Brad shook his head. "All I can tell you is that whoever it was was wearing a dark green hat and a green coat like the professor's. And considering the way he ran behind the hut, I'd say he didn't want to be seen."
"Well, it wasn't Professor Trainey," Ned insisted. "And that's that."
Reluctantly, Nancy told them about finding the professor's Phi Beta Kappa key.
Ned scowled. "There's bound to be an ex- planation. Did you ask him about it?"
"Yes," Nancy told him. "He said he noticed he lost it a few days ago."
"Well, there you are," Ned concluded. "It was probably on the floor all this time."
Nancy glanced at Ned, who looked upset.
She decided to drop the subject for a while.
Turning back to Brad, she asked, "Can you think of any reason why anyone would want to hurt you?"
"When I noticed that the traps were missing, the others divided up my ch.o.r.es so I could look into it. Maybe my investigation bothered somebody," Brad suggested.
Nancy nodded thoughtfully. "Did you dis- cover anything?"
Before Brad could answer, a nurse came bustling in. Nancy could almost hear the starch rustling in her white uniform.
"Sorry, folks. Visiting hours are over." She took Brad's wrist between her fingers and checked her watch.
The group said their goodbyes. As they left, Nancy decided to return the next day to ques- tion Brad further.
On the way back, Ned sat silently beside Nancy. .She could tell he was thinking about the professor. Jack and Bess kept up a steady stream of conversation in the backseat, and Nancy was glad of it.
"I have an idea," Jack said as Nancy turned onto the dirt road leading to the campsite.
"There's a new little cafe with disco music in West Yellowstone. I know Ned has to rest this evening, but we could go dancing."
"That sounds great," Bess replied.
"Thanks, but I'll pa.s.s," Nancy said. "You guys go without me."
"Sure you don't mind?" Bess asked.
Nancy shook her head.
When she parked the car. Jack climbed out, then put his head in through the window. "I'll come by the hotel around eight, okay?" he said to Bess. "If you change your mind, you can still join us," he added to Nancy.
"Oh, wait," Bess called, getting out and walking up the path after Jack. "What kind of place is this? I need to know what to wear."
Jack laughed and put his arm around Bess's shoulders. The two of them bent their heads together and launched into an animated con- versation.
Nancy looked over at Ned. He was sitting very stiffly, staring straight ahead. "Are you feeling all right?" she asked.
"I'm fine," he said in a tense voice. But then he added, "There's no way Dan Trainey tam- pered with that stove. Nancy."
Nancy was silent, and Ned guessed the rea- son. "You're not listening to me, are you?"
"I'm listening," Nancy said. "But I have to check him out, and what B
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