The Pink Orchid Ch. 02byDickLarson©
Seven of Nine
The hat with legs had tired of waiting and let herself in.
"Good morning. Welcome to the office of Mr. Larson, Private Detective. How can I help you?" Jessica recited, as the lady strode into the office.
"I require the services of a good detective. Is Mr. Larson a good detective?"
"Yes. Yes. A very good detective," Jessica managed to respond, to the attractive and flamboyantly dressed lady.
The lady's assertiveness and direct approach were quite unsettling. Adding to Jessica's discomfort was the sensation that a small amount of the recently exchanged bodily fluids was threatening to make an escape from between her still shaking legs!
"If you will take a seat," Jessica said, "I'll just go and see if Mr. Larson is available."
Dick had extinguished his reefer and was desperately trying to get his mind into gear. The first piece of business to walk into his office in a month, and he was stoned.
Bollocks! His laptop was still only half way through loading up. Bollocks! He swore again at the tormenting device. Dick didn't know much about computers; didn't even have any work that needed to be put onto a computer, but it was the nineties and he felt that a modern detective agency would have some sort of computer, for filing clues away and writing up cases. Since he had bought the thing, he had mastered Solitaire and was just getting his head around Mine Sweeper.
After a whole morning of messing around with files and a free floppy disk that came with his morning newspaper, he had managed to install a rather cool 'Simpsons' screensaver. Then, after a short, frenzied attack on the mouse buttons, he had deleted some sort of DLL file and his screen had gone all funny. So he was doing the only thing he thought might work and was re-installing the whole of Windows from disk one upwards.
Jessica knocked and walked into his office; she sniffed the air and frowned at Dick. She liked her job, and wanted to keep it, but she couldn't understand how Dick was going to continue in business if he sat around his office smoking dope and staring out of the window all day.
"There's a lady here who wants to know if you are a good detective." Jessica said.
Dick detected the edge in her voice but relaxed back into his black leather chair. He knew she didn't approve of his habit and she had got quite upset the time he had offered her a puff, but people were entitled to their views, and he to his habit.
"Well, show her in then, Jessica."
Jessica turned on her heels and walked back out to the reception area and returned almost immediately following the Hat and Legs into Dick's office.
Dick tapped on one of the laptops keys, waking it from its short hibernation. It was still waiting for the next disk, so Dick obliged it. He looked up to see a very striking lady, striding confidently towards his desk. She wore a pale green, linen three piece dress suit. Tall heels molded smoothly into delicate ankles and elongated up to form shapely calves. The dog tooth pencil skirt stretched neatly down to three inches above the knee. The skirt's waist band was decorated simply with three large black buttons running vertically down its centre. Under the immaculate pale green fitted jacket was a matching fluted blouse, the woman's breasts were just large enough to push into her blouse and cause her jacket to swing open pleasingly.
Wow, she looks like the sexy Borg lady, Seven of Nine out of Star Trek Voyager, he thought to himself.
"Pardon?" said the woman out loud; smelling the air, detecting the faint odours of sexual sweat which were almost hidden under the stronger smell of smoke, before she looked interestingly around the office.
"Er... Nothing," said Dick.
"Well, then. I'll come straight to the point, Mr. Larson. I am a woman of considerable means, and I need a detective; one with a keen sense of observation, alertness, and an open mind."
She looked directly into his stoned eyes and having never met Mr. Larson before, she had no idea that these two fried eggs staring back at her were a result of the recently smoked Ganja cornet. But she did realize these were not the inquisitive, nimble, searching eyes she had been hoping to find in a detective.
Being high on marijuana, sensitized Dick's mind and in close proximity with certain people he could hear snippets of their thoughts.
Never judge a book by its cover, she thought.
"What book?" asked Dick.
"I never mentioned a book," said the lady.
He could do with a haircut, she thought.
Who could? thought Dick.
"Who could, what?" asked the Lady of Considerable Means.
Both of them were now somewhat confused.
"What, exactly, do you have in mind Mrs...?"
"Mrs. Larindale," she offered, "I am throwing a masquerade ball with a twist," she said, "It's also going to be a Murder Mystery night. I have hired a troupe of actors who are going to mingle in with my guests. One of them ends up dead, and I want you to solve the crime."
Dick started to mull this information over in his mind and got stuck in a mental loop, where he just stared at the lady, locked in the wasteland of his own consciousness, oblivious of the seconds ticking away and the rising tension in Mrs. Larindale.
Mrs. Larindale wasn't sure if the man was trying to flirt with her or if he was in deep thought, preparing his next astute and detective like question.
"Beep!" Dick's hand went out automatically, to swap the disks over in the laptop.
"Would you like a cup of coffee?" He asked.
Mrs. Larindale, relieved to be out of the embarrassing silence, agreed.
"Jessica, love. Two cups of coffee."
"Yes, Mr. Larson," Jessica replied as she walked from the office excitedly; this was one of the few times anyone had actually visited the detective Agency and Mrs. Larindale seemed like just the kind of client Dick needed right now.
"An attractive secretary you have, Mr. Larson. Is she your daughter perhaps?"
"Er, no. No. she isn't. Yes, er, very attractive; a pleasure to have around the office," he smirked.
