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Bill Posters Will Be Prosecuted

by Josh Pachter

About the Author: JOSH PACHTER is a writer, editor and translator. Almost a hundred of his short crime stories have appeared in EQMM, AHMM, New Black Mask, Espionage, and many other periodicals, anthologies, and year’s-best collections. The Tree of Life (Wildside Press, 2015) collected all ten of his Mahboob Chaudri stories, he collaborated with Belgian author Bavo Dhooge on Styx (Simon & Schuster, 2015), and he co-edited Amsterdam Noir (Akashic Books, 2018).


William and Evangeline Posters came up the steep semi-circle of concrete steps from the Victoria and Albert Museum’s main entrance to street level. It was bitterly cold, and fat snowflakes drifted earthward from a slate-gray sky.

“The more it snows, tiddely-pom, tiddely-pom,” Bill hummed, his mind still on the delightful Winnie the Pooh exhibit they’d taken a taxi across the city from their hotel on the west side of Lincoln’s Inn Fields to see. He looked across Exhibition Road at the looming bulk of the Natural History Museum.

“Dinosaurs?” he said.

“God, no,” Evey frowned, eyes rolling. “I’ve had enough museums to last till next Christmas.”

They’d been in London for the last four days, having found an irresistible Expedia price on a flight-and-hotel package, and they’d already done the British Museum (“Sythians: Warriors of Ancient Siberia!”), the British Library (“Harry Potter: A History of Magic!”), the National Portrait Gallery (“Marlene Dietrich: Dressed for the Image!”), and Sir John Soane’s Museum (“Egypt Uncovered: Belzoni and the Tomb of Pharaoh Seti I!”), right around the corner from their hotel.

“May I have this dance, then?” asked Bill, taking her gloved hand and nodding at the gleaming ice rink on the East Lawn between the Natural History Museum and the Cromwell Road.

“Can you be serious for one minute?” demanded Evey, pulling free.

Story Comments

Feb 28 - Judy Penz Sheluk

Great morning read, Josh. Thoroughly enjoyed it. Well done, you!

Feb 28 - Earl Staggs

Cute story, Josh, and well-written. Loved the accents.

Feb 28 - Robert Petyo

What fun!! Great job.

Feb 28 - Susan Rickard

Nice tight tale. Witty and humorous! I don't know how you think this stuff up.

Feb 28 - Nancy Sweetland

So clever - love plays on words. And you did it so very well!

Feb 28 - Jason Otoski

Loved this story...perfect length and very funny! Love the accents, the puns, loved the ending. Very well done!

Feb 28 - Jennifer Kunz

I love short stories around puns and this was no exception, thanks! :)

Feb 28 - Rose Anderson

This was a great read -- clever!

Feb 28 - Jeff

Entertaining lunchtime read. Nice work.

Feb 28 - Bobbi. hukran

Great play on words, Josh! Congratulations!

Feb 28 - Nina Ritter

Wow! A great short story! Cleverly done!

Mar 1 - Josh Pachter

Thanks for all the nice comments! You pun lovers might also enjoy my even shorter "Father Knows Bets," which appeared on the SHOTGUN HONEY website last October. You'll find it at this link:

Mar 2 - Frances Dunn

Loved it! A superb ending.

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