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Scipio Zelin

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PostSubject: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:36 pm

Subject: Re: Tether?
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Xomar Mycron

My boy,

Thank you for your assistance in figuring out this G4 hotspot device to access the internet. As I mentioned on the phone, the small motel I’m holed up in seems to be trapped in the era that it was built. I believe I have UHF stations available on my television, if that’s even possible. Unfortunately, I don’t have any news regarding dear Susan. You’ve gone over the data that I’ve sent; she seems to have fallen off the face of the earth with her two companions.

After my first little adventure at the diner absolutely destroyed my insides, I haven’t had much of a chance to gather more information on this place. I must say; it’s absolutely charming, in an American gothic sort of way. I met a young lady that has been most helpful pointing out the landmarks of this little slice of Americana. She appears to be one of those new agers; works in a crystal shop with her sister. I’m quite sure you’d find her attractive.

Speaking of which, how is the mediation going? I spoke with Vic and he has already agreed to call off the hounds; you should be able to finish the divorce proceedings soon enough. Once again, I’m terribly sorry things turned out as they did. I should have warned you sooner; I should have done a lot of things different really.

I’ve managed to find the library and am busy doing some background research on this location, Ravenhurst. So far, it has a very curious history. One I thought I was vaguely familiar with on my research for that anthology I’ve been working on. I’ll let you know once I’ve found more information.

Sincerely,
Skip

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Subject: Re: Re: Tether?
From: Xomar Mycron
To: Scipio Zelin

good to hear that. By the way, it’s 4G-be thankful you weren’t stuck with an iphone and at&t like your daughter. that’s probably one of the reasons she hasn’t been able to contact anyone-they have the worst coverage in certain areas, especially wooded.
i’m sure she’s quite attractive-maybe you should show her the power of age and experience old man! the last thing i need to think about is a relationship. i’ll never be able to repay you for what you did with the old man; this could have turned out much worse for yours truly. Don’t blame yourself-if anyone should have known what was going on, it was her fucking husband.

let me know if you need anything else. the buyout package is quite generous, so I’m suddenly without anything to do but wait for our mediation dates. we should go on vacation after all this is over-it’s been a while since we got a chance to catch up. somewhere warm-this winter is killing me.
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:39 pm

Subject: Update
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Xomar Mycron

I've decided to move from the roach motel up the street to a new place called the Red Dragon Inn while I continue my investigation. While both places seem to be owned by the same group, whom I met last night, this one seems a little less likely to to give me mesothelioma. I think you might be amused by the decor; I think it was fashioned to look like a Chinese opium den, minus the prostitutes. However, I do have a nice little balcony that has a nicer view than teenagers sitting in lawn chairs getting drunk on cheap liquor.

Speaking of the owner of my temporary abode, she was quite interesting in a rustic, raw manner. I also got the feeling she, like the crystal shop owner, are most likely amateur pagans into holistic healing. If I didn't know any better, I'd swear I stumbled into the tribe from Hair; it almost makes me want to burn my draft card. I know this is the west coast, but either hippies are making an unexpected comback or this is a very strange convergence within a very small community.

I still haven't been able to track down this sheriff. From what I gathered, he seems more interested in tracking down loose women than missing persons. I'm starting to lose hope. It's been more than a month at this point and there is still no sign of any of them. How do three girls and an entire BMW disappear with nobody having seen them? The inn owner told me that they have a problem with missing hikers every so often and that they have a set of old mines up in the mountains here. This most worrisome; Susan was more of a naturalist than I am. I can't imagine her getting lost out in the wilderness, but do you think she may have taken a hike? The scenery here is lovely; far more grand than on our side of the country.

I'm just babbling at this point; I'll let you know when I find more. I'll be heading to the library to do a little more research on these mines.

Sincerely,

Skip



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Subject: Re: Update
From: Xomar Mycron
To: Scipio Zelin

that inn sounds better than the motel. take some pictures for me will you? especially if you find any prostitutes.

i'm a little young to follow your strange hippie references, old man. is hair that musical where everyone gets naked? maybe the great northwest isn't a bad place to vacation, eh?

don't lose hope-susie's a smart girl and i can't imagine a group of pre-med students would be doing anything completely stupid and dangerous. she's not a history major or anything. be careful if you head out into the countryside-i saw a special on natgeo last night about wolves. your not so fast on your feet anymore.

let me know if you need anything on my end. i'm sitting on my ass here.
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:40 pm

Subject: Leave of Absence
From: Jack Hegel
To: Scipio Zelin

Skip,

It's been over a week since we've heard from you. How is the search progressing? You have our sympathies; everyone here is praying for the safe return of your daughter. As it seems you'll be taking an extended leave of absence, do you have a preference for your temporary replacement? I was thinking Higgins since he has seniority, but I'm not as familiar with your lectures as I should be.

Also, while this is somewhat inappropriate, the dean would like to know about the status of the grants coming in from OCP and ECHO. I wouldn't bother you with this if it wasn't important.

Thank you,

Dr. Jack N. Hegel
Associate Dean for the Social Sciences
116 College Hall
University of Pennsylvania



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Subject: Re: Leave of Absence
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Jack Hegel

Hello Jack,

I appreciate your kind words of encouragement. Unfortunately, it does appear I'll be needing to take a longer leave than I anticipated. I will let all of you know as soon as I do find my daughter.

I'd rather you let Ramos handle my classes; he has a much better grasp of the cirriculum and has filled in for me before to great effect.

Do not worry about either grants; the speaking engagements fulfilled our requirements for ECHO and OCP is still on schedule to sponsor that new wing. I've not neglected my duties; I will forward the contacts I've had over the past several weeks with both.

Sincerely,

Scipio Zelin, Phd.

Professor
Chair of the Department of
History and Sociology of Science



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Subject: Re: Re: Leave of Absence
From: Jack Hegel
To: Scipio Zelin

Great! I'll notify Jill. Let us know if there's anything we can do.

Thank you,

Dr. Jack N. Hegel
Associate Dean for the Social Sciences
116 College Hall
University of Pennsylvania
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:42 pm

Subject: Re: Re: Update
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Xomar Mycron

This isn't much of an update, but I've got to do something to calm my nerves. I'm about through half a pack of cigarettes today; thankfully, it's kept me away from the bottle. I've finally met with the sheriff. While it wasn't encouraging and the man looks to be practically half my age, he seems as though he knows what he's doing. He mentioned he would be checking the mines first on his list. I hope I'm wrong, but I can completely imagine Susan doing a bit of exploring in one of those places. She used to practically drag us into whatever cave or mine was available on our holidays; Carlsbad, Laurel, you name it. I pray I'm wrong; it's just everything seems to be pointing in that direction short of alien abduction.

The owner of the inn offered her help, such as it is, by taking something owned by Susan to a psychic or palm reader; some such nonsense. Frankly, I'm willing to try anything at this point. Fact is often stranger than fiction, although this charlatan will probably closer to Sylvia Browne than Johnny Smith. I hope everything is well.

Sincerely,

Skip



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Subject: Re: Re: Re: Update
From: Xomar Mycron
To: Scipio Zelin

don't worry about me-there's nothing going on here except the worst winter of my lifetime. do you want me to check out this sheriff for you with my guys? i can run a background check to make sure he knows what hes doing if you want.

i didn't realize you read garbage by stephen king. i thought you were more cultured.

you stay out of trouble and don't even think about heading into those mines. let law enforcement handle that. i don't want to have to come out there looking for the both of you.

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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:43 pm

Subject: Thank you
From: John Ramos
To: Scipio Zelin

Prf. Zelin,

I appreciate your recommendation to handle your lectures in your absence. I wanted to thank you and let you know that everything will be handled while you continue your search. I'll make sure all the grades get entered into the new system. If there's anything I can do to help, don't hesitate to ask.

John



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Subject: Re: Thank you
From: Scipio Zelin
To: John Ramos

Johnny,

No need to thank me; you're obviously the most qualified to handle my workload in my absence. If anything, I should be thanking you for handling all my lectures while I run around the great Northwest. Truthfully, the search is going rather slowly; I'm waiting on law enforcement to continue their investigation.

On a different note, one that I think you'll find curious, there seems to be a huge influx of what appear to be wiccans and pagans in this area. I'm sure your fiance would feel right at home out here. I purchased a book just yesterday from one of those crystal shops on supernatural creatures. Would you do me a favor and ask Prof. Gutmann the origins of this book? I've attached an image of the publisher's notation, which I can barely read myself. Oh, if you could also ask her to send me a copy of her lecture notes on her comparative mythology course; I promised to show them to a couple of budding researchers out here.


Sincerely,

Skip


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Re: Re: Thank you
From: Marta Gutmann
To: Scipio Zelin
CC: John Ramos

Skippy dear,

How are you holding up? I'm beside myself with grief over what's happened with you these past several years. Let me know if there's anything Karl and I can do for you.

