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About The Sunday Oregonian. (Portland, Ore.) 1881-current | View Entire Issue (Sept. 3, 1905)
THE SUNDAY OREGOXIAX, PORTLAND, SEPTEMBER 3, 1905.
Adventure of the No
THE Lord St. Simon marriage and Its
curious termination have long
ceased to be a subject of interest in
those exalted circles-in -which the unfor
tunate bridegroom moves. Fresh scan
dals have eclipsed it, and their more pi
quant details have drawn the gossips
away from this four-year-old drama. As
I have reason to believe, however, that
the full facts have never been reiealed
to the general public, and as my friend
Sherlock Holmes had a considerable share
ln clearing the matter up, I feel that no
memoir of him would be comjrfeto without
some little sketch of this remarkable epi
sode. It was a few weeks before my own mar
riage, during the days when I "was still
sharing rooms with Sherlock Holmes on
Bakor street, that he came home from an
afternoon stroll to find a letter on the ta
ble waiting for him. I had remained in
doors all day, for the weather had taken
a sudden turn to rain, with high autumnal
winds, and the Jezail bullet which I had
brought back in one of my limbs as a
relic of my Afghan campaign throbbed
with dull persistency. "With my body in
one cany chair and my logs upon anothor,
I had surrounded myself with a cloud of
newspapers, until at last, saturated with
tha nows of the day, I tossed them all
aside and lay listless, watching the huge
orest and monogram upon the envelope
ijpon the table, and wondering lazily who
my 'friend's noble correspondent could be.
"Here is a very fashionable epistle," I
remarked, as he ontercd. "Yqur morning
letters. If I remember right, were from a
fishmonger and a tldewalter."
"Yog, my correspondence has certainly
the charm of variety." he answered, smil
ing, "and the humbler arc usually the
more interesting. This looks like one of
those unwelcome social summonses which
flail upon a man either to bo bored or to
He broke the seat and glanced over th
"Oh. come. It may prove to be somothing
of interest, aftor all."
"Net social, then?"
"No. distinctly professional."
"And from a noble client?"
On of the highest In England."
"My dear fellow, I congratulate you."
"I assure you, "Watson, without affec
tation, that the status of my client is a
matter of less moment to me than the in
terest of his case. It is Just possible,
Thowover, that that also may not bo want
ing in this new Investigation. You
have been reading the papers diligently of
late, have you not?"
"It looks like it." said L ruefully, point
ing to a huge bundle in the corner. "I
hv had nothing else to do."
"It is fortunate, for you will perhaps ;
be able to post me up. I read nothing
except the criminal news and the agony
oohtmnjThe latter Is always instructive.
But Ifyou have followed recent events so
closely you must have read about Lord
St. Simon, and his wedding?"
"Oh. yes. with the deepest interest."
"That is well. The letter which I hold
in Br hand Ib from Lord SU Simon. I will
read it to you. and in return j-ou must
turn trver those papers and Jet me have J
wlwtjever boars upon the matter. This Is
whtU ho savs: 1
My Dear Mr. Sherlock Holmes: Lord
Backwater tells me that I may place im
plicit reliance upon your judgment and
discretion. I have determined, therefore,
to call upon you, and to consult you in
reference to the very painful event which
lias occurred In nniirvllnn xHth mv -nA.
ding. Mr. Lestrade. of Scotland Yard, isj
acuns? aireaar in tun mat or hut v o
wires me that he sees no objection to your
oo-oporation. and that he even thinks that
it might be of some assistance. I will call
at 4 o'clock in the afternoon, and should
you have any other engagement at that
time. I hope that you will postpone It. as
this matter is of paramount Importance.
Yours faithfully, ST. SIMON.
"It is dated from Grosvonor Mansions,
written with a quill pen. and the noble
lord has had the misfortune to get a
Hmoar of ink upon the outer side of his
right little anger," romarked Holmes, as
he foMed up the epistle.
"He says 4 o'clock. It is 3 now. He
will bo here In an hour."
"Then I have Just time, with your as
sistance, to got clear upon the 'subject.
Turn over those papers and arrange the
extracts In their order of tlfre while I
take a glance as to who our client Is."
He picked a red-covered volume from a
lino of books of reference beside the man
telpiece. "Here ho Is," said he. sitting
down and flattening it out upon his knee.
"Lord Robert Walslngham de Vore St.
Simon, second son of the Duke of Bal
moralHum! Arms: Azure, three cal
trops in chief over a fess sable. Born In
3SIS. He's forty-one years of age. which
is 'mature for marriage. "Was Under-Secretary
for the Colonies in a late adminis
tration. The Duke, his father, was at one
tlmo Secretary for Foreign Affairs. They
inherit Plantagonot blood by direct de
scent, and Tudor on the distaff side. Ha!
Well, there is nothing very instructive In
nM this. I think that I must turn to you,
"Watson, for something more, solid."
"I have very little difficulty In finding
-what I want," said I, "for the facts are
quite recent, and tho rriatter struck me as
remarkable. I feared to refer them to
you, however, as I knew that you had an
inquiry on hand, and that you disliked the
intrusion of other matters."
