CLUE: Papers in the Trash
The anthropology team was investigating a place where
the Arctica crew camped after their ship was wrecked. A crumpled-up piece
of paper summarizes what they found.
THE MAIN CAMP SITE
The ash pile is small, indicating a camp time of less than a month. Aside
from the usual waste, the midden held some manmade items:
four empty 1-fluidram apothecarist's
vials circa 1830. By shape and residue,
I believe each held about 3.5
milliliters of James's Powder (antimoniated
calcium phosphate), a fever reducer.
The remains of about 50 lead-soldered tin-plated
iron cans. These were of standard Royal Navy issue, probably containing
meat, potatoes or fish. The cans are similar to those used on Franklin's
third expedition. They appear to have been of indifferent quality:
many were poorly soldered, and several were bloated.
An unusual bottle and stopper, very small and sturdy,
as if to hold a very heavy liquid. Bottle volume: about 7 milliliters.
THE QUARANTINE CAMP
Since this camp was apparently suddenly covered by ice, it is complete
-- although many of its contents were crushed in the cataclysm or by subsequent
movements of the ice. A rock cairn alerted us to the presence of this
The ash pile was unexpectedly large, and the ashes were
seen to contain buttons and bits of bone. The cataclysm collapsed the
triple-canvas tent onto its wood plank floor. Inside the tent we found
blankets, tinned food, a firepit, firewood, cooking utensils and personal
effects. The tent also contained a stone that appears to be a meteorite
Subject 1 was discovered wrapped in blankets, apparently
killed in his sleep. The body was crushed and deformed by the ice. Subjects
2 and 3 were spared this fate by a protective pocket formed by the ice
Subject 2, a man, suffered a fatal head wound in the
cataclysm. A blood trail, still visible, shows he was dragged into the
pocket by Subject 3, a woman, before she died. She was found with her
arms wrapped around him, both lying in the collapsed tent as if asleep.
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