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The Left Handed Assassin

A Detective's Story

I was called down from London to Ipswich on an errand peculiar to one of my profession. I reached the Inn where I was to meet a fellow detective, who had expended both time and patience in attempting to ferret out a mysterious murder. But it appeared to be one of those singular cases that defy human detection, and which are generally abandoned by those appointed to discover the culprit, and left to divine vengeance.

I met Mr. Crofts, who [formally] resigned in my favor, and after taking a glass of rum punch with him, returned to the city while I prepared for my journey.

I will now state how matters stood.

Some three and a half miles from Ipswich stood a stone mansion, the property of Chas. Simmonds, a retired barrister.

He resigned his profession owing to a handsome legacy bequeathed to him by an only brother, who, after amassing a fortune in Australia, took it into his head to die. Charles was his sole heir. Mr. Simmonds had practiced law in Ipswich but his health had never been very robust, and soon after entering into his legacy, he purchased the mansion alluded to and retired from business, seeking the quiet and rest one in his station so greatly needed.

He married when young, but he made a great mistake in the selection of a partner for life. His wife was pretty (the snare that caught him), but wholly devoid of principle; illiterate and low in her tastes, she became the bane of his life.

She had a brother who occasionally visited the house, and who ingratiated himself in Mr. Simmonds’ favor by his amiable manners, genteel address, and the frequent brotherly lectures he read to Mrs. Clara Simmonds, his sister.

Morris Obdyke was always well dressed when he came to the house, and his conduct was unexceptionable… Read More