Wow, the last few weeks where insanely mental. I'm still in shock. But I better start from the beginning.
None of us was expecting it when Sherlock texted at half 3 in the morning, Mary mumbled in her sleep slightly as I grabbed my phone.
Meet me at Bakers Street. This is a good one.
That’s all it said, no apologies, no explanations but with Sherlock the chances of him thinking of others where nought.
I did wonder whether to go, I mean I was married now and had a relatively normal life. Sherlock’s idea of a good time is a nice locked room murder, followed by an evening of getting shot at and leaping around the rooftops of London. Small stuff like sleep aren’t considered in his scheme of things.
I know I’m mad liking this sort of lifestyle; I just wanted a normal life when I came back from the war. My attempts didn’t go to plan really. My wife’s an assassin, my landlady used to run a drug cartel and my best friend’s a sociopath that faked his death for two years.
Sherlock was exiled for four minutes a couple of weeks ago, his nemesis Moriaty has seemingly come back from the dead. Somehow he’s become even more antisocial, sitting for hours in the silence, not noticing anyone else at all.
I left a note for Mary and made by way out of the silent suburbs. Bakers Street was quiet as I parked my car. I walked up the stairs quietly, conscious of waking Mrs Hudson.
Sherlock sat in his chair, eyes closed. He could have been mistaken for sleeping but I knew better.
“Sherlock?” I asked.
“Ahh, John.” He said, opening his eyes.
“What’s happening now?”
“Did you bring your gun?” he asked, his eyes alight with excitement. I checked my coat pocket, and saw my pistol.
“Yes, of course. Why did you call me here at… at whatever time this is?!” I blustered.
“There’s no time to explain, follow me. The game is on!” he charged out of the room happily.
Typical. I was knackered and wanted nothing more than to go to sleep. But I found myself following him downstairs and into a cab.
“Sherlock, what in gods name is going on?”
“A serial killer, God I love those!” Sherlock smiled happily. “To be more precise a nursery rhyme killer!”
“What are you on about?”
“Shh. We’re almost there.”
We pulled up outside a normal semi detached house, a line of police cars on the pavement. A man with black circles under his eyes, clinging to his coffee like a nun to a crucifix.
“Sherlock, John.” Lestrade nodded, before yawning. “Neighbours complained about the smell and they found it; not a pleasant sight. We’re all baffled, go on up” he said gesturing to the open doorway.
I don’t have to guess which way to go. I just followed the vile smell of rotting corpses.
Sherlock and I climbed up the ladder to the attic where, bathed in bright lights, are five corpses. I walk forward, Sherlock almost smashes his head on a low beam.They’re woman, at first glance 20-25 years old. Their flesh is crawling with flies and maggots, five nooses suspend them from the ceiling. A small gust of wind from the open window, rocks the bodies slightly. A small tinkling sound emits from the nooses.
Threaded in the ropes are small bells and shells,
“Mary, Mary quite contrary,
How does your garden grow?
With silver bells and cockle shells,
And pretty maids all in a row.” I mutter.
“The dead are Janice Daffodil, Elizabeth Rose, Jasmine Jones, Petunia Williams and Lilly James.” Sherlock says suddenly.
“How do you know that?” Lestrade gasps, “They’ve been found for barely an hour.”
“They’ve been missing for about a month, the killer has an obsession to nursery rhymes. Looking for flower names in an age range of 20-25 we get these five.” He says, happily showing off.
“So this guy left no trace?”
“Nope, none whatsoever.” Lestrade says miserably.
“So, he’s still out there? That’s worrying?”
“Not as nearly as worrying as a grown man knowing nursery rhymes?” interjected Sherlock. “The killer is left handed, black haired and a man.”
“How the hell do you know that?” asked Lestrade.
“The rope is worn slightly on the right where he hauled the bodies up, there are scraps of black hair on this beam here, even I can't hit my head on it. The chances of a woman THAT tall are low so the suspect is a man about six feet eight." Sherlock said scathingly.
His phone beeps and his eyes widen.
"Oh this is good. Good, good, good." he murmurs.
"What?" I asked.
He passed me his phone,
Liked my little joke. My little friend did ever so well didn't he?
Here's your next one,
Jack and Jill went up the hill,
To fetch a pail of water,
Jack fell down,
And broke his crown,
And Jill came tumbling after.
"M? It can't be." said Lestrade.
"Oh, it is. Its Moriaty." replied Sherlock.
"What now?" I asked.
"The game is on!" he cried, before charging down the ladder.