Private Peaches IN…
Fo' Dolla a Box
It was yet another greasy day in the big city of Fourside. My gaze focused on a sign outside the window, running up the side of that ugly building as if it were stapled on with glue- it was the weasel nest, otherwise known as the Monotoli building. I had been sitting at my desk since noon on the third night of the month. That was an hour ago. I had finished a delicious meal of fish on rye that made me as happy as a can opener in a food aisle. That was when the door swung open.
She was a bodacious babe, a finger-licking hunk of chicken with blonde hair that could have made the sun green with envy. She was wearing a piece of the night sky, (though after I was stricken with the hangover did I realize it was just a felt dress) with a string of pearls around her slender neck. Her lips were coated crimson and her eyes had become stained with running mascara. She wasn't very happy.
"Mister Sanchez?" Her voice warbled like a drunken sailor wheeling about the deck of a broken ship. God I wanted to put her in a jar and keep her on my desk.
"Yes, but you may call me Peaches." It was a long and detailed story about how I had acquired that name, mostly thanks to a combination of my mother and dirty bathrooms. But I hadn't the time nor the money to extend the story so I merely continued talking. "Please, take a seat, ma'am."
She sat down in the leather chair. It had a few holes from a mouse infestation during the Papaya Wars in lower Scaraba, but it was a damn good chair either way you looked at it. It had originally been white, but there was an incident involving a bottle of ink and a live eel. We stared at each other in prolonged silence. I was moved to say something to keep the story moving.
"So, your name?" Everybody knew her name and so my question was really pointless. She was the star singer at Topolla theatre, who men lusted for and women imitated. Foreigners knew who she was unless they had never heard about her, no matter where they came from. Plus it was written in cursive on her name tag. Too bad I only read Polish at one in the afternoon. "Venus, right?"
"That's correct." Her lips moved when she spoke. It was amazing.
"Now, what's your problem, darling?"
"You see," She ended her words with a daring, curved comma that enticed my senses. "Something very precious of mine has been stolen. I always need it with me in order to perform my act, and now… now it's…"
"You suspecting theft? What item was taken? String of pearls? Emeralds?"
"No… my… my box of tissues!"
Her words hit me like a bug smashing against a windshield. I wanted to ask 'But Venus, can't you buy another one? The designer ones are only four dollars a box' but that would have made things too easy. My mother always told me I'd never get money if I did things the easy way. "That's horrible ma'am. Have we any idea who might have taken them?"
"Not a clue, which is why I came to you. Please, Peaches, you must take this woman's plea! I cannot live without my precious box of tissues!"
"Don't worry ma'am." I tipped my hat. "I'll be right on it."
I left my office unlocked around three, then went back and locked it at about three o' one. It was after lunch and I was rather hungry, so I decided to cruise by the department store with an excuse of looking for clues which were probably found in one of the many little stores held within. I decided to order a burger, though I would have enjoyed a pizza more, but the only way you could by them was by phone and they didn't have one at the counter. This was a paradox of sorts since they had cash registers, but apparently they were decorative only. I tossed aside my errant thoughts like old boxers and worked on gnawing my way through the bread and dead cow laden with grease. Then I saw him.
That man was sitting across the table, peering at me through a newspaper with a huge hole in it. If he was trying to be a spy, he was doing about as good of a job as a cat signing up for scuba diving. It just was impossible. I called to him. "Hey bozo, put the paper down and come stare at my face from here."
He rose and then sat down in the chair in front of me. He looked like a spot of grease on the Threed Speedway. But he had a nice haircut, which I was more than a little envious of. I decided to scalp him later.
"A young woman wandered into my office today," I spoke with a firm tone like warm butter, "Said she was missing a box of tissues. Now, should I believe you had anything to do with this, Staples?"
Staples twitched- he always did that. He had grown up a shaved hamster and had become a penguin for his adult life. Really, he even had a green sweater for the job. "No no, sir, not at all. I haven't touched anything but women's panties for the past week."
"I really didn't want to know that, but thank you anyhow. Have you heard anything in your circle of friends?" I was being a big ball of butter- I knew he had no friends and I was figuratively pointing and laughing.
