3rd Rail Press – Kujira’s Lament Chapter 5_12 Jan 2020

Kujira’s Lament©
An Original Work of Fiction
By David G. Yurth

Draft: Nov. 18, 2012
© 2012 David G. Yurth
All Rights Reserved Holladay, Utah USA

Five

Eric spent more than two hours reading through the stack of files piled up on the coffee table. There were twenty-seven files altogether, one for each of the Sküvoy victims, a file for the intel follow-up at the village, several medical evaluation reports on the victims and the villagers, a detailed list of all the media people who had visited the island, and file from the Kujira analysis group. After four days of intensive information gathering and analysis, several things remained unknown. He made a bullet list on the yellow pad while he thought about it.

* No idea who did it * No physical clues discovered at the site * No recall by any of the victims

This last point really bothered him. None of the victims were apparently aware that anything had happened to them until they woke up in the Türshavn Hospital several hours later. He made a note to himself to check with the medical assessment team to see if any of the victims reported experiencing any peculiar dreams after the event. Something else about this case didn’t make sense. No messages had been received from anyone claiming responsibility for the event. “Terrorists are such egotistical bastards,” he said to himself. “They can’t resist the urge to draw attention to themselves. This was clearly not an act performed by anyone who fit the conventional mold of a terrorist.”

Eric had watched hours of interviews and listened to more hours of audio recordings. He did not find what he was looking for. No one slipped up. No one inadvertently gave away any crucial information that suggested this might be the work of disaffected villagers. There was no scent of a feud in the village other than the normal generational stuff. None of the medical reports suggested that any of the villagers might be psychotic or wildly sociopathic or deranged in some detectable way.

Once in awhile, more as the result of in-breeding than anything else, small isolated communities were seen to sometimes go through periods of social readjustment. The dynamics of small communities operate in much the same way as the human immune system. When the system gets out of balance, it auto-corrects by ostracizing or in some other way eliminating the cause of the irritation. The fact that life in a small, totally isolated village is always difficult under the best of circumstances leaves little room for stupid, non-essential behaviors. A little violence, sometimes too much drink, over-active hormones under a full moon occasionally result in short-lived conflicts but those things usually work themselves out. There was nothing in any of the files or videos to suggest that anything deviant was at work among the indigenous population.

Yet, there it was. “Perhaps,” he mused, “the best answers are to be found in what is not seen in the files or forensic evidence.” He began by assessing what was not evident. Again, the punch list began to grow as he ruminated his way through the files one more time. The bullets came in no particular order. He simply wrote them on his lined yellow pad as they came to him.

* No residue of any kind * No physical evidence of overt incursion * No identifiable un-sub fingerprints * No bruises on the bodies of the S-19’s * No gas residue on the vegetation or surrounding structures * No radiation above ambient * No skid or slide marks in the houses * No skid or slide marks leading from the houses to the square * No evidence of physical tampering with the cell tower * No recorded radar sightings from Türshavn, Iceland, or Norway tracking centers * No eye-satt images. * No evidence of submarine activity in the area * No evidence of boats that did not belong * No suspicious incoming or out-going cell phone calls * No unaccounted strangers visited the island within 90 days * National Geographic’s photographic mission was vetted and cleared * No unusual activity among regular suppliers of essentials, mail, etc. * No word from NSA or Intel’s ref: email or internet traffic to/ from Sküvoy. How long before we get a report? * What else? What have I missed?

Eric dropped his pen on the coffee table, selected a quick-dial number on his cell phone and waited for an answer. When it did not connect, he turned it off without leaving a message and put the phone down. The instant he did, it rang.

“Rollande,” he said.

“Eric, sorry I missed your call. Been expecting it.”

“What do you have for me?”

After a soft cough, the voice continued. “This is a tough one. We have almost nothing to go on.”

“I know,” Eric said. “I’ve been through this stack of files half a dozen times and I can’t see a damned thing that really helps us, at least nothing obvious.”

“Couple of things,” Burstyn said. “We took the cell phone repeater off the tower and replaced it. We also retrieved the processors from the vault. The packet transport record shows that everything was working perfectly until they stopped working at 11:46 PM.”

“So, that’s when it began. 11:46. Sunrise was what? 0530 or 0600?”

“No. They’re much further north than that. Closer to 0345.”

“Okay, that gave them three full hours to pull this off.”

“The IC’s in the repeaters are fried. Not just non-functional but literally melted from the inside out.”

“No way! What can do that?”

“Dunno. Never seen anything quite like it outside a nuclear test site.”

“Okay, let’s get MI-5 and DARPA on this. Maybe they have something in their box of black magic that could do this.”

“Hmmm,” Burstyn mused. “You know, there was no distortion of the repeater casing. No scorching or melting or evidence of any kind of physical tampering.”

“What is the case made of?”

“This one is made of a special propylene composite. Supposed to be bomb-proof to the weather and totally transparent to cell phone signals.”

“Alright. Well, if you come up with anything else get back to me, okay? Thanks.” And with that Eric terminated the call. He put the phone down on the coffee table again and again it rang almost immediately.

“Rollande,” he said.

“Mr. Rollande? This is Dr. Demmus Joensen at the Türshavn Emergency Medical Center.”

“What can I do for you?”

“I have a note here in the patient file to call you directly at this number in the event anything unusual was observed in the behavior of the Sküvoy patients.”

“Go on, please.” Eric quickly retrieved his yellow pad and pen.

“I thought you might be interested to know that we’re having some difficulty with one of the Sküvoy victims.”

“Which one?” he asked. Goose flesh came up on his arms.

“Anika Sonnerstrom, age 10.”

“What is the problem?”

“She has refused to go back to the town. The Attending physician reports that she woke up during the night screaming. Apparently had a nightmare or a hallucination or something.”

“What is she telling you?”

Eric could hear the man shuffling through the papers in the patient’s file, searching for last night’s nursing notes. “Ah….here it is. She reported seeing people with huge eyes reaching out to grab her. She described them as shiny silver with big eyes. She said they talked in a language she did not understand.”

“Did they hurt her?” Eric asked.

“If they did, she didn’t say so.” A moment passed. “She also said she tried to speak but couldn’t. Said her body wouldn’t move. She could hear and see but couldn’t move her eyes. She’s been sedated but seems pretty agitated at the moment.”

“Keep an eye on her and let me know the instant you learn anything more, okay?”

“Certainly,” he said, and ended the call.