March 5th, 2012

Death in absentia ... in Austria

When: 1970s

Where: Austria  (Technically, AU, but one closely derived from our own.)

Prior research:  Wikipedia "death in absentia"

     Does anyone out there know the Austrian law for declaring death in absentia i.e. where someone disappears without explanation?   A prominent figure (someone on the order of, say, Linus Torvalds) just disappears; I need to figure out how long it will be before ownership of their estate passes.  (As opposed to beneficiary control, which is covered by a power of attorney.)

Thanks, folks - this is exactly what I needed.

Curses, shock, and mixed marrages.

I have a character in the later chapters of one of my stories who studies biology and medicine talking to one of the professors at Hogwarts (probably Minerva, but that may change) about the Cruciatus Curse. More specifically, she's asking how it doesn't cause the victim to go into (I think it's anaphalaptic) shock and go completely numb, and suggests that the pain might be psychosomatic in nature.

What do you guys think the mecanisms of that particular curse could be?

On a completely unrelated note, I was wondering what the reactions would be in late 80s - early 90s Japan would be to a reporter from Akita Prefecture who had married an American woman from Maine, both before and after she had become a semi-famous model? She looks Japanese enough to pass at first glance, except for the larger eyes and slightly different skin-tone; the man who spotted her wanted something "exotic" for his agency. Would it help that she - named Melissa Chapman, but having taken the stage name Miaka - is an easygoing and good-humored about almost everything?

What would her husband's parents think of her, hypothetically, and would they say anything to her, or just to their son about marrying her? And, would their opinions change when she became a model? And, how would their son be treated?