Sunday, 13 July 2014

Case: The Kidnapping of the Scotts and Gloria - Ep. 1




Graphic Design by Marilyn Russell / Written by James M. Russell
Copyright © 2014 James M. Russell, All rights reserved

Keisha wasnt nervous, shed opened tougher safes than this one but her time allotment for cracking this cube of five inch thick steel was a paltry 6.44 minutes and Keisha had already used 4.2 minutes of that.
On any other iPad the hacking program she wrote would probably have taken twelve to fifteen minutes to open a Brown Ltd., Man Safe Model 1418 with a La Guard Keypad but the modifications Keisha had made to the Apple processor easily cut that time in half. Fortunately, the Perp didn't purchase his safe with the Biometric Lock upgrade. Cutting off his thumb was not only a messy option but likely to get Keisha kicked out of school.
The beep that signaled success was soft but loud enough even for Emma, standing twelve feet away by the study door, to hear it and respond with a whispered, Awesome!
Keisha grabbed the safes chromed handle and twisted. There werent many documents inside, and only three were Excel spreadsheets but conducting a forensic audit wasn't Keisha's job - she even failed Grade 9 math - so she said "You're up Barbie," and handed the documents to Bridgit.
"Keisha! said Ramu.
"People skills?"
Bridgit was oblivious to the unpleasant exchange between her two club-mates as she examined the documents. Her eyes scanning every line of text, her brain racing. Bridgit was the clubs genius. Under that tangle of unruly strawberry blonde hair, mascara, and lipstick was the human version of NASAs supercomputer.
Elementary! she said softly then placed the sheet face down on the scanning glass of the Perps . Lexmark printer and pressed the email option. Seconds later Emma, Ramu, Keisha, Janet, Heri, and Bridget - six of the seven member, James Muir High School Sherlock Holmes Reading Club - reacted with a turn of their head or shift of their eyes to the sound of a key in the front door lock.
Whoops! Guess Victor's squash game ended a little sooner than usual.
Bridgit figured that their Perp, Victor Rockle, knew he had an intruder the moment he noticed that the burglar alarm was already off because he took the stairs two at a time and reached the second floor of his split level condo in less than fifteen seconds. The club members watched as the office door swung open at a cautious pace. Bridgit was the first person he saw.
"Who the hell are you and what are you doing in my office?"
Bridgit flashed him a relaxed smile and replied, "I am Bridgit, pleased to make your acquaintance but this is only your office until Lieutenant Rezoski of the Major Crimes Division of our own Metropolitian Police passes this..."
Bridget snatched the spreadsheet from the scanner.
"... informative and recently faxed document to the City Prosecutor, who will no doubt then seize your humble abode as said document, along with other incriminating evidence, proves that you bought it with the "Profits of Crime", heroin smuggling in your case, as per Section 67.8 of the Criminal Code, Amended in 2004."
Bridgit then said in a contrite tone, "Bugger! That was a run-on sentence wasn't it?"
"My safe is..." Victor said but never finished the sentence before his face contorted with rage and he immediately lunged toward Brigit. Emma gave the leatherette loveseat a powerful shove with her right knee and Victor performed a near perfect summersault over its back and hit the floor, head first, with a loud thud.
Ramu, who was sitting in a very comfortable, aged leather LazyBoy in the shadow shrouded north-east corner of Victor's office, said to Emma in a perky tone, "Dude-ess, those Dead Weight Lifts are really paying off."
Victor stood weakly, waved his arms in the air, Karate style, then assumed the Cat Stance.
Heri, who sat at Victor's desk, playing with the stainless steel Rubik's Cube, fountain pen stand, digital picture frame and other items, glanced up at Victor, flashed his television host smile then chuckled.
"Really! There's only one of you and you're really, really old. There's seven of us and we're young. So put those 'deadly' hands of yours away before my friend... (Heri motions toward Emma)... and Gold Gym's Under 21 Body Builder for 2014, rips your arms out of their sockets."
Team! Exit stage left!" Bridgit said then led the other members out, leaving Victor alone and perplexed. As Heri, the last to leave, passed Victor he said in a soft almost sympathetic tone, "Dude, you shoulda just said no to drugs."
{{ }}
