“That’s it,” exclaimed Phoebe. “Remember someone was bringing wax bodies to life at Madame Tussaud’s and The London Dungeon. What if Sabroh had the power to do that?”
“But he doesn’t have a physical body – he can only manifest himself in animate form, like fire he can only appear in the form of fire or reflect himself in water.” Piper interrupted.
“His powers have been growing and he did manifest himself in a solid mass. We all saw him. Horrible as it was.” Phoebe reminded her. “And you couldn’t freeze him Piper. Which means he still needs someone to do the dirty.” Phoebe commented grabbing her bag. “Come on Pipe. I know exactly where to go.”
They ran out of their hotel and darted across town on the underground (subway). Phoebe knew exactly which train to catch and which line to take as she had studied the entire underground map the night they had arrived, when she should have been exhausted. They took the train from the brown colored Bakerloo line from Oxford Circus to Baker Street station, scurrying like busy bees. A short journey which was only two stops from end to end.
“Next stop Baker Street.” She enthused.
“Why here?” asked Piper looking flustered.
“This, sweetie, is where it all began. Remember the paper headlines: the two tourists disappearing and Perdita’s encounter with some strange man. Well right here are ye olde waxworks: Madame Tussaud’s.”
Here were housed the world famous collection of waxworks and dummies of famous people, past and present.
“What you mean Sabroh’s here!”
“I don’t think so. But then he could be anywhere. Anyway you said he needed “people” to work for him, where else can you find the devil’s minions – but here.”
“Phoeb don’t bring the devil into this – that’s just what we don’t need!”
“Quit worrying honey, it was just a figure of speech. As I was saying, remember the body snatchers?”
“No I didn’t go see the movie at the Revivalist.” Said Piper.
“Not the sci-fi movie silly! The Body Snatchers. Don’t you know your history Piper?” Phoebe remarked. Not only is it English history but US too.”
“Well I’m not the one who’s grown a big head just cos I’m back at school.” Piper said obtusely.
“Nah, it’s basic high school stuff. General knowledge even. They used to find dead people; dig up bodies and sell them to doctors for experiments and research; cutting them up and using their body parts.”
The eighteenth century was a particularly difficult and far from austere time for medicine in many countries around the world and even more so in England and America. Whereas many “doctors’ before this time were considered quacks, butchers or bloodletters, the eighteenth century regarded surgery as a suitable occupation for many young men from rich, prominent backgrounds, of good blood and breeding, it could be said, rather distastefully.
Medical schools, once created, boasted unscrupulous competition for places and more so for students of anatomy. Bodies, cadavers, were needed. Those that could be obtained legally for experiments were those of criminals. Hence the need for unsavoury characters such as body snatchers, since there was an unusual shortage of hung criminals in England for that time.
One such notorious body snatcher, so dedicated to his craft, actually snatched the body of his own sister. Adding a new dimension to the phrase “keeping it within the family!”
The most famous body snatchers in London at that time were Burke and Hare.
“So. So I don’t get where you’re going Phoebe. What would Sabroh want with Prue or with live bodies?”
“No, remember he’s a djinn he needs live people for their souls and what I mean is he’s got these two old body snatchers working for him. The twist being, these characters are taking the real thing and not dead bodies. Taking over their minds and souls probably gives him his power. If he knows Prue is a charmed one he’d want her soul even more.”
“Because she’s good?” Piper asked.
“No because she has her powers.” Phoebe wished she didn’t have to spell everything out for Piper all the time, but she felt Piper’s cautiousness probably made her not see the true picture all the time.
“Ok, so what now Phoebe? You seem to have all the answers.”
Their trip to Madame Tussaud’s proved to be a waste of time. They stumbled out looking down. They stood outside in the rain oblivious to their surroundings. As though they were standing still with the rest of the world passing them by. Crowds of people, tourists rushing round without a care in the world. Almost dejected and heartbroken they returned to their hotel where Perdita was waiting for them.