"Whatever do you mean?" I replied, trying to act innocent.
"You are an impostor and certainly not part of the Stone family. I know all of the members of my family and there is no one named Samantha Stone!"
"Not yet ... but there will be one day!"
"Now what's that supposed to mean?"
There was no getting around it. I had to tell Charles the truth.
Without thinking, I told him how we were related. I told him all about the family as far back as I could remember from the notes on my genealogical chart.
My words caused more confusion as I spoke about a future that made no sense to him.
He demanded the truth about how I knew so much about his family.
I could tell that his scientific mind was struggling with this information. I was asking him to replace logic with the reality of future visions.
He clearly knew that I was not a current relation and questioned me at great length until at last I had to confess everything, hoping he would believe me.
When I told him that I was from the future, he paused and stared at me. I went on to explain about the camera, the sepia photo that served as a portal to this reality, everything I could think of to convince him about who I was.
Charles, a former military officer stared at me in disbelief. I anticipated he would throw me in the brig! I could feel his frustration as if he was waiting for me to tell him some deep dark secret.
I played my final 'hand' ...
I removed the stone from my purse and showed it to him.
My hand shook as I sat there starring into his eyes, waiting for that spark of understanidng, that recognition of a truth I was now sharing with him.
I didn't expect him to believe me until . . .
He looked me dead in the eye.
I was afraid to speak.
"What do you know about this stone?"
"It appeared in my hand when I came into this reality. I have no idea what the symbol means?"
"Do you know about the other half of the stone?" he asked.
"Yes there is another half to this stone that completes the message."
"I would show it to you if I had it, but truly I do not know where it is," I said with conviction.
Charles took the stone and examined it.
"I must share a family secret with you, Samantha. First you must promise to tell no one."
"I promise not to tell a 'living soul'!" I said just in case I was to ever return to my timeline.
"Egypt is the key!" he said.
"Egypt? What do you mean?"
"You have been to Egypt?"
"I was there twice. Once I was there for what one might call an initiation. The second time ..."
Charles interrupted. "What do you mean by 'Initiation'?"
"Being in the energies of the pyramids helps create connections to the ancient mysteries of the land and its people. The entire area is designed to allow one to move their consciousness through portals of time," I said.
"Then you will understand what I am about to share with you. You must promise to keep it confidential."
"You have my solemn word."
"I spend 13 years in Egypt where many unexplained things happened to me. I was serving as the Chief of the General Staff of the Khedive in Egypt. Strange things always seem to happen on and around the fourth of July each year though I have no explanation for this date. It is curious that it coincides with the date America became a free and independent nation."
"There are no coincidences," I said with assurance.
"I suppose you are right. On that date in 1882 I found myself making an unexpected trip to Giza. I met an old Egyptian friend, Mohammed, who shared a journey with me to the Great Pyramid and the Sphinx.
Ramesses II at Abu Simbel. Frederic further told me that he thought he might have lived another life as the great Pharaoh Ramesses II the King who built so many large monuments.
"Frederic wrote about the Sphinx and the Great Pyramid ...
"He foresaw much of what you have told me about the future in which you say you live, and had his own mystical experiences while in Egypt.
"Now I must tell you what occurred on July 4, 1882 ...
"I was standing outside the Great Pyramid with Mohammed when we heard chanting. No one else was around as the hour was late. I was drawn to the chanting as if under a hypnotic spell. Mohammed was afraid for his life and ran to a safe distance, knelled down and began to pray to Allah for protection.
"The chanting became stronger. I felt no fear, only a sense of inner guidance.
"Suddenly six priests in hooded robes of blue and gold, physically manifested and walked into the pyramid. I knew I must follow them. We ascend to a room that was not of this dimension. I was given a robe which I placed over my clothing. I felt connected. I stood with the priests as they chanted and prayed their words seemingly familiar.
"I cannot tell you how long this initiation lasted, for time did not exist. Toward the end of the experience, a woman manifested before me, dressed in white robes, and carrying something in her hand. I believe she was a manifestation of Isis. Frederic had mentioned a similar experience with a woman whose face he would use for the Statue of Liberty, though the world would believe that it was the face of his mother. Perhaps she represents 'Mother' in the greatest sense of the word.
"When she appeared, she handed me a stone similar to yours. Telepathically she told me that one day I would receive the other half and that I was the Keeper of the Sacred Stone until that time. Now you are here with the other half of the stone.
