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Case 2- Supplementary and Case 3

Case 2: Supplementary
Dr. Owens and Ms. Douglas/French-Worcowski

(These notes were found in a high ranking official’s office in the Bunker on 11/3/16)


I have decided to mention here that Ms. Wortcowski at this point was unaware of the GATAEH and their reach within her life.  

It should also be mentioned that bringing these two subjects together was something of a challenge to begin with; Dr. Owens preferred to keep his online activities anonymous for several years after the Apprehension of 2014, and although very adept with use of research tools, was unable to figure out why his searches yielded no results.  He had just assumed his wife had left him.

His appearance has changed slightly since then, his hair, which in previous years, had always been kept short, neat, and naturally blond, has been allowed to grow out to just past his clavicle.  He has also put on some weight; to the point that he cannot easily be recognized by those who have previously associated with him.  He does wear corrective lenses in the form of wire rimmed glasses, and so his eye color has not changed, and still shows an intense grey.  The shape of his eyes also always suggests the subject is either tired or in a state of depression, but this is natural for Dr. Owens.

Ms. Wortcowski was not fully honest with her contemporaries within the Finder’s Guild, and also did not use her given name, so therefore it took quite some time to figure out that she was indeed Sandra Wortcowski and not Katrine Douglas.  (Katrine Douglas committed suicide in 1992 in Sault Ste. Marie Ontario.)  In this way, Ms. Wortcowski has managed to elude those who may be looking for her, as attempts to retrieve records from places the GATAEH have not infiltrated entirely can be difficult and time consuming.  Using the moniker of “Katrine” threw us off course for quite some time.  Although her appearance has not changed much, she has lost a great deal of weight since 11/1/14, her hair is still the same chestnut brown, she has however grown a sizable silver streak along the front.  She does not wear corrective lenses, save for when she is reading which has changed slightly since her meeting with our psychologists, (guised as a student worker at a nearby [name redacted] university).  Her round face has no visible wrinkles, save for “crows feet” at the area surrounding her eyes.

Experimentation with these two subjects together has been occurring since 1996.  Initial entry to the project was completed in 1986 after both completed an IQ test and assessment showed the two to have similar personalities, as well as “genius” level IQ’s of 160 for Dr. Owens and 140 for Ms. Wortcowski respectively.  Ms. Wortcowski is also very athletic, when she was an adolescent, she participated in several activities and sports, such as: fencing, figure skating, modern dance,  and at least 4 forms of martial art that we have been made aware of.

Although Mr. Wortcowski was tested, we found his IQ of 165 adequate, but because he tested non-neurotypical, (he has a high functioning form of Autism) we found him to be unacceptable for our program.  As it turns out, his offspring also show signs of non-neurotypical behaviors, and so would not be considered for candidacy for our academy.

At this point, we are at Stage Alpha 1 with these subjects, reintegrating them in the lives of one another, and hoping that something clicks.  We tried to hit Dr. Owens with a endorphin shot, (Commonly referred to as Cupid’s Arrow) before he was to meet with Ms. Worcowski in the hopes of hurrying things along, but due to actions taken by her organization, were not able to intercept Dr. Owens.  We moved to Stage 1 Beta, where the subject A is forced, (through no action of his or her own) to share quarters with subject B.  Fortunately, at the time of this writing, there is an intrepid and incredibly good looking double agent who is orchestrating and hopefully insuring the beginning of the mating ritual between these two subjects.

Case 3:  Personnel- Dr. Zander Owens- Research Specialist

Later on that evening, Dr. Owens found himself being driven in a blue Volkswagen Beetle to the Bunker.  His driver was Alan.  As Alan drove, he observed Dr. Owens appeared visibly shaken

“How’re you holding up back there, gent?” asked Alan.

“As well as could be expected.” said Zander.

“What’s wrong?” asked Alan.

“It’s just... Being tracked for some reason I don’t understand.”

“Oh, that?  Heh, yeah.  It takes a bit getting used to, doesn’t it?”

“Yes, you could say it that way...”

“It sounds like my friend, you’ve got more on your mind than that, though.  We’re going to be roommates most likely, so you might as well tell me what’s up.”

Zander sighed. “It comes to this; I haven’t seen your, is it Katrine that you call her?  Well, I haven’t seen her in 10 years.”

“Why do you care, man.  I mean, she’s just an old friend of yours, right?”

“Well... yes and no.  She and I were very close for a time, and we grew apart after our respective marriages.” Zander almost added, but then thought to himself “it was actually well before that.”

“Oh, so she’s an old fuck buddy, eh?

“No, not exactly.  She wanted to but... I didn’t.”

“Was there something wrong with her or something?”

“Oh no, she’s great.  She’s intelligent and funny, and friendly and very attractive...” Zander’s mind wandered off.

“All ended peacefully, right?” asked Alan, a bit too intently.

“...I don’t actually remember.  You see, I had some medical issues several years ago and my memory has never been particularly good... Adding benzo’s to the mix was not the right thing to do.  That is, if I wanted to remember anything.  As it turns out, the more that I’ve found out about myself during that time in my life, the more I DON’T want to remember.  And that is why I’m nervous...  I have no fucking clue why I’m telling you any of this.”

Alan smiled.  “It’s ok, man.  I hear this all the time, people say I’m easy to talk to..”

Alan muttered something under his breath, but then he continued “So anyway, how’d you convince the University to let you free for a while?”

“Well, I told them I was helping my friend set up the infrastructure for her business, when I wasn’t busy searching for Deborah.”

“If you don’t mind me asking a sensitive question, why didn’t you look for her before this?”

Dr. Owens cleared his throat, “Well, there are a lot of reasons.  Deborah and I were living in different states as she was working at a different university, so it took me a bit to realize what was going on, it wasn’t uncommon to not hear from her for a few days.  By the time it occurred to me that she was, well, GONE, it never crossed my mind it was due to the Missing, then, when talking to some colleagues, they mentioned the event, and it took me down that path and here I am.  Which if you don’t mind me asking a question...”

