Thursday, July 28, 2011


I am so tired right now.

The last few weeks were spent attempting to expand our smallish knowledge base. We had names and numbers, so spent a lot of time feeling creepy as we snooped for the backgrounds of the kids. Felt significantly less creepy looking for the beneficiaries of the money that Dande handed out like candy. Still, within this town, there aren't that many leads to pick up from. And though I am good at paperwork, I am less-good at being a detective. I'm good at presenting cases to groups, but not so much at talking to people-people. My roommate was a lot better at talking to normal people than I was, and would have probably hit me for using the phrase "normal people." But I digress. I am-- not bad at investigating, but incompetent in the field of detecting. Also, as it turns out, the field of subtlety.

We had information about the kids, and about the kinds of people being paid off by Diende. We had no idea what to do with it. We can't storm Dande because there are, well, two of us, we can't alert the police because they're corrupt and we can't contact allies because we don't have any. I had no clue what I was really doing and was retracting into my "It's hopeless" state of mind. Of course everything to do with the MONSTER is hopeless, I know that. But more hopeless than usual, if that makes sense. Then yesterday, as I was walking out of the door of the hovel we're staying in, a woman walked up to me and punched me in the face.

She yelled something in French. I yelled something in vulgarity. Simone ran out yelling something in Franglais. I think she went drinking somewhere last night.

Anyway, according to Simone, the conversation started with her asking what the hell the woman was doing. The woman replied that she was punching me. Simone asked why, and the woman said we were stalking her son, and that he'd disappeared, and it was all our fault. Eventually Simone managed to get the woman to stop being angry with us and told her that we were trying to help, and that even though I was a dick I didn't deserve to be punched. I was, of course, watching this in complete confusion. The confusion was intensified as the woman started laughing, slightly hysterically, and held out her hand to help me up. Somehow she and Simone and I ended up sitting on the carpet in our semi-permanent pit of a home, talking almost normally, with Simone acting as translator.

Her name's Ibola, and when asked why and how she found us, she said she asked for the people who were stalking her son. That's why she hit me-- her son went missing, and two foreigners were wandering around talking to people about him. I have no idea how Simone calmed her down and convinced her we weren't villainous so easily. A loved one of mine goes missing and it takes years to calm me down god-fucking-dammit. Sorry. Anyway, we talked to her for a bit. She thought it was us that'd kidnapped the kids but realized that there are only two of us and as I mentioned above, we can do nothing. So her suspicions snapped back to Dande. She's been insisting that the kids are kidnapped for a while, but nobody's believes her. She told us that she knows a guy in the town the kids were being taken to and he never saw them arrive. Nobody else thinks there's anything suspicious.

This day has been confusing. We have a plan now, though. Ibola's sister has two kids, and she's signed them both up for the medical thing. Ibola tried to dissuade her sister but they're not on good terms. At least now we have a lead.

Ibola swears that her kid is still alive. She'd know if he wasn't.

I wish there was some sort of psychic connection between one and ones loved ones.

This entry got off track a lot. Gist of it is, we might be able to save the kids. Yay.

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