The Case of the Missing Irregular
by Stacey (SST205 at aol.com)
In turns, Miss Fayre and Holmes told the visitor about the events
of the morning.
The color disappeared from Lynette Fayre's face. Deidre looked at
the floor, half expecting to see the puddle of blood that had drained from
"So...you've called the police...yes, yes of course you have. You
just got through telling me they were here this morning," Mrs Fayre
murmured, staring blankly ahead of her.
"Lynette," Miss Fayre said, getting on her knees in front of the
couch, "are you all right?"
"All right?" Tennyson's mother said in the same low tone, looking
at her sister-in-law without really seeing her. "I've just been told that
my only son has been kidnapped. No, I'm not all right."
A tear escaped from her left eye and ran down her cheek. "Caroline --
I left Tennyson with you because I didn't want the media hounding him when
they found out I had a son. I didn't want to put him through what Ashton
did to him all over again -- certainly that would have come out. Also...I
wanted him to be safe....from his name. He is a rich woman's son,
and just as Ashton said...."
She trailed off. Holmes remembered Christmastime; Mrs. Fayre had
revealed that she was the one dropping sums of money on her sister-in-law's
doorstep in order to help care for her son. Holmes and the others had been
there to hear Mrs. Fayre tell what her husband had said when she told him
she was going to bring Tennyson home -- after Mr. Fayre had thrown him out
of the house.
"Fine, Lynette! Go--bring him back here, I dare you -- but things
happen to rich men's sons, you know -- kidnappings, things of that sort --
one day you might wake up and find him gone again."
Could this have been Ashton Fayre's work? No -- he had gone to
America. Of course, he could have come back....
He came over to the coffee table, got on one knee and looked
Tennyson's mother in the eye. "Madam, I will do everything in my power to
get your boy back safely."
Mrs. Fayre drew a deep breath and wiped the single tear away. "That
is a great comfort, Mister Holmes."
Her sister-in-law said, "There's Someone else watching out for
Tennyson, too, Lynette."
The woman on the couch drew a deep breath. "You have your religion
and your God to give you comfort, Caroline. I, however, prefer to put my
faith in that which I can see."
But 'Faith is the substance of things hoped for, and the evidence
of things not seen,' Holmes said to himself, but he knew that now was
not the time to get Mrs. Fayre involved in a discussion of Scripture.
"Mrs. Fayre, I suggest you go back to your buisness or home now, or
from wherever you were before you came here," he said aloud.
The woman looked at him sharply. "Are you suggesting I forget about
my son?" she asked.
"Not at all, madam. I am simply suggesting that you get your mind
settled down. Your being distraught when Tennyson's kidnappers make their
demands will not help you or him."
Taking a deep breath, the mother of the youngest Irregular nodded.
"You are, of course, right, Mister Holmes. I will go back to work -- there
are plenty of things to keep my mind occupied there."
She stood and looked him in the eye. "I am putting my faith in you,
She leaned down and hugged her sister-in-law, then stood and nodded
to each of the others. "Doctor Watson--Wiggins--Deidre."
She went out the door.
"Holmes, I wonder if she's all right to drive by herself?" Watson
"She'll be fine, old friend. She's a strong woman."
Caroline Fayre looked at the floor sadly. "She could be stronger."
"I know, Miss Fayre -- Lord willing, someday she'll learn that.
Right now our prayers need to go up for Tennyson, and our bodies
need to get to the task of searching for him."
There was a knock at the door then. Looking puzzled, Miss Fayre got
up and answered it.
"Why--Inspector Lestrade. Come in, please." She stepped aside and
let the Inspector in.
Holmes noted a hint of a gleam in Lestrade's eyes. "Lestrade, what
is it?" he asked, eyeing the manila envelope in her hand.
"The guys in the lab got clear prints off of the windowsill," she
answered. "Here, take a look for yourself."
She handed him the envelope. Wiggins and Deidre were immediately
on either side of him.
"Open it, sir!" Deidre urged.
"Yeah, I wanna get a good look at these guys," Wiggins added, a
spark in his eye.
