|The Case of the Aztec Gold|
What a surprising turnaround of events.
Comic: "Bright Eyes" (click for full size)
|Number of Comics||14|
|Dates Published||October 3rd - November 2nd 2011|
|Fido, Ralph, Kevin, Spo|
A Respite In The Country
The Case of the Aztec Gold is the 45th arc in Housepets!.
- Bill Lindberg
- Crazy Old Man Who Only Speaks in Limericks
- Truck Driver
Monday 10:23 PM. The K-9 Unit was summoned to the scene of the crime. Ten crates of highly valuable Aztec artifacts had gone missing from a truck en route to Chicago.
Bill interrogates the driver of the truck, who claims the cargo was still there when he left Springfield. Bill redirects him to Fido, who merely asks what it smelled like.
Ralph goes over the facts, and scolds Kevin for not paying attention. Kevin claims the background stuff is boring. Ralph exclaims that they have a search area of seventy square miles and they need to keep on track. Spo sarcastically claims the owner did it for the insurance (a conclusion he reached by watching TV cop shows.) Ralph frustratedly asks Fido what Spo is doing there, and Fido says he chewed his ear about it.
Ralph wonders how the artifacts were removed from the highway in the first place. Kevin makes the suggestion that a swarm of bats did it. Just as Ralph is scolding Kevin again, a swarm of bats fly by. They follow the bats, and find a cabin belonging to the crazy old man who speaks in limericks, who gives them a sage, but cryptic riddle about a long-unpaid debt.
Meanwhile at the headquarters, another member of the K-9 Unit, an English Spaniel named Terrance, is acting as a liaison between the K-9 Unit and the forensics team. The forensics worker explains the ten crates containing the artifacts were placed behind twenty filled with paper, intended as a decoy. He further explains that they were toppled over, but only after the crates had been removed. Terrance notices markings in the photographs, and tells him to enhance it despite the fact they're already enhanced. The forensics worker tells him they have the actual truck in evidence.
Terrance examines the markings inside the truck, a smeared drawing made of charcoal, as most of it was wiped when the crates fell. Meanwhile Kevin finds the completed symbol on a cave wall while Ralph interrogates the bats. Kevin shows the symbol to the others, and Fido proceeds to take a picture of it to send to the lab. As they are doing this, a ghost of an Aztec jaguar warrior materializes behind them, but they don't turn around and notice it.
Ralph finds the criminals, as well as the stolen artifacts, next to a river bank with a boat. They are too deep in the cave to get into radio contact, so Ralph tells Kevin to get to the surface to contact HQ while Fido and Ralph make bat sounds to keep from being heard. Unfortunately, as Kevin retreats, he runs right into the ghost. The others finally notice and frantically run away (though the ghost doesn't chase them.)
Ralph declares they aren't equipped to handle the situation, and they'll have to retreat until someone better suited can come and take care of it. With the new information, they completely forget about the criminals, and are quickly captured, tied up and brought on board the boat.
As the criminals argue over what to do about the ghost and the K-9 Unit, Spo chews at the ropes binding them. The ghost comes over and speaks to Ralph, explaining his name was Teoxihuitl, a knight under Montezuma. He was charged with protecting the royal vault from the Spanish. Not knowing if he would survive, he found a sage who told him of the power after death, such as signs that would let him, among other tings, fold space, but only if drawn by a living hand. As a spirit, he sank the Spanish ship that carried the gold. But because he had feared his own death, he was thought as a coward and his charge was considered unfulfilled. When the treasure was raised, he went to retake it again but his power is limited outside his spells. The spirit had asked the criminals to help him, however they stole the treasure for themselves. He asks Ralph and the others for help.
Just then, the criminals notice that the three are free. Ralph barks at Kevin to grab his notebook. While they are fighting, Kevin draws the symbol in the notebook and the criminal swipes it. He thinks that they're just going back to the cave entrance. Terrance is seen back at the lab holding the completed the symbol, and the boat is immediately teleported into the forensics lab.
Fido writes a letter to Sabrina, explaining the situation, and enclosing a trinket he took from evidence. Fido tells Sabrina in the letter that Teoxihuitl is still anxious over what would happen to the treasure, so Sabrina offers him therapy to help him cope.
- Terrance is named, even though he was introduced in A Sinister Shadow.
- This arc was originally going to be called "The Mystery of Mysterious Happenings." as seen in it's archive address.
- Before this arc, a poll was conducted asking people what they wanted to see next in the comic. One of the options was "The K-9 Unit solves a mystery." The winner, "Sasha does something meaningful" became The Present.