A/N: Mighty Ducks: The Animated Series and canon characters belong to Disney and its affiliates. These works of fiction are written solely for entertainment.
Captain Klegghorn: The Man With the Badge
We've been introduced before. It was shortly after those annoying Ducks from another dimension arrived in our relatively quiet city of Anaheim. My name is Barnaby Peter Klegghorn. But everyone calls me Captain Klegghorn. I prefer it that way.
Contrary to popular belief, my life didn't become complicated with the arrival of the Ducks. They just added another layer to the complications that were already underway. Strangely enough, their antics and dilemmas were downright more manageable than the tangled mess going on behind the scenes at my department. Their issues were straight forward compared to mine. At least until the red lizard man messed with their family. Then things for them were about as complicated as mine.
I won't say that I had no sympathy for them, because I did. But I also won't say that it made us friends. There are days I really hate their guts.
It just made us tolerable. I think.
Just like the relationship between me and my superior.
Commissioner Lyons is more of a grouch than I am. Or rather, he's the main reason why I've been such a grouch these past few years. I mean, I was always strict and focused on the job, but for some reason, the man has it out for me. Rumor is that he's afraid I'll be selected to take over before he reaches retirement. As if I want his job.
He's so two-faced about everything. He condones the ducks actions, stating that he has no use for my department. Then he rants and raves and demands to know why I haven't taken any action against the ducks.
It's the way it always goes, day in and day out.
But these past few days have really taken the cake.
Not only have I been dealing with the Commish… but I've been bouncing back and forth between the ducks, the feds, a bomb threat and a robbery turned hostage situation, with ducks sprinkled in between, the court systems… and to top things off, my ex wife and son.
Yeah, you heard right.
Oh, and a wife, once upon a time.
Don't get me wrong. I love hearing about my son. I just wish the timing and circumstance was better. With all that was happening, I can't help but feel more irritable. And worried. Could there not be a day that things could go smoothly just once?
The majority of my current problems began about three days ago.
Captain Klegghorn glanced at his office clock as he settled down into his chair. As soon as he was down, the phone began to ring.
I'll be honest. When I heard it go off, I really thought it was going to be Duck related. After all, that seemed to be the recurring trend since they arrived.
Instead, to my unhappy surprise, it was my ex-wife calling. We didn't part on good terms. But despite the nagging calls she still made, the timing was way off.
"Carol?" Klegghorn's eyes were wide as his voice faltered at the sound of her voice.
You see, Carol had the tendency to wait until I was home to give me a call.
To be calling this early in the day meant that something was potentially wrong.
"What is it?" he asked.
His wife's voice came through the phone, lacking its typical nagging tone, replaced by worry and concern.
"What? What do you mean, missing?"
"He's gone, Barnaby. I went to check his room and he was gone. Hasn't come back since last night."
"Did something happen last night?"
"Oh, he started with his nonsense again about moving out of state to attend the Academy."
Klegghorn sighed. "I hope you didn't call it nonsense while you were talking about it, Carol. You know how that sets him off."
"But it is nonsense!" The nagging voice was back.
Danny is an only child. It wasn't really by choice. I'd like to think had things worked out between Carol and me, there would have been at least three. Maybe five. I came from a large family, and so did Carol. I guess I expected it to be that way. On the day of that call, I did my best to ignore her as she went off on what a bad career choice Danny was making.
He wanted to follow my footsteps and work in law enforcement.
I'll admit that I would rather have him be aim to be a lawyer, as it would be less dangerous, but then again…
My family couldn't talk me out of being a cop when I first started.
Listening to her ranting, I was a bit regretful at having married the woman. But I loved her once and we had happy times. It would be cruel for me to wish we never were married.
Danny was the best thing that came out of our marriage.
Carol wasn't always against my line of work. Back when I was a rookie cop, she was the only one who supported me. Things changed as I got promoted. I'm pretty sure it had a lot to do with the extra time I had to spend in the office.
That's when things changed. She seemed bitter about it. Hated it.
It was always difficult, trying to juggle between my love for my wife and the love for my job.
She didn't give me much of a chance to continue trying to work things out.
