An Off Weekend– A Deviled Yeggs Mystery

I’m Detective Staff Sergeant Deviled Yeggs.  I work homicide in the big city of Tracy.  My partner is Jim Wednesday.  Poached Yeggs, homicide detective and my nephew, has been working with Jim and me.

I had eaten my sandwich while doing paperwork.  I still had my share of the casework, but I did most of the paperwork, double-checking the paperwork from Jim and Poached, triple-checking if they did not close the case.

I was just signing off on a report that Poached had filed when my phone rang.  The caller ID said that it was my wife, but I decided to answer with my usual official response.  “Tracy Police Department, Detective Division, Homicide.  You are speaking to Detective Staff Sergeant Deviled Yeggs.  How may I help you?”

This sexy voice answered, “Oooo, that sounded so sexy.  I need a tall, strong man with big muscles, and a winning smile.  Someone willing to go on an adventure.”

I thought for a second.  “I think Jim Wednesday is available. …”

The sexy voice continued, “I was thinking of you, Detective Sergeant Staff whatever.”

I rechecked the caller ID.  “Ummm, to whom am I speaking?”

The sexy voice said, “I know you have checked the caller ID.  You know who this is.”

I replied, “Yes, I know, but my wife should be teaching classes now.  She has not used this particular sexy voice in nearly eleven years, about the time she got pregnant with our third child.  And it is starting to freak me out a little.  What is the purpose of this call?”

She replied, “The purpose is to get your rear in gear in get it out here.  I am double-parked in front of a police precinct, Buster!!!!  Now get moving!  Now ask Gisele for some comp time.  Grab your hat and head out the door!  Now, Buddy Boy!!  And absolutely no questions.  This adventure can be pleasant or a sheer horror show.  Your choice!”

When my wife uses “Buster” and “Buddy Boy” in the same set of instructions, she is saying, “Do as I say or you will pay.”  Rather poetic, like her telling me to get my rear in gear and get out here.

I grabbed my hat, and I opened my office door.  Gisele stood there with the paperwork already filled out.  She said, “Since you are already late, I saved you having to walk to my desk.”

I signed them and I looked at her smiling, and knowing, face.  I said, “I will get in trouble if I ask a question, so I will make some accusations.  Gisele, you found out about this before I did.  Obvious having the paperwork ready.  But I am thinking that I was the only one in Tracy who did not know.”

Gisele smiled and fluttered her eyes, something the patrolmen became weak in the knees about, “Please, Deviled, there is probably a homeless person somewhere in Tracy that does not know a thing about your upcoming weekend.”  She snatched the paperwork from my hand and went back to her office.  Jim and Poached cheered me on as I left the squad room.  Yep, I was the last to know.

She said double-parked, but no one was double-parked in front of the precinct.  I then looked for my wife’s SUV.  It was nowhere in sight.  Then I heard a honk, front and center.  Glyce was on the passenger’s side of a cherry red late model sports car with a rag top.  Glyce said, “Put the hat in the trunk.  I want the top down.  You drive.  I navigate.  Head north on highway 41 and then west on highway 6.”

Once we were out of town, traveling west on highway 6, I made a statement.  Until then I had said nothing and she had not either.  “Dear, I know I am to ask nothing, but I would like to ask about motivation.  Sure, you are in full control of the itinerary, but may I ask why?  What precipitated this?”

Glyce, short for nitroglycerin, explosive when shaken, and this might be tantamount to shaking, stared down the road for about a full minute, at least long enough to be extremely awkward.  “Dev, Sweetie, I was afraid the romance was gone in our relationship.  There is such a rush of romance in everyone around us, but we are simply there as observers.”

I knew I was in trouble, but I had to ask, “What romance?”

She stared at me like I had grown a third eye between the other two.  If I had, it was not any better at seeing than my first two.  “Dev, do you not know that all three of our children have love interests?”

