War

Dear Vera,

Get ready for this, because this week I have some sad news.

My boss, the sub-Lieutenant Third of the American Branch of the Illuminati, has passed away. I never got to know him, because he wasn’t my boss before, and because he was in hospital the whole time while he was my boss. In fact, I have never seen his face, because it got terribly disfigured by that giant fiery bird that everyone keeps talking about. Now that I have taken his position, I hope the best for him in the afterlife, and I hope to honour his memory by fulfilling my duties as sub-Lieutenant Third of the American Branch of the Illuminati.

Now that I’ve given you some good news, it’s time for the actual bad news.

The Freemasons have declared war on the Illuminati. Apparently, as our forefathers predicted, the Illuminati and the Freemasons would eventually fight on the greatest war on all of history, which would be fought in the Plains of Angst and Sorrow and would decide the destiny of humanity as it moves on a speck of dust through the vast infinity of void that is the universe. During this war, one will destroy the other, and the winner will shape the world to its image.

This makes me extremely sad. I mean, I have read some of the pamphlets that the Freemasons give out in the streets, and they are very similar to our own. Most of them involve luring people to restaurants, bars and clubs with special offers and to kidnap them, to brainwash them later on so that they acquire the company values. The Freemasons and the Illuminati have so much in common! I think both companies would benefit from collaboration instead of competition, and I’ve tried to explain this to the warring leaders of the Illuminati, but all explanations have been met with tribal dances of power.

As the Illuminati are preparing for war, I feel the urge to try to negotiate with the Freemasons. I think I’m going to try to go pay them a visit on my own, just to see what I can manage to do with dialogue. It’s probably going to be extremely dangerous, and the Freemasons will think that this is just a strategy for me to distract them. But I need to try. I think peace is the only way for us to manage to make this a better world.

Hope it goes well!

Jan

New Missions

Dear Vera,

I’ve been too busy to read any mail this week. As I had told you already, I am now working as a Priest of the Dark Lord, Assistant of the sub-Lieutenant Third of the Illuminati branch of America. This means that I have many more responsibilities, than before, and that I get to know a lot more about the world, and the inner workings of the company.

So, the other day I was in a meeting with my boss’ boss, because apparently the bird that attacked Lisa’s boss, that is, my current boss (who holds the position of sub-Lieutenant Third of the Illuminati branch of America), was some sort of sacred bird whose fiery tail pierced through his impure soul, mortally wounding him. This means that he is agonizing, and that I’ll probably have to take his position in the company when he dies (which is a bit of a pity, because that means I will never experience being the human sacrifice in the Dark Mass). I am currently already carrying out his work in practical effects, so that would only affect my salary and the perks I get from it, which is great!

Now, the other day, in that meeting I was telling you about, the Lieutenant Third of the Illuminati branch of America, High Priestess of the Dark Lord, explained that the Masons were advancing in their domination of the world, and that we needed to stop them. From what I understand, the Masons are a rival company whose interests oppose those of the Illuminati, and the High Priestess said that we need to stomp them, murder them, torture them and utterly shatter them.

The first objective in our fight against the Masons is to brainwash as many members of the president’s cabinet as possible. It would seem that previous brainwashing efforts were not strong enough, and that the Mason brainwashing is making the members of the cabinet behave in the erratic way in which they currently do. Our mission was to stabilize them and make them work in accordance to our company’s goals.

I was the one in charge of said mission, so the High Priestess’ personal assistant opened a portal for me to go to Washington. A few people from the company had already prepared meetings with the members of the cabinet for me to brainwash them, and so I headed to each and every one of them, fearing that my brainwashing abilities might not be on point for such a delicate mission.

What I found was… Weird. Like, they responded pretty easily to my brainwashing, and their new interests were back in line with those of the Illuminati, but they still behaved quite erratically, even when directed towards those goals. Upon further inspection I realized that the members of the cabinet had no cerebral activity, or any sort of brain, for that matter. Their skulls were just empty shells.

