The Carpenter's Cup Chapter 1A Chapter by Calvin
March 8th, 1229 Jerusalem As a long bloodbath of a battle came to an end Sir John Helms and the crusaders took control of Jerusalem, after submitting to ruthless muslim control for generations the holy land was now under European christian leadership.Sir Helms had long dreamed of taking the holy land, now that dream had finally come true on the most successful crusade ever waged. This knight in shining armour was the toast of England after many successful campiegns against the vikings, soon he would return to a hero's welcome back home. Sir John polished his armour and mounted his black stallion with pride, he drew his sword and let out a scream of victory. The valiant steed reared back and raised it hooves high in the air as if it were posing for a statue. " Raise the flag men!!! " Sir helms shouted victoriously. Williams, his faithful servant delivered the flag to the knights restlessly awaiting at the top of the hill, they knew they would return to Europe heroes after this glorious conquest. " We've done it! We've captured the holy land! " Sir Helms thought to himself in this moment of great triumph. For half an hour he stared in awe at the christian flag flowing galivantly above Jerusalem, " Is'nt it beautiful williams? " Sir Helms asked his faithful servant. " If you say so sir. " williams answered indifferently. Sir Helms was'nt indifferent about the immpossible task the crusaders had just accomplished, he was in absolute euphoria over what had happened. A rider approached the area where Sir Helms and his servant were standing, his name was Sir Henry Lindisfarne, one of Sir Helm's closest friends and long time comrade. The triumphant knight was expecting Sir Lindisfarne to approach him joyfully, embracing him and laughing. There was a complete different look on the noble warrior's face than what John Helms had expected, he was riding as fast as he could and looked as if he had seen a ghost. His horse was gasping for breath as if he had rode a long distance, he immediately jumped off his horse and embraced Sir Helms briefly. " John, I have good news, the muslims have been driven out of Jerusalem! " said Sir Lindisfarne breathing heavily. " Good henry! what is this all about? " Sir Helms asked. " what is what about? " questioned Sir Lindisfarne. " Come now Henry I know something has happened to make you act so nervous. " " Well John, it's a serious matter that needs your help. " replied Sir Lindisfarne nervously. " What matter could make you tremble and pant like a scared rabbit? " " It's something my men and myself discovered, I think you better have a look at it." " Could you reveal to me whatever it is you have found? " " It's something I must show you John. " " How far is it from here? " asked Sir Helms " About an hour's ride." replied Sir Lindisfarne. So the two knights set out on horseback to observe whatever it was that Sir Linisfarne had discovered, thoughts ran through Sir Helm's mind on what it could be. Sir Lindsfarne acted as if he had found the ark of the covenant, John laughed to himself at the idea. Little did John know what suprise Henry had in store for him. As the riders approached their destination the men came out to greet Sir Helms opon his arrival, he was highly respected among the noblemen. The knights gathered aroung his horse to welcome him. " So what is the great discovery that I absolutely had to see for myself? " Said Sir Helms as he sighed " Just inside the tunnel John. " replied one of the crusaders. As John Helms gazed at the ancient temple one of his fellow knights had pointed to he noticed a small opening at the bottom, Sir Lindisfarne and his men had uncovered it while capturing it from the muslims. The synagouge was typical of the others found throughout Jerusalem, six large pillars supported archway above the stairway to the entrance. Hebrew writing was engraved elaborately above the doorway, in some ways it even resembled the greek temples in Athens. This place of worship was resting atop a large hill which was in some ways a bit odd, just below the synagouge was the opening of the cave like tunnel which concealed the discovery of a lifetime. " Me and my men were recovering what loot we could from this ancient synagouge when we noticed that there was a small opening in the rocks, carved on one of the rocks was the star of David carved into the stone and an inscription in Hebrew we could not translate. After we cleared away some of the rocks we noticed a tunnel inside, it resembles a tomb somewhat. " said Sir Lindisfarne " If it resembles a tomb it most likely is a tomb. " replied Sir Helms pessimissticly " Wait until you see the contents of this tomb John. " answered Sir Lindisfarne with a slight grin on his face. Sir Helms knew the sincere look on Henry's face and knew that some sort of shocking discovery awaited him in the tunnel, so Sir Helms agreed to enter the tunnel with Henry and a few other knights to see what sort of suprise they had in store for him. As they walked throughout the tunnel there were artifacts and relics scattered around, John began to feel dissappointed thinking they had brought him all the way down the tunnel for a few ancient sheilds and pitchers. For miles it seemed they walked down the tunnel, it would sometimes become so narrow and shallow that they had to crawl through. It was a very sophisticated tunnel system and it had many caves connecting to it. The tunnel twisted and turned for miles, Sir Helms thought it would never end. " Just around