TAC Table of Contents
by Stephen L. Brooks
One of the goals of the Lost Adventures of Superman series is to feature characters who appeared only once or twice in the canon of TV episodes. Many of these characters deserve further exposure. Some may have back stories which we can explore.
The spotlight this time shines upon Candy Myers, the PI who we mainly know from "The Stolen Costume." Here's a story about how Clark and Candy first met.
* * *
Clark finished washing his breakfast dishes and turned to the coffee pot, debating whether he wanted another cup before heading to the office. He was relieved of the decision by someone ringing his doorbell.
He answered the door and found a short slender man in a cheap suit smoking a cigarette. He wondered briefly if it was some hood he had put away through one of his articles, but the face was not familiar. "Yes?"
"Are you Kent?"
"Yes, I am. And you?"
"My name's Candy Myers. I'm a PI." He displayed his detective's license in his wallet.
"Inspector Henderson's mentioned you before. Come on in."
"I've read your stuff in the Planet. Good work there, Kent."
They shook hands and Clark asked what brought him to his apartment.
"What do you know of your new neighbors, the two next door?"
"Not much. They haven't been here long and I've only seen them a couple of times."
Candy pulled out a pocket notebook. "One's a man in his early twenties, the other a teenage girl, right?"
"They're subjects in a case I'm working on. Can't tell ya nothin' more than that."
"I understand." Clark focused his X-Ray Vision through the wall into the next apartment. "They're not there now," he mused.
"I think they've gone out for breakfast, probably to the diner around the block. I can take you there if you want."
"Nix. I need to talk to 'em in private. It'd be better to see 'em in the apartment."
Clark nodded. "Bill Henderson has spoken of you and said you knew your business. I'm guessing the girl is a runaway?"
Candy eyed him shrewdly. "I can't say."
Clark smiled; he had his answer. "Can I be of any help?"
"Yeah. Can I use your apartment as a stake-out until they get back?"
Clark sized him up. From what Bill Henderson had said Candy could be trusted. "Be my guest. I have to be going to the office; you'll have the place to yourself."
Candy sniffed the air toward the kitchenette. "That coffee smells good."
"Help yourself. There's Frosted Flakes in the cabinet, if you want breakfast." Clark got his hat. "Hope you can resolve your case today."
"Thanks, Kent. See ya 'round."
They shook hands again and Clark left the apartment. He took the elevator down to street level and glanced at his watch. He was running late. His car was in the shop. That was all right: he had his own means of transportation.
Clark ran into an alley, took off his glasses, and turned into Superman. He emerged from the alley, took a quick look about, and leaped for the sky. Focusing his Super-Vision as he neared the Daily Planet building, he scanned the Store Room. Miss Bacharach was there getting some supplies. He banked to his left, coming around to the north side of the building, and banked again to the right, heading for his own office. No one, thankfully, was there. A puff of Super-Breath blew the windows open and he landed inside. He made sure his door was locked and donned the drab double-breasted grey suit and glasses, adjusting his tie.
Someone tried to jiggle the doorknob and Clark unlocked it.
"Do you usually lock yourself into your own office, Clark?" Lois Lane, followed by Jimmy Olsen, entered the office.
"Sometimes," Clark said, "when I need a little privacy."
"Jimmy and I had coffee at Tony's this morning," Lois said. "There was a man and a girl in the next booth. Their behavior was suspicious."
Clark was instantly attentive. "Suspicious? How?"
"The girl was nervous, and the man was trying to calm her."
"I heard her say something about wanting to go back home," Jimmy added.
"What did the man say to that?" Clark asked.
"He was furious. The girl was in tears. Then he tried to calm her. Said she was his girl, and that he cared about her."
"Lots of young girls have been deceived that way," Clark said.
"And I'm afraid she's one of them," Lois agreed. "Tony warned him that if he carried on like that again he'd have to ask them to leave."
"Did they go?"
"No, they were still there when we left. Clark, I think Inspector Henderson should know about this."
Clark shrugged. "You have no proof that the man has done anything criminal. Maybe it was just a lovers' spat."