“What is it?” asked Alan.

“Of those you find, are their any who don’t WANT to be found?  People that you find that are just kind of ‘oh great, you found me, now lose me again?’”

Alan smirked, “All of the time, actually.  Some people used the event to hide their own disappearances.  We usually have ways of working that out.  So far, we’ve found that anyone that didn’t disappear on 11/1/14 was not connected to the event, so that’s when we refer folks over to a Private Investigator.”

“I wonder if Deborah is one of them..”

“Nope man, I can confirm for you absolutely that she is part of the Missing.  You couldn’t find an online presence for her, right?”

“No matter what I did, it seemed to turn up as a dead end, and I couldn’t figure it out.”

“Well, I found some online presence for her, but she’s stayed fairly anonymous as well, she was one of the more tricky folks to find.  We are trying to pin down a location on her now, but, it’s slow.  In these sorts of cases, we usually have to rely on public record, such as traffic tickets or what not, being as she appears to take public transit a lot... not much in the way of civil infractions, but since she was recently incarcerated...”

“WHAT?  Woah... That’s not like Deborah, do you have details?”

“Yeah of course, I’m not going to tell you something like that and leave you hanging!  She was protesting a group that many conspiracy theorists agree caused the events on 11/1/14.”

“Well?  Is she ok?  Have you found out anything?”

“The trail has gone cold at this point, that was 2 years ago.”

“Oh.” said Zander.

“And, she was seen with another man in those pictures, so, although she is an official part of the Missing, she may no longer be looking for a reconciliation.”

Zander sighed.  “Yeah, that’s what I’m afraid of.  Oh well, might as well help Sand-- I mean, Katie out.”

“I take it you knew her by another name Dr. Owens?” asked Alan.

“Yes, I’m assuming since you’re in the organization it’s safe to tell you, her name was Sandra French when I knew her.”

Alan smiled broadly, “Hmm, Sandy.  I would have never pegged her as a Sandy.  Maybe a Danielle or a Shirley but never a Sandy.”

“Well,” Zander shrugged, “I never thought about it that way.  It’s just been the way I’ve always known her.  Brave, altruistic, beautiful and fierce warrior for justice, Sandy.  She was going to go into law at some point.  Did I mention she’s also fucking crazy?”

“Wah?  You don’t say.”

“In fact I do, sir!  She’s as batty as a loon.  And you know the old adage, right?”

“Don’t stick your dick in crazy.” both of them repeated solemnly, then laughed.

“I think we’ll get along great, Zander.” said Alan as he pulled up to the bunker, “We have an event going on at the Bunker tonight, won’t you join us outside at a bonfire?” asked Alan.

“I think I’m going to find my quarters, then turn in for the night.  It’s been a long day, Alan.

“There will be beer and various liquors..”

“It would be my pleasure.” said Zander, feeling more comfortable.

Case File 3: Sandy, Dr. Owens, A Jug of Wine and Thou.

As Zander rounded the corner, he saw a few people trying to start the fire, there was a cooler and marshmallows and of course chocolate and graham crackers.

He grabbed a beer then made his way to the people struggling to light the fire.

“Can I help out?” He asked.  Zander was always something of a pyro at heart.

“Not unless you can light wet wood.” said Gary.  “And who are you by chance?”

Zander smiled, “I’m Professor Owens from the University of Iowa.  Who are you?”

“Gary Roostertail, insurance salesman, script writer and Network Volunteer.”

Meg walked up then. “I’m Meg!  I’m one of the heads of the Finder’s Guild.” she said, extending her hand to Zander, he shook it.

“We’ve heard so much about you!” she continued.

“Oh, nothing bad I hope.”

Meg bit her lip, “Well, nothing horrible.” she said, ever the optimist.

Gary smiled and muttered under his breath to Meg “Other than you left Katrine awfully confused several years ago and made her feel like the scum of the earth.”

Zander scowled.  “I didn’t catch that, but I’m pretty sure I wasn’t meant to.”

“Oh, for the Love of Sagan!!  Why won’t this damned thing light?!” Meg said, exasperated.  

Zander giggled, “Atheists, I’ll be right at home” he thought, then asked “Can I try?”  She nodded.

He pulled a silver flask from his pocket and poured its contents, then lit one match.  He then pulled an entire brick of fire starter from his trench coat and threw that in the fire as well.  Soon it was roaring to life.

It was then that Katrine walked out and saw Zander standing in front of the fire, drinking a beer, and all the old high school feelings came back in droves.  How he was her best friend, how he took care of her when she was down, how he always made her laugh, how no matter what she was thinking, he always seemed to know how to make her feel better, and then, she thought of her husband and how much he was all of these things, only more so.  She sighed and joined Zander at the fire.

“So, who’s idea was the fire?” she asked, looking at Zander.

Zander smiled, “Strangely enough, not mine.”

Gary and Meg popped out, Meg handed her a beer and found her a seat.  Then Meg ran inside to the loudspeaker and announced, “There is a bonfire outside with s’mores, hot chocolate and adult beverages come on outside, and enjoy or a s’more or two and relax.  You’ve earned it!”

Lewey smiled and headed urged families to come outside, soon the former playground had buzzed to life, more dry wood was found.

Katrine smiled to see all the people she and her colleagues had helped.  Then Alan pulled her aside for a moment.

“Take some time to relax, Katrine.  You’ve worked the hardest without rest.  Let us take care of you, and don’t judge now, but I think that Zander is really looking forward to spending some time with you.”

“Al... I love you dearly, you know that, right?” she spoke more frankly with the influence of alcohol.

Alan nodded.