One evening I had come home to find divorce papers on the dining table instead of a cold dinner like I was used to. All of her belongings had been packed, as well as Danny's stuff. She had taken off with him.
I didn't bother to fight it.
Although at first I did fight against her decision to try to gain full custody of Danny. Because I had no history of domestic violence, I was granted permission to have him during the summer and any major holidays as she was planning on moving across the country.
But work kept me too busy to take care of Danny, and after a few years, I just stopped fighting all together. It wasn't fair to keep putting Danny in the middle of our fights, and I'll admit I never spoke with Danny frankly regarding the situation.
I can't help but wonder if Danny ever resented my choices. Especially since he use to say how much he wished he lived with me rather than his mother. But little by little those opinions faded.
After he stopped flying over, he kept up with phone calls here and there. Then any communication we had just stopped.
I would send a holiday cards and birthday cards, you know, hoping I'd hear from him. Or about him.
Just not like this.
"Why don't you do something?" Carol's voice screeched into his ear, snapping Klegghorn out of his thoughts.
"What do you want me to do?" the detective asked with a sigh.
"Can't you use your connections to find him?"
"Carol, Danny is no longer a minor. Unless there is evidence that his life is in danger, they won't search for him until he's been missing for 72 hours. Or 48 at the very least. "
"You're useless! You never cared! Why do I even bother trying to talk with you?"
Amazing how she still acted like she was the injured party. My think my ear is still ringing from the force she used to slam her phone. I think that's the only reason why she hasn't switched to a digital hand set.
Klegghorn rubbed his ear several seconds after his ex hung up on him. He then rubbed his face and sighed, already feeling exhausted for the day.
"What more can be thrown at me?" he asked to no one in particular.
His phone rang again.
"Captain Klegghorn," he responded.
"Captain! Just got a phoned threat in about a bomb at The Pond!"
Klegghorn felt his eye twitch. "It was a rhetorical question," he muttered.
"I'll be right there. And someone get the Feds on the line."
You'd think I'd learn not to ask any variation of 'What can go wrong?' working in Anaheim.
I'll be honest. Working with Feds tends to give me a headache. I'd rather not deal with a majority of them. However, bombing cases do fall under their jurisdiction and to give them a hard time would keep me in the bad spot light with the Commish. He was still a bit sour about the Decker incident. Not my fault the man hired to take over me was a loon.
Oh, he did try to make amends. But that only lasted a week.
The whole collapsing of the Extravagant Resort put me right back on his black list, even though it was a mistake of the feds part.
Although I'll admit, working with Agent Belle wasn't so bad.
I liked her.
Too bad it wasn't her that was responded to this incident.
It was some obnoxious pretty boy agent going by the name of Kimble. You know. The type more concerned with his appearance so that he always looks good for any photo op that presents itself.
Also the type that thinks we are incompetent fools.
Now I may not like the feds, but it's not because I see them as incompetent. I just think they think way too highly of themselves. And having had this brat look at me like I was gum underneath his pristine and shiny shoes… no. After dealing with him for a few seconds, I just had to ask.
"What happened to Agent Belle?"
Agent Kimble laughed, his green eyes lacking any mirth. "She was transferred after her foul up. Not that anyone should be surprised-a woman like her trying to make it into the big leagues. What was she thinking? I'm the agent in charge of this district now."
"Your masculinity must be rejoicing in the removal of such a threat," Klegghorn grumbled.
"Ha ha… hey." The agent shot Klegghorn another dirty look.
Oh yeah. He was also a chauvinistic pig at heart.
"I'll leave the work to you guys in trying to find out how legit this threat is. I'll go tell the bird brains the news. After all, they prefer the Anaheim police over feds any day," Klegghorn couldn't help but say with a smirk.
Or rather, they preferred to deal with me since they knew me and had given me a communicator a while back ago. And it wasn't completely just to tell them the feds would be on their way to investigate. Since the communicator worked like a key, I'd be able to get in directly without having to wait on them and waste precious minutes.
They were going to need at least a few minutes to secure every entrance that led to their secret den, and leave the rest of the area open.
The public area.
Not that it mattered. Those ducks had ways to scan for explosives. And if not, that girl duck Tanya would come up with something quick.
