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Iceland 1

Armand Zander

This is a blog post that was made by Rachel Blake on her blog So Their Tomorrow Never Comes on Wednesday, June 28, 2006.

Blog TextEdit

Well, looks like you guys kept yourself busy while I was en route to Iceland - a couple of you had the most interesting conversation following yesterday's post. Check it out:

UdonPaul331: I think Rachel is correct about Vigi Benoffski. I am from his home city, Kolobrzeg, in Poland. He teaches at the local University, and I happened to find this memo in my professor’s office:

Roughly translated, this says Benoffski was to appear at a mathematics symposium in Perth, Australia... I checked the dates - they overlap with the SAME DATE he died in that fire in Iceland. How is that possible?

KemicalRXN654321: It's not. Benoffski must have been lying.

UdonPaul331: So, you think the memo was a cover? For what, though? I guess if you think about it... the letter was typed. Anybody could have written it.

KemicalRXN654321: I wouldn't say just anybody.

Rachel: Well, there you have it. I knew there was more to this.


19.40 Anyway, Iceland.

This place is gorgeous. Can't help but wish I were here under different circumstances. Course, if Mittelwerk knew I was here because of him, bet he'd say the same thing.

I'm staying in Reykjavik, the capital. Today, I drove down to Vik, at the southern tip of the island, and headed over to the Vik Academy. The local police were there, as well as some reporters... and, of course, who did I see walking the grounds with the Vik Institute's director, Armand Zander?

GidgetGirl had it right. Thomas Werner Mittelwerk is here. And he's brought a few of his goons. (Think one of them's my iron victim?)

Waiting was tough, but once Mittelwerk left, I managed to convince Armand Zander to meet me at a local restaurant for a chat. Yeah, I may have bent the truth a tiny bit about who I am. But, you won't believe the stuff I found out.

Now, before you find and watch the VIDEO buried somewhere on the web, you'd better go ahead and refresh your memory of Zander's LETTER to Mittelwerk...

Because that letter is how I got Zander to talk.

Yeah. I know.

I'm sure you're right there with me in wondering... What have I gotten myself into?

Does anyone else feel like we've just taken a sharp ninety-degree turn?

I don't know what I was expecting, but I guess I was anticipating the words "ship" or "map" or "island" - or geez, ALVAR HANSO - to factor into what's happened at the Vik Institute.

Definitely not an enclave of world-renowned mathematicians.

I've emailed Zander - he seemed pretty spooked at the restaurant, but maybe he'll come around and give us something more to go on.

In the meantime, hit me with your comments. If you have even a CLUE as to why Mittelwerk would have these mathematicians hiding in a mental hospital, running some arcane equation through the brains of a bunch of autistic savants, post about it. And while you're at it - take a stab at the hieroglyphics.

Good hunting.


Video TranscriptEdit

Rachel Blake Post 001 Vik, Iceland.

Smile, you're on purse cam. I'm about to meet with Armand Zander, director of the Vik Institute, where that mathematician just happened to be visiting a mental patient. Wish me luck.

Armand: We are, of course, very strict about enforcing visiting hours, but mistakes do happen.

Rachel: I know that's the story you practiced, and it's convincing, but I'm not from the Times, Doctor.

Armand: I, uhh-- Who are you?

Rachel: Just a concerned citizen.

Armand: No, you have 3 seconds to come clean before I walk out.

Rachel: I read your letter.

Armand: What letter?

Rachel:The one to Mittelwerk, about the savants, the forced memory tests, the "third basement"? They've lied to you, they're lying to everyone, they don't want the world to know that Vigi Benoffski was at your institute, why!?

Armand: I can't talk to you..

Rachel: Listen, I might not be from the Times, but if you walk out that door, the people knocking at your door tomorrow, they will be!

Armand: I--I didn't know what I was getting into when I took this job.

Rachel: And what are you getting into?

Armand: You--You read my letter. The third basement, Miss Blake, it's not full of mental patients! They are mathe--mathematicians! Pulled from the world's finest, paid to come in, undercover, and work in secret, only I'm sure some of them don't want to be there. I don't know. They work day and night on this equation. And there's the savants.

Rachel: What about them?

Armand: These are autistic savants, Miss Blake, their computational powers are unsurpassed! They keep them in this room, it's comfortable, I've seen to that, first and foremost I am a doctor. But all day, they are running this equation over and over, over--

Rachel: What kind of equation is this?

Armand: It's like nothing I've seen. There are these--symbols. I asked one of the mathematicians, and he said they were representational.

Rachel: Representational of what?

Armand: I've always thought they looked like, Egyptian hieroglyphics. There are five, maybe six of them in there, and, it's a vulture, a staff, a--

Rachel: You need to show me them.

Armand: I've answered your questions, Miss Blake, now answer mine. Who are you? Why are you doing this?

Rachel: The answer to that is the reason that I can't tell you. Trust me, you're safer not knowing. Dr. Zander, while you still have a chance, get away from them.

Armand: (scoffs) There is no getting away from them. Haven't you realized that yet?


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