Sherlock Holmes: The Adventure of the Devil’s Foot

Summary: Sherlock Holmes is in bad health, so the go on holiday to a gloomy moor. They are summoned by a clergyman and his lodger to look into a strange, tragic event at the lodger’s family’s home. After leaving them from playing cards, his two brothers and sister were found the next morning still at the card table; the girl was dead, as if scared to death, and the two men were sitting there were out of their senses, laughing and singing, but also looking scared. Then the lodger/brother turns up dead in the same manner a short time later. Sherlock discovers a strange powder that had been burnt at both scenes, and so he decides to test it out on himself and Watson. They descend into fear/madness until Watson saves Sherlock. Then Sherlock confronts this lion hunter/Dr. who had been about to go to Africa but had come back after learning about the first deaths. It is revealed that the lodger/brother had poisoned his siblings with this special devil’s foot stuff the lion hunter had brought back from Africa in order to get control of their family’s wealth. The lion hunter came back because he had been in love with the sister, so he took revenge on the murderer. Sherlock lets the lion hunter go, saying if he’d ever loved anyone he might have done the same (meaning, if Watson is ever killed, Sherlock will get ruthless vengeance)

Sherlock Rating: This one gets 5 magnifying glasses. The summary was so long because the details of this one were interesting, and it was even exciting when Sherlock almost killed himself and Watson.

Mystery Story Convention: I’ll call this a “Sherlock” convention because Sherlock, the scientist and experimenter couldn’t resist testing the poison himself, even though it had probably killed two others and sent two more to the loony bin. That’s so Sherlock.