One morning Pip the mouse woke up to find Timmy the cat pacing back and forth in annoyance in their room. “Uh, Timmy?” Pip asked. “Why did you wake me up?” Timmy stopped pacing back and forth, looked at Pip with a frown on his face, and hissed, “Because someone stole our ponies!”
Pip’s mouth fell-open as his eyes widened and tears flowed freely down his sweet face. “Wait! My favorite pony, Kallie Pony, is gone??” Pip cried with a squeak.
“Forget your pony!” Timmy hissed. “My Harvey Horse is gone!!”
Pip sat for a moment thinking about his favorite pony. “Timmy, what are we gonna do???”
Timmy continued pacing back and forth, concentrating hard. Then, an idea flooded Timmy’s head. “I got it!!” he yelled with a big grin. “We haul in the suspects who were in our home over the past week and question them!” Timmy said with pride as his chest puffed-out with his fool-proof plan.
Pip’s left eyebrow arched in uncertainty, but he didn’t have to think about it for long. “Ok Timmy,” Pip said. Timmy grabbed Pip, dashed out of their room, and charged downstairs with Pip in his paws. Timmy ran into the living room where big brother Taffy was seated in his favorite chair, reading the newspaper, The Daily Scat.
Taffy looked up and smiled, “Good Morning, you two!” Taffy adored Timmy and Pip. They were the youngest members of his family and he knew they looked to him as a father-figure. “Taffy, where’s your special coat and hat?” Timmy asked in his best innocent tone.
“Why do you ask?” Taffy asked with a quizzical look.
Timmy smiled, “You’ll see Taffy, you’ll see… but for now I just need to know where they are.” Taffy went back to reading his newspaper, “My special coat and hat are upstairs in my bedroom closet, a little in the back,” he said.
Timmy’s eyes widened with excitement as his breath caught in his throat. “Thanks, Taff!”
Timmy ran into Taffy’s room and hurriedly plunked Pip on Taffy’s bed.
“Why do you need Taffy’s special coat and hat?” Pip asked innocently.
“Because Taffy has an awesome coat and hat that looks just like Merlock Jones’ coat and hat! He wore it in a play when he was a kitten,” Timmy said as he disappeared into Taffy’s closet.
“Oh! But you still didn’t answer my question,” Pip said with a frown.
“Don’t worry, you’ll see," Timmy called out to Pip from inside Taffy's closet, "and we’re gonna need an outfit for you, too.”
Timmy’s kitten-face brightened as he found the treasure he was looking for and hurried out of Taffy's closet to show Pip. Then they headed up the hall to Zenny’s room.
“Why are we going to Zenny’s room?” Pip asked.
“Because he might help us with your Merlock Jones and Dawson outfit!” Timmy said.
The door swung open. There stood Zenny wearing a smile, a top hat, tuxedo, white gloves, and shiny black shoes, with cane in hand.
Timmy's and Pip’s mouths and eyes opened wide in confusion. Why was Zenny wearing such a dressy outfit? But this was Zenny! You never knew what you were gonna get with the Z-Man!
“Oh, hey, Timmy! Hey Pip!” Zenny said with a smile and sharp salute.
“Zenny, we need your help! Can you ‘poof’ an outfit for Pip that looks like Dawson’s outfit from Merlock Jones and Dawson?” Timmy asked.
Zenny’s right eyebrow arched for a second but with a wink, he ‘poofed’ an outfit just Pip’s size and handed it to him. “Here you go!” Zenny said with a smile.
“Thanks for your help Zenny!” Timmy said with an earnest smile as he turned and dashed back down the hall to his and Pip’s room.
Zenny stared after them for a moment, shook his head as he closed the door and turned to see Zippy, his black cat, with a quizzical look on his face.
“What was that about?” Zippy asked sleepily.
Zenny shrugged, “I don’t know. Something about a Merlock Jones outfit.”
