Co-Written by Breech Loader and Froggy22651
Breech: Well, it's last chapter time. It's time to find out who killed Gerald and Maria. Some of you got it right. Some of you didn't. But none of you got the clues right, and I'm ashamed of you, yes I am!
Froggy: And why didn't we get more reviews? Why did we practically have to beg? That's low, that is. What's the matter? Don't you like murder mysteries?
Chapter Five: The Guilty Parties
Doctor Eggman looked around at Sonic, Shadow, Knuckles, Rouge, Amy, and Tails, "I've gathered you all here in the Accusing Parlour," he said, "Because I believe we have enough information now to find the killer - or killers. Watch as my genius mind unravels this case," He glared at Shadow, who was shaking slightly, "Remember, if you found a clue and don't reveal it, you become a greater suspect. So don't lie - for your own sake."
Sonic, who was sitting much closer to Amy than he usually dared, also glared at Shadow. "Yeah, well I think I'll start by accusing the faker over there," the blue hedgehog stated bluntly, "He was the first one at the swimming pool. But the window in the kitchen doesn't face the swimming pool! And hey, if you don't think he has a motive, take a look at this stuff!" Sonic lifted up the stack of photos and letters that he and Amy had collected from the black hedgehog's room and dramatically splayed it across the parlour floor for everyone to see.
Shadow swallowed as the other room residents looked at the photographs, and Eggman looked up at him, "Can you explain this, Shadow?" he asked.
"I... I love her," Shadow admitted, "I've been watching over her since the day she was born. I would never kill her!"
"Have you got an alibi?" Eggman asked, looking at several of Shadow's badly written poems, "One that excuses you from Gerald and Maria?"
"I was washing up," Shadow insisted, "I was feeling kind of angry and tense and I dropped a glass. I cleared up the glass, finished washing up, and went out to aqua-vac the leaves off the pool, like I do every evening and morning. That's why I was out there! And that's when I found Maria!"
"Oh, don't give us that!" Sonic shouted, "There's a whole lot more of this stuff back in his room, and it's the only thing in there! This creep is sick in the head!"
"Sonic, Shadow was washing up when Maria was killed," Eggman spoke, before Shadow could burst into rage-filled accusations of his own, "The washing up and broken glass prove it. Whatever motives he has, he also has an alibi."
"Aren't you one of Gerald's new heirs, Sonic? And broke, too?" Shadow asked him, "You were all over the scene of the crime, contaminating it like nobody's business!"
"And you weren't, Mr. Psycho?" Sonic shot back at Shadow, pointing a finger at the black hedgehog, "You've been stomping all over the place, too, and you had your hands everywhere, including on the bodies! You have access to nearly every room in the house, and you have the speed to pull it all off and remove evidence before anyone could get to it!"
"Look who's talking! The guy who fucked the maid!" Shadow snarled, "She's got your photo all over her room!" he threw down a few poems and newspaper clippings on top of the photographs of Maria.
"Shadow has an alibi," Eggman repeated, louder, "Do you have an alibi, Sonic?"
"I don't need one! I'm Sonic the fucking Hedgehog! Hero of the fucking planet!" Sonic growled at the rotund scientist.
"You're certainly fucking hedgehog," Shadow snarled, glaring at Amy.
Sonic ignored this, "I'm not the murdering type. But you, doctor, had some awfully unusual plans for battle machines and world domination type stuff in your room."
"So?" Eggman asked, "What's that got to do with killing my own grandfather and cousin? I was busy working on those when Shadow found Maria. Oh, and 'I don't need an alibi' won't work on the judge."
"Yeah, well then it's too bad that the judge can't do a thing to stop me," the blue hedgehog replied, cocky as ever, "I was in my room when all this crap went down. Ask around; others saw me, Mr. We-can't-call-the cops."
"Okay," Eggman looked around the room, "Did anybody see Sonic in his room between dinner and the pool?"
