Sunday, July 31, 2005

Blame the Docs

Thanks to AppleTron for stopping by again. And, thanks, Mr. Walker, for the update. I haven’t checked the Unfiction forums yet, as I’m still a bit tired from what I’ve been through. It’s been quite an interesting week.

I must apologize for the silence – I had a minor medical condition come up. Everything’s fine now, but the Doc wouldn’t allow me to use a computer in the recovery room.

The Robbins watched Roxie, and she had a dandy ol’ time with Mulligan. I also had USC find me my new assistant. Her name’s Penelope and I gave her the login and password for the blog (but not my email – I gotta have SOMEthing secure, right?), so she can log in and keep the blog going in case… well, in case I get indisposed again like this past week.

I went into the hospital on Wednesday, a day after I had a meeting with my potential buyer. I’m going to call him Mr. A. Mr. A. has been apparently keeping an eye on me, and brought me in to discuss my last post. I told him before he went any further that, for my own protection, I was going to write about this meeting. Mr. A. was fine with it, as long as I never mentioned his name. So here we go.

I sat in his red-walled waiting room. Eerily quiet for 9am. His secretary smiled at me and I could tell she was aware this wasn’t a pleasant meeting. I get the feeling he schedules all his unpleasant confrontations early in the morning to get his day started with a bang.

He sat me down, acting real calm. This guy never gets worked up. He took a seat behind his desk, and in silence, called up this here internet site. He spun around his laptop and showed me his computer screen. There it was, good ol’ “Perplexed in L.A.” He just looked at me. I looked at him. He then scrolled down, revealing all the lovely entries I’ve put in here. He then looked at me again. I looked at him.

“You like it?” I asked.

He smiled. He closed the website and spun his laptop back around. He closed the lid of his laptop.

“You don’t like money, Jimmy?”

“I love money,” I said, or something smart like that. I knew what Mr. A. was getting at, but I wanted to hear it from his mouth. I had no contract with him, no down payment, nothing - just a promise and (I’m starting to assume dubious) info from Mr. A. so far.

“You clearly don’t want my money, Jimmy,” he said.

So I told him. I told him how it was preposterous to convince me to think this Cube was in L.A. There’s a piece of information he wasn’t giving me.

“The Cube is in L.A., Jimmy, why would I lie?”

“You’re not lying, buddy,” I said. “You just don’t even know what the hell you’re looking for, just like the rest of us.”

He nodded. He got up out of his chair, then walked to the window. Looking out, he was trying to be dramatic and imposing, but I’m 61, dammit – these theatrics don’t work on me anymore.

He said, “I’ve seen the forums, the boards… you’ve not only drawn attention to yourself, and subsequently me, but you’ve made it appear as though you want to work with these others, these… fools… to help find this thing. You always give away money like this?”

“Why, you giving the reward to others, too?” I said. At this point, I was getting upset.

“No, Jimmy, if I was doing that, I surely wouldn’t have picked you.” Mr. A. turned back around and faced me.

“I want to make something very clear, Jimmy. You are on this case because of me. You will find this Cube. When you do, you will never have to worry about Medicare or Social Security, you got that? I hired you because you are the only person I think that can retrieve this for me.”

“Or, is it because you think I’m a dupe.”

He laughed really hard. I may have sworn there instead of dupe, but I don’t remember every word I said. Next time I’ll bring a tape recorder and have Penny transcribe it word-for-word.

“The choice is yours, Jimmy.”

“What’s it do?” I asked him.

“It doesn’t matter,” he said.

“Yes, it does. Do you even know?”

“Are you still working for me?”

I paused. This was my time for dramatics.

I stood up, slowly of course, and started to walk out. I stopped and turned towards him and, boy this was good, I said, “We’ll see.”

He laughed some more as I walked out.

Next day, I’m in the hospital. I guess the joke’s on me after all.

Have some catching up to do, and I still haven’t made it up to Berkeley yet. Once Penny gets settled here, I’ll have her order from the internet for me. Knowin’ me, I’d send some hacker my credit card.

All’s well, now it’s time for bed.