"Oh, I wouldn't expect you to come to her rescue, Clark," Lois scolded. "You're a little too timid to play Sir Galahad."
Clark adjusted his glasses. "Guess you're right, Lois. Excuse me a minute, will you?" He was out the door before they caught their collective thoughts.
Jimmy looked up and down the corridor for him.
"Where did he go?" Lois asked.
"I don't know. He couldn't have used the elevator."
As Lois and Jimmy pondered their friend's disappearance, Clark had found the Store Room now empty and changed once again to Superman. Little more than a guided leap took him to Tony's diner, a block or so from the Planet building. He entered the eatery and glanced about. The man and girl were not there.
Plump, balding Tony came immediately up to him. "Superman!
You come to have breakfast at Tony's?"
"I'd be glad to, Superman."
"There was a man and a girl in here before."
Tony frowned. "Yeah. He was no good. Yelled at the girl, in my diner. I almost threw him out."
"Did you see where they went?"
"No. But I think they drove off."
"Yeah. I heard a car start when they left."
"Did you see their tags?"
"No. Sorry, Superman."
The Man of Steel sighed. "Well I guess it's impossible to find them now. Thank you, Tony." He shook the cook's hand. "You've been a great help." He stepped out and threw himself into the air.
* * *
Candy had made himself at home while waiting. He had scrambled a couple of eggs and fried some bacon, sandwiching the whole between two slices of toast. He was a bachelor like Clark, but hadn't the advantage of the housekeeping tutoring of Sara Kent. Instead of washing his dishes he simply ran some hot water on them and left them in the sink to soak themselves clean.
He had brewed another pot of coffee and was just finishing the last cup when he heard a key turn in the lock. He instinctively reached for the snub-nosed .38 he kept in his pocket, but replaced it when Clark entered the room.
"Oh, Kent; it's you. Short day at the office?"
"Hmm? Oh. No, but I may have some information for you. A man and a girl were seen at Tony's diner. They may be the ones you're looking for."
"Oh yeah? Well, they didn't come back here."
"They were seen driving away, but Tony didn't get the license."
"Bad break. How long ago was this?"
"Within a half hour."
"Then they might still be in town." Candy snapped his fingers. "I've got a way of checking, but ya gotta promise something, Kent."
"What I'm about to do ain't exactly legal. Ya can't tell your manager or your friend Henderson."
"Depends on what it is."
"Fair enough. Come with me."
They went next door and Candy knocked. He waited and knocked again. As both expected, there was no answer. He got a key case from a pocket and opened it. "Ever see keys like this, Kent?"
"They're skeleton keys, aren't they?"
"Right. I'm gonna unlock this door and take a look around." He watched as the reporter seemed to try to peer past the door and look inside. He even reached for the doorknob as though he could open it, but thought better of it and thrust his hands in his pockets. He wondered what was going through Kent's mind.
"You've done this before," Clark said.
"Have to. The PI license excuses it, sort of."
Clark shrugged and gestured with a nod for Candy to go ahead. The detective sorted through the various oddly shaped keys and selected one. With some careful effort he soon turned the lock and opened the door. The two men entered.
They looked around. There was no sign of habitation. Candy opened the closets which proved to be empty.
"They vamoosed," Candy said.
Clark nodded, and Candy sensed in that nod a mere assurance of something the reporter had already secretly known. He shrugged; reporters develop instincts about these things the same way detectives do. They searched for any clue to where they had gone. There was a pad by the phone and Candy lightly rubbed a pencil across the impressions, raising a phone number.
"Can you get Henderson to run this number?"
"I'll give it a try," Clark said, placing the paper in a pocket.
Candy glanced at his watch. "I have an appointment with my client at noon. Think I'll stop by Tony's and see if anyone else noticed anything. Then I'll meet my client and report. Thanks for the use of the apartment, Kent."
"My pleasure, Candy."
Candy shut the door of the apartment as they left. They shook hands in the hallway and after Candy had caught the elevator Clark ducked into his apartment and changed to Superman. He flew back to the Planet building, landed in the now vacant Store Room, and resumed his guise as Kent.
He had no sooner returned to his office than he received a call on his intercom from Perry White. He immediately strode up the hallway to the editor's office. Jimmy Olsen was there with what looked like a teletype from the wire service.
