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The Petpet Detectives: Case of the Kidnapped Kadoatie - Part Three


by playmobil_is_my_life

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The following day was very arid. The wind was much warmer than yesterday and the sun beat down on us. It was a good day to spend relaxing: reading a book, or sipping a smoothie on a park bench. But no one in our group needed a reminder that this morning was very important.

     At precisely eleven o'clock sharp, we landed in front of a towering building. Damien and Luna slid off my back; Charlie remained in his usual spot. Damien was dressed very nicely, as always, and Luna had brushed her shadow fur, wearing her Faerie Back Pack. Charlie wasn't much different though, there's not much you can do to make a pea Chia look nice.

     In front of us was a magnificent white building, with gold writing, "The Neopian Times" towards the top. It stood at nearly twenty stories tall. I felt so small next to it, maybe like how Charlie felt when he stood next to me.

     "Good morning, all," Lance appeared, his blue scales shining in the morning light. The sun winked off his glasses. He shook hands with all of them again, including Charlie, "Ready for the grand tour?"

      "Yes," I answered, and to myself added, "and ready to meet some suspects."

     "We'd like to meet the Neopets you work with," Damien appeared to be reading my mind, "anyone that you see on a regular basis."

     "Sure thing," Lance exclaimed, and he ushered us through the automatic doors.

     Being a very large Eyrie, I had to reel my shoulder back to get through the doors. We were in the front room-a large fountain was in front of us, with chairs and tables to the side of that. Neopets reading The Neopian Times were seated about. The cool tile floor felt good on my paws, since the sidewalk outside was warm.

     Lance guided us to an elevator and we stepped inside. He pushed the button for floor seven and we started to move upwards. In just seconds, the doors swung open and we followed Lance down the carpeted hall.

     Just as Lance pushed a door open, someone came out. It was a young woman with beautiful brown hair and she was wearing a white dress.

     "Good morning, Mrs. Snowflake!" Lance chirped.

     "Good morning, Lance," she echoed, smiling. She started down the hall, taking the sheets of paper in her hands.

     "She's the editor," Lance explained. "She publishes the articles and reads over the short stories and comics."

     I nodded, but there wasn't time to say anything because we were joined by two yellow Chias wearing identical white shirts and red ties. Both smiled at once.

     "Ah, there you are! Marlo, Luna, Damien and Charlie, I'd like you to meet Timothy and Thomas, or Tim and Tom."

     "Pleased to meet you," the one on the left said.

     "Pleasure," I answered, shaking hands with both of them.

      I glanced over at the group. Damien removed his hat and shook their hands, but after Luna shook their hands, she drew back a bit. Her expression grew somewhat startled. But she replaced it with a quick smile as if to cover it up.

     "We'd just like to ask some questions regarding the disappearance of Lance's Kadoatie," I explained.

     "Sure thing," the one on the left answered.

     "Do you think one of us took the petpet?" The one on the right said at the same time.

     "We're just doing our jobs. So, Tim and Tom, you both write articles here?" Damien inquired.

     "Yes," the one on the right replied.

     "And how long have you been working here?"

     "A couple years now," the other one answered, "what would you say, Tim? Something along those lines?"

     "Yeah," Tim, the one on the right, answered.

     I looked over at Luna, who was taking notes with a pen from her Faerie Back Pack.

     "Not to sound interrogating, but let me ask you something," Damien said, "where were you on the 2nd night of this month?"

     "I was in the Coffee Shop, finishing up an article," said Tom.

     "And I was at home," answered Tim. "Researching for an article."

     "You both were working all evening?" inquired Damien.

     "Just trying to get the story," Tim grinned. "And I'm sorry, but I was just on my way to the park, you'll have to excuse me."

     "We only have a few more questions," I pleaded, holding out my white paw to stop him. He was only a few feet tall, and I was much more intimidating, but he just looked me in the eye and said,

     "I think I've answered enough questions now, you're cutting into my lunch break."

     "Just trying to get the story," I echoed, smirking as the yellow Chia started out the door and towards the park.

     "I'm sorry, but I should go, it's my lunch break too," said Tom, "nice meeting you," he added.

     And with that, we were left alone with a mindful of theories.

     ***

     The same evening, we all sat in the Evidence Room, on the second floor of our home. We had already had dinner at the Pizzaroo, and were now discussing theories and suspects.

      Damien was sitting in a Red Bean Bag Chair, playing with the feather on his hat. He did that when he was thinking. Luna was reading over her notes. Charlie was musing on the armrest and I was going over the conversation with the two Chia brothers in my mind.

      "It didn't take much to figure out that Tim was in a foul mood, and that would make him a perfect thief," Damien wondered aloud, "but what if he and Tom are working together?"

