Posts Tagged ‘Lee Jacobs’


It is weird in the life of a writer. You become part of that which you write, there is a reason the words spill out on the page. Is it a quirk of character? A question that arises? A soul movement? The characters speaking into you and asking out to perform? All of the above and so much more. It is why I enjoyed Jules Schwartz’s comics and metaphysical writings, he got it. During this journey my lifetime characters have shared the journey, their legacies have changed. Heroes felt the effects of real world health, mental health and relationships…outcomes and solutions-some healthy, some permanent, with the ripples.

Whether it was the Great Crime Fighters, Bionic Knight or Lee Jacobs line (amongst many others) over the past several decades these characters have aided in unpacking through allegory and metaphor life. Such heroes from mythology, ancient aliens, cryptids, ancient lore re-imagined with spins of secret agents, Supras, and catalysts like this that saw Rick Saturn and his soul mate, Susan, vanish into the nether that was the Nirvana of Camelot, to allow Beth Venus to actualize into the new BK. The ending of death through suicide by others who could not handle the crushing blows of trauma in their own isolation without social supports and the crush of trauma upon a life seeing colleagues and friends die or vanish.

At times funny, other times raw. The Lee Jacobs pulps launched new story arcs attempting to tackle the current toxic dualism of our world.  I am sure at this point the reader understands that for me whether a mystery, pulp hero or fantasy-science fiction it is used to raise issues and challenge a reader’s notion of life to be able to discourse and dialogue. I have sat here during this vocation reinvention staring at the blank screen and keyboard with ideas bumping around in my mind to pick up where the last pulp left off with Venus and the new villain colliding and exploding.

What was to come? Challenges for Williams and Jacobs in a failure to protect? Reveal of the enigmatic new villain? Possible twists of returns of long gone heroes? Unpacking for Beth the heroic journey and what it means to be the Knight? For the concept behind the spiritual church Jacobs ministers over is St. Jude– the patron saint of lost causes. All these would be great issues, and throwing in other concepts and debates during the time of shutdown Canada.

Yet, I block. There is no Gremlin stopping the gears and words from rolling, rather it is a–not a weariness or a fatigue–rather a completeness…the ambiguity of the last entry’s ending is like life it self. Before the advent of social media and relationships continued on past their best before date.  There was a time, when things wound down, when questions were left unanswered, and in our resiliency we sat with that and moved forward…to often characters, like relationships, carry on past their best before date…and it does not bode well.

So I sit. In the midst of discernment for vocation reinvention…and my tales of what was once jokingly termed the “tyverse” by friends reading the pulps printed on dot matrix printer paper…

is complete.

Now to see where the great universal muse takes me to play.


The black gauntleted hand smashed hard into her golden helm, the Bionic Knight was reeling. She had not had a throw down challenge of someone as strong or stronger than her in her short career. Beth Venus shook her head hoping the com-link had remained in. Retired Constable Sean James was in the old F-150 200 million K white pick up relaying best he could from the tracking off a tablet. Their van had been stolen and torched.

Pastor Lee Jacobs was next to him. Sean had used his previous undercover guise of Sean Williams to track the stolen van to a crew of thugs attempting to re-ignite the spree killing hate group inspired by the departed villain- Killer Face. The six were easy to incapacitate, and drop a line to the police for round up. As Beth took flight to leave the ware house imploded and the black armoured figure streaked through the night air and in a burst of blue flame energy his fist met with her face.

“B.K., duck and weave girl.” Sean said.

“That’s what you got for me?” Beth said as she tried to shake her mind back to reality and track the black armoured  figure against the night sky. The new style street lights city council brought on were supposed to reduce fake light pollution to allow the stars to light the night. They failed horribly a few decades back not purchasing the shade as an “austerity cost saving measure”, so you were not only left with enough light pollution to block out the stars, you were also left with not enough light to illuminate the roads.

She ran a golden gauntleted hand down her helm, she felt the green energy through a crack. The dude had cracked her armour. How was that possible?

Lee slipped on a pair of night vision goggles to track the fight. For some reason in his mind he was running through the Norse Myth of the Mistletoe. A legend of under-estimating what horrors an innocuous plant could cause. Word had come down that Baldur was to die, the Gods got everything in the world to promise not to harm him, but had forgotten the innocent looking Mistletoe. They created a game, of hurling things at Baldur and seeing them bounce off, his brother, though blind and left out, was found by that trickster Loki, and encouraged to participate. See Loki had spoke with the Mistletoe, who also felt left out. It was the Mistletoe that Loki placed in Baldur’s brother’s hand to throw…and fatality ensued.

Death due to surprise. Not thinking beyond what was presented. The literal. The trickster mind. “Sean, look closer at that armour. Remind you…”

“The Ionic Knight.” Sean said. Lee knew, they both knew, the Ionic Knight had been the original Bionic Knight’s ultimate nemesis. Powered by the magics that had wanted to destroy Camelot…that being Morgan La Faye and Mordred, that which corrupted Lancelot. The original Ionic Knight had been the original Bionic Knight’s twin brother. Yet, Beth’s brother was dead.

The mystery of who was a problem to solve later. The first thing to solve was how their girl was going to survive.

“Mistletoe.” Lee said.

Sean looks at his friend. “You feeling the need to kiss strangers?”

