“Pete, your left arm is hurt. What happened?” asked Safora.
“I collided with a suspect and he fell on top of me, he is such a giant. But don’t worry, Safora. I’ll tell you more about it later, now we are going to Miss Hong’s house to check her doors,” answered Pete.
When they arrived at Miss Hong’s house, they saw a group of policemen around a wooden shed at a corner of Miss Hong’s garden. A few minutes later, a police officer arrived in a police car together with three other policemen. As he walked through the gate, a policeman ran to meet him followed other policemen, leaving two policemen to guard the locked shed.
“Sir! We saw a glimpse of something orange and furry running into the shed and now it is locked! We are trying to get the door open but we have to be careful because we do not know what the yellow thing is. It could be a lion…,” said the policeman to the police officer.
“A lion?” asked the police officer as he rushed to the shed followed by the policeman. “We’ll see what we ca….”
“Ouch!” shouted a policeman who was guarding the shed as he was pushed to the ground.
Before the police officer could finished his sentence, a brawny man popped out from a big bush next to the shed, pushed a policeman who tried to stop him, sprinted towards the shed and kicked down the wall of the shed. A part of the wall crashed, leaving a big hole in the wall.
Suddenly something that looked like a lion crawled out from the hole. When the thing stood up, they realised that it was not a lion but a heavy-set man in a furry, orange lion costume. The two strong suspects ran towards the fence, pushing away the policemen who tried to stop them. Another man jumped down from a big apple tree near the fence, and the three men jumped over the fence and ran to a big ice cream truck. They went in the truck and immediately drove away leaving the stunned policemen behind.
“Wait,” said one of the policemen. “They are driving towards Mr. Pete’s house!”
He immediately called the police chief and told him to block the ice cream truck with a registration number of REX3541. Pete, Mic, Safora and Reen ran after the truck together with the policemen. As they approached Mr. Pete’s house, they saw the ice cream truck in front of his gate.
The policemen blocked the road with two big police trucks that had just arrived at Mr. Pete’s house, and surrounded the area so that the gang members could not get away. They caught the three men and hand cuffed them before taking them to the police truck. The police chief and his men opened the door at the back of the truck to investigate, and to their surprise, they found wooden doors instead of ice creams in the truck.
The police chief drove the children to the police station and called their parents to tell them what had happened. The police recorded the children’s statements about the kidnapping and the children showed the police chief their notes and told him what they knew about the case. When their parents reached the police station, they were so happy to see that the children were all right. Before they leave the police station, the police chief thanked the children for helping the police to solve the mystery of the missing doors.
After interrogating the gang members, the police identified the gang’s leader as George Gampore Jr. or also known as XYZ. The gang members admitted that they had stolen all the doors and told the police where the doors were kept. They also told the police that they planned to export those beautiful wooden doors to a neighbouring country where wooden doors were very expensive because the country was over forested until there was no timber in the country to make wooden doors.
“Well, children,” said the police chief. “Thank you very much for helping the Woodsland Police to solve this case. Now I am going to give everybody a special reward!”
Pete got a pocket camera while Safora was rewarded with some nice notebooks and pens. Mic was very excited for he got a fingerprint detector and Reen was very proud of his new set of spying gadgets.
“Well, congratulations for solving the Mystery of the Missing Doors, PeforaMeen Solvers”, said the police chief with a big smile.
Mr. Luke went inside and brought out a big plate of cookies and a pot of tea.
“Mic, Reen, come and eat these tasty cookies while I call the police. I bought them in London for both of you,” said Mr. Luke.
Reen took a big bite and just as he was about to say something, the police chief arrived followed by six policemen.
“Hello, sir,” said Mr. Luke. “Did I do something wrong?”
“No,” said the police chief. “It’s someone else who did something wrong. We are here to make sure that your doors won’t be stolen.”
“Well, it’s too late, sir. My beautiful front door is already stolen! In fact I was about to go inside and call the police regarding this matter,” said Mr. Luke.
“When did you find out that your door is stolen and did you see anybody suspicious before it happened?” asked the police chief.
“Mic and Reen came here just now to have tea with me and that was when we found out that my front door is gone. By the way, I did not hear anything or see anybody suspicious, sir. Please, I really hope that you can help me to get my door back.”
