Graduation is Difficult...


It's the end of the school year again, the moment the senior students graduate. And I, too, have been trying to pass my exam assignment for quite some time. I also put a lot on Yoo.rs about this project called “Nutshell”. But that's not all that comes with this. In it I show the process and the things I make for it, but not the stress and other emotions that come with it... And that's what I want to talk to you about right now.

This is something I prefer not to talk about, but it is definitely something I should mention because sometimes I get the idea that a study is underestimated. Children/Students can sometimes get under a lot of stress and if this is not handled properly then this can have bad consequences. For example, I know a lot of people who have had a burnout that they have had to quit their education or that there is just so much stress because the deadlines are not attainable. But I'm not going to talk about the other students right now, but about myself...

How I was thrown out of school.

I am attending a two-year education, an associate degree in Design and Digital Media at the HKU in Utrecht. Now I have already trained in the media myself, but this was quite different. The teachers, supervisors and students not only look at what you can do... Because I can do and make a lot, so I always knew myself as a creative maker. So I can make video, animation, games and much more! Only I thought that I could and should do everything myself, in the end I was dropped out of school after my first year. This was because I was a bit all-knowing and arrogant, because of this I could not communicate well with other people because I saw myself above other people.

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UNCERTAINTY

Uncertainty, something I'm sure we've all had to deal with. Uncertain about the future, yourself, love, or success in your life. I can honestly admit that I have been uncertain about all this. I often had the uncertainty about this training and whether I could still succeed here. This would have been a real eye opener for me. That is why I have done everything I can to be able to follow this study again. And after a lot of effort, conversations, second chances and new appointments I succeeded.

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BREAKDOWN

I was able to return to the training with a month behind which I had to keep up with the current lessons and also to catch up with everything that was before. I also started asking for the help of a tutor to get everything on the same page. And so I've been walking with that uncertainty for a long time. During this time I also had some breakdowns and burst into tears. Because after a summer holiday of full work to come back, I finally got back to training and had to do twice as much work!

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TRANSFORMATION

And it was at this time, only in such a time of need that I started to realize how much help you can be and how happy I have to be if someone wants to help me. Not because I need it and they need to be ready for it, but because they want it and give me that help. With this new way of thinking there is also a “new Marc” emerged the “Marc 2” so to speak. I left the all-knowing and arrogant thing behind and exchanged it for more concern and interest. For my work, learning new things but also for the people around me.

Come back...

And now already a few months later I am completely up to date. I don't have to catch up or try again! But what I still have to do is make a final exam project and a lot of other assignments around it. I can honestly say that a study has never been so difficult for me, but what I can say despite everything that has happened to me in this course, that I can proudly say that it has changed me the way I hoped. At the beginning of this training I hoped to be able to deal with more media techniques, to think out of the box and to work better with people. This way I am always grateful for the opportunity and the second chance I have received and therefore I want to be able to pay back for the training.


After this training I plan to develop this game even further where I can. And to start up an official media company where I can apply other techniques in my projects besides film. And I still hope that my future projects will help humanity form a more intimate relationship with each other.

My name is Marc van der Laan and I'm no longer insecure.