Lee shook his head and grabbed the com from Sean. “B.K. draw him in close, then power down and up rapidly.” Mistletoe took Baldur and the Gods by surprise. This new player was underestimating the rookie hero in how he was manhandling her.

Lee heard B.K. gurgle as a choke hold was placed around her neck, and the black sword known as Chivalry was drawn by her opponent. It was shifting from long sword to dagger. He was going to shiv her through the chink in her armour, and then grow killing her. The original Ionic Knight had been redeemed by giving his life to save the world. This one was out for blood. “He’ll kill me if I do.” was choked through the com. Lee got the child’s worry, but it was the hail Mary that was needed. It was what St. Jude’s did on a regular.

“For your life… Please…Beth.” Lee said.

The tip of the black magic dagger Beth felt it cut through her chain mail and break skin. Her hear was groggy from the lack of oxygen flow. Spotlight from a news helicopter and a police helicopter.

“bionic off.”

Green and blue energy explode around the two fighting armoured figures.

A blood tipped dagger explodes to full length…

Armour pieces fly away into the night…


Williams attempted not to grimace as the cup of coffee from Circle K was one step below Emergency Room coffee in hospitals, he had better stuff visiting homeless shelters when he was a Constable. Jacobs bit into the soggy donut from the $1 for a half dozen variety of glazed from Wal-Mart.  7-11 had great donuts and coffee, unfortunately that was not where the resources had come from as they traveled through back roads in Williams’ old VW Bus looking for St. Jude’s Sprinter Van someone had lifted.  A parishioner had shared the idea that car thieves dumped cars in and around Tim Horton’s.

“We are wasting out time” Retired-Constable Sean Williams said.

Jacobs took another swig of brutal coffee, really why hadn’t they upgraded to bad swill and just ordered from one of the Timmy’s they had been driving through the parking lots of. Jacobs noted that the concept of this stake out had invigorated his friend. The man had never taken the time to mourn the loss of his job and the identity that came with it when he retired. Much like he could eulogize or allegory the province not having mourned the transition away from oil sands to other forms of energy in the world. It was being stuck in that grief cycle stalled out on anger and denial that had led to the vitriol of moving away from the steady guidance and support of the previous governing party into the new regressive theocratic-fascist state that was developing.

Which is why Jacobs knew that St. Jude’s was needed now more than ever. A gathering community for those of the lost causes living in a province governed by the lost cause, a miracle of the affirmation of humanity and birthing into the new had to happen.

“Probably, but where else are we going to get this excitement?” Jacobs responded. “Do you think they dumped it? I mean it was fairly new.”

“If it had been used as wheels for a smash and grab, chances are it was dumped. I’ll give a call to impound to see if it was picked up. But they could’ve also grabbed it to chop.” Williams said.

Jacobs scratched his few days growth of salt & pepper whiskers, the grabbing vehicles just for joy rides too was an option, in which case if it wasn’t in an accident, it could’ve been left anywhere. With the recent heavy snow fall, the white van simply could be fading into the background.

Melanie tugged her St. Jude’s hoody down as she stood up and head out onto the church steps to talk to the media. The missing van was impacting their children and youth outreach for the area, as it was what was used to pick up kids after school and bring them to the church. Those that weren’t yet connected with older kids to walk to the church. She was hoping by talking to the media.

Walking out of the Sacristry, she was was coming by the raised altar area, where she noted the youngest addition to the family curled up in the high backed oak chair just off the side of the pulpit. The furnishings of the rebuilt church had become a hodge podge of different church stylistics as many in the area wanted to see St. Jude’s around to do the social justice piece of the gospel so they could focus on the prosperity end, hence they dumped quite a lot of what had been taking up storage space on them.

Beth Venus’ long curly ginger hair was draped forward hiding her face, and Melanie could pick up her whispering to herself. Due to air traffic even smart phones had a hard time getting signals in the old church. “Hey kiddo.”

Melanie Moon could feel the grimace and cut eye through the hair, all the hair needed was sun glasses and she could’ve been cos playing cousin It from Addams Family. “Don’t call me kiddo I could…”

“Bench press the galaxy yada yada yada” Melanie said as she slides onto the bar stool next to the chair (like we had noted, a hodge podge of weird, kinda like the parish itself). “But you are not powered up currently, just emoing in the sanctuary.” (editor’s note: Beth Venus is the secret identity of the new Bionic Knight). “So our over powered and hormoned 15 year old what ever art thou wrestling with?”

Beth sniffled, and looked like she wiped a tear away. Her parents had vanished on her and her brother leaving them to a street life, and then her brother had been lost to the opioid crisis wrecking havoc on the province. Beth had then lived with the Great Crime Fighters on a piece of land known as the Ashram, before they had died and the base was destroyed. That is what brought her to live at St. Jude’s through Lee’s big heart.

“Just don’t want to leave.” Beth sniffles out.

Something was wrong, Mel had attempted to put her arm around Beth, only to have the girl recoil away. “I don’t know who you’ve been hanging out with the last few months, but Lee takes folks in, I have never seen him put anyone out.”

Beth shook her head, Mel followed her eye fall on a bi-sexual flag that had been hung next to a stain glass of an apostle whose name failed Mel in this moment, possibly Andrew? “Are you trying to figure out where you are on the spectrum?”