Holmes did so, and slid out the papers that were inside. On the
first page were two color computer-generated pictures, one of a man with
greasy hair and a full face, the other of a man who was thinner and looked
only slightly cleaner.
"Michael Baxter and Jacob -- Baxter ." Holmes read aloud.
"Hm -- brothers," he commented further as he read on down the page.
"Says here that they were suspects in several petty and greater
crimes since they were teenagers," Deidre added, reading down further,
"--and that they were avoiding the New London Child Protective Services
Wiggins read down further. "Here it says that once they were caught
with stolen jewelry they took from the home of a prominent New London
businessman and his wife."
"Yes," Holmes acknowledged, looking at the ceiling. He separated
the papers, giving some to Deidre, some to Wiggins, and keeping the last
for himself. "Deidre, what is on the papers you have?"
The girl scrutinized it. "Well, at the top of the page are the
copies of their fingerprints, which if they've already been arrested for
crimes, I guess were already in the Yard's records."
Inspector Lestrade nodded, pushing some of her shoulder-length
brown hair over her shoulder.
"Plus," Deidre continued, "it lists some more of their crimes:
stealing jewelry from an auction, robbing several people at gunpoint,
holding up an armored car that was parked outside Akien Systems--"
Holmes' eyes lit up. "Outside where?"
"Akien Systems, sir. Actually, there's a date beside each crime,
and according to this, that must have been the first one they were accused
"Interesting," Holmes murmured, rubbing his chin.
"What's that, Mister Holmes?" Wiggins asked.
The detective glanced at Wiggins, then Deidre. "Come now, my
dears. Use your brains -- where have you heard that name before?"
For a moment or so the teens looked at each other, unsure what
Mr Holmes was getting at. Suddenly, their eyes widened.
"Hey, that's--" Wiggins started.
"Mrs. Fayre said--" Deidre spoke up at the same time.
"That's what Mrs. Fayre said that Fayre Technologies was called
before she married Ashton Fayre and allowed him to change the name,"
Holmes completed their thoughts.
"Whoa," murmured Wiggins.
"Possibly just coincidence," Holmes speculated aloud, "but possibly
worth looking into in the future. But I digress. Go on, Deidre."
It took a moment for the girl to pull herself back together. "Um...
holding up the armored car, robbing people who were attending a charity
function, as well as taking the cash that had already been raised --
stealing the funds raised from a charity skyboard race."
Deidre drew a deep breath. "That's it on my pages."
Holmes nodded. "Again, interesting. Wiggins, what about you?"
The boy on his other side looked at the paper in his hands. "Well,
this says that after the two guys were caught and went to trial, their
barrister pleaded insanity. After that they were checked out by a
"Really?" Holmes said, his eyebrows shooting up. "By chance, are
there any notes about those sessions?"
Lestrade spoke up then. "There sure are, Holmes." She produced a
folder which she had kept under her arm, and handed it to him.
Holmes took the folder from her, opened it, and began to read aloud.
"May third, two-thousand ninety-eight, nine twenty-five a.m. Doctor
David Welch in a session with Michael "Mickey" Baxter.
"Dr. W: Michael -- or would you like to be called 'Mickey'?
"MB: Call me whatever, I don't care one bloody bit.
"Dr. W: Very well. Michael, what do you think caused you to commit
"MB: Didn't nothin' cause me to commit nothin'. I wanted to do the
"Dr. W. You wanted to ? Why?
"MB: 'Cause all 'a' them rich people don't need that money.
"Dr. W: Rich people? One of the places you stole from was a charity
"MB: It was full 'a' rich people, wasn't it? Their credits was
goin' in th' pot, wasn't they?
"Dr. W: You seem to have a fixation on rich people, Michael.
"MB: I don't 'ave no bloody fixation! It was rich people th't
killed me pa an' me mum, too. They don't deserve t' 'ave what they
got when me an' me brother's got nothin'!
"Dr. W: Mm-hm. It seems to me you have some sort of
obsessive-compulsive disorder stemming from the trauma you suffered from
losing your parents.
