Sherlock, Season 2, episode 2 transcript: The Hounds of Baskerville, part 2 Transcript by Ariane DeVere aka Callie Sullivan.
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Sherlock, Season 2, episode 2 transcript: The Hounds of Baskerville, part 2
(Return to part 1 / Jump to part 3 / Jump to part 4)
Sherlock drives up to the main complex at Baskerville, parks the car and he and John get out. Another soldier leads them through barriers and towards an entrance to the main building. As they walk, Sherlock looks around at all the military men patrolling the area, many of them armed. Even the scientists in lab coats are being escorted. As they approach the entrance, a military jeep pulls up and a young corporal gets out.
LYONS: What is it? Are we in trouble?
SHERLOCK (sternly): “Are we in trouble, sir.”
LYONS: Yes, sir, sorry, sir.
(Nevertheless, he steps in front of them and holds out his hands to prevent them getting nearer to the entrance.)
SHERLOCK: You were expecting us?
LYONS: Your ID showed up straight away, Mr. Holmes. Corporal Lyons, security. Is there something wrong, sir?
SHERLOCK: Well, I hope not, Corporal, I hope not.
LYONS: It’s just we don’t get inspected here, you see, sir. It just doesn’t happen.
JOHN: Ever heard of a spot check?
(He takes a small wallet from his pocket and shows the ID inside to the corporal.)
JOHN: Captain John Watson, Fifth Northumberland Fusiliers.
(Even before he finishes speaking, the corporal comes to attention and salutes. John crisply returns the salute. Fangirls faint.)
LYONS: Sir. Major Barrymore won’t be pleased, sir. He’ll want to see you both.
JOHN: I’m afraid we won’t have time for that. We’ll need the full tour right away. Carry on.
(The corporal hesitates.)
JOHN (instantly): That’s an order, Corporal.
LYONS: Yes, sir.
(He spins around and walks towards the entrance. Sherlock glances across to John with a proud smile on his face as they follow. At the entrance, which is marked “AUTOMATIC SECURITY DOOR”, Lyons swipes his pass through a reader, then waits for Sherlock to walk over and do the same with his own pass. The message “ACCESS GRANTED” appears on the reader. Lyons then presses a button and the locks on the door disengage. Sherlock checks his watch.)
(Elsewhere, probably a long way from Baskerville, a message flashes up on a screen:
CCV1 • security authorization requested •
holmes, mycroft • priority ultra
processing CCV1 •
The security request begins to process. At Baskerville, the door swings open and Lyons leads the other two inside, taking off his beret as he goes. As he leads them towards the next security door, the boys talk quietly.)
SHERLOCK: Nice touch.
JOHN: Haven’t pulled rank in ages.
SHERLOCK: Enjoy it?
JOHN: Oh yeah.
(Reaching the door, Lyons swipes his pass and then steps aside for Sherlock to do likewise. As he does so and another “ACCESS GRANTED” message appears, the authorisation request is sent out again. The doors slide opens and reveal an elevator on the other side. Lyons leads them inside and Sherlock looks at the wall panel. The lift, now on the ground floor, only goes downwards to five floors marked -1, -2, -3, -4 and B. Lyons presses the -1 button and the doors close, opening shortly afterwards on the next floor down. Lyons leads them out into a brightly lit and white tiled laboratory. As they walk forward, various scientific staff dressed either in white coveralls including full breathing masks, or lab coats and face masks walk around the lab. There are large cages to the right of the elevator and as Lyons leads the way past them, a monkey screams and hurls itself at the bars towards them. Sherlock spins on his heel as he passes the cage, looking at the monkey and the chain around its neck.)
SHERLOCK: How many animals do you keep down here?
LYONS: Lots, sir.
(At the far end of the lab, a scientist wearing coveralls and a breathing mask comes out of another room and takes his mask off. Another scientist walks across the lab with a beagle on a lead.)
SHERLOCK: Any ever escape?
LYONS: They’d have to know how to use that lift, sir. We’re not breeding them that clever.
SHERLOCK: Unless they have help.
(The man who just took his mask off comes over to the group.)
FRANKLAND: Ah, and you are?
LYONS: Sorry, Doctor Frankland. I’m just showing these gentlemen around.
FRANKLAND (smiling at them): Ah, new faces, huh? Nice. Careful you don’t get stuck here, though. I only came to fix a tap!
(John chuckles politely as Frankland walks towards the lift. John turns to Lyons.)
