Sherlock, Season 1, episode 2 transcript: The Blind Banker, part 1
Episode written by Steve Thompson.
Transcript by Ariane DeVere aka Callie Sullivan. (Last updated 11 June 2015)
Note: Although this transcript is complete, it will continually be a work in progress and may be amended at any time if people point out errors or additions to me, or if I suddenly notice or hear something I’ve never seen/heard before. Any suggested amendments or new information can be PMd to me, or they can be submitted in the Comments section below even if you’re not a registered member of Livejournal.
Polite request: If you take extracts from this transcript for use elsewhere, and especially if you repost my own words, it would be kind if you would acknowledge the source and/or give a link back to this transcript. Thanks.
Warning: if you’re not fond of random asides from your transcriber, this is not the transcript for you. This is my least favourite of the episodes which have been shown so far, particularly because of the many and varied plot holes in the story, and I’m afraid that I have rather alleviated my dislike of this episode by inserting more than the usual number of transcriber’s comments to stop myself from getting bored or fed up with the task. I hope they’re not too distracting, but if they are, there’s not a lot I can do about it! I’ve tried not to be too facetious, but may not have always been successful in that attempt. Anyway, onwards:
Sherlock, Season 1, episode 2 transcript: The Blind Banker, part 1
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In the National Antiquities Museum, an ancient Chinese clay tea set has been arranged on a tray. Oriental flute music is playing gently. A young Chinese woman, Soo Lin Yao, takes a large pinch of tea leaves from a bowl and sprinkles them into a clay teapot before pouring water on top of them. A group of children and a few adults are watching her demonstration.
SOO LIN: The great artisans say the more the teapot is used, the more beautiful it becomes.
(She has deliberately overfilled the pot so that when she picks up the lid and gently presses it down into place, water spills out over the sides of the pot. Now she picks up a small jug and pours more liquid over the top of the pot.)
SOO LIN: The pot is seasoned by repeatedly pouring tea over the surface. The deposit left on the clay creates this beautiful patina over time.
(She holds up the wet teapot to show her audience how the pot is shining.)
SOO LIN: For some pots, the clay has been burnished by tea made over four hundred years ago.
Some time later, the visitors have left and Soo Lin is gently drying and dusting off the tea set with a brush.
TANNOY ANNOUNCEMENT: This museum will be closing in ten minutes.
(A young English male employee, Andy Galbraith, walks over. He stands behind her and watches as she carefully packs the tea set into a box.)
ANDY (in a joking tone): Four hundred years old, and they’re lettin’ you use it to make yourself a brew!
SOO LIN (not turning around): Some things aren’t supposed to sit behind glass. They’re made to be touched; to be handled.
(She turns and looks at him. Andy – who clearly has a massive crush on her – looks back at her all doe-eyed. She turns back to the box and frowns.)
SOO LIN: These pots need attention. (She holds up a dry-looking pot with no shine on it.) The clay is cracking.
ANDY: Well, I can’t see how a tiny splash of tea’s gonna help.
(He grins nervously.)
SOO LIN: Sometimes you have to look hard at something to see its value.
(She puts down the teapot as Andy steels himself to say something. Just as he opens his mouth she lifts up another pot to show him.)
SOO LIN: See? This one shines a little brighter.
(Andy braces himself.)
ANDY: I don’t suppose ... um, I mean, I don’t suppose that you ... you wanna have a drink? (He grimaces.) Not tea, obviously. Um, in a pub, with me, tonight ... umm.
(Soo Lin puts down the pot, not looking at him.)
SOO LIN: You wouldn’t like me all that much.
ANDY: Couldn’t I maybe decide that for myself?
(She hesitates, but then briefly glances towards him.)
SOO LIN: I can’t. I’m sorry. Please stop asking.
(She closes the box.)
A little later, the main entrance doors to the museum are closed for the night and most of the lights are turned off. Down in the basement archive, Soo Lin is in one of the stacks, presumably putting her equipment away. There’s a noise nearby.
SOO LIN (calling out): Is that Security?
(There’s no response, and after an anxious pause she walks out of the stacks and looks around.)
SOO LIN: Hello?
(To her right, a tall and narrow object is covered with a white sheet which billows in a breeze. She nervously walks closer to the object, then hesitantly takes hold of the sheet and pulls it down. Whatever she sees underneath makes her face fill with horror and fear.)
SUPERMARKET. John Watson is standing at one of two self-service checkouts, scanning items from his basket. A short queue has formed behind him. John scans another item.
AUTOMATED VOICE: Unexpected item in bagging area. Please try again.
