The Resolution pt. 1

[Inspector D’Anton]

Now I understand we’ve all had a trying night here, locked in this mansion with a wanton murderer, but I’ve gathered you all here in the drawing room to reveal who that killer is. At last, our long nightmare of fear, suspicion, and low-quality hors d’oeuvres will be at an end.

Mrs. Walters you poor woman, not only are you a new widow, but you’ve had many of your own guests opening accuse you of murder with their eyes. At least I’m pretty sure that’s the case, my intuition is not what it once was. But, why wouldn’t they? It’s long been suspected that you have been less than loyal to your now-deceased husband Edward over the past few months. And while, that may be completely untrue, it gives many the appearance of motive.

However, at the precise moment that the shot rang out, you and I were in the broom closet discussing serious business matters. Just to make sure, before we rolled your husband up in the rug to avoid having to eat our dried out deviled eggs around the corpse that was beginning to smell like them, I checked the door of the closet for a hole of the same size and shape as the one in your husband. There was none, and you have been cleared, sexy.

Now, to Miss Mallory Martin the maid: You love your ducks, don’t you. Always feeding them that stale bread that would have otherwise been used for that mediocre crostini, taking them on walks through the garden, teaching them to roll over and play dead. Very maudlin, Miss Martin. It was no secret that you have been slowly emptying the feathers from the Walters’ pillows and gluing them to your ducks to keep them warm for the oncoming winter. Clearly, you think you can play god; there’s only a small step between that sort of behavior and deciding that you should be allowed to decide who lives and dies.

It must have driven you crazy when Mr. Walters used to play Jock Jams 3, his favorite album, through the speakers disguised as rocks in the garden, regardless of how many times you warned him that all birds hate the song “Come and Ride it (The Train)” by Quad City DJs. He deserved to die, didn’t he, Mallory? Didn’t he?!

In all honesty, most of us agree with you, however confusing your reasoning we may be. You couldn’t have done it, could you? You were too busy in the kitchen disguising this evenings’ overcooked chicken a l’orange to appear more like duck, weren’t you? None of us were fooled, and I think we all agree that you should have died as well for that transgression. Oh well, justice isn’t always on time.

And here we have young Cayson. 16 years old and you’ve never wanted for anything. Money, cars, friends who aren’t quite as good as you at sports even though your own ability is negligible. . . You’ve got it all Cayson; you’ve even been handed the ability to appear educated without the need to be intelligent. You’ll make a fine investment banker one day.

But you couldn’t wait for a full fortune, could you? Your uncle had always provided everything you could want, but greed is a filthy animal living in the pit of your stomach, devouring everything, isn’t it Cayson? You knew that your uncle had made you the sole beneficiary in his will after catching your aunt with a particularly handsome gentleman caller. So, you killed him, didn’t you?

No? Okay, I was just checking. Well, in that case, congratulations. We’ll talk about my fees after this little bit of unpleasantness is over. Also, your hair is absolutely perfect this morning, all things considered.

Well, as I’ve gathered an uncountable number of suspects into this room and refuse to reveal to you the true murderer, I had better move on with my person by person exposition. Who knows how long this will take, probably until whatever force controls this universe gets tired of this bit.


[To be continued]

Library Raider no. 1- Sara Reins’ Handbook of Etiquette

Greetings,

I am writing to you from the basement of the Leftwich County Memorial Library with torn trousers and singed sport coat from the number of sprung booby traps that now lay behind me. Notebook in lap, I my back is against a false bookshelf that once hid a real, far more spectacular bookshelf.

Upon this bookshelf sits a collection of some of the most dazzling and gaudy books these old eyes (transplants- I am quite young, for my age.) have ever seen. First hand accounts of wars, renaissance, and, in one case, the Renaissance Wars between Il Bloods and Il Crips sit as far as the (transplanted) eye can see.

Neither this discovery, nor my recent discovery of Snapchat, are the reason I am writing you tonight (Though, I cannot resist the urge to enclose several meaningless photos of myself.). I write to you now, because, on this shelf, lies the most perplexing work of literature I have ever come across.

In all appearances, Sara Reins’ Handbook of Etiquette and Appropriate Behaviour is just like any nineteenth century book of courtesy, available at any deceased robber-baron’s estate sale. However, upon closer examination; it appears that the rules found within apply to, and only to modern day western culture. Even more unsettling, is the fact that it references objects and ideas unheard of outside of the author’s lifetime (including Snapchat).

My great fear is that no one may believe me upon hearing this tale, and my greater fear is that this is all just a hallucinatory response to the noxious gas that was released in death chamber number six of my quest. For this reason, I have decided to transcribe and share an excerpt from this book to serve as either proof of this marvelous relic of a mysterious life, or of a record of this absolutely fantastic acid-like trip.

 ***

           On the subject of the dap:

In a situation in where a handshake is appropriate; one may choose to offer a closed fist, to be met with another closed fist as a substitute. By these means, a person acknowledges the friendly circumstances of the meeting, and exhibits his or her knowledge of current youth culture. This process is commonly referred to as the dap.

A gentleman’s dap should be firm, as to not convey weakness, yet not too tight, as to emulate a punch (which is a decidedly more aggressive maneuver).

A lady’s dap is treated with the same rules as a gentleman’s. A concept that should feel more foreign to me, as I am a nineteenth century woman.

When offering a dap, do not begin with a flat hand and close it on the way to the point of contact. This will confuse your dapping partner, creating a situation in which one person is offering a dap, while the other is accepting a handshake. In this situation, it is incumbent upon the respondent to alter his or her hand position to synchronise the proceedings. A hackneyed comment about one of the participant’s whiteness will usually follow, but shouldn’t.

***

 As you can see, this is something of an odd revelation, to say the least. I simply must collect more information about this Sara Reins character at once. Perhaps, I will even discover the strange origins of her insight. Or whatever happy active ingredient lay in death chamber six’s fun fumes. I will keep you updated at every turn.

                 Your dear uncle,

                                 John H. Brokaw- Library Raider