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The Myriad Investigations of Detective Oscar [One-Shot Collection]


Sloooowly writing...
Summary: The largest city in Liber is no stranger to crime. From random hooligans to organized crime syndicates, Capital is a city of mystery, danger, and intrigue. But none of that is a match for the unparalleled intellect and masterful detective work of the city’s very own Detective Oscar!

This is a relatively recent idea that I’ve been playing with for the past several months. At its core, this is a collection of one-shots and short stories: there isn’t really going to be any kind of schedule for this, it’s just whenever I feel like writing one, I’ll finish it and post it to this thread to keep them all in one place. While these are all standalone stories, there is some continuity between them: I would describe the format as like an episodic TV show. The episodes don’t have much to do with each other, but the later ones do expect you to have a basic understanding of these characters that’s built upon over time, and our main duo here do have a goal they are trying to work towards. For the near future, I’m going to be focusing on writing stories for this, at least until Gen 9 is released in November, at which point I’m going to be shifting my focus away from this to work on the main project that this is a part of.
I would rate this collection as PG. The general tone of these stories is pretty lighthearted, and if noticeably darker elements become present in one of them, I’ll give a warning for it in that story’s post. As a general warning, there might be some very minor swearing here and there, as well as references to alcohol in a couple stories, but that’s pretty much it.

Also, each story has it's own Table of Contents that outlines each scene and their length. Since these stories are long enough to be seperated into multiple posts, these ToCs will also contain links to the individual posts that make up that story. This is jut to make it easier to navigate and create stopping points for yourself, so feel free to take advantage of it!

All that said, I hope you enjoy! Feedback is very appreciated, as I’m trying to experiment a lot with these to see what works and what doesn’t.



Detective Oscar and the Mystery of the Thrice Stolen Pearl
It begins as a simple request to find a stolen pearl. But the situation soon multiplies into not one mystery, but three! Can Detective Oscar solve them all, and reach the truth at the heart of it?
Start - 2.3k words
2:22 in the afternoon - 5k
3:31 in the afternoon - 0.8k
4:10 in the afternoon - 4.7k

Type: Search
Client: Grumpig
Reward: 120 Poké
I woke up this morning to find our family’s most prized possession missing! It is my great-great-grandmother’s pearl, one that had been passed down for generations! Our house is near Tranquilo’s north exit. Please help me find it!

21st day, Month of Clygem, 1843.

“I see…”

The studious herdier examined the table in detail, looking at it from every angle and position. Its condition was pristine, and it smelled like old pine. Content, he took a step back to consider the room he was in once more. The table was situated against the wall at a perfect distance from the front door and nearest window both, which would place it right in the middle of the room.

A grumpig watched him anxiously. “Have you figured something out yet, Detective Oscar?”

The great Detective Oscar answered his question with a question. “May I ask, you said that the door was still locked when you woke up this morning?”

The grumpig, known as Ettore, fiddled nervously with his large ears. “Yeah, and I swear it was locked all night.”

“And there are no other entrances to the building?”

“No, just the windows.”

“A locked room mystery,” the detective thought, his mind whirling with possibilities. He got close to the table and sniffed the pillow Ettore claimed the pearl had been sitting on. But all he found was that same scent of old pine, with what he assumed to be Ettore’s scent faint and distant. “That’s odd.”

“What’s odd?” asked Ettore.

“I have seen a few spoink pearls in my time,” said Oscar. “And they would typically carry the scent of their owners. But there is not a single lingering trace of it to be found here.”

“Oh, that would be my fault,” Ettore explained, wringing his hands. “I should have mentioned it. I wash the pearl every now and then to keep it clean, that’s why you can’t smell it.”

“Does he wash it with pine or something?” The detective decided that it didn’t matter why it was missing a scent. “If I cannot smell anything, then I cannot track anything, so unfortunately we will have to proceed the old-fashioned way.” He shifted his gaze to the swoobat poking inquisitively at the wall underneath the stairway. “Benigno!”

Benigno was snapped out of his trance. “Huh?” He quickly hopped over and tilted his head. “What is it?”

“You seemed to be very invested in that wall there. Did you find anything?” Oscar asked.

Benigno shook his head. “Nope.”

The detective lifted a brow. Benigno was a ‘mon of odd habits, always being distracted by even the slightest of small sounds. While his acute hearing abilities were often helpful, they just as often led to dead ends, and the swoobat himself could never seem to tell the difference. In this case, however, he decided to trust his word. “Very well then.” He turned towards the grumpig. “Now, Ettore, was it? We will have to ask you a few questions. Is there anyone you know who would covet the pearl?”

“No one that I can think of,” he replied. “It must have been some kind of common thief.”

“A common thief that leaves no scent and can pass through a locked door.” Oscar shook his head, the small bag around his neck shifting as he did so. “It is far more likely we are dealing with someone more professional here. Though as to how they found out about the pearl, would you know?”

“Well you can see it from the window over there,” he said, pointing to it. “That’s probably how it caught their eye.”

Benigno tapped his partner on the shoulder with a wing claw. “Do you think it was a ghost?”

“I wouldn’t think so, but…” Oscar pondered the situation. “The way I see it there are two possibilities.”

“Two?” questioned Ettore.

The great detective nodded. “First, as Benigno suggested, it may have been a Ghost-type pokémon. I would think that a ghost does leave behind a scent, however I must admit that I am not the most educated on ghosts. So it is not out of the question that some are incorporeal enough to not leave behind a scent as they travel. The other possibility…” The herdier moved over to the window, whose curtains were drawn back. “Is revealed by these open curtains!”

The swoobat’s eyes widened. “Really?! What do they mean?!” asked Benigno, his excitement mounting.

“What they mean is the second possibility! Ettore, were these curtains closed last night?”

The grumpig rubbed his chin as he tried to remember. “Well, no. I don’t think so.”

“You would think a Psychic-type would understand the significance!” The detective shook his head in mock disappointment. “Haven’t you heard to always keep your curtains closed at night? Because if you don’t, you open yourself up as a victim of telekinetic crime!”

Benigno hopped slightly, wings spread in understanding. “Oh! That’s the thing where you make things move with your mind!”

“Exactly! The move in question: Telekinesis! It requires a line of sight between you and the object in question, and both the door and pearl can be seen from here. In theory, one could use it to unlock the door, take the pearl, and lock it once again, all without having to enter your home!”

Ettore’s hand stayed glued to his chin as he gave the detective a skeptical look. “But isn’t Telekinesis a rare move? There aren’t really a lot of pokémon who know how to use it.”

But Oscar was not deterred. “Which is perfect, as it narrows down our search considerably!”

“Maybe they left a smell at the window!” exclaimed Benigno.

“Good thinking, Beni!” Oscar put his front paws on the window sill. “Would you mind, Ettore? It would be much faster if you were to open it.”

Ettore, still skeptical but willing to humor him, did as he was instructed and undid the latch keeping the window closed. With a *click!* he pushed it open, allowing Oscar to jump out and investigate the small side path wedged between buildings. He licked his nose and immediately got to work combing through the area, trying his best to sort out the smells to find something that wouldn’t fit.

“Did you find anything?” asked Benigno from the window.

There was nothing. Everything in the alley seemed to be in order, not a single recent smell. “That can’t be right! Did I miss something?” But he couldn’t have missed something, he was thorough! “It seems…” He tried desperately to think of a response. “That there is nothing of note in this particular location…”

“So it wasn’t a Psychic-type then,” said Ettore. His tone was becoming less impressed by the second.

Benigno piped in. “Maybe it was a ghost using Telekinesis!”

“I was just about to say that!” The great detective jumped back into the building and placed a paw on Benigno’s shoulder. “This is why we are partners; we are of the same mind! Ghosts are known for using Telekinesis!”

Ettore placed a hand on his chin. “It’s a bit far-fetched, but it would make sense I guess.”

“Of course it does!” He motioned for Benigno to follow him to the door. “Unfortunately, however, there isn’t much else to be discovered here. We will have to take our search elsewhere.”

Ettore clasped his hands together. “But you’ll find it, won’t you, detective?”

The great Detective Oscar stood proudly and scoffed. “Of course we will! Who do you think I am?!”

“Yeah!” exclaimed his esteemed partner Benigno. “We’re the best detective duo in all of Capital! You’re in good paws!” He lifted his wings and spread them wide. “And wings!”