“As much as everyone wants a fairy tale ending for me, it’s not going to happen, it’s not possible for reasons that you are yet to know or understand.  Dr. Owens and I; although we have a history, are not going to run off and get married or have wild sex throughout the night..  It’s simply not going to happen.  He has a wife.  I am ethical.  This will not do.”

Alan nodded.

“...Besides, Alan, we all know you are a hornball, and if I really, REALLY had to get laid, I’m sure I could count on you.”  she winked, kissed him on the cheek, then ran off.

Editors note: it is true what they say about true friends, they can not see each other for years and pick right back up where they left off with little difficulty.  Dr. Owens and Ms. Douglas are classic examples of that.

Zander noticed something as she was talking to Alan that made him feel strange, and it wasn’t the kiss.  Something that made him pull Katrine aside immediately.  Alan was enjoying the festivities and so did not notice, or at least pretended not to notice Zander pulling her away from the party.

“Dr. Owens” she said, formally.

“Oh, cut the crap Sandy.  You’re in danger.”


“You’ve got an operative in your midst.  And I’m afraid, before I realized it that I told him your real name...”


“Yeah, you’re telling me.”

“Well, hopefully it’s not anyone high up on the food chain.  And I trust you have evidence.”

“Not yet, but I’m well on the way there.  That guy you just kissed on the cheek... Who is he?”

“uh... That’s Alan Bakersfield, he’s one of my Officers, he got us access to some sensitive government informati--”

“I think he’s your spy.”

“Wha, how can you be so sure, Z?”

“The badge that was sticking partially out of his pocket while you were kissing him.  I only saw it for 2 seconds but... I’m sure it wasn’t from the Finder’s guild.”

“Well, I’ll ask someone to search his office covertly tomorrow.  In the meantime, we have catching up to do.” and she smiled at him.  “How have you been?”

Zander smiled, “It’s been rough, but I think its getting better already.  It’s really been forever.  And, I apologize for dropping off the face of the planet just... Things got a bit weird for me.”

“It’s ok Zander, I just thought I had done something wrong...”

“No, I did.  I decided I wanted a Ph.D.” and the friends shared a laugh.

“Hey, but look at all that has brought you, you’re a professor now.”

“Yeah, I do alright for myself but...”

“But what?” she asked.

“I’m lonely without Deborah.  I know we only talked over the phone or over skype, and only occasionally saw each other, but, she’s still... my equal.”


“Well It’d be stupid for an atheist to say ‘soul mate’ right?”

She laughed again.

“So, enough about me,” Zander started, “How is your family fairing?”

Sandy’s smile stopped then.  He didn’t know.  The revelation hit her hard.

“All but my daughter are among the Missing.  I can’t find them.  I can find everyone else’s family, but not my own.  I can’t even call my in-laws anymore, they refuse to answer the phone for me.  Aside from this little village I’ve started up, I’m all alone.”  Her eyes welled up with tears, she wiped them quickly.

Zander sat and watched the fire as he thought it over.

“We’ll get through this, just like everything else.  I’ll tell you what, you find Deborah, I’ll find Doug and your kids... How many do you have now?”

“Four including Amber.”

“Holy shit, you’ve been busy, haven’t you?”

Sandy only offered a sheepish grin in reply, then decided in her drunkenness to respond, perhaps too loudly, “What can I say, I fucking LOVE sex!”

Her officers overheard and laughed, Alan practically did a jig.

“Carry on then, nothing to see here.” she said loudly to the group.  She felt her face turn red.  Any thought that she had of crying quickly turned to embarrassment.  

Zander, trying to remove her from the situation suggested they go inside.  He followed Katrine through the red doors indoors.  She lead him to her office, crying every now and again to herself.  She had decided that day had just been a bit too much for her to handle.  The November chill filled the room as she pulled out her laptop and signed onto the network she had created.

He noticed her tears and reached for his handkerchief.  He dabbed her eyes.  Memories flooded back for Sandy, but she only thanked him quietly the long the rest of the way in.

She used the governmental device she had been given for searching the web.

“So, Z... This is what I’ve got to work with.” She logged off of the research proxy then did an internet search for his wife.

“There are no results.” he said.

She smiled then searched for her husbands name.

“Again, no results, are we getting somewhere here?” asked Zander.

“Wait.” She said, then she logged back in to the research proxy.

Then she searched again, and suddenly there were results. “This doesn’t work for all the Missing, but it does for the vast majority of them.  It makes our jobs easier.  What I want to know is how they know who is sitting on the other end of the computer.” She searched her husband’s name again, and saw some pictures, then tried to click on it, a “404 not found” appeared on the screen.

Zander smiled. “This one I can fix, possibly... Give me a second.”

She handed Zander the laptop.  He was able to pull up a picture of her husband and kids.  “What did you do?”

“I saw a redirect script, I took a screen-shot at the exact moment it pulled up.  I read the original address and typed it in.  I managed to fool it, but it won’t work for everything, but this picture... it isn’t hosted on facebook or any standard social network, so... yes something is definitely monitoring, which was the conclusion I came to, I just... haven’t been able to figure out the what or the why behind things.  Here you go, you may want to print this picture, it might be the last time you see it.”

It was a picture of her kids and her husband playing a video game together.  They were very much alive and healthy, although Paul, her middle son, looked very sad.  It was clear he did remember her, and was missing her.  She printed the picture on the highest quality paper she could find sitting around her office and put the picture somewhere only she would see it.

He cleared his throat as she placed the picture in a frame.  “I had managed to do that once or twice before all the pictures disappeared...  So, you called me here, what is it that you need?”

She sighed.  “I need to find my family, Zander.  I need to find ALL the families.  I’m in way over my head, I feel as though I have an impossible task fighting an invisible enemy, who so far as I can tell isn’t technically even an enemy at all.  You know I know my way around a computer, and research, and the internet for that matter, but I haven’t figured out why some of the missing are so easy to find, yet some of them are so difficult to find.  I’m rolling with the state of the art as far as equipment and still, I can find not--”

“Did you hear something?” said Zander, then he crept to her window just in time to see someone fleeing the scene.