Beth leapt from the chair and froze mid run step. “No…I mean… lookk…” she points to the crucifix…”hates…”

Melanie rose and pulled Beth in as the girl crumpled into her shoulder sobbing. “Oh honey, we love all the images of God, and that includes you. Full stop, no qualifiers.”

Lee sipped his refurbished cup of coffee, this time from a Tim Horton’s drive thru, as Williams stood next to him, they were both staring at the closed water spray park parking lot– and the burnt out remains of the church’s Sprinter.

“Oh damn.”

Spray painted on the snow was a simple message: St. Jude’s close now!

“Oh damn.”

 


Beth nods to Moon, a trench coated figure moving in the far back with a ball cap pulled down. Retired Constable Sean James followed the gaze, he knew security was good and would get the individual. Due to the dress looked very androgenous, but they had rounded up many that had decided to cause a ruckus.

Jacobs was in Jacobs form. The Holy Spirit was moving through him, Beth thinks as she continues to scan the crowd. She chuckled at the thought. This old broken down writer turned preacher she knew very little about who looked her in the eye when she was in the Bionic Knight armour and said no to her offer of help. Now today he was holding a parking lot Mass of Hope he called it. The Open Table of Love. It sounded corny as it went through her mind, but the corn bread was real.

Another break out of campfire hymn singing. As it quiets down, Jacobs picks up the bread “On the night he was betrayed, betrayed out of fear and hate for change, for the old ways dying away. For those oppressive powers and control authorities realizing they needed to release and let go and let come the new Holy Love. Jesus took bread and broke it. This is the bread of hope.” As if on cue lunch bags, snacks, you name it started coming out, and a potluck smorg was shared with all. It was St. Jude’s way. Communion was not just a simple piece of bread it was eating, like the feeding of the masses miracle. Jacobs handed the bread to Moon and James who let it out to the crowd, as well as the baskets of sandwiches.

Moon smiled as she watched the bread and food move into the crowd. The other reason St. Jude’s was so relevant and real, as she had begun to understand as the area MLA (Member of Legislative Assembly) wasn’t because of some Platonic, Metaphysical or Western-Constantinian Theology…it was simple love through ensuring folks could get to treatment, medical appointments, kids were cared for, and when months were tight in the socio-economically diverse area bills were covered and food was in pantries. She had once asked Jacobs to see a budget sheet, he burst out laughing and said, “Talk to Elder James, he gets heart palpitations at least 8 times a day with how that thing is bent, broken and abused.” When she pushed on how they still survived.

He gave this grin with a chuckle. It wasn’t cockiness. It was a depth of humility. It was the type of look when he locked eyes on you that you truly believed it was all going to be alright and the good would win. “Because we give.” It made no sense to her political mind, or her basic undergrad economics mind, yet here was the result. The more they gave the more…they had in tangible and intangible ways. Almost like there truly is enough for everyone in the world.

He nodded to Beth Venus. The next part. “Then he took the cup, knowing that his blood was about to be spilled. That he was to lose his life for simply sharing the story of Holy Love and belonging. This is the cup of promise. Drink and be at the table together as family.” Beth got volunteers to begin rolling out coolers with juice, pop and water to share.

Sean James admitted Jacobs has driven him batty the entire time he has known him, from his reporter days forward.  James also knew if he did something it was with conviction and belief of actually helping people. His eyes watched the crowd reacting. Lee held that through love you dissolved hate. James thought he was nuts, and said “I told you so.” After St. Jude’s bombing and as the crowd’s gathered today.

It had looked like it was going to snow, but it had held off.

And now what he was seeing.

She noted tears in people’s eyes at the simple acts. Those in hate garb, some let it drop off as they made eye contact for the food. Simple, kindness.

Moon, James, and Venus note the trench coat drop off, the yellow vest, the cap off…

The costume underneath.

She was already vibrating wanting to dodge at super speed towards Jacobs. Beth could hear her words through magic vibration. “this life took my Johnny.” She had known her friend was hurting. But had been improving, and had entered this place of what Venus believed was contentment. Looking at the situation now it was resignation of having a plan on a place to misdirect her anger and denial.

She had promised no powers.

But here was the Speedster flying towards Jacobs ready to tear him to pieces.

An audible…

“johnny”

“Go now in Holy Love of the Creator, the blessing of Brother Jesus, and the Family of the Holy Spirit. Go. Embrace. Simply say, I love you.”

As a yellow vest falls into the crowd and vanishes.

The pop shattered the moment.


The first question arose about the retired Supra agent Jacobs had been seen with after the shoot out at the trailer. He hated turning Sunday Service into a media blitz, but sometimes the Liturgy (work of the people) was about being the catalyst for change. Jacobs chuckled it was a very Catholic Workers or Social Gospel or Liberation Theology movement, but it was true. Today in the parking lot outside the office, as the writ had been dropped and Melanie Moon was no longer an MLA, and the Social Credit party ceased to be. It became outdoor church.

