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Can You Solve This Two-Minute Mini Mystery? ‘All Steamed Up’

Grab your magnifying glass and channel your inner Sherlock Holmes to crack the case!


Woman’s World readers are entertained each week with a two-minute mystery story in every issue (and have a special Mini Mysteries magazine devoted to cracking even more cases!) — from whodunits to who-stole-its to who’s up to no good — and we’re sharing those stories here each week to bring more laugh-out-loud fun to our readers.

Read on for the newest installment!

All Steamed Up by Hal Charles

Famed State Police Detective Kelly Stone finally admitted the truth to herself — her latest investigation had left her stumped.

At noon, she had been called out to the local country club. On a cold morning, only four women had shown up to enjoy the usually crowded pickleball court.

One of the women, Stephanie Bird, had been so cold after losing two out of three matches that she claimed she needed a long, hot shower. Her three companions had ordered lunch at the club’s rathskeller while they waited.

Two-Minute Mini Mysteriesgetty

When Stephanie had not shown, one of the women, Allie McGuire, went downstairs to the locker room to fetch her. What she found, however, was her teammate lying lifeless on the floor of the steamy shower, the water still running.

Kelly arrived shortly after the coroner, who pronounced Stephanie dead from a blow to the head, which could have happened as she fell in the shower. The detective quickly figured out that the only entrance to the ladies’ locker room was downstairs from the rathskeller.

“I know Allie went downstairs because she discovered the body,” the detective announced to the remaining two women, “But did either of you go down there?”

“Right after the soup was finished, Brenda—excuse me, she likes to be called by her full name Brenda Underwood Dailey—announced she had to visit the ‘little girls’ room,” ­volunteered Tanley Vine.

“And Tanley disappeared after the salad arrived,” Brenda kicked in. “Something about talking to the manager.”

When the club manager confirmed Tanley’s story, Kelly was back to square one, so she tried an unusual tactic. Taking Brenda and Tanley aside, the detective asked the duo if they knew of any reason Allie would have killed Stephanie.

“Other than the fact that Stephanie married Allie’s ex,” they ended up saying, “we can’t think of a single one.”

Taking Allie and Brenda aside, the detective asked the same question about Tanley.

“Well, Tanley did owe Stephanie a mountain of money for that business loan,” they agreed.
To Tanley and Allie, the same question about Brenda brought back memories of how Brenda never got over losing the homecoming queen’s crown to Stephanie.

So, the detective concluded, all three women had motive, opportunity and means to harm Stephanie. Kelly was standing there lost in thought when Allie came up to her. “Detective, I need to show you something that may be meaningful.” Allie pulled out her cellphone and brought up a shot of a steamy glass shower door.

Shower head with falling water Two-Minute Mini Mysteries
Two-Minute Mini MysteriesGetty/xijian

“I’m afraid that when I saw Stephanie lying there,” Allie confessed, “I did exactly what my teenage kids would do. I snapped a picture. There was something on the shower door I wanted to catch before the steam dissipated.”

Allie enlarged the mark, which looked like 118. “Is that one of those dying clues?” she asked.

“I’m not sure what it could mean,” said Kelly.

“Well, Tanley lives at 118 Breck Avenue,” said Allie.

Three numbers sounded like an area code to Kelly, so she looked it up.

“Well, 118 is an area outside London, England,” she said.

“What a strange coincidence,” said Allie. “Brenda was Brenda Underwood before she married Lord Dailey somewhere outside London last year.”

“I’m sure 118 could refer to a lot of things, like the date January of 2018 or even November 8, somebody’s ­birthday or even wedding day,” Kelly continued. “I think there was even an Indian film by that name.”

“Why would a dying woman write such a difficult clue to decipher on glass?” Allie asked.
“Maybe she had to make the clue oblique because she knew her killer might see it,” Kelly suggested, “and erase it.”

The detective began to picture the dying woman’s last gasp, and suddenly Kelly realized she had been picturing the clue wrong.

Who killed Stephanie?

For more puzzles, games and fun, keep reading…

This Seemingly Simple Riddle Has Everyone on the Internet Scratching Their Heads

6 Jigsaw Puzzles to Challenge Even the Most Avid Puzzle Fan

9 Surprisingly Tricky Word Problems That Will Recharge Your Brain

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