The Lottery Ticket
Once a young private detective: Constantin Ivanov was walking through the roads of Moscow. Constantin Ivanov was a tall brunette. He was 30 years old. His hair was straight and short. His clothes and shoes were always tidy and he was very neat. He had bushy eyebrows and he was unmarried. When he was passing the police station he saw a woman who was very familiar to him. She was about 29 years old. She had brown eyes like coffee and the same colour hair which was very curly like springs. She had big eyes and she was very attractive. Constantin was looking at her. Constantin knew who she was, it was his classmate Maria. When Maria saw Constantin she came up to him and said with a warm smile “Hello Constantin. I haven’t seen you for ages. How is your life?”
“Thanks Maria, fine. Have your childhood dream come true? Have you become an actress? Constantin inquired.
“I didn’t become an actress. I’m working in a bank now. What about you?” Maria asked
“I had been working as a police for five years and two years ago I became a private eye,” Constantin answered looking into Maria’s lovely eyes.
“Wow, a private eye. You know, I have a little problem, and maybe you can help me?” Maria asked.
“Sure. Let’s go to my office, and you will tell me everything about your problem there,” Constantin responded.
Maria and Constantine went to the office.
“So Maria, What is your problem?” Constantin asked
“I lost a lottery ticket which was a winning ticket. I won 3 million roubles,” Maria answered.
“Did anyone else know about your lottery ticket?” Constantin inquired.
“Only one man knew. His name is Alexei, and I don’t know anything else about him,” Maria responded.
“So if you didn’t know much about him, why did you tell him about your lottery ticket?” Constantin asked.
“One day I met Alexei and I invited him to my house. At home I accidently told him about my lottery ticket. Later I didn’t want to date him anymore. So I told him Bye Bye.” Maria said.
“Did Alexei see where you put the lottery ticket?” Constantin asked.
“Yes, he did. Oh, how dumb I am,” Maria answered.
“And do you know anything else about him?” Constantin asked waiting to hear the answer.
“Actually he told me that he worked in a restaurant. I took a photo of him for my collection,” Maria answered.
“Does anybody else have the key of your apartment?” Constantin inquired.
“No, only I do. Oh, actually my mom and dad have one, but they live very far from me,” Maria replied.
Constantin printed the photo of Alexei, and right on that day he started to look for Alexei. He drove to every single restaurant in Moscow; he showed the photo and asked if that person was working there. Constantin was very lucky that day. He found restaurant Alexei was working. He worked in a restaurant called “Arbat.”
The next day Constantin drove to Maria’s apartment. There, he asked Maria if anybody had come to her apartment the day, when the lottery ticket was stolen. Maria told him that a telephone repairman came to her house. She said that she hadn’t call him; he said that there was a problem with her phone, and he also said that he would repair the wires.
When Constantin was going out from Maria’s apartment, he saw a telephone wire and he decided to look at it carefully. He saw that the wire was covered with adhesive tape. Constantin cut the adhesive tape and saw that the wire was cut very accurately, and then it was covered with tape. Constantin thought that someone had cut the wire with scissors, and he thought that it was the telephone repairer.
“Did the telephone repairer enter the apartment?” Constantin asked Maria.
“Yes, he went inside to check the phone,” Maria answered.
“And where were the keys?” Constantin asked.
“The keys were always on the door, like there are now,” Maria answered pointing to the door.
“So the telephone repairer could easily get the mask of the keys,” Constantin said.
The next day Constantin drove to the restaurant “Arbat”, in which Alexei worked. When he saw Alexei leaving the restaurant, he followed him in his car. Alexei met one man and talked to him. Constantin took a photo of that man.
Right after that Constantin went to Maria to show that photo.
“Do you recognise the man on this photo?” Constantin asked while he was showing the photo to Maria.
“Oh, yes... This man on the photo is the telephone repairer,” Maria answered.
“Maybe he is not a telephone repairer at all. I should check those guys,” Constantin said while leaving.