"Oh. you mean the little problem of
the Grosvonor Square furniture van.
That is quite cleared up, now though.
Indeed, It was obvious from the first.
Pray give the results of your news
"Here is the first notice whloh I can
find. It is in the personal column of
the Morning Post, and datos, as you
Bee, some weeks back. A marraige
has been arranged.' It saj-s, 'and will,
if rumor is oorrect, very shortly take
place, between Lord Robert St. Simon,
socond son of the Duke of Balmoral,
and Miss Hatty Doran, the only daugh
ter of Aloys! us Doran, Esq., of San
Franeisoo. CaL, U. S. A.' That is all."
"Torse and to the point," romarked
Holmes, stretching his long, thin legs
toward tho fire.
"There was 'a paragraph amplifying
this in one of the society papers of
the same -week. Ah! here it is. There
will soon be a call for protection in
the marriage market, for the present
free-trade principle appears to tell
heavily against our home product. One
by one the management of the noble
houses of Groat Britain is passing into
the hands of our fair cousins from
Across tile Atlantic. An" important
addition has been made during the last
week to the list of the prizes which
have been borne awayby those charm
ing invaders. Lord St. Simon, who has
shown himself for over 20 years proof
Against the little god's arrows, has
now definitely announced his approaching-
marriage with Miss Hatty
Doran. the fascinating' daughter of a
California" millionaire. Miss Doran,
whose graceful figure and striking face
attracted much attention at the West
bury House festivities, is an only
child, and it js currently teported that
her dowry will run to consideraby over
the six figures, with expectancies for
the future. As it is an open secret
that the Duke of Balmoral has boon
compelled to soil his pictures within
the last few years, and as Lord SU
Simon has no property of his own, save
the small estate of Birchmoor. It is ob
vious that the California heiress Is not
the only gainer by an alliance which
will enable her to make the easy and
common transition from a republican
lady to a Britten peeress.'"
'.Anything else?" asked Holmes,
"Oh, yc-a; plentr. There is another
note in the Morning1 Post to say that
the marriage would be an absolutely
quiet one, that' it would bo at St.
George's, Hanover Square, that only
half a dozen Intimate friends would be
Invited, and that the party would re
turn to the furnished house at Lan
caster Gate which had been taken by
Mr. Aloysius Doran. Two days later
that 1?, on Wodaosday last there is
a curt announcement that the wed
ding had taken place, and that the
honeymoon would be passed at Lord
Backwater's place, near Fctorsfield.
Thtse are all the notices which ap
peared before the disappearance of the
"Bofore the what?" asked Holme,'
with a start.
"The vanishing of tho lady."
When did she" vanish, then?"
"At the wedding broakfasU"
"Indeed. This Is more interostlng
than It promised to be; quite dramatic,
"Yo; It struck me as bolng a little
out of the common."
'They often vanish before the cere
mony, and occasionally during the
honeymoon: but I cannot call to mind
anything- quite so prompt asthta. Pray
let me have the details."
"1 warn you that they are very in
complete." "Perhaps we may make them less
"Such as they are, they are set forth J
in a single article of a morning paper
of 3'osterday, which I will road to you.
IT is headed. 'Singular Occurrence at
a Fashionable Wedding:'
"The family of Lord Robert SU
Simon has been thrown into tne great
est consternation by the strange and
painful eplsodo which have taken
place In connection ith his weddipjr.
The cenwuony. as sjhortly announcod
In the papers of yiterdy. occurred
on the previous mornng; but it is only j
now that it has been possible to con- j
n rm me strange rumors wnicn nave
been so persistently floating abouU In
spite of the' attempts of the friends to .
hush the matter up. so much public !
attention lias now been drawn to it
that no good purpose can be served by j
affocting to disregard what is a com- 1
mon subject for conversation. j
rue ceremony, wnicn was per
formed at SU George's, Hanover Square,
was a very quiet one, no one being
present save the father of the bride,
Mr. Aloysius Doran, the Duchess of
Balmoral, Lprd Backwator, Lord Eus
tace and Lady Clara SU Simon (the
younger brother and sister of the
bridegroom), and Lady Alicia Whit
tington. The whole party proceeded
afterward o the house of Mr. Aloysius
Doran, at Lancaster Gate, where break
fast had been prepared, it appears
that some, little trouble was caused by
a woman, whose name has not been
ascertained, who endeavored to force
hor way into the house after the bridal
party, alleging that she Iwd some
claim upon Lord SU Simon. It was
only after a painful and prolonged
scene that she "was ejected by the but
ler and the footman. The bride, who
had fortunatoly entered the house be
fore this unpleasant interruption, had j
sat down to breakfast with the resC
when she complained of a sudden in- J
disposition and retired to her room. ;
Her prolonged absence having caused
some comment, her fathor followed her.
but, learned from hor maid that she
had only come up to her chamber for
an inatanU caught up an ulster and
bonnet, and hurriod down to the pus
sage. One of the footmen declared that
xi e had seen a lady leave the house
thus apparelled, believing her to be
with the company. On ascertaining
that his dhughter had disappeared, Mr.
