Previous chapters of this story, and other stories, can be found on my home page under “The Investigators, Inc.” and “20/20 Investigations, Inc.”
Pictures of Mr. Cat are kindly supplied by his human, Nina.
And now, after a busy night our story continues…
We are finally back at the hotel, I got them to change our room to something larger so now we have two beds. Caren definitely did not want to be alone and I don’t blame her, though I’m still not sure if she is in danger or not. Hopefully I will get some information soon that might help this investigation. We were all asleep in minutes, though there really wasn’t much time for sleeping, Caren had to be at work in the morning which meant getting up again in 2 hours. That’s okay, we needed to be in the restaurant at that time anyway to meet with Baldwin’s men, if they show up. Right now I’m not sure about anything. The time went by too fast, I should have just stayed awake, I felt better before sleeping. Oh well.
While Caren was getting ready for work I got a call from Rossana. Muffin plugged in the scrambler. She looks at me. Meow,meow?=You forget again, you sure your rememberer is working okay? “Yes, just fine,” I said, “I just forget sometimes.” Meow,meow.=Ha! Sometimes he say. We talked for a bit and I asked her to check on those two police officers. She did give me some interesting information about Caren however. “That would explain why she didn’t like being in the cellar,” I said, “that’s also an interesting piece of this puzzle that I have been looking for. But I think there are more pieces yet.” After the phone call we went down for breakfast, Caren would have time to eat before starting work.
“You know,” I began to say to Caren, “if I’m going to help you in this case, then I need complete honesty from you. Is there anything you haven’t told me that might help me out? Even small details can sometimes be very important, something, or someone, from your past for example.” I didn’t want to come out and tell her what I knew, I wanted her to tell me, it’s always better that way. “I really can’t think of anything Steve,” she said, “I certainly don’t have any old boyfriends. I haven’t really had a very exciting life I guess.” “You told me you were 22, right?”, I asked. “Yes, that’s right,” she said. “Yet your driver’s license says you’re 29,” I said casually. The shocked look on her face was fantastic.
“No, I didn’t look at your license,” I said, “but I did do some checking through the police files. I would say you have had quite an exciting life, but in the wrong sort of way. You spent 5 years in prison in Sweden, you have now been out for a little over a year. Their rehabilitation program got you this job and you have been doing very well staying out of trouble.” She looked down at her food, drank a little coffee and said, “yes, I messed up bad, got in with the wrong people and regretted it even before getting arrested. But I’m clean now and I’m going to stay that way, honestly.” “That’s good,” I said, “I’m happy to hear that. Now, getting back to the present, could any of your old “friends” be trying to scare you?”
“I really don’t know,” she said quietly, “no one is supposed to know I’m here.” She is right about that, so how could they find her? Just then 3 men walked past our table and the second man left an envelope on the table beside me. “What’s that?”, asked Caren as I read the note. “Sorry, just PI stuff,” I said with a smile, “actually just telling me to expect a phone call in 30 minutes, that will give lots of time to finish breakfast.” Meow,meow.=That good, these excellent pancakes. Meow=Me agree, not want to waste any. “I don’t know how you 2 eat so much,” I said. Meow,meow!=Look who talking?! You have big mountain of pancakes! Caren laughed.
“May I go to my job now Warden?”, she asked. “Very funny, get going,” I said. After she left the cats and I went outside to the garden area and sat waiting for Baldwin to call. We only had to wait a few minutes, he’s very punctual. He told me to expect a parcel today and gave me a bit more information about Caren and her family. Caren is a very beautiful young woman, she has a sister who is not considered so beautiful and she has always been very jealous of Caren, to the point of finally hating her and even making it very public that one day she would make Caren regret being so beautiful. Another piece of the puzzle falls into place. Caren’s sister has a serious problem, but why didn’t Caren mention this to me? But something still doesn’t fit here, or are there two things going on here at the same time?
To Be Continued.
©2021 Steve McLeod.