I've taken a look at your attachment and I have to say I'm stumped. I'm going to run it by a couple of book dealers I know, but it appears to be a reprint done in New York around 1974. I feel if we track down the publishing company, we should be able to get an origin creation for you. My gut feeling is it's a small printing press that takes specialty orders.

I've also attached the notes you requested. Please don't tell me you're trying to squeeze work in at a time like this? Jill is such a slave driver! Good luck and god speed on your return.

Thank you,

Marta Gutmann
Professor
116 College Hall
University of Pennsylvania
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:43 pm

Subject: Living Sober
From: Bernard Dietrich
To: Scipio Zelin

Hey buddy,
I'm glad we had that talk last night. Remember, it took me three tries to get this living sober thing right. My heart goes out to you. Sometimes it feels like God is consipriring against us. I know I felt the same way when I lost my first wife. Remember, he has a plan for all of us and it's not ever going to be easy. Self doubt and doubt in Him will always be there, just like our addiction. Don't let a parlor trick with a pagan lead you astray. I've got your back and I'm here for you. Do you still have the 12 steps memorized? You might want to try reciting them again, it helped last time, remember? Give me a call later this week.



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Subject: Re: Living Sober
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Bernard Dietrich

Hello Bernie,

It's been a while. I really appreciate you tolerating my off kilter ramblings the other night. That bizarre seance really threw me for a loop. It felt so real; like I could sense her. I don't want to lose control again, but I feel like I'm staring into an abyss and it's ready to swallow my soul. I feel better after our chat; I'm going to do what you suggested. It really did help last time; it must be my 'ordered and literary' mind. I'll call you soon; our talks really help me make sense of everything. Tell Margie and the kids I said hello.


Sincerely,

Skip


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Re: Re: Update
From: Xomar Mycron
To: Scipio Zelin

hey old man-that was a weird message you left on my phone. i tried calling but you didnt pick up the phone. call me back when you can okay?

by the way,i took your silence as an okay, so i ordered a background check on this sheriff jericho macalroy for you. no need to thank me. before you ask, no i didn't call in any favors to find out his name. i can use lexus nexus easy enough. i should have something back in a couple of days-will let you know what we find out.

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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:43 pm

Subject: Re: Re: Re: Thank you
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Marta Gutmann

Marti,

Thank you for the notes and for following up on the book origins for me. I suspect it might be one of those independent publishers from the W.W.Norton line of suppliers. I'll try and see if there's anything I overlooked about the print to help you in your search. I really need to show you this book when I get the chance. I'm taking some scans of the chapters to send over for your perusal; it's an absolutely fascinating read.

You'll be able to identify at least four different authors, with awkward wording that would denote translation from other languages. You're better at linguistics than i am; I'll let you figure it out. This print does not have any identification for the authors; it could be that they're all originally anonymous, or that it was withheld.

Certain chapters read like any average dictionary entry on the subject in question; however, certain chapters are, in a word, strange. Take a look at the chapters on Shapeshifters and note the specific, almost clinical certainty of their habits, weaknesses, and habitat. As though they were reporting on actual observation and study instead of a mythological creature. Either the author is one hell of a satirst, or he's an extreme psychotic who's castle in the air I would very much like to visit.

This is the first batch of scans; I'll have the rest scanned by tomorrow. Tell Karl I said hello; we need to have dinner again when I'm back home.


Sincerely,

Skip



------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Re: Re: Re: Re: Thank you
From: Marta Gutmann
To: Scipio Zelin

Skippy darling,

You are right on the money with your supposition; it was a small publisher associated with WW Norton; in fact, I've already tracked down which. It's now defunct; apparently put out of business by a fire which destroyed the building back in February 1976, owner never printed again. I've asked Johnny to look up the owner as he's still alive and well in New York. He's filling in for that lecture on Antietam you were supposed to be delivering. Naughty, naughty! He should be back tomorrow evening, so he'll fill us in on anything he finds out.

What a curious story! I'll be sure to look these over with the rest of my team and let you know what they think. I'm already intrigued. Oh, by the by, one of my favorite collectors in the city was influential in cracking your little publishing case. He wanted to know if you would give him a call; he might be interested in purchasing the book. He collects oddball editions from all over; he was quite excited when I showed him the image. His name is Dewitt Harley Beckford(I have to roll my eyes every time he refers to himself in third person. He absolutely insists on including his middle name in introductions) and his number is 718-555-3552. Who knows? Perhaps it will be like an episode of Antique Roadshow and you're sitting on a tiny goldmine. If so, dinner is definitely on you!

You sound better than our last email. I hope you have some good news regarding little Susan. Karl misses you; he'd like to go hunting again soon. Please make it back by the spring; we need to catch up.


Thank you,

Marta Gutmann
Professor
116 College Hall
University of Pennsylvania
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:44 pm

Subject: NYU
From: John Ramos
To: Scipio Zelin

Prof. Z,

Don't worry about the lecture at NYU, I covered it. Your notes were extremely useful as always. They've already invited us back next year for the next annual series. That should please the dean, no doubt.


I'm sure this next piece of information is much more interesting to you. I stopped by this old coot's place, name of Robert Oates, to talk about that defunct Atreus printing company. He founded the company until it burned down in 1976. He gave up working in the publishing industry after that and oddly enough, he couldn't tell me why. Said it just didn't feel right and he hadn't even read a book in over 30 years. I'd guess he was traumatized by the fire which killed half his staff and completely wiped out everything he had. He was quite the character, the bastard could curse a mean streak I haven't heard since I visited my familia last. It was strange interview, though. His memory was very solid on many facts, like a walking date book, but he had trouble remembering certain things. He could cite by memory most of the books and dates he printed over those 8 years of the life of the company and how many copies commissioned, but when we got to what i wanted know, he was as forgetful as my nana.

An hour later and about 3 glasses of whiskey, I managed to get as much out of him as you could hope. It basically broke down like this: a man that he cannot remember any details about, other than the fact that he wore a 'fucking black cloak like he's a god damned wizard', commissioned the printing of a series of books, usually in the 100-200 copy range. They were always delivered to a specific address that he has no record of and can't remember. His last commissioned book which was, get this, Alchemical Properties and Transmutations by Count Alessandro Cagliostro. He was visited the day before the copies were to be shipped by another person that he can remember no details other than it was a female of indeterminate age. She warned him to destroy the books and never commission another order from mystery man or he would pay for it. I'm pretty sure you can guess what happened next. The subsequent police and insurance investigation revealed nothing but a simple accident. A loose wire leading to a catastrophic, one in a million accident. Not exactly helpful, I know. Still, it was kind of creepy looking into his eyes when I asked to describe the two people in question. His eyes would go blank and he would forget where he was. Then I'd have to prompt him back to reality and he would snap back to normal like nothing ever happened. It must have been a seriously traumatic incident, losing everything like that.

It wasn't a complete waste of time, though. After some careful prompting he remembered that he still had a ledger with the orders from this mystery man. He never kept all his records at the office, so it was lucky this happened to be preserved. I scanned a copy and attached it to this email here. Take a look at the book titles. Weird, wild, stuff, Ed. And look at the company name: Apophis Unlimted. Wasn't that some giant serpent? My memory of goofy mythological gods isn't as good as yours. Looking at these book titles, I'd be tempted to say God struck down this publisher with the wrath of the old Testament. I remember reading in grad school about Count Cagliostro and his quests of making gold out of lead and finding eternal life. I'm tempted to go the confession just for reading this list.

I hope you're doing okay out there. Let me know if there's anything else I can look up for you.


Sincerely,

John

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Subject: Re: NYU
From: Scipio Zelin
To: John Ramos

Johnny,

That's quite the story from Mr. Oates. Looking over the list, I can see your point. I'm pretty sure half of these books are supposed to be fictional; how did they print up books that were never written? Men in capes, mysterious fires, ancient secrets; if the Vatican was involved, I would think it was a bad Dan Brown novel. I think I better speak to that book collector Marta recommended. He might be able to give me a clue as to what these all mean. At least I have something constructive to distract my mind. Thank you so much for covering my lectures and for handling that legwork. You really didn't have to waste your time tracking down the fancies of an old fool like me.

Oh, would do me a favor and keep this whole list between us? I love Marti like a sister, but she is loquacious to a fault. The last thing I need is everyone in the department thinking I've gone off the deep end.


Sincerely,

Skip



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Subject: KTUV Action News Interview Request
From: Laura Stevenson
To: Scipio Zelin

Dr. Zelin,

I'm Laura, an assistant producer with Channel 12 Action News in the bay area. I obtained your email from your colleagues at your university. I understand you're doing your own investigation and are currently in the Washington area. We are doing a piece on the disappearance of the three pre-med students from Stanford last month. I understand you're the father of Susan Caldwell and we are very interested in arranging an interview. We've already met with the parents of the other two missing students, so you being in the area would very helpful to our segment. Would you please let me know when you would be available to discuss your side of the story?