Timmy donned his Merlock Jones attire, admired himself in the mirror, and began to pace back and forth. “Pip, you’re soon to have your Kallie Pony back, and I’m soon to have my Harvey Horse!”
“I’ll make the list of suspects and you do the invitations,” Pip said. Timmy nodded as they both set to work. Before departing on their biggest sleuthing-adventure, ever, Timmy and Pip checked themselves one last time in the full-length mirror. Yep! They looked identical to Merlock Jones and Dawson! No doubt about it! Timmy and Pip looked at each other, and with a high-five, gave each other the nod of approval as they stepped out of their room and into the hallway.
Slowly, Timmy crept up the hall toward the habitat of Suspect # 1, their big brother, Dash! Stealthily, Timmy slid a Blue invitation under Dash’s door, then raced down the hallway back to their room, to await a reply from the first suspect.
Suspect # 1.
On the other side of the door, Dash saw a mysterious blue envelope slide under his door and rolled his eyes. Dash sauntered lazily over to the door, picked up the invitation, and read:
“Dear Dash, we would like for you to come to our room at 10:00 am because we need to ask you a few questions!
Timmy and Pip.
P.S., Be there! You have no choice!!”
Dash rolled his eyes again and checked the clock on the wall. It was 10:01 am. Dash grumbled under his breath as he walked out of his room and headed to Timmy’s and Pip’s room. He knocked on their door - no answer. Dash knocked a second time. Still, no answer. Dash noticed the bedroom door was slightly open, so he carefully pushed it and saw only a dim light in the room.
Squinting in the dim light, he saw a little desk and chair in the middle of the room. A sign said, “Sit here!!” Suddenly, a blinding light snapped-on right in his face, and he winced at the brightness. At that moment, Timmy swung around in the chair, with Pip on his shoulder.
“So, you may be wondering why we summoned you here today!” Timmy said as he got up from his chair and paced back and forth.
Dash grumbled, “Uh, No!”
Timmy glared at Dash and banged his paw on the desk, startling Dash. “Where were you when Pip’s Kallie Pony, and my Harvey Horse disappeared??”
“If you think I have something to do with your pathetic ponies, you’re wrong!” Dash said, frowning at Timmy. “Don’t believe me? Ask Zenny!” he added.
“We intend to ask him! Next!” Timmy said, hissing once more. Then Timmy and Pip disappeared into the darkness. Dash rolled his eyes, shook his head, and muttered to himself as he left their room.
Timmy and Pip huddled in excitement after Dash left their room. They were sure they were on to something big! Now, it was time to contact Suspect #2! Timmy placed Pip back on his shoulder, crept stealthily up the hall to Zenny’s door and slid a pink invitation beneath it. Meanwhile, on the other side of the door, Zenny was talking to his cat Zippy about Timmy and Pip’s strange behavior that morning.
Zippy pointed to the pink envelope under their door. Zenny, with his dance-cane in hand, walked over, picked up the invitation, and read it out loud: “Dear Zenny, we need to talk to you about something very important! Meet us in our room at 10:14 am! Sincerely, Timmy and Pip. P.S., Tell Zippy we’re talking to him next!” Zippy's ears lay flat against his head and his whiskers twitched when he heard those words.
Zenny walked down the hall to see Timmy and Pip’s bedroom door, fully open, so he stepped into their room. As his eyes adjusted to the darkness, he saw the outline of a desk and chair in the middle of the room. Timmy and Pip swung around in a chair on the other side of the desk, saying in unison, “We’ve been expecting you, Zenny!”
Suspect # 2.
Zenny was startled and confused, “Uh, wha-why am I here?” he asked.
“When I woke up this morning, while Pip was still asleep, I looked for my Harvey Horse only to find he wasn’t on my nightstand where I always put him!” Timmy said with a hiss. Zenny gulped. Timmy continued, “And! I looked for Pip’s Kallie Pony just to make sure, only to find out he was missing, too!”
