So, after some thinking, I'm releasing this first chapter of a certain supposed-to-be-funny story.
It's not a fanfic mind you, but original thing.
Also, I once posted a proto unfinished version of this some time ago.
Welp, anyway here it is.
Chapter 1 - The First Case In Which Introductions Happen - Part 1 - Fall From Grace
In a huge circus tent, in the shadow of the night, stood a particular someone. This someone, not unlike a vile criminal, kept cutting away at something using a small saw. He did so for a time quite long, after which he giggled to himself with a voice most girlish, and left in a hurry.
Little did anybody knew, that the very next day, a typical circus show would spiral into a drama. One of magnitude which has not been seen or heard of before.
* * *
Deep inside an old and ruined castle, sat a man in a dirty white lab coat. The room in which he resided, could be possibly described as a laboratory of sorts. Not one of those tidy ones that you often see in movies, mind you. Because this place, while being a lab, belonged to a mad scientist.
"Damn! Another failed formula!" Said the man, and threw a crumpled piece of paper against a wall.
"Why?! I don't get it! To think I, Doctor Steinveiz, would be beaten by such a trifle!"
After complaining to no one in particular, he got up from the table he sat at and began walking around the entire lab in circles. He continued like this for few good minutes, until knocking at the door awakened him from his trance of thought.
"I'm too busy, right now. Come back later."
The knocking at the door stopped, however, the mad doctor knew this might not be the end. The person who knocked, namely his maid Karmilla, only did so when she tried to be nice. However, usually, if you denied her the permission to enter, she would suddenly kick the door down and waltz in anyway.
It would seem that this time, nothing of the sort took place.
"Well that solves it."
"That solves what?"
Steinveiz jumped in place, almost letting out a girlish scream. He concentrated so much on watching the door, that he almost completely lost self control out of surprise. When Karmilla whispered into his ear, his heart skipped a beat.
He turned around, backing away few steps. She just stood there, twirling a small strand of her black hair with her fingers.
"Damn her. She must have phased in through the walls." Thought Steinveiz.
He quickly noticed, that in addition to her black and white maid uniform, which was her standard clothing, Karmilla had a big red ribbon in her hair. It made her look cute, despite not really matching with her color scheme.
"If you're going to enter despite my plea, you could at least just walk in using the door. It's not like I lock them, or anything."
"Nevermind that, doctor." Spoke Karmilla, completely dismissing Steinveiz' request. "Miss Tweedletumb, gave us a pair of tickets to the circus." She said, taking out two small yellowish tickets from a pocket in her skirt.
Steinveiz raised an eyebrow.
"She did? That's awfully nice of her, considering what happened between us two days ago... and a week ago... and... hm."
Steinveiz paused for a moment, because he realized something else was off about his maid today. The cute ribbon distracted him so much, he failed to notice, there were stains of blood on her hands and left cheek.
"What did you do this time? There's some bloodstains on you." He asked, even though deep down in his heart he knew he's going to regret it.
Karmilla clicked her tongue in irritation. She hoped her "master" wouldn't notice.
"Well, I might have simply killed that small dog which belonged to Miss Tweedletumb. He barked too much." She replied casually.
Steinveiz tried to control himself, otherwise he felt he's going to faint. Two days ago, poor elderly Miss Tweedletumb got her entire garden completely devastated, when Karmilla decided to take a shortcut through it. Before that, a whole week ago, Karmilla was supposed to test out Steinveiz' newest Homing Boomerang. Miss Tweedletumb was saved from decapitation only by the fact that the device malfunctioned. However most of her collection of porcelain figures wasn't so lucky.
Those were only two recent examples, since Karmilla's obvious torturous intent towards the poor old lady who simply happens to live down the hill, dates back to when they both first moved into this castle.
Now poor Mr. Poompernickles, the small and jumpy dog, lost his small doggy life.
"Please tell me you at least hid the dog's remains somewhere."
"I hid the dog's remains."
Steinveiz let out a deep relieved sigh. At least now that poor old lady won't have to see-
"Inside Miss Tweedletumb's couch."
Upon hearing this, he almost choked on his own saliva. The cruelty of his maid seemed to know little bounds. Then again, she was much more than a human, and a lot older than she looked. As much as she fascinated him, she also managed to be utterly disgusting in her behavior.
Steinveiz decided to change the subject. After all, nothing could be done about this now.
"So... why did she gave you the tickets? There must have been a reason."
"Yes. She said (and I quote): 'Go to the circus. You kids will feel right at home there, and who knows, maybe you both can stay there as attractions.'"
There was a brief silence, Steinveiz wasn't sure what to do or say exactly. Karmilla however, was quick to fix that.
