The Visitor from the Gloria Scott – Episode 3 – Salting the Bones


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Below we present the complete text of ‘Salting the Bones’; episode 3 of The Visitor from the Gloria Scott.

Gaslamp Mystery - GM001 - The Visitor from the Gloria Scott

Gaslamp Mystery – GM001 – The Visitor from the Gloria Scott

SCENE 12: INSIDE THE BURNING MANSION — NIGHT (VICTOR, MARTHA, YOUNG HOLMES)

  1. MUSIC: OPENING THEME – LET IT FINISH.
  2. NARRATOR: In our last episode the young Sherlock Holmes returns to Donnithorpe at the invitation of Martha Hudson to find a community living in fear and suffering under a baleful influence (the spirit of a sailor, mutineer, and pirate murdered by the mansion’s owner)  that has extended to infect even, the otherwise upstanding, local residents.  As a mob of locals sets fire to the Mansion at Donnithorpe, Holmes and Martha enter from behind hoping to save Mr Trevor and his son.
  3. SOUND: [3] (WALLA) CRACKLING OF FLAMES — ESTABLISH AND UNDER
  4. YOUNG HOLMES: (COUGHING) Miss Hudson, make sure the servants are out. I’ll check the upstairs bedrooms.
  5. MARTHA: There’s been no servants in this ’ouse for a month. No-one’ll abide the place.
  6. YOUNG HOLMES: Check anyway. We can’t afford to make a mistake.
  7. MARTHA: (COUGHING) As you say.
  8. SOUND: [35] MAN’S FOOTSTEPS APPROACHING ON THE STAIRS — LET IT FINISH
  9. VICTOR: (COUGHING) Who’s there? Somebody raise the alarm. I can’t wake my father.
  10. YOUNG HOLMES: It’s me, Victor — Sherlock Holmes. I’ll come up and help you break down the door.
  11. SOUND [50] (MUSIC) SUSPENSEFUL SCENE ENDER — LET IT FINISH

SCENE 13: OUTSIDE MR TREVOR’S BEDROOM DOOR (VICTOR, YOUNG HOLMES, MARTHA)

  1. SOUND: [4] (WALLA) CRACKLE OF FLAMES; OCCASIONAL CRASH OF COLLAPSING WOODWORK ETC. — ESTABLISH AND UNDER
  2. SOUND: [36] CRUNCH OF MEN TRYING TO BREAK DOWN DOOR — LET IT FINISH
  3. YOUNG HOLMES: Again!
  4. SOUND: [36] CRUNCH OF MEN TRYING TO BREAK DOWN DOOR — LET IT FINISH
  5. SOUND: [37] CRASH OF DOOR BREAKING OPEN — LET IT FINISH
  6. VICTOR: (SHOUTING) Father! Wake up! Father!
  7. YOUNG HOLMES: (BEAT) It’s too late. He’s gone. Died in his sleep.
  8. VICTOR: (COUGHING) No. It can’t be.
  9. YOUNG HOLMES: You’re right, Victor. Or at least it shouldn’t be. But, there’s no time to determine the “whys” of this mystery now. We have to get out. The roof will come down on us if we stay much longer.
  10. VICTOR: But we can’t just leave him here to burn.
  11. YOUNG HOLMES: (URGENTLY) The bed’s already alight, man. There’s nothing you can do.
  12. VICTOR: No, I can’t just…
  13. SOUND: [38] THUMP OF A SOMETHING STRIKING VICTOR ON THE HEAD AND THEN HIS BODY FALLING TO THE FLOOR — LET IT FINISH
  14. MARTHA: (AS IF NOTHING HAD HAPPENED) The servants’ quarters are empty like I said.
  15. YOUNG HOLMES: (SHOCKED) Martha!
  16. MARTHA: (URGENTLY) What? We’d all be dead by the time you finished talkin’ ’im into runnin’. Now pick ’im up and let’s get out of ’ere ’afore we get roasted ourselves.
  17. SOUND: [51] (MUSIC) ADVENTUROUS SCENE ENDER — LET IT FINISH

SCENE 14: OUTSIDE THE BURNING MANSION — NIGHT (MR ADLER (SNR), JOE, MICHAEL)

