Mystery Spot

You never know what’s coming – thus the mystery. Copyright  © Jim Jesson & Pete Jesson – All rights reserved. All names, places, objects and things are works of fiction. Full disclaimer on home page.       

  Mystery Spot

       This isn’t supposed to be a Halloween story, just sounding like it. The music was right in front of my eye, I mean ears. I broke another rule, overlooking the obvious. 
     Mr. Sidwell used to come down from his suite later in the evening and play one of the five assorted piano’s around 10:PM, especially on weekend nights. We all enjoyed his melodies and looked forward to a few tunes before bedtime. With five grand and babygrand piano’s to choose from, he tended to shy away from where too many guests gathered. I would always try to find him playing if I was still up after homework. Often, I caught him playing in the Baxter room or the Seaver parlor where his favorite piano’s were. One night he was in full form, and played several of my requests. Peter mentioned putting in a quality intercom sound system so we could send the tunes to many rooms. Neil Richenbach and Bellingham loved the idea. As I was drawing it out, I thought of putting Mr. Sidwell on a big screen in each room so we could see and hear him. Again, everyone gave a thumb’s up. Peter helped me get started with the design and I started wiring or re-wiring as needed. I was excited to get the project going and very sad when he passed away last year. Although an accomplished player, Mr. Magnusson refused to play and when he did, it was strictly classical. Mr. Sidwell gave me some lessons but there’s no way I wanted to try to duplicate his talent. A few other residents played occasionally but on some nights, we didn’t need anyone however as the tunes we craved from Mr. Sidwell came over the audio. We assumed that it was recordings but I never set up the system to record!   

After he passed away, I mentioned that no one wanted to play in the evening, although the boys whined about it. “How about a few tunes this evening Magnusson?” asked the Admiral. I don’t think Magnusson could make it to the piano in the Baxter room after that many drinks. “How about you Davia?” Nice of him to ask. “I’m just not good enough Admiral. Why don’t we find that guy named Charlie…” I cut myself off. No one here knows of the story, Play it Again, Charlie, written by Jim and Pete. They told me he was supurb at the keys. Well, one night, I heard someone playing and recognized the tune. I was tired and just stayed on the couch. I flipped the screen on to “inside” to see who may be playing. But no one was playing any one of the 5 piano’s in the house. Puzzled, I got up and walked to all the rooms that had a piano in it. No one was around and I didn’t notice that the music had stopped. A bit baffled, It was late, time for bed…

The next morning, I made it a point to go down and check the AV system completely. It didn’t take long and although hooked up to a computer, there were only a few tunes of Mr. Sidwell on the system. I had heard one of my favorites last night, The Best is yet to Come, but we never recorded him playng it – how strange.

I took off to school, but thought about the mystery tunes all day. I guess I chalked it up to Jim and Pete, creating another mystery for me to solve. I got a little mad at Bud setting me up, making those red Z marks on the unfinished rooms. I don’t want any more make believe investigations. But I know I need the practice so if it is another “test investigation,” so be it. One thing bothered me however. The first night I heard the tunes Mr. Sidwell used to play at night, would have been his birthday. I guess there is always the possibility of a ghost. I just don’t believe in ghosts! I know, I can hear you from here. The DTC (Detective Ten Commandments) – DON’T ASSUME.

I heard the piano on Friday evening, around 10 PM (another clue) and this time I sent Kingston to find Mr. Sidwell (or his ghost), carrying his favorite cigar as he always did. I had 4 cameras watching 4 of the 5 pianos. Watching the fifth piano was easy as I was sitting in the Baxter room. I heard the music and wanted to scream at Mr. Magnusson or Barnes, but what good would that do, they’d just laugh and drink. I called my friend Lisa and let her listen. She said, “Go see if the computer is on and playing a tune from it.” Why didn’t I think about that? The computer was on, but it wasn’t playing from it. Thinking more about it, perhaps someone simply plugged in their iPhone to the system, but there weren’t any other peripherals hooked up as far as I could see. I went back to the couch. Have I really collected all the evidence? Not really. I traced what I had put down as far as wires are concerned. Could it be a wi-fi device hooked in to the sound system that I’m missing? I was tired, but started snooping around until I stopped dead in my tracks. Kingston did too. I heard one of my favorite tunes again. We were in the dark and I have to admit it was a little bit scary - and it’s not even Halloween yet.