JOHN: How far down does that lift go?
LYONS: Quite a way, sir.
JOHN: Mmm-hmm. And what’s down there?
LYONS: Well, we have to keep the bins somewhere, sir. This way please, gentlemen.
(Sherlock is watching Frankland as he reaches the elevator. Frankland in turn looks around to gaze with interest at the new arrivals. As Lyons leads John away, Sherlock walks backwards for a couple of paces before turning to follow.)
JOHN: So what exactly is it that you do here?
LYONS: I thought you’d know, sir, this being an inspection.
(Sherlock is looking at the various scientists around the room, a couple looking at a rat in a glass cage, another one doing something to the leg of a monkey on a leash which is sitting on a metal table. Nearby, another scientist picks up what looks ominously like a glass container of serum.)
JOHN: Well, I’m not an expert, am I?
LYONS: Everything from stem cell research to trying to cure the common cold, sir.
JOHN: But mostly weaponry?
LYONS: Of one sort or another, yes.
(He swipes his card through the reader of the door at the end of the lab, then steps aside for Sherlock to do likewise.)
JOHN: Biological, chemical ...?
LYONS: One war ends, another begins, sir. New enemies to fight. We have to be prepared.
(As the door releases, Sherlock checks his watch as the security authorisation message goes out again, the message changing slightly:
CCV1 • security authorization //5894
• query • query • query
CCV1 • 5555*0000*x1
Lyons leads them through the doors and into another lab where a monkey stands up on its back legs with one hand high in the air and shrieks before sitting down again on a high metal table. A female scientist looks at it and then turns to her colleague.)
STAPLETON: Okay, Michael, let’s try Harlow Three next time.
(As she walks away from the table, Lyons approaches her.)
LYONS: Doctor Stapleton.
SHERLOCK (thoughtfully): Stapleton.
STAPLETON: Yes? (She looks at Sherlock and John.) Who’s this?
LYONS: Priority Ultra, ma’am. Orders from on high. An inspection.
SHERLOCK: We’re to be accorded every courtesy, Doctor Stapleton. What’s your role at Baskerville?
(Stapleton looks at him and snorts with disbelieving laughter.)
JOHN: Er, accorded every courtesy, isn’t that the idea?
STAPLETON: I’m not free to say. Official secrets.
SHERLOCK (smiling at her): Oh, you most certainly are free ... (his smile fades and his voice becomes ominous) ... and I suggest you remain that way.
(She looks at him for a moment.)
STAPLETON: I have a lot of fingers in a lot of pies. I like to mix things up – genes, mostly; now and again actual fingers.
(Sherlock has had a lightbulb moment when she said the words ‘genes’ and is reaching into his pocket before she finishes the sentence.)
SHERLOCK: Stapleton. I knew I knew your name.
STAPLETON: I doubt it.
SHERLOCK: People say there’s no such thing as coincidence. What dull lives they must lead.
(He holds up his notebook to her on which he has written a single large word: “BLUEBELL”. She stares at it in amazement as Sherlock watches her face closely.)
STAPLETON: Have you been talking to my daughter?
SHERLOCK (putting his notebook away): Why did Bluebell have to die, Doctor Stapleton?
JOHN (bewildered): The rabbit?
SHERLOCK (to Stapleton, as she stares at him blankly): Disappeared from inside a locked hutch, which was always suggestive.
JOHN: The rabbit?
SHERLOCK: Clearly an inside job.
STAPLETON: Oh, you reckon?
SHERLOCK: Why? Because it glowed in the dark.
STAPLETON: I have absolutely no idea what you’re talking about. Who are you?
(Even as she speaks Sherlock has been keeping a mental note of the time and now checks his watch again. Out in the security system somewhere, the authorisation request changes:
CCV1 • security authorization
•• alert •• alert ••
potential level 5 security breach
Someone looking at the screen picks up the phone and lifts the handset to their ear. At Baskerville, Sherlock lowers his hand and turns to Lyons.)
SHERLOCK: Well, I think we’ve seen enough for now, Corporal. Thank you so much.
LYONS (surprised): That’s it?
SHERLOCK: That’s it. (He turns and heads briskly back towards the door, John following behind and Lyons trailing after them.) It’s this way, isn’t it?
STAPLETON (calling after them): Just a minute!
(John catches up to his friend and speaks quietly so that Lyons can’t overhear him. His tone suggests that he is not best pleased.)
JOHN: Did we just break into a military base to investigate a rabbit?