Aloysius Doran. in conjunction with
the brldogroom. Instantly put them
selves into communication with the
police, and very energetic Inquiries
are beinc madn. which will tirnhahlv
rcsultv In a speedy clearing up of this
very singular business. Up to a lato .
hour last nlghU however, nothing had '
transpired as to the whereabouts of ;
the missing lady. There are rumors of
foul- play in the matter, and it is said
tnat tne ponce nave caused the arrest
of the woman who had caused the orig
inal disturbance, in the belief that,
from jealousy or some other motive,
she may have been concerned In the
strange disappearance of the bride.'"
"And is that all?"
"Only one little item In another of the
morning papers, but it is a suggestive
"And that is"
"That Miss Flora Millar, the lady who
had caused the disturbance, has actually
been arrested. It appears that she was !
formerly a danseuse at the 'Allegro,' and
that she has known the bridegroom for
some years. There are no further par
ticulars, and the whole easels in your
hands now so far as it has been set
forth In the public press."
"And an exceedingly interesting case
it appears to be. I would not have
missed it for worlds. But there is a ring
at the bell, Watson, and as the clock
makes It a few minutes after 4, I have no
doubt that this will prove to be our noble
cllenU Do npt dream of going, Watson,
for I very much prefer having a witness,
if only as a check to my own memory."
"Lord Robert 8U Simon," announced
our page-boy, throwing open the door. A
gentleman entered, with a pleasant, cul
tured face, high-nosed and pale, with
something perhaps of petulance about the
mouth, and with the, steady, well-opened
eye of a man whose pleasant lot it had
ever been to command and to be obeyed.
His manner was brisk, and jet his gen
eral appearance gave an undue Impres
sion of age, for he had a slight forward
stoop and a little bend of the knees as
he walked.'' His hair. too. as he swept
oft his very , curly-brimmed haU was
grizzled round the edges and thin upon
the top. As to his dress, it was careful
to the verge of foppishness, with high
collar, black frock coau white waist
coat, yellow gloves, patent-leather shoes,
and light-colored gaiters. He advanced
slowly into the room, turning his head
from left to right, and swinging in his
right hand the cord which hold his golden
"Good day. Lord St. Simon." said
Holmes, rising and bowing. "Pray take
the basket-chair. This is my friend and
colleague. Dr. Watson. Draw up a little
to the Are, and wc will talk this matter
"A most painful matter io me, as you
can most readily Imagine. Mr. Holmes.
I have been cut to the quick. I under
stand that you "have already managed
several delicate cases of this sort, sir.
though I presume that they were hardly
from the same class of society."
"No, I am descending."
"L beg pardon."
"VMy last client of the sort was a king."
"Oh. really! I had no idea. And which
The King of Scandinavia."
"What! Had he lost his wife?" .
"You can understand." said Holmes,
suavely, "that I extend to the affairs of
my other clients the same secrecy which
I promise to you In yours."
"Of course! Vory right! very right! I'm
sure I beg pardon. As to my own case.
I am ready to give you any Information
which may assist you in forming an
"Thank you. I have already learned
all that is in the public prints, nothing
more. I presume that I may take It as
correct this article, for example, as to
the disappearance of the bride."
Lord SU Simon glanced over it. "Yos,
it is correct, as far as it goes."
"But it needs a great deal of supple-
. ! RBS f i&'ffl m lis i Tl I
j S11K HAD CAUGHT TV AS VUSTKR AND BONNET.
" - - i .... . - - ------- .j
mentlng bofore any one could offer an
opinion. I think that I may arrive at
my facts most directly by questioning
"Pray de so."
"When did you first meet Mies Hatty
"In San Francisco, a year ago."
"You wore traveling in the States?"
"Did you become engaged then?"
"But you were on a frlondly footing?"
"I was amused by hoc1 society, and sho
could see that I was amused."
"Her father Is very rich?"
"He is said to be the richest man on
the Pacific slope.'
"And how did he make his money?"
"In mining. He had nothing a few
years ago. Then he struck gold. Invested
1U and came up by leaps and bounds."
"Now, what is your own impression as
to the young lady's your wife's char
acter?" The nobleman swung his glasses a lit
tle faster and stared down Into the fire.
"You see, Mr. Holmes," said he, "my
wife was twenty before her father be
came a rich man. During that time she
ran free in a mining camp, and wand
ered through woods or mountains, so
that her education has come from Nature
rather than from the schoolmaster. She
is what "we call in England a tomboy,
with a strong nature, wild and free, un
fettered by any sort of traditions. She
is impetuous volcanic. I was about to
say. She is swift in making up her mind,
and fearless in carrying out her resolu
tions. On the other hand, I would not
have given her the name which I have
the honor to bear" he gave a little
stately cough "had not I thought her to
be at bottom a noble woman. I believe
she is capable of heroic self-sacrifice, and
that anything dishonorable would be re
pugnant to her."
"Have you her photograph?"
