Returning to Cadbury’s office, Selia again found herself disoriented. The ambiance had shifted dramatically and now resembled something akin to a sauna room at a morgue. A dankness had also swept the outside sky and either night was falling early, or she had been knocked out for a period.
She saw what appeared to be Cadbury manifesting as a shadow that was strangely more substantive that his previous solid form.
Cadbury: Yes. Cadbury.
Selia: Erm… I have an appointment!
Cadbury: Well I trust that to be the case madam, or you should not have been allowed to squander my solitude with your presence.
Cadbury: But what do you want, really?
Selia: [Adjusting to the light somewhat] Well I came to discuss a case.
Cadbury: Interesting. [Pondering] Hmmmm, no, let’s upgrade that to Fascinating! Of all the things. Truly. A Case. Do you know what I do, madame?
Selia: Your signage says you are a Detective.
Cadbury: Does it? [Drumming his fingers in the air, they still made quite a sound] No, it does not. My signage merely states the name of this business. I would not submit your resume to any Detective Agencies if that is the extent of your Detective work. But let’s have a soft moment, shall we?
Cadbury sat down, seemingly in the air. He appeared to whirl a cane for some time, then began humming. A helicopter flew by the window. In the background Mr. Gullet could be heard cussing out someone, perhaps himself.
Cadbury: I suggest you sit Selia, we have a bucket for you.
He pointed his cane at a quite impressive looking upturned bucket. Selia moved slowly towards it.
Selia: [Noticing Cadbury was also sitting on a bucket, rather than in the air as it had at first appeared] Why do you use buckets as seats may I inquire?
Cadbury: Buckets are the most civilized seating choice madam. Put simply, they are robust and flexible, they free the body for other pursuits, they liberate the mind from the sorry entrails of fixed structures like chairs. Indeed, I have no idea why any other seating choices exist.
Strangely satisfied with this explanation, Selia seated herself on the bucket, which this time was not removed from beneath her. It was horribly uncomfortable, she noted.
Selia: My case-
Cadbury: No! Please not that. Let’s just step back here. Not everything has to be hard. This moment is meant to be soft.
Selia: Like a chair?
Cadbury: No! Like the robust softness of a bucket. So, now. This case of yours…. [he trailed off, leaving an opening]
Cadbury: But not yet! First we need to set the scene with some discussion of myself. I will plant the seeds of how Cadbury came to be.
Selia: [Feeling as though she should be affronted but not able to put her finger on it] Okay.
Cadbury: But not now, that would be overly forward. And I am on a 3 step program here. I will plant those seeds though Selia.
Cadbury got up from his bucket. He could usually only sit on them for about 5 minutes before losing all feeling in his buttocks. As he arose he considered asking Selia to go for a walk with him, as her buttocks would almost certainly be tingling by now, however knowing what would inevitably come of that, he decided it would be ungentlemanly of him. And Cadbury Fife was nothing if not a demented gentleman.
Cadbury: Selia, I do want to hear about your case, I really do. I am positively bristling, and parts of me are glistening, at the prospect. However I should warn you, before we start, that some of my methods are what you might refer to as “unconventional”, and my other methods are what you might refer to as “controversial”.
Cadbury: [Twirling cane] Firstly, you shall not pay me for my services, Selia. No, I shall pay you. However, some of the things I pay you with may have negative value. Also, your life may be ruined. These are just standard disclaimers Selia, no need to be alarmed, all drug packaging has these. There are side effects of a Cadbury relationship of course, and we have a full list of them somewhere. At least those that have been identified.
Cadbury: [Pacing around his bucket, then reseating] OK, good. Standard 10 second window to respond…. and we are ready to go…
Cadbury: But not now. Detective work is not a frenzied process Selia. It is slow and steady, like a crippled rabbit.
Cadbury: [Standing once more] So, now, leave my presence. And make another appointment for 3AM. [He poked at the door]
Selia rose and tried awkwardly to pat some life into her bottom. Cadbury enjoyed that quite a lot and was well aware that his guests did it for his benefit. He patted his own bottom in appreciation. Then he poked again at the door, urging her to leave.
As Selia was again swept from the room Cadbury inhaled her scent, mixed with bells, and the sly odor of his own thoughts.