"I have heard that a box of tissues has passed into the hands of the officials in Monotoli." That was the weasel nest. "A very special box belonging to a very popular young lady at a very popu-"
"I get it, I get it. Well. I need to reserve an appointment. Buy me a cellphone or I will tomato you to death." I waved the tomato at him, and he turned yellow like an apple sitting in a bread box. It was just the beginning of my violence for the day.
I spent the rest of the evening playing Bubsy in the office on the small TV. My appointment was at five in the morning the next day, and I should have been asleep but I was as stubborn as a rusty nail. I was craving coffee at about three and nearly died of a caffeine overdose at four. At five, I was in my best goulashes and standing in the reception room of the Monotoli building.
"Excuse me." I stepped up to the desk and was facing the prettiest kitty this side of the city. She had eyes of emeralds and a stunningly sleek figure. She wore a delicious fur coat, handwashed, Persian. "I need to speak to the receptionist."
The cat didn't move. I had to pick it up. But where to put it? I decided to put it in the potted plant since there was no better alternative. But then I heard a voice. "What are you doing with that kitty? Put it down or I will call the management.
I dropped the cat without concern of it falling since it would land on its feet, except for the fact it was back-down two centimeters away from the floor. The woman before me was absolutely gorgeous, like a glass jar in an empty field. Her black hair nicely framed her face, and her eyes looked like glassy marbles stuck in a wedge of cheese. She wasn't much to look at, however. "Hello miss…"
"Elan." Yes, her nametag said this, but I couldn't read German this early in the morning. "Do you have an appointment?"
"Yes. I am here for the National Federation for Distribution of Garden Gnomes to Squirrels fifth annual get together." I remembered that group from the back of an envelope that said they would take my life if I didn't donate fifty dollars and give me free address labels. How could I resist donating gnomes to Squirrels? In the end I never paid. "What floor are they on?"
"Thirty second, you can take the first elevator to the fifth floor and then take the second to the thirtieth. But then you need to head down the stairs to the fourteenth floor and take the airlift up to the thirty second. They're in conference room 333." How appropriate. That meant they were half evil. "The travel will take you about an hour."
"Brilliant. Thank you, Elan."
"That's Creampuff to you, honey."
"Alright." I ran away. In fear.
The trip actually took me three hours since I got lost like luggage on a third inning of baseball somewhere on the twentieth floor. But there was the door like a beaver in a Laundromat. I was tempted to open the door. But I didn't and wound up standing in the hallway like a scared nun in a toaster oven. Eventually the door opened.
"Welcome, Peaches," a greasy voice came from within. "I've been expecting you."
I recognized that voice. I could have known it like a moth attracted to wax three miles away. This meant I really didn't know who it was and was just trying to cover up my embarrassment. "Hello, sir. Have we met?"
The man smiled an evil smile. He ushered me in with a wave of his ring-covered hands. I was ushered in further as his big bodyguards, Jenny and Mouse pulled me in. I remembered those two from an old mudpit brawl over an apron that belonged to Alice. How I missed that dame and her broom. She was amazing at cooking breakfast, too.
"Yes, we have, at some point or the other. Would you like something to eat? We have some delicious Trout and Mocha yogurt."
"I'd rather not." I thought this but nodded. It was a mistake, I'd later find out.
"Now, why are you here, and what is so urgent you'd call me in?"
"Well, actually," I squinted to read his nametag. I think it read 'Hello My Name Is', but the Japanese characters were rather smudged with donut frosting. I decided to call him Sunshine Squishy for the time being. "I am looking for a box of Kleenex."
"Ah, we have many around. Take one! You have a cold?" The piggy laughed. He really needed to lose some weight, since he looked like a whale on a Christmas card.
"No. But I am looking for one in particular. You know a woman named Venus? Yes. She needs her tissues. Oh, I have them here. You do? Yes, and you may have them. Thank you very much."
"You're reading too far into the dialog. And no, you cannot have them!"
"I no longer have them." Squishy grinned. "I was killed dead and they were taken from me by two people wearing matching parkas."
"You don't look dead."
