"Heart of gold."
This was hell.
William tried one more time.
"Yes, on the surface, I agree. But underneath it all, deep down, he is really one of the sneakiest, most two-faced…"
No one was listening.
"Old Flipper." Ted shook his head in disbelief. "In a dinner jacket!"
The twelve year old was grinning like he understood what was going on.
"Why Flipper?" he asked.
William wanted to cry.
"You don't understand." He said.
"He thought he was a dolphin." Oakes said.
"He'd come to shore to save humanity," said Ted.
"The man is evil." William said.
"He claimed to be a dolphin?"
"Actually, he tried to keep it quiet. How did we find that out?"
"He's an evil man." William said.
"He cut the chain link fence for those demonstrators."
Oakes snapped his fingers.
"The toxic waste dump!"
"I knew it," William moaned. "the eco-Mafia."
Oakes eyes were glazed over. The Chief of police was back in the past, now—unreachable.
"Yeah,"he said, "Things weren't going well for me at home. If it hadn't been for that conversation with Flipper…"
"I don't believe this." William said. "I'm sure there were other times…"
"What about the power theft?" Ted suggested.
Finally, a ray of hope. William leapt on it, greedily.
"Yes," he said. "what about the power theft?"
Oakes was actually giggling.
"Some old uptight rich guy came in screaming one night…"
"Stealing power," William said, "Is not a small thing."
Oakes couldn't go on. Ted continued the story.
"Flipper rigged an extension cord from this guy's house so that some homeless people could use electric blankets on the beach."
"That was Dudley?"
Sam opened his mouth for the first time since they came into the station.
"That was your house, wasn't it, William?"
The Chief brought his giggle under control.