|This page is a transcript for the Season Four episode Alma Matters.|
Morland Holmes: Bum, bum, bum-bum-ba-bum. I could have sworn I had that statue removed. Oh, dear. I've done something new to anger you.
Sherlock Holmes: It's what you didn't do. You didn't mention you were the target of a failed assassination attempt which left a woman named Sabine dead, and you more empty on the inside than you already were.
Morland: How did you find out?
Sherlock: Watson grew suspicious after observing your eating habits.
Morland: I don't speak of it because I find the matter painful. Sabine and I were very close.
Sherlock: You also failed to mention that whoever was behind the attempt is still at large, and that you believe another attempt is likely. Why else would you be banking your own blood? By insinuating yourself into our lives without disclosing any of this and without sharing whatever intelligence you have so that we might implement our own precautions, you've placed us in danger.
Morland: Well, it's nice to see that my well-being is essential to your concerns as ever. Joan's deductions are only partly correct. It's true someone tried to kill me. That should come as no surprise. One makes one's share of enemies in my line of work. Where she and the truth part ways is in the assumption that I am presently in danger. Banking my blood is a precaution. Complications from this type of injury can flare up years down the road. I could be rushed back into surgery at any time. As for your safety and Joan's, the would-be assassin has been dealt with. It's over.
Sherlock: Well, you're lying, so I'll just have to investigate the matter myself.
Burglary Leader: Hey! Eyes outside. What if they come home early?
Lookout: Hey. They ain't comin' home early, and you know they aren't.
Leader: I know that you're supposed to be the lookout, so look out!
Lookout: All right. What was that?
Leader: You see something?
Lookout: I saw everything.
Joan Watson: Hey, where were you? You left your cell phone...what happened?
Sherlock: Ah, just another failed attempt to gather information on my father's shooting.
Watson: Okay, well, let me help you with this. What happened to asking your contacts at Scotland Yard?
Sherlock: Scotland Yard have been kept in the dark. Likewise the French police. It seems Father has kept a tight lid on the investigation.
Watson: So you decided to try beating the answers out of someone?
Sherlock: I touched base with a contact inside a mercenary group that Father sometimes employs. I had to leave my phone at home, because she's sensitive about the presence of microphones.
Watson: A woman did this to you?
Sherlock: A highly trained woman.
Watson: Well, it doesn't look like she wanted to touch base with you.
Sherlock: Quite the contrary.
Watson: Some of this isn't blood. It's lipstick. And you smell like perfume. Were you in a fight, or were you having sex?
Sherlock: The two aren't mutually exclusive. Anyway, I'm confident her employers are also in the dark.
Watson: Well, while you were sparring, you missed a call.
Sherlock: I'll check my voice mail.
Watson: No need. It was one of the counselors at Hemdale, Gene Winnick. When he couldn't reach you, he called me.
Sherlock: I remember him. He's a nice bloke.
Watson: He wanted us to contact a friend of us, a woman who runs a halfway house on the Lower East Side. She thinks she has information about a murder.
Watson: Are your residents mostly men in recovery?
Lily Cooper: We also have a lot of parolees who have been released to transitional housing, some homeless too.
Sherlock: You said you knew something about a murder.
Cooper: His name was Dennis Hicks. He was shot in his apartment in Queens two weeks ago. The police think he was killed by robbers.
Sherlock: But you think otherwise?
Cooper: Let's go to my office. Fairbridge University, you've heard of it?
Watson: They have ads all over the city. And they've been in the news a lot lately. Government is cracking down on for-profit colleges, and Fairbridge's name comes up a lot.
Cooper: They're being investigated by the Department of Education right now. Long list of accusations, including illegal recruiting tactics. Since federal loans make up most of their income, if it doesn't go their way, they get shut down. Dennis was a recruiter for Fairbridge. He was about to testify as a whistle-blower. That's why they killed him.
Sherlock: Or so you believe. Uh, so what's your connection to all of this beyond Dennis Hicks being someone you knew?
