1965-02-21 - Treasure Hunt: Research is a Pain
Summary: Log Summary
Related: http://www.marvel-1963.com/log:1965-02-19-treasure-hunt:the-heist
Theme Song: None

//Dear Diary,

Research is a pain in the patoot.//

As she walks down the hall of the biology department, Stephanie Brown composes her latest diary entry. She had the professor she's looking for last semester, never needed to go to his office, but he was a nice man, and smart, and, most importantly, he was Indian. East Indian. Not, you know, cowboys and Indian.

"Doctor Ramanajan?" she asks as she comes to the office, taps on the window, puts her head around the door. The man is there, sitting at his desk and grading. He looks up at her. He's in his fifties with the dark skin of the subcontinent and neat salt-and-pepper hair.

"Miss Brown," he says. "You're not in my classes this semester. Did you get lost?" His voice has a cultivated upper-class British accent, but undertones of his birth in New Delhi. She knows that twenty years ago, in his twenties, he was following Gandhi.

"No, sir," the girl says as she slips into the office, into the seat opposite him. "I need your expertise."

"I'm happy to help you with any biology questions," says the professor.

"Not biology," says Stephanie, blushing a touch. "I… need to know what this says." She passes a page of paper across the table, Sanskrit words carefully copied onto notebook paper.

Ramanajan looks at the notes, then at Stephanie. "Sanskrit? Are you studying Hindi now?"

"I got interested in the robbery at the Met the other day," she explains. "I found out where the statue came from. The one that was smashed by the thieves. And that text was found where it was taken from. So, I figure that might be relevant to the robbery and…" She runs out of words, shrugs helplessly. "I was there the other night," she concludes.

Her professor grimaces slightly. "Professor Hawthorn?" he says. Stephanie's blush is answer enough. "Of course. But you're smart enough to have escaped intact. You're a good student, Stephanie." High praise from the biologist, and while Stephanie is still red, she glows a little at his words. The professor adjusts his glasses and examines the notes more closely. "It's an old dialect," he says. "But… something like… 'Ganesha has eaten the key to the…" He leans in closer. "… the door to perfect peace. Nirvana is yours if you follow his trunk.'"

"So, whatever they stole from his belly must be this key," says Stephanie thoughtfully.

"So it would seem."

"Thank you professor," the young woman says, flashing a smile at her teacher. She takes back the paper and writes down his translation quickly. "You were a great teacher last semester — and I appreciate your help."

"I hope to have you in class again," says Ramanajan as he returns his attention to his grading. Stephanie rises and heads out of the room and back down the hall. She stops suddenly after she's gone less than ten paces.

"Oh heck," she says with a sigh. "I have to find somebody to send me to India."

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