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The Muffin Man

时间:2013-12-25 12:48:54  来源:  作者:Victor Aguilar & Duna  [ 下载本书 ]
简介:Do you know the Muffin Man who lives on Drury Lane? Perhaps not as well as you think. Here you will learn that the kindly old gentleman harbors a dark secret - one that may prove his undoing....

   Do you know the Muffin Man,

  The Muffin Man,
  The Muffin Man?
  Do you know the Muffin Man
  Who lives on Drury Lane?
  
  
  “Hot muffins!  Fresh out of the oven!  Get your hot muffins here!”
  
  The Muffin Man was a fixture on Drury Lane.  The lawyers who hurried past in suits and skirts could recall their parents telling them of the Muffin Man.  “Blueberry is best,” they said, “though he has peach and apricot muffins too if you want a change in your routine.”
  
  The Muffin Man liked the lawyers.  They would hand him a five-pound note, grab a couple of muffins and hurry on to their jobs in the shiny glass offices without waiting for change.  It hadn't always been like that.  When the Muffin Man started out as an apprentice baker forty years ago, Drury Lane had been mostly residential, with a few shops:  a green grocer, a haberdashery, a tobacconist.  Back then everybody waited for their change – and counted it too.
  
  One by one the other shops had all gone under.  Rent in the neighborhood had steadily risen and, with each increase, another shop closed down.  Now, except for the Starbucks two blocks away, his was the only shop on Drury Lane.  The Muffin Man couldn't understand how Starbucks made a go of it.  “Their tea is overpriced!  And those dry Bap rolls.  Yuck!”
  
  Something else had changed in the neighborhood as well:  When the Muffin Man arrived at three in the morning to fire up his oven, he would sometimes notice girls standing in doorways or on the corner.  At first he thought they were lost or had missed the bus or something.  He worried about their safety.  But then he observed the short skirts and the bleached blond hair.
  
  “Those girls are pr- pr- pro-,” the Muffin Man could barely get the word out, “prostitutes.”
  
  Now the Muffin Man had a new worry.  The questionable ladies (he liked that term better) would drive away his customers.  “What will the nice lawyers think if they see one of those women standing in front of my shop?  They might not want to come in and buy a muffin!”
  
  Once the Muffin Man had figured out what those women were doing, he began seeing them everywhere.  As late as six or seven in the morning, when the sidewalks were starting to fill with office workers, he would glimpse a bleached blond in a short skirt with bags under her eyes walking in the opposite direction.
  
  Sales were down.  It couldn't be the Starbucks, not with those awful Bap rolls.  The Muffin Man was sure that the questionable ladies were driving away his customers.  “The neighborhood just isn't what it used to be,” he moaned, “How will I sell my muffins?”
  
  They say he had a sword in hand,
  A sword in hand,
  A sword in hand,
  They say he had a sword in hand
  Chopped heads off, he's insane.
  
  “The newspaper says that the killer used a sword.”
  
  The society ladies who came to sit and eat muffins late in the morning could speak of nothing else.
  
  “How awful!  What kind of a man could do that?”
  
  “Some kind of pervert,” another lady said, nodding her head sagely, “Probably in his thirties and still living with his mother.”
  
  “Probably can't even do it,” said a third, “That's why he kills.  Sexual frustration.”
  
  It was around noon when the man from Scotland Yard dropped by.  “Excuse me, good sir,” he said, removing his hat, “Could you answer a few questions for me?”
  
  “Certainly,” said the Muffin Man, “Care for a muffin?”
  
  The questions were simple.  He was shown a picture of the girl or, at least, of her head.  “Ever seen this young lady before?”
  
  “No, can't say that I have.”
  
  “What time do you begin work?”
  
  “Three in the morning.”
  
  “Did you notice any strange men lurking about?”
  
  “No.  But I'm in the back at my oven.  I wouldn't be looking out the front window.”
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