"Are we going to the circus, Doctor?"
"Mmm, yes. But, let's take the longer route. Far from Miss Tweedletumb's house."
Karmilla marched towards one of the walls, and as if she was a ghost, she walked through it with little trouble. However, before she did so, Steinveiz looked at the ribbon again, guided by some terrible feeling. He noticed there was some small writing on the back of it, but in the end, he decided to pay it no mind and walked out of the laboratory.
"Circus, huh? Well, it might be fun."
* * *
The circus. A place where kids and adults alike can watch various strangely dressed people do strange and weird things. There may be some animals involved too. Some of them dangerous, some of them not. But if there's one true constant thing with all of the existing circuses, it was the clowns. They always come in two types. "Annoying" or "Completely Terrifying".
If it depended on Steinveiz, all clowns would be forbidden to partake in circus. The reason for this deep rooted hatred for clowns was unknown even to Karmilla. Though she only learned about it today, when they arrived before the entrance to the circus' tent. They were greeted by a pretty happy clown, whose makeup on the other hand, looked like something out of that one horror film. Steinveiz immediately started screaming at the clown, telling him to get away, and in general making a huge commotion. Eventually, Karmilla was forced to kick him in the stomach to calm him down. Then she dragged him inside the tent, much to the amusement of many children.
"What was that outburst about, Doctor?" Asked Karmilla after they finally found free seats.
"I'll rather not talk about it." Responded Steinveiz, massaging his stomach. He was thankful that Karmilla did not use her super strength to kick him. Though it didn't change the fact it still hurt like hell.
"In your childhood, you went to the circus with your parents. But one of the clown's caught you while they weren't looking and did this and that to you. Am I right?"
"No! And if you failed to understand: Hell No! Nothing of the sort happened. Perhaps I'll tell you one day, but not right now."
Eventually, the show started. First were the clowns, who began doing various tricks and jokes, jumping around on balls, juggling balls and desperately trying to amuse someone else than just five year old kids. Doctor Steinveiz, of course, tried to abandon ship barely two minutes into this truly "marvelous" spectacle. Karmilla wasn't about to let it happen of course, so she held his right hand, almost to the point of crushing it.
Next came the animals and their trainers. Steinveiz managed to finally calm down, though now he kept complaining through the entirety of the animal part, that his right hand hurts.
And so, after few other performances, came time for the finale.
"So... what kind of 'interesting', by which I mean boring, performance are we in for the finale, I wonder?" Asked Steinveiz in a less than enthusiastic tone.
Karmilla, who held a small leaflet with a clown on the cover, began going through its pages. It was quite thick, despite its small size. After a long moment of silence between the two of them, she finally spoke.
"'The Great Skyrunner Family! True to their name, they soar the sky to amaze you! Prepare to see a show filled with acrobatic tricks, like you've never seen before.'"
Steinveiz lightened up a bit. Perhaps this entire clown-filled trip will not be wasted yet.
"Acrobatics, huh? Well, color me interested." He said with a smile.
"You like acrobatics, doctor?"
"That I do. They were always my favorite of performances. I remember the last time I went to circus, while I was a kid, it was something truly marvelous and inspiring to see a group of people jumping through the air, catching each other in the middle. And... and..."
"And then a clown raped you."
"Yes and then a clow-"
Steinveiz paused, realizing what he was about to say. He looked at Karmilla who clicked her tongue in disappointment.
"Will you STOP that?"
"Quiet, Doctor. The show is starting."
Steinveiz capitulated and directed his attention to the stage..
There were two large towers in the corners of the stage. Upon one of them stood a man and on the other a woman. Both in white tights. They were both holding onto their own swing. Steinveiz, along with the rest of the audience (well, minus Karmilla) held his breath when the two acrobats leaped off from the towers using the swings. Much to the amazement of everybody who wasn't Karmilla, both of them did an amazing somersault, passing by each other in the air and grabbing onto each other swings.
At that moment... it happened. The lines on both of the swings broke off. Mister and Miss Skyrunner fell down. Never to soar the sky again.
People screamed, children cried. The circus staff gathered quickly around the dead pair of acrobats.
Steinveiz, however, stood aghast. Karmilla noticed this, and got up from her seat as well.
"Let us go, Doctor. There is nothing pleasant to see here anymore."
Steinveiz, however, seemed to have a different idea, as he began walking down, towards the stage. Karmilla blinked two times, and quickly followed.
"I am sorry, Doctor, but I do not understand. You know nothing of medicine, besides I do not believe you can help them..."
"Just make sure nobody gets in my way, will you?"
Steinveiz jumped onto the stage. One of the clowns noticed him.