But we all have to keep up appearances.
Klegghorn walked into the arena and found them on the ice practicing. He noticed that they were missing one of their members.
"Where's Canard?" he asked.
Let me tell you, I'm kind of glad that I no longer stumble over their names. Trust me, their names are not that hard. It's just that for me it's never comfortable addressing someone I'm not close friends to by their first name. Of course these ducks never offered their last names. If they even have any.
It just make it that much more difficult to maintain professionalism amongst them since I have to be so informal with them.
Nosedive took off his helmet and skated over to Klegghorn. "He was gone this morning, Cap. Just left a note saying he went out for a walk. He hasn't answered his unit either." The blonde looked slightly worried.
Klegghorn gave the blonde duck a small smile.
In a strange way, Nosedive reminded me of my son. Of course I'd rather die than admit that to anyone.
It's obvious by his speech and manners that he's not that much older than Danny. He may even be younger.
Yet here he was, fighting a war that the public only just got to learn about. A dangerous battle against the red lizard that wants to take over the world.
I couldn't… and still can't… understand why Wildwing allowed his brother to be in such danger.
But then again, being brothers was probably something different. He would see him more as an equal.
Had he been a parent… it probably would have been different.
Wildwing came up behind Nosedive, ruffling his hair and giving him an encouraging smile. "I'm sure he's fine. He just needs to get some things sorted." Wildwing looked at Klegghorn. "What can we do for you, Captain?" he asked, polite as always.
"Are you in charge then for right now?" Klegghorn asked.
Wildwing looked slightly uncomfortable. "Yeah, you can say that."
"A bomb threat against the Pond came in."
"What?" The rest of the ducks skated over.
Klegghorn shrugged. "It could be a prank, but it still warrants an arrest when we find the caller. I got here to give you guys a few minutes to bolt down or do whatever you do to keep outsiders from getting inside. The feds are coming over to inspect the place from top to bottom to make sure there is no bomb."
"Why can't your team do it?" asked Wildwing.
Klegghorn sighed. "Most bomb threats become a federal case taking it out of my hands. I was only able to stall for time to give you guys a chance to hide your stuff."
"Thanks," Wildwing said.
Klegghorn waved at Wildwing. "It's nothing. Just… don't go anywhere. Every time you guys go out, something big always seems to happen."
"Oy, it's not like we go out looking for trouble, you know?" commented Duke, hand on his hip.
Klegghorn gave him a smirk. "Yeah, it knows where you are at all times. See you guys later."
"Sure thing, Captain. Oh, and… uh…"
Klegghorn glanced back as he walked away. "Yeah, yeah. If I see Canard I'll send him your way. Just one of you out there is enough trouble. Don't want to tempt fate any more today."
Oh, if I only knew…
Klegghorn was typing his preliminary report when his phone rang. He glanced at it, hesitant to answer.
I knew, if I picked up that phone, it was going to be one of three things. My ex, Lyons, or something duck related.
Guess who won that round?
"Barnaby! I came home and just checked his room. Things are gone!"
"His stuff! His drawers were thrown open, and his closet! I think we were robbed! Someone had to be looking for something! Now will you use your connections to call someone to look for him?"
Hearing that left me a bit worried. But it's difficult to tell what has transpired from words along. And I had no way of seeing what state my son's room was in through verbal descriptions alone.
"Have you already tried calling the NYPD about it?" he asked his ex.
Carol gave him an angry huff. "They're accusing me of being paranoid! They think he's the one that emptied out the room! But it couldn't have been him!"
"Was anything else missing from the house?"
"No, and don't you dare say the same thing! I know something happened to Danny. You come over here now and help me look for him!"
Klegghorn sighed. "It's not that easy, Carol. I can't just up and leave. I have to make arrangements."
"You just don't care."
The phone beeped as she disconnected from him for a second time that day.
Klegghorn sighed once more and hung up to phone yet again.
Right after that, I did begin to search the schedules for both flights and staff. I needed to find someone who could fill in for me and be willing to swap shifts.
At least I knew my staff well enough to know who was and wasn't a family man.
I had found two potential candidates. But when I reached over to give the fellow captains a call, my phone rang again.
