Previously: “Episode One,” Episode Two“, “Episode Three

  

“Treasure Those Idol Moments”

The detective arrived and Manny showed him to the chair. He’d made sure not to disturb the evidence. “Manny,” Detective Carlson began, “Its excellent that you’ve found this.” He collected the hair with tweezers and a gloved hand, and placed it in the evidence bag. “I’ll make sure they run it at the lab to see if we can get any DNA off of it.”

“Muchas gracias, detective.” Manny said. “Please let me know as soon as you find anything out.”

When the detective left, Manny, Kelly, and the tools were once again quiet. Manny, however, was thinking. “There are only a few people in town who have white hair,” he finally said out loud.

After a moment, Kelly agreed. “That’s right, Manny.” She looked at him, waiting for what he’d say next.

“The first one I can think of is Mrs. Lopart.”

“Mrs. Lopart would never do anything to hurt anyone,” Kelly said, “Especially one of the tools.”

“But she may know something.” He said.

“Manny,” Kelly began, worried. “You’re not thinking of going to see her are you?” She asked. “It might be dangerous.” 

Before Manny could respond, the tools did so for him. “We’ll protect you, Manny!” Pat said.

“Yeah!” Dusty  chimed in. “Rusty is our friend, and so are you!”

“We protect each other,” Felipe called out.

“I suppose we should go,” Turner said, rather unenthusiastically.

“That settles it, I guess.” Kelly said, shrugging. “We’re all going.”

*

They all traveled in Manny’s truck, made silent by the electric motor installed on Earth Day some time ago. When they arrived at Mrs. Lopart’s house, they walked up to the front door in silence, Manny leading the way. Manny knocked on the door and waited. After a few moments he knocked again, with the same result. 

“I wonder if something is wrong?” Manny asked aloud. He looked at Kelly, who shrugged, and then at the tools. Trying the knob to no avail, he peaked in a side window. Nothing appeared out of place, but all the lights were off. “I think I will walk around the house, see if I can see inside another way.” He said before turning to walk off the porch. 

Without a word, Kelly did the same, peaking in windows. She heard Manny call out, and then heard the sound of breaking glass. Rushing around to where Manny had been, she walked in the now opened back door, stepping on broken glass in the process.

There, in the kitchen floor surrounded by a pool of blood, lie the body of Mrs. Lopart, or so they assumed. Her face was damaged beyond recognition. It’d been repeatedly smashed in by blunt force trama.

Manny reached in, yellow gloves on his hands, and checked for a pulse. He looked back up at Kelly, sullen and saddened. With a tiny movement of his head, he silently told her that Mrs. Lopart was dead.

*

A few minutes later, the police had been called and were on their way to the scene. Manny, Kelly, and the tools—who’d remained outside on Manny’s orders, all sat outside on the back porch. “Manny,” Kelly finally spoke up, as the sound of sirens drew near. “Someone should tell Mr. Lopart. About his mother. Someone he knows. 

Kelly leaves manny to go inform Mr. Lop art of his mother’s death. 

“Si, kelly,” manny said. “Yes. You’re right.”

“You stay here, with the tools, and meet the detective,” she suggested, standing up. “It’s not far to Mr. Lopart’s Candy Store from here, I’ll go check on the hardware store and head next door to talk to poor mr. Lopart.”

“Alright, if you’re sure.”

“I’m sure. I want to make sure I’ve closed up the store for today, I’d rather be around for you.” She said, then hastily added, “And rusty and the tools too.”

Manny watched as Kelly walked away, stopping to speak to the first officer to pull up to the house. When she left, the police officer stepped away from the car, to meet Manny. He sighed and stood up. He looked at the tools. “It’s been a día muy largo, a very long day.” 
Continied in “Episode Five: Home Sweet Home

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