Thursday, December 2, 1926
A Reverend Harcourt Pitman of the First Congregational Church of Sausalito contacts the Pinkerton Detective Agency about a member of his congregation who is missing—one Edith Lawson. The agency in turn sends Gunther Orne, a detective; Leah Xia, a parapsychologist; & Quinlan Rutherford, an archaeologist from San Francisco to investigate.
Rev. Pitman explains that Lawson is a respected and valuable member of his church, and he fears for her safety because she’s been missing for just over two weeks. He also tells the investigators that he fears her husband might be at fault due to the fact that he is a known drunk and philanderer who does not go to church.
The investigators ask Pitman if Edith had any friends in the congregation and he directs the investigators to Grace and Aurora Blake who sing in the choir with her.
The investigators talk to Sheriff Ansel Andersen, and he corroborates the information Rev. Pitman shared. He tells the investigators that Harriet Taylor, a local merchant, was the last person to see Edith Lawson.
The Blake sisters tell the investigators that just before Edith’s disappearance, she exhibited signs of distress, which became visible at both the choir rehearsal and performance on the weekend before she became missing; however, she did not say anything regarding why.
When the investigators go to the Lawson house, no one is home, but the door is unlocked. The investigators let themselves in and inspect the house. In the house they find a Bible verse, Jeremiah 11:29 scribbled on a piece of paper next to Edith’s bed and an old moss encrusted brooch under a potted plant on the patio. Quinlan identifies that the brooch is very old.
After leaving the house Aurora Blake confirms that Edith had mentioned something about Jeremiah 19:11, and the choir director, Gavin Reese, gives the agents the address for a jeweler, Truman Boyle, who identifies the brooch as having belonged to a Doris Taylor who died 20 years prior. He tells the investigators the brooch was buried with her!
By this time, it has gotten dark, and the investigators decide to find lodging for the night in order to start their search anew in the morning.