Mic saw some footprints and took out his notebook to compare them with the ones that they saw at Miss Nyla’s house. And as he had expected, they were the same.
Then he saw something that looked like a piece of purple cloth sticking out from the bushes. He tried to pull it but it was stuck. Mic pulled harder and harder until suddenly it pulled him back towards the bushes. Then the bushes shook and Mic saw something green and purple crawling under the bushes.
“There is something green and purple crawling under the bushes!” shouted Mic.
Everybody was surprised and Reen who was enjoying his third cookie, was almost choked in surprised.
At that moment, a man jumped out from the bushes and pushed Mic to the ground before he ran away. The man jumped over the fence, and ran towards Miss Hong’s house.
“Go after him!” shouted a police chief to his men.
Mic picked himself up and ran to take a piece of cookie before he ran to Miss Hong’s house.
Suddenly, Pete who came running from the opposite side ran into the suspect. They collided and both of them fell to the ground with the tall man on top of Pete.
“Pete! Are you all right?” shouted Mic as the policemen ran to catch the suspect.
The suspect got up, pushed a policeman to the ground and tried to run away. Four other policemen surrounded the suspect and caught him. The suspect was a tall and a very strong man, but the four policemen were too strong for him. The suspect was handcuffed and taken to the police car.
Mic helped Pete up and they both ran to Miss Hong’s house followed Reen who first took a few pieces of cookies before running after Mic and Pete. On the way there, they met Safora.
Pete and Safora ran back to their house as fast as they could. They went inside the house and Pete locked the door. He switched on the lights in the dining room and turned towards his sister.
“What an adventure,” said Pete excitedly. “But it’s a sad thing that we could not get to hear more of their secret plans. Safora, please contact Mic and tell him what happened while I prepare something for us to eat.”
Safora sat on her favourite chair and took out her phone. She sent Mic a message telling him that they were already back home and that he could now go to bed. She also told him that she forgot to silence her phone and that it made a loud beeping sound at the beach.
Meanwhile in the kitchen, Pete took out some cheese and bread and prepared some sandwiches for both of them. After eating their delicious supper, they went to bed. They both slept well, dreaming about solving the mystery. In Pete’s dream, he met a big fat giant and the giant shook him until he could not breath. Then he heard a familiar voice calling his name, it was his mother trying to wake him up.
“Pete, wake up! It is already 10 o’clock, ” said her mother.
Pete woke up with a surprise.
“It is already 10 o’clock?” he asked. “How can I be so sleepy and did not hear my alarm clock ringing,” he continued.
“Did you slept well last night?” asked his mother. “Or did you stayed up late?”
Pete got up from his bed and rushed to the bathroom to take a bath. After eating his breakfast, he ran to Mic’s house with Safora. The four of them discussed about what had happened last night.
“I’ve sent the information to the police chief,” said Mic. “He said that he will go to the gang’s headquarters this morning. I think we too should go there and check out the place. How about asking the milkman if we can help him deliver milk at that location? By the way, the milkman is really late today. Normally he comes very early.”
“Good idea,” said Reen. “A very good idea, indeed. I think I should go there with Pete and I could use my blue and green wagon to carry the milk.”
“And here comes the milkman,” said Mic. “Let’s ask him if we can deliver the milk to the headquarters.”
“Hello, Mr. Milkman. Can we help you deliver these milk, please?” asked Reen.
“Well,sure!” answered the milkman. “I am almost done, there are only a few more houses left. And here are the addresses. Just be careful and don’t break the bottles. I shall be at my house, at number 611 on 505 Street. It is just around the corner. You’ll just send me back the crates and there will be rewards for you.”
“Thank you, sir, ” said Pete as he put the crates into Reen’s wagon.
“He is XYZ!” said Pete in a low voice. “That milkman is XYZ! His face, his voice and where he lives! I just can’t believe it. So, he lives at the the thieves’ headquarters. Take notice of each people in the house when we send these crates. Man! I just can’t believe it. If we see Miss Nyla’s door, we’ll call the police chief. Mic and Safora, please call the police chief if Reen and I are not back or if you hear nothing from us after an hour.”
They said good bye and the two boys walked to Miss Nyla’s house, the next house was her German neighbour, Mr. Polst and then to their friend, Neick’s house, After that they delivered the milk to Mr. Raldo’s house and to a few more houses before walking all the way to house number 611 on 505 Street.
