The Unknown: The Red Line.
  Iam a Palestinian!” declared Dirk, raising his left hand toward the barbed wire.

“But I am also a Jew!” he announced, raising his right hand toward the stretchers being carried out of the smoking ruins of the bus and loaded into ambulances. A soldier waved his machine gun at Dirk, indicating that the three unknown tourists should move on. A squadron of fighter planes screamed overhead.

“Ah-ah,” Dirk shook his finger and smiled at the soldier, who did not speak English. “Israel has a law against extraditing Messiahs.”

“C’mon, Dirk, let’s go,” said Scott nervously tugging at the sleeve of Dirk’s robe.

Dirk pulled away. “I am a Shiite!” Dirk cried, gesturing in the general direction of Mecca, “and yet I am also a Sunni!” The mention of these words made the soldier frown and he raised his machine gun. Dirk winked at the guard, and said, “But I am also a Jew!” The soldier muttered something into his radio, not lowering his machine-gun nor taking his eyes off the shorn Dirk with the flowing white robes and the golden hoop earring.

“And yet I am also a Nazi!” cried Dirk.

Scott started sweating, and fumbled a cigarette out and lit it, offering one to the soldier, who waved it away and gestured that they should move on. William stared across the barbed wire at the Gaza Strip.

“C’mon Dirk,” said Scott, “let’s get out of here. Maybe a few days in a Kibbutz will mellow you out.”

“I have a hydrogen bomb!” declared Dirk triumphantly, raising both hands to the sky. Another soldier arrived, gun at the ready.

William started to walk slowly away, trying his best to look Orthodox. A third soldier stopped him.

The second soldier scrutinized Dirk, squinting, then his eyes brightened. “Unknown!” he said. Then repeated it in Hebrew for the benefit of the first soldier, who shrugged.

“I am a poet! And yet I am also a hypertext novelist!”

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