221B BAKER STREET. In the living room of the flat, Sherlock Holmes is under attack from a heavily robed figure whose face and head are almost completely shrouded in a variety of scarves. As the attacker slashes at him with a curved sword, Sherlock backs up carefully and ducks this way and that to avoid the blows. The man backs Sherlock up as far as the sofa and takes another swing at him. Ducking under the sword, Sherlock drops onto the sofa in a sitting position. The attacker lifts his sword above his head with both hands and Sherlock raises a leg, kicking hard at the man’s chest and shoving him backwards. As the man stumbles back across the room, Sherlock gets to his feet and takes an all-important moment to straighten his jacket before charging across the room towards the man.
In the supermarket, John holds a lettuce in a plastic bag and moves it slowly across the scanner in an attempt to get it to read the barcode.
AUTOMATED VOICE: Item not scanned. Please try again.
(John straightens up, staring at the device in exasperation.)
JOHN: D’you think you could keep your voice down?
In the flat, the attacker has his sword held horizontally in both hands and is pushing Sherlock backwards into the kitchen. With a tight grip on the man’s wrists, Sherlock falls back onto the kitchen table and the man follows him down, trying to press the edge of the blade into Sherlock’s throat. Grimacing with the effort, Sherlock pushes the man’s right wrist upwards to keep the blade from cutting him. The point of the sword begins to dig into the table to Sherlock’s right. Sherlock raises his left leg and knees the man in the side several times and, as this begins to weaken the man’s grip, Sherlock forces himself upwards again. The sword tip gouges a long slash across the top of the table.
In the supermarket, John has at last got everything scanned and has inserted his credit or debit card into the chip-and-PIN machine. He types in his PIN and waits.
AUTOMATED VOICE: Card not authorised. Please use an alternative method of payment.
JOHN: Yes, all right! I’ve got it!
AUTOMATED VOICE: Card not authorised. Please use an alternative method of payment.
(The man in the queue behind him has already picked up his own basket in expectation of getting to the scanner soon. John reaches towards his back pocket but apparently realises that he has no other way of paying.)
JOHN: Got nothing.
(He points at the machine.)
JOHN: Right, keep it. Keep that.
(As the man behind him looks on in surprise, John angrily walks away, abandoning his shopping and quite possibly his card as well.)
In the flat, Sherlock is on his feet again and the fight has moved back into the living room. The attacker takes another swing at Sherlock who ducks underneath the sword and then quickly straightens up, pointing directly over the man’s shoulder.
(The man has already half turned in that direction with the swing of his sword and is also perhaps momentary distracted by their reflections in the mirror over the fireplace behind him. Sherlock takes advantage and swings a powerful uppercut to the man’s chin, and the man drops unconscious into Sherlock’s armchair. Sherlock straightens up and immediately checks his reflection in the mirror, straightening his jacket and cuffs and then dusting himself down. He looks down at the man with disdain, as if indignant that he messed his suit up.)
Some time later Sherlock is sitting in his armchair calmly reading a book. There is no sign of the attacker. John walks up the stairs and into the living room, stopping just inside the room and looking around as if he suspects that something has happened in his absence, but he can’t tell what.
SHERLOCK (not looking up): You took your time.
JOHN: Yeah, I didn’t get the shopping.
SHERLOCK (looking indignantly over the top of his book): What? Why not?
JOHN (tetchily): Because I had a row, in the shop, with a chip-and-PIN machine.
SHERLOCK (lowering his book a little): You ... you had a row with a machine?
[It won’t be the last time that John argues with a ‘machine,’ Sherlock baby, but let’s not go there right now ...]
JOHN: Sort of. It sat there and I shouted abuse. Have you got cash?
(Sherlock holds back his amused smile and nods towards the kitchen.)
SHERLOCK: Take my card.
(John walks towards the kitchen where Sherlock’s wallet is lying on the table, but before he gets there he turns back to his flatmate indignantly.)
JOHN: You could always go yourself, you know. You’ve been sitting there all morning. You’ve not even moved since I left.
(Sherlock briefly flashes back in his mind to a moment in the fight when he ducked under a swing from the attacker’s sword. [And oh my goodness can you see how the blade cuts right into The Coat hanging on the back of the door?! *cries*] He tries to look nonchalant as he turns the page of his book while John picks up the wallet from the table and rummages through it for a suitable payment card.)
JOHN: And what happened about that case you were offered – the Jaria Diamond?
SHERLOCK: Not interested.
(Using a piece of paper as a bookmark he shuts the book with a loud snap, and only then realises that the attacker’s sword is still lying underneath his chair in plain view. He quickly slams a foot down onto the end and slides his foot and the sword further back to get the weapon out of sight.)
SHERLOCK (firmly): I sent them a message.
(Flashback to his uppercut that ended the fight.)
(John has now found a card he can use, but pauses to bend over to look more closely at the new long narrow gouge in the top of the table. He sighs and runs his finger along the cut, rubbing at it in case it’s just a mark that can be removed.)
JOHN (in an exasperated whisper): Ugh, Holmes.
