Welcome to my first stop with 12 Days of Clink Street Christmas. Today I’m delighted to have a guest post from Matthew Redford, author of Addicted to Death and Who Killed the Mince Spy, food related crime stories.
Who Killed The Mince Spy?
‘Tenacious carrot, detective inspector Willie Wortell is back to reveal the deviously delicious mind behind the crime of the festive season in this hugely entertaining, and utterly unconventional, short story.
When Mitchell the Mince Spy is horrifically murdered by being over baked in a fan oven, it falls to the Food Related Crime team to investigate this heinous act. Why was Mitchell killed? Who is the mysterious man with a long white beard and why does he carry a syringe? Why is it that the death of a mince spy smells so good?
Detective Inspector Willie Wortel, the best food sapiens police officer, once again leads his team into a series of crazy escapades. Supported by his able homo sapiens sergeant Dorothy Knox and his less able fruit officers Oranges and Lemons, they encounter Snow White and the seven dwarf cabbages as well as having a run in with the food sapiens secret service, MI GasMark5.
With a thigh slap here, and a thigh slap there, the team know Christmas is coming as the upper classes are acting strangely – why else would there be lords a leaping, ladies dancing and maids a milking?
And if that wasn’t enough, the Government Minister for the Department of Fisheries, Agriculture and Rural Trade (DAFaRT) has only gone and given the turkeys a vote on whether they are for or against Christmas.
Let the madness begin!’
This short story by Matthew Redford follows his deliciously irreverent debut Addicted To Death (Clink Street Publishing, 2015).
Detective Inspector Willie Wortel’s Christmas Day ~ not quite what he planned.
This was not how Detective Inspector Willie Wortel had planned his Christmas day. He wanted to be at home with his family, passing Christmas presents to his children, looking at their faces as they carefully unwrapped the paper trying to guess what was inside before the present revealed its contents. He wanted to be helping his wife in the kitchen with the Christmas dinner, wrapping pigs in blankets, peeling potatoes. He wanted to decorate the dining table with Christmas crackers, each one containing a silly joke and a paper hat which, no matter how hard he tried, never sat neatly on his green, spiky carrot hair.
But no, that wasn’t to be. He was stuck in his car with his homo sapiens sergeant Dorothy Knox and his two fruit officers Oranges and Lemons. They had been called out on Christmas Eve when Wortel’s nemesis MadCow McBeef had escaped from prison. And here they were, hiding in his car, keeping watch on a deserted building on an industrial estate.
Make no mistake, with MadCow McBeef inside, this was a proper steak out.
MadCow McBeef was a dangerous character who had been incarcerated at the Farmer Giles Mental Institution. For Detective Inspector Willie Wortel, MadCow McBeef was not mad at all, he was an evil genius. Inside with MadCow was another member of the criminal underworld, Napoleon, a rather plump domestic boar. The rumour was that he had been involved in the prison breakout which did not surprise the Food Related Crime team one bit.
The deserted building was owned by Napoleon, and Wortel was sure it had been purchased using stolen funds. After all, Napoleon always found it had to keep his snout of the trough.
Dorothy broke the silence. “What’s the plan boss?”
Wortel held his tongue which was a strange thing to do as there was no need for his hand to be in his mouth. He removed his hand, wiped it down his trousers and shrugged. “I’m not entirely sure yet Dorothy,” he replied, before turning his head towards the rear passenger seats to look at Oranges and Lemons. “How are you getting on boys?”
Oranges and Lemons never looked up but continued what they had been doing since the steak out began. The carried on using their police issued rolling pins.
“We’re doing okay,” Oranges replied.
“Have you got it as thick as I wanted?”
“Not yet,” chimed Lemons, his little arms starting to ache from all of the rolling.
“Okay, let me know when you have,” muttered Wortel turning back around and looking towards the building where MadCow McBeef was hiding.
“Any chance we could sing a few Christmas carols while we work?” asked Oranges tentatively, not sure how his boss would react.
Detective Inspector Wortel shuddered. He wasn’t a huge fan of Christmas carols, mainly because he could never remember the words. In all of his years, he could not get the lyrics to ‘Little Donkey’ to stick in his mind. In fact, that song was a pain in the ass in more than one way.
A thought suddenly struck him. “Dorothy, I’ve got a plan!”
With Oranges and Lemons concluding their rolling, the four members of the Food Related Crime got out of their car and walked quietly towards the deserted building. A small light shone from inside, most likely from a candle.
With a nod of his head, the four police officers began to sing.
“Silent Night! Holy Night!”
From inside the building, Napoleon and MadCow McBeef exchanged a startled look. Carol singers, oh lord.
“I’ll get rid of them,” oinked Napoleon as he shifted his porkly frame towards the door.
MadCow McBeef inched behind him, a feeling of strange nervousness creeping over him. As Napoleon reached for the lock, MadCow McBeef heard the carol singers croon once more, and he suddenly recognised a voice he dreaded. Wortel.
As he went to call out to his criminal colleague he realised it was too late for Napoleon had opened the door. There stood Wortel and Dorothy Knox handcuffs at the ready, while Oranges and Lemons stood alongside their senior colleagues holding the puff pastry and mushroom mix they had been working on in the car.
“Quickly,” shouted Wortel as Napoleon turned away in panic, crashing straight into MadCow sending them both scattering to the floor.
Oranges and Lemons rushed forward and threw the puff pastry and mushroom mix onto the two criminals trapping them inside.
“You’re under arrest MadCow McBeef. In fact, McBeef Wellington! And look, Wellington beats Napoleon again!” laughed Wortel.
As the Food Related Crime started to close down their crime scene, dampness started to settle on the floor.
“Oh no,” said Dorothy. “This will make my hair get big.”
“Never mind,” said Wortel. “It could be worse.”
“How?” she replied.
“It could be rain dear.
Merry Christmas everyone!!
About Matthew Redford
Born in 1980, Matthew Redford grew up with his parents and elder brother on a council estate in Bermondsey, south-east London. He now lives in Longfield, Kent, takes masochistic pleasure in watching his favourite football team snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, is a keen chess player and is planning future food related crime novels. To counterbalance the quirkiness of his crime fiction Redford is an accountant. His unconventional debut crime thriller, Addicted to Death: A Food Related Crime Investigation was published by Clink Street Publishing last summer.