“The Morozov Inheritance,” my new book, weaves the crimes of a brutal, psychotic serial killer around a story of love and the building of a business empire set in Moscow and London. It is a story of murder, love and money.
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he used the scalpel to crudely cut the handful free. This was more
When he had finished, he checked his watch. About an hour and a
half before the Ignatievs would return from the function. Half an hour
before the household staff would come into the back area to lay out a
He packed the gloves and instruments away, making sure no traces
of blood remained on his skin. He dressed quickly, pulled on his
overcoat, placed the trophy bag and scalpel case in his pocket and
quietly left the house through the back entrance, confident no one had
Across the lane at the rear, a ten-year-old girl, unable to sleep,
gazed out the window. It seemed to her that the tall man in the dark
coat moving through the snow away from the Ignatiev house walked
like a wolf. She squeezed back, away from the window, in case he
should look her way.
§ § § § § §
Maksim Nickoliavich Rysakov had been a successful investigator
for the Customs Service before joining the Imperial Police Service.
Years ago, he declined an offer to join the Okhrana. He told them he
preferred to remain an investigator “in the open” rather than the
underworld of the secret police. And he enjoyed the work. Most of the
Rysakov wore a deep blue serge suit that served as a nondescript
uniform. Too much
had left him carrying too much
weight, but it didn’t bother him. Crimes were solved by intellectual
effort, not physical force, he believed.
Once during an investigation, a
man asked him if he were a Jesuit priest. The description fitted him
well, the look of interrogatory intellect, and an air of relentless
As he arrived at the scene of the murder, he had to push his way
through a crowd of Muscovites who, out of morbid curiosity, began to
assemble outside the Ignatiev Palace once word of the gruesome
nature of the murder spread.
The militiaman at the door glanced at the identity papers declaring
M. N. Rysakov to be a senior investigator and ushered him in out of
the frost laden air.