"I brought this with mc." He opened
avlockeU and showed us the full face of
a very lovely woman. It was not a pho
tograph, but an ivory miniature, and the
artist had brousht out the full effect of
the lustrous black hair, the large dark
eyes, and the exquisite mouth. Holmes
gazed long and earnestly at 1U Thon he
closed the locket and handed it back to
Lord SU Simon.
'The young lady came to London then,
and you renewed your acquaintance?"
"Yes, her father brousht hor over for
this last London season. I mot her sev
eral times, became engaged to her, and
have now married her."
"She broughu I understand, a con
"A fair dowry. Not more than Is usual
in my family."
"And this, of course, remains to you,
since the marriage Is a fait accompli?"
"I really have made no inquiries on the
"Very naturally noU Did you see Miss
Doran on the day before the wedding?"
"Was she In good spirits?"
"Never better. She kept talking of what
we should do In our future lives."
"Indeed! That Is vers Interesting. And
on the morning of the wedding?" X
-sne was as origan as possiDie at least
until aftor the ceremony."
"And did you observe any change In her
"Well, to tell the truth I saw then
the first signs that I had ever seen that
her temper was Just a little sharp. The
incldcnU however, was too trivial to re
late and can have no possible bearing
upon tho case.
"Pray. lat us have it,-for all thau"
"Oh. It Is childish. She dropped her
bouquet as we went toward the vestry.
She was passing the front pew at the
time, and it fell over into the pew. There
was a moment's dolay, but the gentle
man in the pew handed it up to her
again, and It did not appear to be the
worse for the falL Yet when I vspoke
to her of the matter she answered me ab
ruptly, and in the carriage, on our way
home, she seemeu absurdly agitated over
this trifling cause."
"Indeed!" You say that there was a
gentleman In tho pew? Some of the gen
eral public were present, then?"
"Oh. yes. It Is Impossible to exclude
thorn when the church Is open."
'This gentleman was not one of your
"No. no: I call him a gentleman by
courtesy, but he was quite a common
looking person. I hardly noticed his ap
pearance. But really I think that we
are wandering rather far from the point."
"Lady SU Simon, then, returned from
the wedding In a less cheerful frame of
mind than she had gone to IU What
did sho do on re-entering her father's
"I saw her In conversation with her
"And who is her maid?"
"Alice Is her name. She Is an Ameri
can, and came from California with her."
"A confidential servant?"
"A "little too much so. It seemed to
me that her mistress allowed her to take
great liberties. Still, of course. In
America they look upon those things in
a different way."
"How long did she speak to this Alice?"
"Oh. a few minutes. I had something
olse to think of."
"You did not overhear, what they said?"
"Lady SU Simon said" something about
i 'Jumping a claim. She was accustomed
to use sSang of the kind. I have no Idoa
what she meanu"
"American slang Is vory expressive
sometimes. And what did your wife do
when she finished speaking to her mald?
"She walked Into the breakfast-room."
"On your arm?
"No, alone. She was vary independent
In little matters like that. Then, after
we had sat down for ten minutes or so,
she rose hurriedly, muttered some word
of apology, and left the room. She never
"But this maid. Alice, as I understand,
deposes that she went to her room, cov
ered her bride's dress with a long ulster,
put on a bonnet, and went ouu"
"Quite so. And she was afterward seen
walking Into Hyde Park In company with
Flora Millar, a woman who Is now in
custody, and who had already made a
disturbance at Mr. Doran's house that
"Ah. yes. I should llk'e a few particu
lars as to this young lady and your rela
tions to her." . ;
Lord SU Simon shrugged 'his -shoulders
and raised his eyebrows. "We have been
on a friendly footing for some years I
may say on a very friendly footing. She
used to be at the 'Allegro.' I have not
treated her ungenerously, and she has
no Just cause of complaint against me,
but you know what women are, Mr.
Holmes. Flora was a dear little thing,
but exceedingly hot-headed, and devoted
ly attached to me. She wrote me dread
ful letters when she heard that I was
about to bo married; and, to tell the
truth, the reason why I had the marriage
celebrated so quietly was that I feared
lest there might be a scandal in the
church. She came to Mr. Doran's door
Just aftor wc returned, and she endeav
ored tO OUsh hor WSV In. llttnrtnr- vnrv
abusive expressions toward my wife, and
even threatening ncr; nut I had loreseon
the possibility of something of the sort,
and I had two police fellows there In
private clothes, who soon pushed her out
again. She was quiet when she saw that
there was no good in making a row."
"Did your wife hear all this?"
"No, thank goodness, she did noU"
"And she was seen walking with this
very woman afterward ?'
"Yes. That is what Mr. Lestrade. of
Scotland Yard, looks upon as so serious.
It Is thought that Flora decoyed my wife
out and laid some terrible trap for her."
"Well, It is a possible supposition."
"You think so, too?"
"I did not say a probable one. But you
do not yourself look upon this as likely?"
"I do not think Flora would hurt a
"Still, jealousy Is a strange transformer
of character. Pray what Is your own the
ory as to what took place?"
"Well, really, I came to seek a theory,
not to propound one. I have given you all
the facts. Since you ask mc. however, I
may say that it has occurred to me as
possible that the excitement of this af
fair, the consciousness that she had made
so immense a social stride, had the effect
of causing some little nervous disturb
ance In my wife."
