The harassment of the Sugar and Spice Tea Shop and Mediumistic
Establishment appears to be at an end; Vito and Paulo don't show up
again. Peter Collins's Halloween article in the Boston Globe
runs on the front page of the entertainment section. However, the
party doesn't completely break up (lucky for the run!).
Esme arranges some further dinners; in addition to any social causes,
the Valiants find that they can get useful advice on cases, Peter gets
useful leads on some stories and some good connections for interviews
from Esme, and Charlie gets free food...
During the next year or so, the Valiants cases, in addition to the
more normal runaways and unfaithful spouses, include:
Other people's pursuits:
- The Mysterious Affair of the Man in Grey. A woman who thinks
she's being stalked hires the Valiants. Initial surveillance
indicates that she is, in fact, being stalked, by a man in
grey. The man in question doesn't appear to be very bright, and
can't easily explain why he's following the woman. Before he gets
locked up as a maniac, however, some psychological suggestions by
Dr. Schreber and some archival digging by Mr. Collins turn up
suggestions that the man is, in fact, one of those separated-at-birth
twins who has begun to recognize his long-lost sister. A somewhat
stilted reunion is arranged, and the woman seems reassured.
- The Eccentric Case of the Eccentric Husband. A woman, having
heard about the Valiants' success in exorcizing the ghost which was
haunting Mrs. Genelli (at least, that's the way she puts it) wants
them to exorcise the ghost possessing her husband. While the husband
is, in fact, behaving somewhat oddly, Dr. Schreber is able to pin it
on atropine poisoning, and a search of the house discovers some old
herbal teas which seem to be contaminated. The obvious suspect, the
wife, is eventually ruled out when some records-digging turns up what
appears to have been Grandfather's death of atropine poisoning (the
herbal tea having been Grandmother's). Mr. Bellesby also proves
helpful here, both in doubting any actual possession, and in
confirming some very long-ago murderous emotions associated with the
- Dr. Schreber continues his medical practice and "researches into
the workings of body and mind", and begins to make a name for himself
as the physician of choice for those suffering from nervous disorders.
At the monthly dinner get-togethers, his offers to "enhance" people's
drinks tend to be declined.