“Private, those are. Personal and private,” my master exclaimed.
“Pray, sir, what distresses you so?” I enquired.
“Papers in this cabinet are not to be disturbed, in accordance with my express wishes.”
“Precisely, sir. Papers in that cabinet have not been disturbed by me.”
Pursing his lips, but opening them slightly, he struggled to keep his voice from exploding. “Please, then, inform me of the whereabouts of my teddy bear.”
Placing my hands behind my back, I stood to attention. “Perhaps it has escaped your notice, sir, but a teddy bear is not a paper.”
“Possibly so,” said my master, still looking grim. “Perhaps, nevertheless, you could inform me of the location of my poor teddy.”
“Poor teddy,” I said, “is in the arms of my granddaughter. Possibly I could retrieve it, although a limb or two might be lacking.”
“Please bring my teddy in one piece, for otherwise I shall have to consider harsher measures.”
“Promise, do I, that your teddy bear will be returned to you in pristine condition.”
Pristine condition, I reflected, remembering the chaos rendered by the little girl, could only be achieved if I paid a sum of money for a new teddy bear. Procurement of such a sum could be achieved by channelling off a very small fraction of the treasure I discovered sewn inside the old teddy bear.
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