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Winchester-Nabu Detective Agency Year Six: Case File No. 26-286

Gus going into work

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Where We Left Off:

For Halloween, Amber finished up cleaning the bones of a female Jersey devil-deer. The work was supervised by Professor Oliver Winchester and Burton Guster Nabu, P.I.

The Fear Inside:

The celebration of Halloween may have been last week, but horror can hit anytime. One of the horror genres frequent plots is infestation. It may be a specific type of bug, aliens, monsters, or even regular animals. I remember being terrified by the movie Them! (1954) which must have been showing on WPIX 11 like all great monster movies. Oddly, that was not the source of my bug phobia. Neither was Tarantula! (1955) though I could feel my nervous system reacting as its expected to from horror movies. Maybe the 1977 movie Kingdom of the Spiders was the one I have a specific recollection of, but I’m not sure. I remember there was a suburban street of houses and all the trees were covered in spiderwebs. Does anyone remember what movie that was?

Penny Dreadful gif

Other people have nightmares about snakes covering them or spiders or some other grotesque, uncontrollable enemy. What I’ve noticed about mice is that it’s not fear exactly. It’s being startled that makes people scream, jump up on a chair, or run. It’s a tiny animal. Sure, they can spread disease, but mostly they’re cute and harmless. However, I don’t want them walking across my silverware and plates as they urinate and poop their way through cabinets. No one wants that. It’s why Gus and Oliver are supposed to catch mice they find. I’ve jumped and made funny sounds when I see a mouse or snakes and I’m not actually afraid of them. It’s the surprise appearance or the wild aspects of them. I can handle someone’s pet snake without a problem; trying to catch one is a different situation. Gus loves to play with snakes by the way.

award for best mousing

If you’re new here, you may want to click on the “mice” tag in order to see that I can often release the mice out into the wild.

The “barn” mice in the garage bother The Grumpy Old Man a lot. I’ve never asked why, but I can guess that’s for a similar reason like them being in the house. They walk across everything pooping and peeing on everything. The other thing they do is more destructive: they make their nests out of soft materials they can find. That means they tear up boxes, books/paper, furniture filling, clothing, etc. You can imagine that even though the garage, workshop, storage loft, and firewood are a pole barn, there are still things we don’t want ruined.

Gus descending stairs

At the end of summer, I found Gus underneath a chest of plastic drawers. The plastic is old and discolored. Once white and now sickly yellowed. Inside the drawers are grey and the frame structure is metal. I didn’t expect to find an entirely new nest with a huge family of mice under the drawers. The insides are kind of like filing cabinets. The drawer pulls open, but the inside grey containers lift out. So there’s space all around those components plus the grooves in the sides for the drawer frames on wheels.

The video presented here shows Gus in action trying to capture all the mice. He did a good job, but not the best. He kept catching them and then letting them go. Only one succumbed to its injuries. I left it in a can for The Grumpy Old Man to see the fruits of our hard work.

Case Findings:

Gus discovered a secret nest of a huge mouse family. The nest materials were thrown away. The mice scattered except for one who was exterminated.

Case Status: Closed

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