“So, you’re telling me you went on holiday, and by coincidence you came to Havenmoor, the same place as I!? You really went on holiday!?”
“I think you’re missing the point Watson, actually.”
They sat in the inn Watson had been staying in the past week and leant forward into their coffees. He stared incredulously at Holmes, in wonder. His superior, on holiday; here! It seemed hard to comprehend. Sherlock was casually attired, a long jacket hiding a simple checked jumper. A jumper, in this heat! Watson wondered if Holmes really was mad. Smiling despite himself, he searched Holmes’ face, attempting to find evidence of his motives. Why had he come here? He was sure he had not just decided to go on holiday: this was Holmes after all.
“I can give an answer to your question, Watson, but not here, a man on the second seat at table 14 is looking rather menacing, and I’d rather not be speared today. Shall we be going then?”
Holmes smiled as Watson started.
“My question!? I…How did you know?” Watson said, amazed. His eyes scanned the room and sure enough, a man sat, glaring in their direction, his hand clenched around something in his pocket.
“Why is he-?” he said as he and Holmes stood up, leaving.
“Oh, I may have angered him on the cliffs, when I was… taking notes”
Holmes smiled again, and they left into the markets outside.
“I do actually have something to discuss with you, Watson”
“Ha! I knew it! You never just go on holiday!”
Holmes turned, looking offended.
“I mean…I just...” Watson stammered.
Holmes laughed, “Anyway, you must have heard about the murders in Manchester, they’ve been all over the news”
“I..I haven’t really been paying attention to the news. I mean, I am on holiday!” Watson said indignantly.
“Come on Watson, that’s a rookie mistake, you must always pay attention.”
It was Watson’s turn to look offended, “Hey!”
Holmes laughed again.
“I found this when I was at the office,” he threw a watch back to Watson, who just caught it by the tips of his fingers, “Someone left it with a note telling me to come here, to Havenmoor. What do you make of it, Watson?”
Watson looked down at the watch, dodging pillars that held up the market tunnel that led to the coast, an Atlantean style construction, cool and blue, trying to keep up with Holmes’ quick pace. The watch was simple, not ornate: a band of silver connecting a plain face. Watson looked closer, trying to find clues, anything to make an inference.
“Well, “he started cautiously, “The scuff marks around the edge tell that the wearer uses the watch frequently, and by the way it is quite small, it must be a lady who is wearing this. This may be her only one, or one she uses most. She may wear a suit often, and this matches the accessories, so she must be a business woman of some sort,” Watson gathered confidence, “and by the fact it is slightly grubby, she must have children who cling to her frequently.” He finished triumphantly. Holmes stopped, and began to clap.
“Congratulations, Watson, truly, you underestimate yourself!”
Watson felt his cheeks go red.
“But, I may say you have made a few misguided judgements.” He said delicately.
“How! I see not any flaws in my inferences!”
“Well, for a start we see that the wearer is male, we can tell that he is rather fat, so to speak, enjoys mussels with a rather fine cheese sauce, is wearing brown trousers, has dark hair and may not be the brightest. He is a frequent traveller, preferring planes and is certainly scientific, possibly working at…” He took the watch from Watson, glanced quickly at the back, then finished, “Chemod Laboratories, London.”
Watson stood, aghast. They had reached the coast, and Holmes was muttering at the wall.
“Ah, gotcha! Come Watson.”
Watson turned. A slab of rock had swung on hinges and Holmes was hurrying inside.
“How?” He gasped.