A lot of things were going missing from the Hansen’s house.
“Annie! Bryce!” Mom shouted. “Who left out the Monopoly game last night?”
“Bryce got it out,” Annie said.
“You played it too,” Bryce said.
“You both can pick it up, right now,” Mom said.
“We’re missing some pieces,” Bryce said. “What did you do with them, Annie?”
“Nothing!” Annie said.
“Does anyone know what happened to my stamps?” Mom asked. “I had them pinned right up here on the tack board, and now they’re gone.”
“Mom, can you see any Monopoly pieces over there?” Bryce asked.
“No,” Mom said. “Annie, are those your markers on the table? Pick them up, we need to get ready for breakfast.”
“Where’s the green one?” Annie asked. “It was right here with the others.”
“What’s happening to all our stuff?” Bryce asked.
“Does anyone see the crossword I was working on last night?” Dad asked. He picked up a section of the newspaper and flipped through it. “The whole page is just missing from the newspaper.”
“It must be the mouse,” Mom said.
“Must be,” Dad agreed.
I froze, the green marker in my paws poised above the first square of 29 down. I glanced around my snug little room, nicely decorated with postage stamp pictures on the walls and a beautiful, green, wall-paper-like design. The monopoly pieces stood like little statuettes on either side of my front door, which I still needed to chew a bit to make it more even and less ragged-looking. On my floor, a lovely carpet of pale green tissue paper, a table and plastic chair stolen from the doll house upstairs. I twitched my ears and stared out my hole, watching the narrow space under the entertainment center, past which I could just see Bryce’s fingers groping around in the carpet, looking for his monopoly pieces, I presumed.
How did they know? I wondered. How did they know it was me?