Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Christmas Cooking/Baking (not recipes) (10/16/08)
TITLE: Detective Crystal’s Investigation
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â€śNot me,â€ť Madison answered, not looking up from the table.
â€śDid too. Who else would have done it?â€ť
The back door closed with a thump.
â€śAlright you two, break it up.â€ť
Madison crossed her arms tightly. â€śIâ€¦ didâ€¦ notâ€¦ lickâ€¦ Crystalâ€™sâ€¦ spoon.â€ť
â€śCrystal, thatâ€™s enough,â€ť Mom demanded.
I tossed the spoon into the sink. â€śMom, you promised that if I got the ribbon for the Christmas cookie parcels, I could lick the spoon. It was my turn.â€ť I glared at my seven-year-old sister. She poked her tongue out and I stomped out of the kitchen. I wasnâ€™t happy.
When I returned a few momentsâ€™ later, notebook and pencil in hand, Mom and Madison were busy removing cookies from a baking tray. â€śOkay, Mom, what happened when I left the kitchen to get the ribbon?â€ť
With an audible sigh, Mom opened the oven door and placed another tray onto the top shelf. â€śWell, after we finished mixing the cookie dough, I went outside to bring the towels in from the clothes line. If Madison licked the spoon, I didnâ€™t see her.â€ť
Madison added an angel-shaped cookie to a large plate and then turned toward me. â€śIâ€¦ didâ€¦ notâ€¦ lickâ€¦ yourâ€¦ spoon.â€ť
I noted her statement. â€śMadison, what were you doing while Mom was outside?â€ť
â€śColoring in my Santa book.â€ť
â€śBefore that, stupid.â€ť
â€śPlease, Crystal,â€ť Mom intervened. â€śYou can play your detective game but please donâ€™t be rude to your sister.
Madison placed a red cherry to the top of a Christmas tree cookie that was all ready to be baked. She continued with her defense. â€śI didnâ€™t touch the spoon. Mommy said it was your turn to lick it so I went and washed my hands in the bathroom and got my crayons and book from the dining room table.â€ť
Millie, Madisonâ€™s kitty, brushed against my legs. â€śWhere was Millie?â€ť I crouched down and checked the kittenâ€™s paws and mouth.
â€śShe followed me outside,â€ť Mom replied, crossing the kitchen to pick up the ribbon I had left on a chair.
â€śWell, it couldnâ€™t be Millie,â€ť Madison protested again.
I added my notes about Millie then poked the pencil behind my ear and placed the notebook onto the table. â€śCan I help decorate the Christmas cookies, Mom?â€ť
â€śWash your hands and you can chop some cherries.â€ť
Obediently but agitated, I moved to the sink and washed my hands. I still think Madison did it. I kept my eyes on miss goody two-shoes as I turned on the faucet. Little sister seems to always avoid punishment.
â€śDid you come to any conclusions,â€ť Mom asked, watching me closely.
My attention remained focused on Madison. I opened the drawer and felt around for a small knife. â€śWell, if it wasnâ€™t Madison or Millie, who else could it be?â€ť
â€śIt wasnâ€™t me,â€ť Madison began in her sing-song of innocence. â€śYou always blame me.â€ť
Momentarily, I concentrated on not chopping my fingers with the cherries.
â€śWell,â€ť I heard Mom say. â€śIf you did Madison, no one would be mad at you for it. Itâ€™s the lies that I donâ€™t tolerate.â€ť
Madisonâ€™s lips quivered. â€śI didnâ€™t.â€ť
A noise from the living room caused me to turn suddenly. â€śWhatâ€™s that?â€ť
Mom glanced up at the doorway as Dad entered.
Madisonâ€™s frown disappeared. â€śDaddy, youâ€™re home early.â€ť
I dropped the knife onto the chopping board. â€śHow long have you been home, Dad?â€ť I grabbed my notepad and drew the pencil from behind my ear. I tapped my foot. â€śWell?â€ť
â€śWell, nice to see you too,â€ť Dad laughed.
I approached Dad and leaned forward. There on his loosened tie, was a tiny blob of cookie dough. â€śDadâ€¦ you didnâ€™t. How could you?â€ť
Mom pointed her finger. â€śSo youâ€™re the culprit.â€ť
Dad bent down to kiss my forehead.
â€śDaâ€¦ad, your lips are sticky.â€ť
Dad just stood there and laughed. â€śYeah, I came in to see my beautiful girls before I put my briefcase away. No one was here so I tasted some Christmas cooking.â€ť He grabbed a paper serviette and wiped his mouth. â€śI guess you found me out.â€ť
â€śYou licked the spoon? It was my turn.â€ť
Mom came over and touched my shoulder. â€śI think you have an apology to make, Detective Crystal.â€ť
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