“And you’re wondering where I was in all of this?” Zenny asked. Timmy nodded. “I was hanging out with Dash! You can ask him!” Zenny said.
“Alright, you’re off the hook!” Timmy said still looking at Zenny, who sighed, happily relieved, until Timmy’s last words, “for now!” Timmy said, “And tell Zippy he’s next!” as he shooed Zenny out the door. Zenny turned as he was leaving to see Pip standing next to the desk in his Dawson outfit and said, “Hey! Nice outfit, Pip!” Pip smiled brightly and said, “Oh, Thanks, Zenny!”
“I’m really hungry, Timmy! It’s hard doing a man’s work when you’re just a kid!” Pip said as he collapsed onto his bed after Zenny left. “I miss my Kallie Pony!” Pip said as his eyes welled-up with tears.
Timmy smiled at Pip and said, “I miss my Harvey Horse, too. But you’re a great Dawson! And just think, Merlock Jones couldn’t do this without you! Now, let’s go see if Miss Martha has lunch ready, ok?”
Timmy ran downstairs with Pip hanging on for dear life on his shoulder. They entered the dining room to find Taffy already seated at the dining table. Timmy and Pip pulled up a chair to the table and sat down. Miss Martha (the Taffy Family Gray Goose housekeeper, best-cook-in-the-whole-world, secret-keeper, and friend) set a lunch plate down for Pip.
“Oh Boy!!” he said. “Swiss Cheese with strawberries and blueberries! YUMMM! My favorite!!”
Then Miss Martha set a plate down for Timmy who licked his lips in anticipation! Fried fish with Watermelon on the side! “I could live on this stuff!” Timmy cried excitedly and immediately dug into the juicy watermelon.
“Aahh, aahh, aahh!!” Miss Martha honked, wagging a large, wooden mixing spoon at them from across the room. “Just what are ya forgettin here, dearies?”
Timmy and Pip pouted and put the forks back on their plates. Timmy said, “We’re sorry Miss Martha, but we’ve been workin really hard this morning and we’re starving!”
“Yeah,” Pip added, “We’ve been doin grown-up man’s work and we’re starvin!”
“Makes no never-mind how starved ya are, ya always give Thanks for your food before ya eat it, dearies!”
“Yes Miss Martha,” Timmy and Pip said, simultaneously. They bowed their heads and clasped their little paws together. “For what we are about to receive we are truly thankful!” said Timmy and Pip. Pip’s head still bowed, with a nod of his head, said, “Amen.”
After their wonderfully satisfying lunch, Timmy wiped his whiskers with a napkin, took a deep breath, and patted his stuffed tummy. “Wow! Lunch was really great, Miss Martha! Thank You!” he said.
“Mmmhmm, lunch was the Best, ever, Miss Martha! Thank You!” Pip said with heartfelt agreement.
Miss Martha scooped them up in her warm, soft wings and held them close. “Thank ya, ma dearies!” she said with a slight crack in her voice. “I love ya so and ya make me so proud!” Miss Martha hugged them tighter for a moment longer before she waddled away into the kitchen trying unsuccessfully to hide her tears and muttering to herself, “Oh, such sweet little darlins they are!”
Timmy’s Bright Idea
Before heading back upstairs and getting back to work on his and Pip’s self-proclaimed investigation of the century, Timmy had a bright idea. He hopped up into the chair next to Taffy and said in great earnest, “Um, excuse me, Taffy, but do you have any advice about detective investigations or trying to nail a suspect?”
Taffy tilted his head in thought. “Well, just the basics… my advice is to listen closely when the suspect talks. Even the smallest, most insignificant seeming detail could link-up to the crime. And, always try to be aware when someone tries to butter you up or tries to throw suspicion off himself and on to someone else,” Taffy said with a smile. “And, don’t forget body language,” he added. “Always notice if the suspect doesn’t make eye contact with you or stops making eye contact with you. When someone folds their arms across their chest, it’s a sign they’re being defensive but doesn’t necessarily mean they’re guilty. It could just be that they’re nervous!” Timmy plopped Pip back on his shoulder and hurried upstairs to prepare for Suspect #3.