"Klegghorn," he responded again.
Grrr. I'd rather deal with Carol than the Comissh.
"What can I do for you, Commissioner?"
"The trial for the Decker case has been moved up for the day after tomorrow. Depo is tomorrow in the morning, 11 o'clock. Be there. And make sure the ducks check their messages. It's integral to the case that they testify what happened."
"The ducks have been recognized as citizens, Klegghorn. It's about time they perform a public civil duty and be introduced to our court systems. Understood?"
"Yes, sir," Klegghorn growled out.
Figures Lyons would find a way to make things harder for me.
Okay, okay. That's a bit unfair.
Even I know that man doesn't have the power to move up trial dates to inconvenience me.
But it did mean that I wasn't going to be able to fly out to New York until three days from then, after the trial.
Which left me hoping Carol was overreacting.
But what was Danny up to? He was always a smart kid. Running away was never a concern with him.
I found myself getting ready for a second trip to the Pond.
I was hoping that the feds were done with their search.
Although getting through with them on the communicator would be easier, this was too important not to talk to them personally about it.
"Are you trying to make my day worse?" Klegghorn asked Canard through the communicator as he stared at the dozen of patrol cars parked in front of a small shop.
"I'm sorry?" responded the duck, keeping his voice low while sounding utterly confused.
"All your bird buddies are trapped in the Pond which is currently being searched and you find yourself in an armed hostage situation. Why couldn't you all be together or partnered up with someone like you normally are?"
"The Pond is being searched?"
"Never mind. Let's worry about you first."
Klegghorn put away the communicator and made his way to one of the patrol cars.
What a big surprise I had.
On my way to the Pond a call came in about an armed robbery turned hostage situations. Of course that took priority over being messenger boy.
I had a gut feeling that this wasn't going to be completely human related.
Lo and behold… when I got there I saw one of the Duck's cycles parked in front of the store.
I took my chances and hailed Canard on the communicator.
As it turned out, the tan mallard was near the store's storage room when the perp came in and had his inside the room. I knew that as long as he remained undetected, he would be my ace in this game.
"What's the status?" Klegghorn asked a uniform standing nearby.
"Captain! Swat team's ETA is less than five. Eleven hostages…"
"There's a twelfth hidden that I got in contact with."
"Oh boy. Twelve hostages and the perp is demanding for a car."
"Yeah, right. Okay. Where's the negotiator?"
At least Canard handled himself well. Or so he told me.
Canard sighed as he leaned against the wall. Briefly he wondered if it weren't for whatever was going down at the Pond, would the team be aggravated with the situation he found himself in.
Obviously Captain Klegghorn was. At least that's what Canard gathered from the tone of the human's voice over the communicator.
Maybe if he was lucky this whole thing would be over before the investigation was and he would brush it off as something that wasn't so dangerous.
The communicator beeped.
"Negotiator is speaking with the suspect right now, but it sounds like he's only being further agitated. SWATs confirmed that he's moved further from the front of the store and is using the hostages as a shield. He's currently near the back of the store. Think you can take him out?"
"Asking for civilian help? I'm touched."
"Save it. None of this goes on record if they ask you."
"Understood. Would it help to say that I was already formulating a plan before you contacted me?"
"I'm sure you were. Be careful."
Canard readied his puck launcher in stun mode and made his way to the store room, slowly unlocking and opening the door just enough to see what was going on. The door way was situated in a hallway that looked out into the small convenience store. From there he could see the gunman pacing behind the row of hostages, shouting into a cordless phone.
Canard judged the height of the man and waited until he walked past the hallway once more before squeezing out of the room, back up against the wall. He raised his puck launcher and waited.
He knew he would have to gain the man's attention to get him to stop for just a second, otherwise he would risk hurting one of the hostages.
With his trigger finger tightening, he could hear the gunman approaching.
As the man crossed the front of the hall, Canard let out a sharp whistle.
The gunman turned around, lowering the phone while raising his gun, but Canard proved to be faster and shot at him.
A puck went off and knocked the man against his chest, sending a shock wave through him. With a strangled cry, the man collapsed, and the hostages took the opportunity to run out, screaming.
