Noah Finder and the Case of the Stolen Carpet
by Zoya Nojin
'Don't run in the house!' Noah's mum called as he hurried to answer the front door. 'And check before you open it!'
Noah rolled his eyes at her worrying.
'It's Tom!' a voice called. Noah opened the door to see his best friend hopping about, his eyes wild.
'Someone stole our flying carpet!' Tom blurted.
Noah frowned. 'I didn’t know you had a flying carpet.'
'We only figured out it could fly last night,' cried Tom. 'And this morning, it was gone! We need you!'
Noah nodded. 'Wait here.' He whipped inside to get his notebook and pen. This would be his biggest case yet – a missing flying carpet! He'd only solved minor problems before, like finding Mum's car keys.
When Noah reappeared, Tom said, 'Remember Dad went overseas last week and brought back loads of stuff?'
Noah nodded, picturing the strange statues and jars Tom had shown him.
'Dad bought a carpet too,' said Tom as they jogged to his house. 'Mum put it under the coffee table in the loungeroom. We were watching TV…'
'What time?' panted Noah, trying to write in his notebook.
'After dinner. Amy lay on the carpet with Fluffy and threw him in the air, yelling "Up to the ceiling with you!" And the carpet floated up! It took the coffee table, Amy and Fluffy with it. Fluffy jumped off, but Amy screamed and screamed!'
Noah forgot to write.
'Mum panicked, but Dad yelled "Amy – say, down to the ground with you!" She finally said it and the carpet slowly sank back down.'
'We decided what to do with it. Dad said he'd never have to use an airport again, Amy thought of tea parties in the air and I wanted to fly it to Winterland and toboggan from the mountaintop!'
'Cool!' They burst into Tom’s house and Noah remembered his notebook. 'How big was the carpet?'
'Car-size, but flat.'
Amy was slumped on the lounge, staring at the empty floor. Noah noticed the open window. 'Was anyone else besides your family about?'
Tom thought. 'We did hear rustling in the bushes outside.'
'We thought it was a possum,' said Amy.
They stared out the window at the flattened bushes. 'A giant possum or…a person?' Noah looked at Tom and they groaned together, 'James!' The worst snoop in the neighbourhood was constantly crouched under other people's windows.
Tom raced to the door. 'How dare he steal our carpet!'
'Wait! It wasn't him,' said Noah, hearing Tom's mum humming happily in the dining room.
They all stomped over and Noah gasped at the rich red carpet threaded with gold draped over the table. Tom's mum was sewing something on.
'You stole the carpet!' Tom accused her.
Guilt flushed her cheeks. 'No one's falling off this flying carpet and that's that!'
They all grinned at the sewn-on seatbelts. Tom asked Noah, 'How did you know?'
Noah shrugged, 'She sounded too happy. Believe me; I know how much mum's worry!'