I replied, “Easter and Jemima is a legitimate romance.  Sophie and Emmett have only gone to the Lily the Pink waterslide together a couple of times. Three times tops.  And Margie and Blaise is just a social media thing.”

Glyce corrected me, “For a detective, Dev, you miss a lot of the details.  Sophie has been going to Lily the Pink with Emmett on the bus a couple of days each week, and they sit in Pink’s office to do their homework at the dining room table.  They discuss what they learned and include Pink in the conversation if she is so inclined.  As for Margie, she calls Blaise every other night.  His bear hug had the same effect on her as yours did on me.  And you are blind to it all.  Then Otto and Zuzka have announced their engagement.  I think your old pal and now fellow detective, George Evident, will propose to Jochebed.  I don’t think Ralph and Amy’s engagement should even count as romance.  Ralph is lucky that Amy did not press charges, but then again, you need good computer service, but I find the computer geeks hard to understand.  And then we have four ladies that we know who are pregnant.  At least the four in the expectant mothers’ club, all expecting their first.  And just think, Dev.  You are about to be a great uncle to one little baby and a half-brother to another.  And I, I, umm, I just feel left out.”

Okay, the adventure is now ranging into the terror side of things.  I was wondering when the pleasant adventure might start.  I ventured, “So, you are looking for a spark of romance.  You aren’t thinking about adding a fourth child.”

She huffed, “And what is wrong with a fourth child?  A lot of people wait until they are my present age to start having children.  Having one more child would not be unheard of.  It would be socially acceptable.  It would be a planned child, not an accident.”

“Really?!”  It was getting beyond terror into the ludicrous zone of horror.

“Dev, I feel that I missed out on being a mommy.  I was too career oriented.  I saw too many people go through physical therapy thinking that they could not do it.  Being a coach did not work with many of them.  If they had an abusive experience with a coach, they would shrink from the ‘terror’ of being coached by a therapist.  And I also found that if positive reinforcement was employed, they might make better than expected recovery.  But as I studied and added more courses and then developed a new department at the university, I look back and see the hugs and kisses that I missed by not being home.  Or worse, at home with a ‘do not disturb’ sign on my office door.”

I shook my head, “You were at every school play.  You were at almost every game when they were in sports.  You irritated your professors, deans, and such by insisting that the meeting end on time so that you could have the evening meal with your children.  You did a lot more stuff than most career women do.”

“But if we had another child now, it would be different.  The department and the degree program are well-established.  I only have a couple of meetings each month.  There are some of the professors that have their infants with them in their office when they have office hours.  Besides, there is a day care at T.R.U.S.T. for faculty and employees and the policies are quite liberal.   T.R.U.S.T. is still a conservative school, but they see needs and fill the need.”

“But, Sweetheart, I would like to retire someday soon.”

“You?!  Retire?!  Poached may be the dead body magnet, but when you get around a dead body, you go into detective mode in a heartbeat.  I do not see you ever retiring, unless it is forced upon you.  And I think Sophie will become your boss before then.”

For the rest of our drive in a “middle age crisis car,” I was quiet.  She had planned where we would eat our evening meal and we arrived at a mountain resort on the foothills just after dark.  When I went into the resort managers cabin, I felt ‘heavy’.  The manager handed me the keys to our cabin and a map, although our cabin was two buildings down from hers.  I asked if she was okay.  While I felt a little off in her cabin, she looked off.  She admitted to having a headache, nausea, and exhaustion.  Her husband felt the same way and he had gone to bed early.

Glyce had done her research.  The only telephone and internet connection was in the manager’s cabin.  There was no cellphone service.  We were disconnected completely for the weekend.  Glyce had them place a canoe on our front porch.  She said that “we” would go canoeing on the lake Saturday.  I would be paddling since I needed the exercise, and she would be sitting in the canoe watching the scenery go by.  Then we would awake before dawn on Sunday to hike up the mountain and sit in a special spot to watch the sunrise, complete with Scripture and a hymn.  Glyce had printed everything beforehand.  We would be singing, In the Garden, as the sun came up.  But the rest of the time, she wanted us to get reacquainted, you know, in the bedroom.