Canard sighed and waited for the police and SWAT to come charging in.
Klegghorn slid a cup of soda over to Canard as they sat in his office. "So seeing an opportunity you went ahead and attacked the gunman," he said, looking over the written report in his hand.
Canard grinned. "Yes, sir."
"While you acted with bravery, let me remind you to leave this job to the police," Klegghorn responded without real bite.
At least the duck understood about keeping appearances. The Commish paced outside my office, waiting for me to be done with the "witness." But I still had things to tell him.
Klegghorn placed the report down and leaned back. "I got word from the situation at the Pond on our way back. Seems that there was a bomb behind one of the concession stands."
"It must have been placed there during one of your last games since you guys have outstanding security there. It was also a poorly built bomb according to the bomb squad. If it had detonated, it would have injured anyone within three feet, possibly first degree burns to those about 5 feet from the heat of the blast."
"That's poorly built?"
"It's meant to take out anything within a 15 feet radius. But they did get some prints off the casing and are checking on it now."
"Well, that's somewhat of a relief. Since nothing major happened at the Pond, I'm thinking the others aren't going to tell me anything, so… can you keep this little drama hushed as well?"
I don't laugh often. But I did that day.
I had no problems keeping things hushed. But this was Anaheim, home of the ducks and lizards.
"You didn't pay attention to the news vans, did you? Your heroic deeds are probably being broadcast as we speak."
"Besides, Commissioner Lyons claims you guys need to start performing your civil duties. Even if your team didn't find out now, they would once whoever planted the bomb is captured and you have to give your testimony in court. "
Klegghorn nodded. "Speaking of which, your first trial is coming up. Your team needs to be at the courthouse tomorrow at 11 am. I'll be there. The Decker trial is going to start, and some of you are key witnesses and you need to be prepared for what the defense is gonna throw at you guys."
"Sounds like fun," Canard stated, bemused.
"Well, this ain't no tv show or a work of fiction. This is the glamorous life of us cops that are rarely mentioned."
Too bad life can't wrap up cases like shows within a half hour to an hour tops.
When I finally got home that day, I saw that I had several missed calls on my answering machine. Of course the first five were from Carol, all demanding that I call her back. Considering that she had called me at the office eight times after wards according to the time stamp, I deleted the messages. I had already spoken to her.
Another message was from a telemarketer, which I deleted before I could learn about whatever he was selling, and then there was a hang up with an unknown number.
Oh, and the feds also called. They had actually caught the bombing suspect. I'll admit, I was rather surprised they took the time to let me know.
Anyways, I did jot down when the hang up occurred, since it was left about an hour before the feds claimed to have caught the suspect. I mean, with all the news media that surrounds the ducks, a genius isn't needed to speculate just how deep my involvement with the ducks go.
The timing of the call was just too close in my opinion to brush it off. It could have been the bomber wanting to leave some taunting message. Or it could have been a reporter hoping for some inside information.
I wrapped things up and settled in for the night.
The next day was not much better.
"There is no way you can hold us responsible for this," Canard and Wildwing both said as they pressed up against the wall.
Klegghorn glared at them as Grin motioned for several people to run past him into the emergency stairwells. "Oh yes I can," he growled as the grey mallard disappeared, being the escort for the civilians.
A deposition is suppose to be just a simple meeting between witnesses and lawyers. Nothing more, nothing less. But because the birds were involved, things just had to escalate into a disaster.
But maybe I was being a bit unfair in casting the blame on them. After all… the mayhem started a few rooms away.
"But it's not like that lunatic came from our court room!" argued Nosedive, who was standing across the hall, also pressed up against the wall. He pulled back a bit as several shots rang out, hitting the corners of the hallways.
As it turned out… the guy causing the trouble was the same guy who tried to bomb the arena.
"Yeah, well, he was here for a preliminary sentencing since he pleaded guilty to placing the bomb in your stadium."
"That's the guy?" asked Duke, standing behind Nosedive.
"I fail to see how that's our fault," added Canard.
"He's a disgruntled fan. Felt you slighted him by not responding to his fan mail."
Some people really need to get a life.
