“jjab-ala-BUb-jjthc jjtK QUh-wNa-dmg-jVia-Woa-jBn-tK-xia, LS-Fof-wmJ-Wckx-lia-jjVdA-Ga-VK-Lrnd-aiJa-Hch-jjfb ‘tkn-tK-lNf-wls-jFoJk qcd-jRok-Hfh-xk-Fkd-Woa-Dpg-RUh-Fid-jFoJk-fp.’ Woa-ZTigs-vmg-rahk-FK-wNa-jjvv-aiJa, Woa-ZTigs-dmg-Wu-div-Woa-lis-dPf xid-FK-GEh-WI-dP-tP-nk-Ga-GF-dks-wls-VK-Lrnd. xp-jjSb-Woa-jBn-tK-xia-jDogk-aiJa-Dpg-GEh-WI-dP-tP-nk-Hch-Dhkn-VK-Lrnd. Dis-rxof-jrtogk-apJ-dmg-jqug-l-FK-WoJa-rk-cbk- jjxba-rnis-jVia-ePgs-Dpg-Shls-dka-wls-Woa-jBn-tK-xia-QUh-Dpg-wNa-tos-jFhn-Gv-apJ jjthc-eogs-xk-jjSb Lv-RP-jxn jjtK tkc-nis-FK-Geb-rahk-dkd jqugl-vmg-Grh-jRok-jria-Gv-rahk-wls-tkc. qm-fp-tkc-xk-jCPs-Dpg-apJ-jjthc-tK, vmg-foa-jRok-FK-Hfh-RUh-Bbks-Eif-jFa.”
“Exactly. And the man who wrote the note is a German. Do you note the unusual way he wrote one sentence – ‘This description of you we have from all people received.’ A Frenchman could not have written that. Frenchmen, like Englishmen, put their verbs in the middle of their sentences. It is only the Germans who put their verbs at the end of their sentences. All that remains, therefore, is to discover what is wanted by this German who writes on paper from Bohemia and who wishes to wear a mask so that we won’t see his face. And here he comes, I believe. We will soon know for sure.”
wK-aK-Dpg-tkc-dI-tis-jcoJk-BUb dmg-Hfh-nPa-eNs-vkf-Spa-xhk-VK-eka-div-eNs-tmJ-tof BNv-Geb-rpa-fis-xk-jjSb-Dks-ald Cif-xk-dmg-xp-eNs-dK-fPs-fis-wyJa.
“zis-Fkd-eNs-jjthc-Shls-jjxba-xhk-els-LS,” tkc-jcoJk, “jjxba-jjthc,” tkc-jcoJk-Smg jjtK jvPgs-lld-HV-Dks-Vbls-BhNx, “jVia-tof-DNx-xhk-Wia-ahln jjtK xp-xhk-Dpg-ecn-skx-els-LS, jjSb-tK-LS-rahk-FK-xp-tk-Wk-jCPs 150 Vla; cif-eia, FK-xp-jsPa-rtkn-Ga-WK-fp-apJ Chk-vmg-xp-ePgs-luga-lpd.”
“Bbk-jtpn fil-d-jSp, BUb-Dpg-apJ-jjrtK, cNd-apJ-FK-vmg-eI-jtif-Chk-vmg-xp-LS. Riv-VK-dia-Hfh-jtpn-cbk-jtugls-apJ-Shls-jVia-jtugls-Dpg-rahk-eoa-GF-rtkn, Chk-qkf-HV-dmg-FK-jen-fkn-thkA.”
As he spoke there was the sharp sound of horses’ feet and of wheels rubbing against the stones outside, followed by a sharp ring of the bell.
“A pair of horses, by their sound,” he said. “Yes,” he went on, looking out the window. “A nice little car and a pair of beautiful horses. They would cost 150 pounds each. There’s money in this case, Watson, if there is nothing else.”
“I think that I had better go, Holmes.”
“Not a bit, Doctor. Stay where you are. I am lost without you. And this promises to be interesting. It would be sad to miss it.”
