I - Prelude:
II - The listing of previous chapters:
III - The Offertory (Forms for Tips, Recs and Comments are available for your convenience)
IV- The Message
Dearly beloved readers,
Our time together in this adventure is winding down (not quite yet, though). It is not revealing anything to say this. Had this been a hard-cover volume, you would have long since stopped using the front part of the dustcover to mark your place. Had this been a television show, you might be debating whether to pop a bag of Homestyle or Extra Butter during the up-coming commercial break. But this is something different: a free serialization with a seemingly inexhaustible page count.
In theory, this story need never end. It has been written with enough potential hooks and loopholes to allow all sorts of spin-offs, spin-outs and spin-dry cycles. But not for a while. I have another story I want to tell. So with your indulgence, after this saga concludes (as I said, not quite yet) this time-slot will have a new name, a new plot (political satire, sort of) and new characters. Let me know if you are interested in learning more about this. I will refrain from announcing the title for now. But know this: whilst researching information used here in chapter 34, I came across a forum debating one of the key topics I had already planned on using in the new story. The forums were even labeled as being for and against. I will take that as an omen I suppose. Why not.
V - Postlude:
VI - The rendering of the Orange Antimacassar:
Sherlock Holmes in Space -- The Knower -- Chapter 34
a story by jabney based on (the now public domain) characters created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
We conversed while they were gone. With each statement being preceded as a matter of necessity by the speaker's own jinx-breaking ritual, I could but be grateful we had no wider audience than our small band of wanderers. I regret that in the resultant mirth I neglected to note all the physical details, but the words I do recall.
"Holmes," I said, "What do you think the two Codys will decide?"
"Watson, I think we err when we speak of Cody in the plural. Even though it appears there are two."
"What do you mean by that?" said Otis.
"I'd like to know too," said Edgar.
Holmes said, "Evan, you are being rather quiet. I presume you have guessed already."
Evan said, "Though I were blessed with 100% certainty concerning the matter, which I assure you I am not, I should nevertheless wish to avail myself of the opportunity of personally hearing a deduction from Sherlock Holmes."
"Edgar," said Holmes, "Does the position you have passed on to young Evan here require the use of flattery?"
"Only when the praise is justified, Mr Holmes, in which case it would be wrong to withhold it. Your colleague, Dr Watson, for example, has managed to strike a good balance in describing you and your abilities."
"I do appreciate the kind words, gentlemen, but I urge you to avoid an excess of verbosity, no matter how well intentioned. We are in Hell and we appear to have a deadline for being able to get out."
"In that case, Holmes, should we not be on our way?" I said.
"Ah, that presents a problem, I fear. A problem that Cody must help us solve."
"But which Cody, Holmes?"
"There is but one Cody in our midst, Watson. Think, if you will, of the river Thames as it passes through Gloucestershire..."
""Passing through" implies a complete traversal, does it not Holmes?"
"Do not be pedantic Watson. The Thames leaves Gloucestershire as one stream, and though it looks most unlike the noble flow that labors past the Palace of St James, nevertheless, one does not speak of River Thameses. From the headwaters in Gloucestershire to the estuary as it meets the sea, it is one river."
"But Mr Holmes," said Otis, "Would not the Meander River have made a better analogy?"
"Which one Otis. The river in the middle east, the river in Australia, the town in Canada? No, the Thames will have to do."
"Whatever the river may be, Mr Holmes," said Edgar, "Here comes the flood." Turning to the two figures that slowly approached us, Edgar said in a voice that did not quaver in the slightest, "Hello Cody, have you reached a decision?"