Thank you,

Laura V. Stevenson
Asst. Producer
KTUV
4 Jack London Square
Oakland, CA 94607
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:44 pm

Subject: Anthology
From: Dewitt H. Beckford
To: Scipio Zelin

Dr. Zelin,

It was a pleasure to finally make your acquaintance. I must tell you, it must be fate that has drawn us together. I've been attempting to track this volume down for twenty odd years now. What a strange coincidence that it would turn up in such an innocuous place; well, perhaps not so unexpected should you know the history of that town as I do.

As I stated on the phone, I am completely satisfied with a trade for information. I've attached an imaged copy of the final book by Cagliostro and look forward to getting a chance to peruse your edition. I would love to add the physical book to my collection. Once you've completed your research, name your price. I have a feeling what I'm searching for won't be found in bits and bytes of an electronic image. I would say more, but you would call me mad, if I haven't already frightened you off.

I would love to continue our discussion about the anthology at a future time. It's surprising how few educated souls are willing to expand their minds and look past the shadows flickering across the cave wall to face the truth of our existence.

Respectfully,

DHB


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Subject: Re: Anthology
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Dewitt H. Beckford

Mr. Beckford,

It was certainly a stimulating conversation. While I remain firmly planted in the realm of skepticism, I must say, you certainly weave a fantastic story. I've attached the scanned copies for your perusal, as you say. If I do happen to come across anything of interest in the book, believe me, you will be the first person I notify.

Sincerely,

Skip


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Subject: Fw: Re: Anthology
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Marta Gutmann

Good lord, Marti, where did you find this lunatic? He practically talked my ear off for an hour rambling about fairies and hobgoblins. He certainly does like to hear the sound of his own voice. I think I might have been out here too long; unfortunately, the sheriff seems to operate on his own schedule and I can never track the man down. I do hope he has some good news.

Skip


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Subject: Re: Fw: Re: Anthology
From: Marta Gutmann
To: Scipio Zelin

Skippy dear,

I did warn you about his eccentricities, didn't I? Besides, as Howard Hughes demonstrated, when you're that wealthy, you can no longer be classified as crazy.

Oh, I was going to call you, but this works just as well. Danny, one of my assistants, was cataloguing the scans and he noticed something curious. At first we thought that the strange shading and irregularities on the page were just a sign of a badly kept book and possible water damage, but it seems as though these little pits only occur over specific letters. He's convinced there's a pattern, but I thought I would check with you since you have the physical book. Would you be a dear and check the pages and compare to our attached highlighted images?

I do wish that sheriff would get off his duff and do some police work. Let me know the moment you have any news regarding sweet Susan.

Thank you,

Marta Gutmann
Professor
116 College Hall
University of Pennsylvania


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Subject: Re: KTUV Action News Interview Request
From: Laura Stevenson
To: Scipio Zelin

Dr. Zelin,

I've tried your cell phone several times now, but have yet to hear back. I'm sure you're extremely busy, but could you please call me back? We want to finish out piece next week and that doesn't leave a large window for an interview. We'd love to include your take on how the authorities have handled this case so far. Look forward to hearing from you.

Thank you,

Laura V. Stevenson
Asst. Producer
KTUV
4 Jack London Square
Oakland, CA 94607
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:44 pm

Subject: Update
From: Xomar Mycron
To: Scipio Zelin

hey old man-i wanted to give you the heads up on the background check for the good sheriff of ravenhurst. he's clean, from what i can tell. as clean as an antiques importer/exporter from ireland can be, anyways. a few complaints from several foreign countries about transporting illegal relics and paintings and the like. hes also linked in some sort of advisory position with the sas. my few encounters with those brits were memorable-they're badass. his involvement most likely involved the ira, but with all the hajis in londinistan now and his involvement with antiques it's also likely he may have assisted in other ways. there's a good chance he's in ravenhurst to lay low.

i'm glad you've found something to distract yourself while the investigation continues. don't lose hope-this ain't csi miami, crimes don't get solved in a work day. you did some good detective work, but leave it up to the professionals, ok? regardless of what some hippie witch told you, wandering mines is a damn fool way to get yourself killed. that one sounds like a loose cannon.

some news bitch has been calling the family looking for you, by the way. i've told them where to stick it, but you might want to warn your colleagues not to talk to them unless you want to end up featured on nancy grace.

ready for spring training? i'll handle the ticket package this year since you're busy which his just as well. you barely had any tickets when the angels were in town last year.
X

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Subject: Re: Update
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Xomar Mycron

Despite your intruisive and most likely shady investigation of a lawman and your repeated racial slurs, I do appreciate you looking out for me on this. I know I should be patient; it's just hard. If you had a child...nevermind. Your point is taken and I think I'll leave this up to the professionals.

You're a little late on that; I've already been repeatedly contacted by some Bay Area station who have been doggedly persistent in ignoring my refusals so far. My guess is they spoke to Marti. Tell your soon to be ex-father in law that i'll do my best not to embarrass the family and start weeping like a guest on Oprah during a local news interview.

I'm sure whatever tickets you pick up will be fine; as you said, I have other things pressing on my mind at the moment.

Regarding the distraction, I was hoping you could assist me with part of my research as you're much more skilled with algorithms than I am. I think I've discovered a cipher within the book I've been researching; or more specifically, a steganographic message. It's actually quite simple if you have the formula they used to disguise the letters in the text. It seems my version of the book is the lead copy and it had some notes by the persons who had it commissioned. My guess is they were double checking to make sure everything matched up after print. The hidden cipher is literally sprinkled through the whole book; what I had thought was bad translation and spelling misprints are actually necessary changes to make the message read clearly. Because the pattern runs over several pages, it's almost impossible to see without knowing exactly where to look. It's a very clever way to hide something in plain sight.

Well, maybe I exaggerated on the simple part. There's still the tedious work of extracting the proper letters and arranging them into the correct sequence. I was hoping that you could put something together that could do this a lot quicker than by hand? I've attached the scanned copies, so you'll need to run it through some OCR software. I would ask Marti, but it would probably be on Wikileaks before I had a chance to even look at it. I'm asking you because I know you can keep a secret. It's somewhat amateur hour an archaic compared to the usual modern day ciphers, but it still could have been sensitive government information passed around during the cold war, perhaps? I have no idea; you're the securities expert in the family. Either way, I'd really appreciate it if you could handle this and save my poor eyes.

Sincerely,

Skip


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------




Subject: Re: Re: Fw: Re: Anthology
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Marta Gutmann

Your instincts were correct, Marti. It's just water damage. Judging by the smell of the pages, I suspect it's been stored in a location very close to the sea these past decades. You should tell your assistants to quit looking for buried treasure and see if they can date the actual writings. You might be able to extract a paper about this; it's certainly right up your alley. I'll let you know if I find anything else of interest here.

Don't worry about the investigation; the police are doing all that they can. This is basically a cold case at this point; they haven't even located the vehicle. I really wish I was as calm and collected as this email sounds. Of course I will let you know as soon as they have more information. Keep her in your prayers, Marti.

Skip


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



Subject: Re: Re: Update
From: Xomar Mycron
To: Scipio Zelin

jesus, old man, you're not asking for much are you? cold war secrets? you really know how to catch my attention, don't you? no need to kiss my ass, its not like have anything else going on. i know these newfangled electric boxes amaze and confuse those from your generation, so i already finished your request. no need to thank me, because the result is all greek to me. are you sure about this? it's a bunch of random letters.
X


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Re: Re: Re: Update
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Xomar Mycron

That didn't take very long and you're wrong, my boy. There definitely is something here, although i should have mentioned the sequence across the pages should have gone from right to left. For a systems analyst, you can be a little dense sometimes. Don't worry about fixing it; I can handle that. It's funny you mentioned Greek, because it's actually written in archaic latin. I think that safely rules out the Ruskies or Cuba, so no state secrets here. It's probably some mystical nonsense that won't interest you. I do appreciate your help, Xomar. Thanks for giving me something to occupy my mind. I walked into the market the other day to pick up some items and made it all the way to the cash register before I noticed the bottle of vodka. I really hope they find something soon. I think I'm going stir crazy in this town.

Skip


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Re: Re: KTUV Action News Interview Request
From: Laura Stevenson
To: Scipio Zelin

Dr. Zelin,

Please contact us back. We understand your reluctance, but our special reports have helped solve over 50 cases over the past 10 years. This report may just provide precious leads for the authorities.

Thank you,

Laura V. Stevenson
Asst. Producer
KTUV
4 Jack London Square
Oakland, CA 94607
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:45 pm

Subject: Re: Re: Living Sober
From: Bernard Dietrich
To: Scipio Zelin

Skip,
Thank you for calling me last night before you did something you might regret. I'm sorry I can't offer anything other than my support, but I'm proud of you. You could have surrendered and taken that drink, but you didn't. I don't know if I would have been strong enough had something happened to my boys, or God forbid, Margie. Still, it's jut an ID from one of the girls. Susan could still be out there somewhere. I wouldn't give up hope just yet. Call me if you need to talk about anything. Sometimes talking helps keep the demons away.