Then Constantin decided to talk to Alexei very seriously. He drove to restaurant “Arbat” and waited for Alexei. When Alexei finished his work and went out of the restaurant, Constantin came up to him and showed the photo of Maria.
“Do you know this woman?” Constantin asked Alexei.
“It’s the first time I’ve seen her,” Alexei answered.
“Don’t lie Alexei! You do know this woman, and you were in her apartment.” Constantin said.
“Yes, I was, so...” Alexei said.
“I came to talk to you, because Maria lost the lottery ticket, and only you know about it,” Constantin said.
“She deserved it,” Alexei said accidently.
“So you did it, right?” Constantin asked.
“No. I didn’t” Alexei said angrily.
“But we found your fingerprints on Maria’s door. And if you want, I can call the police,” Constantin said.
“Ok, Ok. Look, she deserved it. In the morning she threw me out of the door. Yes I wanted to steal the ticket, but when I came, there was no ticket. Someone must have stolen it before me.” Alexei said.
“So you tried to steal it?” Constantine asked.
“Yes. But I told you, there was no ticket, and also, she actually stole that ticket. It is not hers.” Alexei responded.
They both said bye to each other, and Constantine went home.
The next day Constantin came to Maria, and he asked her where she had bought the ticket. Maria told him that she had bought the ticket near the train station.
After that, Constantie went to a place where you can buy lottery tickets from. Following much investigation, Constantin found out that Maria’s ticket \has been bought in the kiosk№7, and actually it was too far from the train station.
“Maybe Alexei was right. Maybe Maria really stole that ticket?” Constantin said to himself while going to Maria.
When Constantin came to Maria, he asked her if she had any relatives. Maria told that she had mom and dad, but they lived, very far from her. Constantin told that he wanted to speak to them and asked Maria to give him their address. Maria gave him their address, and asked Constantine not to tell them about the lottery ticket. She told that they had diseased hearts and they would have a heart attack from that.
Constantin drove to Maria’s mother and father’s house. He showed his detective license and they let him in. Maria’s mother was Margarita Petrovna Volkova, and Maria’s father was Peter Sergeevich Volkov. They sat down by the table and Constantine noticed that Margarita and Peter are very active, and it didn’t seem that they had diseased hearts.
Constantine found out that Maria came to them about two weeks ago, and that she was alone. That day, Margarita, Peter, Maria and their friend Svetlana Nikolayevna Drozdova were watching a movie. In addition he found out that Margarita also bought lottery tickets regulary. The last time, she bought a ticket was when with her friend/neighbor Svetlana Nikolayevna she went to get their pension. It was about two and a half weeks ago. Then Constantin asked Margarita to tell him the number of that ticket.
Margarita Petrovna searched and searched for the ticket, but she couldn’t find it anywhere. Then she took a writing pad and said “Constantin, I can’t find my lottery ticket anywhere, and actually Maria told me that I hadn’t won any money. I wrote down my ticket number here, on the writing pad. I wrote it right after I had bought the ticket.”
Margarita Petrovna told the ticket number to Constantin, and he put it down. The ticket number was 12031951.
Constantin noticed that Peter Sergeevich was very silent. He didn’t speak at all. It seemed like he was hiding something.
Then Constantin went to Maria.
Constantin came to Maria and asked her “Maria, what was the number of your lottery ticket?”
“One minute Constantin. I think I forgot to turn off the iron,” Maria said.
Constantin saw Maria going to the living room. Then he heard Maria telephoning someone. Maria had a very loud voice and Constantin heard everything. Maria was talking to her mom. Maria asked her mom to tell her lottery ticket number was. Maria said something else and then hung up. She came to Constantin and told her lottery ticket number. Her lottery ticket number was also 12031951! Constantin was shocked.
When he was driving to his office, he said to himself “Alexei told that Maria had stolen that ticket from someone. Now, Maria and Maria’s mother have the same ticket number. I think that Maria stole that ticket from her mother. But who stole the ticket from Maria herself? Maria told me that no one else knew about the ticket, it only could be someone who knew that Maria’s mother had the winning ticket. Margarita Petrovna told me that she had bought that ticket with her friend Svetlana Nikolayevna. But how and why would Svetlana Nikolayevna memorize the ticket number? I should check her.”
