In case some of you have forgotten, I happen to have a feline roommate who is also a detective. If this is news then you can read about him here. Today I bring to you the first part in a daring new tale of the adventures of EB & Thumbs.
The town had grown quiet and due to the reduction in noise our business was moving slow. Needless to say we were a bit in the dumps but if there’s one thing I know it’s that the sun will always rise. So here we were, morning coffees in hand and discussing the day ahead. Ernest had thought perhaps we should do some door to door promotions. The whole bit of introducing ourselves, stating our business, and offering coupons.
“Coupons? Whoa now, let’s reel it back. What’s the scoop? Are you pulling in more money on the side? Because last time I checked we were up to our britches in bills and the last thing we need to be doing is charity work when nobody’s got charity for us.”
Ernest did not seem to agree. “M’ow.”
“Listen here Ernest, we are in the red and we need to not be there. If your fixin’ to hand out our money I gotta say–” My stern warning was cutoff by a knock at the door. Curiosity was getting the best of both of us as I could see Ernest’s eyes grow bright. Could this possibly be a new client?
“Yeah, do I got da office of E.B. & Thumbs? Ya know, the detectives?” I couldn’t help but notice what a gruff voice this young woman had.
Either way a client is a client so I made with the introductions, “Why yes it is. I’m Thumbs and this is my partner E.B.” Ernest nodded to her at his introduction.
“Uh, yeah, well anyways look this is the problem I got. My husband and are separated but we still live together right now. Doesn’t mean I love him any less. He hasn’t been home in something like a week, I don’t know, give or take a day or two. I want the two of yous to go out there and find her- I mean him.”
I looked over to Ernest to see what his take was and as soon as my head should turn I saw him hop right on up. “Merow!”
“That means we are on the case young lady!”
“Ugh, yeah, well okay, you’re the gumshoes so I’ll leave this to you. Here’s my address should you have any questions or if you find him.” And with that she handed us a folded piece of paper and took her exit. There was an air of excitement in the house. Finally, we had got another job. The first step was to case some places this mystery husband might have been seen lately. Naturally, the first stop thought up was the local grocers. Ernest was hungry and I figured there had to be a lot of foot traffic there so off we set.
Upon arriving I sought out the first cashier I saw. Quickly I began describing the woman who had visited and asked if they had seen her with someone she was somewhat close to and if they had seen that man recently. Apparently this was not the line of questioning he wanted to hear.
“Look pal, I done told you on every other case you bring in here. I don’t pay that close attention to the goings ons of the customers. You know how many blonde gals come through ‘ere a day? I just ring up the groceries and sack ’em.”
I wasn’t getting nowhere fast. “My apologies, sir, my apologies. Look I’m just hoping to solve this one and quick. It’s the first case Ernest and I have had in months and we have to rebuild our reputation.”
The grocery clerk still did not seem quite pleased with our presence. “Ernest, eh? Your partner? Yeah, well he’s over there walking on the meats and chewing on the plastic over ’em. How’s about you pick him up and the two of yas get on outta here. You are this close to gettin’ yourself banned for life pal.”
I turned to Ernest to, in fact, see him doing exactly what the clerk had described. Almost immediately he looked right back at me. “M’ow! M’ow!” Despite his happiness in the store we departed and hit right back at the start, rock bottom. Now seemed as good a time as any to stop on the curb and have a smoke, collect my thoughts, and get back in the game. Fumbling through my pocket for a light, I stumbled on the note from our client with her address. Funny, the name wasn’t even written on it.
“You know, perhaps it’s time for us to revisit our client and get ourselves a picture of this missing person. Why didn’t we think of that right away?”
“Meow.” Ernest seemed a bit indifferent. Perhaps he was still thinking about the meat.
Upon reaching our clients house there was an eerie weight to the air. Something was off. The door was wide open and as we entered I waved Ernest to follow behind my lead. We were soon stopped by our reactions like hitting a brick wall. In front of us lied the body of a deceased blonde girl. Not the one who hired us but someone entirely different. After collecting ourselves a bit we stepped backwards out to the porch. “Ernest, we got call downtown and let ’em know what’s here! We can’t just let this go.”
Then our hearts sunk. Sirens. We turned around to be greeted by multiple cops all lights ablaze pulling up to the house. I swallowed hard. We were setup and it was looking like slammer time for us.
TO BE CONTINUED…