“Well said Beni!” And with that, Benigno opened the door and the two stepped out into the sunlight.

Oscar took a deep breath of the afternoon air. There was a slight chill that day, a rare winter breeze blowing through the streets of the ever quiet District Dragos, aptly known by its residents as Tranquilo. Out of every district in Capital, it was both the newest and most peaceful, the buildings and roads well-maintained and newly placed street lamps lending a modern flair. To most adventurers it was known as the least interesting locale one could possibly visit, and was generally considered inferior to other districts when it came to lucrative requests. To the great detective however, it was a treasure trove of mystery. While it was true that genuine mysteries such as his current one were rare in this corner of the city, when one did appear it was always certain that he would get to it first. And it was through this clever usage of opportunity that he had gained his reputation as a first-rate problem solver.

“So now what?” asked Benigno as they walked aimlessly down the street.

“That’s the hard part.” Oscar kept his head straight and proud as he glanced at his partner. “Sometimes, Benigno, it is important to understand the ever-changing nature of mysteries.”

Benigno nodded along, enraptured by his words. “Uh huh?”

“So! Consider that as of right now, it is impossible to track down the pearl with our current information,” Oscar explained. “In such a situation, the best thing one can do is wait. In time, as the stolen item moves through the city, new information is bound to reveal itself.”

“But what if nothing turns up?”

Oscar felt a prickle of nervousness eat away at his tail. Still, he was not one to be deterred by his curious partner’s questions. On the contrary, they kept him sharp. “The guild’s information network is vast and far reaching. If worst comes to worst, we can utilize it to its fullest extent, though I would hope we would not have to resort to such measures.” The worst-case scenario he had in mind was the possibility that it ended up on the black market, in which case the mystery would become substantially more complicated, but he had confidence (or at the very least hope) that whoever stole it would not immediately seek to sell it there. Spoink pearls were sought after for more than just their weight in silver, after all, and the most likely culprit, a Ghost or Psychic-type, would have the most to gain from its uses. “Regardless, let us regroup at the Traveler’s Office and inform the guide of our predicament.”

“Right, let’s go!” Benigno spread his wings and leapt into the air, riding the wind and soaring far ahead of his friend. Oscar sighed. “The least you could do is wait for me.”

Together, they rushed through the streets of Tranquilo until they reached a small plaza, a light brick building featuring the emblem of Capital’s Guild just on the corner. Benigno landed and ran in first, Oscar trailing behind him. District Dragos’ Traveler’s Office was as quaint as the district itself: fairly small and clean, with the reception desk to the right and the ever-important request board on the wall to the left. Oscar’s claws clacked on the wooden floor as he entered, alerting the riolu behind the desk.

“Back already? That was quick,” said the riolu, trying to ignore the swoobat jumping up and down in front of him. He regarded Oscar with the kind of ruthlessly complicated expression one would expect from an individual who loathed your presence.

“You should see it for yourself, it is quite the conundrum!” said Oscar, in jovial ignorance of the guide’s exasperation. “A locked room mystery, if you can believe it! Somehow, the thief made off with the item without even leaving a scent!”

“And what does that bring you back here for?” asked Lin, leaning his head into his paw. He looked sharply at Benigno. “And stop fidgeting! You’re giving me a headache.”

“Oh! Sorry.” Benigno calmed down and stood still. While Oscar had many advocates in Tranquilo, Lin, the guide of this Traveler’s Office, was not one of them. Since Oscar often operated here, the two were well acquainted, but the differences between the two were simply too stark to reconcile. Lin was too clever and too serious for his own good, seeing Oscar’s mystery solving efforts as a nuisance rather than a help. Though Oscar theorized that the real reason he did not like him was because of an incident where Benigno questioned how a child could be trusted as the guide for Tranquilo. The answer, of course, was nepotism. Lin did not appreciate this.

“As much as I would prefer to bring good news,” Oscar continued. “We as of yet have no leads on the pearl. So…”

Lin sighed. “I’ll send a message to the other district offices. If we find anything out we’ll let you know. Is that it?”

“Um.” Benigno put a claw to his snout in thought. “Do you know anyone who could’ve stole it?”


Oscar added to Benigno’s thought: “If it helps, the culprit is most likely either a ghost or psychic type pokémon. Can likely use Telekinesis.”

“No. But I’ll put it in the message.”

“Rather disappointing, but I guess I’m already asking a lot out of him.” Oscar nodded. “We appreciate it.”

With everything said and done, the duo left the tired riolu behind and found themselves back in the plaza. “Now what?” asked Benigno.

“As I said, Beni, we wait.” He watched as the whimsy faded from his friends eyes, and panicked slightly. “N-no worries, Benigno! Patience is a virtue! By tomorrow we can be certain that a new lead will have appeared!” Oscar did not want to admit that the mystery was a complete dead end. “Not a complete dead end! Just… mostly.”

“But I don’t want to wait. I tried to wake up early today,” Benigno complained.

“How about we visit your favorite restaurant? To make up for our lost afternoon?”

The swoobat nodded, smiling a little. “That sounds good I guess.”

And so, they went about their day, in the hopes that by the same time tomorrow a new lead would appear in the case. “If not for my or Benigno’s sake, then for Ettore’s!”

---District Dragos Traveler's Office, 2:22 in the afternoon---​

22nd day, Month of Clygem, 1843.

It was a miracle.

Type: Search
Client: Gothitelle
Reward: 300 Poké
As I opened up my shop for the day, I was assaulted by a mysterious assailant. And when I came to, the centerpiece of my fortune telling business, my prized crystal ball, was missing! Please find it and the thug who stole it from me! My store can be found just on the edge of Tranquilo on Nera Street.

Oscar felt waves of relief crash upon his back as he read the request out loud for his friend. “What did I say, Beni?! A lead has revealed itself!”

“How do you know if they even have anything to do with each other?” commented Lin from his desk on the other side of the room.

“Simple!” Oscar glanced at Benigno and saw that the attention of the only one who mattered was on him completely. His tail wagged in barely concealed excitement. “Consider what a crystal ball and a spoink pearl have in common. They are both objects of powerful psychic energy! And for two items that match that description to become missing in such a short period of time, they must be connected!”

Benigno waved his wings in excitement. “And gothitelle are supposed to be Psychic-type pokémon too, right?!”

“Astute observation, but let us not get ahead of ourselves!” The herdier stood up and hurried to the door, his partner carefully picking the request off the board with his wings and carrying it in his mouth to follow. “We’re off, Lin!” Oscar exclaimed by the door. “By the time we come back, we’ll have solved this case completely!”


There was no time to wait. Oscar already knew where he needed to go, as Nera Street wasn’t far from his home. He and Benigno rushed through well-traveled city streets, each turn made on instinct until they reached a wide open road paved with dark gray bricks. Oscar made an abrupt stop to look around, and found the fortune teller’s almost immediately. It was a striking building colored of pure black, with white stars of paint placed in careful patterns so as to replicate constellations. Most would have called it tacky, but Oscar thought it was memorable. A whimsicott was exiting the building, wearing a look of disappointment. “That’s our cue!”

Once the duo approached the door, Oscar lifted the door knocker with his mouth and let it go, the noise of its impact with the door resounding loudly in his ears. Benigno still had the request in his own mouth, battered by the wind but still readable. He trembled beside the herdier in anticipation; Oscar himself had to concentrate on his tail to keep it under control. Eventually, the gothitelle they were here to see at last opened the door. “I apologize, but we’re…” She trailed off as she saw the request paper.

“It seems you have already surmised why we are here.” Oscar nodded a greeting. “My name is Oscar, and this is my partner Benigno. We are here because you placed a request?”

“Ah, Oscar. I had a premonition that you would come here today.” She placed a mitten-hand on her chest. “My name is Cosima. Please, come in.”

The inside of the fortune teller’s shop was dark, the strong smell of an odd incense taking over the room. As his eyes adjusted, Oscar noticed that the constellation theming continued into the interior as well, the walls painted in dark blues and illuminated by pockets of light coming from a covered lamp in the center. The shop was stocked with various trinkets: twisted spoons, moon tarots, covered incense and star charts. As he looked around, he became steadily more aware of the incense’s stuffy aroma, the air weighing down on his lungs and slowly suffocating him. He took a measured breath. “For a closed shop you seem rather dedicated to your theme,” he commented with veiled sarcasm.