(Looking across to his flatmate, he tuts pointedly. Sherlock shakes his head innocently. John turns and leaves the room, trotting down the stairs as Sherlock smirks.)
Later, John staggers up the stairs carrying several bags of shopping.
JOHN (sarcastically): Don’t worry about me. I can manage.
(Sherlock, who is now sitting at the dining table with his hands folded in front of his mouth as he looks at a laptop screen, barely glances across to John, who sighs heavily as he carries the bags into the kitchen and dumps them onto the table. Sherlock is engrossed in reading an e-mail from someone called Sebastian Wilkes. The full e-mail isn’t shown but what text can be seen reveals that Sherlock and Sebastian haven’t seen each other for a long time. Sebastian has heard that Sherlock is now a consultant – or a consulting detective – and tells him that “There’s been an ‘incident’ at the bank” which he hopes that Sherlock may be able to sort out. He asks him to drop by and says that he’ll be relying on Sherlock’s discretion. John turns around from the kitchen table and frowns when he realises which piece of equipment Sherlock is looking at.)
JOHN: Is that my computer?
SHERLOCK (starting to type): Of course.
SHERLOCK: Mine was in the bedroom.
[“The bedroom.” He said “the bedroom,” not “my bedroom.” Just sayin’. *whistles innocently*]
JOHN: What, and you couldn’t be bothered to get up?
(Sherlock doesn’t reply.)
JOHN (indignantly): It’s password protected!
SHERLOCK (still typing): In a manner of speaking. Took me less than a minute to guess yours. (He glances up at John.) Not exactly Fort Knox.
JOHN (annoyed): Right, thank you.
(He walks over and slams the lid down. Sherlock pulls his fingers out of the way just in time. John takes the laptop across the room and puts it down on the floor beside his armchair as he sits down. Sherlock clasps his hands in the prayer position in front of his mouth as he props his elbows on the table and looks thoughtful. John picks up a small pile of letters from the table beside his chair and frowns.)
(He flicks through the letters, at least one of which appears to be a red bill which needs urgent paying. He shakes his head in resignation.)
JOHN: Need to get a job.
SHERLOCK: Oh, dull.
(He seems to be lost in thought. John puts the letters back onto the table and looks across at his friend for a moment, but then glances at the bills again and awkwardly sits forward.)
JOHN: Listen, um ... if you’d be able to lend me some ...
(He stops when he realises that Sherlock appears to be a world of his own.)
JOHN: Sherlock, are you listening?
SHERLOCK (without looking round): I need to go to the bank.
(He gets up and heads towards the stairs, taking his coat from the hook on the door as he goes [so thankfully it was undamaged by that nasty man who was so carelessly flashing his sword around. *pets the indestructible Coat*]. John frowns, then jumps up and hurries to join him.)
TOWER 42, OLD BROAD STREET. Sherlock leads John through revolving glass doors which lead into Shad Sanderson Bank. John stares at the impressive foyer as he follows his friend.
JOHN: Yes, when you said we were going to the bank ...
(He gets onto an escalator behind Sherlock while the detective observes everything around him, especially the security systems which have to have cards swiped across electronic readers in order to open glass barrier gates. The boys reach the top of the escalator and Sherlock walks over to the reception desk and addresses one of the receptionists.)
SHERLOCK: Sherlock Holmes.
A little later the boys have been shown into Sebastian Wilkes’ office and now he walks in and grins at Sherlock.
SEBASTIAN: Sherlock Holmes.
(They shake hands, Sebastian clasping Sherlock’s hand in both of his own.)
SEBASTIAN: Howdy, buddy. How long’s it been? Eight years since I last clapped eyes on you?
(Sherlock looks back at him with only marginally disguised dislike. Sebastian turns to look at John.)
SHERLOCK: This is my friend, John Watson.
SEBASTIAN (latching on to the emphasised word): Friend?
(They shake hands, Sebastian looking at John curiously.)
(He throws a brief look at Sherlock as if saying, ‘Didn’t think you had a friend!’ Grinning unpleasantly, he momentarily scratches his neck and Sherlock’s gaze falls on his wristwatch. Sebastian turns away, John pursing his lips as if he has taken an instant dislike to the man; either that or he’s regretting correcting Sherlock.)
SEBASTIAN: Well, grab a pew. D’you need anything? Coffee, water?
(Sherlock shakes his head.)
SEBASTIAN: No? (To his secretary) We’re all sorted here, thanks.
(As the secretary leaves the room, Sebastian sits down at his desk and the other two sit side by side opposite him.)
SHERLOCK: So, you’re doing well. You’ve been abroad a lot.
SEBASTIAN: Well, some.
SHERLOCK: Flying all the way round the world twice in a month?
(John frowns in confusion but Sebastian just laughs and points at Sherlock.)
