(Ran's point of view)
We met in front of the downstairs cafÈ for the 4th day in a row. Once again, I had to wake dad and Conan up, but that was okay. Today, we were going to get closer in finding the auto thief. I could feel it. I waved to Umi and Mathew as they were coming over.
"Good morning," I greeted them.
Mathew smiled and waved back, and told me morning. Umi came over and looked at everyone with a tired look.
"Bruh." She uttered.
"You seem tired. Are you okay?" I asked.
"Bruh." Umi said again.
I smiled awkwardly. I suppose it was kind of like talking to a brick wall.
"Are you going to be okay for the case?" I asked.
"Oh yeah! I have informationables!" Umi responded, waking up and taking out her notebook.
She flipped to about the eighth page and held it up for us to read.
(Conan's point of view)
Well… that was… fast. I looked at the notebook Umi had. It was.. all chicken scratch. Like she read my mind, and probably mine and everyone else's expressions, she translated.
"You know that Johnathan Smithee guy? Turns out this guy's pretty connected in some pretty good places. I even got a sketch of him, and he does look foreign, like I thought." She explained.
Umi dug though her pockets again and pulled out a pretty good sketch of the Smithee guy. Since it was a black and white sketch, Johnathan had no color. However, he had unkempt hair and a little goatee. He looked to be in his mid-to-late forties.
"When exactly did you get this," I asked just to be sure.
"Last night. On my way 'home,' I discovered I wasn't really tired, so I decided to head on over into town and try investigating this guy. I tried all the bars first, since that's usually a warehouse of information if you can do things right. He does work at the hotel, but it's part-time, and it turns out, he doesn't usually show up anyways. Maybe once a week."
Mathew took the notebook and the photo, and Umi conjured up four more sketches, where she handed everyone one.
"I prepared copies." I said.
Mathew kept looking at the notebook and took his sketch silently.
"Hey," he started to say.
We all looked at him.
"Maybe we ought to split up into three groups.. One person can keep looking at the hotel, unless we get another person, and the other two can start looking for Smithee. What do you guys think?" He said to us.
"I think it's a good idea," Ran said with a smile.
"And we could get Sonoko to be the sixth person."
Oh, yeah, that airhead, I thought.
(Ran's point of view)
We all agreed that it should be three parties. Umi said she'd check out the hotel, since Sonoko wasn't up yet. She said she didn't mind doing it alone. We waited for the first bus to arrive, and wished Umi good luck.
"Where should we start looking first," I asked Mathew.
He looked at his notepad and a hand-drawn mini map. He looked thoughtful.
"How about here," he asked, pointing to Kinuta Park.
I nodded. Maybe we could pick up some things Conan and Umi hadn't picked up yet. He must have thought so as well. We got off the bus and looked around. It was still fairly early, and there were some clouds in the sky, so not many people were around. We decided to see if anyone was there.
"After this, maybe we should check out the owner of the van.. He might have something to say about it," I suggested.
Mathew looked at me and nodded.
"Sure thing, Ran," he said with a smile.
We reached the security building and looked inside. There were no lights. We decided to wait for about another hour before he showed up. Maybe he was just late..?
(Mathew's point of view)
Why wasn't the
security guard there? He should have been there by now. After all, it
was a little after 7 A.M…. He should have been here by now. And
even if he wasn't, someone else should have been. Perhaps they had
just changed shifts..? Nonetheless, we decided to stick around for
awhile longer. Ran suggested we enjoy the quiet morning while it
lasted. So, to kill time, we walked around the park, and even swung
on the swings for awhile. After an hour had passed, we decided that
that was enough, and decided to go in, at least to the main desk.
We made our way back to the security office. The lights were still out, so we tried the front door. It was unlocked, so we went in.
"Hello," we shouted, in case the guard was sleeping.
Ran went behind the desk and stared in shock for a few seconds before screaming. I ran to her.
"Ran, what is it?!" I asked her.
I didn't want to hear the answer, and hoped it was just a colony of mice. She backed away and kept pointing. The body of a mangled officer was shoved under the desk. After quickly catching myself before Ran could see, my detective instincts took over.
