The Cookie Caper
“You lost the games, Vanny!” teased Evini, pushing the wooden door of my house open. “And I thought you were the tag champion!”
I made a face at Evini, a blue Bori. “I still am.”
“Then why’d you lose every time?” asked Little, a skunk Yurble.
“Because of my stupid trench coat.”
“Well, if it’s making you lose the games, why not take it off?” quipped Little.
“I already told you! I’m a detective now, and I have to wear my trench coat ALL THE TIME. It shows my authority.” I pulled my magnifying glass out of my coat pocket and held it up to my eye. Evini grabbed it out of my hooves before I had a chance to say anything, though.
“Vanny, that creeps me out!” she squealed. “Well, now that the game’s over, can we have a snack now?”
I, a yellow Ixi, sighed. “I guess... I wanted to play another game.”
“You’ll lose anyway,” scoffed Little.
“Oh, fine! Let’s have a snack, then. I made a batch of cookies yesterday. They were supposed to only be for me, but I guess you each can have one. Or maybe half of one.”
I hurried into the kitchen, Evini and Little following in my wake. “You can each have one half of a- SWEET FYORA, THE COOKIES ARE MISSING!”
I stared in horror at the empty tray in front of me. There were no cookies left. I had told my family not to lay a paw on them, that they were just for me, but obviously somebody disobeyed.
“Oh, it’s no big deal,” said Little. “We can always have some of your momma’s fudge instead.”
“No, we cannot!” I cried. “Somebody stole my cookies, and I’m going to find out who...”
Little and Evini exchanged glances. “Umm... we should go now,” Evini said.
“Fine, be that way! I suppose if you don’t want to help me find the cookie thief, you can just leave.”
Little took a step backwards. “Uh, okay. See you, Vanny.”
“I hate it when she goes into detective mode like that,” Evini whispered once she and Little were out of the room. “I hope she moves onto another phase soon...”
“I heard that!” I shouted at my friends.
“No, you didn’t!” Evini shouted back. I sighed. Some people were so unsupportive.
To be truthful, I had mixed feelings about the whole thing. Sure, the cookies going missing was a terrible tragedy, but then again, it was my first real case as a detective. Before this, I just acted out mysteries with my plushies. Now I actually had something real to solve! But there was only one problem. I wasn’t exactly sure how to go about solving a real mystery. Well, I guess following my instincts would be the best thing to do.
I carefully inspected the cookie tray, hoping I might find some evidence. There was nothing. I was about to leave the room when I noticed a mysterious brownish trail leading into the living room. I bent over and inspected it with my magnifying glass. The trail was made of cookie crumbs! I hurried into the living room.
Two of my siblings, Cocoa the brown Grundo and Court the red Hissi, were currently sitting in the room. Cocoa was on the couch reading The History of Meridell, my Altachuck Greyfur cuddled up beside her. Court was dusting off his saxophone.
“HEY YOU SUSPECTS!” I cried, hoping to get their attention.
Court dropped his saxophone in surprise. He let out a loud yelp ‘cause it apparently landed on his tail. “Vanny! You scared me half to death!”
“Well, good, then. You’re a suspect!”
“What are we suspected of doing?” Cocoa asked, not even bothering to look up from her book.
“Stealing MY cookies,” I hissed back. “Did I or did I not tell you that they were just for me and no one else?”
“Well, yeah, but I didn’t take them!”
“Vanny, even if Cocoa did take your cookies, it’s not a big deal,” Court said. “We can always make another batch tomorrow.”
I was in shock. How could my own owner say such a thing? “You just don’t get it, do you? It is a big deal ‘cause somebody stole my cookies, and that makes that somebody a thief, and that thief should be punished accordingly! I won’t rest until I find that dirty rotten cookie thief!”
“Well, I’m not saying I’m the thief or anything, but why should I let you interrogate me when I have much better things to do?” snapped Court.
I had a feeling Cocoa would say this. Thankfully, I had a plan. “Because if you don’t tell me anything I’ll have to tell everyone that story of what happened to you two at Ava’s birthday party last year.”
