Stalking the Average Man
By John Axelson
This first in the Stalking series chronicles a covert mystic's efforts to have a television technician reinterpret his experiences in the world’s hot spots, and recognize a design in his travels that was at once an outrage to reason, a blasphemy to religion, and undeniable...
While writing a behind-the-scenes war coverage novel, John meets Bonnie, whose own writings deal with the design of destiny, miracles, and him, as she transparently dangles mystical intrigues from her story to secure his help developing a difficult aspect of her plot.
Hesitantly, she explains that her tale involves a rescue mission of such massive proportion and intricate design that participants have to undergo rigorous training, and that she needs a man of John’s specialized background to go through key lessons. Without intimate knowledge of a trainee’s development, she claims her story would sound like a child’s fantasy, and not the comprehensive preparations required for the true mission that it is. For this reason, the target is kept secret from participants until they are ready to hear it, including John.
As an average looking man, whose naiveté had been savaged in places like San Salvador and Beirut, John reasons that a romance between them is no more absurd an idea than the ones she already embraces, and he decides to pursue Bonnie’s affections while assisting her.
They subsequently work closely, often combatively, while Bonnie keeps him at bay like a bemused fox playing with a myopic rabbit, while the friction between them blossoms when she begins to align his beliefs to the need for the rescue mission.
Finally, she makes claims too ridiculous to contemplate: the many absurdities she has cleverly justified in her work notwithstanding—her story is about the end-of-the-world cycle of events and the Second Coming scenario. Realizing he has been chasing a brilliant lunatic, John decides to cut his losses. However, while gathering the courage to abandon her otherwise delightful companionship and their challenging discussions, he has what would have been inexplicable experiences if Bonnie had not surreptitiously prepared him for miracles.
Just as Agnes Whistling Elk had positioned Lynn V. Andrews, and to where don Juan Matus had led Carlos Castaneda before her, he is ready to leap into the darkest corners of himself, because the mission requires it. And he knows it can be no other way.