Welcome to Three Word Thursday #19. This week, joining the quondam word-list, we have phlyarologist; pulchritudinious; & summotion. We also have a whole list of perspicacious writers. If you enjoy reading my story, leave a comment then click on the names of the other players and go see how they used the words. You’ll be entertained (and possibly educated) all at once.
The beginning of this story is here: Daze of Wine & Murder
Copper pitched to the floor, unable to move. He heard Nurse Spanner’s voice, and saw her nursing shoes as she stepped over his prone body. She said, “You’re supposed to be dead, Stephen. You’ve wasted a perfectly good dose of my potion.”
“Mel! Why are you doing this?” Stephen demanded. “I thought you loved me!”
“Love!” Melanie Spanner snorted. “What do you care of love? Booze and sex! Drunken revelry! All you care about is your own hedonistic satisfactions. You might call that love, but I know better!”
“Is that a gun?” Janice Wheeler shrieked.
“It is a dart gun,” Melinda Spanner confirmed. “I got it from the veterinarian Stephen shared me with at the last Bacchanal. I have filled the darts with my own special potion.”
Copper heard a faint popping noise. Stephan Rose slumped to the ground. A red fletched dart protruded from his neck. Convulsions wracked his body, his feet drummed against the floor, then all movement ceased and he stared sightlessly at the ceiling.
Copper wondered if there was a similar dart protruding from his own neck, and why he wasn’t dead.
“Damnit!” Janice Wheeler snapped. “You killed Stephen and I really wanted to do that!”
“Yes, well, we don’t always get what we want, do we?” Melinda Spanner said. “If we did, you would have been dead a long time ago.”
“What did I ever do to you?” Janice demanded. “It seems to me we should be on the same side! We both hate the Bacchanal and obviously we both wanted Stephen dead.”
“You are the reason everything has gone wrong!” Melanie shrieked. “My cheating husband died when I poisoned everybody at the first Bacchanal. At the second Bacchanal, I killed the couple that invited him to his first festival –”
“And hundreds of other innocent people!” Janice interrupted.
“There are no innocents at a Bacchanal!” Melanie cried. “Besides, the third set of murders was to be my last! I set Stephen up to take the fall. I chose him because he was bragging about cheating on you. Then when you came to my shop looking for a way to kill him, it all seemed so perfect. I figured Stephen and I would kill you, and the evidence trail would lead the police to Stephen, who I planned to poison and make look like suicide, but you lived! Then I tried to set up a fake doctor to take the fall for your murder, but the damned fool had some kind of apoplectic fit and ended up in the emergency room. Now I’m out of time.”
Copper saw Janice recoil against her bed pillows. “No! Please! Don’t shoot!” she cried.
The hospital door bounced against the wall and Melinda Spanner screamed. The gun spun across the floor and came to rest under the hospital bed.
“Hold her, Wally!” Copper heard Al shout.
“I’m trying! I’m trying!” Wally answered. “Help me!”
Janice Wheeler scrambled from her hospital bed and grabbed the dart gun. “Nobody move!” She yelled.
“Excellent idea. Nobody move. You, put the gun down.” Copper wanted to shout with joy. The Chief of Police was on the scene, and everything was going to be all right. Janice Wheeler lowered her hand to her side and pointed the dart gun at the floor. “Officer Argyle,” the chief said, “take this woman into custody.”
“No!” Melinda Spanner yelled. Copper felt someone stumble across his back. Wally fell to the floor beside him. Melinda lunged forward and grabbed for the gun in Janice’s hand. The two women struggled briefly and the gun went off. They stood eye-to-eye staring at one another. Janice Wheeler slowly backed away and sat down on the vinyl covered chair beside her bed. Melinda Spanner slumped to the floor, her body convulsing spasmodically.
Lights flashed. Bells rang. Dozens of pairs of shoes passed Copper’s line of vision, some police issue, some hospital regulation. He felt hands on his back and someone shouted, “I think this one’s alive!”
The intransigent corpses stood around him in a circle. Slowly, in unison, each one’s right arm raised. They all pointed at Copper, staring. Though their lips didn’t move, Copper heard their whispers. Thank you. One-by-one each corpse said thank you, and faded away. When the last one had gone, Copper opened his eyes.
“Welcome back!” Marty Creedence sat beside Copper’s hospital bed.
Copper frowned. “Am I under guard?” His throat was dry and his voice sounded raspy. Marty stood and poured a cup full of water from the small pink plastic pitcher at Copper’s bedside.
“Drink,” he said, handing Copper the cup. “I’m not your guard, I’m a visitor. I figured you’d want to hear what went down while you had your little nap.”
“I’m not dead,” Copper said. “Why?”
Marty laughed. “Apparently our pulchritudinious nurse didn’t believe in killing cops. Instead of shooting you with the dart gun, she stabbed you with syringe full of muscle relaxant.”
“Well, it certainly relaxed me,” Copper said, “But I remember the summotion of the bodies, and Janice Wheeler’s arrest.”
“Yeah, that little phlyarologist has been talking non-stop since Argyle snapped the cuffs on her. Luckily, your recording devise never stopped running. No matter how many creative ways she claims her own innocence, we have the whole thing on tape.”
“And the Green Panther kids,” Copper asked. “What happened to them?”
“Well, two of them — Al and Wally — probably saved Janice Wheeler’s life. They came in about thirty seconds ahead of the chief and jumped the nurse. They are pretty excited about the whole case, and are talking to the chief right now about joining the police academy.”
“Good,” Copper said. “Someone to take my place when I retire.”
Three Word Thursday on Hiatus:
I am going on vacation. Three Word Thursday will resume upon my return.
Got it? Good! In that case: Your story is due on: July 23rd, 2009