(Sherlock reaches the door and swipes his card, then waits for Lyons to catch up to them and do the same with his own card. In Whitehall or somewhere similar, telephones begin to ring as a chain of calls relays the potential security breach and the message goes out:
• URGENT • URGENT • URGENT •
refer holmes, mycroft
Sitting in what can surely only be the Diogenes Club with a cup of coffee on the table beside him, Mycroft takes out his phone as it trills quietly. Looking at the message, he rolls his eyes in exasperation, gazes off into space with a “Good God – what now?!” look on his face for a moment and then begins to text.)
(At Baskerville, Sherlock walks swiftly through the security doors and heads for the lift as his phone trills a text alert. He takes out his phone without stopping and reads the message:
What are you
He laughs sarcastically.)
SHERLOCK: Twenty-three minutes. Mycroft’s getting slow.
(Reaching the lift doors, he swipes his card and Lyons does likewise. The doors open revealing Doctor Frankland standing inside as if he has been waiting there for them ever since they met. He smiles at them.)
FRANKLAND: Hello ... again.
(Narrowing his eyes suspiciously, Sherlock walks into the lift with the others. Very shortly afterwards, one floor up, the doors open again and reveal a bearded man in military uniform waiting for them. He does not look happy.)
LYONS: Er, um, Major ...
BARRYMORE: This is bloody outrageous. Why wasn’t I told?
JOHN: Major Barrymore, is it? (He steps out of the lift towards him.) Yes, well, good. Very good. (He offers him his hand to shake.) We’re very impressed, aren’t we, Mr. Holmes?
(Barrymore refuses to take John’s hand. Sherlock’s phone sounds another text alert and he reaches into his pocket for it again.)
SHERLOCK: Deeply; hugely.
(He walks past Barrymore as he looks at his text message which reads:
What’s going on
The major follows along behind the boys as Sherlock hurries towards the exit door.)
BARRYMORE: The whole point of Baskerville was to eliminate this kind of bureaucratic nonsense ...
SHERLOCK: I’m so sorry, Major.
SHERLOCK: New policy. Can’t remain unmonitored forever. Goodness knows what you’d get up to. (Urgently and quietly to John) Keep walking.
(Lyons has briefly ducked into a side room but now hurries out again.)
(He slaps an alarm button on the wall. Alarms start to blare, red lights flash and the automated security door locks itself. The others turn back to him.)
LYONS: ID unauthorised, sir.
LYONS: I’ve just had the call.
BARRYMORE: Is that right?
(He turns to Sherlock and John.)
BARRYMORE: Who are you?
JOHN: Look, there’s obviously been some kind of mistake.
(A little further back, Frankland is slowly walking towards the group, looking thoughtful. Barrymore holds out his hand for Sherlock’s ID card, which he gives to him. He looks at the card and then up at Sherlock.)
BARRYMORE: Clearly not Mycroft Holmes.
JOHN (getting out a notebook and starting to write): Computer error, Major. It’ll all have to go in the report.
BARRYMORE: What the hell’s going on?!
FRANKLAND: It’s all right, Major. I know exactly who these gentlemen are.
BARRYMORE: You do?
FRANKLAND: Yeah. I’m getting a little slow on faces but Mr. Holmes here isn’t someone I expected to show up in this place.
SHERLOCK: Ah, well ...
FRANKLAND (offering him his hand to shake): Good to see you again, Mycroft.
(John tries to mask his surprise. Smiling falsely, Sherlock shakes Frankland’s hand.)
FRANKLAND: I had the honour of meeting Mr. Holmes at the W.H.O. conference in ... (he pretends to think) ... Brussels, was it?
FRANKLAND: Vienna, that’s it.
(He looks at Barrymore.)
FRANKLAND: This is Mr. Mycroft Holmes, Major. There’s obviously been a mistake.
(Barrymore turns and nods to Lyons, who goes back to the alarm switch and turns it off. The lights stop flashing and the alarm falls silent. A moment later the entrance door’s lock disengages noisily.)
BARRYMORE (turning back to Frankland): On your head be it, Doctor Frankland.
FRANKLAND (laughing as he looks at the approaching Corporal Lyons): I’ll show them out, Corporal.
LYONS: Very well, sir.
(Sherlock spins on his heel and walks towards the now open entrance door. John and Frankland follow him while Barrymore glares after them unhappily. The boys go outside, John grimacing anxiously with an “Oh gods, I really hope we’re going to get away with this!” expression on his face. Frankland trots after them.)