Already the mud slinging by the former governing and former official opposition parties had begun. Jacobs’ heart was to filled with sorrow to track the rants and lies. The fact that old things were dragged up to attack character, but no newer patterns of same behaviour were there to show legitimacy or current causation. That is even though it may be true (an attack, not a smear) it was without merit and did not allow for the fact that human being grow and evolve over a lifetime. Or the stirring of the hate and fear pot. His opening prayer had been simple at this cross roads of grief:

“Loving Creator, we are a people, a province at the crossroads. Change is grieving. We are trapped in anger and denial. Gnashing our teeth and shaking our fists against that which is no longer possible or plausible. We need hope, we need to let go that which was, and be fully present in our new reality, a province where all belong simply because they are. A true community with an open table, that loves as our Brother Jesus commanded and lived for us to do. Let us surrender our pain in this wilderness so that we can let come the new blessings that await… Alleluia!” Jacobs prayed.

As hecklers from the back in blue shirts screamed at him about not being “Heretic! Racist! Not a Christian!”

There was police present, as well as the strip mall complex security. Jacobs waited as the regular attendees of St. Jude’s began chanting “Alleluia! Alleluia! Love Wins!”

Moon nodded to him. Sean James and Beth Venus closed ranks around Jacobs, they knew this could turn sketchy, as he answered the question about Louie Regis. Beth spoke silently into her up turned denim collar so Speedster was aware. Kyla Storm, the Speedster was just on the outskirts of the crowd, her costume hid under a trench coat but ready if powers were needed. Venus stood by her promise to Jacobs, hate had to be defeated with hope, not super hero involvement.

“It’s always funny to get a press question during a church service.” Jacobs spoke again into the outdoor microphone. The regular congregants of St. Jude’s were alternative verses of Jesus Loves Me and Come in, Come in and Sit Down you are apart of the family. “I did not know retired Agent Louie Regis well. I knew of his reputation when the police came to tell me someone had assassinated him. I use that term, because folks need to understand murder/assassination are the same thing. Usually it is title or socio-economics that determine the word choice. Louie may never have made it above working class salary in-spite of his white collar look, but he served our Country. He retired due to Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, and should’ve been able to rest and heal.” Jacobs takes a sip from the McCafe coffee he had picked up on his way to the parking lot. His eyes scanning for anything that could be a long shot gun. The goon mobs of extremist party members were still trying to agitate, and he noted the attire of some known hate groups as well. He was happy to see that the police and security were starting to root, arrest and move along.

“Unfortunately the passion he put into protecting others, and being their pillar of strength he did not think himself worthy enough of. I hope the Governor General allows for a full honours funeral, and I pray this is a change in the national dialogue around trauma, mental health, addiction and violence so that we can truly become a nation that loves our neighbours, but also loves ourselves with the same love. Louie’s death is a reminder what happens when we only fulfill one part of the second Great Commandment, love of neighbour without honouring our own Imageo Dei. Now back to your regularly scheduled service.”

Melanie Moon opened a well worn New King James Bible, and reads to the gathered crowd:

34 But when the Pharisees heard that He had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together. 35 Then one of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question, testing Him, and saying, 36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?”

37 Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and great commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.”

She hands the microphone back to Jacobs. He finishes off his cup and deposits it in a recycle bin. “Anyone with a passing knowledge of the Hebrew Bible or Donnie Osmond Musicals (editors note for the youngsters: this is a Dad joke about Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, fyi, my daughter says her aunt does Dad jokes better). Knows we need to pay attention to dream work for sometimes it is simply our subconscious dealing with bull shit, other times it is a healthy place to release the hurt and pain. Sometimes it is where we learn…and on a very slim moment it can be a mystical experience.

I had one of those multi-coloured mystical moments. To the citizens of this province I want to let you know that our hero is not coming to pull us out of this quagmire of fear and hate. The original Bionic Knight is gone.”

Jacobs let that sink in, seeing some faces tear up, even the hecklers, bullies and aggressors in the audience were gob smacked.

“His name is Rick Saturn, his wife was our beloved mayor that vanished last year, Susan Kobwash. They have two amazing super heroes as children blessed to experience this life with Cerebral Palsy and Autism respectfully. They have joined the pocket verse between the multi-verses…” a few heart beats to let that sink in. “They are living their best life, as both Susan and Rick, and their kids shared with me, he has moved through the destruction wrecked by the a-typically cellularly ingrained Post Traumatic Stress Disorder into what is known as Post Traumatic Growth… or to a simple shit disturber like me, the path of Light renewal.”

A break out of singing old hymns from all around. Then the voices become more unified as they sing an old favourite of St. Jude’s, John Lennon’s Imagine . As the singing comes to a close, before he continues, Jacobs opens up for the Lord’s Prayer. As is the custom of his congregants, and to the beauty being sent out via the news. They do not pray in English, they may if that’s their language, but Latin is heard, Cree, Blackfoot, German, Russian, many African and Island dialects. For Jacobs he calls it the Pentecost moment of service, where the simple prayer is said and heard so all may hear it in their language.

“Saturn wants us to release our anger and hate. To grieve. Let the tears flow don’t hide behind toxic human beliefs. Feel. Love. He knows he can be in the next phase of life, for the hope is here already within each of us. The still small voice that speaks what is honest, good, and true. That which allows us to have compassion for ourselves and neighbour, and to truly know that the only way forward to a bright future is by embracing the beautiful Mosaic like is gathered here today.”

Venus and James watched the rabble rousers, the next part was the heading to the closer, and the benediction was going to be the tell.