"MB: I told you, I don't 'ave a blinkin' fixation, an' I don't 'ave
no ob-- com-- whatever it 'tis you said!
"Dr. W: Michael, let me try to help you. I'd like to try some
different medications with you -- they'll help with both your disorder,
and possibly your anger.
"MB: Fer th' last time, you bloody [expletive] I don't need no....
"(Note: session had to be ended when Mr. Baxter became violent and
had to be restrained by two attendants)."
"Does it -- does it say anything about the other man?" Deidre asked.
Holmes put the top page of the sheaf in his hands behind the others.
"Yes, Deidre. Here it is."
The girl took the papers from him, and began to read aloud.
"May fourth, two-thousand ninety-eight, nine thirty a.m. Doctor
David Welch in a session with Jacob "Jake" Baxter.
"Dr. W: Hello, Jacob. How are you this morning? (doctor notes that
subject appears nervous)
"JB: Um, kinda scared.
"Dr. W: Why?
"JB: I don' know wha's gonna happen.
"Dr. W: Well, Jacob, we're just going to talk for a moment. Is
that all right?
"JB: I guess so.
"Dr. W: Jacob -- or do you prefer 'Jake'?
"JB: Well, ev'rybody calls me Jake, if that's what you mean.
"Dr. W: Very well, Jake. Do you know why you're here?
"JB: Yes, sir, I do. Me an' Mickey did somethin' bad.
"Dr. W: Well, Jake, you're not supposed to take things that
aren't yours. Were you aware of that?
"JB: (pauses) Well, Mister Doctor, sir, tha's th' only way we'll
"Dr. W: Who told you that?
"JB: Me brother. 'E says that--
"Dr. W: It's okay, Jake. You can tell me. I won't tell anyone
what you say.
"JB: Well, Mickey says that -- if we don't take money from the
rich people, 'e won't 'ave enough money to get me the operation to make
"Dr. W: I see. Why dosen't your brother get a job?
"JB: 'E-- 'e says that takin' from the rich people is better --
'cause they killed our mum an' pop.
"Dr. W: Really?
"JB: Yessir. Mum an' Pop both died workin' fer rich people.
"Dr. W: Thank you, Jake. I'm glad I talked with you.
"JB: You won't tell Mickey what I told you?
"Dr. W: (note: JB looks very nervous about this). No, Jake,
Holmes looked up from the papers. "Speaking of client-patient
privilege, Lestrade, how was it that you were able to acquire these
"I -- have a lot of contacts over at the hospital," Lestrade
explained, "and -- I told them a boy's life was at stake."
Holmes' brows drew together. "Lestrade!"
"Holmes, I didn't tell them who it was or the nature of the case,
The detective looked at the floor. "Beth, if anything jeopardizes
that boy's life--"
"I know, Holmes." Lestrade answered, putting a hand on his
shoulder. "I knew you could use this information, though -- I'm sorry."
Holmes sighed and looked her in the eye. "I know, Beth. You were
doing your duty. Thank you."
Behind them, Deidre and Wiggins looked at each other. They knew
that even though Holmes wouldn't want anything to happen to any of the
Irregulars, he had a special place in his heart for Tennyson. That didn't
bother them -- they both did, too.
Just then, everyone heard a beeping.
"What's that?" Wiggins asked, looking around the room.
Lestrade tilted her head, listening. "Sounds like a communicator."
Watson activated his inner scanner. After a moment he said, "The
source is on the shelf above the stove."
Miss Fayre walked across the room to the small kitchenette.
Reaching behind a canister up on the shelf, she produced a half inch-thick
metallic device upon which a red light blinked.
"Fine place for this to be," she muttered, pushing a button under
the red light with her thumb. "Yes, this is Caroline Fayre."
"C-Caroline," came her sister-in-law's shaky voice. "Is--is Mister
Holmes still there?"
Miss Fayre looked at the detective. "Yes."
"Please -- tell him to come to Fayre Technologies right away.
I--I've received something -- very disturbing in my mail."
On to Part 9!
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