The Petpet Detectives: Case of the Kidnapped Kadoatie - Part Three
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
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
"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
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,"
"And I was at home," answered Tim. "Researching
for an article."
"You both were working all evening?" inquired
"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
"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
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
My ears perked up. Damien asked, "What kind
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
"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
"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.
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
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
To be continued...