“The aesthetics are more for myself than my customers. They help with focus,” said Cosima. “Allow me to lead you to where I placed the orb.”

The gothitelle led the duo into a small room at the back, containing nothing but a small table with an empty cushion. “This is where I kept my crystal ball. And this…” She moved over to a door at the back, opening it to show that it led outside into a back alley. “This is the back entrance. I was entering the shop from here this morning when I was attacked.”

“Attacked…” Oscar mulled it over. “By any chance did you get a glimpse of your attacker?”

Cosima shook her head sadly. “Unfortunately no. I believe they used Hypnosis to put me to sleep, as I don’t quite recall what happened at that moment.”

“I see.”

Benigno tilted his head. “Hypnosis? Ghost-types can use that, right?”

“Most can, yes,” Oscar confirmed for him. “So can Psychic-types, for that matter.”

“Is that relevant?” asked Cosima.

“Possibly.” Oscar licked his nose and took a moment to investigate the cushion that the stolen orb must have once occupied, a detail confirmed by its depressed center. He sniffed at it, and regretted the action almost immediately as the bitter odor of the odd incense attacked his senses and forced him to sneeze. “Does she really need all this? It’s a bit much!” He couldn’t help but notice the cushion’s scent held the slight twinge of something else, but he wasn’t in the mood to sniff it again after that. He tried his best to shake off his shock. “By any chance do you recall what the orb smelled of?” he asked, fighting back the urge to sneeze again.

Cosima placed a hand on her cheek. “I don’t think I recall it smelling like much of anything. Though I was never one to pay attention to such things.”

Oscar sneezed again, this time in slight embarrassment. “Of course. I should’ve known better than to ask.” He looked to Benigno, who was poking around at the various corners of the room, occasionally putting his large ears up against the walls. “Have you found anything?” Oscar asked.

With a slight jolt, Benigno slipped out of his trance and with dejection looked back towards the detective. “No…” he said, shaking his head sadly as he twiddled his thumb claws.

“Then there isn’t much for it.” The herdier turned back to Cosima and nodded politely. “Could you show me the alley? Hypnosis doesn’t last for very long, so our perpetrator may have left behind a clue in their haste.”

“Yes of course.”

She opened the door for Oscar, allowing him and his partner through. He gave the alley a once-over; small and thin, it was a space sandwiched between two rows of buildings. It had little in it, though a few crates were rather conveniently placed near the door. Oscar sniffed at one carefully: it reeked of odd incense, though not quite as strongly as inside the shop. He could still make out the distinct salty scent of the ocean that reminded him of District Attilio. “A recent delivery, maybe? It would provide good cover.” “Do you order odd incense in bulk?”

Cosima nodded. “I do. They only make them in Hivech, so it can be quite a hassle to get ahold of.”

“Perhaps the culprit hid in here.” Oscar reared up to peer over the edge of the box. It was empty, and Oscar had half a mind to search it. But the smell was simply too much for him. “Whoever did this was very concerned with hiding their scent.” It was a long shot, but he decided to try sniffing the ground around the box to see if he could pick up something recent. It was when he circled to the other side that he whiffed something vaguely familiar…

“So what did the crystal ball look like?” asked Benigno.

“Oh, it was a spoink pearl, of course.” Oscar’s head shot up as he heard it. “Anyone who is serious about fortune telling and psychic augmentation knows to get their hands on one.”

Benigno did not react as Oscar did, only seeming curious. “Really? How’d you get it?”

The gothitelle adjusted one of the disks of hair jutting from her head. “Obviously, I bought it.”

He innocently placed a thumb claw up to his mouth. “Where’d you buy it from?” His questions seemed innocuous, but Oscar knew from experience that it was when he was at his most innocent that he was the most dangerous. “You’re brilliant, Benigno!”

“Oh it was some store a bit far from here. I don’t quite remember the name, but I had predicted I would find it there.”

“Do you remember what district?”

Cosima’s gaze hardened, her patience quickly worn thin. “I don’t see how this is relevant. Aren’t you supposed to be finding where the pearl is?”

“Oh.” Benigno looked down and sheepishly tapped his claws together. “I guess I don’t really know where it is, so…”

“No worries, Beni!” Oscar trotted over and placed a paw on his shoulder in reassurance. “Asking questions is the basis of investigation! Allow me to take over from here.”

“Did you find anything of note?” Cosima asked, her mood having softened.

“I wasn’t sure if I was willing to consider it at first, but Cosima is definitely suspicious. She may not have answered his question, but I do have an idea of where she may have gotten this pearl.” Oscar nodded. “As a matter of fact, I believe I have an idea of where to search next.”

She sighed. “That’s a relief to hear. Is that all you need from me?”

“We may return here later if the case calls for it. There are still a few unresolved peculiarities regarding this scene, after all.” What Oscar had in mind was the scent. He had not forgotten about it. “Where have I smelled that before?”

Oscar held his breath as Cosima led the duo back through the shop. “I wish you the best of luck in returning my pearl to me,” she said as a farewell. And so the duo were left at her front door, and Oscar gasped for breath.

“Are you okay?!” shouted a worried Benigno.

“I’m fine! It was just a little stuffy in there, is all!” Oscar coughed. “Anyway, it is time we pay a visit to District Attilio!”

Benigno tilted his head. “Huh? Where are we going?”

“To where Cosima bought the pearl, of course!” the detective explained. “If she truly bought it from a store, then there is only one place to look in all of Capital, barring the fancy, high-end stores in District Grande. We shall take the tram, and make for there at once!”

The two traversed the city until they reached the nearest tram station. District Dragos’ trams were not very busy, which was perfect for Benigno’s sake. The station itself was a simple platform in the street near a railway, with a schedule attached to a board and a map of the city. They waited here alone, until a tram car appeared rumbling slowly along its track. Oscar stuffed his head into his bag for a gold coin, clenching it in his jaws just in time for the tram to come to a stop at the platform and the machoke driver to open the door. Oscar exchanged his coin for a day pass, and the two found a place to sit, Benigno taking to the window to marvel at the city. “It’s hard to imagine this beats flying, but I guess he just thinks it’s interesting.”

The tram stopped at a station just on the edge of District Attilio. Even this far out from the harbor, Porto Eone was bustling and lively in a way that District Dragos simply wasn’t, pokémon of all shapes and sizes moving from place to place, making conversation, and stopping by the many shops this part of the city was known for. The detective duo departed here, Oscar taking the lead towards their destination. “There is a jeweler not far from here. If anyone were to know about where Cosima got that spoink pearl, it would be Otto.”

The two hurried through the busy streets. Benigno seemed uncomfortable as he flew ahead: Oscar knew it was because of all the noise. “It won’t be long! Just a little farther.” Soon they came upon the store, a brick building among many others differentiated by the large sign featuring a gleaming jewel labeled ‘OTTO’S GEMS AND CRAFTS.’ The swoobat almost flew past it. Oscar barked to get his attention, and when he came back they stood together in front of the door. “This is it?” asked Benigno.

“It is. I’ve done a request for Otto before, so we are already acquainted.”

Benigno tilted his head. “I don’t remember that.”

“It was before we met.” Oscar gestured to the door. “Would you mind?”

Benigno pushed open the door and was surprised as it caused a chime attached to the door to ring. Oscar nudged him from behind, and together they entered the shop. It was somewhat small, the browsing area centered around a glass display case that ran the length up to just before the counter on the other side. More display cases were along the walls and behind the counter, each filled with various gemstones and jewelry. Just behind the counter was the sableye owner, Otto. He put a ringed claw around one of his gemstone eyes and appeared to adjust it. “Customers? Who’s there?”

Oscar expected that he wouldn’t be recognized. “It is Detective Oscar! Do you remember?”

“Oscar…” He tapped his head as he tried to remember. “Oh! The one who helped me a few months ago? With that lost bag?”

“The one and the same!” he announced proudly.

“And who’s the other one, the uh…” Otto adjusted his eyes again. “The one with the wings.”

As if prompted to do so, the swoobat spread his wings to show them off. “I’m Benigno! I’m his partner!”

“So you got a partner, that’s nice,” said Otto, nodding thoughtfully. “You’re probably here for that request I put up, aren’t you?”

“Request? What request?” What could the jeweler need at such an inopportune time?