Bernie


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------




Subject: Re: Re: Re: Living Sober
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Bernard Dietrich

Bernie,

I'm sorry for calling you so late, but I'm glad you were awake. No, this is all the confirmation that I needed that my vision was correct and that Susan is gone now. I can't blame it on my subconscious or something I ate. That ID in a sea of missing persons is as clear as clear can be. It's odd; I wasn't sad, or devasted like I thought I would be. Not like when Lillith was taken from me. I was furious; I wanted to find the man responsible for this and tear him limb from limb. I wanted to beat him senseless, to burn him alive and watch him suffer. I'm not exactly full of Christian charity and forgiveness, am I?

These feelings worry me. They remind me of how I used to feel when I drank myself senseless. I never told you about the altercations at the bars nor the nights in the drunk tank. I didn't have to; my family's influence and money took care of that. I didn't have to wallow in the shame of all the people I hurt over those years; I could be a respectable professor from a wealthy family who you could pity because he lost his wife in a terrible accident. No, these feelings of nihilism and self destruction only surfaced at the bottom of a bottle. Now, it's gnawing at my consciousness at every waking moment. I still can't sleep without having those dreams.

I'm sorry, I'm babbling again. It's easier to write this than to vocalize my emotions. You've been very good to put up with me over these years; better than I deserve. I've been lying to everyone, including myself about what I am. I'm thankful you have done your best to help me. I don't think I'll be calling again while I'm out here. I need to handle this on my own.

Sincerely,

Skip


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------




Subject: Ramos
From: Jack Hegel
To: Scipio Zelin

Skip,

Have you spoken to John this week? I've gotten reports he's been acting very erratic for the past couple days. He apparently stormed out of a lecture shouting like a madman. Nobody has seen him today; I've asked Roger to fill in for now. Let me know if you hear from him. I tried calling but he's not picking up. If you hear from him, please ask him to call me. He's not tenured and I don't know how long I can keep the dean from finding out. You know she did not approve of his hiring in the first place.

Thank you,

Dr. Jack N. Hegel
Associate Dean for the Social Sciences
116 College Hall
University of Pennsylvania


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



Subject: Re: Ramos
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Jack Hegel

Jack,

I have not heard from John since he covered the lecture in New York. I will pass along your message if I get in contact with him. I will also contact Higgins regarding my classes. If there is a problem with Ramos, I'm sure Higgins will have no problem handling everything.

Sincerely,

Scipio Zelin, Phd.
Professor
Chair of the Department of
History and Sociology of Science


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Call Me
From: Scipio Zelin
To: John Ramos

Johnny,

What the hell is going on? Everyone is looking for you and Jack is threatening to have you terminated. What kind of trouble are you in? You know you have my complete faith in your abilities; I wouldn't have chosen you to take over for me if I didn't. Please call me back so we can talk about whatever is going on.

Skip


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Re: Call Me
From: John Ramos
To: Scipio Zelin


I can't call you back. They're listening to me. They're probably reading this over my shoulder, but at least the voices have stopped for a moment.I can hear them whispering at me all the time, from every nook and cranny. Last night I could hear them talking to me through my tv. Unspeakable things. I can't make it stop. I don't know what I did wrong, but they won't leave me alone until I do what they want me to do. You'll take care of things for me with the school, won't you? I'm sorry about all this.

Lux pandit Ra sita trans terras
Tenebrae Apep mundabo mundum
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:47 pm


Subject: Re: Fw: Re: Anthology
From: Marta Gutmann
To: Scipio Zelin

Skippy dear,

Have you heard the dreadful news about Johnny? I tried calling but it keeps going to voicemail. The whole school is in an uproar. Johnny and his fiance are both dead from a fire at their apartment. The facts so far are sketchy, but the rumor is the authorities are investigating a possible murder suicide. Can you believe that? He was acting very odd this week, but he's always seemed so steady and calm. Did you speak to him this week? The police are already interviewing his friends and colleagues; I've already given a statement. I hope these rumors are shown to be unfounded. I just can't believe one of us would do something so horrific. Please call me back ASAP.

Thank you,

Marta Gutmann
Professor
116 College Hall
University of Pennsylvania


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------




Subject: Re: Re: Ramos
From: Jack Hegel
To: Scipio Zelin

Skip,

I'm sure you've heard the news by now. News this tragic travels fast. We've been informed that the authorities have witnesses on the scene that have confirmed the worst of the initial reports. I don't have to tell you just how damaging this kind of story is going to be for our university. The dean is not pleased at all; this is going to hurt our enrollments for years to come.

Thank you,

Dr. Jack N. Hegel
Associate Dean for the Social Sciences
116 College Hall
University of Pennsylvania


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Re: Re: Ramos
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Jack Hegel

Jack,

I understand what you want. Tell Jill I'll take the fall for this. I brought Ramos on board and have been the one endeavoring to make him a permanent fixture at our fine university. I will be stepping down from my chairmanship; it's probably best that I remain absent for the rest of the school year. Email me the paperwork when you're ready.

Sincerely,

Scipio Zelin, Phd.
Professor
Chair of the Department of
History and Sociology of Science


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------




Subject: Re: Re: Re: Ramos
From: Jack Hegel
To: Scipio Zelin

Look, Skip, I just want to tell you I think it's unfair this has to happen this way. I'm glad you see the big picture here, though. I'm sure that by the time Autumn rolls around, most of this will blow over and you can get right back to doing what you do best.


Thank you,

Dr. Jack N. Hegel
Associate Dean for the Social Sciences
116 College Hall
University of Pennsylvania


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Fw: Re: Call Me
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Dewitt H. Beckford

Mr. Beckford,

I wanted to phone, but I know the hour is late out there. I'm at a loss for words at what happened with my friend and colleague this weekend. I'm sure you've heard the news as it's one of those stories that seems to sell well in the papers. As you can see from the attached email, John's grasp on reality seemed to be rapidly deteriorating. However, I refuse to believe this was the result of insanity alone. Just last month if I was asked to believe in magic spells and spirits, I would have laughed politely in your face. What a difference several life altering events can make.

I want to know what's so special about this set of books that would result in them being surrounded by so much death and destruction. Why you would offer so much money for a book that's hardly worth one tenth of that price. You obviously know much more than you're letting on and if I and others around me could be in danger, I want to know why. John's reference to the eternal battle between Ra and Apep is so strange and random, it must have some significance. Please contact me as soon as you're able.

Sincerely,

Skip
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:47 pm

Subject: Answers
From: Dewitt H. Beckford
To: Scipio Zelin

Dr. Zelin,

I feared something of this manner would happen. It's probably best I bring you up to speed about what is at stake here. I was going to contact you after I attempted to make an appointment with the publisher fellow, Mr. Oates, after you sent me the list. As he's an insignificant old man unable to pull the heartstrings of the media followers, his death this week went by unnoticed. If you guessed accidental death by fire, you win a cigar. The obituary states he fell asleep with a lit cigarette in his hand, which sounds pretty reasonable considering his history with alcoholism. However, combined with the fate of your colleague, this seems more than a coincidence. I wll try and explain the connection between your friend's death, an ancient organization dedicated to bringing chaos to the world, and these seemingly bizarre yet innocuous books. Let me start at the beginning.

Judging by your education and history, you're quite familiar with the chaoskampf, or the struggle against chaos by a chosen hero spread throughout much of early religious and mythological texts. The hero struggles to bring order to the world by defeating the representative of chaos, generally a serpent of the sea. The ocean, with it's random storms and floods, has ingrained itself deep into mankind's psyche as demonstrated by the multitude of great flood stories. You have Marduk and Tiamat from Babylon, Zeus and Typhon in Greek myth, even the hebrew god Yahweh and Leviathan. The battle between Ra or Atum and Apep to make the sun rise against the darkness is one of the earliest examples of this myth.

Nearly 5,000 years ago, the Old Kingdom of Egypt was beginning it's rise, advancing civilization to heights it's never seen before. While they excelled at architecture and organization, they were not without assistance. They, like other ancient cultures, were given a leg up by what they thought were gods; familiar names like Osiris or Thoth. I am aware of your skepticism towards the idea of the supernatural, but perhaps it will be easy to stomach if you think of them as far more advanced a species than us. While we do not know exactly who or what these creatures were, it's obvious that they were far more intelligent and powerful than our ancestors. Much like the cargo cults in New Guinea worshipping airplanes because they had no concept of assisted flight or metalwork, we can imagine these ancient Egyptians believing these beings to be gods. One man's magic is another man's engineering, after all.

