Authors note: This is a work of fiction. It does not reflect any actual events, and all of the characters are fictional. Any similarity to events or persons living or dead is purely coincidental.
There is a real city of Oceanside, California. It’s San Diego County’s third largest city with a below-average crime rate.
The Grand Pacific Hotel is fictional, but during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, there were at least two similar resort hotels that did exist, primarily serving railroad passengers and tourists as described in this book.
— Tom Morrow
The following day, the detectives sorted their notes and rehashed their interviews. What they knew was there were a lot of odd similarities: call girls, rowdy Marines, a hotel madam, and leaking pipes. What they didn’t know was how all this could be connected, if at all, to three recently found bodies that appeared to have been hidden for many, many years. However, there was one slight connection: the rowdy Marines and the mummy—he was positively identified as a Marine.
But all of the other information they had collected seemed relevant, too; they just didn’t know how. From the people they had interviewed, the detectives sensed it unusual for all of them to talk of the same things; especially since they said they hadn’t seen or talked to one another in over twenty-five years. In one way or another, they felt they had. Their words seemed too coincidental.
As they were working at their desk, Joe received a call from Sara. The team had some results from their autopsies: the bones in the pit and the bones in the boiler. Both detectives dropped what they were doing and headed to the forensics lab.
“Laura, what’ve you got for us,” asked Danny.
“Well, let’s start with the body we found in the privy. I think we have more information on her.”
“So you’re saying it was a woman?”
“Yes, it was a woman and a young one at that.”
“How young?” Joe asked.
“Based on bone density and how long we felt she was buried in the privy, we think she was in her mid-twenties.”
“And how long do you think she was in the pit?” Danny asked.
“Since the early 1950s.”
“How do you know that?” Joe asked.
“We coordinated with Professor Hanover and his research, which led us to do a little research of our own. Between the two of us, we think we’ve nailed the time period of exactly when she was buried in the pit.”
“You can be that exact?” Danny asked.