The story The Slash Man, Book 2 of the series The Fallen, is now concluded. I began drafting in February of 2013 and posting to AO3 and FFN on August 30. Nearly a full year has passed since then, and I am grateful to those who have stuck with me to the end. Though an exhausting endeavour, it has been immensely rewarding on a very personal level, and the support, encouragement, and enthusiasm shared among readers has helped propel me toward completion.

This section contains the following:

Appendix A: Timeline of Sherlock's Childhood, Youth, and Early Adulthood

Appendix B: Timeline of The Slash Man

Appendix C: Index of Victims, Fairy Tales, and Other Puzzles

Appendix D: Preview to Book III

Appendix E: Acknowledgements

As before, the inclusion of this information is for the benefit of the interested reader. I am not offended if people choose to ignore it.

Appendix A: Timeline of Sherlock's Childhood, Youth, and Early Adulthood

This timeline makes assumptions about Sherlock's date of birth, as well as other significant events in his life. Any errors or inconsistencies in the consequent timeline I provide here I consider in keeping with the canonical messiness.

Childhood (0–12)

January 6, 1976
Sherlock Holmes is born

The Holmeses lose Sherlock at a funeral; he is discovered sleeping in a casket

Sherlock's fascination with bones begins to be expressed

September 1982
Mycroft leaves home to attend Eton College

October 1982

Sherlock cuts open a pigeon's wings to learn how it flies
He visits his first child psychiatrist
He acquires his first violin

Summer 1983
Mycroft observes Sherlock's compulsive tendencies and begins to worry

Mrs Holmes takes Sherlock to a string of psychiatrists, looking for answers

Summer 1986
The Big Boys Upstairs first take an interest in Sherlock
Mycroft dedicates his life to protecting his little brother

Spring 1987
Sherlock reveals his father's infidelity

The Holmes' divorce is finalised
[John's mother dies]

Youth (12–17)

Autumn 1989
Sherlock goes to Eton
Carl Powers drowns in a swimming pool

Sherlock refuses to return to therapy; he begins smoking cigarettes
Mycroft buys Sherlock a new violin
[John's father dies]

Sherlock sneaks away from the school at night and becomes a petty criminal; his dependencies and addictions worsen

Adulthood (18–34)

Sherlock attends university

Mycroft is 'invited' to join the Big Boys Upstairs

Sherlock drops out of university

February 1997
Sherlock sees his father's name in the obituaries

Mrs Holmes commits suicide

September 11, 2001
Attack on the World Trade Center

Sherlock begins solving crimes by using his deductive skills

Winter 2003
Sherlock meets Greg Lestrade

Lestrade starts using Sherlock on official cases

[John is shot in Afghanistan and invalided home]

January 2010
Sherlock Holmes meets John Watson at St Bartholomew's Hospital, London

Appendix B: Timeline of The Slash Man

This timeline begins in the week preceding the opening chapter of The Slash Man. We open with the plot points most pertinent to the events laid out in the story. Therefore, we begin on Christmas Eve of 2014, approximately one week following the conclusion of Ten Days and one week prior to chapter 1 of The Slash Man. It has been some two months since John's rescue, though only about four weeks since he left hospital.

December 23, 2014
Two bricks fly through the windows of 221B and the front door is vandalised

December 24, 2014
Alone in a pub on Christmas Eve, Edward Stallman meets a man who bribes him simply to turn a key

December 26, 2014
Mycroft pays a visit to 221B
George Yarrow is bribed to steal Donovan's keys

December 28, 2014
Randall Kensington has an imprint made of Donovan's keys

December 30, 2014
Mitch Jenkins unlocks the evidence lockers; Heidi Ringwald steals evidence relevant to the St Mary's abductions

December 31, 2014
Hidden within nondescript parcels, the dog dish, grey underwear, and cilice leave the Yard through the post

January 1, 2015
Thomas Dryers discovers the evidence missing

June Zalud is bribed to purchase sodium hypochlorite

January 2, 2015 [Novel beings]
Sherlock has a nightmare in which John falls from the roof of St Bart's

