“So this was it. This was how her life would end, here, in the Grayling Institute. Even Dr. Fabian and his “engine of live” could not save her. She had seen it in her dreams. And her dreams, she knew from experience, always spoke the truth.”
Charles Brainbridge of Scotland Yard calls on Maurice Newbury to identify a body. It turns out the deceased is a local crook named Edwin Sykes. Edwin had been implicated in numerous, unique burglaries, but nothing was ever proven. Things become complicated when the unique type of burglary happens again. This time with a body at the scene. The body once again is of Edwin Sykes. Turns out Sykes was part of a club called “The Bastion Society” Maurice and Veronica meet with the head of the society Mr Enoch Graves and while they don’t get too much information they do learn that Dr. Fabian, Queen Victoria’s surgeon and the man in charge of Amelia Hobbes care was once a member of The Bastion Society. Maurice decides to talk to Fabian at the Grayling Institute to get more info on the Society and Graves but also to distract the doctor so Veronica can sneak in to speak with her sister who Fabian has forbidden her to speak to for the time being to help the progress of her care. While in the institute Veronica finds a room with multiple doppelgänger of her sister being tortured to reveal their clairvoyant powers. An attempt on the Queens life points to the Bastion Society, where Newbury and Hobbes break into, and while the are captured Maurice finds out that they have amassed an army, but not to take out the Queen but to take out Dr. Fabian and the Grayling Institute. Hobbes and Veronica while imprisoned come to the realization that the Queen has been manipulating them. They decide to allow the attack on the Institute so they can use the chaos to rescue Veronica’s sister. This the third installment of “the Newbury & Hobbes Investigation” series by George Mann was by far my favorite. Since the beginning of the series Maurice had a small dependency on Laudanum which he would use to open his mind. But at the start of this story he has hit rock bottom. He is only a fraction of the man he once was. And while he is able to stop using we see him constantly going through the effects of withdrawal. Also Maurice come clear about their feelings for one another (it’s about time). By the time the story wraps up there are implications that will last through the characters life. I’m anxious to read the next installment.
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