Disclaimer:None of the characters are mine! Like I say to my friends when they find something of theirs is missing, I am only borrowing it, without asking or intention of giving back.
Anyway this idea is a cliche I know, but it would appear that no one has done it yet, so I thought I would take the liberty.It starts out quite boring, but keep reading I promise it gets better! I hope you enjoy!
It was a sunny day in the middle of April, and even London with all its fog and tightly packed houses, could not hide the beauty that radiated through the spring air. As I strolled down Baker street it cheered me to see the family's picnicking on the green, and the friendly faces of couples as they past by. I could not help however, but feel a slight dread oppress upon my heart as I gazed up at apartment 221b. I had not seen my friend Mr Sherlock Holmes for a week now, and having checked the agony column every day with devotion, I surmised that consulting detective did not have a case at preset, for no scandal of any nature had presented itself to my attention.
Therefore as I took out my key and opened the front door, it was in full expectancy of finding my room mate in the mist of what he liked to call his 'black mood'. Walking upstairs and across the landing, I could not help but give a deep sigh before turning the handle of the living room door. I peered inside, awaiting the scene with baited breath, but was surprised to see that Holmes was not there at present. A faint scuffling noise in the direction of his bedroom told me that he was, at least, at home.
"I'll be right with you Watson" came the familiar voice, which I was happy to hear, was tinged with the excitement that came only from a case.
"How did you know it was me Holmes?" I asked.
"My dear doctor, only one man to my knowledge has such a distinctive step" came his slightly muffled reply. "And" he said now poking his head around the door frame "since I gave Mrs Hudson her annual leave yesterday, only one person could have entered the house, being the only other, save myself, to have the key".
"You gave Mrs Hudson leave Holmes?" I said, deciding that it would not be wise not to comment on the simplicity of his reasoning, as this tended to lead to him not explaining his many deductions to me for weeks on end.
"Are you going somewhere?" I now asked as he came out from his room carrying his travel suitcase. My reply came in the form of him taking a letter from his pocket and passing it to me with the usual request that I read it aloud, I could only imagine this was so he could brood over the matter more fully as I read.
Dear Mr Holmes it read
It would be of the greatest assistance to me if you were to kindly sail to America tomorrow, as I have a case that I believe will interest your taste for the unusual that I have so often heard you to possess. The matter is of the greatest delicacy, and there for I am unable to give you a full account in this note, however I should gladly cover any traveling expenses you may incur as well as being extremely generous should you solve my issue. I implore you to come by the 10am ship to Ellis island where I will meet you and present you with the details of the case.
Sir Randolf composé
"You mean to tell me that you are willing to travel across the Atlantic ocean on an errand in which you know so little about? What If it is a prank?" I asked him looking up.
"In answer to your questions, I do not as you suggest know little of the matter, on observing the style in which the letter I can perceive that it was done so in some agitation, on examining the paper I can see that it is written by someone well-to-do, and lastly, on consulting my books I can support my theory that the man is well off, as I have him down as a highly honorable gentlemen. Now considering the facts that an honorable gentlemen, in a state of obvious agitation has chosen to call in a specialist instead of someone in his own country, and is willing to pay so heavily to do so. Why on earth would I not chose to go Watson?"
"Well when you put it like that Holmes, the whole business does sound rather intriguing" I said passing back the note.
"Excellent! Then you will agree to come with me?"
"Well I wouldn't miss it for the world Holmes. But on the other hand it does sound rather private does it not?"
"I shouldn't worry about that Watson, if this fellows willing to call me in all the way from America then I doubt he is going to turn me down so readily, as my terms remain firm, it is both of us or neither." My heart warmed at his words, and I felt privileged that such a great man should choose to have me by his side, when his usual manner is that of cold isolation from the majority of the human race.
"There is one thing that bothers me about the man however..."
"Oh it is probably nothing, you had better go and pack Watson, we leave in a hour" he said now sitting in his armchair while I rushed off to do as he had suggested.
An hour later we found ourselves in a hansom bound for Plymouth. We drove past rolling fields and down quiet country lanes. The tingle of excitement that came with an adventure had now fully set into my bones, and even Holmes seemed restless as he sat by my side looking out to the horizon, where the rising sun had illuminated the green hill tops in the distance. We reached the port just in time to catch our ship, and were shown to our shared room on the lower deck.
Holmes spent most of the journey ether sitting in our room conducting chemical experiments, or else in the games room were he had found a french companion by the name of Mr Échecs, who was a master at chess and gave my friend an opponent of similar capability. Many a day I spent strolling along the deck of the mighty steam launch, looking out at the vast ocean. The waves were calm, the same calm that came before a storm. Their gentle sloshing noise as they rose and fell seemed to whisper of some hidden danger.
