Ch2-01 Like a candle in the wind.

A chance occurrence in London's Heathrow Airport leads to a desperate search to find answers to terrible lost knowledge.

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Ch2-01 Like a candle in the wind.

Postby ghill » Sun Mar 10, 2013 10:48 am

The brutal death of Professor Adrian C. Gosshamm, Chair of Eastern European Studies at Brichester University makes national television and newspapers. Several TV News programs show edited CCTV footage of the violent attack. The film footage show a gang of men armed with an assortment of meat cleavers, kitchen knives and machetes approaching the Professor in a pair of cars as he does some lunchtime shopping in Brichester* high street. The men park the cars by the side of the road before getting out and running towards him they do not hesitate but chop the professor down then calmly walking back to their cars and driving away. Both the press and TV talk about the gang members distinctive tattoos which are hauntingly familiar.

But there is no doubt that the leader of the gang is the same old man last scene fleeing from the burning house in Ealing from where the girls were rescued.

*Brichester, a provincial university town in SW England.

[spoiler-button]Who see this:,For Liz Clay and Jacob this is front page news for several days on the TV, radio and national newspapers so brazen is the attack. It would come up on any UK news feed should Greg be taking a passing interest in events in the UK.[/spoiler-button]
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Re: Ch2-1 Like a candle in the wind.

Postby Mr. Handy » Tue Mar 12, 2013 3:57 am

Image

Liz sees the news about Professor Gosshamm's murder online when she gets back from taking her last final of the semester, confident that she's aced it. She watches the video in shock and instantly recognizes the old man. Hurriedly, she composes an email with a link to the article and video and sends it to Greg, Jacob, and Clay. Then she starts searching online for whatever she can find out about Gosshamm. The link to Albania can't be a coincidence, she thinks.

Spoiler:
I presume Liz is fully healed now. Even without treatment, she's guaranteed to get back at least 1 HP per week, and she's only down two.
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Re: Ch2-1 Like a candle in the wind.

Postby ghill » Tue Mar 12, 2013 9:34 am

Spoiler:
At this point all injuries are healed, if not forgotten. In Liz's case time and fresh air soon heal any damage to her lungs beyond the occasional cough.


Spoiler:
Library Use please.
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Re: Ch2-1 Like a candle in the wind.

Postby Mr. Handy » Wed Mar 13, 2013 3:11 am

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Liz has no problem navigating cyberspace and uncovering the information she seeks.
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Re: Ch2-1 Like a candle in the wind.

Postby ghill » Wed Mar 13, 2013 12:08 pm

Liz finds the following about the Prof.

  1. "He is a prominent anthropologist, linguist and folklorist whose work has “mined the rich, often overlooked territory of the Balkans” specifically Albania."
  2. "Professor Gosshamm states his academic net is cast so wide he does not believe there is a single name for his field of study andhe claims to be a linguist, sociologist, anthropologist and an archaeologists"
  3. As a linguist, studying at Miskatonic University Professor Gosshamm started a long-time interest in the Ur-language, the idea of the hypothetical common ancestor of all the world's spoken languages.
  4. Professor Gosshamm is well known for his preference to carry out his studies in the field where the subjects of his studies are "flesh and blood".
Born on June 24, 1960, in Winchester by the time he was a young man, he was already deeply interested in the Balkans. He earned a bachelor’s degree in literature and anthropology from Kings College in 1981 and a Ph.D. in Anthropology from Miskatonic University in 1986.

Before joining the Brichester faculty, Professor Gosshamm taught at Harvard; the University of California, Berkeley; and the University of London. He was a past president of the European Anthropological Association.

NB: The following may already have been discovered by Greg during his trip to see the Prof
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Re: Ch2-1 Like a candle in the wind.

Postby royya » Wed Mar 13, 2013 9:23 pm

Jacob is clearly troubled by the news and the old man since that man is the one who shot him. A scar that will haunt him till the end of his life.
I assume Liz shares the info with us... so Jacob reply to the email.

Dear Greg, Liz and Clay,

Clearly the professor found something that agitated the Albanians and I must wonder if we might expect the same fate? I wonder what is this Ur-language? Is it ancient than Hebrew ?! We can look for more information about this.
I suggest to search for recent published articles of the professor and try to find unpublished works, maybe we can access his University office somehow, question his relatives and collegues.

regards,
Jacob

PS: I returned from my trip so we can meet for a calm kosher breakfast
Last edited by royya on Thu Mar 14, 2013 9:00 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Ch2-1 Like a candle in the wind.

Postby Mr. Handy » Thu Mar 14, 2013 3:31 am

Image

Liz forwards the information she has uncovered to the others and replies to the email:

"Dear Jacob, Greg, and Clay,

Whatever he found, it must be big. Otherwise the old man would have come after us first. This Ur-language sounds a lot like something out of Snow Crash, a brilliant book by Neal Stephenson. It could be whatever language people spoke before the Tower of Babel. For all we know, the Ur-Language is Hebrew. I've heard that the names of people in the book of Genesis have meanings in Hebrew, even the parts before the Tower of Babel.

I'll be there in the morning. I'm in Cambridge now, but London is just a short train ride away.

Cheers,
Liz"
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Re: Ch2-1 Like a candle in the wind.