SHERLOCK: Thank you.
FRANKLAND: This is about Henry Knight, isn’t it?
(They don’t answer him but he takes their silence as agreement.)
FRANKLAND: I thought so. I knew he wanted help but I didn’t realise he was going to contact Sherlock Holmes!
FRANKLAND: Oh, don’t worry. I know who you really are. I’m never off your website. Thought you’d be wearing the hat, though.
SHERLOCK: That wasn’t my hat.
FRANKLAND (to John): I hardly recognise him without the hat!
(John tries unsuccessfully to bite back a smile.)
SHERLOCK (tetchily, sounding the ‘t’s loudly): It wasn’t my hat.
FRANKLAND: I love the blog too, Doctor Watson.
JOHN: Oh, cheers!
FRANKLAND: The, er, the Pink thing ...
FRANKLAND: ... and that one about the aluminium crutch!
SHERLOCK (stopping and turning back to Frankland): You know Henry Knight?
FRANKLAND: Well, I knew his dad better. He had all sorts of mad theories about this place. Still, he was a good friend.
(He looks back the way they came and sees that Major Barrymore is standing some distance away and watching them. He turns back to Sherlock.)
FRANKLAND: Listen, I can’t really talk now.
(He takes a card from his coat pocket and hands it over.)
FRANKLAND: Here’s my, er, cell number. If I could help with Henry, give me a call.
SHERLOCK: I never did ask, Doctor Frankland. What exactly is it that you do here?
FRANKLAND: Oh, Mr. Holmes, I would love to tell you – but then, of course, I’d have to kill you!
(He laughs cheerfully.)
SHERLOCK (straight faced): That would be tremendously ambitious of you.
(Frankland’s smile fades and he shrugs in embarrassment.)
SHERLOCK: Tell me about Doctor Stapleton.
FRANKLAND: Never speak ill of a colleague.
SHERLOCK: Yet you’d speak well of one, which you’re clearly omitting to do.
FRANKLAND: I do seem to be, don’t I? (He shrugs.)
SHERLOCK (raising the card that Frankland just gave him): I’ll be in touch.
FRANKLAND: Any time.
(The boys walk away from him and head towards their Land Rover.)
JOHN: What was all that about the rabbit?
(Smiling briefly, Sherlock pulls his coat tighter around him, flipping the collar up just as they reach the car. John rolls his eyes and turns to him.)
JOHN: Oh, please, can we not do this, this time?
SHERLOCK: Do what?
JOHN: You being all mysterious with your cheekbones and turning your coat collar up so you look cool.
(As he turns to go to the car door, Sherlock opens his mouth to speak but is apparently so disconcerted that for a moment he can’t find the words.)
SHERLOCK: ... I don’t do that.
JOHN: Yeah you do.
(They get into the car.)
Later, Sherlock is driving them across the moors.
JOHN: So, the email from Kirsty – the, er, missing luminous rabbit.
SHERLOCK: Kirsty Stapleton, whose mother specialises in genetic manipulation.
JOHN: She made her daughter’s rabbit glow in the dark.
SHERLOCK: Probably a fluorescent gene removed and spliced into the specimen. Simple enough these days.
JOHN: So ...
(He looks across to Sherlock and waits for him to continue the sentence.)
SHERLOCK: So we know that Doctor Stapleton performs secret genetic experiments on animals. The question is: has she been working on something deadlier than a rabbit?
JOHN: To be fair, that is quite a wide field.
(Sherlock looks round at John in startled surprise as he realises that that’s true.)
HENRY KNIGHT’S HOUSE. His home is enormous – a four-storey stone building that was probably a very important property in the area in the past. A large old-fashioned glass conservatory is attached to the rear of the building on the ground floor (and your transcriber looks round to her LJ friends who read her fic and whispers softly, “world’s smallest jungle ...” knowingly) and a modern two-storey glass extension has been built onto the side of the house to join it to another two-storey stone building nearby. Sherlock and John go into the conservatory, which looks very run-down and clearly hasn’t had a paint job in years, and walk across to the door on the opposite side. Sherlock rings the doorbell and Henry opens the door.
HENRY: Come in, come in.
(Wiping his feet on the doormat, Sherlock walks in and heads down the hallway. John follows more slowly, stopping to look into a large high-ceilinged sitting room before following Henry again.)
JOHN: This is, uh ... are you, um ...
(He searches for the right word for a moment before finding it.)
