The police officer picked up the skull with gloved hands, turning it enough so that he could examine the interior. "You're correct, sir," he said, speaking to Micah. "There is definitely dirt still clinging to the inside." Turning to the others he asked, "How many people would have handled this besides you, Mr. Vilaró?"
"Good question," Kirk replied. "Whichever prop person put it there for starters, right Micah?" Micah nodded. "And, I suppose anyone else who was around today, though why they would have is the question."
Chandler added, "The two men playing the gravediggers could have. Probably did actually."
The officer almost smiled. "Maybe I should ask who wouldn't have handled this. I guess we'll fingerprint everyone on the premises and go from there." He carefully bagged the skull, saying as he did, "I suspect it's just someone playing a prank, thinking it would be cute to try to scare you, Mr. Vilaró."
"Then he failed, because he didn't scare me, though it did throw me a bit. If he wanted the full effect he should have waited 'til opening night."
With a nod, the officer asked Chandler if he'd gather the cast together so he and his partner could get fingerprints. Then they'd deal with everyone else in the building.
* * * *
When a police officer appeared in the doorway of the costume shop, Ross' first thought was that for some reason security had called them in about whoever had been messing around there after hours. So that was the first thing he asked the officer. The man shook his head, requesting that Ross to explain.
Once he'd finished, Ross of course asked why he was there. He frowned as he listened, asking the office when he was done, "Could it be the same person doing this?"
"It certainly makes sense to think so," the man replied as he got ready to fingerprint Ross and his crew.
When he'd left, fifteen minutes later, Beth came over to Ross, asking softly enough that the others couldn't overhear, "Do you think this is aimed at the two of you for some reason?"
Ross looked at her in surprise, about to reply to the negative, and then paused as he thought about the question. "Interesting idea," he replied after a moment, "Although I don't see why anyone would have it in for us, even in a joking way."
"Jealousy?" She smiled slightly. "Maybe I read too many romance novels but this is the kind of thing the bad guy would do to try to mess with your heads."
"Then he's SOL because we'd be more likely to pull together than split up."
"I know that, but some people live in hope and have no brains to back it up. At least in the novels. I guess in real life it was probably all a coincidence."
"I'm sure it was. Someone thinking they're being cute is all. It's almost too bad Chandler called the cops. If we had ignored what happened, whoever is doing this would probably see it wasn't worth continuing."
"Or they'd up the ante," Beth countered before going back to work.
"God I hope not," Ross muttered. "I've got too much to do as it is, without worrying about some nutcase."