"In short, that she had become sudden
"Well, really, when I consider that she
has turned her back I will not say upon
me, but upon so much that many have
aspired to without success I can hardly
explain it in any other fashion."
"Well, certainly that Is also a conceiv
able hypothesis." said Holmes, smiling.
"And now. Lord SU Simon, I think that
I have nearly all my data. May I ask
whether you were seated at the breakfast
table so that you could sec out of the
"We could see the other side of the
road and the park."
"Quite so. Then I do not think that I
need to detain you longer. I shall com
municate with you."
"Should you be fortunate enough to
solve this problem," said our client, ris
"I have solved iu"
"Eh? What was that?" '
"I say that I have solved IU"
"Where, then. Is my wife?"
That Is a detail which I shall speedily
Lord SU Simon shook his head. "I am
afraid that it will take wiser heads than
yours or mine," he remarked,' and. bow
ing in a stately, old-fashioned manner, he
"It Is very good of Lord SU Simon to
nonor my head by putting it on a level
with his own." said Sherlock Holme3,
laughing. "I think that I shall have a
whisky and soda and a cigar after all
this cross-questioning. I had formed my
conclusions as to the case before our
client came into the room."
"My dear Holmes!"
"I have notes of several similar cases,
though none, as I remarked before, which
were quite as prompt. My whole exam
ination served to 'urn my conjecture into
a certainty. Circumstantial evidence Is
occasionally very convincing, as when
you find a trout in the milk, to quote
"But I have heard all that you have
"Without, however, the knowledge of
pre-existing cases which serves me so
well. There was a parallel instance in
Aberdeen some years back, and something
on very much the same lines at Munich
the year after the Franco-Prussian War.
It Is one of those cases but, hello, here
is Lestrade! Good afternoon. Lestrade!
You will find an extra tumblor upon tho
sideboard, and there are cigars in the
The official detective jras attired in a
pea-jacket and cravat, which gave him a
decidedly nautical appearance, and he
carried a black canvas bag In his hand.
With a short greeting, he seated himself
and lit the cigar which had been offered
"What's up. then" asked Holmes, with
a twinkle in his eye.. "You look dissatis
"And I feci dissatisfied. It is this in
fernal SU Simon marriage case. I can
make 'neither head nor tail of the busi
ness." Really! You surprise me."'
"Who ever heard of such a mixed af
fair? Every dew seems to slip through
my fingers. 1 have ben at work upon It
"And very wet It seems to have made!
you." said Holmes, laying his hand upon
the arm of the pea-Jackou
"Yes, I have boon dragging the Ser
pentine." "In heaven's name, what for?"
"In search of the bddy of Lady SU Si
mon. Sherlock Holmes leaned
back in his
chair and laughed heartily.
"Have you dragged tho basin of Trafal
gar Square fountain?" he asked.
"Why? What do you mean?"
"Because you have Just as good a
chance of finding this lady In the one as
In the other."
Lestrade shot an angry glance at my
companion. "I suppose yoii know all
about It." he snarled.
'Vel. I have only Just henfd the facts,
but my mind is made up."
"Oh. Indeed! Then you think that the
Serpentine plays no part In the matter?"
"I think It very unlikely."
'Then perhaps you will kindly explain
how It Is that we found this In It?" He
opened his bag as he spoke and tumbled
onto the floor a wedding dress of watered
silk, a pair of white satin shoes and a
bride's wreath and veil, all discolored, and
soaked with water. 'There," said he. put
ting a new wedding ring upon the top of
the pile. 'There is a little nut for you to
crack. Master Holmes."
"Oh, Indeed!" said my friend, blowing
blue rings into the air. "You dragged
them from the Serpentine?"
"No. They were found floating near the
margin by a park-keeper. They have been
Identified as her clothes, and it seemed
to me that If the clothes were there the
body would not be far off."
"By the same brilliant reasoning, every
man's body is to be found in the neigh
borhood of his wardrobe. And pray what
did you hope to arrive at through this?"
"At somo evidence Implicating Flora
Millar in the disappearance."
"I am afraid that you will find It dif
ficult "Are you. Indeed, now?" cried Lestrade
with some bitterness. "I am afraid.
Hplmes, that you aro notjrery practical
glth your deductions and your Inferences.
You have made two blunders in as many
minutes. This dress does Implicate Miss
"In the dress Is a pockeU In the pocket
Is a cardcase. In the cardcasc Is a note.
And here Is the very note." He slapped
It down upon the table In front of blm.
"Listen to this: 'You will sec me when
all Is ready. Come at once. F, H. M.'
Now, my theory all along has been that
Lady St. Simon was decoyed away by
Flora Millar, and that she. with confed
erates, no doubt, was responsible for her
disappearance. Here, signed with her
Initials. Is the very note which was no
doubt quietly slipped Into her hand at the
door and which lured her within their
"Very good, Lestrade," said Holmes.
laughing. "You really are very fine in-J
paper Iff a listless way, but his attention
instantly became riveted, and he gave a
little cry of satisfaction. 'This is Indeed
Important." said he.
