Starry Starfish was in his tide pool where I expected him to be--but he didn't seem to be his usual bright self--in fact he appeared distracted and even gloomy.
He saw me coming and waved weakly in greeting.
"Hello, Constable." he said, clearing his throat, "I think I know what brings you here this morning. Have a seat and lets talk."
This was so different from his usual bantering way, that I guessed at once that he had heard about the Crown of Thorns starfish's appearance in the coral garden.
"You are doubtless here concerning my cousin--the Crown of Thorns starfish." he said. "Bad news certainly travels fast! I am at my wit's end about this matter too!"
"You probably know, Constable, " he continued bleakly, "that my family has very little to do with the family of the Crown of Thorns. True, we are related, but that side of the family has always been in ill repute.
In fact, I had never even seen a Crown of Thorns in my entire life! I had absolutely no idea he was coming..."
"That's all right, my old friend." I immediately interjected, since I could easily see his emotion was getting the best of him. "No one is to blame for one's relations! We just have to deal with the good as well as the bad! The question is WHAT shall we DO?"