Both Cocoa and Court exchanged nervous glances. “D’you mean... the bubbles thing?” Cocoa asked in a hushed voice.
“Yup, that’s the one,” I replied. “Oh... lots and lots of bubbles.”
Cocoa jumped to her feet. “Okay, okay, I’ll talk! Ask me whatever!”
“Same with me!” cried Court.
I grinned. I had them in my clutches. I was going to find out which one of them ate my cookies, I was sure of it. “Do you swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth?”
Cocoa shrugged. “I guess...”
“DO YOU SWEAR TO TELL THE TRUTH, THE WHOLE TRUTH, AND NOTHING BUT THE TRUTH?!”
“Okay, okay! I swear! I swear! Now just stop yelling in my ear!”
“Good... now, tell me... where were you on the day of today? I want details, Miss Cocoa! Lots and lots of details! Or else I’ll have to break out the bubbles story!”
I smiled. This blackmail thing was really effective. I took a seat and listened as Cocoa told her side of the story.
“Well... Constellation bought me a new book this morning, so I decided to start it. It’s called The History of Meridell, and it teaches you everything you need to know about how Meridell came to be and... well, the history of it, I guess, but the title sort of implies that. Anyway, did you know that-”
“I don’t want to know about the book, Cocoa, I want to know about your day!” I exclaimed. “Are you stalling? You are stalling, aren’t you? You just don’t want to tell me that YOU stole the cookies!”
Cocoa groaned. “No, Vanny, that’s not it! I just thought you might be interested in the book, that’s all. Anyways... well, I spent the morning reading the book, but then I got hungry, so I went into the kitchen to get a snack, and-”
“AHA! You DID eat the cookies!”
“No, Vanny, I didn’t!”
“But you just said you-”
“I ate a cheese covered pretzel, not a cookie! Anyway... then Little and Evini came over, Little stole my pretzel, and then he went outside to play tag with you and Evini. And then you came inside and now we’re here! That’s basically how I spent my day.”
I thought for a moment. Cocoa’s story was pretty believable. After all, I had been wondering what Little had in his mouth when he came out to play tag. He nearly choked on it when we started the first game. “Alright, alright, you’re innocent, Cocoa. And that means...” I turned to Court.
“What?! You’re saying I ate the cookies? I certainly did not! I didn’t touch them!”
“But there’s a cookie crumb trail leading into the den and you two are the only ones in here!”
“Well, maybe the person who ate the cookies left the room after they finished them! You’ve been outside playing tag all morning. How would you know how long ago they went missing? Sheesh, Vanny, sometimes you really need to use your brain...”
I sighed. Court had a point. I was about to leave and interrogate the rest of the family when all of the sudden, Greyfur let out a loud yelp. I rushed over to the petpet and scooped him up. “Oh, quiet, you! I’m trying to be a detective here! Some petpets just don’t- hey, buddy, what’s that all over your mouth?”
I set Greyfur down on the couch and pulled a large brownish crumb out of his fur. “Hmm... could this be?” I muttered to myself. “Only one way to find out...”
I popped the crumb into my mouth and began sucking on it. “Eww, Vanny!” Court cried. “You just eat something you find tangled up in the fur around your petpet’s mouth?” I ignored him. He needed to learn that a good detective makes sacrifices.
As soon as I tasted that crumb, my worst fears were realized. That crumb was no normal crumb... it was a cookie crumb! “Everybody, I’ve found the culprit,” I announced. “And it is... GREYFUR! The little traitor! I never imagined my own petpet would betray me like that. Now, if you will all excuse me, I have to go put Greyfur here in the jail I set up in my room. Thank you all for your contributions for the case.” And with that, I strutted out of the room, Greyfur in hand.
I was very proud of myself. I had solved my first real mystery! I was sure Court and Cocoa were both very proud of me, and their annoyed faces were just their special way of showing it. At least, that’s what I hoped.
This is my half of the story crossover with jayandcourtneyk. Hope you like it, Constellation!