"Are you serious?" asked Nosedive. "Does he have any idea how many letters we get? Phil had to hire four people to sort through all that. Four! And that's only because he was too cheap to hire more!"
"Your fault for not being fast readers," Klegghorn stated.
"Hey. I'm a very fast reader," protested Tanya, kneeling between Wildwing and Canard. She made some quick adjustments to her puck launcher that had misfired just seconds before.
"Cover me. I'm going in for Lyons."
Yeah, yeah. The man who has it out for me was trapped and I had made the decision to go in after him. Just because I don't like a person doesn't mean I'll abandon him in his time of need. That's what being a cop should be like.
Wildwing nodded. "At the count of three we'll start firing and keep him pinned. That's when you go for the room the Commissioner is in. We'll signal you to come out. If Grin gets back before that, we'll use him to take this guy out."
Klegghorn nodded once. Wildwing glanced across the hall to where his brother, Mallory, and Duke were holed up.
He held up three fingers and dropped them one by one. Pulling his hand back, all ducks began firing as the perpetrator ducked back into his hiding spot, yelling.
Klegghorn shot out under the volley of puck shots and dashed into the room that lay between the ducks and the shooter.
Closing the door behind him, he found himself face to face with the pale face of the Commissioner. "Klegghorn!" the man exclaimed.
"We'll get you out in a moment, Commish."
"You get me out and I'll grant you anything within reason."
"Days off starting tomorrow."
"I have personal matters to attend, sir."
"Understood, Captain. They'll be granted. Baring any urgent matter, of course."
I knew that was the best I was going to get from the man. Not that it mattered. One way or another, I was going to take off for New York the following day.
Klegghorn's com unit beeped. "Are you ready?" Wildwing asked.
"Just tell me when."
"Stay low," Klegghorn warned Lyons as he grabbed the man by his sleeve and dragged him out of the room. He ducked into the hallway Nosedive was in, knowing that the hallway led to the closest stairwell possible.
"Go, sir," Klegghorn shouted, turning back towards where the shooter was.
"Thanks, Captain. Superb job as usual. Now finish it off and stop that guy."
With those words, the Commissioner headed towards the flight of stairs and exited.
"Wow. Isn't he a prize."
"You should try working for him."
The stairwell opened up to reveal Grin.
"Everyone is outside safe," he said.
"Great!" said Canard. "I'm pretty sure that guy is running out of ammo. Tanya here figured out a way to temporarily expand the personal shield to cover you from head to toe." He paused and glanced at Wildwing. "But he can give you the rest of the details."
I was a bit thrown off by that remark. I wasn't sure if there was some power struggle going on or if Canard was completely giving leadership control back to Wildwing. It would explain why he suddenly was wearing the mask again.
Wildwing looked at Canard, but with the mask donned, no one knew what his expression really was.
"Plan is pretty simple, Grin. I got a good look at the guy. He's small. We'll be using your size to intimidate him enough to give up."
"Sometimes going simple is enough," said Grin.
"Give me your unit," Tanya ordered, holding her hand out. Grin gave her his shield which she tweaked quickly and handed it back to him.
"Just activate and check him."
Grin nodded and did as he was told.
I knew he was fast on ice. I didn't realize he could move fast while running, too.
The large duck charged up the hall, activating his shield so that the few bullets still flying his way ricocheted into the walls. They all heard the shooter scream out in fear as Grin's body slammed into his little fort of desks and chairs and him, sending the suspect flying back into the wall.
Looking dazed, the guy looked up at him. "Heh. I was just checked by a Mighty Duck. Awesome." The guy promptly passed out.
"Well, that was a bit anticlimactic," Klegghorn muttered as they all approached the individual.
"Makes things more simple, don't it?" asked Duke.
If only that were true…
Canard came out of Klegghorn's office, sighing and turning to shake his hand.
"That was kind of different," said Duke, coming out of another office.
"The joys of being a citizen. You are now required to help write up a statement," said Klegghorn, smirking.
So I relished the idea of them getting a small taste of what I had been going through with them. Big whoop.
"That was like doing school work!" Nosedive claimed.
And that reminded me of another issue…
"You know, you're still a minor under our standards. Wildwing, he needs to have a tutor at least to pass GED classes unless you plan to enroll him in high school."
