Jody Baker: And They All Lived Happily Ever After

Monday, July 29, 2013

Lord Robert Walsingham de Vere St. Simon was a pompous ass. He held himself to be above everyone else.

In the *The Noble Bachelor” tale he was condescending toward Holmes. In his introductory letter he wrote: “I have determined, therefore, to call upon you…. ***** I will call at four o’clock in the afternoon, and, should you have any other engagement at that time, I hope that you will postpone it, as this matter is of paramount importance.”

In his initial meeting with Holmes, he said: “I understand that you have already managed several delicate cases of this sort, sir, though I presume that they were hardly from the same class of society.” 

Hatty Doran was the rough-and-tumble California heiress that St. Simon thought he had wed. Of Hatty, he said: “I would not have given her the name which I have the honour to bear…had not I thought her to be at bottom a noble woman.”

Flora Millar is the former *danseuse* at the Allegro. Lord St. Simon has had a long-term side affair with her. He said this: “We have been on a friendly footing for some years–I may say on a very friendly footing. She used to be at the Allegro. I have not treated her ungenerously, and she had no just cause of complaint against me, but you know what women are,  Mr. Holmes.”

Lord St. Simon’s future was uncertain and his fortune on the ebb. He was the second son of the Duke of Balmoral and had a distinguished pedigree.  But his expectancy was rapidly slipping away. It was reported that: “As it is an open secret that the Duke of Balmoral has been compelled to sell his pictures within the last few years, and as Lord St. Simon has no property of his own save the small estate of Birchmoor, it is obvious that the Californian heiress is not the only gainer by an alliance which will enable her to make the easy and common transition from a Republican lady to a British peeress.”

That much was written by Watson. And now, for the rest of the story --- 

As a result of the events recorded by Watson and the disappointments experienced, Lord St. Simon came down off of his aristocratic high horse, dropped his patronizing attitude, learned to face reality and matured. In a word, he became a man. He overcame the social embarrassment of realizing that Hatty Doran was not his wife because she already had a husband. He overcame the emotional embarrassment of realizing that Hatty loved another far more than she loved him. He dropped the trappings and grandeur of nobility and insisted upon being no longer addressed as Lord St. Simon.  It was as Robert St. Simon that he returned to his love of Flora Millar. They were wed in a simple and private ceremony with only a few close friends in attendance.

Robert St. Simon found gainful employment at one of the large banks in London. First, at entry level; then he progressed rapidly through department manager; branch manager; VP for small accounts and finally VP for very large accounts. His old friends admired him for what he was doing. His new friends loved him for what he had become.  Flora did not return to dancing. She now has two sons and a  daughter to raise. Robert and Flora are very happy with the life they are living and with what they have.

Hatty Doran Moulton and her beloved Frank were re-united in conjugal bliss and went on their first honeymoon, enjoying the delicious love of married life. Frank  had escaped from the Aapache Indians and had continued prospecting. He had struck a lode that made him a far wealthier man than Hatty’s father, Aloysius. They now live on a large estate in County Surrey and are raising their children to enjoy the wild and tempestuous life.

By the way, it may be of interest to know that Frank and Hatty Moulton are the beneficial owners of the bank at which Robert St. Simon has enjoyed his successful and prosperous career. Of course, ownership is held in trust for them as undisclosed beneficiaries. Neither Flora nor Robert know that the owners of the bank that employs Robert are their very close friends, the Moultons.  Hatty and Flora lunch together often and shop together frequently. Robert and Frank play golf twice a week, and the two couples play bridge on the evenings of the first and third Tuesdays of every month.

Respectfully,
Inspector Baynes

[Editor’s Note: This writing will have more meaning for those who have read *The Noble Bachelor.* That short story is in *The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes* available in print at your favourite bookstore and available in digital form at http://ignisart.com/camdenhouse/canon/nobl.htm .]

(Jody Baker is a Chattanooga attorney, who specializes in Sherlock Holmes lore. He can be reached at josiahbaker@bkhcw.com.) 



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