These Egyptian priests learned the ways of their gods and used them to forge several dynasties that lasted thousands of years. They enforced order in the name of these others, which did not sit well with everyone. Then there is the matter of the pyramids. Much of the adult population devoted many years and resources to building what you might consider a diving rod to locate these gods' source of power. In fact, this is supposedly what the great pyramid of Khufu was constructed for and why the central chamber remained empty. It seems that these gods used these naturally occuring sources of power that are spread across the world's surface. I'm not entirely sure whether these sources originate from within the earth, from somewhere out of the atmosphere, or some other realm we can't hope to understand. The witches of modern times also continue to use these sources of power to greatly enhance their abilities. But I digress.

These gods, and their human representatives, the priests and pharaohs, represented this new world order. As I mentioned before, there were many that were not thrilled with these new overlords and began to form organizations to resist this influence. Eventually, they took on the names and identities of the representatives of chaos in solidarity with their idea that mankind should be free to make their own choices, regardless of the consequences. One of the oldest organizations, one that supposedly has existed in some loose form for these past five thousand years are now known as Liberi Apep, or the Children of Apep. They continue their fight against society and civilization itself as they see it as an abomination, controlled by these Others and their quisling mankind betrayers. These followers of Apep continue to spread chaos and destruction wherever they exist.

The book you found is part of their distribution to their members for training them in the ways of old magic long forgotten. Nowadays, I'm sure they're able to utilize the internet to much more useful effect, but years ago they were still transporting this forbidden knowledge through books, generally hidden within text. I've been trying to crack the code in these books for years; as a scholar mind you. It's rumored they possess the original scrolls of magic bestowed upon humanity by the god Thoth; information long forgotten through the annals of history. This is knowledge that people would kill for.

I'm sorry that you have stumbled into my quixotic quest and that your friend has paid the ultimate price. It might be best if you get that book out of your hands as quickly as possible.

Respectfully,

DHB




------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Re: Answers
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Dewitt H. Beckford



Mr. Beckford,

Let me distill your incredible story down to the basic facts. You're saying that magical, space aliens from another dimension helped the Egyptians build the pyramids and now control the world like some Illuminati organization on steroids? And that the first anti-establishment, devil worshipping hippies are looking to use magic against magic in some sort of pissing contest for mankind's free will and I accidentally stumbled in the middle of it by buying a used book at crystal shop? Thank you for clearing that up; I was beginning to think I was losing my mind. Now I know I'm not the craziest person on this email thread.

I would cease communication with you if not for one thing; I've actually decoded the damn book's secret message. You may be barking mad, but you are accurate about the fact that this book is holding a cipher; one that references some of the things you've mentioned. I think we should discuss this further. Give me a call.

Skip
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:47 pm

Subject: Re: Scipio's Inbox Tue Mar 15, 2011 3:32 pm
________________________________________


Subject: Fw: Re: Answers
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Xomar Mycron

My boy,

Take a look at this exchange I had with that book collector from New York. I'm sure you think I've completely lost it at this point; to be honest, I can't say for sure I haven't. That frightens me a little. No matter, because there are real lives being lost for reasons that remain shady to me. Whether you believe in little green men or witches isn't really relevant at the moment; John Ramos, his fiance, and this Oates fellow have all died under extremely suspicious circumstances. Thankfully, he didn't send any of this information to Marti; I have enough on my conscious as it is.

Do you think it's possible that some organization is eliminating people one by one to cover up an information leak? You have much more experience with this cloak and dagger crap than I do. I'd like to know if I'm just suffering the early stages of a nervous breakdown, beginning with an acute case of paranoia.

The media was here yesterday; luckily, I managed to stay out of their lens. The last thing I need right now is media exposure. I already feel like I'm being watched in this small town. There's just something off here; it becomes more and more apparent the longer I stay in Ravenhurst. I can't quite place my finger on it, and frankly, it's probably best that I don't. I'm afraid I might find out that Beckford is right.


Skip



------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



Subject: Re: Fw: Re: Re: Answers
From: Xomar Mycron
To: Scipio Zelin

you're right about one thing, old man-i'm pretty sure you lost your mind back while i was still one of your students. you've done a remarkable job of faking it, though. of course i think that whole fairy tale is a bunch of horseshit-what bothers me is that your so affected by it. there's really only two options regarding this clown 1. he's a couple cans short a six pack or 2. he's 10 pounds of shit in a 5 pound bag. i don't know what kind of resources he has, but he seems to know you far better than an average civilian should be able to. i think he's playing on your fears right now and its working.

i would say you have good reason to be concerned. with the history of that publishing house, one fiery death is a coincidence-two is trouble. just because you're paranoid doesn't mean they're not out to get you. setting up an accidental apartment fire is pretty simple wetwork, whereas the murder suicide outcome of your friend looks to be far more sophisticated. we're talking psychotropic drugs and the type of people you don't fuck around with. i'm going to call in some favors and find more about your new friend. i'll tell you when i know more. until then, try not to wander down any dark alleys.

X




------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



Subject: Re: Re: Answers
From: Dewitt Beckford
To: Scipio Zelin

Dr. Zelin,

It must be fate that we crossed paths, indeed. I know you are still not convinced, but please practice caution. The children of Apep' influence has long arms and has been known to manipulate not just average humans, but those of the supernatural world as well. Per your request, I'll be sending you several volumes to work on. I'm also going to include several items I've collected over the years for protection. Instructions will be included with the package. I don't want anything to happen to you while you're completing your translations. Keep this in strictest confidence; trust nobody. They can invade the mind and body of those closest to you. Good luck; let me know if you need any further assistance on my part.


Respectfully.

DHB


Last edited by Scipio Zelin on Wed Mar 23, 2011 12:51 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:49 pm

Subject:
From: urrobouros03@ mail.com
To: Scipio Zelin

Scipio,

I do appreciate your father's respect for Roman history, however misguided. I would imagine by now you're very familiar with your namesake. The great general, statesman, conqueror of Africa, the only man to face Hannibal Barca and defeat him. He's partly responsible for turning the Roman republic into the world power it came to be. At first glance, you wouldn't think of him as force for destruction of the Roman way of life. Not until you looked below the surface, examined his influence on the brothers Gracchi would you have an inkling of what corrosive thought can do to society. While the collapse of governments seems to happen over night in many cases, if you dig deeper, you will find decay seeping in from many different, oft times seemingly harmless sources.

I think you've seen enough now to know that there are no coincidences. All is according to plan and fate is just another one of the pretty little lies bestowed on us by those pulling the strings. Are you finally starting to realize you've been drawn to Ravenhurst for a reason? That free will is an illusion and you will perform as instructed? The sooner you realize this and pull back the curtain, the sooner you can experience true freedom.

You are on the right path, but you must walk it alone. I cannot tell you who I am, but in time, you will understand why. Just know that I will be beside you all along the way, in the shadows. Only through darkness will you see the light.

O


P.S. Are the dreams getting worse? Do not fight them. You will only delay the invevitable.



------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Fw:
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Xomar Mycron



Looks at this email I just received. Do you think this is a prank of some sort? I'm really starting to feel like I'm being watched. Is there any way to trace this email to find out where it came from? I never should have come here; I'm not closer to finding Susan and now...now this. I haven't slept very much lately; it must be getting to me.

That Beckford fellow sent me a package the other day with several more volumes as well as some very curious items. Supposed to protect me from the boogey man, I suppose. Have you found out anything else about this fellow, yet? I'm sorry about bothering you with all my problems, but I'm not sure who else I could talk to. You might be the only person in the world that I can trust now. Let me know how the settlement is proceeding and if you need me to talk to Vic again.

Sincerely,

Skip





------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Re: Fw:
From: Xomar Mycron
To: Scipio Zelin



Jesus, old man-where do you find these people? your assistant professor, the certifiably insane book collector, now this? you have more nutcases in your orbit than an episode of jerry springer. you don't sound so good yourself. have you tried ambien? that stuff works pretty good.

as far as tracing your email goes, no. this isn't a movie where i can tap on the keyboard and locate your griefer in moments. just looking at the header i can see it's running through a webserver in asia which means the sender probably knows how to mask his location even if i were to try and dig into it. i wouldn't worry too much about the email-it's that beckford ass continuing to mess with your head. i know you've had a lot of weird shit happen to you these past weeks, but don't let it get to you. all jokes aside, you're one of the most levelheaded, sober minded men i know. don't let these tragedies turn you into howard hughes. it might be a good idea if you take a break from those books and, i don't know, watch the discovery channel or read a trashy novel. decompress, old man.

don't worry about my settlement-it's right on schedule, which means it'll take the rest of my natural life. if any conspiracy out there is real, it's the ones between all the lawyers and their mission to rob everyone of their time and money. i haven't found much out on beckford yet, but i have a couple calls out there. i'll let you know as soon as i hear something.

X
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:50 pm

Subject: Re:
From: Scipio Zelin
To: urrobouros03 @mail.com

I don't know who you really are, but if you expect me to believe what it seems you want me to believe; namely, that you represent this "mysterious" organization Liberi Apep, you'll have to do a little better than vague crackpot theories and a transparent email title that any freshman taking Religions of the World would understand. If you're trying to intimidate me, you're going to have to do better then this. I'll have you know this; if I find out you had anything to do with my friends or family, I'll come at you with everything I have. I may be just a harmless college professor in your mind, but I have the impressive resources of my family as well as contacts that you do not want to mess with.

