Transplanted Life
Tuesday, April 04, 2006
It looks so much easier on TV
The people who follow my life with rapt attention are probably wondering how Friday's date went. Let's just say that Friday night was... eventful.

Things went well at first. I snuck out of work at 4:30 so that I could take the bus home and have some time to get looking nice before meeting up with Alex. It was looking really nice out, so I went with something that shows off the cleavage and legs rather than a tight sweater. I admit it - I was looking to get laid. It's been a few months since Korpin (ptui!) and I like Alex, plus the fact that he's a little intimidated by me is a little bit of a turn-on. It's not like he hasn't slept with a girl or anything, or that I'm just so super-hot as to make men cower, but there's a lot of girls who look at him and say "I can do better". That they're just looking without speaking to him doesn't matter, of course, but we've all seen those high school movies. Anyway, the shorter hemline meant shaving my legs, which just eats time. I think Gertie had her "breakfast" while waiting for me to get out of the bathroom.

Worth it, though. I looked hot, even with the pasty skin only a New England winter can bring. I was going to be late meeting Alex at Legal Sea Foods, but part of the fun of being the girl is that the right outfit can make up for a lot, and I had the right outfit on. Of course, I also had a coat on because I was going to walk to the T and ride a train (and it might not be so warm later), but by the time I met him at the bar it was over my shoulder and he was impressed. He didn't look that bad, himself. He's the sort of guy who's never put much effort into making himself attractive - he's got ten pounds he could stand to lose or turn into muscle, and it wouldn't hurt to put a little more effort into the shaving - so I really did appreciate that his pants had seen an iron and he was clean-shaven. I've been on the other side of the table, so I know how annoying it can be when you don't really feel like it makes you look that much better.

So, we eat, and we've just bought our tickets for Inside Man when my phone rings. If I'd had it longer, I might have just ignored it, but this mobile phone thing is new to me and I still tend to think that if it rings, it must be an emergency.

It's Gertie, and I don't know if I'd call it an emergency, because there's nothing that anyone can do. She had been called to walk a music student home; the girl said she didn't usually use the escort service but there were bangs on the wall between the practice spaces so she was nervous. Gertie had a master key, unlocked it, and found Korpin's body. The girl screamed, Gertie told her to sit back down in her practice room while she called the police, and then she called me to get Agent Jones's number.

Yeah, like I was just going to give her that and then quietly go see a movie. I flipped through my contact list, gave her Jones's number, then told Alex we were going back to Cambridge to make sure my last boyfriend was dead.

We got there at about the same time as Jones and his partner, who saw us and told Alex to stay back. "Not that we usually ask this of potential suspects, but what do you think?"

I told him that when it was all said and done, he'd have a tough time deciding whether it was technically suicide or murder. He grunted agreement before showing the Cambridge detective his badge and saying that the Bureau would be taking over the investigation, as Korpin was an international fugitive, and that "Miss Hart will be assisting with our inquiries." I don't know if that's actually a legitimate reason for the FBI taking over a murder investigation, but people well above both Jones's and the detective's pay grade had been talking and Jones was in charge.

He didn't let me actually go into the room because the crime scene guys were still in there, but I was able to verify that, yeah, it was Korpin's body. I had to put my head between my legs for a minute or two. It's funny, because this didn't look nearly as bad as Carter's body getting shot in the face two years ago, but somehow it feels worse. Maybe it's because of that. This seems more premeditated. "Sorry," I say. "This... this is just cold. I mean, even when it was Alexei in my old body and I was still attached to it, I couldn't..." One of the crime scene guys looks at me funny and Jones leads me a few yards away while his partner tells him to look at his work.

"We don't know it went down that way." I give him a look and he says, yeah, that would be his guess too. So what do you think?

I'd been thinking about it on the train ride up here. What I think, and what I tell him, is that I don't think Mikail will stay in his new body for long. If he's got the tech to switch, he'll do it as soon as it's safe to do so. I just don't think he'll be satisfied staying a woman. Which means the Bureau had better find him quick, because this guy seems much less tolerant of loose ends than Dmitri and Alexei were.

Yeah, he sighs. Just hoping you had a different read on the situation.

