s -
h a ms w e r e a l s o a w a y i n t h e c o un t r y . Th e Ba t e ma n s
w e r e c r ui s i n g i n t h e Me d i t e r r a n e a n
. Th e Gr e e n -
w o r t h y s w e r e a t Ba t h
. Ev i d e n t l y f o r t h e mo me n t
C OS MOS

2 4 3
t h e r e w a s l i t t l e d o i n g
.
But e v e r y t h i n g c o me s t o h i mw h o w a i t s , a n d a t t h e
b e g i n n i n g o f Oc t o b e r t h e Pr e s s a n n o un c e d t h a t i n v i e w
o f t h e g r o w i n g me n a c e p r e s e n t e d b y S o v i e t R us s i a , a
l a r g e A n t i - Bo l s h e v i s t me e t i n g w a s t o b e h e l d i n t h e
A l b e r t Ha l l , a t w h i c h t h e l e a d i n g me mb e r s o f t h e
C o n s e r v a t i v e Pa r t y w o ul d b e p r e s e n t . " Mr . Mur r a y
Ba t e ma n , M. P. , t h e C o un t e s s o f Bun t i n g f o r d , a n d
Ge n e r a l Br i g h o r n " w e r e t o b e a mo n g s t t h e s p e a ke r s ,
a n d Mr . Os c a r Fr a n kl i n w o ul d t a ke t h e c h a i r .
Br a n d o n a n d K a v a n a g h d e c i d e d t h a t i t w o ul d b e
a mus i n g t o g o a n d s e e h o w C a p r i c o r n us a c q ui t t e d
h i ms e l f o n t h i s o c c a s i o n , w h e n a s o me w h a t d i f f e r e n t
a t t i t ud e w o ul d b e r e q ui r e d o f h i mf r o mt h e o n e i n
w h i c h t h e y h a d l a s t s e e n h i m, c h o ki n g a n d h e a v i n g
o n t h e f l o o r o f t h e c l i n i c .
Th e me e t i n g w a s l a r g e a n d e n t h us i a s t i c , t h a t i s t o
s a y , t h e b o x e s a n d t h e b o d y o f t h e h a l l w e r e c o mp l e t e l y
f i l l e d b y a n a ud i e n c e t h a t n e e d e d n o c o n v i n c i n g o f t h e
e v i l s o f Bo l s h e v i s m .
Gr e y o r b a l d h e a d s p r e d o mi n a t e d
a mo n g s t t h e me n , w h i l s t t h e f e mi n i n e e l e me n t - e x c e p t
f o r t h e us ua l c o n t i n g e n t - o f s o mn o l e n t d o w a g e r s i n t h e
f r o n t r o w s - w a s l a r g e l y p r o v i d e d b y t h e g a l l a n t
w i d o w s a n d e l d e r l y d a ug h t e r s o f s o l d i e r s a n d s a i l o r s
w h o c a n a l w a y s b e d e p e n d e d o n t o r a l l y t o a n y p a t r i o t i c
c a us e , a n d w h o ma ke t h e c o n t e mp t uo us t e r mo f " o l d
w o ma n "a n a n o ma l y i n d a y s w h e n y o un g me n s h ud d e r
a t t h e i d e a o f p ut t i n g up a f i g h t i n d e f e n c e o f t h e i r
c o un t r y .
Th e p l a t f o r mw a s e x p e n s i v e l y d e c o r a t e d w i t h
p a l ms a n d c h r y s a n t h e mums i n p o t s , f o r mi n g a p l e a s i n g
f o r e g r o un d t o t h e r o w s o f t i t l e d o r i mp o r t a n t p e r s o n -
a g e s w h o h a d g i v e n t h e i r s up p o r t t o t h e p r o c e e d i n g s -
t w o d uke s , t h r e e d uc h e s s e s , o n e o r t w o w e l l - kn o w n
2 4 4

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
mi l l i o n a i r e s , Mr
. Bl o x h a m, t h e C h i e f A g e n t o f t h e
C o n s e r v a t i v e Pa r t y , a n d s e v e r a l l e a d i n g Me mb e r s o f
Pa r l i a me n t .
Th e h umb l e w o r ke r s w h o b o r e t h e h e a t
a n d b ur d e n o f t h e d a y w e r e r e l e g a t e d t o t h e up p e r
c i r c l e .
If t h e i d e a h a d b e e n t o i l l us t r a t e t h e S o c i a l i s t s '
c o n c e p t i o n o f a n t i - Bo l s h e v i s ma s a c l a s s mo v e me n t o f
t h e Ha v e - No t s a g a i n s t t h e Ha v e s , i t c o ul d n o t h a v e
b e e n b e t t e r s t a g e d .
Th e C o mmun i s t s , w h o c o n -
s t i t ut e d a l mo s t t h e o n l y o c c up a n t s o f t h e g a l l e r y , w o ul d
h a v e l i t t l e d i f f i c ul t y i n p r o v i d i n g a b ur l e s q ue r e p o r t t o
t h i s e f f e c t f o r t h e c o l umn s o f t h e
Da i l y Wo r ke r .
Th e p r o c e e d i n g s o p e n e d w i t h a n e x c e l l e n t s p e e c h b y
Mr
. Os c a r Fr a n kl i n , d e p l o r i n g t h e a p a t h y o f t h e
Br i t i s h p ub l i c w i t h r e g a r d t o t h e Bo l s h e v i s t me n a c e ,
a n d e x p r e s s i n g t h e h o p e t h a t a l l t h o s e p r e s e n t w o ul d
c o n t r i b ut e g e n e r o us l y t o t h e c o l l e c t i o n f o r t h e n e w
c a mp a i g n o f p r o p a g a n d a t h a t t h e me e t i n g w a s t o
i n a ug ur a t e . Le t t e r s f r o mt h e Pr i me Mi n i s t e r , t h e
Ho me S e c r e t a r y , a n d t h e A r c h b i s h o p o f C a n t e r b ur y
w e r e r e a d a l o ud e x p r e s s i n g t h e i r d e e p r e g r e t a t t h e i r
i n a b i l i t y t o b e p r e s e n t o n t h i s a us p i c i o us o c c a s i o n
.
A p o w e r f ul s p e e c h w a s d e l i v e r e d b y Ge n e r a l Br i g -
h o r n d e s c r i b i n g t h e h o r r o r s o f Bo l s h e v i s mi n t e r ms s o
l ur i d t h a t e v e n t h e o l d l a d i e s i n t h e f r o n t r o w s w o ke
up f o r a f e w mo me n t s a n d s h i v e r e d .
Mr . Mur r a y Ba t e ma n , M. P. , i n a c a l me r a n d mo r e
Pa r l i a me n t a r y v e i n , e x p l a i n e d t h e n e c e s s i t y f o r
d i f f e r e n t i a t i n g b e t w e e n C o mmun i s ma n d S o c i a l i s m,
a n d h i s r e mi n d e r t h a t " w e a r e a l l S o c i a l i s t s n o w
" me t
w i t h w a r ma p p l a us e f r o ma s ma l l s e c t i o n o f h i s a ud i -
e n c e
. Th e Br i t i s h La b o ur Pa r t y , h e w e n t o n t o s a y , w a s
c o mp o s e d o f me n w h o c o ul d b y n o s t r e t c h o f t h e i ma g i -
n a t i o n b e s us p e c t e d o f Bo l s h e v i s t i c t e n d e n c i e s .
La d y Bun t i n g f o r d w a s c e r t a i n l y e x t r e me l y w e l l
C OS MOS

2 4 5
d o c ume n t e d , a n d r e a d a l o ud s t a t i s t i c s s h o w i n g t h e
p r o g r e s s o f t h e s e c o n d Fi v e Y e a r s ' Pl a n , w h i c h h o w e v e r ,
s h e a d d e d , w a s d o o me d t o f a i l ur e . (" Th e n w h y w o r r y
a b o ut i t ? " s h o ut e d a C o mmun i s t f r o mt h e g a l l e r y , w h o
w a s i n s t a n t l y s i l e n c e d . ) He r f i g ur e s w e r e r e ma r ka b l y
c o r r e c t a s w e l l i n d e e d t h e y mi g h t b e , s i n c e t h e y h a d
a l r e a d y b e e n p ub l i s h e d i n t h e Pr a v d a a n d p a s s e d o n t o
h e r i n t r a n s l a t i o n b y a mo s t c h a r mi n g a n d w e l l - i n f o r me d
R us s i a n w h o h a d b e e n p r e s e n t e d t o h e r a t a p a r t y , a n d
w h o ki n d l y o f f e r e d t o s up p l y h e r w i t h a l l t h e p r o -
p a g a n d a s h e mi g h t r e q ui r e .
A s t a r t ur n f o l l o w e d i n t h e s h a p e o f a s p e e c h i n
s o me w h a t h a l t i n g En g l i s h b y a v i c t i mo f t h e R us s i a n
R e v o l ut i o n , Ma d a me K r a p o t s ky , w h o s e ma r ke d l y
A s i a t i c f e a t ur e s s e e me d v a g ue l y f a mi l i a r t o Br a n d o n
a n d K a v a n a g h
.
" Ic a n ' t t h i n kw h e r e o n e a r t h I' v e s e e n h e r , c a n
y o u ? " w h i s p e r e d t h e f o r me r .
" No , b ut i t ' s c o mi n g b a c kt o me - w a i t , J i mmy -
a h !
I' v e g o t i t ! Th e w o ma n w e s a w g o i n g o ut o f t h e
g a t e o f t h e V i l l a Pa x Mun d i - t h e t y p i c a l r e v o l ut i o n a r y
f e ma l e y o uc a l l e d h e r - d o y o ur e me mb e r ? "
" By J o v e . Of c o ur s e . Y o u' v e g o t i t . Iw o n d e r
w h a t s h e ' s d o i n g i n En g l a n d . "
Th e y w e r e s o o n t o kn o w . Ma d a me K r a p o t s ky , t h e
C h a i r ma n i n f o r me d t h e me e t i n g , w a s t o b e e mp l o y e d
a s t r a n s l a t o r b y t h e mo v e me n t
.
Th e y w e r e f o r t un a t e
i n s e c ur i n g t h e s e r v i c e s o f t h i s a c c o mp l i s h e d l a d y .
Th e me e t i n g , e v e r y o n e a g r e e d a s t h e a ud i e n c e
s t r e a me d o ut , h a d b e e n a b r i l l i a n t s uc c e s s . Th e
c o l l e c t i n g p l a t e s h a d b e e n r e t ur n e d p i l e d w i t h n o t e s ,
a n d t h e w e l l - kn o w n s o a p ma g n a t e , Mr . S c h ut z h e i m, h a d
s e n t up a c h e q ue o f & , o o o t o t h e p l a t f o r m .
Th e C o mmun i s t h e c kl e r s o n t h e w h o l e h a d b e h a v e d
2 4 6

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
r e ma r ka b l y w e l l , a n d a f t e r e mi t t i n g a f e w c a t - c a l l s h a d
s ub s i d e d i n t o s i l e n c e . A f t e r a l l t h e r e s e e me d n o r e a s o n
f o r c r e a t i n g a d i s t ur b a n c e a n d r i s ki n g e j e c t i o n b y t h e
s t e w a r d s . No t a w o r d h a d b e e n s a i d t h a t c o ul d
d a ma g e t h e Bo l s h e v i s t c a us e i n t h e e y e s o f a n y o n e n o t
a l r e a d y c o n v i n c e d o f i t s i n i q ui t i e s .
Go i n g o ut i n t o t h e f o g g y a t mo s p h e r e o f t h e Oc t o b e r
n i g h t , K a v a n a g h f o un d h i ms e l f s ud d e n l y c o n f r o n t e d
b y My r a Gr e e n w o r t h y .
Th e y h a d n o t me t s i n c e t h e
s o me w h a t p a i n f ul s c e n e i n t h e g a r d e n o f h e r f a t h e r ' s
h o us e , b ut My r a e v i d e n t l y h a r b o ur e d n o r e s e n t me n t ,
f o r s h e s mi l e d up a t K a v a n a g h a n d s a i d mi s c h i e v o us l y
" Wh a t d i d
y o ut h i n ko f i t a l l , Te r e n c e ? "
" It h o ug h t i t mo s t i mp r e s s i v e , "K a v a n a g h a n s w e r e d
f i r ml y , d ul y n o t i n g t h a t Ge n e r a l Br i g h o r n w a s s t a n d i n g
a t h i s e l b o w .
My r a p ut h e r h e a d n e a r e r a n d w h i s p e r e d

Di d y o us e e Iz z y ? "

No . Wa s h e o n t h e p l a t f o r m ? "
My r a l a ug h e d . " It h i n ke v e n Iz z y c o ul d h a r d l y d o
t h a t . "
K a v a n a g h r e me mb e r e d h e a r i n g t h a t y o un g Fr a n kl i n
h a d n o t a c h i e v e d h i s f a t h e r ' s p o p ul a r i t y w i t h " t h e
Pa r t y , "t h a t i n f a c t h e w a s r e p o r t e d t o h o l d "a d v a n c e d
v i e w s , "a n d w a s b e l i e v e d t o h a v e f r e q ue n t l y v i s i t e d
S o v i e t R us s i a .
But b e f o r e h e c o ul d ma ke a n y r e p l y
My r a h a d n o d d e d g o o d n i g h t a n d w a s w h i r l e d a w a y i n
S i r Pa ul Gr e e n w o r t h y ' s l ux ur i o us Me r c 6 d 6 s i n t h e
d i r e c t i o n o f K e n s i n g t o n Pa l a c e Ga r d e n s .
A f e w n i g h t s l a t e r Br a n d o n a n d K a v a n a g h w e r e
s i t t i n g o v e r t h e f i r e i n t h e l a t t e r ' s r o o ms , w h e n t h e
ma n s e r v a n t e n t e r e d t o s a y t h a t a l a d y w a s a t t h e d o o r
a n d w i s h e d t o s e e t h e Ma j o r .
C OS MOS

2 4 7

Wh a t s o r t o f a l a d y ? " a s ke d K a v a n a g h .

Y o un g , s i r , a n d w e a r i n g a h a n d s o me f ur c o a t .
S e e ms t o b e a b i t up s e t , s i r . "
K a v a n a g h r o s e a n d w e n t t o t h e d o o r . On t h e
t h r e s h o l d s t o o d My r a Gr e e n w o r t h y , e v i d e n t l y i n a
s t a t e b o r d e r i n g o n h y s t e r i a .
" C o me i n , My r a , "h e s a i d ; " w h a t o n e a r t h ' s t h e
ma t t e r ? "
Th e g i r l e n t e r e d h ur r i e d l y . K a v a n a g h l e d h e r i n t o
t h e s i t t i n g - r o o ma n d i n t r o d uc e d Br a n d o n . " Th e
f a mo us p o r t r a i t - p a i n t e r , y o ukn o w . "

Iw a n t t o s p e a kt o y o ua l o n e , "s h e s a i d i n a
t r e mb l i n g v o i c e , t ur n i n g t o K a v a n a g h .
But , My r a , C a p t a i n Br a n d o n ' s my g r e a t e s t p a l
a n d a s w i s e a s a n o w l . If y o u' r e i n a n y d i f f i c ul t i e s
h e ' s t h e ma n t o h e l p y o u, "s a i d K a v a n a g h , d e t e r mi n e d
t h a t i f a n y r e v e l a t i o n s w e r e t o b e ma d e J i mmy s h o ul d
b e t h e r e t o h e a r t h e m.
" We l l , i f h e c a n b e d e p e n d e d up o n n o t t o t a l k-
w h a t I' v e c o me t o t e l l y o ui s t e r r i b l y s e c r e t , y o u
un d e r s t a n d ? "
" J i mmy w o n ' t s a y a w o r d . Go o n , My r a . "
My r a h e s i t a t e d . Th e n t h e w o r d s c a me o ut w i t h a
r us h

Oh , Te r e n c e , Ib e l i e v e Fa t h e r ' s i n s o me d r e a d f ul
d a n g e r . "
" Ho w c a n S i r Pa ul b e i n d a n g e r ? " a s ke d K a v a n a g h ,
p uz z l e d .
" Th a t ' s w h a t Iw o n d e r e d . "S ud d e n l y My r a ' s e y e s
f i l l e d w i t h t e a r s . " Y o ukn o w w h a t Fa t h e r h a s b e e n
t o me - s i n c e Le o p o l d d i e d a n d Mo t h e r w a s t a ke n
i l l . ),
K a v a n a g h n o d d e d
.
He r e me mb e r e d h e a r i n g t h a t
My r a ' s b r o t h e r h a d b e e n ki l l e d i n t h e w a r a n d t h a t
2 4 8

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
h e r mo t h e r h a d g o n e ma d w i t h g r i e f .
" But t h o ug h Fa t h e r . a n d Ia r e s uc h f r i e n d s , "My r a
w e n t o n , " h e d o e s n ' t c o n f i d e i n me a b o ut h i s a f f a i r s .
A n d l a t e l y h e h a s s e e me d t e r r i b l y w o r r i e d a b o ut
s o me t h i n g . Ic o ul d n ' t f i n d o ut w h a t . On l y h e
s e e me d a l w a y s w o r s e w h e n Os c a r o r Is i d o r e Fr a n kl i n
h a d b e e n w i t h h i m . Ic o n c l ud e d i t mus t b e s o me t h i n g
t o d o w i t h b us i n e s s .
"
On e d a y Os c a r Fr a n kl i n c a me a n d w a s s h ut up
w i t h Fa t h e r i n t h e l i b r a r y f o r e v e r s o l o n g . Iw a s i n
t h e mo r n i n g - r o o mo p e n i n g o ut o f i t , y o ukn o w , a n d I
c o ul d h e a r t h e i r v o i c e s t h r o ug h t h e d o o r , a s i f t h e y
w e r e a r g ui n g , a n d h e r e a n d t h e r e Ic o ul d h e a r a w o r d ,
s o me t i me s En g l i s h , s o me t i me s Ge r ma n . Th e n a t l a s t
Ih e a r d Os c a r Fr a n kl i n s a y i n a l o ud a n g r y v o i c e
V e r y w e l l , Pa ul ; t h e n y o ua r e a t r a i t o r . Y o ukn o w
t h a t b y r i g h t s y o us h o ul d h a v e t a ke n y o ur p l a c e i n t h e
Zo d i a c , a n d t h a t a l l t o g e t h e r w e s h o ul d r ul e t h e w o r l d .
No w t h a t p l a c e w i l l h a v e t o b e g i v e n t o a n o t h e r . ' ` I
c a n ' t h e l p t h a t , ' Fa t h e r s a i d h e l p l e s s l y , a n d Ic o ul d
h e a r h i mp a c i n g t o a n d f r o o v e r t h e p a r q ue t . Fo r a
mo me n t t h e r e w a s s i l e n c e , t h e n Fa t h e r s a i d l o ud l y
It e l l y o u, Is s a c h a r , ' - Is s a c h a r , y o us e e , i s Os c a r ' s
r e a l n a me - ' It e l l y o u, Io n c e f e l t j us t a s y o ud o
a b o ut t h i s c o un t r y , b ut I' v e c o me t o l o v e i t . Id o n ' t
w a n t t o s e e i t g o un d e r . A f t e r a l l , my b o y d i e d f i g h t i n g
f o r i t . ' Ic o ul d n ' t h e a r w h a t Fr a n kl i n s a i d t o t h i s , b ut
i t mus t h a v e b e e n s o me s o r t o f s n e e r , f o r i t s e e me d
t o s e n d Fa t h e r a l mo s t ma d
. ` Y o ud a r e t o c a l l h i m
t h a t ? ' h e s h o ut e d , ' my s o n , my f i r s t - b o r n ! ' A n d i t
s e e me d t o me t h a t h e w a s ma ki n g a r us h a t Fr a n kl i n .
Iw a s s o f r i g h t e n e d o f w h a t mi g h t h a p p e n t h a t I
o p e n e d t h e d o o r a n d w e n t i n .
"
Fa t h e r a n d Fr a n kl i n s t o o d a n d s t a r e d a t me
C OS MOS

2 4 9
a g h a s t
. Th e n Fr a n kl i n t ur n e d t o me a n d s a i d w i t h
b i t t e r s a r c a s m :` Ic o n g r a t ul a t e y o u, My r a , o n y o ur
f a t h e r ' s p a t r i o t i s m . A t r ue En g l i s h ma n ! ' Wi t h t h a t
h e t ur n e d o n h i s h e e l a n d l e f t t h e r o o m
.
Fa t h e r w a s w h i t e a n d s h a ke n , b ut h e w o ul d s a y
n o t h i n g o f w h a t h a d t a ke n p l a c e . S i n c e t h e n h e h a s
h a r d l y e a t e n a n y t h i n g , a n d s i t s f o r h o ur s s un ki n s i l e n c e
b r o o d i n g o v e r s o me t h i n g . A n d Iw a t c h h i ma n d
t r e mb l e , f o r If e a r t h e i r v e n g e a n c e . Th a t i s w h y I
c a me t o y o u, Te r e n c e ; If e l t Imus t t e l l s o me o n e o r I
s h o ul d g o ma d . "A n d s i n ki n g h e r h e a d i n t o t h e
c us h i o n s o f t h e c h a i r My r a b ur s t i n t o p a s s i o n a t e s o b s .
" S t o p , My r a , "s a i d K a v a n a g h s o o t h i n g l y , p a t t i n g
h e r s h o ul d e r a s h e h a d d o n e t h a t n i g h t i n t h e g a r d e n ;
" d o n ' t g i v e w a y t o d e s p a i r . We ' v e g o t t o d o s o me -
t h i n g . "
" Wh a t c a n w e d o
? " a s ke d My r a , s i t t i n g up a n d
l o o ki n g a t h i mt h r o ug h h e r t e a r s . " We a r e p o w e r l e s s .
Th e y a r e t o o s t r o n g f o r us . "

Wh o a r e t o o s t r o n g f o r us ? " a s ke d Br a n d o n
q ui e t l y .
" Th e Zo d i a c - w h a t e v e r t h a t ma y b e . "

Y o un e v e r h e a r d o f i t b e f o r e ? "
On l y o n c e
. Th a t w a s w h e n Ic a me i n t o t h e r o o m
o n e d a y a n d f o un d Fa t h e r g o i n g t h r o ug h s o me p a p e r s
a t h i s w r i t i n g - t a b l e . On e o f t h e s e w a s h e a d e d ` Th e
Zo d i a c , ' a n d un d e r n e a t h w a s w h a t l o o ke d l i ke a l i s t o f
n a me s a n d c ur i o us s y mb o l s . But w h e n Fa t h e r s a w
me h e h a s t i l y p ut i t a w a y . He h a s s o me s e c r e t p a p e r s
t h a t h e ke e p s i n a h i d i n g - p l a c e o f h i s o w n - n o t i n h i s
w r i t i n g d e s ko r d e s p a t c h - b o x , t o w h i c h h i s s e c r e t a r y
h a s a c c e s s , a n d h e a l l o w s n o o n e t o s e e t h o s e
p a p e r s b ut h i ms e l f
. Ic o n c l ud e t h e o n e a b o ut t h e
Zo d i a c i s p ut a w a y a mo n g s t t h e m . "
2 5 0

THE S EC R ETOF THE ZODIA C


" A n d y o u' v e n o i d e a w h a t t h e Zo d i a c i s ? "
Ii ma g i n e d i t mus t b e s o me s o r t o f f i n a n c i a l c o m-
b i n e . But It h i n kn o w i t ' s mo r e i mp o r t a n t t h a n t h a t
- a n d mo r e s e c r e t . It h i n k, "a n d My r a l o w e r e d h e r
v o i c e my s t e r i o us l y , " i t ' s s o me t e r r i b l e c o n s p i r a c y
w h i c h Fa t h e r kn o w s a b o ut , b ut w o n ' t b e d r a w n i n t o .
Iz z y , y o us e e , i s a C o mmun i s t ; Ib e l i e v e h e ' s i n t h e
v e r y t h i c ko f t h e Bo l s h e v i s t c o n s p i r a c y . By t h e w a y ,
h e h a t e s y o u, Te r e n c e ! "
" Me ? Wh a t h a v e Id o n e t o Iz z y ? "
" We l l , y o ur e me mb e r t h a t e v e n i n g i n t h e g a r d e n
l a s t s umme r , w h e n - w h e n - I- " b l us h i n g f a i n t l y ,
My r a e n d e d t h e s e n t e n c e w i t h a n e r v o us l a ug h .
" Y e s , Ir e me mb e r
. Y o uw e r e f e e l i n g r a t h e r o v e r -
w r o ug h t . Go o n , My r a . "
"
A n d y o ur e me mb e r t o o t h a t w e h e a r d a b i r d i n t h e
b us h e s b e h i n d t h e s umme r - h o us e ? "
K a v a n a g h n o d d e d .
" We l l , t h a t b i r d w a s Iz z y ! " s a i d My r a , l a ug h i n g
t h i s t i me o ut r i g h t . Th e l i t t l e w r e t c h h a d f o l l o w e d
us o ut i n t o t h e g a r d e n a n d w a s h i d i n g b e h i n d t h e
s umme r - h o us e , w h e r e h e h e a r d t h e w h o l e o f o ur
c o n v e r s a t i o n . J us t t h e s o r t o f s n e a ky t h i n g Iz z y w o ul d
d o ! S o y o uc a n i ma g i n e h e ' s n o l o v e f o r y o u, Te r e n c e
.
Y o us e e , "s h e w e n t o n , t ur n i n g t o Br a n d o n , " i t h a d
b e e n a r r a n g e d Is h o ul d ma r r y
Iz z y , a n d w h a t h e h e a r d
t h a t n i g h t s h o w e d h i mw h a t If e l t a b o ut t h e q ue s t i o n .
A n d n o w h e h a t e s Te r e n c e w i t h a d e a d l y h a t r e d .

Ha s h e g o t a t w o - s e a t e r Be n t l e y ? "K a v a n a g h
e n q ui r e d w i t h a p p a r e n t i r r e l e v a n c e .

Y e s . Wh y d o y o ua s k
? "

On l y b e c a us e a c a r o f t h a t ma ke n e a r l y r a n me
d o w n a s Iw a s w a l ki n g h o me t h a t e v e n i n g . "
" A h , I' l l b e t i t w a s Iz z y ' s 1 Hi s c a r i s a Be n t l e y .
C OS MOS

2 5 1
He w a s d r i v i n g h i ms e l f , Ir e me mb e r , t h a t e v e n i n g , a n d
h e l e f t d i r e c t l y a f t e r y o ud i d .
Oh 1 " My r a a d d e d
un c o n t r o l l a b l y , "
i f o n l y w e c o ul d g e t Iz z y a r r e s t e d ! "
On c e s a f e i n g a o l , s h e w a s e v i d e n t l y r e f l e c t i n g , a n y
ma t r i mo n i a l i n t e n t i o n s o n t h e p a r t o f Is i d o r e w o ul d b e
e f f e c t ua l l y t h w a r t e d .