“Take notice of their faces and everything inside the house, Reen,” whispered Pete as they walked to the house. When they reached the house, Pete rang the door bell and XYZ opened the door.
“Well, well,” said XYZ with a big grin. “Please come in.”
As soon as they were inside the house, he locked the door and clapped his hands.
“It seems like you have fallen into my trap!” he said.
Then both of them were surrounded by the gang members. They took out a long rope and tied up the boys’ hands and legs.
“Now you are going to be punished for spying on us,” said XYZ.
“I wasn’t spying!” said Reen. “I was sleeping at home. It was Pete who was sp….”
Before Reen could finish his sentence, XYZ covered Reen’s mouth with duct tape and then did the same to Pete. Soon they heard the door bell. As XYZ stood up to open the door, he accidentally dropped his phone.
“Our pizzas are here,” announced XYZ as he brought in a few big boxes of tasty smelling pizzas.
“Stay there and do not try to get away,” shouted a fat, bald man in a fierce voice from the dinning table.
The whole gang sat at the dinning table and started eating their tasty pizzas without realizing that Pete had managed to pick up XYZ’s phone which was on the floor not far from where Pete was tied up. The gang members were talking to each other noisily while enjoying their pizzas. Pete who was familiar with that type of hand phone tried to send a message to Safora.
He could not type properly as he could not see the phone keys for his hands were tied up behind his back, so he could not see the phone keys. At Mic’s house, Mic and Safora were very worried because Pete and Reen were gone for nearly an hour and they still heard nothing from them. Suddenly Safora heard her phone ringing. She took it up and saw a funny message from an unknown phone number.
“Sfor! Its pte hre. i’m kinapd. athq of enmy cll plice? I wonder who sent this weird message,” said Safora.
Mic took the phone and tried to read the message.
“Safora, I think it is from Pete, trying to tell us that he was kidnapped and wants us to call the police.”
Safora quickly called the police chief and told him what happened. The police chief told her not to worry because he had almost reach the house. After that, Safora and Mic rushed to the gang’s headquarters and when they reached the house, they saw the police chief ringing the door bell.
Someone opened the door thinking it was a pizza man as they had ordered more pizzas. The police chief went inside the house followed by a few policemen. Some of the gang members ran outside from the windows and the kitchen door not knowing that the police had already surrounded the house. Anyway one of them managed to escape and ran away toward the woods.
On Wednesday night, Pete and Safora had an early dinner. By half past eight, they had already washed all the plates and cleaned up the dinning table. Their parents were away till the next day and their mother had prepared their meals and put them in the refrigerator for them to heat up.
“All right, we are all done,” said Pete, washing his hands. “We better check our things and get ready to go to the beach. Just think about it, we may be able to hear their plans and every thing they will discuss in their meeting!”
Less than ten minutes later, Pete and Safora arrived at the beach . They hid behind a closed stall as planned. Pete peeked through the top of the stall counter. He took out his micro listener and his night vision glasses and put them on to help him see and hear things clearly. Meanwhile, Safora was hiding under the counter with her phone in her hand, ready to text Mic the information needed to be sent.
Mic was already at the headquarters with a laptop, his phone and a voice recorder with Reen sitting beside him. They were very excited and wished that they could go to the beach together with Pete and Safora.
It was after nine o’clock when Pete saw a few men walking to the beach. They stopped not far from where Pete and Safora were hiding and sat down on the sand. They looked around them and a few minutes later, a tall man started the meeting.
“All right, is every body here?” started the tall man in a purple jacket in a low voice. “498, here. 767, here. 123, here. 555, here. ABC, here. And XYZ which is me, also here.”
“Now, where is 8910?” asked someone in a crooked voice.
“Never mind, that guy is always late,” said XYZ. “Maybe he’s asleep. All right, now we’ve got three doors. The first one is from Miss Nyla’s house, then from Mr. Lonard’s house and the third is from Mrs. Kale’s house which is not in Woodsland. We are going to steal 5 more doors, but we will do it outside of Woodsland. ABC, steal the strongest and finest door in Whitehall. 767, do the same thing as ABC in Petershall. 555, go to Mr. Pete’s, Miss Hong’s, and Mr. Luke’s house in Canary Street, Kingston and steal their doors tomorrow night. All three of them have nice doors and they will not be at home. They are now in London for a week. After you are done, bring those doors to our new headquarters at number 611 of 505 Street.”