“So my family, however you identify we are connected through the holy spark, that blessed breath that gave us life. Listen to the simple words of Jesus, Love your neighbour as yourself. It is how we show love for God. If anyone piece falls down, we are not truly living the sacrament of Holy Love…and then hate and fear win. So Love.”

Another break out of campfire hymn singing. As it quiets down, Jacobs picks up the bread “On the night he was betrayed, betrayed out of fear and hate for change, for the old ways dying away. For those oppressive powers and control authorities realizing they needed to release and let go and let come the new Holy Love. Jesus took bread and broke it. This is the bread of hope.” As if on cue lunch bags, snacks, you name it started coming out, and a potluck smorg was shared with all. It was St. Jude’s way. Communion was not just a simple piece of bread it was eating, like the feeding of the masses miracle. Jacobs handed the bread to Moon and James who let it out to the crowd, as well as the baskets of sandwiches.

He nodded to Beth Venus. The next part. “Then he took the cup, knowing that his blood was about to be spilled. That he was to lose his life for simply sharing the story of Holy Love and belonging. This is the cup of promise. Drink and be at the table together as family.” Beth got volunteers to begin rolling out coolers with juice, pop and water to share.

She noted tears in people’s eyes at the simple acts. Those in hate garb, some let it drop off as they made eye contact for the food. Simple, kindness.

“Go now in Holy Love of the Creator, the blessing of Brother Jesus, and the Family of the Holy Spirit. Go. Embrace. Simply say, I love you.”

The pop shattered the moment.


“You’re not MacKay?” retired agent Louie Regis said. He appeared just around 60 years old, but was closer to his mid-70’s having chosen to retire after seeing far too many of the heroes he had known in his long and not so illustrious career make the transition to Valhalla. It was supposed to be a time of relaxation, possibly writing the memoir he had thought about. Instead his personal home phone had gotten a voicemail from MacKay asking for help. He probably should have updated that voicemail to actually track things like dates however.

Though finding a… Priest…in a dried blood soaked kitchen was not what he was expecting. His hand went to the snubnose .38 he was carrying illegally (Canada didn’t have open carry permits, and handguns were on the restricted list). He pulled back the hammer. “Well Padre, who the hell are you?”

Jacobs eyes scanned the kitchen. Trying to shake the cobwebs from his brain. He used to box, well more like fight as he wasn’t so keen on the rules boxing brought with it, but it had been a while since his bell got rung like that. Time to bide sometime, was this some old guy pulling a Frank, from god bless america (Bobcat Goldwait’s movie about a couple of spree killers trying to end the mean narcissistic culture by killing the rude, and hapless reality stars of the country).

“Don’t call me Padre, only my friends can do that.” Jacobs said. In the back of his mind he worried about Beth Venus showing up, the kid would be a liability in this situation, bad enough they almost got blown up together at St. Jude’s, he didn’t need her getting shot by the angry senior.

Jacobs rolled up into a crouch, the muscles and joints of his tired old body screamed at the sudden movement. The senior leveled his gun at Jacobs. “Did you kill MacKay?”

Jacobs chuckled. Using his right index finger he flicked the white cardboard square from his collar and undid the top button. He slowly rose to a standing position, the old man may not be happy but he doubted he would risk a gun shot in this trailer park. Rainbow colours began dancing on the wall behind the old man, Jacobs squinted closed his eyes and let out a slow exhale hoping to refocus. That was messed up. He opened his eyes, and the bearded face rippled through the rainbow before it vanished.

“No, Ms. Storm let me stay here after some rat bastards of hate fire bombed my church’s manse.” Jacobs said. “Who the hell are you?”

The old man seemed taken aback. He startled a bit like one who had been through a bit too much in his life to deal with aggression. Jacobs lowered his tone, “Can we lower the gun?”

The older man seemed stunned he was holding the snubnose, he slowly lowered the hammer, and placed it back in a back holster. “Retired Agent Louie Regis, and you are?”

Jacobs rubbed his chin, all he had wanted was a cup of tea and an early night. “Father Lee Jacobs, rector of St. Jude’s.” He offered up his hand, and Regis shook it. Jacobs motioned to the living room, he took up an arm chair while Regis sat on the couch.

“I got a voicemail from MacKay saying he needed help. Friend calls, you come. Then I find you Lee.” Regis said.

Lee scratched his whiskers. “What kind of help?”

“Didn’t say, but then there’s blood, no MacKay and you.”

“You say he’s a friend, that blood is really caked in and dried out, MacKay passed a while ago. Think you are a bit late on the call for help there, Louie.” Jacobs said.

Louie exhaled slowly. His suit was rumpled, many during his tenure at the Supra Agency had made comparisons to Columbo and him. Always underestimated, but always came through for the win. Now this priest was busting his chops about not making it in time to help his friend. Which, was true. He was so lost in his own self and the work he had missed a lot.

“Ate his gun didn’t he?” Louie asks. Jacobs noncommittally nods. He hadn’t worked out all the details, but evidence did jive with other gun suicides he had attended in his journalist days. “Damn.” Louie had chosen retirement to avoid the demons eating his soul, MacKay’s demons chose his life for him.

Louie rose slowly from the couch. “I’m sorry for bothering you, Lee. I will be on my way.”