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Requiem: Chapter 6
- Inspector Norino Vastai, for the umpteenth time, read the note sent to him by post. Notwithstanding the effort that his colleagues had made to track down the sender of the message, these attempts had not yielded anything. It would also have proved impossible to detect the person in question through the specific location from which the message was sent. The laser coding of the shipment indicated that the letter was posted in P.O. Box 2509 Sanctuary. But even with the many fixed cameras in the streets or the mobile spybots that were surveillance some parts of the city, one couldn't screen the mailboxes all. Perhaps this would have been possible, knowing that one had to keep an eye on that mailbox if one had programmed a number of cameras in advance. After examining the relevant postbox, it turned out that it was just in a blind spot of the fixed cameras.. Coincidence or intended? Not that Norino Vastai could not initially 'read' the text or that he did not know who had written those roaring strange words. The databases of before the ' Great War' were fortunately preserved for humanity and had already revealed to him the name of the original writer of these words. They had given up that he had in hand an extract of Mozart's Requiem. Unfortunately, the translation of this text was not available in the databases of the Security Service and it was a language he was not able to. The history before the destruction of a part of the world was a piece of relic and a silent witness how man had helped his own demise. There were books, pieces of music, biographies, photographs of monuments and sights and many other things kept in these databases. He looked at the jolly handwriting and read the note again. Dies irae, dies illa Solvet seaeclum in favilla, Test David cum Sybilla. Quantus tremor and futurus. Quando Judex Cuncta strict discurrus. The Fingerprints service could not have discovered anything useful on the paper. It was of a recycled type that was sold everywhere — real paper had become very expensive — and the chemical research on the ink or possibly DNA on the paper had not revealed anything.. No rare type of ink that could send them in a particular direction or store. Just a flawlessly described piece of paper without traces. Lucky in an accident that one of his colleagues had studied classical and debilitated languages in addition to his diploma in criminology and a few other certificates in his youth.. A dead language such as Latin was no longer included in the teaching schedules of the New World. The main language was English, both in business and in the scientific world, even the people in the medical sector who used many Latin terms at the beginning of the 21st century had abandoned. But now Norino was happy to call on that piece of knowledge of that colleague. By the way, a translation agency would be an extra post on its monthly expense report, which the management would just skimp on and skimp on.. Today, every penny had to be accounted for, to the extreme. That is why he now read on an attached digital note from his colleague, the typed translation of this anonymous strange message: Day of wrath, that day of days Which will set the world to ashes, As David and Sybilla testify What fear will there be, If the Judge will come, To judge everything just. For completeness, his colleague and translator had added to it: 'Extract and translation from the “Requiem” by Mozart. Norino Vastai would never have passed 'this' message. But at the bottom of the Latin text there was a question in swirling letters. A question that was not asked in Latin. It was written in Norino's national language. Those words he'd read at least ten times made the Chief Inspector frown the eyebrows worried. Who's next after Suzy Chang? ………. He was in lotus position naked on a grey cold concrete ground. Motionless like a mannequin or a wax image. The eyes closed. Only the vertical and horizontal movements behind his closed eyelids testified that this was not a doll but a living creature and that this person was apparently in the phase of rem sleep. Images of blood, crying and screaming filled his dreams. A smile lay sprayed around his lips. He heard the begging and praying for forgiveness, the weeping of his victims in the realization of their sins. Sinners he had put on the right path. A person who saw his mistakes and begged forgiveness was given the appropriate grace. The grace of death. Obliterating their crimes in washing their own blood, that was the only way to cleanse them of their sins. Between his hands resting relaxed on his knees his erection was clearly visible. So he stayed in his world of horror and death. For about half an hour without giving any appearance sign of life, he remained in the same position. Then suddenly he stood in one smooth motion straight from his sitting position and at the same time opened the eyes. Before him stood a small elevated, a kind of altar on which he had exhibited various objects. On each side of these objects were four candles that cast creepy shadows on the rough walls in the dim space around him. His naked