THE WINCHESTER-NABU DETECTIVE AGENCY

Cats photoshopped as noir detectives

AMBER LOVE 23-APR-2018 My work is supported by the generous backers who adore my cat stories at Patreon.com/amberunmasked and they also get first access to what’s happening with my books and podcast. Also, I’m an Amazon Influencer so you can shop through my personal recommendations and buy my books with these handy links below:

ADVENTURES WITH GUS – CHAPTER FIFTY: THE LADY CONFESSES

Expand for Adventures with Gus Table of Contents


Where we left off…

We examined some evidence that was discovered on the mountain and determined that this area was once the gaming ground for Jersey demons in the sport called Crooked Wing Chase.

THE WINCHESTER-NABU ESTATE. EXTERIOR — FOREST. MORNING.

I think it’s safe to say that the week of April 9, 2018 was one of our most interesting weeks ever in the history of the Winchester-Nabu Detective Agency.

To be honest, it all started the weekend before the ninth. I was not at home and spent the weekend at a comic con in Atlantic City. I was consumed by anxiety the whole time. The show was great, but I felt awful.

Gus

First and Second Specimens of the Week:

On Monday the 9th, our adventure included two notable specimen finds: the first was a long bone with a ball joint head so my guess is either a femur or humerus; my best guess of the two is that it’s a partial humerus (front leg/arm long bone).

artifacts

The second specimen isn’t organic matter at all. It’s a plastic device and had some embossed lettering on it. To put it bluntly, it’s for disemboweling. Essentially it’s a wildlife butt plug that a hunter would shove it and rip out to gut the innards. Super gross.

Three Specimens Found Midweek:

We tried to settle into our normal routine by Tuesday. I couldn’t get any more anxiety medicine unless I went to see the doctor in person. This is never ever a good thing for me. It wasn’t the worst panic attack I ever had in that office, but it wasn’t simple, nor easy for me to sit there and explain how things are going. Then I had to sit at the pharmacy counter (woohoo).

Upon returning home, I immediately harnessed Gus and took him out for a stroll. It was a good thing I did. We found three more artifacts!

At initial examination out in the field, I believed we had discovered two partial long bones and one skull. As soon as I began cleaning the three artifacts, I was less sure of what I had in my hands. One particular piece seems more dense than bone, yet it’s hollow; plus the coloring was a lot darker than the other bones we’ve found. If it’s a piece of wood, I have no idea what kind would grow with a huge lengthwise hollow cavity.

I gave this week’s pieces a good scrubbing with degreasing dish soap, hydrogen peroxide, and water solution using an other toothbrush and various longer brushes of different sizes. The previous two bones discovered (a scapula and partial pelvis) had been soaking over a week and were exceptionally clean to begin with. I removed them from the plastic tub, discarded that cleaning solution, then made new solution and added the four newest pieces retrieved.

At this point, it’s a waiting game. I’ll have Oliver do more research when I can take the pieces out of the solution. Until then, Gus and I continued to hike.

The Dangers of Hiking with Gus:

Friday the 13th came around. Now this is not normally a bad luck day for us. I do keep my eyes on Gus to make sure no one would want to bring harm to a black cat such as him on a superstitious day. He was acting normally and begging to go out so I got into my outdoors clothes, sprayed myself up in bug repellent, and set out on our journey.

I had been having decent luck keeping up with Gus though I’m considerably slower and have balance concerns. I’ve been able to modify and not go up as high as he does. I can’t maneuver around the logs and branches so easily either, but I don’t mind climbing on a huge tree trunk and walking a few feet. On that hike, I climbed up and was successfully able to trim back some overgrowth of the vines and thorny bushes. I walked back along that first enormous trunk and crossed over to another one.

Gus

By this point, Gus was all the way at the root end of the trees and investigating the dirt and roots. I think I must have stood there for a good ten minutes, but I truly don’t know how long it was. I heard a noise, turned my head, and fell off the tree!

I knew what happened, but couldn’t figure how it happened. One second I was standing there, fine as can be; the next I was on the ground with my hair completely tangled in thorny branches. I had to cut the branches with my pruning shears then work the twigs and thorns out of my hair. My butt never landed on the ground. I think what happened is that my left foot landed appropriately on the ground and I kept tipping over into the shrubbery. The problem was my right leg was going through a Thanksgiving wishbone scenario and splitting me sideways only I didn’t feel it at the time.

We finished our walk and I figured everything was fine. I wasn’t even going to tell all the humans back at the estate because they’d lecture me. Feeling okay, I went about my day. I showered, got to my desk, and then recorded a new podcast episode.

It was during the recording that I began to feel the pain. I knew nothing could have broken if I had gone that many hours without pain and figured I would be a bit sore. Nothing unexpected.

Then I tried to stand up from my desk. That was the moment I knew shit was not right inside my body. I did my best to hobble to the bathroom. I had just entered the bathroom about a couple of feet when I was aware that I was drenched in sweat, my vision was blacking out, and the pain was unbelievable. (Some TMI here, fair warning:) I held on to the vanity which runs the length of the entire bathroom. Somehow, I managed to go, but then couldn’t easily move my legs apart to wipe. It was a huge challenge and excruciating. After washing my hands, I reached for my phone and texted for help.

SELFIE
THOUGHT I WAS FINE AND JUST NEEDED REST.

Since I hadn’t confessed earlier what had happened, my text was confusing. Why did I need help and want to go to the ER? I can see how it made no sense, but I was trying to move as little as possible and that included my ability to use my hands for texting. I called my doctor and left a voicemail to please call in a pain med prescription so I could avoid the emergency room. Naturally, that wasn’t going to happen even though such meds are on my chart to take as needed.

ER selfies
PROGRESSIVELY WORSE BEFORE BETTER.

Anyway, off the ER I went. It was a hellish experience. This was the same hospital I went to when my back went out. They made me scream in agony and panic for hours. Seriously, they wouldn’t even give me Valium like last time; I was left screaming my head off while a nurse tried to get me to breathe deeply. I knew she was being nice, but I wanted to punch her in the throat. I was crying so much that I couldn’t breathe in through my nose. Therefore asking me to inhale through my nose and out my mouth was an impossible request.

TL;DR — as I told them from the beginning, nothing was broken and my muscles were locked in spasms that wouldn’t stop. I knew what was happening, but I couldn’t articulate through the screaming and clenched jaws. Several hours later, I was at home on the reclining part of the couch awake until after 1AM.

Each day got progressively better, but because of the telephone tag with my regular doctor, I never got the big bad narcotic that I know I can take without falling asleep. So after a steady week of panic attacks and horror, I have put myself back in the position of going to a doctor’s office.

Meanwhile the artifacts are soaking and we’ll examine them for the next chapter.