SEBASTIAN: Right. You’re doing that thing.
(He looks at John.)
SEBASTIAN: We were at uni together. This guy here had a trick he used to do.
SHERLOCK (quietly): It’s not a trick.
SEBASTIAN (to John): He could look at you and tell you your whole life story.
JOHN: Yes, I’ve seen him do it.
SEBASTIAN: Put the wind up everybody. We hated him.
(Sherlock turns his head away and looks down, his face momentarily filling with pain. To this day your transcriber cannot understand how Benedict didn’t win a BAFTA for that stupendous moment of acting alone.)
SEBASTIAN: You’d come down to breakfast in the Formal Hall and this freak would know you’d been shagging the previous night.
SHERLOCK (quietly): I simply observed.
SEBASTIAN: Go on, enlighten me. Two trips a month, flying all the way around the world – you’re quite right. How could you tell?
(Sherlock opens his mouth but Sebastian continues speaking.)
SEBASTIAN (smugly): You’re gonna tell me there was, um, a stain on my tie from some special kind of ketchup you can only buy in Manhattan.
SHERLOCK: No, I ...
SEBASTIAN (talking over him): Maybe it was the mud on my shoes!
(Sherlock simply looks back at him for a moment before speaking.)
SHERLOCK: I was just chatting with your secretary outside. She told me.
(John frowns round at him, confused by such an ‘ordinary’ explanation. Sebastian laughs humourlessly and Sherlock smiles back at him with an equal lack of humour. Sebastian claps his hands together, then becomes more serious.)
SEBASTIAN: I’m glad you could make it over. We’ve had a break-in.
(He leads them across the trading floor towards another door.)
SEBASTIAN: Sir William’s office – the bank’s former Chairman. The room’s been left here like a sort of memorial. Someone broke in late last night.
JOHN: What did they steal?
SEBASTIAN: Nothing. Just left a little message.
(He holds his security card against the reader by the door to unlock it. Inside, hanging on the plain white wall behind the large desk is a framed painted portrait of a man in a suit – presumably the late Sir William Shad himself. On the wall to the left of the portrait someone has sprayed what looks like a graffiti ‘tag’ in yellow paint. The tag looks vaguely like a number 8 but with the top of the number left open, and above it is an almost horizontal straight line. Across the eyes of the portrait itself, another almost horizontal straight line has been sprayed. Perhaps because of the texture of the paper or perhaps because the ‘artist’ oversprayed the line, the yellow paint has run trails down the painting. Sebastian leads the way towards the desk and then steps aside to allow Sherlock a clear view of the wall. John moves to stand on the other side of Sebastian, who looks at Sherlock expectantly while the detective stares in fixed concentration at the graffiti.)
(Later they’re back in Sebastian’s office and he is showing the boys the security footage of the office from the previous night.)
SEBASTIAN: Sixty seconds apart.
(He flicks back and forth between the still photograph taken at 23:34:01 which shows the paint on the wall and on the portrait, and a minute earlier – 23:33:01 – when the wall and portrait were still clean.)
SEBASTIAN: So, someone came up here in the middle of the night, splashed paint around, then left within a minute.
SHERLOCK: How many ways into that office?
SEBASTIAN: Well, that’s where this gets really interesting.
Back in the reception area, Sebastian shows them a screen on a computer which has a layout of the trading floor and its surrounding offices. Each indicated door has a light against it showing its security status.
SEBASTIAN: Every door that opens in this bank, it gets logged right here. Every walk-in cupboard, every toilet.
SHERLOCK: That door didn’t open last night.
SEBASTIAN: There’s a hole in our security. Find it and we’ll pay you – five figures.
(He reaches into the breast pocket of his jacket and takes out a cheque.)
SEBASTIAN: This is an advance. Tell me how he got in, there’s a bigger one on its way.
SHERLOCK: I don’t need an incentive, Sebastian.
(He walks away. John watches him go, then turns to Sebastian.)
JOHN: He’s, uh, he’s kidding you, obviously.
(He holds out his hand.)
JOHN: Sh-shall I look after that for him?
(Sebastian hands him the cheque.)
(He looks at the figure on the cheque and shakes his head in disbelief that this is only the advance.)
Sherlock has returned to Sir William’s office and is taking photographs on his mobile phone of the graffiti. Once he has taken several pictures he turns around, the symbols still floating in front of his mind’s eye. He looks to his right where the floor-to-ceiling windows show an impressive view of the nearby Swiss Re Tower, better known as ‘The Gherkin.’ Frowning and looking away in thought for a moment, he then walks over to the windows and pulls up the blinds which are covering what is revealed to be a door onto a small balcony. Opening the door he goes out onto the balcony and looks at the spectacular view over London before looking down at the very long drop to the ground hundreds of feet below. Viewers who’ve seen Season 2 whimper quietly. Sherlock looks along the balcony and bites his lip thoughtfully before heading back inside.