Goodnight, E.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

La La Land...

I gotta be open and honest, right?

There was recently some hub-bub over my little corner of the internet here. I have to say, I’m surprised anyone found this at all. But, strangely enough, people felt I had ulterior motives for posting this weblog. One person thought I was trying to take over the "game" – take attention away from the matter at hand (I first thought it was a hint that my old partner from the force, Jack Potter, was somehow mixed up in this, too).

First of all, I had a hard time with this "game" aspect myself. It’s a lot easier to grasp the concept of another city that doesn’t exist on earth if you call it a "game." But, that illusion was shattered, at least for me, with Pietro Salk’s death. This isn’t a "game" to Sylvia and her family, is it? I can’t think of it as one anymore, either.

Secondly, the purpose of this weblog is for my own protection. People may still be wondering why I feel so threatened in this search. I’m a 61-year-old man, and while Roxie may look intimidating, she would just wag her tail at an intruder. As things develop, and especially if I find the Cube, I’m sure my visitors will increase. A public record of an internet search that’s on the internet seemed to me the best way to do this.

But, there is good reason to be suspicious of me. I haven’t been completely open and honest with my weblog, and if I’m doing this solely for my own protection, I should start by telling the truth.

If I find the Cube… I may not return it to Perplex City.

There are a lot of reasons, but when I first got the call, about a month ago now, I laughed. My employer, who has to go unnamed due to our confidentiality agreement, explained to me about the search for the Receda Cube. I thought this was all ridiculous, to be honest. He then told me the award was $200,000 if the Cube is returned to Perplex City and Mr. Kiteway.

He was going to pay me double to give it to him.

But nothing upfront. He’s given me a little information, like the bit about the Cube being in Southern California, and I fell for it, although I now realize that’s probably not true – a promise to get me on board. You see, I have a medical condition, right now, that prohibits me from flying on an airplane. So, there’s going to be problems if I figure out the Cube is in Paraguay.

So, I have a promise from Perplex City to give it back to them for $200,000, and the people that are "helping" me are supposedly going to pay me more to hand it over to them instead.

What is this Cube?

So there it is. No more half-truths or sugar-coating. I have to be honest, if I do find the Cube, I want to know what it does before I hand it over. There’s too much going on and too much happening for me just to let this thing pass out of my hands before I know what it is. I hope anyone else out there who may beat me to it would think to do the same. As for me, I honestly don’t know what I’ll do if and when I find this thing…

Thank you to Mr. Appletron for stopping in – he wants to be my assistant and come to Berkeley? Well, I have to apologize. I found someone. She’s real nice and real energetic, and I think my first order of business for her will be to get access to this weblog thing as well. I hate typing on this thing. As for Berkeley… I don’t have much else to do, so I may drive up there still. Maybe I can ask my new assistant to do it!

Roxie’s doing fine, and Jamal came over again to check my sink. He’s a real handy man, and I’m lucky to have him as a neighbor.

So, just to state once more, and for the final time, I never intended this to be seen by the fellow hunters, or "gamers." I am, in no way, trying to co-op attention, distract, or confuse others, although that would probably help stall their efforts in order for me to get to the Cube first. The focus is Perplex City, the lost Cube and those that are dying (my mistake, I meant "murdered") over it. If others want to check on me, they know where to find me, and maybe my old gears will provoke thought on their end, just as I hope their talk on the forums provoke thought for me. I can very easily be ignored, and that would be almost preferable, but that was the other side of the coin for doing this weblog. But, don’t be surprised if I try to get to the bottom of some questions through the Perplex City channels. For example, my next post will reveal my contents of my letter to the paper.

Open and honest… this could be bad.

Goodnight, E.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Escape from LA

Thanks to Lyle for stoppin’ in again! I realize that ground may have been tread already in your forums, but as you saw, Mr. Walker was still trying to shed suspicion on the religious group, and I wanted to explain it in a different way. That’s not to say that I think the Recons are completely innocent, either. More on that, later.