"Kent! Where in blue blazes have you been?" Perry demanded.
"I was helping a detective friend with a case. Might make a good story, when he solves it."
"There's no time for that now. Olsen just brought in this teletype."
"It's about a jewel robbery!" Jimmy said as he handed the paper to Clark.
He scanned the dispatch and said, "This is interesting. The Khadmar Emerald has been stolen."
"That's not what your friend is investigating, is it?" Perry asked.
"Then drop that for now and get on this. I want you and Olsen to go see Henderson and find out what he knows about this."
"Okay, chief," Clark said. "Come along, junior."
Jimmy waved and grinned broadly as he went out the office door. "See you later, chief!"
"DON'T CALL ME CHIEF!"
Jimmy cautiously closed the door behind him and as he and Clark waited for the elevator he asked, "Gee, Mr. Kent. How come he let's you call him chief but he blows his stack when I do it?"
"Mr. White still thinks of you as a kid, Jim. Maybe in a few years when he's seen you mature he'll allow it."
"But, I'm over twenty-one."
"Not in Mr. White's eyes. He still sees you as the young teenager taking night school classes in journalism, when you first came here."
"Golly. Then all I need to do is grow up."
"That's right." There was a part of Clark that hoped his young friend never would grow up. Jimmy's naïveté, his childlike trust in others, and even that tendency to get himself into jams when he tried to act the adult, were things that made Jimmy the likable soul that he was. Clark smiled as he thought: Even Perry likes him for that; though he would never admit it.
* * *
Lois took a break and went to the drug store down the block. At the end of an aisle near the phone booths she recognized the girl from the diner. She appeared to be alone, but anxious as though the man Lois had seen her with was nearby. Hoping to help her, Lois went over.
"Hi," Lois said. "Remember me? I was sitting in the next booth at Tony's this morning."
The girl dropped her eyes and mumbled "Hello" before glancing toward one of the phone booths.
Lois offered her hand. "I'm Lois Lane, a reporter on the Daily Planet. What's your name?"
"Grace," the girl whispered. "Grace Ferguson."
Lois took her hand. "Listen, Grace, maybe I can help you."
The door of a phone booth crashed open and a man suddenly came between them, causing Lois to release her grip. The man was young, mid-twenties, and could be called good-looking. He took Grace's arm firmly.
"Look, lady, she don't need help. We're fine just the way we are, aren't we Grace?"
Grace nodded fearfully.
"So stay outta this. Hear me?"
"Of course," Lois said. "Good to meet you, Grace. If I can do anything..."
The last words were addressed to them as the man pulled Grace away. Just as they went out the door, the girl cast a pleading look back at Lois. The woman reporter counted a couple of beats and followed them, keeping discretely out of sight.
* * *
Jimmy drove them to Police Headquarters in his convertible. They came to Inspector Henderson's office and stopped at the threshold.
"Good morning, Bill. Got a minute?" Clark asked.
"Sure, Kent. Hi, Jimmy." He rose from his desk. "I think I know why you're here."
"Actually it's two reasons." Clark handed him the phone number he and Candy had found. "Can you run a trace on this?"
Henderson glanced at the paper. "Sure." He made a call, reading off the number. "Now, wasn't there something else you came about?"
"Yes, the Khadmar Emerald," Clark said.
"I thought so. I just got an alert about it myself," Henderson said, searching and finding a paper on his desk. "The robbery happened in Chicago, when the emerald was on display in a museum. The troopers have set up roadblocks at all the highways leading out of state, so they believe they're still here in Illinois. One of the men was recognized: Carl Ballard." He picked up a photo from his desk. "I dug up his mug shot. He's known to work with a Bert Lawson." He had a picture of him, too. "They're probably going to try to sell it and move on or sneak it into Canada and sell it there."
"Who would be able to arrange such a thing?" Clark asked.
"Probably a man we know only as The Fixer. He's suspected to be tied in to a lot of different rackets, but we've never been able to pin anything on him."
Henderson's phone rang and he answered it. "All right. I'll be right there." He hung up. "A body's been found in an alley."
