Ebooka przeczytasz w aplikacjach Legimi na:
Odsłuch ebooka (TTS) dostępny w abonamencie „ebooki+audiobooki bez limitu” w aplikacji Legimi na:
The Faithful Steward
Published by Dmitri Dobrovolski, 2015.
This is a work of fiction. Similarities to real people, places, or events are entirely coincidental.
THE FAITHFUL STEWARD
First edition. January 1, 2015.
Copyright © 2015 Dmitri Dobrovolski.
Written by Dmitri Dobrovolski.
10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1
1 | The Wicked Sinner Collects
2 | The Wicked Sinner Falls into a Pit
3 | The Lord Protects the Son
4 | The Mystery of the Resettlement
5 | Happiness on the Verge of Death
6 | The Miraculous Deliverance
7 | The Faithful Steward
8 | The Gift of the Father
9 | The Fruits of the Prayer Room
10 | Good Stewards
Sign up for Dmitri Dobrovolski's Mailing List
Also By Dmitri Dobrovolski
“To the person who pleases him, God gives wisdom,
knowledge and happiness, but to the sinner he gives
the task of gathering and storing up wealth to hand it
over to the one who pleases God. This too is meaningless,
a chasing after the wind.”
– Ecclesiastes 2:26
The car in front drove loudly through the tall grass that covered the barely visible road. Two cars followed behind. There was almost no trace of dust. The group of cars finally came to rest in the middle of a large field. Two people climbed rather clumsily out of the middle car and slowly began to move away from the armored giant. Evening was approaching, but the sun still warmed the uncovered heads of the men who were no longer in the prime of life.
It was immediately clear who was to start the conversation: the elderly, grey-haired man radiated power – his gait and his slightly raised chin and eyes betrayed a man accustomed to being obeyed by those around him.
“I have lived in Zurich my whole life, but I can’t remember heat like this... I want to come to an agreement with you, Mr. Okrog. I have a few questions,” the white-haired man began.
His companion, a respectable-looking man who, clad as he was in an expensive suit and tie, was clearly not dressed for this weather, could barely conceal his indignation.
“I have been under investigation; your people keep me under constant surveillance; my clothes have been handled; and I was thoroughly searched. I am not used to being treated this way! I could hardly restrain the bank’s security service. Mr. Kinsherg, you know that the heads of our bank are constantly under protection.”
“Yes, I know. I beg your pardon. I’ll double your fee. You must understand that the sum of money I am going to put into the account is substantial, so I am cautious. That is why we are here – so that no-one can overhear us.”
“OK, I understand. Everything is in place to accept your deposit.” The banker had pulled himself together and his voice was now calm and confident. “Only three people have the information, one of whom is me. But your requirement...! It completely violates the rules of the bank!”
“It is impossible to alter that condition,” Kinsherg snapped, his look hard and cold, a gaze which could easily have crushed the banker.
“Now look here!” The banker didn’t give way. “If you lose your key, we will not be able to refund your money!”
“That’s not going to happen! The key will be in a safe place.”
“Have it your way!” muttered Mr. Okrog; then, loosening his tie with a trembling hand, he let his final shot fly: “We will be forced to give all the money to any old Joe who happens to put his name on the papers! It’s completely unthinkable!”
“I know.” Mr. Kinsherg had clearly decided to end the conversation. “At ten o’clock tomorrow morning a car will come to the bank vault with its cargo. Once all the formalities have been settled, come and pay me a visit. Now it’s time to go back. Let’s go!”
THE FOLLOWING DAY, at the appointed time, several enormous trucks vanished through the gates of the silent bank vault. Of the few passers-by who happened to see this event, none could ever have imagined that one of the largest fortunes in Europe had just been driven by.
“I should have found some pretext not to come to this meeting,” thought Mr. Okrog as he entered the lavish fortress belonging to his wealthy client. He determined to get away as soon as he could.