“You aren’t? That’s unfortunate. Before we talk about whatever you need, would you be willing to hear me out?”

“Of course we are!” replied Benigno. Oscar looked toward him with some annoyance. “Do we really have time for this? Not that I don’t want to help him, but we have a mission!”

“You see, it’s about a pearl I had in my possession. It was stolen.”


Otto recoiled and leaned back from Oscar’s outburst. “Y-yes, just last night, I believe.”

“Was it a spoink pearl?!” Oscar asked, front paws now on the counter and tail wagging in anticipation.

“Yes it was, how did you know?”

This changed everything. “If these are all the same pearl, then…” It certainly raised multiple questions. But for now he needed to remain focused on what was in front of him. Oscar calmed down and got off the counter back into a sitting position. “How long have you had this pearl for?”

Otto was still taken aback. Carefully, he adjusted an eye again and returned to his natural stance. “It was sold to me just yesterday, a most precious gem. The pearl had a youthful energy, I found myself quite taken with it. In all I appraised it to be worth about 500 silver.”

Benigno quickly caught on to the significance of that. “Who did you buy it from?!” he asked excitedly.

“It was…” Otto tapped his head, his taps getting faster and more forceful with each one. “F-Forgive me, I don’t quite recall.”

“Huh? But how?! It was yesterday!”

“It’s a peculiar weakness of his species,” Oscar explained. “Sableye are more concerned with gems than pokémon.”

“Oh he’s bad with faces…” Benigno whispered to himself.

“Not just faces, I’m afraid,” said Otto. “You all are… difficult to put together. Much more difficult than my gemstones. But I do keep a ledger. Just a moment.” The sableye disappeared behind the counter and reappeared with a notebook. “Let’s see… Noehnameh, Missingno.”

“That’s a weird name,” Benigno commented. “And what’s a missingno?”

“It sounds to me like an alias. And I don’t believe there is such a thing as a missingno.” Oscar shook his head in disappointment. “I hate to tell you like this, but I believe you have been taken for a fool, Otto.”

“R-really?” The sableye clutched his head and dug in his claws. He gave a frustrated sigh. “I’m… so sorry, this is my fault. Is there some reason you need to know? There wasn’t anything bad about that pearl, was there?”

Oscar considered how much he should tell him. “Technically it is still only a theory.” “No particular reason,” he lied. “If it helps, did this pokémon stand on two legs or four?”

Otto tapped his head once. “...Two.”

Oscar nodded. “That would be all. Could you show me where the pearl was kept?”

“Right. I liked it so much I decided it would work best as a decoration. I had it on display just over there.” He pointed towards a round metal stand located on a shelf just behind him. “Here, you’re good with smells, let me just-” The sableye’s crystal eyes gleamed a bright magenta, and suddenly the stand lifted itself up into the air and towards the counter.

Benigno tapped Oscar’s shoulder. “Telekinesis!” he whispered into his ear.

“I see that,” he whispered back.

The stand completed its journey towards the counter, settling carefully on its polished granite surface. Alarm bells were ringing in Oscar’s head, but in counter to them was his own consciousness, not willing to believe that a previous client could have committed a crime and pointing out the flaws within that line of thought. Forcing himself to push it aside for now, he licked his nose, took a whiff of the metal stand, and found that it had no scent. Nothing out of the ordinary that would hint at a culprit, at least. “Once again, no leads.”

“Well?” Otto had a hopeful gleam in his eyes.

Oscar shook his head. “Unfortunately I cannot determine anything from this. I can try investigating the shop, but it would be faster if you could explain how someone could have gotten into the shop to steal the pearl in the first place.”

“Hm. I can’t think of any. I close up shop late in the night, so it would have had to have happened sometime then. And I’m certain I locked the doors.”

“Unfortunate.” Oscar turned to Benigno. “I believe it is time we investigate. Perhaps we can find some sign of who was in here.”

The two got to work. Benigno started poking at the various corners of the shop, while Oscar sniffed the ground in hopes that by some miracle he would recognize a scent. He was not exactly confident in his theories yet, but if he could find something he recognized it would confirm them. “I just need some definitive sign these mysteries are connected.” And as luck would have it, near the counter he once again recognized a vaguely familiar scent. “It is the same one from the alley behind the fortune teller’s shop. It couldn’t be older than yesterday.”

“There’s something wrong with the door!” Benigno shouted.

“What?!” Otto left the counter and ran over to pull the door open. “It seems fine to me.”

“Well, uh…” The swoobat seemed to be having trouble putting thoughts into words. At that moment, something occurred to Oscar, and he believed he knew what his partner noticed.

“Can you check to see if the lock works?” he asked.

“If it works?” said a skeptical Otto. “Of course it does.”

Oscar joined Benigno and put a paw on his shoulder in reassurance. “If my partner says something is wrong, then something must be wrong. Just humor us for a moment.”

After Otto grabbed his key, they all left the shop, allowing Otto to close the door behind them, and insert the key. Benigno seemed to perk up as the lock turned. “It didn’t lock.”

Otto looked at him skeptically. “What do you mean?” He began to push the door as if to demonstrate -- “Of course it’s-” -- and it opened. “Whuh?”

As the confused sableye held it open, Oscar walked inside to investigate the lock on the side of the door and noticed that the bolt responsible for keeping it closed was missing. “It seems someone broke your lock.”

Otto rushed to see what he was talking about and put his free claw on his head in despair. “But, when?! How?!”

The great detective lifted his head high in a knowing gesture. “Simple! To remove the bolt from the door, one would first have to open it.”

“But I watch this door all day! I would have noticed if they were tampering with it!”

“Would you?” asked Oscar. Otto shook his head as if in disbelief he would ask that, but Oscar was not deterred. “Consider this: in order to steal the pearl, you would have to know it is here in the first place. But the pearl has only been here for a day, sold to you yesterday by a mystery seller. So how could they have known?”

Benigno excitedly waved his wings. “If they saw it!”

“Exactly! And how could they have seen it?”

“By coming into the shop!”

The sableye let go of the door and started tapping his head again. “So you’re saying it was one of my customers?”

“Not just any customer. After all, whoever this customer was had the ability to steal the pearl without actually touching the stand upon which it was displayed. And the only way they could do that would be with Telekinesis. And when you consider that, the means through which they could have covertly removed the bolt from the door becomes obvious!” Oscar nodded with certainty. “They destroyed it on the way out, with the intention of coming back to steal the pearl at night!”

“Is that even possible…?” Otto carefully considered the validity of Oscar’s claims. “It's not impossible…”

“With that established,” Oscar interrupted. “I would like to ask, is there anyone you would suspect may have stolen the pearl? Any dodgy customers?”

Otto stopped tapping his head and started fiddling with his ring instead. “Well… there was one pokémon.”

Benigno leaned in. “Yeah?!”

“I-I don’t remember what they look like, but yesterday someone asked to buy the pearl from its display. But I told them it wasn’t for sale. We argued for a bit, they left, and I didn’t put much thought to it afterwards.”

Oscar’s tail started to wag, the pieces falling together in his head. “And how many legs did this pokémon stand on?!”

Otto turned his ring once and looked up at Oscar. “Two.”

Benigno put a claw to his mouth. “Does that mean anything?”

“Of course it does!” the detective said proudly. “Consider: the thief knew about the difficulty sableye have with recognizing other pokémon. Taking advantage of this, they devised a simple scheme: first, they sell the pearl to Otto, and use their Telekinesis to weaken the lock on the way out. Then, under the guise of someone trying to purchase the pearl, they came back to finish the deed! That way they could steal it back undeterred!”

“No, that’s not possible.”


Otto stood up straight and adjusted his left eye. “I may not be good with faces, but I would recognize their voice. The pokémon who sold it to me and the pokémon who tried to buy it were definitely different pokémon,” he explained. “And while I’m at it, I’m pretty sure the buyer was taller than the seller.”

“W-Well it was just a theory,” said Oscar, brushing his nose with a paw as he hastily tried to save face. “It could have been done in one trip as well, assuming they are a sufficiently powerful psychic. What matters now is that we have a lead!”

“You do?”

Oscar nodded. “Of course! I already have multiple theories, I just need the time to discuss them with my partner. But do not fret! I guarantee you we will have this mystery solved by the end of today!”

“Yeah, today!” Benigno repeated.

