Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Write in the MYSTERY genre (04/05/07)
TITLE: The Mystery of Keats Missing Endymion Solved.
LEAVE COMMENT ON ARTICLE
SEND A PRIVATE COMMENT
ADD TO MY FAVORITES
Historian Albert Winslow sat at his desk in a sparsely furnished London office. Using two large wooden tweezers, he gently unrolled the manuscript. Faded calligraphy on tea coloured paper, revealed its age and fragility. With a magnifying glass he studied the almost illegible signature confirming the author, John Keats.
Winslow peered over the top of his wire-framed spectacles and studied the gentleman sitting opposite who repeatedly wiped his balding head with a handkerchief. âSir, where did you say you found this manuscript?â
âWell ... I didnât exactly find it. It was ... um ... part of my inheritance.â
Removing his spectacles, the historian eyed the man suspiciously. âWhat did you say your name was?â
âKent. Michael Kent.â
âWell, Mr. Kent, this signature doesnât appear to resemble a Kent.â
âOh, um âŚ it was handed down on my motherâs side. My mother changed my surname name when she remarried.â
âI see. Leave it with me, Mr. Kent. Iâll have it valued for you by tomorrow. Leave your details with my secretary on the way out.â He rose and shook his clientâs hand.
Winslowâs secretary entered his office the following morning. He looked up as she reached his desk.
âMiss Harwich, could you please place a call to a Lord David Keats of Hampstead? Give him my name and switch him through to my office. Give me a few minutes though, I need to talk to Scotland Yard.â
âYes, Mr. Winslow.â
âYes, this is he.â
âI believe I have in my procession your great grandfatherâs missing manuscript, âEndymionâ.â
âHow can that be? It disappeared after he died, in 1821, almost a century ago?â
âYes, I know. I also know that your father, Lord Alfred Keats, passed away last week, my condolences.â
âThank you, but how do you know and what does his death have to do with my great grandfatherâs manuscript?â
âYour father paid me to know. You see, Iâm a historian and a private investigator. Your father visited me here in London on December sixth last year. The manuscript had apparently resurfaced and he hired me to investigate its location. I sent him a wire last Monday about my findings; before his heart attack. He didnât mention it?â
âNo, and Iâm not sure why he would hire anyone. Until Christmas, my father and I had been investigating the mystery disappearance together for almost a decade.â
Winslow carefully chose his words before proceeding. âPerhaps, Lord Keats, your father discovered he hadnât been told when someone had found it. That someone decided to use it for his own financial gain.â
âWhat are you implying, Mr. Winslow?â
âLet me refresh your memory. Two years ago your cousin, Michael Kent, inherited a meagre bequest. While clearing out his motherâs writing bureau, Kent discovered a key to a safe deposit box which contained a letter from his grandfatherâyour grandfatherâs younger brother. With that letter was your great grandfatherâs manuscript. The letter described in detail how your grandfather cheated him out of his share or their fatherâs estate. Your great uncle stole the manuscript after your great grandfatherâs death in 1821âbefore he could have it published. Are you following me, Lord Keats?â
âContinue, Mr. Winslow. I find your hypothesis intriguing.â
âLate last year, your cousin decided it was time to show his hand by attempting to blackmail your father. Because your father didnât want his conniving nephew to get his hands on his money, he came directly to me. We thought it was an open and shut case until I discovered that Michael Kent had an accompliceâsomeone who wanted revenge for an unrelated incident years before. Unfortunately, that piece of information inadvertently killed your father. The accomplice was you. Am I right, Lord Keats?â
âYouâre very clever, Mr. Winslow. Thereâs one thing you havenât explained. How did you get your hands on the manuscript?â
âThat was the easy part. After your fatherâs death, you and your cousin initiated plan B: to sell the manuscript to a publisher and split the profit. However, your cousin decided to have it valued first. Unfortunately for you both, he came to me. I advertise my professions separately and I only display my name on the door.â
There was a notable silence followed by a murmur of voices at Lord Keatsâ end of the line. âYouâll have to excuse me, Mr. Winslow. Apparently, I have visitors.â
âAh yes, my friends from Scotland Yard: blackmail is a serious crime. Good day to you, Lord Keats.â
Authors Notes: English poet John Keats, born October 1795 in Moorgate, London, died in February 1821 at the age of 26 from tuberculosis. His works had been the target of much abuse including his last epic poem âEndymionâ. John Keats never married, which should indicate that the contents of: âThe Mystery of Keatsâ Missing âEndymionâ â Solvedâ set in the early twentieth century, is completely fictional.
The opinions expressed by authors may not necessarily reflect the opinion of FaithWriters.com.
Accept Jesus as Your Lord and Savior Right Now - CLICK HERE
JOIN US at FaithWriters for Free. Grow as a Writer and Spread the Gospel.