Cooper: Fairbridge University owns us.
Watson: So why would a college want to own a halfway house?
Cooper: Because we're a source of warm bodies and social security numbers, and that's pretty much all they care about. Five years ago, we were hurting for cash. When Fairbridge offered to buy us, even I thought it was a good idea. Turns out we let the devil in the door. Ever since, the school's been aggressively recruiting our residents. And I'm not allowed to do anything about it.
Sherlock: Um, forgive our ignorance, my partner and I tend to think of higher education as being a good thing, so what is so bad about people who are trying to turn their lives around going to college?
Cooper: If they were getting a real education and if there was real financial support for them, I'd be all for it. But with this, they're flat-out lied to. Recruiters promise degrees that the school doesn't even offer, and help with job placement that they never give. They'll say anything to get people to sign on the dotted line.
Watson: And in this case, the dotted lines are on student loan applications.
Cooper: The school gets its money, and when my guys get out or drop out, they're just as unemployable as ever, only now they're buried in debt. And whatever money they do make is seized by collectors. And we all know how helpful that is when you're trying to get your life back on track. I've assembled a list of cases that I'm presenting to the D.O.E. Vulnerable people who I promised to help who have been criminally deceived by Fairbridge. Now, I've talked to the police, but they just think I'm crazy. A good man's been murdered. So what do you say? Will you look into it?
Watson: It says here Dennis Hicks lived in Astoria. That's the 116. We could reach out to whoever caught the case, at least see where it stands.
Sherlock: Assuming there's a case left to see. Crime scene's two weeks old. Body's probably in the ground already. Ooh. You remember Lukas Muller, the uh, Interpol agent?
Watson: Sure. He got us information on that Swiss bank account a few weeks ago.
Sherlock: My father pays him for such help, now, if he was in the old man's pocket two years ago, stands to reason he was asked to investigate the shooting which cost Sabine Raoult her life.
Watson: Well, you're assuming there was an investigation. Your father may know exactly who came after him.
Sherlock: And then discreetly handled the matter himself? No. He was lying when he said the matter was resolved. Anyway, I reached out to Muller several times, no response. But my contact at Interpol's New York office has just told me he's in town for a conference.
Watson: So while I'm looking into this, are you gonna fight Muller or are you gonna sleep with him?
Sherlock: You get any pushback at the 116, just remind their lieutenant that he owes me. I helped get his two-timing son-in-law deported.
Homicide Detective: Body was found on the floor over there. Three rounds from a nine-millimeter. Looks like the intruders took the stereo, Xbox some things off the counter. Apartment's paid up for the month, so the landlord gave the family time to clean it out. I got to ask, why does Major Crimes need a consultant to go over all this?
Watson: I'm not checking your work. A friend of the victim asked us to take a look. You might have spoken to her, Lily Cooper.
Detective: The one who thinks Mr. Hicks' employers had him killed? And the five other homes that were broken into that night, they do all that as cover? All the break-ins happen between here and 30th Avenue, all within a couple of hours.
Watson: And there were no witnesses?
Detective: The crew that did it got in and out of the other spots without running into any residents, Hicks was unlucky.
Watson: I think you're right. Not about Hicks being unlucky but about the killer not staging the five other break-ins. I don't think what happened here was connected to those. Look at the last names of all the other families. They're all Russian.
Detective: There's a lot of Russians in this neighborhood.
Watson: Yes. But if you exclude Hicks, the crew hit only Russians. There's a Russian Orthodox church just a few blocks away. And the night of the break-ins was also the Eve of the Epiphany.
Detective: The what?
Watson: If the thieves had an association with the church, they would have known which families were attending services that night. That would explain how they only broke into homes that were empty. That's one of the homes that was hit, right?
Watson: And that apartment and this one can look right into each other. And according to this, they didn't take very much from that one. Maybe because they left in a hurry.
Detective: Because they heard gunshots coming from over here and figured the police were on their way.