      "Yeah, didn't you hear when Tim said he was at home, finishing up an article? What if he was really at Lance's house?" Charlie asked, "The whole 'at home' thing always sounds suspicious."

      "Mm-hmm," I answered, stretching my wings. "But let's not forget about that Quiggle butler. Wouldn't it be just too perfect to snatch the Kadoatie and hide her?"

      "For what, Marlo?" Damien asked.

      "I don't know," I admitted. I turned to the shadow Yurble, "Luna, what do you think?"

      She had been so quiet this whole time. Luna looked up, her brown eyes wide, "Oh. I'm not sure. I'm leaning on the teamwork of the two Chia brothers at The Neopian Times office."

      "It's too bad we don't have any leads," I finished.

      Luna sighed, "Actually, I think we do have a lead."

      My ears perked up. Damien asked, "What kind of lead?"

      Luna fished around in her Faerie Back Pack and pulled out a glass jar. She shook it in her paw. "Just don't take it out," she passed it to Damien, "I don't want to lose them." Damien examined the jar.

     Inside were five or six light-colored hairs.

     "Where did you find these?" Damien wanted to know.

     "Lance's mansion, in the hallway leading from Lance and Jasmine's room."

     "Why didn't you tell us sooner?" I asked, catching the jar that Damien tossed to me.

     "I wanted to see if I knew who they belonged to. They're obviously not Lance's, he only has scales and Jasmine's fur is white. That Quiggle butler doesn't have hair or fur either, so it had to have been the kidnappers."

     "Lance said he has a cleaning lady," I remembered, "She probably would have found it before you did, Luna. It's probably just a hair from one of Lance's friends, or employees." We sat in silence, thinking of other options.

     "No, the cleaning lady wouldn't have found it," Charlie's voice cut the silence. "Lance said she only comes once a week. What if she came before the kidnapper took Jasmine? Then she wouldn't have seen the stray hair because she wouldn't have been to the house since it happened."

     "You may be a pea Chia, but you don't have a pea brain," I joked. Charlie smiled.

     "Wait, what if the cleaning lady took Jasmine? It could have been her fur from the beginning."

     "The only way for that to be possible is if she were yellow. And Lance said she was a red Zafara, remember?"

     "No, I don't remember," I protested.

     "Of course you don't, that's why I wrote it down," Luna rolled her eyes. "Unless Lance was lying about her fur color…which I highly doubt… it looks like the kidnapper definitely has yellow fur."

     "Tim and Tom are looking pretty suspicious right now," I mumbled and yawned. "I'm going to hit the sack. See you in the morning."

     I started downstairs and into my bedroom that I shared with Charlie, with my head feeling like a vortex that just kept sucking in new theories.

     After glancing at the clock, I saw that it was nearly midnight. I cracked open the window to let the cooler night air come in, then flopped down on my Fresh Bamboo Bed, sighing into the pillows. My mind was swirling, but I was more tired then anything.

     Without warning, I heard a noise.

     Crack!

     I lifted my head, and then sat up. My white tail swished back and forth, one of my nervous habits. I targeted the sound-it came from outside.

     It was probably just a twig snapping off a tree. I told myself.

     Or a twig snapping under someone's foot!

     Maybe the kidnapper's foot! I mused.

     Trying not to feel paranoid, I took a few deep breaths and went over to the open window. Everything was now silent. The dry leaves rustled on the ground and the dark trees swayed.

     I couldn't see much, let alone make out if there was anyone around. I paused: Lance said he felt that same paranoid feeling. Like someone was watching him. The air seemed to stand still. My breath caught in my throat:

     Maybe it really was the kidnapper!

     Marlo, get a grip, I told myself, you're twice his size, anyway. Why should you be worrying?

     "Is anyone there?" I called, trying to sound braver than I felt.

      Not a sound.

      A shadow moved further away, dodging low branches and jumping over rocks along his or her way. Whoever it was disappeared before I could call again. It was probably just a little Neopet running around after dark… and scaring the heck out of his owner. I chuckled.

     After another calm breath, tiredness overcame me. I crawled back in bed and fell asleep. But I shut the window before doing so.

To be continued...

 
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Other Episodes


» The Petpet Detectives: Case of the Kidnapped Kadoatie - Part One
» The Petpet Detectives: Case of the Kidnapped Kadoatie - Part Two
» The Petpet Detectives: Case of the Kidnapped Kadoatie - Part Four
» The Petpet Detectives: Case of the Kidnapped Kadoatie: Part Five
» The Petpet Detectives: Case of the Kidnapped Kadoatie: Part Six



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