When I explained this to the High Priestess, she said that all politicians turn into clay golems over time, and that it was only normal to find that they had no brains. This apparently had something to do with some hex that a witch placed on all politicians a long time ago. I then asked her whether it would be more efficient to replace those human-golems which were weak and could be brainwashed by more robust golems that could not be brainwashed.

She seemed to like the idea, and that is what we have done! The High Priestess, who is called Christina, by the way, said that we could go really far with that kind of mentality! I am so happy that my efforts are being valued!

Anyway, I hope you are all doing well back at home. Give my regards to friends and family.

Jan

The Dark Mass

Dear Vera,

I would ask you how things are at home, but there seems to be a problem with post, and even though I receive your letters, I seem to have problems reading them. The last letter that you sent me was quite thick. I am guessing it contained letters from mom, dad and everyone else, right? Well, when I opened the envelope, just as I received the letter, an incredibly powerful gust of wind took all of the papers away (the envelope, too!).

I cast a few spells to try to capture the papers, but they did not work. I ran after the papers, and, after what must have been a few hours of running, I reached a vast wasteland in the edge of the Occult Neighbourhood. I had never seen this wasteland, and that was actually the last time I saw it. When the papers landed on it, a forest grew over it, so thick that it was impossible to navigate. When I finally gave up, I met a figure with the skull of a ram for a head, who looked at me in an intense way (despite its lack of eyes), and told me that “Destiny had been sealed”.

Going to this week’s activities, I had already told you about the Dark Mass, right? Well, it has already happened. The other day, I met the Dark Lord. As I told you in my previous letter, every Priest and Priestess of the Dark Lord, Assistant of the sub-Lieutenant Third of the Illuminati branches needed to be sacrificed in the Dark Mass. My boss, Lisa, was going to attempt to kill her boss to get a promotion and manage to escape the deadly fate. However, she could not find him at any point during the week, not even instants prior to the Dark Mass, because, apparently, he had been attacked by some large bird, and so he did not come to work during the whole week. Lisa finally had to come to terms with the idea that she was going to get sacrificed to the Dark Lord.

The Dark Mass was an extremely controlled ceremony. There was lots of protocol to be followed, and to be fair, I was thankful to the seminars that I had received on the previous week. The ceremony took place in some sort of cathedral that we accessed through underground tunnels. Seats had been assigned for us; I was seating towards the edge of the room, and all of the sacrifices were in the very centre, so my boss had a pretty good place to see the whole thing. The cathedral must have been larger than a stadium, but it was crowded. There were thousands of people there!

The people that were going to get sacrificed were in quite some distress, and there was quite a lot of noise, but I could not see why, or what was going on. Suddenly, several lights of different colours illuminated each of us, and the cathedral went from the black of everyone’s cloaks to a sea of colour. My light was a bright white, a rare thing that I could not see on anyone else (but there were over 50,000 people there, so no easy way to know if there were others like me). There were green, blue, red, yellow, pink… and several other colours. One of the regions of the public looked like one of those Find Waldo drawings. The sacrifices did not have any colours on them.

A dark fluid concentrated on the ceiling of the building, and spiralled down in weird shapes that defied any sense, falling over the human sacrifices. They were enveloped by that black goo in no time, and when they had all disappeared under that dark mantle, the Dark Lord materialized. Now, this was quite a shocking experience. I don’t remember exactly what the Dark Lord looked like. It had long hair, and I think it had wings and horns, but I cannot quite remember what happened. A girl that was sitting next to me told me that the Dark Lord was such a superior being that our brains had trouble conceptualizing it, so the brain avoided those memories.

The Dark Lord disappeared without saying a thing, apparently pleased with the Dark Mass. The centre of the cathedral was left empty, and the human sacrifices were nowhere to be seen. After several rituals, we all went back to our workplaces. I asked about Lisa, and I was told that she had ‘crossed to the other side’ which I think means that she has gone to work in Europe now. Good for her.

