Murder in the Keys

Date:  May 20, 2006

Setting:  Key West Public Library

When the corpse of Ernie Hammyweight, the legendary writer and adventurer, is found during a party at the Key West Public Library, it’s up to you and your teammates to solve the murder.  Meet the suspects…

Officer Sunny Brite, a bicycle policewoman with the Key West Police Department, is an easygoing and friendly soul.  As she rides her daily “beat” (which includes the library), Sunny gives out many more warnings than tickets, gently lectures lawbreakers with New-Agey words of wisdom, and makes frequent pit stops to meditate and sip herbal iced tea.  Her casual uniform includes a tie-dyed T-shirt, athletic shorts, bike helmet, and badge.

Raslyn C. Ritters, better known as “Gator Gal,” stars in her own wildlife show on cable television.  As the cameras roll, she journeys around the globe, seeking out exotic, rare, and ill-tempered animals.  Raslyn’s fans love to watch her bold (and downright crazy) antics, such as grabbing poisonous snakes by their tails and tackling giant alligators.  Always chipper, exuberant, and ready for action, Raslyn usually sports khaki adventure wear.

Leif Z. Beech, a happy-go-lucky beach bum, is often found strolling along Key West’s sandy coastline with his metal detector in one hand and a cold beer in the other.  Affable and fun-loving, he enjoys fishing, shuffleboard, building sand castles, watching televised sporting events at local bars, and generally avoiding work.  Leif has been Ernie’s favorite drinking buddy for years.  He typically wears Hawaiian shirts and wrinkled shorts.

Bea R. Ghest, a sweet, old-fashioned lady, owns and operates Ghest House, the coziest bed and breakfast in the Keys.  Built in 1859, the charming inn has been in Bea’s family for generations and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.  Many local residents believe it is haunted by mischievous ghosts, and this story only increases the house’s allure to tourists.  Bea has never married and wears conservative dresses, blouses, and long skirts.

Pinky F. Lamenceau, a flamboyant local nightclub owner, runs the Pink Pomeranian Paradise Lounge.  Pinky’s place is a real hot spot, full of flash, color (mostly pink, of course), throbbing dance music, and kitschy decorations.  A popular and sociable character, Pinky has a fondness for all things cute and pretty, including toy dogs, flamingo-print tablecloths, and blond surfer dudes.  He wears comfortable, brightly patterned clothes accented with jewelry.

Mrs. Marina Swagg, a poised and vibrant woman, has served as president of the Key West Yacht Club for nearly ten years.  Sadly, she was widowed at a young age when her husband, wealthy yachtsman Sal T. Swagg (a pal of Ernie’s), was killed in a boating accident.  Since then, Marina has sailed the world on her beloved yacht, Swagg o’ the Sea, frequently returning to her plush home in the Keys.  She is always impeccably dressed in fashionable deck wear.

Bubbles J. Kusie, a cute and sparkling “cabana girl,” hosts the most fabulous beach parties and poolside soirées in the Keys.  She is quite the flirt, and the Key West Gazette’s gossip column recently hinted that Bubbles and Ernie (who is a regular guest at her shindigs) are more than just casual acquaintances.  Bubbles loves to wear colorful sarongs and always has a hibiscus or other tropical flower in her hair and an umbrella drink in her hand.

Rex N. Plunders, a successful real estate developer and construction manager, is the owner of Plunders All, Inc., a company known for its aggressive tactics and high profits.  In the name of progress, Rex has destroyed countless acres of pristine Florida woods and wetlands and replaced them with luxury condos and entertainment complexes.  Now, he plans to raze a good chunk of Key West to build a flashy theme park.  Rex often wears power suits and a hardhat.

Dr. Clora Fill, a skilled botanist and professor at the University of Miami, is currently conducting field work in the Keys.  She is the author of countless scholarly articles and has just completed her first book, Floridian Ferns.  In addition to her scientific career, Clora donates her time to environmental causes and is a passionate defender of endangered plant species.  She wears a lab coat and reading glasses and usually carries a case of botanical samples and equipment.

Paul Meddo, a local exterminator, runs a pest control service called Die, Bug, Die!  Paul is very dedicated to his work and has a knack for finding (and immediately killing) insects wherever he goes.  He can be spotted driving around town at all hours in his rusted green van, which is equipped with the latest in bug eradication technology.  A strange, sullen fellow, Paul grunts a lot and smells vaguely like insect repellent.  He wears grungy coveralls and a cap.

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