I decided to convince the girls to go back home and just call the police if they see anything suspicious. Off they go, though they were quite hesitant to leave, especially Sofia. Right now I really don’t trust Sofia, she is much too calm about all of this. She could easily be mixed up with whoever kidnapped Katharina. The night passed quietly which was nice, always good to sleep well on a case, makes it much easier to think clearly. In the morning while we were eating breakfast there is a knock at the door. The cats take up their position in the living room while I answer the door. I just got the door open and Karin came rushing in, obviously quite scared. I’m sorry Steve, but when I woke up this morning there was a couple men in a car outside my flat. One of them was Karl’s driver!
His name is Wilhelm, but Karl always calls him Willie. I have always been scared of that man, there’s just something about him, he looks cruel. Then I noticed a camera in the corner of my bedroom, which wasn’t there before! I had to get out of there and I didn’t know what to do, I was scared Steve! So I came over here, can I please stay with you and the cats? Maybe I can help you out somehow. Besides German I can also speak Italian and French fluently. Hmm, that could be very helpful indeed, I said, especially since all I can speak is English. Meow, meow.=You should learn more languages since we in Europe a lot. Yes, I agree, but learning a different language just doesn’t come easy for me. Karin hadn’t eaten breakfast yet and there was still more pancakes left even after the 3 of us had eaten.
I never had pancakes before, said Karin, they are delicious! While she was eating I took the cats aside and asked what they thought about Karin and Sofia. Meow, meow.=Mr. Cat and me talk about them already, tell what we think Mr. Cat. Meow.=Sofia human we not like, but Karin human seem okay to us. Meow, meow.=Right, so we say let her stay with us, we help each other. Meow.=That right. Okay, I agree with you, so she gets to stay. Okay Karin, it’s unanimous, we would like you to stay with us. Thank you all of you. She picked up each cat and gave them a hug and a kiss, then she gave me a hug and a kiss. I promise, I will try not to be in your way. I’m sure you won’t be any problem, but likely a very big help. Now, we need to figure out what those people took yesterday and why.
Sofia and I noticed right away, it was Katharina’s music box. She always would play that thing whenever we came to visit her. She would say it was the key to her big secret, but she never told us about the secret. But that was not her only music box, she also had one in her bedroom. We all went in the bedroom and sure enough that music box was gone too. That’s not good, now the kidnappers are ahead of us about something. Maybe not, let’s go back to the living room. There were shelves lining one of the walls and most had books on them. Karin went over and, here it is, she said. It was a book titled, “The Private Key”. That’s a big book to read, I commented. Before Karin had a chance to say anything I motioned for her to stay quiet and we all went to my bedroom.
I know there are no bugs or cameras in here I said, now, what about the book? It’s not a book, said Karin, it’s another music box. The last couple weeks before Katharina disappeared she was very nervous, totally unlike her. One day when I was out here visiting alone with Katharina she confided in me that she was afraid something might happen to her and if anything did then the answer lay within this music box. She opened the lid and it played some nice music, then at the end was a recording that said, “The key is hiding in full view, look out the window, you’ll see it too, follow directions, it’s easy for you, but please don’t forget me when you do”. That was all of it. Well, it must mean the living room window so let’s go. We all looked out the window but couldn’t see anything that might help us. Meow!=Look here, keys! Mr. Cat was right, hanging in full view on the lamp by the window were decorative keys, all except one which was a real key. But what about directions?
To be continued.
©2020 Steve McLeod.