Questions and Answers

by Torry Martin

Dear B. Log,

I just solved a 49-year-old mystery without interrogating anybody. Hey, I think I’ll interrogate myself!

Q: What can you tell me, I mean you, about Miss Ulily Mae Willow?
A: Well, Miss Willow is 68 years old and has lived across the street for 15 months now. She left Odyssey 49 years ago to attend etiquette school in England.

Q: She was in etiquette school for 49 years?
A: Actually, she ended up becoming a spy. Plus, she didn’t want to come back to Odyssey and deal with Mr. McCready.

Q: The Odyssey banker?
A: Yes. When Miss Willow was 19 and lived in Odyssey, Mr. McCready asked her to marry him. So she ran away to England.

Q: Couldn’t she have just politely said, “No, I don’t want to marry you, but thank you for asking”?
A: Yes, but she didn’t learn proper etiquette until later. Plus, I think she was afraid that saying no would hurt his feelings more than leaving the country and changing her name.

Q: Wait a minute! She changed her name?
A: Yes. Her spy name was Daffodil June Pine.

Q: Daffodil June Pine? Isn’t that the name of the woman who your family’s butler, Bradford, fell in love with when he was in England? And didn’t she mysteriously disappear 49 years ago? But now she’s living across the street? What a coincidence!
A: It’s not a coincidence at all—it’s an answer to Bradford’s prayers and an almost-Easter miracle!

Q: An almost-Easter miracle?
A: Yeah. Tomorrow is Easter, and it was by delivering a bouquet for Miss Willow’s Easter tea party that I solved the 49-year-old mystery!

Q: Wow! How’d that happen?
A: Well, Miss Willow took the bouquet and said, “Oh, I love daffodils! They remind me of being a spy named Daffodil June Pine. Back then I fell in love with a spy named Beauford Manly who was studying to be a butler. Unfortunately, I was given a spy assignment in Russia and had to leave without telling him. We didn’t know each other’s real names, so we were never able to find each other. I eventually came back to America to find him, and I was sneaking in and out of Willow Manner so Mr. McCready wouldn’t know I was back in town. (Sigh.) Anyway, I love daffodils! I’ll put them in this vase!”

Q: That’s weird.
A: What’s weird?

Q: She said all that but neglected to thank you?
A: She’ll probably send a card.

Q: Oh. So are you certain Bradford Manners was “Beauford Manly”?
A: Yes. Miss Willow recognized my picture of Bradford.

Q: So have you called Bradford to tell him the good news?!
A: No, the plan is for me to invite Bradford to Odyssey next month, and we’ll attend Miss Willow’s Cinco de Mayo tea, where she’ll surprise him!

Q: Wow! That’ll happen next month?
A: Yep, and I can’t wait!

This article first appeared in the April 2011 issue of Focus on the Family Clubhouse magazine. Copyright © 2011 by Torry Martin. Used by permission. Illustration © Gary Locke.