Jacobs stood and shook the man’s hand. Regis walked by the bay window at the front of the trailer. Jacobs saw a glint of red. He shoved Regis onto the floor, “down!”, as the bullets fly through.

Regis feels a rib or two give way as he hits the floor. A bullet blows off the tip of his ear, and a few others whizz past his hair. Jacobs feels one tear through his left upper arm muscle.

Regis sees the blood. “Lee!”

Before he blacks out Jacob retorts, “Call me Father Jacobs!”

To Be Continued…

 


The wind blew through the cardboard that had been a window. Lee tips the empty scotch bottle up right and rights the chair. The blood had become brown stained with time. It was a trailed in a place called “The Ashram”. The child, Beth Venus had invited him to live here after hate tried to snuff out the light of St. Jude’s. One does need a place to lay their head, but he was not expecting entering the trailer of a dead man. One not touched by time since he had taken his own life.

The minister in him had done a blessing and clearing of the space. Letting any lingering spirits know that they could rest. MLA Melanie Moon had helped lending her office space for services while the insurance company dawdled on whether or not to pay out for the damages.

Lee was not sure if he would ever get the soot off his boots, and what had crunched into his soles’ walking through the burned out mass that had been a sanctuary and refuge for those without hope.

A place to find hope.

The trailer needed some tlc and clean up that was for sure, that would be for tomorrow, today he would crash on the couch, the television still got a signal. He tossed a book from his back pocket he had picked up from the library, Robert Gleason’s The Evil Men Do, if nothing else Trump’s `Merica had reinvigorated the espionage novel that had been slumping since the end of the Cold War. He took his dollar store bag to the bathroom, splashed warm water on his face. In the morning he would connect with James Sean about where to go with rooting out those that attacked St. Jude’s.

A knock on the door, “Father Jacobs?” He really wish the child would get that his name was Lee, Father just sat wrong with him.

Lee stroked his salting beard as he looked up in the mirror, for a minute he saw a slimmer of another bearded face, but then his own. A trick of traumatic fatigue. He walked the short hallway to the door and opened it.

Beth had brought a friend. “Father Jacobs, this is Kayla Storm, she’s the landlord.”

Lee extended his hand and nodded, “Thank you Ms. Storm, and it’s Lee.”

The blonde lady had the lithe muscular build of a runner. There was something familiar in her blue eyes that had irises shaped like a diamond mosaic. Lee just couldn’t quite place it. “Alright Lee, but Ms. Storm was my Mum, I’m Kayla. Sorry we couldn’t get it cleaned up I wasn’t expecting to loan it out since Mr. MacKay….” Her voice trailed off. Lee was not to sure about what the full story was with the previous tenant, but she seemed more shaken up than simply a landlord whose renter took his life. (astute readers remember who MacKay and his son were in the life of Kayla Storm-check out Bionic Knight Pulps for all the Great Crime Fighter tales).

Lee begged off with an apology of just wanting sleep so the two would leave the stoop, as he closed the door in the glass behind the door of the built in souvenir shelf he swore he saw the face of… “Madame Mayor?” Lee pinched the bridge of his nose. He really needed sleep he was starting to see things that were not there.

Stumbling into the kitchen he searched the cupboards and found a kettle, tea pot and two bags of Red Rose tea hidden in an 1970’s era orange Tupperware container. It didn’t matter, some tea would settle the mind. As he put the tea to steep he looked out the small trailer window, whisps of wind that looked like twins.

“Dear God, I am going…” His external soliloquy was interrupted by a riotous rapping on the back door. “Beth I said I just wanted to rest.”

A grunt, “No Beth here, mate.” The voice was unfamiliar. Lee slipped a butcher knife out of the knife block as he moved to the door where the rapping became more intense. Lee peered through the window. The porch light was burnt out so he couldn’t see anything. Slowly he slicked the safety chain off, and undid the dead bolt.

The door knob hit him in the mid-section knocking the wind from him as the rest of the door slammed into his head knocking him back and through the kitchen table. The knife skittered across.

An oriental man close to sixty stood over him in a rumpled navy suit with a snub nosed .38 pointed at him. “Damn, you ain’t MacKay, who the hell are you?”

Lee groaned as his eyes tried to focus the domed kitchen light searing into them he didn’t see his reflection, but a greying goatee and bald head. A mouth he could barely make out the words of “camelot.”

To Be Continued…


The headline screamed Start 2019 in Love. The by-line was by a local MLA, Melanie Moon, writing about the horrors of hate and how it had taken a life at a gathering meant to inspire. Lee crunched the paper at his breakfast table. He missed the days when Rick Saturn would write and rally the troops (writer’s nod: yes the original Bionic Knight’s secret identity). Unfortunately, with the former mayor, Rick and his kids had vanished. The new mayor was trying, as were the new heroes. Lee admired Mel for what she was able to do as an anomaly MLA in Alberta Politics raising issues and poking the bear.

“Populism will destroy the Just Society if good people say and do nothing.” the gravelly voice said. Lee turns slowly, he really had to examine the list of folks with keys to the residents portion of the Church.

“James, bit early for you isn’t it?” James walks by the counter and pours himself a black cup of coffee before sitting across from his old friend. “Ms. Moon is doing the best she can. I mean it’s not like a super hero is offering to help your end hate crusade. Oh wait they were.”