But, one more thing for my British visitor – I don’t want to people to think I’m a loner, or separatist of some sort. I plan on joining the speculation on your forums, as you call them, but two things must happen: (1) I want to have something constructive to say; (2) I find my password that I wrote down when my niece helped me set-up my account. I could have it emailed, but the email password’s on there too! Anyway, Lyle, I hope if I still have trouble getting on there, you are more than welcome to relay my thoughts and theories on there for me.

However, I fear knowledge of my associations may alienate some of the current collaborators, so I’ll do and say as I’m able. I may get into trouble postin’ on those forums. I should’ve picked a more secret login than “ShamusDLeahy!” Oh well.

I didn’t reveal my 3rd tab in the ol’ folder, yet, but it appears it’s more than OK to talk it about it now. This mysterious “Advisor.” This “Advisor” contacted Pietro Salk covertly about the theft of the “cube.” The “Advisor” claimed he or she was paid to commit the crime. Funny how people word things ever so carefully. I’ve got to think about it some more, though, so I’ll work on it some more tonight…

By the way, I just found out that there is, indeed, a store in Southern California with the cards! In Berkely!!! Hooray! My niece and I will have to head over this weekend, so I get to solving some of these puzzles!

It’s an earliest post than normal, since I want to do some more reading tonight. And, I gotta keep an eye on Roxie – she got out this morning and just took off. I couldn’t really run after her, but luckily Amanda was coming home from a late shift and picked her up on the way home. She came by for some coffee and we chatted about life and her job. We also were trying to guess the reason for Roxie’s escape attempt – she’s never done that before. Maybe she misses Mulligan already, as he’s been sick the last few days.

Oh, well, it’s early, but goodnight anyways, E.


Tuesday, July 19, 2005

The Beat Goes On

Well, Roxie’s all clean and cut, although she put up a fuss at the groomer’s. She hates being away from her dad. Good thing she’s got that new friend next door.

As you may have seen, Mr. Walker stopped by. He cleared up my confusion, which is great. I am grateful that those questions of mine were answered, but I still have a problem with the Reconstructionist motivation for committing this crime. Let me try another way of explaining my sincere doubt...

Think of it this way. Let’s say I worship Roxie’s green frog toy. But, Roxie keeps it in her bed, under lock and key (it's under the pillow she lays on). If I take it, she’ll hound me ‘til I give it back.

I hatch a plan. The green frog toy should be free, for everyone to play with. It’s a sophisticated plan – I distract Roxie with some snacks in another room, and I crack her defenses (she hides it underneath her pillow), and rescue the Green Frog Toy!

Only to throw it as hard as I can into the ocean.

That would be the Reconstructionist plan. They “rescue” the object of their worship, something they can’t live without. But, instead of putting it someplace safe, they ship it off to somewhere where no one will ever get to it?

Which brings us back to the initial question: Either it’s not the Reconstructionists, or Mr. Kiteway has been duped to believe travel between Earth and Perplex City is currently impossible. In either case, to consider the Recons the #1 suspects is a hasty conclusion, especially since it's quite convenient for the fanatics to be the ones to commit such a crime. It's not to say these cultists aren't a few pennies short of a dollar, but the way this crime has thus far played out, it just doesn't fit with what they claim to want from the "Cube."

But, who else would dare have the motivation? Someone who knows what the “cube” is for, who also happens to be on Earth, here. That someone paid the would-be Perplexon thieves to get it OUT of Perplex City and down to here, Earth. That someone could, in theory, just be waiting ‘til the days cool down to do whatever it is he or she wants to do with it.

Or, even worse, is getting whatever he or she needs from the “Receda Cube” as we speak (and dream up dog toy scenarios).

I think finding out what this “Receda Cube” can actually do, other than look pretty, will really help narrow things down. It’s too bad my own source is unwilling to divulge that information to me.

By the way, Jamal was nice enough to come by today and take a look at my central air set-up. This humidity kills my joints! He looked around for a little while, and thought maybe something got caught in the vents. We talked a little bit about my case, and he was surprised people were stumbling upon my corner of the internet. "Blame my niece," I told him. She said no one ever finds these things. I guess that’s a testament to the rising stakes of this hunt.