“vmg-jVia-rnis-fld, jRok-lkf-FK-Shls-dka-Wckx-Ebcn-jrtu-l-Fkd-LS jjtK tkc-dmg-jEiga-dia. tkc-xk-Rlf-jjthc, aigs-tos-Sigs-riJa-jjrtK fil-d-jSp jjthc-SiJs-GF-zis-Grh-fp.”
eNs-vkf-Spa-raidA-EhkA Dpg-Hfh-nPa-xk-jjSb-Dks-tYbx BYf-BUb-Smg-rahk-VK-SU-Dia-Dp jjthc-qcd-jRok-dmg-Hfh-nPa-eNs-jWkK-VK-SU.
“But your client–”
“Never mind him. I may want your help, and so may he. Here he comes. Sit down in that chair, Doctor, and give us your best attention.”
A slow and heavy step, which had been heard in the hall, stopped immediately outside the door. Then we heard someone at the door.
“Come in!” said Holmes.
QUh-Ekn-Dpg-jwoJk-xk-xp-Wckx-eUs-vmg-SX-dcbk-rod-zYf-div-rod-apJc, jVia-Woa-jlPd-Grnb jjtK jvPgs-jjws-jjRs-fp; jWugls-aYbs-wls-tkc-xp-tk-Wk-jjqs jjSb-jvPgs-xia-xp-tof-aP-nox-SX-Ga-lis-dPf. jeuJl-WYx-ep-zhk-jjdb-Vod-rYhx-BUb-jDPs-vbk xp-jeiJa-ep-jjfs-qkf-SPf-Flf-BUb-Dpg-Wm jjtK xp-dK-fYx-ep-jjfs-RYbs-SPf-Hch; xu-wls-tkc-Fiv-rxcd-BUb wK-aK-Dpg-Gv-rahk-ebca-jDPs-rYhx-Hch-fhcn-rahk-dkd-ep-fI, tkc-Shls-rk-dmg-nUh-rahk-dkd-wyJa-dbla-jwoJk-xk-Ga-rhls-apJ jqkK-cbk-xu-wls-tkc-nis-nod-BUb-Sla-Dpg-tkc-jwoJk-xk-Ga-rhls. jvPgs-Fkd-Gv-rahk-jjthc tkc-FK-Shls-jVia-vYd-Woa-eI-Wia, jVia-vYd-Woa-Dpg-rcis-Grh-Woa-luga-jRif-Skx-Dpg-tkc-jcoJk. jvPgs-tkc-jVia-Woa-Dpg-vmg-VbNa-GF-jjvv-sbknA.
A man entered who was at least six feet six inches tall, with a wide, strong chest. His clothes were rich in a way which would, in England, seem to be in bad taste. The deep blue cloth which was thrown over his shoulders was lined with flame-colored cloth and joined at the neck with a single, bright red stone. He carried a hat in his hand, while across the upper part of his face he had a black mask. He must have just pushed up the mask before coming into the room, for his hand was still raised as he entered. From his face, he appeared to be a man of importance, a man who expected others to do as he said. He did not look like a man who changed his opinions easily.
“jFoJk-Hfh-lbka-wmJ-Wckx-wls-whln-jjthc-jjxba-vmg?” tkc-Ckx-fhcn-aO-eNs-Dpg-wys-wis jjtK jVia-eNs-Woa-jBn-tK-xia-Bbks-Eif-jFa, “whln-vld-jFoJk-jjthc-cbk-whln-FK-xk-qov,” tkc-jvPgs-HV+-xk-tK-rcbks-qcd-jRok-els-Woa jvPgs-jjthc-vmg-Wbln-jjab-GF-cbk-FK-jcoJk-div-GQ-fp.
