There was nothing worse than spending the 4th of July on a cruise ship instead of going to our town’s Independence Day picnic. There were always exciting mysteries to solve at those picnics, but I would be stuck in the middle of the ocean with a bunch of adults. I didn’t even have my trench coat! Mom doesn’t take my detective work seriously enough to let me take it. I may be only ten, but I am as professional as they come. I’m so professional, that when a case came up, I was ready to work without my trench coat, briefcase, or sidekick.
I was at the front of the boat watching the fireworks when some lady came pushing past people calling, “Snoodles. Snoodles!” Some of the people were giving her mean looks, but being the observant detective I am, I knew there was something seriously wrong.
I stepped up to her. “Let me guess. Snoodles is your pet, and he is missing.” The lady blinked twice behind her giant glasses and nodded, obviously impressed with my detective ability. “I’m detective L.C. and I’m an expert in finding stuff.” I held out my hand. She blinked at my hand a few times before taking it. She must have been still in shock over losing her pet. “I’ll help you find Snoodles,” I said, raising my voice as another round of fireworks exploded overhead.
“Would you? It would be great to have some help. He just took off when the fireworks started. I wasn’t holding his leash because he was sitting in my lap and he’s usually such a calm dog. I take him everywhere and I…”
I let the lady think I was listening while I put my detective mind to work. She’d already told me the important stuff. Snoodles was afraid of the loud noises the fireworks made, so that means he was probably hiding under something. Under what? Well, he was in her lap, so that meant he was a small dog and could fit almost anywhere.
“We should split up,” I told her, not caring that I interrupted whatever she was saying. Hey, if she wanted someone to talk to, she should find a psychologist not a detective.
I hadn’t been searching for very long when I spotted a tiny white poodle under the table of a nicely dressed man and woman. They didn’t seem to notice him, so I thought it would be best if I got him to come to me quietly. I pulled a mini Twix bar from my pocket and held it out.
“Come on Snoodles.” I kept my voice low so I wouldn’t disturb the people at the table. Dogs have better hearing than people you know. His little white ears went up and he sniffed the air. “That’s it. Good Snoodles.” He got up and walked toward me, leash trailing behind. He must have been really hungry, because he didn’t even notice the fireworks.
Then when Snoodles was only two feet away, he stopped. His leash was holding him back. It must have been stuck on something under the—
“Hey, little girl.” The man at the table was scowling at me. “What are you feeding my dog?”
“I’m sorry to bother you,” I said, ignoring that he just called me “little.” “I’m just trying to get this dog back to his…. Wait. Did you say your dog?”
“Yes that’s our dog,” the women said. Her scowl looked a lot like man’s. “And we’d rather keep her healthy if you don’t mind.” She pulled on the dog’s leash.
Healthy? What, did these people put their dog on a diet or something? Poor dog couldn’t even eat a little chocolate…. Chocolate! Dogs get sick from eating chocolate. Oops.
Before I could explain myself, a voice from behind sang, “Look who I found.” Standing behind me was the lady, wearing a smile bigger than her eyes and holding a dachshund in her arms. So that was Snoodles.
“You might want to teach your daughter what is safe to feed to dogs,” said the man. I didn’t think that the lady’s eyes could get any wider, but they did.
“Senator Wilson?” she squeaked. “We didn’t mean to cause you any trouble. Believe me, I’m proud of the work that you’re doing and I would never….”
I took two steps backward, then made a run for it. I hope he won’t remember me. If I want to be a detective one day, the last thing I need was for someone in the government to hold a grudge against me.
I broke a record with this one. I used three writing prompts. 🙂