Shortly afterwards, Sherlock is dancing. On the trading floor he has ducked down behind a desk and now rises slowly upright, staring in concentration at the glass doorway to Sir William’s office. He then ducks sideways and hurries across the floor, to the bemusement of a Random Sexy Extra and other traders. Sherlock continues to scamper around the floor, frequently scurrying sideways and ducking down behind desks before popping up again and peering at the doorway. He dances across the floor again and twirls around a column [please note how our super-strong Sherlock knocks it sideways!] before backing towards an office on the other side of the floor. Stopping in that doorway, he wiggles about, his eyes still fixed on Sir William’s office, then turns and goes into the office and heads to the other side of the desk. Standing directly behind the chair of whoever works in that room, he sees that he has a clear view of the top of the painting and the new yellow slash across the portrait’s eyes. He dances sideways across the room before coming back to his previous position, confirming that this is the only place on the trading floor from where the damaged portrait can be seen. Looking around the room for some identification, he eventually goes to the door where two signs are attached to the outside, one showing that this is the office of the Hong Kong Desk Head, and the sign above it giving the name of that person – Edward Van Coon. He slides the top sign out of its holder and heads off.
Not long afterwards, Sherlock is leading John back towards the escalators.
JOHN: Two trips around the world this month. You didn’t ask his secretary; you said that just to irritate him.
(Sherlock smiles but doesn’t respond.)
JOHN: How did you know?
SHERLOCK: Did you see his watch?
(Brief flashback to Sherlock looking at Sebastian’s wrist while he scratched his neck.)
JOHN: His watch?
SHERLOCK: The time was right but the date was wrong. Said two days ago. Crossed the dateline twice but he didn’t alter it.
JOHN: Within a month? How’d you get that part?
SHERLOCK: New Breitling.
(Flashback close-up on the watch showing its brand name: Breitling Chronometre Crosswind.)
SHERLOCK: Only came out this February.
JOHN: Okay. So d’you think we should sniff around here for a bit longer?
SHERLOCK: Got everything I need to know already, thanks.
SHERLOCK: That graffiti was a message for someone at the bank working on the trading floors. We find the intended recipient and ...
(He deliberately trails off, allowing John to finish the sentence.)
JOHN: ... they’ll lead us to the person who sent it.
JOHN: Well, there’s three hundred people up there. Who was it meant for?
SHERLOCK: Pillars and the screens. Very few places you can see that graffiti from. That narrows the field considerably. And of course the message was left at eleven thirty-four last night. That tells us a lot.
JOHN: Does it?
(Sherlock continues talking as he and John go through the revolving doors and out onto the street.)
SHERLOCK: Traders come to work at all hours. Some trade with Hong Kong in the middle of the night. That message was intended for someone who came in at midnight.
(He holds up the name card to show John.)
SHERLOCK: Not many Van Coons in the phonebook.
(He spots what he immediately needs and calls out loudly.)
After a taxi ride, they are outside a block of flats and Sherlock presses the door buzzer marked ‘Van Coon’. Releasing it, he looks into the security camera above the buzzers, waits a couple of seconds, then presses the buzzer again. There’s no response.
JOHN: So what do we do now? Sit here and wait for him to come back?
(Sherlock has looked at the number of buzzers on the wall and steps back to look up the front of the building, presumably calculating the layout of the flats inside. He comes back to the wall and looks at John triumphantly.)
SHERLOCK: Just moved in.
SHERLOCK: The floor above. New label.
(He points to another buzzer which has a handwritten label saying, ‘Wintle’.)
JOHN: Could have just replaced it.
(Sherlock presses that buzzer, then looks at John again.)
SHERLOCK: No-one ever does that.
(A woman’s voice comes over the intercom.)
MS WINTLE: Hello?
(Sherlock turns to the camera and smiles, putting on a ‘I’m just a normal harmless human being’ voice.)
SHERLOCK: Hi! Um, I live in the flat just below you. I-I don’t think we’ve met.
(He grins prettily into the camera.)
MS WINTLE (over intercom): No, well, uh, I’ve just moved in.
(Sherlock turns to throw a brief ‘told you so’ glance at John, then turns back to the camera.)
SHERLOCK: Actually, I’ve just locked my keys in my flat.
(He grimaces and bites his lip plaintively.)
MS WINTLE: D’you want me to buzz you in?
SHERLOCK: Yeah. And can I use your balcony?
MS WINTLE: What?