Lee just smirked cheekily. He knew his old friend didn’t get it, but stirring the pot would not work if it did not end with the normals. “Just keep stirring the pot, the group has been called out and the city fully alerted. Two jackanapes are in custody. See what else shakes out of the shaken tree.”

The door buzzer was one of those annoying chimes that attempted to sing a song, a bad leave over from the 1980’s. Lee kept meaning to unplug it, but like most old buildings tracing proper wires was an impossibility due to all the MacGyvering over the decades. Lee rises and walks to the door, that James had not re-locked upon his entry.

A peek through the peephole revealed a lithe purple and yellow haired teenage girl. “Sorry already bought Girl Guide Cookies and Scouts Popcorn.”

The girl didn’t move. Maybe he should have tried the Despicable Me fake recording voice. “Father Lee, my name is Beth Venus, I was there at the Cosmic Mass…I…” (yes astute reader, Beth Venus is the new Bionic Knight’s secret identity). “I lost my kid brother to an overdose and, well, I want to help.”

Lee hears James chuckle, “well damn grumpy old Padre, let her in.”

Lee begins to turn the door handle when a smell hits his nostrils. “James OUT!”

James responds as Lee flings the door open and in a fluid motion knocks Beth to the ground rolling away as a road is heard…

Blue flames billow out first the lower levels then through the entry door.

James shoulder rolls, his body feeling all its years. He see the form running. Khakis and red polo shirt. Pushing up hard he huffs and puffs as he takes pursuit.

Jacobs eyes watch St. Jude’s burn.

Beth pulls her phone from her pocket and is already dialing 911, fighting the impulse to say the words. Lee was right, if this was to end, it had to be humans, not Supras that shone the light into hate’s darkness and confounded it.

Sirens wailing.

Lee scans the parking lot and sees James knock the form through the chain-link fence. There’s blood as Lee pulls Beth up and moves towards the fallen forms. Khakis is not moving as James has him face-down and straddling his back.

St. Jude is the patron saint of lost causes. Padre Lee Jacobs watched as the pumper trucks poured into the parking lot and unleashed the water. The police hauling away the arsonist and taking their statements. The church had been a gathering point for those who felt they had no where else to go, for those in life recovery, for those from other nations, for those who wanted a better world: for those who believed LOVE trumps all.

“Hate won.” Beth said.

Lee shook his head and looked at the teenage girl. “Why do you say that?”

“They got St. Jude’s.”

James chuckled.  Lee looked at the newest convert to the cause of battling hate. “St. Jude’s was just a building, rebuilding that is what insurance is for. What St. Jude’s stood for is in the hearts of all that came through her doors, and lived in the light that shone out.”

“Pollyanna much?” Beth said.

Lee just nodded. “Yes, yes I am. Good beats evil. May take a while, but love wins.”

 

 


When Jacobs’ wife and child had died their wish was to have their lives continue on through organ and body donation. He lost the fight through court injunctions as Alexandria’s mother (Lee’s mother-in-law) battled on the false basis that the whole body needed to be buried and intact. Lee fought this bad theology viscerally, but in the end the courts sided with the Mother-In-Law. It was the darkest time of his life, and the light of hope he had was snuffed out.

Scant months later the mother-in-law succumbed to lung cancer, Jacobs’ almost did a jig.

Now in these quiet moments after stirring the pot, he finds himself sitting in the cemetery leaning on the headstone. He was not one for these ancient practices of bodies decomposing in the ground for he knew that once someone transitioned they were with you always. “So Lexie, I have done what you always hated when seeking truth and a better world. Stirred the pot. Now we wait and see what happens.” Their child hadn’t lasted many days after birth, but he had a name when he transitioned. John. In quiet moments Lee did wonder what it would be like to be in a pulpit in the area they lived with a child?

“If you and John were still here, would I still stir the pot?” He could hear her smart ass retort of yes. He blamed himself. He had stirred the pot the night before the accident that put Alexandria into pre-mature labour…the night he lost his world. His ears perk at the snap of a dead branch on the brisk winterish morning. Lee rolls up to a stance, he feels every bump, bruise and break over the years.

The shimmer of armour. Jacobs had known the predecessor. The hero had been a good man, did much for the city. Saved the universe a few times too if he remembers the by-lines of yesteryear. The newbie, well, she was young and brash.

“You must be the Bionic Knight?” Lee said.

“That I am Father Jacobs.” The voice had a Star Trek computer tinge to it.

“I ain’t a father. Lee will do just fine.” Jacobs stated. Everyone sees the collar and assumes Roman Catholic orders and all.

“The Great Crime Fighters have heard of the resurgence, and would like to offer aid to you and your community.” The voice said. Lee smirked. From what he had heard, the great team currently was just two members, but she was keeping up a good facade so many citizens did not lose hope. Super powers and super heroes would be a quick way to deal with the idiots trying to gain traction in this populist world that was trying to emerge again.

But what message would it send?

“The gods come from down on high and do battle with the lowly mortals? What message does that send that the only way to beat aggression and hate is with aggression and more power?” Lee winces as he shifts his bruised knuckles. Obviously one of those do as I say, not as I punch kind of moments. “Honestly, it is tempting. Like when Satan came to Jesus and said throw yourself down from here, and He will save you.”

