55 Strategy

With Gabriel gone, Lucie huffs a “whatever” in his direction and does some controlled breathing to defuse her anger. This would be a terrible time for her to morph into a serpent. Even though Gabriel threw a tough punch in her direction with his prediction of her future, she knows she needs to absorb it and resist the urge to act out. She can’t let her emotions get the better of her—not this close to her goal.

To try and shake the whole thing off, she paces the circumference of the oval atrium. There has been a distinct change since her last visit here. Directly beneath the monstrous chandelier are two thrones. Between the thrones is a table topped with stacks of cards, gold tablets, and a game board made of multicolored marble.

Lucie recognizes the ornate seats immediately. One belongs to Almighty, and the other once belonged to her. Hers was a gift from the Creator on the day he chose her to lead Heaven’s angels. Its original home was in the Crystal Castle where she presided over meetings. Her name is still written on the top cross rail of the seat. It’s the smaller throne of the two, made of molded onyx and embellished with rubies and topaz.

Almighty’s throne is much larger than hers, made of pure gold and embellished with diamonds, emeralds, sapphires, and pearls. Traditionally, his throne is kept in the Holy of Holies with the saints. There’s no name on his throne, but there is little doubt as to its owner. She knows this prop is here for effect. Almighty is not a solid being and has never been confined to a tangible form. The only thing she will see on his seat is a bright white light that flickers and moves in a suspended circular motion.

Lucie also recognizes the items on the table. Until this day, they have been sealed in a vault on the north wall of the Holy Atrium. A painting of Moses—a hinged door rather than an art frame —has been highly effective in disguising the opening in the wall. It was Almighty’s idea to construct a safe house for the game pieces. He told her this was for keeping the details of the game between the two of them. Yet, after the game was put away, she was denied the combination to the vault. This is the first time she’s seen the cards or the tablets since the two met to negotiate the specifics of the Great Game.

The term “Great Game” is all hers. She chose it to belittle man and his relationship with his Creator. Lucie knows Almighty is on a quest to save mankind and uses acts of love rather than fear to lure men to his side. Even so, it’s hard not to notice the methods that man uses on both sides are beginning to resemble acts of war.

After the fallen angels were banished to Hades, Lucie became enraged with Almighty for ignoring her protests. He refused to address her questions, or even acknowledge her existence. When she occasionally traveled to the surface, Almighty would turn His back to her—withdrawing the sunlight from where she stood. She would wait there in the darkness, hoping to be noticed, and at the same time seething in resentment. The anger intensified after Almighty created man and turned His attention towards him.

Though she hated man from the beginning, she had to admit he was impressively designed. He had free will, and was made in the image of Almighty, and given some of His finest qualities.

Compared to man, Lucie is limited in many ways. While angels have reasoning skills, they lack problem-solving. They can understand the what of a task but cannot comprehend the why of it. Man’s ability to reason through the motivators and emotions of himself and others makes him the most evolved species in the cosmos.

Lucie knew she could not compete with the far superior humans in the typical fashion. She concluded the only way to get Almighty’s attention was to become part of man’s story. In a moment of pure genius, she had the idea of spawning evil into the human population. “If man is made in Almighty’s image, he is capable of assuming any of His characteristics—including jealousy and violence.”

She was convinced man could be tempted into sin if it were done in the right way. If she could get man to give into temptation, he would fall from grace and level the playing field for her. Then, Almighty would have to acknowledge her part in the storyline of man. She would once again be relevant.

The plan worked perfectly. In less than an hour of being tempted into the sin of pride, Adam and Eve fell, and mankind had a new storyline. These first two humans were now prohibited from being in the presence of Almighty. As Lucie watched Adam and Eve being driven from Eden, a new fear consumed her: “What if Almighty banished sinful men to Hades?”

If these men were sent to live in Center Earth for their rebellion and refusal to repent, the number of new residents might push her even further away from Almighty. She feared man might be given charge over Hades, causing her to be forgotten altogether in the depths of Hell. She moved quickly to secure her territory. She reasoned if she challenged the Creator to a competition—with man’s soul as the prize—He would engage with her.

Now, centuries later, she stands in front of the very table where the Great Game took shape. She runs the tips of her fingers lightly across the tablets and cards. The touch causes her to tingle with confidence. She can—and she must—win this game.

The cards are Lucie’s favorite part. They are marked with the characteristics that defined Almighty before time began. The stack on the left, in front of his throne, contains the characteristics He kept in the Great Game. The stack on the right, in front of her throne, contains the characteristics she assumed. There are twenty-four cards in all—twelve pairings of opposing characteristics. The setup is the same as it was so very long ago.

The tablets are made of gold so pure it’s practically translucent. The angels meticulously chiseled the agreed-upon conditions and rules of the contract into the tablets immediately after they were set at the first meeting. Today, the two leaders will only be reviewing the tablets that pertain to her reign. The others will remain in the vault for future conversations. On this visit, she’ll be asked to confirm her willingness to participate in the remaining events on Earth.

As it stands, she has no concerns about continuing with the current conditions of the Great Game. Almighty has always been fair in his dealings with her—even when he was losing. There were a few times when man sank so deeply into sin, Lucie could have declared victory and taken the majority of mankind as her servants. Almighty always came to their rescue. He would summon Lucie to the Holy Atrium and offer a concession to keep the game in play.

