Craven Danger on the Run - Part Two
“So let me get this straight,” said Dr. Retch. “You want me, a licensed professional, who has dedicated his life to helping people find order in their shattered lives, to help you gain the confidence to go out and shoot people?”
“Only the people that got it comin’,” said Craven Danger. “But most people are all right in my book.”
“Then why don’t you be like most people and call the police when you witness trouble?”
“Oh, you don’t understand, doctor,” said Craven. “I’m a professional like you. I’m a private investigator. I have an office just down the hall. Me and my wife Betty are partners. We call it Twin Danger’s - Private Eyes.”
“Aren’t most private detectives former policeman who have been properly trained in the handling of firearms?” said Dr. Retch.
“I wouldn’t know anything about that,” said Craven. “The detective school I went to only had two requirements. An enrollment fee of one hundred and twenty nine dollars. Cash only. And that I hang my diploma high enough that no one can read it. They said they didn’t want just anyone to get wind of where I got such good training. They’re a pretty exclusive organization.”
“And what was the name of this detective school of yours?” said Dr. Retch.
“The Seven Good Sleuth’s Detective Academy. Here,” said Craven, “Ya can read all about it on the inside of this matchbook cover. I saved it.”
“Yeah, said Craven. “That’s where I got the number for the school. I called and they sent a guy over right away with the detective manual and my diploma.”
“They gave you your diploma on the first day?”
“They made me promise not to hang it up until I was absolutely sure I could answer all the questions in the manual. They also made me promise not to peek at the answers in the back of the book. Not looking at the answers was the hardest part of the whole course. I’m only human. But after two weeks of intensive study, I nailed it. On the job since 1941. Almost six years now.”
“Solve many cases?” said Dr. Retch.
“Not one,” said Craven. “It seems every time I draw my gun to get the drop on a suspect, I can’t seem to pull the trigger. I’m fine with pigeons or in my dreams. But with real people I get cold feet in my shootin’ hand. That’s why I finally made Betty a partner. She used to be my secretary. But she was always following me around on cases and doing the solving herself. It used to make me all red in the face, but then I went and married her. Now we’re full time partners. But she’s the one still solving all the cases, doc. That’s why I’m here. I need you to help me shoot straight so I can do a little solvin’ of my own.”
“So Betty’s the stable one in the relationship,” said Dr. Retch. “And she’s making you feel inadequate, insecure and inferior.”
“She is?” said Craven.
“Sorry,” said the doctor. “Time’s up. See you again next week. Same time.”
Inadequate? Insecure? Inferior? Wait until I get to the office, thought Craven. I’ll give that Betty a piece of my mind. And no amount of sweet taklin’ is gonna get her out of it.