The Mystery of the Midnight Marauder
Odd Behavior ● 1
JEEPERS!” Trixie Belden exclaimed breathlessly as she hurried into the kitchen. “I’ve never walked so far in my entire life. It didn’t do any good, either. I couldn’t find Reddy anywhere. Did you two have any luck?”
She flung herself into the nearest chair and gazed at her older brothers inquiringly.
Brian looked up from his breakfast. “Hey, slow down, Trix,” he said. “What’s all this about Reddy? Isn’t he outside? Did you call him?”
Trixie stared. “No, Reddy isn’t outside—at least, not where he’s supposed to be. And of course I called him. I’ve been calling him for the last half hour—and searching, too.” She frowned. “So where were you?”
Mart, who had been pushing his scrambled eggs around on his plate with his fork, flushed guiltily. “Sorry, Trix,” he mumbled. “I guess I forgot to give Brian your message.”
Trixie gasped. “You forgot about Reddy ?”
Mart avoided her eye. “I did say I was sorry. Anyway, this isn’t the first time that dog’s been gone all night. Reddy’s probably chasing a rabbit through the woods or something.”
Brian grinned with relief and relaxed against the back of his chair. “Sure,” he agreed, “I’ll bet that’s what he’s doing. If not, I expect he’s over at Manor House with Honey. Did you think of looking there?”
Trixie bit back the sharp retort that sprang to her lips. She was a sturdy fourteen-year-old whose temper sometimes had a short fuse, though her blond curly hair and big blue eyes belied the fact.
Right now she was struggling to hold on to that temper. After all , she thought, the boys couldn't be expected to know that I've just got back from Manor House.
After searching the grounds of Crabapple Farm, which nestled in a green hollow not far from the Hudson River, it was only natural that Trixie should have thought next of the Wheelers’ mansion. It stood high on the neighboring hill, just west of the Beldens’ cozy farmhouse, where Trixie lived with her parents and three brothers— and Reddy.
Trixie knew that the lovable Irish setter enjoyed the Wheelers’ huge estate as much as she did. He liked their stable full of horses and the private lake for swimming. He liked the game preserve and the woods, which were deep, dark, and mysterious, with trails that crossed and recrossed each other.
And he particularly liked Honey Wheeler, who was the same age as Trixie, and who had been Trixie’s best friend from the day the Wheeler family had moved into Manor House.
Trixie didn’t know what Reddy thought about all the mysteries she and Honey had solved since then. It was likely he didn’t know that the two girls had been so successful that they planned to open an office when they left school and call it the Belden-Wheeler Detective Agency.
One of the girls’ first cases had been to find Jim Frayne, who had run away to upstate New York to escape from his cruel stepfather. Soon afterward, Honey’s parents had adopted Jim.
Jim, Trixie, and Honey, together with Brian and Mart, had formed a club called the Bob-Whites of the Glen, or B.W.G.’s for short. Another neighbor, Di Lynch, and Dan Mangan, the nephew of Bill
Regan, the Wheelers’ groom, had later become Bob-Whites, too.
The Bob-Whites devoted themselves to helping others, as well as to solving the mysteries in which Trixie was constantly getting them involved.
Except this time, Trixie thought crossly, I’m not having much luck getting Brian and Mart involved in finding out what’s happened to Reddy!
“I’ve already been to Manor House,” Trixie said, trying to speak quietly and reasonably. “I couldn’t find Honey and Jim, but I asked Regan, and he hasn’t seen Reddy at all.”
Mart, eleven months older than Trixie—almost her twin—stared at her thoughtfully. “I still think you’re worrying over nothing,” he said flatly. “Reddy can take care of himself. He’s always done it before.”
Trixie leaned across the table toward him. “But this time it’s different,” she insisted. “This time I think something’s happened to him.”
“What sort of something?” Brian demanded. His dark eyes watched her steadily.
For a long moment, Trixie didn’t answer. Now that she was sure they were willing to listen, she wanted to be certain she remembered everything exactly the way it had happened.
Around them, the old farmhouse, where three generations of Beldens had lived, was unusually quiet. This was
Weitere Kostenlose Bücher