Sgt Sally Donovan, spokesperson for New Scotland Yard, announces Sherlock's exoneration to the press; Kitty Riley reveals her knowledge about the missing evidence

Lestrade attends therapy with Dr Quinton

The body of Sam Jefferies is discovered in Lower Clapton

Lestrade informs Sherlock and John about the missing evidence and dead body, which he believes to be a victim of Darren Hirsch, the Slash Man

Against explicit instructions, Sherlock goes to examine the body in the morgue; he tells Molly Hooper that John is not doing well; Lestrade discovers him there and gets angry

January 3, 2015
Lestrade calls Sherlock to confirm the identity of the victim

Sherlock and John visit the crime scene and find the victim's shoe in a tree; they receive a cryptic text

Kitty Riley publishes an article denouncing Sherlock for the murder of Richard Brook

John has a sleepwalking nightmare, the first Sherlock has witnessed

January 7, 2015
Sebastian Moran is spotted in Baranavichy

Kitty Riley accosts Molly Hooper for information about Sherlock

Lestrade petitions Chief Superintendent Gregson to allow Sherlock Holmes to assist on cases; though initially denied, Gregson is later convinced and relents

January 8, 2015
Lestrade invites John to serve as a medical consultant to the Yard, and Sherlock to serve as John's assistant

January 9, 2015
In the early morning, John has a nightmare about Mary

The body of Holden O'Harris is discovered at Borough Market; Scott Anderson, under Kitty Riley's instruction, tries to stir Sherlock to anger and hits his mark by insulting John; John suffers a panic attack in front of other officers; Ewan Nichols confronts Sherlock about his broken promise

John has a bad day and rows with Sherlock; in the evening, while playing his violin, Sherlock is shot at through the window; John saves his life but suffers a severe panic attack

January 10, 2015
Mycroft visits 221B and suggests that Sherlock leave England, for his own safety; Lestrade berates Mycroft for his callousness

John has another nightmare and attacks Sherlock

January 16, 2015
After a bad session with his therapist, Lestrade receives a disturbing video from 'Watson'

Donovan confronts Anderson regarding what she supposes is his involvement in the shooting; she leaves only to answer a text from Lestrade

Sherlock lies to John and goes to the Yard to be part of the briefing; John goes after him

Sean Lawrence, tech specialist, manipulates the cameras in the briefing room at the Yard

A video of Sebastian Moran carving an IOU into John's back is shown to officers of the Yard; text messages are sent simultaneously to all officers present; John is discovered standing in the back of the room; Sherlock and John row in the men's loo

Ewan Nichols is found hanging below London Bridge

Back in 221B, John hallucinates Sebastian Moran and almost shoots Sherlock; he decides to get help

February 6, 2015
John returns to Ella Thompson

Ralston Winters and Lynette Avery are abducted

February 9, 2015
The Sun publishes graphic photos of the convent; Kitty Riley is brought in for questioning

Ralston Winters is murdered

February 11, 2015
Lynette Avery is murdered

February 12, 2015
The bodies of Ralston Winters and Lynette Avery are found in a skip near Shepherd's Knoll

February 13, 2015
Mycroft assigns Lestrade to the task of stealing classified materials from Home Office

Ella introduces John to the idea of 'safety zone therapy'

Molly returns home from St Bart's and finds a rose on the table and a dead bird in her kettle; she flees the flat and hurries to Baker Street; John teaches her how to shoot and gives her his gun for protection; Sherlock, John, and Molly return to her flat where they spend the night

Lestrade completes Mycroft's assignment

February 14, 2015
Lestrade goes to see Molly and discovers that she had a break-in; John and Sherlock leave for breakfast, then back to Baker Street where the flat reeks of ammonia

Sherlock and John are called back to the scene of the break-in to be questioned by DI Dimmock; Anderson, part of Dimmock's forensics team, mocks John with an offensive comment about sexual assault; Sherlock snaps and pummels Anderson to the ground; he is arrested for attacking an officer