Suspect # 3.
Zippy trotted down the hall to Timmy and Pip’s room and knocked on the door.
“Come in!” Timmy said, in the deepest voice he could conjure.
Zippy entered the room and stepped into darkness. He hesitantly tiptoed toward the desk, hopped up on it, and sat down. Suddenly, the desk chair swung around with Timmy and Pip in it.
“Hello Zippy!” Timmy glared at Zippy. “We’re just wondering if you had anything to do with our ponies disappearing! Pip’s Kallie Pony and my Harvey Horse went missing this morning and we’re questioning everyone who might have something to do with our missing ponies!”
Zippy burst into laughter. “Do I look like the type of cat who plays with ponies?”
Timmy remembered Taffy’s advice about the suspect’s behavior and eye contact. “Hmmmmm,” Timmy thought to himself as he tapped his furry cheek with the sharpest claw on his right paw. Zippy’s ears lay flat on his head and his whiskers twitched as he sat in silence looking every which way, trying to avoid Timmy’s eyes.
“I have business to attend! Good day gentlemen!” Zippy said as he straightened his red bowtie, cleared his throat, hopped down from the desk and leaped through the door.
“Pip, I know exactly who we’re gonna question next!” Timmy said.
Suspect # 4.
Rufus, Chippy’s butler, drove Chippy, the 13-year old Chipmunk snot of My World, to the Taffy Family Mansion. Chippy walked into the Taffy Family Mansion like he owned the place. Upstairs, he went into Pip and Timmy’s room. “Hey guys! So, I’m here-” Chippy was cut off as the door slammed behind him and the room went pitch-black! Chippy gulped as he squinted his eyes and made his way to the chair and desk in the middle of the room.
“Hey, what’s going on Timmy?! You’re not kidnapping me are ya?” Chippy asked.
Timmy rolled his eyes. “No, Chippy, we’re not kidnapping you!” Timmy said.
Chippy scoffed, “Why not? Think I’m not good enough to kidnap? Think I’m not-”
Chippy was interrupted by Timmy, “No, Chippy, we need to ask you some questions… about our missing ponies!”
Chippy’s eyes went wide. “Say, I really have to go now!” Chippy said and pointed to his left wrist as if wearing a watch. “I am the important, one-and-only, Chippy the Chipmunk after all!” Chippy said, as he tucked his tail, hopped off the desk into the chair and onto the floor, and sped out of their room.
“Just as I thought!” Timmy said, as he banged his paw on the desk. “He has something to do with all this but, I have a feeling he’s not the only one!”
Suspect # 5.
Snowball hopped and danced his way to the Taffy Family Mansion and rang the doorbell. The door to Timmy and Pip’s room was open, so Snowball walked into their room. BAM!!! The door slammed shut behind him!
Snowball gulped in fright, jumped, and gulped again because the room was pitch-black! Slowly, his eyes adjusted a little and he was able to see the outline of a chair and desk that seemed to be there, just for him, in the middle of the room “Uh, hey, Timmy, what’s up? Is something wrong?” Snowball asked nervously.
“Yes, I’m afraid something is wrong!” Timmy said as he looked at Snowball with a frown.
Timmy held up photos of Pip's Kallie Pony, and his Harvey Horse. “I don’t suppose you’ve seen these toys before, have you?” Timmy asked.
Snowball grinned nervously as he looked at the photos. “Uh, uuhhh, n-n-no, I haven’t uh, why? Are they missing?”
“Good guess Snowball! You sure are one smart bunny!!!” Timmy said still smirking. “Or, did you guess?” Timmy asked, as he leaned in closer, with a wide, scary grin.
