After a couple of rough days of realization about the murder of Jackson Elias and following leads that have led to some horrific realizations, Dr. Norman Addams, Jacques Tabarin Dupond, and Samuel Paletta spent a relaxing day at the hotel enjoying a fine meal and conversation. Monsieur Dupond was able to help the events of the past few days make a bit more sense. Mr. Paletta obviously had a drinking problem, because what he saw in the sewers was clearly an animal. Only in the shadows did it look human like. By resting, Monsieur Dupond took some time to read the papers and think. He read in the paper that Astronomers predicted that this coming Saturday was going to be a Solar Eclipse. This caused him to remember the occult significance of eclipses and that they revolve around cycles of nine. Some occults believe that after 9 life cycles there is a rebirth. After talking with Mr. Paletta realized that there have now been 9 murders by this mysterious cult in New York City.
At noon, our Investigators stand out in the cold and snow to listen to the service of Jackson Elias as he is laid to rest in his casket. The service is held by an Episcopalian minister of Seaman’s Church in Manhattan by the name of Lawrence T. O’Dell. He gives a moving sermon that begins with Psalm 13 and leads into some prepared thoughts that touch on Jackson Elias’s wanderlust, generosity of spirt, his ability to make friends with anyone even half way across the world, and his belief on the triumph of truth. A message that the Lord would have appreciated. He proclaims the small turnout that it was a true sign that although Elias may have died in NY his home was the world. Jonah Kensington then spoke a few words about his friendship with Elias and that it began many decades earlier when they were copyboys for the New York Observer.
The turn out was indeed small. Only the Investigators, Jonah Kensington along with a few employees from Prospero Press, a woman unfamiliar to all, and a Black man that obviously knew Mr. Kensington in at least a casual way. Jacques Tabarin Dupond talked to the woman (Jacqueline McMurry) to find out that she used to date Jackson Elias 3 years ago and that he just disappeared after about 6 months to never see him again. All she got were a few odd letters, none of which appeared to show any affection. Samuel Paletta saw that the Black man who he later finds out is named Carl Stopper, was talking to Mr. Kensington in a very familiar tone. Carl was at first a little hesitant to talk to Agent Paletta, but opened up once Mr. Kensington gave him some reassurance. Sam found out a few interesting things, that Carl got Elias out of a few jams over the years and contacted him the first part of January about needing his help. He went to meet Elias the night he was murder, but arrived after all the cops did. Carl knew that Jackson Elias wanted some information regarding some suspected cult behavior in Harlem. Carl Stopper knew of Mukunga, but though not too afraid to speak his name, knows he as a sinister reputation as a witch doctor or shaman for Africans in Harlem. Agent Paletta paid him some money to keep an eye on the JuJu House and report to him any findings.
Jacques Tabarin Dupond wrote up some notes and sent them off to Lady Margaret Pond in England. That afternoon he met Jacqueline McMurry for coffee. After some charm, she opened up a bit about her relationship with Jackson Elias. She started dating him in 1922 after his book The Black Power was published. Free from obsessions and having some cash, Mr. Elias settled down and enjoyed her company for 6 months or so. One night he exclaimed “They are alive!” while reading a newspaper. She saw him again a few more times before he just left. All she ever heard again from him were three letters. One of which says, “the night unlocked the doors to a great mystery” and the other “If I die, go to my funeral, you will meet people you need to know.” The latter letter was dated in November of 1924.