  1. SOUND: [5] (WALLA) CRACKLE OF BURNING MANSION IN DISTANCE — ESTABLISH AND UNDER
  2. MR ADLER (SNR): That’s it, lads. Watch it burn. This’ll put an end to the monster.
  3. JOE: Da’! There’s some’t movin’ out back o’ the mansion.
  4. MR ADLER (SNR): No! We can’t let the villain survive.
  5. MICHAEL: Take up the rifle, Da’. Ye’re still the best shot ’ere. Even in the dark.
  6. SOUND: [39] CHAMBERING OF A RIFLE ROUND — LET IT FINISH
  7. MR ADLER (SNR): Alright… ’ere goes… And…
  8. SOUND: [40] RIFLE SHOT — LET IT FINISH
  9. MICHAEL: Did you get ’im, Da’?
  10. MR ADLER (SNR): I can’t be sure after the muzzle flash, but I think so. Let’s get down there and make sure.
  11. JOE: What’ll we do with this journal?
  12. MR ADLER (SNR): Throw it on the flames. It can burn with the rest o’ old Trevor’s chattels.
  13. MUSIC: [50] (BRIDGE) SUSPENSEFUL SCENE ENDER — LET IT FINISH

ACT 3

SCENE 15: IN THE DONNITHORPE GROUNDS — NIGHT (YOUNG HOLMES, VICTOR, MARTHA, BEDDOES, MR ADLER (SNR))

  1. SOUND: [6] (WALLA) STUMBLING THROUGH GRASS — ESTABLISH AND UNDER
  2. MARTHA: We’ve got to get away, Mr ’olmes… and Master Victor’s been shot!
  3. YOUNG HOLMES: If we can get to the tree-line we’ll be fine. They haven’t brought any dogs.
  4. VICTOR: (GROANS)
  5. YOUNG HOLMES: Victor, you’re awake. Can you travel under your own steam?
  6. VICTOR: (GROANING) I’ll try. What hit me?
  7. BEDDOES: (ECHOING HOLLOW LAUGHTER — AT A DISTANCE) Mwa ha hahahahaha!
  8. MARTHA: Look! Back up the ’ill. Standing in the flames of the ’ouse. It’s the specter. (BEAT) ’e looks almost solid.
  9. YOUNG HOLMES: Yes. With the elder Trevor dead, it will have absorbed the entirety of his life force. Now it will start looking for others to kill.
  10. VICTOR: (PANTING AND OBVIOUSLY IN PAIN) What is that thing? I don’t understand.
  11. MARTHA: I don’t understand neither. It’s some’t as shouldn’t be… (BEAT) but it’s there all the same.
  12. SOUND: [42] SOUND OF SALT BEING SHAKEN FROM A BAG — UNDER
  13. YOUNG HOLMES: Yes, there’s something very wrong here. Adler and his sons seemed to know what a specter was when we first saw them on the lawn, yet their actions since they opened the journal have been that of a crazed mob. Mr Trevor was already dead in his bed. The specter had already absorbed his life force, yet it wanted the house burned anyway.
  14. VICTOR: Holmes. What the devil are you doing?
  15. YOUNG HOLMES: A little trap of my own. I’m laying out some salt. If I make the perimeter wide enough and leave a gap on each side, it may not notice that it can be enclosed until it’s too late.
  16. MR ADLER (SNR): (AT A DISTANCE CALLING TO HIS SONS) Well, someone was ’ere ’n I nicked ’im at least. There’s blood on the grass.
  17. MICHAEL: (CALLING BACK) Can you tell which way e’s gone?
  18. JOE: (CHIMING IN FROM A DISTANCE) If it’s the ol’ man, ’e can’t ’ave gone far. I reckon ’e’s ’eaded for the trees. (SUDDENLY CHOKING) Ack!
  19. BEDDOES: (ECHOING HOLLOWLY AT A DISTANCE BUT IN A SURPRISINGLY CULTURED TONE) Fools! Yet you had just the wit to play the part I required, and thanks to my enchantment you set the house to burn as I desired. You will be held responsible for the murder of Trevor and his son, and I have no further need of you. Die you useless cattle!
  20. MR ADLER (SNR), MICHAEL, AND JOE: (CHOKING TO DEATH)
  21. SOUND: [41] BODIES COLLAPSING TO THE GROUND
  22. MARTHA: Saints alive! I think it’s seen us.
