I’m Detective Sgt. Deviled Yeggs. I work homicide in the big city of Tracy. My partner is Jim Wednesday. Poached Yeggs, my nephew and Jim’s and my junior detective, is being annoying as usual.
It was Jim’s wedding day, but that was later. The Captain insisted that we both worked until noon. Our Captain, all heart. Actually, that is said often about our dear Captain Al Hart.
Poached said, “Deviled, have you heard from the Crime Scene guys on the ‘Beam Me Up’ case?
Jim answered, “Yes, Poached, the residue had elements of organic materials and maybe some burned metals. At least they think the slag was recently burned as opposed to being minerals in the soil. Size nine shoe is confirmed. George Evident wears size nine. He had taken his shoe off and held it over the burn scar, to not contaminate the scene, but the Crime Scene guys did the proper measurements.”
I added, “And we’ve been following up on Beemer Maximilian Wurst. Seems like he was the worst neighbor in the neighborhood. He was obsessed with high performance anything. He was always experimenting, making things faster. Dishwashers, washing machines, anything. His experiments rarely worked, but there was always a lot of noise. There were explosions on a regular basis. The 911 calls and official written complaints are well documented. Seems that the loud noises and such died down about a year ago. Seems Mr. Wurst would pack things into the trunk of his car and disappear for a day or two. When I told them to let us know if he ever showed up again, they said that we’d know when we saw the block party crank up. I did some follow up on Mr. Wurst’s purchases. Seems he was into exotic stuff, strange combinations in chemicals and rare earth metals. He had bought some odd, extra thick tubes. Maybe that’s what Biff was referring to when he said, ‘totally tubular.’ But none of that stuff was at the scene, not even tiny pieces of it.”
Jim asked, “Poached, did you get anything new out of the two witnesses?”
“Nope, they told the same story. The only details that were different in their stories was adding the number of birds that they saw. Callie told me what kind of birds, in English and Latin. Nothing about the man, who I assume is Mr. Wurst. It fits the description of a man doing experiments. When I asked Callie if she had seen Biff since the day of the beaming up, she put her hands to her head, and said ‘I knew I was going to regret that.’”
Jim exclaimed, “Mickie’s big and little hands are on the twelve, guys! We are out of here!”
The weather was still holding. Tuesday’s plans for an outdoor wedding were coming together. Jim asked me to be his best man and Tuesday asked my wife, Glyce, to be her matron of honor. Poached and our son, Easter Yeggs, were the ushers. Sophie Yeggs, our daughter, carried Tuesday’s train, while Blaise Yeggs, our six-year-old, carried the rings on a satin pillow. A nice small family affair. Det. Wolfe, from Stout county, who Tuesday worked for, made a very rare appearance, as he almost never left his office. It was unheard of for him to leave the county, but Tuesday insisted that the ceremony be held in the courtyard outside the First-Third Metho-Presby Church in Tracy with the pastor, Oswald Tozer presiding.
Everything was beautiful. There were beautiful flowers, beautiful sunshine, a beautiful couple. Tuesday had been working out at the gym to fit perfectly in her gown. She was breath taking.
Everything was coming off just as planned until the preacher said, “If any of you has a reason why these two should not be married, speak now or forever hold your peace.”
I suddenly figured out our mystery. I exclaimed, “I got it!”
Pastor Tozer asked, “You got what?”
I looked at Jim and Tuesday and Glyce. They were all staring at me. Glyce was trying to hold back one of her classic explosions. As some may know, ‘Glyce’ is a nickname, shortened from nitroglycerin, because of her explosive mood swings as a child.
I cleared my throat, looked at the grass at my feet and said, “Nothing. Please, keep going.”
I then looked back at Tuesday. My outburst had ruined her perfect day, but what I saw was the police officer, Tuesday, in a shooter’s stance holding a 44 Magnum. How she hid her weapon under a dress that could barely fit Tuesday I’ll never know.
Tuesday said through gritted teeth, “Deviled, you better not say that you have been working a murder case during our wedding! Now, I don’t remember if I loaded my weapon today. ‘Well, to tell you the truth, in all this excitement, I’ve kinda lost track myself. But being this is a .44 Magnum, the most powerful handgun in the world, and would blow your head clean off, you’ve got to ask yourself one question: ‘Do I feel lucky?’ Well, do ya, punk?’”
