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 A SCANDAL IN BOHEMIA  I had seen little of Holmes lately. My marriage separated us from each other. I was very happy with my family while Holmes remained in our flat in Baker Street, with his old books. He was still interested in the study of crime' and managed to find those clues and clear up those mysteries, which had been thought as hopeless by the police. From time to time I heard of him and was very proud of my friend.  ' was still interested in the study of crime — все еще интересовал- ся изучением преступлений  3'  One night — it was on the 20th of March, 1888 — I was coming home from work (because I had now returned to civil practice), and I was walking through Baker Street. As I passed the well-known door, I felt a great desire to see Holmes again and know how he was. His rooms were brightly lit and 1 saw his tall figure walking about the room. As I knew him well 1 saw that he was at work again. 1 rang the bell and was shown up to the room that used to be my own'. I think Holmes was glad to see me. Without a word he waved me to an arm-chair. Then he stood before the fire and looked me over carefully.  "I think, Watson, you have put on weight since I saw you," he said. "I see you have been getting yourself wet lately, and that you have a very careless servant girl."  "My dear Holmes," I was surprised, "this is too much2. I really had a walk to the country and came home very dirty;  but as I have changed my clothes, I can't understand how you deduce it. As to our maid she is really careless, but how do you know?"  He laughed quietly and rubbed his hands together.  "It is very simple," said he, "my eyes tell me that you have some parallel cuts on your left shoe. I think they have been made by someone who tried to remove mud from it carelessly. This makes me think that you had been out in bad weather. And I also see a black mark of nitrate of silver on your finger and you smell ofiodoform, that's why I understand you started your medical practice."  I could not keep from laughing listening to his explanations of his process of deduction3.  "When you give your reasons," I remarked, "everything is so clear to me that I could easily do it myself. But I am always  * to the room that used to be my own — в комнату, которая раньше была моей  2 this is too much— это уже слишком  3 process of deduction ['prouses sv di'dAkJn] — дедуктивный ме- тод  baffled', until you explain your process. And yet I am sure I have as good eyes as you do."  "Quite right," he agreed, lighting a cigarette and sitting down into an arm-chair. "You see, but you do not notice. Do you see the difference? For example2, you have often seen the steps which lead up from the hall to this room."  "Yes."  "How often?"  "Well, hundreds of times."  "Then how many are there?"  "I don't know."  "That's right! You have seen but have not noticed. But I know that there are seventeen steps there. By the way,3 since you are interested in these little cases, you may be interested in one more." He gave me a sheet of thick pink paper, which had been lying on the table. "It came by post. Read it aloud," he said.  There was no date on the paper, it was either without address.  "At a quarter to eight o'clock you'll have a visitor," it said, "a gentleman who wants to consult you on the matter of great importance4. Your help to one of the Royal Houses of Europe have shown that you may safely be trusted. This account of you we have from all quarters received5. Be at home at that hour and do not take it the wrong way if the visitor wear a mask."  "It's a real mystery," I said. "What does it mean?"  "I don't know yet. It's a mistake to make conclusions6  ' I am always baffled ['bsefid] — я всегда озадачен  2 for example — например  3 by the way— кстати, между прочим  4 on the matter of great importance [im'patns] — по делу чрезвы- чайной важности  5 This account of you we have from all quarters received. — Так вы охарактеризованы во всех имеющихся источниках.  6 to make conclusions [kan'klu^nz] — делать выводы  when you know nothing. But as for' the note, what do you think of it?"  I looked carefully at the writing and the paper.  "The man who wrote it was rich," 1 remarked, imitating my friend's explanations. "Such paper is not cheap. It is strong and stiff."  "Yes," said Holmes. "It is not an English paper at all. Raise it up to the light."  I did so, and saw large and small letters.  "What do you think of it?"  "It's the name of the maker, of course."  "No. The Gwith the small /means the word "Company" in German. P, of course, stands for "Papier". Now for the Eg. Let's look at our reference book." He took a heavy brown book from the shelves. "Eglow, Eglonitz — here we are, Egria. It is a place in Bohemia, not far from Carlsbad. 'It is famous for its glass factories and paper mills.' So what can you say now?"  "The paper was made in Bohemia," I said.  "Exactly. And the man who wrote it is a German. I can say that seeing this odd construction of the sentence — 'This account of you we have from all quarters received.' The only thing is to find out what this strange German wants. And here he comes."  "I think that I'd better go, Holmes."  "No, Doctor. Stay here. I am sure this case is interesting."  "But your client"  "Never mind him.2 Here he comes. Sit down in that arm- chair, Doctor, and be all ears."  Heavy steps, which had been heard on the stairs, paused outside the door. Then there was a loud tap.  "Come in!" said Holmes.  A very tall man with the chest and limbs of a Hercules  ' as for — что касается 2 Never mind him — He обращайте на него внимания.  entered the room. He wore a black mask across the upper part of his face. Looking at the lower part of his face I understood he  was a man of strong character.  "Have you got my note?" he asked, in a harsh voice with a strong German accent. He looked from one to the other of us, hesitating which to address.  "Please, take a seat,'" said Holmes. "This is my friend, Dr. Watson, who is very kind to help me in my cases. Whom have I the honour to address?"  "I am the Count von Kramm from Bohemia. I hope that your friend is a man whom I may trust?"  "You may say before this gentleman anything which you may say to me."  "Then I begin," the Count said, "1 ask you to keep this secret for two years. As this case may change European history."  "1 promise," said Holmes.  "And I."  Г'Excuse me this mask," our strange visitor went on. "The august person I work for wants his agent to be unknown to you. The name I've told you is not my real name."  "I know it," said Holmes.  Our visitor glanced with surprise at the man who had been told to be the most clever and energetic agent in Europe. Holmes slowly opened his eyes and looked impatiently at the client.  "If Your Majesty would start telling your problem," he remarked, "I should be better able to advise уои.1''  The man jumped from his chair and walked up and down the room excitedly. Then he tore his mask from his face. "You are right," he cried, "I am the King."  "Yes," murmured Holmes. "Your Majesty had not spoken before21 knew that I was addressing Wilgelm Gottsreich Sigismond von Ormstein, Grand Duke ofCassel-Felstein, and the King of Bohemia."  '' take a seat — присаживайтесь 2 had not spoken before — не сказали еще и слова  "But you can understand that I never did such things personally. Yet the matter was so delicate that I could not tell it to an agent without putting myself in his power. I have come to consult you."  "Then, do consult," said Holmes closing his eyes again.  "About five years ago, during a visit to Warsaw, I met Irene Adier. 1 am sure you know this name."  "Doctor, please look her up in my index,'" murmured Holmes, without opening his eyes. For many years he gathered all kinds of information about people and things. If he needed, he had everything about someone immediately. In this case 1 found her biography quickly.  "Let me see," said Holmes. "Hum! Born in New Jersy in 1858. Hum! Prima donna Imperial Opera of Warsaw— Yes! Living in London — quite so! Your Majesty as I understand fell for this woman,2 wrote to her some letters and now you want those letters back."  "Yes. But how..."  "Was there a secret marriage?"  "No."  ""No legal papers?"  "No."  "Then I don't understand. If this young woman should use her letters for blackmailing, how can she prove that they are real?"  "My writing."  "Copied."  "My private paper."  "Stolen."  "My own seal."  "Imitated."  "My photograph."  "Bought."  ' in my index ['indeks] — в моей картотеке 2 fell for this woman — влюбились в эту женщину  "We were both in the photograph."  "Oh, dear! That's very bad. Your Majesty has made a mistake."  "I was mad."  "It must be got back."  "We have tried and failed."  "It must be bought. Pay to her."  "She will not sell."'  "Stolen, then."  "Five attempts have been unsuccessful."  Holmes laughed. "It is quite a pretty little problem," said he.  "But a very serious for me," returned the King.  "I see. And what is she going to do with the photograph?"  "To ruin me."  "But how?"  "1 am going to marry."  "Yes, I have heard."  "To Clotilde Lothman von Saxe-Meningen, second daughter of the King of Scandinavia. They have very strict principles. A shadow of a doubt as to my behaviour would put an end to our marriage."  "And Irene Adier?"  "She says she will send them the photograph. And she will do it, because she has a soul of steel.2"  "Are you sure that she has not sent it yet?"  "I am sure."  "Why?"  "She has said that she would send it on the day when the engagement was publicly proclaimed. That will be next Monday."  "Oh, we have three days yet," said Holmes. "That is good, as I have some important matters to look into. Will you stay in London?"  She will not sell. — Она отказывается продавать. 2 a soul of steel — непреклонна  "Certainly. You can find me at the Langham, under the name of the Count von Kramm."  "I shall inform you."  "Please do."  "Then, as to money?"  "You have full freedom."  "And for present expenses?"  The King took a heavy leather bag from under his cloak, and laid it on the table.  "There are three hundred pounds in gold, and seven hundred in notes," he said.  Holmes wrote a receipt on a sheet of his notebook, and handed it to him.  "And her address?" he asked.  "Briony Lodge, Serpentine Avenue, St. John's Wood."  Holmes wrote it down. "Then good night. Your Majesty. And good night, Watson. If you will be so kind to come tomorrow, at three o'clock, I should like to discuss this matter over with you."

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