Where is this Jewish troublemaker, this messiah, or king, or whatever it is he calls himself?

He’s in the antechamber your grace. He has been…softened, as it were, in preparation for your interview.

Bring him in.

Jesus is thrown to the floor.

Oh good god, they’ve overdone it. Albus this man is clearly no danger. Why is he in this condition?

The Jews had a go at him before he came to us, your grace. Fabius was a little rough but no more than is customary to properly cow a prisoner.

I don’t expect discernment from the common soldiery, Albus. But I do expect a certain decorum from you. We’re not barbarians. Intellectual prisoners or religious leaders should be treated with care.

You there. No one will strike you here. You’re safe.

Anyway, I’m interested in this man. I’ve heard talk of him. He seems to have some influence among his people. Philosophical discussions with these religious zealots amuses me.

Yes, your grace.

You can lift your head. As I said, you’re in no danger here. Now…what is it they call you?

If we were to imagine a moment when the modern world was born, it may well have been in Jerusalem when the mechanized Romans hammered a semitic prophet to a slab of wood.

And the zero hour of that event horizon would be the moment Pilate said to Jesus, “What is truth?”


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