"I told you, I was washing up," Shadow growled.
"And I was having a shower," Amy insisted.
"I was working in the garage all the time," Tails added, "Remember my clothes were all greasy," he added.
"Whatever. You're just taking all the attention off yourself by taking command," the blue hedgehog stated, rolling his eyes, "I'm a hero. Period. End of discussion. Find the real killer, or I will."
"And have you forgotten that we found this in Rouge and Knuckles' room?" Tails asked, tossing the blood-stained spanner onto the table.
"Yeah, and just who had the key to that room, huh Shadow?" Sonic asked, accusing the dark hedgehog again.
"Yeah, who did, Sonic? I mean, you couldn't possibly have one if you were banging the maid," Knuckles spat across the parlour sarcastically.
Amy blushed, "That only started this evening," she said.
"Sure it did, all the documentation on Sonic in your room indicates that this hasn't been going on for months," Shadow said sarcastically.
"Heh," Knuckles uttered with a smirk, "I bet they've been planning this for that long. Just waiting for all that inheritance money..."
Sonic looked at the ceiling with his arms spread wide, saying, "Can someone please tell me when I started caring about money? Because I sure don't remember. I also don't remember when I started making bludgeoning people over the head my hobby."
"You're deep in debt, Sonic," Shadow replied, "Gerald told me you needed money. Hell, I've heard you asking him for money. Just how desperate for cash are you? Got any 'hobbies' we don't know about?"
"You know, there's this biiiiig gap between 'needing cash' and 'being desperate enough to kill good friends for it'," Sonic retorted, "And there's not as big a gap between 'obsessively stalking girls' and 'drowning them in their own pool'."
"Sonic!" Eggman said loudly, "So far Shadow is the only one in this room with a decent alibi! Rouge, Knuckles, where were you when you heard Shadow screaming?"
"I was in here relaxing," Knuckles said smugly, leaning back.
"Was anybody with you? You know, to confirm your position?" Eggman asked.
"Was anyone with you?" Knuckles talked back, "It's a big friggin' house, and it's late. I was alone."
"I was," Rouge answered, "But I left about thirty seconds before Shadow found Maria. I was going up to my room. The window was open, which is odd because I closed it earlier. But then Shadow started screaming and I just flew out of the window and went to the pool."
Tails nodded quietly, absorbing the clues. Eventually, he turned his head towards Shadow again and asked, "Shadow, tell me how the plumbing in this house is set up, please."
"It's an old house," Shadow replied, "All the hot water pipes are connected. Except for the pool, which was installed separately. You can't so much as flush the damn toilet without affecting the water flow."
Tails nodded again with his eyes closed and arms crossed, looking content with this knowledge. He opened his blue eyes, sweeping them along his friends within the parlour, and stated simply, "Amy is Maria's killer."
"What?" Amy asked, "You can't be serious, Tails!" she cried out, "Why would I want to kill Maria?"
"Well, the inheritance money is the first thing that comes to mind. The fact that this all made you closer to Sonic may or may not have been a coincidence," the fox admitted, "But the point of the matter is that you were the only person to have the motive and means to kill Maria plus solid evidence against you. You were damp when you came to the pool, and you explained it by saying you took a shower... but me and Shadow found that your shower was dry, and Shadow was cleaning dishes at the time of the murders... meaning you lied to us. Why would anyone lie about taking a shower?"
Quietly, the brilliant fox stood up and paced around the semicircle the group formed, everyone's eyes on him. "Amy has access to any room in the house, able to lock and unlock doors at will," Tails began, "My theory is that she stole my wrench and killed Gerald with it first. Seeing as it didn't draw any attention, she then had the time to stash the wrench away in Rouge's room, make her way to the pool, drown Maria, washing away all evidence on her in the process, and circle around just before Shadow found the body."