It was the third night on the ship, and we were now in the very middle of the Atlantic ocean, a fierce storm had set itself upon the boat so I sat in my room reading, Holmes had gone to inquire about supper being brought down. A few minutes later I heard him return, and a few seconds after that I heard a click from my bedroom door, I walked over to it and was greatly surprised to see that it had been locked. Banging on the door I called out to see if anyone was there, but it appeared that who ever had locked the door had hurriedly left. My shouting was disturbed however, by a sudden violent explosion that came from somewhere else on the ship. The floor shook beneath me and I fell to the ground, something was now definitely wrong and I could hear screams and shouts coming from the other passengers mixed in with the ships alarm sirens.
Holmes POV After being told that supper would be served at 10, I started to head back down to our rooms. I was just passing along the corridor on the first deck when a loud explosion followed by a violent rocking of the ship meant that I was hard pressed to stay on my feet and instead slammed into a near by wall. The ships alarm bells had sounded, meaning that all passengers were to come above board, wondering what had happened I now followed the stream of screaming passengers that were running up the stairs. When on the deck I rushed to the railing and gasped at the scene before me. The entire bow was ablaze and the ship was starting to tilt downwards as water flooded in.
I stood as tall as I could and looked around frantically for Watson, but there were to many people, men pushed though the crowds with their wives and children were being dragged around by the panicked mothers. My ears rang with the sounds of woman's sceams and the ships crew were trying to order the people into groups to be placed on the life boats.
I pushed my way though the crowd calling out for my companion, but he was no where to be seen, by now most people had been piled on to the life boats and only one remained. "Hey you there! Quick get in!" called out one of the crew members as he started to lower the last boat into the water. But I had yet to find Watson. Was it possible that he had already been lowered to safety? No. He would have waited to find me first surly. This left only one conclusion, that for some reason he had not been able to get to deck. I took the only option I saw myself to have and rushed to the stairs, hesitating only briefly I turned around to see my last chance of safety disappearing, but I waved for the man to go on without me as I rushed down the stairs.
Reaching one of the lower decks where our room was situated I now found my self waist deep in water. I entered our rooms "Watson! Watson where are you!" I shouted, in reply there came a loud series of knocking from Watson's bedroom door.
"Holmes! Is that you? Help I'm locked in!" I rushed forwards and tried to open it, but the key was no where to be seen and the pressure of the water meant that my shoulder was no use.
"Watson I can't open it!" I called amidst the rushing sound of the intruding water.
"Go Holmes, for gods sake leave or we'll both drowned!" came Watson's panicked reply.
"I'm not going anywhere Watson! Not until you're out!" but for once in my life I had no idea what to do, the fear that now ran swiftly though my veins did not help. I forced myself to calm, the water was now up to my chest and my eyes darted around the room for some means of help. They came to rest upon my revolver that was sticking out of my coat pocket on the other side of the room. I wadded forward and retrieved it before returning to the door.
"Watson stand back!" I shouted, now aiming it at the lock. I pulled the trigger and the key hole shattered.
Pushing the door once more I was relieved to see that it swung open to reveal my friend. Being shorter then me the water had now risen above his shoulders, and he spluttered as it splashed in his face.
"Quick Watson!" I said said grabbing his sleeve under the water and pulling him towards the door. When in the corridor it now became impossible for us to stand, and we swam towards the stairs. We struggled though the water and at one point I was forced to reach down and pull Watson up by his collar for had fallen beneath the violent surges of liquid that now came upon us in mass.
Finally we reached what little part of the deck remained, there was now no signs of people and the life boats had long disappeared. With a lot of quick thinking I managed to grab hold of a wooden table in one hand and Watson's arm in the other, Watson copied taking hold of the table next to mine as the angle of the boat now sent us flying into the icy sea. For a moment that seemed to take a life time I was held under the salty water, with no way of knowing which way was up and which was down. My only sources of comfort were clutched in each hand. If I had hold of the table then I could not be sinking, and if I had hold of Watson then neither could he. I came to the surface having drunk a lot of water and struggled to remain conscious. A ferocious wave helped push me on top of my floating table. At the same time however, it had pulled Watson from my grasp. With my remaining energy I rolled over to see that thankfully Watson too had managed to get astride his table. This relieving thought was my last before I scummed to the darkness entreating around my eyes.
To be continued...
Please review, I know it was a bit like the titanic but how could it not be? Anyway please say what you think, ideas are also welcome. Thanks for reading!