The Players Assemble

V J Enterprises, 1996-1997
( ... for the written part of the story ... )

Chapter 1

The Storyteller rJis


July, 1981 - Guatemala City, Guatemala

Scene of Guatemala City IN GUATEMALA CITY, TRADING in the streets is a way of life, so almost every day you can find people with their wagons of goods. As most people can not afford to have their own stores, this is how they must survive. It is unusual to see a person with fine clothes walking through the streets, but Francisco Hernandez, has discovered some rare Mayan artifacts among these poor sellers.
At the moment Francisco is talking with a young man, a good friend and contact, who to the public appears to be a local peasant selling fruits and vegetables. But Ernesto keeps his eyes open and always knows when a new Mayan city is discovered. The key to Francisco, in regards to his business with ancient antiquities, is to try to get some people at this site to acquire its treasures before the Government and archaeologists take over and the Government declares it a national sanctuary. This business of obtaining and selling Mayan artifacts is very profitable and very dangerous. But Francisco likes the challenge. Today however, Ernesto does not have any news ... but wait, he knows in the El Bonito Restaurant, as this moment, the famous Professor Nielson, an American Mayan archeologist, is having lunch, perhaps ... Francisco might like to meet him.

Francisco is amazed, as Professor Nielson is very well known to him and he even has purchased some of his books ... the last book by the professor is one of his most prized possession as he keeps it on his desk at his store back in New York City. So he thanks Ernesto for the suggestion and heads over to the Restaurant.

WHEN FRANCISCO ARRIVES AT THE RESTAURANT, he asks the hostess if they have a phone. He promised his "Mama", the Dona Hernandez, he would at least call and say hello to his cousin Carlos. He has had some business dealing with Carlos, who is very well connected on many official and unofficial levels of business in Guatemala, but he really doesn't trust his cousin. His cousin has a love for power. Carlos is not in, but he does leave a message on his answering machine, leaving the phone number of the local hotel he is staying at. With family business taken care of, he seeks out the professor.

Francisco heads toward the serving tables inside and easily spots Professor Nielson .... who is wearing the traditional clothes of an archaeologist including a cowboy style hat. The Professor is eating a traditional Guatemalan dish and reading some notes at the same time. He is alone, so Francisco decides to go up to him and introduce himself.

Francisco: "Senior Nielson (in his heavily Spanish accented English) ... am I interrupting you?" I am Francisco Hernandez, and a great admirer of your work with the Mayans ... your last book was absolutely wonderful."

Prof. Nielson: "Ah what ... sorry ... I get very absorbed in my work ... we are preparing to explore a relatively new site that has come up .... in the Highlands of Guatemala ... but yes of course you are welcome to join me. Although I do need to leave in about 10 minutes, I have a guide waiting for me."

Francisco: Well, it is not often I get to meet a real explorer of the Maya ... I have been fascinated with the Mayans since I was a child. Of course being brought up in the Yucatan area, you can not escape their influence, even hundreds of years after they disappeared. Perhaps, if I left you the phone number of my hotel, we could have dinner sometime, when you are not so busy?"

Prof. Nielson: "Yes, that would be great ... I would be happy to share some of my findings and hear about your studies as well ... there is so much to learn about these people."

Francisco: Excellente ... here is my hotel phone (he writes it on a napkin), I will be waiting to hear from you ... good luck with your research, good afternoon Senior ....

Francisco leaves the professor and for some reason has a strong liking of this man ... the next day they do have dinner together and this is the beginning of a long long friendship....

To continue to the next/previous page, follow the arrows below ...

In the Jungle ...
___________ Act VIII
The Call of the Inca ...

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