John Patmos, commonly believed to be Vernon Theodore Moss (born 2001), is the pseudonymous leader of Second Advent. He adopted the Patmos alias in 2042 when Second Advent began to revere him as a foundational figure of the proto-state.
Born in Tacoma, Washington, United States (US), Patmos served in the US Air Force (USAF) before joining Deutsche Bank as a stock trader in 2031. When he was charged with multiple counts of securities fraud in 2042, Patmos jumped bail and fled to Texas, where he was elected leader of Second Advent.
In 2049, Second Advent proclaimed Patmos to be responsible for the assassination of Xu Shaoyong, which has resulted in a campaign of violence across the US. On October 9th 2049, Patmos appeared in a video address to command all Second Advent members to assemble in San Antonio.
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Early life and education
John Patmos was born Vernon Theodore Moss on October 4th 2001 in Tacoma, Washington, United States (US). His parents were Roland and Thelma Moss (née Eversmann), who worked as researchers for Fusion GPS. Patmos described his childhood home as “absolutely alive with the buzz of real politics.”  He graduated from Fife High School in 2019 and earned an Economics degree from Washington State University in 2023.
In November 2024, Patmos applied to the US Army as a joint fire support specialist in the 1st Infantry Division. Due to a kidney deficiency that resulted in frequent kidney stones, he was deemed unfit for frontline combat duty and transferred into the US Air Force (USAF), where he received training as a UAV operator. In 2025, Patmos began piloting surveillance UAVs over East Asia, for which he was awarded the Air Force Combat Action Medal (AFCAM). In June 2027, Patmos was one of seventy military service members invited to a White House dinner celebrating the launch of the Margaret Burbidge Space Telescope (MBST).
In 2029, the US Army Research Laboratory (ARL) announced a partnership with Neuralink to trial the company’s new line of implantable multielectrode arrays (MEAs), which were designed to improve the effectiveness of service members in the most demanding roles in the US Army. Patmos reportedly refused the MEA implant on the grounds that it represented an invasion of privacy. As a result, he recorded fewer confirmed kills and shorter flight hours owing to fatigue, and his mission record began to suffer compared to his colleagues.
In 2030, Patmos was honourably discharged from the USAF after five years of service. In an interview, Patmos stated that he “left the Air Force because they sold out our country. The rank and file of our military is filled with capable, brave, and proud people, but everybody above them, everybody occupying the space between them and the Oval Office, betrays them on a daily basis.” 
In July 2031, Patmos relocated to New York City (NYC) and began to work as a stock trader at the US branch of Deutsche Bank. In November 2031, he was seconded within Deutsche Bank to a team of traders responsible for arranging equity sales to other banks, including the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC). Through these sales, Patmos met Sun Jingyu, with whom he began to conduct a series of mirror trades on behalf of Chinese government officials and private investors.
Throughout the 2030s, Patmos and Sun arranged for Chinese clients to purchase stocks in a number of blue chip companies, including Amazon and Rio Tinto. They then sold the same amount of the same blue chip stock on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), with the resulting capital gains reinvested into companies and ventures at the discretion of the Chinese clients. This process “allowed for Chinese corporations and government ministries to easily and discreetly invest millions into American political affairs.” 
In May 2035, Patmos registered Radial as a financial services firm and named its owner and CEO as one Maitland Garvey, believed to be an alias. Between 2035 and 2040, Radial received more than ¥520 million in development and business loans from Deutsche Bank. The earliest of these loans was dated June 18th 2035 and personally authorised by Patmos, with subsequent loans authorised by Sun and other colleagues at their trading desk. Throughout the same period, Radial “paid millions in consultancy fees to various American political and advocacy groups that, although disparate in their agendas, were united by a common cause: the direct or indirect undermining of America’s democratic system and its presence on the international stage.” 
On October 10th 2041, Deutsche Bank suffered a breach to its internal network, resulting in the leak of operational and personal data of its employees, corporate clients, and trading partners. A subsequent audit of these records uncovered the loans made to Radial as well as the mirror trades conducted by Patmos and his colleagues. In January 2042, Sun reached a plea deal with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in exchange for testifying against Deutsche Bank and his colleagues at the trading desk. On January 8th 2042, Patmos was arrested and charged with multiple counts of securities fraud, with his bail set to ¥64.8 million by a NYC court.
