Despite my great frustrations at the current moment I will do my best to tame my passions and recount to you calmly the occurrences of my meeting with Hercule Poirot:
To those among you who hoped that this meeting between Mr. Poirot and I would harken the beginning of complete reconciliation and friendship – a partnership even of great minds – I regret that I do not bring such good news. While we have removed our mutual suspicions of ill-intent, Mr. Poirot stubbornly refuses to trust even my own identity, let alone my worth as a contact or my usefulness as an ally. Therefore I decided not to further inflame our joint irritations and hence have decided to pursue little more than a tacit truce with the man.
Surprisingly, the conversation amongst ourselves started off rather well, if admittedly light. We both discussed amongst ourselves our favor for the city of Paris and the dreary drizzly weather we faced. We enjoyed some nice veal appetizers. He described to me the details of a fascinatingly complicated case involving a locally renowned family in which the murder of the patriarch Comte de Cavaignac revealed terrible scandal and viciousness among its parties. I decided in turn to discuss my own intrigue with Ms. O’Shea.
That was when the positive attitude of the conversation quickly reversed.
For Poirot sought to question me – not on the details of the case, but why I should take on a case at all! He asked me why I continued – why I should proceed in pretending to be Sherlock Holmes, a detective of fiction which he confessed that he greatly admired. He asked me whether or not I thought of it as some kind of ruse, some sort of personal nickname for myself, or whether I was deluded enough to believe I was in truth Sherlock Holmes. Upon tolerating this rather well, I told him that I am who I said I was – the famous detective Sherlock Holmes. And how I came to come into this world where people perceive me as being fictional and legendary I do not know, but calling myself by that name was no pun or jest but was the blunt truth.
He immediately scoffed this away and said that he had heard before of these rumors – “if we should call them so” by his words – that characters of fiction were roaming around the real world; he said that, though such claims were levied against him that he was fictional, he quickly convinced claimants otherwise by saying that he was real and somehow arrived in this present day and age by some method unknown to him. It was impossible that I – by which I mean, Sherlock Holmes – could ever be real as some sort of fiction suspended in fact.
With much irritation I angrily told him that I least of all wished to view myself as fictional – or so you call it – not merely for the severe moral and mental difficulties that come with such a revelation but also the punishing difficulties of logic that it presents. But, I told him, my tenet was to eliminate the impossible, and it was impossible, when I should enter mysteriously into a future day and age where people knew me as fictional and moreover could account for the author and his sources, that all society should be so mistaken and that I was in fact real, when I could not account for it. And it is my solemn principle that once I have eliminated the impossible, what remains – however improbable – must be true.
His unwillingness to listen to this further indicated that I could not persuade him, so I decided to leave before my main course, saying that judging by his build he was well suited to finish it for me. But I told him in leaving that I was disappointed that a man so perceptive would miss what was right before his face, and that perhaps he would see if he carried and wore his pince-nez more often! I also pointed out the luck that I was moving to New York soon, so that Poirot would never have to see me again.
As soon as I got home I got into contact with my unnamed benefactor and requested to go immediately. He informed me that arrangements were already prepared for me to go to America and that I could leave that night if I should so choose. I gratefully accepted his offer, and am packing my meager materials for departure.
I do not know if Poirot will ever come to his senses or if I will see him again. Frankly I have decided that such a decision is not mine but his to make.
To the proud city of New York tomorrow!
P.S. I have just opened up a new website at holmesinvestigations.net; use it to send me a case or if I formally request your services. Otherwise continue to post your comments; it is the best way to informally get in touch with me.