In Pursuit of his Past-Jack's Medieval Chase
After Jack had taken a well-earned break after that final meeting with Lt. Col. Hughes, where they had agreed that Jack should do a little soul searching, coming back in six months to decide whether his future was still inside the Australian Army.
He spent some time travelling around his homeland.Time up North on the Gold Coast and the Sunshine Coast for some sun and surf. Time by himself just getting to know his own country a little better after six years in Afghanistan.
All in all 166 days had come and gone and Jack was relaxed as he started to fulfill his promise to himself and discover where he came from and eventually where he was going. The 166 days significant in the context of the amount of time that had elapsed since he left his signature on his get-out-of -Afghanisatn free card. Leaving Hughes in his wake back in Kabul Jack was all set.
Let the Chase Begin
Jack's local YPRL library would be the epicentre of not so real, seismic activity, but a kismet or fate that would lead him to not only discover his pedigree, but his connection to his mother Eva, and numerous other shock revelations along the way. Jack's first day in the library would see his computer screen flood with ancestry hints by the hundreds, leading him all the way back to thirteenth century Lithuania.
It was Eva's line that dragged Jack back in time. Eva, who emigrated to Australia as an eighteen-year old, under somehat mysterious and suspicious circumstances, an inkling to perhaps an upbringing as unstable as Jack's. Even worse. Nonetheless, she married Joseph, poor misguided Joseph, and voila! Along came Jack.
So here he was, twenty-eight years later, trying to connect with his mother's past, and maybe reconnect after fifteen years of separation.
Jack's initial foray into his research was a raging success. He gravitated between his on-line resources and the 908 section of the library - History with Respect Groups of People, to discover among his forefathers was the first King of Lithuania, Mindaugas, puppet to Egneta, descendant of Eglé, Gediminas, the head of a long line of Grand Dukes and one of the most revered dynasties throughout Lithuanian history. All directly descended from Eglé and Palemonid (Pompey).
The sun was plummeting below the Whittlesea skyline when Jack first met Agnetha. mistaking her for a member of library staff about to eject him at closing time, Jack couldn't have foreseen what real, convulated story lie behind this stunning green-eyed redhead. The next two days saw Agnetha help Jack on his pursuit of the past. But why? And why help on her day off when the library was closed?
Unsurprisingly, Agnetha was not who she seemed. Her unlikely tale of familial plight was steeped in intrigue and festooned with gossamers of deceit.. These tendrils of subterfouge would not be out of place in A Raymond Chandler novel.
Luring Jack back to her temporary lodgings near the library to complete their research, Agnetha gradually drip feed more and more of her scheme that would see Jack and her back in her homeland - Lithuania.
Forward to Vytautas - A True Legend
But not before Jack completing his chase through time.Having found Mindaugas and Gediminas, he and Agnetha were able to track down in minute detail, his ancestry going forward to Algirdas, Gediminas' son, and Kestutis, Algirdas' brother. Then on to Vytautas, Kestutis son. All the while Jogaila, Algirdas' son lurking in the background ready to usurp Vytautas the Great. Vytautas would become the pre-eminent ruler of Medieval Lithuania, revered to this present-day.
The real question that grated on Jack was why did Agnethadrive him to complethis family journey with such passion?
At the outset Jack was keen to have his ancestry documented as a must do. But the fervour with which Agnetha tackled it with him was unnerving. Jack would find out soon enough that all the gediminad line had one thing in common. The Duchy's precious crown jewels, made from thousand year old amber from the Baltic shores and from the most precious gemstones from ancient Europe, lost in time for over half a millennium.
Jewels that would prove themselves elusive booty to present-day Lithuanian Mafia, what remained of the Order of the Teutonic Knights and Jack and Agnetha who needed them to complete their mission.
Read the full account of how the dynasties of Medieval Lithuania evolved and how they would affect Jack almost one thousand years later in 'The Vytautas Pursuit', Jack Carpenter's debut thriller.
Vytautas the Great c. 1350 – October 27, 1430