“dK-tY-ak-aigs-tos-dbla,” LRxe-vld, “apJ-jjxba-jqugla-wls-whln fil-d-jSp cif-eia QUh-Dpg-xid-FK-xk-Ebcn-jtugls-WK-fp-SbksA-wls-whln-jVia-vks-WiJs-Wkc. vmg-RUh-cbk-Dbka-FK-Grh-whln-jlpJa-cbk-jjac-Gf-fp?”
“You had my note?” he asked with a deep strong voice, clearly marked with a German sound. “I told you that I would call.” He looked from one to the other of us, as if uncertain which to speak to.
“Please take a seat,” said Holmes. “This is my friend, Dr. Watson, who is from time to time good enough to help me in my cases. Whom have I the honor to address?”
“jFoJk-FK-jlpJa-whln-cbk jWoJk cla jjWTx dmg-Hfh, whln-jVia-Soc-jjDa-wls-qK-tk-Ek jjrbs Lv-RP-jxn. whln-RUh-fp-cbk-eY-qkv-vU-tYf-QUh-apJ, jqugla-wls-jFoJk, jVia-QUh-Dpg-xp-dNf-SP-nof jEPgs-whln-qm-FK-Hch-cks-GF-Hfh-Ga-jtugls-Dpg-eI-Wia-Dpg-eYf. Chk-vmg-figs-aiJa-whln-Bkd-FK-tox-div-jFoJk-Skx-tI-qis.”
whln-Bua-wyJa-FK-lld-HV jjSb-LRxe-Fiv-jjwa-whln-Hch jjthc-vld-Grh-aigs-tos-Sigs-aiJa-lpd, “Shls-tox-div-qcd-jRok-Dis-els-Woa Chk-vmg-figs-aiJa-FK-vmg-xp-dka-jF-tK-Fk-GfA,” LRxe-jcoJk, “jFoJk-FK-jcoJk-rnis-dmg-Hfh-BUb-Smg-rahk-eY-qkv-vU-tYf-QUh-apJ jrxula-div-jFoJk-FK-jcoJk-div-whln.”
“You may address me as the Count von Kramm, here to speak for the king of Bohemia. I understand that this gentleman, your friend, is a man of honor, whom I may trust with a matter of the greatest importance. If not, I would like to talk with you alone.”
I rose to go, but Holmes caught me by the arm and pushed me back into my chair. “It is both, or none,” he said. “You may say before this gentleman anything that you may say to me.”
Dbka jWoJk syd-roc, tkc-jcoJk-cbk: “Wia-EiJa whln-Shls-jtpgx-SoJa-Lfn-dka-wm-Rhls-Grh-qcd-jFoJk-Dis-els -Fogs-jdiv-Hch-jVia-Wckx-tiv-jVia-jc-tk-jCPs-els-Vp, rtis-Fkd-aiJa-jtugls-apJ-FK-vmg-xp-Wckx-eI-Wia-lpd-Smg-HV. jjSb-eI-tiv-VK-FY-via-apJ xia-Wos-FK-vmg-Lqf-jdpa-HV-Dpg-FK-jcoJk-cbk aO-raid-jjrbs-Wckx-eI-Wia-wls-xia xp-Qoa-dK-Dov-Smg-dka-VbNa-jjVs-Ga-VK-rcif-ekf-wls-Ekc-BU-Tov-jtpn-dmg-cbk-Hfh.”
“whln-Shls-wm-LDf-Dpg-Geb-rahk-dkd-xk,” jjwd-jjVd-rahk-wls-jRok-jcoJk-Smg, “vYd-Woa-eI Wia-QUh-Dpg-Fhks-whln-xk Vk-CK-rak-vmg-Grh-qcd-jFoJk-RUh-whln jjtK whln-wm-ek-tK-qkv-jtpn-cbk Eug-Dpg-whln-GEh-apJ-vmg-Hfh-jjxba-Eug-jjDh-wls-whln.”
The Count nodded. “Then I must begin,” he said, “by asking you both to keep this a complete secret for two years; at the end of that time the matter will be of no importance. At the present time it is not too much to say that it is of such weight, it may change the course of European history.”