Id o n ' t kn o w w h a t w e c o ul d g e t h i mo n , "K a v a n -
a g h s a i d me d i t a t i v e l y .
" If w e c o ul d t r a c kh i mt o s o me C o mmun i s t h a un t , "
My r a b e g a n . Th e n f umb l i n g i n h e r g o l d b a g s h e d r e w
o ut a s c r a p o f v e r y c r ump l e d p a p e r
. " Iw o n d e r
w h e t h e r t h i s me a n s a n y t h i n g ? " s h e s a i d , h a n d i n g i t
t o K a v a n a g h . " It f e l l o ut o f Iz z y ' s p o c ke t t h e o t h e r
d a y , a n d Ip i c ke d i t up . It h o ug h t i t mi g h t b e us e f ul . "
K a v a n a g h r e a d i t a n d p a s s e d i t o n t o Br a n d o n
.
On l y t h e s e w o r d s w e r e w r i t t e n o n i t
" C o s mo s :[ i o ' c l o c k . "

But t h e r e ' s s o me t h i n g o n t h e o t h e r s i d e , "s a i d


My r a .
Br a n d o n t ur n e d i t o v e r a n d r e a d :"' Th e n i g h t i s
f i n e . A n d t h e s t a r s a r e s h i n i n g
. ' Wh a t o n e a r t h c a n
t h a t me a n
? "

Od d , "s a i d K a v a n a g h . " Y o u' v e n o i d e a w h a t


C o s mo s i s , My r a ? Is i t a p e r s o n o r a p l a c e ? "

Ih a v e n ' t a n o t i o n . "
It mi g h t b e Iz z y ' s b a r b e r , "Br a n d o n s ug g e s t e d
w i t h a l a ug h . " A n y h o w , l e t ' s l o o kup t h e n a me i n t h e
Te l e p h o n e Di r e c t o r y . "
But n o C o s mo s w a s r e g i s t e r e d i n i t s c o l umn s
.
If i t ' s a p l a c e , i t ' s e v i d e n t l y n o t a r e s o r t t h a t
w a n t s t o a d v e r t i s e i t s e x i s t e n c e , "s a i d Br a n d o n ,
a d d i n g :" Wh i c h ma ke s i t a l l t h e mo r e i n t e r e s t i n g . "
2 5 2

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
"A n d t h e r e f o r e w o r t h f o l l o w i n g up , "s a i d K a v a n -
a g h . " I' l l d o a l l Ic a n , My r a . "
He w a s c a r e f ul t o us e t h e f i r s t p e r s o n s i n g ul a r . It
w o ul d b e i mp r ud e n t t o l e t t h e g i r l kn o w o f Br a n d o n ' s
a c t i v i t i e s o ut s i d e h i s s t ud i o .
My r a , n o w e v i d e n t l y r e s t o r e d t o h e r n o r ma l c h e e r -
f ul n e s s , r o s e t o g o . Th e t h o ug h t o f g e t t i n g a l i n e o n
Iz z y s e e me d t o e x h i l a r a t e h e r .
" I' ms o g l a d y o u' l l d o s o me t h i n g , "s h e s a i d , p ul l i n g
h e r mi n kc o a t a r o un d h e r s h o ul d e r s .
"A n d i f y o uc o ul d f i n d o ut a l i t t l e mo r e a b o ut t h e
Zo d i a c , "Br a n d o n s a i d w i t h w e l l - a f f e c t e d d e t a c h me n t ,
i t mi g h t p e r h a p s b e us e f ul . "
If o n l y Ic o ul d g e t h o l d o f t h a t l i s t ! " My r a
a n s w e r e d , l o o ki n g e n q ui r i n g l y a t K a v a n a g h . " Do
y o ut h i n kt h a t w o ul d h e l p , Te r e n c e ? "
He l p ? Is h o ul d t h i n ki t w o ul d h e l p ! " A n d l e s s
c a ut i o us t h a n Br a n d o n , K a v a n a g h p ut h i s h a n d o n
My r a ' s s h o ul d e r a n d s a i d i mp r e s s i v e l y :" My r a , y o u
mus t d o y o ur l e v e l b e s t t o g e t t h a t p a p e r ! "
He h a d g a ug e d t h e g i r l ' s p s y c h o l o g y b e t t e r t h a n
Br a n d o n , kn o w i n g a s Br a n d o n d i d n o t , t h e e mo t i o n s
h e h a d s t i r r e d i n h e r h e a r t . Fo r K a v a n a g h ' s s a ke s h e
w a s r e a d y t o d o a n d d a r e a n y t h i n g .
" V e r y w e l l , Te r e n c e , i f y o us a y s o , I' l l g e t i t - b y
f a i r me a n s o r f o ul . " He r e y e s f l a s h e d w i t h d e t e r mi n a -
t i o n . A n d p r e s s i n g K a v a n a g h ' s h a n d s h e mo v e d t o
t h e d o o r .
It ' s a n ug l y b us i n e s s , "Br a n d o n s a i d a f t e r t h e
f l a t d o o r h a d c l o s e d b e h i n d h e r . " I' ma f r a i d o l d
Gr e e n w o r t h y ' s f o r i t . Th e o r d e r s o f t h e Zo d i a c a r e
n o t t o b e l i g h t l y d i s o b e y e d . "

If o n l y w e c o ul d g e t Is i d o r e r o un d e d up , "s a i d
K a v a n a g h ,
" w e mi g h t p ut a s p o ke i n t h e i r w h e e l . I
C OS MOS

2 5 3
h a v e a f e e l i n g t h a t i f t h e r e ' s a n y d i r t y w o r kt o b e d o n e ,
h e ' s t h e ma n f o r i t . "
" Y e s . A n d t h e f i r s t s t e p i s t o f i n d o ut w h o o r
w h a t i s C o s mo s . I' l l g e t o n t o t h a t s t r a i g h t a w a y
. "
Dur i n g t h e c o ur s e o f h i s " d o ub l e l i f e "Br a n d o n
h a d h a d o c c a s i o n t o ma ke ma n y s t r a n g e f r i e n d s i n a l l
w a l ks o f l i f e .
Ne w s p a p e r b o y s , f l o w e r - s e l l e r s , r a g a n d
b o n e me n , h a d a l l i n t ur n s e r v e d t h e i r p ur p o s e w h e n
i n f o r ma t i o n w a s t o b e g l e a n e d f r o mt h e c i r c l e s i n w h i c h
t h e y mo v e d , a n d n o n e o f t h e mw o ul d h a v e r e c o g n i s e d
i n C a p t a i n Br a n d o n , t h e s o c i e t y p o r t r a i t p a i n t e r , t h e
o d d - l o o ki n g ma n i n t h e d i r t y f e l t h a t a n d s h a b b y
o v e r c o a t w h o h a d e n t e r e d i n t o c o n v e r s a t i o n w i t h t h e m
a t s t r e e t c o r n e r s o r a t t h e b a r i n p ub l i c - h o us e s
. S o me
o f t h e md o ub t l e s s s us p e c t e d t h e f e l l o w w a s a p o l i c e
"n a r k, "o r i n t h e e mp l o y o f s o me d e t e c t i v e a g e n c y ,
b ut t h e h a l f - c r o w n s t h a t h e f i s h e d o ut o f h i s t r o us e r
p o c ke t w e r e a l w a y s w e l c o me , a n d n o q ue s t i o n s n e e d
b e a s ke d a s t o t h e us e ma d e o f t h e n e w s t h e y s up p l i e d .
In t h i s w a y Br a n d o n h a d c o l l e c t e d a s ma l l a r my o f
i n v e s t i g a t o r s up o n w h o mh e c o ul d d e p e n d w h e n a n y -
t h i n g i n w h a t i s kn o w n a s " l o w l i f e " h a d t o b e d i s -
c o v e r e d .
On e o f t h e s t r a n g e s t o f t h i s a r my w a s S a l l y Wi c ks .
Br a n d o n h a d ma d e h e r a c q ua i n t a n c e s o me y e a r s a g o
w h e n , g o i n g a l o n g o n e o f t h e b y - s t r e e t s o ut o f S h a f t e s -
b ur y A v e n ue l a t e a t n i g h t , h e c a me up o n a b r a w l
g o i n g o n o ut s i d e t h e d o o r o f a p ub l i c - h o us e . Th e
c e n t r a l f i g ur e , a g i r l w h o s e p r o f e s s i o n w a s c l e a r l y
s t a mp e d o n h e r f a c e , w a s s h r i n ki n g b a c ki n t e r r o r f r o m
t h e a d v a n c e s o f a h a l f - c a s t e , o b v i o us l y d r un k, w h o
r e e l e d b e f o r e h e r o n t h e p a v e me n t , w h i l s t a s ma l l
c r o w d s t o o d r o un d a n d j e e r e d . Br a n d o n , p us h i n g h i s
2 5 4

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
w a y a mo n g s t t h e m, h a d t a ke n i n t h e s i t ua t i o n a t a
g l a n c e a n d r e s c ue d t h e w r e t c h e d w o ma n f r o mh e r
t o r me n t o r .
A f t e r t h a t n i g h t h e h a d o f t e n p a s s e d h e r
i n t h e s t r e e t , w h e n s h e n e v e r f a i l e d t o g i v e h i ma w a n
s mi l e a n d w o r d o f g r e e t i n g
. On e e v e n i n g , mo v e d b y
p i t y , h e h a d t a ke n S a l l y i n t o a n It a l i a n r e s t a ur a n t a n d
g i v e n h e r a me a l
. Th e w a r mt h o f t h e p l a c e a n d
h uma n s y mp a t h y l o o s e d h e r t o n g ue , a n d s h e t a l ke d o f
h e r l i f e , h e r t r o ub l e s , a n d w h a t mi g h t h a v e b e e n , f o r
s h e h a d o n c e h a d v i s i o n s o f b e t t e r t h i n g s
. S h e h a d h e r
l o y a l t i e s , t o o .
In t h e c o ur s e o f f ur t h e r me e t i n g s Br a n d o n d i s -
c o v e r e d t h a t t h e R o y a l Fa mi l y o c c up i e d a p e c ul i a r
p l a c e i n h e r a f f e c t i o n s . He h a d c o me up o n h e r d ur i n g
t h e K i n g ' s i l l n e s s i n 1 9 2 9 , s t a n d i n g i n t h e c r o w d a r o un d
Buc ki n g h a mPa l a c e w i t h t h e t e a r s w e l l i n g b e t w e e n
h e r b l a c ke n e d e y e l i d s a n d ma ki n g g r i my c h a n n e l s i n t h e
r o ug e o f h e r c h e e ks . Th i s s ug g e s t e d p o s s i b i l i t i e s , a n d
Br a n d o n t o o kt o e mp l o y i n g h e r f o r l i t t l e j o b s . Ow i n g
t o t h e f a c t t h a t s h e l o o ke d s o p l a i n l y w h a t s h e w a s s h e
c o ul d p e n e t r a t e i n t o p l a c e s w h e r e a r e s p e c t a b l e w o ma n
w o ul d b e r e g a r d e d w i t h s us p i c i o n a n d w h e r e us e f ul
i n f o r ma t i o n w a s s o me t i me s t o b e o b t a i n e d . Br a n d o n
f o un d h e c o ul d t r us t h e r t o o , a n d , t h o ug h h e r e ma i n e d
Mr . Pe t e r s t o h e r , s h e b e c a me o n e o f t h e f e w t o w h o mh e
d i s c l o s e d s o me t h i n g o f t h e t r ue n a t ur e o f h i s i n v e s t i g a -
t i o n s . C o mmun i s mi n i t s e l f me a n t n o t h i n g t o h e r , b ut
t h e i n s ul t s t o t h e R o y a l Fa mi l y ut t e r e d b y C o mmun i s t
o r a t o r s r o us e d h e r t o f ur y a n d n e r v e d h e r t o un d e r t a ke
a n y e n t e r p r i s e f o r t h e i r un d o i n g , h o w e v e r h a z a r d o us .
Th e mo n e y s h e e a r n e d i n t h i s w a y c o un t e d f o r l i t t l e
c o mp a r e d t o t h e g l o r y o f f e e l i n g s h e w a s w o r ki n g f o r t h e
K i n g .
A d a y o r t w o a f t e r My r a ' s v i s i t t o K a v a n a g h ' s f l a t ,
C OS MOS

2 5 5
Br a n d o n , c r o s s i n g Pi c c a d i l l y C i r c us t o w a r d s mi d n i g h t ,
f o un d h i ms e l f f a c e t o f a c e w i t h S a l l y Wi c ks
.
" S a l l y , "h e s a i d , " w o ul d y o ul i ke t o d o a j o b o f
w o r k ? "

Wo ul d n ' t Ij us t ? A n y t h i n g t o d o w i t h t h o s e
b . R e d s ? "
Y e s . Iw a n t y o ut o f i n d o ut , i f y o uc a n , w h o o r
w h a t i s ` C o s mo s
. '
He r e , I' l l w r i t e i t d o w n f o r y o u
. "
A n d h e h a n d e d h e r a s l i p o f p a p e r
.
S a l l y l o o ke d a t i t a n d s c r e w e d up h e r n o s e .

S o un d s n a s t y , d o n ' t i t , d e a r i e ? Ho w d o Is e t t o
w o r k ? "
Be t t e r d r o p i n f o r a me a l a t s o me o f t h e s ma l l
r e s t a ur a n t s i n S o h o , a n d s e e i f y o uc a n p i c kup a n y -
t h i n g , "Br a n d o n s a i d , s l i p p i n g a p o un d n o t e i n t o h e r
h a n d .

R i g h t - o . I' l l s e e w h a t Ic a n d o , Mr . Pe t e r s .
S a me a d d r e s s a s us ua l ? "
A n d w i t h a n o d s h e d i s a p p e a r e d i n t o t h e c r o w d .
Th e a d d r e s s w a s t h a t o f R i g b y ' s s i s t e r , w h o ke p t a
s ma l l s w e e t s h o p i n C h e l s e a . Fo ur d a y s l a t e r a l e t t e r
d ul y a r r i v e d t h e r e a d d r e s s e d t o Mr . Pe t e r s i n S a l l y ' s
s p r a w l i n g h a n d . It w a s s h o r t a n d t o t h e p o i n t

I' v e f o un d o ut w h a t i t i s . It s a r e s t a r r o n g . Do n ' t
kn o w w h e r e y e t b ut h o p e t o s o o n . I' l l b e b y t h e Pa l a c e
t o mo r r o w e v e n i n g a t s e v e n . "
Br a n d o n , i mp a t i e n t f o r f ur t h e r n e w s , ke p t t h e
r e n d e z v o us i n S h a f t e s b ur y A v e n ue . S a l l y , h e r f a c e
a g l o w w i t h t r i ump h , w a s w a i t i n g f o r h i m .
It ' s i n Po n d S t r e e t . Go t i t o ut o f a w a i t e r a t
Bo n i n o ' s , w h e r e Id r o p p e d i n l a s t n i g h t . S p a n i a r d h e
w a s , Is h o ul d s a y ; s e e me d a c h a t t y s o r t o f f e l l o w , s o I
2 5 6

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
j us t s a i d : ` K n o w C o s mo s ? ' Lo o ke d a b i t q ue e r , t o l d
me w h e r e i t w a s .
S o It h o ug h t I' d s t e p t h a t w a y a n d
h a v e a l o o k . Th e r e i t w a s l a r g e a s l i f e . "
"
Wh a t ' s i t l i ke ? "

Oh , a b e a s t l y h o l e ! "S a l l y s a i d , ma ki n g a f a c e .
"
We l l , i f y o ud o n ' t mi n d , It h i n kw e ' l l g o
, a n d h a v e
a me a l t h e r e . "

R i g h t - o
.
Th i s e v e n i n g ? "

Y e s , I' l l b e b a c kh e r e a t e l e v e n . "
A t t h e a p p o i n t e d h o ur Br a n d o n , i n t h e g ui s e o f a
Ge r ma n C o mmun i s t , j o i n e d S a l l y n e a r t h e Pa l a c e a n d
f o l l o w e d a s s h e l e d t h e w a y t o Po n d S t r e e t . A f t e r
p a s s i n g a s ma l l K o s h e r r e s t a ur a n t t h e y c a me t o a
s i g n w i t h t h e w o r d s " C a f e C o s mo s " w r i t t e n i n s ma l l
l e t t e r i n g o v e r a c i r c l e w i t h a p o i n t i n t h e mi d d l e .
Op e n i n g t h e d o o r t h e y e n t e r e d a l o n g r o o mw i t h
n o t a b l e s b ut a b a r a t t h e e n d , b e h i n d w h i c h s a t a ma n
o f s w a r t h y a p p e a r a n c e s mo ki n g a t h i n S p a n i s h c i g a r
a n d r e a d i n g t h e Mo s c o w Ne w s . Put t i n g d o w n t h e
p a p e r h e l o o ke d a t t h e n e w a r r i v a l s e n q ui r i n g l y a n d
n o t w i t h o ut s us p i c i o n
.

Go o d e v e n i n g , c o mr a d e , "s a i d Br a n d o n , s p e a ki n g
En g l i s h w i t h a w e l l - a s s ume d Ge r ma n a c c e n t .
Th e ma n a t t h e d e s kr e t ur n e d t h e g r e e t i n g g r uf f l y
a n d t h e n a d d e d a s i f e x p e c t i n g a r e p l y
Th e n i g h t i s f i n e . "
Wh e r e h a d Br a n d o n h e a r d t h e s e w o r d s r e c e n t l y ?
S ud d e n l y r e me mb e r i n g t h e n o t e o n Iz z y ' s s c r a p o f
p a p e r , h e a n s w e r e d w i t h o n l y a n i n s t a n t ' s h e s i t a -
t i o n
" A n d t h e s t a r s a r e s h i n i n g . "
" Th a t w a s l a s t w e e k, "s a i d t h e ma n a t t h e d e s k
.
" Wh e r e a r e y o uf r o m ? "
" Fr o mHa mb ur g . Th e c o mr a d e s t h e r e t o l d me I
C OS MOS 2 5 7
s h o ul d b e w e l c o me h e r e . " A n d Br a n d o n p r o d uc e d a
c a r d o f me mb e r s h i p t o t h e K . P. D . i n t h e n a me o f Ot t o
S c h mi d t .
Th e ma n l o o ke d r e a s s ur e d .
" Go o d . But t h e y s h o ul d h a v e ke p t y o uup t o d a t e .
A n d y o ur c o mp a n i o n ? "
" A n En g l i s h w o ma n . A f r i e n d , b ut n o t y e t o n e o f
o ur s . "
" Th e n s h e c a n ' t c o me i n
. "
Br a n d o n l o o ke d a t S a l l y , w h o i mme d i a t e l y un d e r -
s t o o d .
" A l l r i g h t , "s h e s a i d , n o d d i n g . " Go o d n i g h t , Mr .
S c h mi d t , s e e y o ua n o t h e r e v e n i n g . "A n d mo v i n g t o
t h e d o o r , s h e w e n t o ut i n t o t h e s t r e e t .
" Y o uc a n g o t h r o ug h n o w , c o mr a d e , "s a i d t h e ma n ,
j e r ki n g h i s h e a d i n t h e d i r e c t i o n o f a d o o r a t t h e s i d e o f
t h e d e s k .
Br a n d o n e n t e r e d a n d f o un d h i ms e l f i n a b a c kr o o m,
w h e r e s o me d o z e n me n a n d w o me n w e r e s e a t e d a t
s ma l l t a b l e s e v i d e n t l y mo r e e n g r o s s e d i n c o n v e r s a t i o n
t h a n i n t h e me a g r e r e f r e s h me n t s p l a c e d b e f o r e t h e mb y
a g i r l w i t h s h o r t b l a c kh a i r b r us h e d s t r a i g h t b a c kf r o m
h e r f o r e h e a d , w e a r i n g a g r e a s y s c a r l e t b l o us e .
Th e a s s e mb l e d c o mp a n y l o o ke d a t Br a n d o n
e n q ui r i n g l y a s h e s a t d o w n a t a n e mp t y t a b l e i n t h e
c o me r a n d a s ke d f o r a g l a s s o f v o d ka .
A f t e r a mo me n t ' s s i l e n c e t h e c o n v e r s a t i o n w a s
r e s ume d a g a i n i n l o w v o i c e s a n d i n a v a r i e t y o f l a n -
g ua g e s - S p a n i s h , Ge r ma n , Y i d d i s h , a n d R us s i a n .
Br a n d o n c o ul d c a t c h o n l y a f e w w o r d s h e r e a n d t h e r e -
" c a p i t a l i s m- t h e b o ur g e o i s - t o v a r i s c h , "t h e us ua l
p h r a s e o l o g y o f C o mmun i s m .
"
Y o ua r e a s t r a n g e r , "s a i d t h e g i r l i n t h e r e d b l o us e ,
p ut t i n g t h e v o d ka d o w n b e f o r e Br a n d o n , a n d h e f e l t
I7
2 5 8

THE S EC R ET OFTHEZODIA C
t h a t t h e r e s t o f t h e c o mp a n y w e r e l i s t e n i n g f o r h i s
r e p l y .
"
Y e s , Ih a v e o n l y j us t a r r i v e d i n Lo n d o n
. I' m
f r o mHa mb ur g . "
" A c h s o ? "
s a i d a ma n s i t t i n g n e a r h i m . " A n d
h o w a r e t h i n g s g o i n g t h e r e ? "
Ba d l y , "a n s w e r e d Br a n d o n b r i e f l y
. Fo r t h e
mo me n t , h e d e c i d e d , t h e l e s s h e s a i d t h e b e t t e r
.
Th e ma n , a f t e r a f e w d e s ul t o r y r e ma r ks , t ur n e d a g a i n
t o h i s c o mp a n i o n s , l e a v i n g Br a n d o n t o c o n s ume h i s
v o d ka i n s i l e n c e . A f t e r a w h i l e h e g o t up a n d w e n t o ut
.
Th e e v e n i n g h a d y i e l d e d l i t t l e , b ut o n e v i s i t c o ul d n o t
b e e x p e c t e d t o l e a d t o a n y t h i n g o f i n t e r e s t . It w a s
e v i d e n t l y n e c e s s a r y t o b e c o me a n h a b i t ue
.
" On e c a n c o me a g a i n , c o mr a d e
? " h e s a i d , a s h e
w e n t o ut t o t h e ma n a t t h e d e s k, w h o n o d d e d a s s e n t .
A f t e r t h i s Br a n d o n t o o kt o , d r o p p i n g i n e v e r y f e w
n i g h t s a n d w a s s o o n o n f r i e n d l y t h o ug h n o t c o n -
f i d e n t i a l t e r ms w i t h h i s n e i g h b o ur s .
No l o n g e r
c ur i o us a s t o h i s i d e n t i t y , t h e y s e e me d t o h a v e d e c i d e d
t h a t h e w a s a c o mr a d e o f l i t t l e i mp o r t a n c e
. But t h e i r
v o i c e s w e r e n o w r a i s e d a t mo me n t s s o t h a t Br a n d o n
c o ul d c a t c h i n t e r e s t i n g f r a g me n t s o f c o n v e r s a t i o n
.
"
But t h e En g l i s h , w h a t c a n o n e d o w i t h t h e m?
"
s a i d o n e i n Y i d d i s h . " A w o o d e n - h e a d e d r a c e
. Th e y
w i l l n e v e r ma ke a r e v o l ut i o n . "
" No , "s a i d a n o t h e r ,
" t h a t i s w h y w e ' v e g o t t o ma ke
i t f o r t h e m . By t h e s p r i n g y o u' l l s e e - t h i n g s w i l l
b e g i n t o h a p p e n - "a n d t h e s p e a ke r ' s v o i c e s a n ki n t o
a w h i s p e r .
A n o t h e r t i me a d i s c us s i o n w a s t a ki n g p l a c e i n
R us s i a n . " But We l s ky , h e i s t h e i r ma s c o t , "s a i d a
v o i c e , a n d Br a n d o n l i s t e n e d w i t h a l l h i s e a r s , f o r
" Pr i n z We l s ky "
i s R us s i a n f o r t h e Pr i n c e o f Wa l e s
.
C OS MOS

2 5 9
A g a i n t h e c o n v e r s a t i o n b e c a me i n a ud i b l e . Th e n
s o me o n e s a i d i n a l o ud e r t o n e : But , Ma n g i n , t h a t w a s
s i mp l e , h e a t t e n d e d a b a n q ue t . "
Of w h a t f o l l o w e d o n l y o n e w o r d c o ul d b e h e a r d .
Th a t w o r d w a s " p n e umo n i a . "Br a n d o n d ul y n o t e d i t
o n t h e t a b l e t s o f h i s me mo r y .
On e e v e n i n g a c ur i o us i n c i d e n t o c c ur r e d . A g r o up
o f f i v e me n o c c up y i n g a t a b l e i n t h e c o me r h a d b e e n
d o i n g t h e ms e l v e s b e t t e r t h a n us ua l a n d w e r e t a l ki n g
w i t h un a c c us t o me d f r e e d o mi n Y i d d i s h . S ud d e n l y
o n e o f t h e mp ut o n h i s h a t a n d b e g a n t o mut t e r w h a t
s o un d e d l i ke a p r a y e r i n a l a n g ua g e un kn o w n t o
Br a n d o n .
"
But s ur e l y , J a ko v , "s a i d a y o un g ma n - a n e w -
c o me r - i n e v i d e n t s ur p r i s e ,
" a s a C o mmun i s t y o ud o
n o t b e l i e v e i n r e l i g i o n ? Th e n w h y d o y o ur e c i t e t h e
S c h e ma ? "
" Y o uf o o l , "r e t o r t e d t h e o t h e r , " w h a t i s C o mmun -
i s mt o us ? Do n ' t y o ukn o w i t i s o n l y t h e me a n s b y
w h i c h w e me a n t o a t t a i n t h e ma s t e r y o f t h e w o r l d ? "
Th e o t h e r s n o d d e d a s s e n t , a n d t h e y o un g ma n r e -
l a p s e d i n t o s i l e n c e .
Tw o p o i n t s Br a n d o n r e ma r ke d a s o f p a r t i c ul a r i n -
t e r e s t . On e w a s t h a t n o n e o f t h e l e a d e r s o f t h e Br i t i s h
C o mmun i s t Pa r t y w i t h w h o s e f a c e s h e w a s p e r f e c t l y
f a mi l i a r w e r e t o b e s e e n h e r e . Ev i d e n t l y t h e y w e r e n o t
i n t h e i n n e r c o un c i l s o f t h e mo v e me n t - "Dumm-
ko p f e "h e h e a r d t h e mo n c e r e f e r r e d t o i n t h e c o ur s e o f
a c o n v e r s a t i o n .
Th e s e c o n d p o i n t w a s t h a t t h e p h r a s e o l o g y e mp l o y e d
b y t h e s e p e o p l e h a d n o t h i n g o f t h e o c c ul t r i n g n o t i c e -
a b l e i n t h e c o r r e s p o n d e n c e h e h a d g o n e t h r o ug h a t
Bo g a z z o
. Th e Zo d i a c w a s n e v e r me n t i o n e d , n o r w e r e
a n y c l a s s i c a l p s e ud o n y ms e mp l o y e d ; t h e l a n g ua g e , i n
2 6 o

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
f a c t , w a s t h a t o f p ur e C o mmun i s m . Br a n d o n j ud g e d
t h a t t h e s e p e o p l e f o r me d a n i n n e r c i r c l e f o r c a r r y i n g o ut
t h e d i c t a t e s o f Mo s c o w , b ut w e r e s o me w a y r e mo v e d
f r o mt h e Hi d d e n C h i e f s w h o c o mp o s e d t h e s e c r e t i n n e r
r i n g o f t h e w o r l d mo v e me n t .
Me a n w h i l e , n o t a s i g n h a d b e e n s e e n o f t h e ma i n
o b j e c t o f Br a n d o n ' s s e a r c h - Is i d o r e Fr a n kl i n
.
Br a n -
d o n b e g a n t o w o n d e r i f h e h a d f a i l e d t o r e c o g n i s e h i m,
f o r h e h a d o n l y me t h i mo n c e a t a d i n n e r - p a r t y c a r e f ul l y
g r o o me d w i t h h i g h l y p o l i s h e d h a i r a n d i n s ma r t b l a c k
e v e n i n g c l o t h e s , a s h i r t f r o n t s t r a i g h t f r o mt h e R ue d e l a
Pa i x , a n d a l a r g e c a b o c h o n r ub y g l e a mi n g o n h i s l i t t l e
f i n g e r . Th i s w a s c e r t a i n l y n o t t h e g e t - up i n w h i c h h e
w o ul d b e l i ke l y t o v i s i t C o s mo s , a n d Br a n d o n ke p t h i s
e y e s o p e n f o r a c a mo uf l a g e d e d i t i o n o f t h a t e n t e r p r i s i n g
y o un g ma n . Th e n o n e n i g h t w h e n Br a n d o n h a d s t a y e d
l a t e r t h a n us ua l a n d w a s p r e p a r i n g t o g e t up f r o mh i s
t a b l e i n a c o me r o f t h e r o o m, t h e d o o r o p e n e d , . a n d a
n e w c o mr a d e " e n t e r e d . Th i s t i me t h e r e c o ul d b e
n o d o ub t i t w a s " Iz z y , "i n s p i t e o f t h e s h a b b y b l a c k
c o a t , t h e v o l umi n o us r e d t i e , t h e f e l t h a t w e l l p ul l e d
d o w n t o h i s e y e s , w h i c h w e r e c o n c e a l e d b y a p a i r o f
t h i c kb l a c ks p e c t a c l e s . It w a s c e r t a i n l y n o t t h e s p r uc e
a n d o p ul e n t Iz z y o f We s t - En d d i n n e r - t a b l e s , b ut i t w a s
Iz z y a l l t h e s a me , a n d o n t h e l i t t l e f i n g e r o f h i s r i g h t
h a n d h e s t i l l w o r e t h e l a r g e c a b o c h o n r ub y .
Hi s e n t r a n c e a p p e a r e d t o c r e a t e n o s ma l l s t i r a mo n g s t
t h e h a b i t u6 s o f C o s mo s , f o r s e v e r a l r o s e r e s p e c t f ul l y a n d
ma d e r o o mf o r h i ma t a t a b l e .
" Th i n g s a r e g o i n g w e l l , "h e s a i d i n Ge r ma n , s i t t i n g
d o w n w i t h h i s b a c kt o Br a n d o n , w h o , f r o mt h e mo v e -
me n t o f h i s s h o ul d e r s , g ue s s e d t h a t h e w a s t a ki n g s o me -
t h i n g f r o ma n i n n e r p o c ke t o f h i s c o a t .
C OS MOS

2 6 1
Tur n i n g f r o mo n e t o a n o t h e r o f t h e g r o up , Iz z y s p o ke
i n s h o r t s h a r p s e n t e n c e s
"
Y o uh a v e w o r ke d w e l l , R e ub e n A a r o n o v i t c h , "o r
"Y a s h a J i d o v s ki , y o ur w o r kh a s n o t b e e n e n t i r e l y
s a t i s f a c t o r y .
Y o umus t s h o w mo r e e n e r g y i n f ut ur e . "
A n d s o o n .
" He i s d i s t r i b ut i n g mo n e y , "Br a n d o n s a i d t o h i ms e l f ,
t h o ug h t h e s h o ul d e r s o f t h e g r o up w e r e p r e s s e d t o o
c l o s e l y t o g e t h e r f o r h i mt o s e e w h a t w a s t a ki n g p l a c e
o n t h e t a b l e .
Ea c h ma n r e c e i v e d Iz z y ' s r e ma r ks a n d ,
p r e s uma b l y , t h e n o t e s h a n d e d t o h i m, h umb l y a s c o m-
i n g f r o ma s up e r i o r , t h o ug h o n e o r t w o g r umb l e d a b o ut
t h e d i f f i c ul t y o f ma ki n g h e a d w a y h e r e
.
"
Wh a t c a n o n e d o i n Lo n d o n , t h e s t r o n g h o l d o f
C a p i t a l i s m ? " s a i d o n e , l o ud e r t h a n t h e r e s t
.
Br a n d o n s i p p e d h i s v o d ka t h o ug h t f ul l y .
S o Iz z y
w a s t h e i n t e r me d i a r y b e t w e e n t h e Zo d i a c a n d t h e i n n e r
c i r c l e o f t h e f o r e i g n C o mmun i s t s i n Lo n d o n , p a s s i n g o n
t o t h e mt h e f un d s p r o v i d e d b y t h a t my s t e r i o us s o ur c e
o f w e a l t h w h i c h f i n a n c e d a l l p h a s e s o f t h e w o r l d mo v e -
me n t i n t ur n .
A t t h i s mo me n t Iz z y r o s e t o g o , a n d o n h i s w a y t o t h e
d o o r s p o t t e d Br a n d o n i n t h e f a r c o r n e r o f t h e r o o m .
" Wh o i s t h a t f e l l o w ? "
h e a s ke d , s t o p p i n g s ud d e n l y
w i t h a g e s t ur e i n Br a n d o n ' s d i r e c t i o n
.
"He i s a Ge r ma n c o mr a d e , "a n s w e r e d o n e o f t h e
g r o up . "
He c o me s h e r e o f t e n . "
"
Ha v e y o ua s ke d h i mf o r h i s p r o o f s ? "d e ma n d e d
Is i d o r e .
" Pe d r o a d mi t t e d h i m, s o h e mus t h a v e g i v e n t h e
w o r d . "
" We l l , l e t h i mg i v e i t n o w I Y o uh a v e f a r e d w e l l
? "
h e a d d e d , t ur n i n g t o Br a n d o n , a n d e v i d e n t l y w a i t i n g
f o r a r e p l y .
2 6 2

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
"
Ex c e l l e n t l y , "s a i d Br a n d o n , s a y i n g t h e f i r s t t h i n g
t h a t c a me i n t o h i s h e a d .
" Th a t i s n o t t h e a n s w e r . "
" But , c o mr a d e , Id i d n o t kn o w t h a t a n e w p a s s -
w o r d w a s n e c e s s a r y e a c h t i me o n e c a me h e r e . Iun d e r -
s t o o d t h a t a l l c o mr a d e s w e r e w e l c o me . "
" Of c o ur s e . But y o us h o ul d h a v e b e e n a b l e t o
a n s w e r t h a t , "s a i d Is i d o r e p e r e mp t o r i l y .
Br a n d o n w a s n o w c o mp l e t e l y a t a l o s s . Wi t h t h e
h i g h e r i n i t i a t e s s uc h a s Br i n kd o r f f a n d Os c a r Fr a n kl i n
i t h a d b e e n e a s i e r t o g e t o ut o f t h e s i t ua t i o n w i t h
ma s o n i c g r i p s a n d p a s s - w o r d s , b ut a t C o s mo s s o me t h i n g
e l s e w a s n e e d e d - e v i d e n t l y a p a s s - w o r d , t h a t w a s
c h a n g e d w e e kl y . He h a d n o t a n t i c i p a t e d t h i s s i t ua -
t i o n ; us ua l l y t h i s ki n d o f t e s t f o r me d t h e p r e l ud e t o
a d mi s s i o n , o n c e t h a t R ub i c o n h a d b e e n p a s s e d h e h a d
c o n c l ud e d t h a t n o d i r e c t c h a l l e n g e o f t h e ki n d w o ul d b e
o f f e r e d
. But Is i d o r e Fr a n kl i n w a s - e v i d e n t l y mo r e
v i g i l a n t t h a n h i s c o mp a n i o n s ; mo r e o v e r , t h e t r a n s a c -
t i o n s o f t h a t e v e n i n g d e ma n d e d g r e a t e r s e c r e c y t h a n
t h e d e s ul t o r y c o n v e r s a t i o n t h a t w e n t o n a t C o s mo s .
Br a n d o n ' s f a i l ur e t o g i v e t h e r e q ui r e d p a s s - w o r d t h e r e -
f o r e r o us e d h i mt o f ur i o us s us p i c i o n .
"
C a l l i n Pe d r o
! "h e . s a i d t o t h e c o mr a d e a t t h e d o o r .
Th e o r d e r w a s o b e y e d , a n d t h e s ul l e n b a r - ke e p e r
e n t e r e d t h e r o o m
.
"
Wh a t d i d y o ume a n b y a d mi t t i n g t h i s f e l l o w w i t h -
o ut t h e p r o p e r t e s t s ? " h e s a i d i n Ge r ma n .
"But h e a n s w e r e d n e a r l y r i g h t t h e f i r s t e v e n i n g .
A n d h e s h o w e d h i s c a r d o f me mb e r s h i p t o t h e
K . P. D . "
" Ne a r l y r i g h t i s n o t e n o ug h . A n d h e c a n n o t a n s w e r
n o w . S h o w y o ur c a r d o f me mb e r s h i p , "h e w e n t o n ,
t ur n i n g t o Br a n d o n , w h o p r o d uc e d i t f r o ma n i n n e r
p o c ke t .
C OS MOS

