THE WINCHESTER-NABU DETECTIVE AGENCY
YEAR TWO: CASE FILE NO. 10-62
AMBER LOVE 16-JULY-2018 Catch up on Year One and previous Year Two cases at the Winchester-Nabu Detective Agency. This 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. For a one-time tip, you can go to the new PayPal.me.
Where we left off:
The detectives (and the assistant!) began to collect data for analysis into the mysterious holes appearing in Gnome Grove.
Did I absolutely need PowerPoint to create an organization chart of the Chipmunk Mafia™? Yes, I did.
The Moretti Crime Family:
Joey Bag O’Peanuts
We’ll highlight Joey BOP first since Gus has had the most contact with him. Joey comes from the neighborhood called the Fairy Garden, but the name is more reminiscent of earlier times. There’s no actual garden there. Just weeds and mostly ferns. The Fairy House sits right next to it. It’s the kind of neighborhood where you can sit on the cement block wall and see all the potential of a dreamy wonderland when in reality, it’s just an empty lot.
Kids like Joey grow up there spending time skirting the law a bit. They’re tough, but not so tough they can’t be turned by a heavier hand. Namely a meaty paw coming down like the swift blows of Guster Nabu. Joey is the suspect in a number of assaults against two of the fairies: Meg von Fae, who has been taken to safer space; and the newest addition Rosalu.
Rosalu may be young by fairy years, but she’s a tough cookie. She plays hard with the boys from the garden. Whenever Joey comes around giving her grief, demanding her peanuts and shoving her over, Rosalu does her best to reciprocate. She pretends she’s not worried given that she’s thrice the size of Joey.
As we observed Joey BOP more, it seemed to be that he was of that old way of thinking about romance that should be long gone but still lingers. He harasses the shit out of Rosalu in order to get attention from her, but she knows what to do. If she’s not in the mood to engage in spritely fistacuffs, she ignores him. That makes guys like Joey even more interested.
Because Joey is sweet on Rosalu or at least likes her company more than he does the other fae, they talk when no one is looking. They could probably be friends if he wasn’t such an abusive jerk sometimes. Rosalu has been trying to get Joey to soften up more and turn legit. She relays messages from the Winchester-Nabu Detective Agency that the Moretti crime family isn’t the best place for the garden goombas to get their meals. The humans of the agency have no problem slipping peanuts to the fae and magings. Well-behaved chipmunks and squirrels would surely be welcome in the distribution plan.
As Joey Bag O’Peanuts realized the growing danger of being on Gus’ bad side, it was easier to get the little furball to turn on his boss. Joey first tried denying his connections to the Moretti family. After multiple tussles with Gus, he started talking. Since the Fairy Garden is on the northeast side, Joey answers to the capo who oversees the entire northern operation, Tamas Marmotini.
Tamas Marmotini holds a very special place on the wall of perps at the Winchester-Nabu Detective Agency. He’s one of the roughest, toughest rodents you’d ever meet. Tamas was the first chipmunk that Gus ever caught. Boy when he did, it wasn’t easy keeping him from gnawing the life out of the fella.
Not long after that first battle, Gus and Tamas met up again. It was equally as unpleasant for the Marmotini tribesman. Gus brought him close enough to me during “questioning” that I was able to see the scars along Tamas’ hind quarter. It was deep. Scary-looking. Definitely something to note in his profile.
As recorded above in the Moretti family organization chart, Marmotini hails from the swanky resort area of Bunny Hollow. We have no information at this time if he has a working relationship with Lola Rabbit, the mayor of Bunny Hollow. It’s also possible that Tamas has business dealings with the wolpertingers who reside there. The rabbits have been shifting territory allowing others like the chipmunks to easily move in.
The enforcer on the southside is Sgt. Burrows. He’s a wartime veteran who spends a lot of time in the “bunker” made from the bottom rim of a propane tank. He leaves the safety of the bunker when he makes his rounds.
Sgt. Burrows is also one of the chipmunks who easily moves across the borders. Perhaps it’s the confidence he exudes that keeps anyone from messing with him. Another theory is that Sgt. Burrows is actually a renowned spy gifted in disguising his identity.
Lil’ Chip Amunko
Overseeing Sgt. Burrows we have the capo of the southeast who controls the impressive high-rise woodpile of chipmunk condos. It’s none other than Lil’ Chip Amunko. He’s gentlemanly unlike the northern fellas. Amunko has charm, charisma, and wit. He doesn’t mind popping out of his penthouse to have a casual conversation with Oliver Winchester or the old human.
We believe Amunko runs the best rackets for the boss. He has connections with the catbirds and possibly the humans of the neighboring property. If true, that means, he has even more reach, all the way to the dogs and stray cats.
Amunko, Sgt. Burrows, and Ada Holestein are known associates who have been spotted in the same neighborhoods.
We don’t have any information on Tami Sneakers except that she lives in Oliver’s patio wall. There are no photos of her. She keeps herself low on the radar. Chatter tells us she might do special assignments for the boss.
The one who keeps the boss squeaky clean is Ada Holestein. She lives in Gnome Grove and we get our information on her from our new hire, Gnomez Addams.
The only photos taken of Holestein came from when she passed through the southern border in Sgt. Burrows’ territory. We don’t know what her business was there, but it’s suspicious. Holestein is also considered one of the friendlier of the bunch. We can’t let courtesy fool us though. As the Moretti family consigliere, Holestein would know all the secrets.
It’s time for the boldest of the bold. The big man on campus. The boss. Cheeks Moretti, don of the Moretti crime family known on some streets as The Underground.
Cheeks demands payments often. He was the first chipmunk to sign Oliver Winchester’s new lease agreement, but he attached a rider to it. Like all nefarious mafiosi, Cheeks has a great reputation to his own kind in his territory. Even other species love him. He’s out in front in the spotlight. Loves to be seen. He strives to take care of the neighborhood and come across as charitable. Besides frequent offerings of peanuts as reparations for Gus’ aggressive pattern of assault, he also demanded certain freedoms.
Moretti expects us to look the other way as he bounces back and forth from yard to yard. He may call the elaborate rock wall in Central his home, but he definitely has hideouts across the way. I’ve personally seen him in the debris of the neighbors’ construction projects. This leads to how we know Moretti has his tiny mitts in the suspicious construction industry. Why on earth do the jobs begin at 7PM when humans have been there all day? Where does the money come from? What happened to the rocks that were piled for months and then magically vanished?
Agency Plan of Action:
Gus and Oliver have been considering getting some outside help to look into Moretti and his underlings. The top candidate is a woman that goes by the moniker M3. I’m not sure I know how to track her down. She’s one of the best in the field and I don’t have those kinds of connections. We may be on our own for the duration of the chipmunk invasion.