“I promise,” said Holmes.
“I am sorry to appear in this mask,” went on our strange visitor. “The important person who pays me wishes that I be unknown to you, and I may admit at once that the name by which I have just called myself is not actually my own.”
“WK-fp-apJ-jVia-WK-fp-Dpg-tK-lNf-tK-lm-jjDhA jjtK qcd-jRok-Shls-jRif-DYd-ePgs-DYd-Bbks-Dpg-jRif-Hfh jqug-l-BYf-SP-ePgs-Dpg-lkf-FK-dkn-jVia-jtugls-dbkc-wcia-aPa-Dk-lia-Grnb-rtcs jjtK jVia-Wckx-ebNs-eUs-Smg-dNf-SP-nof-wls-SK-dYa-dK-eif-jjrbs-BU-Tov. jcoJk-Grh-jwoJk-GF-sbknA-dmg-Wu jtugls-apJ-qoc-qia-jCPs-tkf-EK-cos llx-eSkn, jEPgs-jVia-dK-eif-jjrbs Lv-RP-jxn.”
“I already understood that,” said Holmes dryly.
“This case is very delicate, and we must do everything we can to stop what might grow to be a great scandal and seriously risk the honor of one of the royal families of Europe. To speak plainly, the matter involves the great House of Ormstein, the kings of Bohemia.”
“jtugls-aiJa-whln-jwoJk-GF-fp,” LRxe jcoJk-qhlx-Dis-jRif-Soc-eK-vknA-BUb-div-Sigs-lpJ jjthc-rtiv-Sk.
jjwd-wls-jRok-jrtuld-Sk-jvPgs-QUh-Ekn-Dpg-xp-ep-rahk-dNf-Whka-jr-sok-ala, QUh-Dpg-tkc-RUh-xk-cbk-jVia-aid-euv-eK-rtNc-eK-rtkf-Dpg-eYf-Ga-BU-Tov fhcn-ep-rahk-jjVd-GF-Bbks-jria-Hfh-Eif-jFa. LRxe-WblnA-xua-Sk-wyJa-lpd-WiJs jjthc-jvPgs-HV-Dpg-jjwd-Rbks-Grnb-wls-jRok.
“I already understood that, as well,” said Holmes, making himself comfortable in his chair and closing his eyes.
Our visitor glanced with some apparent surprise at the loafing, sleepy-looking figure of the man who, no doubt, he had been told was the best detective in Europe. Holmes slowly opened his eyes again and looked at his big client.
“Chk-qK-los-FK-dK-tY-ak-lK-DP-vkn-dm-tK-ap-apJ-jls,” LRxe-SiJs-wmJ-eis-jdf, “whln-lkf-FK-Ebcn-rnis-Hfh-fp-dcbk-apJ.”
QUh-Ekn-Woa-aiJa-tYd-wyJa-VYv-Viv-Fkd-Sigs jjthc-nbks-HV+-xk-Skx-rhls-fhcn-ep-rahk-vmg-eK-vkn-GF, Fkd-aiJa-tkc-dmg-Fpd-rahk-dkd-lld jjthc-Lna-tos-quJa-rhls, “jFoJk-jwoJk-GF-Cud-Shls-jjthc,” tkc-jcoJk-wyJa-Bbks-jjRs, “whln-jls-Wu-dK-eif jjthc-jVia-rnis-whln-Shls-xk-Vod-VPf-Soc-jls-jjvv-apJ?”
“If your Majesty would please explain your case,” he remarked, “I would be better able to help you.”
The man jumped from his chair and walked up and down the room with a very unhappy look on his face. Then he tore the mask from his face and threw it on the floor. “You are right,” he cried; “I am the King. Why should I try to hide it?”
“jjxba-rnis-dia?” LRxe-lY-Dka-wyJa, “dbla-Dpg-qK-los-jcoJk-lld-xk whln-dmg-eis-rla-GF-BUb-jjthc-cbk- whln-dI-tis-jcoJk-div-dK-eif-jjrbs Lv-RP-jxn BUb.”
