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Victorian Short Stories: Troubled Marriages

The Adventure Of The Abbey Grange
By Arthur Conan Doyle
(The Strand Magazine, 23 January 1897)
It was on a bitterly cold night and frosty morning, towards the end of the winter of '97,
that I was awakened by a tugging at my shoulder. It was Holmes. The candle in his hand
shone upon his eager, stooping face, and told me at a glance that something was amiss.
'Come, Watson, come!' he cried. The game is afoot. Not a word! Into your clothes and
come!'
Ten minutes later we were both in a cab, and rattling through the silent streets on our way
to Charing Cross Station. The first faint winter's dawn was beginning to appear, and we
could dimly see the occasional figure of an early workman as he passed us, blurred and
indistinct in the opalescent London reek. Holmes nestled in silence into his heavy coat,
and I was glad to do the same, for the air was most bitter, and neither of us had broken
our fast.
It was not until we had consumed some hot tea at the station and taken our places in the
Kentish train that we were sufficiently thawed, he to speak and I to listen. Holmes drew a
note from his pocket, and read aloud:
Abbey Grange, Marsham, Kent
3:30 A.M.
My Dear Mr. Holmes:
I should be very glad of your immediate assistance in what promises to be a most
remarkable case. It is something quite in your line. Except for releasing the lady I will see
that everything is kept exactly as I have found it, but I beg you not to lose an instant, as it
is difficult to leave Sir Eustace there.
Yours faithfully,
STANLEY HOPKINS
'Hopkins has called me in seven times, and on each occasion his summons has been
entirely justified,' said Holmes. 'I fancy that every one of his cases has found its way into
your collection, and I must admit, Watson, that you have some power of selection, which
atones for much which I deplore in your narratives. Your fatal habit of looking at
everything from the point of view of a story instead of as a scientific exercise has ruined
what might have been an instructive and even classical series of demonstrations. You slur
 
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