Round and Round She Goes
by Jeff Baker
Author’s Note: The draws tor the December 2022 Flash Fiction Draw Challenge were: A Mystery, on a Merry-Go-Round involving a Surfboard. I set my happily-ensconced private eyes Josh and Adam on the case. Here’s what happened.
Josh hung on to the end of the surfboard with one hand and clung to the carved horse he was sitting on with the other as the merry-go-round at the middle of the carnival spun around and around. He was ready to puke. And he really, really hated carousel music.
“I think we lost them,” Adam said hanging on to the other end of the surfboard. They hoped the body of the big carved horse hid the board from anybody watching.
“We’re just lucky they didn’t get a good look at us, or any look at us.” Adam said.
“Yeah,” Josh said queasily. “All they know is we’ve got the surfboard.”
Adam grinned at Josh as the merry-go-round slowed down. “For better or worse, remember?”
“Including spinning horses!” Josh said managing a smile.
Josh and Adam’s detective agency had been hired to find the gaudily-painted 6’ surfboard which their client, Convy, said had been stolen.
“I inherited it,” Convy said. “My Great-Uncle was a collector. Collected all sorts of things.”
But the board was never delivered to Convy; it had been stolen from the warehouse. Josh and Adam had tracked the owners to the carnival and had found it on sale at a booth and had bought it for $150. Probably from an associate of the thieves who wasn’t in on it.
“Six feet long and they call it a short board,” Adam grumbled.
They were carrying the board away when they heard the commotion from the booth. Apparently the thieves had shown up, found the board had been sold and were understandably upset. Josh and Adam had ducked through the crowd with the board when they had the wild idea that they could hide a gaudily-painted surfboard on a gaudily-painted merry-go-round. Especially if it was spinning.
They had bribed the operator to let them be the only people riding it and had gotten on with the board. Amazingly, it had worked.
So had Adam’s research on Convy’s Great-Uncle. He’d been a collector all right, but not of surfboards. He’d collected art.
And the painting on the board had been done by Pablo Picasso.
Josh and Adam grinned as they stuck the board in their car’s backseat and drove away. Their client would more than be able to pay their fee, the $150 and their expenses.