Not long afterwards, Sherlock has flirted his way into the lucky Ms Wintle’s flat and is standing on her balcony. He looks over the side to the ground several floors below. Luckily for him, he is on the top floor where the flats have balconies which only run halfway across the front of the flat, whereas the floor below has full-width balconies. He climbs over the side of Ms Wintle’s balcony and drops down onto the one outside Van Coon’s flat. Taking another look over the edge, he turns and reaches for the handle of the door and finds that it is unlocked, which is a jolly good thing or he’d still be sitting there now waiting for Lestrade to turn up with many many colleagues who would want to take photographs of him stranded out there. He goes inside and walks across the very elegantly decorated living room. This is clearly the apartment of a wealthy person, with white leather furniture, shiny black tables and minimal clutter. He looks at everything as he goes through the room, and glances at a pile of books on a table. He walks through the kitchen, looking at the work surface before opening the fridge to reveal that it’s full of nothing other than bottles of champagne. The front door to the flat buzzes.
JOHN (from the other side of the door): Sherlock.
(Sherlock moves into the hall.)
JOHN (from outside): Sherlock, are you okay?
(Sherlock opens the door to the small bathroom and glances inside at the few items on the shelf opposite. He shuts the door and walks to a larger door which is closed. He tries it and finds that it’s locked.)
JOHN (from outside): Yeah, any time you feel like letting me in.
(Sherlock turns side-on and shoulder-charges the door and it bursts open. He walks inside and finds a man in a suit and overcoat lying on his back on the bed, dead. There is a pistol on the floor, and the man has a small bullet hole in his right temple.)
Later, the police have been called and a photographer is taking pictures of Van Coon’s body lying on the bed. A forensics officer is dusting for fingerprints on the nearby mirror, and distant voices suggest that other forensics officers are elsewhere in the flat. Sherlock has taken off his coat and is in the bedroom putting on a pair of latex gloves. John stands beside him.
JOHN: D’you think he’d lost a lot of money? I mean, suicide is pretty common among City boys.
SHERLOCK: We don’t know that it was suicide.
JOHN: Come on. The door was locked from the inside; you had to climb down the balcony.
(Sherlock has squatted down by a suitcase on the floor near the bed and has opened the lid and is looking at the contents.)
SHERLOCK: Been away three days, judging by the laundry.
(He sees that there’s a deep indentation in the clothing inside the case, then straightens up and looks at John.)
SHERLOCK: Look at the case. There was something tightly packed inside it.
JOHN: Thanks – I’ll take your word for it.
JOHN: Yeah, I’m not desperate to root around some bloke’s dirty underwear.
SHERLOCK (walking to the foot of the bed): Those symbols at the bank – the graffiti. Why were they put there?
JOHN: What, some sort of code?
(Having looked closely at Van Coon’s legs – or possibly his shoes – he moves up and carefully opens the man’s jacket to look at his inside pockets.)
SHERLOCK: Why were they painted? If you want to communicate, why not use e-mail?
JOHN: Well, maybe he wasn’t answering.
SHERLOCK: Oh good. You follow.
(Sherlock throws him a look before moving on to examine Van Coon’s hands.)
SHERLOCK: What kind of a message would everyone try to avoid?
(John frowns in confusion.)
SHERLOCK: What about this morning – those letters you were looking at?
(Sherlock gently prises open Van Coon’s mouth and pulls out a small black origami flower from inside. Air hisses out from the dead man’s lungs.)
SHERLOCK: Yes. He was being threatened.
MAN’s VOICE (outside the bedroom): Bag this up, will you ...
JOHN (looking closely at the paper flower as Sherlock lifts an evidence bag to put the flower into it): Not by the gas board.
MAN’s VOICE: ... and see if you can get prints off this glass.
(The man – a plain clothed police officer who looks so young to your ancient transcriber that she feels he really ought to be in his own bedroom doing his school homework – walks into the bedroom. Sherlock turns and walks towards him.)
SHERLOCK: Ah, Sergeant. We haven’t met.
(He offers his hand to shake. The young man puts his hands on his hips.)
MAN: Yeah, I know who you are; and I’d prefer it if you didn’t tamper with any of the evidence.
(Lowering his hand, Sherlock gives the evidence bag to the officer and turns his best stroppy look on him.)
SHERLOCK: I’ve phoned Lestrade. Is he on his way?
MAN: He’s busy. I’m in charge. And it’s not Sergeant; it’s Detective Inspector. Dimmock.
(Sherlock looks at him in surprise [See? He agrees with me that this boy is far too young to even be in the police, let alone have advanced to D.I. rank], then turns and shares his surprised look with John. Dimmock walks out of the room. The boys follow him into the living room where he hands the bag to one of the forensics team.)
DIMMOCK: We’re obviously looking at a suicide.
JOHN: That does seem the only explanation of all the facts.
(Sherlock takes off the latex gloves and turns back to him.)
SHERLOCK: Wrong. It’s one possible explanation of some of the facts.
(He turns to Dimmock.)
SHERLOCK: You’ve got a solution that you like, but you’re choosing to ignore anything you see that doesn’t comply with it.