"Oh, but I am."
"Alright. I'll come to the funeral dressed in my finest tuna."
"Good lad." He fell out of his chair and promptly died like a slug in a salt factory. Finally an analogy that made sense. I said my final words to his body ('You rotten scumbag Squishy Sunshine dorkwad poopy pants') and left, taking Jenny with me but leaving Mouse to clean. That reminded me of Alice. God, I missed that dame.
I stopped at Jackie's Café for a good cappuccino, but I only got a cup of mudwater when I asked for it. I drank it anyhow, since it was part of the cliché storyline. Jackie's place was interesting, and I remember vaguely how it used to be Mabel's coffee place. That was until Mabel was hit by a speeding Welsh Corgi. I had been on hand to investigate the incident but then I really didn't care. The smoke was so thick it was like glitter on a pickle- that is, it was a smoke-free environment. That's when I saw it.
There was a jukebox in the corner of the room. I finally knew I had my man. I walked up to it. "Hey you- I know what you and your buddies are up to. Release the names of the two Kleenex Kidnappers or get cappucinoed."
'You can't always get what you waaant…' It was taunting me.
"This is your last chance. Where is the tissue box?"
'Goooood ol' Rocky Top! Rocky Top, Tennessee!'
"What are you trying to do- pull a fast one on me? One last chance- who are the thieves?"
'One last dance with Mary Jane, one more time to ease the pain…'
I threw my cappuccino on the machine. It shot out sparks like a piece of foil in the mouth of a man with braces. It then belted out a snappy rendition of Click Clock Woods before exploding. I was no closer to my goal. I left with a sense of disappointment and a lawsuit.
I woke up the next day like my horoscope said I would. If I believed that piece of paper, I would do many things today and eventually go back to sleep. But I never read horoscopes. That's when an idea hit me like a piece of ham tied to a windmill. I would have to borrow a Visa card, but it would lead me to my goal. The Fourside hotel was my answer.
I entered the clean building that sparkled like dirt. It smelled like lemons with just a hint of algae. I rented a room. Why? Because it wasn't on my credit. I meandered to the lounge and there they were- the two little snotbags that had Venus's tissues.
"Hm?" They both looked at me with matching expressions. I nearly died inside. They were tiny little people in parkas, one in pink and the other in blue. They had rosy cheeks and horribly cute faces, like puppies sitting in a recycle bin.
"You're the people I'm after- what are your names?"
"We're…" They both suddenly waved oversized mallets.
"Nana!" The one in pink cheered.
"Popo!" Cried the one in blue.
"The ICE CLIMBERS!"
"That's… that's not possible!" I shook like a chip on a railway, "That's COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT!"
"That's too damn bad!" Nana laughed, "The tissues will always be ours! Unless you want to come and try to get them back that is! Bahahaha!"
"Prepare for a fight scene!" Popo shouted as he drew up an ice pick.
It was three in the afternoon. Venus was sitting in front of me and crying tears of joy. She had her tissues and all was well now. I was in a full body cast, but I had fended off the Ice Climbers with the neo-atomic bomb I kept in my hat. It was a good thing I wasn't wearing it to the fight. I felt like a goldfish in a boot. But at least all was well.
"I'm not sure how to repay you!"
"Just leave a check at the office." How I loved dough.
"Oh, but you deserve something more…"
"Oh boy, a kiss!"
"What? No. You get… a tissue."
"Oh." She left the tissue on my bed. I felt like a sweatrag in a clothing store. In other words, I didn't give a damn about anything and felt like my day was done. That was good, because I didn't want to extend the storyline. That's when the door burst open like a pimple on a butterfly.
"Oh, Private Peaches! It's terrible! I need your help!"
Another dame, another problem. At least it gave me a reason to finish the story.
HIYAAAH! Sexy amazing and youthful! Peridox writes like a shiny day of warmth! This has been a lovely parody of typical dectective stories by the GREAT and VIGOROUS author who MAKES THE SUN RISE! If you want more, please EMAIL her or LEAVE a COMMENT! Happy day! Bright, yellow, cute, wonder!
Death to Peaches!