Wildwing gave Klegghorn an amused look. "I'll look into it."
Klegghorn looked at all of them. "Now I'm heading out of town for a couple days. I won't be around to pull you guys's tail feathers out of any trouble so stay put."
"Like we did when that nut job tried to bomb us? Yeah, sure," Canard said, laughing.
"Don't tempt fate, mallard," growled Klegghorn.
I had a few more messages when I got back home that day. This time around, Carol had called me ten different times, none of the messages being pleasant, and one that was nothing but static sound.
I deleted them all and hopped onto the computer to book a flight to New York.
Fortunately for me, there was a morning flight available.
Klegghorn leaned over and picked up his phone. Taking a deep breath, he called Carol back.
"My plane arrives at 4," he said. "I'll meet you at the house."
Yesterday had me investigating my son's own room. A couple of posters were missing, seeing how there was some discoloration on the wall. The bed was unmade, which according to Carol was how it was left. Drawers were left open, more than half were empty. Same with the closet. There were bare hangers haphazardly strewn about both on the floor and on the rack. A few articles of clothing were on the floor, but not enough to account for all the available space.
Haven't been to a lot of crimes scenes, I knew my ex was being too paranoid.
This room may have looked ransacked at a quick glance, but I could see the truth.
Danny himself had left here in a hurry, and he left with a lot of anger judging by the state of things.
But Carol wasn't going to listen to that considering that she would have taken it as me accusing her of making Danny angry.
Klegghorn stepped out of the room, and looked at the tiny blond woman who had her hands on her hips and an angry scowl on her face. Even though she had a thin body, her face was a bit on the round side and she had a few wrinkles near her brows and mouth.
I guess both Carol and I developed some frown lines. But I wouldn't ever tell her that.
"Well?" Carol demanded.
Klegghorn sighed. "Has he ever given you a list of phone numbers from his friends?"
"None of the ones I have know anything," she snapped.
Klegghorn frowned. "Not even Ed?"
"Those two don't even talk to each other anymore."
"Do you still have his number?"
As a detective, you didn't leave a single stone unturned. Sometimes the most unlikely places turn out with vital information.
"Sorry, Mr. K. I don't have anything to say at the moment. Danny did call me a few days ago, and it was just to go off about everything. I mean, we haven't really talked much online, much less the phone. Wait… I did get a message. It was badly broken up but it almost sounded like Dan. I think that was two days ago. But it was only a few words. Something about money and highway."
"Thanks a bunch, Ed."
"No problem, Mr. K. Hey, maybe I can swing by your office when you're back in town. You're still at Anaheim, right? Been wanting to ask your opinion on a career choice since you're the only cop I trust to be honest with someone like me."
"Sure, kid. Anytime."
Klegghorn hung up with another sigh and rubbed his face with his hand.
So Danny had been in contact with at least one of his friends. But I wasn't going to mention that to Carol either. The woman probably would see it as a form of attack.
Especially considering that she had told me that Danny and Ed no longer were talking with each other.
Klegghorn stepped into a hotel room. He loosened his bow tie and fished out a paper from his pocket. He sat down on the bed, picking up the phone.
He began to dial.
I was able to make a few phone calls. In that time, I verified that Danny had almost emptied out his bank account, but had not done any transactions since the day Carol realized he was missing. Credit cards would be useless as he still didn't have one.
At least I was able to get the police department to issue out a BOLO on Danny's car, despite the fact that he wasn't registered as a missing person.
But nothing was reported, which indicated that Danny could have driven out of town, or maybe even out of state.
Calling around some more, I also determined that he didn't have a girlfriend, which meant he hadn't eloped.
Although if that were the case, I'm sure it would have been amusing to have seen Carol's reaction with that bit of news.
But other than that, there wasn't much more I was able to do that day. Without witnesses or more concrete information from Danny's peers, I was stuck.
I had no choice but to break the news to Carol. And book a flight back to California.
She wasn't going to be happy.
All that chaos lead to today. On my way to the airport, I received a call from Commissioner Lyons. And should I say it was right after Carol had called me just to give me another tongue lashing?