"A masquerade party, you say, Mrs. Larindale? A murder mystery, masquerade party you say? Sounds very grand; and I'll be the Detective?"
"Yes. You would be dressed up like Sherlock Holmes; tweed clothes; deer stalker hat and a pipe, of course."
A pipe, Dick thought. It's been quite a while since I smoked any herb through a pipe. This could be fun.
His mind raced back to a summer in Tenerife, when he had made a peace pipe out of a manta ray's skull bone; fourteen inches of two inch wide plastic tubing; a clay chillum and several meters of red, green and yellow thread.
Bloody hell! That pipe would blow your mind away, thought Dick. The local dealer used to come down to his van on the beach, in the afternoon heat; pack the pipe full of the best hashish on the island and suck on the beast like a desperate hooker. Dick passed many an afternoon with his mind reeling from the effects of smoking the killer pipe, while sitting in the shade of the van's awning, watching his dealer friend juggle stones he'd picked up from the beach and staring at the surf crashing down onto the volcanic reefs.
Mrs. Larindale suddenly had images of white beaches, black rocks and a blue, rolling ocean running through her mind for no reason she could think of.
Snapping out of her little day dream, she observed that Mr. Larson appeared to be under some sort of hypnotic trance.
"Mr. Larson? Mr. Larson!" Mrs. Larindale said raising her voice. She had become irritated watching him stare catatonically at the blank wall across the room, and jarred him out of his reverie.
Jessica arrived with the coffee.
They both watched her set the coffee, milk, and sugar down on the low coffee table; her round bottom, pushing out at the fabric of her skirt.
Hmm, thought Dick, just peachy.
Hmm, thought Mrs. Larindale.
Their thoughts collided and sparked back to their respective owners. Mrs. Larindale looked at Dick. Dick looked at Mrs. Larindale. A tiny switch clicked on in Mrs. Larindale's mind.
Great arse, thought Dick.
Yes and such a tiny waist, thought Mrs. Larindale.
Appreciate a woman's figure, do you? asked Dick silently.
I'm partial to all sorts, Mrs. Larindale indicated with a wink.
Dick smiled. Mrs. Larindale smiled back at him.
The link broke, as Jessica offered a cup of coffee to Mrs. Larindale.
Dick coughed, and Mrs. Larindale looked around, distinctly bemused. She took off her jacket and hanging it on the back of the chair in front of Dick's desk, sat down, crossing one very slender and toned leg on top of the other and sitting straight backed with her hands resting on her lap.
Dick was impressed with Mrs. Larindale's athletic but feminine physique, pleasantly defined muscles rippled subtly across her shoulders, her arms were tanned and delicate, her small biceps and forearms defined through horse riding or tennis deduced Dick; her bosom was neatly contained under the thin linen blouse and the stomach rounded naturally between her hips.
Jessica offered a Liverpool football club mug of coffee to Dick and smiled sweetly as he patted her bottom before turning to Mrs. Larindale with an Everton football club mug, steaming with instant coffee.
Mrs. Larindale's couldn't quite hide her indignation and disappointment at firstly being handed a mug to drink from and secondly that the brew it contained had obviously not spent twenty minutes passing from stage to stage through something similar to her gold plated, bean to cup, coffee making machine at home.
Dick noticed a slight wrinkling at the top of Mrs. Larindale's nose and the discreet and barely noticeable rising of her brow as she sniffed at the dirty looking puddle water that the mug contained.
"Would you perhaps be more comfortable drinking from the Liverpool mug, suggested Dick, wrongly assuming that it was Mrs. Larindale's allegiance with the other of the city's great football teams that has caused her discomfort. "I have not sugared it yet, so we could just swap mugs. I'm not that really into football," continued Dick, "but people expect me to be and the conversation nearly always seems to be dragged in that direction, so I bought a couple of mugs to show willing and to try and fit in a little."
"No Mr. Larson I am quite comfortable drinking from the Everton mug. I too find the whole business of football quite dull but as you have found, living in Liverpool one needs to support one or the other so when I am asked which team, I answer Liverpool," explained Mrs. Larindale as she again admired Jessica's unusual and eye catching outfit.
Mrs. Larindale, suggestively, smoothed down an invisible crease across the side of her blouse, as she complimented Jessica on her slim figure. Jessica's eye was attracted to the movement and wondered if Mrs. Larindale had deliberately pushed the side of her breast inward causing her cleavage to move between the open collars of her blouse. Jessica looked up from the fleshy display and blushed.
"That's a beautiful hat you are wearing Mrs. Larindale," Jessica said recovering her composure quickly as she exited the office with her most sexy walk.
Dick and Mrs. Larindale watched her exit. The young girl aroused them both with her fluid curves.
"Ah, yes. The Masquerade party.... well, my fee would be £150 for the night and I would need my secretary along as well; she would be another £75."
"Fine," said Mrs. Larindale agreeing immediately.
Damn, thought Dick, I should have asked for more.
"I'm sorry," said Mrs. Larindale. "Did you say something?"
"No," said Dick.
"Oh," said Mrs. Larindale, feeling confused again.
The arrangements were made and Jessica was delighted to be asked along to such a prestigious event. Mrs. Larindale signed a cheque and gave Dick the address of the fancy dress agency where he and Jessica could be kitted out.