Bonus Holmes content for those who enjoyed “The Mystery of the Last Line.”
The mind of a woman is very different from that of a man,” Holmes was lecturing as we left the cab and started up the stairs that led to our brownstone on Baker Street. “So different, in fact, that it would prove extremely difficult for the average male to follow.”
“Well, Holmes, you are certainly far beyond average,” I supplied as we ascended the 17 steps to our rooms.
“You flatter me, Watson, in as much as you are correct,” my friend responded. He threw open the door to our flat, and I followed him inside.
“You know, Holmes, I am rather surprised you never married,” I went on.
Holmes stopped near the mantel of the fireplace, turning his head only slightly in my direction, as if he was not sure he had heard me rightly. “How’s that?” he inquired sharply.
I dropped into a favourite chair. “Only that one would think a woman could do no better than to find a man who understands her way of thinking.”
“Do not mistake understanding for approval,” cautioned Holmes.
“Come now,” I went on in hopes of lightening his humour once more, “you can’t tell me there was never some dainty country girl, or perhaps someone you met abroad who caught your eye?”
Holmes did round on me then, his expression making several things clear: that such an idea was absurd, that the conversation had taken an inconvenient turn, and that Sherlock Holmes resented such familiarity, even from the man who could be counted his closest companion. But he spoke only one word: “Hardly.”
It was also the last thing he said for three days.