Read Part 1 Here (it’s very funny!)
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And now… here’s part two of Riz Raru in… The Case of the Sticky Fingers
It was my 20th time visiting the cemetery that month. You could say I go a lot. Go ahead. Say it.
Mom, dad. I still haven’t found out who killed you, or how you died, or who framed Roger Rabbit since I never saw that movie, but I promise I will. If you could just help me find the answers. I see so many ghosts, but I never see you… I miss you so much.
“Excuse me.” A man stood behind me with his young daughter beside him. She was cute. Cute enough to grow up to be a high-priced call-girl, or at the very least, a girl who drives a Jetta.
He asked me what I was doing. I wanted to respond with “Nunya. Nunya business,” but I’d been using that one too often and couldn’t think of a new one, so I told him the truth: the authorities never found my parent’s bodies, so they were never given a grave, plus graves are really expensive and not worth paying for if you don’t have a body to throw in there. I guess there are rules against digging them up too, which seems stupid if it’s your grave. I told him I’d been using that one as my mother’s. Then I stuck my finger out at him and asked him what are yooooooouuuuuu doing here?
“That’s my wife’s grave,” he said, upset for some reason. I told him it was beautiful, then shoved some old flowers off it and replaced them with my own, along with a note saying “I luv you, mom.” “Luv” was spelled incorrectly on purpose because my mom and I used to have this little inside joke where I didn’t know how to spell, which was also not a joke.
He tried to swat and shoo me away like I was some kind of pestering bee, so I stung him a couple of times and then decided to call it quits after he finally connected with a 911 operator.
I know how hard it can be to lose someone, so before I left I made sure to give him some comforting words:
“I can’t wait until you die, so one day I can put flowers on my father’s grave.” The words must have really touched his daughter, because she started crying instantly. Nothing a good handful of dirt didn’t stop though.
While the dad wrestled me away from putting dirt in his daughter’s mouth, my phone got a text message, which could only mean one thing: my phone service hadn’t been cut off yet.
I’VE GOT A CASE FOR YOU
My office is the last one in a long row of businesses.
-Pair-a-Normal Investigators, Rick Normal and Tobey Normal
-Sofia’s Unmeltable Ice-cream (Legal note: the ice-cream is not unmeltable, but is very tasty)
-Patrick Poogal, Private Investigator
And finally, mine: Riz Raru, Preyevit Investalligator. I have a CERTIFICATE OF EXCELLENCE taped to the door to show everyone how excellent I am at the hiding fist holes in the door (The certificate is for a Jiffy Lube somewhere in Sherman Oaks.)
My assistant, Ditch, was already waiting in my office for me. He’s really more of my sidekick, but the rates for sidekicks are much higher than assistants. I’m not made out of money.
He looks like someone plucked right out of a 40s-detective movie. He wears a trench coat and has a really big mustache that I make him wear. He tells me it’s very itchy and uncomfortable, but then I threaten him with violence and that always ends that argument. He’s very easy to get along with.
I sat in my chair looking at a picture he put on my desk. It was of a girl in military fatigues. I studied it for a while as Ditch leaned against my desk reading the accompanying file, then I stole his wallet while he wasn’t looking.
“You’re not going to believe this one, Riz,” he said with a chuckle.
He punched me in the face. I told him I meant the news, so he grabbed a rolled newspaper and hit me with that. I thanked him and asked him about the case.
“Her name’s Private First Class Jessica Rios. You may know her as the face of army recruitment.” I nodded, even though I didn’t, nor had I really been listening that well. He could tell I wasn’t listening because I’d been humming loudly, so he taped my mouth shut and explained that there were billboards for military recruitment all over the country with Private Rios’ picture. He told me the army had caught her off base.
I ripped the tape off and saved it for later. “Is there a crime against that?” I asked sassily. Looks like I’d solved the case before it even started.
He told me that yes, it was a major infraction for military personnel, especially the poster-child of the army.
I rhetorically asked him what the mystery was, knowing it must be murder.
He told me it wasn’t murder. “More like murdering brain cells, actually. She was high as a kite when the military police officer found her. As you can imagine, the military frowns on that sort of thing. It’s not like she was a male officer who sexually assaulted a female recruit. They couldn’t just look past this one.”
It sounded like an easy case. Just not for the defense. I told Ditch that I didn’t see anything worth investigating, then started throwing things at him.
He begged for me to stop, which I finally did once I ran out of things to throw. As he pulled my letter opener out of his thigh he told me the kicker; Private Rios swears she didn’t smoke, but refused to give a straight answer on what happened.
“The military wants to clear her name, but she’s stone walling all of their investigator. They think she might open up to an outside party,” he said, wrapping his leg wound in used tissues I told him were gauze.
“So they called the best,” I said proudly.
He said “bingo,” and a man came in, took a Bingo card from ditch and inspected it.
“We have a winner,” said the man, leaving immediately.
I told Ditch I’d think about it. As much as I needed a case, I also didn’t feel like working, so I wasn’t sure of the right thing to do.
“By the way, they’ve also asked Patrick Poogal to take the case,” he said on his way out the door.
My eye twitched at the sound of his name. Patrick Poogal was my biggest competitor and rival. At just shy of 6’5” he towered over all the other private investigators in the area. He also often stole my business.
I told Ditch I’d take the case. After all, it was the perfect case for me. I was used to tracking down and tattling on stoners in high school.
Ditch chuckled to himself and remarked, “Plucky teen, Riz. I can only imagine how you were in high school.”
“High school?” I asked him, “this was last week. But don’t worry. I’ll get her to open up to me. Even if it costs me her life.
Ditch left, leaving me alone to wonder how I was going to solve this case, and get drunk.
That’s it for now. Later this week I’ll be writing about how I went about writing my Star Wars parodies before the movies came out. If you want to read why I wrote them, check it out here.
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