I have more to do than find a ghost piano player –

Fran called me up to her office on the third floor. Half the floor is just used for storage and stuff. I have my weatherstation and lab there still. “Hi Fran, whats’ up?” I asked walking in to her disheveled office. Davia, can you replace our old PIX firewall with this new one?” She asked very matter-o-factly. “Of course,” I answered with attitude, “nothing to programming a new firewall to protect this multi-million dollar set up.” I guess Fran wasn’t used to me being so brisk. “What’s the matter, Davia, wake up on the wrong side of the bed?” I didn’t even answer that and said, “Lisa is the house IT admin, shouldn’t she be installing it?” Fran just looked down for a moment and answered, “She doesn’t know how and is a little afraid of it.” I understand that, firewall and router security is a big thing these days. “Why not send her to one of those 5-day intensive courses like she did for windows?” I just didn’t feel like doing anyone else’s job again. “Okay, Davia, I was just asking. It would be nice if you were there to help at least.” Of course, guilt overrode me and said, “Sorry, for the grouchy morning Fran. I’m frustrated with my research paper, nervous about being sent off for a PhD at 17 years old and don’t understand why old Mr. Sidwell’s music is playing at night with no recordings of his around. Fran looked up smiling, kind of with a surprised look on her face.

I can help you with that last one girl,” she said. “Huh?” Fran went on, “Don’t you remember the music server we set up here?” I looked at her puzzled. “Oh, that might have been Lisa who helped me with it. Anyway, Bellingham asked if we could have some of Mr. Sidwell’s music played at night and we easily obliged with the server we installed right over there.” I shook my head. “How did you guys hook it up, I don’t see it wired up to the server downstairs.” There on Wi-Fi with this USB key girl, didn’t you see them plugged in behind all the speakers?” Hell no, I thought, and never even thought to look. Case solved. I overlooked the obvious – obviously.

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BTP

Beyond This Point

         

 

 

 

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The Next Act

The Next Act

                                     The Next Act   

Comments from Editorial Reviewers: “The drama here is in the nuts and bolts of ferreting out the mystery in some off-beat cases.” – Palmettoreview.com  -  “A highly entertaining mystery and crime book containing 20 short stories.” TBR- topbookreviewers.com  -  The story, and its placement, indicates right away that this isn’t your typical detective book… Palmettoreview.com Comments from Amazon Reviews:   “I found them to be the most unusual and unique cases, that you normally don’t hear about. Like an office building full of employees who keep getting sick, even after returning from recovering from the illness.” – Amazon review  -  “Many of the stories have a humorous side to them as well.” - Amazon review   “Jim is often accompanied by his family, primarily his techno-wiz son. I liked this angle, as it shows his family life as well as progresses the current case.” - Amazon review  -  “Each curious story I read before bed leaves me with a smile.” – Amazon review   -  “Many of Jim’s cases discussed were sort of off the wall, and it was in that aspect that I really found this book interesting.” – Amazon review Comments from Friends (whom I’ve not asked to give us an Amazon review): “Should be a text book.” – Cathy. “A teaching book.” – Ann  “Should be a movie.” – Roy. “I’ve had to put down 4 best seller’s recently, they were boring! I’ve read some stories in, The Next Act, three times already. You won’t be bored, I promise – Davia” –  “What funny and odd detective stories” – Brenda.  “Better than the book I’m reading now that’s on the best seller list.” – Johnny The Case Book of Detective Jim Jesson. This was our first small book with 10 stories we wrote in 2012. We decided to publish it and is available for .99 cents on Amazon. We’re on –  BOOKBUZZ    BROADWAY    PR.COM    NEWBOOKJOURNAL     GOODREADS    PORTSMOUTH HERALD              

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