Earth In Hell (The Damnation Of Father Andrew Part 5) by Keith Kitchen

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Direct them to the Garden of Gethsemane and the Lord will take it from there."

"Is this all you ask of me, Lord?" Judas asked, somberly.

"No," Jesus said, shaking his head sadly. "I will name you my betrayer after we have supped tomorrow night and you must argue with me."

"Argue with you, Lord? We have argued over small things many times."

Jesus allowed a small smile onto his face. "Yes, Judas, you must argue with me like you have never argued before. No debating, you must show anger and then you must leave to fetch those who will arrest me." The smile left Jesus' face. "Then, when you return, you must seal your betrayal by kissing me."

The shock sprang through to Judas' face. "I'll never be able to show my face anywhere afterwards."

"No, Judas, you won't." The pain was plain upon the face of Jesus. "You won't, because after you have betrayed me to the Priests in Jerusalem, they will in turn hand me over to Rome, who will put me to death. Before I die, however, you must kill yourself."

"Kill...myself?"

"There is no other among the Twelve that I could possibly ask this."

Though he was filled with fear, strangely the feeling of peace began to fill Judas. A wonder filled his eyes and he knelt, took his Master's hands and kissed them. "As I said, though I am fearful, I will do whatever you ask."

Jesus placed his hands, still wet from Judas' kiss, onto the large man's forehead and smiled sadly and said, "As I knew you would. In the name of the Father, take my blessing to the deepest depths of Hell and do my Father's will and we will meet at the End of the Earth and you will rest in Heaven." He looked around. "You must go and do this, now."

"Now, Master?"

"Now, Judas."

"I love you, Master." The emotion was strong in Judas' voice.

"And I, you, Judas."

Jesus watched as Judas walked towards Jerusalem, wondering which of them had the harder duty. He only had to die and then join his Father in Heaven to plan the war which would last thousands of years. Judas would have to wait those thousands of years in hell. He said a silent prayer to the Lord above and walked back to the others.


II
(Third Circle of Hell, the present?)

The portal shimmered in the air and the group stiffened, not knowing who or what might exit. Only when the figure of the priest, Andrew, stepped through, did they relax.

"Where have you been, priest?" Judas rumbled.

"I don't know," Andrew shrugged. "How long have I been gone?"

"Three days," Snake gasped.

"Three days? That almost seems impossible."

"Who were you with?" Judas asked, his voice rough.

Andrew shook his head. "Good question, Judas. I was in a cabin in the woods, somewhere. There was an unconscious nun and I saw the remains of several priests and a lot of dead demons, but wherever I was, I was only there a few, short minutes."

Judas placed his hands upon Andrew's shoulders and looked deeply into his eyes.

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