Do not contact me again.

Skip


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject:
From: urrobouros03 @mail.com
To: Scipio Zelin

Scipio,

Well well, it appears there is a little bit of fire left in your belly, after all. Here I thought you were a broken down alcoholic who's done his best to drive away everyone he cares about in a pathetic display of self pity. Do not make idle threats. I know more about you than you could possibly ever know about me. I know what strings had to be pulled and what palms needed to be greased to make sure a Zelin wouldn't embarrass the family name with a felony DUI and manslaughter charges. I know about the domestic assault charge that was conveniently dismissed with anger management classes and wiped from the records.

Do not worry, Scipio, I'm not using these as threats. I'm being open and up front with you; we have all done things that we regret. This system of lies enforced upon us turns all into shadow puppets hiding our true nature from each other. I tell you these things because they are the truth and we have spent enough time hiding from the dark underbelly of our true existence. The truth will set you free, but it will be shocking, painful, horrific in nature. Many choose not to see the truth, but I'm optimistic in your case. You've experienced things that would make another man give up in life, yet you keep moving forward, albeit slowly. Your mind and senses may be as crippled by conventional thinking as your left leg, but you've shown a surprising ability to adapt in your twilight years.

I see you ignored my advice regarding the dreams. I think you've gleaned enough from your research and that little encounter with the careless witch in your building. Yes, I know all about that as well. Trust me in that it wasn't very hard to find out; you gossip like a 12 year old girl. We will have to do something about that eventually, but for now, I think you know what must be done. Be honest with me as I have with you. Are the dreams solely about your daughter, or are they tinged with a desire for something else? You must have felt it by now, despite everything you've ever learned telling you it was foolish and crazy. You've learned how to crawl, now you must learn how to walk. I'll be waiting on the other side, for despite your protestations, I know you won't stop until you know everything. I look forward to our next exchange.

O


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Search
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Xomar Mycron


Hello my boy,

Thank you for your concern. This mystery person seems to know far more about me than anyone should. Perhaps they will tip their hand at some point; for now, I'll just play along. I know I've already asked for too much, but I've been in contact with one of the deputies in town. She seems to be taking this much more seriously, yet seems to have way more experience than your average small town cop, not to mention also being a foreigner. She's from France, although you'd never know it by the accent. According to her badge, her name is Kel Angelis, although I'm guessing Kel is short for something. She mentioned working in conjunction with the FBI among other things. Why would a small town like Ravenhurst be staffed with people who have so much experience? Is this a dumping ground for the witness protection program? There are far too many coincidences going on. I'm starting to sound like the conspiracy theorists I've been in contact with, aren't I? I hope all is well. I will let you know more when I find out.

Sincerely,

Skip
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:50 pm

Subject: Re: Search
From: Xomar Mycron
To: Scipio Zelin


another search on a random person in ravenhurst? Oh sure, i'm sure my contacts at the Pentagon have nothing better than to investigate every random person you encounter. is there a particular shop keeper giving you the eye? how bout the janitor? actually, the info that turned up on your sheriff sort of hit some red flags for me so i was already checking out the two listed deputies i was able to turn up. it seems there was inquiry into one of them-a reen nyoki. the alameda police department was sending out some feelers-no official missing persons report has been filed just yet. the other one that you asked me about is even more interesting than the sheriff. almost everything she's been involved in is classified which means she's most likely a spook. what the hell she would be hanging around a cow town like ravenhurst is anyone's guess. you basically have a man involved with the sas and a spy pretending to be roscoe p. coltrane and deputy enos in hazard county. that kind of shit doesn't happen by accident.

oh, i wanted to share some good news. the bitch wants to get remarried to some inbred blueblood so they're finally agreeing to the settlement! (sorry about calling your niece a bitch. even if its true.) anyways, i should be done with the lawyers soon enough. are you ready for a real vacation yet? let law enforcement do it's job-your emails are starting to scare me, old man. i need to get you out of that place, pronto. how about vancouver? i keep hearing how great vancouver is. just think about it, alright?

X


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Re: Progress
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Dewitt H. Beckford


Mr. Beckford,

You'll find the remaining pages from the volume attached for your perusal. I've begun work on what appears to be the first volume of these printings; the first several pages appear to be some sort of table of contents for the entire set. I've attached those as well. I'm extremely interested in the contents of volume 9, Ancient Book of Formulas; see if you can move that up to the top of the queue for my work.

I'd like to broach another subject with you, if you don't mind. I know I've been highly skeptical and boarding on insulting towards the idea of magic in the natural world. Still, I've seen things that, well, let's just say may have opened my mind a crack. The subject I'd like to pick your brain about is about these magic users themselves. First off, can anybody utilize witchcraft with enough practice and knowledge, or is it genetic, passed down through generations? If the latter, how is it one would even know they were capable of such skills? I've read up on this source you've discussed before and it seems as though there are many of these lines spread across the globe. Has anyone taken time to map them? Are you aware of any within the continental United States? What happens when a latent magic user comes in contact with one of these source points?

I like forward to furthering our discussion.

Sincerely,

Skip



------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Re: Re: Progress
From: Dewitt H. Beckford
To: Scipio Zelin


Dr. Zelin,

I'm delighted you're starting to take a much broader world view and I'd be most happy to answer your questions as best I can. As I can attest, not everyone can perform magic. From all that I've been able to gather, it seems that the ability to tap into the source seems to be in line with certain families. Whether that is because they are able to easily identify and recruit those with the innate gift or because of genetics, I cannot say. I have heard tales of certain artifacts which could help someone not inclined to the practice to achieve some measure of skill. Nothing in all my research has produced any evidence of this, however. It does seem most likely that this is a mutation passed down generation to generation. As far as someone with this ability actually utilizing it? Well, from what I understand, the modern day covens do their best to actively seek out these people and recruit them into their ranks in order to keep them from injuring themselves and potentially others. However, many manage to never activate this latent talent and can live their entire lives without experiencing anything of the like. I would imagine certain experiences in the subjects life would jump start the ability. There is the other theory that the lines of sources that I've discussed actively draw these people to them, like a moth to the flame. Some believe the source itself is a self aware being and utilizes these magic users for it's own purposes. Personally, I think it just is; much like digging oil out from the ground. It's a tool to be used accordingly.

As far as locations of these source lines, well, there has been some study on it but nothing definitive. You see, the lines seem to drift over time, much like the continents themselves. 5,000 years ago, a strong source line was located right where the great pyramid is. From what I've been told, it's drifted further out into the desert and seems to have been swallowed by time. There are certain famous locations, but I imagine this question is a leading one. You want to know if there happens to be one in Ravenhurst, do you not? I can't say it's definitive, but Ravenhurst has been home to many supernatural occurrences and is supposed to be the home of one of the oldest, continuous covens in North America. As observant as you are, I imagine you've seen some strange things while you've been there. However, I would warn you once again to be careful; witches are one of the least dangerous groups that I'm aware of in that location. I will leave it at that, but I would like to know if you are using the items I sent you? I would feel much better about your safety if you would.

I'll see if I can track down that 9th volume for you, but until then, keep them coming! You're helping bring to fruition 30 years of tireless work and will help expose a blight on humanity. Let me know if there's anything else I can provide to speed this along.


Respectfully,

DHB
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:50 pm



Subject: ETA on return??
From: Marta Gutmann
To: Scipio Zelin


Skippy dear,

I'm sorry I haven't checked up on you this past week. It's been crazy! One of my assistants passed away after a horrible car accident. Our department has been fraught with tragedy this past year. You were drawn away to look into poor Susan's disappearance, then Johnny suffering that breakdown, now this! I'm tempted to say things couldn't possibly get worse, but that's always bad karma.

How is the search progressing? Judging by your lack of communication, I'm guessing there has been no luck yet. I thought for sure she would turn up in Canada or some such place. You must send us an update. I'm dying to know what they've found so far.

By the way, Walter's already enormous head has grown at least three sizes since he's taken your chair as the head of the department. Everyone here has been asking about you and sending their prayers. Contact me soon, please.

Thank you,

Marta Gutmann
Professor
116 College Hall
University of Pennsylvania



------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



Subject: Re: ETA on return??
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Marta Gutmann


Marti,

I'm sorry to hear that. This wouldn't happen to have been Danny, would it? Listen, remember those pages I scanned over to you from that old book? I'm pretty sure it's a hoax; I've found sections of it copied and pasted from other sources. I wouldn't waste any more time with it if I were you.

As far as an update; I'm sorry Marti, there hasn't been much different than when I spoke to you. Several attempts to investigate sections of the area had been called off due to weather. However, this weekend is looking better and it appears the sheriff's office will be organizing a large search party with the local neighborhood watch and what looks to be a representative from the FBI. I'll hopefully have more news afterwards.