  23. YOUNG HOLMES: That would be our cue to keep moving then. We must get Victor out of harm’s way.
  24. SOUND: [33] HIGH PITCHED RINGING TONE (UNDER) — INDICATIVE OF SOMETHING STRANGE HAPPENING — LET IT FINISH
  25. BEDDOES: (ECHOING HOLLOWLY FROM NEARBY) Oh, I think not!
  26. MARTHA: (GIVES A SHORT SCREAM OF FRIGHT) ’ow’d you get down ’ere so fast?
  27. BEDDOES: (ECHOING HOLLOWLY) Movement is almost instantaneous in this form, Miss Hudson. And you have the younger Trevor, I see. But I don’t know you, Mr?
  28. YOUNG HOLMES: Sherlock Holmes. I’m a friend of the family. But since we’re all being introduced, who might you be?
  29. BEDDOES: Why I’m Beddoes, of course.
  30. YOUNG HOLMES: Oh, I think not. You have none of the coarseness to be expected of Beddoes. There’s strong magic at work here: a specter which has grown powerful so quickly; the corpse light, and the enchantment of the farmers; and now this… a specter possessed by a living sorcerer?
  31. BEDDOES: Oh, well done. There aren’t many who could guess the truth so soon. But as for who I am, you’ll never find out. It grieves me a little to say this now that I meet you but… Ah well, c’est la vie… I’m here to kill you, Mr Holmes, you and your companions… (BEAT) Wait… what are you doing?
  32. SOUND: [42] SALT BEING SHAKEN FROM A BAG — ESTABLISH AND UNDER
  33. YOUNG HOLMES: Pay no attention “Mr Beddoes.” It’s just a little salt. (TO MARTHA) Get around behind him and complete the circle, Miss Hudson.
  34. SOUND: [42] MORE SALT BEING SHAKEN FROM A SECOND BAG — UNDER
  35. MARTHA: (BUSINESSLIKE) Almost there.
  36. BEDDOES: (HOLLOWLY) No! No, you can’t!
  37. SOUND: [43] CHIMING BELL-LIKE TONE OR A THUNDEROUS BOOM TO INDICATE THE CIRCLE IS SEALED — LET IT FINISH
  38. YOUNG HOLMES: Well, Mr Beddoes. I think that will keep you till morning.
  39. BEDDOES: (ROARS WITH FURY)
  40. SOUND: [56] TWO OR THREE GONG-LIKE CLANGS AS THE CREATURE TRIES TO BREAK OUT — LET IT FINISH
  41. BEDDOES: (ENRAGED) You’ll pay for this, Sherlock Holmes. This salt circle will only hold me till dawn. After that I’ll be free again… and I won’t forget you. I know your name. (BEAT) Oh no… I’ll never forget you!
  42. YOUNG HOLMES: Come on, let’s away to somewhere quieter. There are still things to be done and considered.
  43. BEDDOES: (FADING AS THEY MOVE AWAY) Holmes! Do you hear me, Holmes? I won’t forget you. Holmes!
  44. VICTOR: (WEAKENING) What of Mr Adler and his sons?
  45. MARTHA: Victor. You’re losing a lot of blood.
  46. SOUND: [45] STRIP BEING TORN FROM DRESS — LET IT FINISH
  47. MARTHA: Here, let me tie this around the wound.
  48. YOUNG HOLMES: I think our pursuers are dead, but I’ll check, of course. The salt circle would have broken the spell over them anyway but I believe the specter has already killed them.
  49. MARTHA: Does that mean it’s over, Mr ’olmes?
  50. YOUNG HOLMES: Almost. We still need to retrieve Beddoes’ bones from the well before tomorrow night — an easy task now we know where they lie. They’ll need to be salted and burned, of course. Daylight will dispel the creature in the salt circle until the evening, so we’ll have to make sure all arrangements have been made by then.
  51. MARTHA: I’ll take Master Victor up to the cottage. ’e needs to ’ave that wound looked at.
  52. VICTOR: (WEAKLY) Well at least it’s a clean wound. The bullet seems only to have nicked me, despite all the blood.
  53. YOUNG HOLMES: Alright. I’ll take care of the rest.
  54. SOUND: [48] NEUTRAL SCENE ENDER — LET IT FINISH

