This last week I went to Minnesota to visit my parents, pick up my car, and help my mom declutter the house. I had so much fun, and the house is looking great. Marie Kondo is MAGICAL I tell you!
In the midst of decluttering, we found a file that contained all of my report cards and standardized test scores and a random sampling of my academic work. One sample was a mystery story that I wrote in fifth grade. It was so good it was selected to be the principal’s pick that week, and I was extremely proud of it. Looking at it now, it turns out that I was great at plagiarizing fictional worlds, pretty decent at dialogue, and TERRIBLE at constructing mysteries. I think if I practice just a little bit more I can join the team of Carolyn Keenes. (When I first learned that Carolyn Keene was not a real person I was appalled. It was worse than learning about Santa.)
And now, available for the first time on the internet (you lucky ducks!), The Case of the Kidnapped Millionaire:
Once there was a girl detective named Nancy Drew. She had two friends named George Fayne and Bess Marvin, who were cousins. One day, when they were about to go to Taco Bell for lunch, Nancy received a phone call.
“Someone’s out to kill me!” screamed the voice on the phone.
“Wait a minute, who are you?” Nancy replied.
“My name is Emily Welcore, and I have been receiving a series of sinister notes!” she said, a little more calmly this time.
Nancy knew Mrs. Welcore because her father, Carson Drew, who was a lawyer, had settled the will for her husband, who had died a millionaire. *
“I’ll be right over,” Nancy said to Mrs. Welcore.
“Change of plans,” Nancy told Bess and George. “I have a new case, so we’re going to Mrs. Welcore’s house.
Nancy explained the case on the way. When they got there, Mrs. Welcore was waiting for them.
“Come inside, and I’ll give you the details,” Mrs. Welcore said.
“First of all, I received a note saying ‘If you value your life, leave 8,000 dollars at the park,’ and naturally, I thought it was a joke,” Mrs. Wecore said. “Then I received a note saying ‘This is not a joke. Get out of town if you value your life.’”
“Hot stuff!” George whistled.
“Today, I received a note that said, ‘GET OUT OF TOWN NOW,’ and that’s when I got scared,” Mrs. Welcore said.
“Do you have any enemies?” Nancy asked.
“Well, my sister, Lydia Itchkin, was jealous when I married Wayne, but she wouldn’t do that,” Mrs. Welcore said. “There is also Wayne’s brother, Todd Scutter, who was mad he only got 100 dollars when Wayne died."
“Do you know either of their addresses?” Nancy asked.
“No, they never told me when I asked,” Mrs. Welcore said.
“Well, we have to go,” Bess said.
Everyone said good-bye and they left. Nancy dropped George and Bess at their homes.
The next morning, Nancy decided to go to Mrs. Welcore’s house. When she got there, the door was slightly open. The whole house was ransacked! She probed the room, and she found a note that said, ‘We’ve taken her to Washington D. C., and don’t you dare follow us!”**
Nancy called her home, and Bess and George’s homes. The three soon got permission to go to Washington D. C. When they got there, they went to a hotel.
“While we’re here, how about we go to the White House?” George suggested.
“When they got there, Nancy heard a muffled cry from the girl’s bathroom.
“I’ll be right back!” Nancy called as she raced down the hallway.
When she got there, she found Mrs. Welcore! She removed the gag, and Mrs. Welcore told her where the crooks were.
In case you’re wondering, Lydia Itchkin and Todd Scutter had gotten married, and they were against Mrs. Welcore together. They were caught and put in jail, and everyone else lived happily ever after.
*I'm still pretty proud of these relative clauses.
** Now THAT is how you move the action forward!