2 6 3
Is i d o r e l o o ke d a t i t c r i t i c a l l y .
"
Wh o kn o w s w h e t h e r t h i s i s g e n ui n e
?
Fo r a l l w e
c a n t e l l t h e f e l l o w i s a n i mp o s t o r , a s p y o f t h e Br i t i s h
S e c r e t S e r v i c e . Ho w e v e r , w e s h a l l s o o n f i n d o ut . He
w i l l a p p e a r b e f o r e t h e G . P. U . a n d p r o v e h i ms e l f - i f h e
i s a b l e . "
" De c i d e d l y t r o ub l e s o me , "Br a n d o n t h o ug h t t o h i m-
s e l f , f o r h e w e l l kn e w t h e i mp o s s i b i l i t y o f e s c a p i n g f r o m
t h e r o o mw i t h t h e s t e e l d o o r s w h i c h f o r me d t h e Lo n d o n
b r a n c h o f t h e C h e ka , n o w mo r e e up h o n i o us l y r e -
n a me d t h e G . P. U . De t e r mi n e d n o t t o b e c a p t ur e d
w i t h o ut a s t r ug g l e , h e ma d e a d a s h f o r t h e e x i t , b ut h a l f
a d o z e n me n c l o s e d a r o un d h i ma n d h e w a s o v e r -
p o w e r e d .
Is i d o r e s t o o d b y i s s ui n g h i s c o mma n d s
" Mo r r i s , p l a c e a g a g o v e r t h e f e l l o w ' s mo ut h .
R e ub e n , p i n i o n h i s a r ms b e h i n d h i s b a c ka n d l e a d h i m
t o t h e d o o r . My c a r i s w a i t i n g a l i t t l e f a r t h e r up t h e
s t r e e t . S ummo n Ma i mun t o c o me up t o t h e d o o r a n d
p us h h i mi n t o t h e c a r a s q ui c kl y a s p o s s i b l e
. "
Th e o r d e r w a s i n s t a n t l y o b e y e d . Br a n d o n f e l t h i m-
s e l f s e i z e d f r o mb e h i n d , h i s a r ms b o un d t i g h t l y w i t h a
l e a t h e r b e l t t h a t o n e o f t h e c o mr a d e s r e mo v e d f r o mh i s
o w n b o d y , a h a n d ke r c h i e f w a s s t uf f e d i n t o h i s mo ut h
a n d a n o t h e r t i e d a c r o s s i t a n d kn o t t e d a t t h e b a c ko f
h i s h e a d . Th e n h e w a s l e d t h r o ug h t h e b a r t o t h e
e n t r a n c e , w h e r e t h e c a r , d r i v e n b y Fr a n kl i n ' s n e g r o
c h a uf f e ur , w a i t e d .
But j us t a s h e w a s b e i n g h ur r i e d a c r o s s t h e p a v e me n t
a s ud d e n p a n d e mo n i uma r o s e , a n d Br a n d o n f o un d h i m-
s e l f t h e c e n t r e o f a s t r ug g l i n g c r o w d , b l o w s r a i n e d l i ke
h a i l o n t h e h e a d s o f h i s c a p t o r s , Is i d o r e d a s h e d t h r o ug h
t h e o p e n d o o r o f t h e c a r a n d w a s d r i v e n r a p i d l y a w a y
.
Th e n e x t mo me n t Br a n d o n f e l t h i s a r ms r e l e a s e d , t h e
2 6 4

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
g a g t o r n f r o mh i s mo ut h , f r i e n d l y h a n d s g r i p p e d h i s ,
w h i l s t S a l l y , w i t h h e r a r ms r o un d h i s n e c k, w a s ki s s i n g
h i ms o un d l y o n b o t h c h e e ks
.
Fr o mt h e mo me n t Br a n d o n h a d t a ke n t o f r e q ue n t i n g
C o s mo s , S a l l y h a d l i v e d i n a s t a t e o f a c ut e a n x i e t y .
" Mr . Pe t e r s , "t h e s t r a n g e ma n i n t h e s h a b b y o v e r c o a t
w a s w h a t t h e " C o n f e s s i o n Bo o ks
" c a l l e d h e r " g r e a t e s t
h e r o i n r e a l l i f e . "
No t o n l y h a d h e c o me t o h e r r e s c ue
t h a t n i g h t s e v e r a l y e a r s a g o l i ke t h e kn i g h t i n a s t o r y
b o o ks a v i n g a d a ms e l i n d i s t r e s s , b ut h e w a s t h e o n l y
ma n w h o h a d e v e r s h o w n h e r a n y h uma n s y mp a t h y
a n d g i v e n h e r h o n o ur a b l e w o r kt o d o , t h e w o r kt h a t
a b o v e a l l o t h e r r a i s e d h e r i n h e r o w n e y e s a s b e i n g p e r -
f o r me d i n t h e s e r v i c e o f t h e K i n g . If "
a n y t h i n g h a p -
p e n e d
" t o Mr . Pe t e r s a l l t h a t s i d e o f S a l l y ' s s o r d i d l i f e
w o ul d b e a t a n e n d .
A n d i n g o i n g a l o n e t o C o s mo s s h e
f e l t c o n v i n c e d t h a t h e w a s r un n i n g a t e r r i b l e r i s k
. In
v a i n s h e h a d b e g g e d h i mt o t a ke a c o mp a n i o n w i t h
h i m, b ut , a s h e h a d p o i n t e d o ut , n o o n e un p r o v i d e d
w i t h t h e n e c e s s a r y c r e d e n t i a l s w o ul d b e a b l e t o g a i n
a d mi t t a n c e . He a l o n e w a s c a p a b l e o f c a r r y i n g t h e
t h i n g t h r o ug h
. But S a l l y d e t e r mi n e d n o t t o l e a v e
t h i n g s t o c h a n c e .
If Mr . Pe t e r s w o ul d n o t t a ke c a r e o f
h i ms e l f s h e w o ul d s e e t o h i s s a f e t y
. It h a p p e n e d t h a t
s h e h a d
a l o v e r a mo n g s t t h e y o un g f i s h - p o r t e r s i n
Bi l l i n g s g a t e , s o me o f w h o mw e r e a s
l o y a l a s h e r s e l f .
Ha t r e d o f t h e a l i e n r a n h i g h i n t h e mi n d s o f t h e s e me n ,
a n d i t w a s a s a l i e n s t h a t t h e y l o a t h e d t h e C o mmun i s t s
w h o f r e q ue n t e d t h a t p a r t o f Lo n d o n .
It w a s t h e r e f o r e
t o Bi l l Ho d g e t t t h a t S a l l y c o n f i d e d h e r f e a r s f o r t h e
s a f e t y o f Mr
. Pe t e r s w h e n h e t o o kt o f r e q ue n t i n g C o s -
mo s , a n d t h us , un kn o w n t o Br a n d o n , e v e r y n i g h t t h a t
h e h a d s p e n t t h e r e , S a l l y w i t h Bi l l a n d s e v e r a l o f h i s
C OS MOS

2 6 5
h e f t i e s t ma t e s h a d w a n d e r e d r o un d t h e r e s t a ur a n t ,
ke e p i n g g ua r d o n t h e e n t r a n c e a n d n e v e r r e t ur n i n g
h o me un t i l t h e y h a d s e e n "Mr . Pe t e r s "
e me r g e s a f e l y
f r o mt h e d o o r w a y .
Bi l l a n d h i s b a n d w e r e t h e r e f o r e a l l r e a d y w h e n , o n
t h e f a t e f ul e v e n i n g Br a n d o n , g a g g e d a n d b o un d , w a s
s e e n i n t h e a c t o f b e i n g h us t l e d i n t o t h e w a i t i n g mo t o r
a n d t h e o p p o r t un i t y f o r a s c r a p w i t h t h e a l i e n R e d s
g a v e t h e mn o l e s s s a t i s f a c t i o n t h a n t h e r e s c ue o f S a l l y ' s
h e r o , Mr . Pe t e r s .
Th e y w o ul d h a v e l i ke d t o p ur s ue
t h e ma n d g e t i n a f e w mo r e p un c h e s a s b r ui s e d a n d
b a t t e r e d t h e y t o o kt o t h e i r h e e l s i n a l l d i r e c t i o n s , b ut a
w o r d f r o mBr a n d o n b r o ug h t t h e mt o a h a l t
. S o f a r t h e
w h o l e a f f a i r h a d h a p p e n e d s o q ui c kl y t h a t n e i t h e r t h e
p o l i c e n o r a c ur i o us c r o w d h a d b e e n a t t r a c t e d t o t h e
s p o t , a n d " Mr
. Pe t e r s , "h a v i n g t h a n ke d h i s r e s c ue r s
w i t h a w a r mh a n d s h a ke a l l r o un d a n d a
" Go o d n i g h t ,
S a l l y ; Go d b l e s s y o u, "w a s a b l e t o s l i p a w a y un o b s e r v e d
f r o mt h e s c e n e o f a c t i o n .
It w a s t h e p r o ud e s t mo me n t o f S a l l y ' s l i f e .
Th o s e
w o r d s " Go d b l e s s y o u
"e c h o e d i n h e r e a r s a s s h e ma d e
h e r w a y h o me w a r d s , w a l ki n g a s i f t o t h e s t r a i n s o f a
t r i ump h a l ma r c h .
On c e o ut o f d a n g e r , Br a n d o n , a s w a s h i s w o n t , p ut
h i s p e r s o n a l e x p e r i e n c e s a t C o s mo s o ut o f h i s mi n d , a n d
s e t t o w o r ko n t h e c l ue s h e h a d c o l l e c t e d t h e r e
. It w a s
n o t t i l l a w e e kl a t e r t h a t t h e c i r c ums t a n c e s o f h i s r e s c ue
w e r e s ud d e n l y r e c a l l e d t o h i s me mo r y
.
He h a d
e n t e r e d a t r a i n o n t h e Di s t r i c t R a i l w a y a n d p i c ke d
up t h e e v e n i n g p a p e r w h e n a s ma l l p a r a g r a p h c a ug h t
h i s e y e .
"
S a r a h Wi c ks , a g e d 2 7 , o f n o o c c up a t i o n , w a s f o un d
s t a b b e d t o t h e h e a r t l a s t n i g h t i n a p a s s a g e l e a d i n g o f f
2 6 6

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
Po n d S t r e e t , C o v e n t Ga r d e n . A y o un g R us s i a n ,
R e ub e n A a r o n s o h n , s e e n i n t h e v i c i n i t y , w a s d e t a i n e d
b y t h e p o l i c e , b ut r e l e a s e d f o r l a c ko f e v i d e n c e c o n -
n e c t i n g h i mw i t h t h e c r i me . Th e ma t t e r i s i n t h e h a n d s
o f S c o t l a n d Y a r d . "
Br a n d o n p ut d o w n t h e p a p e r w i t h a s p a s mo f i m-
p o t e n t f ur y a t t h e s e mi s e r a b l e t h i n g s b e i n g p o s s i b l e i n
a c i v i l i s e d c o un t r y . S o S a l l y h a d p a i d f o r h i s l i f e w i t h
h e r o w n 1 No t h i n g h a d e v e r t o uc h e d h i ms o p o i g -
n a n t l y i n t h e c o ur s e o f h i s a d v e n t ur o us c a r e e r .
C HA PTER XIII
A K ENS INGTONTR A GEDY
WHILS T t h e s e e v e n t s h a d b e e n t a ki n g p l a c e My r a w a s
p a s s i n g t h r o ug h a l t e r n a t i n g mo me n t s o f h o p e a n d d e s -
p a i r . He r f a t h e r ' s d e p r e s s i o n s e e me d t o b e g r o w i n g
d e e p e r , a n d s h e d r e a d e d h e mi g h t b e d r i v e n t o s o me
d e s p e r a t e d e e d . But a t t h e s a me t i me s h e h a d f a i t h i n
K a v a n a g h , f o r s h e w a s c o n v i n c e d t h a t Is i d o r e w a s i n
s o me w a y c o n n e c t e d w i t h t h e t r o ub l e w e i g h i n g o n h e r
f a t h e r ' s mi n d
;
o n c e Iz z y
h a d b e e n r o un d e d up s h e f e l t
t h e d a n g e r t h a t t h r e a t e n e d h i mw o ul d b e a v e r t e d
.
Me a n w h i l e , s h e h a d h e r o w n w o r kt o d o
. S h e c o ul d
s t i l l f e e l t h e t o uc h o f K a v a n a g h ' s h a n d o n h e r s h o ul d e r s
a n d h i s v o i c e , w i t h t h a t l i g h t s us p i c i o n o f a b r o g ue ,
s a y i n g :" My r a , y o umus t d o y o ur l e v e l b e s t t o g e t
t h a t p a p e r I " We l l , s h e w o ul d f i n d i t s h i d i n g - p l a c e -
s h o w w h a t s h e w a s a b l e t o d o f o r h i m, t h e n Te r e n c e
w o ul d l o v e h e r a n d a l l w o ul d b e w e l l .
On e e v e n i n g K a v a n a g h , s i t t i n g o v e r t h e f i r e i n h i s
r o o ms w i t h Br a n d o n , h e a r d t h e t e l e p h o n e b e l l r i n g a n d
t o o kup t h e r e c e i v e r . A s t a r t l e d l o o kc a me o v e r h i s
f a c e
.
"
Wh a t i s i t ? " s a i d Br a n d o n .
"A mo s t e x t r a o r d i n a r y s o un d - t h e s o un d o f l a b o ur e d
b r e a t h i n g - c o mi n g i n g a s p s - w h o i s i t ? " K a v a n a g h
s a i d q ui c kl y , s p e a ki n g i n t o t h e r e c e i v e r .
S t i l l t h e s a me g a s p i n g s o un d .
" Wh o i s i t ? " h e r e p e a t e d .
Th e n a v o i c e s a i d f a i n t l y
2 6 7
2 6 8

THE S EC R ET OF THE ZODIA C


"It ' s - i t ' s - My - My - My n a "
"My r a !
Wh a t ' s t h e ma t t e r ? "
A p a us e f o l l o w e d , t h e n t h e s a me g a s p i n g w h i s p e r
s a i d
"C o me - c o me - q ui c kl y
. I' m- d y i n g . "
Th e l a s t w o r d w a s a l mo s t i n a ud i b l e . Th e n c o mp l e t e
s i l e n c e f o l l o w e d .
" Go o d Lo r d ! "s a i d K a v a n a g h
. " Wh a t c a n h a v e
h a p p e n e d ? J i mmy
! We ' v e g o t t o g e t b us y , c o me o n . "
Fo l l o w e d b y Br a n d o n , t o w h o mh e r a p i d l y e x p l a i n e d
w h a t h e h a d h e a r d , K a v a n a g h r a n i n t o t h e h a l l a n d
f l un g o n h i s o v e r c o a t . Hur r y i n g d o w n s t a i r s t h e t w o
me n h a i l e d a t a x i , t e l l i n g t h e c h a uf f e ur t o d r i v e w i t h a l l
s p e e d t o K e n s i n g t o n Pa l a c e Ga r d e n s . Fo r t un a t e l y ,
t h e s t r e e t s a t t h i s h o ur w e r e c l e a r , a n d t h e y a r r i v e d i n
l e s s t h a n t e n mi n ut e s a t t h e i r d e s t i n a t i o n .
" Is Mi s s Gr e e n w o r t h y i l l ? " s a i d K a v a n a g h t o t h e
f o o t ma n w h o o p e n e d t h e d o o r - a n i n t e l l i g e n t - l o o ki n g
y o un g ma n w h o mK a v a n a g h r e me mb e r e d a s " A l b e r t , "
a n d w h o g a v e h i ma q ui c kl o o ko f r e c o g n i t i o n . Th e
ma n l o o ke d s ur p r i s e d .
" No t t h a t Ikn o w o f , s i r . S h e ' s i n t h e l i b r a r y , Ib e -
l i e v e , w i t h S i r Pa ul - a t l e a s t , s h e w a s a b o ut t w e n t y
mi n ut e s a g o . If y o u' l l c o me t h i s w a y , s i r , "a n d h e l e d
t h e w a y t h r o ug h t h e h a l l a n d o p e n e d t h e l i b r a r y d o o r .
A t f i r s t t h e r o o ma p p e a r e d t o b e e mp t y . Th e d i m
l i g h t f r o mo n e e l e c t r i c r e a d i n g - l a mp l e f t t h e c o r n e r s i n
a l mo s t c o mp l e t e d a r kn e s s . Th e h e a v y , r a t h e r d e l i c i o us
p e r f ume K a v a n a g h r e me mb e r e d n o t i c i n g t h a t e v e n -
i n g i n t h e g a r d e n h un g i n t h e a i r
.
"
Is t h e r e n o o n e h e r e ? " h e s a i d , g o i n g f o r w a r d , a n d
e v e n a s h e s p o ke h e s ud d e n l y s a w t h r o ug h t h e s h a d o w s
a t t h e f a r t h e r e n d o f t h e r o o mt w o f o r ms l y i n g p r o s t r a t e
o n t h e f l o o r .
A K ENS INGTONTR A GEDY

2 6 9
"S i r Pa ul a n d My r a ! " h e s a i d un d e r h i s b r e a t h .
" A n d t h e y ' r e d e a d . "
Th e t h r e e me n a p p r o a c h e d q ui c kl y . Y e s , t h e r e
c o ul d b e n o d o ub t a b o ut i t . Th a t w a s S i r Pa ul , h i s
e y e s c l o s e d i n d e a t h , w i t h a r o un d h o l e i n h i s t e mp l e
f r o mw h i c h t h e b l o o d w a s s l o w l y t r i c kl i n g , a n d a n o l d
Br o w n i n g p i s t o l l y i n g c l o s e t o h i s r i g h t h a n d . My r a
t o o s e e me d t o h a v e c e a s e d b r e a t h i n g , b ut n o w o un d w a s
v i s i b l e , o n l y o n e x a mi n i n g h e r b l ue v e l v e t g o w n a d ul l
r e d s t a i n o v e r t h e l e f t b r e a s t w a s v i s i b l e . Be s i d e h e r ,
o v e r t ur n e d o n t h e f l o o r , w a s t h e t e l e p h o n e w h i c h s h e
h a d e v i d e n t l y p ul l e d d o w n f r o mt h e t a b l e n e a r a t h a n d
i n o r d e r t o b r e a t h e h e r l a s t w o r d s t o Te r e n c e .
Th r o w i n g h i ms e l f o n h i s kn e e s b e s i d e h e r , K a v a n a g h
p ut h i s h a n d o n h e r s ; i t w a s s t i l l w a r m, a n d t h e p ul s e
w a s v e r y f e e b l y b e a t i n g .
"S h e ' s n o t d e a d y e t , "h e w h i s p e r e d . "Fe t c h s o me
b r a n d y - - q ui c k ! "
A l b e r t , w h o h a d r e ma i n e d r o o t e d t o t h e g r o un d w i t h
t e r r o r , a w o ke a s f r o ma d r e a m, a n d h ur r y i n g f r o mt h e
r o o mr e t ur n e d w i t h a g l a s s o f b r a n d y . Br a n d o n h a d
kn e l t d o w n o n t h e o t h e r s i d e o f My r a a n d g e n t l y h e l d
h e r l i p s a p a r t a s K a v a n a g h w i t h o n e a r mb e n e a t h h e r
h e a d p o ur e d t h e l i q ui d b e t w e e n t h e m .
A t f i r s t s h e d i d n o t mo v e , t h e n a f t e r a w h i l e s h e g a v e
a s h ud d e r i n g s i g h a n d o p e n e d h e r e y e s .
" Te r e n c e , "s h e w h i s p e r e d .
" Y e s , My r a , w h a t h a s h a p p e n e d ? "
" Fa t h e r d i d i t - h e f o un d - o ut - Ih a d - s p o ke n
"s h e s a i d i n t h e s a me g a s p i n g w h i s p e r t h a t h a d
s o un d e d t h r o ug h t h e t e l e p h o n e , p a us i n g b e t w e e n e a c h
w o r d . " He w a s - "a n d h e r v o i c e f a i l e d h e r
.
" He w a s w h a t , My r a
? "
s a i d Br a n d o n , d e t e r mi n e d
t o o b t a i n w h a t e v i d e n c e h e c o ul d b e f o r e i t w a s t o o l a t e .
2 7 0

THE S EC R ETOF THE


ZODIA C
Fo r h i s p r a c t i s e d e y e t o l d h i mt h a t My r a h a d o n l y a
f e w mo me n t s t o l i v e
.
"A f r a i d - o f - t h e i r - t h e i r v e n g e a n c e . "
A n d h e r e y e s c l o s e d a g a i n .
"
Th a t ' s t h e e n d , "Br a n d o n s a i d s o f t l y .
But i t w a s n o t q ui t e t h e e n d . On c e mo r e My r a
o p e n e d h e r e y e s , a n d l o o ki n g s t r a i g h t i n t o K a v a n a g h ' s
s mi l e d f a i n t l y
. Th e n , a s i f w i t h a s up e r h uma n e f f o r t ,
s h e w h i s p e r e d
"
Ta - t a l - t a l i s ma n ! "
He r e y e s c l o s e d a g a i n , a n o t h e r s h ud d e r i n g s i g h b r o ke
f r o mh e r l i p s , a n d s h e l a y s t i l l w i t h K a v a n a g h ' s a r ms
a r o un d h e r .
" It ' s a l l o v e r , Te r e n c e , "s a i d Br a n d o n , r i s i n g
. A n d
t ur n i n g t o t h e f o o t ma n , h e a d d e d
" R un o ut a n d g e t a
p o l i c e ma n a s q ui c ka s y o uc a n
. We ' l l s t a y h e r e t i l l h e
c o me s . "
A s s o o n a s A l b e r t r e t ur n e d Br a n d o n s a i d t o h i m

Ha v e y o ua n y i d e a h o w a l l t h i s h a p p e n e d ? "
" No n e , s i r
. On l y t h e ma s t e r ' s n o t b e e n h i ms e l f f o r
s o me t i me . S e e me d a s i f h e h a d s o me t h i n g o n h i s
mi n d
. A n d t h i s e v e n i n g , w h e n h e c a me b a c kf r o mt h e
C i t y , h e s e e me d mo r e up s e t t h a n us ua l . Ha r d l y
t o uc h e d h i s d i n n e r , s a t l o o ki n g a t h i s p l a t e w i t h o ut
s p e a ki n g . Ic o ul d s e e Mi s s My r a w a s w o r r i e d a b o ut
h i m . A f t e r w a r d s , w h e n t h e y ' d g o n e i n t o t h e l i b r a r y , I
w a s p a s s i n g t h e d o o r a n d h e a r d h i mt a l ki n g a l o ud -
s h o ut i n g i f Imi g h t s a y s o , s i r - a s i f h e w a s g o i n g f o r
Mi s s My r a a b o ut s o me t h i n g . Th e r e s e e me d t o b e a
r e g ul a r r o w g o i n g o n , s o t o s p e a k
. "

Y o uh e a r d n o t h i n g t h a t h e s a i d
?
I ' mn o t g i v e n t o l i s t e n i n g , s i r . "
" No , b ut i f h e w a s t a l ki n g s o l o ud y o umi g h t h a v e
h e a r d s o me t h i n g w i t h o ut l i s t e n i n g , "s a i d Br a n d o n .
A K ENS INGTONTR A GEDY

2 7 1
C o me o n , A l b e r t , t e l l us w h a t y o ukn o w
. It ' s r e a l l y
i mp o r t a n t . "

It ' s n o t f o r me t o s p e a k, s i r
. "
" Y e s ,
i t i s - i f y o uc a n t h r o w a n y l i g h t o n t h e ma t t e r . "
A l b e r t h e s i t a t e d a n d t h e n s a i d
"
We l l , s i r , i t w a s o n l y a f e w w o r d s . Ih e a r d t h e
ma s t e r s a y a n g r i l y : ` Y o uh a v e s p o ke n ! Y o uc a n ' t
d e n y i t t
' A n d Mi s s My r a c r i e d o ut :` It w a s t o s a v e
y o u
. Ikn e w y o uw e r e i n d a n g e r . Ic o ul d n ' t s t a n d b y
a n d s e e y o ut h r e a t e n e d
! ' Th a t s e e me d t o s e n d h i m
a l mo s t ma d
. He r a g e d up a n d d o w n t h e r o o ms h o ut -
i n g :`
Y o u' v e r ui n e d me . Y o u' v e r ui n e d me 1 Th e y ' l l
t a ke t h e i r r e v e n g e
. '
"
Wa s t h a t a l l , A l b e r t ? "

Y e s , s i r , a f t e r t h a t Iw e n t b a c kt o t h e p a n t r y
. It ' s
a g o o d w a y f r o mt h e l i b r a r y , y o uun d e r s t a n d , s i r
. On e
c a n ' t h e a r n o t h i n g t h e r e t h a t g o e s o n i n t h i s p a r t o f t h e
h o us e . "

A n d y o u' v e n o i d e a w h a t w a s t r o ub l i n g S i r Pa ul
? "
" We l l , s i r , Ih a r d l y l i ke t o s a y
. "
" Y e s , s p e a ko ut , A l b e r t
. We w o n ' t g i v e y o ua w a y .
Wh a t d o y o ut h i n kw a s t h e ma t t e r ? "
S i n ki n g h i s v o i c e t o a c o n f i d e n t i a l w h i s p e r , A l b e r t
s a i d
Is h o ul d s a y t h a t i t ' s a l l a l o n g o f Mr
. Os c a r Fr a n k-
l i n o r h i s s o n Mr
. Is i d o r e - t h e ma s t e r a l w a y s s e e me d
w o r s e w h e n h e ' d b e e n w i t h t h e m, "a n d t h e ma n ' s f a c e
t o o ko n a s ud d e n l o o ko f h a t r e d .
" Y o ud o n ' t l i ke Mr . Is i d o r e
? "
" No , s i r , Id o n ' t , a n d t h a t ' s a f a c t
. A l w a y s n o s i n g
i n t o e v e r y t h i n g , i f y o uun d e r s t a n d w h a t Ime a n , s i r . "
" Pe r f e c t l y , "n o d d e d Br a n d o n
. " Wh a t y o u' v e
t o l d us i s v e r y us e f ul , A l b e r t . "
By t h i s t i me t h e p o l i c e h a d a r r i v e d a n d b e g a n t o t a ke
2 7 2 THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
c o p i o us n o t e s o f t h e a f f a i r . It w a s s o o n e v i d e n t t h a t
S i r Pa ul Gr e e n w o r t h y h a d s h o t h i s d a ug h t e r t h r o ug h
t h e h e a r t a n d t h e n t ur n e d t h e w e a p o n o n h i ms e l f
.
A s
t o t h e mo t i v e o f t h e d o ub l e c r i me t h a t w a s a ma t t e r f o r
s p e c ul a t i o n . " Di d Mi s s Gr e e n w o r t h y s a y n o t h i n g
mo r e t o t h i s e f f e c t ? "a s ke d t h e p o l i c e . Y e s , s h e h a d
s a i d
: "He w a s a f r a i d o f t h e i r v e n g e a n c e . "
Th e p h r a s e
w a s d ul y n o t e d i n t h e i r p o c ke t - b o o ks . Th i s w a s a s
muc h a s w a s n e c e s s a r y f o r t h e mt o kn o w , a n d t h e e n -
q ui r y b e i n g e n d e d , Br a n d o n a n d K a v a n a g h l e f t b y
p e r mi s s i o n o f t h e p o l i c e . But b e f o r e g o i n g o ut i n t o t h e
n i g h t Br a n d o n c o n t r i v e d t o s l i p h i s c a r d a n d a p o un d
n o t e i n t o A l b e r t ' s h a n d , s a y i n g i n a n un d e r t o n e
Go o d n i g h t , A l b e r t . Y o u' l l b e w a n t i n g a d r o p o f
s o me t h i n g t o p ul l y o ur o un d a f t e r a l l t h i s . He r e ' s my
a d d r e s s a n d t e l e p h o n e n umb e r i n c a s e y o uma y h a v e
a n y t h i n g t o c o mmun i c a t e . Y o uun d e r s t a n d ? " h e
a d d e d s i g n i f i c a n t l y .

