The Adventure of the Dying Detective

  The Adventure of the Dying DetectiveThe Adventure of theDying DetectiveBy Sir Arthur Conan Doyle1The Adventure of the Dying DetectiveMrs. Hudson, the landlady of Sherlock Holmes, was a long- suffe
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  The Adventure of the Dying DetectiveThe Adventure of theDying DetectiveBy Sir Arthur Conan Doyle1The Adventure of the Dying DetectiveMrs. Hudson, the landlady of Sherlock Holmes, was a long- sufferingwoman. Not only was her first-floor flat invaded at all hours by throngsof singular and often undesirable characters but her remarkable lodgershowed an eccentricity and irregularity in his life which must have sorelytried her patience. His incredible untidiness, his addiction to music atstrange hours, his occasional revolver practice within doors, his weird andoften malodorous scientific experiments, and the atmosphere of violenceand danger which hung around him made him the very worst tenant inLondon. On the other hand, his payments were princely. I have no doubtthat the house might have been purchased at the price which Holmes paidfor his rooms during the years that I was with him.nwj今日教育资源网
  The landlady stood in the deepest awe of him and never dared tointerfere with him, however outrageous his proceedings might seem. Shewas fond of him, too, for he had a remarkable gentleness and courtesy inhis dealings with women. He disliked and distrusted the sex, but he wasalways a chivalrous opponent. Knowing how genuine was her regard forhim, I listened earnestly to her story when she came to my rooms in thesecond year of my married life and told me of the sad condition to whichmy poor friend was reduced.nwj今日教育资源网
  "He's dying, Dr. Watson," saidshe. "For three days he has beensinking, and I doubt if he will last the day.He would not let me get adoctor. This morning when I saw his bones sticking out of his face andhis great bright eyes looking at me I could stand no more of it. 'Withyour leave or without it,Mr. Holmes, I amgoing for a doctor this veryhour,' said I. 'Let it be Watson, then,' said he. I wouldn't waste an hourin coming to him, sir, or you may not see him alive."I was horrified for I had heard nothing of his illness.I need not saythat I rushed for my coat and my hat.As we drove back I asked for thedetails.nwj今日教育资源网
  "There is little I can tell you, sir. He has been working at a casedown at Rotherhithe, in an alley nearthe river, and he has brought thisillness back with him. He took to his bed on Wednesday afternoon andhas never moved since. For these three days neither food nor drink has2The Adventure of the Dying Detectivepassed his lips.""Good God!Why did you not call in a doctor?""He wouldn't have it, sir. You know how masterful he is.I didn'tdare to disobeyhim.But he's not long for this world, as you'll see foryourself the moment that you set eyes on him."He was indeed a deplorable spectacle. In the dim light of a foggyNovember daythe sick roomwas a gloomyspot, but it was that gaunt,wasted face staring at me from the bed which sent a chill to my heart.nwj今日教育资源网
  His eyes had the brightness of fever, there was a hectic flush upon eithercheek, and dark crusts clung to his lips; the thin hands upon the coverlettwitched incessantly,hisvoice wascroakingand spasmodic.Helaylistlesslyas I entered the room, but the sight of me brought a gleam ofrecognition to his eyes.nwj今日教育资源网
  "Well, Watson, we seem to have fallen upon evil days," said he in afeeble voice, but with something of his old carelessness of manner.nwj今日教育资源网
  "My dear fellow!" I cried, approaching him.nwj今日教育资源网
  "Stand back! Stand right back!" said he with the sharp imperiousnesswhich I had associated only with moments of crisis. "If you approach me,Watson, I shall order you out of the house.""But why?""Because it is my desire.Is that not enough?"Yes, Mrs. Hudson was right.He was more masterful than ever.Itwas pitiful, however, to see his exhaustion.nwj今日教育资源网
  "I only wished to help," I explained.nwj今日教育资源网
  "Exactly! You will help best by doing what you are told.""Certainly, Holmes."He relaxed the austerity of his manner.nwj今日教育资源网
  "You are not angry?" he asked, gasping for breath.nwj今日教育资源网
  Poor devil, how could I be angry when I saw him lying in such a plightbefore me?nwj今日教育资源网
  "It's for your own sake, Watson," he croaked.nwj今日教育资源网
  "For MY sake?""I know what is the matter with me. It is a coolie disease fromSumatra--athing that theDutch know moreabout than we,thoughthey3The Adventure of the Dying Detectivehave madelittleofituptodate.Onethingonly iscertain. It isinfallibly deadly, and it is horribly contagious."He spoke now with a feverish energy, the long hands twitching andjerking as he motioned me away.nwj今日教育资源网
  "Contagiousby touch,Watson--that'sit,by touch. Keep yourdistance and all is well.""Good heavens, Holmes! Do you suppose that such a considerationweighs with me of an instant?It would not affect me in the case of astranger. Do you imagine it would prevent me from doing my duty to soold a friend?"Again I advanced, but he repulsed me with a look of furious anger.

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