Well, Walter deserves it. I know he can be a bit stuffy and full of himself at times, but he's a fine, safe, choice for the department. A perfect counter to my questionable repuation as of late. Tell everyone I appreciate their well wishes. I should be back for a visit soon. Like you said, dinner on me.

Sincerely,


Skip



------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



Subject: Re: Re: ETA on return??
From: Marta Gutmann
To: Scipio Zelin


I'm sorry dear, what book are you referring to? The last book I received from you was that charming little edition of Society and Solitude for my birthday back in November. Did I miss something? I checked my older emails, but I can't find anything with an attachment. Are you sure you sent it to me?

I'll be sure to be pleasant to Walter, don't worry about that. Please let us know how the investigation proceeds this weekend. Karl and I are staying in, so we should be at home. Even if they don't find anything, please give us a call. It seems like ages since spoke.

Thank you,

Marta Gutmann
Professor
116 College Hall
University of Pennsylvania




------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Hello
From: Victor Zelin
To: Scipio Zelin


I know we've had our differences these past couple years, but I'm going to be the bigger man and apologize for how things have turned out. I know losing Lillith was especially difficult for you. While I don't condone most of the things you've done since then, I do forgive you. I still hope Susan will turn up, but I know how these cases generally turn out. I'm sure you're starting to feel like Job, but I am proud that you've managed to kick your habit and stay dry this past year.

Anyways, ma wouldn't have wanted us to keep feuding like this. I let my son in law off the hook like you wanted, but also because life is just too short to waste on petty problems like this. I just want my little girl to be happy, like I know you always wanted for Susan. Let me know when you're back in town. We should sit down and talk about a few things.

Vic
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:51 pm

Subject: Re:
From: Scipio Zelin
To: urrobouros03 @mail.com

I am at an obvious disadvantage as you know everything about me and I nothing about you. I'm sure you'll next bring up the algebra test I cheated on off of Molly Winter's paper back in Middle School. I'm sure you'll continue your little mind games until I see the light, as it were, by dragging me through the sewer that is my past. What I really want to know is, how long have you known that I was capable of magic? I ask because I feel as though this whole trip to Ravenhurst was preordained by your organization. That you have been a part of every last detail that has drawn me into this web of insanity that I now find myself in. As you've said so succinctly before; there are no coincidences. Why did Susan have to be brought in? How could I possibly trust you when you've taken the one thing that I care more about in the entire world?

Skip


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject:
From: urrobouros03 @mail.com
To: Scipio Zelin

Scipio,

I must say that I am impressed you've adjusted as quickly as you have. Then again, with your addictive personality, the power and opportunity of such a skill as you've discovered most likely has kindled long lost ability and promise that you once showed when you were younger. I'm going to assume it is also this new self absorption that keeps your very impressive deductive abilities from realizing the truth of the situation. You were never the candidate we were seeking. You're old, set in your ways, a conventional thinker and closed minded, stuck in your level of comfort. You were approached years ago, but you rejected the organization's advances so thoroughly that we've never even considered you since. No, my friend, you were barely on the radar as a backup; a plan B to the one that we were actively recruiting. It was always your daughter, Susan.

She was the perfect candidate. She was youthful, clever minded, she had your pedigree of magic users in the family, attractive, and had all your family's resources at her fingertips. Why would we ever want to recruit an old, broken down, shadow of a man who cracked the first time his perfect little life didn't go his way? The truth hurts, but then, you already knew that. After your accident, she had her first experience with the source and her potential powers. We began to follow her progress and started up our contact with her. Had you paid as much attention to her interests as you did in the bottom of your bottle of vodka, you might have noticed her interests shift to the supernatural shortly after you were released from the hospital. She was a tough sell on our goals, however. Still believed in humanity as presently constructed. Or, perhaps more specifically, still had faith in a father who was everything to her. That all changed that night 2 years ago. You remember it, I'm sure. The drunken argument, the tumble down the stairs. How many stitches did she need? No matter, we need not revisit such a painful memory for you. The entrance to Stanford was the perfect excuse for her to cut off all ties with you and devote herself to our cause. We're all very disappointed that she was thwarted in her journey to access a much more powerful source. Of course, had she not disappeared, you never would have made the trip, would you? I suppose there really are no coincidences in this world. The divinations said you would be useful, despite all appearances to the contrary.

Continue your journey, my friend. I don't expect you to trust me just yet, but you will come to see the corruption in the secretive, hidden world soon enough.

O
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:51 pm


________________________________________
Subject: Re: Hello
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Victor Zelin

Vic,

It certainly takes a big man to not apologize about something. Well, after you've ignored all attempts to contact you as per my AA instructions, I suppose I'm supposed to be thrilled that you were kind enough to grace me with contact of sorts. I truly do regret many of the things I did when I wasn't sober, although, I frankly don't give a shit how it affected you or the family.

I'm glad to hear that the divorce is final between your daughter and Xomar; I wish her happiness in her new relationship. Much more than she experienced these previous years. I also begrudgingly thank you for your offer of condolences for Susan, before we even know what happened to her. It's nice you're staying positive for your own niece, you asshole. I'll be sure and sit down with you soon enough; we can make a giant snowman in hell.

Skip


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



Subject: Re: Re: Hello
From: Victor Zelin
To: Scipio Zelin


That was just unnecessary. I extended an olive branch and you slapped my hand away. I really am sorry about what's happened with Susan and I want to help in any way I can. Frankly, I'm insulted that you're treating me this way after I covered up your various run ins with the law. Do you have no appreciation for what I did to keep you out of jail and on the front page of every newspaper in on the east coast? If you don't wish to contact me, that's fine. However, your niece is still found of you and she asked that we bury the hatchet. I'll leave it up to you. I'm here if you need anything.

Vic




------------------------------------------------------------------------------------




Subject: Re: Re: Re: Hello
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Victor Zelin


Did she ask you to bury that hatchet in my back like you normally do? Frankly, I'd like to slap more than your hand, starting with your grotesque, fat face. I'm sure you kept me out of the papers solely for my own benefit and not to minimize the damage from a senate run; nice lot of good that did for you, anyways. If you want to do some good, go light a candle at the next mass; I'm sure Susan would appreciate it.

Skip
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:51 pm



Subject: Re: Re: Search
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Xomar Mycron

Strange; I haven't heard any missing persons discussed about that deputy you mention. According to Kel, the other deputy, Reen Nyoki is supposed to be off hiking with his girlfriend. I should probably follow up and see when he is due back. If there is someone dangerous on the loose in Ravenhurst, wandering the forest seems like a very poor idea.

I can definitively say there is something strange going on here; I've found out some things that I never would have believed before I arrived. The two sisters that run the crystal shop in town have been very helpful on this front. I would tell you more, but I'm just not in the mood for your usual round of tasteless jokes.

I will mention that just staying in my room hasn't seemed to keep me out of danger as of late. Twice this week, the inn was broken into. The first was a tattooed mess of a girl who was attempting to rob the owner of the establishment. I'm told she had been sent to a sanitarium last year and may have escaped. The second involved a young man armed with a rifle and what seemed to be suicidal tendencies arguing with another stranger in our front lobby. I'm considering finding another place of residence while I wait for the investigation to finish up. The sheriff's office has been of no help; either with these incidents or Susan's disappearance, really. They still haven't been able to organize a proper search party.

As far as my paranoia towards dark conspiracies go, have you had a talk with Marti lately? She had an assistant die in a mysterious car accident and now supposedly has no knowledge of the book I had asked her to look into weeks ago. That makes three separate incidents surrounding my original inquiries; at some point, coincidence is just not a possibility.

I'm getting very tired of all of this. I think a vacation from my present vacation isn't a bad idea, although some place warm sounds far more appealing at this point. When were you last in Hawaii?


Sincerely,

Skip


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Re: Re: Re: Search
From: Xomar Mycron
To: Scipio Zelin

hawaii, old man? now we're talking! i should be finished up with everything in another couple of weeks and then we can hit the surf. well, i can hit the surf and you can sit there in your black socks and sandals sipping on a girly drink with your nose covered in lotion.

i can't see how i could have been tempted to make tasteless jokes about you spending time with two young, nubile, free-spirit type women they probably just want you to donate money to their cult. word of advice-if they offer you koolaid, just say no.

i'll call marti today-that is definitely suspicious. i think that paranoia is contagious. i would have bet anything i've had a tail this week, but i haven't been able to pin anything down. this shit going down in your inn is not good. so much for sleepy towns being more safe than the big city. since i know you'll ignore my plea to leave immediately, it's about time i send you a care package for anything that may go bump in the night.

any word from your mysterious stalker lately?

X



------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Will
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Jeremy Shapiro

Jeremy,

I hope things are well. Would you please send over the most recent amended copy of my last will and testament? I think I lost it when my laptop went kaput and I may need to make some changes.

