Sherlock Holmes - Character Illustrations

Holmes knocked out the ashes of his pipe with a quiet chuckle.
He swung a huge knotted lump of a fist under my friend’s nose. Holmes examined it closely with an air of great interest.
“Were you born so?” he asked. “Or did it come by degrees?”
It may have been the icy coolness of my friend, or it may have been the slight clatter which I made as I picked up the poker. In any case, our visitor’s manner became less flamboyant.

“I’ve wanted to meet you for some time,” said Holmes. “I won‘t ask you to sit down, for I don’t like the smell of you, but aren‘t you Steve Dixie, the bruiser?”

Without waiting for any further questioning, our visitor bolted out of the room almost as precipitately as he had entered. Holmes

Here we had a very extraordinary interruption. Holmes raised his hand for silence. Then he strode across the room, flung open the door, and dragged in a great gaunt woman whom he had seized by the shoulder.

“Well, you will let me know any fresh development. I have taken up your case, and you may rely upon it that I shall see it through.”

As we passed through the hall Holmes’s eyes, which missed nothing, lighted upon several trunks and cases which were piled in a corner.

“Well, just bear in mind, Steve, that the lady in that house, and everything under that roof, is under my protection. Don’t forget it.”

When I met my friend in his room early next morning, I was conscious from his bearing that all was well.

“I made a mistake, I fear, in not asking you to spend the night on guard.”

“You look wretchedly ill,” said Holmes. “Perhaps you are hardly equal to telling me what occurred.”

A machine-like footman took up our cards and returned with word that the lady was not at home. “Then we shall wait until she is,” said Holmes cheerfully.
The machine broke down.
“Not at home means not at home to you,” said the footman.
“Good,” Holmes answered. “That means that we shall not have to wait. Kindly give this note to your mistress.”

“By supposing that your hired bullies could frighten me from my work. Surely no man would take up my profession if it were not that danger attracts him.”

Holmes turned away wearily.
“Yes, I have underrated your intelligence. Well, good- afternoon!”

“You have the feelings of a gentleman. How quick a woman’s instinct is to find it out. I will treat you as a friend.”
“I cannot promise to reciprocate, madame. I am not the law, but I represent justice so far as my feeble powers go.”

So roguish and exquisite did she look as she stood before us with a challenging smile that I felt of all Holmes’s criminals this was the one whom he would find it hardest to face. However, he was immune from sentiment.

“Well, well,” said he, “I suppose I shall have to compound a felony as usual. How much does it cost to go round the world in first-class style?”
The lady stared in amazement.
“Could it be done on five thousand pounds?”
“Well, I should think so, indeed!”
“Very good. I think you will sign me a cheque for that, and I will see that it comes to Mrs. Maberley. You owe her a little change of air.”