"I'm sorry, sir." He said. "But you should leave..."
Steinveiz merely pushed him aside and walked up to one of the broken swings. He began to examine the rope. It was made of metal, as expected. It had to be that way, because otherwise the risk of it tearing off was too big.
Steinveiz narrowed his eyes. It was obvious to him now, this...
"Who are you, sir?"
Steinveiz looked up, and saw a quite fat man in a tuxedo and a top hat. He had large white mustache. Steinveiz noticed the man emanated sadness.
"Are you the owner of this circus?" Steinveiz got up, still holding the broken swing.
"Y-yes. And who..."
"That doesn't matter right now. What matters is that this was not an accident."
Everyone of the personnel on stage, turned their attention to Steinveiz.
"Wha-what do you mean, sir?"
"Although it looks like the metal rope simply tore off, that was not the case. The rope is made of obviously stern metal, not to mention it's quite thick. However the point where rope torn off is too perfect. It looks more like, as if the rope was cut, most probably with a saw of some sort."
"MY GOD, sir. Are you some sort of detective?"
Steinveiz was about to deny that, however, Karmilla upon hearing that question got a "brilliant" idea.
"Yes." She spoke, just before Steinveiz had a chance to. "This man right here, might not look like it, but he is an excellent detective. Additionally, he knows his way around science, which as you can see for yourselves, allows him to gather clues quickly and efficiently."
Having heard this, everyone gathered let out a surprised "ooh".
"A moment, please." Having said that, Steinveiz grabbed Karmilla by the arm and dragged her into a corner of the stage. "What exactly are you doing?" He asked angrily.
"I'm getting you a proper job, why?"
"I already have a job. I'm a mad scientist, remem-"
"I just wish to remind you, Doctor, that we are behind with most of our bills. Your inventions, to put it bluntly, never sell and if we do not pay the bills, we might as well say good bye to your precious castle."
Steinveiz could not deny it, even though her words stung like a giant needle, it is true they are behind on all the payments. He tried quite hard to create something that would sell, but it just didn't work out. And he loved the castle, it was perfect home for a mad scientist like him.
"I am glad we understand each other, Doctor."
Steinveiz sighed, and together with Karmilla, returned to the group that gathered around the unfortunate acrobats. Immediately upon that, the circus owner jumped out with a question.
"Good sir, if you're a detective and what you say is true... If this was an act of sabotage, then... I beg you, please try to find out who did it."
"Yes. Don't worry, I already had that in mind upon confirming the cutting of the rope."
"Thank you, sir. We might not be a huge circus, like some of our rivals, but I'm prepared to pay you whatever is necessary."
"Cha-ching." Whispered Karmilla very quietly, however not quietly enough for Steinveiz' taste.
"Yes. Let's leave that until I actually solve this case, alright?" Said Steinveiz in a response that to him felt like something he needed to say in order to combat Karmilla's greediness.
"Oh, and where are my manners. I haven't even introduced myself." Said the owner, taking off his top hat. "I am Adamms Harcyboopler. And as you know already, I am the owner of this humble circus."
"I am Docto-"
Steinveiz barely managed to start his introduction, when Karmilla gave him a blow in the stomach using her elbow.
"His name is Ethaniel Steinveiz, a professional detective. I am Karmilla, his trusted, smart, cute and lovable assistant. Pleased to meet you, mr. Harcyboopler."
"Em... yes. Will... will he be okay?" Asked mr. Harcyboopler.
After Karmilla's quite painful strike, Steinveiz laid on the ground with his butt pointed up, in his eyes a blank expression. It seemed like he also foamed at the mouth.
"Yes." She replied bluntly. "In any case, I strongly suggest no one leaves this circus until we are done investigating... or else." With that said she sent everyone present a deadly stare.
* * *
After ten minutes of laying on the ground without signs of life, Steinveiz woke up. The first thing he saw, was the bodies of the Skyrunner family being taken away to an ambulance.
"Huh. How long was I out this time around?" He said looking up at Karmilla who, like a loyal dog (from hell) stood by Steinveiz, twirling her hair and generally being indifferent to everything around her.
Steinveiz figured that in their current situation, even the smallest break could hurt the entirety of their so called "investigation".
"Then we have no time to waste."
Steinveiz got up, brushed off the dirt from his lab coat and sighed in relief.
"First we need to ask who's in charge of maintenance in the circus, namely the swings."
"Already done. Mr. Harcyboopler said that one of their staff, who works as a clown too, takes care of maintaining the swings, among many other things."
Steinveiz' face became pale. A clown. He had to go, and have a conversation with a clown. A conversation which will require him to pay attention and look at the clown constantly to see if he's lying, or trying to hide something. A conversation.
