When Sarah and I arrived at the Skelton Creek Irregular's office, Eddie was waiting for us. He greeted us with a smile, but when he saw the looks on our faces, he knew the game was up and his smile turned sheepish. With a sweep of his arm, he indicated the tiny coatroom, which he had once told me with a laugh doubled as his office. Once we stepped in, he shut the door, probably thinking that we would lay into him.
"I know you're probably mad," he began, "but I really didn't mean to get you in trouble. You guys are my friends."
"Then why send us to the dredge again? Or have us break into places?" Sarah asked accusingly.
I was a little more forgiving than her. Eddie and I had gotten to know each other a lot since I had joined the newspaper. He really was a good friend, so I couldn't reconcile this strange behavior with the Eddie I knew.
Eddie looked between the two of us and frowned. "I didn't think you'd get caught. I mean, I've read your blog, Ryan, and heard the story. You guys were sneaking all over the place and never getting caught. I thought you would be safe."
"But why drag this on? Why did you even set this up to begin with?" I asked.
I felt a little bad seeing Eddie wince. He must have thought he had lost some friends. From the way Sarah was fuming, I couldn't blame him for thinking that. I was just curious though.
"I just wanted to help you guys."
"Help us?" Sarah asked incredulously, voice lifting a pitch higher than normal.
Eddie rubbed the back of his neck. "Alright, maybe it wasn't helping you so much as the rest of the town. But it would help you guys too! I knew doing this would give you something else to blog about. And the more you have on your blogs, the more material you have for applying to colleges, right?"
He sounded desperate, like he was grasping for straws with that last statement. I found more interest in what he had said before that. "What do you mean you were trying to help the town?"
"Well…I don't know if I should be telling you…" He glanced at Sarah. Her glare seemed to sway him. With a sigh, Eddie revealed why he had gone to such lengths to push Sarah and I into another adventure. "Now that the gold is all sorted out and the mystery with the crossbones and everything is cleared up, the town has gone back into a financial slump. I mean, sure we have revenue coming in from a few tourists, but we won't bounce back for another year or two, when the dredge is fully made into a museum. It was your two's story that drew the people here. So I thought—"
"You thought that if we made another story, it would draw people back." Sarah finished for him.
Eddie nodded. "I really didn't mean to get you in trouble." He mumbled.
It was hard for me to stay mad at Eddie. Yeah, we did get caught by Bonner and Eddie did make us do some dangerous things, but he had a good reason. I suppose it isn't fair of me to say that he made us do anything. I could have just as easily deleted his emails as follow along with them. I laughed a little at how well Eddie had played us. He knew us well enough to know Sarah and I wouldn't let something this interesting drop.
Sarah was still a little mad after we left the news office, but by the time she and I got back to my house and we opened some cans of soda on the porch, she was smiling at how sly Eddie had been.
"I suppose we deserve it." She said with a small smile.
"It will be a great story." I said, running my fingertips across my journal.
Sarah looked at me with a mischievous grin. Tomorrow, we decided, we're going to talk with Eddie and we're all going to plan how we're going to present this on our blog. Right now though, I just want to write it down. This hasn't been the grandest of Sarah and my intrigues, but I don't mind that. Neither does my leg. I'm just glad we all came out of this unscathed and without a criminal record. Next adventure someone sends us on, I hope there's a lot less criminal activity.