"She showed me the rising sun against a sky of blue and aqua, the color of your eyes." He paused and looked in my eyes. "Eyes are the windows to the soul."
For a moment we said nothing more.
"I believe 'Isis' if that is who she was, referring to the Dawn of a New Age!" I said. "In my timeline, people are beginning to understand that consciousness is evolving into something more than its current experience."
'What do you propose we do now?" I asked.
"We must bring the stones together on this site tomorrow at daybreak," said Charles.
"I will arrange for us to take a boat to the island before dawn so we will arrive here as the sun rises on the eastern horizon. That seems to be significant. I would invite you to return home with me to meet my family, but they would ask too many questions, that are best left unspoken."
"Do you have money and a safe place to stay tonight?"
"I thank you for your concern. I assure you that I find suitable accommodations in the city. I would like to return there and explore Her as she is today."
"You must spend the night at the Westchester Hotel, in lower Manhattan. It is a fine hotel with a good reputation."
"Thank you. I will make arrangements as soon as I return to the city," I said.
"I feel I must escort you there myself. You are a stranger here and should be looked after."
"If you are not busy I would be honored to have you accompany me."
Charles spoke to the workmen then gathered some papers as we prepared to leave.
"There is something else I feel guided to share with you. I feel that I am to bring a friend to our meeting tomorrow."
"Who? To what end?"
"He is a man of great vision who works as an inventor. He has mentioned the concept of 'time travel' to me in the past. Perhaps he can help you return to your timeline. I know he is living in the city now. I will find him tonight when he returns from his job and ask him to join us tomorrow morning.
"Can you tell me his name?"
"Please wait until tomorrow. For now we must allow fate to guide our destinies."
The boat ride back to the city was refreshing, bringing some relief from the heat of the day. Charles arranged for the boat to meet us at the dock the following morning.
A taxi took us to the Westchester Hotel where Charles arranged for my room after which he took me to an elegant restaurant for dinner.
Later Charles went off to meet his friend as I thought about all of the conveniences I missed from my timelines - air conditioning, cool clothing, cell phones, my computer ... but then again I was determined to enjoy the city no matter what.
I took a taxi ride marveling at the people, shops, outdoor markets, houses of worship, early skyscrapers, other buildings that would become landmarks, universities, libraries, and more.
I returned to the hotel, which was not far from the area where the Twin Towers would be erected.
I could hardly sleep thinking about the two stones. I stared out the window observing the city at night, street lamps flickering then being turned off. I suppose I closed my eyes for a few hours but I feared that I would wake up to find that this was all a dream.
The next morning I waited for Charles and his friend in the hotel lobby.
They arrived on time, Charles walking ahead of the other man who looked not much more than a teenage boy. As they came closer, the boy's face looked familiar.
They smiled as they approached me.
Charles introduced us. "Samantha Stone I would like you to meet my friend, Nikola Tesla. Nikola is an up and coming scientist working in New York City with Thomas Edison."
Oh my god! It was Tesla. My heart sank. I managed to extend my hand to his and mumble, "It is my pleasure to meet you."
Tesla spoke with a thick accent. "It is my pleasure to meet you too, Miss Stone. You look so familiar. But then again I hear you get around ... in the most unusual places."
We laughed as we set off on our journey.
I wanted so much to tell Tesla what a brilliant future he had ahead of him, yet something told me it wasn't the right time.
We made some small talk about New York City and life in the 21st century, which fascinated both men. Tesla was particularly interested in the new technologies especially those that worked with electricity. He seemed to process all of what I said as if to use the information at some future time. Did my information about the future, affect what he would later discover?
Tesla told me about his work with Edison and how he was planning to leave and work on his own now that he had funding from other sources. He believed in time travel and hoped one day to be successful at it. He was interested in finding out if time travel existed in the 21st century. I assured him that at the turn of the 21st century there was no physical evidence in which someone time traveled and returned to the Point of Origin. How and why I had moved into the sepia photo was a mystery.
The subject turned to the two stones and what their messages were about. It would most certainly be a clue to why I had come through the portal and hopefully that I could soon return to my time.
"Charles has shared everything about your journey and the stone. I hope that is comfortable for you," Tesla said.
Turning to Tesla I said, "It is, but I know that you are here with us today for a greater reason."
"I hope I can be of assistance."
"We must keep this between the three of us," added Charles.
"I am fine with that," I said. "Would you like to see the stone now?"
Charles insisted we wait until we arrived safely on the island.
And so we did agree.
