We got back to the Inn and Mable was there talking with one of the men at a table. First time we have seen only one of those guys, they are always together. That very likely means I’m right about one of them being that sniper that keeps killing the people we talk with. He hasn’t had a chance to get back yet. That’s good, so we sit down at a table and I whisper to the cats. They disappear and Mable gets some tea for us. When she comes back I ask her to join us, but she says that she can’t right now, too much work to do. I meow nice and loud. The guy at the other table looks over and “thwock, thwock!”, he falls off his chair to the floor.
Mable looks terrified now and I tell her to sit down, but she tries to get away. That’s when Kat stood up, grabbed her arm and pushed her down on a chair. “There,” I said, “now we are going to talk while your friend is having his nap and before the other one gets back from his hunting trip.” She looks at me, almost in tears she’s so scared. “Yes, I know the other one is a sniper and he’s been out today killing our suspects in this case,” I explained, “if you want to live, then help us, and we can help you too.” “I, I, don’t know a thing,” she said very nervously, “I’m just hired to look after the Inn, I can’t say anything or they will kill me.”
“We can protect you Mable,” said Kat, “we have done things like this before, just trust us. You help us, we help you.” “That’s right,” I said, “but right now whoever is behind all this is going to kill you, because they don’t know if you have talked to us or not. So you’re better off talking now.” She put her head down and said, “okay, I was hired…” And a shot rang out from the stairway. Kat managed to get off a shot herself and knocked the gun out of his hand, but he ran upstairs. M.C. and I ran after him and Muffin stayed with Kat who was looking after Mable.
Unfortunately the guy had a head start and I can’t run that fast anymore so by the time I got to their room he had already climbed out the window, down the trellis and was driving away. There was blood however, so Kat must have hit his hand, so he’s wounded. We head back downstairs. “Mable is dead,” said Kat, “and she had a listening device on her. By the way, that guy had a gun in each hand, I’m sure he shot twice.” I went over to check his friend, he was dead too. He wasn’t taking chances, however, that sniper isn’t in charge, someone else is, but who?
And they don’t want us, we are just being used as bait, obviously to catch someone else. Would that be Baldwin? That makes sense, but who is after him? And why? “Well, I guess we have to call the police again,” I said, “but this could get us in trouble.” Meow,meow.=Maybe we just leave, go back home. I called Rossana to get her input on this and told her I don’t trust the two officers that we have met so far. She checked and apparently no one from the local police have been checking on any murders in the area, meaning those other two are not real officers at all.
She contacted the police herself and they soon arrived at the Inn and we filled them in on what had been going on. The case was now in their hands. They found a note in Mable’s pocket which read, “One time long ago the King lost his lovely Queen to the hands of wicked men who took her captive and hid her well. The King searched long and hard but could never find his Queen. Then one night her body was found in his bed. The King killed himself and the castle was destroyed.” “Another warning?”, asked Kat. “Yes, I believe it is. Time for us to head home and find out what this means and who it’s for,” I said.
We packed quickly and headed back to the airport. We had to wait just a short time while Calanthe arranged for one of Baldwin’s jets to pick us up. She sent along some armed guards as well, just in case. We went on board and soon we were in the air, heading home. “I wonder if we’ll find out what this is all about?”, asked Kat. “Somehow I don’t think this is over yet,” I said. Then a man came out of the cockpit with a gun. Kat jumped quickly and kicked the man on his chin, hard, knocking him to the floor. She likely broke his neck with that kick. That’s when we all noticed the plane was falling fast!
To Be Continued As “The Search”.
©2021 Steve McLeod.