The German was sent for but professed to know nothing of the matter, nor could any inquiry clear it up. Another item had been added to that constant and apparently purposeless series of small mysteries which had succeeded each other so rapidly. Setting aside the whole grim story of Sir Charles's death, we had a line of inexplicable incidents all within the limits of two days, which included the receipt of the printed letter, the black-bearded spy in the hansom, the loss of the new brown boot, the loss of the old black boot, and now the return of the new brown boot. Holmes sat in silence in the cab as we drove back to Baker Street, and I knew from his drawn brows and keen face that his mind, like my own, was busy in endeavouring to frame some scheme into which all these strange and apparently disconnected episodes could be fitted. All afternoon and late into the evening he sat lost in tobacco and thought.
Just before dinner two telegrams were handed in. The first ran: --
Have just heard that Barrymore is at the Hall. -- BASKERVILLE. The second: --
Visited twenty-three hotels as directed, but sorry, to report unable to trace cut sheet of Times. -- CARTWRIGHT.
There go two of my threads, Watson. There is nothing more stimulating than a case where everything goes against you. We must cast round for another scent.
We have still the cabman who drove the spy.
Exactly. I have wired to get his name and address from the Official Registry. I should not be surprised if this were an answer to my question.