Sunday, November 26, 2006

Chapter 6.1 "The Nine"

Martin stared at the press release on his desk and held his head in his hands. Until now, the New Life venture was the best-kept secret on Wall Street. Today, NL would go public with the astounding news that they had successfully brought eight people back from the dead.

The eight men successfully resurrected were all founding members of the Ripley Cryogenics, a small company in San Francisco with incredible financial assets. Each of the men had bet their fortunes on the notion that frozen remains could someday be re-animated. And while the means were not what they had expected, tonight they would gather at a grand reception at the St. Francis hotel.

The implications of these developments shook Martin to his core. The zealots, doctors, the skeptics, and the press would soon rush into his world like a tidal wave. Martin realized he would soon be the face of New Life, as the friends of Mr. Ito wished to remain silent partners.

The mystery of the ninth founder troubled Martin as well. When Ito called with the news some six days prior, he seemed to note the failure of the ninth resurrection only as an afterthought.

"Some will not come back," he said, offhandedly.

The man's name was Kulduri, a Pakistani who had died in a skiing accident. He had been one of the first to invest in Ripley Cryogenics, and was widely renowned for hisphilanthropy.

What made Kulduri different? Was it his diet, age, or mode of death perhaps?

He had asked his man Culper to do some research. Just as Culper called, Martin saw that the press release had just hit the wire. It had begun.

"Martin? I was getting nowhere so I ran background check on all nine. I think... I think I found something."

"What is it?"

"Kulduri was a Muslim. All the others, Martin, they're Jewish."

"That's remarkable. Remember that video that Ito showed us at the Jewish cemetery in Prague?"

"I do, I did. Martin, that's the freaky thing. I got into the Internet archives of Josefov--all eight of these guys have family there."