This meant that her position was vacant, so it was offered to me. I gladly accepted it, and I am now a Priest of the Dark Lord, Assistant of the sub-Lieutenant Third of the American branch of the Illuminati. I am so excited! I am going to have new responsibilities now! I really like the opportunities for promotion that the Illuminati offer. I’ll start working on my new position soon, and I will get to meet my new boss! Let’s hope it goes well!

Regards,

Jan

Seminar

Dear Vera,

I hope you are receiving my letters. I imagine that you are, because I have received three more letters from you and Alek (thank you for telling him where I am, by the way! I had not had the time to write to him).

Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to read any of these letters, and I think there is some sort of pattern with this that I am not capable of discovering. One of your letters suddenly turned into a fiery phoenix when I opened it, and flew out of my window before I could get it to give me your message.

Your second letter literally started to materialize in gigantic letters. It was quite a weird experience: the words started to fall out from the letter, and they grew in size until they filled my apartment (oh, yes, I forgot to tell you! Now that I am officially working for the Illuminati, I have a company flat, which I share with three shadowy figures who look like they’ve turned into one with their shadows). It took a bit of effort, but I managed to open the window, and the letters started to grow out of the window, flowing out and shattering against the floor, several floors below. When I tried to reconstruct the pieces, they turned to dust.

Finally, Alek’s letter must have disappeared, and I feel like it had never existed in the first place. All memory of it has disappeared from my mind, and everyone else’s minds. Nobody remembers that letter, but I had apparently written the first paragraph of this letter before Alek’s letter disappeared out of existence. I am now doubting whether the letter has actually ever existed. Weird.

Anyway, let’s get back to the topic. I’ve attended a few seminars this week, and some extra training. Apparently, every Priest and Priestess of the Dark Lord, Assistant of the sub-Lieutenant Third of the Illuminati branches need to be sacrificed every 23rd of February to quench the thirst of blood of the Dark Lord. My boss, Lisa, has told me that I might take her position if she gets sacrificed, or that I might be the sacrifice myself if she manages to murder her boss and take his position. I am happy to hear that there are many and fast routes for promotion in the Illuminati.

Seeing that I am going to have to participate in the great sacrifice, we have had a few seminars to remind us of the protocol for the Dark Mass. Cloaks and fancy attire are a must, and blood daggers are also necessary for the ritual sacrifice. I have been told that it is considered rude to keep a mobile phone in the Magic Stone Pocket of the cloak, and that the Dark Lord once enslaved and destroyed humanity because of a similar incident. This was apparently in another timeline of our universe.

I was also told that I would get to see the Dark Lord, who is the one that actually controls all of humanity and the universe. We the Illuminati are just the Dark Lord’s executing hands. Sounds quite amazing! I am going to get to see the actual boss of my company! I think that is so considerate of the Dark Lord, approaching the workers of the company and showing that we are part of something greater than ourselves. It’s so much better than one of those corporations where the boss is just an unknown being who, for some unknown reason, manages the company.

Anyway, I’ll send more news as soon as I know what’s going on. Wish me luck for the promotion! I really hope I get it!

Regards,

Jan

First mission

Dear Vera,

I have finally received one of your letters! I’m glad to hear that everyone is doing well back home. Well, I am imagining that the letter said that, because I’m not very sure whether it did. The envelope had been torn open, and half of the letter was charred, as if it had been touched by a fiery claw of some sort. I tried to rebuild it using some magic, but the letter did not respond to magic, as if its contents had been blurred out by some powerful dark magician (that’s weird, am I right?).

Anyway, I have finally started work this week. It’s been quite a stressful period, after studying so intensely for the selection process, but luckily all of that is behind me. I just need to concentrate on my work now (and I even get some leisure time to do what I want to, which is quite nice, if you ask me).

My boss is a woman named Lisa who has the position of Priestess of the Dark Lord, Assistant of the sub-Lieutenant Third of the American Branch of the Illuminati, which I think makes her quite important in the corporate structure of the Illuminati. I am basically her assistant, and she explained to me that she was responsible for handing out missions to her assistants, who were to carry them out. So she is something like an operations manager, I think. I still don’t understand very well how this whole thing works.

