Saturday 21 June 2014

Mrs. Eaton's Jewels

     "Hello Marie," Mrs Eaton called as she entered the upscale jewellers, Halloways.  "May I have a word?"

     Marie walked over to the sales counter to ask, "And what can I do for you today, Mrs Eaton?"

     "My insurance broker called last week.  Apparently, I need some appraisals updated.  You can arrange that, right?"

     "Of course."

     Mrs Eaton pulled three velvet pouches from her handbag.  The smaller two contained rings.  The first, a very large diamond and the second, a sapphire surrounded by diamonds.  The large pouch held the most valuable piece, a ruby and diamond necklace.

     After examining the jewelry, Marie looked up at her client.  "These are lovely, Mrs Eaton.  The appraisals are for riders on your insurance?"

     Mrs Eaton nodded.

     "As you know," Marie continued, "since Mr Halloway's retirement two years ago, we've been sending jewelry out to an independent appraiser.  They're very busy right now and it may take up to four weeks.  Is that a problem?"

     "My that's a long time."

     "I know," Marie smiled apologetically.  "But these things can't be helped."

     "Then four weeks is what it will have to be," Mrs Eaton sighed.  She waited while Marie completed the necessary paperwork and then watched as the jewelry was locked in a drawer below the cash register.

     Marie reminded Mrs Eaton that she would call as soon as the appraisals were completed and then waved goodbye as the older lady left Halloways.


     That evening, Marie was still smiling as she opened the locked drawer.  Alone in the store, she had been left to check the books and prepare any outgoing material for the courier pick-up the next morning.

     Mrs Eaton's jewels were beautiful and more importantly, very valuable.  Marie estimated their worth to be at least fifty thousand dollars.  It was the perfect opportunity to cash in on all the hard work she had done in the past two years.  Mrs Eaton wouldn't mind her 'borrowing' the jewelry for a week or two.  Mrs Eaton would never know.

     Marie placed both the paperwork and the jewels in her own purse.  She then phoned one of the assistant sales clerks and asked if they would be willing to cover for her the next afternoon, telling the girl she had forgotten about a doctor's appointment.

     The next morning, Marie arrived at work as usual and was there when the courier arrived for his daily pick-up.  Several items went out but Mrs Eaton's jewels were not among them.

     That afternoon, Marie drove the hundred kilometres to Middletown.  She found a parking spot three blocks away from Bergman Jewellers and walked the rest of the way.  "Hello Mr Bergman," she called as she entered the store.

     "Dr Smith," Mr Bergman returned.  "Taking the day off?"

     "Just the afternoon," Marie laughed. "I need to have some more jewelry appraised and I wanted to bring the pieces in to you, personally."

     "They're for riders on your insurance again?" he asked.

     "Yes," Marie answered.

     Mr Bergman examined the pieces carefully.  "What a beautiful necklace.  It must be one of a kind."

     "It is.  It has been in the family for years."

     "I'll need a few days to complete the appraisals," stated Mr Bergman.  "They'll be ready a week from today."

     Marie enquired, "You'll do the work yourself?  As usual?"

     "Of course."

     "Perfect," Marie said with a smile.


     The following week, Marie arranged to have the day off so that she could pick up the jewelry and appraisals from Bergman Jewellers.  Once again, she drove into Middletown.  The appraisals were paid for, the jewelry was collected and all were popped into her bag.

     When Marie arrived home, she tore into the package containing the appraisals.  Looking at the dollar amounts, she whistled.  Twenty thousand for the diamond ring, twelve thousand for the sapphire and the necklace was valued at a whopping thirty-five thousand dollars.  This was better than she had imagined.

     Marie immediately called her insurance agent.  She would need riders on her insurance to cover an additional sixty-seven thousand dollars worth of jewelry.  It would be expensive but well worth it. Besides, she'd only be paying the additional premiums for a few weeks.  Marie told her insurer she had purchased the pieces at an estate sale.  "They were a steal," she said.  "I'll mail you copies of the appraisals first thing tomorrow."

     The next day, Marie met the courier for his regular pick-up at Halloways.  This time, Mrs Eaton's jewelry was included along with the original paperwork naming her as the owner.  No one would be any the wiser as to what Marie had done.

     Marie started to make plans for the break-in.  In a few weeks, her apartment would be burglarised.  The thieves would know exactly what they were after.  They would steal all of Marie's best jewels.  Luckily, everything was well-insured.  Of course, the jewelry would never be found and she would collect more than two hundred thousand dollars from the insurance company.  After giving her notice to Halloways, Marie would move to another city in another state.  Using a different name, the game would begin once more, just as it had several times before.


     Marie didn't suspect a thing when the police arrived at Halloways a few days later.  It wasn't until one of the officers asked to speak with Doctor Smith, that she became nervous.

     "I understand you know a Mr Bergman," the officer said.

     Marie swallowed hard.

     "Marie Smith, you're under arrest for insurance fraud.  You have the right..." and the officer droned on.

     Marie hadn't realised that the ruby and diamond necklace had been custom made, locally.  It had been beautifully crafted by Al Bergman, of Bergman Jewellers, twenty years before.  Mr Bergman never forgot a piece and recognised it immediately.  After confirming that Mrs Eaton still owned the necklace and was not related to anyone named Dr Smith, he called the police.  Playing along, he gave the authorities time to complete their investigation.  An investigation which led them straight to one Marie Smith.


  1. Well hello Mrs. Peep! I thought I would drop by and say a hello. I have just came from your kitties blog of course, and wanted to see what all the fuss was about. Now get to writing!!! BOL!!! Have a great weekend! I am subscribing!
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    1. Hear that Peepers? This is good news, for sure. purrs


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