There's not much more I can do at that point, aside from talk to Gertie. As much as I trust her, let's face it: Boy. Girl. Same place. I tell her Agent Jones would like to draw some blood, from both of us, to make sure Korpin's not hiding right under our noses. At first, she doesn't get it, and then she's like, oh god, everyone really is a suspect. Everyone with a vagina at least Then she looks over at Jillian, the girl who called her for the escort, and, yeah, could be. I tend to think that she wouldn't want to call attention to the corpse, especially when the person who came to escort her was someone who'd recognize Korpin, but I've got no idea how that bastard's mind works. Like, he knew he couldn't pretend to be Michelle forever, so why get himself noticed? It just doesn't make any sense.

Anyway, it seems that fingerprint analysis and DNA tests don't come back nearly as fast as they do on TV, even when you're dealing with the FBI instead of a local police department. And I imagine that practice room was just covered with prints, and how many female Harvard students, faculty, and staff are in the database? They've started making some headway on figuring out which girls were away for spring break, but you can't exactly compel blood tests for everyone who may have been in the building (I'm guessing that they don't have any security video).

Which is where I'm coming in. They had me come in after work this evening, see if I could spot any of Mikail's body language or speech patterns in any of the people they interviewed after confirming that Korpin's body has nanos in it now, along with a pretty nasty poison. After all, I'm the person who spent the most time with him. Well, second most. They had Telly doing it in another room, so that we couldn't influence each other. I don't know if a judge will see me and Telly independently saying that this girl kind of moves like Korpin as reason to order a blood sample or a search warrant, but I can't think of many better ideas.

As to whether they found anything, well, I'll be looking at more video tomorrow. At least they rushed mine and Gertie's blood tests, so we don't have to sleep with one eye open any more.

Well, so much for merely wondering if Marti was ever going to get laid again :-)

I think you have to give Korpin credit. He's managing to mess up your sex life without even being present. More seriously, tho, what the heck is wrong with him? Why on earth is he doing *anything* within 500 miles of Boston? Hell, it's just been spring break. He could have gone off to Daytona Beach, had his pick of bodies from thousands of hard drinking and partying students.

One of them ends up floating in the pool, appearing to have simply fucked up with too much alcohol, and who the heck's going to be looking for nanites or poison. They see what they ezpect.

Oh, sure, sooner or later when they fingerprint the body, the FBI probably notices that Korpin's body was the floater. What are they going to do, try and track down every drunken frat girl who was within a mile of the pool? Retroactively, a week afterwards? As you comment, just like playing Michelle, this was stupid. And yet, the boy (Not that that probably applies this minute) doesn't seem stupid. Weird.

- Z
I just hope he hasn't swapped into someone female that Marti knows. I know, it still means Korpin murdered someone, but I'd hate to see Marti lose another friend.

Maybe K has reached some sort of swapping limit and his/her personality is starting to degrade, hence the lack of planning or logic in some of his actions? Or maybe he is just twisted enough to enjoy it? Hopefully he hasn't found some way to swap male-to-male directly... he could be anyone.

I hope the FBI is keeping an eye on Marti, in case K is coming back for revenge.
I think Korpin swapped with Katie Couric. She's been acting weird lately.
One possible way to narrow things down. Presumably anyone who was using the practice room was a musician of some sort. There's no evidence that Korpin had musical talent. Is there a young woman who can be tied to the scene who has suddenly lost her musical abilities?

Maybe K has reached some sort of swapping limit and his/her personality is starting to degrade, hence the lack of planning or logic in some of his actions?

Well, there were no nanos in his bloodstream when the feds checked at the start of the year, so that seems unlikely - it would indicate that he hadn't ever switched out of that body before Friday.

There's no evidence that Korpin had musical talent. Is there a young woman who can be tied to the scene who has suddenly lost her musical abilities?

Well, absense of evidence isn't necessarily evidence of absense. We don't know that Korpin had a tin ear, either, so he could have chosen a body where he could fit in.

I imagine the FBI is asking those questions, but would anyone have noticed in a week, unless she has a bandage on her hand or something.
My guess: the Boston area has gotta be where the nanotech is stashed. The FBI needs to do a thorough search of the living and working spaces where Martin became Marti. And watch the airports for one of those practice-room girls trying to fly (back) to Eastern Europe with lumpy luggage.
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