SHERLOCK: The wound was on the right side of his head.
SHERLOCK: Van Coon was left-handed.
(He goes into an elaborate mime as he demonstrates his point, pretending to try and point a gun to his right temple with his left hand.)
SHERLOCK: Requires quite a bit of contortion.
SHERLOCK (sarcastically): Oh, I’m amazed you didn’t notice. All you have to do is look around this flat.
(He points to the table beside the sofa.)
SHERLOCK: Coffee table on the left-hand side; coffee mug handle pointing to the left. Power sockets: habitually used the ones on the left ...
(Close-up of a double socket on the wall with a plug in the left-hand socket.)
SHERLOCK: Pen and paper on the left-hand side of the phone because he picked it up with his right and took down messages with his left. D’you want me to go on?
JOHN (tiredly): No, I think you’ve covered it.
SHERLOCK: Oh, I might as well; I’m almost at the bottom of the list.
(John nods as if to say, ‘Yeah, I thought you might.’)
SHERLOCK (pointing towards the kitchen): There’s a knife on the breadboard with butter on the right side of the blade because he used it with his left.
(He turns to Dimmock with an impatient look on his face.)
SHERLOCK: It’s highly unlikely that a left-handed man would shoot himself in the right side of his head.
[Says the man whose flatmate is left-handed but shoots with his right hand ...]
SHERLOCK: Conclusion: someone broke in here and murdered him. Only explanation of all the facts.
DIMMOCK: But the gun: why ...
SHERLOCK (interrupting): He was waiting for the killer. He’d been threatened.
(He walks away and starts to put on his scarf, coat and gloves.)
JOHN: Today at the bank. Sort of a warning.
SHERLOCK: He fired a shot when his attacker came in.
DIMMOCK: And the bullet?
SHERLOCK: Went through the open window.
DIMMOCK: Oh, come on! What are the chances of that?!
SHERLOCK: Wait until you get the ballistics report. The bullet in his brain wasn’t fired from his gun. I guarantee it.
DIMMOCK: But if his door was locked from the inside, how did the killer get in?
SHERLOCK (condescendingly, as he dramatically slams his hand into his glove): Good! You’re finally asking the right questions.
(He turns and flounces out. John looks round at Dimmock and then points apologetically towards the departing drama queen before following him.)
RESTAURANT. Sebastian is having lunch with some clients or work colleagues.
SEBASTIAN (laughing): ... and he’s left trying to sort of cut his hair with a fork, which of course can never be done!
(Sherlock and John walk over to the table.)
SHERLOCK: It was a threat. That’s what the graffiti meant.
SEBASTIAN: I’m kind of in a meeting. Can you make an appointment with my secretary?
SHERLOCK: I don’t think this can wait. Sorry, Sebastian. One of your traders – someone who worked in your office – was killed.
JOHN: Van Coon. The police are at his flat.
SEBASTIAN (shocked): Killed?
SHERLOCK (sarcastically): Sorry to interfere with everyone’s digestion. Still wanna make an appointment? Would, maybe, nine o’clock at Scotland Yard suit?
(Sebastian puts down his glass of water and nervously runs his finger inside his shirt collar.)
Shortly afterwards, Sebastian and the boys have relocated to the toilets in the restaurant. Sebastian is washing his hands.
SEBASTIAN: Harrow; Oxford. Very bright guy. Worked in Asia for a while, so ...
JOHN: ... you gave him the Hong Kong accounts.
SEBASTIAN (drying his hands on a towel): Lost five mill in a single morning; made it all back a week later. Nerves of steel, Eddie had.
JOHN: Who’d wanna kill him?
SEBASTIAN: We all make enemies.
JOHN: You don’t all end up with a bullet through your temple.
(Sebastian’s phone beeps a text alert.)
SEBASTIAN: Not usually. ’Scuse me.
(He gets out his phone and looks at the message.)
SEBASTIAN: It’s my Chairman. The police have been on to him. Apparently they’re telling him it was a suicide.
SHERLOCK: Well, they’ve got it wrong, Sebastian. He was murdered.
SEBASTIAN: Well, I’m afraid they don’t see it like that.
SHERLOCK (sternly): Seb.
SEBASTIAN: ... and neither does my boss. I hired you to do a job. Don’t get side-tracked.
(He walks away. John waits until he has left the room, then turns to Sherlock.)
JOHN: I thought bankers were all supposed to be heartless bastards(!)
EARL’S COURT. NIGHT TIME. An overweight bald man in his early forties is running frantically down the street, a hard backed book clasped in one hand. He looks repeatedly behind him as he runs. Reaching his front door, he whimpers as he fumbles with his door keys and finally gets the door open. Running upstairs, he unlocks the door to his flat and hurries inside, slamming the door and pushing a bolt across. He scurries up the flight of stairs leading to the main flat, throwing his book onto a pile of other books strewn all the way up the stairs, and runs into his living room. He stops in the middle of the room and then turns around, his face covered with sweat and his face full of terror at the sight which greets him.
