Previously on Sherlock Herms Master Detective – Part 1.
Mosey shivered, then quivered. And then he shook like a wet dog, all the while bouncing around my office. As the nylon tunnel glowed in the attic’s shadowy darkness, I watched it grow bigger … or maybe I was shrinking. Either way, Mosey rolled toward it.
“Haalllp!” Dori screamed, still determined to say her lines. “He’s being eaten!” And then she was gone. And Opie and Jack were gone. So was my desk, my interrogation corner, my piggy bank and collection of trucker magazines.
My ears hurt from the wind-whooshing sound that surrounded me, and the dazzling button lights on the control panel captivated me unlike catnip or any feathery toy I’d ever played with. But I now knew better not to stare. I got yelled at the first time.
As Mosey rocked and rolled from side to side, then flipped upside down, then right-side up, I hunkered under my mint chip cushion to ride it out. I wasn’t afraid. I felt exhilarated! I was going to meet Sherlock Holmes who would hopefully teach me to be a Master Detective just like him.
I just hoped Dr. Watson didn’t get upset and think I was trying to replace him as Holmes’ sidekick… although I wouldn’t say ‘no’ if Holmes asked.
Eventually the sound around me changed from whooshing to sucking, kinda like I was being squeezed from a tube of Laxatone.
When Mosey stopped shaking I threw aside the cushion to see we were rolling along a smooth pavement with dark shops lining the otherwise empty street on either side. It was nighttime, and the air smelled damp and foreign with a lingering odor of stinky fish.
As Mosey rolled along I spied a sign that had me unzipping the hood and shouting “Stop!” As obedient as a faithful dog, Mosey screeched to a halt. Lights in the windows told me someone was inside. Possibly Sherlock Holmes, himself!
With my whiskers quivering, I started to climb out when Mosey abruptly rolled forward. “No, stop!” I told him. “This is the place.”
Mosey rolled forward again with a low growl. Not knowing What the Friskies was his problem, I jumped out and told him, “Sit. Stay!” Mosey whimpered in reply.
I knocked on the door, but when no one answered, I pawed it open. I know, brazen of me. But I’d come so far to meet my hero and I’m sure if I explained, Holmes would understand me barging in on him so late. I just hoped I didn’t catch him in his jammies. So embarrassing… though I was curious if his jammies had tiny magnifying glasses on them.
The moment I stepped inside I smelled the lingering odor of stinky fish, along with a sourness that I always associate with beer. I’d expected to find myself standing in the front hall of 221B Baker Street, but instead I was inside what us Ameowicans call a bar and the Brits call a pub.
“Sorry! We’re closed,” a woman said from behind the bar. “Come back tomorrow.”
I must have had a confoozed expression on my puss cuz she looked at me really hard. “Are you lost?”
I clearly was. “Isn’t this where Sherlock Holmes lives?”
She laughed. “No. This is Number 10 Northumberland Street. The Sherlock Holmes is a lounge; a restaurant. The place you want is on Baker Street across town. It’s a four minute walk to Charing Cross from here, then a seven minute ride with four stops to Baker Street Station. But the museum is closed for the night.”
Still confoozed, I gazed around the room, trying to collect my thoughts. Why would I want to walk to a place called Charing Cross? What museum?
“Are you hungry?” she asked, and when my tummy growled in reply, she said, “I have a few leftover scraps that I was planning to throw out.”
Oh joy. Garbage for dinner.
A moment later she returned with a newspaper upon which lay a few mushy peas sticking to a glop of cold oily fish. To make matters worse, instead of helping me pull out a chair to sit at a table, she placed it on the floor. “Enjoy!” she tossed over her shoulder as she returned behind the bar.
Eating the leftovers reminded me of my weeks on the road as a lost kitten in the Kentucky wilds. But I hadn’t eaten directly off the floor since I’d been rescued. Still, I was pretty starvy so I gobbled the cold fish, leaving the mushy peas for the garbage. Hunh! She hadn’t even provided me with a napkin to wipe my whiskers.
Oh! Here’s a fun fact for you Ameowicans. In the U.K. a table napkin is called a serviette cuz to the Brits a napkin means… um… uhhh. *nose and ears turn bright pink with embarrassment* Never mind.
