31 August 2009
Lord Likely and the Bloody Nuisances
From the diary of Doctor Elton Whelkbladder.
I MUST make a clear and concise note of the events which transpired last night, for they were so wild and fantastical that they seem like something from a dream, but a dream they were most assuredly were not. No, these events were very real, and very, very disturbing…
I was roused from my slumber by a telephone call from the house of one Mr. Strix, who – according to the maid who had contacted me – was in rather poor health, and was fading fast. Despite the ungodly hour I agreed to pay a visit to the stricken fellow, and so I immediately summoned a hansom cab and jumped into it…then I jumped out of it, when I realised I had failed to change out of my pyjamas.
After getting changed into more suitable attire, I leapt back into the cab and headed off to the address of the patient. The carriage rattled through the dark, foggy streets of the city, until we finally reached the destination – a rather large, foreboding house situated on Stake Drive.
I had barely gotten out of the cab and paid my fare, when a young lady scurried out of the house and grabbed me by the arm, pleading with me to make haste to the master bedroom. At first I thought I had struck it lucky with this girl and was being invited upstairs for a bit of the other, but as it turned out she was the maid who had called me earlier, and her desire to get me upstairs was due to her employer’s condition having worsened, and not because she wanted to engage in some rumpy-pumpy with a middle-aged doctor…much to my dismay.
I was led into a spacious, well-kept bed-chamber, at the centre of which stood a large four-poster bed, wherein lay the sick man in question. I scurried over to the bed to examine the patient, and almost recoiled in horror at what I saw.
Mr. Strix was looking incredibly pale; his skin was as white as the very sheets of the bed that he lay on, while conversely his eyes were as red as the very carpet upon which his bed lay on. His eyes were not merely bloodshot, instead a dark crimson colour had filled the whites of his eyes completely, which left me feeling like I was staring into the eyes of the devil himself.
Mr. Strix was also remarkably thin, and looked completely and utterly drained. I asked the maid to close the window, for I feared the slightest breeze would send poor Mr. Strix floating off down the hallway, so very gaunt and frail did he look.
Mr. Strix was also terribly, terribly cold – I placed my hand on his forehead and withdrew it in shock, for he felt as icy to the touch as a penguin’s backside. Not that I am familiar with such a sensation, of course.
I shook my head sadly, for it seemed Mr. Strix was so awfully afflicted that I doubted he would survive the night. I administered some Laudanum to allay his symptoms and help him sleep, but it was all I could do, and I suspected it would be too little, much too late. I told the maid to keep watch over her master, and to contact me in the morning with any developments. With that, I bade her farewell and ventured back outside.
To my annoyance, I found that my cab had vanished whilst I had been inside the house, leaving me stranded in the perishing cold. I cursed my cab-driver, and turned to return to the house to summon another carriage in its place.
As I shuffled up the path to the big, old house again, I suddenly heard a leathery, flapping sound, and spinning around I saw a rather large bat flying toward me. I instinctively ducked as the beast sailed over my head, before it swooped back and headed for me again.
Then, the damndest thing happened.
The bat stopped short beside me, and seemed to hover, as if it were watching me, staring at me with its beady little eyes. Then, there was a puff of acrid-smelling smoke, and in place of the bat stood Mr. Strix, looking considerably healthier than when I had checked upon him mere moments earlier.
“Good heavens, sir!” I exclaimed. “You gave me quite a start! Why, that is a rather impressive piece of trickery, I must say! How on earth did you ever squeeze yourself into that small bat costume?”
Mr. Strix smiled at me, a smile which sent chills running through my bones: for when Mr. Strix smiled, I saw a set of fangs so fearsome that I almost dislodged last-night’s supper into my undergarments.
And then, as I stood transfixed with terror, Mr. Strix lunged at me.
From the journals of Lord Likely, Aristocratic Adventurer and Gentle-Man of Action.
I WAS sat in my drawing-room, not drawing, but reading, an activity I usually carry out in my reading room, but I was unable to use that particular venue as it was still being cleaned up after I had read a particularly racy erotic novel in there last week. Thus I was forced to relocate, much to my chagrin. I really must set up a masturbation room in the near-future, to prevent such inconvenience in the future.
I mused upon this notion for a while, then I took a sip of my whisky, turned over the page of my book, and continued to read the fiction I was currently working through.
