“Hello, Tim, is that you?”

“Hi, Ma. What’s up. This isn’t a good time.”

“Can you come over to my place?”

“Things are crazy at work right now. Maybe I can get out there next weekend, Ma. Why?”

“Tim, this is important. Mr. Flufenstuf has gone missing.”

“That cat again, Ma? Maybe he got sick of being called–”

“Sadie is gone too.”

“The dog? How do you mean, gone? When?”

“Tim, I think it’s the new gardener, Sid.”

“What about him? I thought you said he was doing a good job.”

“Well, he is, but… there’s something a bit off with him.”

“Ma, I don’t have a lot of time. Are you trying to tell me you think this guy, Sid, stole your pets? And did what? Ate them?”

“Maybe… I don’t know.”

“Ma, seriously. Why would you think that?”

“Well, I saw him take his hat off yesterday for the first time…”

“…and?”

“Tim, he had horns.”

“Horns?”

“Yes, Tim, big, curved horns, like… you know… the truck goats.”

“Like a ram?”

“Yeah, like that. And he has yellow eyes.”

“Yellow… Ma, are you taking your meds?”

“Timothy! I’m telling you the man has horns, and yellow eyes. Also his fingernails are very sharp… very, very, sharp.”

“So you hired some weirdo with odd contact lenses and fake nails, and you’re surprised he did something to your pets? What were you thinking, Ma?”

“Well, he was cheap, Tim. Really, quite affordable. I mean I can overlook a lot for a good deal.  Beside my petunias have never looked so lovely.”

“Of course. Look, maybe you should call the police.”

“Oh, I did that.”

“And?”

“A very nice man, Officer Saltonstall, came by yesterday.”

“And what did he say?

“Well, he said ‘Hello, ma’am’-”

“No, ma, what did he say about Sid.”

“Well, he went to the shed to have a talk with him…”

“Ma!”

“He never came back out, Tim.  I saw Sid come out a little later and drive off in Officer Saltonstall’s cruiser, but Officer Saltonstall never came out of the shed. I need you come over and look inside there for me, Tim.”

“You… Ma, this is crazy.  Have you lost your… Hold on Ma, there’s… Yes, what is it?”

“Tim, who are you talking to?”

“Hold on, Ma.”

“Tim?  Tim?”


“I’m sorry Mrs. Anthony, Tim doesn’t seem to be in the office at the moment.  It’s strange, I never saw him step out.  An Officer Saltonstall came by earlier to talk with him, but he left a short while later later.  I’ll have him call you as soon as he get’s back, Mrs. Anthony, all right?”

Categories: 2014

Jason Penney

I'm a software engineer who likes to write. So I should do that more.

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