Thursday, March 12, 2009

Xtra Files 7: The Hook

I've always assumed that someday I'd stumble across a dead body. As a Land Surveyor, I've frequented some of the most remote and varied areas in numerous states west of the Rockies. I've been to remote places rarely traversed by mere humans, and Greg knows that I've stumbled across a lot of strange things while performing the mysterious and age-old tradition of Land Surveying. But on one occasion, the sight of a pale hand sticking out from the rubble of a fallen structure was the last thing I expected to find at a particular condemned site where we were conducting a topographic survey.

Located near the top of the Santa Cruz Mountains, it was probably once a beautiful place... before the Loma Prieta Earthquake back in '89 that made the home on the picturesque property unsuitable for occupation. Now the landscape is riddled with a half-fallen house and lots of debris from other structures that have c
ollapsed. That's where we saw the partially exposed motionless hand.

Ronaldo was wearing his leather work gloves when he knelt down, and touched the pale hand. He immediately realized that it was a false hand, a prosthetic hand, to be precise. I was glad it wasn't what it first appeared to be, but now there was a
new mystery... Who would abandon a perfectly good prosthetic hand?

As Ronaldo thumbed through an abandoned box of old photos that had been left outside to rot, he discovered a picture of a man holding a large fish with his left hand, and a brandishing a shiny hook in place of his right hand...

Ronaldo snapped this photo.

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