The air seemed fresher at our cabin.  The short hairs on the back of my neck started to stand on edge.  Why did the air suddenly seem fresher?  The manager said that the main cabin was on gas from a landfill, but we would have to start a wood fire in our cabin.  Lucky for us, it was too early in the season for a serious amount of snow and none was in the forecast.  I started a fire and then turned to see Glyce in one of the sexy lingerie things that she had gotten for being a part of Pink’s wedding party.

We maneuvered to the bedroom.  We managed to get our clothing off, and then a horrendous explosion came from the direction of the main cabin.  Glyce said, “Your love making is improving.  The ground was shaking!”

I turned and reached for my pants.  I said, “We haven’t gotten started with the love making.”  She tried to pull me back into bed, even though we could see an orange glow in the direction of the main cabin.

As we got frisky, there was a knock at the door…

I threw on my pants as I yelled, “I’ll be there in a minute.”

The voice from outside said, ”No need.  The main cabin just blew up.  There’s a fire.  A couple of people are fighting the spot fires.  I’m running into town to tell the police and fire department.  You may want to pack and move.  Don’t know if the spot fires will spread.”

Before I could get my pants on, he had driven away.  I then got dressed properly to assess the situation and help where I could.  I saw three people doing a good job of putting out the spot fires.  When the explosion occurred, it threw burning pieces of the cabin in every direction.  Two of the “fire fighters” were working on the cabin side.  I felt we were safe.  As for the main cabin, there was one intense fire near the back of what had been the main cabin.  I looked at it carefully.  It was the main gas supply to the cabin that had ruptured.  I looked at the pipe leading to the torch created by the escaping gas burning.  There was a valve just below the inferno.

As I started to crawl beneath the flame to reach the valve, a hand grabbed me.  Glyce said, “That kind of valve needs a tool, and you are not going in there without something wet covering you.  She had taken the laundry bin from the cabin and soaked a blanket with water.  I looked around in the rubble and found a few bits of metal that I might use as a tool.  There was a tire iron, a pickaxe head, a spike that probably had held logs of the cabin together, and a shovel handle.  Glyce laid the blanket over me, and I crawled up to the pipe.  It was hot as blue blazes as the water rapidly evaporated.  The valve was a small plug that had a flat tab that only a specific tool will turn, but the tab had a hole in the middle.  Of all the “tools” that I had brought, the spike (a nail about eight inches long) was the only thing that fit into the hole.  I turned off the valve and the inferno turned into a few spot fires within the home.  We also found the water shutoff valve to the main cabin.  Depending on where the source of water was, stopping the water going nowhere into the crater of the cabin, might save some pressure for bathing.

Of the three fire fighters, one complained, “Hey!!!  Who turned off the lights?”  The other two cheered as the source of other fires that might start was turned off., but indeed, it was a lot darker – easier to see the remaining spot fires, but difficult to see the hazards scattered everywhere.  Hazards like broken pieces of the cabin or maybe other things that I kept from Glyce.  I told her that she should go back to the cabin.  She insisted on shadowing me.  It was the perfect opportunity for her to see me in action.  I told her that she might see some things that she might never be able to unsee.

With few spot fires remaining and a clear sky and near a full moon, we were starting to get our night vision.  I had just warned Glyce about seeing something horrible, when she said, “What is th…”  I then heard her retching.  Glyce started to cry.  “Dev, I picked up a piece of sheet rock and the manager was staring at me.”

“Is she alive?”

“No, very much dead.  All I found was her head.”

“You can go back to the cabin.  It might get worse.”  She refused.  She didn’t think she had anything left to throw up and she was wondering if she even liked me anymore.  Anyone that can see all that gore and not be moved by it, like in throwing up, she did not think they were altogether human.  I told her that I had seen stuff like this before.