“jjSb-jFoJk-Wos-FK-jwoJk-GF,” jjwd-jjVd-rahk-wls-jRok-jcoJk qhlx-Dis-aigs-tos-lpd-WiJs jjthc-GEh-xu-Dis-els-tUv-Gv-rahk-vbla-Dpg-rahk-dkd-jWpn-SPf-BUb, “jFoJk-Wos-FK-jwoJk-GF-cbk whln-vmg-EPa-jWpn-div-dka-dK-DI-jjvv-apJ-fhcn-Soc-jls, EO-vmg-raI-xia-nis-jVia-jtugls-Dpg-tK-lNf-tK-lm Foa-whln-vmg-Bkd-FK-Grh-Woa-luga-VK-SP-vif-jjDa Lfn-Vk-eK-Fkd-dka-lhks-lps-jCPs-lI-akf-wls-whln. whln-xk-Fkd Lv-RP-jxn Lfn-vmg-vld-Grh-GQ-RUh jqugl-xk-wm-WI-Vyd-ek-Fkd-jFoJk.”
“Why, indeed?” said Holmes. “Even before Your Majesty spoke, I knew that I was addressing the King of Bohemia.”
“But you can understand,” said our strange visitor, sitting down once more and putting his hand to his face where the mask had sat, “you can understand that I am not used to doing such business in my own person. Yet the matter was so delicate that I could not give it to anyone else without putting myself in his power. I have come from Bohemia, without telling a single person, in order to ask for your advice.”
“Wckx-FPs-xp-BUb-cbk VK-xka-rhk-Vp-Qbka-xk-apJ Ga-tK-rcbks-dka-HV-BhNx-Bkx cm-Em jVia-jc-tk-rtkn-xuJ whln-Hfh-qov-div Hl-Tpa jjlf-jtp, jFoJk-Shls-RUh-Fid-Eug-apJ-Bbks-vmg-Shls-eos-He.”
“Then, please ask,” said Holmes, shutting his eyes once more.
“The facts are these: Some five years ago, during a long visit to the city of Warsaw, I met Irene Adler. The name is no doubt known to you.”
“fil-d-jSp, LS-Ebcn-dcf-jvPgs-tkn-Eug-wls-aks Ga-VyJx-via-Dyd-wls-jRok-jjfb,” LRxe vld-wK-aK-Dpg-Sk-wls-tkc-nis-VPf-BUb. jVia-jc-tk-rtkn-Vp-Dpg-tkc-jdiv-via-Dyd-jtugls-tkc-Fkd-rais-eu-qPx dbNc-div-VK-jfia-Dpg-tkc-WPf-cbk xuJ-Gf-xuJ-raygs-lkf-FK-jVia-Dpg-rahk-eoa-GF -Hch-jVia-qiaA-jtugls. xia-jVia-dka-nkd-Dpg-FK-tK-vY-Eug-jjSb-tK-VK-jfia rtu Eug-vYd-Woa-Gf-raygs jEPgs-tkc-vmg-ek-xkf-Eld-wmJ-xUa-Hfh-Lfn-Dia-Sk. vmg-foa-whln-dmg-WoJa-qov-Ep-cK-VK-rcif-wls-aks elf-BUb-tK-rcbks-VK-rcif-wls-aid-jjShx-Woa-ZTigs QUh-Dpg-jjShx-RUv-Lfn-GEh-jjSb-ep-wNc jjtK VK-rcif-wls-QUh-Dpg-wNa-jtugls-eiJa dbNc-div-Vk-Ga-DK-jt-jtPd.
“Kindly look her up in my papers, Doctor,” said Holmes without opening his eyes. For many years he had been keeping thousands of newspaper stories about subjects that might one day be of interest. It was difficult to name a subject or a person on which he could not at once give information. Very soon, I found her life story, between that of a French artist who painted using only the color green, and that of a man who had written a short book about the deep-sea fishes.