“What am I going to do with this entry, Sir,” moaned accountant Mortimer Squigg scratching the few hairs left on his bald head as his boss, Sir Algoquin Marshwiggin, entered his office, “we need it to complete the annual audit by tomorrow morning, or we shall incur a hefty fine from the Land Revenue Service.”
“What’s wrong with the entry, Mr. Squigg?” croaked Sir Algoquin Marshwiggin with a worried expression on his face.
“Someone spilled ink on the page and three digits have been blotted out, as well as the item price,” said Mortimer Squigg, wincing as he looked at the page so wantonly invaded by tiny ink blots.
“I say, what part of the entry can be read, Mr. Squigg,” demanded Sir Algoquin Marshwiggin.
“Sir, the only part somewhat legible is an amount of £*85*.6* paid for 264 packages of frozen haddock. The unit price is totally blacked out,” whimpered Mortimer Squigg with horror.
“Who is the bloody idiot guilty of such stupidity,” shrieked Sir Algoquin Marshwiggin, “we could be ruined if we are imposed another fine by the Land Revenue Service.”
“Well, ah… Sir, it was you, Sir, when you were, ah… making a very important point at the Friday morning staff meeting last week,” said Mortimer Squigg timidly, shrinking from a possible backlash.
“Poppycock and balderdash, how could that have occurred,” bellowed Sir Algoquin Marshwiggin with an ominous sound to his voice, smacking his swagger stick on the desk, paper flying.
“Well, Sir, you suddenly and forcefully swung your arm in a wide arc holding your new fountain pen between your fingers to make an important point, and a streak of black ink spurted out of the pen flying in a perfect curve, splatting onto the open page of the ledger I was carefully inspecting,” related Mortimer Squigg half triumphantly.
“Humbug, you’d better figure out what the missing amount is by morning, Mr. Squigg, or you can consider yourself dismissed for incompetence,” roared Sir Algoquin Marshwiggin and stamped his way out of the office, slamming the door.
Can you help the poor and unfortunate accountant Mortimer Squigg work out the missing entry amount and the item price for the frozen haddock packages so he won’t get the sack in the morning?