Otto adjusted his eye one last time as he looked them over. “After the last time you helped me, I don’t have much reason to doubt you. I wish you both luck.”

“Thank you for your trust!” Oscar gestured for Benigno to open the door. “Come, Beni! We still need to formally accept Otto’s request!”

“Right!” He pulled the locked door open, and the two left the shop. “Bye Otto!” The door chimes rang as it closed behind them.

Oscar led his partner through the streets of District Attilio, heading deeper into the district until they reached a wide plaza. The smell of the sea was stronger here, the harbor being not that far. “Can we see the ocean today?” Benigno asked.

“If we finish this request in a timely manner, then perhaps,” the detective answered. “For now, we must go over what we’ve learned from our investigation.”

They decided to settle near a bench located in the middle of the plaza. There were many pokémon about, but it was still noticeably quieter here than on the busy shopping streets, allowing Benigno a chance to relax at least somewhat. He spoke before Oscar could. “I think the pearls are connected.”

“It is likely,” agreed Oscar. “It is simply too much of a coincidence that three spoink pearls were all stolen in succession with one another. And when you consider what we know, a timeline of events starts to reveal itself.”

“What kind of timeline?” asked Benigno.

“For starters, who stole the pearl from who?”

The swoobat’s eyes lit up. “Oh yeah! If they’re all the same pearl, then someone must’ve stolen it from someone!”

“Exactly. The question of who stole from Ettore is still a mystery. However, I believe there is good reason to believe that the one who stole from Otto is Cosima.”

Benigno tilted his head. “Really? I thought she stole from Ettore at first.”

“If we take her at her word, then she bought her pearl. But that must be a lie, because the one shop that would have sold it did not have it for sale,” Oscar explained. “Considering that, it makes sense to assume that she was the thief.”

“But can she use Telekinesis?”

“That…” They never saw her use the move, and Oscar wasn’t certain if her species was one that would learn it naturally. “Of course she can! It only makes sense!”

“Then did Otto steal it from Ettore?”

That was the first pressing question. Otto was a Ghost-type who knew Telekinesis, a profile the two had established yesterday as a possibility. “I wouldn’t think so. Sableye are Ghost-type pokémon, but they are not actual ghosts, if you understand what I mean. If he really did steal the pearl from Ettore, then I should have smelled him.”

“But…” Benigno tapped his claws together. “If we can’t say who stole it from Ettore, then how can we say they’re the same pearl?”

“And therein lies the second pressing question.” Everything they knew about the three cases so far was only enough to tie two of them together. Even the one detail Oscar had not yet mentioned, the familiar scent he found in the shop, was something only shared in common with Cosima’s case. “There is still the possibility that whoever stole it in the first place sold it to Otto,” Oscar mentioned. “Though it is only a theory.”

A troubled look crossed Benigno’s face. “Well, whoever stole it from Cosima is the one who has it. So where is the pearl now?”

“I have no idea.” “Simple!” Oscar declared. “Consider this: what if the one who sold the pearl to Otto and the one who stole it from Cosima were one and the same pokémon?!”

Benigno looked at Oscar as if that were the most incomprehensibly brilliant sentence he had ever heard. “How do you know that?!” he asked.

“In the back alley of the fortune teller’s I happened upon a peculiar scent. And as it happens, I found an older version of that same scent in Otto’s shop! Obviously, this means the same pokémon was in those two places at the exact right times to perform those actions!”

The swoobat’s eyes were sparkling. “Wow, you’re so amazing Oscar!”

Oscar basked in the praise. “It didn’t answer his question at all, but at least he was distracted by it. If only I could remember where I smelled that scent before…”

District Attilio’s Traveler’s Office was just nearby at the edge of the plaza. It was only to be a quick stop to pick up Otto’s request, then they would proceed with their mission. All of the Offices in Capital looked rather similar to each other, though this one stood out with a few upscale furnishings. A simple but refined metal chandelier hung from the ceiling just above the area in front of the counter, which lay in the center of the back wall opposite the entrance. The floor was carpeted in red, enough so that Oscar could walk up to the board, grab Otto’s request, and bring it back to the granbull guide without having to touch the wooden floor underneath. And of course, the guide himself was wearing a black tuxedo. Oscar always thought he looked uncomfortable in it. “No words today?” the guide remarked. “Just a request?”

Oscar placed it on the counter. “As it happens, we have already spoken to Otto and promised to assist him in his request. I am simply here to make it official.”

“Still searching for pearls, huh? I heard from Lin,” he remarked. “You might be interested to hear we found something.”

Oscar’s ears perked up. “You did?!”

The granbull leaned on the counter and nodded. “Yup. Got a call from Lin not that long ago. He said he found something out about the case and to tell you if you showed up.”

Oscar looked to Benigno. “Why didn’t he tell me this?!”

“Well he did say wait.”

“That’s his fault, then! He should have led with it!” Oscar took the request and stuffed it in his bag. “Thank you for the tip, Ciro,” he said hastily before running to the door. “Now come, Benigno! We have no time to waste!”

And so they hurried to catch the next tram.