On the way out they passed the billiards room, the two million dollar Cezanne, the Spanish Marble indoor waterfall and finally reached the mahogany door with the custom-made brass horse head knocker. Kaseka was waiting in the roundabout outside the condo building's lobby and they all piled into to his 1885, silver, Jaguar Vanden Plas, a nearly five ton vehicle they lovingly refer to as Juggernaut.
I guess from the smug expressions on your faces that everything went as planned.
Brilliantly Watson. Brilliantly, Bridgit said in a British accent so perfect that it would put a BBC news reader to shame.
I would have loved to see the expression on his face," Kaseka said.
Have seen not see past tense not future perfect," Janet replied.
Miss English teacher! Will you lighten up! Schools out!
You think we can bill our client at our premium rate because its after 5 pm?
Oh Ramu, is that all you think about is billing and accounts receivables?
Yes. One of us has to, Ramu said as he buckled his seatbelt.
Well Id much rather think about getting Eric Woo alone and tearing off his.
Whad I say?
What is wrong with you girlfriend! Did you accidentally take your mother's menopause pill instead of your Ritalin?
"Can we get going?" Janet, sitting in the back seat, said in weak gasps.
All the members turned toward her.
"You having an attack?" Bridgit asked.
"Forget your puffer again?" asked Ramu.
"Just drive," Janet said to Kaseka then added with difficulty, "I have promises to keep and miles to go before I sleep.
Robert Frost, 1874 to 1963. Kaseka said immediately then turned the ignition to 'on'. But the starter whined, turned the engine over once, then died.
A chorus of moans filled the Jags interior.
Kaseka, when are you gonna take this heap to the repair shop?
Or the junk yard, Emma said with her usual degree of sarcasm.
About the same time one of you gets your drivers license AND a car. Soooo until that happens…”
Boots on the ground Ladies and Gentlemen! Emma announced then flung open her door. All thje members climbed out of the Jag, except Kaseka, who remained behind the wheel.
"Not you o'breathless person. Bridgit said then barked, Kaseka! Out! Janet, you drive."
Kaseka and Janet did as they were told and all the members moved to the Jag's rear and prepared to push.
"Second gear... clutch in... wheels straight ahead," Kaseka called out to Janet.
"OK team. Engage shoulders and thighs and puuuuuuusssssh!" Emma commanded. But the Jag had only moved a few inches when Bridgit shouted, "NOOOO!" straightened and stared at the fingers of her left hand.
"What?" Keisha asked.
"My nail!"
The other member's rolled their eyes and once again prepared to push.
"Bridgit!" Emma barked.
"One two three - push!"
Amid the grunting and contorted expressions, Keisha, asked Kaseka, "Seriously! How much does this thing weight?"
1796.22 kilograms or 3960 pounds for you metric-phobes.
That a word?
Janet's said breathlessly from the driver's seat spoke, No but... the English... language is a.... fluid and transformative. Its history is littered... with instances of new... words, many of them... lifted from the foreign langu…”
 Thanks Dr. Dictionary! Heri said under his breath.
I heard that Puzzle Nerd" Janet shouted.
Dr. Dropout! Heri replied.
 Witch worshipper!"
Guys! Zip it!" shouted Bridgit, "Could we just push! Id like to be in my bed when my mother comes to wake me up for school.
The members resumed pushing in earnest, building up quite a bit of speed.
Finally Emma called out to Janet, Im assuming that you are waiting until we reach, what? Light speed before you finally pop the clutch?
Just then the Jags rear wheels locked for a moment then the car took off. Leaving the 'propulsion team' standing in the road, exhausted and relieved.
Janet slammed on the Jag's brakes, shifted into the passenger seat and all the members piled in. Then When Kaseka floored the accelerator, the Jags twin tailpipes sputtered briefly before the cylinders cleared their throats and the Jag roared off down the road.
You complete the required reading for tomorrow? Kaseka asked.
Absolutely, what was it again? Emma replied.
Hound of the Baskervilles, Chapter 3, shot back Kaseka.
Oh yeah.
Emma! If Mr. Sheppard gets wind that the John Muir Sherlock Holmes READING club does anything other than READING then we can all kiss our graduation goodbye.
"Chill Jag Watson. Ive got this under control.
Just Watson will do, Kaseka replied.
 The members fell silent, then remained in that state until Emma turned to Bridgit and asked, So what's our next case O' Great Leader?
Bridgit smiled then paused before she answered - just for dramatic effect
"Amber Alert was issued about an hour ago. Six year old kid and her Grandparents have been missing for three days and we're going to find them."
"Outstanding!" replied Ramu.

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