Michael and Jacob held one of their periodic discussions about the convenience of carrying a weapon with them. On that occasion Michael was especially angry because his friend had bought a gun without consulting him before. While Jacob’s attention was briefly distracted, Michael confiscated the weapon arguing the danger posed by that gun in his hands because, when Jacob stared at something, he tended to become cross-eyed and also his pulse trembled and once, in a shooting cabin of Coney Island, the manager had to hide under the counter in view of the erratic movements of his shooting hand. But the discussion was suddenly interrupted when someone knocked on the office’s door.
Such was the elegant way of dressing and distinguished bearing of their new client that Michael and Jacob thought they were in the presence of an English lord, or of a direct descendant of an English lord, or of an English descendant of a Chinese lord, or maybe of a squirrel in a tux.
-Good morning, my name is Richard Staples Mathiesson, I am involved in the buying and selling of pigs and I am an inhabitant of Brooklyn. The reason for my presence here is quite gloomy, to tell the truth, because it has to do with a cemetery, the Green-Wood Cemetery to be precise, where several generations of my family are buried, all of them pig dealers, except Aunt Eleonor who was a stevedore in the harbor at the time of the Boston Tea Party.
That reference to Boston explained everything.
– The fact is that my father has disappeared. The last time we saw him was in the Green-Wood Cemetery, surrounded by his whole family. We said a prayer for the dead and everyone went home, except for him who stayed there, the poor thing. We shouldn’t leave him alone.
-It’s the way of nature. You should resign yourself to that.
Suddenly, the fake Englisman forget his good manners:
-How I’m gonna get resigned?! I’m telling you that my father has disappeared in the cemetery! And you want me to resign?! I want you to find out what the hell happened to him!
Michael and Jacob look at each other as if saying “This man isn’t in his right mind”.
-Do you want us to find out what happens when … the threshold is crossed?
-I want you to accompany me to the cemetery to start investigating.
An hour later, Michael, Jacob and the fake Englishman were standing in front of a grave in the Green-Wood Cemetery.
-It happened here.
The two investigators took off their hats as a sign of respect for the deceased. Jacob approached to read the inscription on the tombstone.
-Your father’s name is Susan?
-How is gonna be Susan my father’s name?! His name is Archibald!
-Well, Then they messed up when they carved out the inscription. In the tomb says Susan Mathiesson.
-There is no error. In that grave is buried my grandmother.
At this point Michael intervened to clarify things:
-We thought the deceased was your father…
-For Heaven’s sake! You’ve not even begun to investigate and you’re already imagining the worst!
-Let’s get this straight. Where exactly was your father when you last saw him?
-I already told you! Right here, kneeling in front of this grave. We had just honored my grandmother’s memory with a pray. We all left, but he wanted to spend some time alone with his mother.
-Now I understand it all.
-In that case, I leave you alone to continue the investigation.
The fake Englishman said goodbye to them, wishing good luck in their inquiries. He rode in his car and left. There was no one else in the cemetery.
-Well (Jacob said), now that he’s gone, show me what this is all about. Did they bury the son in the same grave as his mother?
Michael explained the situation clearly. Then he knelt to examine the tomb more closely.
-Why do you kneel? Was Susan Mathiesson also your relative?
-Don’t say foolishness. Look at this. This slab has been moved recently. You help me?
-You will not desecrate the grave, right ?!
-Come on, let’s just have a look.
Between the two they pushed the heavy marble slab and, to their surprise, found a ladder underneath. Michael turned on his flashlight and began to descend slowly followed by Jacob. After some minutes of descent, both arrived at a corridor at the bottom of which a yellowish light shone. Jacob wanted to go back, but Michael managed to convince him to move on. Very stealthily they advanced along the corridor until, hidden in the darkness, they stopped to observe a macabre ritual that was about to take place in the wide hall lit by torches where the corridor ended. Five people hooded and wrapped in a black cloak surrounded another hooded individual who was tied to the ground face up in the center of the hall. Suddenly, the five hooded men spread their arms towards the one who was stretched. Each of them held a knife. Then all began to recite in unison a kind of poem in which the name of Lucifer abounded.
Horrified, Jacob couldn’t stand the tension and exclaimed “my God!”, being therefore immediately discovered and captured by a pair of the hooded ones who move him to the hall. The others rushed to release the one who was tied to the ground, who now was over the moon because he had providentially found a substitute. Jacob struggled trying to prevent the hooded devils tie him to the ground. Then Michael, who had remained hidden in the darkness of the corridor, turned up suddenly and, wielding the gun confiscated from Jacob that very morning, shouted orders to release his friend and throw down the weapons. Being faced with the gun, the members of that satanic sect had no choice but to obey and wait patiently for Jacob to return accompanied by the police. During the wait, Michael entertained himself looking for the words he would use to apologize to Jacob for having scolded him for buying that gun.