Pete gave Safora a note to be sent to Mic saying,
“Tell our friend the police chief that doors might be stolen from Mr. Pete’s, Miss Hong’s, and Mr. Luke’s house in Canary Street, Kingston tomorrow night. Their HQ is at number 611 of 505 Street.”
Safora sent the message to Mic. Anyway she forgot to silent her phone and it made a loud beep that surprised the gang. Pete grabbed Safora’s hands and together they crept to the bushes behind the stall and after they are far enough, they ran home as fast as they could, afraid of being caught.
It was a windy night and waves made a loud sound as they crashed on the shore. Pete and Safora were lucky that the gang could not hear or see them creeping in the bushes. The gang checked their phones and asked each other whose phone was beeping. They then searched all around them and after a while one of the gang said, “This is creepy, I think we should stop this meeting and continue some other times just in case there issome body watching us.“
“Disperse!” said XYZ, and all of them ran away in different directions.
“Mom, can we have tea at our favourite place in the garden, please? asked Pete.
“Of course,” answered his mother.
The children ran to their favourite table in the garden and took their seats.
“It is very hard to solve this mystery,” said Reen. “I haven’t been able to estimate the length of our suspect’s nose, the length of his arms, the size of his shoes and the size of his shirt,” continued Reen. “I don’t think we could solve it. There are…”
“Hello children. Look who is here to see you,” said Reen’s mother as she walked towards them followed by Miss Nyla. Miss Nyla carried a big tray loaded with home baked cookies and cakes.
“Good afternoon, children,” said Miss Nyla with a big smile. “I baked these lovely cookies and cake especially for all of you. I hope you’ll love them,” she continued.
“Lovely!” said Safora. “Look at those delicious chocolate chips on the cookies. And the cake looks so tasty with cream and huge, fresh strawberries! Thank you, Miss Nyla. You are very kind.”
Just as Miss Nyla and Reen’s mother went inside the house, someone on a motorcycle dropped something in front of Reen’s house.
“Hey!” shouted Mic as he ran to the gate. He saw a newspaper by the roadside and picked it up. “He’s gone,” said Mic to himself. Mic told his friends what had happened and looking at the newspaper, he asked,”Should we check this newspaper just in case if there’s a message or something?”
Then he saw something written on the front page of the newspaper.
“Tell 8910 a meeting Wednesday 9pm at the beach.
XYZ will lead the meeting.
555 of vd (burn after reading)”
“It’s a message to the guy called 8910!” said Pete. “But who is he and what is vd? Is it a place?”
“I know!” shouted Reen. “Seera Soora Sora of Cape Verde. It’s a code. The three fives are codes for three ‘s’ and vd is…”
“That’s impossible, Reen!” said Mic who was tired of Reen’s weird theories, before Reen could go on. “I think 555 of vd refers to somebody with a code name, 555 and vd means vanishing doors.”
“Good thinking, Mic!” said Pete. “555 could bea code name and vd could be vanishing doors. Clever, Mic”.
Mic smiled proudly.
“Now time for a plan. We’ll need someone to spy the meeting and someone else to help the spy send informations by texting to the headquarters. One of us will be staying at the headquarters which is here, to collect information and ready to call for help just in case anything happen.”
“I think Pete will spy,” started Mic. “Safora will assist Pete and I will be at the head quarters.”
“Right,” says Pete. “Today is Tuesday so we’ll better get ready for the meeting. Get your darkest shirt, Safora. We’ll be going there 10 minutes early and we would hide behind a closed stall. Mic, be ready about 13 minutes before the meeting. Understand, everybody?” asked Pete.
“But what about me?” asked Reen.
“I’m sorry, Reen. I forgot to tell you that you’ll be Mic’s assistant. Please make sure that both of you will not fall asleep. Now let’s get prepared!” said Pete.
“Don’t lose hope,” said Pete. “He went into the circus tent. Come on, Reen. Lets go after him.”
Pete ran towards the tent followed by Reen. It was in the middle of a circus show, so both of them bought their tickets and took their seats. They watched the clown juggled five apples on his legs while doing a handstand. Then they watched a bear dancing on a huge ball and next, they watched a monkey hopping on one leg on a tightrope.