JOHN: ... rich?
(Henry leads off again. Sherlock throws a dark look at John before following him.)
Not long afterwards, in the kitchen in the glass extension, Sherlock puts two sugar lumps into his mug and stirs them in. He is sitting on a stool at the central island and John is sitting next to him. Henry is standing on the other side of the island gazing down at the work surface.
HENRY: It’s-it’s a couple of words. It’s what I keep seeing. “Liberty” ...
JOHN (reaching into his pocket for his notebook): Liberty.
HENRY (looking up to him): “Liberty” and ... “in”. It’s just that.
(He picks up the bottle of milk that’s on the island.)
HENRY: Are you finished?
(Henry turns around to put the milk into the fridge. John looks at Sherlock.)
JOHN: Mean anything to you?
SHERLOCK (softly): “Liberty in death” – isn’t that the expression? The only true freedom.
(John nods in agreement as Henry turns back around, sighing. Sherlock takes a drink from his mug.)
HENRY: What now, then?
JOHN: Sherlock’s got a plan.
SHERLOCK: We take you back out onto the moor ...
HENRY (nervously): Okay ...
SHERLOCK: ... and see if anything attacks you.
SHERLOCK: That should bring things to a head.
HENRY: At night? You want me to go out there at night?
JOHN: That’s your plan? (He snorts laughter.) Brilliant(!)
SHERLOCK: Got any better ideas?
JOHN: That’s not a plan.
SHERLOCK: Listen, if there is a monster out there, John, there’s only one thing to do: find out where it lives.
(He looks round to Henry and smiles widely at him before taking another drink from his mug. Henry does not look encouraged by this.)
DUSK. THE MOORS. As night begins to fall, Henry leads Sherlock and John across the rocks towards Dewer’s Hollow. All three of them have flashlights to light the uneven ground below their feet. Foxes scream repeatedly in the distance. By the time they reach the woods it is almost full dark and it becomes even darker as they head into the trees. John, bringing up the rear, hears rustling to his right and turns around to look. The other two don’t notice and continue onwards as John walks cautiously towards the sound he heard. He shines his torch into the bushes as an owl shrieks overhead, but he can see nothing. Raising his head he sees a light repeatedly winking on and off at the top of a hillside a fair distance away. He looks around to alert his friend.
(It’s only then that he realises that the other two have disappeared out of sight. He shines his flashlight in the direction they went but there’s no sign of them. He looks back to the light on the hillside, which is still intermittently flashing, and gets his notebook out of his pocket because he has instantly recognised that the flashes are Morse code. He starts to write down the letters while speaking them aloud.)
JOHN (softly): U ... M ... Q ... R ... A.
(The light stops flashing. John looks down at his notebook.)
JOHN (in a whisper): U, M, Q, R, A. (He tries it as a word.) Umqra?
(Shaking his head, he looks up to the hillside again but no more light comes from it. Shutting the notebook, he heads off in the direction of the other two.)
JOHN (whispering): Sherlock ...
(Henry and Sherlock are a long way ahead and Henry’s torch shows that they’re at the edge of the minefield with its fencing and warning signs. They make their way along the edge of the fencing as John trails a long way behind them, still whispering his friend’s name repeatedly.)
JOHN: Sherlock ... Sherlock ...
(Up ahead, Sherlock breaks the silence.)
SHERLOCK: Met a friend of yours.
SHERLOCK: Doctor Frankland.
HENRY: Oh, right. Bob, yeah.
SHERLOCK: Seems pretty concerned about you.
HENRY: He’s a worrier, bless him. He’s been very kind to me since I came back.
SHERLOCK: He knew your father.
SHERLOCK: But he works at Baskerville. Didn’t your dad have a problem with that?
HENRY: Well, mates are mates, aren’t they? I mean, look at you and John.
SHERLOCK: What about us?
HENRY: Well, I mean, he’s a pretty straightforward bloke, and you ...
(Glancing back at Sherlock, he decides not to follow that line.)
HENRY: They agreed never to talk about work, Uncle Bob and my dad.
(He stops and turns to his left. As Sherlock stops and looks at him, Henry nods in the direction he’s looking.)
HENRY (unhappily): Dewer’s Hollow.
(Sherlock turns and looks at the steep drop in the land that leads down into a misty dark valley.)
(Some distance behind them, John is still following their trail.)
JOHN (whispering): Sherlock ...