"Ha! you And it so?"
"Extremely so. I congratulate you
Lestrade rose in his triumph and bent
his head to look. "Why," he shrieked,
"you're looking at the wrong side!"
"On the contrary, this is the right side."
'The right side? You're mad! Here is
the note written in pencil over here."
"And over here Is what appears to be
the fragment of a hotel bill, which inter
ests me deoply."
There's nothing In IU I looked at it
before." said Lestrade. " 'OcU 4, rooms
Ss. breakfast 2s 6d, cocktail Is. lunch
2s 6d, glass sherry Sd.' I sec nothing In
"Very likely noU It Is most ImportanU
all the same. As to the note. It Is im
portant also, or at least the initials arof
so I congratulate you again."
"I've wasted time enough," said Le
strade, rising. "I believe In hard work
and not In sitting by the Are spinning
fine theories. Good-day, Mr. Holmes, and
we shall see which gets to the bottom of
the matter firsU" He gathered up the
garments, thrust them Into the bag and
made for the door.
'Just one hint to you.. Lestrade,"
drawled Holmes, before his rival van
ished. "I wiU tell you the true solution
of the matter. Lady SU Simon is a
myth. There is not, and there never
has been, any such person."
Lestrade looked sadly at my companion.
Then he turned to me, tapped his fore
head three times, shook his head solemn
ly, and hurried away.
He had hardly shut the door behind
him when Holmes rose and put on his
overcoaU "There is something in what
the fellow says about outdoor work." he
remarked, "so I think. Watson, that 1
must leave you to your papers for a
It was after i o'clock when Sherlock
Holmes left me, but I had no time to be
lonely, for within an hour there arrived a
confectioner's man with a very large fiat
box. This he unpacked with the help of
a youth whom he had brought with him,
and presently, to my very great aston
ishment, a quite epicurean little cold sup
per began to be laid out upon our hum
ble lodging-house mahogany. There were
a couple of brace of cold woodcock, a
pheasant, a pate de fole gras pie, with a
group of ancient and cobwebby bottles.
Having laid out all these luxuries, my
two visitors vanished away like the genii
of the Arabian Nights, with no explana
tion save that the things had been paid
for and were ordered to this address.
Just before 9 o'clock Sherlook Holmes
stepped briskly into" the room- His
features were gravely set, but there
was a light in his eye which made me
think that he had not been disappoint
ed In his conclusions.
'They have laid the supper, then," he
said, rubbing his hands.
"You seem to expect company. They
have laid for five." v
"Yes, I fancy we may have some
company dropping in." said he. "I am
surprised that Lord SU Simon has not
already arrived. Ha! I fancy that I
hear his step now upon the stairs."
It was indeed our visitor of the
morning who came bustling- In, dang
ling his glasses more vigorously than
ever, and with a very perturbed ex
pression upon his aristooratic features.
"My messenger reached you. then?"
"Yes, and I confess that tho contents
startled me beyond measure. Have
you good authority for what-you say?''
'The best possible."
Lord St. Simon sank into a chair
and passed his hand over his fore
head. "What will tho Duke say." he mur
mured, "when he hears that one of the
family has been subjected to such
"It Is the purest accidenU I cannot
allow that there Is any humiliation."
"Ah, you look on these things from
"I fall to see that anyone Is to blame.
I can hardly see how the lady couHl
have acted otherwise, though her ab
rupt method of doing It was undoubt
edly to be regretted. Having no
mother, she had no one to advise her
at such a crisis."
"It was a slight, sir, a public slight,"
said Lord St. Simon, tapping his Angers
upon the table.
"You must make allowance for this
poor girl, placed in so unprecedented
"I will make no allowance. I am
very angry indeed, and I have been
"I think that I heard a ring," said
Holmes. "Yes, thero are steps on the
landing, if I cannot persuade you to
take a lenient view of the matter. Lord
St. Simon. I have brought an advocate
here who may be more successful." He
opened the door and ushered In a lady
and gentleman. "Lord SU Simon." said
he, "allow me to Introduco you to Mr.
and Mrs. Francis Hay Moulton. The
lady, I think, you have 'already met."
At the sight of these new-comers
our client had sprung from his seat
and stood vory erect, with his oyea cast
down and his hand thrust into . the
breast of his frock coat, a picture of
offended dignity. The lady had taken
a quick, step forward and had held out
hor hand to him, but he still refused
to raise his eyes. It was as well for
his resolution, perhaps, for her plead
ing face was one which it was hard to
"You're angrv, Robert," said she.
"Well. I guess you have every cause
"Pray make no apology to me," said
Lord St. Simon, bitterly.
"Oh, jes, I know that I have treated
you real bad and that I should have
spoken to you before I went; but I was
kind of rattled, and from the time
when I faiw Franll- here aaraln T itie
ftikln"t knW what 1- was doing or say-
HK. x ouiy wonaer I didn't fall down
and do a faint right there before the
"Perhaps, Mrs. Moulton, you would
like my friend and me to leave the
room while you explain this matter?;
'If I may give an opinion," remarked
the strange gentleman, "we've had Just
a little too much secresy over this mat
ter alroady. For my prt, I should like
a11 Europe and America to hear the
rights of It." He was a small, wiry,
sunburnt man. clean shaven, with a
sharp face and alert manner.