When finished, I jumped onto the bar. “Excuse me. I’m from out of town. Could you explain to me why Sherlock Holmes’ name is on the sign out front, but he doesn’t live here?”
She smiled the kind of condescending smile parents give children. “I supposed we were named to capitalize on Doyle’s famous works.”
Curiouser and Curiouser…to quote Alice. Who was Doyle? What famous works?
I guess my confoozed expression confirmed I had no idea what she was talking about, because then she said, “Ah, Americans! So gullible. Okay, here’s the story. He eats here so often, we named the place after him.” She then pointed to a chair positioned at the corner of the bar. “That’s his chair.”
With my heart skipping beats like a crazed drummer, I scampered across the top of the bar to the sacred chair. I half expected to see a polished brass plaque reserving it for the famous detective in case he unexpectedly stopped in for a quick bite. It looked ordinary with a high back, but the seat was worn and when I placed my paw on it I swear a sizzle of the Master Detective’s warmth shot through my paw and up my arm, all the way into my brain!
For a moment I could almost feel the legendary sleuth’s thoughts inside my head, using facts and logic, and the power of intuition to solve his cases. Gosh!
With sincere reverence I bent to inhale the aroma of the wood. Oak, I deduced. To think my hero always sat his tail here while dining made me dizzy with excitement. I wondered what he usually ordered. Not cold oily fish on a soggy sheet of newspaper, I was certain. I also doubted he came here to eat muffins and tea.
I pictured him hunkered over a plate of fat geese or cold beef, drinking pots of strong coffee laced with brandy while smoking an incredible amount of tobacco in his pipe as he mulled over his latest thrill of the chase.I touched chair. I swear a sizzle of the Master Detective’s warmth shot through my paw. Click To Tweet
He probably ordered a hearty breakkie. Kidneys, kedgeree, ham and eggs… Maybe chicken curry. His spontaneous, workaholic schedule made eating regular meals impossible, so I imagined him ordering plenty of sandwiches. “Give me some cold beef and a glass of beer,” I could hear him saying. Or maybe he’d order tinned tongue and peaches. I recall reading in one of his historical documents that, while on the trail of a jewel thief, he’d cut a slice of beef from the joint upon the sideboard, sandwiched it between two rounds of bread and, thrusting this rude meal into his pocket, started off upon his expedition.
“Look, mog. It’s an hour after closing. I’m dead on my feet and want to go home. If you’re finished sniffing around, then you need to scat.”
I thanked her and returned to Mosey who began to roll along the street before my back paws were inside the carriage. “I’m sorry. You were right,” I told him. “That isn’t where Sherlock Holmes lives. It’s where he eats. The lady inside said we have to go to Charing Cross… whatever that is… and then—”
Mosey picked up speed, causing the dark shops on either side of us to blur. I zipped up the hood for safety. Soon, through the hood netting, I saw a sign that read Charing Cross, but Mosey zoomed right past it. Then, I swear not more than seconds later, he rolled up to another building with soft lighting in the windows.
“The Sherlock Holmes Museum,” I read out loud. “Souvenirs. Books. Antiques and Curios.” I sat back on my tail with a loud huff. “This can’t be right. He doesn’t live in a museum. Mosey, take me to 221B Baker Street.”
Mosey stayed put. So I got out to peer inside the window. I saw furniture and manny-kins dressed in old-fashioned clothing. More confoozed than I’d thought possible, I walked up and down the street reading the addresses. If my deductions were correct, the Museum was located at 234 Baker Street. I kept walking, looking for 221. I even crossed the street at one point to find 222 Baker Street – a London Quality Dry Cleaners and 220 Baker Street housed Holmes Grill that served Lebanese food. Clearly another place he often visited to eat.
I again crossed the street, expecting to see 221 – B or not to B, didn’t matter. But I found a bookstore at 222 Baker, and an Italian restaurant at 215. And an apartment building at 219.
221 wasn’t anywhere to be found!
I returned to Mosey, totally dejected. If I couldn’t detect something as simple as a fweakin’ famous address, then I should just go home. Give up my dream to be a detective like my hero. Be nothing more than an ordinary house cat.
As tears rolled down my whiskers, I zipped up the hood, and then pulled the mint chip cushion over my head.
If you like what you’re reading… here are more stories by Kimberley Koz and Herman, her mews.