Pe r f e c t l y , s i r , "t h e ma n a n s w e r e d w i t h a q ui c kl o o k
o f i n t e l l i g e n c e .
It h i n kA l b e r t ma y b e us e f ul t o us , "Br a n d o n s a i d
a s t h e y ma d e t h e i r w a y h o me t h r o ug h t h e d a r kn e s s
.
"
He s e e ms t o kn o w mo r e t h a n h e ' l l s a y a t p r e s e n t .
It ' s j us t a s w e l l t o ke e p i n t o uc h w i t h h i m . "
"Y e s , "K a v a n a g h a n s w e r e d i n a n a b s t r a c t e d v o i c e .
Fo r t h e mo me n t h e c o ul d n o t g e t h i s mi n d b a c ko n t o
t h e t r a c ko f i n v e s t i g a t i o n ; t h e h o r r o r o f t h e t r a g e d y
t h e y h a d j us t w i t n e s s e d w a s s t i l l c l o s e a r o un d h i m .
He h a d l o o ke d d e a t h i n t h e f a c e o f t e n d ur i n g t h e w a r ,
b ut t o Te r e n c e , a l w a y s t e n d e r w h e r e w o me n w e r e c o n -
c e r n e d , t h i s s e e me d d i f f e r e n t . My r a , p o o r My r a ,
a l w a y s s o f ul l o f l i f e a n d g a i e t y , h a d d i e d i n h i s a r ms .
Th i s t h o ug h t o c c up i e d h i mt o t h e e x c l us i o n o f a l l o t h e r
c o n s i d e r a t i o n s . But a f t e r a w h i l e a s h e w e n t o v e r t h e
A K ENS INGTONTR A GEDY

2 7 3
s c e n e a g a i n i n h i s mi n d h e r l a s t w o r d s o f a l l r e c ur r e d t o
h i m, a n d h e b r o ke a l o n g s i l e n c e b y s a y i n g
"
By t h e w a y , J i mmy , w h a t d o y o ut h i n kMy r a
me a n t b y
` t a l i s ma n ' ? "
"
I' v e b e e n w o n d e r i n g a b o ut t h a t my s e l f . S h e mus t
h a v e me a n t s o me t h i n g - s o me t h i n g i mp o r t a n t , t o o .
He r mi n d w a s n ' t w a n d e r i n g , p o o r g i r l IBut Ic a n ' t
i ma g i n e w h a t s h e d i d me a n . "
" Do y o ut h i n ks h e c a r r i e d a t a l i s ma n o n h e r s h e
w a n t e d us t o h a v e ? "
It ' s p o s s i b l e . We ma y f i n d o ut t h r o ug h t h e s e r -
v a n t s . I' v e a f e e l i n g w e ' r e n o t a t t h e e n d o f t h e
my s t e r y . "
Th e y h a d n o t l o n g t o w a i t f o r f ur t h e r d e v e l o p me n t s
.
Th e n e x t n i g h t a t t w o o ' c l o c ki n t h e mo r n i n g t h e
t e l e p h o n e b e l l a t Br a n d o n ' s b e d s i d e r a n g .
" It ' s A l b e r t , s i r , "s a i d a v o i c e .
" Y e s , w h a t i s i t ? "
It h i n ky o ua n d Ma j o r K a v a n a g h h a d b e t t e r c o me
a l o n g a t o n c e , s i r . Th e r e ' s s o me me n i n t h e h o us e -
n o t o r d i n a r y b ur g l a r s , y o uun d e r s t a n d , s i r . If y o u
c o ul d c o me r o un d t o t h e b a c kd o o r I' d l e t y o ui n q ui e t l y
a n d t a ke t h e mb y s ur p r i s e . "
" Go o d . We ' l l b e r o un d i mme d i a t e l y . "
Q ui c kl y r i n g i n g up K a v a n a g h , Br a n d o n t h r e w o n h i s
c l o t h e s a n d t a x i e d r a p i d l y t o K e n s i n g t o n Pa l a c e Ga r -
d e n s , a r r i v i n g t h e r e a l mo s t a t t h e s a me mo me n t a s h i s
f r i e n d
. A l b e r t , a d v a n c i n g o n t i p t o e , o p e n e d t h e b a c k
d o o r n o i s e l e s s l y .
"
Th e y ' r e i n t h e l i b r a r y , "h e s a i d i n a n un d e r t o n e ,
" g o i n g t h r o ug h t h e ma s t e r ' s p a p e r s , Is us p e c t
. Th e r e
w e r e s o me h e ke p t v e r y s e c r e t , y o uun d e r s t a n d , s i r . "
" A h , a n d h a v e y o ua n y i d e a w h o t h e me n a r e ? "

Mr
. Is i d o r e Fr a n kl i n a n d s o me o f h i s l o t , i f I' mn o t
I8
2 7 4
THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
mi s t a ke n . Th e y g o t i n t h r o ug h t h e b i l l i a r d - r o o m
w i n d o w w h e r e t h e l a t c h w a s b r o ke n . On l y Mr . Is i d o r e
w o ul d kn o w t h a t , f o r h e h e a r d t h e ma s t e r g i v i n g o r d e r s
f o r i t t o b e r e p a i r e d . "
" Go o d .
We ' l l g o s t r a i g h t f o r t h e m, "s a i d Br a n d o n .
A n d w a l ki n g t o t h e l i b r a r y d o o r t h e y t h r e w i t b o l d l y
o p e n
.
A l b e r t w a s r i g h t
. A t t h e w r i t i n g d e s kb e s i d e a c a r e -
f ul l y s h a d e d l i g h t s a t Is i d o r e Fr a n kl i n t ur n i n g o v e r a
ma s s o f p a p e r s , w h i l s t h i s t w o me n w e r e e n g a g e d i n
p ul l i n g o ut d r a w e r s a n d e v i d e n t l y h un t i n g d e s p e r a t e l y
f o r s o me mi s s i n g d o c ume n t .
"Ma y Ia s kw h a t y o up e o p l e a r e d o i n g h e r e ? " s a i d
K a v a n a g h
.
Is i d o r e s p r a n g t o h i s f e e t a s i f h e h a d b e e n s h o t , b ut
q ui c kl y r e c o v e r i n g h i s c o mp o s ur e , h e a n s w e r e d i n h i s
us ua l d e r i s i v e t o n e
" If i t c o me s t o t h a t , w h a t a r e y o u
d o i n g h e r e ? "
" We c a me b e c a us e w e h e a r d t h e h o us e h a d b e e n
b r o ke n i n t o . No w w e f i n d y o ua r e t h e b ur g l a r
. "
Y e s , Ia mt h e b ur g l a r , "Is i d o r e s a i d c a l ml y , a n d
s i g n i n g t o h i s me n t o l e a v e t h e r o o mh e t o o kup h i s
s t a n d o n t h e h e a r t h r ug a n d l i t a c i g a r e t t e
. It w a s e v i -
d e n t t h a t h e e n t i r e l y f a i l e d t o i d e n t i f y Br a n d o n w i t h
Ot t o S c h mi d t o f C o s mo s . A l b e r t d i s c r e e t l y r e t i r e d ,
l e a v i n g K a v a n a g h a n d Br a n d o n t o d e a l w i t h t h e s i t ua -
t i o n .
Y e s , "_ Is i d o r e r e p e a t e d , " Ia mt h e b ur g l a r
. Iw a s
l o o ki n g f o r s o me t h i n g a mo n g s t Gr e e n w o r t h y ' s p a p e r s
.
Wh a t a r e y o ug o i n g t o d o a b o ut i t ? "
"C a l l i n t h e p o l i c e . "
"
C a p i t a l . A n d w h a t d o y o us up p o s e t h e y w i l l d o ? "
" A r r e s t y o uf o r f e l o n i o us l y e n t e r i n g t h i s h o us e , "s a i d
K a v a n a g h .
A K ENS INGTONTR A GEDY

2 7 5
"
It h i n kt h e y w o ul d f i n d t h a t mo r e d i f f i c ul t t h a n y o u
i ma g i n e , "Is i d o r e s a i d w i t h a n e n i g ma t i c s mi l e
.
A n d i n t h e s a me c o o l v o i c e h e w e n t o n
"
Pe r h a p s y o ut h i n kt h e y c o ul d g e t me o n s o me o t h e r
c o un t ?
Fo r my C o mmun i s t a c t i v i t i e s , f o r e x a mp l e
?
Oh y e s , Ma j o r K a v a n a g h , Ikn o w t h a t a s a c a n d i d a t e o f
t h e C o n s e r v a t i v e Pa r t y y o umus t b e i n t e r e s t e d i n t h e s e
q ue s t i o n s . A n d f r o ms o me t h i n g My r a l e t f a l l o n e d a y
i n a mo me n t o f - s h a l l w e s a y p e t ul a n c e ? - Ig a t h e r e d
s h e s us p e c t e d me o f Bo l s h e v i ks y mp a t h i e s
. A s My r a ' s
d e a r f r i e n d a n d c o n f i d a n t , "
Iz z y w e n t o n w i t h a d e r i s i v e
b o w i n K a v a n a g h ' s d i r e c t i o n ,
" s h e n o d o ub t s p o ke o f
t h i s t o y o u
. In t h a t c a s e y o u' r e p r o b a b l y a n x i o us t o
f i n d o ut mo r e a b o ut w h a t - y o uc a l l t h e C o mmun i s t c o n -
s p i r a c y
. A s Ih a p p e n t o b e i n t h e t h i c ko f i t , t h e r e i s
n o o n e w h o c a n t e l l y o ua b o ut i t b e t t e r t h a n I . Is t h e r e
a n y t h i n g y o uw o ul d l i ke t o a s kme ? Ta ke a c i g a r e t t e , "
a n d Is i d o r e h e l d o ut a j e w e l - s t ud d e d c a s e w i t h a s mi l e .
Ig n o r i n g t h e o ut s t r e t c h e d h a n d a n d t a ki n g a c i g a r e t t e
f r o mh i s o w n c a s e , K a v a n a g h s a i d
" Y e s . Wh e n d o y o up r o p o s e t o b r i n g o f f t h e R e v o l u-
t i o n ? "
" Th e R e v o l ut i o n
? " Is i d o r e a n s w e r e d w i t h a s h r ug .
" Do y o ur e a l l y t h i n ko n e w i l l b e n e c e s s a r y ? Th e r e
w a s a t i me , s o me t e n t o f i f t e e n y e a r s a g o , w h e n C a p i t a l -
i s ms t o o d f i r mi n t h i s c o un t r y a n d i t s o v e r t h r o w s e e me d
o n l y p o s s i b l e b y v i o l e n c e
. But t h a t t i me h a s p a s s e d .
Le n i n w a s r i g h t i n s a y i n g t h a t t h e b e s t me t h o d w a s
b o r i n g f r o mw i t h i n
. No w t h a t p r o c e s s h a s b e e n
a c c o mp l i s h e d , a n d t h e f i n a n c i a l s t r uc t ur e o f t h i s c o un -
t r y h a s b e e n s h a ke n t o i t s f o un d a t i o n s , w h y s h o ul d o ur
p e o p l e r i s kt h e i r l i v e s b y b o mb s a n d b a r r i c a d e s ? Wh y
b r e a kd o w n a n o p e n d o o r
? We c a n o b t a i n a l l w e w a n t
b y l e g i s l a t i o n . "
2 7 6

THE S EC R ET OF THE ZODIA C


"
Th i s i s i n t e r e s t i n g , Mr . Fr a n kl i n , "s a i d Br a n d o n ,
s e a t i n g h i ms e l f c o mf o r t a b l y i n a n a r mc h a i r ; " p r a y g o
o n . "
"
C e r t a i n l y . Wh e r e h a d Ig o t t o ? A h , Iw a s s a y i n g
w e c o ul d o b t a i n a l l w e w a n t b y l e g i s l a t i o n . Th e La b o ur
Pa r t y a r e un d e r o ur d i r e c t i o n
. Our p a c t w i t h t h e mi s
c o n c l ud e d . Th e Li b e r a l s a r e d o mi n a t e d b y o ur p e o p l e
.
A s t o t h e C o n s e r v a t i v e s , t o w h i c h y o u"- s mi l i n g a g a i n
a t K a v a n a g h - "p r o p o s e t o a t t a c h y o ur s e l f , w e h a v e
o ur me n o r w o me n i n e v e r y ke y p o s i t i o n b e h i n d t h e
s c e n e s . A l l t h a t g o e s o n i n t h e s e c r e t c o un c i l s o f t h e
Pa r t y i s kn o w n t o us i mme d i a t e l y , s o t h a t w e c a n
c o un t e r e v e r y me a s ur e t h a t i s o p p o s e d t o o ur i n t e r e s t s
.
A t t h e n e x t e l e c t i o n i t w i l l t a ke i t s t h i r d d e f e a t a n d g o
o ut o n c e a n d f o r a l l . "
" A n d w h a t d o
y o u p r o p o s e t o d o t h e n ? S e t up a
S o v i e t R e p ub l i c
? "
"
Th a t w i l l d e p e n d . Th e s a me me t h o d s a r e n o t
s ui t e d t o e v e r y c o un t r y . In R us s i a t h e S o v i e t s y s t e m
h a s s o f a r a n s w e r e d o ur p ur p o s e v e r y w e l l . Wh e n i t
c e a s e s t o d o s o w e s h a l l r e p l a c e i t b y a n o t h e r t h a t w i l l
s ui t us e q ua l l y
. He r e w e s h a l l p r o b a b l y s t a r t i n q ui t e a
d i f f e r e n t ma n n e r . "
" By t a ki n g o v e r t h e b a n ks a n d n a t i o n a l i s i n g i n -
d us t r y ? "
C e r t a i n l y w e s h a l l t a ke o v e r t h e b a n ks a n d , a s y o u
c a l l i t , ' n a t i o n a l i s e ' i n d us t r y , t h a t i s t o s a y , r un i t o ur -
s e l v e s
. A g r e a t p a r t o f i t i s a l r e a d y i n o ur h a n d s .
Y o ur n a t i v e b a n ke r s w i l l o f f e r n o r e s i s t a n c e , f o r i t i s o n
us t h e y d e p e n d f o r a d v i c e , a n d up t o t h e l a s t mo me n t
t h e y w i l l c o n t i n ue t o b e l i e v e t h e y s t i l l c o n t r o l t h e
f i n a n c e s o f t h e c o un t r y
. "
"
Th e p e o p l e w i l l r i s e a g a i n s t y o u, "s a i d K a v a n a g h .
"Y o u' v e n o t g o t me r e mo uj i ks t o d e a l w i t h h e r e . "
A K ENS INGTON TR A GEDY

2 7 7
" Th e p e o p l e ITh e y w i l l n e v e r r i s e a s l o n g a s w e
ke e p t h e ma mus e d a n d f e d , w h i c h w e s h a l l d o un t i l t h e
t i me c o me s f o r us t o t a ke o v e r p o w e r o p e n l y . Th e
p e o p l e d a n c e t o a n y t un e w e p l a y f o r t h e m . A l r e a d y
w e d e c i d e w h a t t h e y s h a l l e a t , d r i n k, w e a r , r e a d , a n d
l i s t e n t o
. Th e s t up i d p ub l i c a c c e p t s w h a t i t i s g i v e n
b y us . Th e c i n e ma s a r e o ur s . Th e r a d i o a l l o v e r
t h e w o r l d b r o a d c a s t s o ur p r o p a g a n d a . Th e l i t e r a r y
w o r l d i s un d e r o ur c o n t r o l . No w r i t e r w h o d a r e s t o
a t t a c kus c a n o b t a i n a h e a r i n g ; o n l y t h o s e w h o s e r v e
o ur p ur p o s e c a n h o p e t o s uc c e e d .
We a r r a n g e t h i s
s uc c e s s f o r t h e m, f o r w e c a n ma ke a n y a ut h o r ,
s p e a ke r , a r t i s t t h a t w e p l e a s e . A s t o t h e Pr e s s , n o t o n e
w o r d c a n b e p r i n t e d i n t h e n e w s p a p e r s t h a t w e d o n o t
a p p r o v e . No e d i t o r c o ul d h o l d h i s p o s t a d a y w h o
d a r e d t o p ub l i s h w h a t i s d e t r i me n t a l t o us . "
" But t h e Pr e s s , "s a i d K a v a n a g h , "c o n s t a n t l y
p ub l i s h e s c o l umn s a g a i n s t Bo l s h e v i s m . "
" A g a i n s t Bo l s h e v i s m- y e s , t h e f a c a d e - a n d e v e n
t h e n i n s uc h a w a y a s n o t t o i n j ur e i t . Th o s e c o l umn s
me r e l y s e r v e t o a d v e r t i s e t h e p o w e r o f t h e S o v i e t
Go v e r n me n t j us t a s t h e a n t i - Go d l e s s c a mp a i g n i n t h i s
c o un t r y g i v e s p ub l i c i t y t o o ur p r o p a g a n d a b y r e p r o -
d uc i n g c a r t o o n s a n d w h a t i t c a l l s ' b l a s p h e mi e s ' t h a t
w e c o ul d n e v e r h o p e t o g e t i n t o t h e C a p i t a l i s t Pr e s s .
But s o o n t h e Pr e s s w i l l b e a b s o l ut e l y o ur s ; t h e n w e s h a l l
p r i n t e v e r y t h i n g t h a t w e p l e a s e . A l r e a d y w e h a v e o ur
a g e n t s i n e v e r y n e w s p a p e r o f f i c e , i n e v e r y Go v e r n me n t
De p a r t me n t , i n t h e Ho me Of f i c e , i n S c o t l a n d Y a r d .
Do n ' t y o uun d e r s t a n d , "a n d Iz z y ' s v o i c e r o s e t r i ump h -
a n t l y , " d o n ' t y o uun d e r s t a n d t h a t w e a r e a l r e a d y
t h e
ma s t e r s o f t h e w o r l d ! Wh a t c a n y o ud o a g a i n s t us ? "
Th e r e w a s a mo me n t ' s s i l e n c e w h i l s t Iz z y , p a n t i n g
w i t h e x c i t e me n t , s q ua r e d h i s s h o ul d e r s , t uc ke d h i s
2 7 8

THE S EC R ET OF THE ZODIA C


t h umb s i n t o t h e a r mh o l e s o f h i s w a i s t c o a t , a n d f l a s h e d
d e f i a n c e a t h i s l i s t e n e r s .
" A s a me r e ma t t e r o f c ur i o s i t y , "Br a n d o n s a i d a t
l a s t , t a ki n g h i s c i g a r e t t e s l o w l y o ut o f h i s mo ut h , " w h y
d o y o ut e l l us a l l t h i s , Mr . Fr a n kl i n ? It ' s s ur e l y s o me -
w h a t i n d i s c r e e t t o l e t us i n t o a l l y o ur p l a n s i n t h i s
w a y ? "
" Wh y d o It e l l y o ua l l t h i s ? " Is i d o r e r e p e a t e d ,
b r e a ki n g i n t o a d e r i s i v e l a ug h . " Fo r t h e s i mp l e r e a s o n
t h a t i t d o e s n ' t ma t t e r w h a t y o ukn o w , f o r y o u c a n ma ke
n o us e o f i t /
" Y e s , "h e w e n t o n i n t h e s a me j e e r i n g t o n e o f
t r i ump h , " y o uc a n d o w h a t y o ul i ke w i t h t h e i n f o r ma -
t i o n Ih a v e g i v e n y o ut o - n i g h t . Go t o t h e Ho me Of f i c e ,
t o S c o t l a n d Y a r d , t o a l l t h e h e a d s o f t h e S e c r e t S e r v i c e ,
t o t h e Pr i me Mi n i s t e r , a n d t o t h e Pr e s s , a n d t e l l t h e m
w h a t Ih a v e t o l d y o u . Te l l t h e mw e i n t e n d t o o v e r -
t h r o w t h e Mo n a r c h y a n d t h e Go v e r n me n t o f t h i s c o un -
t r y , t o t a ke o v e r f i n a l l y t h a t d e r e l i c t c o n c e r n t h e Br i t i s h
Emp i r e , t o p l a c e t h e b a n ks un d e r o ur c o n t r o l , t o s w e e p
a w a y t h e l a s t r e mn a n t s o f t h e C h r i s t i a n i t y w e h a t e , f o r
i t i s t r ue , a l l t h i s i s t r ue IBut n o o n e w i l l b e l i e v e y o u1
We s h a l l s p r e a d t h e r umo ur t h a t y o ua r e ma d , a s w e
h a v e d o n e i n t h e c a s e o f o t h e r s w h o h a v e b e c o me
d a n g e r o us t o us . Fo r t h e p o w e r i s a l r e a d y i n o ur
h a n d s , a n d w e kn o w h o w t o us e i t . "
Th e n s ud d e n l y d r o p p i n g h i s t o n e o f l i g h t i r o n y , Is i -
d o r e c a me c l o s e up t o K a v a n a g h , a n d w i t h f l a s h i n g e y e s ,
c l e n c h e d f i s t s , a n d
a l o o ko f ma l i g n a n t f ur y , a l mo s t s p a t
t h e s e w o r d s i n t o h i s f a c e
" We kn o w a l s o h o w t o d e a l w i t h t h o s e w h o d a r e t o
o p p o s e us I
Q ui c ka s l i g h t n i n g K a v a n a g h d e a l t t h e y o un g ma n
a s t i n g i n g b l o w w i t h h i s o p e n h a n d w h i c h s e n t h i m
r e e l i n g a c r o s s t h e r o o m . It w a s t h e a c t i o n o f a s c h o o l -
b o y , h e t o l d h i ms e l f t h e n e x t mo me n t , b ut t h e i mp ul s e
t o h i t b a c ki n a n s w e r t o Iz z y ' s i n s o l e n t t h r e a t h a d b e e n
i r r e s i s t i b l e , a n d h e h a d o b e y e d i t b e f o r e h e kn e w w h a t
h e w a s d o i n g
. Ta ki n g a s t e p b a c kw a r d s h e s q ua r e d h i s
e l b o w s t o r e s i s t t h e c o un t e r b l o w w h i c h Iz z y mi g h t b e
e x p e c t e d t o d e l i v e r , b ut t o h i s a ma z e me n t a l o o ko f
a b j e c t t e r r o r s p r e a d o v e r Iz z y ' s c o un t e n a n c e
; f o r t h e
f i r s t t i me h e c e a s e d t o l o o kd e r i s i v e , h i s h a n d s d r o p p e d
t o h i s s i d e s , h i s f i n g e r s c r o o ke d n e r v o us l y , t h e n w i t h
h e a d b e n t f o r w a r d b e t w e e n h i s h un c h e d s h o ul d e r s h e
ma d e f o r t h e d o o r , o p e n e d i t q ui c kl y , a n d w e n t o ut .
Br a n d o n a n d K a v a n a g h l o o ke d a t e a c h o t h e r a n d
b ur s t i n t o a s h o ut o f l a ug h t e r .
" We l l , y o u' v e w o n Is i d o r e ' s r e s p e c t 1 " s a i d Br a n -
d o n , " h e ' l l t h i n kt w i c e b e f o r e h e t h r e a t e n s a w h i t e
ma n a g a i n . He f o r g o t t h a t y o u' r e n o t y e t a p o l i t i c i a n
t o b e i n t i mi d a t e d . "
"No ; i t w o ul d t a ke mo r e t h a n Iz z y t o i n t i mi d a t e me .
S t i l l , I' ma f r a i d t h e r e ' s a c e r t a i n a mo un t o f t r ut h i n
w h a t h e s a i d . We c o ul d n ' t g e t h i mo n w h a t h e t o l d us
t o - n i g h t . He w a s c a r e f ul , y o us e e , n o t t o g i v e us a n y
d a t a w e c o ul d g o o n . No w , i f o n l y w e c o ul d g e t t h e
l i s t o f t h e Zo d i a c o f w h i c h My r a s p o ke t h a t w o ul d b e
d o c ume n t a r y e v i d e n c e . "
" Y e s , b ut Id o ub t t h e i r r e a l l y c o mmi t t i n g t h e ms e l v e s
b y p ut t i n g n a me s o n p a p e r - i n p l a i n l a n g ua g e a t a n y
r a t e . S t i l l , My r a mus t h a v e s e e n s o me t h i n g w r i t t e n -
s o me v e r y s e c r e t d o c ume n t o l d Gr e e n w o r t h y ke p t
a mo n g s t h i s mo s t p r i v a t e p a p e r s . Is h o ul d n ' t b e s ur -
p r i s e d i f t h o s e a r e w h a t Iz z y w a s h un t i n g f o r t o - n i g h t
w h e n w e s ur p r i s e d h i m ! "
" By J o v e , In e v e r t h o ug h t o f t h a t . Wh a t ' s mo r e ,
h e e v i d e n t l y d i d n ' t f i n d t h e m, s o t h e d o c ume n t ma y b e
2 8 o

THE S EC R ET OF THE ZODIA C


s t i l l h e r e s o me w h e r e - p r o b a b l y i n t h e r o o ma t t h i s
mo me n t . If o n l y w e kn e w w h e r e t o l o o kf o r i t . D' y o u
kn o w , J i mmy , "K a v a n a g h w e n t o n me d i t a t i v e l y , "I
f e e l s ur e t h o s e l a s t w o r d s o f p o o r My r a ' s h a d s o me t h i n g
t o d o w i t h i t . "
" Y e s , I' v e t h o ug h t t h a t s e v e r a l t i me s . But Ic a n ' t
f o r t h e l i f e o f me i ma g i n e w h a t s h e c o ul d me a n b y t h e
t a l i s ma n . "
Br a n d o n w a s p a c i n g t h e r o o ma s h e s p o ke , a n d s ud -
d e n l y s t o p p e d d e a d i n f r o n t o f o n e o f t h e b o o ks h e l v e s
t h a t r a n r o un d t h e l i b r a r y w a l l s .
" Go o d Lo r d
! I' v e h a d a n i d e a . Ol d Gr e e n w o r t h y
s e e ms t o h a v e ma d e a j o l l y g o o d c o l l e c t i o n . "
"' Th e h un d r e d b e s t b o o ks ' Is h o ul d t h i n kt o s t a r t
w i t h - Id o n ' t i ma g i n e h e w a s muc h o f a r e a d e r . "
"No
. But h e ' d b e b o un d t o h a v e Wa l t e r S c o t t
a mo n g s t t h e m, "Br a n d o n s a i d , r un n i n g h i s e y e a l o n g
t h e s h e l v e s . "A h , y e s , h e r e w e a r e ! Wh a t a b o ut
t h i s ? " a n d h e p o i n t e d t o a v o l ume .
" Th e Ta l i s ma n ! By J o v e , J i mmy , Iq ui t e f o r g o t
t h a t w a s t h e n a me o f o n e o f S c o t t ' s n o v e l s . C o ul d t h a t
b e w h a t My r a me a n t ? Ha ul i t o ut q ui c kl y ! "
Br a n d o n t o o kt h e b o o kf r o mt h e s h e l f , o p e n e d a n d
s h o o ki t . Out f r o mb e t w e e n t h e p a g e s t h e r e f l o a t e d a
s h e e t o f p a p e r . He s t o o p e d q ui c kl y a n d p i c ke d i t up .
"Wh a t i s i t ? " K a v a n a g h a s ke d b r e a t h l e s s l y
.
"
A l i s t o f n a me s - a n d s y mb o l s - t h e Zo d i a c
! "
Y e s , t h e r e c o ul d b e n o d o ub t a b o ut i t . Th e r e w e r e
t h e t w e l v e n a me s , e a c h f o l l o w e d b y i t s Zo d i a c a l s y mb o l ,
t o g e t h e r w i t h t h e s p h e r e o f a c t i o n a s s i g n e d t o e a c h .
Th e y a p p e a r e d t o h a v e b e e n s c r i b b l e d d o w n h a s t i l y a s a
s o r t o f t e mp o r a r y me mo r a n d um, n o t a s a d o c ume n t
i n t e n d e d f o r p r e s e r v a t i o n . Th e h a n d w r i t i n g w a s un -
mi s t a ka b l y t h a t o f S i r Pa ul Gr e e n w o r t h y .
A K ENS INGTON TR A GEDY

2 8 1
"
Th i s mus t b e t h e l i s t My r a t o l d us a b o ut , "s a i d
Br a n d o n , " a n d t h a t s h e e v i d e n t l y ma n a g e d t o g e t h o l d
o f - p r o b a b l y t h e n i g h t s h e d i e d . Ot h e r w i s e s h e ' d h a v e
g o t i t t o us . Ie x p e c t s h e h e a r d h e r f a t h e r c o mi n g , a n d
w a s a f r a i d o f b e i n g c a ug h t , s o s h o v e d i t i n t o t h i s b o o k
f o r s a f e t y . "
" A n d t o l d us w i t h h e r l a s t b r e a t h w h e r e t o f i n d i t 1
Go o d My r a 1 "
" Y e s . S h e t o o ka b i g r i s ki n p i n c h i n g i t . In e v e r
t h o ug h t s h e ' d r e a l l y b e a b l e t o g e t h o l d o f a n y t h i n g o f
t h e ki n d , "s a i d Br a n d o n .
"
Be c a us e y o uf e l t s ur e t h e n a me s w o ul d n e v e r h a v e
b e e n p ut o n p a p e r ? "
" No r w o ul d t h e y - b y t h e Zo d i a c t h e ms e l v e s . But
t h i s l i s t w a s n ' t d r a w n up b y t h e m, i t w a s d r a w n up b y
Gr e e n w o r t h y , w h o r e f us e d t o b e o n e o f t h e m . Y o u
n o t i c e t h e r e i s a n e mp t y s p a c e i n f r o n t o f t h e s i g n o f
Ta ur us ? Th a t c o r r o b o r a t e s My r a ' s s t o r y o f t h e s c e n e
t h a t t o o kp l a c e b e t w e e n h i ma n d Fr a n kl i n . "
" Th e n Iw o n d e r h o w h e ma n a g e d t o g e t h o l d o f t h e
l i s t ? "
Br a n d o n t h o ug h t a mo me n t .
" It s e e ms t o me t h a t i t ma y h a v e b e e n l i ke t h i s , "
h e s a i d s l o w l y . " In t h e p a s t Gr e e n w o r t h y h a d e v i -
d e n t l y s t o o d i n w i t h t h e Zo d i a c . Y o ur e me mb e r w h a t
My r a h e a r d h i ms a y i n g :`
If e l t j us t a s y o ud o o n c e ,
Is s a c h a r . ' S o n o d o ub t t h e y t h o ug h t t h e y c o ul d c o un t
o n h i m . A n d i n i n v i t i n g h i mt o t a ke h i s p l a c e a mo n g s t
t h e ma s t h e i r Lo n d o n me mb e r t h e y mus t h a v e t o l d h i m
w h o t h e o t h e r s w e r e . But t o t h e i r s ur p r i s e a n d f ur y ,
w h e n i t c a me t o t h e p o i n t o f a c t ua l l y j o i n i n g t h e
Zo d i a c a n d h e l p i n g t o b r i n g a b o ut t h e d o w n f a l l o f t h e
Br i t i s h Emp i r e , h i s f e e l i n g f o r t h i s c o un t r y g o t t h e
b e t t e r o f h i ma n d h e b a c ke d o ut . Th e y ' d p r o b a b l y
2 8 2