They looked around them but the man they were after was nowhere to be seen. A man with a bowler hat called for a volunteer for the next act. Reen was the first volunteer. He put his right hand into the clown’s hat and took out a chicken sitting in a basket. The chicken jumped out of the basket and inside the basket there were four little eggs that were green instead of brown. The clown gave Reen a souvenir and Reen walked back to his seat with a big smile.
Then another volunteer walked to the circus ring for the next act. The boy looked familiar, he walked in a familiar way, when he introduced himself, his name sounded familiar and his voice sounded familiar too. The boy looked at the crowd as if he was searching for somebody.
Reen looked at the volunteer and said, “Pete, that’s my big brother Mic.”
Mic was searching for Pete and Reen. He saw them entering the circus tent and went after them. Anyway he lost them after he bought his ticket, so he took a seat hoping to see them later. He was looking around at the crowd when he saw Reen put up his hands high up in the air waving at him. Mic nodded and waved back before he went back to his seat. He sent Safora a text message telling her that he found Pete and Reen in the circus tent.
And then, the most unexpected and surprising thing happened. Three men swung around and out came the Mayor of Woodsland jumping down from something that looked like a giant leaf that was lowered down to the middle of the circus ring to officiate the fair. Everyone clapped their hands and at that moment, Reen saw the man that they were looking for. He told Pete about it and Pete nodded and whispered that he saw the man too.
Pete got up from his seat as if he was bored and pretended to walk to the door followed by Reen. They passed the suspect, noticing his behaviour with other people. He seemed to be kind and gentle but looked a little nervous. Pete was looking at him when the man got up pretending he was going to the toilet.
Pete walked out of the circus tent and as he took out his phone to send Mic a text message, he saw that his phone battery was dead. Luckily they saw Safora and Pete told her to tell Mic to meet them under the tree where they ate their ice creams earlier.
Meanwhile, Mic was enjoying an act where a monkey was riding a beautiful, white horse. The horse galloped fast around the circus ring with the monkey on its back and white mice on their heads. He was quite sad to read the message because he was looking forward for another act by the monkey and the horse.
Mic went outside and ran to the place where his friends were waiting for him. Pete told Mic and Safora about the suspect and why he and Reen rushed inside the circus tent without waiting for Safora and Mic.
They met Pete’s father who was still seating on the bench. He was reading another sports newspaper when he saw them coming. He bought them tasty burgers with crispy fries for lunch and they had more ice creams before they left the fair.
Pete’s father drove them back home and as he stopped his car in front of Mic’s house, Mic’s father invited him in. The children went to Mic’s room to discuss about the mystery. They listed out the clues and suspects in their note books and realised that they still need much more clues to solve the mystery.
The next day, the four friends had a meeting in Mic’s garden to discuss about the mystery. “I found nothing in Russia that can help us to solve this mystery,” said Mic. “No clues and no information. Furthermore I can’t speak Russian, so it was hard for me to communicate with the Russians over there. So I think we’ll have to get more clues here in Woodsland. And the answers from Akbar couldn’t help us at all. He said he had never come here before, and this is the first trip to Woodsland that he had ever made. So, I don’t think my trip to Russia can help us in solving this mystery,” continued Mic.
They then decided to go to the woods to search for more clues. As they walked near the woods, they saw two men walking from the woods. One was small, slim and dark with white hair and the other was tall, big and red headed. Pete asked the first man, “Good morning, sir. Sorry for interrupting you, but do you know the person who had cut down the trees in the woods or do you know someone who might have done it?”
“No,” said the man looking angrily at Mic, “and stop playing in the woods. This is a dangerous place,” he continued in a croaked voice. He walked towards his big truck, stated the engine and drove away.
Mic walked to the second man, “Excuse me, sir. Do you know someone who might have cut down the trees in the woods?”
The man looked at them with a warm smile. Then he answered in a kind and soft voice, “I wish that I can help you but sorry, I have no idea. It is nice to know that you care about the trees in this woods. Maybe you could take a look around this place for some clues. By the way, I’m Steve Black, the fisherman.”
“Thanks, Mr. Black,” said Mic. ” I am Michael Alvernda. It’s very nice to meet you.”
