Case 874136: Pferd

Case #: 874136

Case Type: Missing Person

Date Reported: 10/21/2015

Reported by: Rebecca Hoover

Address: 4593 Ash Ln, Richmond, VA 23223

Phone Number: (804) 226-9814

Relationship to Missing Person: teacher

Reason for Report: Ms. Hoover was worried for the well being of her student after receiving a series of cryptic and suspicious assignments. These assignments gave Ms. Hoover a reason to believe someone was inflicting harm (psychological and possibly physical) unto the student. Ms. Hoover offered a complete transcript of said assignments (these are located in the evidence section of this case file). Apparently the student talked about seeing some kind of horse and being scared and detained by some sort of male figure (Hoover speculates this could be the student’s father). After the student did not respond to Ms. Hoover’s emails about helping the student for over 36 hours, Ms. Hoover decided to involve the police.

Missing Person: Brigit Schmidt

Primary Language: German, with some English

Address: 9508 Horseshoe Ln, Richmond, VA 23223 (found to be abandoned when officers went to investigate)

Phone: N/A (Hoover only corresponds with student over email, no phone was given in Schmidt’s official school record.)

Age: 20

DOB: 1/17/1995

Race: Caucasian

Gender: Female

Height: Unknown

Weight: Unknown

Clothing worn when last seen: Unknown

Notes: (10/22) Met with Schmidt’s grandmother who is her only known relative in the area. She last saw Schmidt on September 28. She said Schmidt was not acting like herself; she was unusually jumpy and kept looking out the window like she was waiting for someone to appear. She left in a hurry, saying she felt ill but didn’t seem sickly to the grandmother. (10/25) Officers searched the address she put on her official school record only to find a small house that looked like it hadn’t been inhabited in months. There was dust on the floor with non-human footprints, they looked like that of horse hooves, but no horses are in the area and one would hardly fit in that house so that’s almost impossible. (10/28) Visited the Internet café were Schmidt reportedly does her homework for Ms. Hoover’s class. The owner who always sees Schmidt doing her schoolwork says that she hadn’t seen Schmidt since the 19th of October (also the last day Schmidt wrote to Ms. Hoover). Owner says Schmidt had seemed very paranoid the last few times she saw her. She saw her staring at the window at something with a horrified expression for minutes without blinking. She says the last time Schmidt was there she typed something very quickly and then ran out of the café, heading south (this leads to some privately owned land with nothing but an old barn). (10/31) After obtaining a search warrant, officers went to investigate the barn where Schmidt was reportedly heading. Upon arrival, officers smelled rotting flesh. The officers entered the barn and found a very disturbing scene. All over the walls were drawings of what looked like horses; only these horses had no mane or tail. All of these drawings were in white chalk except for the eyes, which were painted red (possibly with blood). Also written on the walls were the words “help me” in English and German. In the middle of the barn the officers found the body of a young female, covered in blood. (11/2) This body was confirmed to be Brigit Schmidt. Medical Examiner could find no cause of death; the blood found on the body did not belong to Schmidt, but a horse. Since there is no presence of trauma to the body or signs of a struggle in the barn, there is no reason to believe Brigit Schmidt was murdered, only that this was some kind of freak accident.

Evidence: Complete transcript of Brigit Schmidt’s Assignments, blood sample found on body of the deceased, pictures from scenes of the barn where the body was found

 

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Johnny’s Love Life

From the beginning of House of Leaves, Johnny Truant displays problems with intimacy. This problem is shown through the opposition of his myriad of sexual relationships to his lack of meaningful and loving relationships with women, even when women seem to be interested in him. Though this lack of meaningful relationships could be Johnny’s choice, it is clear that he wants something more when he expresses his desire to have a family and a lifelong love with Ashley and in his love letter to Thumper. This lewd behavior could also be attributed to Johnny’s close friendship with Lude, whose sexual conquests are detailed by Johnny at may points throughout the novel, but Johnny’s experiences with Zampanò’s notes for House of Leaves have a more prominent effect on Johnny’s love life. These notes deteriorate Johnny psychologically, make him extremely paranoid, and lead to the destruction of his closest relationships.  This effect seems to be limited to Johnny in terms of the people who have interacted with the house since in the end, the house leads Karen Green and Navidson to resolve the problems in their relationship and become closer than ever. Since the house is said to reflect the psyche of anyone who enters it, it effects Johnny differently than it effects Karen and Navidson. Just as the house forces Karen and Navidson to confront the problems  within themselves to repair their relationship, Johnny  must confront his inner demons. In their interactions with the house, Karen and Navidson view the house as the monster because it is what seems to be keeping them apart, but for Johnny the monster is himself. Johnny’s reading of Zampanò’s House of Leaves leads him to viewing himself as a monster, and by extension make him incapable of love through his isolation from the rest of the world, much like the minotaur.