THE S EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
n e v e r r e a l i s e d h e ' d d o t h a t , o r t h e y w o ul d n ' t h a v e c o m-
mi t t e d t h e ms e l v e s . Th a t ' s w h a t ma d e t h e mt h r e a t e n
h i mw i t h t h e i r v e n g e a n c e . "
"Le s t h e s h o ul d g i v e a w a y t h e s e c r e t ? "
"
He ' d h a r d l y h a v e d a r e d t o d o t h a t , kn o w i n g t h e
p o w e r o f t h e Zo d i a c . But h a v i n g b e e n t o l d t h e n a me s
o f t h e me mb e r s h e p r o b a b l y j o t t e d t h e md o w n a f t e r -
w a r d s o n t h i s s c r a p o f p a p e r f o r h i s o w n us e , o n l y t a ki n g
t h e p r e c a ut i o n t o p ut i t a w a y i n a p l a c e o f s a f e t y
. Fo r
t h o ug h h e ' d r e f us e d t o b e o n e o f t h e m, h e w a n t e d t o
r e me mb e r w h o t h e y w e r e - p o s s i b l y s o a s t o ke e p a
w a t c h o n t h e i r mo v e me n t s . "
" Fo r w h a t p ur p o s e ? "
" Oh , t h e s e s up e r me n o f f i n a n c e a r e n o t a b o v e s p y i n g
o n e a c h o t h e r - t h e r e a r e h a t r e d s a n d r i v a l r i e s a mo n g s t
t h e mj us t a s a mo n g s t l e s s e r me n . Ev e n t h e Zo d i a c a r e
p r o b a b l y n o t e n t i r e l y a t o n e , t h o ug h t h e y w o r kt o g e t h e r
f o r a c o mmo n e n d . "
"
Is e e , "s a i d K a v a n a g h ; "a n d i f y o ur t h e o r y ' s
t r ue , Gr e e n w o r t h y ma y h a v e t a ke n o ut t h e l i s t s o me
t i me t o r e mi n d h i ms e l f w h o w a s o p e r a t i n g i n a g i v e n
p a r t o f t h e w o r l d , a n d t h a t ' s h o w My r a c a me t o g e t a
g l i mp s e o f i t . "
" Y e s
. A n y h o w , w e ' v e g o t i t n o w , a n d w e ' d b e t t e r
b e o f f q ui c kl y o r w e s h a l l b e s us p e c t e d o f b ur g l i n g . "
" Wh i c h i s j us t a b o ut w h a t w e h a v e b e e n d o i n g , "
l a ug h e d K a v a n a g h
. " It h i n ka n o t h e r d o uc e ur t o
A l b e r t i s i n d i c a t e d . "
But t h e f o o t ma n , t i r e d o f w a i t i n g t o s h o w t h e v i s i t o r s
o ut , h a d s un ki n t o a p e a c e f ul s l umb e r o n a s e a t i n t h e
h a l l , a n d t h e t w o me n l e t t h e ms e l v e s o ut o f t h e h o us e
w i t h o ut d i s t ur b i n g h i s d r e a ms .
C HA PTER XIV
THEENDOFTHEQ U ES T
S o t h e g r e a t s e c r e t w a s d i s c l o s e d a t l a s t
. Th e l i s t
o f t h e Zo d i a c , t o g e t h e r w i t h
t h e i r s p h e r e s o f
"
g o v e r n me n t , "l a y s p r e a d o ut o n Br a n d o n ' s d e s k .
A n d n e i t h e r h e n o r K a v a n a g h w e r e muc h t h e w i s e r .
Fo r t h e n a me s w e r e mo s t l y t h o s e o f me n e n t i r e l y
un kn o w n t o t h e m .
S a g i t t a r i us w a s d ul y e n t e r e d a s Ge l d b e ut e l a n d
C a p r i c o r n us a s Os c a r Fr a n kl i n
. V i r g o w a s s e e n t o b e
S c h n e e w a l d , A r i e s w a s Fuc h s b e i n o f t h e U . S . A . , Le o
w a s Zi ma r ka r a , w h i l s t C a n c e r , "
g o v e r n i n g " t h e
Br i t i s h Emp i r e , w a s n o o t h e r t h a n Lo r d Fa r b e n s t e i n !
But w h a t o f S c o r p i o a l i a s Fun g Ts i K un i n t h e Fa r
Ea s t ? Or Pi s c e s a l i a s S i mo n b e n A mo n i n A f r i c a
? -
a n d s o o n . A b o v e a l l , w h a t o f t h a t o t h e r un kn o w n
n a me , t h e t h i r t e e n t h , w i t h n o Zo d i a c a l s i g n , p l a c e d
a t t h e t o p o f t h e l i s t , a s i f d e n o t i n g t h e S un a n d
He a d o f t h e w h o l e s y s t e m?
" It ' s a b i t d i s a p p o i n t i n g , "s a i d K a v a n a g h , w h o h a d
h o p e d f o r a mo r e s e n s a t i o n a l d e n o ue me n t .
" Id o n ' t kn o w a b o ut t h a t , "a n s w e r e d Br a n d o n .
"
Of c o ur s e i t w o ul d h a v e b e e n i n t e r e s t i n g i f a l l t h e
Tw e l v e h a d t ur n e d o ut t o b e p ub l i c f i g ur e s w e kn o w a l l
a b o ut . But t h e v e r y f a c t t h a t t h e s e me n h a v e r e -
ma i n e d w r a p p e d i n my s t e r y a d d s t o t h e i r i mp o r t a n c e
.
R e me mb e r t h a t t h e un v a r y i n g r ul e o f w o r l d r e v o l ut i o n
i s t h a t t h e r e a l a ut h o r s n e v e r s h o w t h e ms e l v e s . Lo o k
b a c ko n a l l t h e g r e a t r e v o l ut i o n s o f t h e p a s t h un d r e d
2 8 3
2 8 4

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
a n d f i f t y y e a r s
.
Wh o b e f o r e 1 7 8 9 h a d e v e r h e a r d o f
R o b e s p i e r r e ? Wh o b e f o r e 1 9 1 7 o f Le n i n ? Wh e n
r e v o l ut i o n c o me s , l e a d e r s s e e mt o s p r i n g f r o mt h e
g r o un d r e a d y a r me d l i ke t h e d r a g o n s ' t e e t h o f C a d mus .
If t h i s i s s o w i t h t h e v i s i b l e l e a d e r s , h o w muc h mo r e s o
w i t h t h e s e c r e t p o w e r s b e h i n d t h e m ? "
"S t i l l , Os c a r Fr a n kl i n c o me s o ut e n o ug h i n t o t h e
l i me l i g h t . "
"Y e s , "l a ug h e d Br a n d o n , " a s t h e s up p o r t e r o f c o n -
s t i t ut i o n a l g o v e r n me n t a n d p ur v e y o r o f e l e v a t i n g
f i l ms IBut a s y o us a y , h e d o e s a p p e a r o n t h e s c e n e i n
s o me c a p a c i t y i n s t e a d o f ke e p i n g h i s a c t ua l e x i s t e n c e
d a r kl i ke Ge mi n i , Li b r a , A q ua r i us , a n d t h e r e s t . "
"We l l , h o w d o y o ua c c o un t f o r t h a t ? "
" By t h e p r o b a b i l i t y t h a t Fr a n kl i n i s n o t o n e o f t h e
c o n t r o l l i n g b r a i n s o f t h e Zo d i a c . He n e v e r s t r uc kme
a s up t o Zo d i a c s t a n d a r d . A ma n w h o ' d mi x h i ms e l f
up w i t h o c c ul t i s ma n d j o i n t h e Or d e r o f t h e Ph o e n i x
c o ul d h a r d l y b e r e g a r d e d a s a s up e r ma n o f i n t e l l e c t .
Ge l d b e ut e l s e e me d t o me i n a v e r y d i f f e r e n t c l a s s . He
` ke p t h i ms e l f t o h i ms e l f , ' s o t o s p e a k .
But e v e n h e
ma y n o t b e o n e o f t h e c o n t r o l l i n g b r a i n s . "
" Th e n y o ut h i n kt h a t a l l t h e Zo d i a c a r e n o t s up e r -
me n ? "
"No t i n t e l l e c t ua l l y . If my t h e o r y ' s r i g h t , t h e
Zo d i a c i s d i v i d e d i n t o t h e f o ur t r i g o n s o f Ea r t h , A i r ,
Fi r e , a n d Wa t e r
.
A n d C a p r i c o r n us o f Ne w Y o r k, a l i a s
Fr a n kl i n , i s i n t h e t r i g o n o f Ea r t h .
S o a r e Ta ur us o f
Lo n d o n a n d V i r g o o f S c h n e e w a l d . Pr e s uma b l y a t r i g o n
o f b a n ke r s c h o s e n mo r e f o r t h e i r c o n t r o l o f w e a l t h a n d
b us i n e s s c o n n e c t i o n s t h a n f o r t h e i r i n t e l l e c t s . A r i e s o f
t h e U . S . A . a n d Le o o f t h e Ne a r Ea s t a r e , l i ke Ge l d -
b e ut e l , i n t h e t r i g o n o f Fi r e .
Th a t i s t o s a y , t h e y a r e
f i g h t e r s , me n o f e n o r mo us w e a l t h a n d a t t h e s a me t i me
THE END OF THE
Q U ES T

2 8 5
o r g a n i s i n g c a p a c i t y - a n d kn o w n t o t h e p ub l i c a s s uc h .
But Is us p e c t t h a t t h e g r e a t e s t b r a i n s o f a l l , t h e me n o f
r e a l l y s t up e n d o us i n t e l l e c t , a r e l o c a t e d i n t h e t r i g o n o f
A i r , t h a t i s t o s a y , t h e y a r e t h e t h i n ke r s d i r e c t i n g mo v e -
me n t s a n d ma s s p r o p a g a n d a a l l o v e r t h e w o r l d . Th a t
i s w h y t h e y r e ma i n w r a p p e d i n my s t e r y , s o t h a t w e
h a v e n e v e r h e a r d o f t h e m . "
" A n d n o w t h a t w e ' v e d i s c o v e r e d w h o t h e y a r e , "
s a i d K a v a n a g h , "
w h a t c a n w e d o a b o ut i t ? Th e y s t i l l
r e ma i n o n l y n a me s t o us
. Ho w c a n w e f i n d o ut mo r e
a b o ut t h e m, d i s c o v e r t h e i r me t h o d s o f w o r ki n g i n o r d e r
t o b e a b l e t o c o un t e r t h e m ? We c a n ' t g o a n d l i v e i n
Th i b e t a n d i n t h e S a h a r a a n d i n t h e U . S . A . a n d t h e
o t h e r p l a c e s t h e y i n h a b i t a l l i n t ur n s o a s t o ke e p t h e m
un d e r o b s e r v a t i o n . "
" No , a n d i f w e d i d g o a n d l i v e t h e r e , w e s h o ul d p r o b -
a b l y n e v e r g e t a c h a n c e o f o b s e r v i n g t h e m . Th e me m-
b e r s o f t h e Zo d i a c a r e n o t l i ke l y t o b e v e r y a p p r o a c h -
a b l e
. S a g i t t a r i us c e r t a i n l y d i d n ' t s e e mv e r y s o c i a b l e a t
S t o l z e n b a c h , "r e ma r ke d Br a n d o n
. " But , s e r i o us l y , "
h e w e n t o n ,
" I' ma f r a i d w e ' r e a b o ut a t t h e e n d o f o ur
t e t h e r
. Th i s i s t h e s o r t o f t h i n g t h a t ma ke s us r e a l i s e
o ur l i mi t a t i o n s a s i n d e p e n d e n t i n v e s t i g a t o r s
. We ' v e
d i s c o v e r e d w h o t h e i n d i v i d ua l s a r e a t t h e b a c ko f t h e
c o n s p i r a c y , b ut o n l y me n w i t h a n o r g a n i s a t i o n a t t h e i r
d i s p o s a l c a n a t t e mp t t o d e f e a t i t . Th a t ' s w h y I
t h i n kt h e t i me h a s c o me t o h a n d t h e ma t t e r o v e r t o t h e
S e c r e t S e r v i c e . Th e y h a v e t h e i r a g e n t s e v e r y w h e r e ,
a n d w i t h i n a w e e kc o ul d p r o b a b l y p r o c ur e a d o s s i e r o f
e v e r y me mb e r o f t h e Zo d i a c . Id o n ' t s a y s uc h d o s s i e r s
w o ul d b e e x h a us t i v e , b ut t h e y w o ul d p r o v i d e mo r e
d e t a i l s t h a n w e c o ul d c o l l e c t i n a y e a r . Th e S e c r e t
S e r v i c e ma y n o t b e muc h us e i n s o l v i n g w o r l d p r o b l e ms ,
b ut g i v e i t a d e f i n i t e c o n c r e t e l i n e o f i n v e s t i g a t i o n t o
2 8 6

THE S EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
f o l l o w , a n d y o u' l l f i n d i t s w a y o f w o r ki n g a b s o l ut e l y
a ma z i n g . Wh e n i t c o me s t o p r a c t i c a l s l e ut h w o r kI
t a ke my h a t o f f t o i t e v e r y t i me
. "
"
We l l , a f t e r a l l , w e ' v e g o t p r e t t y d e f i n i t e e v i d e n c e t o
g o o n n o w - p h o t o g r a p h s o f t h e c o r r e s p o n d e n c e w e
i n t e r c e p t e d a t Bo g a z z o , t h e s t o r y o f w h a t h a p p e n e d i n
t h e Te mp l e a n d a t t h e c l i n i c , t h e a c t ua l d o c ume n t
s i g n e d b e t w e e n v o n R a us c h e n b e r g a n d t h e Br i t i s h
S o c i a l i s t s a t S t o l z e n b a c h , n o t e s o f a l l y o ud i s c o v e r e d a t
t h e C o s mo s R e s t a ur a n t , a n d f i n a l l y t h e i n s i d e s t o r y o f
t h e Gr e e n w o r t h y t r a g e d y a n d t h e l i s t o f t h e Zo d i a c
. I
d o n ' t t h i n ke v e n t h e mo s t i n c r e d ul o us o f o f f i c i a l s c a n
ma i n t a i n n o w t h a t y o ur t h e o r y l a c ks p r o o f . "
" It a l l d e p e n d s o n w h o mo n e g e t s i n t o uc h w i t h . My
o l d c o l o n e l , ' Br o n x , ' w o ul d b e t h e b e s t ma n t o g o t o
.
A n y h o w , I' l l r i n g h i mup a n d t r y t o g e t a n i n t e r v i e w a s
s o o n a s p o s s i b l e . "
C o l o n e l Br o c k- i r r e v e r e n t l y kn o w n a s " Br o n x "-
w h e n a p p r o a c h e d o n t h e t e l e p h o n e p r o v e d mo s t c o r d i a l .
"
Of c o ur s e , my d e a r f e l l o w , I' l l b e d e l i g h t e d t o s e e y o u
a g a i n
. C o me i n t o - mo r r o w a t e l e v e n o ' c l o c ka n d h a v e a
g l a s s o f s h e r r y . "
Br a n d o n h a d o n l y t e n mi n ut e s t o w a i t n e x t mo r n i n g
b e f o r e b e i n g us h e r e d i n t o t h e p r e s e n c e o f t h e g r e a t ma n ,
w h o l o s t n o t i me i n h a n d i n g h i ma g l a s s o f t h e p r o mi s e d
A mo n t i l l a d o , a t t h e s a me t i me o f f e r i n g h i ma c i g a r .
"
Tr y o n e o f t h e s e , r e a l l y A i
. Iw a s l uc ky i n b e i n g a b l e
t o g e t a h un d r e d o f t h e ma t t h e s a l e o f p o o r Gr e g s o n ' s
t h i n g s l a s t w e e k
. Ba d l uc kh i s g o i n g b r o ke , e h ? We l l ,
n o w a b o ut y o ur s e l f , Br a n d o n , d o i n g f i r s t - r a t e , Ih e a r ,
w i t h t h e p a i n t i n g b us i n e s s - y o ur p i c t ur e s a r e a l l t h e
r a g e a mo n g s t t h e l a d i e s , w h a t
?
"Y e s , "s a i d Br a n d o n . "I' md o i n g q ui t e w e l l i n t h a t
l i n e
. But i t w a s r e a l l y my o t h e r w o r kIc a me t o t a l kt o
THEENDOF, THEQ U ES T

2 8 7
y o ua b o ut . Y o uma y r e me mb e r Is t a r t e d o n a l i n e o f
i n v e s t i g a t i o n o f my o w n . "
"A h , o f c o ur s e . Iw a s s o r r y y o uw o ul d n ' t c o me i n t o
my De p a r t me n t . Y o ua l w a y s h a d a f l a i r f o r t h a t ki n d o f
w o r k . Ho w e v e r , y o ukn o w y o ur o w n b us i n e s s b e s t .
No w Ic o me t o t h i n ko f i t , my p e o p l e t e l l me y o u' v e
g i v e n t h e mv e r y us e f ul b i t s o f i n f o r ma t i o n f r o mt i me t o
t i me . "
" I' m g l a d o f t h a t , s i r . But w h a t I' v e c o me t o t e l l
y o ut o - d a y i s mo r e t h a n a b i t o f i n f o r ma t i o n ; i t ' s
p r a c t i c a l l y t h e r e s ul t o f my w h o l e l i f e ' s w o r ks i n c e t h e
w a r . "
" R e a l l y 1 A n d w h a t ' s t h a t ? "
" We l l , t h a t a t l a s t I' v e d i s c o v e r e d w h a t ' s a t t h e b a c k
o f t h e w h o l e w o r l d mo v e me n t . "
" Wo r l d mo v e me n t ? " C o l o n e l Br o c kr e p e a t e d w i t h
a p uz z l e d e x p r e s s i o n . " Wh a t d o y o ume a n p r e c i s e l y
b y t h a t ? "
" Th e r e v o l ut i o n a r y mo v e me n t
. Id o n ' t me a n o n l y
t h e p o l i t i c a l , b ut t h e o c c ul t s i d e o f t h e s h o w
. "
" Oc c ul t ? " C o l o n e l Br o c ks a i d , f r o w n i n g
. " My
d e a r f e l l o w , Ir e a l l y c a n ' t f o l l o w y o u
. Id o n ' t s e e w h a t
o c c ul t i s mh a s t o d o w i t h r e v o l ut i o n . "
"
But i t h a s e v e r y t h i n g t o d o w i t h i t . If y o uc a n
s p a r e t h e t i me , s i r , I' l l t e l l y o ut h e w h o l e s t o r y
. "
C o l o n e l Br o c kl o o ke d a t t h e c l o c k . "I' v e g o t a n o t h e r
h a l f - h o ur b e f o r e my n e x t a p p o i n t me n t , s o g e t o n w i t h
i t , Br a n d o n . Ha v e a n o t h e r g l a s s o f s h e r r y , n o ? A n d
a r e y o ur e a l l y e n j o y i n g t h a t c i g a r ? By J o v e , y o u
h a v e n ' t g o t i t l i t 1 " C o l o n e l . Br o c kh e l d o ut a ma t c h ,
t h e n , f i l l i n g up h i s g l a s s , h e s e t t l e d d o w n t o l i s t e n .
Be g i n n i n g w i t h R o s a mun d ' s s t o r y Br a n d o n r e l a t e d
a l l t h e e v e n t s o f t h e p a s t s i x mo n t h s , h i s a d v e n t ur e s o n
t h e C o n t i n e n t a n d a mo n g s t t h e C o mmun i s t s i n Lo n d o n ,
2 8 8

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
e n d i n g up w i t h t h e Gr e e n w o r t h y a f f a i r a n d t h e f i n d i n g
o f t h e l i s t o f t h e Zo d i a c .
C o l o n e l Br o c kh e a r d h i mo ut p a t i e n t l y ; . o n l y n o w
a n d t h e n a s l i g h t l y b o r e d e x p r e s s i o n c r o s s e d h i s p l ump
f e a t ur e s , a n d o n c e o r t w i c e h e g l a n c e d a g a i n a t t h e
c l o c k .
"My d e a r f e l l o w , "h e s a i d a t l a s t w h e n Br a n d o n h a d
f i n i s h e d , " a l l t h i s ma y b e v e r y i n t e r e s t i n g , b ut I' mi n -
c l i n e d t o t h i n ky o uo v e r - e s t i ma t e t h e i mp o r t a n c e o f
w h a t y o uc a l l ` o c c ul t i n f l ue n c e s . ' It s t r i ke s me t h a t
y o u' v e b e e n w o r ki n g a b i t t o o h a r d a n d g o t t h e w h o l e
t h i n g r a t h e r o n y o ur n e r v e s . If Iw e r e y o uI' d g o a w a y
f o r a g o o d r e s t a n d c h a n g e - a Me d i t e r r a n e a n c r ui s e , f o r
e x a mp l e . Th e y s a y t h i s n e w It a l i a n l i n e r i s r e ma r ka b l y
c o mf o r t a b l e . It h o ug h t o f t a ki n g a h o l i d a y i n h e r
my s e l f . "
" Th a n ks , b ut Id o n ' t f e e l i n t h e l e a s t i n n e e d o f a r e s t
a n d c h a n g e . Wh a t Iw a n t i s t o g e t o n w i t h t h e b us i -
n e s s i n h a n d . A n d i f y o ut h i n kI' v e e x a g g e r a t e d t h e
i mp o r t a n c e o f t h e o c c ul t p o w e r , y o u' l l s ur e l y a d mi t t h e
d a n g e r t h i s p r e s e n t s t o t h e c o un t r y . " A n d t a ki n g t h e
p a c t s i g n e d b e t w e e n v o n R a us c h e n b e r g a n d t h e S o c i a l -
i s t M. P. s f r o mh i s p o c ke t Br a n d o n l a i d i t o n t h e t a b l e
b e f o r e " Br o n x . " " Th e r e ' s n o t h i n g o c c ul t a b o ut t h a t ,
i s t h e r e , s i r ? "
C o l o n e l Br o c kr a n h i s e y e o v e r t h e d o c ume n t a n d
s c r e w e d up h i s mo ut h a n d n o s e a s i f s n i f f i n g a b a d s me l l
.
"A n a s t y b i t o f b us i n e s s , "h e s a i d . "But w h a t e l s e
d o y o ue x p e c t o f t h o s e f e l l o w s ? Ho w e v e r , a s y o us e e
i t a l l d e p e n d s o n t h e i r g e t t i n g i n t o o f f i c e a g a i n , a n d a s
t h e y ma y n e v e r g e t i n t o o f f i c e a g a i n w e r e a l l y n e e d n ' t
t a ke t h e mt o o s e r i o us l y . A t a n y r a t e , t h e p r e s e n t
Na t i o n a l Go v e r n me n t i s g o o d f o r a n o t h e r y e a r o r s o ,
I' mt o l d . "
THEENDOFTHEQ U ES T

2 8 9
" Et a p r e s c e l a l e d e l ug e 1 " Br a n d o n s a i d w i t h a
mi r t h l e s s h o o t . " But me a n w h i l e Id o n ' t s e e w h y
t h e y s h o ul d n ' t b e p r o c e e d e d a g a i n s t f o r h i g h t r e a s o n . "
Oh , Pa r b ur y w o ul d n e v e r a g r e e t o t h a t Y o u
kn o w t h e s o r t o f ma n h e i s - w o ul d n ' t d o a n y t h i n g t o
a n t a g o n i s e t h e La b o ur Pa r t y . It h i n kh e ' s w r o n g
t h e r e , b ut w h a t c a n o n e d o ? He c e r t a i n l y h a s t h e
C o n s e r v a t i v e e l e c t o r a t e b e h i n d h i m . Wh a t h e s a y s
g o e s . "
Y e s , Is up p o s e i t d o e s , "s a i d Br a n d o n , r i s i n g .
" Th e n y o ut h i n kt h e r e ' s n o t h i n g t o b e d o n e , s i r ? "
" Id o n ' t s e e a n y t h i n g a t p r e s e n t - n o t j us t a t p r e -
s e n t , b ut I' l l t h i n ki t o v e r . Me a n w h i l e , d o n ' t f o r g e t
a b o ut t h a t Me d i t e r r a n e a n c r ui s e - y o u' r e l o o ki n g a b i t
o v e r s t r a i n e d , my d e a r f e l l o w . " A n d w i t h a h e a r t y
h a n d s h a ke h e t o o kl e a v e o f Br a n d o n .
S o t h i s w a s a l l t h e w o r l d p l o t me a n t t o t h e o f f i c i a l
mi n d . Th e S e c r e t S e r v i c e , Br a n d o n kn e w f r o m
e x p e r i e n c e , c o mp r i s e d ma n y y o un g me n o f b r i l l i a n t i n -
t e l l e c t a n d s t i r l i n g h o n e s t y , me n h e c o ul d t r us t up t o
t h e h i l t , b ut t h e y o c c up i e d s ub o r d i n a t e p o s i t i o n s . It
w a s o n l y t h r o ug h t h e i r C h i e f s t h a t t h e w h e e l s o f t h e
S e c r e t S e r v i c e a c t i v i t y c o ul d b e s e t i n mo t i o n , a n d t h e
C h i e f s kn e w l i t t l e o f t h e s e c r e t s c o n t a i n e d i n t h e f i l e s o f
t h e i r d e p a r t me n t s , w h i c h n o d o ub t w o ul d c o r r o b o r a t e
t h e e v i d e n c e h e h i ms e l f h a d b e e n a b l e t o c o l l e c t .
S un ki n g l o o mBr a n d o n ma d e h i s w a y t o K a v a n a g h ' s
f l a t , w h e r e t h e p r o s p e c t i v e c a n d i d a t e f o r S o ut h Me r -
s h i r e w a s t o b e f o un d d i c t a t i n g c o r r e s p o n d e n c e t o h i s
s e c r e t a r y .
" It ' s n o g o , "h e s a i d , s i n ki n g i n t o a c h a i r b y t h e f i r e ,
a n d h e r e l a t e d t h e e v e n t s o f t h e mo r n i n g .
" A ma z i n g , i s n ' t i t ? " s a i d K a v a n a g h w h e n Br a n d o n
h a d f i n i s h e d . "Wi l l n o t h i n g o p e n t h e e y e s o f t h e s e
r 9
2 9 0

THE S EC R ET OF THE ZODIA C


p e o p l e t o t h e d a n g e r t h r e a t e n i n g t h e c o un t r y ? "
" No t h i n g b ut t h e c r a s h i t s e l f , "s a i d Br a n d o n , "a n d
w h e n t h a t c o me s i t w i l l b e t o o l a t e . "
" It s e e ms t o me , "s a i d R o s a mun d s l o w l y , " t h a t i n
t r y i n g t o c o n v i n c e t h e o f f i c i a l mi n d i t ' s n o g o o d d e a l i n g
i n a b s t r a c t i o n s . A n d a n y t h i n g l i ke o c c ul t p o w e r s a r e
a b s t r a c t i o n s t o t h e m . No t o n e o f t h e mw o ul d b e l i e v e
t h e s t o r y It o l d y o ua n d Te r e n c e - t h e y ' d o n l y t h i n kI
w a s ma d a n d s uf f e r i n g f r o md e l us i o n s . But t a l kt o
t h e mo f g un s o r b o mb p l o t s a n d t h e y ' l l t a ke y o u
s e r i o us l y . Th e y c a n ' t s e e t h a t t h e r e a r e mo r e d e s t r uc -
t i v e f o r c e s i n t h e w o r l d t h a n p h o s g e n e o r T. N. T. "
" It h i n kR o s a mun d ' s r i g h t , "s a i d K a v a n a g h . "I
d o n ' t b e l i e v e i t i s a n y us e t a l ki n g t o t h e mo f w h a t ' s
b e h i n d t h e w o r l d mo v e me n t . Th e s t o r y o f t h e Zo d i a c ,
f o r e x a mp l e , o n l y a p p e a r s t o t h e mf a n t a s t i c . Ho w -
e v e r , i n t h e p a c t s i g n e d w i t h v o n R a us c h e n b e r g w e ' v e
s o me t h i n g t a n g i b l e . It s e e ms t o me t h a t i t w o ul d b e
b e t t e r t o b a n ko n t h a t a n d l e a v e t h e r e s t o ut o f t h e
q ue s t i o n f o r t h e mo me n t . "
" Y e s , "s a i d Br a n d o n , "b ut t h a t ' s mo r e a ma t t e r f o r
s t a t e s me n t o d e a l w i t h . Ba g n a l l a n d C o . h a v e t h e
c o mp l e t e c o n f i d e n c e o f t h e To r i e s a t p r e s e n t ; i f w e
c o ul d s h a ke t h a t w e s h o ul d h a v e a c c o mp l i s h e d s o me -
t h i n g . Th e r e ' s e v e r y p r o s p e c t o f a n o t h e r Ge n e r a l
El e c t i o n b e f o r e l o n g , w i t h t h e To r i e s a s us ua l a v o i d i n g
' p e r s o n a l i t i e s ' s o a s t o e n a b l e t h e S o c i a l i s t s t o g e t b a c k
t o o f f i c e ,
b ut e v e n t h e To r i e s c o ul d h a r d l y s a y t h a t t h e
p ub l i c a t i o n o f a d o c ume n t s uc h a s t h i s w e n t b e y o n d t h e
b o un d s o f f a i r p l a y . Guy Fa w ke s ' s g un p o w d e r p l o t
w a s a mi l d p r a c t i c a l j o ke c o mp a r e d t o t h e c o up Ba g n a l l
a n d h i s f r i e n d s p r o p o s e t o b r i n g o f f . "
" Wh y d o n ' t y o ug o t o t h e Pr i me Mi n i s t e r y o ur s e l f ,
Te r e n c e
? " s a i d R o s a mun d . " He ' d b e s i mp l y b o un d
THE END OF THE Q U ES T

2 9 1
t o s i t up a n d t a ke n o t i c e o f a t h i n g l i ke t h i s . "
" Ib e l i e v e t h a t w o ul d b e t h e b e s t p l a n , "s a i d
K a v a n a g h . "
Pa r b ur y w a s q ui t e f r i e n d l y d o w n a t
Li n g f o r d i n t h e s umme r - w i s h e d me w e l l , a n d s a i d h e
h o p e d I' d d r o p i n t o Mr s
. Pa r b ur y ' s ' A t Ho me s ' a t
Numb e r Te n s o me t i me s , w h i c h Id ut i f ul l y d i d . Pa r -
b ur y w a s s t i l l a mi a b l e o n t h e s e o c c a s i o n s , a l t h o ug h n o
d o ub t h e ' d b e e n w a r n e d a g a i n s t me a s a Di e h a r d . A t
a n y r a t e , h i s ma n n e r w a s q ui t e d i f f e r e n t t o Bl o x h a m' s . "
Oh , Pa r b ur y ' s t h e mo s t g o o d - n a t ur e d f e l l o w i n t h e
w o r l d , "s a i d Br a n d o n . " A ma n w h o s e mo t t o i s ' a n y -
t h i n g f o r a q ui e t l i f e ' c o ul d h a r d l y b e o t h e r w i s e .
Ta c kl e h i mb y a l l me a n s , Te r e n c e . Wh e t h e r h e ' l l d o
a n y t h i n g i s a n o t h e r q ue s t i o n . "
S o i t w a s f i n a l l y d e c i d e d t h a t K a v a n a g h s h o ul d w r i t e
t o t h e Pr i me Mi n i s t e r t e l l i n g h i mh e w i s h e d t o s p e a kt o
h i mo n a ma t t e r o f t h e h i g h e s t n a t i o n a l i mp o r t a n c e .
Th e r e q ue s t me t w i t h a c o r d i a l r e p l y f r o mMr .
Pa r b ur y ' s s e c r e t a r y , a n d a t t h e a p p o i n t e d h o ur K a v a -
n a g h , a r me d w i t h t h e f a t e f ul d o c ume n t - w h i c h
Br a n d o n h a d b e e n c a r e f ul t o p h o t o g r a p h - p r e s e n t e d
h i ms e l f a t i o Do w n i n g S t r e e t .
Go o d mo r n i n g , Ma j o r K a v a n a g h , "t h e a r b i t e r o f
t h e n a t i o n ' s d e s t i n i e s s a i d i n a f r i e n d l y t o n e . " Gl a d t o
s e e y o ul o o ki n g s o w e l l
. Wh a t a p l e a s a n t t i me w e h a d
t h a t w e e k- e n d l a s t J un e ! A l o v e l y b i t o f c o un t r y t h a t
.
I' v e a l w a y s b e e n s o a t t a c h e d t o t h e We a l d o f S us s e x .
If o n l y o n e c o ul d t h r o w o f f t h e c a r e s o f S t a t e a n d s e t t l e
d o w n t h e r e i n p e a c e t o s h e e p - f a r mi n g . "
Id o n ' t kn o w t h a t I' v e e v e r b e e n p a r t i c ul a r l y d r a w n ,
t o s h e e p , "a n s w e r e d K a v a n a g h
. " Th e y ' r e r a t h e r
un r e s p o n s i v e a n i ma l s , a r e n ' t t h e y ? "
" No t w h e n y o ukn o w t h e m, n o t w h e n y o ukn o w
t h e m, "Mr
. Pa r b ur y s a i d h e a r t i l y . " Ih a d a n o l d r a m
2 9 2