A couple of days ago, I received my very first mission. I was told that it was extremely important, and I was given two papers, one of them contained the instructions to get to my destination, and the other one I was not allowed to read until I reached my destination. In fact, I mistook the papers when looking for directions, and a strange ray of light blinded me for a few minutes.

When I recovered my vision, I took the other paper and followed what was written there. I got out of The Occult District and started to walk. In 10 meters, I had reached my destination, a Starbucks in the corner of a nearby street. I got inside, waited for the queue to advance and then read the other paper, which said:

2 x Mocca caramel frappuchinno
1 x Almond special with cream, with no dairy, no sugar, a pinch of cinnamon and no caffeine

I placed the order, waited for ten minutes, got only one Mocca caramel frappuchinno and two lattes, asked for a change, got a tea, gave the tea back, received a Mocca caramel frappuchinno with whipped cream, gave it back once more, received and Almond special with cream, but it was not made of soy, so I gave it back, received the second Mocca caramel frappuchinno, dropped the first one, ordered another Mocca caramel frappuchino, got an Almond special with cream, no dairy and no caffeine, got a rooibos which I gave back, but apparently it belonged to some other lady who had been sitting in a table for quite a while, so I asked for it again, finally received the Mocca caramel frappuchino, left the shop, went back in because I had forgotten the pinch of cinnamon, explained that I had just bought the coffee there to the manager, got some cinnamon, and headed back to The Occult District.

When I got back, Lisa drank the two Mocca caramel frappuchinnos in one go, took the Almond special for her boss, and congratulated me on the success of my mission. My work had apparently had results! I was so happy that I was being part of changing the way the world works. This mission truly inspired me to work harder.

Anyway, I hope everyone is doing well at home. Hopefully the next letter will arrive in one piece. Regards,

Jan

Induction

Dear Vera,

I hope that you received my previous letter. I haven’t received any direct response from you, so I was wondering if there is something wrong with the mail system here. I mean, it’s a bit unorthodox: you have to write your letter in a weird red ink that smells kind of funny, almost as if it had been harvested from a recently sacrificed animal, and then seal it with a demonic pentagram seal. When I did this I lost consciousness, and the next thing I remember I was cleaning a sacrificial knife in an altar that I had not seen before. The letter had disappeared, and my tutor informed me that it had been sent to its destination. Weird, I don’t remember adding a stamp onto the envelope.

Anyway, last week I told you that I was studying hard to pass an entrance exam and that I would hopefully be inducted into the Illuminati this week. I had prepared myself to impress the examiners, and during practice hours I even managed to summon the Behemoth once more, thinking that I was going to impress my Summon examiner and pass that exam with flying colours. I needed to get a good mark in that to compensate for the lower mark that I knew that I was going to get in my Brainwashing exam (I mean, come on! There are so many herbs, potions and mind techniques to learn in that subject that it’s impossible to learn them all!).

I did great at the Marketing and Business related subjects, and I was satisfied with my Revised History and Dark runes responses. They went quite well, and I think I did better than the other candidates in those subjects. However, the second to last exam was Brainwashing, and it was an extremely tiring five-hour exam (which I somehow managed to pass). By the time I got to my Summon examination, I was exhausted, and I kind of messed this one up.

I did all of the basic summons just fine, minor demons and weak fairies are quite easy to call into the human realm, and they don’t require elaborate magic pentagrams to materialize and act on the world. The last question was just to summon whatever I felt like summoning, so I tried to summon the Behemoth once more. The problem was that, due to my tiredness, I was kind of sloppy, and I mixed up the coordinates of the plane of existence in which the Behemoth is usually contained, resulting in opening up a portal to a plane of pure void.

