"I want all the information you have on Paul, the third victim of the beast attacks. As many details as possible!" Kieran said.
Among the five victims, Paul was the one that had caught Kierans attention and made him speculate about the incidents.
Of course, given the lack of accurate information, Kieran was not willing to speculate any further. He didnt want his objective analysis to be influenced.
Being prejudiced was a scary thing, and Kieran knew it. It was actually even worse than habitual actions.
"Paul? Okay, please wait for a bit." Mr.Big sounded doubtful about Kierans request.
All five victims had been investigated thoroughly by him, but nothing had seemed unusual about them. Still, that did not stop him from fulfilling Kierans request.
Ten minutes later, Mr.Big came back with two thick cowhide bags in his hands.
"Heres all the information I have about Paul, from the moment he entered the orphanage to the moment of his death. Everything has been recorded here. This is all I have for now. Do you need to know anything about the rest of the victims?" Mr.Big said, patting the cowhide bags.
"Not right now, thank you," Kieran thanked Mr.Big with a smile before opening the bags right away.
The information inside was organized by date. All twenty years of Pauls life had been arranged in chronological order.
One of the bags held the records of Paul entering the orphanage as a boy, and his life as a teenager and eventually a young adult. It included, but was not limited, to his school years, club activities and love life.
The other bag contained records of minor things about Paul, including his relationships outside school and the people he knew. Kieran went through both of them, but did not notice anything unusual.
Paul had not been the brightest student in class, but his grades had been quite decent. Other than being an orphan and a loner whod had a hard time communicating with others, he had been no different from an ordinary guy.
Hed had idols that he had admired when he was young and a puppy love that had ended without a reason. After college, he had started to work two jobs to cover his ever-expanding expenses. Because of his good grades though, he had qualified for a school scholarship every year.
Other than the fact that hed needed to support himself because he was an orphan, there was nothing that stood out about him. Kieran was not ready to give up though. He checked every page carefully, until the very last page, the full stop of Pauls life. On the last page, there was a photo of a piece of his left arm. The arm was incomplete. There was no palm or upper arm, just a chewed forearm.
The forearm had been mutilated badly by the beast. Only a couple of torn-up tattooed letters could be seen clearly. It was the traces of that tattoo that had allowed the public to identify the forearm as Pauls.
Kieran was not surprised that Pauls forearm had a clear sign on it. That sign actually fit Kierans initial guess. However, when Kieran squinted his eyes to take a closer look at the letters, he realized something. He recognized those words. Not because of the temporary language pack, but because of his [Mystical Knowledge].
Kieran could read the letters on the forearm by using his [Mystical Knowledge]. He was even able to pronounce them, but he could not understand what they meant, because the tattoo was incomplete. It was only a part of a bigger symbol or sign.
Every word made readable by [Mystical Knowledge] was complicated and tediously long. There werent just letters, but symbols as well, some of them unfamiliar to common people. Just like with other languages, the slightest change to the words could alter their meaning completely.
The words "burn" and "frozen" both had fourteen letters and only two small differences, meaning that their remaining twelve letters were exactly same. That was why words like the one on Pauls forearm tattoo were mystical and hard to learn. Kieran felt a little strange about his new discovery.
"Could Paul be the person behind the beast attacks and the one who set up the magic circle?" Kieran speculated before eventually shaking his head.
He believed that Mr. Bigs information was accurate. If Mr. Big said that Paul was not related to Sphendix, then they were not related, neither openly nor secretly.
Unless Paul had been able to change his face completely, he would not have been able to fool Mr. Bigs source at Sphendix.
Most importantly, if Kierans guess was right, it meant that Paul must have had a certain level of [Mystical Knowledge] and known one or maybe even a couple of basic structures of magic circles.
It seemed quite impossible for an orphan of only twenty years of age. A slow person would have to work even harder in school in order to maintain good grades, and given the circumstances, the extra effort of learning [Mystical Knowledge] and working two jobs to survive already exceeded the average persons mental and physical strength.
Kieran had a similar background, so he had experienced this as well. When he was young, he had been grateful just to be able to keep up with his homework, never mind get good grades.
Eventually, Kieran had quit school to work full time.
Learning [Mystical Knowledge] was even harder. Kierans Master Level of the skill allowed him to know quite well how hard it was for the common mind to learn it.
Mystical knowledge was complicated and tough to master. Even if someone was fully concentrated while learning, it would be extremely difficult to reach a certain level by Pauls age, let alone know how to create magic circles. Creating magic circles was not something one could learn on his own. A mentor had to be there to guide them. Even Kierans Master Level included nothing related to incantations, which were necessary to activate a magic circle.
In other words, someone must have taught Paul.
"Did someone teach Paul everything? Or did Paul see someone and get influenced by them, and got a tattoo on his arm instead?"
The thought bloomed instinctively in Kierans mind as he quickly went over the details and looked at Pauls pictures again.
He wanted to find out who could have taught and influenced Paul and confirm what the letters on his arm meant.
The results were disappointing though. The collected information didnt point at anyone that Paul had been close to, or someone who could have had the chance to teach Paul and influence him. Although there were a lot of pictures of Paul, in most of them he was wearing a suit and leather shoes. They all seemed official. None of them depicted him in his daily life.
Before this, Pauls loner personality had seemed quite normal, considering that he was an orphan. However, the discovery of the words on Pauls arm had changed everything.
"Was the tattoo covered up on purpose?" Kieran was not sure about his guess.
He rubbed his temple to ease his headache.
He thought he had been onto something, but all the clues had led him back to his starting point. More than that, they had even ruled out his previous speculations.
"Why did Paul do what he did?" Kieran asked himself in a low voice.