From Dr Watson to Sherlock Holmes Esq:
I wanted to jot down my notes on the rather bizarre and frightening events of yesterday evening before my mind insists that I dreamed the whole thing. Even now, I wonder if my senses deceived me and I was somehow a victim of one of those mass hallucination effects I have heard you speak of. No matter, I detail here my recollections…
Mrs Hudson perhaps did us a disservice with her convivial bonhomie, as I believe, had we followed our usual routine and retired to the Snug and Woofit for pie and mash, our wits might not have deserted us in quite the fashion they did. Though I cannot imagine our experiences would have been very different.
Our midnight surveillance in the shadow of the Sir Robert Peel Inn (its renovation work hiding us from passersby) was a cold and dreary affair and I was doubtful that Gere’s so-called ‘Moth-Sense’ had any bearing on reality, so I make no apologies for supposing that our vigil would be a complete waste of time. Had it not been for the amusing stories of Gere’s days with Charlie Pinkum’s Giggling Circus, Lestrade, Douglas and myself would no doubt have slept through the entire night (though you, of course, were as alert as ever, your keen eyes missing nothing).
However, I was undeniably wide awake when we were alerted to the presence of what Gere likes to call The Creature, and though I suspected he had supped too long at the bottle of Bourbon he perpetually kept lodged in his inside pocket, I could not have predicted how his quick actions kept me from harm. Even as we gave chase, I sensed the presence of danger and readily allowed myself to be led as Gere grabbed my collar and hauled me to one side in time to see the scaffolding collapse around us.
“Oi! Mothman!” I heard you shout, as we stumbled out from the mass of planking and metal tubing. Within seconds, we gave chase and followed the apparition down towards the river in time to see what appeared to be a mass of grey, swirling matter hovering above the ground in front of us. The shape took form and for a fraction of a second, I thought I could see the figure of a man – a man who looked like a gigantic moth!
The Mothman (if indeed that’s what we had seen) flew away from us, up over the embankment towards London Bridge. It was then that Gere gave a low moan like a wolf in pain. Then he muttered something that sounded like: “Oooooooh, fuuuuuuuck…” and before us the apparition whizzed across the water and…
Well, as you know, what happened next stunned us all: as we stood on the bank watching, the Bridge itself began to shake and crumble, its very foundations giving way with a deep and mournful growl, as if the Bridge was some living thing, a being that was faced with its own destruction. Oh, Holmes, I know you’ll think me a fool for spouting forth such language, but like you, I was there and I know (or at least, I think I know) that what we experienced was not of this world.
It was only then, as we struggled to gather our thoughts, that I realised Master Douglas was not with us. For a strange moment, I foolishly imagined that perhaps he was the Mothman. But then I saw him stumble out of the mist that had descended upon us. He walked slowly towards us, his face as grey as the grave, and said, “He left this,” and handed a small white card to you, Holmes. We gathered around and peered at the copperplate typeface that said: You have been Visited by The Mothman…Ner ner ner-ner ner…
No doubt you have wondered, as have I, if what we saw with our own eyes was some sort of dream or nightmare or that we had somehow been cast into some trance-like state in which we, all four of us (since Douglas had fallen foul of the Scaffold), been privy to some wretched foretelling of the future. Even now, as I stand here on the banks of the Thames writing these strange words, it is hard to accept as true that London Bridge is still standing, proud in its glory, British to its core, stone upon stone (you get the picture).
I shall not be sending my account of this episode to The Strand, since I consider it might tarnish our reputation somewhat.
I shall pop round later when I’m feeling more myself.
Tired and emotionally yours