(continued in next post)
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Sloooowly writing...
(continued from last post)

~~~District Dragos Traveler's Office, 3:31 in the afternoon~~~​

Benigno flew up to the door and pushed it open, the loud *creak!* rattling against his ears. Lin was there, but a grumpig and spoink were too. The grumpig was carrying a bag around her shoulder. “Who’re they?” he wondered.

Oscar caught up fast. “You need to learn to stop flying ahead of me!” he complained. And then he noticed too. “Hm?”

“About time you got back,” said Lin.

The grumpig said something first. “Is this the detective you were talking about?” She sounded a little wary. The spoink was huddling close to his mother, his tail bouncing him up and down, slowly in place in rhythm with his heartbeat. Benigno noticed that he didn’t have a pearl on his head.

Oscar looked a little embarrassed. He sat down and nodded his head. “How rude of me, I should have acknowledged you! Yes, I am Detective Oscar. And this is my partner, Benigno.”

“Hi!” Benigno waved hello.

The grumpig’s ears perked up, like she heard the name before. “Oh? I didn’t realize you were a herdier.” She sounded as if she were about to say something else, but she shook off the thought. “My name is Perla, and this is my son, Gino. We’re here because we heard you were searching for pearls?”

Oscar stared at Lin as if he couldn’t believe it. “Another stolen pearl?!”

Lin gave him a bored look. “Just listen to her story, okay? You’ll get it.”

“Of course. I apologize for my outburst.” Oscar shifted his paws, his claws making a *click* sound against the wood floor. “I have been dealing with three different stolen pearl cases today, I hope you understand.”

“Oh I understand completely, you must be very busy,” Perla said to him. She adjusted her bag to prevent it from slipping. “You already figured it out, but we have a bit of a missing pearl problem too. It has to deal with my son.” She patted him on the head and let him hop in front of her. “It was a couple days ago. He’s always been a bit clumsy-”

“M-Mom…” whined Gino.

“Let me speak, dear,” she said to him softly. “He was out playing, when he tripped and fell, and the pearl on his head fell off. And when he looked up, it was gone.”

“Gone?” asked Oscar.

“Yes, gone. He came to me crying about how he couldn’t find it. I thought it just rolled off somewhere at first, but no matter how far we searched, it was completely missing. Like it just rolled off the face of the earth.”

“And you put up a request, surely?”

“We did, at the Libertá office. See, we’re from District Drygon, not around here.”

Oscar closed his eyes as if he were imagining it. “I see. And you said it was two days ago?” Benigno put a thumb claw up to his mouth in thought. “That’s… before the other three, right?”

“Yes. We had an adventurer take it, but she didn’t have any luck either. Eventually we heard back from the guild that there was a detective on the case of another missing pearl, and they called us over here to talk to you.”

Oscar looked like he was deep in thought. Benigno could almost hear the gears turning in his head, things surely clicking into place in ways he himself wouldn’t understand. Suddenly, the detective broke out of his trance and glared right at Lin. “And when did the guild find this out?”

“This morning,” said the riolu matter-of-factly. “I got the call from Libertá first, and right after you left I got another call from Porto Eone.” He shrugged and shook his head. “I was gonna tell you.”

“You should have led with it,” Oscar seethed quietly under his breath. He raised his voice and acted like he didn’t say anything. “Regardless! It was a useful venture, for you are in luck!”

“Luck?” said Perla with a questioning tone.

“Really?” said Gino with a hopeful tone.

“Really,” said Lin with a bored tone.

“Really!” Benigno raised his wings and smiled to support his friend.

“Truly, for I know exactly where the pearl is!” announced the greatest detective in the world.

“Wait, really?!” Lin’s high-pitched bark caused Benigno to wince a little.

Oscar raised his head proudly. “Well, perhaps exactly is an overstatement, but I know that this pearl must have been stolen, and I know who stole it! My investigations have revealed that there is only one possibility for the culprit, if you will only allow me some time to prepare.”

“Prepare? What do you need to prepare for?” Lin asked.

“I need to gather Cosima and Otto, the latter preferably through the guild’s phone line. And as for where we will meet…”

---North Capital Street, 4:10 in the afternoon---​

Cosima needed a little coaxing to agree to this. Oscar had promised her that they found who had attacked her, and that ‘all would be revealed,’ which apparently was enough for her. Otto agreed immediately, and soon everyone was gathered.

Lin knocked on the door to the home, a small but firm noise that the owner would definitely have heard. Benigno stayed close to Oscar as all the gathered pokémon waited. Eventually, it was Ettore who answered the door. He was shocked at what he saw. “H-Huh?” He looked between Cosima and Otto, Perla and Gino, Lin and Benigno, and finally his eyes landed on Oscar. “W-Why are you all here? What’s going on?”

“I am here to report my findings, of course!” announced Oscar.

Ettore looked confused. “Findings? You mean, my request?” Benigno could hear his heart start beating faster.

Otto spoke up. “His request? I thought this was about my request?” Cosima didn’t say anything, but Benigno could tell she was getting nervous too.

“All in due time!” Oscar assured. “If you will allow us Ettore, it would be better to explain inside.”

“Ettore’s heart sounds like it’s about to explode!” The grumpig just stared for a moment. “Yeah. Sure.” His voice did not sound confident.

As everyone entered the home, Benigno found himself wandering to that weird spot on the wall under the stairs again. He poked it again, the *tik!* of his claw against the wall sounding hollow.

“So now that we’re all here,” said Lin, interrupting Benigno’s thoughts. “Can you finally tell us why you dragged everyone in here, Oscar?”

Everyone had gathered in a circle around the detective. He sat down and held his head high with pride. “Of course. As I said, I have solved the mystery of what happened to Ettore’s pearl.”

“Y-You did?” Ettore stammered.

“Yes. Or perhaps it would be more accurate to call it Gino’s pearl.”

Benigno and Gino gasped. Everyone else gave Ettore hard stares. He tried to play it off. “What? What are you talking about?”

Oscar stood up, head held high and tail wagging. “Exactly what I’m implying. The culprit in this mystery is you! You are the thief who stole the pearl!”

Perla was in disbelief. “A grumpig?! Another grumpig stole my son’s pearl?!”

Everyone in the room reacted in their own ways. Gino hugged his mom. Otto was tapping his head. Cosima put a hand up to cover her mouth. “Interesting…” she muttered under her breath. Lin was looking at Oscar like he was crazy.

Ettore held his hands in front of him. “W-Wait, no! Wait! Where are you getting this from?! I’m the one who put up the request in the first place! Why would I steal my own pearl?!”

“For starters, as I said, it is not your pearl,” Oscar corrected. “In order to understand this mystery in full, we must first establish the timeline of events.” He nodded to Gino. “First, two days ago a spoink was playing out in the city when suddenly he tripped and dropped the pearl atop his head. He recovered from his minor accident, only to find that his precious belonging was gone. This is the origin of the true first missing pearl.”

“First missing pearl…” Ettore gulped.

“The next day, another pearl goes missing. Yours, Ettore, the second missing pearl. The thief in question managed to steal the pearl while the door was locked and without leaving even the ghost of a scent behind. A seemingly impossible case, by any measure, yet there was still the possibility it was stolen through Telekinesis thanks to an erroneously open window. This was the situation that led to me contacting the guild to search the city for leads on this pearl’s whereabouts. Which leads us to the next day.” Oscar nodded to Otto, who was still tapping his head. “The third missing pearl. On the same day the second pearl went missing, a pearl was sold to this here jeweler. Enraptured by it, he had decided it was too valuable to sell, and kept it on display at his shop. But that very same night, it was stolen by yet another mystery thief. And finally, not long after this…” Oscar nodded to Cosima, who kept her growing anxiety hidden underneath the hand on her mouth. “A fourth pearl was stolen. She had bought this pearl the same day the third pearl was sold to the jeweler. But the next morning, she was ambushed outside of her home and found that the pearl had been stolen from her while she was unconscious. And so, in the end, four requests are put up, each seemingly for different pearls. But what if I told you that these were actually all the same pearl?”

“Really?” said Perla.

“When he lays it out like that, it does sound like they were all the same, doesn’t it?” Otto commented. Lin stayed quiet. Benigno shook in anticipation: they were getting to the good part, he could feel it.

Ettore spoke up, gaining a little bit of his confidence back. “So you’re saying, that I stole the pearl from that spoink there?” He grinned nervously. “You can’t say that for sure, you have no evidence!”

“And even if he did,” added Lin. “It doesn’t really tell us where the pearl is. Like okay, he stole it first, but someone stole it from him, and then who stole it last?”

But Oscar was not deterred. “I am glad you asked this, Lin, for that claim you made is the first we must debunk. Otto!”

The sableye was shocked out of tapping his head. “Huh?”

“If I remember correctly, when we first asked you about the mystery ‘mon who sold you the pearl, you had difficulty describing their identity.”

“Because sableye can’t recognize pokémon!” Benigno chirped in.

“Right my friend. Our mystery seller referred to themselves as ‘Noehnameh, Missingo,’ which was clearly an alias to further obfuscate their identity. They could only get away with this because of the common weakness that sableye hold, making them the perfect ‘mon to sell to if you don’t wish to be identified. But from the way you have been tapping your head, Otto, I believe you may have finally found the words to describe them.”

“Words? Oh! Yes, you’re right, I thought I had heard that voice before.” Otto nodded twice. “There’s no mistaking it, the one who sold me the pearl was this grumpig.”

Ettore blanched. “Wh-”

