Where we left off…

Detective Inspector Guster Nabu and Prof. Oliver Winchester identified two mysterious artifacts of supernatural and European origins.

NJ sunrise

News coverage of multiple hurricanes, earthquakes, and tornado warnings had much of the United States and Central America prepping for devastation. The west coast was dealing with ongoing wildfires that reached all the way to Canada.

NJ sunrise

Here in New Jersey, we had a blessed reprieve from Mother Nature’s wrath. After Superstorm Sandy and many harsh winters, we learned to savor the perfect mid-seventies temperatures and puffy clouds.


Oliver has some experience with road trips and vacations. He’s been through Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Though he’s not particularly pleasant in the car, once his camper is parked, he’s fine.

Gus hasn’t traveled much. For a while there, we were weekending at the apartment nearby located in a quaint town that has things like sidewalks and restaurants—things we don’t have here. He’s been to the local pet store twice. I think he’s only gone to the vet twice too. Half the time, he throws up in the car no matter how short the drive.


The humans here miss Rocky, the only canine ever to intern at The Winchester-Nabu Detective Agency. He didn’t have much left in the way of his working senses, but his nose for squirrels stayed keen through his final days. Rocky was a great traveler. He loved visits with family and shopping. One of his favorite things was going to the park where he was allowed to roll around in every stinky leaf possible. Even though he loved investigating the great outdoors, he was not a water dog. However, he was a vivacious snow dog.


Without Rocky, the humans have enjoyed the outdoor investigations with Gus and Ollie. Since Gus has become a great explorer of the outdoors, it was time to see if he could fill Rocky’s furry shoes at the park. The one hesitation was that other humans break the dog leash rule and often have canines, including large varieties with giant jaws, off-leash.

Gus approached the trail the same way he does when starting out for his daily perimeter checks at home. Tail down. Head low. Ears up. It didn’t take long for him to find a comfort zone.

The only canines encountered were two beagles, thankfully leashed, who howled like they were being murdered. Apparently that’s a thing beagles do. Gus showed as much fear of them as he does to all the humans he encountered. We would either hide off the trail or pick him up until strangers passed us by.

Leave it to Gus to prefer the off-trail environment — he lead us up a steep hill, over rocks, through weeds, and eventually to one of the upper level, narrow, difficult trails. Gus led us all the way from the ease of Patriots Path to the yellow, white, and red trails. We didn’t know which way went where. We just kept following him. And whenever we paused for people to go by, Gus would do his Gus thing and retrace his steps then decide whether to go back where he was or take another route. This is what he’s like every day at home too. We pace trails. He gets to know every tree.

After about an hour, we heard the beagles from clear across the hill and decided it was time to start the journey back to the car. Gus didn’t want to walk back down. He would have kept going up until he found Waterloo Village. But an hour was plenty for the humans so back to the lower parking lot we went.

Getting to our car required carrying Gus because of the many vehicles and people. He was a squirmy piglet covered in burrs by then. He rested peacefully in the car for the drive home.

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