They all went into the woods and inspected the trees around them. Then they reached an area where the thick bushes stopped them from going further. Suddenly they heard some rustling sound in the bushes. They stood back, scared and wondering what could it be. They were about to run away when they saw a man behind the bushes. He saw the children and walked out from the bushes.
He then walked towards them and introduced himself, “Hi, I am Rupert Alexender Marmet. I am a botanist from Australia. I am studying the plants in this woods. Do you like plants too?” They asked him a lot of questions and the kind botanist was happy to answer their questions. He showed them photos of some wonderful plants that he saw in the woods.
Then he asked them, “It seems that someone had cut down a lot of trees around the woods especially that area,” he said pointing to the area where they came from. “Do you know who did it and why?” The children told him that they were also asking the same questions too. The botanist said, “Well, I have to go now. I really enjoyed talking to all of you and hope that you can solve the mystery of who cut the beautiful trees and why; so that we can stop the person from destroying this beautiful woods. I hope we’ll meet again soon. Goodbye!”
“So, what’s next, Pete?” asked Mic after Rupert left them.
“I think we’ll go and ask a friend of mine if he knows anything about what had happened in the woods as he lives nearby,” answered Pete. “It’s better to ask someone we know than someone we don’t.” And so they all went to the house of Pete’s German friend named Frederick. But he told them that he did not know much about it. He only read about it from a newspaper. Frederick explained that it was against the law to cut down trees in the woods.
Instead of giving them clues, he served them chocolate ice-cream that he made all by himself. The ice-cream was so delicious and creamy and the four children really enjoyed the tasty ice-cream. Soon, they said goodbye to Frederick and walked to a nearby riverbank to discuss about what had happened.
Suddenly they heard footsteps from behind them. They looked behind them but they could not see anything. After a while, they heard clattering noise from the woods across the river. They looked up and saw a few trees started to fall down to the ground on the other side of the river.
To be continued …
Please click here for, The Mystery Of The deforested Woods (Chapter 6: The Actions)
Please click here for, ‘The Mystery of The Deforested Woods (Chapter 3: Suspects)’
They all thought hard. “I know!” shouted Pete. “I think I know the person who cut down the trees in the woods. Henry! It should be him. It can’t be Ivan; because if Ivan cut down the trees, there won’t be any noise so we won’t be hearing the clattering sound. But first, we need to find out more information about Henry and Ivan. All lumberjacks in this country must be members of the Lumberjack Club and we can check their resumes at the club office,” continued Pete.
Safora and Mic volunteered to go to the Lumberjack Club to check if Henry and Ivan are members of the club. An hour later, they returned to Mic’s house with good news.
“Okay,” started Safora. “We have good news. They are both members of the Lumberjack Club and here is what we found out about them.” She took out her note-book and read, ” Henry is now 57 years old. He was born in Dillenburg, Netherlands. And Ivan is now 53 years old. He was born in the lands of Kolomenskoye, Russia.”
“And I have another good news,” said Mic excitedly. “Tomorrow my father is going to Russia and he is taking Reen and I along for a holiday. We’ll try to see if we can find more information about Ivan as our father will be meeting his old friend, a lumberjack named Akbar over there. Akbar was born in India but he now lives in Russia. Our father said that some of Akbar’s fingers had turned crooked or pointy, I can’t remember which; so he wants to visit him and see if he can help Akbar.”
“Where was Akbar born, Mic?” asked Pete.
“Agra, near the Taj Mahal. And I’ll try to ask him questions to find out if he came to Woodsland recently,” answered Mic.
The next day, Mic and Reen were very excited; they could hardly wait for the time to go to the airport. Their flight to Russia would be departing from the Woodsland International Airport or WIAIR at 12 o’clock noon and they were going to the airport two hours earlier. Mic and Reen said goodbye to Pete and Safora, and they promised to bring back something special from Russia for their friends.
“When will you be back from Russia?” asked Safora.
“We’ll be there for six days and we will be arriving back here at 7 o’clock in the morning on Monday,” answered Mic. “I have never been to Russia before and I hope that it is going to be fun over there,” continued Mic. Safora and Pete said goodbye to Mic, Reen and their parents as they departed for the airport.