Then I'll tell our story right away-,"
said the lady. "Frank here and I met
In 81, In McQuiro's camp, near the
Rockie, where pa was working a claim.
e were engaged to each other. Frank
and I; but then one day father struek
a rich pocket and made a pile, while
poor Frank here had a claim that
petered out and came to nothing. The
richer pa grew, the poorer was Frank;
so at last pa wouldn't hear of our en
gagement lasting- any longer, and he
took me away to 'Frisco. Frank
wouldn't throw up his hand, though;
so he followed me there, and he saw
me without pa knowing anything about
.11. It WOUld onlv hnva i-r. ,J V. I j
to know, so we Just Axed It nn nil v
"uuc mill iliuu
r?eS- ran 8a,d that he nic!
so and make his pile, too. and never
come back to-claim me until he had
JCh, aSv.pa So then 1 Promised
to wait for him to tho end of time, and
Pledged myself not to marry any one
else while he lived. 'Why shouldn't
he i5Erled,r,firht awQy- en. said
he -and then I will feel sure of you
until tW lm, ,to bc yoUr husband
X vaI com, hack? Well, we talked
waftlnsr Vhnf clerpman all ready in
waiting:, that we Just did It right
there; and then Frank went off to seek
his fortune, and I went back to pa.
Tne next. I heard of Frank was that
SJn Montana. and then he went
prospecting In Arizona, and then I
heard of him from New Mexipo. After
tnat came a Ions newspaper story about
now a miners' camp had been attacked
bj Apache Indians, and there was my
Franks name among- the killed. I
fainted dead away, and I was very sick
-or months after. Pa thought I had a
decline and took me to half the doctors
of Frisco. Nor a word of news came
for a year or more, so that I never
doubted that Frank was really dead
Tnen Lord SU Simon came to Frlco
and we came to London, and a mar
riage was arranged, and pa was verv
pleased, but I felt all the tlmo that
no man on this earth would ever take
the place in my heart that had been
given to my poor Frank.
"Still, if I hud married Lord SU Si
mon, of course I'd have to do my duty
by him. We can't command our love
but we can our actions. I went to the
alter with him with the Intentlen to
make "aim Just as good a wife as It
was in me to be. But you may imagine
what J felt when, just as I came to
the altar rails, I glanced back and saw
Fronk standing and looking at me out
of the flrst pew. I thought it was his
ghost at flrst; but when I looked again
there ho was still, with a kind of ques
tion in his eyes as If to ask me wheth
er I were glad or sorry to see him. I
wonder I didn't droD. I Wnnw i,.
everything was turning round, and the
words of the clergyman were Just like
the buzz of a bee in my ear. I didn't
know what to do. Should I stop the
service and make a scene in the church?
I glanced at him again, and he seemed
to know what I was thinking:, for ho
raised hia Anger to his lips to tell me
to be still. Then I saw him scribble on
a piece of paper, and I knew that he
was writing: me a note. As I passed his
pew on the way out I dropped by bou
quet over to him, and he slipped note
Into my hand when he returned me the
flowers. It was only a line asking me
to Join him 'when he made the sign to
me to do so. Of- course I never doubted
for n moment that my Arst duty was
npw (o him. and I determined to do
Just whatever he might direcU
"When I got back I . told my maid.
who had known him In California and
had alwKys been his friend. I ordered
her to say nothing-, but to get a few
things packed- and my ulster ready. I
know 1 ought to have spoken to Lord
SU Simon, but it was dreadful hard be
fore his mother and all those great
people. I Just made up my mind to
run away and explain afterward. I
hadn't been at the table ten minutes
before I saw Frank out of the window
at the other side of the road. He beck
oned to me and then began walking
into the park. I slipped out, put on my
things and followed him. Some woman,
came talking- something or other about
Lord SU Simon to me seemed to me
from the little I heard as if he had a
little secret of his own before mar
riage also but I managed to get away
from her, and- soon overtook Frank.
We got Into a cab together, and away
we drove to some lodgings he had taKcn
in Gordon Square, and that was mr
true wedding after all those years of
waiting. Frank had been a prisoner
among the Apaches, had escaped, came
on to 'Frisco, found that I had given
him up for dead and had gone to Eng
land, followed me there and had come
upon me at last on the very morning,
of my second wedding."
"I saw it Irf a paper, exclaimed the
American. "It gave the name and the
church, but not where the Iudy lived."'