(As he progresses onwards, he hears an eerie metallic thrumming sound. He stops and aims his flashlight in the direction of the sound, then goes to move onwards just as the thrum sounds again. The sound continues to repeat, now interspersed with a short metallic ping. John walks slowly towards the sound, then quietly chuckles as he sees a rusty metal container, possibly an oil drum, which is lying in the undergrowth. Water is dripping from the tree above it and causing the thrums and pings as it strikes the drum. As John looks at it and sighs with relief, something massive flashes past behind him. John spins and looks but it’s already gone, but a couple of seconds later an anguished howl sounds in the distance. John turns and begins to hurry to find the others.)
(Sherlock is heading down into the Hollow, being careful to keep his balance on the steep slippery ground. Henry follows him down more slowly. Sherlock reaches the bottom and shines his torch around, finding giant paw prints all around the ground. Some distance away, John is now running to get to the others. Another long anguished howl rings out. Still halfway down the slope, Henry pauses. Sherlock shines his torch up in the direction of the sound ... and his face begins to fill with horror at the sight that greets him. Unfortunately for the viewers, we can’t see what he is looking at, but whatever it is growls savagely from the top of the Hollow. As the beam from Sherlock’s flashlight flails along the Hollow’s rim, the whatever-it-is has already retreated. Sherlock recoils, his face confused and bewildered as he tries to take in what he just saw. From his position some distance away, Henry hurries down to join him.)
HENRY: Oh my God. Oh my God. Oh my God. Oh my God. Oh my God. Oh my God. Did you see it?
(Sherlock lowers his head, still unable to get his mind to accept the evidence of his eyes. He stares around, shaking his head, then shoves Henry out of his way and hurries back up the hillside. Henry follows him.)
(Very shortly afterwards, John finally meets up with the other two making their way back.)
JOHN (referring to the howling): Did you hear that?
(Sherlock storms straight past him. John turns and follows.)
HENRY: We saw it. We saw it.
SHERLOCK: No. I didn’t see anything.
HENRY (chasing after him): What? What are you talking about?
SHERLOCK: I didn’t. See. Anything.
(He hurries onwards with Henry and John trailing along behind him.)
Some time later at Henry’s house, Henry and John hurry indoors. Sherlock has disappeared off elsewhere.
HENRY: Look, he must have seen it. I saw it – he must have. He must have. I can’t ... Why? Why?
(He stops in the doorway of the sitting room, turning back to John in anguish.)
HENRY: Why would he say that? It-it-it-it it was there. It was.
(Taking his gloves off, John ushers him across to the sofa.)
JOHN: Henry, Henry, I need you to sit down, try and relax, please.
HENRY (sitting on the sofa): I’m okay, I’m okay.
JOHN: Listen, I’m gonna give you something to help you sleep, all right?
(He looks around the room and sees a bottle of water on a bureau nearby. As he goes over to get it, Henry unwraps his scarf from his neck, smiling.)
HENRY: This is good news, John. It’s-it’s-it’s good. I’m not crazy. There is a hound, there ... there is. And Sherlock – he saw it too. No matter what he said, he saw it.
Sherlock is back at the inn. Sitting in an armchair by a roaring open fire, his face is still full of shock and disbelief. Unaware of his distress, other patrons sit at tables nearby having their evening meal. John comes in and sits down in the armchair on the other side of the fire.
JOHN: Well, he is in a pretty bad way. He’s manic, totally convinced there’s some mutant super-dog roaming the moors.
(With his hands in the prayer position in front of his mouth, Sherlock glances nervously at John for a moment, then continues to gaze in the direction of the fire, lost in thought.)
JOHN: And there isn’t, though, is there? ’Cause if people knew how to make a mutant super-dog, we’d know.
(Sherlock clasps his fingers together, closing his eyes and breathing heavily as if trying to fend off a panic attack.)
JOHN: They’d be for sale. I mean, that’s how it works.
(He remembers something and reaches for his notebook.)
JOHN: Er, listen: er, on the moor I saw someone signalling. Er, Morse – I guess it’s Morse.
(Sherlock blinks rapidly and repeatedly.)
JOHN (looking at his notes): Doesn’t seem to make much sense.
(Sherlock pulls in a sharp breath through his nose and then blows the breath out again through his mouth.)
JOHN: Er, U, M, Q, R, A. Does that mean ... anything ...
(He finally realises how distressed his colleague is looking and pauses for a moment, then decides that he can’t be right. He puts his notebook away again and sits back in his chair.)