Six days later at 7 o’clock in the morning, an AeroBratsk aeroplane landed on Woodsland International Airport’s runway from Russia. Fifteen minutes later, out came some Russians from the aeroplane. Then a boy with his little brother walked out from the aeroplane together with their parents, followed by an Indian man. It was Mic and Reen and their parents. They came back to Woodsland together with their friend Akbar.
Two hours later, Pete, Safora, Mic and Reen got together at Mic’s house. They were so happy to see each other again. Mic and Reen told Pete and Safora about their experiences in Russia and gave them some beautiful Russian Nesting Dolls, snow globes and some Russian postage stamps. Akbar saw the children talking excitedly to each other in the garden, so he walked towards them. Reen introduced Akbar to Pete and Safora and as Akbar decided to join them, they could not discuss about the mystery. Looking at each other, they wondered, who could be the lumberjack who cut down the trees in the woods ….
“Look!” said Reen. “I think that these hand prints are totally different from those I had ever seen. They have some kind of pointy things on the right thumb. Totally different than mine, see? I don’t have any pointy thing on top on my thu ….”
“Stop!” exclaimed Mic. “We’re inspecting these prints and we need to concentrate.” And so they continued inspecting the hand prints carefully. Suddenly Pete had an idea. He suggested that they should all go around Woodsland and check out who might have a pointy thumb on their right hands.
“Great idea!” shouted Reen. And so they all went out to get their scooters. They then rode their scooters excitedly around Woodland, looking for someone with a pointy thumb.
“First, check out for someone with abnormal hand or hands, then look at their thumbs,” said Pete. “When we’ve spotted them, I’ll snap their pictures and we’d ask the Woodsland Supermarket’s cashiers if they can recognise them. The cashiers might had met them since that is the only supermarket in Woodland. We’ll take pictures of three people before asking the cashiers. But if by an hour we could only find one person, we’ll go and ask the cashiers anyway.”
“I can see one of them over there,” whispered Mic. ” He has pointy fingers on his left hand and he has a pointy thumb on his other hand!” After an hour, they could only spot two people with pointy thumbs. They then decided to go to the supermarket and talk to the cashiers. Mic and Reen volunteered to go inside to talk to the cashiers.
The cashier was a very friendly man who knew the children very well. He told Mic and Reen the names and addresses of both men. After thanking the cashier, Mic and Reen went out of the supermarket. They smiled happily and Mic, who was holding the paper with the names and addresses, handed the paper to Safora.
“Now, off we go to the addresses,” said Safora. “First man…,” she looked at the note and read out loud. “His name is Ivan James, also known as Vames and lives at House 23, Summerland. The second man is Henry Maurice also known as Herrice and lives in House 85, near the winter festival building in Chocolate place. So, who’ll be going over there?”
“Me and Reen,” said Pete suddenly. “Among the 4 of us, we are the best at tracking people.”
So Reen and Pete went to Summerland to investigate. When they reached the address, Reen and Pete rang the door bell and waited. After a while a woman opened the door. “Good afternoon. We heard that there is a great lumberjack named Ivan who lives around this area. Do you know him?” asked Reen.
“Oh yes,” said the woman. “This is his house but he went out since this morning. He is a professional lumberjack and is very good at cutting woods. He could cut the woods without making any noises.” They talked to the woman for a few more minutes and headed to the second address.
At Chocolate Place, they looked for House 85. In front of the house, they saw a man carrying a chainsaw. “He might be a lumberjack,” thought Pete. Pete walk towards him asked him politely, “Hello, sir. Are you a lumberjack?”
“Yup!” he answered. “My name is Henry Maurice but people call me Herrice. I came all the way from Netherlands to work in Chocolate Place.” Herrice was very nice and friendly. They spoke for a while and Herrice invited them to visit him again next time.
Back at Mic’s, Mic and Safora were waiting anxiously for Pete and Reen to return home. “Michael!” called Mic’s mother. Mic went to the kitchen and his mother told him to feed the animals. Safora followed Mic to the barn and helped him to feed the animals. After feeding the animals they saw Pete and Reen walking towards Mic’s house.
They all rushed to the garden table for a meeting. Pete told them about their investigation.”Both men are lumberjacks,” said Pete. “So, could it be one of them who cut down the trees in the woods?” asked Pete. “Henry and Ivan are our first two suspects.”