With a clown.
Karmilla quickly noticed what's up.
"Do not worry, Detective. I believe clowns are only into little children." She said, in a honest hope it will help Steinveiz to get a grip.
"This is hopeless. I can't even stand them from far away, let alone up close. My carrier as a detective will be over before it even truly begins. No, it's more accurate to say that it was over the moment I stepped into this circus. Perhaps I should just kill myself, yes. To atone for the sin of promising to solve this and then failing at the very beginning. A clown... to talk with him. Yes. No. The answer is always left, and if not. Then it's right. I can never make anything useful. I am a piece of trash.
Steinveiz' self-hating and depressing tirade continued for another five minutes, until Karmilla finally snapped and applied her boot to Steinveiz' face. Roundhouse kick style.
* * *
After Steinveiz got a solid beating from Karmilla, they both set out for the small trailer in which the "maintenance clown" lived. It wasn't too far away from the circus tent, in fact, it was located in a pretty empty space, where no other trailer was located, except this one. By a certain rule, every member of the "circus family" lived in a trailer, and they sure encountered a lot of them on the way. However, this one was, to put it mildly... different.
For one, it was entirely pink. For two, it was entirely pink with some flowers painted on it. And for three...
"Is that... is that window shaped like a heart?" Asked Steinveiz, even though what stood before him, was not a drug induced hallucination.
To summarize, the trailer was pink with additional flower paintings for decorations and a heart shaped window. This sort of image left a bad taste in mad doctor's mouth, and he was entirely afraid of what could lay within that thing. However, he was not the only one who didn't like what he saw.
If there is one thing Steinveiz knew about Karmilla, is that her favorite color palette consisted of no more than black, some white, black and then some more black. Until today of course, when he saw her with the red ribbon in her hair, he was entirely sure she held no tolerance for brighter colors. As it turns out... he was actually quite right.
"Doc... Detective... I do not feel so well."
Steinveiz managed to finally look away from the pink trailer. What brought him out from the daze, was Karmilla's voice, which sounded strange. It was neither cold, nor indifferent, as it often tends to be. In fact, it sounded as if she was on the verge of crying.
Karmilla was shaking, covering her mouth with the right hand and flailing strangely with the left.
"I... feenk am gonna pooke." Muffled out Karmilla, after which she had a huge vomit reflex, but fortunately for Steinveiz (who stood right before her) no vomiting happened.
"Don't tell me... no, but... could it be... that you are actually... not good with pink and other bright colors?" Said Steinveiz.
Karmilla merely sent him a dumb stare and fell down on the ground, losing consciousness. Steinveiz stood still over her for a brief moment, after which he just looked around trying to desperately find something or someone who would help him in this situation. But the only thing nearby was the pink trailer which housed a clown.
"Goddammit." Cursed Steinveiz and went towards the trailer.
The doors to this "thing" were probably the most peculiar, as the mad doctor quickly realized upon standing before them. There was a lot of different writings scribbled upon their pink flowery surface, such as:
"Go away unless you're super cute."
"Do not disturb, unless cute."
"Woopie doobie doop boop."
"I sense I'm going to regret knocking." Thought Steinveiz and finally knocked at the door.
After a brief moment, he heard a voice from behind the door.
"Brother! It's a pedophile in a lab coat!"
Steinveiz suddenly felt very uncomfortable. The voice which spoke such insulting words, couldn't belong to anybody who is older than eleven or twelve years of age.
After another moment of waiting, and hearing some kind of inaudible conversation, the locks on the door to the trailer were unlocked.
What emerged out of them, was... a relatively normal looking man. He was young, younger than Steinveiz even, who himself was barely in his thirties. He had a brown shirt and some long black hair. He certainly didn't seem like someone who would live in a trailer like this.
"What do ya want, creep?" Spoke the man.
"Erm... I'm a... detective. I'm trying to find out who sabotaged the swings which Skyrunners used to, er, swing on." Explained Steinveiz.
"Oh yeah, old Harcyboopler called me earlier to say you were coming. But weren't there supposed to be two of you?"
Steinveiz' gaze went towards Karmilla, who was still unconscious on the ground. The man raised an eyebrow upon noticing what Steinveiz is looking at.
"She suddenly felt sick, when uh... she felt sick and collapsed. I wanted to ask actually if I could let her lay in your trailer while we talk?"
"Eh, sure. Get yourselves in."
As such, Steinveiz picked up Karmilla from the ground, and with some help from the young man, they both crossed the doorstep of the colorful trailer.
Little did any of them realize that this visit will change their fates...