And I’m still writing the ad I'm gonna put in the paper for an assistant. How’s this:

“Astute, organized, and patient lad or lass looking to help solve crimes with old geezer? Contact Jimmy Leahy at - ”

Well, I am a geezer.

Headache setting in. I better pop my pills, let out Roxie, and hit the hay for now. Hopefully the Sentinel publishes my letter. I think Perplexans need to hear what I had to say. Especially Sylvia.

Goodnight, E.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Sleeping In...

All right, my niece got me all together with the forum stuff. I just hope I remember the passwords. So, I’ll be interjecting more of my thoughts over there as well as here, to keep the minds working not just on puzzles, but the big one!

I just finished my letter to the Sentinel. I guess I’ll wait to see if they publish it. I’d like its contents to speak for itself, especially the announcement, but if not, I’ll do it here. It has to do with Pietro Salk. And his murder. I’ve seen enough unsolved murders in my day – I’m through seeing a family get torn to shreds over unanswered questions. I won’t let it happen again. Not after what I went through.

Geez, look at me. I’m yelling at my computer – as if you can hear me ranting here. I think there’s something wrong with my air conditioning – although it’s pretty comfortable along the ocean here, my joints can’t take even 80 degree weather some days. I’ll have to tinker with it tomorrow.

I’m also considering hiring an assistant. Back in Chicago, I had a whole team of folks – I paid people to do what you guys on those forums are doing. Cracking things, tracing, keeping things organized. You should see my dining room table right now. Roxie doesn’t even come near it, cuz she knows one tail wag and all those papers hit the ground! But, if I’m to find this Cube myself, which is part of the reason I’m doing this, I need someone to do my legwork. Due to recent events, I’m able to afford one. I’ll put an ad in the paper! Or, call up the college campus, the one my niece attends! Maybe they got some criminal justice kid that needs some internship credits.

Well, I better go. Roxie’s getting her haircut tomorrow, so I have to be up before the van gets here for her, plus there’s my meeting. Keep searching, folks!

And, goodnight, E!

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Crypto Case File

It’s Saturday, during the day here, and I didn’t sleep very well. There’s one hurdle I think I’ve overcome, even if it’s in my own head – where is Perplex City?

Jamal, my neighbor, just left after having spent some time over here with me talking about my not-so-secret case. I felt comfortable in talking to him about it, because to a regular person, this probably sounds ludicrous. A city, that doesn’t exist on Earth, needs our help to find something stolen from it and brought here.

So, we started talking, and newlywed Jamal is much more open to these ideas than I am, but he first brought up the notion of a parallel universe. Something out of Star Trek! He then grew extremely excited about the notion that there was now evidence of such a reality running at the same time as ours. He started asking me questions at a furious pace. “Are our scientists on this?” “Is this in the news?” “Is it our duty to bring to the attention of the country?” But, he then settled down. In a moment, he no longer believed it, and he actually thought I was being had, being tricked. This would be a pretty sophisticated trick, I told him. Besides, I had something… well, all I can say is that I’m sure this is all real. But, Jamal is right – this is too unbelievable as of yet for the majority of the people here. I can’t imagine what my niece would say if I got into the details of this, although I guess she knows where to find my weblog…

But, the truth is, I’m too old to figure out how this is all happening. And, since all we get are emails or telephone contact, this will be seen as just simply people goofing off or whatever. The truth is, though, it’s not fiction. This isn’t a story. Real people – people like you and me – are dying, and this Cube is the core of it. Maybe once that Cube is finally found, people will wake up. But, my job isn’t to enlighten people about this – that’ll happen on its own, when this is all over. For now, my job is to put the pieces of this puzzle together.

So, let’s open my casefile, to reveal my current thoughts. A lot of attention is on this religious cult they have up there, the Brotherhood of the Six. More specifically, 6 folks occupy the minds of us Earthen investigators – Ms. Nadia Anek, Ms. Aiko Entrescore, Mr. Demetri Fallon, Mr. Ryan Klein, Mr. Keenan Thoreau and Mr. Gill Yewley. But, why? Sure, these folks have been up to fishy stuff in the past, but they worship this Cube. Why put it in a place where they can’t get to it?