[Transcriber’s note: those who’ve read the early draft script of this episode which was released online some time ago may know that it was intended that the frenetic drumbeat which we hear as the man turns around was actually meant to be heard by the man. In this finished version of the episode I don’t think that’s clear, and certainly I assumed until I read the draft script that it was simply dramatic backing music. Also, unless the killer was carrying a drum around with him, or had a boombox strapped to his back, I’m not sure how it could have happened anyway ...]
NATIONAL ANTIQUITIES MUSEUM. The museum’s Director walks across to Andy, who is sitting at a table cleaning an ancient pot.
DIRECTOR: I need you to get over to Crispians.
(She shows him a catalogue.)
DIRECTOR: Two Ming vases up for auction – Chenghua. Will you appraise them?
ANDY: Er, er, Soo Lin should go. She’s the expert.
DIRECTOR: Soo Lin has resigned her job. I need you.
(She walks away. Andy turns and looks sadly at Soo Lin’s table behind him.)
Later, he is standing outside the front door to Soo Lin’s flat. Her doorbell has a handwritten name tag above it, showing her name – Soo Lin Yao – with a flower drawn in place of the dot over the ‘i’ and a couple of other flowers in the right hand corners. Andy presses the doorbell, then steps back and looks up to the first floor windows of the flat which is above a shop called The Lucky Cat. The shop and flat are clearly located in London’s Chinatown. When nobody answers his ring, he rummages in his pockets, takes out an envelope and pen and scribbles a note on the envelope before bending down to the letterbox and pushing it through. He walks away.
In a doctor’s surgery, Doctor Sarah Sawyer is reading John’s printed Curriculum Vitae. She looks up at John sitting opposite her.
SARAH: Just locum work.
JOHN: No, that’s fine.
SARAH: You’re, um ... well, you’re a bit over-qualified.
JOHN (smiling): Er, I could always do with the money.
SARAH: Well, we’ve got two away on holiday this week, and one’s just left to have a baby. Might be a bit mundane for you.
JOHN: Er, no; mundane is good sometimes. Mundane works.
SARAH (softly): It says here you were a soldier.
JOHN: And a doctor.
(He smiles at her again. Sarah looks down. She clearly fancies him
and will therefore have to be killed as soon as possible.)
SARAH: Anything else you can do?
JOHN: I learned the clarinet at school.
SARAH: Oh! (She laughs.) Well, I look forward to it!
(John laughs. She smiles flirtatiously at him
and will therefore have to be killed as soon as possible. Did I mention that already?)
221B. Sherlock has printed out the photographs of the graffiti near and across Sir William’s portrait and has stuck them around the mirror above the fireplace. He is sitting on one of the dining chairs with his back to the dining table. He has his fingers steepled under his chin and is staring at the photos while various symbols in different languages flash in front of his mind’s eye. John walks in from the landing and drops his jacket onto his armchair.
SHERLOCK (without looking round): I said, “Could you pass me a pen?”
(John looks around the living room as if expecting that Sherlock is talking to someone else.)
JOHN: What? When?
SHERLOCK: ’Bout an hour ago.
JOHN: Didn’t notice I’d gone out, then.
(He picks up a pen from the table beside his chair and, without even looking at Sherlock, tosses the pen in his direction. Sherlock lifts his left hand and catches it without looking away from the photographs on the wall. John walks over to the mirror to look more closely at the photos.)
JOHN: Yeah, I went to see about a job at that surgery.
SHERLOCK: How was it?
JOHN (absently): It’s great. She’s great.
JOHN (looking round to him): The job.
JOHN: ... It.
(Sherlock looks at him suspiciously for a moment,
clearly agreeing with me that ‘she’ will have to be killed as soon as possible, then jerks his head to his right.)
SHERLOCK: Here, have a look.
(He walks over to the table and looks at the web page on the open computer. The lead article on the ‘Online News’ page is headlined, “Ghostly killer leaves a mystery for police.” Next to it is a photograph of the bald man, and the article reads: An intruder who can walk through walls murdered a man in his London apartment last night. Brian Lukis, 41, a freelance journalist from Earl’s Court was found shot in his fourth floor flat but all his doors and windows were locked and there were no apparent signs of a break in. A police spokesman said they are still uncertain how the assailant broke in...)
JOHN: The ‘intruder who can walk through walls.’
SHERLOCK: Happened last night. Journalist shot dead in his flat; doors locked, windows bolted from the inside – exactly the same as Van Coon.
JOHN (straightening up and looking at his flatmate): God. You think ...
SHERLOCK: He’s killed another one.
Continue to Part 2