"Dead?" Jimmy asked.
They rode with Bill Henderson in a squad car to the alley. A man lay just inside, dead, shot once. A uniformed officer stood over him. As he briefed the inspector a second officer came with a prisoner in tow. Clark was surprised when he recognized him.
"Hiya, Kent. Say Henderson, can ya get this ape to let go of me?"
"I think we have our murderer," the officer said. "I caught him running away with his gun still smoking." He handed the gun to Henderson, who examined the wound closely. "Looks like it was done with a .38." He held up Candy's revolver. "Which is what you carry, Candy." He stood up. "I'm afraid I'm going to have to arrest you on suspicion of murder."
"I don't think Candy did it," Clark said.
"I know I didn't do it," said Candy. "But I think I was shooting at the guy who did."
"Who was that?" Henderson asked.
"I dunno. I was supposed to meet someone near here and was a little early. I heard a shot, drew my gat, and saw this guy standing over the body with his own piece smokin'. He took off when he saw me and I fired at him. Missed. He got away."
"Well, ballistics will prove one way or the other," Henderson said. "I don't want to think you did it either, Candy. The crime lab will tell."
"Hey, who was I supposed to have shot, anyway? I haven't seen the body yet."
"I recognized him," Henderson said. "He's Ballard, one of the jewel thieves I'm after."
Candy leaned over and saw the dead man's face. "His name ain't Ballard. It's Bradley."
"Bradley?" Clark said. "You know the victim?"
"Sure," said Candy. "This stiff is my client."
* * *
Dave Malone had a firm grip on Grace's arm as he rang the doorbell on the house out in the country. The ring was answered by a large fellow who looked like he had once boxed or wrestled.
"Yeah? Whadda ya want?"
"I'm Dave Malone. I have an appointment with The Fixer."
A voice called from inside the house. "It's all right, Babe; I'm expecting him."
Babe looked them over a moment and opened the door, giving them barely enough room to sidle past him. Malone took Grace into the living room. A man sat in an easy chair by the fireplace, calmly smoking.
He was the opposite of his doorman: a slender, waspish man with a trim moustache and a retreating hairline. "You're not what I expected."
Malone shrugged. "Neither are you."
The Fixer indicated the easy chair across from him. "Have a seat. Babe, I'm sure the young lady will be more comfortable on the divan."
"The which?" Babe asked.
"Oh, yeah. Come on, toots."
"You must excuse Babe, miss..."
"Ferguson," Grace answered, responding automatically to The Fixer's charm.
"Miss Ferguson. You see, Babe flunked out of Etiquette School."
Malone sat opposite The Fixer and glanced over at Grace. His look was a warning for her to remain quiet.
"Now, my young friend Mr. Malone. You come to me on the matter of a certain piece of property, as I understand it."
"May I see it?"
"I have it, all right."
"I'm a man of business," The Fixer said, his tone suddenly sharper. "I have my own interests to take care of."
"It's in a safe place. I can get to it any time."
The Fixer shrugged. "Then we'll leave it at that for now. You want to see about disposing of this piece of property."
The sound of a car motor being cut off was heard. The Fixer nodded to Babe to investigate. "We have only a few visitors out here," he said. "I like the quiet."
"Get your hands off me, you big ape!" a woman's voice protested. Babe returned holding a woman roughly by the arm.
"Miss Lane!" Grace exclaimed, rising.
"Lois Lane?" The Fixer asked. "You may release her, Babe."
"Yes, I'm Lois Lane. And I think I know who you are."
"Well then, introductions are not necessary, since you evidently already know Miss Ferguson and Mr. Malone. Babe, kindly show our female guests into the next room while we men discuss business."
"Sure. Come with me, girls." He led them to a second smaller sitting room and they stood anxiously inside. "Have fun tradin' recipes," he said. Babe closed the door behind him but didn't lock it.
* * *
Left alone with Grace, Lois figured it would be best to set the girl at ease until she thought of a way out. They sat on a couch.
"Are you all right?" Lois asked.
"Yes. Just a little frightened. But Miss Lane, how did you find this place?"
"I followed you and this Malone character when you left the drug store. What is this all about?"