At one point, we saw a tree nearby.  We needed to take a break.  The fire fighters had put out the spot fires.  Two had left, completely left, packing their bags and driving away.  All the electricity fed through the main house to the cabins.  No phone, no cell service, no internet, and now no electricity.  I hoped the couple in the electric car had enough juice left to reach a charging station.  The other fire fighter found a bucket.  He was filling it from the boat dock and pouring the water on any remaining embers.  An ember with a bit of wind could restart the fires.

As we rested beneath the tree, I kept hearing something dripping nearby.  As I was trying to find where the drips were landing, Glyce turned on the flashlight of her cellphone and pointed it up into the tree.  She calmly said, “Dev, we found the manager’s husband.  At least all the pieces seem to be intact this time.”

I climbed the tree and confirmed that he was dead.  I got out my notebook and wrote everything down as we found it and where.  I also formulated my theory that I could share with the police and / or fire department.  It was still dark when we got back in the cabin.  We each took a cold shower, and we were asleep by the time our heads hit the pillows.

About 2-3 hours later, the sun blasted through the open window.  Okay, one pane had been broken by the shock of the blast.  I threw a pillow over my head, but the woman in the bed with me started to fondle certain body parts.  When we had showered and fell into bed, we had not even dressed in our pajamas.

As we got frisky, there was a knock at the door…

I threw on my pants as I yelled, “I’ll be there in a minute.”

The person that was at the door was a member of the volunteer fire department.  He thanked me for turning off the gas.  I thanked him for coming by and ensuring everything was safe.

As I got back to the bedroom, still half awake, I was ambushed by Glyce who jumped from behind the door, grabbing my pants and pulling them down to my ankles.  I stepped out of the pants, nearly tripping, and she shoved me onto the bed.

As we got frisky, there was a knock at the door…

I threw on my pants as I yelled, “I’ll be there in a minute.”

This time it was a deputy from the county sheriff’s office.  He asked if he could come in and ask a few questions.  I looked around to see that the bedroom door was closed.  The deputy noticed my service weapon on the kitchen table.  To not get the deputy worried, I produced my shield that was clipped to my belt, the same pants I had worn the day before, the same pants that smelled of burning log cabin logs and burning flesh.

The deputy groaned.  “I do not need someone taking over my case.”

I said, “Too bad, I have notes from last night, observations from before the explosion and the locations of two dead bodies, one badly dismembered.  I also have a theory, if you are interested.”

The deputy, about half my age said that he would come up with his own theory once he had interviewed everyone.  He asked questions about unknown people in the area.  I explained we were all unknown to each other.  This was a resort, or it used to be.  His questions were, to a point, all idiotic.  No guest seemed to know the other guests.  Many guests left when the explosion occurred.  Why?  There had been an explosion.  No power.  Possibly no water soon.  The fire, at the time, was spreading.  No I had no idea who the three men were that put out the fire or which cabin they were in.  I had no idea who the guy was who said he was going to get help.  I had no idea if he had come back.  From what he said probably not.

The deputy muttered something about how I had been far from helpful.  He then asked, “Is there anyone else in this cabin that might have something useful to say?”

Glyce emerged from the bedroom.  Her arms were folded.  I could tell that she was angry, but she spoke in a calm monotone voice.  It was like she was hypnotizing the young deputy.  She said, “I have something to say.  If I wanted to get a big promotion and maybe make a name for myself so that I could run for sheriff, I would ask the detective who has been doing this longer than I have been alive what he observed before the explosion and take the notes from his notebook on where all the body parts were after the explosion.  It would be information that I gathered.  Then I would ask the detective what his theory was.  All the information would be the information that I gathered, including a theory that could be the correct cause of the explosion.  That is if I was interested in advancement.  If you want to ask your non-productive questions, I will give you the same answers that my husband gave you.”

The deputy swallowed a few times, but he eventually did as Glyce told him to do.