When Constantin arrived to his office, he sat in front of the computer and opened a special program for detectives, where you can find the basic information and the photos of all of the people. Constantin typed the name ‘Svetlana Nikolayevna Drozdova’ and he saw her photo and some information. He read some information and then something caught his eye: Svetlana Nikolayevna’s date of birth. Her date of birth was 12.03.1951. The same numbers as in Maria’s/Margarita Petrovna’s lottery ticket number.
“If Svetlana Nikolayevna’s date of birth is the same as Maria’s/Margarita Petrovna’s lottery ticket number, then she could easily remember the number of the lottery ticket. I should put a hidden camera in her house.
The next day Constantin decided to visit Svetlana Nikolayevna. He came to her apartment, showed his detective license and she let him in. They went into the living room sat by the table and Svetlana Nikolayevna asked him “So, what do you want to ask me Mr. Detective?”
“I came here, because Maria Volkova: your friend’s daughter had lost her lottery ticket. And I now know that she had stolen that ticket from her mother: Margarita Petrovna. Do you know anything about that ticket, or do you have an assumption of who could have stolen the lottery ticket?” Constantin asked.
“No, I don’t even have an idea. Would you like some tea or a cup of coffee?” Svetlana Nikolayevna asked.
“I would like some tea please,” Constantin responded.
“Ok. Wait a minute, I will bring it now,” she said.
She went to the kitchen, and Constantin had an excellent chance to put the hidden camera in the living room. He stood up and looked around the room. Then he decided to put the camera on a picture. Then Svetlana Nikolayevna came in, with two cups of tea. Constantine drank his tea, and thanked Svetlana Nikolayevna and left.
Constantin sat in his car and but he didn’t go anywhere, instead he put his laptop on his knees. He put on the program which was connected to the hidden cameras. After a few seconds he could see and hear what was happening in Svetlana Nikolayevna’s apartment. For a few minutes nothing happened, but then Constantin saw that Maria’s father Peter Sergeevich came to Svetlana Nikolayevna! Peter Sergeevich was holding a lottery ticket in his hands, and he said “Svetlana, it would be better if this lottery ticket stays with you. That day a private detective who was working for Maria, came to us. The lottery ticket would be safer with you, honey.”
“But Peter, that private detective also came to me a few minutes ago. He asked me if I knew anything about the lottery ticket. I told him that I didn’t know anything about it,” Svetlana said.
While Svetlana and Peter were talking, Constantin took his laptop and hurried to Svetlana Nikolayevna’s apartment. When Constantin rang the doorbell, Svetlana Nikolayevna looked in the peephole and saw that it was Constantin. Constantin looked in his laptop. From there he could see that Svetlana was very nervous. “This is that detective, hurry up to that cupboard, faster! No one should see us together!” Svetlana told Peter, while she was pushing him into the cupboard.” Then Constantin saw via his laptop that Svetlana put on her pajamas. Then she opened the door and said while she was yawning “Oh, sorry, I made you wait. I was sleeping.” Constantin went in, and he hurried to the living room where the cupboard was. Svetlana was very nervous. Constantin opened the cupboard without asking for permission. Peter was there.
“So where is the lottery ticket?” Constantin asked.
“Which lottery ticket? What are you talking about?” Svetlana cried.
Constantine put his hand in Peter’s pocket, and got out the lottery ticket. “So, how will you explain this?” Constantin said while holding the ticket.
“This is just my lottery ticket,” Svetlana answered.
“No, it is not yours. Look at the number, the number is 12031951. This is Maria’s/Margarita Petrovna’s ticket. Can you explain, how you got this ticket?” Constantin said.
“Ok, ok, but can you promise that it will be only between you, Peter and I?” Svetlana asked.
“We’ll see. Ok, start, I’m listening” Constantin said.
