The J.Harlequin Debacle: A RP Stage Short
(Everyone's a suspect!)
There was a quite noticeable scuff on the floor.
The creme de la creme of the world's crime-fighting society were at a formal dinner at her modest country residence that evening, and there was a scuff on the floor.
Molly Maltese sighed in tones of great irritation and wondered how she hadn't noticed the mark BEFORE all her guests had arrived. They were in the dining room now, chattering happily and dining on the delicious meal she had hired a cook specifically for. Many of her friends and associates were then, including some new faces. One new face in particular; a Mr. John Harlequin. He was a new politician in the area, determined to take on Joe Hollis for mayor. His past was basically unknown; his favorability extreme. Citizens either loved him or hated him.
Just as she had this thought, someone shrieked.
Raising a brow, she hurried from the parlor to look in. All the guests seated at the long table were either standing or sitting with shocked expressions; and John Harlequin was quite shockingly purple.
Even as she rushed into the room and neared him, Harlequin gave one final gasp and died. Silence descended as she grabbed his glass and sniffed at the rim delicately. She turned, and countless eyes bored into her.
"Alright, which one of you poisoned my guest?" she snarled.
Whispers and titters danced along the table, before a very familiar man stood. "We should call the police." he said.
Another raised a brow. "There's a room full of detectives here. I'm sure that's not necessary."
"It is when one of those detectives may be a murderer!"
"We can't send for the police anyway; can't you see its been snowing all this time? We can't go anywhere!" another shouted. Molly went to the window and looked out. Sure enough, snow blanketed everything in sight. The cars parked out front were completely obscured by white.
"Nobody is leaving! If you try, I'll shoot every last one of you!" Molly yelled, pulling out a pistol.
After a moment of silence, Marc spoke up. "Molly?" He asked, "are you sure that it was an accident?"
Molly gave him a suspicious look.
"What do you mean?" She asked in return.
"Think about it," Marc said, "I mean, someone in here was murdered and now your maid is hitting you in the face with a vase."
Whispers flooded the room.
"Correct me if I'm wrong, but does she not have access to everyroom?" Marc said.
A silence filled the room.
Someone spoke up after a minute and said, "You know, he does have a point."
Molly rubbed her head.
"I fail to see any reason Elsie would have to kill Harlequin. She's just a simple maid. Unless someone put her up to it, in which case we're back to square one."
Elsie spoke, and everyone turned to look at her.
"Please Miss, I don't know nothin! It was an accident, I swear!" Elsie pleaded.
Molly raised an eyebrow. "For the sake of your employment status I should hope so. Be that as it may you have made yourself a suspect in a murder investigation. You'll have to stick close; same rules apply. No going off by yourself until we find the killer. Now, unless those with evidence and/or theories are done, may I suggest we retire? It is quite late after all."
Sleuth About Town
Elizabeth turned back to silence as she heard Molly and Marc speaking. Despite the complicated situation, her pale green eyes looked almost dreamy as she stared at a window.
After a few minutes, she sighed and came back to the real world.
"I totally agree with Molly. And I'd advice all of you to lock your doors. As adorable as Molly's hospitality is, we can't forget that one of us is not a very nice guest."
She then turned to Molly.
"Is there anything I can assist you with, Molly?", she asked, politely. She could only imagine how stressfull it was for the woman to have a bomb like that dropped in her house.
"No darling. I'm sure it will be all right." Molly said, and the guests filed out of the room. As they eared the stairs, Molly said, "you have chosen who you will be rooming with this evening, I trust. I know propriety may be an issue, but remember if there is a murderer running amok, you may want a good shot, or a strong man with you."
She winked and climbed the stairs, directing Elsie to show the guests into each room. She beckoned to Joseph Zeo.
"Mr. Zeo, you may come with me." and she led the way down a short hallway to a solid oak door. She opened it and flicked a switch, illuminating her bedroom. It was definitely a suite, a sort of alcove before them branching out into a wider space where her bed was situated.
"The bathroom is over there, I shall set you up by this partition." she said, locking the door behind them and gesturing to a long green divan where a pillow and blanket lay. "I'll be over there if you need anything."
She crossed into her space and stood before her mirror, pulling pins out of her hair. As the copper-red strands spun free and tumbled down her back she gave a little sigh, and examined the bruise on her forehead.
"Nothing a little makeup won't cure." she thought, and then checking over her shoulder, unzipped her dress and let it pool to the floor, swinging a silk robe over her chemise in one swift motion. She tied it loosely and went to hang up the dress in the closet.
"So, Zeo, what are your theories on our murderer?" she called.
As Molly and Zeo walked away for the night, everyone stood around discussing the murder. Marc decided to go into the kitchen and dinning area to look for anything that might give them a lead.
He slowly pushed open the door that lead into the kitchen and dinning area where he began looking. He'd worked on cases over the years in which people had been poisoned and killed. The only difference in this and those was that he was a suspect.
He scaned the floor under the table and chairs. He went into the kitchen and began looking for any type of vile or bottle that may have contained the rat poison. After searching for a mere fifteen minutes, he thought about giving up when something caught his eye.
Marc bent down and put on a glove, careful not to contaminate it, he picked up the small bottle that lay next the trash can.
"Where did you come from?" he thought to himself as he began to stand up holding the bottle.
Just as he began examining the bottle, which may have contained the poison, he was startled when someone walked in behind him.
Marc didn't turn around to see who it was. But the voice of the person told him who it was.
"What are you doing in here?" Asked the voice.
Sleuth About Town
"Actually, no, I haven't.", she stated, shaking her head.
"I can think of a few good gentleman I can share a room with, but I must be sure. Being killed is not a good way to spend the night with a handsome man."