I surmised that the illness of the husband and wife was due to a gas leak.  I had also gotten a bit ill when I walked into the main cabin’s lobby.  The husband had gone to bed, but his wife was still working behind the reception desk, probably when the explosion occurred.  The manager was a smoker.  A lit cigarette after a long day of working in a “no smoking” resort lobby.  The cigarette or the lighter probably set off the gas.  The explosion leveled the house, ripping the manager into pieces.  Since the husband was a few walls from the blast, it was mostly blast wind that propelled him into the tree.  The autopsy would reveal if he was already dead from breathing in the gas.”

Now being more inquisitive than authoritarian, he interrupted, “How did you know about her being a smoker and why was there no smell of mercaptan?”

I shrugged, “As for the mercaptan, I think that the people at the landfill cut corners.  The district attorney may be able to make a case against the landfill people.  When you pipe gas a long distance, you need to add an odorizing station at the point of distribution.  This seems to be an under the table operation.  Maybe find out who was supposed to be getting the gas.  Landfills always produce enough gas, not pure methane, to run even larger places than this.  But, without an odorizing station, the gas would be odorless.  The symptoms would include headaches, nausea, and exhaustion, eventually death even without the explosion.  As for the cigarette smoking, the lady had wrinkles far more than someone of her age should have.  There was a little rattle of phlegm when she laughed.  There were nicotine stains on her teeth and her fingers.  And there were some minor burns in the blouse that she wore.  If I had gotten closer, I might have smelled the smoke smell in her clothing.  That smell lingers for hours, but with the room filling with gas, it might have blocked that smell.”  And then I added, “And when I was checking in, I was starting to feel a little ill, and when I reached this cabin, I felt like I was just smelling fresh air for the first time in a while.  I tried to put two and two together before the explosion, but I was unable to do so.”  I was not about to state that I was distracted.

He left, and Glyce turned to me.  “I am not giving up on this weekend. Change into something that is not soaked in soot and grab the canoe.  I will do my part and grab the paddles.”

I knew better, but I said it anyway, “Don’t strain yourself now.”  She merely grinned, in a seductive way.

After several hours of paddling, we returned to the cabin.  I took yet another cold shower.  Glyce had done as she said she would do, she watched me paddle and looked at the scenery.

When I emerged from the shower, she was wearing yet another of her new lingerie, even skimpier than the last one.  I was fresh from the shower, and it took me no time to untie a couple of bows.  The lace fell to the floor.

As we got frisky, there was a knock at the door…

I threw on my pants as I yelled, “I’ll be there in a minute.”

This time, it was the daughter of the manager and her husband.  It turned out that the daughter was the owner of the resort, or actually her husband was the owner.  She sat down while I consoled her and assured her that the deaths were quick.  She told us that our expenses would be reimbursed to our credit cards, but we insisted to leave it the way it was.  Other than one night sleep lost, we would do everything we planned on doing, or so I thought at the time.

When I finally returned to the bedroom, Glyce was sound asleep.

We awoke well before dawn and hiked up hill for over an hour.  As the glow of the sunrise gave us enough light to read the Scripture, we started singing In the Garden as the sun came over the horizon.

We got back to the cabin and Glyce suggested that we get naked and have some physical workout before showering and driving back to Tracy.

As we got frisky, there was a knock at the door…

I threw on my pants as I yelled, “I’ll be there in a minute.”

It was the deputy.  “This is the second time that I have caught you without your pants on.  Yes, I could tell.  Have you and your wife been up here to recapture your youth?”

I replied, “You are close.  You might actually make a good detective someday. But why the return trip?”

He nodded, “I just wanted to thank you and your wife.  She suggested that I try your approach.”  About that time, Glyce screamed.  She really hates cold showers.  The deputy gave me a puzzled look, but I suggested he go on and tell me where the investigation has gone.  “The landfill company records have no purchases of odorizing stations or purchases of mercaptan.  In talking to a few employees, the resort was not the only company receiving gas from the landfill.  No one has an odorizing station.  I guess talking to the people stuck at work on Saturday afternoon reaps benefits.  The fire inspector did not discuss anything with you and drew the same conclusion of an accidental explosion due to an undetected leak.  Since two people were killed, the DA is going for criminal neglect.  They might get those responsible some jail time, but then there are charges for tax evasion since they did this gas distribution without license and never reported the income.  This might hit the news.  It’s technically not my first murder, but a double-wrongful death is a good start.  I just wanted to thank you.  Have a nice trip back to Tracy.  It’s a fairly long drive.  Is that sweet machine yours?

