Saturday, August 30, 2008

maximum explanation

This week's Saturday Scribes prompts were the following:

Theme: The 5 Senses.
Words: Sympathy, error, fraction.

And I've been watching too much Get Smart lately - not that it shows in what I wrote below . . .

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“So how did you do it, Max?” the Chief asked. “How could have known Kaos was set up here in this particular warehouse?”

“Well Chief, it was really quite simple.”

“Go on?”

“I learned two days ago that Kaos’ lead micro surgeon, Von Gelder, had sympathies with the West India Trading company. So I went to his apartment to check it out.”

“But how did you find that out, Max?” the chief asked. “We’ve had 36 on it for weeks, and he came up with no connection at all.”

“Agent 36 has severe allergies, Chief, and therefore couldn’t smell Von Gelder when he got close to him like I did.”

“Smell him, Max?”

“Yes. While in line at the Quicky Mart I happened upon Von Gelder and I smelled Shock Blaster Dark coffee on him.”

“And this lead you to believe Von Geder drank Shock Blaster Dark?”

“That and the two pounds he was purchasing at the checkout,” Max said.

“Oh, I see. So then what did you do, Max?”

“Well, I infiltrated Von Gelder’s apartment and there too I noticed the distinct smell of Shock Blaster Dark coffee, only available from the West Indian Trading company, and as you know they are heavily into trading micro surgeon secrets as well . . .”

“That’s true, Max. Then you deduced this warehouse location from that alone? There are dozens of warehouses that carry West Indian Trading company goods. And how could you be sure Von Gelder was in league with them? Anyhow, I drink Shock Blaster Dark as well, Max.”

Max raised an eyebrow and looked at the Chief with suspicion, “Say chief, I didn’t know you drank—“

“—never mind, Max. Get on with it, please.”

“Well then,” Max continued, “that was the first clue I had to this exact location, but it was the next piece of the puzzle that was Von Gelder’s fatal error.”

“And what was that Max?”

“I’m getting to that, Chief,” Max said not wanting to be rushed, “but first let me fill you in on some more of the details for your report.”

“If you must, Max”

“Yes, well you do want a full disclosure of the facts, don't you Chief?”

“Of course, Max. Please, continue.”

“Well, one odd thing I found was serveral Escher prints on the walls. I noticed on one particular print that a fraction of it was missing.”

“Missing? How could you know that?”

“I deduced it from the knife mark down the left side which continued across the frame and down the wall. Besides one of the upside down stairs was cut in two. Escher never drew half stairs. Behind the print was an open safe. Inside was a powdery residue I rubbed between my fingers.”

“What was it Max, some illegal substance? Drugs?”

“No, it was dust. Von Gelder is a slob.”

The chief got that pained look on his face and planted his palm on his forehead.

“You okay, Chief?” Max asked.

“Fine, Max. Just getting a bit of a headache. Now please, continue. I need to get this report done by the end of today.”

“But it’s only nine in the morning.”

“I know, Max. I know. Now, carry on if you will.”

“Ah yes. Well at this point I had my suspicions as to Von Gelder’s secret lab location almost nailed down, but the final piece came when Von Gelder’s phone rang.”

“The phone?”

“Yes, Chief. The phone. I took hold of the receiver and answered it using my best Von Gelder disguised voice.”

“Who was on the line, Max?”

“I don’t know. After I said, ‘Gooden Daytog, I ist Von Gelder, Schnell’ they just hung up. Soon after I got the final and deciding clue though.”

“And that was?”

“My hand was stuck to the phone.”

“Stuck? Was it some kind of glue? A trap?” asked the Chief.

“No, it was Mama Butter’s Sugar Mint Lolly Powder.”

“How could you tell that?”

“It took me five minutes to lick my hand free,” said Max.

“So how did that clue you in to this location?”

“Well, once I got the phone free from my hand I placed it back on the hook and it rang immediately again.”

“And?”

“I answered it in the same fashion as before, but this time I got a response.” Max looked pleased with himself.

“Who was it, and what did they say?”

“It was 99, Chief. She had been out walking Fang when she saw Von Gelder enter this very warehouse. Shortly after that I called you and here we are with a major Kaos operation under wraps.”

“So, all those clues at Von Gelder’s didn’t lead you to this warehouse at all, did they, Max? And Von Gelder didn’t make any fatal error.” the Chief looked like his headache was getting bigger.

“Ah well, not really, Chief. But, I’m sure if 99 hadn’t called I would have eventually figured it out on my own. And Von Gelder’s fatal error was not having a fatal error.”

“Thanks, Max. That’s all I needed to know.” the Chief rubbed his forehead again, a pained expression on his face.

“You really aught to get that headache looked after, Chief.”

Staring directly at Max the Chief said, “one day, Max. One day.”

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