"Have you traveled to Egypt?" Tesla asked me.
"Yes, I have visited Egypt on two occasions wherein I experienced the energies of the 'gods', shall we say."
"I have wanted to journey there many times. The Pyramids and Sphinx call to me. I know I shall visit there one day as I see the Great Pyramid in my dreams. Charles has told me much about his experiences in Egypt and I, too, shall come to know that place."
"In the twenty first century the journey can be made in 12 hours by flying in something called an airplane."
"I have envisioned flying machines in the future," said Tesla.
"They will soon be invented and will continue to be improved as man moves beyond planet Earth and into space."
"And will we find Martians when we travel there?" Tesla asked.
"Not as far as science has come in 2001."
"How I wish I could return with you to the twenty first century," Charles said.
"As do I!" said Tesla. "But we know we must each remain in our time and space to fulfill a chosen destiny."
Once on Bedloe Island, we found a private place to discuss the stones.
There was just the three of us.
We all thought it odd that a white dove flew overhead. Charles seemed to feel it was a good omen for peace in the future.
How tempted I was to speak of future wars that would ravage the face of the planet on a global level, each one growing in strength as weaponry became more sophisticated. Could I mention terrorism? There was no way to bring up this information.
I removed the stone from my purse and handed it to Charles. He in turn removed his stone from his jacket pocket, and held it near mine.
As Charles was about to join the stones, Tesla shouted, "STOP!"
Tesla took both stones and laid them side by side, as close to one another without them touching. He studied the symbols.
"When I was given my stone by the woman in the pyramid, I had the feeling they were some ancient Egyptian dialect, but that doesn't seem to be the case," said Charles.
"I do not recognize them," said Tesla. "Samantha, in your timeline did you not have any luck deciphering them?"
"My friend Max is working with them. If anyone can make a breakthrough, it is him."
"These appear to be mathematical symbols based on a geometry that is unfamiliar to me."
Tesla placed one hand on each stone then closed his eyes.
"These symbols move before me in spirals of energy. They are equations ... about the flow of electromagnetic energy."
Charles and I watched Tesla as he stood there with his eyes closed telling us what he telepathically saw.
"These symbols and stones, are not from this dimension. They are part of a larger group of 12 symbols that tell ... a story of some kind."
" You are right, Samantha. The three of us are joined here at this time for a reason. Each of you is to take their half of the stone and place them together. Once joined the stone must be placed into the cornerstone at the base of the foundation of the Statue of Liberty where it shall remain for as long as America is a free nation. This stone will guard and protect all who will arrive in this great nation, from distant shores, in the years ahead.
"The stone carries a mathematical timetable set in place by the priests in Egypt thousands of years ago. It is like part of a clock in which the 11 others stones must be activated.
"I am seeing two tall buildings that will reach high into the sky. They look like columns and pillars. One day they will stand at the end of Manhattan Island, where we took the ferry. These twin towers shall be 'designed' by those who have placed this energy into the stone template.
"I see a connection to Egypt and the Priesthoods from 13,000 thousand of years ago on a day that we would now call, July 4th at midnight. Their secrets were meant to remain in this stone and the 11 others until a time when their messages become released for everyone on the planet to known as once they were in ancient Egypt.
"One day in a time that is far from this one, these two towers shall fall. I see your airplanes fly into them. Though this makes no sense to me only to say that from that day forth the symbols on this stone shall be reactivated and freedom and liberty shall take on new light and definition.
"The energy for freedom and change shall remain here within this stone that stands guard over the harbor. It is the place each of the 3 of us was destined to live at the time in our lives when we would bring our greatest gifts to humanity."
Tesla opened his eyes and looked at us with a glazed stare.
"For you Charles, it is your finest, and yet your final hour. [Charles Pomeroy Stone died two years later, in 1887, after catching a chill during the dedication ceremonies of the Statue of Liberty on October 28, 1886.]
"For me, this is just a 'stepping stone' in which I will spend my life developing great technologies which will change the face of the world forever."
He looked at Sam.
"Samantha, you must now return to your time where another awaits you. The two of you will journey together into another World of Sepia to activate the other 11 stones. Once done, the journey will end."
We each felt an epiphany as we recognized the truth in our destinies.
As the Masons began to pour the foundation, Charles and I placed the stones together.
There was a sudden blast of white light as the two stones merged and ignited.
I found myself in that void between realities, knowing the foundation stone for democracy would be laid that day, combined with the symbology of the ancient Egyptian creational forces.