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Authors: Gertrude Chandler Warner

Candy Factory Mystery

BOOK: Candy Factory Mystery
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The Boxcar Children Mysteries

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THE CANDY FACTORY MYSTERY

created by

GERTRUDE CHANDLER WARNER

Illustrated by Hodges Soileau

ALBERT WHITMAN & Company

Morton Grove, Illinois

Contents

1.  Watch Out!

2.  A Chocolate Mystery

3.  A Curious Candy Tour

4.  The Aldens Go to Candy School

5.  A Candy Mix-up

6.  Broken Eggs

7.  The Aldens See a Ghost

8.  Something's Cooking

9.  Something Sweet, Something Fishy

10.  2 Good 2 Be True

  
About the Author

CHAPTER 1

Watch Out!

O
n a cold winter night, in a big white house, the four Alden children and their cousin, Soo Lee, sat in front of a crackling fire. Grandfather was in his favorite chair. He was finishing up the last piece of coconut cake the family housekeeper, Mrs. McGregor, had made. Watch, the family dog, lay at Grandfather's feet, waiting for a few crumbs to fall his way.

“Now it's your turn to act out a charade,” Jessie Alden told Benny.

“What's a charade?” five-year-old Soo Lee asked. She was still a little new at the games her older cousins played.

“It's a guessing game,” Benny answered. He was a year older than Soo Lee and loved all kinds of games, especially charades. “For candy charades, we pick a message printed on one of our candy hearts. Then we try and make everybody guess what it says. Only we can't use words, not even one, just funny faces and motions.”

“Oh, I get it,” Soo Lee said. “Henry's candy heart said,
Hug Me
. That's why he hugged me, right?”

“Right,” twelve-year-old Jessie said. “And Violet's candy heart said,
Be Mine
. That's why she pretended to sting us like a bee and pointed to herself.
Be Mine
. Now it's Benny's turn.”

“If he has any candy hearts left,” fourteen-year-old Henry said.

The Alden children loved a noisy game of charades. When Grandfather's friend Mrs. Winkles sent up boxes of candy message hearts from her factory in Pennsylvania, it was the first thing they'd thought of.

Benny dumped his candy hearts into a bowl. “Good thing Mrs. Winkles sent us lots more candy hearts. This box is practically empty.”

Mrs. McGregor looked up from the sweater she was knitting. “How can you have room for candy hearts after eating such a big piece of my coconut cake?”

Benny patted his stomach. “Don't worry, Mrs. McGregor. I always leave room for candy,” Benny said. “Okay, I'm ready.”

He picked up a heart and read the message to himself. A puzzled look passed over his face. He scrunched his eyebrows for a long time. Finally, he walked over to the doorway, where Watch's leash was hanging.

Watch raced over to Benny.

“Doggone!”
Henry yelled. “Is that what your candy heart says?”

Poor Watch waited. Benny still had the leash in his hand.

Benny pointed to Watch, then to the door.

“Out? Stay Out?”
Jessie guessed. “Never mind. That doesn't make sense. Candy hearts don't say things like that.”

Benny held up Watch's leash again and pointed to the door.

Watch began to whine. He didn't have to guess what Benny was doing — a leash meant a walk.

“Watch? Out?”
ten-year-old Violet cried. “Does your candy heart say,
Watch Out?”

Benny broke into a big grin. “That's it!” he cried, handing his candy heart to Violet to pass around. “Read it. See, it says,
Watch Out!”

Violet looked at the candy heart in surprise. Benny was right — it really did say,
Watch Out!
She passed it around to the rest of the children so they could see the odd message.

“That's a strange message to print on a candy heart,” Grandfather said. “It must be a mistake. I wonder if Mrs. Winkles knows about this.”

Benny poured the rest of his candy hearts onto the coffee table. He turned them over one by one. Now that he knew how to read, he liked to read everything, from street signs to cereal boxes to candy hearts. “Look. A few other hearts in this box have strange messages, too. Some of them say,
Trouble, Danger Ahead, Go Away, Beware, Warning
.”

“Remember the chocolate mice Mrs. Winkles sent?” Henry asked. “They didn't have any tails.”

Grandfather scratched his chin. “Yes, that was odd as well. I couldn't bring myself to tell Rose Winkles about those. I didn't want to upset her — and I thought the shipment might have just been damaged by accident. But these candy hearts seem to be quite a different matter.”

BOOK: Candy Factory Mystery
6.84Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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