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She was so thin, her eyes were so sunken, her skin was so much like dirty parchment, and her entire appearance was so horrible and repulsive, that it was impossible to conceive a more appropriate and expressive nickname than the one which had been conferred upon her. Markham, well aware that resistance was at present vain, exercised sufficient control over himself to remain motionless, with his eyes nearly closed, while the Resurrection Man and the Mummy dragged him hastily into the back room. The Mummy turned the key in the lock, while the Resurrection Man hurried to the street door, and admitted two men into the front apartment.
One was Tom the Cracksman; the other was a rogue of the same stamp, and was known amongst his confederates in crime by the name of the Buffer. It was this man's boast that he never robbed any one without stripping him to the very skin; and us a person in a state of nudity is said to be "in buff," the origin of his pseudonym is easily comprehended. But I didn't expect you till to-morrow night. I m blowed if I don't like this here resurrection business better than cracking cribs. What do you say, Tom? That way don't tell no tales ;- no wound on the skin - no pison in the stomach; and there ain't too much water inside neither, cos the poor devils don't swaller with their heads downwards.
Tub of water all ready on the floor - hooks and cords to hold the chaps' feet up to the ceiling; and then, my eye! But I say, old feller," said the Cracksman, turning to the Resurrection Man, who had remained silent during the colloquy between his two companions ; "what the devil are you thinking of? We must be off at once.
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He knew that, whatever Richard's pockets might contain, he could rely upon the honesty of the Mummy, who - horrible to relate - was the miscreant's own mother. Having therefore given a few instructions, in a whisper, to the old woman, he prepared to accompany the Cracksman and the Buffer.
The three worthies provided themselves with some of the long flexible rods and other implements before noticed; and the Resurrection Man took from a cupboard two boxes, each of about six inches square, and which he gave to his companions to carry. He also concealed the tin shade which held the candle, about his person; and, these preliminaries being settled, the three men left the house. Let us now return to Richard Markham. The moment he was deposited in the back room and the door had closed behind the occupants of that fearful den, he started up, a prey to the most indescribable feelings of alarm and horror.
What a lurking hole of enormity- what a haunt of infamy - what a scene of desperate crime - was this in which he now found himself! A feculent smell of the decomposing corpse in the next room reached his nostrils, and produced a nauseating sensation in his stomach. And that corpse - was it the remains of one who had died a natural death, or who had been most foully murdered? He dared not answer the question which he had thus put to himself; he feared lest the solution of that mystery might prove ominous in respect to his own fate.
He must fly - he must fly from that horrible sink of crime - from that human slaughter-house!
If he made the slightest noise, the ruffians in the next room would rush in and assassinate him! Could it be possible? The two who had just come, were going to take the third away with them upon his own revolting business! Hope returned to the bosom of the poor young man: But - oh, horror! Those men were rejoicing in their own infernal inventions to render murder unsuspected. The object of the tub of water, and the hooks and cords upon the ceiling, were now explained. The unsuspecting individual who passed the door of that accursed dwelling by night was set upon by the murderers, dragged into the house, gagged, and suspended by his feet to these hooks, while his head hung downwards in the water.
And thus he delivered up his last breath; and the wretches kept him there until decomposition commenced, that the corpse might not appear too fresh to the surgeon to whom it was to be sold! Could the voice of murder - murder effected with so much safety, cry up to heaven for vengeance through the atmosphere of London?
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At length the three men went out, as before described; and Markham felt an immense weight suddenly lifted from off his mind. Before the Resurrection Man set out upon his excursion with the Cracksman and the Buffer, he had whispered these words to the Mummy: While I'm  gone, you can clean out the swell's pockets in the back room. He has got about four or five hundred pound about him - so mind and take care. When you've searched his pockets, strip him, and look at his skull. I m afraid I've fractured it, for my life-preserver came down precious heavy upon him; and he never spoke a word.
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If there's the wound, I must bury him to-morrow in the cellar: The horrible old woman was not afraid of the dead: The revolting spectacle of a corpse putrid with decomposition produced no more impression upon her than the pale and beautiful remains of any lovely girl whom death had called early to the tomb, and whose form was snatched from its silent couch beneath the sod ere the finger of decay had begun its ravages. However, when a charge of homicide is filed against Ian O'Brien, a major benefactor, Nancy realizes she must clear his name for the whales' sake. Realizing a connection, the three work together to find answers.
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