Ho-hum, thought the Muellersavus. Another day, another victory. For collusion. His Langleytips DNA told him it was only a matter of sifting through the rubble and connecting the rocks that mattered. Today he was sitting atop a boulder.
He ramped up his steely-eyed gaze and directed it across the rustic rockpile at the latest stool pigeon caught in his gut-squeezing, mind-melding jaws of justice.
The Alexvanderzwaan, a Danishbritwit ex-legal dino from the meager Skadden Arps Slate Formation, squatted before him. He was the 19th dinosaur caught in the Moscovian Bluffs investigation. Beside him squatted the Rickyprisongates, nervously eyeing the Muellersavus. The veteran Langleytips dinosaur had already nailed him for washing millions of moolah-moolah leaves with his kingpin idol, the Manaforta, in all the wrong places. Law abiding dinos knew moolah-moolah leaves should always be washed at home.
“Alex,” said the Muellersavus, “you lied to me about your conversation with the Rickyprisiongates here. Now that you’re staring at the Solitary Sinkhole, you spent the past three days whining to one of my subordinate dinos about how you desperately need to be home to see the egg cracking of your first little dino.”
“Please, Muellersavus. I’m just a lonely Danishbritwit.”
“Tsk, tsk, tsk.” The Muellersavus waggled a boney claw at him. “I call it collusion entitlement. Did you ever stop to think how I feel? The Papadopoulus. The Flynnhasbeen. And now you. Lying to me. All of you. Do you think this is some dino game of Hang the Droopy Nose on the Dippy Diplodocus? Well?”
The ex-legal dino dropped his gaze to the ground in shame.
“No, it’s not some dino game of Hang the Droopy Nose on the Dippy Diplodocus.”
“I should say not. So, no, you can’t go home. Your poor wife is going to have to crack that damn egg all by herself. I hope you remember that.”
The Alexvanderzwaan was moved to tears. An obvious ploy for pity thought the Muellersavus. Egg crackings, adopted dino babies, the Muellersavus had seen it all. It was time for the boulder play. Crack this one, Manaforta.
“Manaforta! Get in here!”
The Manaforta shuffled in, looking like a Martharaptor caught in the bright light of an incoming meteor. The Alexvanderzwaan’s eyes lit up.
“Hey, Manaforta! It’s been, what … 15 months since we’ve all been together?”
The Manaforta stole a quick glance at the Muellersavus, then turned to the two dinos.
“I don’t know any of you. Never seen you before in my life.”
“Paulie?” The Rickyprisongates looked crushed.
“Oh. Sorry, Ricky. Force of habit. Of course I know you. Only at work though. Remember, you work for me.”
The hairy eyeball from the Manaforta.
“Why are you looking at me like that, Paulie?”
“Ladies,” said the Muellersavus, “let’s cut to the chase.”
“Great,” said the Rickyprisongates. “I’m starved.”
“Figure of speech. Manaforta, you might be interested in knowing, the Alexvanderzwaan and your prodigy here, the Rickyprisongates were speaking with … I’ll call him a mystery dinosaur … the Moscowchickenkiev.”
The Manaforta turned to the Rickyprisongates.
“Did you tell him about the … the … Moscowchickenkiev? Huh? Did you? The Moscowchickenkiev, Ricky!”
“Paulie, stop it. You’re making me hungry!”
The Rickyprisongates coughed up a large, soft-shell rodent, then slowly regurgitated it.
“I’m sorry, Paulie,” he said between swallows. “I had to. I like you a lot but …”
“I don’t like you enough to spend 300 years with you in the Solitary Sinkhole. There. I said it.”
“But we can get pardons, Ricky. Pardons.” He said it through clenched teeth, squeezing his hands into pleading fists.
“Forget it, Paulie. The T-Rump has. The Stormydaniels, the Karenmcdougal, you know how short his attention span is.”
The Manaforta had to give him that one. The Muellersavus raised a claw.
“Manaforta, I think you know who the Moscowchickenkiev is. Oh, who am I kidding? No, I know you know who he is. The question is, do you know how many dinosaurs have already told me you know who he is. Well? … This was just my little way of reminding you that your washing moolah-moolah leaves all over the countryside is just the beginning of the troubled waters I now hold back, just waiting to wash over you. … It’s your turn, Manaforta. Are you a big fish or a little fish? Be the little fish and you may get to see your own little fishies outside visiting hours at the Solitary Sinkhole. What’ll it be, Manaforta? … I’m waiting.”