From the Diary of Dr. Seward.
Lucy was breathing somewhat stertorously, and her face was at its worst, for the open mouth showed the pale gums. Her teeth, in the dim, uncertain light, seemed longer and sharper than they had been in the morning. In particular, by some trick of the light, the canine teeth looked longer and sharper than the rest.
I sat down beside her, and presently she moved uneasily. At the same moment there came a sort of dull flapping or buffeting at the window. I went over to it softly, and peeped out by the corner of the blind. There was a full moonlight, and I could see that the noise was made by a great bat, which wheeled around, doubtless attracted by the light, although so dim, and every now and again struck the window with its wings. When I came back to my seat, I found that Lucy had moved slightly, and had torn away the garlic flowers from her throat. I replaced them as well as I could, and sat watching her.
“Oh, this is complete piss-soup!” I bellowed as I lowered the book, just as my man-servant entered the room.
“Pardon me, my lord?” Botter asked, setting his mop and bucket by the wall.
“This bloody book. It is a pile of balls, and no mistake. It keeps flitting from the journals of one character to another, then back again, then on to some ruddy letter from some moaney old tart to another…I simply cannot keep track of what is going on! And vampires? What a load of old cock-paste!” I slammed the book in disgust. “Bram Stoker? Bum Stroker, more like!”
From the Diary of Botter
I fear my lord is even stupider than I had e’er imagined. He has taken to reading Bram Stoker’s seminal work, Dracula, a tome which has been rightfully heralded by the literary establishment as a masterpiece of gothic horror. Alas, I think it is much too intricate for the fat-headed charlatan, for I found him ranting into thin air about it, complaining that it’s epistolary nature was too confusing to follow. I allowed myself a little smirk, but then his lordship hurled the book at my head with great ferocity.
From the journals of Lord Likely, Aristocratic Adventurer and Gentle-Man of Action
“Botter!” I cried, as the book bounced off my man-servant’s wretched bonce. “What in the name of tossery do you think you are doing? Put that ruddy diary down, and go and get me more drink – my glass grows empty!”
“Very good milord,” the sap replied, turning to leave, but as he did so the telephonic device started ringing.
“Answer that, will you?” I asked. “And then you may fix me a drink.”
Botter sighed in that irritating manner of his, and skulked over to the telephone.
“Hello, Likely Towers, Botter speaking. With whom am I speaking?” he chimed into the receiver.
From the Diary of Inspector Albert Spunkleford.
“It is I, Inspector Spunkleford!” I exclaimed into the telephone. “I must speak to Likely…is he there?”
“Indeed he is, sir. I shall just fetch him for you,” replied Likely’s servant. I heard him converse with Likely, and am fairly certain I heard his lordship bellow something or other in my direction, but it was hard to hear what it was precisely. I am not entirely sure what an ‘ucking dock-hud’ is, at any rate.
From the journals of Lord Likely, Aristocratic Adventurer and Gentle-Man of Action.
“Yes, Spunkleford?” I said as I picked up the candlestick-shaped telephonic contraption.
“Ah, is that you, Likely?” asked Spunkleford, rather needlessly I felt.
“No, inspector, it is the Chancellor of Germany,” I answered in a suitably sarcastic manner for a question quite so incredibly redundant.
“Oh. Well, get Likely, will you? I have nothing to say to you, Herr Bismarck.”
I sighed and pinched the bridge of my nose in despair. How had a man as utterly clueless managed to find himself in the business of collecting clues? The mind literally boggled.
“It IS me, Spunkleford…I was just…oh, never mind. What do you want?”
“Oh! Well, Likely, I have a most curious case for you, if you are interested,” replied Spunkleford.
“Exactly how curious, inspector?”
“Well, a body was found this morning…a dead body, you understand…” the inspector began. “We bought it in to be examined, and, well…um…”
I sighed. “And well what, Spunkleford? Do stop dilly-dallying man, our time on this planet is finite, you know.”
“Well,” Spunkleford continued, “this body…this body has made a complete recovery…its gone from being completely dead, to being…well, completely alive again.”
I lowered the telephone in stunned amazement. I had to admit, that as cases went, this was sounding rather curious indeed…
- Lord Likely.
Next Time in Lord Likely and the Bloody Nuisances: Dead Man Talking!
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