THE S EC R ET OF THE ZODIA C


n o w - "a n d h e w e n t o f f i n t o e x t e n s i v e o v i n e
r e mi n i s c e n c e s .
K a v a n a g h l i s t e n e d w i t h w e l l - c o n c e a l e d i mp a t i e n c e .
"
We l l , s i r , "h e s a i d a t l a s t w h e n Pa r b ur y l e f t h i ma n
o p p o r t un i t y t o s p e a k
. " Ir e a l l y c a me t o s e e y o u
a b o ut a ma t t e r o f s o me i mp o r t a n c e . "
"
A h , y e s , t o b e s ur e , "t h e Pr i me Mi n i s t e r r e p l i e d ,
g l a n c i n g a t K a v a n a g h ' s l e t t e r t h a t l a y b e f o r e h i mo n
t h e t a b l e . " Te l l me a l l a b o ut i t , "h e a d d e d w i t h a
p l e a s a n t s mi l e , l i g h t i n g
f i i s p i p e .
"
In v i e w o f t h e p r e s e n t s i t ua t i o n , "K a v a n a g h
b e g a n , c h o o s i n g h i s w o r d s v e r y c a r e f ul l y ,
" i t s e e me d t o
me a d v i s a b l e t h a t c e r t a i n f a c t s s h o ul d b e b r o ug h t t o
y o ur n o t i c e
. Iun d e r s t a n d t h a t a Ge n e r a l El e c t i o n i n
t h e n e a r f ut ur e i s n o t i mp r o b a b l e . "

It i s b y n o me a n s i mp o s s i b l e , "Pa r b ur y a g r e e d .
A n d t h a t i t i s e q ua l l y n o t i mp o s s i b l e , "c o n t i n ue d
K a v a n a g h , " t h a t t h e S o c i a l i s t Pa r t y mi g h t t h i s t i me
b e r e t ur n e d w i t h a ma j o r i t y . "
It h i n kn o t , "s a i d Pa r b ur y , b ut h i s v o i c e c o n v e y e d
n o c o n v i c t i o n
. " Bl o x h a ma t t h e C e n t r a l Of f i c e t e l l s
me w e a r e n o t l i ke l y t o l o s e muc h g r o un d . R e p o r t s
f r o mt h e p r o v i n c e s a r e o n t h e w h o l e q ui t e r e a s s ur i n g . "
S t i l l , c o n s i d e r i n g t h e v i o l e n c e o f t h e p r e s e n t l e a d e r
o f t h e s o - c a l l e d La b o ur Pa r t y , Ha n l e y , y o uw i l l a g r e e
t h a t t h e me r e p o s s i b i l i t y o f t h e i r t a ki n g o v e r t h e r e i n s
o f p o w e r i s a l a r mi n g ? "

Id o n ' t kn o w a b o ut t h a t , Ma j o r K a v a n a g h .
Ha n l e y i s , a s y o us a y , a t p r e s e n t s o me w h a t o f a n
e x t r e mi s t , b ut o f f i c e h a s a r e ma r ka b l y s o b e r i n g e f f e c t
o n me n o f h i s s t a mp
. Be s i d e s , i f h e w e n t t o o f a r t h e r e
w o ul d a l w a y s b e t h e mo r e mo d e r a t e me n o f h i s Pa r t y
t o ke e p h i mi n c h e c k . S uc h me n a s Ba g n a l l , f o r
e x a mp l e , c o ul d b e s a f e l y r e l i e d o n n o t t o s up p o r t a n y
r e a l l y e x t r e me me a s ur e s . "
" Th a t i s p r e c i s e l y w h a t Iw a n t e d t o p ut b e f o r e y o u,
Mr
. Pa r b ur y . If y o ua r e d e p e n d i n g o n Ba g n a l l a n d h i s
f r i e n d s t o ma i n t a i n t h e c o n s t i t ut i o n o f t h i s c o un t r y , I
a ma f r a i d y o ua r e mi s t a ke n . "
Fo r t h e f i r s t t i me a s h a d e o f a n n o y a n c e c r o s s e d t h e
Pr i me Mi n i s t e r ' s b r o w . He w a s n o t a c c us t o me d t o b e
t o l d h e w a s mi s t a ke n b y C o n s e r v a t i v e b a c k- b e n c h e r s ,
l e t a l o n e a me r e a s p i r a n t t o t h o s e l o w l y s e a t s . But
h e c o n t e n t e d h i ms e l f w i t h s a y i n g g o o d - h umo ur e d l y
"C o me , c o me , K a v a n a g h , y o ua r e a l l o w i n g y o ur s e l f
t o b e c a r r i e d a w a y b y y o ur p r e j ud i c e s . Ba g n a l l ,
Pud s e y , a n d t h e o t h e r s o f t h e i r ki n d a r e e x c e l l e n t
f e l l o w s a t b o t t o m ; t h e y h a v e t h e i n t e r e s t s o f t h e
Emp i r e j us t a s muc h a t h e a r t a s y o uo r I. Wh e n i t
c a me t o t h e p o i n t t h e y w o ul d n e v e r a g r e e t o a n y t h i n g
un c o n s t i t ut i o n a l . "
" Wh a t w o ul d y o us a y t h e n , "s a i d K a v a n a g h , l e a n -
i n g f o r w a r d a n d l o o ki n g Pa r b ur y i n t h e e y e , " i f Ic o ul d
p r o v e t o y o ut h a t t h e y a r e p r e p a r e d t o b r i n g a b o ut t h e
d o w n f a l l o f t h e Br i t i s h Emp i r e ? "
"My d e a r f e l l o w , y o uc e r t a i n l y c o ul d n o t p r o v e t h a t
t o me , "Pa r b ur y a n s w e r e d , w i t h a d o ub t i n g s mi l e .
" Th e n w i l l y o ur e a d t h i s ? " K a v a n a g h s a i d , t a ki n g
t h e R a us c h e n b e r g p a c t o ut o f h i s p o c ke t a n d l a y i n g i t
b e f o r e t h e Pr i me Mi n i s t e r .
Mr . Pa r b ur y r a n h i s e y e s o v e r i t w i t h a p uz z l e d e x -
p r e s s i o n . " Ba g n a l l - Pud s e y - R e n t o n - a n d s i g n e d
b y v o n R a us c h e n b e r g , "h e r e p e a t e d , r e a d i n g o ut t h e
s i g n a t ur e s .
" Y e s , "s a i d K a v a n a g h
. " A p a c t b e t w e e n t h e s e
t h r e e S o c i a l i s t me mb e r s a n d t h e g r e a t Pa n - Ge r ma n
Ge n e r a l , t o f o r ma n A n g l o - S o v i e t a l l i a n c e , t o d e s t r o y
t h e C o n s t i t ut i o n o f t h i s c o un t r y , a b o l i s h t h e Mo n a r c h y ,
2 9 4

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
a n d b r e a kup t h e Br i t i s h Emp i r e . Wh a t mo r e d o y o u
w a n t a s e v i d e n c e o f h i g h t r e a s o n ? "
Mr . Pa r b ur y p us h e d t h e p a p e r a w a y me d i t a t i v e l y .
He h a d c e a s e d t o s mi l e , b ut h i s f a c e b e t r a y e d n e i t h e r
a l a r mn o r i n d i g n a t i o n .
"Hi g h t r e a s o n i s a s t r o n g w o r d , "h e s a i d s l o w l y , "a
s o me w h a t o b s o l e t e w o r d , i f y o ud o n ' t mi n d my s a y i n g
s o . We a r e n o t l i v i n g i n t h e El i z a b e t h a n e r a . Id o n ' t
me a n t o mi n i mi s e t h e s e r i o us n e s s o f t h e t h i n g , y o u
un d e r s t a n d ; i t i s s e r i o us , q ui t e s e r i o us . But i t w o ul d
b e p o s s i b l e t o e x a g g e r a t e i t s i mp o r t a n c e . Th e f ul f i l -
me n t o f t h i s p a c t , "a n d h e t a p p e d t h e p a p e r , " d e p e n d s ,
y o us e e , o n t h e La b o ur Pa r t y g e t t i n g i n t o o f f i c e a g a i n
a f t e r t h e n e x t Ge n e r a l El e c t i o n , a n d , a s Is a i d j us t n o w ,
t h e y a r e un l i ke l y t o b e r e t ur n e d w i t h a ma j o r i t y . If
t h e y a r e , w e l l , w i l d p r o mi s e s ma d e w h e n i n Op p o s i t i o n
a r e n o t l i ke l y t o b e f ul f i l l e d b y me n w h o h a v e a s s ume d
t h e r e s p o n s i b i l i t y o f g o v e r n me n t . "
"But t h i s i s n o t a c a s e o f w i l d p r o mi s e s , "K a v a n a g h
i n t e r p o s e d , " i t i s a c a s e o f a d e f i n i t e t r e a s o n a b l e p a c t ,
s i g n e d , s e a l e d a n d d e l i v e r e d - -
Mr . Pa r b ur y p ut up h i s h a n d . " Ikn o w a l l t h a t , my
d e a r K a v a n a g h , b ut e v e n s i g n e d p a c t s a r e n o t a l w a y s
a d h e r e d t o . "
"But w h y r i s kt h e p o s s i b i l i t y o f i t s b e i n g c a r r i e d
o ut ? "s a i d K a v a n a g h un c o n t r o l l a b l y ; " n o w t h a t y o u
kn o w w h a t t h e s e me n ' s c o mmi t me n t s a r e , w h y a l l o w
t h e me v e r t o t a ke o f f i c e ? Wh y n o t i mp e a c h t h e mn o w
b e f o r e Pa r l i a me n t , b e f o r e t h e w h o l e c o un t r y , a n d l e t
t h e n a t i o n un d e r s t a n d t h e i r r e a l c h a r a c t e r ? "
" Ih a r d l y t h i n kt h a t w o ul d s e r v e a n y us e f ul p ur -
p o s e . We d o n o t w i s h t o a p p e a r v i n d i c t i v e . A n d a t
a n y r a t e , b e f o r e t a ki n g a c t i o n Is h o ul d l i ke t o s ub mi t
t h i s d o c ume n t t o my e x p e r t a d v i s e r s .
Ih a v e a t f i r s t
THEENDOFTHEQ U ES T

2 9 5
t o b e a s s ur e d t h a t i t i s g e n ui n e . "
" But It o o ki t my s e l f o ut o f Ba g n a l l ' s p o c ke t !
Ho w c o ul d i t b e a f o r g e r y ? "A n d K a v a n a g h b r i e f l y
r e l a t e d t h e i n c i d e n t o f t h e mo t o r - c a r a c c i d e n t a t
S t o l z e n b a c h .
" Ic a n ' t h e l p b e i n g s o r r y y o ud i d t h a t , K a v a n a g h .
It w a s h a r d l y p l a y i n g t h e g a me . "
" But t h i s i s n ' t a g a me , i t ' s w a r , d e a d l y w a r f a r e
a g a i n s t t h e Mo n a r c h y a n d t h e Br i t i s h Emp i r e . S ur e l y
a n y me a n s a r e j us t i f i e d t o d e f e a t s uc h a p l o t ? "
" We l l , w e l l , t h a t ' s a ma t t e r o f o p i n i o n . Pe r s o n a l l y
Ic o n s i d e r t h a t i t w a s n ' t c r i c ke t . Ho w e v e r , t h e t h i n g
i s d o n e . Iw i l l a s ky o un o w t o l e a v e t h e d o c ume n t
w i t h me . "
K a v a n a g h d e mur r e d . " I' d r a t h e r n o t l e t i t o ut o f
my h a n d s , s i r . Y o us e e , i f a n y t h i n g h a p p e n e d t o i t t h e
w h o l e c a s e w o ul d f a l l t o t h e g r o un d . "
" Y o un e e d h a v e n o f e a r f o r i t s s a f e t y . It i s a b s o -
l ut e l y n e c e s s a r y Is h o ul d h a v e i t t o l a y b e f o r e t h e
C a b i n e t w h e n i t me e t s o n Tue s d a y . "
Th i s s e e me d un a n s w e r a b l e . Th e Pr i me Mi n i s t e r
c o ul d n o t b e e x p e c t e d t o d e a l w i t h t h e ma t t e r a l o n e ,
a n d h e e v i d e n t l y j ud g e d i t t o b e o f c o n s i d e r a b l e
i mp o r t a n c e a f t e r a l l , s i n c e h e p r o p o s e d t o 1 i s c us s i t a t
a C a b i n e t me e t i n g . A n d a s K a v a n a g h c o ul d h a r d l y
e x p e c t t o b e p r e s e n t o n s uc h a n o c c a s i o n , t h e r e w a s
n o t h i n g f o r i t b ut t o l e a v e t h e d o c ume n t i n t h e Pr i me
Mi n i s t e r ' s h a n d s .
" Ma y Ia s ky o u, s i r , "h e s a i d , g e t t i n g up t o g o , " i f
y o uw i l l s e e me a g a i n a f t e r t h e C a b i n e t me e t i n g , a n d i f
p o s s i b l e l e t me h a v e t h e d o c ume n t b a c kt h e n ? "
"
Th a t d e p e n d s , t h a t d e p e n d s
. Iw i l l s e e y o uh o w -
e v e r o n We d n e s d a y , i f y o uc a l l a t t h e s a me h o ur . I
c a n t h e n l e t y o ukn o w w h a t h a s t a ke n p l a c e . "
2 9 6

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
A n d w i t h a r a t h e r l e s s c o r d i a l h a n d s h a ke t h a n h e h a d
g i v e n K a v a n a g h o n e n t e r i n g , t h e Pr i me Mi n i s t e r c l o s e d
t h e i n t e r v i e w .
Pun c t ua l l y a t t h e a p p o i n t e d h o ur o n We d n e s d a y ,
K a v a n a g h p r e s e n t e d h i ms e l f a g a i n a t Do w n i n g S t r e e t .
Mr . Pa r b ur y w a s s e a t e d a t h i s t a b l e w i t h a d i s t i n c t l y
h a r a s s e d e x p r e s s i o n o n h i s us ua l l y p l a c i d c o un t e n a n c e .
" Go o d mo r n i n g , Ma j o r K a v a n a g h . Ia ms o r r y t h a t
Ih a v e n o n e w s f o r y o us o f a r . We w e r e un a b l e t o
d i s c us s t h e ma t t e r o f y o ur d o c ume n t a t t h e C a b i n e t
me e t i n g y e s t e r d a y . Th e f a c t i s , t h a t b y s o me un f o r -
t un a t e o v e r s i g h t i t w a s n o t r e t ur n e d t o me i n t i me b y
t h e e x p e r t a d v i s e r t o w h o mIh a d s ub mi t t e d i t . In
f a c t , Ih a v e n o t y e t r e c e i v e d i t b a c kf r o mt h e h a n d s i n
w h i c h i t h a s b e e n p l a c e d . "
"
Wh o s e h a n d s ? "
a s ke d K a v a n a g h , t a ke n a b a c k .
" We l l , Ic a n h a r d l y t e l l y o ut h a t , "s a i d t h e Pr i me
Mi n i s t e r , b e g i n n i n g t o f i d g e t n e r v o us l y w i t h a p a p e r
kn i f e
. "We h a v e , y o uun d e r s t a n d , c e r t a i n a d v i s e r s
w h o mw e a r e a c c us t o me d t o c o n s ul t o n ma t t e r s o f
i mp o r t a n c e , e s p e c i a l l y t h o s e r e l a t i n g t o i n t e r n a t i o n a l
a f f a i r s
.
It h i n ky o uc a n s a f e l y r e l y o n my j ud g me n t
i n t h i s q ue s t i o n . "
"But - b ut " s t a mme r e d K a v a n a g h , b e c o mi n g
mo r e a n d mo r e a l a r me d , " s up p o s i n g t h e d o c ume n t h a d
g o t i n t o t h e h a n d s o f - o f - w e l l , Os c a r Fr a n kl i n , f o r
e x a mp l e ? "
"
It i s c ur i o us y o us h o ul d s a y t h a t . A s i t h a p p e n s -
It h i n kIma y t e l l y o ut h i s - i t w a s Mr . Os c a r Fr a n kl i n I
c o n s ul t e d o n t h i s o c c a s i o n . "
" Go o d Go d I " K a v a n a g h c r i e d f r a n t i c a l l y , s t a r t i n g
o ut o f h i s c h a i r a n d c l a s p i n g h i s h e a d w i t h h i s h a n d s .
"Go o d Go d IY o ug a v e t h e d o c ume n t t o Os c a r
THEENDOFTHEQ U ES T

2 9 7
Fr a n kl i n ! "
A n d h e b e g a n t o p a c e t h e r o o ml i ke o n e
d e me n t e d .
"
C a l my o ur s e l f , K a v a n a g h , "t h e Pr i me Mi n i s t e r s a i d ,
l o o ki n g a t h i mw i t h s ur p r i s e d a n n o y a n c e . " Th e r e i s
n o t h i n g t o e x c i t e y o ur s e l f a b o ut i n t h i s w a y . Mr .
Os c a r Fr a n kl i n , a s y o us h o ul d kn o w , i s o n e o f o ur mo s t
p o w e r f ul s up p o r t e r s
. He h a s r e g ul a r l y c o n t r i b ut e d
s ub s t a n t i a l s ums t o t h e f un d s o f t h e Pa r t y . A n d t h e
p o s i t i o n h e o c c up i e s i n t h e f i n a n c i a l w o r l d ma ke s h i ma
mo s t v a l ua b l e a ut h o r i t y o n i n t e r n a t i o n a l q ue s t i o n s .
No o n e i s mo r e q ua l i f i e d t o p r o n o un c e a j ud g me n t o n a
d e l i c a t e q ue s t i o n s uc h a s t h e d o c ume n t y o uh a n d e d me ,
b o t h a s r e g a r d s i t s a ut h e n t i c i t y a n d t h e i n t e r p r e t a t i o n
t h a t mus t b e p l a c e d o n i t . Mr . Fr a n kl i n i s a ma n o f
t h e h i g h e s t i n t e g r i t y . "
"Os c a r Fr a n kl i n a ma n o f t h e h i g h e s t i n t e g r i t y !
Wo ul d y o ul i ke me t o t e l l y o uw h a t Ikn o w a b o ut t h e
ma n ? " K a v a n a g h s a i d un c o n t r o l l a b l y , w o n d e r i n g
w h e r e h e s h o ul d b e g i n i f h e w e r e c a l l e d o n t o r e l a t e t h e
h i s t o r y o f "C a p r i c o r n us . "S h o ul d h e s a y h e w a s a
me mb e r o f t h e Zo d i a c ? No , t h a t w o ul d me a n n o t h i n g
t o t h e i n g e n uo us Mr . Pa r b ur y , a n d e v e n i f t h e f a c t s
a b o ut t h e Zo d i a c w e r e e x p l a i n e d t o h i mh e w o ul d
s i mp l y r e f us e t o b e l i e v e t h e m
. Wh a t t h e n a b o ut h i s
r o l e i n t h e C l i n i c Ni r v a n a , a s t h e w o ul d - b e mur d e r e r
o f R o s a mun d , o r a s t h e v i r t ua l mur d e r e r o f Gr e e n -
w o r t h y a n d h i s d a ug h t e r ? No , t h a t
a l s o w o ul d
a p p e a r f a n t a s t i c ; t r ut h t o o o f t e n i s s o muc h s t r a n g e r
t h a n f i c t i o n
. S o s ui t i n g h i ms e l f t o t h e me n t a l i t y o f
h i s a ud i e n c e o f o n e , K a v a n a g h s a i d b r i e f l y
"
Ic a n t e l l y o ut h a t Os c a r Fr a n kl i n i s o n e o f t h e
mo s t d a n g e r o us me n i n t h e w o r l d
; h e i s i n t h e v e r y
h ub o f t h e Bo l s h e v i kc o n s p i r a c y . "
"
C o me , c o me , c o me , Ma j o r K a v a n a g h , y o uh a v e
2 9 8

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
a l l o w e d y o ur i ma g i n a t i o n t o r un a w a y w i t h y o u .
Wh a t y o us a y i s a b s ur d . Fr a n kl i n i s o n e o f t h e mo s t
r e s o l ut e o p p o n e n t s o f Bo l s h e v i s ma n d , a s Ih a v e
a l r e a d y t o l d y o u, a s t r o n g s up p o r t e r o f t h e C o n s e r v a t i v e
c a us e . A s t o h i s f a i l ur e t o r e t ur n t h e d o c ume n t i n
t i me f o r t h e C a b i n e t me e t i n g , i t w a s o f c o ur s e mo s t
un f o r t un a t e , b ut y o uw i l l un d e r s t a n d t h a t i n t h e c a s e
o f a ma n a s b us y a s Fr a n kl i n a ma t t e r o f t h i s ki n d
mi g h t e s c a p e h i s a t t e n t i o n a n d t h e d o c ume n t b e
mo me n t a r i l y mi s l a i d . "
"
A h , t h e n y o ukn o w i t h a s b e e n mi s l a i d
? "
"Y e s , a t e l e p h o n e me s s a g e w a s s e n t t o h i mj us t b e f o r e
t h e C a b i n e t me e t i n g r e q ue s t i n g h i mt o r e t ur n i t w i t h o ut
d e l a y , b ut h i s s e c r e t a r y r e p l i e d t h a t h e w a s un f o r t un -
a t e l y n o t a b l e a t t h e mo me n t t o l a y h i s h a n d o n i t . He
a d d e d , h o w e v e r , t h a t a s e a r c h w o ul d b e ma d e a n d t h e
p a p e r r e t ur n e d t o me w i t h o ut f a i l
. "
K a v a n a g h l i s t e n e d , s t un n e d . Fo r a mo me n t h e h a d
l o s t t h e p o w e r o f s p e e c h . He kn e w t h e d i f f i c ul t y o f
s e c ur i n g i n t e r v i e w s w i t h o f f i c i a l p e r s o n a g e s w h e r e a n y
a w kw a r d s i t ua t i o n w a s i n v o l v e d , h e kn e w t h a t o n c e t h e
d o o r h a d c l o s e d b e h i n d h i mh e mi g h t n e v e r a g a i n
s uc c e e d i n p e n e t r a t i n g i n t o Mr . Pa r b ur y ' s s a n c t um .
S o r e a l i s i n g t h a t t h i s w a s p r o b a b l y h i s l a s t c h a n c e , h e
p ul l e d h i ms e l f t o g e t h e r a n d , a l mo s t f o r g e t t i n g w h o mh e
w a s a d d r e s s i n g , h e s a i d v e h e me n t l y
"Mr . Pa r b ur y , y o umus t d e ma n d t h e r e t ur n o f t h e
d o c ume n t i mme d i a t e l y . Fo r o n c e i n y o ur l i f e s h o w
s o me e n e r g y 1 R i n g up Fr a n kl i n a n d i n s i s t o n i t s
r e t ur n t h i s v e r y mo me n t . "
To o s ur p r i s e d ,
o r p e r h a p s t o o h y p n o t i s e d b y
K a v a n a g h ' s a ut h o r i t a t i v e t o n e , t o r e s i s t , Mr . Pa r b ur y
s ummo n e d h i s s e c r e t a r y a n d r e q ue s t e d t o b e p ut o n t o
Mr . Os c a r Fr a n kl i n .
THEENDOFTHEQ U ES T

2 9 9
A mo me n t l a t e r t h e b e l l r a n g . Mr . Pa r b ur y h e l d t h e
r e c e i v e r t o h i s e a r , l i s t e n e d s i l e n t l y , t h e n a n s w e r i n g
"Is e e ; It h a n ky o u, "r e p l a c e d t h e r e c e i v e r a n d t ur n e d
t o w a r d s K a v a n a g h
" Ia ms o r r y , e x t r e me l y s o r r y t h a t Ia mun a b l e t o
me e t y o ur r e q ue s t . Mr . Os c a r Fr a n kl i n s a i l e d f o r
A me r i c a i n t h e C a r o n i a t h i s mo r n i n g . "
K a v a n a g h n e v e r kn e w h o w h e g o t o ut o f Do w n i n g
S t r e e t t h a t d a y . A f t e r w a r d s h e h a d o n l y a c o n f us e d
me mo r y o f s t a r i n g w i l d l y a t Mr . Pa r b ur y , ut t e r i n g
a f e w i n c o h e r e n t p h r a s e s a c c o mp a n i e d b y v i o l e n t
g e s t ur e s , a n d s t a g g e r i n g t o t h e d o o r . He w a s n e v e r
q ui t e s ur e t h a t h e h a d n o t t a ke n t h a t i mp e r t ur b a b l e
f i g ur e a t t h e d e s kb y t h e s h o ul d e r s a n d s h a ke n i t w i t h
a l l h i s mi g h t . He kn e w t h a t h e f e l t i n c l i n e d t o d o s o ,
b ut h e h o p e d h e h a d r e f r a i n e d . Fo r a C o n s e r v a t i v e
c a n d i d a t e t o s h a ke t h e Pr i me Mi n i s t e r w o ul d c e r t a i n l y
b e w i t h o ut p r e c e d e n t .
Br a n d o n l i s t e n e d h o r r o r - s t r uc kt o t h e s t o r y K a v a n a g h
h a d t o r e l a t e w h e n h e r e a c h e d h i s f r i e n d ' s s t ud i o .
" It ' s a g h a s t l y b us i n e s s , "h e s a i d . " Of c o ur s e w e
mus t ma ke up o ur mi n d s t o t h e o r i g i n a l d o c ume n t
h a v i n g b e e n d o n e a w a y w i t h . S t i l l , w e h a v e me r c i f ul l y
g o t t h e p h o t o g r a p h s . S o me us e mi g h t b e ma d e o f
t h e m . "
" No t w i t h t h e p o l i t i c i a n s
.
Th e y ' r e a l l t o o t e r r i f i e d
o f Fr a n kl i n t o t a ke a n y s t e p s t h a t w o ul d l e a d t o a n
e x p o s ur e o f t h e p a r t h e h a s p l a y e d i n t h e ma t t e r
.
Pa r b ur y , Ic o ul d s e e , w a s g e n ui n e l y up s e t a b o ut i t ;
h e
e v i d e n t l y h a d c o mp l e t e c o n f i d e n c e i n t h e ma n . S o
t h e y a l l h a v e . It w o ul d t a ke mo r e t h a n t h i s t o s h a ke
i t .
" Th e n y o ua b s o l v e Pa r b ur y o f a l l c o mp l i c i t y ? "
3 00

THE S EC R ET OF THE ZODIA C


" A b s o l ut e l y
.
I b e l i e v e h e s t i l l t h i n ks i t w a s a n
o v e r s i g h t o f Fr a n kl i n ' s . "
" But w h e n h e f i n d s t h a t t h e d o c ume n t h a s d i s -
a p p e a r e d f o r g o o d ? "
" By t h e t i me t h a t b e c o me s e v i d e n t , Pa r b ur y w i l l
h a v e f o r g o t t e n a l l a b o ut i t . "
K a v a n a g h b e g a n t o p a c e t h e r o o mf e v e r i s h l y , t h e n
c o mi n g t o a s ud d e n s t o p , h e s a i d
" Lo o kh e r e , J i mmy , t h e r e ' s o n l y o n e t h i n g f o r us
n o w . "
" A n d t h a t i s

? "
" Th e Pr e s s . "
A n d r e s umi n g h i s w a l ka b o ut t h e r o o m, K a v a n a g h
w e n t o n v e h e me n t l y :" I' l l g o t o e v e r y n e w s p a p e r i n
Lo n d o n w i t h t h e s t o r y . We ' v e g o t t h e p h o t o g r a p h o f
t h e d o c ume n t a n d t h e s n a p s h o t o f t h e p a r t y a t S c h l o s s
S t o l z e n b a c h
. Wh a t mo r e c a n t h e y w a n t ? Th e y
ma d e e n o ug h o f t h e Zi n o v i e v l e t t e r , w h i c h , a s y o u' v e
o f t e n s a i d , w a s c h i l d ' s p l a y c o mp a r e d t o t h e R a us c h e n -
b e r g p a c t
. Wh y s h o ul d n ' t t h e y f e a t ur e t h i s ? "
" Tr y i t b y a l l me a n s , my d e a r f e l l o w . But y o u
f o r g e t t h a t t h e Zi n o v i e v l e t t e r d i d n ' t i n v o l v e a s i n g l e
me mb e r o f t h e Zo d i a c
.
It o n l y i n v o l v e d t h e Bo l -
s h e v i s t f a c a d e a t w h i c h t h e p ub l i c a r e a l l o w e d t o g a z e
t o t h e i r h e a r t s ' c o n t e n t . Th i s i s a v e r y d i f f e r e n t ma t t e r .
Ho w e v e r , g o a h e a d , a n d mo r e p o w e r t o y o ur e l b o w -
y o u' l l n e e d i t t o g e t i n t o s o me o f t h e s e n e w s p a p e r
o f f i c e s . "
S o K a v a n a g h s t a r t e d o n h i s q ue s t . Be g i n n i n g w i t h
t h e mo s t " mo d e r a t e o f t h e C o n s t i t ut i o n a l d a i l i e s , h e
w e n t f r o md o o r t o d o o r a s ki n g t o s e e t h e e d i t o r . In
t w o c a s e s t h e e d i t o r w a s s a i d t o b e e n g a g e d
; i n f o ur ,
h o w e v e r , h e s uc c e e d e d i n g a i n i n g a d mi t t a n c e t o t h e
THE END OF THE Q U ES T

3 01
e d i t o r i a l s a n c t um, a n d me t w i t h a c o r d i a l r e c e p t i o n .
Th e p a p e r s w e r e j us t n o w h a r d up f o r n e w s . Th e
Pr i n c e o f Wa l e s h a d h a p p i l y r e c o v e r e d f r o mt h e a t t a c k
o f p n e umo n i a t h a t h a d ke p t t h e c o un t r y o n t e n t e r -
h o o ks a l l
t h e p r e v i o us w e e k . Th e Gr e e n w o r t h y
t r a g e d y , s a t i s f a c t o r i l y a s c r i b e d t o S i r Pa ul ' s f i n a n c i a l
a n x i e t i e s , h a d p r o v e d l e s s t h a n a n i n e d a y s ' w o n d e r
.
If Ma j o r K a v a n a g h h a d a n y t h i n g o f a r e a l l y s e n s a -
t i o n a l n a t ur e t o c o mmun i c a t e h e w a s mo r e t h a n
w e l c o me .
K a v a n a g h e x p l a i n e d t h a t w h a t h e h a d t o r e l a t e w a s
s e n s a t i o n a l t o t h e h i g h e s t d e g r e e , i n v o l v i n g a s i t d i d
t h e w h o l e f a t e o f t h e Br i t i s h Emp i r e
.
Th e e d i t o r s , e a c h i n t ur n , s c e n t i n g a s c o o p , l i s t e n e d
a t t e n t i v e l y , b ut e a c h e n d e d b y s h a ki n g h i s h e a d a n d
s a y i n g f i r ml y
" I' mmuc h o b l i g e d t o y o uf o r b r i n g i n g me t h i s
s t o r y . It ' s i n t e r e s t i n g o f c o ur s e - a n d mo s t e x t r a -
o r d i n a r y . But I' ma f r a i d w e c a n ' t t o uc h i t . "
On e a l o n e , Da r t f o r d , t h e e d i t o r o f t h e
Lo n d o n A r g us ,
a n a r d e n t l y p a t r i o t i c p a p e r , t o o ka b o l d e r l i n e
.
" Th i s i s s t up e n d o us , Ma j o r K a v a n a g h
. Of c o ur s e
i t mus t b e p ub l i s h e d
. Iq ui t e un d e r s t a n d , t h o ug h ,
p a p e r s r e f us i n g i t
. Th e r e ' s c o n s i d e r a b l e r i s ka t t a c h i n g
t o i t . Y o us e e , i t d o e s n ' t o n l y i n v o l v e t h e s e La b o ur
me n , b ut a l s o Os c a r Fr a n kl i n o v e r t h e d i s a p p e a r a n c e
o f t h e o r i g i n a l d o c ume n t
. A n d t h e p o w e r h e a n d h i s
a l l i e s e x e r c i s e o v e r t h e Pr e s s i s f o r mi d a b l e - i n t h e
ma t t e r o f a d v e r t i s e me n t s , y o uun d e r s t a n d
. Of c o ur s e
a p a p e r c a n ' t l i v e w i t h o ut a d v e r t i s e me n t s .
"
S t i l l , "h e w e n t o n c h e e r f ul l y , "i n a c a s e o f t h i s
i mp o r t a n c e t h e Lo n d o n A r g us
w o ul d b e p r e p a r e d t o
t a ke t h e r i s k
. It ma y a f f e c t us f i n a n c i a l l y , b ut w h a t ' s
g o i n g t o b e c o me o f t h e c o un t r y i f t h i s p l o t c o me s o f f ?
3 02

