The Story Hall
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The Story Hall

The Irene Adler Trilogy

Actually there are 5 volumes. The first one was The Case Book of Irene Adler. They are all available on Amazon, in e-form as well as in print. They (the e-form) are often offered free.

The Case Book of Irene Adler

Here is the Prologue from Case Book:

PROLOGUE

Whilst cleaning Mr Holmes’ study, I stumbled on the piece below, reproduced here in full, and got the idea to write my own casebook. Mr Reynolds had often suggested that I do so, and the money would be more than welcome, as I have responsibilities. The fact that Dr Watson, in his misguided loyalty to Sherlock Holmes, chose to withhold certain facts from his reading public was an added incentive; sadly he also sometimes ever so slightly filtered away anything he thought likely to diminish his hero. Unless I have been remiss in my reading of the Holmes canon, the words below have never appeared in the chronicler’s account. In my admiration for the great detective, I am third to none — I do bow to the good doctor though. This was written on one single sheet of quarto in his characteristic scrawl:

I have often worried about his pallid complexion and, after a lot of preaching, I managed to persuade Holmes to take some exercise; for a while we got into the habit of catching the tram to Westminster once a week, and there we would walk briskly for just over an hour. One day as we were engaged in this fruitful occupation in the Victoria Embankment Gardens, only recently completed by my friend Mr Bazalgette, we saw a handsome well-dressed lady accompanied by a boy who might have been nine or ten walking towards us. The boy had the most unusual limp; he put his left foot forward in the normal manner but when it came to his right foot, he raised it slightly, moved it in an arc of a circle before putting it down again, dipping to his right as if this foot had gone down a cavity, before dragging it up again. Following what my friend and mentor had taught me over the years, I watched the movement more closely until I discovered that the sole of the boy’s foot did not point forward but sideways to the right, which was what made him move in this peculiar manner. I gave Holmes a nudge and asked him in a whisper if he had perceived this.

‘Yes, Watson, I have. And although I have never seen the boy, I can tell you that he celebrated his birthday last week, on the eleventh to be more precise.’

‘My dear fellow, how can anybody deduce that from a limp.’

‘I daresay I can tell you even more. He is called David, his father is a draper, the lady with him, his mother, was born in Pennsylvania and they were married in Yorkminster Cathedral.’

I stared at my companion, unsure as to whether he was not playing a joke on me.

‘And to put you out of your misery, my dear fellow, I will tell you how I know, then we can check with the little chap himself: As you know, I have made an extensive study of physical defects, as they help in my detective work. For this purpose, I attended a lecture at the Royal College of Surgeons only last year, where the eminent orthopedic surgeon Mr Archibald McLeod was expounding on a unique case which he treated a few years ago. The boy David was born with his right foot pointing the opposite way, which would have made it impossible for the little blighter to walk at all. McLeod was forced to carry out a landmark operation on the young patient, and succeeded in readjusting the foot, but fixing it an right angles to its normal position was the best that he could achieve, which at least permitted the boy to walk, albeit with the bad limp that we have just witnessed; the doctor however, decided that the risk involved was too high and resolved that he would not carry out another such an operation until some fresh techniques were developed. At that lecture I was able to meet and talk to the parents of David who happily recounted to me their story.’

As usual his explanations made everything seem pretty hackneyed, but as we were drawing level with mother and child, we stopped and bowed, indicating that we wished to speak if the lady was agreeable; she must have recognised Holmes and she stopped.

‘Tell me, my young fellow, I just told my friend here that you celebrated your birthday last week, that you are called David and that your mother here was born in Pennsylvania; can you confirm this for my friend here?’ The little boy looked at him, then at me, on whom he finally settled his gaze.

‘That’s absolutely correct, Dr Watson,’ at which, my esteemed friend gave him a baffled look.

‘It’s quite elementary, Mr Holmes.

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San Cassimally

San Cassimally

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Prizewinning playwright. Mathematician. Teacher. Professional Siesta addict.