By Edward D. Hoch
Thirteen tales of outrageous heists starring one gentle thiefThe dictator of the island of Jabali wishes a baseball group, and he doesn't care how he will get it. He has assembled 9 of the best avid gamers at the island, and is ready to rent Nick Velvet to thieve him a few pageant. traditional thieves is probably not as much as pinching an entire ball membership, yet Velvet focuses on lifting doubtless valueless goods, and during this year's nationwide League, there's not anything extra valueless than the hapless Beavers. He steals them easily—but will the island's ruler be chuffed with a last-place team?In those fascinating tales starring certainly one of Edward D. Hoch's most well liked characters, every little thing is up for grabs. Velvet steals sea serpents, rubbish, cats, and toy mice—all along with his trademark low-key type. In Nick Velvet's underworld, there's not anything he won't scouse borrow, as long as it's helpful, valueless, or simply undeniable loopy.
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Extra resources for The Thefts of Nick Velvet: Stories
Larry Pike shrugged. “Who understands? It’s earning money for me—that’s all i do know. ” “There’s been a few trace that the article is a hoax. ” “Talk to Mrs. Foster and the others who’ve visible it. There’s a guy who lives around the lake—he used to be the 1st to determine it whereas he was once out fishing. check with him, too. i believe their descriptions will persuade you it’s no pretend. We also have a few photographs, yet they’re now not too strong since it by no means involves the outside in huge sunlight. ” He reached nervously for a cigarette from the half-empty pack at his elbow. “It’s that Crowder over on Golden Lake! He’s the person who retains yelling faux, simply because he’s petrified of wasting a bit enterprise! ” “I’d wish to communicate with Mrs. Foster if I could,” Nick stated firmly. The blonde secretary, Judy, provided to take him, and with a couple of additional phrases to Pike he left the place of work and her to at least one of the freshly painted cottages down by way of the water. He needed to admit it was once a delightful position, with a steady breeze simply rippling the skin of the lake. He may perhaps nearly think himself settling down the following with Gloria. “This is Mrs. Foster,” Judy stated, introducing him to a stout motherly girl who used to be enjoying bridge with 3 different women at the porch of her cottage. “Mrs. Foster, Mr. Velvet the following desires to listen all approximately our sea serpent. ” “Indeed I do,” Nick stated, smiling to place the girl comfy. He needn’t have nervous. It appeared that the monster was once her favourite topic, and she or he embarked on it with gusto, addressing herself as a lot to her bridge companions as to Nick, notwithstanding they'd evidently heard the tale repeatedly earlier than. “Well, it used to be simply at twilight, and that i used to be in the market at the dock. It was once September, keep in mind, while lots of the summer season humans had long past again domestic. Mr. Seeley around the lake had already said seeing the item whereas he used to be fishing one morning, and that i needed to admit i used to be type of taking a look. ” She paused dramatically and Nick prodded her. “Yes? ” “Well, I observed it! approach out in the midst of the lake, simply swimming alongside. A head and two—well, like coils. you know how sea serpents regularly glance in photographs! I’m an previous woman, yet I’ve nonetheless a few spirit left. I took the little motor boat and went available in the market after it. I didn’t think in such issues, you notice. ” “How close to did you get? ” “Oh, perhaps twenty or thirty ft. It wasn’t big—I’d say its head used to be just a couple of ft long—but it was once adequate to scare the satan out of me. All eco-friendly, with seaweed clinging to the pinnacle right here and there, and those coils or spines or lumps breaking the water a couple of foot or at the back of the pinnacle. It had a pretty lengthy neck, however the water the following isn’t transparent so I couldn’t see if it had a physique or legs or if it was once really a serpent. ” “What occurred then? ” “I needs to admit that sturdy experience bought the higher of me. It grew to become in my course and that i high-tailed it for shore. The final I observed of the article, it used to be making for the other shore, close to Mr. Seeley’s cottage. ” “And it used to be alive? It wasn’t a faux of any variety? ” “Mr. Velvet, think me—it used to be alive. ” surprisingly sufficient, Nick did think her.