“And so it is! The reason why there was nothing left at the scene of the crime, is because it was not a crime scene to begin with! He sold the pearl to Otto by his volition!”

“H-how can you say that for sure?!” Ettore objected. “I’m not the only grumpig in this city, maybe it was someone else who sounded like me!”

Otto leaned forward and pointed at him. “No, I’m sure you were the one! You sound exactly the same!”

Lin crossed his arms and tilted his head. “Wait, if he sold it then why did he put up a request?” He wasn’t buying any of it. “Just let Oscar talk!”

Oscar held up a paw. “All will be revealed in due time! Before we get to that, we must discern what happened to the pearl afterwards. I believe you might have some idea about this, Cosima?” The gothitelle didn’t say anything, she just kept her hand over her mouth and glared. Oscar shook his head. “It seems she has forgotten how to speak! But no matter! It is through deduction alone that we can solve this part of the mystery!”

“Are you saying that she’s the one who stole the pearl from Otto?” asked Lin.

“Exactly! The scene left at that store was one similar to what me and my partner witnessed here in this room. There was no sign of anyone having handled the pearl, so the only explanation must have been Telekinesis. And to corroborate this, we discovered that someone must have used that same ability to break the lock on the shop door. But the specific way the lock was broken -- removing the bolt from the interior of the door -- could only have been accomplished if the thief had entered the shop beforehand. This was Cosima’s first mistake, for she has already admitted to having gotten the pearl from a shop!”

Cosima still refused to say anything. Lin filled in for her. “But that’s a weak connection! Sure, she probably knows Telekinesis, but that doesn’t mean she stole it! It doesn’t even mean she visited that specific shop!”

“There is a way to say for certain if she had visited that shop before, and it connects to the reason she hasn’t spoken yet!” Oscar glanced at Otto again.

“I did have an argument with a customer over the pearl.” He adjusted an eye. “They wanted me to sell it to them, but I refused.”

Oscar whirled around to face Lin. “I posit that this mystery customer was Cosima! If our jeweler friend can recognize her, we can say for certain that she had visited the shop that day. As you can plainly tell, she is not willing to confirm this for us, but it may be in her best interest to do so.” Cosima raised a brow at that.

Lin crossed his arms. “What do you mean?”

“For now, let us assume that she stole it, and move on to her case.” Oscar walked beside Cosima and began to explain. “Our gothitelle friend here was ambushed in the back alley of her store. The perpetrator used Hypnosis to put her to sleep, and then took that brief opportunity to break into the shop and steal the pearl directly. However, I could not tie this back to a scent, as the entire store is engulfed in the fumes of an odd incense.”

“It was very smelly,” Benigno confirmed for him.

“Additionally, the culprit had also been hiding in a box used to transport odd incense, further obfuscating the scene. However, while they were clearly thinking to hide their scent, there was a limit to their carefulness, and I happened to pick up a familiar scent in that alley. One that I later would also recognize at Otto’s shop. And now that I am back here, I can say without a doubt that that scent was Ettore’s!”


Wait!” Lin shouted over Ettore. “So you’re saying, that Ettore sold it to Otto, Cosima stole it from him, and then Ettore stole it back?!”

“That is exactly what I am saying!”

“That makes no sense!” The riolu held out his arms in emphasis. “How would have Ettore even known Cosima had it?!”

Oscar moved back towards the center of the circle. “It is remarkably coincidental, but it would not be the only remarkable coincidence,” said the detective. “Isn’t it odd? That on the same day the pearl was sold, did someone come in to buy it? And that it would then be stolen?”

Otto spoke up. “I thought it was a bit odd myself. I barely had any time to truly appreciate its beauty before I got into that argument. It was a several hour difference, but certainly not enough.”

Oscar nodded. “Of course, if we accept Lin’s word that she bought it from somewhere else, this detail is irrelevant. But if we don’t, then how could Cosima have known where to find it? The only one who could tell us the truth of the matter, and in turn implicate the culprit who ambushed her…” The great detective stood up and dramatically pointed at her with his nose. “Would be Cosima herself!”

All eyes were on her now. She was frozen in her position, a surprised look in her eyes. Finally, she chuckled. “Clever.”

Otto gasped. “You are the one who tried to buy the pearl from me!”

“Yes, I admit it.” She let her hand fall back to her side. “The location of the pearl came to me in a premonition. But the specific time I had that premonition was when I was visited by Ettore here. He had come in a few days ago for a fortune, and just yesterday he decided to come back for another. That’s when he fed me the tip on where to find a spoink pearl for my fortune telling business.”

Ettore gave her a confounded look. “But, why would you admit that?!”

“Because if what the detective is saying is true, then you are the one who attacked me this morning.” Cosima glared at him threateningly. “I want to see you pay for that.”

Oscar sat down, proud and content. “And so it is that the pearl was stolen three times! Everything lines up!”

“N-No it doesn’t!” shouted Ettore. “Sure, I was in those two places like you said, I sold a pearl to Otto and at some point I was in that alley. But that doesn’t prove anything! It doesn’t mean I stole the pearl from that kid there!” Gino cowered behind his mother as he was mentioned. She glared at him accusingly.

“Also,” Lin added. “You still haven’t explained why he’d put up a request. I get why Cosima did, she got attacked, but if no one actually stole anything from Ettore, then he’d be setting himself up, especially if he did steal the pearl from Gino.”

Oscar’s tail stopped wagging. “Come on Oscar, you got this!” All Benigno could do was silently encourage him as he thought.

“Quiet huh? That’s because you have nothing!” jeered Ettore.

Then he spoke. “I’ve been thinking as to why you set up that request myself. You created your own crime scene, and told me the pearl was located on that table near the wall over there.” Oscar gestured to the table in question. “It could not have truly been there, there wasn’t even a trace. But if it was kept two days ago, and sold yesterday, then it must have been kept hidden somewhere.”

“Maybe it was upstairs?” Benigno offered. “Wait a second…”

Oscar shook his head. “No, I don’t think he would have risked something like that. Ettore is as aware of scent as I am; he was careful enough to wash the pearl of its scent in the first place. It would make more sense to hide it somewhere safe, where no one could find even a trace of it.” Benigno felt his own heart quicken as Oscar looked at him. He knew exactly where this was going. “When we first investigated this room, I seem to remember my partner finding something that to him seemed suspicious. We ignored it at the time, but would you now reveal to us what we have all looked over?”

“This is my moment!” Benigno pointed dramatically with his wing towards the suspicious wall under the stairs. “This wall is hollow!”

“Loads of walls are hollow,” said Lin, not impressed.

“But it’s a different hollow!” Benigno insisted. He felt along the plaster of the wall, searching for something that would prove his point. Eventually, his claw caught on a small crack. He gasped. “This! This right here!”

Lin came over to look. “This?” Benigno stepped away and allowed the riolu to investigate. “What the…?” He placed his paw inside the crack the best he could and pulled. The ‘wall’ resisted at first, but with a sudden *thunk!* it came loose and revealed itself to be a hidden door! Lin swung the panel open and everyone gasped as they saw what was inside the compartment under the stairs.

“Palkia why,” muttered Ettore.

It was a pink orb. The pearl!

Oscar’s eyes went wide. Benigno jumped in celebration. “You did it Oscar! You found the pearl! You’re so amazing!”

Otto leaned in and adjusted his eye. “Th-that’s the pearl that was stolen from my shop! There’s no mistaking it!”

Gino was bouncing excitedly. “He really is a great detective!” The herdier didn’t respond, he just stared at the pearl he obviously meant to find.

Lin broke out of his own shock to look at him. “Oscar?”

“Y…y-yes! This makes perfect sense, actually! Everything is as I predicted it!” Oscar nodded vigorously. “Consider! If Ettore stole the pearl a second time, where would he keep it but the same place he hid it the first time! In addition, it also reveals the clear motive behind his actions!”

“What do you mean?!” Lin asked incredulously.

Oscar whirled around to face Ettore. “You see, his motive has been staring us in the face the entire time! He stole the pearl from Gino with the intention of selling it. But how much did he get for that, if you’ll remind me Otto?”

Otto hadn’t taken his eyes off the pearl. “He sold it to me for 500 silver,” he answered, still staring at it.

“Not too shabby, but his ambitions were much greater! Why sell it once, when he could steal it again, and sell it twice?”

Something seemed to occur to Lin at that moment. “Wait, you mean-?”

Oscar turned his head to look back at him. “The black market! Of course, since he had already put up a request for the pearl’s safe return, should the guild manage to find it, as a stolen good it would be returned to-”

“Him!” interrupted Lin.

Oscar nodded. “At which point he would attempt to sell it again! Of course, most markets only operate at night, and he stole the pearl back this morning, hence why we find it here, in this secret compartment under the stairs!”

“B-But-!” The desperation in the grumpig’s voice was palpable. “You still can’t say it’s the kid’s pearl! There’s nothing to tie me to that! You can’t prove where I was two days ago!”

Oscar actually seemed startled by that. Benigno looked at him worriedly. “Oh right. It should smell like Gino, but if Ettore said he washed it…”

But it was Lin who spoke up. “Actually, there is one way to prove if you really stole it from him.”

“There is?!” shouted Ettore.

The riolu nodded. “Yup. Spoink use their pearls to concentrate their psychic powers, right? So it should be attuned to his aura.”

