From Dr Watson to Sherlock Holmes Esq:
I am writing this from aboard the steamer the SS Montrose, as stated in my previous missive. Naturally I’m disappointed that you didn’t feel up to accompanying me, but nevertheless I have made some progress.
On boarding the steamer, I made contact with the Captain and ascertained that the couple he believes are masquerading as Doctor Hawley Crippen and Ethel Le Neve are in a fact a popular music-hall act known as The Krankies, which consist of a simpleton and his comedian wife (who, for reasons best known to herself, dresses as a boy). I have spent several evenings in their company and have to admit that they are quite entertaining, though a little slap-stick in their approach to entertainment, however, the main point, of course, is that they are definitely not the aforementioned villain and his mistress.
The captain was a little embarrassed at this error of judgement (since I would not have made the voyage otherwise) and has transferred me, at no expense to myself, to a first class cabin for the remainder of the voyage.
I met an interesting man last evening at the captain’s table. We were speaking of the reasons behind my being on board and he thought this quite amusing, as he himself has apparently also been “identified” by other passengers as Crippen! I did point out to him that he does wear a moustache, glasses and a bowler hat (similar to the police’s wanted poster) but even so, he is quite clearly not the fellow they are pursuing. His companion, an admirable boy, regaled me of several popular songs in a wonderful imitation of that music-hall star Lillie Langtry (in fact I had almost convinced myself that the fellow was a woman!)
I intend to spend a few days catching up on my journal, so will send this off forthwith and will write again when I arrive in Canada.
You will note that I have not entertained your drivel concerning my wife.
I trust you are well,