"Look, Klegghorn, I know I said you could have the days you needed off but we need you back in Anaheim as soon as possible."
Klegghorn sighed. "Not a problem. There isn't much I can do right now so..."
"The department will reimburse you if you can return today. Just fill out the paperwork."
Look. Integrity demands that I be honest and let the man know that I'm already on my way back. But since he was a bigger jerk than average, I really felt no need to let him know that. After all, the man offered to pick up the tab.
"I don't know how you manage it, but those Ducks might as well be a menace to human kind! Them and those wretched dinosaurs!"
"The Saurians, sir?"
"Whatever! They created chaos in the city, attacking one another! You need to get back here and get these animals under control."
Nice to know I could count on those Ducks to stay in trouble even when I'm not there.
And so here I am, arriving at the precinct, ready to tackle these problems that never seem to stop.
Klegghorn yawned as he headed into his office.
"Captain?" asked one of his people as they saw him enter. "Weren't you on your way to New York for family reasons?"
"Change of plans. Someone tell me what's going that I had to rush back?"
"Those lizards attacked the ducks again, this time while they were out at the park while participating in a friendly field hockey scrimmage."
"What's the damage?"
"A fence and a few trees, sir. Most of the chaos was from the people running away. The Commissioner kind of freaked but it wasn't as bad as some of the other past cases."
Klegghorn snorted. "I think the sight of any scale or feather causes him to panic right now. Get me all the paper work so I can review. I don't know what he expects me to do after the fact, but at least I'll have the information."
Shortly afterwards, Klegghorn was sitting at his desk, looking over the police reports, and giving the ducks another call.
"Are you guys completely incapable of taking a break without attracting mayhem? Some of us really need a vacation, you know."
"Captain?" responded Wildwing. "Uh, weren't you suppose to be…"
"Out of town? Yeah, yeah. It seems no one knows what to do with you lot without me around." Briefly Klegghorn wondered if Agent Belle was still around, would he have actually had an opportunity to take a break. Figures how the feds would impose when they weren't wanted, and not be found when they were.
The communication with the ducks was pretty quick. It seemed the encounter really was unexpected on both sides judging by how the damage was actually minimal. It was an instant reaction of firing on each other after spotting each other.
But his mind didn't stay focused on the task for long. His office phone rang right before he got ready to leave.
Do I really want to pick that up? It's probably Carol again, ready to call me names.
With a sigh, he reached over and picked up the phone.
My stomach is turning to lead. I am always referred to as 'Captain.' To be addressed as a civie never is a good thing.
The door to Klegghorn's home slowly swung open, and Klegghorn shuffled in, looking much older and haggard than he ever had on his worst days. His eyes were bloodshot, and his shoulders dropped.
So his son's car was found abandoned alongside a road in Nebraska, with no sign of him. The local police had taken the time to check with the NYPD on a possible BOLO.
They had tried calling Carol, but she wasn't answering for once. So they had called him next since his name was on the form.
He would have to call her and let her know. But then what? Make a trip to Nebraska?
Klegghorn picked up the photo frame on his coffee table and sighed once more, staring at the photo of Danny when he was about ten. He could feel his eyes burning as he hoped that his son was alive and well.
He set the photo down and leaned back into the sofa, staring into the ceiling.
He once again found himself wondering if it had been all worth it, sacrificing his marriage to his career. While he couldn't help but feel that his marriage probably would have only lasted a bit longer, it was not fighting for Danny that gave him regret. Maybe he would have been able to work things out with his son here.
The doorbell rang, snapping him out of his thoughts. Klegghorn grunted as he got himself out of the seat and make his way to his door.
"What can I help you with?" he started asking, wondering which of his neighbors was bothering him at this hour. He froze, feeling stunned, when he saw who was standing in the doorway.
A tall lanky young man with red hair stood sheepishly, two duffle bags by his feet, scratching the back of his head.
"Um, hi, Dad."
To be continued…
In the Next episode of Mighty Ducks:
In a battle between good and evil…
Allies must unite and stay strong…
Unexpected situation will be encountered…
Sacrifices will be made…
Saurian Code Productions: Season 2 finale will begin.