Which leads me to believe that Mr. Kiteway – and the general claim of Perplexans as a whole – that there’s no way to physically go from one place to another isn’t true. The Cube was moved, wasn’t it? Someone knows how to move things from one place to another - maybe not Mr. Kiteway himself, but the first place to look for an innovation like that would be his house of geniuses.

But, what confuses this old fart is why would this cult, who worships the Cube, send it away? To hide it to retrieve later? That’d be quite foolish and considering the sophistication of the crime, these lads and lasses aren't dummies. It’d be foolish because the search on Earth will never end. Hell, they recruited a whole planet to find it!! These cultists had to know that would happen, if they indeed are the culprits. Although they will have a tab in my folder permanently, I’m not entirely sold on them as robbers who ship their product away from them. If the Brotherhood stole the Cube, then it’s nowhere on Earth – they have it in their possession back in Perplex City, to worship and do whatever it is they want to do with it, and concocted this whole Earth-transfer story. Which would take some work, considering there are numerous people in the know who are positive it’s here, one being Mr. Kiteway.

No, my curiosity lies in something more risky, more dangerous, but something I feel I should share today. Anyone else notice the Earth military interaction? I lost the reference, but I remember reading something in the Sentinel about a Earth military person dropping them a lead or a hint in a related investigation. Just recently, a Earth military person by the name of Peter Walker was quite interested in the PCAG games. Not that we shouldn’t take an interest in our sister, uh, dimension (?), but he had quite an interest. If Mr. Walker happens across this blog of mine, I’d be interested to know how closely does he follow Perplex City?

Do not be offended, Mr. Walker, but I now have 2 tabs in my folder.

Goodnight, E.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Where to look...

Sorry I didn’t get to post last night, but my guests kept me up past my bedtime, and I was simply too tired to write. The Robbins are great fun, but boy, do they like to ask questions!

First, thank you to Lyle, all the way in the UK, for stopping by. I have “surfed”, as they say, those webpages, but has of yet been unable to figure out how to post on there. My niece is coming over on Sunday to check up on me, so I’ll coax her into helping me get a logon and password for that site.

I must admit, as I said before, math and deciphering ain’t my strong point. I’m still going to order those cards (again, I might need my niece’s assistance there since I can’t go to a store out here and get ‘em), but my strong point is the crime. The logic of the mistakes, or lack thereof. With the unusual circumstances of our two, uhm… worlds… Mr. Kiteway designed these cards to help our minds think like theirs. So, I think the puzzles on the cards are puzzles of themselves – meaning, they’re meant to stir our mind, lead us on the mental journey the thieves were on. Pretty deep for an old man, huh?

I’ve officially begun my casefile, and as necessary, I will share what I have in there on to the internet. Which is unusual, considering most PI’s will keep their work to themselves, because anything made public could tip off their suspects. But, as you all know, this is an unusual case, so I think talking out loud, er... write out loud my theories and speculation and evidence that I obtain will aid in the collective efforts. I’ll share as much as I can, as I do have some restrictions currently beyond my control, but that’ll be worked out as time goes by.

I guess what I’m saying is that I’ll be in on the card games, the tools Mr. Kiteway gave us to get into the minds of the criminals. But, I can’t guarantee I’ll be of much help. But, you can be certain I’ll be tackling it from my angle, the same approach I approached all my cases over the years – with thought.

Back in my days, both in the uniform and out, I’d go to one of a couple of bars in my hometown of Chicago, take a seat at the far end, order a tall one, and just sip and think. The who, what, where and why. I’d be a crappy profiler, though – I don’t assume things about a criminal. Whatever their reasons are – especially involving a murder – there is a reason that makes sense to them, and in my experience, the type of people that do this doesn't fit into a scientific formula. Once you figure the reason, though, the rest unfolds like a hastily made burrito. And in this case, where I don’t have a crime scene or any physical pieces of evidence to roll around in my hands, this is truly all in my head.