“Fuck.” he said, “You’re spy seems to be pretty hell bent on finding out what you and I are talking about, we need to find a way to conduct conversation more privately.”

She turned on a white noise machine she had in the corner, “Never leave home without it.” she said.

“Well, anyhow, where are you living these days?” He asked.

“Here, on a cot in the basement with the other families.  It isn’t glamorous but it is a place to sleep, 3 square meals a day, and a bunch of really good friends who hold my sanity together.  Sometimes, I just fall asleep on the floor while researching. I wake up sore the next day, but I know I’ve done my best for those Missing.”

“You sound like a Doctorate student.”

“I’m not smart enough for that shit, but I seem to have everyone fooled.” she laughed “the people around here, it seems no one can do anything without me providing some direction.  Now, don’t get me wrong, these folks are not idiots by any stretch, but sometimes I wish they would just take matters into their own hands and do the things that need to be done without someone telling them how to do their job, or what’s ethical and what’s no--”

There was a knock at the door, she looked through the window into the hallway to find Lewey.

“Oh hey, I was ju-- Am I interrupting something?” He asked.

“Not at all.” replied Katrine

“Well, this is regarding that rabbit hole idea you had... let me know when you’d like me to report.”

“You can report now, Lewey.  Dr. Owens is an old friend of mine, and I trust him with details.”

“Are you sure?” asked Lewey.

“Yes.  So let me see what you found out.”

Lewey handed her about 20-25 sheets of paper.  “First of all, someone amongst us is an informant, secondly the organization that the ‘men in black’ belong to is the called the GATAEH.  Second of all, that informant seems to know your real name and intends to continue to keep you from your family.  The only thing I haven’t managed to find out yet,” he said, as his voice grew lower, “is why anyone would do such a thing.”

Katrine nodded as she read the paperwork over.  “Thank you, Lewey.  If you and Debbie have something to do, go do it, you’ve worked enough on this tonight.  Thank you again so very much, now that I know I’m not necessarily being paranoid, I can take some precautions to insure everybody is kept safe.”

Lewey nodded, “Oh, and Dr. Owens?  It’s good to finally meet you,” he said as he extended his hand. “I’ve heard a lot about you, all good, from Katrine, and I really hope to be able to work with you soon.”

“The pleasure is all mine,” said Dr. Owens.  “Any friend of Katrine’s in a friend of mine.”

Lewey nodded at both of them, then walked out.

“I was hoping I was bat shit crazy.  I was hoping none of this was real, and that some organization did this to try to move people from crappy to good neighborhoods, but in the process forgot people and did not plan entirely what needed to happen.  Yep, wishful thinking. Now then, how shall we find your wife?”

“If I may?” he said as he gestured to her computer.

“Of course.” she said.

She watched him work, sitting next to him on the floor.  Some hours passed and she fell asleep on the floor as Zander still worked, while she was asleep, he went and fetched her a pillow and blanket and put it over her, she awoke about 4am screaming, much to Zander’s surprise.

“What’s wrong?” he asked.

“Everything.” she said as the sweat poured off of her, she was crying and shaking.

“Is there anything specifically that I can help with.” Zander asked.  She was still muttering incomprehensibly.

Zander watched her shake a bit more, she was awake and starting into shock, or something that looked a lot like it.  She was about 3 feet from him, he calmly put the computer aside then put his arm around her.  

He’d seen this happen once before, when they were 16.  He lived in another state so he had come to visit, and about 4 am that morning, she woke up and was walking around her house, in that same crazed state, sweating, wide eyed...  She had visions when she was younger.  He didn’t know what she had seen, but it was something.  So he asked her, and she couldn’t spit it out.  

When she finally collapsed around five, he managed to get that “I woke up and they were gone.” nothing further.

When his hand finally reached her shoulder, he saw flashes, first children being put into the line of fire, holding rifles, then children using psychic weapons, throwing blue electrical shocks from their hands, then of children with headaches, holding their heads.

It shocked him, too.  He got right up into her face “Sandy, this isn’t reality yet.  We can still change it!  Come on, come back to reality with me.  Shhhh.”

Her eyes went from wild and wide to more sedate, her pulse slowed, her sobs quieted.

“Shh, Sandy, shh...”

“I think...” she said, “I think I understand what these guys are after now.  Zander, I don’t like this.  But... I have no earthly clue on how to stop it.”

He only nodded.

“Sandy, I saw it, too... When I touched your shoulder, I got a brief glimpse, but I don’t see how kids using psychic warfare...”

“It’s genetics.” she sighed.  “They are after our genes.”

This didn’t fit into Zander’s worldview, either.

“Ok... Calm down.  You have to tell me everything you saw.  Breathe, you are going to be ok.  You are surrounded by friends, nothing can harm you.”  He felt himself panic slightly, but then took a deep breath himself.

“First,” she started slowly, “it starts with them following us all of our lives, Zander.  When you were a child, did you ever get an IQ test?”

“Yes,” he said, “my parents thought something was wrong with me.”

“Same here.”

“They know our results.  They were the ones conducting the exams.  They have been following us since then.  They arranged our meeting, they intended for us to marry and have children, then they turned away...  And fate happened.  They have been orchestrating our lives since we were 6, Z...  Our lives are lies. We are doing just as they want.”

“Until we married other people and went about our lives, doing whatever it was we damn well felt like.”

“But, they arranged the disappearance of our families and spouses, anyone who would get in the way... Oh gods, Z, what if they kill them?”

“That makes no sense, Sandy.  In your scenario, if they cannot get us to procreate, the next best thing would be your kids, right?”

“Well, yes.  What need then would they have for my husband?”

“If they kill him, your children won’t comply.”

“Maybe they would, and that’s even more terrifying.  I don’t want my kids going through that.”