Storms in Frankenstein

The language of nature is particularly prevalent throughout Frankenstein by Mary Shelley. Though these descriptions of nature are often just the passing thoughts of Victor, sometimes certain natural themes are used for a specific purpose. Throughout Frankenstein, storms are used to foreshadow the terrible events that are soon to come in the life of Victor Frankenstein.

The first two storms described in the book foreshadow terrible events in that they transform Victor’s life in ways that eventually come back to haunt him. The initial storm is when Victor witnesses the oak tree being electrocuted by a strike of lightning. This storm leads to Victor pouring himself into the study of science and looking into galvanism. These studies lead to Victor’s scientific pursuits at Ingolstadt, and therefore to his creation of the creature which is eventually horrific for Victor. The next storm immediately precedes the scene in which the creature is given life. Though Victor is looking forward to the successful animation of his creation, the life he gives to the creature turns what he thought was a masterpiece into his worst nightmare.

After Victor finds out that his brother William was murdered, he hurriedly travels back to Switzerland. On his way home, when he is nearing Geneva, a storm passes through the mountains and thunders around Victor as he mourns for his late brother. As the storm is reaching its peak, it sends down a strike of lightning that illuminates the creature for Victor to see. This leads Victor to make the connection of the creature’s coincidental presence to the recent murder of his brother, and drive him to hate the creature (and himself for giving the creature life) even more ardently. When Victor wanders to Chamounix and Montavert in an attempt to get over the contempt he feels toward himself after the deaths of William and Justine, he encounters yet another storm as he is ascending the  mountain. When he reaches the summit, he encounters the creature who then tells Victor his life story and asks him to make him a female companion which leads Victor into a state of depression and disgust for himself until he destroys this new creation.

The next couple storms foreshadow the deaths of Victor’s closest companions. The first of these hits when Victor leaves Scotland to attempt to reunite with Henry Clerval. This storm takes him all the way to Ireland where yet another misfortune befalls him. He survives the terrible storm only to find Henry murdered by his creation.The next storm brought tragedy in the death of Victor’s bride and lifelong friend, Elizabeth. The storm starts right before Victor tells Elizabeth to go to sleep in the very room she is murdered in minutes later.

The last storm in the book occurs when Victor is chasing the creature through the arctic. Just as Victor is closing in on him, a storm hits and breaks up the ice and Victor loses his last chance for revenge. This storm leads to his debilitation and sickness which eventually leads to his death upon Walton’s ship. Though these storms could have all been coincidental, the continual placement of their descriptions show an undeniable connection to the terrible events in the life of Victor Frankenstein.

“The Sapling” Explanation

I got the inspiration for “The Sapling” from volume one of Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein”. In my poem, the sapling represents Victor Frankenstein. I wanted to illustrate the image of Victor as an innocent young person before he becomes interested in metaphysical science. The old trees in the poem represent the scientists that Victor becomes obsessed with into his youth such as Cornelius Agrippa, Paracelsus, and Albertus Magnus. Though no one else thinks these scientists are worthy of time or study, just as no one thinks the old trees’ fruit is sweet enough to eat, Victor and the sapling still hold onto them. The growth of the fruit on the sapling is meant to represent the work that Victor puts into the reanimation of the creature. Though Victor thinks that his creation will be this wonderful thing that will change the world for the better, it turns out to be a frightening (and possibly murderous) monster, just as the apples of the sapling look ripe but are terribly rotten (and possibly poisonous).

The Sapling

In the center of the garden

grew a sapling, never after forgotten.

Summers came, and Winters passed,

through many years this tree did last.

Its roots grew deeper and entangled

roots of trees no longer able

to bear fruit of ample sweetness

to attract one’s tongue to witness.

The old trees spread this malady

through their roots to the young sapling.

As those old trees withered down,

the young tree’s branches were abound

with the blossoms that preceded

the growth of apples, unimpeded.

Though the fruits appeared so red,

the inside filled each taster with dread.

There was no sweetness, only a bitter,

toxic, and pernicious flavor.

Worse than the flavor, was the sight

of fruit’s flesh that was black as night.

Though promising this sapling was,

its fruit has broken nature’s laws.

No more seasons came to pass

before the sapling was replaced by grass.