Humphrey BogCat, Private Eye,
and the Case of the Maltese Falcat

by Jean Goldstrom © 2001

My name is Humphrey BogCat. I'm a private eye. Yeah, I wear a trench coat, and I check out mouse and rat holes. One day I was sitting in my office when I heard the outside door open and close.

A beautiful voice softly meowed to my secretary, Tabitha Typingtoes, "Is Mister BogCat here?"

"Where elsssssse?" Tabitha hissed cattily. "Go on in."

Next thing I knew, this beautiful fluffy Persian with incredible blue eyes was waltzing into my offce. "Siddown, beautiful," I said. "What can I do for you?"

"My name is Lorelei Kittyfur," she meowed musically. "I'm a chanteuse, and --"

"A what?" I asked.

"I sing," she said, "at the Kit Kat Lounge. My boss, Edward G. RobCatSon, owns it. And he's my tom," she purred, confidentially.

"Sounds like a bowl of catnip to me," I growled. "What's the problem?"

"Eddie's been acting strange lately," she said. "He used to be the greatest tom. But now, well, he's so different. He doesn't pay any attention to me. All he talks about is some kind of dessert."

I licked my paws thoughtfully. "Any particular dessert?"

"I think its some kinda ice cream, because he calls it a Malted FatCat."

"You wouldn't mean a maltese falcat?" I asked.

"Yeah," said Lorelei squeaked brightly. "That's it."

"Okay," I said. "I'll take the case. My fee is a case of catfood per day, and I don't mean the generic kind."

"I'll have it delivered," Lorelei purred. "Okay?"

"Fine," I said.

We shook paws and she fluffed her way out of the office. Tabitha began pounding her typewriter furiously, as she always does when some glamour kitten bring us some much-needed business.

"Tabby," I yelled, "ease off on the typewriter and call my Aunt Fluffy."

The typewriter stopped. I heard the phone being dialed. I picked up the phone and talked to my Aunt Fluffy, who is a Maltese. "Hi, Auntie," I said.

"Humphrey? My favorite kitten nephew. What's going on?"

"Auntie, do you know anything about a Maltese Falcat?"

"Sure, honey. He's one of my other nephews. He has a job as a police cat. He's undercover right now, with the K-9s in the Mice Division. You know, he used to work for Miami Mice Squad."

"Okay, Auntie. Thanks a lot. I owe you a dinner at the Creamery. 'Bye."

Hmm. That meant Lorelei's tom was heavily into mice - bringing those disgusting little rodents into our community for the enjoyment of those who were addicted to them.

I yowled to Tabby, "Get that Lorelei on the phone, okay?"

After a certain amount of hissing and growling, Tab snarled, "She's on."

"Lorelei?" I asked.

"Are you looking for meeeeeeeeeeeeeeow?"

"Yeah." I said. "Get out of there and don't come back, unless you want to spend a lot of time in the pound."

"You're saying I have to get meeeeeowt?"

"Yes," I said. "And right neow."

The phone clicked as she hung up. Then I heard the front office door slam, Tabby squeak in fear and squall as if her tail were stepped on - and then Edgar G. RobCatSon stormed into my office.

"Whatsamatta-u," he growled, flashing his claws in my face."You chase my Lorelei out, whatsamatta-u?"

I fluffed my tail and arched my back, to look as threatening as possible. We hissed and growled at each other, each lashing his tail back and forth. I was wondering how long I could keep this up, when the outer office door burst open and I heard a bunch of dogs galloping in. Big dogs. As they charged through my office door, I saw they were wearing badges, and were led by a little gray cat.

The little guy yelled at RobCatSon, "Freeze, Hairball! Frisk him, boys. You'll find his pockets full of mice." And as the dogs grabbed RobCatSon, mice poured out of his pockets.

Several of the dogs each picked up a mouse and put them in little cages. As RobCatSon was hustled out of my office, hissing and snarling, the little gray guy shook my hand. "Thanks for your help," he said. "Aunt Fluffy tipped me off about your call." He purred, "We Maltese are a pretty tight-knit group."

"I was counting on that," I purred back. Otherwise I would have had to leave my office to solve this case, and I hate that.

Finally, that gang got out of my office. I heard Tab lugging in a case of catfood from the hallway - Lorelei had made good. Nice kitty. Tab and I would divvy it up later. But now, with the office nice and quiet, just the way I like it, I curled up under my desk for a well-deserved nap.

-- by Jean Goldstrom © 2001

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