A Scandal in Bohemia 3eso

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  A SHERLOCK HOLMES COLLECTION by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Retold by Vanessa Brown    A Scandal in Bohemia My name is Dr John Watson. I am a friend of the great detective, Sherlock Holmes. I got married a few months ago. After I got married, I did not see Holmes very often. He stayed at his house on Baker Street. He was busy with the study of crime. Sherlock Holmes solves mysteries that the police cannot solve. One night, I decided to visit Holmes. I rang the bell. He was happy to see me. I sat down and he offered me a cigar. Then he stood in front of the fire and looked at me. “You look well. Married life is good for you,” he said. “And I can see that you are working as a doctor again. I also know that you went to the countryside this week, and that you have a car  eless servant girl.”   “My dear Holmes,” I said, “you are very clever. It is true that I went for a walk in the country on Thursday. I came home very dirty. But I changed my clothes, so how do you know? It is also true that we have a careless servant girl. How do you know all these things?”  Holmes laughed. “It’s easy,” he said. “There are six scratches on your left shoe. I can see that a careless person cleaned you shoes. I know that you are working as a doctor again  because you smell of antiseptic.”  I laughed at his reply. Holmes made everything sound so obvious. “Look,” he said. He gave me a sheet of pink writing paper. “The postman  brought this. Read it aloud.”  The letter did not have a date on it, and it did not have a signature or an address. The letter said:  Dear Holmes,  A gentleman will come to see you tonight. He needs your help with something very serious. The man will wear a mask, so do not be surprised. I know that I can trust  you. “This is a mystery,” I said.   “What do you think?” Holmes asked.    I looked carefully at the writing and the paper. “I think that the writer is rich,” I said . I wanted to be as clever as my friend. “The paper is unusual. It is expensive and very strong.”   “Yes, it is   unusual,” said Holmes. “And it is not English paper. Hold it up to the light.”  I held it up. On the paper, I saw the letters  Eg, P and  Gt.   “The Gt    stands for ‘Gesellschaft’,” said Holmes. “That means ‘Company’ in German. The  P    stands for ‘Papier’ –   paper. So this paper is from a German-speaking country.”  Holmes took an encyclopaedia from a shelf and opened it. “Look. The  Eg    stands for ‘Egria’. That is in Bohemia. What do you think of that?”   “The paper is from Bohemia,” I said.   “Precisely, my dear Watson. We must discover what this man wants. I think I can hear him no w.”  We heard slow, heavy steps on the stairs. Then there was a loud knock at the door. “Come in,” said Holmes.  A man entered. He was strong and tall. He wore expensive clothes. There was a  black mask on his face. “Did you receive my letter?” he asked. He h ad a strong German accent. “Yes,” said Holmes. “Please sit down. This is my friend and colleague, Dr John Watson. Who are you?”   “I am Count von Kramm, a Bohemian nobleman. I want to speak to you alone,  please.”  I got up to go, but Holmes stopped me. “You can trust my friend,” he said to the count.   “You must both promise to keep my secret,” said the count.   “We promise,” said Holmes.   “I am sorry about this mask,” our strange visitor continued. “Count von Kramm is not my real name. I am here to see you because I want to prevent a scandal.”    “I know,” said Holmes. He sat down and closed his eyes. “You are Wilhelm Gottsreich Sigismond von Ormstein, Grand Duke of Cassel-Falstein, and King of Bohemia. Your Majesty, please tell me how I can help you.”  The man was shocked. He jumped up from his chair. He pulled the mask off his face and threw it into the ground. Then he said, “I am sure you understand. I come myself because I cannot trust anyone with my secret. Five years ago, I visited Warsaw. There I met the famous o  pera singer Irene Adler.”   “Watson, please find the notes I have about her,” said Holmes. He had notes about many interesting people. I found the notes quickly and gave them to Holmes. “Let me see,” he said. “Hmm! She was born in New Jersey. She sang at La Scala and at the Imperial Opera of Warsaw, but she doesn’t sing in operas now. Ah –   now she is living in London! I believe Your Majesty fell in love with this young woman. You wrote her some letter. And now you want those letters.”   “That’s correct!” said the king. “But how do you know?”   Holmes did not answer the question. He continued, “You think that she wants to show the letters to someone  –     but can she prove that you wrote them?”   “Yes. The writing paper is mine.”   “You can say that she stole it.”   “The letters have my seal.”   “You can say that she copied the seal.”   “But there is also a photograph.”   “A photograph?”   “Yes, a photograph of me with her.”   “Oh, no. That is very bad. Your Majesty was very careless.”  I was mad. I was only Crown Prince then. I was you ng.”   “Your Majesty must obtain this photograph.”   “I tried. It was impossible.”   “You must buy it from her.”   “She does not want to sell it.”   “Steal it.”   “We tried five times. We did not find it.”    Holmes laughed. “You have a big problem,” he said.   “Yes, and it is very serious for me,” said the king.   “What does Irene Adler want to do with the photograph?” Holmes asked.   “I am going to get married soon,” said the king, “to Clotilde Lothman von Saxe -Meningen. She is the daughter of the King of Scandinavia. Irene will give the  photograph to Clotilde’s family. They will stop the marriage. Irene will not let me marry another woman. She loves me.”   “I see. Are you staying in London?”   “Yes. I am staying at the Langham Hotel. Ask for Count von Kramm.”   “What is Miss Adler’s address?”   “She lives at Briony Lodge in St John’s Wood.”   Holmes wrote down the address. “Good night, Your Majesty. I hope we will have good news for you soon. And good night, Watson. Please come tomorrow afternoon, at three o’clock. I want to discuss this with you.”   I arrived at Baker Street at three o’clock the next day. Holmes was not at home. I sat down by the fire to wait for him. At four o’clock the door opened. An untidy man walked into the room. His clothes were old ad he had a red face. I knew that Holmes often wore disguises. But I was not sure if this person was Holmes. The man walked into the bedroom. Yes, it was my friend! Five minutes later, Holmes came out of the bedroom. He was clean and tidy and he wore a suit. He sat down in a chair by the fire and lit his pipe. “Well, really!” he said.   “What?” I asked.   “Something very surprising happened this morning,” he replied.   “What?” I asked again.   “I went to Irene Adler’s house, Briony Lodge,” said Holmes. “I was disguised as a groom. I spoke to the carriage drivers there. I helped them with their work. They told me about Miss Adler.”   “What did they tell you?” I asked.   “She is very beautiful. She lives quietly and sings at concerts. She drives to the  park at five o’clock every day. She returns at exactly seven o’clock for dinner. She
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