Watson: Nobody from that building saw the shooter coming or going, but maybe the thieves did.
Sherlock: You remember me.
Agent Lukas Muller: I have nothing to say to you. Please leave me alone.
Sherlock: I anticipated you having reservations about me approaching you in public, it might expose your arrangement with my father. That's why I chose so private a setting. Don't worry about the cameras. I disabled them a short while ago. As you may be aware, there was an attempt on his life just under two years ago, I'm trying to ascertain to what degree the matter was investigated.
Muller: I imagine you are. Trying to figure out how much he knows?
Sherlock: I've given up asking what he knows, so I'm asking what you know.
Muller: Ask someone else.
Sherlock: Mr. Muller, I have friends here that my father may be placing in danger.
Muller: What is your game?
Sherlock: My "game"?
Muller: On second thought, I don't want to know. I have a family. I have a wife. You and your father can both go to hell.
Detective Bell: Every family whose home was hit had RSVP'd to a dinner that night at the church. So we looked at who had access to those RSVPs. Turns out the leader of your little gang, Roland, he works for the caterer. He also had a record, so we started with him. He gave the rest of you up.
Lookout: He's not "the leader."
Bell: No? That's funny, he definitely described you as a minor player. No, seriously, you should be thanking him. The only reason you're sitting here talking to us, the only reason the DA is offering you a deal and not him, is that he said you were the one keeping watch out the window. See, we're a lot more interested in the homicide you saw across the street than we are in you.
Lookout: So Roland would do more time than me?
Lookout: I was looking out the window. There was a scary looking guy, shaved head, Hispanic, tattoos. Had his gun out like this. And the other guy's begging for his life. And he just plugs him full of bullets. Pop! Pop! Pop!
Bell: Okay, first let's get your hand out of my face. Then let's back up...
Watson (phone): Hey. That lead on the witness paid off, he's giving Marcus a statement right now. After this, we'll have him sit down with a sketch artist. Where are you?
Sherlock (phone): I've returned to Lily Cooper's office at the halfway house.
Watson (phone): Oh. So once we have a sketch, I'll forward it to you. Maybe Lily can identify the guy.
Sherlock (phone): That sketch might be more important than ever. Lily won't be identifying anyone. I'm here because one of the detectives found my card on her desk. She's been strangled.
Bell: Lily Cooper had a locked strongbox bolted inside her desk. It's where her staff kept contraband they confiscated from residents. Staffer who discovered the body found it like that.
Watson: Whoever killed Lily wanted it to look like it was over the contents of the box.
Captain Gregson: And you don't buy it?
Watson: When Sherlock and I went to see her yesterday, she showed us a file of case histories she was about to present to the D.O.E. When Sherlock went back to her office, the file was gone. She thought that Dennis Hicks was murdered because he was cooperating in a case against Fairbridge University, we think she may have been killed for the same reason.
Gregson: And Holmes? Where's he?
Watson: He's dealing with a family thing. You don't want to know.
Gregson: So what now? I take it you have something more specific in mind than "arrest a college."
Bell: Well, we have a finest message out with the sketch of Dennis Hicks's shooter, and detectives are re-canvassing both scenes. We'll see if anyone recognizes the face. Even though we're pretty sure he's just a hired gun.
Gregson: Fairbridge's hired gun?
Watson: Well, this is the CEO of Fairbridge University, Wilson Trager, he is the university. It's privately owned by him. No one stands to lose more if the D.O.E. rules against them.
Gregson: Then I guess I know your next stop.
Wilson Trager: Detective Bell. Miss Watson. Wilson Trager.
Bell: Yeah, thanks for seeing us.
Trager: Of course. I assume you're here because of the murder that took place a couple of weeks ago. The poor guy who works in the call center or something?
Watson: His name was Dennis Hicks, he was VP of Recruiting.
Trager: Right. Sure.