Amy's mouth opened and closed a couple of times as she desperately tried to think of a way to prove her innocence. Finally her expression hardened, "Maria was a spoilt brat, and there's no way she deserved almost ninety percent of the inheritance," she snarled, "I never could stand her, and the way she treated everybody. She knew how Shadow felt about her, and she never tried to set him straight, she just used him. And she was always gloating about how she would inherit everything. I saw her by the pool from the servant's quarters, so I went and pushed her in. It was a simple task to hold her head under for a few seconds until she inhaled water. She hardly struggled at all, and when she stopped splashing I pushed her further into the pool. That stupid velvet dress she wore to dinner just soaked up the water and dragged her down," the expressions of everybody had changed at this speech, "But I didn't kill Gerald!" she insisted.
"You killed Maria?!" Shadow screamed, and leapt at Amy, "I'll kill YOU!" Sonic and Knuckles grabbed him just before he reached her, and held him down.
"Easy, Shadow! It's not worth it!" Sonic cried out, struggling to keep down the dark hedgehog. All the while, he glanced up at Amy, bitter and angry and hurt. "She'll be put behind bars for a long, long time."
"I didn't kill Gerald!" Amy repeated, "He's old! He would have died soon anyway! Somebody else killed him!"
"Yeah, like I'm supposed to believe you now!" Sonic bellowed at her, "You... you lying whore! You used me..."
"I killed Maria for you, Sonic!" Amy wailed, "So that you would get a bigger share in Gerald's estate! I love you! And I didn't kill Gerald!"
"She has got a point," Rouge pointed out, "She's admitted that she killed Maria to us all. Why deny Gerald's murder? And I doubt she'd have had the time."
"What, two murderers on the same night?!" Sonic asked, bewildered by the possibility, "If not Amy, Rouge, then who killed Gerald?"
"Tails, why are your gloves clean while the rest of your overalls are all dirty and greasy?" Rouge asked Tails.
"Because I changed my gloves," the fox explained simply and calmly with a shrug, "I didn't want to get grease all over the furniture."
"Yes, but they were clean when you came out to the pool - by which time Gerald was dead," Rouge said.
"Yeah, because I changed them," Tails repeated with a shrug, "Sure, it's a funny coincidence, but that hardly says I'm the killer. Why would I want to kill Gerald, anyway?"
This had a few people stumped, but Shadow looked up from under Sonic and Knuckles, "You've hated him for years!" the dark hedgehog growled, "Ever since you claimed to have discovered the Chaos Emeralds as a power source! And to think you were pretending to be sympathetic!"
"The garage has a good view of the pool," Rouge said, "If you had been in there, you might have heard Maria splashing. But you weren't. You were in Gerald's study, clubbing him to death with that spanner, weren't you?"
"No, and you're just jumping at shadows," Tails replied, glaring at the bat, "You have no evidence, and the motive you have is shaky at best. Sure, I was angry at Gerald, but that doesn't mean I had to kill him. He cheated me, but I got over it and moved on."
"The spanner is the tool that's missing from your toolbox," Rouge pointed out, "After you killed Gerald, you flew out of the window in case somebody saw you coming out, and flew into mine and Knuckles' guest bedroom through another open window, planting the spanner to implicate us. You heard me coming in and flew out of the bedroom in a panic, heading back to your own room. Then Shadow started screaming. You pulled off your blood-stained gloves and put on a clean pair, thinking that Gerald's body had been discovered, and hurried to the screams. You were very relieved when you found it was only Maria Shadow had found, weren't you?"
"You're delusional... or just trying to take the heat off yourself," the frustrated fox replied, "You could have just as easily have done all of that, and you've got more reason to do it. I'm not the professional thief here."
"Doctor, Knuckles," Rouge said calmly, "Let's confirm Miles' claims by finding his dirty gloves in his laundry basket." Eggman stood up, and so did Knuckles, both of them heading to Tails' room.