Mycroft takes John home and tries to convince him to leave London on his own

Mycroft talks to Sherlock in holding and hints that there are larger though hidden machinations that ought to be feared

February 15, 2015
The Sun publishes the story of Anderson's assault

Donovan reveals to Anderson, in hospital, that the Yard will be conducting an inquiry into his supposed collusion with Kitty Riley

Molly Hooper receives official sanctions at work; her landlord asks her to move out; Lestrade invites her to move in with him

Sherlock's permissions with the Yard are officially revoked

Sherlock is detained unreasonably

John works on the riddle left on Winters and Avery

February 16, 2015
Mrs Hudson's niece, Gillian Woodhouse, calls to express her concern over her aunt's tenant

Sherlock is released and lured to the banks of the Thames where he is attacked, stoned, and thrown in the water; John and Mrs Hudson care for him upon his return to the flat; John accuses Lestrade of negligence; Lestrade goes to Baker Street to talk; later, after he's gone, John reveals to Sherlock the pattern within the victims' names

February 17, 2015
Samantha Hillock emails John and tells him to stop writing

Donovan has a 'lunch date' with Molly

Sherlock phones Donovan and tells her to look for a homeless man with the initials OT; she passes the assignment on to Dryers

Lestrade is questioned regarding Anderson's professional behaviour

Donovan visits JoAnna Brook in Southwater to ask permission to exhume the body in Richard's grave and is thrown out of the house (politely)

Donovan delivers information about OT to Sherlock and is reluctantly recruited to his team; the search for OT begins

February 18, 2015
Donovan and Dryers locate Osmond Tracy

February 20, 2015
Sherlock and John find clues on their doorstep; they determine the victim will be Orrin Tippet, and he will be attacked on the railroad tracks near Elephant and Castle; there, they discover a dying Tippet; Sherlock runs after a shadow and finds the corpse of Colin Simpkins; the corpse ignites; Sherlock catches fire and has to jump off the tracks; John is attacked by the Slash Man, and Tippet is shot in the head; John is taken to hospital

February 21, 2015
Lestrade and Donovan report to Gregson; Donovan receives a phone call from Mrs Brook; she puts in the order for exhumation

Sherlock and John return to 221 Baker Street and are met with an eviction notice

February 23, 2015

Michaela Warner publishes her soon-to-be-famous opinion piece questioning the truth about Sherlock Holmes

February 27, 2015
Kitty Riley follows John Watson to his therapy appointment; she corners him in a bistro and pursues him into the street where she reveals that Mary had been pregnant when she was killed; shocked and heartbroken, he flees and ends up wandering the city until he is attacked just outside the Poor Sailor

Sherlock finds John in the pub; John tries to get away, but Sherlock follows him to an alley where they have a confrontation

Lestrade tracks them down and takes them home

March 2, 2015
Michaela Warner publishes Claudette Bruhl's story

Sherlock faces the magistrates and plead guilty for assault; he is fined £5000 and given a community sentence of 150 hours

The DNA results of the exhumation come back negative for Richard Brook

March 3, 2015
At his physical therapy appointment, John receives a bouquet of flowers; John, Sherlock, Lestrade, and Molly visit Rosemary and Thyme to learn more about the flowers; Sherlock has a breakdown when he realises what the flowers mean

Kitty Riley is arrested on charges of obstruction

Karim Omid Niazi is abducted off the streets

March 4, 2015
Anthea visits Henry Knight with a proposition

Someone leaks the initials KON; Donovan accuses Dryers of being a spy

Sherlock begins his community sentence

John meets Julian Smalls, the cabbie who brought Sherlock home the night he was attacked

March 5, 2015
The Yard deals with the KON fiasco and continues its search

Cyrus Coggins is tricked into using the cemetery for community sentence clean-up work