“I don’t want to see any child go through that, Sandy.”

“You said they didn’t take Amber... if this vision is real, why wouldn’t they have taken her.”

She sighed. “Amber isn’t going to interfere with my hooking up with another man.  I left her Father long ago.  My boys... They wouldn’t allow it.  There’s another thing.  I don’t want to be pregnant again.  EVER.  And if they have their way, I mean... How much of my life were they controlling?  Am I just a power psychic baby making machine?”

“Well, all I know is if they are trying to do this to thousands of people... They did a great job of separating them from one another.”

“That night I slept like the dead, Z.  I’ve NEVER slept that well.  Not since I have had children.”

“They drugged me”  they both concluded in unison.

“Please, tell me I’m crazy, Zander!  I don’t want to believe this.”

“No, I’ll tell you what we are going to do.  No matter what happens, we are not going to allow ourselves to have sex with each other.  We are going to fight this no matter what.  We are going to do anything we can to remind each other of what is at stake so no matter what drugs they give us, we won’t do it.  We can’t do anything about if they take our genetic makeup and artificially conceive, but we sure as hell do not have to be active participants...”

“I’m scared.”

Zander put his arms around her.  “it’s ok to be afraid, right now, when no one is awake to see you except me.  It’ll be our little secret.”

And then Sandy sobbed into his chest.  “You were my best friend for so long.  Now I remember why.” She looked up into his grey eyes.  They were frot with worry.

“Today was awful for you.  Just relax, I’ll keep an eye out until morning.”

“But Zander, you have to sleep.”

“Heh, you know I don’t sleep.  Some things are more important.  Like keeping my friend sane.”

“We need to convince the operative that we had sex.” he said, after a pause.


“So that he thinks it’s an inevitability, to buy us some time before he realizes that is NOT what we are doing in here.”

Sandy nodded, then dropped back off to sleep.

Later, her visions from the past were confirmed


After she had fallen asleep again, he tucked her back in on her pillow, then went back to work on his research, he typed in GATAEH, hit search, and searched the government proxy for any and all information.

Of course, he found nothing.  He saw however, in the permissions, he saw a hole.  He started cutting at it.

By 8 am, he had found his way in, but knew the dual agent would be in soon to see their progress.  He got ready to pack it in, when as if on queue, Alan made his way into Katrine’s office.

Zander quickly put the computer away and played the big spoon to her.

Alan smiled and shouted “GOOD MORNING!” which startled Katrine awake.

She walked across the room to him, looked him over in a very threatening way, grabbed a stepstool, put it next to him, stepped on it and shouted in his ear, “GOOD MORNING ALAN!”  Which made Alan reveal exactly how much alcohol he had the night previous.  He ran to the bathroom, and Zander gave her a high five.  Alan did not return, but Lewey did, and he appeared angry.

“What is the meaning of all of this?” He demanded.

Katrine pulled him aside into a storage closet nearby.

“We believe Alan is an operative for GATAEH.”

“So, why does that give you licence to sleep with Dr. Owens?  I mean, think about the ethics, and the Lord explicitly states tha--”

“Hold up Lewey, Dr. Owens and I have not slept together, nor will we ever.  We found out what the GATAEH are after.  Genetic research!  They have been trying to partner Dr. Owens and I off with one another since we were 6 years old.  We had to convince him that his plan is working so that suspicion is not solicited.  Zander and I were both drugged the night before the Missing, and we have reason to believe that they would drug us again.  We had to make it look as though something happened so that when Alan DOES report back to GATAEH, they think they are done.”

Lewey grew quiet.  He nodded.

“So what I need you to do for me, Lewey, is spread the rumor.  We need this to catch like wildfire.  But secretly inform the officers what is going on, all officers that is, except Alan.  He needs to NOT know his plan isn’t working.”

“I...” he cleared his throat, “I’m sorry I doubted you.  You have my word.  I’ll do as you ask.  May the good Lord have mercy on your soul.”

“So you don’t believe me then?”

“I believe you.  Just, I know there will be some backlash.  I don’t know how I’m going to handle that.”

“Well, I’m no religious expert, but I would say, encourage those to condemn the sin, not the sinner.”

He smiled.  “See, you would have done well as a Minister.”

“Let’s get out of this closet before people start spreading other rumors, just quietly, let my officers know what’s going on please?”

“Of course, you have my word Katie.”

She smiled and left the closet

She had no sooner gotten back to her office when Lewey returned to it.

“Sandy, you need to see this, NOW.”

Her eyebrow raised at the sound of Lewey calling her by her given name.

“What is it?” She asked her dearest friend, and in his hand was a stack of letters.

“I found these in Alan’s office” and he handed the stack to her.  All the letters were addressed to her, the return address was her husband.

Zander had passed out by then.  

“Lewey, can you run interference for me while I read through this stack, please?”

“I imagine I’m going to have to.  We do have a spy in our midst..”

“Lewey, send Alan with Gary to LA.”

“What, why?”

“I amend that, please send Gary, Meg and Dave to my office.  Separately.  We need to deal with this first hand, swiftly.”

Lewey nodded. “I could just, ya know, knock him on his ass, if you think that would help.”

“That’s not a very Christian thing to do, Lewey.” she said almost without thinking.

“He’s got his coming.  Eye for an eye.”

She sighed. “Let’s leave that one to your God, huh?”

Lewey nodded, “...But...”

“No butts, Lewey.  We have to deal with this with diplomacy and tact, not with beatdowns.”

“Ok, you’re the boss.”

“Yes, I am.” she smiled, “So kind of you to notice!”

Lewey snickered then left the room.

She went into the drawer of her desk, felt around for the hidden tab, then pulled it open.  She stowed the letters there, closed and locked the hidden tab, closed the drawer, she had about two seconds to breathe before Alan was in her office.

“I’d like to report a robbery.”