Bell: Actually, two of your employees have been murdered. A woman named Lily Cooper was killed yesterday. She was the director of East River Hope House, which you own.
Trager: Oh, my God, that's terrible.
Bell: We're thinking there's a connection. We were hoping we could ask you a few questions?
Lawyer Bill: Actually, Mr. Trager was just leaving for an important meeting. It can't be rescheduled.
Trager: I'm so sorry. But I've asked Josh and Bill to help you in any way they can. Two people now? I want to know everything. And, uh you know, remind me to send something to the families. Thank you for everything that you're doing.
Watson: Yes, Mr. Trager, we...
Lawyer Josh: Uh, we can answer your questions. Please, right this way.
Lawyer Josh: Can we hang on to this? We'll show it to Mr. Trager and obviously let you know if it sparks anything.
Bell: Again, we were hoping to put our questions to Mr. Trager ourselves.
Lawyer Josh: And why would that be necessary?
Watson: Because we're trying to solve two murders, and both victims were assisting a D.O.E. investigation that could cost him millions.
Lawyer Josh: We...
Lawyer Bill: Wait. So in so many words, you came here to accuse Mr. Trager of hiring an assassin?
Bell: "Accuse" is a strong word at this stage.
Lawyer Bill: But you're hardly here for a friendly chat.
Lawyer Josh: And you wonder why you're talking to us instead of him.
Watson: Does he have something to hide?
Lawyer Bill: We'll ask Mr. Trager if he knows anything about either of the victims. Though based on what we all just saw in the lobby, I'd say he barely knew they existed. As for the D.O.E. investigation, we've got it handled, I promise you. But look, uh, you heard Mr. Trager tell us to help you in any way we can, we'll give you full access to his secretarial staff, his date book, his computer. You find any evidence that he or anyone else here hired an assassin, more power to you.
Sherlock: Lukas Muller is in New York. I paid him a visit yesterday.
Morland: Why would you...
Sherlock: I was surprised, and indeed confused, by the way that he treated me. During our one prior interaction, I had noticed a baseline nervousness to the man, but that could be written off to circumstance. He was, after all, sharing secrets which could have cost him his job. I'm the son of the man who lines his pockets, so yesterday I expected him to treat me as a friend. Instead, he treated me like an enemy. More precisely, a threat. I know, Father.
Morland: Know what?
Sherlock: Why you never mentioned your brush with death. Why you never asked me, the finest detective you know, for assistance. You believe that I'm the man who tried to kill you. It's made me wonder why you really came to New York. Were you just following up on your suspicions, or did you intend to do me harm?
Morland: I did, at one time, suspect you. But I've long since moved off the notion. I'm satisfied that you weren't involved.
Sherlock: Though Muller, apparently, is not. You and I have had our differences to put it mildly but I've always thought that at the very least you knew the content of my character. If you don't know, without question, that I'm not a killer then there really is no foundation for us to build on. This experiment of ours has reached its end. If for no other reason than to preserve my safety and Watson's. I do hope you'll agree. Oh. And if you have any lingering doubts, here's how you can be certain I'm not the one who tried to kill you. You're alive.
Watson: Hey, I didn't you were back. I was down in my office. That's the honey we got for your father when he comes over.
Sherlock: So it is.
Watson: I guess that means the conversation went poorly.
Sherlock: I was right, two years ago he thought I was behind his near murder.
Watson: And now?
Sherlock: Now, according to him, I am a former suspect. I'm not at the center of an elaborate revenge plot.
Watson: You believe him?
Sherlock: I do. But I also think I was right two weeks ago. The matter's not resolved. The culprit is still at large. The good news is, we need no longer fear about being in Father's proximity, because we will no longer be in his proximity.
Watson: I'm sorry.
Sherlock: Don't be sorry. He and I have gone years without talking in the past, it's an arrangement that works. Any luck, we'll be returning to it soon. How went your meeting with Wilson Trager?
