The Treasure of Squeaky Toy Island
Over at the Pugs Ahoy, Captain Snoopy had managed to find his way to the electric keyboard, and was starting to pound out some notes. Muffin grabbed a Karaoke Microphone, and started singing, “Ruff, Ruff will keep us together! Think of me Snoop whenever...........Some little gurrrl comes along, with tummy so long, don't mess around, just 'cause she's so long..........”
Down at the wharf, Easy was prowling the quarterdeck, when he found Captain Snoopy's long glass. A quick sniff of the brass casing, and a sniff of the teak-wood deck confirmed that the Captain had indeed trod the deck recently, and the scent led Easy to the Gangway.
Down on the pier, Ernie growled, “What's taking all night?”
Easy sniffed his way down the deck, and said, “I'm on the scent, Skipper.”
“'Bout time. Lead us to the booty!”
Easy made his way down to the dirt road on shore, and started down the street, which was still shrouded in a fog that the gaslights barely penetrated. Ernie shrugged, put his snoot to the ground, and followed Easy down the street.
They hadn't gone far, when Easy stopped in the middle of the street, and said, “What's that?”
“What?”, Ernie asked.
“Sounds like the Captain and Tenille. Or an unreasonable facsimile thereof. Very unreasonable.”
“No, Skipper, that ain't what I mean. Who does that sound like?”
Ernie listened for a moment, then they looked at each other and said, “Muffin!”
“And where there's Muffin...........”, Easy said.
“.........there's Captain Snoopy!”, Ernie shouted. “Keep sniffing!”
They quickly resumed their quest. After a few more sniffs, Easy thought he heard something else, far off but distinct. And it was growing closer.
In a few more seconds, Ernie heard it, too.
Bump, bump, bump, bump! Over and over again, regular as clockwork. Paws on the road. Lots of paws. And they were marching in step.
Suddenly, Ernie spun around, and yelled, “Out of the road, now!”
They jumped onto the sidewalk, just as about 100 Scotties in blue sailor uniforms marched past. Ernie smacked his forehead, and said, “Just what we don't need!”
“What is it, Skipper? Who are they?”
“That's the Blue Crew.”
“They don't look too sad to me, Skipper.”
“I mean they're the relief crew for that submarine that came in tonight. Every time the subs come in they change crews. The sub dock is between here and the pub. You know what that means?”
“They're all gonna stop for a beer on their way to the boat?”
“No! It means that not only will they be between us and the pub, when the Gold Crew leaves the boat, the first place they'll be off to is the pub! 100 sailors between us and Captain Snoopy!”
Back at the pub, Muffin was still singing, and Captain Snoopy was still playing as Tasha and Puddles arrived. By now, they had been out of the water long enough for their back legs to reappear, and they had no fear of being spotted. Getting to the costumes would be a different story.
Happily, with most of the pub watching Snoopy and Muffin, they were able to creep up behind the counter unseen. Puddles scanned the area between the kitchen and the bar, and motioned for Tasha to follow her to the big bone-shaped plastic boxes that contained the costumes. They had scarcely gotten the lid off, when a voice said, “What are you doing?”
Nervously, they spun around, and saw a dachshund clad in a pink dress. She looked a little like Tasha, but was a bit wider, and had a shorter snoobidoo. Noticing them staring, she said, “What's wrong?”
Puddles said, “Do you work here?”
“Yeah. For my night job.”
“What is you day job?”, Tasha asked.
“I work over at the ship chandlers. I'm a figuresnoot model.”
“So you pose for those paw-carved statues they put on the bows of ships?”, Puddles asked.
“Do you like it?”, Tasha asked.
“It pays the bills. Who are you, anyway?”
“I'm Puddles, and this is Tasha. What's your name?”
Puddles and Tasha looked at each other, and nodded. “Anna”, Puddles said. “May we call you Anna?”
“So, Anna, how would you like to do us a favor?”
“What kind of favor?”
“See the piebald guy over at the keyboard ?”
Anna Rose looked, and said, “The one in the Captain's hat?”
“Yeah. That's Captain Snoopy. That other guy with the long fur is his Bowson, Frankie la Foot. His wives need to get a message to him.”
“Okay, why do you need me?”
“Their husband doesn't know they're working the night job. He knows us, and he might ask us.”
“Gotcha. What's the message?”
“Tell him Ernie the Red is in Port. He'll know what that means. And Anna?”
“Watch out for that red-furred girl that's singing.”
“That's Captain Snoopy's girl. Trust us, you don't want her catching you messing with her man!”
“Sounds like she's singing a Captain and Furnille song”, Tasha said.
“That's Tenille”, Puddles said. “The Captain and Tenille.”
“Not from where I'm standing”, Anna said.
The music suddenly stopped, a bowsun's pipe sounded, and Captain Snoopy started playing Anchors Aweigh. The doors then opened, and blue uniformed Scotties began pouring in, singing to Captain Snoopy's tune.
Outside the pub, Ernie and Easy had just arrived, but all they could see were a bunch of blue uniforms. And with Muffin no longer singing, they had no way of knowing if Captain Snoopy was still inside or not. Just as they were about to give up, Easy sniffed the road, and said, “Hey, Skipper, I got Captain Snoopy's scent back, and it's headed for the beach!”
“Which is probably where he buried the loot! Head for the beach!”
“Wait, I hear a motor.”
They looked back, and saw flashing lights approaching. Nervously, they stood completely still, and waited as the vehicle drew closer. But just as it was upon them, it simply rolled past and continued down the road.
“Who was that, Skipper? Cops?”
“Those were the SP's”, Ernie said.
“SP's?”, Easy asked.
“Shore Pawtrol. The Navy's Cops. They must be making sure those sub crews don't get too drunk.”
“Well, Skipper, we aren't in the Navy, so they don't have any say over what we do.”
“Right, but they're headed for the beach, and if they see us, they could still call the Coast Guard. And Sarge already has his eyes and ears on us. We'll keep going, but let's keep our snoots down.”