"Ran, call the police," I said, putting my gloves on.
"Also call Kogoro, Conan, Sonoko, and Umi," I added as an afterthought.
I looked around for a camera, and found one in the security office. While Ran was dialing numbers on her cell phone, I was taking photos of the crime scene for the officers when they arrived. While taking pictures, one thing caught my eye especially. A pair of dice were on the middle of the desk, in the middle of a cleared off space. What was odd about the dice was they both black ravens instead of the normal little dots.. And it was a snake eyes roll.. I snapped a picture of the dice just in case. As soon as I finished with the pictures of the dice, Meguire and the police came in the small office doors.
(Ran's point of view)
Was this all connected to the stolen van? That poor security guard.. He probably didn't know what hit him. I felt shocked. Even with all the dead bodies my dad, Shinichi, and Mathew saw and solved, I still wasn't used to it. I waited outside for the police and my dad, Conan, Sonoko, and Umi to arrive. The police arrived about ten minutes after I made the call. I politely stepped aside and let them enter. My dad and Conan arrived before Sonoko and Umi, which would make sense, seeing as they were closer. After Sonoko and Umi arrived, I finally went back inside with everyone. By then, Mathew, dad, and Conan were inspecting everything, and Umi joined them. Sonoko stayed with me and we eventually went to go sit outside.
"When did you get to the hotel," I asked.
"A few minutes before you called. But on the way here, Umi filled me in on everything. Sort of."
"Sort of?" I asked again.
"What can I say? I got a bit sidetracked," she said.
I smiled. If there was one thing that would never change, it was probably Sonoko. Sidetracked by a boy, I'll bet.
(Umi's point of view)
I was examining the light switch when I realized something.
"Mathew," I said, kind of curious. He looked up from what he was examining.
"Hm?" I said, realizing something.
"That's odd.. I don't smell that much blood.. But from the looks of the body, he should have bled more than he did… Do you think that maybe… He wasn't killed in here?" I asked.
"Yeah, that's what I thought when I realized it, too. Although, where would he have been killed? And why go to the trouble of bringing him back here?" He continued.
I mulled it over.
"Do you think the door was locked when the guard was murdered, and the guard didn't even come it? Or maybe he came in…." I asked.
I went over to the door and looked at the outside handle. It was scratched around the keyhole, but not by much. Meguire seemed to notice me for the first time and was walking over. I had heard a lot about him from.. well.. the internet. And a bit from Conan.
"What are you kids doing here," he asked us.
"Uh… Investigating?" I asked.
"Sorry, this is our precinct. You guys are going to have to wait awhile before we can allow anyone else in here."
(Conan's point of view)
This had to be because of the black dice. Meguire had
mentioned it to be before, right before I became Conan. Something
about a crime organization or an assassin that leaves raven, snake
eyes dice at the scene of the crime. It was supposed to be completely
Needless to say, though, Meguire had never kicked me off a case before.. Then again, he never did know that Conan Edogawa is the same as Shinichi Kudo. We would have to leave though.. Maybe we could find some more clues elsewhere.
All I could do while Dad, Mathew, and Umi took care of all the detective work was wait. There was no question that the security guard was dead, but the question was... who?
"Who could've done something so horrific?" I asked Sonoko.
"You got me," Sonoko responded.
Geez, a murder on a case that I thought was a hoax at one time. What messed with my head a little was when Ran said she was going out on a date with Mathew once this case was done. For once I wanted this case to last forever so they couldn't go on that date, but I only thought that once.
"Inspector, shouldn't you be looking for suspects?" I asked.
"What's the rush, Mori?" Meguire asked me.
"There's no point," I heard Mathew say.
"What makes you say that... rookie?" I snapped.
"Before you go AWOL on me, Detective," Mathew said to me.
"The security guard's been dead for like about an hour... right, Inspector?"
"I'd say this 'rookie' is onto something, Kogoro," Meguire agreed.
"The suspects... if any, are all in isolated places; it'd take us a long time for us to find them," Mathew continued.
