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Call Me Tarquin

by Rosey

"He's dead," Tarquin said dipping his finger in the gunshot wound through a dead man's head. "Someone call the coroner!"

"I'm the coroner, may I help you?" a man said, stepping out from a large group of reporters whose camera light bulbs flashed incessantly.

"Yes, coronate this man," Tarquin demanded

Tarquin then began to scan the area to search for any clues. He found the powdery wing of a dead moth sitting on the damp road. Picking it up with a pair of tweezers, he examined it quite astutely.

'Could this dead guy be a mothman?' Tarquin thought to himself.

Then a clever reporter by the name of Harry Gang-Green handed Tarquin a wallet.

"I found this lying on the ground, Tarquin," Harry Gang-Green, clever reporter, said. "I think it belonged to that man."

Tarquin nodded in appreciation and looked inside the wallet.

"Ooh, twenty-two bucks!" Tarquin exclaimed. Then he looked at the identification. It was a man by the name of Greg Jones. He was 6 foot 0 inches, had blue eyes, and was male. Then Tarquin looked at the dead man. After close examination, Tarquin gave the wallet back to the clever reporter. "No, this can't be him. You see the person on this driver's license doesn't have blood smeared all over his face. The man lying there does."

"I see," the reporter said. "Well, don't you want to keep the wallet in case you need it?"

"I have no use for it," Tarquin said. "You see, I have no pockets."

Tarquin left the scene of the crime, handbag clutched in hand, to head for the crime lab.


"Come take a look at this, Tarquin," crime lab specialist Dean Grubbs said, motioning toward Tarquin.

"Yes, crime lab specialist Dean Grubbs," Tarquin said. Dean Grubbs took a deep breath as if he were to tell Tarquin something that's earth shattering.

"What you see here is a dead man," Dean Grubbs said solemnly.

"Yes, I see," Tarquin said with interested eyes.

"You would think that he was killed by gunshot wound," crime lab specialist Dean Grubbs said.

"Yes. What with all the blood and the hole in that poor guy's head," Tarquin said nodding his head yes.

"Wrong! I'll wipe off some of the blood so you can see it." He took a handkerchief out of his bra and proceeded to wipe the blood from just above the gunshot wound. "There, see that?"

"It's a handkerchief with blood, so what?" Tarquin said.

"No, I mean those circular bruises that could have easily been made with a hammer," crime lab specialist Dean Grubbs said. "He wasn't killed with a bullet, no sir! He was killed by hammer and chisel!"

"HAMMER AND CHISEL!" Tarquin repeated very loudly.


"Now, what would motivate somebody to approach a man they don't know and kill them with a hammer and chisel?" Tarquin asked while contemplating the case. The thought it was obviously somebody who wanted to get at his brain but had second thoughts before ripping the skull open. "Tell me Patsy, my extremely intelligent sidekick, who would need a brain?"

"You?" Patsy said while he laughed.

"No, no, I'm being serious," Tarquin said frowning.

"Easy," Patsy said while scratching his chin. "A brain transplant doctor."

"No, no, no," Tarquin said dismissing the idea. "Brain transplanting school means that you have to spend at least 20 years in school studying stuff. Why would an educated, not to mention intelligent, man do something this stupid and inhumane! They spend so much time hitting the books that after they finally graduate, they wouldn't go lead a life of crime. Try again Patsy."

"A cannibal delicatessen," Patsy said while casually polishing his fingernails.

"No, no, no, wrong again Patsy," Tarquin said. "Cannibal delicatessens wouldn't use a chisel to open a skull. It would dent the brain once they broke through and would lower in market value. Try again, Patsy."

"Santa Claus?" Patsy asked.

"Hmmm," Tarquin said while taking a sip of freshly brewed coffee. He then experienced a severe headache.

Usually, Tarquin tries to cut down on coffee on normal days, but now that he's on the job, he has to enjoy a sip now and then to stay ready, active and functioning on the job. Unfortunately, Tarquin doesn't know the true myths and harm of coffee.

Perhaps if Tarquin would use decaffeinated coffee, his life would be different, because it is not the coffee itself that is harmful - it is the caffeine. He thinks it helps him on the job but really it hurts him.

Despite rumors of a popular belief, caffeine doesn't actually make you more alert. It makes you jittery and nervous - a physical state where you can miss things that happen to you all the time. Why, just today, Tarquin examined a dead moth next to a gruesome murder scene, didn't realize the victim probably wasn't bleeding when his ID photo was taken, and contemplates that Santa Claus might be the culprit. That is the dangers of caffeine. I hope you have learned a lesson.

Moral of the story: Don't use caffeine. It's evil. Eviler than communism, even. That's pretty evil.


Michael Lawrence does not take credit for the above short story. He's disowned it, actually. Blame Rosey.