Buck & Jane
A Death in the Family
Decker & Hayes
Epic Echoes
The Great Muppet Debate
Guard Duty
Like Mother, Like Daughter
Stage Blood



Guard Duty, Series Four
Episode 10 - Golden Opportunity

By Jordan D. White

Dr. Fast
Mr. Fahrenheit

Narr: The Earth Guard - the planet's most powerful heroes united in the common goal of protecting the innocent people of planet Earth and defending them from threats of all kinds. From the Guard Tower, their base of operations, they watch over the citizens and spring into action at any sign of danger. To that end, the Guard take shifts monitoring events all over the globe. Sooner or later, they all have to take a shift of… Guard Duty. This week: Bumblebee and Dr. Fast in "Golden Opportunity."

(Dr. Fast is in the Tower by himself, flipping through photos. After a second, Bumblebee and Mister Fahrenheit enter.)

MF: Oh, yeah, you’ll be a great addition to the guard, absolutely.

Bee: Really? I mean, my powers aren’t as useful as yours…

MF: Well, sure, but I’m the most powerful member of the Guard. We can’t all be me. Your powers are very useful. We need a… tiny… flying girl, sometimes.

Bee: You mean that? You’re not just saying it?

MF: Oh, yeah, totally. I always said Foal never would’ve died if we had a tiny flying girl on the team. Now we do. I mean, it’s too late for Foal, but at least we got one.

DF: Ahem. Where have you been?

Bee: Sorry I’m late, Doctor. Elijah and I slept through the alarm… but I got here as fast as I could. Why didn’t Peaseblossom wait until I got here?

DF: She tried, but Binary Girl showed up and dragged her out. Something about keeping faithful, or some nonsense. I thought faeries were beyond such religious foolishness. Just goes to show: you can come from a fifth dimensional race whose existence in our reality is owed to a strict practical application of Lowe’s Third Principle of Quantum Occurrence, but it doesn’t mean your mind is going to be any more rational. Barbarians!

MF: Ok… well, on that note, I think I’ll take my leave. I haven’t slept since before the funeral yesterday.

Bee: Shh!(Bee elbows him)

MF: Ow! I mean, yeah, I’ve… been sleeping since the funeral. So, I’ve got to go not sleep, now. And do work. Will I see you tonight… when I’ll be sleeping, again?

Bee: Can’t tonight. Binary Girl and me are going to have a girls’ night sleepover. But thank you ever so much for… comforting me after the tragic death of one of my teammates. I don’t know how I would have gotten through the night without you.

MF: My pleasure.

Bee: See you soon.

MF: Bye. (leaves)

DF: (noise of disgust)

Bee: What?

DF: You people, carrying on like one of the Guard wasn't murdered two days ago! This was one of our colleagues, cut down in their prime! Robbed even of the infinitesimal time a 'full life' would have promised! Not even given the chance to grow old, like the rest of us poor humans!

Bee: Aw, Doctor… I didn't realize you were so sensitive. How have you been, since the funeral? Do you need any comfort? I can be very reassuring.

DF: I'm fine. I’ll be reassured when I actually accomplish something.

Bee: You sure you’re not even a teensy weensy bit upset?

DF: Being upset would change nothing. Why waste my time? I’ve focussed on trying to actually do something about it. I’ve been investigating the murder.

Bee: Ooo, really?

DF: Of course. The Golden Eel may not have been on the Guard long, but her murder deserves to be treated with the utmost seriousness regardless. Just because I never got to know her personally doesn't mean I shouldn't devote the same attention I would if it were any other member.

Bee: Oh, yeah, that's so sweet of you!

DF: Sweet has nothing to do with it. On a practical level, if someone has the ability to murder one member of the Guard without being caught, the chances of them being able to murder another remain high. In addition, it makes the Guard appear ineffectual, which lowers our productivity. Lower productivity means a higher net loss of life in society at large. As such, bringing the killer to justice becomes a priority. I've ceased all other experiments for the time being (except, of course, my aging experiment) to focus on this one. Mathematically speaking, it's the right to do.

Bee: Um, ok. So, what did you learn? Anything good?

DF: It's a murder. What exactly would I find that was 'good'?

Bee: I don't know. She could have been, like... some sort of replicant or something. Like maybe underneath a layer of weird skin-husk stuff, you discover the body was full of alien organs, and wasn't actually her at all! Then maybe we could find the real Golden Eel and everything would be ok.

DF: Intersting supposition. And then there's reality.

Eel: Well, you don't have to be all-

DF: The Golden Eel, AKA Esther Hemmings, was found beaten to death in her cave, her base of super-heroic operations, on the island of Honolulu. The body was found by Honolulu Police Sergeant Nishihara, who had come to check on Eel after numerous failed contact attempts. He discovered her body sprawled all over the floor, face bludgeoned nearly beyond recognition with the Golden Idol that gave her her powers. Photo one. (shows her a picture)

Bee: Eew! That's disgusting!

DF: The head was caved in, as you can see. The idol was spattered in blood and found five feet away on the counter; photo two. (picture) Analysis has confirmed this as the murder weapon. Of course there are no fingerprints on the weapon, besides those of Ms. Hemmings herself. Here (picture), we can see that the beak of the eel statue matches perfectly the indentation on the back of her head, which would imply she was struck from behind. The spatter on the walls here (picture) suggests the same, and places her about here in the room when the event occurred.