Everything and everyone around me started to get sucked into the vacuum, and the rest of candidates and half of the examiners were sucked in, too. When I finally managed to close the portal, the examiners that were left looked at me, raised their shoulders and decided to accept me, because there was nobody else left to compete against me. I felt extremely ashamed, because I had not managed to summon the Behemoth, and the examiners looked sort of neutral? Disappointed? I couldn’t really read their literally faceless expressions. I apologized twice, trying to explain that I had intended to summon the Behemoth, but they just said that it was OK.

That night, I was taken to a meeting point in a garden. There were hundreds of people there, watching from under their dark cloaks, some of them hissing, and their scales only partially visible under the light of a large fire that shone bright in the middle of the darkest night that I had ever seen. I was given my internship contract, which I read and signed. A dark priestess (probably just someone from HR) threw the contract into the fire, which became the brightest black I’ve ever seen, illuminating the night with its blackness, and then it turned into the darkest white, darkening the night even further. The fire then turned red once more, and a dark cloak came out of it. The dark priestess placed the cloak on my shoulders, and welcomed me to the Illuminati.

I’ve been told that I’m going to start working on Monday, I’m so excited! I hope everyone is doing fine at home. Give them my regards. Lots of love,

Jan

The Internship

Dear Vera,

I am sorry that I have not been answering your phone calls and texts and emails and… well, pretty much any sort of communication recently. I’ve had quite a lot on my plate, moving to a new city, and getting used to it, and also, my new employer is quite strict about communication with family members. But I’m writing with good news today!

So I’m completely installed in New York now. You do remember that I was going to move to a flat-share, right? Well, apparently it was a total scam, and when I asked a taxi driver to take me there, he told me that no such street existed. I tried to get a hotel room, but all of them were fully booked, and thus had to wander all night long in the streets of Manhattan.

I went into a bar to get a drink, and, I have to tell you, it was full of such nice people! The people there were all suited up corporate lawyers and investment bankers, like those cold, manipulative and calculating businesspeople that you see in films. Only they were so nice and approachable! One of them offered to keep my luggage safe, while another said that he was going to maintain my wallet under his protection, and that his intention was to make my assets grow. So nice!

These people were, of course, extremely busy, so they had to leave in a hurry, and they took my things with them for safekeeping. So, when I walked out of the bar, I started to stroll randomly, and ended up in quite a nice neighbourhood that I had never heard about: The Occult Neighbourhood. The people there were wearing cloaks, and masks, and greeted other people with complex social rituals, and I was just enchanted by it. New York is such a melting pot for different cultures!

So a couple of people in black cloaks held me by the arms and took me to a pitch black skyscraper topped by a golden triangle. In a small room in there, they took my clothes away and did a full medical examination, and you know what the best part of this is? It was for free! And asked me whether I was desperate for a job that I found fulfilling and to have an effect in the world order. I told them that I had come to New York looking for a job, and that a couple of investment bankers had taken my money and things for safekeeping, but I was sure that they would give it back and help me with the flat situation.

Hearing that, they decided that I was fit for an intern position in their company, and I asked what that company was. I couldn’t believe it! In just one day, I had obtained an internship in one of the leading world-controlling companies of the world, and the job included housing and medical and dental care! It’s so nice to be part of the Illuminati!

The induction process is quite long, and I am studying a lot to be able to go into the position. I find that, having studied an MBA, my business and marketing skills are quite strong, but I never studied The Revised History of the World, which explains how the Spanish Inquisition was just a mind-controlling experiment that made all of Europe imagine that there was such a thing as a Spanish Inquisition. Dark runes is quite a fun subject, and reminds me of that time in which Mike and I pretend-played that we were wiccan witches, and we accidentally summoned The Behemoth, who was the prime suspect in the Campus Killings (but it’s now considered a proven fact that the vice-provost was the one who committed the murders). Yes, Dark runes really reminds me of the fond memories.

My examination and (hopefully, if I pass!) induction into the Illuminati are going to be next week. Until then, wish me luck! I think I’ve found a job that might actually be quite fulfilling. Please tell mom and dad that I’m OK.

Regards,

Jan