He paused, a hand on the banister, midway between the second floor and the third, and Teddy could feel his exhaustion as a living, broken thing, a fourth body in the stairwell with them.  “How does psychopharmacology apply?” Chuck asked.  Cawley said, “A drug has just been approved lithium is its name— that relaxes psychotic patients, tames them, some would say. Manacles 86 will become a thing of the past. Chains, handcuffs. Bars even, or so the optimists say. The old school, of course, argues that nothing will replace psychosurgery, but the new school is stronger, I think, and it will have money behind it.”

“Money from where?”

“Pharmaceutical companies, of course. Buy stock now, gentlemen, and you’ll be able to retire to your own island. New schools, old schools. My god, I do rant sometimes.”

“Which school are you?” Teddy asked gently.

“Believe it or not, Marshal, I believe in talk therapy, basic interpersonal skills. I have this radical idea that if you treat a patient with respect and listen to what he’s trying to tell you, you just might reach him.” Another howl. Same woman, Teddy was pretty sure. It slid between them on the stairs and seemed to spike Cawley’s attention.

“But these patients?” Teddy said. ,

Cawley smiled. “Well, yes, many of these patients need to be medicated and some need to be manacled. No argument. But it’s a slippery slope. Once you introduce the poison into the well, how do you ever get it out of the water?”

“You don’t,” Teddy said.

He nodded. “That’s right. What should be the last resort gradually becomes standard response. And, I know, I’m mixing my metaphors.  Sleep,” he said to Chuck. “Right. I’ll try that next time.” “I’ve heard it works wonders,” Chuck said, and they headed up the final flight.

In Rachel’s room, Cawley sat heavily on the edge of her bed and Chuck leaned against the door. Chuck said, “Hey. How many surrealists does it take to screw in a lightbulb?”

Cawley looked over at him. “I’ll bite. How many?”

“Fish,” Chuck said and let loose a bright bark of a laugh.

“You’ll grow up someday, Marshal,” Cawley said. “Won’t you?”


“I’ve got my doubts.”

Teddy held the sheet of paper in front of his chest and tapped it to get their attention. “Take another look.”


I AM 47





WHO IS 67?

After a minute, Cawley sail, “I’m too tired, Marshal. It’s all gibberish to me right now. Sorry.”

Teddy looked at Chuck. Chuck shook his head.

Teddy said, “It was the plus sign that got me going, made me look at it again. Look at the line under ‘They were eighty.’ We’re supposed to add the two lines. What do you get?”

“A hundred and twenty-seven.”

“One, two, and seven,” Teddy said. “Right. Now you add three.  But it’s separated. She wants us to keep the integers apart. So you have one plus two plus seven plus three. What’s that give you?” “Thirteen.” Cawley sat up on the bed a bit.

Teddy nodded. “Does thirteen have any particular relevance to Rachel Solando? Was she born on the thirteenth? Married on it?  Killed her kids on the thirteenth?”

“I’d have to check,” Cawley said. “But thirteen is often a significant number to schizophrenics.”


He shrugged. “The same way it is to many people. It’s a harbinger

of bad luck. Most schizophrenics live in a state of fear. It’s the common bonding element in the disease. So most schizophrenics are also

deeply superstitious. Thirteen plays into that.”

“That makes sense, then,” Teddy said. “Look at the next number.

Four. Add one plus three you get four. But one and three on their own?” “Thirteen.” Chuck came off the wall and cocked his head at the sheet of paper.

“And the last number,” Cawley said. “Sixty-seven. Six and seven equals thirteen.”

Teddy nodded. “It’s not the ‘law of four.’ It’s the law of thirteen.

There are thirteen letters in the name Rachel Solando.”

Teddy watched both Cawley and Chuck count it up in their heads.

Cawley said, “Go on.”

“Once we’ve accepted that, Rachel leaves a whole lot of bread crumbs. The code follows the most rudimentary principle of number to-letter assignation. One equals A. Two equals B. You with me?” Cawley nodded, followed by Chuck a few seconds later.

“The first letter of her name is R. Numerical assignation of R is eighteen.  A is one. C is three. H is eight. E is five. L is twelve. Eighteen, one, three, eight, five, and twelve. Add ‘em up, guys, and what do you get?” “Jesus,” Cawley said softly.

“Forty-seven,” Chuck said, his eyes gone wide, staring at the sheet of paper over Teddy’s chest.

“That’s the ‘I,’ “ Cawley said. “Her first name. I get that now. But what about ‘they’?”

“Her last name,” Teddy said. “It’s theirs.”


“Her husband’s family and their ancestors. It’s not hers, not by birth. Or it refers to her children. In either case, it doesn’t really mat89 ter, the whys. It’s her last name. Solando. Take the letters and add up their numerical assignations and, yeah, trust me, you come up with eighty.”

Cawley came off the bed, and both he and Chuck stood in front of Teddy to look at the code draped over his chest.

Chuck looked up after a while, into Teddy’s eyes. “What’re you— fucking Einstein?”

“Have you broken code before, Marshal?” Cawley said, eyes still on the sheet of paper. “In the war?”


“So how did you... ?” Chuck said.

Teddy’s arms were tired from holding up the sheet. He placed it on the bed.

“I don’t know. I do a lot of crosswords. I like puzzles.” He shrugged.

Cawley said, “But you wer Army Intelligence overseas, right?” Teddy shook his head. “Regular army. You, though, Doctor, you were OSS.”

Cawley said, “No. I did some consulting.”

“What kind of consulting?”

Cawley gave him that sliding smile of his, gone almost as soon as it appeared. “The never-talk-about-it kind.”

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