The age of strife and science had begun. Cataclysmic wars were fought, and Nature was raped, bound and dissected. The gods’ knowledge grew, and with it their capability for cruelty. The new can only ever arise from the destruction of the old.
– From The Skulkers in the Void, by Amoxtli.
“Hello, is this the law firm of Goldstein & Fink?”
“Indeed, I am the secretary of Dr. Goldstein. How can we help you, sir? Pardon me, but you sound very young to be needing legal counsel.”
“It isn’t about legal counsel. My name is Martin Hernándes. My research indicates that your firm has several subcontractors specialized in finding missing persons. That seems to be the sort of investigator I need to hire. The person in question isn’t missing, but verifiably dead, and I cant find out anything about her life or her whereabouts in the last decade and a half. It is about my mother…”
After being connected to Dr. Goldstein, Martin told him about his mother, and he agreed to work on a commission which would only be paid after Martin was of age and had access to his inheritance. Nearly a year later, the law firm contacted Martin with their findings.
Dear Mr. Hernándes,
We were successful in reconstructing Mrs. Amoxtli’s life within the past fifteen years. As you know, she was a writer of science fiction, and a successful one at that. Apparently in 2018, the year you were born, she had a falling out with her publisher. It was a violent one. The particulars of this case are unclear, due to her unwillingness to say anything beyond pleading guilty for assault. During a short stay in a federal corrections facility, she apparently refused to meet with her remaining family, yourself and her mother. Then she left the United States. Our preliminary findings are that she never came back, but travelled without discernable path or purpose throughout Meso- and South America, Africa, Europe and southeast Asia. She came into conflict with local governments and law enforcement several times – you will find an itemization of known incidents and known localities as an attachment. We managed to piece together a timeline of your mother’s movements, but little beyond that. Additionally, she was several times admitted to psychiatric care. Our investigator tried to get access to her patient’s records, with success. I usually do not condone breaking the law, but he insisted that this may be instrumental in giving you the answers you seek. Given the relative dearth of other information in our other findings, and trusting his judgment, I agreed to bribe a Nigerian orderly and obtained a copy of these records. I haven’t read them myself but included them in this mail. You will find them alongside a write-up of our other findings. I sincerely hope they contain the answers you are looking for. Please, do not hesitate to call the firm if you wish to talk to the investigator or talk in general.
Goldstein & Fink, Attorneys at Law.
Martin speed-read through the write-up. Little indeed if that was all that could be obtained through legal channels. Her crimes were mostly dealings with local black and grey markets and unlicensed archaeological digs. Odd.
The patient’s records, on the other hand, revealed a lot about his unknown mother.
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