“Tuesday, you can put the weapon away. I was not working a homicide. Please, let’s just move on. Let’s chalk it up to Tourette’s.”
Glyce added, “Don’t worry, Tuesday. I’ll get to the bottom of this Tourette’s thing that isn’t a Tourette’s thing. We’ll have a nice talk when you get back from your honeymoon. We might even discuss where to place the shallow grave.”
It didn’t seem that she was joking either.
The bride and groom soon kissed and ran past the crowd. We had the reception in a large gazebo, since the crowd was small. Actually, with Detective Wolfe there, we couldn’t all fit on the gazebo. It was either everyone else or just Det. Wolfe. Det. Wolfe is a gourmand. At least, that’s what he says. He critiqued each food item at the reception. It was getting so bad, Jim and Tuesday threw wedding cake at him.
Jim pulled me aside in a quiet moment and asked about my outburst.
I apologized again. Jim said that it might be the one thing that they laugh about for years after, if I really had a “Eureka” moment, but if I lied to Tuesday, I was still in trouble.
“Nope, I did not lie. The ‘Beam Me Up’ Case should have been entitled the ‘Rocket Man’ case. It’s the only thing that fits the evidence. What’s the phrase? ‘Accidental Death by Misadventure?’ Mr. Wurst, who was always obsessed with going faster could not just build a jet pack to fly around in and pretend to be James Bond, he had to build a jet pack with rockets instead of jet thrusters. He overcompensated on the load calculations and went a bit higher than he expected to go. So, no homicide, just suicide through stupidity. But he was smart in one sense. He blended the right rocket fuel together to not leave a smoke trail. Otherwise, our witnesses would have known it was a rocket launch.”
Jim looked confused. “Deviled, if something goes up?”
“Jim, go on your honeymoon and don’t worry about it. I’ll ask Glyce to follow up at the university to calculate possible trajectories at different launch velocities and angles, factor in the wind at different elevations. If he went up, he came down somewhere. I wonder if Det. Holmes in Doyle County has a John Doe case that he can’t figure out. Then again, if Wurst was even worse at his calculations, he could be in another state.”
“Deviled, what about you and Glyce? She seemed ready to explode.” Jim asked, looking concerned.
“Jim, I may still be sleeping on the sofa when you get back. Either that or staying at the squad room, but after she calms down, she’ll be okay. She may even laugh about it. Nah, that won’t happen.”
Beemer M. Wurst – Beemer is the BMW nickname. As for the ‘Wurst,’ I bowled in a bowling league in Germany, an Army officers’ league. The brigade staff officers, all LTCs and Majors, called their team, the ‘Wurst,’ and they were. Their rallying cry when anyone got a strike or a spare, by accident, was “One in a Row!”
Rev. Oswald Tozer is a blend of Oswald Chambers and A. W. Tozer, of course.
The ring bearer at our wedding held the rings on a satin pillow. He entertained himself before walking down the aisle by bouncing them on the pillow. To ensure the rings didn’t fall off, the rings were double and triple knotted. The best man could not untie the knots, so my brother, who was presiding, hoisted up his robe and pulled out a pocketknife to cut the rings free. I assume Blaise Yeggs had fun with the rings also.
The quote made by Tuesday is the proper quote from the movie, Dirty Harry. It is often misquoted as “Do ya feel lucky, Punk?”
My paternal grandmother had me read the dictionary definition of ‘punk’ in the late 50s – before the present concepts were added. When I admitted that I did not fit that definition, she told my older siblings to never call me that again. I think that’s when I became ‘monkey.’
As for the jet pack with rocket boosters? That comes from the 1995 Darwin Award winner. A guy supposedly strapped a JATO (Jet Assist Take Off) system to his Chevy. He did not factor in how to get it to stop and was embedded into an Arizona mountain side. The Darwin Award is posthumously awarded to the best (most spectacular) example of how Darwin is correct in that the inferior examples of the species weed themselves out before reproducing. As for this Darwin winner however, Snopes simply has a one-word rebuttal, “False.” The Darwin Awards have since confirmed that the story was an urban legend.