Chapter Nineteen, "Things that go bump in the Night," a new Sherlock Holmes Baker Street Adventure is now posted.
"Things that go bump in the Night"
By John Pirillo
Mrs. Hudson and Harry strode up the quaint street that fronted Harlington Downs, a small village with a limited number of stores and lodges that acted as an intermediary stop off point for those interested in proceeding to the Henge, where King Arthur and Merlin were once rumored to be the focus of in legend and actuality.
"Do you really believe that Arthur, King Arthur, I mean, ever did something so humble as wove garments?" She mused outloud.
Harry thought about it, taking in a small garment shop as they passed, then pausing to look at a matronly woman who was staring at the setting sun, then smiled at him. He smiled back and gave her a gentle wave, then continued with Mrs. Hudson, who was amused at his curiosity.
"You do. Don't you?" She asked.
Harry nodded. "I have it upon the highest authority." He said very matter of factly.
She turned her ruddy cheeked face towards him, her eyes twinkling with merriment. "Oh and what high authority would that be? Professor Challenger?"
"No, actually a pair of men as close as brothers who operate out of France."
"Who might they be?" She asked, genuinely picqued by his statement.
"Messiurs Jules Verne and Herbert George Wells."
"Oh my!" She exclaimed. "I've heard of those two. Read of them and read stories by them."
"They're not stories." Harry enlightened her. "They're actually travelogues."
"Oh." She acknowledged in surprise. "How's that possible?"
"Martha. You know and I know now that there are infinite worlds, and infinite choices that run through them. Anything is possible. Absolutely anything."
She looked at a tired looking horse and driver and their buggy as it plodded past. The driver nodded to them and then yawned real big, making an apologetic smile as he hurriedly covered his mouth.
She smiled and waved at him and his weariness lifted several notches. He tapped his cap to her and smiled even wider.
"Watson would be mad with jealousy if he knew you had done that."
"Oh shoo on Watson, he's much too serious sometimes."
Harry laughed. "And that's being kind."
"Way too kind." She replied with a smile.
"So then, how have your friends managed to find out this information about King Arthur." She looked back at him, expecting him to deflect her into another direction, but instead.
"Oh, they played cards with him and helped him out of a few spots. With Merlin's help, of course."
"What!" She cried out in shock.
Several villagers gave her a suspicious look as they passed, talking quietly until they were far enough past, then looking back and shaking their heads.
"These people seem sensitive about some things." Harry observed.
"I wonder why?" She asked.
"No matter." He finally decided. "So Jules was the one who had suggested the two of them go back in time in the Master of the World..."
"The what of the world?"
"Oh. You wouldn't know about their personal vehicle. Tesla helped them create the time coils for it, but he never talks about it."
"He wouldn't. Unlike you, he's a very humble man."
Harry barked with laughter and Mrs. Hudson laughed lightly along with him.
"I can see why you've got old Watson all tied up in a knot the way you carry on. You wouldn't happen to have a sister, would you?" He inquired lightly.
She started to tell him, but he put a hand up. "Just kidding. I like my bacherloodhood, besides which I have my sights on another...more exotic personality."
Mrs. Hudson smiled. "Does she know that?"
"Believe it or not, despite all my public appearances, the numerous expeditions and adventures we've all been on, I'm really at heart a very shy man."
"Sometimes, I wish Watson were more so."
"I'd think with him so close to Holmes, that would rub off on him somewhat."
"You just keep on thinking that."
They paused before an odd shop. It was semi-lit inside.
"What a peculiar little shop." She mused, looking inside.
Harry suddenly stiffened. "Look away."
"What, but I..."
"Look away now. This very second!" Harry ordered.
She looked away, and he suddenly took her arm and led her across the moist street, causing them both to step in some rather unpleasant puddles and items of less savory substance.
She looked down at her shoes. "I knew I should never have worn my best dress shoes."
"Don't worry, Watson will get you another pair."
"Why not you? You have caused this!" She accused.
"Because I am not the suitor for your hand and it will give him a way of mending the feelings between you and he." Harry said, his eyes looking solemn as he spoke.
She looked down, but not at her shoes. "Sometimes, he's just so old fashioned. So unlike Lord Graystone's mistress."
"Well, after you've lived in the wild several dozen years, I imagine you'd be a bit less old fashioned as well."
Mrs. Hudson tittered. "I suppose I would."
They stopped on the other side and Harry turned them back the way they came.
"So why the sudden change of direction and..."
She gestured at her despoiled shoes.
"There is dark magic in that place. If you had stared much longer it would have been able to focus on you and read you."
"I think we now have a solid lead to pursue further."
"You think this is the shop that I once visited?"
"No. I think it is much, much worse."
Then a sudden draft blew across them from nowhere.
A great shadow fell across them for a moment.
Both shivered. They looked up, but nothing was in the darkening sky.
Harry noticed that the villagers were all suddenly rushing to get indoors.
"Run, Missus Hudson!" He urged.
"Run as if the very devil himself were about to arrive." He urged again.
"But why? She asked in dismay.
"Because he is!"
Music courtesy of http://www.dievantile.com/free-background-music/