It was an unwelcoming, dull evening in Fictown when we read the news.
But then all the days had been the same since we had arrived.
As I sat by the windowsill on a recliner, a cup of tea steaming itself cold on top of today’s ‘The Daily Fiction‘, I noticed the grey thunder clouds making their way calmly, enveloping the whole town as the last of light that remained peeped through them as if trying to shovel up some space in a crowd full of people. I picked up the paper and began reading. The tagline below the name read We bring the fabricated world to you.
The headlines on the front page (right below a few graphics that read ‘ Mayor of Townsville to begin his Presidential campaign today Pg. 4’ and ‘Victor Krum declared as the Captain of new World XI Quidditch team Pg. 10’) read
’52 CHILDREN MYSTERIOUSLY DISAPPEARED , FBI BAFFLED’
I fixed the glasses to my face as I began to read the half page article below it.
29 August, 2014: On the eve of the day before yesterday, 27th of August, reportedly a total of 52 children were found missing from their premises all around Fictown. 52 children, which included 23 boys and 29 girls, ranging from ages 5 to 13 year old were found missing from their houses in the middle of the night. If reports are to be believed, all the children miraculously disappeared from their residencies at around 1:30 to 2:00 AM, all at the same time.
The children all belonged to the same neighbourhood of Sesame Street and were all picked at random, stating no further connection whatsoever. A missing report was filed by the parents of the respective children in the Early dawn of the day to the police and after 24 hours of no sign of appearance of any kid, they were all officially declared missing.
The severity of the crime had pressurized the FBI (Fictional Bureau of Investigation) to intervene who after a thorough investigation of the evidences on the location were under a dilemma and have thus refused to release an official statement regarding the matter, stating it as an ongoing investigation.
The Chief of Police, Dave Gordon, however, commented on the matter to the press saying, “A total of 52 children, 23 of them boys and the rest girls have been officially declared missing from their homes in the middle of the night on the 27th. There have been no signs of them living or dead that have been found nor were any evidences discovered during the case. The FBI have decided to take matters in their own hands and the matter is now an ongoing investigation”.
The Mayor of the town, Mr. Mayor, stated in an official press conference to be “a matter of great emergency”. He also stated that all the necessary measurements would be taken place and that the FBI would investigate the matter thoroughly and would make sure the kids return safely to their homes. (Continued on Page 3)
I put the paper back on the table and sipped the now lukewarm cup of tea that was on the table.
“Say have you heard the news?” I asked Holmes who had indulged himself into licking a tattered pair of sock. Perhaps previously gnawed by a rat.
He spat towards the edge of the table and wiped his lips with the sleeve of his overcoat. “Quite a warm welcome, I suppose. Have you gone sightseeing further into the town?”
“No, I haven’t.”
“Well then I’d recommend Berty’s Soup Kitchen at the Diagon Alley, quite exquisite crowd I must say-”
“I don’t want to.”
“-Or the sewer by the bayside. A fine picaresque location.”
“Sounds tempting but I’d rather pass.”
“So I deduct you still haven’t been over Baker Street yet?”
I smirked. “And as always, your deduction skill are quite impeccable I must say Holmes. Perhaps-”
“Don’t patronize me.”
“-if you’d rather use them on more-”
“I must say I quite miss Miss Hudson”
“-important matters like this case at hand.”
“Do you care to bring the groceries? And when you’re at it could make sure to bring a goat’s horn from the nearby butcher.”
“Why do you…. I’d rather not ask. HOLMES! Does this case not intrigue you a certain bit?” I said as I placed the tea cup on the table and made my way towards the kitchen.
“If by intrigue you mean gather my attention for more than 7 minutes then yes, it most certainly does.” He threw the sock he held on Gladstone’s face as the bulldog stood up and blindly began to crawl around in a circle trying to get it off.
“Really? And what does the idiosyncratic detective deduct from the news?”
“Well, firstly, some children are missing-”
“The same way some rats went missing a few days back.” He stood from the chair and walked towards the old storage, he had (forcibly) made his own private laboratory.
“And you think they have something in common?”
“No, Watson. I think they have everything in common.”
“And how could you be so sure?”
“Because the rats didn’t disappear they were eradicated.” He started to fill a syringe with one of the chemicals that were set to boil.
“And who would do that?”
“Oh Christ Watson! Who do you would do the swiping if there is a plague in town?” He clinked the needle to test the flow.
“Amen! Which means our next job at hand would be to-”
“Question the mayor.” I said and bit my lower lip. “So does that make it our first case then?”
“Jesus Watson! Hold your horses. You’re embarrassing me”, he said as he went towards Gladstone, grabbed him and stabbed the syringe in his chest.
He then laid him on the floor. The dog staggered a bit, whimpering about and fell on the floor. Dead.