With these words, she wished Molly a good night and went upstairs, leaving her purse in the room with two beds. She removed her shoes and socks and went back downstairs, remembering she had left her gloves there.
As she was ready to go back up, she heard a sound in the kitchen and walked into it, seeing Marc examining something.
"What are you doing in here? I thought everyone was paired up and in their rooms." , she thought for a moment. "Would you like to share a bedroom?"
The woman blushed vividly.
"There are two single beds...", she explained, her gaze falling on Marc's hand.
"What have you found, Mr. Lacrimosa?", she asked, being more formal than she usually was with Marc.
" A clue. I think I've just found a clue." Marc replied.
" And yes I accept your offer to share a room for the night." He said turning around to face Elizabeth.
" But first lets go talk to Molly and Zeo." Marc said heading to Molly's room.
" Charlie old boy whats say you and I share a room for the night?" Heim asked. " I mean after all we have both already become prime suspects. I doubt anyone else would have us as room mates." Heim asked with a bit of humor in his voice.
" Heim you read my mind." Charlie replied.
The two detectives chose the room closest to Molly's...for some reason they both felt that she needed protecting. They had just settled down and were conversating on the nights events.
" So tell me Heim which way your suspicions point?" Charlie asked removing his shoulder holster and placing his pistol on the night stand next to his cot.
Just then they heard knocking out in the hall...Heim cracked open the door. He saw Marc and Elizabeth knock on Molly's door then the door opened and the two headed inside.
" Charlie I just saw Marc and Elizabeth go in Molly's room. It seemed rather urgent." Heim said.
" What? Why are they out walking around everyone is supposed to be in their rooms now." replied Charlie.
" I think we need to find out whats going on." Charlie said as he stoop up and replaced his pistol and shoulder holster.
" I d@mn sure hate being left in the dark." He said as he walked towards the door.
" Wait up. I'm coming too." Heim said falling in step behind Charlie.
"What are you two doing?" Molly asked not even trying to hide her suspiciousness.
" We, well really Marc found something." Elizabeth replied.
" I went to the kitchen when everyone was headed up stairs. I found this by the trash bin." Marc said holding up a small bottle.
Zeo was in front of him at once. " Let me see that." Zeo commanded. (Cont.)
He took the bottle from Marc touching only the edges with his bare fingers. He didnt want his fingerprints contaminating the evidence.
***3 minutes later***
The door came open. All four detectives in the room turned facing the door. Each one drawing a fire arm and leveling it at the door. Only to see Charlie and Heim standing there.
" What do you think your doing!" Molly yelled.
" Um sorry. I...We thought that something was going on and since we are both prime suspects. Well we figured we were intitled to any breaking news." Charlie said.
" Now if you would please lower your weapons." Heim said " I hate having those things pointed at me."
Everyone in the room re-holstered their pistol.
"Molly where did you draw that from? Your in a robe." Charlie asked with a smirk on his face.
" Your just lucky I dont shoot you anyways pal. And I've told you before I care weapons in places you dont want to know about." She replied. ( see Reformed Burglar RP)
After all the commotion settled down Zeo filled in Charlie and Heim on the latest development.
"Marc you dont have any witnesses that saw you discover that?" Charlie asked.
Before Marc could reply " Thats going not going to go well, who ever the killer is can use that and say they were framed that you planted that evidence."
" I know you wouldnt do that. But not everyone here knows you like those of us in this room know you." Charlie said.
"If the killer says they were framed, then why on earth would I be here trying to show Elizabeth what I've found. See, I'm using gloves, trying not to contaminate this for, it can have finger prints." Marc said, "Zeo is risking it by not using gloves."
"What were you doing in the kitchen alone?" Heimlich asked with cuiosity.
"Funny that you should ask, Heimlich," Marc replied, "I was in there looking for clues. Harlequin was killed with rat poison and this little bottle, may have been used to carry the poison."
A silence filled the room.
"Look, I want to get some sleep." Molly said, "And I'm sure that Mr. Zeo does too. So here's what's going to happen. We are all going to go to bed, and tomorrow morning, we'll discuss this."
"I agree," Joseph said. He handed Marc the bottle back, and Marc took it with his gloved hand.
The four detectives went to their rooms. Elizabeth fell asleep almost instantly but Marc lay awake. He couldn't help but wonder, who had the rat poison. And why rat poison?
He walked up to the desk in the room quietly and sat down. Careful not to wake up Elizabeth, he turned on the desk lamp and pulled out his finger print dusting kit. He began to look for finger prints.
After a minute or so, he got one. A full finger print on the middle of the bottle. Not just one finger print, but two which appeared to be an index finger and a thumb print. Marc pulled out some tape and carefully removed the finger prints from the bottle, preserving the prints on the tape.
He shut the light off and went to sleep.
**The next morning, everyone had breakfast. Marc had never seen so many paranoid looks among so many faces. Everyone afraid they were next to get killed with rat poison.
Even Marc himself, was slightly scared.
After everyone was showered and cleaned, they all met in the study room.
"Last night," Marc said, "A few of you know that I found this bottle in the kitchen by the trash bin. (Contin..)
I found two prints. An index finger print, and a thumb print."
"How do we know they're not yours?" Vulkie asked.
"Good question. You see, unlike some detectives, I use gloves when handling evidence. I know not to contaminate it."
"How do we know you're not the killer?" Someone else asked.
"Because," Marc replied, "Not once, have I gone into the kitchen yesterday except to dine with my fellow detective friends. And, I was sitting five seats away. Count them. 1 2 3 4 5. Don't you think that's a little hard to poison someone's drink sitting that far away?"
Molly then opened her mouth to talk.
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