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1856, London: The specimen-collecting craze is growing, and discoveries in far-off jungles are reshaping the known world. When the glamorous Lady Bessingham is found murdered, surrounded by her vast collection of fossils and tribal masks, Professor Adolphus Hatton and his morgue assistant Albert Roumande are called in to examine the crime scene - and the body.
In the new and suspicious world of forensics, Hatton and Roumande are the best. But the crime scene is not confined to one room. In their efforts to help the infamous Scotland Yard detective Inspector Adams track down the Lady's killer, Hatton and Roumande uncover a trail of murders connected to a packet of seditious letters that, if published, would change the face of society and religion irrevocably.
perhaps? We have a fine Manzanilla.’ Hatton smiled and said Manzanilla sounded exactly right for this weather. ‘I have been up all night again, so please forgive my not making an appointment with you, Mr Broderig, but I have come on spec. I think you might be able to help me.’ ‘Not at all, Professor. Please, sit by the fire. I’ve been up all night myself, because my mind is so restless here in London. There’s a great deal of administration, when death comes. But forgive me, as you can see, I’m
followed the group of Dayaks to their village. And what became apparent was that though he has not said so, I believe Mr Ackerman has been here before. The village heads shook his hand firmly and nodded to him as if there was already some agreement. If this is the case, Katherine, how odd of him not to mention it. I saw him just an hour ago, handing out cigars to a number of local tribesmen and laughing together like they were old friends. It is the first time I have seen Ackerman share anything,
Eagle-eyed, seizing on every detail. They discussed the rapture of dissection, telling their own different stories. Hatton in relation to time, death, injury. Truth lit by microscope and lamp, tested, tagged, and concluded. Hatton felt more at home as he said, ‘My work is a burgeoning science, which unfolds the truth about men.’ Hatton poured another glass and offered one to Broderig. ‘We understand each other, Professor. Botany tells us similar truths. Truths about our world. In Borneo, I
a start.’ ‘What about Mr Broderig, Inspector? Should we check on him, or at least tell him what we’re doing?’ Hatton guessed where his friend might be and felt bad simply leaving him. But Adams was insistent, saying, ‘He’ll be at The Eagle, perfectly happy. I’ll send word for him to wait for us there. He’s had enough shock for a lad of his age. A week or more, you reckon? To stuff a man like that?’ Hatton nodded, knowing where this was leading. A week or more. Finch had been the first.
Hatton had arrived covered in a layer of snow, having walked from the docks, and after telling Roumande all that he knew so far on the case, said he would take just forty winks to restore himself. That had been several hours ago, and Roumande had kept the fire well stoked and lain a tartan blanket over the Professor, which they kept for nights like this. Roumande knew it wouldn’t be one of their collectors at this hour. They usually arrived at St Bart’s just before dawn, their carts laden down,