Tails watched calmly for an instant as the three of them began to make their way towards his workshop, seeing to be unafraid and certain of himself... then, when no one's eyes were on him, the young fox suddenly took flight. Rather than moving towards the nearest window or door, however, Tails flew right past the human, bat, and echidna, racing ahead of them towards his own workshop.
"What the... Tails!" Sonic shouted, leaping to his feet and following the other three in the room, taken by surprise by the unexpected action of his long time friend.
"Get him!" Rouge shouted, chasing after him. Shadow leapt to his feet, unrestrained, and chased after Tails, fury in his eyes.
Tails beat them to his workshop, slamming and locking the door behind him. "Tails, you can't escape!" Sonic called out, skidding to a halt in front of the door, "Buddy... just give up, alright? It doesn't have to be this way!"
Knuckles, clinching his fists and stomping towards the door, growled, "Screw that!" The echidna raised his fist, intending to smash the door when suddenly the door, and the wall surrounding it, exploded outward, sending the various houseguests flying through the air as well.
As the smoke cleared and ears stopped ringing, the young fox walked towards them, holding some sort of energy cannon nearly as big as he was. "Yeah, I did it!" Tails spoke, kicking over a laundry basket, the bloody gloves flopping onto the floor, "Yeah, I wanted to kill Gerald for what he did! But you don't understand; that's not the whole story!"
"What IS the whole story then, murderer?" Shadow growled, his eye twitching.
The fox raised the weapon and fired, sending a stream of intense white light along the wall, blasting away chunks of burning debris, forcing the guests back. "Gerald took the technology that I invented, and he was going to weaponise it!" Tails yelled over the noise he was creating, "He just set up a contract with GUN and everything! Do you have any idea what kind of weapon could be made from the chaos emeralds? A doomsday device! I had to stop him! I couldn't let him do it, not with what I made!"
"And that's NOT a weapon?!" Rouge shouted at the furious kitsune, pointing at the energy cannon.
"This is Plan B!" the fox explained, levelling the cannon at Rouge and the others, "Back away! I don't want to use this thing on you!"
Sonic stood beside Rouge and Knuckles, holding up his hands. "You gotta stop this, man!" the hedgehog pleaded with his friend, "There's nowhere you can go!"
"Except to jail," Shadow spat, raw hatred in his eyes, "I'll kill you, you little freak! You killed Gerald! I'll kill you!"
The fox pointed the cannon at Shadow now. "Don't you call me a freak!" Tails bellowed over the high-pitched whine of the gun charging up, "Gerald had to die, but I had nothing to do with Maria! She was innocent, and I'd have gladly vaporized Amy for doing that to her... if you idiots hadn't left her unguarded!"
Shadow cursed and spun around, running back to the parlour. But Amy was already gone. Outside he could hear the sound of Amy's red sports car starting up. She'd obviously already had her suitcase packed, "FUCK!" he screamed with all his might, and ran outside to stop the car, any way he could.
At the same time, Tails aimed the weapon he had put together at the nearest wall and fired, blowing a hole clear through the house to the outside. The fox took off, flying through the hole and up towards the roof with Sonic in hot pursuit.
"Tails, what are you doing?! Stop!" the blue hedgehog cried out, doing his best to climb out to the roof.
Amy was driving away in her red sports car, when Shadow caught up with it. Running next to the driver's door, he ripped the door right off its hinges and reached in for Amy, who swerved the car in desperation, hitting Shadow and knocking him down.
Standing atop the roof of the mansion, Tails took aim at the fleeing pink hedgehog, the advanced ray gun targeting and locking onto the red car. Sonic watched in horror, running at the fox. "Tails, NO!" he shouted, tackling the fox and making the shot go wide. The beam of white light slammed into the road in front of Amy, throwing her car tumbling into air.
Amy got out of her car, grabbed her suitcase, and totally ignoring the unconscious Shadow, kept running for it, her major goal to get to the airport before any more shots from the energy cannon could be fired.