“I had some important papers on my desk, and they are now missing.”

“Well, everything has an electronic copy around here, I wouldn’t worr--”

“No, these were personal letters to me.”

“Well, I haven’t seen them, and I don’t know anyone who’s been in your office.” she lied.

“Ok, well, thanks.” And Alan started to leave

“Oh, and Alan?”


“I’m having Meg place a few orders around town, we need more beds and I’m planning on having locksmiths come through and fit keys to all of our doors around here, I’m assuming you’d be in for that?”

“Damn straight I would.” he said.

“Ok, but promise that you will come out of your office every now and again to say hello.”

“Of course, I’d miss yer purdy face, lady.”

Katrine smiled at him. “That will be all, Alan.  You are free to go.”

He nodded and showed himself out.

She rolled her eyes as he walked out, feeling like she had just kissed the ass of her captor.

Throughout the day, she made arrangements with her officers, explaining exactly what she and Lewey felt Alan was.  They stated simply they had some evidence to support their claims, but to protect Katrine, they did not bring out the letters.  She asked Meg to order her a bed for her office, as Dr. Owens would be staying there.  She also ordered 2 temporary walls be put up in her office, (since it was the size of a classroom, she could put up walls to make two separate bedrooms and have enough left over for office space.) She wanted to insure she would have privacy as she looked through her letters.  She also order that a lock be put on the door of her office that day.  She also informed her team on how she and Zander were going to deal with Alan, and that any rumor of adultery should be talked about in front of Alan loudly, and in a way he would be sure not to miss.

She then left her office, but not before putting the blanket Zander had gotten for her over him.

She went out and enjoyed an unusual day off.  Yesterday being Missing Day, she didn’t feel like she should take it off, or even that she could.  But this day, with the shock that Alan was indeed a spy for an organization she only learned existed the day before, she felt she needed to breathe outside of the walls for a while.  She hopped in the Prius and drove to Ford Lake [Did not redact as there are several Ford Lakes in the region].  The day was cold, and she felt reminiscent for days that had passed.

She thought of when Amber was still very young, she, Amber and Amber’s father stayed in a small studio apartment which overlooked the lake.  She would watch all day as the lake iced over.  Starting the day rough with waves, then ending with the whole lake frozen.  It wasn’t as interesting as watching the lake thaw in the spring, but it was still enough of a distraction.  She didn’t dare bring the letters with her, she didn’t want to accidentally leave them in the car.

She watched the lake, and by nightfall, the lake had frozen over.  She felt that she, too had frozen over, and that her emotions would not again get the best of her.

Also, while she was out, she obtained a P.O. Box in Lewey’s name, knowing that Lewey’s mail was not likely being monitored.

When she returned, she found the beds and temporary walls already in place.  That was the beautiful thing about so many people being in one spot, it took virtually no time at all to set up and take-down living arrangements.

She felt numb as she entered the compound.

Alan approached her as she returned, “Your new accommodations were completed while you were out, and FYI, I still have not found that sensitive paperwork I told you about earlier.”

She waved him aside.  “Thanks Alan, I’m not sure why you are telling me all of this.”

“Well, because one of them was a package for you that I intercepted because I suspected it was a mail bomb.”

She nodded. “Well thanks.  I doubt anyone around here would open my mail without handing it to me.  Should I get a suspicious looking package, I will make sure I report it to you as well as the bomb squad of the local police.  In the interim, I grow tired of listening to your constant complaints.  You are here, you have a job to do, fucking do it.  There are 100 people, including children staying with us.  If you don’t want your things taken, do not leave them out on your desk, lock them away as I do.  This will insure if someone’s kid is in that they do not grab a letter bomb you have sitting out.  Seriously, this isn’t cool to leave your door wide open with such a thing on your desk, but poor planning does not institute an emergency on my part.”

Alan turned on his heel, obviously angry.

“Oh, and Alan?”

He turned and nodded.

“Any and ALL mail that is addressed to me should be GIVEN to me, REGARDLESS if you feel that it is a danger to me.  Have I made myself clear?”

Alan again nodded then walked away quickly.

She sighed.

Zander rose at that point from the middle of the floor.

“What in the hell was that about?”

She sighed.

“Come on, Sandy.  I can’t help you if you don’t tell me.”

She felt her numbness start to subside, felt tears beginning again.  She stopped it.

She then closed and locked her office door.

She sighed again, then began to explain “Alan had stolen several letters out of my mail.  The letters were from Doug.”

Zander just put his head in his hands.

“These guys are a lot further reaching than any of us may have realized.” She continued.

“Why were you talking about letter bombs.”

“Because Alan noticed the documents were missing right away, and came to me to report them stolen.  I had them locked away safely.”

“But, what in hell could they have said?”

“I dunno, I intend to read them tonight.”

“I wonder...” Zander sighed, “I wonder if there are any for me on some other agent’s desk somewhere.”

“Incidentally, you sleep like the dead, you know that?”

Zander looked at her with a quizzical look, she pointed behind him.

He noted the beds and the temporary walls and smiled.  “Oh, I see I did sleep like the dead then.  Sorry to make everyone work around me.”

“It’s ok, I was gone for the day.”

“Listen, I’ll be right back, don’t start on the letters until I return, ok?”

She smiled.  “Wouldn’t dream of it.”

“I was meaning to protect yourself from being found out.”

She giggled slightly, “Of course.”

She went to her new quarters, a quiet small room.  The comforter was nicer than others, a nice down alternative, and she thought of some kids in the Bunker who may want it.  It got colder in the Bunker than it did in the main part of the compound.  She took the comforter to the basement, where two children who slept near her cot were.  The children were already fast asleep, and she covered them in the comforter.  When their mother approached her surprised, Katrine only said, “I have little need for something this warm, your children do.”  Katrine then grabbed her comforter from the cot then brought it back upstairs.  When she returned to her office and living quarters, Zander had not yet returned.