the next corner John. " said Henry reassuringly. As they turned the corner John's eyes witnessed the most unbelievable thing he had ever seen, a room filled with gold and priceless objects. There were two enormous pillars of solid bronze which acted as a gateway, the tops of them were shaped like lilies. Also there were ten chariots made of bronze and filled with artifacts of gold and silver, with engravings of lions, palm trees and other objects. Gold, Silver, and precious jewels filled the room to the maximum. At the front of the room was a golden alter with five lampstands on each side also made of solid gold, suddenly, Sir Helms noticed something astonishing. As the nobleman looked down at his feet the floor underneath them was a shimmering yellow color, that could mean only one thing, even the floor was made of pure gold. The luster of it was so stunning words alone simply could not describe it, even the knights who had layed their eyes opon it before were at a loss for words because of it's sheer uncomprehensible beauty. Diamonds and precious jewels decorated the walls, wreaths made of pearls hung magnificently from the walls. A chandelier made of diamonds shined and reflected transparently above the room. The artifacts were very ancient, one could tell they dated back to the time of David. The room glowed with the sparkling reflection of gold and silver. " You have'nt seen the half of it John. " said Sir Lindisfarne Henry led John through the room behind the golden alter to a pair of doors made of cedar, in the next room it was very similar but every bit as stunning and beautiful. There was a surprise in the next room that Sir Helms would have never seen coming, he noticed a veil in the front of the room that seemed to conceil something. " What's behind that veil Henry? " asked John. " You'll see " anwered Henry as he removed his helmet and fell to his knees in reverance. One of the other knights pulled back the veil to reveal a discovery that haunted Sir Helms's thoughts for the rest of his days, as the veil was being pulled back it revealed a golden box with two golden angels on top with their wing stretching out one another. Their seemed to be clouds hovering over the top of it, it looked as if it were levetating in mid-air. A supernatural glow surrounded this small golden box, a supernatural force projecting from it was so strong that Sir Helms and the rest of the knights fell to their knees helplessly. " It can't be! We have searched our whole lives for this!!!! " exclaimed Sir Helms stunned and excited. " We must never let it fall into the hands of the muslims!!! " said Sir Lindisfarne. As a knight struggled to pull the veil back over it he said " That is only half the suprise Sir John. " " What possible other suprise could surpass the one we have just witnessed? " replied Sir John baffled and confused. Sir helms gazed upward carelessly and realized there was a tunnel leading down from the seiling, " Where does that lead to? " he asked. " The men have already investigated it, it leads to an ancient synagougue not too far from the one we entered. " Henry replied. " This could only be Solomon's temple! The Jews must have hidden all the riches of the temple down here during the muslim reign. " said John. While they were being led out of the tunnel Sir Lindisfarne said " There is a tomb some other men discovered that will shock you more than this one has. " It was about a twenty minute march around to the other side of the mountain, all of them were tired and exhausted by the time they arrived. A small insignificant tomb was discovered by two men who were looking for muslim hideouts, what they found inside was something thought to be only a legend. While entering the tomb Sir Helms noticed an ancient Jewish inscription above it saying " This tomb is dedicated to Jesus Christ of Nazereth The Son of God, for He has not died but has risen. " After walking a great distance into the tomb he saw a stone that had once sealed the bottom of the tomb for ages, " We had to work on it for hours before we could break the seal open. " Sir Lindisfarne informed. As they stepped into the bottom of the tomb the treasure knights had seeked for ages revealed itself, a golden chalice quite humble in it's design. A simple carpenter's cup which held the key to eternal life, it was the legend written about in poems and folk tales. For nearly an hour Sir John Helms feasted his eyes opon the legend that seemed almost too magical to be real, the legend of the holy grail had finally become a reality. Later on that night the knights argued about what they should do with objects of such religious importance. " What are we to do with such priceless relics? " said Sir Lindisfarne " We must find a way to smuggle them out of the holy land, if the muslims ever take control of Jerusalem again it would mean disaster for our faith! " exclaimed Sir Helms. " What shall we do? If we take it back to England we might as well declare war on all of Europe. The French and the Dutch would not stand for England having possession of these priceless objects. " said one of the knights. " We must find a desolate land somewhere and hide these artifacts from falling into the wrong hands. " replied Sir Lindisfarne " There is an old legend I heard from a viking I once captured, there is a tale of the viking explorer Leif Eriksson discovering land far to the west of greenland. He called it Vinland and it is said to harbour many hostile natives. If he is right, then we should start loading the objects onto