The next day they arrived at the house of the High Priest just as the afternoon sun began to wane in strength.  There were discussions among the leaders almost every day as new reports came in from their forces in Galilee.

Gamaliel climbed the marble steps one at a time, lifting first one foot and then the other and pausing for breath before attempting the next one.

This was no house, it was a palace, as cold and hard and difficult as its inhabitant.  There was no love lost between Ya´acov, the High Priest, and the Rabbi Gamaliel, though they hid it well.

He leaned heavily on Benjamin’s arm, his breath short and gasping.  Benjamin would help him to his seat in the council chamber and then return to the courtyard until he was summoned to bring Gamaliel home.  Too bad Benjamin could not stay there with him.  He had more sense than most and would see the danger.

Gamaliel had decided to make his report immediately, whether they believed him or not.  Onkelos had confirmed his worst fears but he knew they would not accept it at face value.

Still, he had to try.  Too much was at stake not to.

*****

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The Temptations of the Cross by Bert A. Amsing
Copyright © 2012 by vanKregten Publishers. All rights reserved.
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Footnotes and references included in original manuscript.