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
Th a t ' s t h e f i r s t c o n s i d e r a t i o n . I' l l t a ke t h e ma t t e r up
a t o n c e w i t h Mr . Pa r b ur y , a n d i f h e c o n f i r ms y o ur
e v i d e n c e - a s Ic o n c l ud e h e w i l l - w e ' l l c o me o ut w i t h
t h e w h o l e t h i n g , g i v i n g i t a l e a d e r a s w e l l . It w i l l b e
a b o mb s h e l l t o t h e - c o un t r y . Th a n ky o ua g a i n f o r
c o mi n g t o me . Y o uma y h a v e s a v e d t h e c o un t r y . "
K a v a n a g h r e t ur n e d t r i ump h a n t l y t o Br a n d o n .
"If Da r t f o r d s t i c ks t o h i s g un s , "s a i d Br a n d o n , " t h e
t h i n g i s d o n e . "
It w a s h a r d t o c o n t r o l t h e i r i mp a t i e n c e un t i l t h e
Lo n d o n A r g us a r r i v e d t w o d a y s l a t e r - a h ! t h e r e w a s
t h e p r o mi s e d l e a d e r a n d o n t h e o p p o s i t e p a g e t h e
i n c r i mi n a t i n g d o c ume n t r e p r o d uc e d a n d f e a t ur e d , t o -
g e t h e r w i t h t h e s n a p s h o t o f t h e g r o up a t S t o l z e n b a c h .
K a v a n a g h b r e a t h e d
a s i g h o f r e l i e f . Th e r e c o ul d b e
n o q ue s t i o n t h a t t h e c o un t r y w o ul d b e s t i r r e d t o i t s
d e p t h s .
Ea r l y i n t h e a f t e r n o o n h e s t r o l l e d r o un d t o h i s c l ub
i n Pi c c a d i l l y a n d f o un d s o me o f t h e me mb e r s l a n g ui d l y
d i s c us s i n g t h e n e w p o l i t i c a l s e n s a t i o n
. A f e w o f t h e
o l d e r "Di e - Ha r d s " w e r e i n d i g n a n t , d e c l a r i n g t h a t t h e
t h r e e La b o ur me mb e r s s h o ul d b e i mp e a c h e d f o r h i g h
t r e a s o n . But i n g e n e r a l i t w a s a g r e e d t h a t t h e Lo n d o n
A r g us ,
a l w a y s p r o n e t o t a ke a n " e x t r e me " v i e w , h a d
ma d e t o o muc h o f t h e a f f a i r .
" A f t e r a l l , w h a t h a v e Ba g n a l l a n d h i s f r i e n d s d o n e ?
S i g n e d a p a c t w i t h v o n R a us c h e n b e r g ? We l l , h e
s h o w e d h i ms e l f a v e r y g a l l a n t f o e d ur i n g t h e Wa r .
A n d h e ' s b e e n r e c e i v e d o v e r h e r e b y p l e n t y o f i mp o r t a n t
p e o p l e s i n c e
. "
" A n d i f t h e y d i d a c c e p t f o r e i g n mo n e y , i t w a s o n l y
o n b e h a l f o f t h e i r Pa r t y - t o p a y f o r El e c t i o n e x p e n s e s .
No g r e a t h a r mi n t h a t ! "_
" Go o d Lo r d ! "e x p o s t ul a t e d a n i n e t y - y e a r - o l d
THEENDOFTHEQ U ES T

3 03
Ge n e r a l i n t h e c o r n e r . " But t h e y w e r e p l o t t i n g t h e
o v e r t h r o w o f t h e Mo n a r c h y a n d t h e b r e a k- up o f t h e
Br i t i s h Emp i r e ! "
"Oh , w e l l , t h e y t h i n kt h a t w o ul d b e f o r t h e g o o d o f
t h e w o r l d ! We d o n ' t a g r e e w i t h t h e m, o f c o ur s e ;
s t i l l ,
e v e r y o n e h a s a r i g h t t o h i s o w n o p i n i o n s .
A n d t h e
S o c i a l i s t s h a v e a l w a y s p r o f e s s e d R e p ub l i c a n s e n t i -
me n t s . A s t o t h e Emp i r e , a l l Emp i r e s h a v e p a s s e d
a w a y i n t i me . We c a n ' t e x p e c t o ur s t o l a s t f o r e v e r
. "
A n d s o o n .
By t h e e n d o f a w e e ki t w a s p l a i n t h a t w h a t s o c i e t y
r e f e r r e d t o a s t h e Lo n d o n A r g us ' s " l a t e s t s t un t " h a d
f a l l e n c o mp l e t e l y f l a t . A w r i t f o r l i b e l h a d b e e n i s s ue d
a g a i n s t t h e p a p e r , b ut t h e c a s e w a s n e v e r s e t d o w n f o r
t r i a l . Wh y r e mi n d t h e p ub l i c o f w h a t i t h a d n o w f o r -
g o t t e n ? Th e C h r i s t ma s h o l i d a y s p r o v i d e d p l e a s a n t e r
f o o d f o r t h o ug h t .
" I' mj us t w o n d e r i n g , "Br a n d o n s a i d t o K a v a n a g h
w h e n t h e y f i n a l l y r e a l i s e d t h e s i t ua t i o n ; "
I' mj us t
w o n d e r i n g w h e t h e r t h e w h o l e t h i n g i s a t r a g e d y o r a
r o a r i n g f a r c e . We ' v e g o n e t h r o ug h f i r e a n d f l o o d t o
g e t a l l t h i s i n f o r ma t i o n o n t h e w o r l d p l o t , a n d n o w w e
c a n d o n o t h i n g w i t h i t . "
" No , "s a i d K a v a n a g h , " w e c a n d o n o t h i n g w i t h i t .
A b s o l ut e l y n o t h i n g . "
C HA PTER XV
THEDEBA C LE
EA R LY i n t h e f o l l o w i n g y e a r La d y Da r e d i e d o f i n -
f l ue n z a , a n d R o s a mun d b e i n g l e f t a l o n e , K a v a n a g h
ur g e d t h a t t h e y s h o ul d b e ma r r i e d w i t h o ut f ur t h e r
d e l a y .
A f t e r a q ui e t w e d d i n g , w i t h o n l y a f e w f r i e n d s
p r e s e n t i n t h e c h ur c h a n d a b r i e f h o n e y mo o n i n
Po r t ug a l , t h e y s e t t l e d d o w n i n K a v a n a g h ' s r o o ms i n
Ha l f Mo o n S t r e e t a n d g o t t o w o r ka g a i n .
Fo r Te r e n c e K a v a n a g h w a s n o t t h e ma n t o s i t d o w n
l o n g un d e r d e f e a t . Hi s r e s o l v e t o s t a n d f o r Pa r l i a me n t
r e ma i n e d un s h a ke n , t h e mo r e s o s i n c e t h e s e c o n d
Na t i o n a l Go v e r n me n t h a d f a i l e d a n d a Ge n e r a l
El e c t i o n w a s t o b e h e l d o n t h e i s s ue o f C o n s e r v a t i s m
v e r s us S o c i a l i s m- un h a p p i l y w i t h t h e s a me l e a d e r s a t
t h e h e a d o f t h e C o n s e r v a t i v e Pa r t y .
S o , w i t h R o s a mun d a s h i s c o mp a n i o n i n a r ms ,
K a v a n a g h w e n t d o w n t o S o ut h Me r s h i r e a n d s t a r t e d o n
a v i g o r o us c a mp a i g n a g a i n s t h i s S o c i a l i s t o p p o n e n t
.
He un d e r s t o o d t h e w o r ki n g - c l a s s mi n d w e l l e n o ug h t o
r e a l i s e t h a t i t h a s n o us e f o r t h e c o mp r o mi s e s a n d
c o n c e s s i o n s d e a r t o t h e h e a r t o f t h e In t e l l i g e n t s i a , a n d
h i s h a b i t o f h a r d h i t t i n g w o n h i ms up p o r t o n a l l s i d e s .
Ev e n t h e p e o p l e w h o d i d n o t a g r e e w i t h h i mr e s p e c t e d
h i s c o ur a g e a n d w a r me d i n v o l un t a r i l y t o t h e f i r e o f
e n t h us i a s mt h a t f l a s h e d o ut i n h i s s p e e c h e s , w h i l s t
R o s a mun d ' s c h a r ma n d r e a s o n e d a r g ume n t s e n s ur e d
h e r a s y mp a t h e t i c h e a r i n g .
In s p i t e o f h i s s e c r e t d i s c o ur a g e me n t a t t h e i n e r t i a o f
3 04
THEDEBA C LE

3 05
h i s Pa r t y a n d t h e l a c ko f s up p o r t g i v e n h i mb y i t s
C e n t r a l Of f i c e , K a v a n a g h f o ug h t o n un d i s ma y e d .
He
w a s d e t e r mi n e d t h a t i f p o s s i b l e t h e r e s h o ul d b e a t l e a s t
o n e ma n a t We s t mi n s t e r w h o kn e w t h e t r ut h a n d
w o ul d
h a v e t h e r i g h t t o t e l l i t t o t h e c o un t r y .
But h i s s uc c e s s e s e v i d e n t l y d i d n o t e n h a n c e h i s
p o p ul a r i t y i n o f f i c i a l c i r c l e s . A p a r t f r o mh i s o w n
p a r t i c ul a r f r i e n d s , h e f o un d a g ul f w i d e n i n g a r o un d h i m,
a n d t h e o t h e r me mb e r s , w h e n h e d r o p p e d i n a t t h e
C a r l t o n C l ub ; me n w h o w o ul d f o r me r l y c o me up w i t h
a h e a r t y , "Hul l o 1 o l d c h a p ! "o r s e t t l e d o w n b e s i d e
h i mf o r a t a l k, n o w n o d d e d c o l d l y o r mo v e d a w a y i f h e
s a t d o w n n e a r t h e m .
" Ic a n ' t t h i n kw h a t ' s t h e ma t t e r w i t h t h e s e f e l l o w s , "
h e s a i d o n e d a y t o Ge n e r a l Br i g h o r n , w h o mh e h a d
g r o w n r a t h e r t o l i ke i n s p i t e o f h i s c r o s s w o r d c o mp l e x .
Th e r e w a s s o me t h i n g w h o l e s o me , f r a n k, a n d c h e e r y
a b o ut h i mt h a t g a v e o n e t h e f e e l i n g o f s i t t i n g o v e r a n
o p e n f i r e a n d w a s p l e a s a n t i f o n e h a p p e n e d t o b e f e e l i n g
t h e d r a ug h t . Be s i d e s , Br i g h o r n w a s a ma n e v e r y b o d y
t a l ke d t o a n d w h o kn e w w h a t w a s g o i n g o n .
" If e e l t h e y ' r e n o t p a r t i c ul a r l y f r i e n d l y j us t n o w , "
K a v a n a g h w e n t o n , t h r o w i n g o ut a f e e l e r .
" We l l , a s y o u' v e n o t i c e d t h a t - "t h e Ge n e r a l
b e g a n .
Th e n c l e a r i n g h i s t h r o a t h e a d d e d :"
If a n c y
i t ' s g o n e r o un d t h a t y o u' r e a b i t e x t r e me , K a v a n a g h .
Fe l l o w s d o n ' t l i ke t h a t , y o ukn o w . Th e y ' v e h e a r d
o f c o ur s e a b o ut y o ur e l e c t i o n e e r i n g c a mp a i g n i n
t h e Mi d l a n d s a n d t h e y f e e l y o u' r e r a t h e r a n
a l a r mi s t . "
" A n a l a r mi s t
! But i f t h e y kn e w w h a t Ikn o w , "
s a i d K a v a n a g h , " t h e y ' d j o l l y w e l l r e a l i s e t h a t t h e r e ' s
s o me t h i n g t o b e a l a r me d a b o ut . " Wo ul d i t b e p o s s i b l e
t o c o n f i d e i n Br i g h o r n a n d g e t h i mt o h e l p i n o p e n i n g
2 0
i
3 06

THE S EC R ETOF THE ZODIA C


t h e e y e s o f me mb e r s ? But n o , h e w a s t o o c o mf o r t a b l e
t o w i s h t o ma ke h i ms e l f un p o p ul a r .
" Oh y e s , my d e a r f e l l o w , "t h e Ge n e r a l w a s s a y i n g ,
o f c o ur s e y o ua n d Ikn o w t h e d a n g e r s o f t h e Bo l -
s h e v i s t me n a c e . I' v e s p o ke n o ut o n i t l o ud e n o ug h
my s e l f . But w h e n i t c o me s t o a t t a c ki n g t h e La b o ur
Pa r t y i t ' s d i f f e r e n t
. "
" Is i t - w h e n w e kn o w w h a t s o me o f t h e mh a v e b e e n
p l o t t i n g a b r o a d ? Be s i d e s , l o o ka t w h a t t h e y s a y
t h e ms e l v e s t h e y ' l l d o i f t h e y g e t i n t o p o w e r INa t i o n -
a l i s e t h e l a n d , t h e b a n ks , t r a n s p o r t , e l e c t r i c i t y , t h e b i g
i n d us t r i e s o f t h e c o un t r y a s a b e g i n n i n g . "
" Oh , my d e a r f e l l o w , "i n t e r r up t e d t h e Ge n e r a l w i t h
a l a ug h , " t h e y w o n ' t r e a l l y d o t h a t . Th e y ma y s a y
t h e y w i l l , b ut w h e n i t c o me s t o t h e p o i n t t h e y ' l l s e e i t ' s
i mp r a c t i c a b l e . "
A t t h i s mo me n t , h o w e v e r , t h e me mb e r f o r Mud f o r d
c l a i me d t h e Ge n e r a l ' s a t t e n t i o n , a n d h e t ur n e d a w a y
w i t h e v i d e n t r e l i e f t o d i s c us s t h e p r o s p e c t s o f t h e
C a mb r i d g e s h i r e .
" A r e a l l t h e s e p e o p l e ma d , o r a mI ? " K a v a n a g h
s a i d t o Br a n d o n t h a t e v e n i n g a s t h e y s a t o v e r w h i s ki e s
a n d s o d a s i n h i s r o o ms . " Th e y ma ke o n e f e e l a t t i me s
t h a t h un t i n g , r a c i n g , a n d t i p s o n t h e S t o c kEx c h a n g e
r e a l l y a r e t h e o n l y t h i n g s t h a t ma t t e r , a n d t h a t o n e
mus t b e a c r a n kt o b o t h e r a b o ut t r i f l e s l i ke t h e f a t e o f
t h e Emp i r e . "
" We l l , t h e y ' l l w a ke up w h e n t h e i r w o r l d c o me s t o a n
e n d
t h a t ' s t o s a y w h e n t h e h un t i n g ' s s t o p p e d a n d
r a c i n g i s n a t i o n a l i s e d
. Th a t ' s t h e o n l y t h i n g t h a t ' l l g e t
un d e r t h e i r s ki n s . "
" A n d b y t h a t t i me i t ' l l b e t o o l a t e . But i t ' s n o
g o o d w a r n i n g t h e m . Y o umi g h t a s w e l l t r y t o r o us e
t h e s l e e p e r s i n a n o p i umd e n . Be s i d e s , t h e y ' r e p e r f e c t l y
THE DEBA C LE

3 07
c o n v i n c e d o f g e t t i n g i n a g a i n w i t h a t h ump i n g ma -
j o r i t y . "
A s t h e f a t e f ul d a t e a p p r o a c h e d a c e r t a i n l i v e l i n e s s
s p r a n g up a t t h e C a r l t o n C l ub a n d o t h e r h a un t s o f t h e
Pa r t y . Fo r a f o r t n i g h t b e f o r e t h e d a y f i x e d f o r t h e
p o l l s , s p o r t c e a s e d t o b e t h e ma i n t o p i c o f c o n v e r s a t i o n ,
a n d t h e c h a n c e s o f c a n d i d a t e s w e r e d i s c us s e d w i t h
a l mo s t t h e s a me f e r v o ur a s t h e c h a n c e s o f h o r s e s
h i t h e r t o
. No w t h a t t h e El e c t i o n c a mp a i g n h a d b e g un
t h e La b o ur Pa r t y b e c a me f a i r g a me f o r a t t a c k ;
"
p e r s o n a l i t i e s " h a d o f c o ur s e t o b e e x c l ud e d , h e n c e
n o me n t i o n o f t h e R a us c h e n b e r g p a c t c o ul d b e ma d e ,
b ut t h e p ub l i s h e d p r o g r a mme o f t h e Pa r t y me t w i t h
e l o q ue n t d e n un c i a t i o n s . Th e p ub l i c , h o w e v e r , t o o l o n g
l ul l e d t o s l umb e r , r e f us e d t o b e a l a r me d a n d t h e r e s ul t
o f t h e Ge n e r a l El e c t i o n w a s a c r us h i n g d e f e a t f o r t h e
C o n s e r v a t i v e s . Th e f o r me r Pr i me Mi n i s t e r h i ms e l f ,
Mr . Ne l s o n Pa r b ur y , l o s t h i s s e a t , a n d t h e S o c i a l i s t
Pa r t y un d e r Ge o r g e Ha n l e y , t h e l e a d e r o f t h e Le f t
Wi n g , c a me i n w i t h a n o v e r w h e l mi n g ma j o r i t y .
But Te r e n c e K a v a n a g h , t o h i s a s t o n i s h me n t , f o un d
h i ms e l f me mb e r f o r S o ut h Me r s h i r e a n d o n e o f t h e
a t t e n ua t e d C o n s e r v a t i v e Op p o s i t i o n i n t h e Ho us e o f
C o mmo n s .
A f t e r t h i s e v e n t s mo v e d r a p i d l y . Th e Ho us e o f
Lo r d s w a s i mme d i a t e l y a b o l i s h e d , o n l y a h a n d f ul o f
me mb e r s g o i n g o ut i n t o t h e C o n s e r v a t i v e l o b b y i n p r o -
t e s t . Th e r e s t , f e a r i n g t o a p p e a r " r e a c t i o n a r y , "v o t e d
w i t h t h e S o c i a l i s t s .
Th e Go v e r n me n t kn e w b e t t e r t h a n t o ma ke t h e
mi s t a ke o f p ut t i n g f o r w a r d me a s ur e s o f i n t e r n a l p o l i c y
t h a t w e r e l i ke l y t o me e t w i t h h o s t i l i t y n o t o n l y f r o mt h e
Op p o s i t i o n b e n c h e s b ut f r o mt h e c o un t r y a t l a r g e
.
In s t e a d t h e y p r o c e e d e d t o p a s s a s i n g l e a c t , c a l l e d t h e
3 08

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
Eme r g e n c y Po w e r s A c t , g i v i n g un l i mi t e d p o w e r s t o t h e
Ex e c ut i v e t o b e p r o mul g a t e d b y Or d e r s i n C o un c i l
.
En g l a n d t h us c a me t o b e g o v e r n e d muc h a s Ge r ma n y
w a s g o v e r n e d b y Hi t l e r a f t e r t h e d r a s t i c c h a n g e i n t h e
C o n s t i t ut i o n w h i c h e mp o w e r e d h i mt o i s s ue d e c r e e s
p r e p a r e d b y t h e C h a n c e l l o r i n C a b i n e t . On l y i n
En g l a n d t h i s v i r t ua l d i c t a t o r s h i p , i n s t e a d o f b e i n g
i n t h e h a n d s o f a n a r d e n t n a t i o n a l p a t r i o t , w a s i n
t h o s e o f a S o c i a l i s t b ur e a uc r a c y a l l i e d w i t h t h e mo s t
i mp l a c a b l e e n e mi e s o f t h e c o un t r y .
Th e i r f i r s t a c t w a s t o c o n c l ud e a n a l l i a n c e b e t w e e n
Gr e a t Br i t a i n a n d t h e S o v i e t Go v e r n me n t . Th e i r
n e x t w a s t o a b o l i s h a l l t i t l e s . Fo r t h e mo me n t i t w a s
d e e me d a d v i s a b l e n o t t o t o uc h t h e Mo n a r c h y . Th e
p e o p l e s o f a r w o ul d n o t s t a n d i t .
Th e n c a me t h e n a t i o n a l i s a t i o n o f t h e b a n ks , p l a c i n g
a l l n a t i o n a l f i n a n c e a n d b us i n e s s un d e r t h e c o n t r o l o f
t h e Zo d i a c a n d t h e i r n o mi n e e s .
Na t i o n a l i s a t i o n o f t h e l a n d , t h e n o f mi n e s , r a i l w a y s ,
a n d t r a n s p o r t f o l l o w e d . Th e n t h e g r e a t i n d us t r i e s o f
t h e c o un t r y w e r e t a ke n o v e r o n e b y o n e a n d p l a c e d
un d e r "
t h e S t a t e . "
In v a i n t h e p o s s e s s i n g c l a s s e s " p r o t e s t e d ;
t h e i r e s t a t e s c o n f i s c a t e d , t h e i r d i v i d e n d s c ut o f f a t t h e
s o ur c e b y t h e S t a t e b a n ks a n d t r a n s f e r r e d t o t h e
Ex c h e q ue r , t h e y w e r e l e f t w i t h o ut t h e me a n s t o ma ke
t h e i r v o i c e s h e a r d . Th e f o r me r c a p t a i n o f i n d us t r y
n o w c o un t e d f o r l e s s t h a n t h e ma n w h o s w e p t o ut h i s
n a t i o n a l i s e d w o r ks h o p
.
In t h i s w a y a p e r f e c t l y b l o o d l e s s r e v o l ut i o n w a s
a c c o mp l i s h e d .
Me a n w h i l e un e mp l o y me n t h a d r e a c h e d g i g a n t i c
p r o p o r t i o n s . A n a t t e mp t h a d b e e n ma d e t o me e t i t b y
i n c r e a s e d d o l e s a n d b y r e d uc i n g h o ur s o f l a b o ur t o f o ur
THEDEBA C LE

3 09
a n d f i n a l l y t o t w o a d a y . But o w i n g t o t h e s l ump i n
i n d us t r y t h e r e w a s s t i l l n o t e n o ug h w o r kt o g o r o un d .
Th e " p e o p l e , "h o w e v e r , w e r e ke p t h a p p y b y t h e
d e c r e e s o n " Fr e e Tr a n s p o r t
" a n d " Fr e e En t e r t a i n -
me n t , "e n a b l i n g t h e "
w o r ke r s "- a n d t h e " w o r ke r s "
o n l y - t o b e c a r r i e d f r e e b y b us , t r a mo r t ub e t o f r e e
c i n e ma s , t h e a t r e s , f o o t b a l l ma t c h e s a n d g r e y h o un d
r a c e s , a t w h i c h , o w i n g t o t h e a mo un t o f l e i s ur e a t t h e i r
d i s p o s a l , e mp l o y e d a n d un e mp l o y e d a l i ke w e r e a b l e t o
s p e n d mo s t o f t h e d a y .
Th e g o l f c o ur s e s h a v i n g a l s o
b e e n n a t i o n a l i s e d , w e r e c r o w d e d f r o mmo r n i n g t i l l
n i g h t , n o t o n l y w i t h p l a y e r s ;
a n d p i c n i c p a r t i e s o n t h e
g r e e n s , s c a t t e r i n g p a p e r b a g s a n d e mp t y s a l mo n t i n s
a r o un d t h e m, ma d e p ut t i n g mo r e a g a me o f c h a n c e t h a n
o f s ki l l . In Lo n d o n t h e t r a f f i c p r o b l e mh a d b e c o me
a c ut e , f o r t h e w h o l e p r o l e t a r i a t b e i n g o n t h e mo v e a t
o n c e , t h e s t r e e t s w e r e a l mo s t i mp a s s a b l e a n d b l o c ks
l a s t e d f o r h a l f a n h o ur a t a t i me .
Th e s e g l o r i o us j a un t s h a d t h e d e s i r e d e f f e c t , a n d
p r e v e n t e d a n y p o p ul a r a g i t a t i o n a g a i n s t t h e p a s s i n g o f
t h e Go v e r n me n t ' s f i n a l Bi l l , w h i c h w a s d ul y p l a c e d o n
t h e t a b l e o f t h e Ho us e .
Th e d e b a t e h a d b e g un w i t h a d i s c us s i o n o n t h e
s i t ua t i o n i n In d i a , w h e r e r e v o l t w a s r e p o r t e d t o b e
b r e a ki n g o ut i n a l l d i r e c t i o n s .
Th e s ma l l Br i t i s h
f o r c e s s t i l l r e ma i n i n g f a i t h f ul t o t h e V i c e r o y - n o w o n l y
a f i g ur e h e a d , d e p r i v e d o f a l l r e a l a ut h o r i t y h a d
d e c l a r e d t h a t t h e y f o un d s e r v i c e i mp o s s i b l e a n d t h e i r
n umb e r s un e q ua l t o d e a l i n g w i t h r e v o l t o n s o v a s t a
s c a l e .
K a v a n a g h t h e n r o s e t o a s kw h e t h e r t h e Go v e r n me n t
w a s p r e p a r e d a t o n c e t o r e i n f o r c e t h e t r o o p s i n In d i a
a n d r e s t o r e o r d e r b e f o r e i t w a s t o o l a t e
.
" Th e a n s w e r w a s i n t h e n e g a t i v e
. "
3 1 0

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
Th e l a t e S e c r e t a r y o f S t a t e f o r t h e C o l o n i e s un d e r t h e
C o n s e r v a t i v e Go v e r n me n t t h e n a s ke d w h e t h e r i t w a s
t r ue t h a t c a b l e s h a d b e e n r e c e i v e d f r o mA us t r a l i a a n d
Ne w Ze a l a n d o f f e r i n g h e l p f o r t h e r e q ui r e d r e i n f o r c e -
me n t . Hi s S o c i a l i s t s uc c e s s o r i n o f f i c e r e p l i e d t h a t t h e
c a b l e s r e f e r r e d t o h a d b e e n r e c e i v e d , b ut t h e Go v e r n -
me n t d i d n o t p r o p o s e t o a v a i l t h e ms e l v e s o f t h e h e l p
o f f e r e d .
" Wh y ? Wh y ? "a s ke d a n umb e r o f C o n s e r v a t i v e
me mb e r s .
Th i s w a s t h e s i g n a l f o r t h e Pr i me Mi n i s t e r , Ge o r g e
Ha n l e y , t o h ur l h i s b o mb s h e l l i n t o t h e Op p o s i t i o n
b e n c h e s . Wi t h c o n v ul s e d f e a t ur e s a n d t h e l i g h t o f
f a n a t i c i s mg l e a mi n g i n h i s e y e s , h e e mb a r ke d o n a
t i r a d e a g a i n s t t h e i n i q ui t i e s o f " Imp e r i a l i s m- t h e
Br i t i s h R a j mo r e r ut h l e s s t h a n a n y j ug g e r n a ut ,
c r us h i n g t h e l i f e o ut o f t h e In d i a n p e o p l e a n d b a t t e n i n g
o n t h e i r l i f e - b l o o d . " Th e n p a s s i n g o n t o t h e p r o f f e r e d
h e l p f r o mt h e Do mi n i o n s , h e c r i e d
" Wh a t a r e A us t r a l i a a n d Ne w Ze a l a n d b ut d e p e n d -
e n c i e s o f t h a t s a me b r ut a l a ut o c r a c y ? Le t t h e mb e
f r e e a s In d i a mus t b e f r e e , a s Ir e l a n d mus t b e f r e e , f r e e
t o w o r ko ut t h e i r o w n d e s t i n i e s un d e r g ui d a n c e o f t h e
w o r ke r s o f e a c h c o un t r y . A w a y w i t h c o l o n i e s , a w a y
w i t h t h e s h i b b o l e t h o f Do mi n i o n s t a t us ! Le t us
d e c l a r e t h a t t h e Br i t i s h Emp i r e i s w o un d up a n d h a s
c e a s e d t o e x i s t I"
Fr a n t i c a p p l a us e f r o mt h e Go v e r n me n t b e n c h e s
g r e e t e d t h i s s p e e c h , t o w h i c h t h e C o n s e r v a t i v e s l i s t e n e d
i n c o n s t e r n a t i o n , f i n a l l y b r e a ki n g o ut i n t o a c h o r us o f
p r o t e s t .
But i t w a s t o o l a t e .
Th e mo t i o n p ut t o t h e Ho us e t h r e e d a y s l a t e r me t
w i t h w h o l e - h e a r t e d s up p o r t f r o mt h e S o c i a l i s t me mb e r s ,
THE DEBA C LE