“Of course!” Oscar walked up beside Lin and placed a paw on his shoulder. “This is why I brought him, after all!” Benigno was in awe. “He really thought of everything!” But Lin, never impressed, just shrugged him off and glared.

Carefully, the riolu reached into the compartment and grabbed the pearl from its hiding spot. Gino, timid but excited, hopped in front of his mother and eyed Lin hopefully. Lin held it out of front of him and closed his eyes. The two feelers on the back of his head rose for a moment, a low, dull sound coming off of them and bothering Benigno’s sensitive ears, though no one else seemed to notice. The sound went away, and Lin opened his eyes. “It’s his alright.”

Gino hopped forward and sniffed the pearl. He looked a little troubled. “It doesn’t smell right. Are you sure it’s mine?”

Lin smiled sweetly. “I promise it’s yours.” He held the pearl above the spoink’s head, who then jumped up to catch it between his ears. Gino wobbled it on his head, testing the way it felt, then made a happy squealing noise and hopped back to his mother.

“It’s really mine! It’s really mine!”

Oscar’s eyes were watering. “And there you have it.” He sniffed, then turned back around to glare at Ettore. “As for you, I believe it has become clear to us all the true depths of the crime committed over these past couple days.”

“Look, I can-”

“Two days ago, you were in District Drygon for undisclosed reasons. Where you then witnessed it: a spoink, tripping and falling, the pearl atop of his head rolling down the street! As a fellow member of his species, I am certain you felt some inclination to help the poor child.”

“Look! I can-!”

“But you didn’t! Instead, you chose to steal it as part of an elaborate scheme to extort as much gold out of that pearl as you possibly could!”

“I can-!”

“As for what you needed so much money for, one can only fathom! But there is nothing that greed can’t-”


Benigno winced. Oscar went silent. Gino rushed back to his mother and hid behind her. Everyone just stared at Ettore, who was panting, before he carefully sat down on the floor and sighed. “I… needed the money. I lost my job, and the rent on this home is due at the end of the month. I don’t have that kind of time. I just needed some way to make money quickly. So when I saw the pearl rolling down the street, I thought- *sigh* because of the fortune Cosima showed me…”

Everyone looked at Cosima. She sheepishly avoided everyone’s gazes. “I may have told him that fortune would come rolling his way.”

Lin crossed his arms. “Oddly specific.”

“But then it only sold for 500, and that just wasn’t enough. So I thought that maybe I could try and sell it again. I knew about the sableye thing, so I thought that if I sold it under a fake identity and told the guild it was stolen, they’d see the fake name in the ledger and confiscate it from the jeweler. But then I got afraid they’d see through it and keep it, so I gave Cosima the tip and planned to steal it from her instead.”

Oscar closed his eyes and meditated on the grumpig’s story. “Even then, your plan almost failed, as Otto had grown attached and refused to sell the pearl. Ironically, Cosima’s decision to steal it herself is the only reason this got as far as it did. Which also proved to be your undoing, as it allowed us to track the case back to you in the first place.” He opened his eyes. “Though I suppose it was doomed from the start, as Perla’s request conflicted with yours, and the guild here in Capital is too interconnected to allow such things to slip through the cracks.”

Ettore sighed. “Yeah… It was really dumb of me, wasn’t it?”

“And so it was.” Oscar nodded. “The mystery of the thrice stolen pearl has been solved!”

“I just can’t believe this,” said Perla. “Even if you were that desperate, you should understand how important pearls are to us.” She shook her head, disappointed. “I just can’t forgive you for what you’ve put my son through.”

“I don’t expect you to. And I know I need to pay reparations, but I just…”

Cosima had a hand under her chin in thought the entire time. “Speaking of reparations, I suppose I owe Otto some as well? Even if it was a stolen pearl in the first place, I did still break his lock.”

Otto scratched the top of his head. “And I still paid for that stolen pearl too. It’s a bit of a mess, isn’t it?”

“It sounds like Ettore needs to pay back a loooot of pokémon,” said Benigno.

“How about this?” Otto walked up to Ettore. “I won’t ask for my money back, so you can use that 500 I gave you to repay Cosima and the other one. And I’ll just take what Cosima owes me. Does that sound good?”

“Split it for 250?” Cosima remarked. “I suppose I can settle for that.”

“That’s more than I put up for the request,” said Perla. “But I’ll accept it.”

“And so in the end, our thief comes out neither richer, nor poorer,” Oscar narrated. “Perhaps this is truly the best outcome he can hope for.”

Lin sighed and put a paw on his hip. “You all are way too nice. But whatever, as long as it’s resolved.” He walked up to each pokémon in the room and pointed at them. “You need to stop stealing things. You need to stop stealing things, I'm putting you both on a list by the way. You need to get a freakin’ assistant, like ‘Noehnameh?’ Missingno? Seriously? Your request is the only valid one, so you gotta pay Oscar for it. You’re cute. You did a good job, I guess.” Benigno’s heart fluttered at that. Lin pointed at Oscar last. “And you…”

“No need to thank me.”

“Shut up.” And then he stormed out of the building.


The remaining pokémon were left to resolve the situation themselves. Everyone got paid as they had agreed, and Benigno and Oscar found themselves outside the home talking to Perla by the end. “I know it isn’t likely what you agreed to when you accepted Ettore’s request,” she said. “But here, the 90 Poké I offered for it.”

“You don’t need to pay us!” said a cheerful Benigno. “Just your thanks is all we-”

Oscar put a paw over his friend’s mouth. “But it is certainly appreciated, we are very hungry.”

Perla smiled. “I don’t think I’d be able to live with myself if you didn’t accept it anyway.”

Gino hopped up and down, the pearl bobbing on his head. “Thank you Detective Oscar!”

“It was my pleasure,” said Oscar, bowing his head. “Be sure to spread the word of our exploits!”

“I will!”

The duo accepted the reward, said their goodbyes, and were left to try and catch up to Lin as the sun neared closer and closer to the horizon. Benigno caught him first, just in front of the Traveler’s Office. “Lin!” He could hear him groan from up in the air.

Lin had his paw against the front door, looking as if he were about ready to ignore them. But he put his paw back down and allowed the two to catch up, glaring at the herdier all the while. “What?” he snapped.

“I needed to catch up with you!” said Oscar. “You see, technically, we just solved four requests at once! So surely that is enough for you to recognize us and send a letter of recom-”


“But why?!”

Lin crossed his arms. “Three of those requests were for stolen goods. They’re invalid, so they don’t count anymore, and you don’t get credit for them.”

“But come on!” whined Benigno. They needed that letter of recommendation if they wanted to earn the Eon Badge and become certified adventurers!

“I said no!” Lin once again turned to push the door open, and once again hesitated. “Okay, if you want me to say it, you did a good job, but I can’t just give it to you because you think you deserve it. That’s not how this works.”

“Even after all we’ve done…” Oscar sounded slightly angry, but he reigned it in and looked at Lin with determination in his eyes. “Very well, then! We will simply keep coming back to solve mysteries until we prove it to you that we deserve that letter!”

“Tch. Whatever.” And then he entered the building and left them behind.

“Hmph,” Oscar scoffed. “We could have solved this mystery earlier if he had told us about Perla before we left.”

“Well, he did tell us to wait.”

Oscar shook his head. “Never mind that. The real shame is that if I were allowed to sniff other pokémon with impunity, then I would have recognized Ettore’s scent immediately! I would not have even needed Lin!” He huffed. “Stupid personal space.”

“But it worked out in the end, right?” Benigno reassured. “I mean, we wouldn’t have known about Perla then. And we still needed Lin to solve the last part.”

“I suppose so,” said Oscar, brushing his nose with a paw. “In other news, our reward was somewhat meager, but we should be able to treat ourselves with this.”

Benigno raised his wings in excitement. “I want to get a smoothie!”

“In the middle of the winter?”

He nodded with a serious shine in his eyes. “Yes.”

The great detective broke into a smile and laughed. “Very well, Beni! Let us drink smoothies, and make it home in time for dinner!”

And so they ran off, Benigno taking to the air as he raced ahead of his friend, the greatest detective in the world!


Stats: I began writing this one-shot on July 15, 2022. I finished writing it on August 17th, 2022 (33 days to finish). In total, it is 12,893 words long.

I didn’t originally want to lead with this one, but the original first Detective Oscar story involves a character that complicates the dynamic between Oscar and Benigno, and I wanted to introduce their dynamic by itself before getting anyone else involved. But then Lin got involved anyway, so oops. I feel like I kinda stumbled my way through this mystery, in part because I specifically tried to write it as a ‘first Detective Oscar one-shot,’ so I found I had to force myself to really try and think of a plot that could work: normally ideas for stories just kind of happen. But I learned a lot in the process! And I think I can make the next ones even better. Feedback is still very appreciated though. I hope that this acted as a good introduction to these characters and the kind of stories I’m going to try and tell with this. There’s a lot of experimentation involved and putting myself out of my comfort zone when it comes to specific things like plotting and prose, and I’d like to know how I did. I also hope I made Capital seem at least a tiny bit interesting! I had a hard time focusing a lot on the setting here, though I still ended up dropping a lot of details. I admittedly feel a little self conscious about the names Tranquilo and Libertá, but I figured I should probably get feedback on it first before deciding to expand them. (If I were to rename them, I’d probably go with Posto Tranquillo and Piazza Libertá to go in line with the already existing Porto Eone. But I dunno.)

So anyway, that’s all! Thanks for reading!
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