"I don't know. It's all happened so fast, and mostly in the last few days."
"Where are you from?"
"Chicago. That's where I met Dave."
"How long have you known him?"
"Oh, for several months now. We've been dating, though my father didn't approve. Dave is a few years older than I am."
"I understand." Lois noticed the silver broach pinned to Grace's blouse. It was eggshell shaped, surrounded by filigree. Her initials, GF, were engraved upon it. "That's a beautiful broach."
"Dave gave it to me shortly before we left Chicago. There were two other men, friends of his, who we traveled with for a while. But they had an argument and Dave got me away from them. It was to protect me, he said; but now I don't know.
"When we met, Dave was so kind and gentle. He charmed me off my feet. But since we've been here in Metropolis, I've become afraid of him. I learned he had a gun. I imagine the other two men had guns too. They were very rough men. I was surprised Dave was friends with them. But I guess he wasn't that close to them, since he rescued me from them."
Lois wasn't too sure that rescue was exactly what Dave Malone had in mind as far as Grace was concerned.
* * *
The Fixer took a long drag on his cigarette. "I was under the impression that there were three of you. And I didn't know about the girl."
"I ditched the other two," Malone said, "and never mind about the girl."
The Fixer shrugged. "Very well. If it's just the two of us, and you have the merchandise, I'll just get a bigger split. What do you say to half?"
"Wait, Fixer; we had a deal."
"My deal was with Mr. Ballard, not you. Since Ballard and Lawson are presumably out of the picture, if you want me to handle this, we cut a brand new deal."
"You were supposed to get a quarter of what we got."
"Now it's half."
Malone rose to protest but Babe came near and rubbed a fist menacingly against his palm. Malone sat down, gulped, and nodded acquiescence.
"Babe," said The Fixer, "why don't you take Mr. Malone with our other guests while I make some calls."
* * *
Clark, Jimmy, and Candy were all gathered in Bill Henderson's
office. "It's starting to tie in, Kent," Henderson
said. "That number you and Candy had is unlisted, and the
only address is to a Post Office box believed to be owned by The
"Ballistics shows that your gun didn't fire the shot that killed Ballard, Candy, so you're cleared."
"I told you that."
Henderson handed Candy's gun and PI license back to him.
"It's bigger game now than a runaway kid," Candy said. "She's got herself mixed up with some jewel thieves!"
"And we'll do our best to see that she gets away from them."
"What if she's part of it?" Jimmy said.
"You mean an accomplice?" Candy asked.
"We'll see, Jim," Clark assured him. "We have to get back to the office and file this story."
"I'll come with you," Candy said.
* * *
For the second time in one day Clark was called to Perry's office as soon as they reached the building. Candy came along and Clark introduced him to Perry.
"Have you seen Lois?" the editor asked.
"Not since earlier this morning," Clark said. "Why?"
"She left on an errand over an hour ago, saying she'd only be a few minutes. And you and Olsen have been running about all day too. Whichever one of you hasn't come back with a story better have a good explanation instead."
"Jimmy and I have a story for you, chief," Clark said, "and I'm sure Lois is on the trail of something as well. Where did she say she was going?"
"To the drug store down the block."
"Hmmm. I'll go check on her, chief. Candy, meet me at my apartment later." He gave him a key.
"All right, Kent. Good to meet you, Mr. White."
* * *
Clark went to the drug store counter and waited for the person in front of him to make his purchase before speaking to the cashier.
"I'm Clark Kent of the Planet. You know my colleague, Miss Lane?"
"Of course, Mr. Kent. She was in here earlier."
"Did she buy anything, or was she talking to someone?"
"Yes, now that you mention it. She was talking to a young girl standing near the phone booths."
"Did you know the young girl?"
"No, I've never seen her before. But a man who was using a phone suddenly took the girl away. And I think Miss Lane left right after them."
Clark mused, "Lois probably followed them. But where?"
* * *
Clark and Candy once again conferred in the former's apartment. "The man and the girl were spotted in a drug store. Lois saw them."
"Does she know where they went?" Candy said.
"No. They disappeared and Lois along with them."