March 6, 2015
Lestrade has his final mandatory session with Dr Quinton

While working in the New Cemetery at Camberwell, Sherlock discovers a rose and feather on the grave of Ewan Nichols; roses are found at the graves of each of the victims of the Slash Man and Sebastian Moran; Sherlock and John go to Newport where they find forget-me-nots and poppies at Sherlock's grave; they find Karim Niazi hanging from a tree and save his life

In hospital, John interviews Karim, and Sherlock serves as translator

Eva Almaraz leaves the nurses' station for seven minutes

John sleepwalks again

March 7, 2015
Donovan crosses Dryers off her list of suspects

March 8, 2015
Sherlock, Donovan, and Lestrade receive deceptive texts; they discover the Slash Man's lair; Sherlock and Lestrade see Darren Hirsch enter 221

Molly and John are both attacked

John kills the Slash Man

March 9, 2015
At St Bart's, Mycroft tells Sherlock he bought 221; he has created aliases for Sherlock and John to use as needed

Ella Thompson tells Sherlock that John needs him

The autopsy of Darren Hirsch reveals how thoroughly John had killed him

Sherlock wakes up in John's room; tensions arise, and Sherlock leaves upset

March 10, 2015
Michaela Warner writes up the death of the Slash Man

Sherlock, suffering severe pain in his ankle, tries to self-medicate; he undergoes surgery to correct a lateral malleolus fracture

Gregson interviews Molly about the attack

John visits Donovan in hospital and thanks her for being an ally

Lestrade announces his plans to sell the house and build a new life with Molly

Donovan asks Dryers out on a date

Sherlock and John reach an unspoken truce and spend some peaceful time together

March 13, 2015
In Mycroft's flat, John can't sleep; he asks Mycroft whether he really cares for his brother; Mycroft affirms unequivocally that he does

March 16, 2015
John and Sherlock return to the flat, which has been refurbished with the highest security measures; Sherlock expresses gratitude to his brother

March 19, 2015
John updates his blog for the first time in nearly four years

Sherlock goes to the Yard to examine evidence; Lestrade informs him about the blog, which is creating quite a stir among officers; Sherlock hurries home; he is stunned by what he reads

John returns home

March 21, 2015
John and Sherlock travel north to Norfolk to bring Mrs Hudson home

March 25, 2015
Lestrade interviews Edward Stallman

April 2, 2015
The Brooks hire Sherlock to find out what happened to their son

April 3, 2015
John suffers a painful self-revelation

April 15, 2015
Michaela Warner writes an article detailing the sentencing of Kitty Riley

Lestrade gives John a photograph of him and Mary; Bill Murray, an old friend, is in the background; that night, John speaks openly to Sherlock of Mary

Mycroft ensures Sherlock's safety from the Big Boys Upstairs by sacrificing it to Moran and Adler; he has an unexpected and unpleasant encounter with Irene Adler and is poisoned

Mycroft's body is dumped on Sherlock's doorstep

Appendix C: Index of Victims, Fairy Tales, and Puzzles

Victims of the Slash Man

Sam Jefferies
Died January 2 (see rhyme #1)

Holden O'Harris
Died January 9 (see rhyme #2)

Ewan Nichols
Died January 16 (see rhyme #3)

Ralston Winters
Died February 9 (see rhymes #4, #5)

Lynette Avery
Died February 11 (see rhymes #4, #5)

Orrin Tippet
Died February 20 (see rhyme #9)

Colin Simpkins
Died February 20 (see rhyme #10)

Karim O Niazi Survived (see rhyme #12)

Nursery Rhymes and Other Poems

The nursery rhymes selected by Irene Adler and Sebastian Moran all have the common theme of falling, as Sherlock explains to John (see chapter 16). The majority of these, including their relevant historical contexts, and explicated in the story itself, usually by Sherlock. They are collected here as index.

1. Rock-a-Bye

Rock-a-bye baby, on the treetop.
When the wind blows, the cradle will rock.
When the bough breaks, the cradle will fall,
And down will come baby, cradle and all.

