Chapter 6

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Chëpter Sëxxen (Chapter Six)

Junooery Feefft (January Fifth)

MARTY STU woke up the next morning to find a cat meowing on his front porch. "Hello, cat. It seems like you'll be my only companion in this cold and macabre wasteland. I certainly hope nothing horrific happens to you." He picked up the cat and took it inside.

Marty Stu made himself an open-faced sandwich with herring in mustard sauce, and gave half of it to the cat. Then he brushed the cat, and put out a pillow for it to sleep on.

Marty Stu made a call to a cable company and requested they install an Internet connection in the cabin. After an hour, a cable repairman came to the cabin, and installed two high-speed connections; one in the living room and one in the bedroom.

After the repairman left, Marty Stu sat down and sighed. "Man, that was boring. I can't believe I have a years' worth of this to get through. But I think we can take it to the next level."

Marty Stu picked up a nail clipper and began to clip his toenails. First, he made a half-moon shape on his big toe, and then he cut off the edges of the nails on his smaller toe. The next toe already looked pretty short, so he skipped cutting that toenail, and the next. His little toe looked a little too long, so he snipped it flat. When he finished cutting the toenails, he carefully brushed the clippings into his hand, and threw them in the trash.

"That was good. But not far enough." He punched his fist into his palm. "I have to give more detail. I have to get more boring."

His eyes blinked slowly, and opened again before blinking once more. He took a deep breath, inhaling slowly, and breathed out. He took another breath, one after the other. Oxygen flowed into his lungs, and flowed out. His heart pumped blood through his veins, paused, and pumped some more.

He sighed. "There. Now I think we've achieved a level of minutiae that would numb the mind of any reader."

That settled, he sat down and began to review Heartsick's notes on the disappearance of Harried Avenger. It took him all day.

Marty sighed. "Well, this certainly is a lot to go through. I should visit the police officer assigned to the case to see if he has any insights."

He got dressed in his inadequate clothes and left the cabin. He walked down Gjorbiddessen to Schadenburg, and crossed over into Quedenstad. Then he realized he didn't know the town, so he was lost. He wandered along Stybenjorg, turned left on Forjjistaf, found himself on Gjorbiddessen again, tried to go down Romanoffen, but came to a dead end. He doubled back to go down Lashmikken, but came to Wormagotten, and had to stop to ask someone for directions. With the right directions, he went back down Schadenburg and walked up Breddbasken to Remsenbokken.

He finally found the police station, where he walked in to find an elderly man standing by the front desk.

"Hello," Marty Stu said to the old man. "I'm Swedish, and I'm looking for Sergeant Goodstuff Moral."

The old man nodded. "I'm Goodstuff Moral. I'm the police officer who worked on Harried's disappearance. I thought you would like to speak to me."

Marty blinked. "Actually, that would be very helpful. But I didn't think anyone knew I was working on this. How did you know?"

Moral snorted as he dropped into a chair. "Please. Your investigation is the worst kept secret in town. Every time someone new comes to Headcasetad, it's because that old fool is bringing someone else to investigate Harried. He's hired scuba divers, private detectives, police officers, dog trainers, the host of that infomercial for the Psychic Network, and a guy in a chicken suit who spins signs outside the McDonald's. Now he's hired you, a financial journalist. Why else would you be here? Let's get this over with. I was born in the small town of Hanssenfluden in 1924. I served in the Swedish military during World War II, where I was injured during an incident of friendly fire from my best friend shooting me in a jealous rage. I've been in law enforcement for forty years, and Harried Avenger's disappearance was my first case. I spent half my life working with Heartsick to try and solve it, but I never did. I have two dogs named Jorgen and Rojneg, a wife who died six years ago of a mysterious illness, and my hobbies include sailing and coin collecting."

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