“A rental.  Just for the middle-aged crisis weekend.”

“And thank your wife for me.  She has a way of getting your attention.”

“Sure will, Deputy.  You are going to go far in law enforcement.  I can tell.”  With that the deputy left.  Glyce opened the bedroom door, fully dressed and ready to go home.  I showered and by the time I was done, she had the car packed.

On the way home, I said, “Glyce, Sweetie, I am sorry you had a little difficulty with your weekend off.  We never had that chance to become intimate that you wanted.  Maybe we can try to make that baby that you want some other weekend.”  I could not believe that I had said that.  It still seemed like a scene from a horror show to be putting someone through college when you were in your seventies, barely, but seventies?!?!

Glyce leaned her head onto my shoulder.  “Can I tell you a hypothetical story.  Oh, maybe a fictional story of a family far, far, away?”  I gave her my permission. “Once upon a time there was this loving couple who had a family of three children who were quickly growing up.  Within five years, the last would be out of high school and the empty nest years would start.  The wife saw other people in her extended family getting pregnant and she inadvertently, with mostly an impulse, stopped taking her birth control medication.  She then got pregnant, and she had no idea how to tell her husband.  So, she cooked up this grand scheme of a romantic weekend.  She planted the idea of a fourth child in her husband’s mind, and she learned that he was so loving that he would welcome the fourth child and love that child as much as he had loved the previous three children.”

I asked, “Is this hypothetical story actually a true one?”

Glyce leaned harder into my arm and said, “We’ll see.”

This should be the end, but there is an epilogue.

Late that Sunday night, back in the Yeggs’ home in the big city of Tracy, we were getting ready to have our first hot shower in three days.  Glyce was undressed and ready to enter the shower.  I did not ask permission.  I simply joined her.  We started kissing each other as the warm water flowed over us.  I told her that I loved her now more than I ever had loved her.  Our love continues to grow.

Glyce kissed me and said, “I am so sorry.  I had a wonderful weekend off planned for us.  Instead, we had an adventurous weekend that was … off.”

As we got frisky, there was a knock at the door…

Sophie screamed, “Blaise has enlisted Margie into his nefarious schemes!”

I DID NOT throw on my pants.  I yelled, “Sophie, I do not care what Blaise did to you this weekend with Margie’s help.  You want to be a police lieutenant!  You figure out what to do.”  I had no idea what I had unleashed with that statement.

And then I whispered in Glyce’s ear, “Now, where were we?”


The theme of this story, other than coitus interruptus, is a second family.  I was nine years younger than my brother, 11 years younger than my sister.  I know of families with their youngest in high school when they had another child.  Where there is love, there is always love to go around.  Where love is lacking, the second family may suffer from parents or from the older siblings.  In this case, Glyce never said that the story that she told was a true one.  I suppose we will have to see.

Highways 41 and 6 intersect in Mississippi where I grew up, at least near there.

On a project in Thailand, one of our field engineers ended up in the hospital, having breathed too much natural gas.  The utility had a leak and had not odorized the gas with mercaptan.  The field engineer recovered after a few days of rest and breathing clean air.


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  1. Did you know that today is National Deviled Eggs day?

    Liked by 1 person

    • No! That is wonderful to have a Deviled Yeggs story on National Deviled Eggs Day. I just got back from our prayer fellowship where I was the host. I might post my cake baking story soon. We have a doctor visit this afternoon, but the adrenaline was running this morning and I need to CRASH!

      Liked by 1 person

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