3 1 1
w h o , a t t h e d i v i s i o n , s t r e a me d o ut t o a ma n i n t o t h e
Go v e r n me n t l o b b y .
Th e Bi l l w a s p a s s e d b y a l a r g e ma j o r i t y a mi d s t a
p a n d e mo n i umi n w h i c h C o n s e r v a t i v e g r o a n s w e r e
d r o w n e d b y t h e d e a f e n i n g c h e e r s o f t h e i r o p p o n e n t s .
Th e Br i t i s h Emp i r e h a d c e a s e d t o e x i s t .
K a v a n a g h , w a l ki n g b a c kt o Ha l f Mo o n S t r e e t a s i n a
d r e a mt h a t e v e n i n g , n o t e d t h e p o s t e r s a t t h e s t r e e t
c o r n e r s a n n o un c i n g t h e us ua l s t a r t l i n g n e w s
:"Fa mo us
f i l ms t a r d i v o r c e d , " "
Fo r me r Ba r o n e t a t Bo w S t r e e t . "
. . .
Buy i n g a p a p e r h e s c a n n e d t h e c o l umn h e a d i n g s .
No , t h e r e w a s n o t h i n g y e t a b o ut t h e d e b a t e . He
t ur n e d t o t h e s t o p p r e s s . A h 1 t h e r e i t w a s ! Be n e a t h
t h e c r i c ke t s c o r e s a n d l a t e s t r a c i n g n e w s , t w o l i n e s o f
s ma l l p r i n t : "R e p l y i n g t o Ma j o r K a v a n a g h t h i s
a f t e r n o o n t h e Pr i me Mi n i s t e r p r o p o s e d t h e c o mp l e t e
i n d e p e n d e n c e o f In d i a a n d t h e Do mi n i o n s . "
"
S o p a s s e s t h e Br i t i s h Emp i r e
! "
K a v a n a g h s a i d
a l o ud , c r us h i n g t h e p a p e r i n t o a b a l l a n d h ur l i n g i t i n t o
t h e g ut t e r .
R e a c h i n g t h e r o o ms w h i c h h i s s a l a r y a s a l e g i s l a t o r
s t i l l a l l o w e d h i mt o r e t a i n , K a v a n a g h f o un d R o s a mun d
b us y w i t h t h e s c a n t y e v e n i n g me a l w h i c h , n o w t h a t
d o me s t i c s e r v i c e h a d b e e n a b o l i s h e d , t h e y w e r e w o n t
t o p r e p a r e f o r t h e ms e l v e s . In a f e w b r i e f s e n t e n c e s h e
t o l d h e r w h a t h a d o c c ur r e d .
" S o t h a t ' s t h e e n d 1 "R o s a mun d s a i d b l a n kl y .
" Oh , Te r e n c e , t o t h i n kt h a t e v e r y t h i n g mi g h t h a v e
b e e n s a v e d i f o n l y t h e y ' d h a v e l i s t e n e d t o y o ua n d
J i mmy ! "
" Y e s . It ' s g h a s t l y . But t h e r e ' s n o g o o d i n g o i n g
o v e r t h e p a s t . We ' v e g o t t o f a c e t h e f ut ur e
. "
" A n d t h e o n l y w a y t o d o t h a t i s t o l i v e b y t h e d a y
3 1 2

THE S EC R ET OF THE ZODIA C


a n d h o ur , "R o s a mun d s a i d p r a c t i c a l l y . " If o n l y t h e
mi l kma n w o ul d c o me I' d ma ke t h e c o f f e e . "
U n d e r S o c i a l i s mt h e S t a t e d a i r y ma n b r i n g i n g r o un d
t h e b l ue l i q ui d t h a t d i d d ut y f o r mi l kw a s l i a b l e t o
a r r i v e a t a n y o d d h o ur o f t h e d a y o r n i g h t - i t a l l
d e p e n d e d o n w h e n s up p l i e s a r r i v e d f r o mt h e c o un t r y .
" Th e r e ' s a r i n g a t t h e b e l l , p e r h a p s t h a t ' s t h e mi l k-
ma n , "s a i d K a v a n a g h , r i s i n g a n d g o i n g t o t h e d o o r .
"Hul l o , i t ' s J i mmy IC o me i n , o l d c h a p . "
Br a n d o n , w h o w a s n o w e a r n i n g a p r e c a r i o us l i v e l i -
h o o d a s a S t a t e c i n e ma d e c o r a t o r , e n t e r e d g l uml y .
" Y o u' v e h e a r d t h e n ? " a s ke d K a v a n a g h .
Br a n d o n n o d d e d . Th e n e w s f r o mWe s t mi n s t e r h a d
r e a c h e d h i mo n h i s w a y h o me f r o mw o r k . S i t t i n g d o w n
h e t o o ko ut h i s p i p e a n d f i l l e d i t w i t h t h e r a n kw e e d
s up p l i e d b y t h e S t a t e To b a c c o C o mp a n y .
" Le t us e a t a n d d r i n kf o r t o - mo r r o w w e d i e I "
K a v a n a g h s a i d a f t e r a l o n g s i l e n c e , w i t h a h e a v y
a t t e mp t a t c h e e r f ul n e s s . " S h a r e o ur o r g y o f ma c a r o n i
a n d c o f f e e s ub s t i t ut e
. We ' r e o n l y w a i t i n g f o r t h e
mi l kma n , t o b e g i n . "
" Ta l ki n g o f ma c a r o n i , "Br a n d o n a n s w e r e d , p ul l i n g
a l e t t e r o ut o f h i s p o c ke t , " r e mi n d s me t h a t t h i s
a r r i v e d t o - d a y f r o mIt a l y . Y o u' d h e a r d C o un t e s s
Za p r a ks y d i e d s ud d e n l y t h e o t h e r d a y ? "
" Y e s . Id o n ' t t h i n ks h e e v e r g o t o v e r t h e s h o c ko f
a l l t h a t h a p p e n e d a t Bo g a z z o . It mus t h a v e b e e n a
t e r r i b l e d i s i l l us i o n me n t t o h e r . "
" We l l , t h e s t r a n g e t h i n g i s , t h a t s h e ' s l e f t y o ua n d
me h e i r s t o h e r p r o p e r t y - t h e V i l l a Pa x Mun d i a n d
q ui t e a l o t o f mo n e y . Th i s l e t t e r i s f r o mh e r l a w y e r s .
Wh a t a r e w e t o d o a b o ut i t ? Go o v e r a n d c l a i mi t ? "
"Y e s . But w e s h o ul d n ' t b e a l l o w e d t o b r i n g mo n e y
o v e r h e r e a n d w e c a n ' t s e t t l e a t Bo g a z z o . "
THE
DEBA C LE

' 3 1 3
" No . We ' r e n o t r a t s t o d e s e r t t h e s i n ki n g s h i p . "
" J us t s o . But w h a t a b o ut g e t t i n g R o s a mun d o ut o f
t h e c o un t r y ? "
" Th a n ks . I' mn o t g o i n g t o b e g o t o ut , "R o s a -
mun d s a i d f i r ml y . " I' l l s t i c ki t a s l o n g a s y o ub o t h
d o . But t h e r e ' s n o r e a s o n w h y w e s h o ul d n ' t a l l g o t o
Bo g a z z o f o r a b r e a t h e r n o w a n d t h e n , i s t h e r e ? Hul l o ,
Ib e l i e v e t h a t r e a l l y i s t h e mi l kma n t h i s t i me . "
Fo r a r a t t l e o f c a n s h a d s o un d e d o ut s i d e . Go i n g t o
t h e d o o r K a v a n a g h t o o kt h e i r me a g r e r a t i o n o f mi l k
f r o mt h e ma n ' s h a n d a n d w a s s ur p r i s e d t o h e a r h i m
s a y

Y o ud o n ' t r e me mb e r me , Ma j o r K a v a n a g h 1
"
Wh e r e h a d h e h e a r d t h a t v o i c e b e f o r e
? Lo o ki n g f o r
t h e f i r s t t i me a t t h e mi l kma n ' s f a c e , w h i c h a l s o s e e me d
f a mi l i a r , h e a n s w e r e d :
" No t f o r t h e mo me n t - a n d y e t - a n d y e t - i s i t
p o s s i b l e t h a t y o ua r e Mr
. Pa r b ur y ? "
Mr
. Pa r b ur y , s h a b b y a n d h a g g a r d w i t h a s t ub b l y
g r o w t h a r o un d h i s c h i n !

Is i t r e a l l y y o u ? " K a v a n a g h r e p e a t e d i n a s t o n i s h -
me n t .

Y e s , Ne l s o n Pa r b ur y . On c e Pr i me Mi n i s t e r o f
En g l a n d . We l i t t l e t h o ug h t w e s h o ul d l i v e t o s e e t h i s
d a y . "
It w a s a l mo s t mo r e t h a n K a v a n a g h c o ul d d o n o t t o
a n s w e r :" My g o o d Pa r b ur y , Ikn e w i t , b ut y o uw o ul d
n o t b e l i e v e me ! "But o n t h e p r i n c i p l e o f n e v e r s a y i n g
" It o l d y o us o ! " h e o n l y a n s w e r e d
" We l l , Mr . Pa r b ur y , I' ms o r r y t o s e e y o u' v e c o me
t o t h i s . "
Oh , I' ml uc ky t o h a v e a j o b a t a l l , "Mr . Pa r b ur y
a n s w e r e d , w i t h w e l l - a s s ume d c h e e r f ul n e s s ; " i t ' s t h e
n e w s I' v e j us t h e a r d f r o mt h e Ho us e t h a t ' s up s e t me .
3 1 4

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
Is i t r e a l l y t r ue t h a t t h e y ' v e w o un d up t h e Emp i r e ?
" Y e s , o n l y t o o t r ue
. Y o u' l l s e e i t i n t h e p a p e r s t o -
mo r r o w . "
Mr
. Pa r b ur y t o o ko ut a l a r g e g r e y p o c ke t h a n d -
ke r c h i e f a n d w i p e d h i s f o r e h e a d
.
" Th e p o o r o l d Emp i r e I "
h e mut t e r e d , " t h e p o o r
o l d Emp i r e I To t h i n ki t ' s g o n e I
"
S h a ki n g h i s h e a d mo ur n f ul l y , h e p i c ke d up h i s mi l k
c a n s a n d w e n t o n w i t h h i s r o un d s
.
By t h e mo r n i n g t h e Pr e s s h a d r e a l i s e d t h a t s o me -
t h i n g q ui t e s e n s a t i o n a l h a d h a p p e n e d i n We s t mi n s t e r
.
Th e Te s t Ma t c h w a s a c t ua l l y r e l e g a t e d t o t h e f o ur t h
c o l umn , w h i l s t l e a d i n g a r t i c l e s a n d g l a r i n g h e a d l i n e s
d e a l t w i t h l a s t n i g h t ' s d e b a t e .
Th e o r g a n o f t h e
S o c i a l i s t Pa r t y o f c o ur s e w a s j ub i l a n t , b ut t h e c o n -
s t i t ut i o n a l Pr e s s i n g e n e r a l e x p r e s s e d d i s a p p r o b a t i o n ,
r i s i n g i n o n e o r t w o c a s e s t o a l mo s t v i o l e n t p r o t e s t a -
t i o n s - t h i s t h i n g mus t n o t b e , t h e c o un t r y w o ul d n o t
s t a n d i t , e t c .
But t h e p r i n c i p a l d a i l y mo ut h p i e c e o f t h e C o n -
s e r v a t i v e C e n t r a l Of f i c e s e t t h e e x a mp l e o f s a n i t y ,
w a r n i n g t h e c o un t r y n o t t o g i v e w a y t o h y s t e r i a .
" Th e p r e s e n t s i t ua t i o n , "i t w r o t e , "
mus t b e f a c e d
w i t h c a l mn e s s . Wh a t e v e r s e n t i me n t a l r e g r e t s ma y b e
e n t e r t a i n e d a t t h e p a s s i n g o f s o t i me - h o n o ur e d a n
i n s t i t ut i o n a s t h e Br i t i s h Emp i r e , i t b e h o v e s us t o t a ke
a l a r g e r v i e w t h a n t h a t o f n a r r o w n a t i o n a l i s m, a n d t o
c o n s i d e r t h e w e l f a r e o f t h e w o r l d a t l a r g e
. S e e n f r o m
t h i s a n g l e t h e a c t i o n o f t h e Go v e r n me n t l a s t n i g h t w a s
s t a t e s ma n l i ke a n d f a r - s i g h t e d , a g e s t ur e w h i c h c a n n o t
f a i l t o a r o us e a d mi r a t i o n i n e v e r y c o r n e r o f t h e e a r t h
.
Br i t a i n h a s s h o w n h e r s t r e n g t h b y s ur r e n d e r i n g t h o s e
a d v a n t a g e s w o n i n t h e p a s t b y f o r c e a n d b y r e c o g n i s i n g
t h a t w i t h t h e a d v a n c e o f c i v i l i s a t i o n t h e w o r d ` Im-
THEDEBA C LE

3 1 5
p e r i a l i s m
' mus t b e e x p un g e d f r o mo ur v o c a b ul a r y , "
e t c . , e t c .
A t Ge n e v a t h e g r e a t n e w s w a s r e c e i v e d w i t h a c c l a -
ma t i o n s , a n d t h e Le a g ue o f Na t i o n s , a t a s p e c i a l me e t i n g
c o n v e n e d f o r t h e o c c a s i o n , p a s s e d a un a n i mo us r e s o l u-
t i o n t h a t
:"Th e a b o l i t i o n o f t h e Br i t i s h Emp i r e ma r ks
t h e p a s s i n g o f Imp e r i a l i s ma n d p r o v i d e s t h e s ur e s t
g ua r a n t e e f o r t h e p e a c e o f t h e w o r l d . "
In c o n s e q ue n c e
"
t h e Di s a r ma me n t C o n f e r e n c e w h i c h h a s s a t f o r t e n
y e a r s c a n n o w b e d i s b a n d e d . "
A l t h o ug h t h e Emp i r e w a s g o n e t h e Go v e r n me n t s t i l l
d a r e d n o t t o uc h t h e Mo n a r c h y , a n d c o n t e n t e d i t s e l f
w i t h d e p r i v i n g i t o f a l l a ut h o r i t y . Th e R o y a l Fa mi l y
b e c a me v i r t ua l l y p r i s o n e r s i n t h e Pa l a c e , a s i t h a d
b e e n i n Fr a n c e a f t e r 1 7 8 9 .
It w a s f ur t h e r d e c i d e d t h a t t h e S o v i e t s y s t e m
s h o ul d n o t b e a d o p t e d a s i t w a s un s ui t e d t o t h e Br i t i s h
p e o p l e , w h o s e i n d i v i d ua l i s t i c c h a r a c t e r mi g h t ma ke t h e m
l e s s d o c i l e me mb e r s o f s o v i e t s (o r c o un c i l s )t h a n t h e
R us s i a n w o r ke r s .
Th e f a r c e o f p r e t e n d i n g t o a d mi t
t h e mt o t h e g o v e r n me n t o f t h e c o un t r y w o ul d b e
q ui c kl y s e e n t h r o ug h h e r e
. Le g i s l a t i o n w a s t h e r e f o r e
c a r r i e d o ut b y t h e h o s t o f o f f i c i a l s f r o m- Ea s t a n d
C e n t r a l Eur o p e w h o h a d s w a r me d i n t o t h e c o un t r y a n d
b e e n p l a c e d i n ke y p o s i t i o n s i n e v e r y s p h e r e o f d i s -
t r i b ut i o n .
U p t i l l t h i s mo me n t t h e o r g y o f f r e e a mus e me n t s a n d
un l i mi t e d f o o d s up p l i e s b y t h e S t a t e f r o mt h e s t o c ks
l a i d i n b y t h e p r e v i o us Go v e r n me n t h a d ke p t t h e
w o r ke r s q ui e t .
But n o w , o w i n g t o t h e d i s l o c a t i o n o f
i n d us t r y a n d t h e d e c l i n e o f n a t i o n a l c r e d i t , s up p l i e s
b e g a n t o f a i l .
R a t e s a n d t a x e s h a v i n g b e e n a b o l i s h e d
s i n c e t h e r e w a s n o o n e l e f t t o p a y t h e m, t h e d o l e h a d t o
3 1 6

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
b e d o n e a w a y w i t h , a n d t h e p o p ul a t i o n ke p t a l i v e o n
r a t i o n s t h a t g r e w e v e r y w e e kmo r e me a g r e . A n un d e r -
c ur r e n t o f d i s c o n t e n t n o w a r o s e , a n d t h e s i g h t o f t h e i r
n e w ma s t e r s d r i v i n g t h r o ug h t h e s t r e e t s i n l ux ur i o us
mo t o r s w i t h c o mp l a c e n t s mi l e s o n t h e i r Or i e n t a l
f e a t ur e s w a s g r a d ua l l y r o us i n g t h e p o p ul a c e t o f r e n z y .
A l l p r e t e n c e o f Pa r l i a me n t a r y Go v e r n me n t w a s
f i n a l l y a b a n d o n e d , f o r p o w e r h a d n o w p a s s e d f r o mt h e
h a n d s o f l e g i s l a t o r s i n t o t h o s e o f t h e o f f i c i a l s w h o ,
h a v i n g a l l t h e me a n s o f l i f e un d e r t h e i r c o n t r o l , w e r e
a b l e t o h o l d un d i s p ut e d s w a y .
Th e Ho us e o f C o m-
mo n s w a s n o w c l o s e d d o w n , a n d n o t o n l y t h e C o n -
s e r v a t i v e b ut t h e La b o ur Pa r t y w a s " l i q ui d a t e d . "
In o r d e r t o p r e v e n t a n y a t t e mp t o n t h e p a r t o f t h e
d i s mi s s e d me mb e r s t o o r g a n i s e a n Op p o s i t i o n o ut s i d e
Go v e r n me n t c i r c l e s , a l l t h o s e w h o h a d s a t a s C o n -
s e r v a t i v e s w e r e b a n i s h e d , t o g e t h e r w i t h a n y o f t h e i r
s up p o r t e r s w h o w e r e h e l d t o b e d a n g e r o us e n e mi e s o f
t h e S o c i a l i s t r e g i me . On t h e l i s t o f e x i l e s w a s f o un d
t h e n a me o f J a me s Br a n d o n .
Fo r c e d t h e r e f o r e t o l e a v e t h e c o un t r y , Br a n d o n ,
t o g e t h e r w i t h K a v a n a g h a n d R o s a mun d , f o un d a
r e f ug e i n t h e V i l l a Pa x Mun d i , w h e r e , a mi d s t s un s h i n e
a n d v i n e y a r d s , t h e y w a t c h e d s a d l y f r o ma f a r t h e f i n a l
e c l i p s e o f t h e Br i t i s h Emp i r e .
Ot h e r s o f t h e i r f e l l o w - c o un t r y me n , l e s s f o r t un a t e ,
w a n d e r e d p o v e r t y - s t r i c ke n a b o ut t h e w o r l d ; t h e r e w a s
n o c o un t r y t o b e f o un d r e a d y t o t a ke up t h e p a r t
p l a y e d i n t h e p a s t b y En g l a n d t o w a r d s t h e r e f ug e e s
f l y i n g f r o ms o c i a l r e v o l ut i o n . Mr
. a n d Mr s . Ne l s o n
Pa r b ur y , a f t e r kn o c ki n g i n t ur n a t a l l t h e f r o n t i e r s o f
Eur o p e , a n d f i n d i n g a w e l c o me n o w h e r e , w e r e f i n a l l y
r e c e i v e d un w i l l i n g l y b y t h e Es ki mo s .
Me a n w h i l e , t h e f o r me r " La b o ur
"l e a d e r s w h o h a d
THEDEBA C LE

3 1 7
r e ma i n e d i n t h e c o un t r y , f o un d t h e ms e l v e s r e d uc e d t o
t h e r a n ks , o b l i g e d t o s e e kj o b s a s b e s t t h e y c o ul d i n
n a t i o n a l i s e d i n d us t r y
. Ha n l e y , i n d e s p a i r a t s e e i n g
t h e r e a l i t y t o w h i c h h i s d r e a ms o f a S o c i a l i s t Pa r a d i s e
h a d l e d , f l un g h i ms e l f i n t o t h e r i v e r f r o mWe s t mi n s t e r
Br i d g e .
Th i s s t a t e o f a f f a i r s w a s n o t a t a l l t o t h e t a s t e o f t h o s e
me mb e r s o f t h e La b o ur Pa r t y w h o h a d f a r e d s ump -
t uo us l y i n t h e b a d o l d d a y s o f t h e C a p i t a l i s t s y s t e m
.
A c c o r d i n g l y , Me s s r s
. Ba g n a l l , Pud s e y , a n d R e n t o n
d e c i d e d t h a t t h e En g l i s h c l i ma t e w a s n o l o n g e r s ui t e d
t o t h e i r h e a l t h , a n d b e t h o ug h t t h e ms e l v e s o f s e e ki n g
r e f ug e w i t h s o me o f t h e i r f r i e n d s a b r o a d . Wh o w o ul d
b e mo r e l i ke l y t o b e f r i e n d t h e mt h a n Ge n e r a l v o n
R a us c h e n b e r g w h o s e p r o g r a mme t h e y h a d c a r r i e d o ut
s o f a i t h f ul l y ?
On e s umme r ' s d a y t h e t r i o a r r i v e d i n S t o l z e n b a c h
a n d s o ug h t a n e a r l y i n t e r v i e w w i t h Hi s Ex c e l l e n c y
.
" S o ? "
h e s a i d , g l a r i n g a t t h e mf r o mun d e r h i s
b us h y e y e b r o w s . "
Fo r w h a t h a v e y o uc o me ? "
"
We h a v e c o me t o c l a i my o ur p r o t e c t i o n . Our
o w n c o un t r y h a s b e c o me un i n h a b i t a b l e . We w i s h t o
l i v e i n Ge r ma n y a n d t o b e c o me Ge r ma n c i t i z e n s . "
"
Ge r ma n y h a s n o us e f o r t r a i t o r s , "a n s w e r e d t h e
Ge n e r a l , a n d t ur n i n g t o h i s J a g e r h e s a i d a b r up t l y
" Ta ke t h e s e d o g s o ut a n d s h o o t t h e m1
"
Wh i c h w a s d o n e
.
Th e f i e r y Ge n e r a l h a d f o un d o ut h i s mi s t a ke a t l a s t .
Li ke ma n y a n o t h e r C o n t i n e n t a l f o e o f En g l a n d h e
b e g a n t o f i n d h i ms e l f h o i s t w i t h h i s o w n p e t a r d . Th e
t i d e o f Bo l s h e v i s mw h i c h h e h a d h e l p e d t o d i r e c t
a g a i n s t t h e A l l i e s n o w t h r e a t e n e d t o i n v a d e h i s o w n
c o un t r y .
Fo r w i t h t h e d o w n f a l l o f t h e Br i t i s h Emp i r e t h e
3 1 8

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
w h o l e s t r uc t ur e o f c i v i l i s a t i o n h a d b e e n s h a ke n t o i t s
f o un d a t i o n s , a n d e v e n t h o s e w h o h a d h a t e d i t f o r i t s
g r e a t n e s s n o w t r e mb l e d f o r t h e i r o w n s a f e t y
. In
Fr a n c e , Be l g i um, Ho l l a n d , S w i t z e r l a n d , t h e C o m-
mun i s t s b e g a n t o g a i n t h e up p e r h a n d .
S p a i n
d e c l a r e d a S o v i e t R e p ub l i c . J a p a n , un d e r mi n e d b y
Bo l s h e v i s t p r o p a g a n d a , , d e f e n d e d i t s e l f d e s p e r a t e l y
a g a i n s t t h e c o mb i n e d a t t a c ks o f R us s i a a n d C h i n a
.
In In d i a , w i t h t h e w i t h d r a w a l o f t h e Br i t i s h A r my
a n d Po l i c e , f i e r c e r a c i a l r i o t s b r o ke o ut ; s o o n i t w a s
w a r t o t h e kn i f e b e t w e e n t h e Mo s l e ms a n d Hi n d us
.
In Pa l e s t i n e , n o l o n g e r un d e r t h e Pr o t e c t o r a t e o f
Gr e a t Br i t a i n , t h e A r a b s t ur n e d up o n t h e J e w s
; i n
S o ut h A f r i c a , Dut c h a n d Br i t i s h s e t t l e r s a l i ke f o un d
t h e ms e l v e s f a c e d b y a r i s i n g o f t h e b l a c kr a c e s ; t h e
U n i t e d S t a t e s b y a n a n t i - A n g l o - S a x o n c o a l i t i o n o f t h e
a l i e n e l e me n t s t h a t ma d e up s o l a r g e a p r o p o r t i o n o f
t h e i r p o p ul a t i o n .
Th e w h o l e w o r l d r us h e d t o w a r d s c h a o s
.
Th e R e v o l ut i o n , l i ke S a t ur n , w a s e a t i n g i t s o w n
c h i l d r e n .
Th e t h o us a n d s o f w r i t e r s , s p e a ke r s , a r t i s t s ,
p r o p a g a n d i s t s , w h o h a d s p e n t t h e i r e n e r g i e s i n un d e r -
mi n i n g t h e s t r uc t ur e o f c i v i l i s a t i o n , f o un d t h e ms e l v e s
b e i n g g r a d ua l l y b ur i e d un d e r n e a t h i t s r ui n s
. Th i s
w a s n o r e t ur n t o Na t ur e , n o c l e a n s w e e p s uc h a s t h e y
h a d p i c t ur e d , b ut a s q ua l i d me s s a mi d s t w h i c h t h e y
w a n d e r e d t r y i n g t o p i c kt h e me a n s o f e x i s t e n c e f r o m
b e n e a t h t h e w r e c ka g e . Po w e r f ul t o d e s t r o y t h e y h a d
n o c o n c e p t i o n h o w t o s e t a b o ut t h e w o r ko f r e c o n -
s t r uc t i o n .
Th e y h a d ki l l e d s o c i e t y a n d c o ul d n o t l i v e
up o n i t s c o r p s e .
Ev e n t h e Zo d i a c h a d o v e r r e a c h e d i t s e l f . Ev e n t s
h a d mo v e d t o o q ui c kl y f o r i t s r e c ko n i n g s . A c c us t o me d
t o kn o w b e f o r e h a n d w h a t w a s g o i n g t o h a p p e n a n d
THEDEBA C LE

3 1 9
t h e r e f o r e h o w t o t ur n e v e r y t h i n g t o p r o f i t , t h e Tw e l v e
n o w f o un d t h e ms e l v e s un a b l e t o ke e p p a c e w i t h t h e
c h a n g e s t a ki n g p l a c e s i mul t a n e o us l y a t a l l p o i n t s o f t h e
g l o b e . Th e y h a d w a n t e d r e v o l ut i o n s , b ut o r d e r e d
r e v o l ut i o n s e x p l o d i n g l i ke t i me f us e s a t t h e a p p o i n t e d
mo me n t . Th e y h a d w a n t e d w a r s , b ut w a r s c a r r i e d o ut
o n f i x e d l i n e s , o f w h i c h t h e y c o ul d c a l c ul a t e t h e o ut -
c o me , n o t s p o r a d i c w a r s b r e a ki n g o ut h e r e a n d t h e r e
l i ke h e a t h f i r e s i n a l l d i r e c t i o n s a t o n c e . Th e y h a d
w a n t e d t o d e s t r o y t h e Br i t i s h Emp i r e , b ut o n l y i n s o
f a r a s i t w a s Br i t i s h , p r e s e r v i n g t h e f r a me w o r ks o t h a t
t h e y mi g h t t a ke i t o v e r . Th e y d i d n o t w a n t i t r e d uc e d
t o s c r a p - i r o n o f w h i c h n o us e c o ul d b e ma d e .
Fo r t h e Zo d i a c h a d s e t o ut t o r ul e t h e w o r l d a n d t h e y
h a d c o me t o r e i g n o v e r r ui n s . Th e d i s c i p l i n e d o r g a n -
i s a t i o n t h e y o n c e h e l d a t t h e i r d i s p o s a l h a d b e e n
b r o ke n up , t h e i r a g e n t s a n d a g i t a t o r s , f o r me r l y
b r i g a d e d a n d p r o mp t t o o b e y , h a d b e e n r e d uc e d t o a
d i s o r d e r l y r a b b l e . Th e i n d us t r i e s t h e y c o n t r o l l e d h a d
b e e n t h r o w n o ut o f g e a r . Th e s p i d e r ' s w e b o f f i n a n c e
t h e y h a d s p r e a d o ut a l l o v e r t h e w o r l d w a s b r e a ki n g
a t e v e r y p o i n t . Th e f a b ul o us w e a l t h t h e y h a d
a ma s s e d h a d t ur n e d t o d us t ; t h e i r s t o r e s o f g o l d c o ul d
p ur c h a s e n o t h i n g . Of w h a t us e t o V i r g o w e r e mun i -
t i o n w o r ks , c o a l mi n e s , a n d r a i l w a y s i n a d o z e n d i f f e r e n t
c o un t r i e s , w h e n t h e w o r ke r s i n t h e mc o ul d n o t b e
d e p e n d e d o n f o r a mo me n t ? Ho w w a s A r i e s t o c a r r y o n
h i s o p e r a t i o n s i n Wa l l S t r e e t i f t h e Ne w Y o r kS t o c k
Ex c h a n g e h a d c l o s e d d o w n ? Ho w c o ul d S c o r p i o r e a p
t h e b e n e f i t o f t h e b o y c o t t o f Br i t i s h g o o d s i n t h e Ea s t
w h e n In d i a a n d C h i n a w e r e i n a s t a t e o f a n a r c h y ?
Ho w w a s S a g i t t a r i us t o r i n g up Bue n o s A y r e s i f t h e
A r g e n t i n e t e l e p h o n e s y s t e mh a d b e e n p ut o ut o f a c t i o n
t h a t d a y b y r e v o l ut i o n a r i e s ? A n d h o w w e r e Li b r a ,
3 2 0

THES EC R ETOFTHEZODIA C
Ge mi n i , a n d A q ua r i us t o p r o j e c t t h o ug h t o v e r a
d e me n t e d mul t i t ud e ? Th e p a s s i v i t y o n w h i c h t h e y
d e p e n d e d f o r ma s s p r o p a g a n d a h a d b e e n d i s p e l l e d ;
me n w e r e t h i n ki n g a t l a s t , t h i n ki n g f ur i o us l y , f o r t h e
d a y o f w o r d s w a s d o n e a n d g r i mr e a l i t i e s s t a r e d t h e mi n
t h e f a c e .
It w a s t h e n t h a t f r o ma n o b s c ur e c e n t r e i n It a l y t h e
s e c r e t o f t h e Zo d i a c w a s b r o a d c a s t e d t o t h e w o r l d ; t h e
n a me s o f t h e Tw e l v e a n d t h e i r s c h e me o f w o r l d p o w e r
w e r e p ub l i s h e d i n a s c o r e o f l a n g ua g e s . Th e n t h e t i d e
o f h uma n p a s s i o n s t h a t t h e Zo d i a c h a d s e t i n mo t i o n
t ur n e d a g a i n s t t h e ms e l v e s . Th e i r a g e n t s i n t h e K r e m-
l i n , n o l o n g e r a b l e t o ma i n t a i n d i s c i p l i n e i n t h e R e d
A r my , w e r e ma s s a c r e d b y mut i n e e r s f r o mw i t h i n i t s
r a n ks ; p e a s a n t r i o t s a n d p o g r o ms b r o ke o ut e v e r y -
w h e r e . In Ne w Y o r k, Os c a r a n d Is i d o r e Fr a n kl i n
w e r e l y n c h e d b y a ma d d e n e d c r o w d ; i n Lo n d o n
C a n c e r w a s s h o t b y a h un g r y w o r kma n ; a b o mb b l e w
Pi s c e s t o b i t s i n t h e s t r e e t s o f C a i r o . S t r i c ke n w i t h
t e r r o r , Ge mi n i s w a l l o w e d p o i s o n , A q ua r i us b l e w o ut
h i s b r a i n s , Li b r a d i e d o f s h o c k
.
Gr a d ua l l y a l l t h e
Tw e l v e w e r e r e mo v e d f r o mt h e e a r t h ' s s ur f a c e . Th e
S un a n d He a d o f a l l l o s t h i s r e a s o n .
Th e w o r l d t h e y l e f t b e h i n d t h e mw a s i n c h a o s ;
c i v i l i s a t i o n h a d b e e n s e t b a c ka h un d r e d y e a r s .
But
t h e p o w e r o f t h e Zo d i a c w a s e n d e d . Huma n i t y w a s
f r e e t o w o r ko ut i t s o w n s a l v a t i o n .
THEEND