Case 2 - Love Haiku

"I'm James, and that's Sheryl. So, how can we help you?" I said to the girl who had approached us as Sheryl finished writing down our club name, After-School Detectives, on the clubroom request form.

"I'm Virginia, from Ms. Greene's class. And... well..." Virginia looked left and right nervously, as if trying to make sure no one was listening to us. Then, flustered, she took out a letter. "I found this in my locker."

Sheryl grabbed the letter and tried to take it from Virginia. However, the embarrassed Virginia was having a hard time letting go of it. There was a tug of war for a few moments before Virginia finally released her grip on the letter.

Smiling victorious, Sheryl opened the letter and proceeded to read it... out loud, "Dear Virginia, I-"

Virginia's face redden and I grabbed the letter from Sheryl.

"Hey!" Sheryl yelled at me.

"Can't you see that this is private?" I scolded Sheryl and gestured to Virginia's now-scarlet face.

"Oh, right... Sorry." Sheryl apologized sheepishly.

Sheryl and I read the letter in silence, and here's what it said:

Dear Virginia,

I wrote this for you.

Your blonde hair glistens.

Your blue eyes are like the stars.

You are beautiful.

From your secret admirer

"Ooo," Sheryl said, "You have a secret admirer. Seems to be some sort of love poem."

Virginia blushed.

"A haiku, to be exact," I said.

Sheryl gave me a puzzled look, "A what?"

"A haiku, you know, like what we're doing for that assignment in English class?"

Sheryl didn't say anything, but both her eyebrows raised up in an alarmed fashion.

I sighed and said, "You forgot, didn't you?"

"... Yes." Sheryl looked at me desperately, "When is it due?"


Sheryl's face brightened up again, "Oh, I have time then."

"Okay then..." I turned back to Virginia, "So, what do you want us to do?"

Sheryl piped in, "Find this guy and tell him to not send you any more creepy poems?"

"What? No!" said Virginia, "I'd like you to find him so that I can meet him."

We both looked at Virginia's red face.

"Don't tell me," said Sheryl, "That you've fallen in love with this guy just because of this haiku."

Virginia placed both her hands on her cheeks and started imagining, "He must be a sensitive and handsome man. An artist. I have to meet him!"

Sheryl and I exchanged looks. Then Sheryl folded up the letter, and enthusiastically agreed, "Sure! The After-School Detectives are on it!"

And that's how we ended up conducting a stake out on Virginia's locker after-school.


"Alright, let's do this!" Sheryl yelled.

We were behind a wall that allowed us to peek out and take a look at Virginia's locker without being seen easily.

"Then maybe you should quiet down," I said to Sheryl.

"Oh, right," she said in a hushed tone.

"Alright, you keep an eye on Virginia's locker, and I'll keep a lookout for anyone coming down this hallway," I said.

"Okay," Sheryl poked her head out a bit, while I leaned back on a locker, looking down the hallway that we were in.

About ten minutes later, Sheryl tapped me on the shoulder, "Look James, someone is heading towards Virginia's locker."

I poked my head out as well and saw a boy heading towards the locker. He stopped in the area and turned so that his back faced us.

"That's got to be him!" said Sheryl.

"Wait!" I yelled.

But it was too late, Sheryl jumped up and yelled, "Stop right there!"

"W- What?" The boy turned around in surprise as the locker opened - the locker next to Virginia's.

There was a silence in the air as Sheryl realized what just happened. A moment later, she recomposed herself and muttered, "Never mind, I thought you were someone else."

"O- Okay." The boy went back to his business.

"Why didn't you stop me?!" Sheryl scolded me in an annoyed, hushed voice.

"I tried." I said.

"... Right, sorry."

We resumed our positions again. After fifteen minutes or so, Sheryl poked me in the shoulder again and whispered excitedly, "There's someone else heading towards the target!"

We watched as another boy headed towards the area. He stopped in front of Virginia's locker and took out a letter.

"Ah ha! Gotcha!" Sheryl stepped out and pointed a finger at the boy, "Stop right there!"

"Huh?" The boy turned around while his hand was slipping the letter into the locker - the one above Virginia's.

There was a pause as Sheryl realized what had happened.

"Ah!" she yelled in frustration. "Never mind! Go back to what you were doing!"

"Okay..." The boy said, puzzled. Nonetheless, he finished slipping the letter into the locker above Virginia's and left.

We resumed our positions again, but nothing happened for over an hour, at which point, we went home for the day.


"So, did you finish your haiku?" I asked Sheryl the next day, as we headed into English class.

"Yeah, it was easy," she said, "I'm really proud of it!"

"Oh? Can I see it?"

"You'll hear it when Ms. White asks me to read mine," Sheryl said, giving me an excited smile.

And indeed, I did get to hear it since Ms. White, our English teacher, was asking everyone in the class to read their haiku. Sheryl was fourth in line, and here's her haiku:

Mysteries abound,

The world is full of puzzles.

I will solve them all!

I had to read mine too, of course, but I am slightly embarrassed by my haiku, so I won't delve into it. Say what you will about Sheryl's haiku, but at least it's sincere, unlike mine, which I wrote just to pass the assignment.

We spent the next half an hour or so listening to more haiku. Some were good, and some were bad.

Then, Brett, a classmate, got up to read his haiku:

Your blonde hair glistens.

Your blue eyes are like the stars.

You are beautiful.

Sheryl and I looked at each other as soon as we heard the haiku.

"That's the same haiku!" Sheryl whispered, since we were still in class. "Brett must be the one who put that letter in Virginia's locker!"


"Hey Brett! Hold on." I said, getting Brett's attention when we were outside of the classroom after English class had ended.

"What's up, James?"

"We know you slipped that love letter into Virginia's locker," I said quietly.

Brett was taken aback. "What? How did you find out?"

"... You just read the exact same haiku in class."

"Right..." Brett regained his composure. "Well, what do you two want? Does she know? Are you going to blackmail me now?"

"What?" Sheryl said in surprise, "No, Virginia asked us to find out who you were so that she could meet you."

"Really?" Brett smiled excitedly.

"Yeah," I answered, "She'll be in our classroom at lunch to get an update, you two can meet then."


Sheryl and I watched as Brett and Virginia walked away, happily chatting.

"Well, that was easy," said Sheryl.

"Yeah," I replied.

"I was hoping for something more exciting..."

I smirked a little. "We're just kids in an after-school club, how exciting can it get?"

"Hm..., well, maybe the next case will be about a gang of lunch money thieves. Or maybe about a food scandal at the cafeteria. Or ooooh, maybe even one about aliens! Yeah, that would be cool!"

I smiled as Sheryl continued chattering away, excited to see what the next case will bring us.

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