GW Recaps–Dead For Now Chapters Eighteen, Nineteen, Denoument
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Next: Hard Core, Prelude, Chapter One, Chapter Two [To Come]
Chapter 18–Unknown Known The Highway of Tears and the Juarez Maquiladora Murders
Note: My attention was caught by the Maquiladora series of murders many years ago. It amazes me that this is still going on, and must involve some systematic attack on women. I learned of Highway of Tears murders a few years ago. Both involve years-long attacks on vulnerable women of color/indigenous women, and a frustrating inability to stop the slaughter, not to mention not giving the crimes the press they deserve.
Zest drives Gabriel, Veronica, and Joel to the warehouse in Westchester. His plan is for them to stay there until the TS meeting. They will be assumed dead by Jacobs & Co. Since the warehouse has been renovated to Zest’s comfort, Gabriel and Veronica make the best of it. Joel is more resistant. However, Gabriel and Veronica encourage him to be more engaged, and this leads to a sexual encounter between the three of them. From there, for a short period until Zest shows up to tell them it’s time to go (he periodically shows up with supplies and has notified who needs to know that they are okay), the three of them basically engage in non-stop trysts.
Chapter 19–Unknown Known Hale Boggs
Note: I don’t like using conspiracy sites as more and more of them are shite, as the British say. However, I like Kennedys and King, and Jim De Eugenio’s books. This article is not on Boggs, but does go over problems in the Warren Commission. This NOLA article describes the aftermath of Boggs’ death and the questions inherent.
The plan goes into place. Outside on the street, Veronica and Joel are monitoring things inside an SUV. Inside, Gabriel, Geneva, and Jeffrey are disguised as Praetorian guards. Zest brings in the directors of the TS first, four of them. Then he leaves, and brings in Clement. The TS thinks that Zest is bringing in Clement to kill him, Clement thinks that Zest is going to kill the TS. Zest shows Clement Gabriel, and Clement is delighted that he has his experiment returned.
Zest brings in Clement and Hunter quickly realizes the situation is not what he thought it was going to be. The directors are tied up. Clement unmasks Gabriel. He wants to slay Hunter ritual style, but Zest talks him out of it. Gabriel is going to pretend to shoot Hunter while Zest subdues him with an injection. However, three men in military garb burst into the room and shoot Clement.
Meanwhile, Veronica’s and Joel’s monitoring of the Foundation interior is interrupted by Alex pounding on the vehicle. He says trouble is coming, an intelligence contingent that is going to attack Gabriel et al inside. Veronica makes the decision to go in and protect them. Joel and Alex follow. They see one of the invaders guarding the door to the room everyone else is in, and hear some of what is going on. Veronica arranges for a signal to Gabriel and then shoots the guard outside. Gabriel disarms the man near him. The one in the hall refuses to give up, and Jeffrey shoots him. The leader radios someone to abort, and Zest shoots him. Zest shoots Clement dead.
The third man says he’s actually a mole in the Q faction, which the other two were from. The abort call has caused explosives to be set off in the building. Gabriel leads everyone down in the basement where Mesereau’s room was, and then into an underground tunnel they find.
The three directors try to talk Mortem, the third man, into helping them but Mortem says he’s following Gabriel’s lead. At a point, he mentions knowing about Gabriel’s uncle, which puzzles Gabriel. Everyone makes their way through a flooded area, and then eventually into the hotel at the end of the passage. Gabriel and everyone sneak in and set up the directors to be found by the police and press.
Denouement–Unknown Known: Pier Paolo Pasolini
Abel Ferrar directed a movie about Pasolini, with Willem Dafoe playing the murdered director. The Guardian, naturally, has an excellent article about the movie and the murder.
The chapter opens with an excerpt from Alex’s upcoming book. He’s very self-serving and insulting about Gabriel’s abilities.
Meanwhile, Gabriel updates on what happened after the hotel. They went to Herrmann’s place with Mortem. Jeffrey and Zest make an arrangement with Mortem’s superior to do contract work that the government can’t do, and then let him go. Gabriel has to accept it, although he’s distressed he isn’t able to follow up on what Mortem knows about Dominic. Gabriel talks to Mankiewitz, and is blase about Alex’s ‘fan fiction’ as Alex is now in London.
Gabriel’s professor tells him that Dom’s former student came to see her, and gave her his number to give to Gabriel. Some anonymous source calls Gabriel and tells him to look into a group called Paradise. Gabriel publishes a small story on it.
Dom’s student calls and says he has something to tell Gabriel about what happened with Dom. They arrange to meet in the park near Herrmann. In the park, Gabriel, Joel and Herrmann walk to the meeting spot, and don’t see anyone.
Herrmann expresses concern over Gabriel’s meeting, and Gabriel starts to joke about it, when something catches his eye. Then he’s shot in the chest from a rifle, by someone in the trees.
Gabriel starts to split between what’s happening, and what he sees outside the earthly plane. He sees a library and his uncle. He sees the emergency room and his loved ones arriving. The library becomes more real.
He’s with his mother and his uncle. They reunite warmly. Yet even in that he has the sense he’s not supposed to be there. He hears Joel and Veronica mourn for him. Kate and Dom tell him he has a choice. Veronica’s voice draws him back.
In the ICU, Joel is breaking down from the possibility of organ donation. Veronica comforts him and then sees that Gabriel’s eyes are open. They rush over to him.
Later, when Mankiewitz is trying to write Gabriel’s obituary, Joel calls to say Gabriel survived. Mankiewitz publishes a piece about how Gabriel died, but came back and has survived the assassination attempt.
Between the Pages:
- Gabriel’s being shot is not really an Undigified Death, but his being shot by a men’s room echoes what happened to Ioan Culianu.
- The big question here: Did Gabriel really meet with his mom and uncle? Or was this a hallucination caused by lack of oxygen? Did he really hear and see Veronica? Was he in another plane of existence?The reason this question is significant is the fundamental change in the reality of the world in which the stories take place. There’s a huge difference between saying “Gabriel thinks he sees The Afterlife…” and “Gabriel is in The Afterlife…”
- I feel to a certain extent that creative works take on a different life after they are released into the world. A bit of worldbuilding. Their meaning changes and grows. The interpretation of dozens, hundreds, thousands, millions of people has some palpable effect in the ethos. That includes for religious works.
- What you, the reader, gets out of a story–what you feel or interpret–is yours. I’m okay with either interpretation.
Beyond the Pages:
- This article in Wired by Greg Miller features an interview with David Casarett, an MD, on reviving people who were technically dead. Casarett mentions that the most difficult aspect in modern medicine is actually determining death.
- Gabriel’s death implicates several death tropes (from TV Tropes). For example, Dead Person Conversation, Back from the Dead , Death Amnesia, Death is Dramatic .
Questions for Readers:
The experience Gabriel has is certainly of the uncanny. Have you had an experience that involved seeming contact with the supernatural or spirit world?
The soundtrack for the encounter between Gabriel, Veronica and Joel is set to this Symphonic version of Ravel’s Bolero, in the CJ Stone Edit.
The only appropriate song to the Denouement is that which Gabriel heard after he was shot–David Gray, The One I Love.
Only wish I could
Now I’m leaking life faster
Then I’m leaking blood
And the stars above
You’re the one I love
You’re the one I love
The one I love
I want to add a thank you here to readers for this journey through Dead for Now. At the time this is originally posted, the next in the series, Hard Core is about ⅓ done. Hope to be posting it soon!
Copyright 2012-2017 Alex Fiano
Page updated 8/04/2017