After he was killed, Sam Jefferies body was hoisted up a large horse chestnut by the neck and balanced precariously on a fork in the branch. This rhyme was selected specially to precede the others, suggesting to Sherlock that his world and any securities he might trust (essentially, his cradle) in were about to break apart, become unstable, and fall.

2. Ring a Ring o' Roses

Ring a ring o' roses,
a pocket full of posies.
Atishoo, atishoo, we all fall down.

Holden O'Harris was discovered in a market, a place of trade and exchange, with his pockets filled with rose petals (roses being Irene Adler's calling card) and hemlock (a deadly poison foreshadowing Mycroft's death). As Sherlock later tells John, a small bunch of cut flowers, like the ones here, is called a 'posy', pointing to the rhyme. Famously, this rhyme is often though erroneously associated with the Black Plague, as suggested by the sneezing (illness) preceding falling down (death). (The American version replaces 'atishoo, atishoo' with 'ashes, ashes', a reference to cremation. Either way, the act of 'falling down' being associated with death is clear.

3. My Fair Lady

London Bridge is falling down,
falling down, falling down.
London Bridge is falling down,
My fair lady.

Ewan Nichols is discovered hanging below London Bridge, a steel cable serving as his noose. In the London Bridge game known in many English-speaking countries around the world, two children form a bridge with their arms while the others take turns going under it until the bridge collapses and one child invariably gets 'caught' between the children's arms. This prisoner, according to Victorian folklorists like Alice Gomme, was meant to serve as a watchman, someone who was charged to 'watch the bridge' night and day to ensure it does not collapse. Interestingly, this speaks to pagan superstitions of 'foundation sacrifice', that is, a captive was taken and buried in the foundations of the bridge to serve as a perpetual guardian. This presumably ensured its stability.

A parallel may be applied here. As with the cradle in 'Rock-a-Bye', the proverbial bridge is unstable and threatening collapse. As mockery, Ewan Nichols has been 'captured' and made as a human sacrifice to watch over the bridge.

4. Jack and Jill

Jack and Jill went up the hill
to fetch a pail of water.
Jack fell down and broke his crown
and Jill came tumbling after.

A more literal rendering of the rhyme is found in the deaths of Ralston Winters and Lynette Avery, who are known on the streets as 'Jack and Jill'. After leaving the pub the Shepherd's Knoll (the hill) for drinks (a pail of water), they are captured (their own 'fall'); Ralston (Jack) dies first from a blow to the crown of his head; Nette dies second (comes 'tumbling after').

5. Life Is But a Dream

'A boat, beneath a sunny sky
Lingering onward dreamily
In an evening of July—

Children three that nestle near,
Eager eye and willing ear,
Pleased a simple tale to hear—

Long has paled that sunny sky;
Echoes fade and memories die;
Autumn frosts have slain July.

Still she haunts me, phantomwise,
Alice moving under skies
Never seen by waking eyes.

Children yet, the tale to hear,
Eager eye and willing ear,
Lovingly shall nestle near.

In a Wonderland they lie,
Dreaming as the days go by,
Dreaming as the summers die;

Ever drifting down the stream—
Lingering in the golden gleam—
Life, what is it but a dream?

A clipped version of the final stanza of Lewis Carroll's 1903 poem was found with the bodies of Ralston Winters and Lynette Avery. When John discovered the full version of the original poem, he also learnt that the poem was an acrostic: a poem wherein the first letters of each stanza spell out a word, in this case, Alice Pleasance Liddell, the inspiration for Lew Carroll's Alice in his stories Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (1865)and Through the Looking Glass (1871). Once again, if one wishes, we can see the theme of falling playing out here too: Alice falls down the rabbit hole into a preposterous and dangerous world where the mad Queen of Hearts (who has an obsession with red roses) is the supreme villain of the tale.

The acrostic clued John into the hidden message within the names of the victims of the Slash Man.

6. Polly Put the Kettle On

Polly put the kettle on,
Polly put the kettle on,
Polly put the kettle on,
We'll all have tea.

