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The Adventure Of My Very First Case

by Martin Hill Ortiz

About the Author: Martin Hill Ortiz is a professor of Pharmacology at the Ponce Health Sciences University in Puerto Rico where he lives. Over forty of his stories have appeared in print and online journals. Author of four mystery thrillers, he is an active member of the Mystery Writers of America, Florida chapter.


“No,” I, Jules Pfennig, told the young lady, the young lady with pouting lips and a mist in her eyes, “this is 223 Baker Street. The man you seek lives next door.” Being a gentleman, I omitted telling the woman at the doorstep to my rooming house, my profane objections to being confused with that smug sleuth.

“Ah, Mr. Holmes, I was informed you are a trying individual, and that you would wave aside most all prospective clients without mercy. You care only for the challenge of the case.”

“Madame, you have mistaken me for my neighbor,” I said offishly. “I stand a mere five-foot-eight and two-thirds inches. As for Mr. Sherlock Holmes …”

“I can pay!” she blustered, and opened her purse to reveal a five-pound note. “I can pay whatever you ask.”

That stopped me. My wallet was as empty as my belly. “As I was saying: as for Mr. Sherlock Holmes, he is standing here before you. Follow me!”

Together we walked down a dreary hallway, up the stairs with their dreary carpet, down another dreary hall, and entered my dreary flat.

“Take a seat!”

She sat on my lone cushioned chair and folded her hands over her lap.

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