Watson: It's hard to say. It was more of a non-meeting than a meeting. He blew past us and stuck us with a couple of lawyers, and then they gave us full access to his life. Bank and travel records, e-mails...
Sherlock: Suggests confidence we will find nothing.
Watson: Well, I've been going through all of it. So far, no mysterious wire transfers or secret liaisons with hit men. But that's assuming that Trager paid for everything himself. If he used the college's money, it could take years to find the trail.
Watson (phone): You're on speaker.
Gregson (phone): That sketch we've been showing around, some of the staff at Lily Cooper's halfway house I.D.'d the guy, Victor Nieves. He's an ex-con. He lived there a few years ago. His parole officer had a current address on file. We know he's armed and dangerous. ESU is rolling now. Marcus is with them. I'll let you know if we find anything.
Angie Nieves: I already told you. I don't know where Victor is.
Bell: All right, well, when was the last time you saw him?
Angie: I don't know. Two days ago, maybe three?
Bell: Mrs. Nieves, it was raining earlier today, and those boots are still wet. Someone other than your husband leave them here?
Angie: Please. He's a good man. Don't hurt him.
Bell: Hey, believe me, we'd all rather keep things peaceful. But I'm not gonna lie to you. Your husband's in trouble, and we have to find him, so the best thing you can do is help us bring him in. You have any idea where he would have gone?
Bell: Hey. What's your name?
Mayra Nieves: Mayra.
Bell: Mayra? Castle Kingdom, I know that place. My brother and I used to go there. You go with your folks? What happened there?
Mayra: I fell.
Bell: You fell at the park?
Bell: That's no fun. Here, let me fix that for you. That look more than a day old to you? Mayra, when were you at the park?
Gregson (phone): Gregson.
Bell (phone): Yeah, it's me. Nieves's little girl just alibied him for the second murder, looks like the whole family was at an amusement park in South Jersey yesterday until dark. The wife won't say either way, but I found a time stamp receipt in the trash. I'm reaching out to the park to see if they can pull surveillance. If the story checks out, there's no way Nieves could've killed Lily Cooper.
Gregson (phone): That's pretty damn interesting.
Bell (phone): How so?
Gregson (phone): I was about to call you. Victor Nieves just showed up here. Turned himself in. He just confessed to both murders.
Sherlock: Hi. This took some finding on the part of Lily Cooper's staff, but uh, when I explained what it was for, they obliged.
Victor Nieves: That supposed to make me crack? I already said I killed her. It's you people who don't believe it.
Sherlock: Oh no, we know you didn't kill her. We've already established that at the time of her murder you were spinning in an oversized teacup with your little girl. No, this photograph's not for you, it's for me. I've never been a fan of cutting deals. Plea bargains, reduced sentences, mm-mm. I think they're a necessary evil, a dilution of justice. I'm especially displeased when they help murderers. And I do believe that you're a murderer. The ballistics on the weapon that you surrendered match the slugs pulled from Dennis Hicks. So I don't want to help you. Mm-mm. But, she believed that you were deserving of other people's help. She was an exemplary human being. So, as I sit here and I've got to try and persuade you to give up Wilson Trager in exchange for a deal it just, you know helps me to remember her.
Victor: Wilson who?
Sherlock: In your parole record, it seems like you were trying to walk the straight and narrow after your release from prison. You completed your high school diploma, you held a steady job, you enrolled at Fairbridge to study computers took out a student loan for that. Yep. How much did you owe?
Victor: 75 grand.
Sherlock: How much did Trager offer you to murder Dennis Hicks?
Victor: Hicks was my recruiter, remember? He talked me into going to Fairbridge. Fed me a bunch of lies. I killed him on my own.
Sherlock: You also confessed to Lily Cooper's strangulation on your own? Trager paid you to kill Dennis Hicks, and then he paid you again to take the fall for Lily Cooper's strangulation. Now, assuming that he contracted that out as well, you're not only protecting him, but you're protecting the person who actually killed her. Why?