a boat and sail to vinland right now! " Sir Helms said zealously. " How do we know that Vinland even exists? If we sail too far west we shall fall off the edge of the earth. " " What is the alternative? Bring our country into war or allow the muslims to poss these precious, invaluable objects of the christian faith? The most important objects of our faith are at stake! " shouted John Helms in all his valiance. " I swear an oath to protect the temple, ark, and grail from anyone who seeks possession of it!!!! " Sir Lindisfarne yelled. After Sir Lindisfarne's bold interjection all of the knights took the oath and swore to protect the priceless objects at all costs, it was a nearly immpossible task to move Solomon's temple out through the tunnels but the knights were determined to find a way. The first task was moving the giant pillars through the underground cave system, eventually they realized that the tunnel leading to the synagogue was more than large enough for them to fit. Carrying things which weighed so much was another daunting obstacle, the carts proved to be the most challenging in this area. They were made of solid bronze, it took twenty-five men to carry them. The ark proved to be the most dangerous, no knight would even come close to it in fear for their lives. The knights had read in the Bible the terrible, horrific things which had happened to those who had handled the sacred object carelessly. After writing out their will four men volunteered for the dangerous mission, among them was none other than Sir Henry Lindisfarne. Their hearts raced as they picked the ark up off the ground, knowing that just one careless mistake could cost them their lives. It was a tight squeeze carrying the box of mysterious golden box through the tunnel but in the end it was brought safely and securely to the surface. There was no trouble bringing the grail to the surface, but it was handled with the outmost care and respect. Next was the solid gold floor of the temple, it was challenging because the knights had to break it into smaller pieces in order to move it. Though they wanted to preserve it but the crusaders were forced to chisel it into square tiles, it took days to accomplish. Two weeks it took to load Solomon's temple onto small viking longboats the knights had constructed for the journey, they had recruited locals to serve as crews as the Jews did'nt want the muslims to find the sacred golden chest or Solomon's temple either. The grail was kept a secret from everyone exept the knights, they debated relentlessly for hours to decide what to do about the grail. Some wanted it to be secretly smuggled back to England, others wanted to leave it in vinland along with everything else. Through all the fierce arguments and debates Sir Lindisfarne came up with the ultimate solution, it was one that all the noblemen could agree on. One knight would drink from the holy grail giving him everlasting life, they would leave the grail in vinland until tensions between nations in Europe were calmed. The knight who had drank from the cup would return to vinland three-hundred years later and bring it back to present it to the King of England. " Who shall we choose to present the grail to the King? " said a knight. Sir Lindisfarne came up with another solution as always " I have some jewels in a box I found in the tunnel, there are ten jewels but only one diamond. Whoever reaches in the box and takes out a diamond shall drink from the grail and return it to England three-hundred years from now. " The knight's hearts violently pounded inside them as the box of jewels was passed along, whoever took out the diamond would have everlasting life. First was Sir Lindisfarne, he closed his eyes and reached into the box with much anticipation. His hands trembled as he quickly wrapped his fingers around what he thought was the diamond, to his disappointment his hand pulled out a blue sapphire. It was Sir Helm's turn now, he prayed in his heart that his hand would pull out a diamond as he slowly and carefully reached into what seemed to be the end of his life. While his eyes were closed his hand could feel the distinct ridges and indentations of a diamond, as he began to pull the stone out of the box he reluctantly opened his eyes to find a beautiful, transparent diamond in his hand. Sir Helms was filled with joy as his eyes feasted opon the stone that had given him everlasting life, the crusaders held a ceremony that night for John while he drank from the grail. His fellow knights watched in awe as he touched the rim of the cup to his trembling lips, after taking the first swallow the wrinkles on his face slowly dissappeared and he began to take on a more youthful look. He was forty-five years old but drinking from the grail made him look more close to thirty, after John Helm's amazing age transformation all the noblemen swore and oath to never tell anyone of what they had discovered underneath Jerusalem. All exept Sir Helms took the oath as he was the one who would present the grail to the King. The next morning the longboats were all loaded and ready to go, after the crusaders boarded them they sailed off to hide the centerpieces of christianity in an unknown land. The boats dissappeared over the horizon as they sailed off to the unknown land called Vinland.
© 2011 Calvin
Added on November 2, 2010
Last Updated on January 14, 2011
The Carpenter's Cup
AboutI'm a college student and I love to write, it's the greatest hobby I've ever had. I can't wait to get my first book published! more..