Case 7 - Birthday Present

It was a few days after the winter holidays, and we, the After-School Detectives, were back in the clubroom again. I looked over at the nine or ten case files that we had accumulated on the shelves over the past year, and wondered what cases the new year was going to bring us.

The three of us were doing our own things when Brett, our classmate, burst in all the sudden, "Guys! You have to help me!"

Sheryl stood up excitedly and declared with a thumbs-up, "Don't worry, Brett, the After-School Detectives are on it!"

"Thank you, Sheryl!"

"Holmes..., call me Holmes."

I put down the book that I was reading, "So, what's up, Brett?"

"Virginia's birthday is coming up, and I need to get her a birthday present!"

"Oh!" Samantha perked up, "You're that Brett and Virginia!"

Samantha was, of course, referring to the After-School Detective's second case, where we brought the couple together. This was a relief, since that meant we weren't going to be caught in the same situation as the one with Franklin.

"Huh?" Brett asked, puzzled. "Which Brett and Virginia?"

I waved off his concern, "Don't worry about it."

Brett raised an eyebrow, but decided to move on to more pressing matters, "So, can you guys help?"

"Well, why don't you just ask her what she wants," Sheryl asked.

Samantha nearly exploded at the suggestion, "He can't just ask her! It has to be a surprise! It has to showed that he listens to her! That he cares about her!"

We all stared at the normally bubbly Samantha's outburst before she meekly said, "Sorry..."

"Well, she's right," I said to Brett, "In fact, it's probably something that you should figure out yourself, instead of coming to us."

"Well, I wouldn't have come to you guys if I could think of something. You gotta help me!"

"Why don't you sit down first?" I said.

Brett did so.

Then I asked, "So, what does Virginia like?"

"Um..." Brett placed his elbow on the table and his head in his hand. Tilting his head a bit, he pondered on the question for a while.

Samantha, Sheryl, and I waited for Brett to answer. Running out of patience, Sheryl shoved her bowl of candy in front of Brett, "Maybe you should have a piece of candy to stimulate your mind?"

I gave Sheryl a look. Then, trying to be helpful, I asked Brett, "Does she have any favourite foods? What kind of hobbies does she have? Does she play any sports? Does she watch any TV shows? Movies?"

Again, we all waited for Brett as he thought really, really hard.

After a long time, Brett threw up his hands and let out a yell of desperation, "This is worse than homework!"

It was getting late, so I said, "Why don't you think about it some more tonight? Maybe you'll come up with something."

"There isn't enough time!"

"When is her birthday anyways?" asked Sheryl.

"It's in two days."

"What?!" Samantha nearly exploded again, "Why did you wait until now?"

"Because I didn't remember that her birthday was coming up until this morning!"

Brett was panicking a little now. I sighed and said, "You could always get her the usual box of chocolates?"

"No!" Samantha jumped in, "Think, Brett, think!"

We waited again for Brett to come up with something. Finally, he gave up, "Forget it! I'll just get her a box of chocolates!"

And then he stormed out of the clubroom.


It was two days later, and Sheryl, Samantha, and I were walking along the hallway during lunch. I spotted Brett up ahead, giving a wrapped present to Virginia.

Virginia ripped a little bit of the wrapping off, just enough for her to see what it was. Then, she smiled and gave Brett a hug, "Thanks Brett! You remembered."

Brett smiled as well, "Of course I did."

Virginia relaxed the hug, "I'll see you after school?"


Virgina walked away with her friends and waved good bye to Brett with a smile on her face.

We walked up to Brett. Brett spotted me and held his hand up.

I high-fived him and asked, "Good job, Brett! So, what did you get her?"

He grinned, "A box of chocolates."

Samantha exclaimed, "That worked?!"

Brett let out a laugh, then he explained, "While I was in the candy store, looking for a box of chocolates, I remembered that she loves caramel, so I got her a box of caramel chocolates. So thanks, guys. Looks like that session helped."

Brett happily parted ways with us.

The three of us couldn't think of anything to say for a while, until Sheryl came up with, "Well, looks like another case was successfully closed!"

Samantha pointed out, "We didn't do anything."

Then I pointed out, "How was that even a mystery?"

"Well," Sheryl grinned and said, "The mystery was what to get Virginia for her birthday, and we pushed Brett in the right direction. So yeah, case closed!" Then she added, "Successfully, by us."

I grinned back and said, "Yeah, I guess you're right."

Samantha grinned in agreement as well, "Guess I have a new case file to write up."

Happy with how things turned out, we went off to eat lunch.

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