SCENE 16: IN THE DONNITHORPE GROUNDS — NEXT DAY (YOUNG HOLMES, IRENE, ELDER HOLMES)

  1. SOUND: [7] (WALLA) BIRDSONG — ESTABLISH AND UNDER
  2. SOUND: [46] MATCH LIGHTING AND WHOOMPH OF FLAME RISING UP —ESTABLISH AND UNDER
  3. SOUND: [8] (WALLA) CRACKLE OF FLAME — UNDER
  4. IRENE: Does this bring it all to an end, Mr Holmes?
  5. YOUNG HOLMES: Ah, Miss Hudson, or should I call you Mrs Adler?
  6. IRENE: I’m not Mrs Adler yet, Mr Holmes.
  7. YOUNG HOLMES: Oh, but you are. The indentation of the ring is quite plain. You’ve been Mrs Adler for quite some time.
  8. IRENE: You’re very observant, Mr Holmes.
  9. YOUNG HOLMES: Why keep it a secret? Didn’t Mr Adler Senior approve of the match?
  10. IRENE: No, he did not.
  11. YOUNG HOLMES: Pity, after all your hard work training yourself out of the family accent etc. He still saw you as the farmer’s daughter from up the hill?
  12. IRENE: Quite the opposite. He felt my attempts to better myself were putting on airs.
  13. YOUNG HOLMES: And now that he’s dead?
  14. IRENE: I don’t know Mr Holmes. I feel so lost.
  15. YOUNG HOLMES: Oh my. You are good, aren’t you? Perhaps it’s the way you put that little catch in your voice as you say, “I feel so lost.”
  16. IRENE: I’m sure I don’t know what you mean!
  17. YOUNG HOLMES: Really, Mrs Adler? You’ve come out of this rather well, haven’t you? With the older brothers and the father dead, your Peter stands to inherit the entire Adler estate. I would have thought you would be celebrating your good fortune.
  18. IRENE: How dare you!
  19. YOUNG HOLMES: How dare you, Mrs Adler! I can’t prove you were behind this, and I’m sure that you never intended for anyone to get hurt, but I’m as certain as I can be that this bed is of your making.
  20. IRENE: I don’t have to stand here and listen to this nonsense.
  21. YOUNG HOLMES: No, you don’t. I didn’t ask you to come down here, Mrs Adler. It’s a rather ghoulish task, salting and burning the bones of the dead. Not for the faint of heart. But maybe something for the desperate.
  22. IRENE: (GROWING UPSET) What do you mean?
  23. YOUNG HOLMES: Let me know if I’m getting warm, Mrs Adler. You had managed an engagement to the youngest son of a reasonably wealthy local landowner — not a man of education, particularly, but one with an income well above his station. When you discovered the marriage would not be met with approval you arranged to elope discreetly on the side. But how to secure a share of the inheritance? It was quite possible that on discovering the marriage, your beau would be disinherited entirely. Was that when you sought out the sorcerer’s help?
  24. IRENE: (CRYING NOW) You don’t understand.
  25. YOUNG HOLMES: Oh, I understand well enough. Irene Adler née Hudson, the girl who could wrap everyone she ever met around her little finger, encountered one of the most dangerous people in England and thought she could do the same to him. (MOCKINGLY) She wanted to hire him to secure her husband’s inheritance and he?… let us assume for now that it’s a he… and he agreed. But now, five deaths later — if we include that wretch Beddoes in the count — this naïve but clever girl, is scared. She’s suddenly aware that she has been playing a very dangerous game and, like the fly caught in the spider’s web, is struggling to find a way out.
    Well, Mrs Adler, as I believe I have already stated, this is a bed of your own making and, unlike most of the other men in your life, I do not intend to become a pawn in your attempts to escape it. Good day.
  26. SOUND: [9] FADE OUT BACKGROUND WALLA

CONCLUSION

  1. ELDER HOLMES: [CUE] Thus ended my first adventure. This case was the first I ever undertook and set me on the path that ultimately defined my life. I bade my goodbyes to Martha Hudson — somewhat surprised once more at the odd feeling of loss it engendered — and prepared to depart. Victor sold Donnithorpe soon after and set off to the West Indies to create himself a new life. As for Peter and Irene Adler, they too soon sold the Adler property and moved to London. I think it was this more than anything which compelled Miss Hudson to sell up as well. She bought a rooming house at 221B Baker Street in London on the proceeds, a place with which I would later become intimately familiar. I never told her of my suspicions regarding her sister’s involvement in the affair, however.
    It was some year’s later that I discovered that each of the properties sold were bought up by the same man, a local landholder who, by securing them, came to be the wealthiest man in the district. He was a young man and something of a mathematical genius. It was rumored at the time that he was likely to be offered a professorship at one of the better English universities. It would be a very long time before our paths crossed again and he would be well established in his places of power by that time. Life is full of coincidences and, had I but realized, it was this man who held the final key to unlocking the mystery at Donnithorpe. For you see, just as I was embarking on the beginnings of my career as an investigator, James Moriarty — for that was his name — was also engaging for the first time in an enterprise that would define his future existence. In order to secure for himself some prime farmland he agreed to undertake an act of sorcery on behalf of a young woman named Irene Adler. By this one act he tied all our destinies together. (CONTINUED OVER)
  2. ELDER HOLMES: (CONTINUED FROM PREVIOUS) And this, in a round-about way, returns me to the beginning of my story. It was the death of Mr Adler Senior and his two sons that led me to seek to actively control the flow of information around the dark forces which my calling in life has led me to confront. A little knowledge about the things which inhabit the edges of our nightmares can indeed be a dangerous thing. I endeavored from that day forward to ensure that the truth of my doings remained opaque until such time as the world could safely discuss them in the light of day.
  3. SOUND: [53] (MUSIC) CLOSING THEME AND CREDITS —LET IT FINISH

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The Visitor from the Gloria Scott