A Nose for Danger, part 17

I went back to my office around noon, and made myself useful, putting things in order. I had a feeling I’d be spending a lot of time here until I found the killer, and I wanted my office to be a place where I could think clearly. I even did the dishes.

The phone rang a few hours later. I picked it up eagerly, figuring Hu had the print results. But it was Sam.

“Smellephant, you’ll never believe this. I dug up some more evidence in the city records. This really ties things all together — Whiskers, Manny, Winthrop, there’s a pattern. And I think it’s all one perp. One very clever perp. You’ve gotta see this for yourself. When can you get here?”

“Hu in the crime lab is running some tests for me — mums the word. I told her I’d wait for her call. Just give me until five, and then I’ll come over.”

“It’s not like Hu will be upset,” Sam said. “Pandas are always happy.”

“Wait, Hu’s a panda?? I knew she was from China. But I thought she was a bear.”

“Technically,” Sam said, “A panda is a bear. Unless you’re talking about a red panda.”

“Maybe,” I said, “we should stay away from politics.”

“Um, sure,” he said. “fine with me. Anyway, come over as early as you can.”

“Don’t worry. I’ll be there soon. Thanks for staying on this. I’m looking forward to seeing your evidence.”

Hu called about half an hour later. “Guess what I found?” she asked with her usual cheerfulness.

I wasn’t feeling so cheerful. “Like I told you, I’ve been hoping you’d tell me.”

“Whoever they are,” she said, “the prints are definitely not from the same individual. So, am I telling you good news or bad news?”

“I’m not sure,” I said slowly, thinking. “It’s definitely, um, interesting news.” With my best theory blown, it looked like I might be back to square one.

Now I had to hope that whatever Sam had dug up would give me some solid answers.

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