The Kids From B.A.D.

Stories by Allen Morgan

detective story collection

no illustrations

six stories - 128 pages



John, Mike, Ben and Sally have formed a detective club called the Barton Avenue Detectives. The following story is the second of six cases contained in this collection.

Burglars (part 1)

The Kids from B.A.D. didn't have to wait long for another case. Their big chance came only two weeks after the bicycle caper was wrapped up. Mike's parents had decided to go away for the weekend to visit friends so they arranged for Mike to stay next door with John while they were gone. John saw the possibilities right away and brought it to Mr. Thayer's attention the first chance he got.

"Protection," John told him. "You're going to need it."

"Protection? Protection from what?"

"Burglars," explained John. "Your house is going to be empty, isn't it? If you don't get protection burglars could hit your place as soon as you leave. They'd take everything. It happens all the time."

"Don't you think you're being a little extreme, John? And anyhow, I'm sure the police will keep an eye on things," said Mr. Thayer.

"Oh, they'll try," agreed John. "But you can't expect them to be everywhere at the same time; they can't just park outside your house all night, you know. Listen, Mr. Thayer, you've got to understand the sort of people we're dealing with here. They're crooks of the worst kind-just read the crime news, you'll find out. When they hit a house they wipe it out. They take everything. They'd even take your cigars." John pointed to the big leather box of cigars on the desk. "What you need are some private detectives to keep an eye on things. Why not hire us?"

Mr. Thayer smoked his cigar in silence for a moment. "How much do you charge?" he asked finally.

That caught John by surprise. He had been so busy trying to convince Mike's father that he needed protection, he hadn't stopped to figure out a price. He started to add figures in his head and was already up past twenty dollars when Mr. Thayer interrupted.

"How about two dollars?" he offered.

John blinked. Two dollars seemed a little low, but Mr. Thayer was already holding it out to him. The money looked good. He decided to take it.

"All right," he said. "But there may be some expenses.

"What sort of expenses?"

"Oh, you know," said John vaguely. "The usual kind. Have a good trip, Mr. Thayer. I've got to get home for supper now." He left quickly before Mr. Thayer could ask any more questions.
The next day John called the Barton Avenue Detectives together to give them the details of the job. He passed some sodas around as he told everyone about his talk with Mr. Thayer.

"How much do we get?" asked Ben.

"Two dollars," John told him.

"Two dollars!" groaned Sally. "That's only fifty cents each!"

"And we'll be watching the place twenty-four hours a day," added Ben.

"Hold on, hold on. He's giving us an expense account too," explained John.

"What kind of expenses do we have?" asked Mike.

"Lots," said John, pointing to the soda bottles. "Mr. Thayer will pay us back for the drinks. I kept the bill."

"Hey, all right! Let's get some pizza too," cried Ben.

"Wait a minute," protested Mike. "This is my dad we're talking about. We can't make him pay for everything."

"Mike's right," agreed John. "You can't charge your client for whatever you feel like, only stuff you have to have to work on the case. Of course, sodas are okay. After all, you need a soda to be able to think straight."

The other detectives nodded. They all knew he was right about that.

"Maybe we should hire a couple of watchdogs," John suggested next, sipping the last drops of soda from the bottle.

The others thought that was an excellent idea until Sally made a few phone calls and found out it would cost a fortune.

"Hey, I know," said Ben suddenly. "We could use Bentley."

"Bentley!" exclaimed John. They all knew what Bentley was like.

"If he saw a burglar he'd run the other way," said Sally.

"He would not," protested Ben.

"Ben's right," said Mike, laughing. "Bentley wouldn't even see the burglar in the first place. He'd be fast asleep."
"Bentley's not like that anymore," Ben told him. "I'm training him to be a hit dog like you see on TV. I've been giving him lessons every day and he's learning a lot."

"The only thing you could teach Bentley is how to play dead," said John. "He knows how to do that already."

They talked for a while about buying walkie talkies to use during their stake-outs, but Mike said his dad wouldn't pay for those either. Then they talked about getting guns. And radar. And burglar alarms. They spent the whole afternoon trying to think of good things to put on the expense account but everything seemed to cost too much. Finally they just went down to Joe's Milk Store for bubble gum. They bought three packs each-there was a whole weekend ahead of them and no one wanted to run out. John was sure Mr. Thayer would pay for gum.

"A cop's got to chew," he explained.

continue on to part two of Burglars story


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