The computer voice sounds like it was doing a spit take. “I ain’t Satan.”

Jacobs waves the comment off. “Satan is not a big bad, he is a favour giver. A tester of the faith, Hollywood has turned him into the cloven hoof evil. Think closer to the delightful Lucifer series. Besides Jesus himself called Peter, Satan, you’re in good company.” Off the cuff theological diatribes, Jacobs was feeling like he was having coffee with the Seminary students again.

“Look, it is a problem, in less than 2 days it will be gone.” The computer voice stated as the golden armour shimmered showing that it was an adolescent girl within.

Jacobs tired old eyes looked into the glowing green armoured eye slits. “Tempting, but no. In the heart of humanity at this point in history beats a song of hate. It is not having more might that will snuff the darkness out. It is light of hope. It is the heart of humanity replacing hate with love. Humanity, us mere mortals, standing on our own in the face of the darkness. It may take longer, may cause more pain…”

“But you hope it will last longer the change?” Said the computer voice.

Jacobs simply nodded. “Okay, Lee, if you need us we will stand with you.” the voice stated, as it shimmered out of view.

Lee scratched his salting beard. Stirring the pot and seeing what falls out. “Was not expecting that.”


It’s funny when most people think of politicians they picture the bourgeois that needs to be overthrown due to its corruptness. Not a high ranking profession, believe in some instances with recent revelations certain clergy fall into the same distrustful category. But as Lee steps off the bus outside of the small truck stop for my meeting, Lee knows this Member of the Legislative Assembly is different.

The servers wear pink scrubs, the walls are a pastel pink, with a model train that goes around the roof. In a corner booth sits my coffee companion. Lee slides in and turn a cup over sending a waitress over with a fill up. Melanie Moon is an abnormality. “Ms. Moon.”

“Please, Lee, call me Mel.” Stated the reluctant politician. She was dressed in a Montreal Canadiens hoody and jeans with her hair in a braid. Wisps of silver was visible in the red, that only highlighted her face freckles to Jacobs and, her dimples which made her appear younger than her years. Jacobs knew in phone contact until they met her, many thought due to her young sounding voice she was quite young.

Please call me, Mel was a by-election candidate in the area after the dynasty ended. She ran as a Social Credit candidate which baffled many. As she spoke to the media on her by-election run, it was due to a Great Uncle she had met at a family reunion when she was a teenager who had spent hours with her teaching her the ins and outs of the political system, but also Social Credit. She signed up then. She won a by-election which then saw a general election 10 months later, and she retained her seat. A party that was supposed to be D.O.A., and here she was. Then travesty hit in her mind as her party changed names to appeal to a very specific so-con movement, becoming the Pro-Life party. Mel had not decided if she was going to run again, definitely not with that party that had drifted from what her values were. She had received permission from the speaker to complete her term as a SoCred, as she wanted to honour her Great Uncle and mentor that way. “Can I guess by stirring the pot it has to do with the C.M. death?” Mel, had attended St. Jude’s since before she ran, she enjoyed Jacobs’ panentheistic-original blessing take on her family faith. It made it come alive to her being able to openly debate, discuss and discover what God was doing for her now, especially with the change looming she was playing cards close to her chest. She also understood that any change was a process and journey of grief, she felt the heart pain for this transition.

Lee sipped his black coffee. It was strong enough to melt a spoon, never mind let it stand up. He ordered a breakfast special- scrambled eggs, bacon, hash browns and raisin toast. Mel just chuckled as asked for it to be times two. “Who gets to expense this?” Lee joked as he asked for a refill on the coffee.

“I think its your turn.” Mel said. “Now, about stirring the pot?”

Lee chuckled, he scratched the whiskers turning into a beard it had been a bit since his last shave. The salt was over taking the pepper making him just look old not wise. “Decided to take the fight to those that were, up to nefarious deeds.” His crows feet crinkled when he winked at her. Mel was never to sure what to do at breakfast out with a cleric.

“I heard about the drug dealer take down at the park.” Mel said. “I also saw what happened to the church doors.”  Part of the SoCred history was a focus on personal salvation, and Christianity. Sadly, like the Social Gospel movement that gave the country the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (which begat the New Democratic Party) eugenics had been a miserable sin of the ideologies. Mel and Lee had spent time discussing how to exorcise that particular demon from the movement St. Jude’s was trying to renew. “Fuck Nazis.”

Lee chuckled. “Yeah, I miss the days when anti-fascism was the default setting for society, and not a question on a multiple choice test.” Lee had spoken openly from the pulpit about many things the church needed to repent from, including its role in white supremacy. Some of the Elders and parishioners also knew that the Padre’s face that looked like an old boxer’s was not because of boxing but due to years of street fighting with hate movements in Canada. As Jacobs was fond of saying `I wasn’t born a padre’.

“And after cleaning the doors?” Mel asked. Lee told the tale of the alleged assault in the mall bathroom of the sex trafficking recruiter. Noting that the non-uniform uniform was the same as the dealer. “And what do you hope comes from the pot stirring?”

Jacobs’ grins a grin that says `I have no clue, but it’s going to be alright and one heckuva ride.’ “Honestly, it’s like doing theology, just bouncing around the darkness looking for where the light can poke through.”

Melanie Moon laughed. “Ever think you should have been a private eye?”