figure was projected in a multitude on the walls of those walls. A luguber shadow play. He caressed with reverence over the altar and the things he had collected. Fetishes, proofs of his victories, the lost sheep, the rescued herd. How long had he been trying to bring the deceived to the right path. He carefully picked up a strand of hair that he had wrapped in a transparent plastic film, opened the package and smelled with passion to the hair, folded the foil back and put it back in place. So he did with all the objects lying on the altar. ‘ Exaudi orationem meam, ad te omnis caro veniet. Listen to my prayer; to You all the flesh comes , 'he contemplated in Latin while he took a piece of skin the size of a coin in his hands and sacrificed to the photograph that stood at the back of the altar. After performing these rituals, he took the Nihonto from the holder who also stood on the altar and pulled it out of the scabbard he put back in the holder on the altar. He turned to the right where there was another door. A door that led to another room as dim as the room with the altar. On a hook on the left side of the door hung a large white cloth that he draped over him. Two holes in the canvas at the level of his eyes made it possible for him to find his way. He opened the door to that other room and left his personal intimate temple. On heavy chains that were fixed in the wall hung a man. When the white form entered the room, the man had barely moved his head. Yet he had heard something and there was a whimpering sound from his throat that cut through bone and marrow. It was fear that was squeezed out of the prisoner's throat. A sound that slowly swelled as the white form approached. …….. I wiped tired but satisfied the sweat from my eyes. After an intensive workout during which I have all the movements of the ' Kami Akai 'had performed in a false fight against my imaginary opponent, my stress was' almost 'completely eliminated. A series of 120 movements flowing into each other in perfect symmetry was the basis of a martial arts in which I was trained from the age of seven.. Although there were combinations that consisted of fewer movements depending on whether they had to be applied to a particular situation, I had completed the whole series out of frustration and physical necessity. Both my body and my mind needed this. Actively respond in a practice session made up of defensive but also offensive movements. The interaction always had a calming effect on me. It was an interaction of various functions of the body. The eye reflexes that had to react to a countermotion, the breathing control in connection with the understanding of the fighting situation in case one had to deal with a real opponent, everything was important. All these things had to respond to each other in such a way that at the end of the session people felt a lot better because of the released endorphins. A positive reaction to the mass of negative aggression that one had built up in one's system during a certain period. That was the only right path to balance according to my father Arturo Mitsukai, who had also been my teacher in the ' Kami Akai' . Freely translated means Kami Akai the Red Spirits. The practitioner of this martial art must be like a spirit. Quickly and invisibly, at one moment still facing his opponent, looking down the next as victorious on his flown opponent. The red of Akai represents the power of the sun. The force with which one strikes, the heat of the energy that is released by which one sends the enemy. It wasn't just that this time I had the dojo ' Shogi 'had chosen for my training. It was also the dojo where some of the members of the Skeelers practiced their martial arts. Ji Lang, an old acquaintance, who had been trained together under the same Master since my tenth year of life, came by regularly and he was the person who might be able to help me. Today he had an appointment at four o'clock in the afternoon. This information was obtained at the counter by throwing my natural charms into the ring. Sometimes this gave even better results than a round of fighting. Just a fifteen minutes of sweating out on the treadmill and then I had some pressing questions to ask. Ji entered the dojo at four o'clock. He owned the Red Circle just like me. The second best ' Kami'. Het waren maar de meesters die na het dragen van de Red Circle gedurende vele jaren uiteindelijk de kans kregen om de Golden Circle earnable. The red sun that becomes a golden sphere at its strongest and at its highest point. Therefore, this was also the highest award in the Kami Akai, the best being among the best. Na een periode van het verdedigen van de Red Circle kon men volgens de regels van de Kami Akai nog een tiental proeven afleggen, een soort eindexamen. Those who succeeded flawlessly got the Golden Circle. This was for each of them a test of their years of experience and knowledge gained in this martial arts. So it was not surprising that it was only a few who were given this honour. I came to Ji and bowed with my right hand pressed against my heart. Ji smiled and greeted back. “My deepest condolences Yukiko,” were his first words. I thanked him for his condolences. It became a mechanical reaction. So many people had already done this and although I did not doubt their words, my reaction came out without thinking about it, I did not want to go into it more deeply. I just hoped that with that would not be offended. 