Victor: 'Cause I'm sure that guy didn't have no choice, either.
Sherlock: Why on earth would you think that? Oh.
Sherlock: Until last night, we were assuming Wilson Trager only hired one killer. But when Victor Nieves' confession to the murder of Lily Cooper was punctured, we realized that there had to be two.
Gregson: Do you think he's part of a team?
Sherlock: More likely a collection of individuals with similar problems. He seemed convinced he understood the second killer's circumstances. Why? Because he believes their circumstances to be the same.
Watson: We've been through Trager's life with a fine-tooth comb. Now, this guy doesn't have conventional criminal ties, yet he managed to hire two different killers in two weeks.
Sherlock: It's possible Nieves knows the identity of Lily Cooper's murderer, but I think it's more likely that he intuitively understood where Trager found his second killer.
Gregson: He's getting them from his own student rolls.
Sherlock: His perch atop a for-profit college gives him access to a unique list. Individuals who sought to improve their lot in life, many of them with criminal records, who now, thanks to him, are buckling under student loans they cannot repay. This makes them ripe for manipulation.
Bell: We started wondering, maybe these two murders weren't the only times he solved his problems this way, so we looked for other suspicious incidents in his past. About a year ago, the college's main campus was being fined for safety violations. The whole thing got dropped because of a fire in the building inspector's office. All the inspection records were lost, and the city had to start again. A year before that, Trager wanted to buy a co-op on Central Park South. For whatever reason, the board was about to reject him, until a swing vote was injured in a hit-and-run. She resigned her spot, 'cause she could no longer fulfill her duties, and the vote went Trager's way.
Watson: Now, if this guy isn't behind it all, he is the luckiest innocent bystander in history.
Gregson: All right, say you're right, say the guy's a gangster, so how do we prove it? Victor Nieves isn't gonna help us.
Watson: Well, now that we know what we're looking for, we can try and identify other people that Trager coerced. Look through the school's past students for people who fit the bill, ex-cons who defaulted on their loans.
Bell: Nieves's priors were for burglary, so we're thinking Trager may have chosen people based on their skills, an arsonist for the office fire, a wheelman for the hit-and-run. Nieves won't flip, maybe someone else will.
Gregson: Fairbridge University has got to have what, 20,000 students? That's got to be hundreds of ex-cons a year.
Sherlock: You think we're looking for a needle in a haystack. We are. Or at least Watson and Marcus are.
Bell: What are you gonna do?
Sherlock: Well, I've always found the best way to come at a haystack is with a pitchfork.
Trager: I'll see you on the tee at 7:00 a.m.
Sherlock: You know, I imagined you'd be the sort to have a private entrance, and I'm not disappointed.
Trager: Who are you?
Sherlock: Uh, I, I mean you no physical harm. My name is Sherlock Holmes. I'm a consulting detective. I believe you brushed off my partner and her colleague in the lobby yesterday.
Trager: Did their feelings get hurt, so they sent you?
Sherlock: No one sent me. I've missed the opportunity to look you in the eye myself, and I thought it was time to rectify that.
Trager: Got it. Drink? So lay it on me. Come on, I could've yelled for security the moment I saw you, but I didn't. Humor me. What do you see?
Sherlock: I see very much what I expected to see. A psychopath with no real human connections, except for the facades he maintains for convenience. A vampire of sorts, but instead of blood, you feed on hopes and dreams.
Trager: Do one I haven't been called.
Sherlock: Very well. You're a double destroyer of lives. Once when you wrote people into debt, and then again when you used that debt to leverage them into doing your bidding.
Trager: Well, I haven't heard that one. Look, I'm doing what guys like me have been doing since the beginning of time. Promising people on that side of the wall that what I'm selling will help them get to this side of the wall. Why do you care so much? Wha-wha-what's it to you?
Sherlock: Oh, two people are dead. That's what it is to me.
Trager: I heard somebody confessed to those killings.