There was a night stand, a lamp, a makeshift closet of sorts with a dresser, all secondhand.  She smiled and thought of she and Doug’s first apartment together, how she came home her first night there to find Doug watching hockey with her little dog in his arms.  She thought of how innocent he was.  She found him one night playing an album on their stereo and crying... One of Doug’s friends had recently passed away, (about 6 months before they moved in together.)  And sometimes, it just got to be too much for him.  

Around everyone else, Doug was like a rabid peacock, all show, conceited and judgemental, which was what initially lead her to him.  She wondered, “how can someone be so conceited?”  Then she learned that it was a show.

He was warm and kindly, always was generous to Amber and treated her as though she was his own.  He and her small dog always got along well, she often would come home to find her in his lap.  When he had nights of insomnia, he would clean the countertops and do the dishes even when it wasn’t his turn.  As his condition worsened, the cleaning of the countertops and dishes ended, and he wasn’t nearly as generous and kindly, but he still was at least civil.  When he disappeared, she was on one hand heartbroken, but on the other, he wasn’t who he was, and she hoped that perhaps he decided to leave her.  At first, it was her children she missed most.  Then, as time went on and time healed the wounds left by non responsiveness, she realized she missed him very much.

It was after about 4 months of no contact that she decided that perhaps something was awry.  On the one hand, he didn’t seem to really care for her anymore, however she knew that he would at least want to check in and say hello by then.  She knew he was part of the Missing, but Doug was very smart and figured he’d find a way to get something to her saying that he and the children were still alive.

She had her clock radio which allowed for an MP3 player to be plugged in, she found her dusty ipod and put on some calming music.  She lit candles and started to boil water with her electric kettle, it was then that Zander walked in.

He carried a bottle of red wine and 2 glasses.

“Listen, I don’t know about you, but I’m stressed out as hell and I could use the wine to take the edge off.”

She smiled at him and unplugged her kettle.

“That’s fine, thanks.”

Then she went to her desk.  “Zander, can you turn your head, I just don’t want anyone torturing you asking you where these things are.”

“No problem, I don’t want to be tortured.” and he turned away.

She retrieved the letters from her hiding place.

She wanted to start with the most recent letter, first, but decided that she should start from the beginning.

She found half of the letters already opened.

She went to the letter written for December 12, 2014.

“Good day my love,

I’m sorry that I can’t be with you now.  I don’t know what’s happening.  They tell me that I’ll be allowed to see my Parents and brothers for the holiday, but that you are gone.  I don’t know where they took you, so I am writing you at the home address in the hopes that maybe you’ll get this and be able to tell me that you are ok.

Know this: I am looking for you, I am going to find you and no one can stop me.  I will not give up until you are found.

GATAEH has us, they are taking reasonable care of us.  The kids are still making it to school, it’s just a different school now.  Steve and Chris are adjusting well, Paul isn’t.  He misses his Mom and cries every night.  We managed to confiscate a picture of you, and Paul talks to it nightly.

They, (the doctors and what not) speak in whispers about testing you and that you are going to do some good for their agency.  I don’t really trust them, especially because they say I’ll never see you again.  I can’t bear that thought.  But I hope you are safe and well.  The kids are looking forward to getting down to a normal routine.  They are going to move my parents, and we will be moving in nearby where they move them.  They haven’t told me where that is, but I’m under the impression we should be somewhere near Chicago.

She took a glug of her wine, and handed Zander the first page of the letter while she read the second.

“I have put the return address on the envelope, provided they do not scratch it out.  Try to write me there if you get this in any reasonable time... If you get this at all.

I hear all of this talk on the news about the “Missing” and I think we are the “Missing”, here, they call November 1 the Apprehension. I’m not sure what all of this is about, but I just want to come home.  I miss you so much,  I love you beyond reason, and I hope you are doing well.


She felt her eyes well up.

Zander reached out and touched her hand.  He knew how she must have been feeling.

She skipped to the last letter dated Oct. 31st 2016.

“My dearest love,

Well, this would be letter 27 that I suspect isn’t going to reach you.  I’m not getting any return to sender letters though, so I suspect we’re golden.  They’ve displaced us again.  They say that they will move us anytime I attempt to give you the return address.  I have to get out of this situation, this is not doing the boys any good, and I feel like I can’t manage them on my own.  I moved out on my own because I got sick of having to make my parents move once a month because I had the audacity to attempt to contact my wife.  My Mom says you have probably moved on by now, but I don’t believe that for a second.  I can’t, without you I’d die for sure. “

Another glug of wine, she handed the empty glass to Zander who refilled it.

“I wonder why this happened, I’m so angry.  I know they are probably doing experiments on you, testing your reflexes and what not, and that’s not why you’re here.  I am the one that gets tested, I’m the one who has neurological problems.  Fuck them and the jaded horse they rode in on.  But I can’t do ANYTHING.  I’m so lost.  Your phone isn’t working, I can’t email you.  I just want to give up, but I can’t.  You are my wife, I made a promise and I intend to keep it.

I sent pictures of the kids in their costumes.  This year, Steve is Luigi, Paul is Mario and Chris is Toad.  I know you’d be proud of them.  They are doing so well in school but, Paul never recovered.  He still misses his Mom.  Chris is used to you not being around now, but every now and again he still asks, “when are we going home with Mommy?” and my heart breaks.  At least we’ve been allowed to see Amber, Chase has seen to that.  Chase says that you are doing well, but that he was given specific instructions to not say where you are at or what you are doing.  In fact, he doesn’t know aside from where he drops Amber off with you every few weeks.  He says you live in a compound and that you run some sort of Finder’s facility.  He says you’ve been looking for me and that you’ve helped a lot of other families find their other halves.  You are an inspiration, hon.  You’re my idol.  Seriously.  I’m glad you’ve found such meaningful work. So, hurry up and find us.  We miss you, it’s time for all of us to come home.  I know it’s not safe, I don’t care.  I want our kids to know you.  Pictures are not enough.”

