Thursday, January 04, 2018

New Stories from the Durrington Detective Agency

There are four new stories from the Durrington Detective Agency this year.

Ivy is the story of a strange murder

“Who is that woman climbing the tree?” I asked Micah.
“Oh, you mean Ivy. Ivy Dore. I think she's after that cat of hers.”
It was a tortoiseshell cat, we later found its name was Pushkin. As we watched she lured Ivy onto narrower and narrower branches before making a dash for the ground where the bemused cat stood and looked up at her as if slightly scandalised by her behaviour.
It was amusing up to a point. That was the point at which Ivy stopped struggling to get down, screamed something most unladylike and fell out of the tree, breaking her neck.
Micah is something of a first-aider. In fact, she is something of everything. She got to work to resuscitate Ivy while I got on the phone to the ambulance. Micah looked at me and shook her head. Pushkin came up to the body and tried to snuggle up to Ivy.
“It's too late for that,” I thought.
“Look at this,” Micah was pointing to a tiny hole in Ivy's trousers. Ivy didn't go climbing trees in a skirt.
“Moths?” I wondered.
Micah looked at me pityingly and revealed the wound beneath the hole.
“Airgun,” she said, “This was no accident.”
We looked around the area which was visible from the tree.
“One of us will have to climb it,” said Micah.
“Won't the police think that a little odd?”
“Then do it before they get here. I'll keep watch.”
I haven't climbed a tree since I was twelve. That is fifty-three years ago. I got as high as I could in the time but there were no convenient assassins with air rifles to be seen.
“We were watching Ivy. Her antics distracted us from the killer,” Micah said.
The police and ambulance arrived at around the same time. We had to make statements at the station. They were less than pleased that Micah had tried to resuscitate Ivy. Apparently, it messed up the evidence.
“I'll leave her to die next time.”
“She is dead, Mrs McLary. There will be no 'next time',” was all the answer we got.
No sooner were we home than Micah was at work on her laptop hacking quite illegally into the police system. As she put it, "It is as leaky as a colander anyway. Anyone could hack into it."
I don't know if the police took the same attitude but I kept my peace.
“They noticed the air gun wound and they are not treating it as an accident. They have extracted the airgun pellet and analysed the striations. This will be very useful if and when they find the weapon which fired it. Airguns of that muzzle velocity do not require a licence.”
“How do you know the muzzle velocity?” I asked.
“Depth of the wound.” She said impatiently.
“Wouldn't that depend on how far away the shooter was?” I asked.
Micah paused for a long moment and then said, “Yes.” between gritted teeth.
“However, the police have not found any registration documents among their three main suspects at this time.”
Pulling a notepad towards her, she wrote down in her neat handwriting:
“Bertie Dore
Shane Dore
Frank Raison”

To be continued....

The Case of the Missing Candle

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Death by Computer

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Advent in the Graveyard

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