"Your son is quite amazing, Madam."
Mrs. Milani smiled and glanced at her son. "He is, isn't he?"
Right now, the ten-year-old was seated at a baby grand piano, playing Beethoven's fifth symphony for a large audience of well-dressed adults. As his fingers danced along the piano with incredible ease, he won nods and murmurs of approval.
Not only could the boy play piano, he could play the violin, flute, cello, piccolo, harp, and mandolin. As well as being able to play just about every instrument he laid hands on, the boy could also multiply numbers up to seven digits in his head, had a photographic memory, and knew how to make delicious soup.
The boy's parents loved him. Although he had an older brother, the younger was the favorite, and an obvious difference was made between the two. The younger got everything he wanted, though he didn't want much, and his parents showered him with attention.
That's how it used to be.
One day, the youngest son was the apple of his parents' eyes, and the next, it was as if he had never even existed.
All of a sudden, the boy wasn't in the house anymore. Whenever anybody asked about the boy, his parents deflected the question with another subject. His room was locked and the key hidden somewhere, his school records became non-existent when searched for. His older brother became reclusive and refused to speak with anyone.
A mystery to perplex all.
People had many theories. The most popular theory was that the youngest son went mad and his parents, ashamed of him, sent him to an insane asylum for the rest of his life. The second most popular one was that his older brother was jealous and had killed him. According to this theory, the boys' parents, wanting to cover it all up, paid off the police and FBI to keep their oldest son out of jail, since they had so much money.
The first theory is only partly true.
The youngest son's parents did send him to an insane asylum, but not for the rest of his life. After only four months of being there, the boy was removed by a Dr. Haringer.
And that's where Nim comes in.