I hate being in my head too long, especially with what happened to Pietro. If I were on the PCPD, I’d be demanding to be on this case, since it appears to be sitting on someone's desk right now collecting dust. I just might write to the Sentinel about it. To not suspect foul play is to be blind, to say the least. Those detectives better get on this, or else we’re going to see more die – and not just in Perplex City.

On a side note, Jamal has taken quite an interest in my little case. Jamal and Amanda Robbins – my neighbors with the Scottie, Mulligan. They moved in a week ago, and even though their house is still in disarray, they had me over for a meal last night. Of course, I brought Roxie with! Jamal works as a bank branch manager for Washington Mutual (they’re everywhere out here!). His wife, Amanda, works at one of the elder patient care facilities here in Santa Monica. We have quite a bit of those. I asked her if I’m elderly enough to live there! She laughed, but she said it’s quite nice for those who need constant care. I’ll be there someday. But, they pried my recent history out of me, and whatever I share with you, I sure can share with them. Jamal is particularly interested, and he may come over and look at some things tomorrow. The more the merrier, right?

I received a response from Sylvia. She thanked me for the wishes, but she's not answering anything personally right now. Understandable. But, just so she knows, my offer is still on the table.

Well, I really must get to bed – too much excitement these days for my old bones. Maybe I’ll ask my niece to show me how to put a picture of Roxie up on the site, here.

Goodnight, E.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Happy Card Day!

It’s amazing what we gotta put up with. In L.A. alone, we’ve got highway shootings, a 70-year-old bank robber, and everyone waiting for the next “big quake.”

Here I am trying to solve a crime by using the internet.

Oh, and cards. With puzzles on ‘em.

Today was supposed to be the official “release” date, but for me and Roxie, here, we’re going to have to wait a little longer to get our hands on them.

Sometimes, I wonder if this is all real. I put the difficult questions of, oh, where is Perplex City, in the back of my head, because the answer to that truly could change our world as we know it. And the cube? Whatever it is, I don’t think it’s simply a pretty paperweight. This thing is dangerous, to say the least, and the sooner we return this cube to its rightful owner, the better I’ll feel.

Which begs the question – who is the rightful owner of the Receda Cube?

Again, getting ahead of myself.

Pietro Salk was murdered. It hasn’t been said yet, out loud, by his late wife, or anyone else in authority, but take it from a guy that has seen this before – this has foul play written all over it. He was murdered because someone with information contacted him, and somehow he got found out. He was close to something big. Poor Pietro – he didn’t realize how big the stakes have gotten.

Fortunately, wise Pietro knew this as well, and gave us a least a place to start to find out who did this to him. But, there are still some locked areas that contain more information.

I e-mailed his late wife today. Obviously, I expressed my condolences, but also asked for her assistance. She may decline, since this is a very difficult time for her and her family. Believe me, I know. Even after 2 years, it’s still hard every now and then.

But, if she can help me – us – out, she will. And her husband should get justice. It doesn’t look like the Perplex City P.D. is looking too hard into this case, so it’s going to be up to us to help bring Mrs. Salk and all that knew Pietro some closure.

Roxie met the new neighbor’s dog today. Roxie’s a mixed breed – part lab, part rottweiler, part Doberman - friendliest girl in the world. She has a new friend, a Scottish Terrier named Mulligan. The neighbor’s are a nice newlywed couple, and we watched our dogs run and play in the sand for most of the afternoon. It was nice.

Be well.

Goodnight E.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

I have to congratulate my niece for putting up with me today. Without her, I wouldn’t be on this webloggy thing, and she deserves an award for putting up with a 61-year-old man all day, annoying her with questions she probably thinks are basic knowledge. She has a ton of patience. Thanks, dear.

She tells me rarely does anyone even look at these things. I mean, sure, there’s a chance, but who’s gonna look at an old man’s blog in L.A. who’s searching for a Receda Cube?

I probably shouldn’t be so humble. I’ve been told it makes me look conceited. I tell you, though, if my old partners found out I was mixed up in this whole Perplex City thing, they would laugh.

Perplex City… boy… what a can of worms this is gonna be.

