Who's up for a Mystery and a Curse?
England, 1890, 19th Century
"In all England there is no district more dismal than the vast expanse of primitive wasteland, the moors of Dartmoor in Devonshire"
On a cold, misty night in Dartmoor, a lone elderly man runs at speeds unimaginable for even a man half his age. It is not power that drives the man, but fear, pure fear that keeps this old man going as the ghastly sounds of a monstrous howl is heard not too far from him. As the old man makes it through a picket fence to what could be his salvation, he grabs his chest in agonizing pain and topples over and dies instantly.
Out of the bushes, comes a man in rags, he sees the old man dead and after looking around attempts to rob the body. However, the voices of others drive the would-be thief away with nothing. A woman comes out of the house and sees the body in the yard and lets out a scream that is overpowered by the last ghastly howl.
The next morning, a multitude of people stand around a table discussing the "events" of the night before. "My wife and I found him lying dead in the New Abbey, lying downward" said one man.
"What did you do then?"
"I hurried across the moor to fetch Dr. Mortimer, who was at dinner with the Stapletons" the man explained.
After a taking a moment to look over at the doctor and the Stapletons who nodded to confirm the story, the coroner concluded, "That is all Mr. Barrymoore" he thanked. After that he looked to the doctor, "Doctor, what do you attribute to the death of Sir Charles Baskerville?" he inquired.
Mortimer stood, "Heart failure sir, and I might add that he's been in an extremely nervous state for some time before his death. Something had been praying at his mind" he announced. When asked if Sir Charles had confided in him as to what, Mortimer's wife grabbed his hand and many others looked at the doctor as a subtle "reminder" of something. "No sir he did not say" he lied reluctantly.
"What about those footprints, it's not like he was tip-toeing back to the house!" Torune Stapleton yelled out. "I examined those footprints myself and as a man of science I-" he continued but was immediately cut off by the doctor who admitted he checked the footprints as well and admitted that Sir Charles was indeed running. "Running, from what!?" he rebuffed.
The Coroner stopped the fight, but yet another elderly man spoke up "Fools! He was murdered and we know it, murdered I tell you!"
"Enough gentlemen!" the coroner yelled "You already testified you were not there Mr. Franklin and saw nothing and there was no marking on the body to suggest foul play" he reminded everyone. "Now Dr. Mortimer, as Sir Charles's physician what do you attribute to be the main cause of his death?" he asked again. When Dr. Mortimer reluctantly said it was heart failure beyond a shadow of a doubt, the coroner concluded "And thus is the verdict of this autopsy".
Mr. Franklin was again stood up, "Say what you want, Sir Charles was murdered, and there is certainly more than one person in this room who knows I speak the truth!"
London, 12:00AM, one day later
In the Baker street 221B apartment household, a paper article stated that "Young Sir Kiba Baskerville returns to claim family estate". Dr. Shikamaru Watson seeing this once again began clipping said article out of the paper, "Why are you having me clip these articles about our old friend Kiba, I have no idea" he complained. "You know what, don't answer that question I find the answers just give me more questions" he added.
However, there pinning all these articles to a bulletin board in an obsessive manner stood Naruto Holmes himself, insane crime solver extraordinaire. "Too late you already asked, to answer your first question it is because I don't not think our old buddy is long for this world" he explained. When questioned at what he meant he continued, "I mean I believe he'll be murdered" he answered as he ran over to a corner checking on certain materials he had melting in a smelting pot.
"MURDERED?!" Shikamaru said surprised and horrified.
Naruto Holmes nodded "Yep and it'll be very interesting to see if my deductions are accurate". Instantly he then picked up a crossbow and shot it right passed Watson at a plant in the corner. "Getting better all the time" he happily said.
Almost instantly, Tenten Hudson their landlady came in pulled out the arrow and used it to wap Holmes on the head. "Oh yeah and if you shoot my pillows to solve another shooting case AGAIN, I'll throw more knives at you, and hit this time" she warned as Holmes ignored "nanny". "Oh yeah, a man came to see you earlier while you were out rummaging through garbage looking for papers when you could have just bought them. He left this walking stick by accident" she explained.
Holmes instantly took up the stick and examined it, after a moment he handed it to Watson. "Tell me Watson, what you can tell me about our doctor friend here via this walking stick of his" he asked. "Use our elementary powers of deductions"
Shikamaru took the stick in hand and examined it, "Well, I should say that this Dr. Mortimer is a successful man that is good and well-esteemed" he began to reconstruct with Holmes's approval. "It appears that he does a great deal of his visits on foot as the iron bottom is worn down" he continued. Shikamaru then saw an inscription on the stick "To James Mortimer M.R.C.P From His Friends of the C.C.H 1884" he read and thought it was some sort of hunting club as "C.C.H" had no attachment to Watson's memory. When Holmes congratulated Watson, Shikamaru felt proud, but then he got annoyed as Holmes stated he missed the bigger pictures.
Naruto took the cane and elaborated, "Well first of all, he used to work for a hospital and this was his going away present. The C.C.H rather obviously suggests the name "Cherring Cross Hospital" and he now works in the country where the iron base is worn from stones and that finally, he has a dog" Holmes deduced. Shikamaru was quite shocked to hear that a cane could imply ownership of a dog but Holmes explained. "Well see here from the teeth marks, it is canine and a rather large canine I'd say given how high up the marks go". Holmes then ended his deductions with a rather surprising one, "Oh and if I'm not mistaken, he'll call on us in a few moments"
"Okay THAT'S rubbish, how can you deduce that?" Watson complained
"Well if he accidently left this important cane he A) would immediately return for it and B) the issue at hand is rather important for him to forget such a thing" Holmes slyly explained.
Sure enough within a few moments, Tenten came into the room with said doctor. He seemed anxious and when the cane was returned he stated it was a gift from Cherring Cross Hospital as Holmes deduced. "Now listen Mr. Holmes, you're the one man in all of England that can help me" Dr. Mortimer said. Holmes mumbled under his breath the amount of times he's heard that and asked the Dr. Mortimer to sit down. "The life of my late friend's grandson is in danger, Kiba Baskerville. I am afraid his life will be snuffed out for lack of better words" he announced.
Naruto looked over to Shikamaru at the sheer coincidence of such a fact. They had mentioned their friendship to Kiba right away and the doctor was happy they feared for his life as well. "You see I have found out that for centuries past EVERY Baskerville who inherited the Baskerville Hall has met with a sudden death" Dr. Mortimer explained.
"Interesting, but I though Sir Charles's death was due to natural causes, heart failure to be precise" Watson interjected.
Dr. Mortimer nodded, "That's true, that was the conclusion the coroner and myself, Sir Charles's personal physician, concluded about his death. But there was ONE fact I kept from the authorities" he explained. "About fifty yards from Sir Charles's body were…footprints" he ended with a grave deal of horror in his voice.
Holmes was immediately interested and got right to work, "Man or Woman's?"
The doctor's head shook, he looked over his should and gave a deep breath, "Mr. Holmes, they were the footprints…of a gigantic hound"
"A hound!? Why didn't you report it?" Holmes asked.
"Not a soul would have believed us! It rained that late night and the tracks were washed away but I saw those prints Holmes as clearly as I see you" Dr. Mortimer explained. "And our fears were solidified when we found this document in Baskerville Hall" he ended as he handed Holmes the centuries old document in his jacket.
Naruto looked at it as Shikamaru and even Tenten came in closer, "Legend of the Hound of the Baskervilles"