"He's got a point," Inspector Meguire said.
(Mathew's point of view)
I looked at Kogoro and almost grinned. I knew he hated me, and almost anyone else interfering with his "work." But instead, I looked at Inspector Meguire and waited to see what he said.
"Sorry you two," Meguire said after a few moments of thought.
"but this case is strictly off-limits to outsiders."
"Ho ho ho, that's right. Now, the rest of you all go out and play in the sandbox or something," Kogoro said to us, waving his hand.
Meguire looked at him like he was an idiot.. Which he was.
"Mouri, I mean you too. If we need you, we'll call."
"Ah! But.. but.. You can't mean that," Kogoro protested, looking crestfallen.
"Ah.. You guys can see if there's anything about these dice. I have detailed pictures of all sides for you guys, okay?" Meguire told us.
He pulled out some photos and handed a copy to Kogoro, one to me, and one to Umi. Conan looked up, probably hoping to get one.
"Sorry, Conan, but I don't have a copy for you. Good luck with that," he said, waving us away.
We went outside and gathered, where Ran and Sonoko joined us.
(Ran's point of view)
Sonoko talked about this guy on some train for the entire time they were gone. When they came out, I thought they had figured it out. Apparently not, though, after seeing their faces. Mathew and Conan filled me in, while Dad lit a cigarette and Umi either daydreamed or thought.
"Apparently, this case has to do with a dangerous organization, so they said we can't help," Mathew told me.
"They leave a pair of dice as their calling cards," Conan added, taking Mathew's camera and showing me the pictures he took.
"But, one thing is foggier than the rest, and that's-"
"-The motive." Umi cut into Mathew's statement.
"The guy was just a simple security guard. But that's only if you look at the skim of things. What if.." Umi started to say, but stopped there.
She seemed to have a habit of stopping in the middle of her sentences.
"He was really part of an underground organization, possibly the same organization, or another," Conan said to finish her sentence.
Umi just nodded.
"But the janitor could also just be an ordinary guy in the wrong place at the wrong time," Mathew said.
"Because of the van," Umi muttered.
It was getting to a point as to where I almost laughed. Those three seemed to be on the exact same page, reading the same lines.
(Mathew's point of view)
With more trails to look for, there were more and more questions, and different places to search. As much as I used to love the "Scooby Doo" show, I hated to sound like Fred and say we have to split up.
"Well, I think it's safe to say we don't need to stalk the hotel," Umi said.
"instead, we need someone to check out everything on Makoto, we need someone to keep working on the van, one person to find Johnathan Smithee, and one more to find the owner of the van," Umi said, counting on her fingers.
Okay, less.. cliché than mine, but it worked. I nodded.
"Yeah. That means we need 4 groups. There are six of us.. That means that two 'teams' will have two people." I said to the group.
"Let's see... Investigating Makoto and working on the van are probably going to require another person than the other two," Conan said absent-mindedly.
At this point, I figured Kogoro was probably getting sick of the three of us being on the same page, and him being.. well…. Lost.
"Let's let Kogoro pick who's on what teams, then," I said feeling sort of sorry for him.
"Hmph. Ran will come with me and we'll investigate the van. Umi and Mathew will go investigate Makoto.. Sonoko and Conan need to go find the owner of the van," Kogoro said, lighting his cigarette.
"Um, dad? What about Johnathan Smithee?" Ran asked.
"We've spent too much time on looking for him. We won't look for him until tomorrow."
I thought about if for a few moments. What he said… actually made sense.. Much unlike the nonsense he was usually spewing off.
"He… has a point," Umi said, pointing at him and looking at Conan and I after a few moments of silence.
"OF COURSE I HAVE A POINT," Kogoro yelled at her.
She winced and sighed.
"Well, this is the last push," she said.
I agreed. I could feel we're so close to the answer.
End of chapter
(Alright, any favorite parts from you? Sorry for the long wait. Umi started school and we haven't been updating this story lately. But we should be if we're lucky. Be sure to leave reviews for this chapter.)