Me: Why are you and Harriet sitting at the top of the stairs?
Nell: We are conducting an important investigation.
Me: Into what?
Nell: The Case of the Missing Flip Flop.
Me: Has someone taken one of Kev’s bathroom slippers again?
Nell: Yes. The remaining flip flop has been carefully placed on the landing chest of drawers for all to see.
Me: Yes. I can see it. Thank you.
Nell: Should the guilty party attempt to climb the stairs carrying the missing flip flop he will be apprehended by Harriet and myself.
Me: I’m guessing you have a suspect.
Me: Might he be Big Brave and Beautiful?
Nell: Possibly. She might, however, be small and fluffy.
Me: Poppy is cooking breakfast with Malcolm.
Nell: Or elderly and deaf.
Me: Mutley is still asleep in his chair.
Nell: It might be large with hooves, although we think it is unlikely.
Me: Alpacas, moose and reindeer are not allowed upstairs.
Nell: Interesting. The culprit could perhaps be feathered.
Me: Malcolm is making pancakes and Timothy is laying the table with Ginger. I think Susan is up at The Nest.
Nell: I think the culprit is likely to be coming upstairs quite soon.
Me: What makes you say that?
Nell: Because Kev is about to start shouting ‘Have you taken my flip flops again?’
Me: So this is a common occurrence?
Nell: It is.
Me: I think it’s a case of a Mistake rather than a Theft.
Nell: You would.
Me: The animal I am thinking of takes footwear to give as a Present. It always brings it back.
Nell: But not always in the same condition.
Me: Shall I go and find Dave then?
Nell: Yes please and hurry because I can hear Kev starting to grumble.
Me: Yes. Sorry.