The sound of someone working the lock to the adjoining apartment could be heard.
"Sounds like they've returned," Clark said.
"No, Kent; I know that sound. Someone's jimmying the lock."
"Then it might be the other man: Lawson. He must have traced them here like you did."
"Come on, Kent; we can take him."
"Wait, Candy. We still don't know where the others are."
Candy snapped his fingers. "You're right. But maybe he can lead us to them."
Clark leaned against the wall and his Super-Hearing heard the man dial a number. Clark counted the clicks, and they matched the number traced to The Fixer.
"You don't think you can hear him through the wall, do ya, Kent?"
Clark waved him to silence. He heard the man say: "I've got it, Fixer. Ninth and Keefer, four o'clock." Then they both heard the man leave the apartment and walk down to the elevator.
"I'm gonna follow him."
"Wait," Clark said. "Get Inspector Henderson to send a couple of squads to Ninth and Keefer, just after four o'clock. Use the phone booth just outside the building."
"Why can't we use your phone?"
"I've got another call to make."
"Okay." He checked his watch. "That's fifteen minutes from now. But hey, how did you get the dope on this?"
"Tell Henderson it's one of my hunches. He'll understand."
"Okay." Candy left the apartment.
Clark immediately changed to the red and blue of Superman.
* * *
Candy had nearly reached the phone booth when he spotted Lawson. He recognized him from a glimpse of the mug shot on Henderson's desk. Candy grabbed him by the arm. "Hey, where ya goin??"
"What's it to you?"
"I'm just a guy who likes to ask questions," Candy said. "And what I like even more are straight answers."
"Well, you're gettin' nothin' outta me." He broke loose but Candy grabbed him again. Lawson swung a left to Candy's face, and the PI answered with a right to the ribs. They went at it pretty hard. Lawson was fairly hefty, and seemed to have the advantage. Candy was short and wiry, but a scrapper. He finally got in a sharp uppercut that sent Lawson down on his back. Candy stood over him, daring him to get up.
"Now will you tell me where you're going?"
"All right! A pawn shop on Ninth and Keefer."
"Huh. Wonder how Kent knew that? On your feet, mug." Candy hauled him up and pulled a pair of handcuffs from a pocket. He cuffed his prisoner to a nearby lamppost while he searched him. He immediately found a .38 revolver. "Is this the gat you used to kill your partner and frame me?"
"I never shot nobody."
"A likely story. Now stay put. Our little sparring match delayed me from making an important phone call."
* * *
It was nearly three-thirty, and time for Malone to leave.
"Make sure you take your two girl friends with you," The Fixer said. "I don't want to get mixed up in a kidnapping. Makes the Feds unhappy."
"I'm taking them along anyway," Malone said. "The girl reporter is my hostage against Superman." His gun persuaded Lois and Grace to get in his car and he drove off.
* * *
Ninth and Keefer was a corner in a seedy section of Metropolis. Even in broad daylight a colorless darkness seemed to hover around the shops, greasy spoons, and flophouses that made up the neighborhood. Several of the stores were pawn shops and "offices" for bail bondsmen. Some of the pawn shops were actually fronts for fences.
Such was the pawn shop in front of which Malone parked his rented car at four o'clock. He got out of the car and drew his gun, forcing his two passengers to disembark as well. He kept them in front of him, steering them toward the pawn shop door.
The door flew open from the inside as the Man of Tomorrow leaped out before them. Even the royal and scarlet of his uniform seemed but tones of grey in the gloom, but his powerful presence instantly commanded the situation. "Let them go," he ordered.
Instead, Malone suddenly had a switchblade to Grace's throat and had pressed his gun barrel against Lois' head. "It's a stalemate, Superman. You may save one of the girls, but not both."
Superman was in a dilemma and he frowned. Malone was right. After a moment his frown softened and was replaced by a sardonic grin.
"I've got some help on this one," he said. "You'd better look behind you."
"I'm not falling for that one," Malone snorted in confidence.
The short barrel of a pocket .38 dug into his back. "Good thing, too," said Candy from behind him. "Drop 'em."
Malone dropped both weapons and his captives fled to either side.
