The NZ Elizabeth Dane is a cargo vessel operated by EEP Shipping, whose home port is in Long Beach. In late 2004, the Dane carried the Ankaran Sarcophagus, a separate key, and a collection of pottery from Turkey to Los Angeles.
It was in transit by October 10, and things initially seemed normal, but several of the crew had gone missing by October 17. More and more crew were reported missing, with only pools of blood left behind, leading back to the Sarcophagus. The final report from the captain was on October 20, and apparently none of the crew survived. The Dane may have been on autopilot, as it was discovered and towed offshore just a few days later for investigation by the LAPD, USCG, NCIS, and LAHP.
When the ship was investigated, the crate containing the key was already missing. At least one of the investigating officers suggested some bunny-shaped graffiti indicated the possible presence of a gang.
Professor Ingvar Johansen evidently did not travel on the Dane, but took a different route to LA, as he arrived at the Empire Arms Hotel without incident.
- The Elizabeth Dane is the name of the ghost ship from John Carpenter's 1980 film The Fog, further referenced by a computer password: "AntonioBay." Antonio Bay is the setting of the film.
- NZ is not a real ship prefix: the closest real-world equivalent is probably NS, which indicates a nuclear ship. NZ has been used as part of other prefixes, such as HMNZS, indicating the New Zealand Royal Navy. It's not known what NZ by itself is supposed to stand for.
- The events which occurred on the Dane are a reference to the events which happened on the Demeter, the Russian ship which transported a coffin containing Count Dracula from Wallachia to England in 1893. Ships logs indicated that the crew gradually disappeared over the course of the voyage, until the ship drifted into port at Whitby. The only remaining body was that of the captain, draped over the wheel, a look of horror on his face.
- Brian Mitsoda confirmed in a forum Q&A that Smiling Jack was responsible for the massacre on the Dane.