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Lanyon series

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Menagerie à Trois View larger

Menagerie à Trois

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When a quiet day at the office turns into utter chaos, it’s business as usual at the unusual detective agency.

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    With no clients in the office for two weeks, Randy is bored and Bertha is nagging. Then three cases walk through the door all at once.

    First, an impoverished widowed goblin who doesn’t believe her husband committed suicide. It must be murder, only the minions of the Committee of Public Safety have already closed the case.

    Then there is the well-off gnome who had a battered old horn stolen from his shop.

    Lastly, a stuck-up wealthy and obnoxious elf whose wife was kidnapped, but he is only worried about a cheap missing necklace.

    The usual pressure on Randy to solve the cases while trying to avoid getting involved with some serious nasties sounds simple enough. Did we mention shadowy figures with scythes or seductive crime bosses?

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    Menagerie à Trois

    Menagerie à Trois

    When a quiet day at the office turns into utter chaos, it’s business as usual at the unusual detective agency.

    EXCERPT

     

    “Mr. Aloysius will see you now.” Bertha held open my office door and a tall figure swept through, glanced around, wiped off the seat of a chair with a white glove, and lowered himself carefully to the edge.

    “You are Randolf C. Aloysius?” The words held a certain vibrant ringing tone to them.

    “I am.” I can say, with all honesty, as a general rule I do not like elves. Not fond, would be putting my prejudice too mildly. When it comes to High Elves, their rarified upper-crusted brethren, the hairs on my back become positively twitchy.

    This character wore a black suit with creases so sharp you might cut yourself if you came in accidental contact with a pant leg. He actually sported a short, red-trimmed black cape over the top of his jacket. His tie, black silk, woven with what I suspected was genuine gold thread, covered his throat. This overdressed in early summer weather, not the cool mid throes of spring or fall, seemed a bit too much for this part of town. Maybe the oversized diamonds sparkling in his pointy earlobes did it. I decided to detest him and double my price, for whatever I was going to be asked to do.

    “Can you be discreet?” Those golden eyes narrowed, the pupils probing.

    I had the distinct feeling he was examining me closely, clothes, features, in order to estimate my net worth, and where I fit in the city’s pecking order. My jacket was new ten years ago, my status, as a mongrel, far closer to the bottom of the dung heap than near Central City’s center. He appeared to be trying to use his powers to probe me. I broke eye contact and concentrated on a fly strolling on the wall behind him.

    “I’m so discreet some days I have no idea whether I’m coming or going. I keep everything a secret, even from me.” And this may turn out to be one of those days.

    A frown distorted his narrow face. “This is a very serious matter.” He spoke in a hoarse whisper.

    Did he think the walls had ears? I have the office swept at least weekly, and Bertha casts a mean hex and counter-snooping spell every morning when she arrives.

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