It all started with coffee and cakes – homemade, of course. My grandmother doesn’t cut corners. The smell of cinnamon permeated the small kitchen, and I watched as she carefully sliced the still-steaming confection. We’d enjoyed a light luncheon for our Sunday afternoon visit. Grandma’s tomato and mayo sandwiches on toasted bread will forever be the meal that reminds me of her. As we nibbled on our cake and sipped our hazelnut-flavoured coffee, our conversation turned to her past. She’d always been a soft-spoken person – shy and introverted – but, I knew from the few pictures I’d seen of her as a young woman, she’d once been very outgoing and popular. I’d always wondered what’d happened to her. Grandma was a strong woman; just under the surface, I sensed a ferocity, carefully veiled, yet intentionally cultivated. She was a conundrum – an enigma – and I felt, without understanding her, I may never truly know myself.
Grandma grew up relatively poor. She lived in comfortable affluence now, but her early years were mired with poverty and seemingly insurmountable hurdles. I’d always attributed her reticent nature to her arduous past. As I grew older, I realized there must be much more to her story. The way she sometimes carried herself when no one was around, and her possession of a small jewelry box – an ancient, old thing, covered in some sort of Sanskrit scribblings and a peculiar-looking ornamental globe on the lid – told me my grandmother’s history harbored more than a poor upbringing.
I’ve always been slightly in awe of my grandma. Though she seemed quiet-natured, there were underlying passions she could not, or would not, ignore. Though she was never in the limelight, never a spokesperson or award-winner, Grandma remained a pivotal advocate for many charities. Over the years, she’d held private lunches with many influential people. The Vice President of PETA, multiple UN Ambassadors, chairmen and chairwomen of the Red Cross, and quite a few Peace Corp associates, among many others, came to her large manor home, tucked away in the Ozarks, from far and wide. When they left, their organizations inevitably saw new successes, though it wasn’t until I was well into my thirties I realized the extent of Grandma’s involvement.
Growing up, I, like most children, saw my traditional grandparents with rose-coloured glasses. Grandma had been a stay-at-home mother and was an avid baker of cookies and cakes. Grandpa was the bread-winner. He’d been a Fleet Admiral in the Navy and enjoyed an easy, early retirement. Grandpa was quiet, too, but mostly because he was either sleeping, eating, or smoking his pipe. He kept himself occupied, building model airplanes and puttering around in his vegetable garden, and generally making himself scarce while Grandma held her luncheons.
Every once in a while, Grandpa would join me and Grandma for our regular Sunday meals, but it was rare. This Sunday, per the norm, he was nowhere to be seen. Grandma didn’t seem to mind. She’d zipped about the kitchen, preparing the table for our dessert. I’d tried to help, but, of course, she waved me away. Wiping her hands on her apron, she’d presented the coffeecake. When our stomachs were comfortably full, our casual chat turned serious. I began by asking her leading questions about her past, but she evaded answering most of them. I decided I needed to take a more direct approach and asked about the jewelry box.
Her hazel eyes went wide, and she drew a deep breath. With a furrowed brow and a worried glance toward her bedroom, she pressed, asking if I’d looked inside the box. Her relief was evident when I told her I hadn’t, and I wondered all the more what she was hiding. Reminding her she could trust me, that I was her blood, seemed to flip a switch in her mind. Slowly, she began to reveal a tale so complex and mysterious, it boggles the mind to contemplate:
Nearly four thousand years ago, an ancient race, the Annunaki, landed on Earth. They were in search of a precious mineral: gold. To fuel their ships and factories on their home planet of Nibiru, they mined the vast lodes of gold, once found throughout the entire world. Once they realized there was an indigenous species able to perform the minute tasks needed to mine the gold, the Annunaki, with their advanced intellect, merged the DNA of these creatures with their own, thus creating the Human race. In the beginning, the Human’s minds were pliable and they were easily dictated to. However, they soon began to evolve from their original design.
As the Human’s intellect and numbers grew, the Annunaki began to fight amongst themselves over how to govern them. Some wanted the Humans to have free-will and dictate their own lives, while others preferred to keep them working until every last nugget of gold was mined. A civil war ensued, resulting in the removal of all Annunaki, and the institution of a half-blooded, Human-Annunaki hybrid as the new leader of the remaining peoples.
This hybrid lived for three hundred years, before passing the golden crown to his own child. Thus continued the line of succession until modern history. Once the line was muddied and forgotten, it became nothing more than another ancient legend of mythological Gods and Goddesses. But, it is much more than that. The hybrid’s descendants live on… in us.
My Grandma’s story captivated me, and left me with a thousand more questions. Trying to make sense of it all, I felt I needed more information to understand how my grandmother fit into everything. I finally asked her the one question which had been burning in my mind since arriving for lunch – what is in the box?
When she answered, it was with slow and deliberate words. Tears filled her eyes, but refused to fall as she explained the box’s mysterious contents. It’d been over three thousand years since the hybrid was crowned. Little remained from that time, aside from a few eroded stone tablets, some tools and other random items found on archaeological digs, and, in Grandmother’s unassuming jewelry box – the last remaining piece of the hybrid’s golden crown.