Sukey take if off again,
Sukey take if off again,
Sukey take if off again,
They've all gone away.

When Molly Hooper returned home the night before Valentine's Day, she found a rose on her table with a note reading 'Molly put the kettle on', alluding to this rhyme. Though the rhyme itself has nothing to do with falling, it did get Molly to look in the kettle, where she found a dead wren with clipped wings (see #7).

7. Dreoilín, Dreolín, Rí na nÉan

Dreoilín, dreoilín, Rí na nÉan
The wren, the wren, the king of birds

Is mór a mhuirthín, is beag é féin
His brood is big, but he is small

Lá 'le Stiofáin a gabhadh é
St Stephen's Day he was caught

Is tabhair dhom pingin a chuirfeas é.
And give me a penny to bury him.

Many legends, poems, and fables exist relating the story of how the wren became the 'King of the Birds'. Sherlock gives the German account when explaining to John how the bird cheated the eagle and was cursed by the owl and shamed by all birds (see chapter 16).

The song given here, in both the original Irish and the English translation, speaks to the game of trying to catch a wren on St Stephen's Day (December 26), also called 'Day of the Wren', usually by throwing rocks at the bird while it is perched on a wall (see #9) , knocking it to the ground, and killing it for sport. Metaphorically, Sherlock is often depicted as a wren in these stories.

8. Three Wise Monkeys

See no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil.

Usually given as pictorial maxim using three mystic apes, the Three Wise Monkeys are often seen together as one covers its eyes, another its ears, and the last its mouth. In Western culture, it is often used to suggest turning a blind eye to others' suffering.

This is exactly what the homeless accuse Sherlock of doing: effectively turning a blind eye to their plight, as their people continue to be targets of the Slash Man. As punishment, they stuff his mouth with mud and cover his ears and eyes, making him blind, deaf, and mute. Ironically, they are blind to the fact that the Slash Man is among them, assisting them in their act of cruelty.

9. Humpty Dumpty

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.
All the king's horses and all the king's men
Couldn't put Humpty together again.

Sherlock and John are presented with seemingly obscure clues pointing to the location of Orrin Tippet's body, which Sherlock is able to crack in short time (see chapter 22). The selection of the rhyme 'Humpty Dumpty' speaks to the futility of making something what it was before: once Humpty Dumpty, an egg, as the riddle suggests, has fallen, it cracks, and no power of kings or armies can restore a cracked egg to wholeness. Similarly, the abuses being enacted against the Slash Man's victims (in this case, Orrin Tippet) have made indelible marks that can never be expunged. One cannot return from the dead.

10. Jack Be Nimble

Jack be nimble,
Jack be quick,
Jack jump over
the candlestick.

This blatant warning of imminent danger and the charge to act with exigency leads almost at once to a literal fall, as Sherlock, to escape a fire, must jump off the railroad tracks to the pavement below (see chapter 23).

11. Hickory Dickory Dock

Hickory, Dickory, Dock,
The mouse ran up the clock.
The clock struck one,
The mouse ran down,
Hickory, dickory, dock.

Though this counting rhyme never appears in any explicit way in the novel, it is alluded to on several occasions. As a child, Sherlock begins to keep an internal clock to mark the passage of time whenever he felt anxious or alone (see chapter 25). That clock has been ticking ever since toward the inevitable strike of the hour. Only Mycroft appears to be aware of this.

12. Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary

Mary, Mary, quite contrary,
How does your garden grow?
With silver bells, and cockle shells,
And pretty maids all in a row

From an anonymous well-wisher, John received a bouquet of condolence flowers, comprised of periwinkles, snowdrops, and black orchids. Sherlock gives a full explanation of how each of these flowers relate to the rhyme as silver bells, cockle shells, and pretty maids; strips them of metaphor in showing how they speak to medieval torture devices, and attaches their significance to weapons used against John (see chapter 27). The word 'garden', he also says, is sometimes given as 'graveyard'. In time, this leads to the search of for gravestones of the victims of Moran and Adler, their growing garden of the dead.