JOHN: So, okay, what have we got? We know there’s footprints, ’cause Henry found them; so did the tour guide bloke. We all heard something.
(Sherlock blows out another shaky breath. John looks across to him and frowns momentarily.)
JOHN: Maybe we should just look for whoever’s got a big dog.
SHERLOCK: Henry’s right.
SHERLOCK (his voice shaking): I saw it too.
JOHN (shocked): What?
SHERLOCK: I saw it too, John.
JOHN: Just ... just a minute. (He sits forward.) You saw what?
(Sherlock finally meets his gaze but his face is twisted with self-loathing as he forces himself to admit the truth.)
SHERLOCK: A hound, out there in the Hollow. (He talks through gritted teeth.) A gigantic hound.
(John almost laughs as Sherlock looks away, trying unsuccessfully to blink back tears. John sits back in his chair again, not quite able to cope with this strange reaction from his colleague.)
JOHN: Um, look, Sherlock, we have to be rational about this, okay? Now you, of all people, can’t just ...
(Sherlock blows out another breath.)
JOHN: Let’s just stick to what we know, yes? Stick to the facts.
(Sherlock looks round at him.)
SHERLOCK (softly): Once you’ve ruled out the impossible, whatever remains – however improbable – must be true.
JOHN: What does that mean?
(Looking away again, Sherlock reaches down and picks up a drink from a nearby table. Looking down at his trembling hand, he sniggers.)
SHERLOCK: Look at me. I’m afraid, John. Afraid.
(He takes a drink and then holds the glass up again, his hand still shaking.)
SHERLOCK: Always been able to keep myself distant ... (he takes another drink from the glass) ... divorce myself from ... feelings. But look, you see ...
(He holds up the glass and glares at his shaking hand.)
SHERLOCK: ... body’s betraying me. Interesting, yes? Emotions. (He slams the glass down onto the table.) The grit on the lens, the fly in the ointment.
JOHN: Yeah, all right, Spock, just ...
(Realising that he is starting to raise his voice, he looks around at the other people in the restaurant behind him and then looks back to Sherlock.)
JOHN (more softly): ... take it easy.
(Sherlock is blowing out a few more breaths and still failing to bring himself under control. He glances panic-stricken at John.)
JOHN: You’ve been pretty wired lately, you know you have. I think you’ve just gone out there and got yourself a bit worked up.
SHERLOCK: Worked ... up?
JOHN: It was dark and scary ...
SHERLOCK (laughing sarcastically): Me?! There’s nothing wrong with me.
(He looks away, almost beginning to hyperventilate, then puts his fingertips to his temples, groaning in anguish. John looks at him in concern.)
JOHN: Sherlock ...
(Sherlock begins blowing out breaths again, his fingers trembling against his skin.)
SHERLOCK (loudly, furiously): THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH ME!
(He glares round at John.)
SHERLOCK: DO YOU UNDERSTAND?
(He looks round at the other patrons, all of whom are now staring at him. He looks away again, then looks at John.)
SHERLOCK: You want me to prove it, yes?
(He pulls in a deep breath, trying to get himself under control.)
SHERLOCK: We’re looking for a dog, yes, a great big dog, that’s your brilliant theory. Cherchez le chien. Good, excellent, yes, where shall we start?
(He looks over his shoulder and points at a man and woman sitting opposite each other at a table in the corner of the restaurant. His voice becomes savage and relentless as he goes into deduction mode.)
SHERLOCK: How about them? The sentimental widow and her son, the unemployed fisherman. The answer’s yes.
SHERLOCK: She’s got a West Highland terrier called Whisky. Not exactly what we’re looking for.
JOHN (quietly): Oh, Sherlock, for God’s sake ...
(Sherlock looks briefly across at the man and his knitted jumper with reindeer and holly leaves on it before turning away again.)
SHERLOCK (quick fire): Look at the jumper he’s wearing. Hardly worn. Clearly he’s uncomfortable in it. Maybe it’s because of the material; more likely the hideous pattern, suggesting it’s a present, probably Christmas. So he wants into his mother’s good books. Why? Almost certainly money.
(He takes another quick glance at the man.)
SHERLOCK (quick fire): He’s treating her to a meal but his own portion is small. That means he wants to impress her, but he’s trying to economise on his own food.
JOHN: Well, maybe he’s just not hungry.