Snowball gulped again. “Well, would you look at the time!! Sorry Timmy, but my mom is making lunch about now and I don’t want her to worry about me so, goodbye!!” Snowball chattered nervously as he jumped straight up out of the chair and raced out the door. Timmy smiled to himself, knowing his inquisition of Snowball had gone well.
Suspect # 6.
“So, Timmy, do you know who our pony thief is?” Pip asked anxiously.
Timmy smiled, “I think I might know but we need to make one more phone call. It’s time for Suspect # 6, and I guarantee we will not be disappointed!”
“Be right there, fellersssss!” Jim the cobra hissed sweetly when Pip and Timmy asked him to come over. “It’ll be a pure delight sssseein’ you boyssss!”
Jim smiled happily to himself as he adjusted his new, black Fedora and slithered up to the door of the Taffy Family Mansion. With the tip of his tail, Jim rang the doorbell in excited anticipation. Timmy answered the door, with Pip on his shoulder.
“Hi, Jim! Come on up to our room, we have some important stuff to talk about!” Timmy said with a smile.
“Okie Dokie!” Jim said happily as he slithered up the stairs with Timmy and Pip.
Just then, Dash walked out of his room into the hallway, whistling and smiling, until he saw Jim with Timmy and Pip. Dash froze in his tracks and gulped hard as his knees started to knock-and-roll! Jim looked Dash’s way, smiled happily, and tipped his hat to Dash as he slithered into Timmy and Pip’s room. Timmy slowly closed the door behind Jim.
Dash ran to Zenny’s room. Zenny opened the door, “Wha…???
“They’ve got Jim!” Dash said, biting his claws.
Zenny gasped in horror. “You think they’re on to us?”
“Of course, they’re on to us, Zenny! Why else would they be questioning Jim!!” Dash said, still biting his claws
“Should I zap Jim back home?!” Zenny asked, wide-eyed and worried.
Dash shook his head frantically, “NO! Cause they would know for sure it was us!”
“Then what should we do!?!” Zenny asked in a frantic tone.
“Pray, Zenny!! Pray, that Jim doesn’t say anything that will give us away.” Dash said with a gulp. “Oohhh man!!” He said and melted onto the floor, head in his paws, still biting his claws. Dash looked at Zenny. Zenny looked at Dash. “Ooohhhh man!!!” they both said hopelessly, closed their eyes, and shook their heads in desperation as Zenny melted into a heap on the floor beside Dash.
Meanwhile, down the hall, Timmy hopped-up into his chair and happily motioned for Jim to sit in the suspect chair. Jim happily slithered up into the chair and coiled comfortably as Pip took Jim’s new Fedora and hung it on their hat rack.
“Why, thank you, boyssss. Timmy, you’re ssssuch a polite young kitten, and Pip, you’re ssssuch a polite little mousssse. Misssss Martha hassss done very well teaching you boyssss mannerssss! Sssso, what did you need to assssk me, today?” Jim asked with a wide grin on his sweet face.
Timmy held out photos of Pip’s Kallie Pony, and his Harvey Horse for Jim to see. “Jim, have you seen these toys before?” Timmy asked with a knowing smile as he sat back in his chair.
Jim’s grin got wider, “Well, of coursssse I’ve sssseen these toyssss before, Timmy!! Dash, Chippy, Zenny, Zippy, Ssssnowball, and I, have been sssstealing you-boyssss’poniessss for quite ssssome time now, after you go to ssssleep, but we alwayssss put them back!” Jim said reassuringly with a nod of his head, and a happy grin on his sweet face.
“How long have you guys been stealing our ponies, Jim?” Timmy asked.
“Oh, jusssst about ever ssssince you got them, of coursssse, causssse they’re jusssst the cutesssst thingssss!” Jim said with a wide smile.