13. Three Blind Mice

Three blind mice. Three blind mice.
See how they run. See how they run.
They all ran after the farmer's wife,
Who cut off their tails with a carving knife.
Did you ever see such a sight in your life
As three blind mice?

Sgt Donovan receives a text message and a taunt reading, 'Three blind mice. See how they run.' The 'three mice' referred to are Sherlock, Lestrade, and Donovan, blinded in that they were deceived and lured away on the false pretence of chasing after clues or villains. It may be inferred that the 'farmer's wife' of the rhyme, who holds the carving knife and inflicts actual damage, is Irene Adler.

14. O Danny Boy

O Danny boy, the pipes, the pipes are calling
From glen to glen and down the mountain side.
The summer's gone, and all the roses falling.
It's you, it's you must go and I must bide.

But come ye back when summer's in the meadow,
Or when the valley's hushed and white with snow.
It's I'll be here in sunshine or in shadow.
Oh, Danny boy, oh Danny boy, I love you so!

But when ye come, and all the flowers are dying,
If I am dead, as dead I well may be,
Ye'll come and fine the place where I am lying,
And kneel and say an Ave there for me;

And I shall hear, though soft you tread above me,
And all my grave will warmer, sweeter be,
For you will bend and tell me that you love me,
And I shall sleep in peace until you come to me!

The motif of flowers and the theme of death is prominent in this ballad, which is liturgical and often sung at funerals, although the original tune, 'Londonderry Air', is often considered a victorious anthem. Victims of the Slash Man often heard him whistling this tune before they died.

15. Who Killed Cock Robin?

Who killed Cock Robin?
I, said the sparrow.
With my bow and arrow,
I killed Cock Robin.

Who saw him die?
I, said the fly.
With my little eye,
I saw him die.

. . .

All the birds of the air
fell a-sighing and a-sobbing,
when they heard the bell toll
for poor Cock Robin

Intended as the pièce de résistance of Moran and Adler's series of rhymes and murders, 'Who Killed Cock Robin?' was left on the wall of the entryway to 221B (see chapter 30). As Sherlock describes (see chapter 31), the death of Cock Robin was to be synonymous with the death of John Watson. The execution of the murder was thwarted, and so the masterpiece spoiled.

Appendix D: Preview to Book III

Book III will conclude the series The Fallen.

The storytelling will grow in two directions—both advancing forward in time and extending backward to reveal hitherto unknown secrets, for example:

Why was John labelled an 'insubordinate soldier'?
What really happened to Richard Brook?
How did Sebastian Moran come to be Moriarty's right-hand man?
Why did Mary need a detective?
And others.

The forward direction of the plot will, for now, be kept secret.

Appendix E: Acknowledgements

Once again, I would like to acknowledge the work of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, who originated the characters I have come to love so well, from Sherlock Holmes to Dr Watson to Inspector Lestrade to Mrs Hudson. His work continues to inspire my own, as it does the thousands of others who have embarked on works of fanfiction, whether it be professionally cinematic or as amateur as this.

I'd also like to acknowledge and thank BBC creators and writers Steven Moffat, Mark Gatiss, and Stephen Thompson, as well as all the creative staff who have contributed their time and talents to bring us Sherlock, which will always rank very highly as one of the best-loved programmes of my life.

I am especially indebted to my readers, for their words of encouragement and enthusiasm, for helping me think more deeply about these stories, and for contributing their own talents in creating complementary vids, gif sets, audio clips, and artwork for this story. I am astonished and touched by your work, and I never imagined anything I could write would inspire others' creativity.

Last but certainly not least, a big thank you goes out to the online Engazed Support Group, organised on Tumblr, which has provided emotional support for fellow readers as well as fantastic analyses of chapters and theories about what might happen next. You guys. You're too fabulous for words.

See you all for Book III.

For future updates and information, you can follow me on Tumblr at engazed DOT tumblr DOT com