SHERLOCK (quick fire, becoming almost frenetic): No, small plate. Starter. He’s practically licked it clean. She’s nearly finished her pavlova. If she’d treated him, he’d have had as much as he wanted. He’s hungry all right, and not well off – you can tell that by the state of his cuffs and shoes.
(He asks the question he’s expecting to come from John at any moment.)
SHERLOCK: “How d’you know she’s his mother?”
(John, who until now has been looking at his colleague with concern as Sherlock’s voice – while lowered – has become increasingly intense, smiles briefly.)
SHERLOCK (quick fire): Who else would give him a Christmas present like that? Well, it could be an aunt or an elder sister, but mother’s more likely. Now, he was a fisherman. Scarring pattern on his hands, very distinctive – fish hooks. They’re all quite old now, which suggests he’s been unemployed for some time. Not much industry in this part of the world, so he’s turned to his widowed mother for help. “Widowed?” Yes, obviously. She’s got a man’s wedding ring on a chain round her neck – clearly her late husband’s and too big for her finger. She’s well-dressed but her jewellery’s cheap. She could afford better, but she’s kept it – it’s sentimental. Now, the dog ... (he looks at the thick wiry hairs on the lower part of the woman’s black trousers) ... tiny little hairs all over the leg from where it gets a little bit too friendly, but no hairs above the knees, suggesting it’s a small dog, probably a terrier. In fact it is – a West Highland terrier called Whisky. “How the hell do you know that, Sherlock?” ’Cause she was on the same train as us and I heard her calling its name and that’s not cheating, that’s listening, I use my senses, John, unlike some people, so you see, I am fine, in fact I’ve never been better, so just Leave. Me. Alone.
(He glares at John, who stares back at him in shock.)
(He clears his throat.)
JOHN: Okay. Okay.
(Distressed by his colleague’s venom, he tries to settle back in his chair as Sherlock stares towards the fire, breathing heavily.)
JOHN: And why would you listen to me? I’m just your friend.
SHERLOCK (savagely): I don’t have friends.
JOHN (softly): Naah. Wonder why?
(He gets up and walks away.)
Shortly afterwards, John storms out of the pub and stops just outside, breathing heavily. He gazes up into the sky and blows out a breath, pulling himself together, then looks into the distance and his eyes narrow. The flashing light is back on the hillside. As it continues to flash, he starts to walk in its direction.
HENRY’S HOUSE. Henry is asleep on the sofa at the edge of the kitchen. He has a duvet over him and a pillow under his head, presumably brought in by John after giving him a sleeping pill. Now he wakes, sits up and rubs his hands over his face, sighing. He stands up and walks over to the floor-to-ceiling glass doors and looks out into the dark garden. Still half asleep, he has a sudden mental flash of the word “Liberty” stitched into material, and then the following “In” word. Recoiling from the memory, he buries his face in his hands and sighs in anguish.
MOORS. Using his torch to illuminate the way, John is walking towards the flashing light on the hillside. As he reaches the top of the hill he can hear a rhythmic squeaking noise, and then as he shines his light around he realises that there are several cars parked up there. The drivers sitting in each car flinch and hold their hands up to shield their faces from the beam from John’s torch, but they are also trying to avoid being identified and John now realises why as he turns his beam onto a car which has slightly steamed-up windows and which is rocking from side to side. Its headlights are intermittently flashing on and off. A woman’s voice comes from inside the car.
WOMAN’s VOICE: Oh! Mr. Selden! You’ve done it again!
MAN’s VOICE: Oh, I keep catching it with my belt.
(As the inhabitants of the car groan and continue about their ... ahem, business, John lowers his torch.)
JOHN: Oh, God.
(He hesitates and squints at the car, almost tempted to take another look and half-raising his torch again, but then it fully hits him that the Morse messages he wrote down yesterday were nothing more than the random flashings of a car’s headlights during the sexual goings-on of a dogging site. He turns and heads back towards the pub.)
(As he walks away from the hillside his phone trills a text alert. He gets the phone out and looks at the message:
Henry’s therapist currently in Cross Keys Pub
John writes a brief reply, speaking it aloud as he types.)
(The reply comes almost instantly:
WHY SHOULD I?
After a moment he gets another alert:
Downloading image ...
Shortly afterwards the image arrives and he opens it. It’s a covertly-taken photograph of Louise Mortimer standing at the bar. She’s pretty, and around John’s age. He looks at the photo for a moment and then walks on.)
JOHN: Ooh, you’re a bad man.
(It’s not clear, however, whether he’s talking to himself or to Sherlock.)
On to Part 3