Mystery Part XVIII

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

The Devil in the details

Here is the next post of Act II of Jayne Barnard's "The Evil Eye of Africa."

The first post is here.
A list of all the characters is here.

You can get all the posts by clicking on the mystery tag.

Remember that if you think you have solved the mystery email your deduction to:  madamesaffron at
Madame will be drawing from all the correct solutions for some prizes from Tyche Books!

Keep your sightglass full, your firebox trimmed and your water iced.

"The Evil Eye of Africa"
By Jayne Barnard

A Guess-the-Murderer Mystery in Two Acts 

Act II: Hercule Hornblower Investigates

From the Case Journal of Hercule Hornblower: 

August 24, 1898

A day of the most surprising in this investigation: Baron von Boddy did not drown. He was murdered.

The Cornwall Constabulary knows this, but has kept it silent from the newspapers to further the investigation. Naturally, I offered my inestimable services to aid them. It is to be hoped that Mrs. Midas-White did not kill him, as claiming my fee from a murderess I helped to arrest could prove awkward.

To record in brief my learnings:

1.    The skeleton clearly shows the nick of a bullet in a rear rib, indicating it was shot in the back.

2.    The airship salon’s panoramic forward window has cracks in one corner, radiating from a small hole.

3.    Some solvent, possibly fuel oil, has damaged the walnut flooring of the salon beneath the window. Did it dissolve a large blood stain?

4.    The trunk to which von Boddy was tied was filled with books and papers, much water-stained but all of them the property of the American Professor Indy Brown.

5.    Finally, the canopy and cork belt missing from the airship were found stuffed into a crevice on the moor.

For my reference, a view of the rocky shore where the skeleton washed up:

Click here for the next installment.


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