“Gee an’ Bee, shift desk,” Mooney answered unenthusiastically.
“Is this the horribly inappropriately named Guts and Butts Gazette?” a snooty voice said from the other end. Mooney recognized the voice for all that it didn’t belong to any local. It was that nasty little yuppie chick who had been staying at the Wilk place with her yuppie boyfriend. Marissa, his mate, had referred to them as “crunchy bobos”. He understood that to be a human term for rich humans who wanted to be New Agers without having to give up any of their material wealth. The crunchy part meant they thought that they could do this by not grooming themselves. This had led to him making a joke about crunchy food, which had led to him having to bunk here at the paper’s office because Marissa had not been amused. Time for a little payback, he though gleefully.
“It is,” Mooney said, hiding his eagerness behind a mask of boredom and irritation.
“I need to report a strange sighting,” the disembodied voice replied.
“Ma’am, this is the town newspaper, not the police department. Would you like the phone number for them?”
“No, I have got that number but this is important and I don’t want those rednecks you people call law enforcement to sweep it under the rug!”
“Uh-huh. What have you got?”
“I am standing in front of the carcass of a unicorn,” the yuppie chick said with great pomp and ceremony, as if she were officiating a wedding.
“This is also not the substance abuse hot line. Would you like that number instead?” Mooney replied with the same emotionless, slightly bored tone of voice. In reality, he was pulling out his cell phone and texting Moon-Moon, his fellow beta wolf and normal partner-in-crime. Just before hitting the “send” button, he added Lamar and Jamie to the distribution list.
—Got us a live one. Unicorn sighting— he texted.
“I am not on drugs!” she hissed through the telephone line, or signal or whatever it was called in this day and age of wireless wires. “I tried to take photos of it myself but the camera on my Galaxy 5S keeps shutting itself off whenever I try to point it at the poor thing. I need someone from the media to come document this before your so-called law enforcement shows up!”
“Have you called the cops yet?” Mooney asked as his cell phone started buzzing with responses.
“No, I have not,” the crunchy chick replied.
“OK, I just sent a call out to our on-call reporter and his photog. What’s your location?”
“The carcass of the unicorn is on the left side of the road next to the bridge by Schitt Creek.”
“North or south of the bridge?” Mooney asked, annoyed and making sure she heard it.
“Un, on the side away from town.”
“North side,” he said. “And by left you mean?”
“Just tell your reporter to look for the lime green Prius parked on the side of the road. We had to move the car to the side the poor murdered creature was not on because our car kept shorting out.”
“Um, murdered?” Mooney asked cautiously. Murdered was a strong word in shifter communities. But it seemed to be a frivolous one to those yuppies because they considered all killing a form of murder. In fact, a few of the folks in town had started yelling “murderer” at them every time they took a bite of their free range natural grown salads. The fact that even the town’s bunnies had started taunting them said a lot about just how obnoxious they had become.
“It has an arrow in it!” she hissed triumphantly.
“OK, I’ll let the on-call team know. They should be at your location in about fifteen minutes.”
Mooney hung up the phone before the loony-tune could say anything else. Just then, Moon-Moon popped in.
“What’s up?” he asked cheerfully. Mooney did not even begin to understand how Moon-Moon could be cheerful at ten o’clock at night, but there you had it, Moon-Moon in a nut shell.
“Wanna go swipe a unicorn out from under the noses of those hippies?