I laughed when I first heard about it. I’m still wrapping my head around it. But, I’m a retired private investigator, and I’ve never seen or heard anything like this before. In fact, who knows where this all may lead?

If this is my online journal (not a diary), I shouldn’t have to introduce myself, but at the same time, things are going to get hairy. Not only am I doing this to organize my thoughts about this really, really strange case, but also to protect me. I’m not a kid anymore – it’s just me and Roxie living along the beach here in Santa Monica. I’ve got a cane, for Christ’s sakes! If something… well, if something were to happen to me, there’d be evidence. Roxie would need someone to look after her. They can destroy a lot of things, but it’s a funny thing, this internet – once this is out there, it’s out there. This will be out there - it's kind of like I'm standing in the light so that I can't be quietly taken off the stage. I hate to be so paranoid, but while I’m risking showing my hand to the rest of the players, it’s an insurance policy, where the stakes are higher than I think we all realize. Oh, that’s right… there are cards, aren’t there… so weird.

But enough about that. My name’s Shamus D. Leahy. All my friends call me Jimmy. A little background about me: I was born and raised in Chicago, Illinois. My father was a cop, just like my uncle and my grandfather – it was natural for me to join the force. After being a beat cop for 15 years on the streets of Chicago, though, I got the itch to do the fun stuff. Detective. But, as you probably can guess, at the time, I’d be waiting another 10 years (minimum) for a spot to open up. I didn’t wanna wait. So, I left the department and went to work in the private sector, opening my own firm. I dealt with little things. Divorces, tax fraud, insurance fraud – that kind of thing. I really got a kick out of cold cases – the stuff the precincts toss to the side after 20 or 30 years with no leads. I solved a few of those in my day as a P.I., and those felt good.

But, a couple years ago, I had had enough. I stopped working altogether, and wanted to be by the ocean. My dog Roxie and I moved out to Los Angeles – specifically Santa Monica. Then, this came along, not more than a week ago.

I’m not going to get into things right now. I’ll have plenty of time for speculation and theories as the weeks go by. And don’t get me started on where Perplex City is! Can of worms, I tell ya!! At any rate, the thing is, in my research thus far, this case is simple. Find the cube.

I want to be clear – I don’t work for the Mindcandy people, and I sure as hell ain’t a Perplexian. Perplexon? Perplexan? Whatever they’re called, I ain’t one of them. I’m a guy, like everyone else looking at the bounty with drool on their faces, trying to solve this crime. Which it is – a crime.

2 crimes, in fact, and it looks like more foul play may be at hand, which again is why I want my thoughts to be made public… well, as public as a webloggy is to all 3 of you who happen upon this little corner of the internet.

We have a theft, and more importantly, we have a murder. A stolen “Receda Cube”. One dead security guard, “Fran Mendling.” I imagine it’s only going to get worse before it gets better. What makes it even more interesting is that this is another good ol’ fashioned “cold case.” Hell, a year is almost not even enough to call “cold.” I cracked crimes that had mold on their folders and suspects lying 6 feet under, so a year removed is still a little lukewarm. But it’s just long enough that the perps probably feel safe. Like they got away. That’s the window of opportunity.

Look at me – I’m already rambling. I should go to bed – I need to let Roxie out anyway.

One last thing before I turn off my computer for the evening. This “Receda Cube” – the key to solving everything, the answer – is somewhere on God’s green earth. Up ‘til now, it looks like the search has been in England, primarily. Well, let’s just say that there’s a real good chance that it’s here. In my backyard. Right under my nose, here in Los Angeles. It’s one of the many reasons I’m now joining the search. I probably wouldn’t bother taking this case if there wasn’t at least a chance I could get my hands on it. Sure, it may end up being in Copenhagen or Tokyo (I really don’t wanna get a passport), but if that’s the case, I’m going to have trouble getting there. But, that’s for another time as well. All I know is that I’ve received a credible tip that L.A. is a good starting point. Hell, for all I know, I may be being played for a fool – the tip may be a piece of garbage.

But I’ll never know if I don’t look.

Hand me the can opener, Roxie. Good girl.

Goodnight E.