A New Dimension: Chapter Thirteen

        “Private Chuck-Bob!”
        “Sir, yes sir?”
        “Private Chuck-Bob, what do you see on that there screen.”
        “Sir, I see, a . . . a chicken sir.  But, sir?”
        “Yes, Private Chuck-Bob?  Be swift in verbalizing your confoundment.”
        “Uh, yes, sir.  Thank you, sir.  But, uh, sir?  I am having a hard time seeing just what’s a goin’ on in this here video.”
        “AHHEM!”
        “Uh, right, sir.  In this here video, sir.”
        “Well private Chuck-Bob, let me pull out my magic colonal’s wand and clear up the image quality of this here security camera footage, and . . . For the love of Pete Private Chuck-Bob, pull yourself together!”
        “Uh, who’s Pete?  I uh, I mean, sir!  Who’s Pete, sir!”
        “Private Chuck-Bob, I’m going to give you one more chance to straighten up, and then I’m going to punt your sorry Private First-Class self into next week!  Do you read me, Private Chuck-Bob?!”
        “Uh, sir, read? – oh, uh, Sir! Yes Sir!”
        “That’s better Private.  Now, tell me what you see on that there video.  And I better not hear another word about the image quality.”
        “Yes sir!  That is a chicken sir.  It is paused just before the chicken leaves the range of the security camera.”
        “That is correct Private.  That is correct.  Now what do we see in this other image.”
        “Uh, sir?  Oh, uh, nothing sir.  We see nothing sir.  Just empty hallway, sir.”
        “That is correct, Private.  What does this tell you?”
        “Um, the chicken isn’t in this other video.  Sir?”
        “That much is obvious, Private Chuck-Bob.  What happened to the chicken between this camera, and this other camera?”
        “Um, I guess I don’t know, sir.  The chicken seems to have disappeared.  Sir.”
        “Do chickens just randomly disappear into thin air, Private Chuck-Bob?”
        “Well, sir, I don’t rightly know sir.  I had one fly up onto my head once when I was a tryin’ to grab ‘im.  It was like one minute it was on the ground a peckin’ at whatnot, and then just there it was, poopin’ in my hair, and Billy, he . . .”
        “PRIVATE CHUCK-BOB!!”
        “Oh. Right, sorry sir.  Um, no, chickens don’t just disappear.  Sir.”
        “Correct Private Chuck-Bob.  Correct.”
        “So the question is where did this particular chicken go between this spot in the hallway, and this other spot in the hallway.”
        “Um, maybe there’s a trapdoor there or somethin’ sir.  I saw this magic show once where . . .”
        “PRIVATE CHUCK-BOB!!”
        “Oh.  Right, sorry sir.  But you know maybe this chicken can disappear.  I heard that this here chicken magically appeared in the desert.”
        “Private Chuck-Bob, any information you may think you have regarding this chicken is of a completely speculative nature, would be classified at the highest level, and is disavowed by the entire military establishment.  Is that clear, Private Chuck-Bob?!”
        “Sir.  Yes, sir.  Roger that.  That’s a big Texas 10/4.”

“Good, Private Chuck-Bob.  Now, let’s get back to business.  What rooms are between this point in the hallway, and this other point in the hallway?”
        “Um, right, sir.  Good thinking.  But sir?”
        “Yes Private Chuck-Bob?”
        “According to military regulations and all, doors are always locked.  Sir.  And sir?  I ain’t never met a chicken who could turn a doorknob.  Sir.”
        “That is a fascinating bit of chicken lore, Private Chuck-Bob.  But the fact remains that this chicken slipped into a room off of this hallway.  There can be no other explanation.”
        “Sir.  Yes sir.  So the rooms in the hallway that ain’t shown in the video are, uh, room 108 – that’s a – uh office of gallus anomalies.  Whatever the hey-ho that is, sir.  Room 110 – that’s uh, the office of avian groundskeeping – again, sir, that’s super bizarro.  Then, uh, room 112, a janitorial closet.  Hmm.  Uh, sir.”
        “Janitorial closet you say?”
        “Sir, yes sir.”
        “Private Chuck-Bob?”
        “Sir?”
        “Do we have any records showing janitorial activity on the evening in question?”
        “Sir, do you mean were any janitors working last night?  Sir?”
        “Did you not hear me the first time, Private Chuck-Bob?  That is exactly what I asked.”
        “Let me look . . . uh, sir?  It seems as though there was one janitor on duty last night.”
        “Just one?  Be sure, Private Chuck-Bob.  We have no idea how important this chicken may or may not be.  This chicken could be at the very heart of a plot to destroy the entire planet, Private Chuck-Bob.  Think of that!  We just don’t know.”
        “Yes.  Sir.  There was one janitor on duty.”
        “Let’s see if we can pull up any video footage of that janitor from around the same time period of the chicken escape.”
        “Sir, yes sir, here let’s use this other video monitor.”
        “Private Chuck-Bob?”
        “Yessir?”
        “Do you see that?”
        “Yessir!  That’s a janitor.”
        “Do you notice anything funny about that janitor?”
        “Uh, no, uh, sir?”
        “I’ll tell you what’s funny about this janitor, he’s pushing a mop and a bucket.”
        “Uh, with respect sir, isn’t that what janitors are supposed to do?  Sir.”
        “Not, Private Chuck-Bob, when they’re leaving the compound to the rear parking.”
        “Well, doggone-it, sir, you’re right!”
        “And tell me Private Chuck-Bob, is that janitor a member of this fine military institution you and I so proudly represent?”
        “Let, me check . . . no, no sir!  That there’s a contractor, a civilian, sir.”
        “A civilian?!  Private Chuck-Bob, are you sure?”
        “Sir. Yes, sir!  And it’s just clear as daylight in the swamp that that there civilian is stealing that mop. Sir.
        
“Private Chuck-Bob, that’s not all this civilian is stealing.  Replay that video segment.  There.  See that?”
        “Uh, sir?”
        “There, zoom in there.”
        “I see it, sir.  I see it!  It’s . . . it’s a feather!”
        “Yes, Private Chuck-Bob.  It’s a feather.  That janitor is aiding and abetting a known chicken suspect.”
        “Sir.  You’re a genius.  Sir.”
        “Round up some MPs, Private Chuck-Bob, the boys in green are hot on the case.  Mark my words Private Chuck-Bob, we’ll get that chicken if it’s the last thing we do.  Mark my words.”

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