Winchester-Nabu Detective Agency Year Five:
Case File No. 13-221
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Where We Left Off:
The new volkolak family showed their true colors as a band of birdseed robbers.
They Made Me a Killer:
This week’s case takes us back to early June when Gus was on a hot streak with capturing voles and mice. It was still light later into the evening and the moon was waning. As usual, I couldn’t get to sleep despite being tired. It’s hyperbole of sleep: close my eyes, think about sleeping, try to force sleep, hear every single noise that really is there and probably some that aren’t. Then I get the sensation of my skin itching leading my not-quite-asleep thoughts to shredding off my epidermis with adamantium claws. But then I heard Gus.
He makes a distinctive sound when his mouth is full with a perp’s body. Oliver was nearby too. Maybe it was a sound or maybe I can just sense his silence now. I did not feel like getting up to see what they had. I didn’t have much choice when Gus threw a dead body over a bench and onto the foot of the bed. He quickly retrieved it and got back on the floor, but that was enough to get me up.
I maneuvered in the light of the TV to find the mouse jar (an empty candle jar with a lid). Noticing that the culprit was a mouse and was indeed dead or real good at playing dead, I didn’t have a lot of argument from Gus when I got on the floor close to them.
“Gus, do you want to tell me what happened? Who is… was this?” I said to the black brawny fuzzball in Sphinx position with his prize in front of him.
“If you’ll allow me, human,” Oliver interjected. Gus does the killing. Oliver does the explaining.
“Go ahead, Ollie.”
“Don’t let her diminutive stature fool you,” Oliver began. “Ms. Blanche Burrow, not to be confused with Sgt. Burrows, had many connections in the Underground criminal racket. We’ve had her on our Wanted list for quite some time.”
“But guys, it looks like she’s a nursing mother.” Of course I had mixed feelings. We don’t want more mice in the house, but it’s not as if I want to personally be the one to end their lives. That’s why I leave the slaying to the boys and The Grumpy Old Man.
“She may be a nursing mother, but she’s an associate of top criminals and she isn’t all sweet an innocent just because she’s a mother. She and her associates are known for breaking and entering, burglary, squatting, trespassing, and relieving themselves in inappropriate locations.” Oliver walked around the box fort and mirrored Gus’ posture with the corpse between them.
I told them I was too tired and out of sorts to deal with the whole situation at 10:30. I hesitantly used my thumb and index finger like a pincer and pulled at Ms. Blanche’s tail. I put her in the jar. She seemed pretty dead. If she was faking, she was the best I’d ever seen. I know writers might annoy readers by noting that a character sighed or exhaled but seriously, that is what humans do. I stood up with the dead mouse in the jar, inhaled, and audibly let the air out of my lungs. I was not going to get pants and shoes on and walk the dead body somewhere in the yard or in the woods. What to do?
I left it on the balcony. Didn’t see the need for the lid on the jar. The next morning, Gus was ever-so excited to show The Grumpy Old Man the fruits of his labor. He wasn’t as impressed as I thought he should be. He’s usually happy to see Gus taking his job seriously.
It came time for disposing of the body. I stewed on possibilities again, but there was no motivation whatsoever for having a respectful send off for Ms. Blanche. She may be part of the “Bloody Burrow” gang, but sometimes a woman falls for the bad boy. Apparently that’s true regardless of the species. She may not have been fond of her outlaw relatives, but she did enough of the aiding, abetting, and trespassing on her own that she was considered a criminal too. Whatever was wrong with me that week, all I can say is I didn’t have the energy or motivation to give Ms. Blanche the send off she deserved.
I walked the jar to other side of the balcony and threw the corpse into the hedgerow of burning bushes. What happened then was even more remarkable than Ms. Blanche’s capture. Sylvia DeCitta, the Underboss of the Blue Jay Gang, sailed through the air like a jet touching down for a landing. Only she didn’t even hit the ground for more than a second and she had pivoted and was back in the air. She had Ms. Blanche’s body! I didn’t think blue jays ate mice, but apparently they do. Sylvia had the corpse by the tail and I would not have believed it if I hadn’t seen it for myself.
Gus and Oliver captured and killed a member of the notorious “Bloody Burrow” rodent family, Ms. Blanche Burrow. Gus delivered the body to the biographer. The body wasn’t used for science, but was used naturally in the circle of life. Sylvia DeCitta took the carcass for her own purposes.
Case Status: Closed