Thursday, November 23, 2017

The Sherlock Holmes Theory

I haven't posted here in a while. I'm either too lazy or too busy. My current work, the third in my mystery series is taking whatever time I have between everything else.

But I did promise to take a portion of this book to post here. But first a brief explanation and set-up here.

I've become a fan of Sherlock Holmes, and my other posts in Lorelei's Writing Journal, I've posted about this very thing. I realized there was a 3-year span of no stories coming from Conan Doyle about Holmes, and that he had actually killed Sherlock off, but had to bring him back. He didn't get into his hiatus much, and everyone accepted this as Sherlock's memory loss, or as some refer to it as the Great Hiatus. This character was such a big hit in England, and elsewhere that Doyle had to continue with the story. However, he never wrote what happened in between.

Since my third Lainey Quilholt book Until We Murder Again is set in a writer's retreat where various writers of mystery have come together for a week long event of writing and round robins, I eventually had to decide what each of them wrote. There's a hard-boiled detective writer, for instance, there's one that's more into suspense/horror side of murder mysteries, one who writes the classic whodunit and another who does the cozy. My MC, Lainey, is writing a true-to-life story (this is the first book Party to a Murder.) And it is her first serious attempts writing.

Another writer is a Sherlock Holmes fan (yeah, you had to figure that was going somewhere, didn't you?). His name is Wesley Powell. I'd promised to share with you a bit of what he wrote. He is writing what he calls The Lost Manuscript of Sherlock Holmes. It opens where Sherlock has just grappled with Moriarty, and this was where the author, Conan Doyle left it, that he along with the villain went over the cliff into the Reichenbach Falls. But later on, it is revealed Sherlock actually survived, but didn't want anyone to know, because he knew that Moriarty's henchmen would be looking for him in order to kill him.

This is a portion of what I've written for this book:

Chapter 1
When Moriarty fell to his death that fateful day into the Reichenbach Falls of Switzerland, after I fought him to what should have been certain death for the both of us, I had to compose myself, surprised that I remained on the cliff and he had plunged into the churning waters over eight hundred meters down. I somehow managed to keep my balance and since he was fighting dirty, I also took this tact and gouged his eyes. I have to presume it was the younger, more agile man pitted against the older Moriarty, who was more set in his sedentary ways, giving the orders. While I, on the other hand, am an adept bare-knuckle fighter and know a bit of baritsu, which has helped me on occasion. Fighting for my life, I had to resort to variations on backstreet fighting.
Pressed against the cliff side, I looked around myself ascertaining I was quite alone. Already a thought occurred to me that Moriarty would have brought along at least one of his henchmen, and he would come here to make sure I had not survived his attack. What they would find is that I had survived and Moriarty had perished. A plot was already developing in my brain, that was at the same time terrifying and devious enough that I knew it should work, as long as I acted quickly. One part of me thought I dare not do it. But the other part—my reasoning part said it was the only way I would survive.
There was only one way for my certain survival and that was to allow everyone to believe I had died along with Moriarty, went over the cliff into the depths, fallen to my doom on the rocks below and washed away my body by the mighty rush of water.
I moved swiftly away, knowing Watson and others would soon be looking for me. The earth abruptly went vertical, and finding hand- and foot-holds on the rocks and boulders, I scrambled my way up to a flat area, where I could watch from above, unseen.
I waited. In a little while Watson appeared first. He found the spot where I'd left my stick and the pages I'd neatly written for him to find, in which I told him I'd known the note given to him had been bogus, intended to separate us. I watched him read and come to realization as to what had become of me. Watson called out for me, went to the edge and looked down hopefully. From there one could not see anything but the mighty falls churning all the way down a thousand feet. He continued to call when three men in [uniforms] also came to the spot. They looked around some more for some clue as to whether or not I had fallen to my doom. Of course, they would all come up with the only possible answer: I was gone.
I must admit my heart gave a lurch at first sighting Watson, watching him desperately call out for me. I nearly did return a yell, but stopped myself, realizing the folly. To allow anyone, even my most trusted friend to know I was alive would ruin the possibility of my own continued survival.
I remained hidden and still, watching the scene below as it sadly played out. It was best this way. At this time I did not know how long it would take for Moriarty's men to realize he was dead, and hunt for me. Moriarty's body would be discovered, eventually, down in the river below. But mine would not because I was still alive. It would hardly take a genius to figure out I was still alive.
In a moment of thrill, I realized I was about to set off on my own adventure. Of course, I would need money, what I had would not last me long. The only person I could dare contact would be my brother, Mycroft. He would keep my secret safe and wire me funds as I needed.
Once Watson and the others gave up and left, I straightened and moved off. Before I'd gotten very far, I heard first the sound of a slug hitting a tree, right after which I heard the report from a riffle. Automatically I dove for cover behind a rock, just in time, as another shot was fired and it ricocheted off the rock, exactly where I had been.
I did not stay long in my hiding place. I had no idea how many of them there might have been. A shooter would have easily pinned me down white others came after me.

I ran as fast as I could, dodging behind a tree, here and there, while the shooter somehow tracked and shot at me. My only chance was to keep inside the woods, and keep moving, which I did. I might have ran a mile before I slowed my pace and looked back. By this time, I'd come down off the mountain, somehow moving away from the rushing river and, well beyond the falls. I noticed there were trails and a road, but I knew to avoid them completely. I had to blaze my own trail, through underbrush, over rocks, and through fields of more rocks and weeds. Donning my deer-hunter's cap, I kept to the tall ancient forest, and headed toward the village. Knowing full well I would need a disguise, I would find a shop in a nearby town which I could procure these things. 

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