IJMC - Encyclopedia Brown Does it Again
And again, and again, and again until he does it right. But hey, with
friends like his, who needs enemas? (groan after you finish. Hell, groan
now and then again after you finish this...<grin>) -dave
It was raining again, and from the safety of his garage Encyclopedia Brown
frowned at the precipitation. "Who's going to visit our detective business in
this weather?" he fumed.
Sally had to agree. She was the prettiest girl in their grade, and was also the
toughest. Many was the time that Bugs Meany regretted ever having crossed Sally
in one of her cases. Encyclopedia was the brains behind their operation,
possessing the keen memory and sharp mental skills that his nickname implied,
but Sally was the muscle; bullies had learned to steer clear of the pair when
they were on a job.
Suddenly, Pee-Wee Weatherby ran up the driveway. Soaked to the skin, the pudgy
second-grader approached the overturned gas canister that served as the
agency's desk and plunked down a scratched-up quarter. "I've got a job for
you," he declared firmly.
Encyclopedia pocketed the quarter. "No case too small," he announced. "What's
the scoop, Pee-Wee?"
"That bad old Bugs Meany has sold a bunch of us on a plan to recycle
newspapers. We were all to contribute a dollar to get the business started.
Bugs said that we could earn two-fifty a week once the plan got underway. Well,
it's been two weeks now, and we haven't seen any of our money. We asked Bugs to
give us our stakes back, but he said he couldn't do that. I want my dollar
Sally patted Pee-Wee across the desk. "Don't worry, Pee-Wee. The Encyclopedia
Brown Detective Agency is on the job!"
"That's right, Sally," averred Encyclopedia. "Now, Pee-Wee, can you tell us
where Bugs is hanging out?"
Soon the rain stopped, and the trio biked over to the abandoned lot on
Jefferson Street. A pile of scrap metal and boards formed a ramshackle
club-house. Hanging on the door was a crudely-lettered sign reading:
NEWSPRINT, CARDBOARD, SCRAP
Below it was another sign reading:
CLOSED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE
Lounging in front of the clubhouse was a very bored-looking Bugs Meany. He was
an older boy with a Jughead Crown and a nasty sneer. He hated Encyclopedia
Brown for his interference, but he feared Sally and her terrible fists. As the
three kids approached, Bugs looked a little nervous. However, he soon relaxed
and looked down his nose at the younger children.
"Welcome to my place of business, ladies and gentlemen!" Bugs announced in a
sarcastic voice. "Would you like to trade in your newspapers for cash? Gee, I'm
really sorry, but our business folded, and I don't know when we'll be back on
our feet." He regarded the trio with a saucy smile.
"You dirty rat!" shouted Sally. "You're robbing kids of their money for your
business and not giving them anything in return! I'll bet you never did one
minute of work at recycling!" Sally menaced Bugs with her fists; Bugs quickly
Encyclopedia Brown surveyed the yard. The grass had grown very tall and green.
Next to the clubhouse was a wheelbarrow, partially filled with old newspapers.
There were several ruts cutting across the abandoned lot. They were all of
Bugs was shouting back at Sally: "That's not true! I had a legitimate business
going! I would bring newspapers, cardboard boxes, and other paper scrap to the
recycling center! They paid me cash; I was going to distribute it to my
shareholders as soon as I showed a profit! I invested their stake in that
wheelbarrow, but then the recycling center closed! Now I can't repay the stake;
otherwise I would -- honest!" He favored Sally with a smug smile.
Encyclopedia Brown stepped up to Bugs and picked something off his shirt. He
held it up for all to see. It looked like a scrap of greenish ribbon.
Encyclopedia Brown smiled.
Bugs Meany frowned. "So what? What does that prove? It doesn't mean anything.
I'm innocent, and you can't prove otherwise."
"You're wrong," said Encyclopedia quietly. "You're guilty, and you're going to
return that money right now. You see, Bugs, you made one small mistake."
WHAT WAS BUGS' MISTAKE? (see below)
Bugs' mistake was meeting the Brown Detective Agency alone.
Sally held Bugs down and sodomized him with a power drill. By the time she had
worked her way up to the three-eighths-inch bit, Bugs was in a talkative mood.
Encyclopedia Brown elicited the appropriate confession and obtained a full
refund for the other kids. Sometimes having not a shred of evidence is no
obstacle for a real sleuth.
Encyclopedia Brown does it again!