The Unquestionable History of
Ptolemy XIII


"Caesar has rented a house at harbour's edge from Dimonius, an elder cousin of ours whose sole interest in life is the procurement of foreign prostitutes. This is as it should be. Praetorian guards have been bivuoaced in a nearby warehouse, where treasures from the Indias and Ch'in were once stored. (Rome, like a recalcitrant slave, inches ever toward us!) These days the building is mostly unused, but I am told that during sandstorms it provides shelter for anyone caught unawares at marketplace ..."

"Maddeningly, the general refuses to acknowledge our official summons. I cannot allow his disrespect for Egypt's State Religion (and Our Self as Titular Goddess) to go unpunished. Options, however, are few. After all, what can I possibly do to redress his slight? How can I, a delicate woman, extract homage from the unmannerly barbarian? Were he a petty king or local satrap I could have him brought before me in chains, to beg for my forgiveness. But logistics aside, I fear that in this situation such a response might prove difficult. Not to mention dangerous."

"My spies tell me that Caesar is redecorating. It doesn't surprise me. Dimonius' taste was always just short of obscene. He once had a tapestry spun from the pubic hair of slaves. The Alexandrians were scandalized. Orators took to the streets. Six field hands died from incidental bleeding. But there was a notable decrease in the louse population that year. In any event, Caesar's sudden fascination with furniture and wall coverings indicates he plans to continue ignoring this Queen of Egypt. Which of course is unacceptable under any circumstances."


I've Got Mail

Dear Max,
You are complete fool, not worthy of the classification homo erectus. That we share a common genetic code is more offensive to me than the Indian rite of suttee, and more puzzling than the Sphinx.

As a boy, William was puzzled by Tinker Toys.  Bad hair offended him.

This childish stunt of yours is absolutely the last straw. Your web posting of The Ptolemaic Deception has caused me no end of difficulties. As if I didn't have enough problems already. Thanks to you, my archaeological team - which is comprised of people you don't know, people who have never harmed you - is about to be deported. They have lost their jobs, you see.

He was right about my hair.  It sucked.

The laptops, my floppy disks, and of course the papyri documents have been confiscated by the Department of Antiquities. Everything gone. Lost to oafish government officials. For the past three days I've been hiding out at the U.S. Consulate. I'm composing this email on one of their computers.

That explains the sentence fragments.

I can't buy food. Can't pay for the pillow on which I lay my head at night. It's humiliating. I can't leave the compound. The government has issued a warrant for my arrest ...

I won't burdon you with the rest of William's note.  It goes on and on. Perhaps later I'll write a summary of it, you know, laced with my usual witty remarks.

Won't that be fun.

Suddenly I'm sick to my stomach.  Reading of my brother's troubles has left me tired and confused. It's been a long day. So I'm going to bed now. In the morning I may reconsider the entire business; even though the barn door has been pulled shut and the horses, by this time, are long gone. I'm thinking maybe I won't reveal any more of his 'Deception.'

Or my own.

a continuation of the document