Postby ghill » Mon Mar 18, 2013 9:55 am

Spoiler:
A simple library use produces a huge list of articles with regards the professor stretching back nearly 20 years. The vast majority of them relate to Balkans with the last 12-14 years work more focused on Albania. He doesn't look as though he has published anything of any weight in the last two years. Finding and working ones away through this catalogue of work will take a considerable time as very little of it is available online.
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Re: Ch2-1 Like a candle in the wind.

Postby ImpInTraining » Mon Mar 18, 2013 1:44 pm

Greg had been ignoring his phone, especially when he recognized the names of the texts he was getting. He wanted to forget all about what had transpired during his trip to England, push it all away and convince himself it was only a bad dream. But he remembered all too well the events of the recent past. Those were good people, and they didn't deserve to be ignored.

So one day ... he read them. The article of the dead professor didn't sit well with Greg at all. True, there was no new news about any more girls abducted. But so long as that organized unit of Albanian cultists were still around and active, it would only be a matter of time before they did get some more girls for their nefarious schemes.

Greg finally texted back with, "I met with his assistant before. I can try to arrange another meeting if you like."

Greg checked his balance of vacation time and the appointments he had in the upcoming month. Nothing seemed too pressing that it couldn't be postponed or handed off to another member of the staff.
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Re: Ch2-1 Like a candle in the wind.

Postby Mr. Handy » Tue Mar 19, 2013 5:32 am

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"Yes, I'd like that," Liz replies.
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Re: Ch2-1 Like a candle in the wind.

Postby ghill » Tue Mar 19, 2013 12:32 pm

Spoiler:
What reason/excuse is Greg going to use to try and arrange a meeting? Persuade roll please
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Re: Ch2-1 Like a candle in the wind.

Postby ImpInTraining » Tue Mar 19, 2013 2:07 pm

Greg responds back to Liz, "Send all pictures you have regarding our case studies on the tattoos we encountered. You might also want to research Professor Gossham's recent lectures. He was supposed to have some sort of speech set up a week after I spoke with him. Could be something he said that incited the Verbetoi's anger."

Greg then digs out the contact information that John had given him in their brief meeting. He sends a quick email,

"Sorry - been delayed. Regarding the verbetoi tattoo study, I hope it's not too late to get your feedback on it. If it is possible, we'd like to arrange a meeting after you have had a chance to look at the attached images.

Dr. Greg Hammer"


He attached the files that Liz provided.

He made himself a pot of coffee, checked what hour it was in England, and then gave the man a call on the phone if he hadn't responded immediately.

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Re: Ch2-1 Like a candle in the wind.

Postby ghill » Tue Mar 19, 2013 3:13 pm

John Wheelsdown is a bit surprised to receive Greg's call and while he protests that his world is a bit of a mess at the moment due to the professor's death, agrees to look at the pictures and meet Greg later in the week.
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Re: Ch2-1 Like a candle in the wind.

Postby Mr. Handy » Wed Mar 20, 2013 5:20 am

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Liz collects and organizes her research, then forwards it and the pictures to Greg. "Here you go," she replies. "I suppose this makes me your research assistant." She looks into the most recent materials that Gossham has published and any lectures he has given lately, starting online and then visiting the library.
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Re: Ch2-1 Like a candle in the wind.

Postby ghill » Wed Mar 20, 2013 11:41 am

As already mentioned it doesn't look as though he has published anything of any weight in the last two years. There are only a couple of recent pieces in public journals they are short articles on languages and dialects considering the time between articles and their brevity, one might think the professor was simply doing the minimum to meet his tenure requirements.

In addition Liz finds wastes several hours watching a couple of youtube videos of the professor's lectures which are both funny and amusing, the professor is supposedly giving a lecture on the living spoken languages and dialects of Albania he clearly knows his stuff but is constantly and perhaps willingly side tracked by his students into telling anecdotes about his extensive travel in the region.

Spoiler:
Listen roll
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Re: Ch2-1 Like a candle in the wind.

Postby Mr. Handy » Thu Mar 21, 2013 3:52 am

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Liz forwards the links to the others and watches the videos, but she doesn't notice anything relevant. It's a real shame he was murdered, she thinks. I would have liked to meet him. He was a lot more interesting and entertaining than most of my professors.
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Re: Ch2-1 Like a candle in the wind.

Postby ImpInTraining » Thu Mar 21, 2013 3:11 pm

Greg started putting in for his vacation time with his hospital and rearranging his schedule. He booked a flight to England and informed the others of his arrival time. After that, he started searching for recent lectures of the professor and turned to YouTube as well. Unfortunately, he found it rather boring and dozed during most of it.

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Re: Ch2-1 Like a candle in the wind.

Postby ghill » Sun Mar 24, 2013 1:29 pm

Spoiler:
Consider that Greg has now flown to the UK and can act accordingly.
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Re: Ch2-1 Like a candle in the wind.

Postby ImpInTraining » Mon Mar 25, 2013 1:52 pm

Greg wasted no time at the airport. He avoided talking to all strangers while there. He didn't even stop to get a cup of coffee. In record time after the plane landed, Greg managed to secure his baggage and stand on the curb outside where he dialed up Liz. "I'm at the airport. Where should I meet you?"
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Re: Ch2-1 Like a candle in the wind.

Postby Mr. Handy » Tue Mar 26, 2013 4:34 am

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"We're meeting at Jacob's place," replies Liz. "Do you still have the address?"
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