“Are you sure you want to do this, Livia? You can still change your target. How about Greece? There are still targets there that haven’t been dealt with….”
“Simon, Greece has been so done. Let’s just get me prepped before I do change my mind about the whole thing. I’m getting irritated the more you ask that question.”
Simon just shook his head. He talked with Livia over the past weeks, about her target. Initially, he was dumbfounded by her choice. Of all places, why that armpit of the planet? But, Livia was looking for something–someone. Simon told her that she was setting herself up for failure. She would return disappointed either because she found him and he wasn’t what she was looking for, or he didn’t exist, never did. He had to make the best argument he could to sway her, or he would be left with only one other option…well, there always was that last option, but he was afraid of what that would do to them both.
“Listen, Livia. Have you thought this through to its logical conclusion, if you do find what you’re looking for? You know what I’m talking about–don’t give me that look. Just listen. We both know the history of the planet–the violence and horrendous acts of inhumanity. Poverty, disease, slavery, war, conquest, subjugation, human sacrifices, and worst of all the value of life being less than nothing, and that’s naming just a few of the highlights…you think you can handle that, Livia? On your own?”
“Simon, you’re scaring the women. Stop that.”
Livia turned and winked at Alexis who was her backup. Nothing would be kept from a backup…nothing. The backup needed to know everything and be prepped for insertion should the operative get into trouble. Alexis winked back, but continued to stay quiet.
“Funny, Livia–very funny. I know you. If you miss the target by a millimeter, you’ll stick around until you get close enough to get your answers. What if you discover that everything that’s been written is true? Would it be true for us as well? Would you have to stay there for it to apply to you? Would you live out your life there? Do you want it for yourself or are you just trying to find the answer and you’ll return to tell the tale?”
“Wow, Simon. That’s at least two week’s worth of arguments all at once. I told you before, I don’t know what I’ll do until I get there. And as for all the nasties, the simulations have come up with options for all the relevant scenarios. As long as I’m prepped up to my eyeballs in data, my cover is solid and the vaccinations cover all the diseases and ailments, then I will be fine…
Simon, I’m going. From all we have read and researched over the years, we know there was a historical man who might be called Jesus who was the subject of what is called the “New Testament”. I just want to know if he was what they called the “Savior” and if there is a God or supreme being or something running this Universe. We have the technology to go back in time. Why not use it for the key question of the history of all questions?”
“Simon, I’m going.”
“Livia…not if I say you don’t…just listen. I know that as a historian, you want to find the answer to the question that has perplexed many others. It is a mystery, for sure, but it is not our mystery to solve. If you find that the “New Testament” is correct and even vaguely accurate, it could open a can of worms for us. You know what I’m saying. As long as I’ve known you, you have wanted to know the answer to that question. This is personal for you, Livia, and that has no place in our business. It means you are biased–you’re compromised. That leads to mistakes made in the field, maybe even fatal ones. Protocol mandates that I shut this trip down in the event that an operative is on a personal quest. Now….”
“And as if a Knight on the Crusades wasn’t a personal quest for you, Simon? We operatives are human. Of course it’s personal or we would send in androids as we once did. Please don’t pull that card on me, Simon. I will come back, and as for the can of worms? Just get me there first before we decide the philosophy of the issue.”
“Simon, get me to Jerusalem. Get me there before he gets crucified. The clock is ticking.”