On January 11th 2042, the bail for Patmos was posted by Second Advent, though he remained under round-the-clock surveillance and house arrest in his East Village penthouse apartment. This came after it was reported that the Church of Christ Embattled (CCE) and Second Advent were among the groups that had received payouts from Radial. In addition, Second Advent followers had found a 2037 selfie of Patmos taken while he was walking down Second Avenue in NYC, which they interpreted as a dog whistle due to a street sign bearing 2 Av prominently visible behind him.
When Arnold Boxer learned of Patmos’ role in the Radial payouts, he referred to him as “a saviour of God’s Promised America. When His chosen nation continues to sink, overburdened with the weak and despicable, He sends to us a man to tip them over the side.” According to his aide, this was one of the last things Boxer said aloud before his speech became too impaired from the illness that claimed his life on January 14th 2042.
As a result, Second Advent began to revere Patmos as a foundational figure of the cult, posting his bail and entering him into the leadership election that followed Boxer’s death. On January 20th 2042, Patmos broke his house arrest and took a private jet to Texas, where he changed his name and visited the Second Advent headquarters outside San Antonio. Patmos was elected leader of Second Advent with 72% of the vote on February 1st 2042.
On February 11th 2042, Patmos livestreamed a three-hour sermon to denounce the use of G6 and neural colloids. He quoted heavily from the Book of Revelation and promised his followers “delivery from the final Storm.” Following the sermon, Second Advent intensified its physical and cyberattacks against G6 infrastructure in the US, which led to Patmos being cited in a Red Notice by Interpol.
Patmos has made no further communications or public appearances since his 2042 livestream, leading to speculation over his continued role in Second Advent. Drone surveillance of Second Advent’s activities in Texas has indicated that Patmos spends most of his time at the cult’s headquarters and several penthouse apartments in San Antonio. A stylometric analysis has indicated that Patmos contributes writing to Second Advent’s public messaging.
Darcy Werner, who left Second Advent in 2045 and wrote of her experience in the cult, describes Patmos as “rarely seen, though always, always heard, whether anyone realised it or not,” and claims he issues orders through a network of subordinates.  A conflicting view was offered by Glenn Thorneloe, Boxer’s former aide, who suggests that Patmos serves Second Advent as a “figurehead” whose role primarily involves “making sure there was always money, regardless of where it came from.”
On October 3rd 2049, Second Advent began to incite violence across the US in response to the assassination of Xu Shaoyong, resulting in 408 deaths and the destruction of G6 hubs in Indiana and Washington. Second Advent adherents have proclaimed Patmos as the perpetrator of the assassination, calling it “a righteous action against the Antichrist that heralds the final Storm.” There has been no reaction from Patmos to confirm or deny his involvement in the assassination, or to intervene in the violence being enacted in his name.
On October 9th 2049, a video address from Patmos was uploaded to one of Second Advent’s networks, ordering “all soldiers of the Second Advent to gather in San Antonio, where lies salvation from the Storm.” The video has de-escalated hostilities across the US, with reports indicating that Second Advent members have begun to make their way to Texas. The source of the video is currently under investigation, with independent analysis indicating that it was generated by artificial intelligence (AI) from the likeness and voice patterns of Patmos.
Throughout his life, Patmos rarely spoke about his activities outside of his work. He did not attend the funerals of either of his parents and was estranged from his extended family.
During several seminars in the 2030s, Patmos listed “don’t drink, don’t fall in love, don’t lie” as his three rules for a successful life, and mentioned gardening as his “one reliable joy.”
- Patmos, J. (March 2041). “Death to the New Byzantium.” Stone Tablet. ↩
- Durán, C. (April 2030). “US Army Discharges Soldiers Who Refuse All But Mandatory Brain Implants.” The Daily Wire. ↩
- Bleetman, A. (March 2042). “American politics: a plaything for foreign elites.” Bloomberg. ↩
- Folco, V. (December 2040). “Financial firm Radial uncovered as foreign interest ‘muddle fund’ to support American anti-government groups.” Politico. ↩
- Werner, D. (August 2046). “Have You Heard the Fake News of Our Lord?” Press 315. ↩