Sotto Voce.

"Qui plume a, guerre a." — Voltaire

“Mr. Monk and the Alphabet Murder”

Mr. Monk and the Alphabet Murder
A Creative Writing Exercise

[Instructions: Monk, the obsessive-compulsive detective, is working on the murder case of Jane Doe. Write a part of this story, in which the words start with the letters of the alphabet, in order. To make it a little easier, you may use 1-, 2-, and 3-letter words throughout, in any order. You may also use the word “said” to reference spoken dialogue, when unavoidable.]

Adrian blanched at the corpse of Doe on the examiner’s flat gurney. “Handi-wipe,” he insisted.

“Just kidding,” the lieutenant muttered as the napkin was opened, patted quickly, and returned to Sharona. “That was unintentional.” (He had ventured to wink at her.)

“I Xeroxed yesterday’s zygote analysis,” the bearded coroner said. “As you can clearly see, Doe was in her early forties, in good health.”

“Interestingly, she was a juror on a killing too, Lieutenant,” Monk said.

As none of the others presumed to question his reasoning, Stottlemeyer turned to him and said “Unbelievable! And very weird too.”

“A xylophone, a yellow zither, and an antique brass chandelier,” said Disher. “Everything we found in the girl’s house was intentionally jury-rigged to kill her.”

“Lieutenant,” Monk said, “was one of her neighbors an orchestral performer?”

Quickly he reviewed his small tablet. “Unfortunately, no. But the Venerable Wasabi-roshi, the xenophobic Yugoslavian Zen Abbott, has a bungalow close to the Doe enclave. His followers generally hate instruments.”

“A justification for killing her, lieutenant, nevertheless?” asked Monk.

“I’ve observed pretty queer reactions,” he said. “Some of them are unhappy the way we value women. Xenophobes who yearn for zero availability of babes or compositions.”

“A disgruntled enlightener who fears gender and humanitarian improvements; a Jane-Doe killed,” listed Monk. “And noiselessly. Only, the police can’t question the religious satrap in his tower, as he’s untouchable. I venture to wonder if his xenophobia is a yearning to zip up his alibi.”

“Because of old crimes?” Disher said.

“Exactly,” Fleming said. “He hates all ingénues, but she was a juror of his, so he kills her.”

“Lovely,” said Monk. “Novices get the order, and perform the act quickly, and Roshi is saved the trouble. Now I understand.”

“If we are very worried, we can put an X-call, zero in on him, and arrest the bastard!” said the Captain.

“Definitely,” exclaimed Fleming, “Get him!”

“Interestingly, now I just do not know,” lamented Monk.

“No!!” objected the policemen. “Quit, so we can respond! The show is now in Act Three!”

Understandably, all the viewers want to see the xenophobes zapped too.

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