'Then we had a talk as to what we
should do, and Frank was all for open
ness, but I was so ashamed of It all
that I felt as If I should like to vanisn
away and never see any of them again
Just sending a line to pa, perhaps,
to show him that I was alive. It was
awful to me to think of all those
lords and ladles sitting round that
breakfast table and waiting for me
to come back. So Frank took my wed
ding clothes and things and made a
bundle of them, so that I should not
be traced, and dropped them away
somewhere where no one could And
them. It is likely that we should have
gone on to Paris tomorrow, only that
this good gentleman, Mr. Holmes, came
round to U3 this evening, though how
he found us is more than I can think,
and he showed us very clearly and
kindly that I was wrong and that
Frank was right, and that we should ue
putting ourselves In the wrong if we
were so secret. Then he offered to
give us a chance of talking to Lord
SU Simon alone, and so we came rlgnt
away round to his rooms at once. Now,
Robert, you have heard it all, and I am
very sorry If I have given you pain,
and I hope that you do not think very
meanly of me."
Lord St. Simon had by no means re
laxed his rigid attitude, but nad lis
tened with n frowning brow and a
compressed Hp to this long narrative.
"Excuse me," he said ."but it is not
my custom to discuss ray most intimate
persoi-al affairs in th.is public manner."
"Then you won't forgive me? You won't
shake hands before I go?"
"Oh. certainly. If It would give you any
pleasure." He put out his hand and
coldly grasped that which she extended
to him. ,
I had hoped." suggested Holmes, "that
you would have joined us In a.' friendly
supper." ' -
"I think that there you ask a little too
much," responded his lordship. "I may
,be forced to acquiesce in these recent de
velopments, but I am hardly be expected
to make merry over them. I think that,
with your permission, I will now wish
you all a very good-nlghU" He included
us all In a sweeping bow and stalked out
of the room.
"Then I trust that you at least will
honor me with your company," said Sher
lock Holmes. "It Is always a joy to
meet an American, Mr. Moulton, for I
am one of those who believe that the
folly of a monarch and the blundering of
a minister In fargone years will not pre
vent our children from being some day
citizens of the same world-wide country
under a flag which shall be a quartering
of the Union Jack with the Stars and
"The case has been an interesting one."
romarked Holpaes, when our visitors had
left us. "because it serves to show very
clearly how simple the explanation may
be of an affair which at flrst sight seems
to be almost Inexplicable. Nothing could
be more natural than the sequence of
events as narrated by this lady, and
nothing stranger than the result when
viewed, for Instance, by Mr. Lestrade.
of Scotland Yard."
"You were not yourself at fault at all,
"From the flrst two facts were very
obvious to me. the one that the lady had
been quite willing to undergo the wedding
ceremony, the other that she had re
pented of It within a few minutes of
returning home. Obviously something
had occurred during the morning then,
to cause her to change her mind. What
could that something be? She could not
have spoken to any one when she was
out. for she had been in the company of
the bridegroom. Had she ssen some one.
then? If she had. it must be some one
from America, because she had spent so
short a time In this country that she
could hardly have allowed any one to
acquire so deep an Influence over her that
tho mere sight of him would Induce her
to change her plans so completely. You
see we have already arrived, by a pro
cess of exclusion, at the Idea that she
might have seen n American. Then
who could this American be. and why
should he possess so much influence over
her? It might bc a lover; It might be
a husband. Her young womanhood had.
I knew, been spent In rough ocenes and
under strange conditions. So far I had
got before I ever heard Lord SU Simon's
narrative. When he told us of a man in
a pew, of the change in the bride's man
ner, of so transparent a device for ob
taining a note as the dropping of a bou
queU of her resort to her confidential
maid, and of her very significant allusion
to claim-Jumping which in miners' par
lance means taking possession of that
which another person has a prior claim to
the whole situation became absolutely
clear. She had gone off with a man, and
the man was either a lover or was a
previous husband the chances being In
favor of the latter."
"And how in the world did you find
"It might have been difficult, but friend
Lestrade held Information in his hands
the value of which, he did not himself
know. The Initials were, or course, of tho
highest Importance, but more valuable
still was It to know that within a week
he had settled his bill at one of the most
select London hotels."
"How did you deduce xhe select?"
"By the select prices. Eight shillings
for a bed and eIghtpencefor a glass of
sherry pointed to one of the most expen
sive hotels'. There are not many In Lon
don which charge at that rate. In the
second one which I visited in Northum
berland avenue. I learned by an inspection
of the book that Francis H. 'Moulton,
an American gentleman, had left only
the day before, and on looking over the
entries against him I came upon the
very Items which I had seen In the du
plicate bill. His letters were to be for
warded to No. 22S Gordon square; so
thither I travelled, and being fortunate
enough to find the loving couple at home.
I ventured to give them some paternal
advice, and to point out to them that
it would be better In every way that they
should make their position a little clearer
both to the general public and to Lord
SU Simon In particular. I invited them to
meet him here, and, as you see, I made
him keep the appolntmenU"
"But with no very good resulU" I
remarked. "His conduct was certainly
not very gracious."
"Ah. Watson," said Holmes, smiling,
"perhaps you would not be very gracious
either. If. after all the trouble of wooing
ajjd wedding, you found yourself deprived
In an Instant of wife and of fortune. I
think that we may judge Lord SU Simon
very mercifully, and thank our stars that
we are never likely to find ourselves-In the
same position. Draw your chair up, and
hand me my violin, for the only problem
we have still to solve is how to while
away these bleak, autumnal evenings."
(Copyright by Harper & Brothers.)