The owner of the castle met his guest personally at the magnificent doorway and cordially welcomed him into his office. “I am very grateful to you, Mr. Okrog. The fee has now been credited to your account. I should like to propose a toast to a mutually beneficial partnership!” With these words, Mr. Kinsherg flicked open the bar with a swift movement and took two glasses out. “Purely symbolic, I assure you – I know that you are driving,” said the host courteously, smiling broadly.
Sparkling wine filled the glasses quickly.
“Thank you!” said the guest, blushing slightly. “Let’s drink to the successful completion of rather a complicated case.”
“Come on, I’ll show you my garden,” the rich man said invitingly. In this way he indicated that after the short excursion Mr. Okrug’s visit was at an end.
AS THE BANKER'S CAR slowly vanished behind the alley of trees, Mr. Kinsherg thought, “Poor fellow. I feel a bit sorry for him really. The poison is very strong – I should wash the glass thoroughly.”
A week later, Mr. Okrog died unexpectedly. A heart condition. Over the following six months, all the people who knew anything about this strange transaction passed away in one way or another.
“Whoever digs a hole and scoops it out, falls into the
pit they have made. The trouble they cause recoils on
them; their violence comes down on their own heads.
I will give thanks to the LORD because of his righteousness;
I will sing the praises of the name of the LORD Most High.”
– Psalm 7:15-17
Kinsherg's secretary barely had time to report that the chief of security needed to see him, when the door to the office opened abruptly, revealing a tall, athletic and intellectual-looking man standing on the threshold.
“You wanted to see me? What’s happened?” Kinsherg, who was visibly nervous, stood up from the table.
“Yes, boss!” The eyes of the wide-shouldered, intelligent man flared with a less than benevolent fire. “I have served you faithfully for many years. Six months ago I personally carried out your orders, in the process committing a crime! A sin against God at that!” The voice of the chief bodyguard gradually became louder and more threatening.
“And I am very grateful to you. What do you want me to do?”
“I now feel poisoned in the same way that you poisoned the others!” The enraged lackey rushed at his master... but a shot to the chest stopped him dead in his tracks.
THE GUARDS, WHO SOON arrived, running, were witness to a dreadful sight: the chief of security was lying in a pool of blood, his face still contorted with rage, while his boss was staring in a rictus, frozen forever in shock at a weird spike sticking awkwardly out of his neck. Moreover, this same spike was clutched in the hand of the dead chief of security.
“When they were but few in number, few indeed, and
strangers in it, they wandered from nation to nation,
from one kingdom to another. He allowed no one to
oppress them; for their sake he rebuked kings: ‘Do not
touch my anointed ones; do my prophets no harm.’”
– 1 Chronicles 16:19-22
Twenty Years Later...
The head of one of the largest banks in Switzerland rarely had the need to visit this conference room, and such stringent security measures were almost never necessary. This, however, was a special case. It was also clear that the bank manager, usually such a calm, even-tempered man, was very nervous today. When he spoke, therefore, the small group of people listened to him in silence.
“Sirs, I have managed this bank for over fifteen years, and most of you are not that new here either...” It was painfully obvious that the banker did not know where to start. “Well, you know that a significant portion of the assets of our bank consists of this unusual contribution.”
The listeners nodded in approval.
“I won’t hide the fact,” continued the director, “that I wanted to find out more about the contributors. Nothing was forthcoming. Careful consultation with lawyers over different possibilities...”
“Can you tell us openly and honestly what you want?” a confident man in his fifties asked, speaking for many in the group.
“Honestly?” The manager leapt up from behind the table. “For many years, the person who made the deposit just wasn’t forthcoming, and then, unexpectedly, we were approached by this strange Russian man. He came alone, without any form of protection, as a regular visitor, to declare his right to the contribution.” The head of the bank collapsed into his chair, exhausted, dabbing at his brow with a spotless handkerchief and rolling his eyes in exasperation.