She skipped the glass and went right for the bottle.  Her tears pouring down her face.

“I love you, I hope you are well.  I hope you can sneak something along with Amber to let us know you are doing well.  Take care and I hope we see you soon.

Love you always,


This letter had not been opened by Alan, yet.  She found the pictures that Doug had sent.  Her little boys were turning quickly into little men and she smiled to see them.  She took the pictures and put them with the one she had printed the day previous, crying.

She then laid down in the fetal position and cried.

She knew, somehow that it was going to be ok.  She knew she had to talk to Chase, (her ex husband) and to Amber.  She knew, somehow that this was going to have to be the plan.

She called Chase immediately from her dumb phone.


“Hi Chase, it’s Sandy, I was just wondering if we are still on for Friday?”

“Of course.”  She could tell there was more he wanted to say.

“Is Amber there?”

“Umm, no.  She’s... out.”

“She’s with, them,  isn’t she?”

Chase cleared his throat. “Yes.  What that agency is doing is so unfair.”

“But your words are guarded, are you being monitored?”


“Can you come about an hour early on Friday?”

“Yes, of course.”

“Listen, I’m going to email you a picture, please send it along to you know who?”

“Of course.”

“Thank you so much Chase, I take back anything bad I’ve ever said about you.”

“... Since when have you said anything bad about me?”

They both laughed.  “Well, you know, you’re my ex and all...”

“Yes, I’ll meet up with you on Friday, Amber will be there.”

“Thanks again.”

They hung up.  She asked Zander if he would take her picture.

“Sandra, you’re half drunk.” he said.

“I don’t care, Zander.  This is for my family, they need to know I am safe.”

and so, Zander snapped the photo and hooked up the camera via bluetooth to the computer.

Of course, it wouldn’t connect.  He connected the camera directly.  The picture wouldn’t attach.  Zander then encrypted the photo and threw it in a password protected zip file.  She called Chase back.

“The password you need will be WhiteHorse1”

“Got it.”

“The W and the H are capitalized, the one is the numeral.”

“Ok, it’s taken care of.  I’m sending it along now.”

“Thanks again, if I send something else later, would you send that along, too?”

“Of course, Sandra.”

“Thank you, Chase.  Have a good night.”

She sighed a little, then looked to Zander who was already figuring out how to make something appear innocuous while yet containing a message.

“Wait.” She grinned.  “I have a better idea.  How about if we figure out a way to mask our IP so that I can send him a message directly.”

“You won’t be able to do that.  It’s not just the IP they use, it’s an algorithm that I haven’t figured out yet.  We’d need a list of those that are being studied in order to determine the algorithm.”

“What about an internet based message board?”

“Nope.  Because the IP has something to do with the algorithm, it wouldn’t work.  We’d have to find some way to fix... hey, can you get me access to Alan’s computer?”

“Not likely... Alan has always been protective of his stuff.  That’s why he was so upset when the letters went missing.”

“I think, if I had access into their network, I could not only figure out the algorithm, but I could crack it, maybe for like, 5 minutes at a time, but enough time that if everyone knew where and when to look they could...”

“That’s brilliant.  We’ll have to warm him up to the idea.  And by warm him up, I’m thinking maybe violence.”

Zander raised his eyebrow, “Didn’t you just tell that Minister fellow no on violence?”

“Yeah, but he’s a Minister.  I’m not.”

Zander sighed, then went back to work.

“So, this is what I’ve come up with.  We are going to make a Word file.  I’m going to use Lorem Ipsom to generate text.  We are going to capitalize letters, and those letters will make words, just like a logic puzzle in the newspaper.  So, what I want you to do is write what you want to tell your husband.  I will then throw it into a document and capitalize letters.  We won’t be able to send the code with it, though.  So Doug will have to figure it out.  I figure it’s obvious enough that he’ll get it pretty quickly, but to an automated system, an algorithm, this’ll seem innocuous.”

“Well then I’ll start writing, and then we’ll encode.”

“Write it all in caps, that’ll make it easier.”

She nodded, then grabbed another laptop and began work and this is what she wrote:





She sent the file to Zander on the network, he picked it up then added the extra letters.

lorem ipsum Dolor sit amEt, consectetur Adipiscing elit. Morbi dapibus massa id elit gRavida in pellentesque ante blanDit. PrOin metUs justo, vestibulum sed mollis sit amet, ornare eGet enIm. nAM eu vulputate Ligula. Praesent dictum, magna ullamcOOrper iaKulis semper, rINsus dolor tempus lacuG, Fel lOboRtis dYi OUi at elit. Aliquam erat volutpat. Pellentesque egestas venenatis urna sit...

And so on, the letter ended up being 5 pages long and making absolutely no sense.

She then texted Chase the key.

Zander worked on, sent the documents in another password encoded zip file, then turned to Sandy again.

“So, what did you do, you know, before all of this?”

She smiled.

“I was doing some Private Investigating before this.  You know, the usual, ‘my husband is cheating on me, would you look in and take some photographs to be used for blackmail.’  I started getting a lot of cases of missing persons after my family disappeared.  I couldn’t figure out why I couldn’t find THEM when I had had no trouble finding others.”

“You seem to know a fair amount about networks and computers...”

“Enough to be dangerous.”

“Yes, that’s what I mean.  Did you take any computer science in school.”

“I worked through college for an ISP and later doing network surveillance.”

“Ahh, I see.  But... Are you asking me for a reason?”

“...Ok, yeah I am, I wanna know what tools I have in my arsenal when the time comes.”

“Ahh, I see.  Well if you tell me what to do, I’ll tell you if I know how to do it, how about that?”

“Fair enough.”

Next Chapter: Case File 1: Sandra French-Wortcowski