Bee: Oh, GOD, why am I seeing this?!

DF: We're attempting to solve the murder of one of our colleagues.

Bee: Well, what do you expect me to do?

DF: You're a superhero. This is a crime.

Bee: I shrink and I fly and I blast things! Preferably, things in tights! I don't look at pictures of splattered brains!

DF: But, I... I read your file. You've solved murders.

Bee: Oh, sure! One, I saw a guy running away and figured he did it. I blasted him, and thankfully it turned out I was right, or he probably could have sued my pants off. The other time, the cops figured out who did it, they just... let me make the bust. Me and a few detectives had an arrangement...

DF: That's not important now. It's my job to investigate the crime scene evidence, and since you're here on Guard Duty, you can help.

Bee: You don't want me to help with that... I usually try to stick to the things I'm good at: shrinking, flying, blasting, and erotic massage.

DF: Too bad! As a member of the Earth Guard you have to be able to adapt to whatever situation may arise, even if that means did you just say erotic massage?

Bee: If you think it would help, I could-

DF: No, forget that! The Golden Eel, a member of the Earth Guard, has been murdered!

Bee: But, I can't-

DF: Yes, you can! This is your chance to rise to the occasion. You say you're a hero. Prove it.

Bee: (pause for a sec, screwing her courage to the sticking place) All right, fine. So what else have you got?

DF: Excellent. Now, the real question is, how did the murderer get into the cave in order to Murder Golden Eel? As you can see here, (photo) there's no sign of forced entry on the secret entrance, and the door was found locked. First glance, then, suggests a teleporting villain, like Goblin Girl or Popup, although it could also have been someone with access to technology giving them the ability to become intangible and pass through walls, perhaps Holy Roman or the Creationist.

Bee: You think they'd be able to figure out Eel's secret base?

DF: They could have placed a tracking device of some sort on her person, used it to discover her location.

Bee: Was there a tracking device?

DF: No, but they could have taken it with them when they left. OR, they could have developed a tracking device that breaks down into component gasses after a fixed duration! Let me check the make-up of the cave's atmosphere... Damn it! If only they'd taken the reading sooner, it would be more accurate!

Bee: I think you might be over-thinking this just a smidge, doc.

DF: As soon as they opened the door, the air was compromised, who knows what drifted out!

Bee: No, wait, hang on. Look at the pictures, here. Golden Eel has everything in her cave labeled.

DF: Yes, of course, she was very efficient, what's your point?

Bee: Take a look, here by the door, see? This ugly little eel plaque with the hooks? This hook is labeled "spare keys", and there they are. This one just says "keys", and it's empty. If Golden Eel was as systematic as she claimed to be, don't you think she'd have hung up her keys first thing? I mean, when I get home, it's practically instinct, I do the exact same things: lock the bolt, lock the chain, take off all my clothes. Never fails.

DF: Of course! Let me check- (whoosh... whoosh) You're right, her keys are missing, they're nowhere to be found in the cave at all!

Bee: Did you just... go there? How did you get in?

DF: I can run through walls.

Bee: But we're in space.

DF: I can run through space. Anyway, whoever murdered her must have taken her keys and locked up after themselves. And without forced entry, it would likely be someone she knew.

Bee: Maybe it was a secret lover, meeting her for a tryst in the dark! Were there candles, or champagne for two?

DF: No, she was actually in the middle of eating a ham sandwich. From what I can gather, it appears she was sitting at her monitors here (photo), eating the sandwich, got up, walked over to the mirror, was brushing her hair, and then someone began bludgeoning her.

Bee: So it must have been someone she didn't feel threatened by... a friend, or one of those police officers. Or- ...well, no.

DF: What?

Bee: Nothing, it was silly. Not even worth saying.

DF: We owe it to the Golden Eel to investigate all possibilities. What were you going to say?

Bee: I was going to say it could have been a member of the Guard. But that's silly, so forget it. No one on the Earth Guard would ever kill anyone, so there's got to be something else. One of the cops, like I said. Or someone invisible, or something.

DF: Still, it's worth investigating... where were you the night Eel was murdered?

Bee: Me? I was on Guard Duty with the Stallion. My first shift. Where were you?

DF: I was conducting my experiments, of course, but obviously it wasn't me. That leaves-

Argus: (incoming) Argus to the Earth Guard! Argus to the Earth Guard!

Bee: Argus? Hey, sweetie, what can we do for you?

Argus: I know I don't officially start until tomorrow, but there's a pack of dinosaurs rampaging through Portland! I need the Guard's help, now!

DF: It's not a problem, we can call out the Guard. Welcome to the team. See, Bumblebee? You rise to the occasion, even if it means starting early.

Bee: I think I get the picture. (button, shrinking) Attention Earth Guard! There's dinosaurs in Portland, Argus needs assistance! Make your way to Oregon ASAP. (button) How was that?

DF: Excellent. Now, I'll meet you in-

Bee: Doc? Do you think I could, um... ride in your pocket?

DF: In my... well, I don't see why not. Let's move.

Bee: Thanks... Ooh, it's toasty. (woosh)

Go to Episode 11