Nothing is more fun to read in the winter than a Sherlock-Holmes-inspired detective story. But before you enter this criminal underworld, enjoy this drawing of four kittens.
artwork by Jane F., Grade 8
“Ms. Scarlet, I believe it has come to the point where we
need your assistance,” my advisor says to me in a low voice.Everyone in the room glances up from his or
her computer, trying to get an earful of our conversation.I turn around in my chair, leaning back
nonchalantly.However, I suppose I
should introduce myself before I continue on.I am Scarlet Hooverguard.I work
for the FBI but not in the way one might think.I leave all the dirty work to the agents.I am simply here for when the agents come to
the point of desperation, and they need my assistance.I am what one might call a detective.I have been trained how to fight, for one
never knows what could happen in the FBI business, but I prefer not to do those
kinds of activities.I simply
investigate crime scenes, searching for clues one may have missed during their
sweep through the area.When I am not
investigating, I am a journalist for the local paper; I’m the best in the
business, actually.I suppose I am
getting a bit ahead of myself; I have a story to tell.I glance up at my advisor, whose name is
Malcolm Fielder III.I suppose one might
call him a bit disorganized.He has wild
eyes and hair that never seems to stay smooth.I smooth my own hair into place before speaking to him.
this the case of the missing diamond necklace?” I ask tiredly. Malcolm nods.
“There is no trace of him or
her to be found.” About three days ago, in a museum, a diamond necklace was
stolen out of its display case. The glass was shattered, and the necklace was
ripped from its place, sounding the alarm. The robber escaped before security
could even show up. The FBI found barely any clues, including an open air vent
that leads to the outside, which the robber must have gone through, and a
smudge of red lipstick on the display case.Neither of the clues seems like they will be much help to my case. The
way the robber came in normally is not much help, and matching the lipstick is
a very difficult and tedious task.
have three suspects, Miss, all of which are women and wearers of red
lipstick.The first is Mrs. Irene
Walker, the owner of the shoe store next door.She owns a museum key in case ofemergency.The second is Ms.
Liliana Doolittle, the woman who works the night shift at the coffee shop three
blocks down.The third is Molly Chalmer,
the owner of the cosmetic shop.They
have all been interviewed, but there are no signs of them bearing guilt.”I nod, solemnly before thinking over my
I say, “I’ll take a look.”
was right; there is no trace of the robber. There are glass shards on the floor
from the smashing of the glass and an open air vent. That’s it. I have each
woman’s file.There are definitely some
clues about each one that leads me to believe that one may have stolen the
diamonds, but I don’t have any good proof to prove any of them.I examine each shard of glass. Several of the
shards are too small to have any clues. There is nothing to be found on the
glass, but as I’m on my hands and knees on the floor, I notice something shoved
between the wooden display case and the floor. It’s wedged under there so much
that nobody would see it unless they were really searching. Most of the FBI
agents are not as skilled at catching small details.I crawl over, and place my fingers around the
object. I wrench it from its hiding place with a sharp yank. It’s odd, really.
It seems to be the heel of a high- heeled shoe. I quickly shove it in my coat
pocket before I walk up to the front desk where a woman sits. Her name tag
reads Wanda. I take a glance at her
face -- no red lipstick.
I say politely.
she says, her voice clipped. I peer over the desk at her.
was wondering if I could take a peek at your surveillance,” I ask.
can’t,” she says, “The cords were cut.” I drop my pen on the ground and fall to my
knees.As I’m down on the ground, I see
nothing but Wanda’s size 9 beat up flats—no other clues.I quickly stand up, brushing off my pencil
“I was just wondering,” I say, “When
is your trash picked up each week?” Wanda looks up at me slowly.
Thursday,” she answers in a murmur.Today
is Wednesday—the trash has not been picked up since the robbery.I mumble a quick thanks before I go to the
back door by the Ancient Greece exhibit.I quietly slip through the heavy door.In the back, just as I suspected, there’s a large dumpster.Most of the dumpster is covered in rust, but
that shouldn’t affect my work.I know I
said I don’t normally do the dirty work, but digging through dumpsters wasn’t
exactly what I meant.I throw open the
large black lid, cringing at the loud squeal from the hinges.After digging around for a few moments, I find
exactly what I’m looking for: a pair of broken high heels.Perfect.I lift them out of the dumpster and take the heel I found earlier out of
my coat pocket.
It fits beautifully.
Ah, so it appears that neither the lipstick
nor the open vent provides me any information about the robber.They are simply red herrings. If one were to
glance inside the soles of the shoes, they would see a small sticker labeled
with the shoe size.In case two and two
has yet to be put together, allow me to further explain.Before the robber went to steal the
multimillion dollar necklace, she made some very smart moves indeed.She cut the camera cables, smeared red
lipstick on the case even though she doesn’t wear it, and she opened the vent
to make detectives such as myself believe she came from outside. But she didn’t.
When she was stealing the necklace from the
case, her heel snapped off, sliding across the floor and wedging it beneath the
display case.The robber removed her
shoes and proceeded to steal the necklace.But her smart moves stop there.She was inept enough to toss the remains of her shoes into the garbage
bin outside, unable to find the broken heel that snapped off.The size sticker clearly was still on the
sole.If you were to look closely at
that sticker you can make out the size.And that size, is a size 9.The thief
of the diamond necklace is obvious.She
had easy access, and she knew the best quick getaways through the museum by
being an employee.Miss Wanda, the
keeper of the reception desk, is guilty for stealing the diamond necklace.
The coffeehouse may seem like a distant memory of the autumn, but we are pleased and proud to share with you a recorded spoken word poem from this most memorable event! Thank you to all of our readers and community members who were able to attend. Over 200 people were able to hear this poem live. Sevenatenine is thrilled to share it with a broader audience here.