Dropping the textbook-loaded backpack on my bedroom floor, I groaned. Eighth grade was a lot harder than seventh, and the teachers didn't even care how much stuff they threw at us. Didn't they know we had more than one class?
Sounds of pounding fists on my door yanked me away from my moment of self-pity.
Kimo burst in, squealing like a hungry piglet.
"Leilani, you have to help!"
I leapt to my feet. "What's wrong? Mom okay?"
Kimo nodded, his face red and eyes bulging.
I gritted my teeth and sighed. My irritating little brother was acting all crazy over nothing. "Then get out of my room."
He ignored my command and shot toward me. "It's my ukulele class. You have to come help us."
"I don't play the uke."
Kimo narrowed his eyes and set his jaw tight. "I know that, Leilani. But you're a detective and we need your help at the music school."
"Oooooooo!" I grinned and made wiggly motions with my fingers. "Someone lose their music book or something?"
He sucked in a huge breath and bounced onto my bed.
The little twerp was pushing his luck. "You are so in trouble, dorko."
He shook his head. "It's not something stupid. It's real important."
I clamped my arms across my chest and leveled my eyes with his. "Okay. This better not be some lame idea of yours."
"There's a big mystery at the music school. Some kids have been getting bad notes left on their stands or inside their cases. And I bet it's gonna happen again today."
"Bad like threatening?"
"Yup. They say stuff like, 'This is a warning. Don't come back here.'"
"Did you tell your teacher?"
Kimo's eyes grew into pancake-sized circles. "She got one too. And she was super upset. Then one of the moms yelled at Mrs. Lee because her kid got a bad note."
"No one has any idea why someone's doing this?"
Cocking my head, I puckered my lips. "Don't think there's anything I can do except maybe come watch your class one day and snoop around."
"That won't help." Kimo locked his arms across his chest and frowned.
"Of course it would. I might catch the culprit in the act."
"Everyone would know what you're doing, Leilani. It won't work." His eyes brightened as a sly grin wormed its way across his face.
A shiver flowed through my neck and shoulders. Whatever Kimo had in mind, I knew I wouldn't like it.