The Adventure of the Mysterious Benefactor

Part 11

by Stacey (SST205 at
Holmes finally stood in front of a tiny little place with a white fence around it. There were a few shingles missing from the roof, and the off-white paint was peeling in a few places on the house. The weathered wooden postal box to the left of the gate in the fence read C. Fayre.
"This must be the place."
Holmes pushed the gate open, and it creaked loudly. A short walk led up to the front door, upon the latter of which Holmes knocked.
He heard footsteps inside. The door opened, and the smell of ginger wafted out the door. A woman with the blonde hair put up behind her neck stood in front of him, wiping her hands on a well-worn apron.
"Yes?" she said in a soft tone.
"Please forgive the intrusion, Miss Fayre." Holmes said, taking off his cap and bowing slightly. "My name is Sherlock Holmes. I wonder if I could have a bit of your time."
The woman's eyes widened, and Holmes couldn't help but grin as he felt the urge to reach out and catch the blue-irised orbs as he did with Tennyson.
"Mister Holmes!" the woman cried, curtseying a bit. "I've heard so much about you from my nephew--please come in."
"Thank you, Miss Fayre."
Holmes stepped in, taking in the place at a glance. There was a small stove in the far corner to his right, off of which the chrome had been almost rubbed from cleaning. Walking across the hardwood floor, he saw that it was in the same rubbed-to-a-shine condition.
"Please sit down, sir."
"Thank you."
Holmes removed his Inverness and took a seat on the couch by the wall. Looking down at the cushion, he could barely make out the fine stitches that had been used to mend tears in the fabric.
Miss Fayre gestured toward the teapot on the stove. "Can I get you some tea, sir?"
"Thank you, no -- I took tea earlier."
Miss Fayre nodded, moved a low stool with a threadbare cushion closer to the couch and seated herself.
Holmes stood. "Miss, can we switch places?"
"Oh, no." his hostess said, waving a hand. "I'm quite used to sitting here -- it's the perfect level for talking to my nephew."
Her guest grinned and sat down. "Eh -- where is the lad?"
Tennyson's aunt turned her head, indicating an open hallway behind her. "He's in his room asleep. I got the feeling something happed while he was out, but he was dozing when Deidre and Wiggins brought him home."
She turned back to her guest. "Someone was bullying him again, weren't they?"
Holmes frowned deeply. "Again, miss?"
"Yes. It hasn't happened in a while -- I had hoped the ruffians had left the country on holiday or something..."

On to Part 12!
Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6,Part 7, Part 8, Part 9, and Part 10.
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