Kitsch & Kitty, Kriminal Katchers sez the gold lettering on the door. Yeah, that’s the ticket. So, who cares if the lettering is a little flaky? Kitty and me, we’re pretty flaky, too. If we weren’t we’d never be in this crazy business. So here we are, getting set for our tea break, eucalyptus of course, when Kitty’s eyes pop wide open.
“Smell that, Kitsch, honey?” “What? I don’t smell no honey, doll-face.” “No, not honey, honey. Smell the tea.” “If you say so, sweet-cakes.” So, I give it a sniff and my nose feels funny. Kind of frosty. “Hmmm,” I say. “This ain’t right. I think it’s …” But I splash a bit in my saucer, give it a mo to chill and lap up a mouthful. “Gack!” I yell, spitting it out on the floor. Kitty rushes to clean up the mess looking concerned and irritated at the same time as only a dame can do.
“See what I mean?” she nods, hands on hips in disapproval.
“Mint! That’s what it is. Didja know that stuff can kill ya?” I yell.
“Well, maybe yes, maybe no. There’s all kinds of answers on the Internet.”
“Oh, yeah, I feel so much better now,” I reply, giving Kitty my most ferocious look that she calls my big, black bear look even though I’m only a Koala but she knows it makes me feel like a million bucks. That’s what the right doll can do for a guy.
But hold on a mo. I almost forgot I might be kicking the bucket.
“So how you gonna feel when I’m twitching around on the floor, wheezing out my last breath?” I conveniently forget that I’m probably wheezing because of that run-on sentence a few lines back.
“Oh, honey, you know I’m not going to let that happen. First we have to find out who switched our tea. Isn’t that what we do here at Kitsch and Kitty Kriminal Katchers?”
Coffee Cups, Greeting Cards and phone cases, print on demand from the Ryn Shell Koala oil painting image.
Ryn Shell Koala T Shirt.
“Remember that old movie, D.O.A., where Edmund O’Brien gets poisoned and he only has about a day to find his killer?”
“So? I know ya’ like those old dark movies where ya can’t even see what they’re doin’.”
“It’s called film noir,” Kitty sniffed. “And they were wonderful movies. Laura is my favorite with …”
“Okay, okay. I get ya’. D.O.A. That’s the one where the guy tells his dame to take all their money and buy herself a fur coat. Well, that ain’t gonna work with me, doll-face. You already got a fur coat,” I snicker.
“Are you going to listen or not?” Kitty nearly shouts, stomping her little foot.
But now I’m sweating and I don’t feel so good. So I listen. Kitty glares at me for another minute to make sure I’m ready to take her seriously.
“Alright,” she sniffs. “First, we need to see where this awful stuff is coming from. Then we need to find out how it got in our tea.”
Ryn Shell, Framed Koala Print
“Yeah, and who put it there and does the little creep have an antidote.” “Yes, honey. Of course, honey. That, too.”
Kitty pats me on the cheek but I know she’s just humoring me. Still, I need my doll on my side, so I scrape up a smile and squeeze the hand still on my cheek.
“Where should we look first?” I say, but I already know where. Right around our favorite eucalyptus tree, but I always want Kitty to think it’s her idea.
“Not our favorite tree,” she nods thoughtfully. “That’s too obvious. I think we should go to the edge of the woods and see what’s growing there.”
“But, but …” I protest, but Kitty is waving me away.
“Now, honey, we have to go right past our tree and a whole lot of others on our way to the field. We’ll be able to smell that awful stuff from several feet away.”
“Okay,” I grumble. But we don’t have far to go. Right outside our door is a mole, and not just any mole. It’s Marcus the Mole, our friend and neighbor, and he reeks of mint.
“Hey, Markie baby,” I shout, waving my hand in front of my face. Kitty, doll that she is, holds a hankie delicately to her nose. “What’s with the mint? And did you poison our tea?”
“Is that you, Kitsch?” he asks, his eyes streaming. Blind as a bat anyway from living underground, the runny eyes and nose aren’t helping him any.
“Yeah, yeah,” I grunt beginning to cough myself. “So what’s with the stinky stuff?”
“It’s not me,” Marcus squeals. “It’s Farmer Schuntzenheimer. He read somewhere (probably on the Internet, Kitty whispers in my ear) that mint repels moles. And boy was he right. He’s got it planted everywhere. Me and the family are getting out of here.”
“But where will you go?” Kitty asks tearfully.
“Oh, I don’t know,” Marcus sniffs. “We’ll probably follow the rabbits to Watership Down.”
Tote from the Koala painting by Ryn Shell. Print on demand orders accepted in varied sizes and styles. Satisfaction Guarantee.
Margaret Lake was born in New Jersey, but moved to Florida in her early teens and has lived there ever since.
Reading has been her favorite activity since she was ten years old. Even after purchasing a Kindle, she still has seven large bookcases filled with paper books.
Her other passion is history, especially English History, dating from when she first read "Catherine" by Anya Seton. When the inspiration came to write her first novel, she naturally gravitated to the Wars of the Roses because of that book.
Her favorite author is Susan Howatch, her favorite book is "Outlander" and her favorite series is Harry Potter. She leads a Harry Potter book club at the elementary school and helps with the chess club at both the elementary and high schools.
Margaret rescued a nine-year old Jack Russell Terrier named Angelo who is now fourteen and as frisky as ever.
Ryn Shell started blogging in 2007, while also writing and painting each day. Since then she’s attracted over a half million unique visitors from over one-hundred countries to her site. Ryn Shell is the winner of numerous prestigious professional awards from portraiture, landscape and still life-floral studies in the mediums of oils, watercolour, pastels and drawing plus pottery, sculpture ,and literature.
Ryn Shell's paintings are beautiful, and beyond fashion, her novels timeless, Her blog commentary centres around her experiences while creating each piece – stories about the gardens, land, and the wildlife she paints. Ryn Shell developed the multi-award winning Buninyong Gallery with her husband Reg Shell and has taken art exhibitions on tour around Australia, and especially through regional and the outback communities. She has painted commissions for an International clientele, and represented Australia at the International Artists’ Festival, Ryn Shell has been featured in the Australia Artist Magazine, and on Channel 9/WIN Television Network,