Sherlock: His name is Victor Nieves. And you'll be hearing his name at your trial, because you hired him to commit one murder and then take the blame for another.
Trager: Oh, wait, so you, you think that I wanted Dennis Hicks murdered because he was a whistleblower. Okay, but Lily Cooper? Why on earth would I want to hurt her?
Sherlock: She was gathering evidence to present to the Department of Education, a file with a list of individuals that Fairbridge University had deceived.
Trager: Ah. Okay, those guys you just saw me say goodbye to? Lead counsel for the D.O.E. We just shook hands on a deal that's been in the works for a week. Pay a fine, support some guidelines they want to enforce, and that'll be that. It amounts to nothing. So whatever sob story that woman would present, I, I didn't care. I've known this investigation's going away for days. I'm sure you'll be able to confirm that. Obviously, you uh, you know the way out.
Watson: Oh, you're back. Fairbridge University decided to stop cooperating. So Marcus and I have been getting help from the D.O.E. We've been comparing registration and student loan records against their department's databases. It's gonna take some time. Oh, how'd it go with the haystack?
Sherlock: Trager left me questioning his motive for having Lily Cooper killed, but I'm as convinced as ever that he did have her killed. Other than that, one of his diplomas is fake, and he's a hunter, so his lack of empathy extends beyond bipeds. Expecting someone?
Sherlock: Perhaps I goaded Trager into sending another assassin.
Sherlock: Look on the bright side, if one of us survives, we'll have identified another needle.
Morland: It was true. What you said before. I should never have suspected my own son. I do know you. But in my defense, it was not without reason. I, I'd like to think that we had grown a little closer these last months to, to understanding one another a little better. Well you remember where we were two years ago. Not to mention the decades before. My investigators located a Paris cabbie, who identified you to a tee. He said he had you as a fare in the vicinity on the night of the attack. You were living in London at the time, so it seemed plausible.
Sherlock: Yeah. Uh, do you think I would've been as careless as to allow a witness to identify me?
Morland: Eventually I asked myself that very question, and I concluded that it was more likely that he'd been bribed to throw us off.
Sherlock: Since recanted his tale, has he?
Morland: He's proved impossible to find again. Now whether this means that he is dead or simply vanished, I, I can't say. But I urged my people to move off you as a suspect, nonetheless.
Sherlock: Lukas Muller just failed to get that memo, did he?
Morland: Lukas never believed that I'd stopped suspecting you. He was convinced it was just my way of, of sending the eyes of the law elsewhere, while I dealt with you myself. And recently he threatened to tell you as much.
Sherlock: Right, so then you threatened him back. That's why he was so afraid of me?
Morland: It happened that my previous Interpol contact was murdered. An agent called Jasper De Clerq. I told Lukas I was behind it.
Sherlock: But you weren't.
Sherlock: Uh, you'll understand if I find your word on the matter less than reliable?
Morland: Well, I hope you'll take my word on this. As soon as I stopped considering you as a suspect, I realized how terrible it was that I ever had. When I heard about your relapse, I decided to arrange an extended stay in New York. That it was time to make things right between us. And that was always my only reason for coming. You've made it clear you'd like me to return to London. And so I shall. I just wanted you to know.
Sherlock: Are these candidates for your potential pool of Wilson Trager's problem solvers?
Watson: Call it a first swing. I focused on people who live locally with criminal records that match the skills that Trager needed. Fairbridge students who defaulted on their loans. Each packet contains everything we've gathered for that person. Rap sheets, parole records, loan histories from the D.O.E. I thought we could look through them, and then just narrow them down from here.
Sherlock: You included Victor Nieves, I see.
Watson: Yeah, he's the only person that we know for sure. So I used him as a model for the profile.
Sherlock: I imagine the file that disappeared from Lily Cooper's office contained many of these same faces. Perhaps even Victor Nieves. It's ironic. If we're right, Lily and Trager would've used much of the same criteria. One of them to help people. And the other to exploit them. Hmm.
