Mama Take This Badge Off Of Me, I Can’t Use It Anymore.

Hey dere Max.

Hey, Dog.

See, dat’s whut I talkin bout. Fox never did bother lernin mah name, jes call me ‘sergeant” r whatev. Aint like I got a hard name t’member.

Hell, I’ll be da foist one ta admit he can a joik. But… damn man, look at dis!

I guess Max should be thankful.

Is his case files. Whatabout em?

These aint gonna wait for im ta get back frum whereveh da heck he’s vanished to! You can’t stuff em in tupperwares and shove in da back o da fridge! Someones gotta keep up on dese or he’s out of a job!

A snort. S’whut ‘f he is? Shouldn’t-a run off.

Den I’M outa a job!

Oh. Well, looks like you gon hafta pick up da slack.

Geez, I can’ do dis job! Sly’s like… he’s like… somekinda knowing about stuff guy! Mosta da time when we’re on a case I jus space out an wait fer ‘im ta point at somebody an say ‘you did it.”

Dey aint no way you can do dis? I mean… lesse here, missin person on a rabbit, dat aint gone be too hard, right?

Says you… I bin workin on dis monstah all weekend. Figgered it’d be easy, roight? Feh. There’s a nasal sigh.

You missin dat clown? Gaaaay.

Ahh, shu’up! I got woik ta do!

Long pause.

Mebee he treated me like doit, but dammit, ‘e was… I needed him, Dog. I can’t do dis coppah racket on my own, I got no freggin clue.

Dat a metaphor?

I don even know anymore! S’like I’m falling out of a plane wit no parachute, cept dis time he aint gonn, dunno, swoop by in some custom plane wit a big ol net. I’m jes fallin and it’s only a matter a time fore I hit. S’like I’m knockin on-

Knock knock knock.

…uh, c’min?

Max… I…

Roz, what’s wrong?

…there’s a call for Slylock… and I think, I mean, it sounds like-

Give it here!

“Hello, is this a detective Slylock Fox? Particularly brilliant? Because I think I’ve got a tip on one of his cases.”

Sly?! Ohmygawd where are you? What happened? What’s going on?

“…I’m sorry, I must have the wrong number. You seem to think I am someone named ‘Sly,’ no doubt an intelligent and very handsome individual. If detective fox is not available, perhaps I should just go-”

No wait!

“Can you perhaps connect me to his assistant? I believe his name is Mouse.”

Uh, speaking.

“What a coincidence.”

Sly, if dis is all youre idea of a joke, let me tell you it so aint funny at all, why-

“I understand that this case involves a rabbit in his teens who had snuck onto private property, presumably to swim, seeing as how his clothes were found folded up on a log near the waters edge.”

yeah.

“And all leads have lead to precisely squat.”

Holy Aslan, Sly! Why’re we playin dis game? Why not jes come in an-

“That’s because you’ve been following the leads the wrong way. The property in question belongs to a human runt, with, lets see… a physical handicap where his knees don’t work, and he has to hop everywhere, and a real nasty inferiority complex to go with it. The assumption being that he snapped and did away with the kid somehow.”

Yeah.

“But just cause it happened on his property doesn’t mean a thing. After all, we’re talking about a lake. Anybody with a boat or a pair of water wings can swim right up. Not leave any tracks, either.”

…ya know somethin.

“Well, there is an alligator, lives down at the poor end of the lake, who’s been suspected in several illegal predatation cases. Never enough evidence to indight. Maybe this time, though.”

Wow, I… thanks, Sly.

“Why do you keep calling me that? Though it is, doubtless, the name of a very attractive and brilliant person who gets all the ladies daydreaming about him.”

Ok, den, be dat way! But… f’ya see Sly, uh, Detective Fox ‘fore I do… tell him.

“Yes?”

Tell ‘im I got tings undah control.

There’s a noise that could be a laugh or a snort. “Shut up, Max.”

He hung up… did we trace dat?!

Oh… that would have been a good idea.

Gahh…

So watcha gon do? We go’n ta find him?

Mebee later. The mouse pulls on his hat and heads for the door. Right now, doh, I got a moider ta solve.


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