Phooey and the Counterfeiters

by Arnold Nelson

    One day while Phooey was at school, at recess. His friend Steve came up to him. Steve said I have to talk to you in private. So they walked a little ways from the rest of the kids.

    What's up Steve? Phooey said. Steve said you know that empty house across the street from me? Something strange is happening over there. Every night late at night I see lights on. I think we should check it out. Phooey said What if I spend Friday night at your house. Then we can check it out after your parents are asleep. Steve said ok, that sounds good

     So they asked their mothers and both mothers said ok. It was not uncommon for the boys to spend the night together at one or the others house. Friday night came and Phooey when to Steve's house with his things. They went into Steve's bedroom and both tried to take a nap because they knew it would be a long night. Steve set the alarm for midnight.

    Then the boys went down to dinner. After dinner the boys went right back to Steve's room. They both went to sleep about 9 and at midnight the alarm went off. They both got up quick and went to the window. See I told you the lights are on in the empty house and when I check in the mornings there is no sign that anyone was there.

    Phooey said lets go. They both went out through the window. They started up the driveway of the vacant house there was a big Cadillac sitting in the drive. Phooey wrote down the license. They started carefully looking around the outside but saw nothing. They went around the back and saw a doggie door in the back door. Phooey said here,s our way in.

    They both crawled through the doggie door. and started looking around.. All of a sudden someone grabbed both kids and picked the up. What are you doing in here He said. Then both kids kicked at hard as they could and each kicked a shin. The man fell down with a bang. Both kids started to run as fast as the could. When the got to the door it opened and another man was there. He grabbed both kids and had one kid under each arm.

    He said what is going on here? All this noise will wake the neighbors. The first man said I found these kids snooping and I was going to tie them up when they both kicked me. The second man said I will tie these kids up, the boss wants to talk with you. So he took the kids in a back room and found two chairs and told the boys to sit. he said if they tried any funny stuff he would hurt them. So they sat quietly. The man found some rope and tied them up. As soon as the man left the room Phooey lifted up his hands. Steve whispered Wow! how did you do that Phooey whispered An old magic trick a friend taught me. Steve whisper you will have to teach that to me someday.

     Phooey said let's get out of here fast as he finished untying himself and then untied Peter. They went to the window it was stuck. Find something we can pry with Phooey said They finally came up with an old screwdriver and they were able to get the window opened with it. They both went out and ran back to Steve's house and back into Steve's bedroom. They were both scared! The next day Phooey said to Steve We have to go back over there and find out what is going on. You said they all leave early in the morning, so it should be safe enough. So Phooey and Steve headed back over there. There were no cars anywhere. They went back in the window they left through last night. They started searching the house.

      When they went downstairs into the basement. They saw a printing press sitting on a big table. There were stacks of paper next to the press. Steve said that paper is the same color as money. Phooey said That's it they are making counterfeit money. Steve said What's that. Phooey said it is fake money only the government can make real money. When any one else does it is call counterfeit and it is no good. Steve said It looks good Phooey say yes that is the problem but it is worthless and anyone caught with it can go to jail

    Phooey said We need to find some of the money they already printed and show it to the police chief. then the police chief can stop them. They looked around some more and found a closet when they opened it they found eight boxes. one was empty and seven were full of $20 bills. All the money was strapped in packs of 100 bills. Steve said Whew! I didn't know there was that much money in a world.

    Phooey reach below the top strap and picked up a strap and pulled 2 bills out of it. the covered the strap again with the top strap. Phooey said more evidence for the chief. Then he told Steve to grab one of the sheets and fold it up and stick it under his shirt. Phooey said let's get out of here I don't like this place. So they both left in a hurry. and they went straight to the police station and asked to talk to the chief.

     Phooey said we have something to show the chief and no one else. It is very important. Finally they were escorted into the chiefs office. The chief said what is it that you can only show me. Phooey Pulled out the 2 twenties and Steve pulled out the sheet and they put them on the desk. The chief looked over the money and the paper and picked up the intercom and told his secretary he wanted no interruptions the rest of the day. Then he looked at the boys and said where did you get these? Does anyone know you have them?

   Steve said Some bad guys are making money across the street from me The Chief said Wait no sense in telling the story twice. I have to call the FBI and when they get here you can tell all of us at the same time. Phooey said What is the FBI? The Chief said It stands for Federal Bureau of Investigations, It is like the United States Police Department. When a case is too big for our police department we have to call them, and this is way to big for us. Then the chief picked up the phone and called. They said they would have someone there within an hour.

     The chief said we have to wait a little while before they get here. Are you hungry? The boys both said yes. So he told his secretary to send someone for hamburgers and colas for the three of them. Phooey said Can I have root beer please. Chief smiled and said make that one root beer and two colas.

     Shortly after they finished eating the FBI agents arrived the boys told their story. The agents said this is very dangerous anyone else no about this The boys assured them only the people in the office knew. The agents said one of us will stay with the boys until this is over. Agent Jones will take them to Steve's house and will stay with them there. We will send some agents to the house and stake it out until the counterfeiters return.

    So the boys went home with the agent. The agent told Steve's mother what the boys had found and told her not to say a word to anyone until the gang was arrested. Another agent went to Phooey's house and told his mother the same thing so she would not worry. The boys were looking out the windows when three cars and a van pulled up across the street and the agents went in and searched the house and came out later with all the evidence.

    Then the truck left and they hid the cars, all the agents hid, some outside and some inside. They had to wait until the counterfeiters returned When the counterfeiters came back the FBI arrested the whole gang. Some agents stayed around just in case anyone else came. The agent stayed with the boys until morning then he left.

    There was a big trial and Phooey and Steve had to testify. After the trial the counterfeiters were put away for a long time. Phooey and Steve got a big reward and put it towards their college fund.

    This story is made up. Please do not try anything like this at home. It could be very dangerous. If you see anything strange in your neighborhood please call the police and let them investigate. They are trained for it you are not.

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