“Ok, but please don’t tell anyone,” Svetlana started. “When we were buying that ticket together with Margarita, I memorised the ticket number easily. Then, one day we were watching a movie in Margarita/Peter’s apartment. I went out of the room to drink some water, and saw how Maria was stealing Margarita Petrovna’s ticket. Then I decided not to tell anything to Margarita. After some weeks I went to internet, and saw that the winning lottery ticket was Margarita’s ticket. Then I remembered that Maria stole it. I told everything to Peter. Then we decided to steal that ticket from Maria. If we could have that ticket, we could marry and then live happily together, away from that Margarita.”
“And how did you know where to look for that ticket in Maria’s apartment?” Constantin asked Peter.
“Maria always puts papers inside of the books. It’s her childhood habit. I love Svetlana, and we wanted to marry. We really needed that lottery ticket,” Peter responded.
“And how did you get into Maria’s apartment?” Constantin inquired.
“I had the keys.” Peter said quietly.
“So who stole the ticket?” Constantin asked.
“I did it. When Maria was at work. I got the keys, and hurried to her apartment. Now, this is only between me, you and Svetlana, right?” Peter said.
“No! Now you should go and tell everything to Margarita Petrovna. Hurry up,” Constantin said.
“To Margarita? Never!” Svetlana said.
“If you don’t want to tell her, I will tell her,” Constantin said.
“Ok, we can finally tell the truth to Margarita, and you Peter, will finally divorce her. And we can marry eachother,” Margarita said.
They all went to Margarita Petrovna’s/Peter’s apartment. When they came there they saw Maria sitting and talking to her mother.
“Oh, it’s great that you are here, Maria. You have some news to hear. Can I start?” Constantin said.
“No Constantin. Let me start it. Ok mommy, I should explain you everything. Mom, do you remember that lottery ticket that you had bought? I told you that it was losing ticket, but actually it was winning. I knew that it was a winning ticket, and I stole it from you. Then when someone else stole it from me, I understood everything. I was very dumb. And it was very good that someone else had stolen it from me. I deserved it. Mommy, will you forgive me?” Maria said in a very sweet way.
“Maria, I didn’t think that you would ever do this. But if you understood you fault, it’s ok. I forgive you. So where is my ticket now?” Margarita said.
“Now, it’s my time to explain you everything, Margarita,” Svetlana started. “Do you remember that day, when we all watched a movie? That day, I saw Maria stealing the ticket, but I decided not to tell you anything. I thought that Maria would tell you everything herself. The next day, I went to internet and found out that your ticket was the winning one. Then I remembered that Maria stole that ticket. Now Margarita, promise me that you will stay still.”
“Ok, what do you want to say?” Margarita said.
“Margarita, I love your husband, and he loves me too. He doesn’t love you, but he couldn’t tell that to you. Now Margarita, we told you the truth. We wanted to marry each other, and to buy an apartment away from you, but we didn’t have enough money. Then when I knew that Maria had the winning lottery ticket, we decided to steal that ticket from her. And also Peter had the keys from Maria’s apartment,” Svetlana said.
“And I thought that you were my friend Svetlana. You actually are a ----” Margarita was interrupted.
“Hey girls, don’t fight. Margarita, I love Svetlana, and I will live with her,” Peter said emphatically.
Svetlana and Peter gave the lottery ticket back to Margarita. And Margarita said “Svetlana, I donate my Peter to you. I don’t need him anymore, he is useless. You can have him, because now, I have 3 million roubles,” Margarita said happily while looking at her lottery ticket.
“What kind of a family this is. Daughter steals the ticket from her own mother. Father has a mistress. Then father steals the ticket from his own daughter to divorce his wife and marry his mistress,” Constantin said.
Now, three months have passed and Peter lives in Svetlana’s apartment. They married and they live happily. Margarita has her 3 million rubles and she bought a new apartment in a small village. She met a man called Gregory, and she fell in love with him, they are getting ready for a wedding. Constantine and Maria now date each other.