Sincerely,

Skip
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:52 pm

Subject: Call Me
From: Xomar Mycron
To: Scipio Zelin

hey old man-where the hell are you? i've been trying to call you for the past several days. did you forget how to operate your smart phone again? i can look into picking up one of those jitterbugs for you-i hear the big number keys are less confusing for old timers. seriously, what's going on? you start talking about people breaking into your hotel and then don't contact me for days on end?

i have some other news that you're probably not gonna want to hear. i looked into that auto accident of marti's assistant and it's not good. according to eye witnesses, the car swerved off the road and hit a tree, then burst into flames. it wasn't even a pinto. he didn't have a little rice burner with nitro or anything, nor was he transporting napalm in the front seat, so that shouldn't have been possible. the accident report seems to blame faulty wiring and a leaking fuel line, but you can color me skeptical. if my toaster blows up in my face i'm holding you and your foolish investigation responsible. even weirder, marti didn't remember getting any sort of book from you and played dumb. what the hell is in that thing?

since it's been nothing but good news, here's some more. you remember reen nyoki, the 'hiking' deputy?' according to my one of my west coast contacts, his folks are not buying whatever story is being floated out there and are looking to go all nancy grace on your little cow town. he's not a young, beautiful blonde, but you might have another media circus your way soon enough. just don't get eaten by a bear or anything and give me a damn call.

X


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Re: Re: Re: Progress
From: Dewitt H. Beckford
To: Scipio Zelin


Dr. Zelin,

I hope all is well. It's been several days since our last conversation. Are you having any issues in the translations? I've left a message or two on your phone, but it seems to be going directly to voice mail at the moment. I imagine the cell towers may be having an issue, being such a small, out of the way, location. I do hope you are staying safe and have made use of the items I sent you.

I look forward to hearing from you to continue our discussions.

Respectfully,

DHB


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject:
From: urrobouros03 @mail.com
To: Scipio Zelin


Scipio,

I imagine things are getting a little frightening out there in Ravenhurst. I must admit, we didn't anticipate the timing of the fog you are trapped in the middle of. No matter; I'm sure this will speed up your inclusion into their little circle, should you survive, of course. I'm afraid I can't offer any information about the dangerous mist that seems to strike Ravenhurst every 3 or 4 generations; but I'm sure the existing coven there will illuminate you. Have they been as open and forthcoming as I have? Surely, they've told you everything by now. Good luck, my friend.

O
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:55 pm

Subject: Re: Call Me
From: Xomar Mycron
To: Scipio Zelin

now i'm starting to get worried. what's going on over there? the news seems to be some sort of giant storm of the century. i'm going to guess you've lost power-contact me when you get a chance.

X


------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: I'm glad I did, because this is the best PenisEnhancement product that I've ever had.
From: Ami Gwyneth
To: Scipio Zelin


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From Steve(client): 'If you are looking for a good penispill, this is for you'

http:/enlargefastscanda



------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Storm
From: Dewitt H. Beckford
To: Scipio Zelin

Dr. Zelin,

I see what is happening now. I understand you're in the middle of what appears to be a once in a lifetime supernatural event. I do hope you are alright; please contact me once it passes. I have so, so many questions about what is occurring there.

Respectfully,


DHB



------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


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From: Jaye Valeria
To: Scipio Zelin


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------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



Subject: Re: Will
From: Jeremy Shapiro
To: Scipio Zelin

Hey Skip,
Nice to hear from you. It's been a while. See attached for the will and send me the modifications. I'll go ahead and smooth them out as soon as I get them back. How is little Susie? We should catch up some time.

Thank you,

Jeremy Shaprio, Esq.
Rendel, Shapiro, and Sharp



------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Re: Hello
From: Victor Zelin
To: Scipio Zelin

I am hearing from my son-in-law that you're stuck in the middle of some sort of storm. I hope you're safe. We didn't finish our discussion yet and I really do want to continue our dialogue. Please give me a call when you're able. We have much to go over.

Vic



------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



Subject: Branded watches can make a life more modish.. See others being jealous of you when you wear exclusive watches.
From: Effie Bliss
To: Scipio Zelin

Once you buy a copy of a branded watch, you will look cool.. Discounts on all branded accessories, hurry up to get some for you.

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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:56 pm

Subject: Re: Re: Call Me
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Xomar Mycron

I hope I managed to alleviate your fears regarding my nearly tragic fate with the message I left for you. Needless to say, rumors of my death are greatly exaggerated. Sadly to say, that is not the case for many in Ravenhurst over this past week. You wouldn't believe me if I told you the things that transpired, but at least accept the body count. They just towed in an empty bus last night; empty if you discount the large pooling blood stains.

I'm not sure if all carnage will increase or decrease the odds of getting a proper search party to find my daughter and her two friends. I would imagine there will be more families than mine in search of a missing relative when all is said and done. I only fear the inevitable media circus that will most likely descend on this small fishing town once again. I don't fear much for myself anymore; it's more on what a collection of sharks like that will discover about this town that is so unsettling. If the news on this Nyoki boy is correct as well, it will only increase the feeding frenzy.

I can't say I'm surprised about Marti's curious researcher, considering the events that have unfolded out there. I think it might be best if you cease your investigations into these events. I can't imagine anything good coming out of them at this point. The storm did a number on my room and the book that's caused all these problems has vanished. Maybe it's just as well; all it brought was death and destruction.

Give me a ring when you get the chance.

Sincerely,

Skip



------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Re: Storm
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Dewitt H. Beckford

Mr. Beckford,

As you're aware, I had many pressing items on my plate this past week and have been unable to make too much progress on the recent books that have come my way. However, I will send you the 5 pages I finished before everything went to hell. Literally. Also, should my friend Xomar Mycron contact you again, please do not discuss our arrangement. I'm sure you're aware he was investigating you; that was from my prompting. I obviously had reservations working with a man I hardly know, but you've been startlingly accurate in your observations thus far.

As far as the incident that just occurred, I would be happy to discuss it with you. I hope I may be able to gain some insight into some of the things that are still confusing to me. I don't believe they've fixed the string between the two cans that acts as a phone system in this town, but the cell tower seems to be working again. Feel free to give me a call when you have a moment.

Sincerely,


Skip



------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Re: Re: Hello
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Victor Zelin


I'm not going to sit on hold while you act important. I'm assuming this is about the shares in the family company. Don't you worry; I'm updating the will this week to reflect the potential that Susan is-- I'm hardly a humanitarian; the company will not be split up should I kick the bucket. I've always respected father's legacy; while we never really got along after the wedding, I'm not as spiteful as you may imagine. I'll have Jeremy send you a copy when it's signed and notarized. If you need to actually talk to me about something that doesn't involve your bottom line, you have my number.

Skip
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PostSubject: Re: Skip's Inbox   Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:56 pm

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------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Re: Re: Re: Call Me
From: Xomar Mycron
To: Scipio Zelin

hey old man-it was good to hear you're well. at least as well as a broken down, chain smoking wreck can be. i think i actually heard a semblance of emotion when i told vic about the storm you went through. don't worry about me in my investigations-i know what i'm doing. i still think something very dangerous is happening and i don't want to read about you dying in a tragic massage parlor fire. i think i'm on to something-i'll let you know when i have more info.

we missed you on opening day at yankee stadium. i tried using the program to keep score for you, but gave up halfway though. i have no idea how you do that shit-it's boring as hell. unfortunately, the evil empire won. i still have hope they'll crash and burn this year with no pitching.

have you received that package i sent to you last week? i know there were problems, but wtf? i sent it federal express, not pony express. let me know if it made it to your lock box.

X




------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



Subject: Re: Re: Re: Re: Call Me
From: Scipio Zelin
To: Xomar Mycron

It's good to hear from you as well, my boy. I doubt you saw any empathy in my brother; it was probably something he ate. I haven't seen him express a human emotion since the Carter administration. Truth be told, he was worried about the stock options I have in ZDT Inc. and whether I'd get eaten by a bear before I had a chance to make sure they stay in the family.

I wish you would leave well enough alone. This investigation was a mistake; I should have just concentrated on assisting the authorities with locating Susan. On that note, I believe the authorities will be doing an island wide sweep leaving no stone unturned. I really hope this will be over, one way or another.

I have not had a chance to head down to the post office this week, but I will do so this afternoon. Should I even ask how you not only knew I had a P.O. box, but also knew the correct one to send it to? The way you happen to 'find out' things is a little spooky, you know.

P.S. Go Yankees. That is all.

Sincerely,

Skip




------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Subject: Re: Re: Re: Re: Call Me
From: Xomar Mycron
To: Scipio Zelin

i told you, gramps-it's what i do. it wasn't that hard to find out. all i did was call the ravenhurst post office and ask what box was owned by the wrinkled, argyle obsessed chain smoker with the justin bieber haircut stay out of trouble and let the professionals conduct their search.

X
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