Monday, 1 August 2011

The Curious Case of the Swollen Organ, part 4 (of 5).

The continuation of the continuing saga continues continuing...

“My dear Mrs Haversham”, Holmes said coolly, “any creature is easy to obtain in London if one knows where to look and who to ask. Why, I could secure for you an Indian elephant by the end of the week if you so desired.”
"But what about me?" Mr Haversham spluttered. "You say I've been poisoned, is there any cure?" He gesticulated wildly as he spoke. Holmes regarded him patiently, waiting for him to finish.
"Mr Haversham, worry not. The poison is but a very mild one. Its effects should wear off presently."
"Pendleforth really had thought of everything" I observed.
"Almost" Holmes exclaimed. "Should Mr Haversham had paid what he owed, Pendleforth could simply have called over on some pretence and removed the erstwhile intruder without issue. He even went so far as to ensure the window was left open, allowing the butterfly to escape. Quite ingenious. But what he hadn't thought of was London's greatest sleuth and his languor of an assistant! Now, onwards, to Pendleforth's abode!"
Holmes trotted towards the door, but Mr Haversham leapt in his way, a foolish act if ever there was one.
"Now see here, Holmes! You think you can just waltz in here, tie a fancy bow around things, then bugger orf without so much as a by your leave? Well, I'm afraid you're very much mistaken sir!"
Holmes stepped back, clearly impressed by this man's audacity, although he didn't show it.
"What would you have me do, Mr Haversham?" he asked.
At this, Haversham blew up like a great balloon, red with anger. His moustaches bristled, and he clenched his teeth so hard I feared they might shatter.
"What would I have you do?" he almost screamed. "I'd have you arrest that Pendleforth villain for attempted murder, as well as forcing him to pay out generous reparations into the bargain."
Holmes smiled thinly and shook his head. This set Haversham off once more, and he began moving about the room like an agitated clockwork toy.
"Firstly, the poison he gave you was only a mild one at most, as I've already tried explaining to you. Hardly attempted murder. Secondly, as for reparations, you're the one who owes him money, and I'd pay up if I were you. In all honesty, my hat is well and truly off to such a cunning individual."
At this revelation, Haversham almost collapsed in abject fury, but just about managed to regain some sort of composure.
"I knew it, you're in league with this treacherous scoundrel" he howled, pointing at Holmes with a trembling finger. "Well, you picked the wrong fellow to try and con, let me tell you. I used to be boxing champion at Cambridge back in the day, and I dare say I've still got a few moves left in me. Come on now, put up your dukes."
Mrs Haversham, who had up until now been watching the tense scene unfold before her with some distress, finally fainted with a sigh onto the ornate divan behind her. Haversham meanwhile, threw off his jacket, and began bobbing and weaving about the room, punching the air. Holmes simply stood still in the centre of the room, watching this ridiculous figure dance a fool's jig around him.

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