Meanwhile, Sonic and Tails wrestled for control of the energy cannon on the roof of the Robotnik manor, each trying to overpower the other. Sonic, being the larger and stronger of the pair, soon managed to tear the gun from the fox's hands and whip him across the face with it, knocking the boy unconscious.
Rouge flew up to join him, a pair of handcuffs in one hand. The reason she had them with her was probably best left unexplored, as she cuffed Tails' hands behind his back, "We have to catch Amy!" she said. Not only was the pink hedgehog a murderess, but she had also committed a hit-and-run.
Knuckles climbed up onto the roof just after Rouge, a pissed-off expression on the red echidna's race and ashes from the havoc inside the mansion in his fur. "Leave that to me!" he snarled, leaping off the roof and gliding fast on the wind towards the fleeing pink hedgehog.
Rouge picked up Tails, and flew down to the ground with him, taking him back into the house, and calling the cops. Sonic, meanwhile, raced down to check on Shadow, worried about the red and black hedgehog. "Shadow! Shadow, can you hear me?!" the blue hedgehog shouted, running across the lawn.
The dark hedgehog wasn't moving. Eggman was jogging behind Sonic, although he was losing a lot of ground and a lot of breath too, trying to see what had become of his inheritance.
Sonic knelt down beside Shadow, one hand on his shoulder, rolling the other hedgehog over and checking him for any serious injuries. "Shadow, do you hear me?" he repeated
Eggman reached them, puffing and panting, "Whatever you do, don't move him, Sonic," he said, "And don't let him move himself either. That hit could have broken his spine. You could kill him."
"Uh..." Shadow moaned softly. Well, at least he was breathing.
Elsewhere, Knuckles was gliding swiftly and silently towards the fleeing form of Amy, eager to make her taste dirt for all the trouble she and Tails had given him. Within range of her, the echidna swooped towards the ground, tackling Amy. "Surprise, bitch!" he shouted.
"Get OFF me, you brainless thug!" Amy shrieked at him, trying to hit him with her suitcase. After a couple of hits the case burst open, and items of clothing, expensive jewellery and lingerie flew all over the road. Not all of the jewellery was Amy's.
Knuckles brushed past them and grabbed Amy's arms, spinning the pink hedgehog around. "Oh, you thought you could get away, huh? Well, think again!" Back in the direction of the mansion, Sonic was watching over Shadow while Eggman ran off to call an ambulance.
"Get off me!" Amy shouted, suddenly getting an idea as Knuckles pinned her, "You pervert! You're trying to feel me up!" she screamed.
Knuckles slammed her against the ground and began to drag her back towards the others. "Oh, don't even start that shit!" he growled, "You're getting thrown in a cage, and there's nothing you can do about it! Live with it."
Amy kicked at him, shouting and yelling and making accusations as Knuckles dragged her past Sonic and the semi-conscious Shadow.
Sonic kept watch over the dark hedgehog, making sure he didn't move too much. "I'm sorry, Shadow", he said eventually, "You were right all along... and I shouldn't have said those things to you."
"No, you shouldn't have," Shadow agreed. He couldn't feel his back right, "But I shouldn't have treated you like that either... What if it all goes wrong?" he asked, "What if they don't get done for it? What if Amy was right, and Maria wasn't so wonderful..." he sighed, tiredly.
"It's going to be fine", Sonic assured the dark hedgehog, "Both of them are going to be locked up for this. And Amy was wrong about Maria. We all knew her."
Shadow made a quiet noise that suggested he would have argued with Sonic even had the other hedgehog insisted the sky was blue. In the distance, the sun was rising and Sonic could hear the approach of sirens. It had been a long night, and it was likely to be an even longer day.
Breech: It was Amy and Tails! Yeah! And none of you won!
Froggy: Did we do good? Did it all fit together logically?
Breech: Story is over. You want another Sonic Cluedo, you'll have to ask for it! And tell us what you think!