Superman gestured to Candy to back away as he stepped toward Malone. He drew back his fist.
"Here's where I teach you not to hide behind women," he said. With one controlled punch he knocked him out. Malone lay cold on the sidewalk.
Candy whistled. "Wow! You did that with one punch!"
"When Superman punches them," Lois said, "they stay punched."
"Oh, Candy could've taken him if he had to," Superman said.
Henderson and his boys arrived. "Thanks for getting this one, Superman. Candy already got the other for us. Both of them will be facing kidnapping charges."
"I'm sorry I ever got in with Dave Malone," Grace said.
"You're not the first girl to be charmed by a good-looking guy who was up to no good," Lois consoled her.
"Yes, but I ended up with the wrong crowd and I've learned my lesson. Inspector, I'm willing to testify against both of them."
"You're a brave young lady," Superman said.
"Now if only we could find the emerald and pin that on them too," Henderson said.
Superman chuckled. "You said it yourself, inspector. But it's already pinned to Miss Ferguson. May I?" He put out his hand, nodding toward the broach.
"Of course," she said, as bewildered as everyone else except the Man of Steel. She unpinned it and handed it to him.
Superman found the hidden catch and opened it, releasing the eggshell cover. He shook what was hidden inside into his palm and held it up for all to see.
"So the girl was carrying the emerald all along!"
Superman nodded. "That's why she was so important to these three men." He turned to Grace. "Ballard, Lawson and Malone here were probably planning the robbery for months; but they needed someone above suspicion to carry the stone for them until they could fence it. When Malone met you, he decided you were perfect for their plans."
"Then I guess I was really a dope," Grace said.
"Malone is a con-man," Superman said, "and many have fallen prey to such as him. Remember your promise to testify, and you'll help put these men away for a long time."
"And when we do the ballistics tests on their two guns," Henderson added, "we'll know who killed the third partner."
"I'll see that you get back home safely," Candy said.
"And there's a reward in it for you too, Candy," Henderson said. "You'll get the finder's fee for returning the emerald."
Candy grinned. "That'll be pretty good pay for a day's work!"
* * *
Lois, Jimmy, and Inspector Henderson were gathered in Clark's office.
"Even though, thanks to Miss Lane, we know where The Fixer lives," Henderson said, "we still don't have anything on him."
"Neither Grace nor I heard anything of Malone's deals with him," Lois said, "and The Fixer was more than willing to let us go."
"He even had the nerve to call me and swear out a trespassing complaint against the three of them," Henderson added.
"Guess you'll have to get The Fixer another time," Clark said.
Candy came into the office and Grace was with him.
"We just wanted to say good-bye, Kent, before we take the train to Chicago."
"Mr. Myers phoned my parents," Grace said, "and I'm more than ready to go home."
"And she has even more reason to testify against them now," Henderson said.
"Oh? Why is that?"
"It turned out Malone was the one who killed Ballard. Ballistics matched his gun to the bullet."
"I'm so glad Superman and Mr. Myers were there to protect me. Mr. Kent, how can I see Superman to give him my thanks?"
Clark smiled. "I'll see that Superman knows."
"I've been on the phone with the FBI," Henderson said. "They're interested in prosecuting Lawson and Malone for kidnapping."
"That takes care of them." Candy reached into his breast pocket and pulled out a card, handing it to Clark. "Just in case you ever need a PI."
Clark took the card and said. "If I ever do need one, I'll know who to call." Clark and Candy shook hands. "Good-bye, Miss Ferguson."
"Good-bye, Mr. Kent." They said farewell all around.
They filed out of the office leaving Clark alone. Jimmy returned to the City Room and Lois to her office. Clark watched the others until they caught the elevator, waving good-bye. He stepped inside and considered the card in his hand. He smiled and mused, "Who knows?" and placed it in a drawer of this desk.
Steve Brooks is the author of the mystery novels The Raid and The Raid II: Back to School, available from Amazon. He intends to continue writing more Lost Adventures of Superman and invites readers to contact him with suggestions. He also encourages others to try their hands at stories. His e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jim - July 7, 2008
"Like The Only Real Magic -- The Magic Of Knowledge"