“Perfect! Thanks Jim---”
Timmy was cut off by Jim’s rambling, “We even have a Pony Boy Fan Club! Did you know that? But, of coursssse you didn’t know it! How could you know it! Dash issss the pressssident of the club, of coursssse. Hissss favorite pony issss Pony Boy. My favorite issss Little Red Pony; Zenny’ssss issss Lightnin Bolt Pony; Zippy’ssss issss Warm Ssssunsssshine Pony; and Chippy’ssss favorite issss Big Rasssscal Pony, and we all jusssst love Kallie Pony and Harvey Horsssse, which issss why we alwayssss ssssteal them to play with them, by the way! Ssssnowball’ssss favorite issss Little Pony Boy! We even go to the sssstore and buy new poniessss all the time, and Dash alwayssss makessss a really funny excusssse ssssaying they’re for you guyssss, but we all know they’re for our fan club! We play with our poniessss, and we play with your poniessss, every Monday night when we can! I have my own pony, ssssee?” Jim said as he held up Little Red Pony.
For a solid hour, Jim talked about their Pony Boy Fan Club and how much fun they had playing with the ponies until finally, he had to stop and gasp for breath! “And that’ssss all I got!”
Timmy grinned his biggest, brightest smile, ever. “And that’s all we need! Thanks, Jim!”
“Hey, anything I can do to help you boyssss! Anytime!” Jim said happily as he slithered out the door of their room and into the hallway. Timmy almost closed the door but saw them just in time… the spies! Dash and Zenny were spying in the hallway, waiting for Jim to depart Timmy and Pip’s room. Immediately, Dash and Zenny ran wide-eyed-and-hearts-pounding to Jim.
“So, Jim! What did they ask you??” Dash squeaked with fear. “What did you tell them??”
“What did they say? What did they do?? What did you say??” Zenny squeaked in wide-eyed fear.
Jim smiled “Oh, nothing important!” he said calmly with a smile. “You know, they’re jussst ssssweet little fellerssss!” Dash and Zenny sighed with relief.
Then, Jim pulled out his favorite Red Pony. “Hey! Wanna play poniessss? It issss Monday night, you know!” Jim said with a smile.
Dash and Zenny nodded in excited unison. “Yeah!! I need this!!” Zenny said.
“Yeah!! Me, too! I’ll call Chippy and the gang and tell them to bring their ponies!” Dash said.
Wide-eyed, Timmy and Pip peeked carefully around the corner at the trio in the hallway, pressing their front paws hard over their mouths to keep from laughing out loud. Timmy softly closed the door.
“So, Timmy, now that we know who our pony thieves are, what should we do?” Pip asked with a smile.
“I think we should confront them, right now, and get our ponies back!” Timmy said. Pip was about to agree but was cut off by sudden yelling from Dash’s room.
Cautiously, Timmy and Pip peeked into the room to see Dash, Zenny, Zippy, Chippy, Jim, and Snowball, sitting in a circle on the floor with toy ponies, brushing their manes and tails. Breath caught in Pip’s throat as he squeaked, “Look!! They’ve got my Kallie Pony!!”
“And, my Harvey Horse!!” wailed Timmy as they both put their paws over their mouths so they would not be heard.
“So, whose pony is going to be princess today?” asked Dash.
“Well, Mine of course!!” Chippy said.
“Dude, yours was princess yesterday!” Zenny said with a glare.
“My pony’ssss gonna be the hero!” Jim said with a grin.
“I think mine should be the princess!” said Snowball.
“No, mine!” Zippy said.
“No mine!!” Chippy said.
“No, mine!!!” Zenny said with a glare.
All of them looked at each other and began to shout.
“Mines gonna be princess!!” “No mine!” “No mine!!” “No mine!!!” “Mine!!!!” “Mine!” “Mine!!” “Mine!!!” “Mine!!!!” they all screamed.
Timmy quietly closed the door and looked wide-eyed at Pip. “I think they need our ponies more than we do!” Timmy said in a whisper as he and Pip burst into peals of laughter and scampered down the hall to their room.