26 September 2008
Murder on the Menu
“Oh dear,” I sighed, as we entered the kitchens of St. Bumthrusty’s. The scene was one of utter chaos; items of cutlery were strewn about the place, food items were spilt everywhere, and slumped next to the stove was the body of a man. I knelt down beside the corpse, which I noticed was covered with a mixture of eggs, milk, and flour. On closer inspection, it seemed that the poor bounder’s head had then been shoved roughly into a pan of boiling oil.
I sighed again, and straightened up.
“I am afraid to say,” I began, addressing the rapt audience before me, “that this poor fellow has been battered to death.“
An audible gasp was raised by the assembled few, while the rather pretty young thing who had alerted us to the crime broke down in tears again.
“There, there, m’dear,” I cooed softly, putting a comforting arm around her shoulders (whilst also taking a quick peep at her fabulous cleavage, naturally). “We shall find the cad responsible, do not fear!”
“Oh, it is awful,” the dear creature sobbed, drying her beautiful, blue eyes on my lapel. “How are we going to get our hands on that many eggs again at such short notice? I am supposed to be baking a big cake for the reunion to-day…and then this happens!”
The poor girl buried her head in my chest, weeping loudly.
“Um…yes, I see,” I said, not altogether seeing. “Well, I am sure the cake would have been delicious, m’dear…”
This attempt at placating the troubled totty failed rather miserably, and only elicited further prolonged wails from her mouth.
I am not the best chap at dealing with such outward displays of emotion, and felt increasingly uncomfortable with a weeping woman in my arms. Being an English aristocrat, I firmly believe that such emotions should be bottled up inside one’s self, until they either explode within you, leading to a full-blown mental breakdown, or letting them gush forth in a torrent of terrible twaddle when pissed out of one’s head. Much more healthy, I am sure you will agree.
Anyway, I unburdened myself of the blubbering beauty, forcing her into the arms of my bemused man-servant, Botter. I dare say Botter was even less equipped to deal with a female in any state, but I had more important things to worry about. A dead body in the kitchen of my old school, for example.
“Do we have any idea who this poor man is?” I asked. “His face is barely recognisable any more.”
Inspector Spunkleford, relishing the chance to finally do some detecting, bounded over to the body of the recently deceased, and began frisking the body earnestly – maybe rather too earnestly, in fact.
“Ahem,” I coughed politely, as Spunkleford continued to rummage through the man’s pockets for slightly too long. “Find anything, Spunkleford? Apart from maybe a new-found preference for the same gender?”
“Ah-ha!” Spunkleford beamed, holding aloft a brown leather wallet. “I believe this shall shed some light on the identity of the victim.”
“There is no need to look so smug,” I sniffed. “Just tell us who it is, man!”
Spunkleford looked slightly crestfallen at this remark, but obliged by opening up the wallet and removing a small business-card from within.
“It seems this fellow is a mister Edward. J. Crotch-Staiyne…he is a banker, apparently…”
“Wait!” I said, as another wretched memory sprang forth into my mind. “What was that surname again?…”
“Crotch-Staiyne,” Spunkleford repeated. “Why? Do you know him?”
“I believe I did,” I nodded sadly. “That is old Crotchy…another of my old school-chums.”
“Crotchy!” gasped Ginger Nadgers. “Oh my! Poor, poor Crotchy.”
“Tell me, Inspector,” I continued, a sense of dread welling up inside of me. “Do we know the name of the teacher who was murdered here earlier?”
“Ah, yes!” Spunkleford exclaimed, retrieving his note-book from his back pocket. “Let me see….ah, yes, here we are…he was a mister…Harrison. Yes, Thomas Harrison.”
“Ginger Harrison,” I sighed. “I had no idea he had become a teacher.”
“How many Gingers were there in your school, milord?” Botter asked, struggling with the still-inconsolable girl in his arms.
“Ginger Harrison wasn’t even ginger-haired,” Ginger Nadgers replied. “I believe he got his name from having been caught molesting the school cat, Ginger, if I recall…”
“Never mind all that bollocks!” I snapped, my brow furrowed in deep concentration. “Do you not see what is transpiring here? Some bastard is offing my old school chums, and has already threatened to see me run through as well. Clearly this is someone who knows something of my school-days…someone who maybe attended this very establishment with me…but not long enough to grasp the very basics of the English language, if his note was anything to go by…”
“What is it, Likely?” Spunkleford asked, noticing the look of horror etched across my handsome face.
“I know who the culprit is.” I said slowly. “If my hunch is right – and I am very rarely wrong, of course – then this murderer is Loathsome.”
“Loathsome?” Spunkleford repeated. “Downright despicable, I would say! Now who is it?”
I rolled my eyes in despair. “Loathsome, my dear, slow-witted Inspector, is a name in this instance, rather than an adjective. Although, truth be told, the adjective does suit him well. You see, I am almost one hundred per-cent certain that the killer is none other than…”
I paused for dramatic effect.
There was a stunned silence.
“Who?” said Spunkleford, rather ruining the mood somewhat, the tedious little twat-bag.
- Lord Likely.
Next Time in The Astonishing Adventures of Lord Likely: Looking for Loathsome!
Lord Likely would like to thank everyone who sent him birthday well-wishes earlier this week. So wrapped up in his adventures was his lordship, that he quite forgot it was his birthday. Many thanks to you all!
Hungry for more inter-net based fiction? Then may I suggest you peruse The Web Fiction Guide, Pages Unbound or The Blog Fiction Blog, all of which are thoroughly excellent, due in no small part to the fact that I am listed with them all. Huzzah!