'It's been a long time since we met, 'Ji continued. “What brings you here today? What out of shape or something, “he teased me. We could always have liked each other, my father had always found him a docile and promising pupil. 'On the contrary, today I feel really in shape, maybe I'll win from you, 'I challenged him teasing. Ji Lang could not dismiss that challenge and pointed with a grinning glance at the free mat on his left. We took our starting position, greeting according to the rules and started moving around like two tigers in a grazing phase. Both Ji and myself first tried a few feints. This to test the action and reaction of the opponent. I had previously experienced that Ji was sometimes a little too confident and usually went into the attack rather quickly. That's why he regularly got a little too close to my stroke range. I had to take into account, of course, that it could be a feint or provoking maneuver. I tried out an attacking movement and got the wind immediately and also a sample of the power that lurked behind his dangerous left. Had I forgotten that famous left of his for a moment. I felt the power of the Kami Akai and counted some asterisks, shook my head and restated my defense. However, I feigned that I was not immediately obtained from his attack. Ji walked wide open with both eyes in my stuffed trap. This time anyway! I dodged his little left, felt the power just above my head in the air powerlessly burst and disappear. With a mowing leg movement, Li was flown by me. Then, of course, he asked for a rematch and, after a longer batch of sensing, won the feints and finally I lay on my stomach in a hold that comes just before the final blow. It was a battle with some masterpieces of Kami Akai and the casual attendees stopped training during the battle to follow this event between two Red Circles. We got an appreciating applause ourselves after each round. After the second game, I used my arms to make the crossed motion over my chest as a sign that I was holding the contest. We both had won a contest each and that was good for my next step, especially after Ji Lang had been able to write the final victory on his palmares. After we had refreshed a bit, as we had agreed before after the game, we met again in the entrance hall of the Shogi. “Hey, Ji, can I offer you something at the bar, to celebrate us again?? Is milk still your favorite drink, 'I laughed. Ji frowned played indignant the eyebrows. “What a dumb question Yu, you know this white stuff is the ultimate drug for me.“It was his joke, with which he had put many on the wrong foot. Those who didn't know him thought he was talking about cocaine, but Ji was dead serious when he talked about his glass of milk. “Let it come, Yu, I won't turn it down. Let's party!Involuntarily I thought of Gekko with his strange language exclamations. However, Ji spoke a lot better English. Both Chinese and Japanese had rather problems with the pronunciation of English, despite the fact that in the 22nd century English was used as a language everywhere because of the multicultural communities in both the Old and the New World. At the bar we both told our experiences of the last year after he once again argued his sincere condolences in the loss of my parents. We picked up some memories that did us both good. To break the ice a bit this was always a good method. But in the end, I asked him why I came here. “You lost a few friends at the Skeelers, I thought you'd read?'I started grazing. “Ah, don't open my mouth, a very distasteful thing, Yukiko. It's still my head that Myo and Dakai are gone. Losing your life in such a bloody way. Mutilated and then eventually decapitated, I just can't think about it. If I could get my hands on the perpetrator, I don't know if I could control myself. Then I wouldn't stop before the final blow!’ He looked at his glass of milk with an evil look and for a moment I thought that the glass in his firm grip would splash apart, so white the knuckles on his hand. 'Ji, I don't know if this is a coincidence, it's almost impossible, but my parents died the same way. Maybe we can try to find out a little bit more together because what I've heard from the Security Service is anything but worth mentioning, you'd almost think they're withholding things..’ Ji Lang looked at me for a while and I let him make his decision in silence. “If you share your info with me, why shouldn't I, maybe it won't work out, maybe it will, but I agree with you that the people of the Security Service want to cover up these things. Maybe this business is just beyond their hats. What have they achieved so far. Nothing, zero, nada!’ I told him about my visit to Gerekko Dai and mentioned the illegal intrusion into the Security Service system. Ji pulled a count the eyebrows up, but the smile on his lips, made me after some hesitation reassured further speak. “That Stephen March, he might know a little more? Do you have any elements in these murders that might take us a little further?? “I might have something better...., 'he let in the silence that followed these words build up the tension and looked at me with the head slightly obliquely, straight in the eye, 'A Skeeler has seen the abduction of Myo and Dakai and may have some more information about that murderous beast. Who knows, it might be something that might help us track down the killer.!’ Now I looked him in my turn right in the eye. “So you also want to, just as I do to start an independent investigation into the murderer or murderers, I understood this correctly?’ Ji nodded. 'I don't get any support for this with the other Skeelers ’ he said, “you know the government is not so on gang-forming and so. They allow us to turn a blind eye, as long as we walk within the lines drawn out to them. But my friend I spoke to is probably the only one who thinks otherwise. By the way, we founded together a small import-export company in artifacts that brings a lot of profit.’ I got some hope, you never know, all the little clues might have gotten one good lead.“Where does he live, what's his name...?’ Ji smiled at my enthusiasm. 'Still the restless Yu as before, always straight towards the man. We've been calling him Eagle Eye for a while, ask me why? 'Why?What a obedient and docile girl I was! 'In a skirmish a dozen years ago, he lost one of his eyes, 'Ji said. 'Yet he did not sit by the suits, and with implantation of the bionic body parts that nowadays can work miracles in such a case, such a high-tech eye was implanted in him. Sometimes a human being is even better off with those intelligent implants. He simply sees a thousand times better with his new eye. Like an eagle who can see miles away, 'smiled Ji. 'Plus the extras you get with such an intelligent eye like the projection of internet data or incoming emails projected onto your retina via a link with your cell phone. And then you can't forget the zoom and recording function and a few more things I probably don't even understand. Even if you become a piece of machine, you might even be better off with two such eyes, 'Ji decided who had always been in favour of technological masterpieces. With one last sip, he emptied his drink, took his vest and beckons me. “Enough talk, come to our humble little house on the outskirts of town. By that, I naturally mean the ' Swift', the meeting place of the Skeelers. I'm just gonna introduce you to him, and we'll see if we have a useful lead. © Rudi J.P. Lejaeghere Requiem Chapter 5 or 7 - Requiem: Chapter 5 - Requiem: Chapter 7 -
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Requiem: Chapter 2
- Stephen March nodded affirmatively. When the man pulled off the white cloth with a tip to identify the corpse, his face turned pale. He swallowed a few times to calm his protesting stomach. His sister Suzy was almost unrecognizably mutilated all over the body, but the small tattoo on her neck, the red round sickle around the green bulb of mistletoe in the right bottom of the neck would be recognized everywhere.. He was mechanically looking for something else and found the little scar on her cut off left hand. The jagged white scar tissue on her ring finger was less obvious than when she was alive and the blood was still flowing through her limbs.. But with both of these landmarks, he was able to officially confirm to the coroner's clerk that these were unmistakably the remains of Suzy Chang. Strange that the memory of the scar Stephen shot through the head at this time, there in the vicinity of her lifeless body.. The scar was the result of a small accident with a broken glass. Trying to save what was already lost! Was this the inscription he should have etched on her grave? His half-sister lay naked, in pieces together, like a macabre puzzle on the metal sliding flap of one of the refrigerated storage cabinets of Sanctuary's urban morgue, Tokyo's new sister city and capital of the New World. He didn't remember what to say, could barely control himself at that time. His eyes were shooting full and he swallowed hard to nip the cry that sought out of his inner way out. He put his hand unmechanically in response over his mouth and stood for a while in the same position. A nervously silent voice ripped him out of his ossification. 'Sumimases! Sorry, Mr. March. I realize it must be difficult moments for you. Forgive us that we have to show your family member to you. However, we were not allowed to degrade the remains because the judicial pathologist has not yet been able to close the forensic investigation. The Security Service has so far not authorised this because of the ongoing investigation into the cause of death of the victim.’ The Japanese clerk apparently felt extremely bored with this situation. The man almost constantly rubbed his hands together in a gesture of despair. Stephen frowned amazed the eyebrows and waited impatiently for further explanation. As a diplomat, he was heard daily meaningless phrases and bombastic explanations, sometimes against will and thanks, but this exceeded his understanding.. He looked at the man who was clearly having a hard time. A sidekick, a messenger? From this man with his neatly combed hair with the parting in the middle and with a nervous tic around the left corner of the mouth he could not expect much. Fortunately, the man had covered the remains of Suzy again, and he had reinstated the slider, because in the time he had made the identification something up in Stephen. Seeing the body, the recognition and the flashes of a living Suzy. It was something he barely had in his hand. That's why Stephen had to get rid of his anger somewhere, and he pointed it at the man before him..“I suppose the ripening of a man must be “the cause of death or not sometimes?“he asked bits snarling, disguising his grief and confusion, when the man did not immediately answer. 'Ie!“the man answered in the negative in Japanese, when he suddenly realized that Stephen was an American. 'No,... uh, yeah... I mean, as far as I understand it, the mutilations are post mortem inflicted, so after the death of your sister, Mr. March. Perhaps this finding can offer you a little comfort at this sad moment. Perhaps your sister hasn't suffered as much as at first sight... I mean as it seems now..’ Stephen suspected that the man was trying to calm him down and felt that the servant was just trying to move his best foot forward. The man had no right to be treated like this. ‘ Could you please tell me who was appointed to lead the murder investigation and who the responsible coroner is? Where can I go with all my questions?'asked a tired and excited Stephen March now a little less evil. However, the impatient sound and anger that still sounded in his voice, he could not hide. It was the anger for the impotence in the whole situation. It was the bubbling realization of a final loss of a piece of his own life. 'Oh yes, of course, 'the servant reacted nervously. “Chief Inspector Norino Vastai has taken this case under his wing. If anyone can find the beast that committed this inhuman murder, it's him. I think Mr. Vastai will be here any moment, 'said the nervous man as he consulted his clockwork for the umpteenth time. 'The coroner, Mr. Huang, I have just seen you arrive when you were standing at the entrance desk, 'Stephen was given as additional information. 'He had an appointment here with Mr Vastai at ten o'clock. So you can meet them both at the same time... if you please. If you'd like to follow me?’ He led Stephen through several corridors to a small space where there were a dozen easy chairs and a low table. A kind of waiting area he assumed, sober and impersonal. A tune muzak broke the awkward silence in the room. 'You can wait here for a moment. I will inform my commander Mr. Huang and Chief Inspector Vastai that you are here..“The servant was apparently relieved that the shocking identification was over and his task was done. He saluted briefly and disappeared railroad. Stephen sighed loudly and fatigued his head in both hands. Notwithstanding his ninety-two and his hundred kilos, he was a giant of a man, as he was sitting there, bent shoulders and his head in his hands looked like a broken and lonely man. A few days ago, he was still unaware of the drama that was going to fall on him.. Yesterday in the early morning, when he landed at Sanctuary airport after a long-haul flight from the Old World with a stopover at Zaventem airport — he had a meeting with the local ambassador in Brussels — he did not know yet that he had his diplomatic mission would begin to identify the corpse of his dead half-sister. His thoughts floated away like a seagull over a sea of time, to a moment somewhere thirty years ago. Around this time, his father Thomas March had married for a second time. After a successful diplomatic mission in the East, he had met a woman and built a second life. His new wife's name was Kathy Chang. Thomas's first wife, Maddy Silverstone, had died five years before. It would have been a short and uneven battle. Bone cancer, diagnosed much too late and with metastasis all over the body. In a dozen weeks, his sweet Maddy Silverstone had passed away as a merged creature, no longer comparable to the beauty she once was.. Stephen had a sister from this new marriage. Her name was Suzy and she was the child of Kathy Chang and her first husband. A loser who had left his stepmother four months pregnant with his child and disappeared with the northern sun. Years later, Kathy had heard of him a few more times. It was when she read that he was murdered during a skirmish that fell out of control between two youth gangs. She had thought of his deserved wages angry and bitter. Suzy Chang was the result of this relationship, a teen-year-old little girl, the same age as Stephen. Slightly shy with a disarmed mysterious smile and pitch-black hair braided in a long ponytail. That's how Stephen saw her at this moment in his memory. He immediately noticed the tattoo of the red sickle around the green mistletoe on her neck. When he asked her what it meant, she had simply answered proudly with one word: 'Akai!’ Later, through his stepmother and Suzy himself, he had learned more about this group of people, about their special way of life, what they believed in and about the rules of their doctrine that they followed as best as possible during their lives as Akai.. Unfortunately, Stephen's father and stepmother died six years ago. They had become the unfortunate victims of an accident with a new prototype glider or autobot. The new means of transport was still in the test phase. As often with new things, sometimes something goes wrong. The one time for Thomas March and Kathy Chang with disastrous consequences. Now he was left alone, his family was gone. He felt literally and figuratively orphaned. The loneliness that suddenly overtook him and rested like a great weight on his shoulder, was so tangible that he sagged even deeper into his chair. He had no idea how much time had passed when he was ripped from his memories by a sound that brought him back to the present. “Mr. March, Stephen March.?'asked the voice again. He looked up and nodded hesitantly affirmatively while at the same time he was hard to get out of his chair. It seemed as if he had dozed off for a while and woke up a little dazed. The shock of the facts and the subsequent identification clearly left its mark. “My condolences for your loss, Mr. March, I realize it must be difficult, but unfortunately I will have to ask you a few questions about your half-sister... the victim Suzy Chang?’ The man spoke perfectly English and was dressed in the uniform of the Security Service. He sat down and took out a small flat black device from the inside pocket of his jacket, pushed a button and put it on the table in front of him. “Better than all that paper waste from the past decades, you won't find?'the man began.'I'm Chief Inspector Norino Vastai. May I also introduce our pathologist, Mr Kim Huang, who carried out the autopsy?’ Huang made a short bow with his hand on his heart and gave Stephen the Western handshake that was customary in the Old World and also sat down next to the Chief Inspector. Chief Inspector Vastai was a small corpulent Japanese with a short-shaved military haircut. His eyes were very perceptive and looked at Stephen in an inquisitive way. Occupational malformation likely. The coroner Kim Huang, of Chinese origin was rather the opposite type of the Chief Inspector. Kim Huang was rather on the skinny side with hair that could best be described as a rebellious ragol. The scattered professor types— maybe? Stephen knew that the appearance could sometimes be misleading. “Make it easy, “the inspector pointed to the chair he had just come out of, “I suppose you have several questions about the death of your half-sister Suzy Chang.. But let me briefly summarize what I can or can tell you about this matter. Perhaps that will answer some questions.’ March had not escaped that the policeman used the phrase 'may or can'. At that time, he felt that there was some special case here. Despite his grief and a pressing fatigue, his attention automatically sharpened. He shook briefly, not unnoticed before Norino Vastai's inquisitive gaze, his head to get his mind clearer. His diplomatic background and influence here might be more than necessary to uncover the truth. 'I listen, 'he answered waiting and looked the captain straight into those perceptive eyes. 'The remains of Suzy Chang, daughter of Kathy Chang, your deceased stepmother, 'began Mr. Vastai, 'were yesterday morning in the' Deeplands 'at a distance of five kilometers from the' Catacombs' discovered by an accidental passerby. She was found... 'here he stopped for a moment in order to formulate his words as tactfully as possible,' in the state as you could see at the time of identification. She must have died the night before between 10:00 and 11:00 according to the first investigations. The victim was mutilated... presumably “after” her death in order to complicate identification as we presume, we have no conclusions on that.. Maybe it could be just a sadistic act of a psychopathic killer.Here he stopped for a moment to give Stephen March time to process everything. The coroner had wanted to add something to the Commissioner's comment when Vastai spoke about the time of the mutilation, but was given a warning look from the man in such a way that he swallowed his reaction again and looked at the ground somewhat dazed. weird? 'However, we found a short note in the lining of her jacket. The note probably slipped through a hole in the jacket pocket into the lining. I don't suppose it was supposed to be. The killer must have overlooked that if he was trying to avoid the identification of the victim.. But in this way we have been able to make the necessary link to you. On the other hand, we were almost 100% sure it was about Suzy Chang. Her identification chip, which was implanted with her when she was staying in the Old World with your late father and Kathy Chang for a while, 'he took a moment to read and weigh his words, frown the eyebrows and looked deep into Stephen's eyes and then went on, 'became although damaged in an attempt to remove that, however, with less success than intended. After some failed attempts and a lot of puzzle work, our ICT services could still get their name out of it, which confirmed our suspicion by the note, 'he stated in his statement, 'but you understand that we needed an independent and personal identification. for our files.’ Stephen let this flood of words flow over himself and remembered only a few words: ' Deeplands' , ‘ note ' and the ' Catacombs' , ‘ Identification chip damaged' . The Deeplands and the Catacombs were neighbourhoods that are not normally frequented at dark. What was Suzy doing there? About the letter he was most astonished. 'A letter? What do you mean that letter was able to link me? I never wrote letters to Suzy. We had regular contact via mail or our mobile phone. Usually when I was on a diplomatic mission in the New World, I always came to visit her, but it was too. What was on that note?’ Mr Vastai doubted a few seconds, which, of course, Stephen immediately remarked. It was one of his skills to be able to read the body language of the people, one of the required and highly valued characteristics as a diplomat, which had already given him the advantage in a discussion on several occasions.. “Your name, let's put it on that, Mr. March..'More he wouldn't hear about this, not now, but Stephen March had his sources, that came later. They weren't done with him yet. “I suppose you haven't been able to track down the perpetrator yet, otherwise you would have informed me.. Do you already have any suspects?“Stephen March didn't even blink when he asked this question. His senses and mindfulness were only now at full speed. He pushed his fatigue into the background and felt that there was more going on here. They wanted to send him here with a little lump in the reeds. Notwithstanding his grief, he was now very observant. Neither Chinese nor Japanese would play with his feet here. Then they didn't know Stephen March yet. 'No... unfortunately not, Mr. March, but we keep you informed of the progress of this case, 'replied Vastai while he was looking at Kim Huang for a moment. Again that single count of doubt and looking away to the left. Norino Vastai was right-handed and would normally look right when he drew from his memories. He had had a good teacher to his father Thomas who had once explained that to him. A right-handed person looks to the right if he used the part of his brain where his memories were stored, then he speaks the truth or tries to remember the truth. The opposite here in this case therefore clearly indicated that Inspector Vastai was not telling the full truth or making up something. 'If you have any questions for Mr. Huang, rest assured, 'the Chief Inspector added, 'we do not want to violate the fragile friendship of the Old and New World, not in the slightest way,' and again a look went back and forth between Norino Vastai and Kim Huang. They definitely withheld something. Stephen had no questions for Mr. Huang. It couldn't bring Suzy back anyway if he asked for more details about her injuries, but he did have another one for the Chief Inspector of Security. “Okay, I understand.! So you don't want to lose anything to me, 'which gave him a thoughtful look from the Chief Inspector. 'Perhaps a small question to which you can answer. Has her apartment already been released? Can I visit it without obstructing your ongoing investigation?'he asked, clearly weighing his words so as not to smack them in the head, for he had noticed the tightening of Norino Vastai after his brief accusation . Stephen had already set aside five days to make up for some lost time with his half-sister. He didn't know he'd have to spend them this way. That way, he didn't have to answer to the home base for his absence. By the way, when urgent, they could always reach him on his cell. “Of course, Mr. Huang will give you the necessary things, what remains of her garments and the rest of her personal belongings she had in her pocket. If you don't have any more questions...?'the Chief Inspector decided. Stephen still had a question for the pathologist anatomist.May I put a question to Mr Huang?He added the deed to the word when Mr. Huang nodded. 'Have you already established the cause of death??'asked Stephen. Again he mainly watched the wordless communication between the two people before him. There was always a moment of subcutaneous tension that prevailed before an answer was given. “Your sister died from the consequences of arterial bleeding, Mr. March,” Huang replied. “I can assure you that she did not suffer long. After the toxicology test, we found a substance in her system that suggests she was sedated.’ Stephen noted that the pathologist didn't mention if that drug was still working when Suzy was killed. The answers he got here were not to his liking. He would have to investigate himself, or else he would remain as ignorant as he had arrived here a few hours ago. For his own peace of mind, he should know more than what they were trying to get rid of him here. Nevertheless, he thanked Mr Huang in his own language: 'Xiè xiè, thanks.’ 'Bù yòng xiè, happily done' replied Kim Huang mechanically but amazed back in Chinese. copyright Rudi J.P. Lejaeghere Requiem: Chapter 1 or 3 - Requiem: Chapter 1 - Requiem: Chapter 3 -



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