Man is in yet another time of great sin, but all indicators say Almighty is not going to be offering any more concessions. The message delivered by Gabriel said to “be prepared to reign on Earth” immediately following the review of the Great Game. It appears to be her time. She tries hard to contain her excitement.

As she walks around the room that has served as her connecting point with Almighty, she admires the designer’s attention to detail. She still finds the Atrium to be ostentatious and a complete contradiction of Almighty’s message, but she admires the artwork. Most of the paintings on the floor, ceiling, and walls are lit scenes of the mysterious Garden of Eden.

Though Lucie has always known the location of Eden, no man has been able to find it since the ousting of Adam and Eve. On occasion, scientists captured glimpses of the lush garden from satellites passing over Mesopotamia, but the explorers who did the follow-up expeditions came up empty-handed. Almighty didn’t make it easy. He kept Eden’s location hidden with mirages, thick foliage, and rugged terrain. The entry gates sit eighty feet below the surface—covered by the waters of the Great Flood. Man has not thought of looking for the entrance in the spring waters of Mesopotamia.

Almighty vowed to gift the Garden to Man once peace was established on Earth. That day never came, and now man is out of time. The Garden and its great treasures now belong to her.

Eden’s secret treasures will play an important role in Lucie’s initial strategy for dominance. The garden’s massive vegetation contains cures for every disease known to man. Lucie is going to reinvent the world’s lucrative pharmaceutical industry for the benefit of her One World Government. She’ll take over the business of trading cures for riches.

Lucie isn’t the only one who thought of exploiting Eden in this manner. In her upcoming speech at the Economic Summit, she will speak through Anna and reveal to the world the United States of America wasn’t looking for “weapons of mass destruction” in Iraq in 2003-2011. It was looking for the Garden of Eden. There was never an official admittance to this failed endeavor, nor was there any proof the U.S. intended to share its find with the rest of the world. Though the excavation was a complete bust, she’ll back her claim with indisputable proof.

This revelation will most assuredly infuriate the nations and break the ties between the United States and its allies. Lucie will encourage the United Nations Assembly to punish the U.S. with severe sanctions, blocked access to international airspace and waterways, and frozen assets at One World Bank.

She can’t wait to watch this bold move knock America off its self-righteous throne—crippling its economy and neutralizing its massive army. The goal is to throw the world’s largest Christian nation into complete chaos to keep it distracted from the happenings in the rest of the world, especially in Israel. She’s sure when the cost of bread reaches astronomical amounts, Americans will lose their enthusiasm for the world’s politics. Religious freedom for others will most assuredly drop from the top of their priorities.

Lucie rubs her hands together in pure glee. Her plans have been percolating for centuries. They are ready, and their effects will be epic. After she sells out the U.S. at the Economic Summit, she will head to St. Peter’s Square to join the Pope for the equally impactful Religion Roundtable. This is where she will begin to dissect and rebuild all the religions on Earth. She knows that religion must be marginalized before the Great War begins. At the core, most soldiers fight for religious reasons. She can weaken the armies by removing man’s reliance upon a Higher Power—but, it must be done with surgical precision.

A trumpet sounds with seven shrill blasts. She still has some time before Almighty arrives. The “Great One” loves to make a grand entrance. Today’s meeting might be the last and most important one they ever have. This is their final discussion before power is transferred and Lucie’s reign begins.

The Christians have been anticipating her reign and have labeled it the “Tribulation.” Apostle John of Patmos gave the world a heads up on what was to come after he visualized the future. He wrote about this time cryptically, not because he was trying to be evasive, but because he was looking forward in time. Though some of the visions were mysterious to him, he relayed the coded interpretation as told to him by the angels. His writings were added to the end of the Holy Scriptures in the well-named book, Revelation.

Most of Almighty’s very-vocal Christian followers haven’t even studied the final book of the Bible. This all works in her favor. If someone had made the effort to crack the code of the book of Revelation, the people of Earth would already know what is going to happen over the next seven years. At this point in the game, she doubts anyone will believe it. Man has been more interested in breaking codes of DNA and solving the mysteries of space than in learning all he must know to save his life. This will be something he will regret in time.

To put mankind off the track of breaking the Tribulation code, Lucie successfully authored a separation of science and faith mentality within the scientific community. She knew the two disciplines should be studied together but cited conflicting data and religious freedom as reasons for removing religious writings from any discussion of science. Her redirects worked and she successfully ran out the clock. Even if gifted minds crack the code of Revelation as things begin to intensify, she can have them silenced now that she’s in charge. She is aware the bold truth of Revelation would cause a worldwide panic. She would lose control of the people, and her reign would be in jeopardy.

There will indeed be a widespread panic on the Earth at the midpoint of her reign, but it will be initiated by the actions of Almighty—not her. Once “the Great One” finishes with His theatrics, she will be prepared with her counteractions to calm the people left on Earth. She’ll use their fear as a consensus builder.

A shout out from an angel brings Lucie to attention. It’s Archangel Raphael. He announces Almighty’s arrival in a thunderous voice. Lucie scoffs at all the pomp and circumstance for just one guest. No one else knows the entire story of Lucie’s creation, the battle between the forces, and the negotiations that happened along the way. The Holy Atrium was specifically designed to forever keep the secrets of the Great Game.


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Triple Digit TOC by K.M. Sheridan is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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