Watson: Plaid is nice. Sudden urge to buy a throw?
Sherlock: It's not plaid. It's tartan. And I think this might be the key to bringing down Wilson Trager.
Junior Exec: Projected demand over the next five years has us outgrowing several of our satellite campuses. We're scouting existing facilities. But at least one or two will have to be new construction.
Trager: What the hell is that?
Sherlock: Uh, that's one of mine. Yeah, um, your calendar mentioned this meeting, so I took the liberty of preparing my own slideshow. It's gonna be much more illuminating, I promise. Yeah, uh, may I? Thanks, thank you. Yes, the face before you is Claudette Bailey. Fairbridge University, class of 2012. Before that, she did 31 months for fraud and destruction of property. When you sent her to set fire to the city building inspector's office, she posed as one of the cleaning crew and disguised her accelerant as flood cleaner.
Trager: When I sent her? I've no idea who that woman is.
Sherlock: This is Joseph DeLuca. He ran over a board member in your co-op for you.
Trager: All right, everyone out. I'm having you thrown out for trespassing.
Sherlock: Oh, security already knows that we're here. Detective Bell is showing them our warrant as we speak. We just didn't, we just didn't feel like waiting. We thought that your staff deserved to know who they're working for ASAP. Victor Nieves. We've spoken about him, of course, but now you have a face to put to the name. Boyd Erlich, who at your instructions, strangled Lily Cooper with his bare hands.
Trager: All right, this is, this is wonderful theater. Your imagination is running wild. But I can't be connected to any of these people.
Watson: You're wrong about that. We figured out how you've been choosing them. Or more accurately, who has been choosing them for you. The collections agent who was assigned their loans.
Sherlock: Yesterday, in your office, I noticed a photograph of you hunting in Scotland. I recognized the tartan worn by your companion as belonging to the Mackmain clan. And judging by the structure of his facial features, I took him to be a relative of your wife. Later on, I noticed in Victor Nieves' loan history that his collection agent's name was Bradley Mackmain. Not a terribly common name, but it was enough of a coincidence to merit our attention.
Watson: So we checked, and Bradley Mackmain is your wife's nephew. He picked the people to coerce based on your instructions. That's why there was never a paper trail leading back to you.
Sherlock: You said that we were wrong about why Lily Cooper was murdered. And you spoke the truth. It wasn't that her case file would be so damning in front of the D.O.E. It was that she had included Victor Nieves, and noticed that his defaulted loan had suddenly started being paid again.
Watson: And Lily genuinely cared about Victor. She was worried that he'd gone back to committing robberies. So she started hounding him for answers. And then she called Mackmain to confirm the information was correct, but she wouldn't let it go. And she was getting too close.
Sherlock: How do we know all this? The police had a pointed conversation with Bradley Mackmain. He seemed remarkably eager to testify against you in exchange for a deal.
Bell: Wilson Trager? You're under arrest for the murder of Dennis Hicks and Lily Cooper.
Watson: I was gonna order takeout. Do you have any preferences? Oh, I didn't realize someone else was here.
Female Mercenary: I wasn't.
Watson: I take it that was your friend from the mercenary group? You guys went another round?
Sherlock: I needed some information, and she was able to provide it. Quid pro quo was in order. Uh, feel free to eat without me. There's somewhere I need to be.
Sherlock: Don't get the wrong idea. I'm not here to stop you or anything. I just came here to give you this. I did some digging into the murder of Jasper De Clerq. Don't look surprised. I was quite clear about my mistrust of your explanation. And as it turns out, what you told me about the murder of Jasper De Clerq was not entirely true.
Morland: I assure you it was.
Sherlock: You said you had nothing to do with De Clerq's death. In point of fact, De Clerq's death had everything to do with you. In there, you'll find De Clerq's travel and phone records in the weeks leading up to the shooting. You notice anything about them?
Morland: Well, Tokyo for four days. Then Riyadh. Then back to London. He was everywhere I was.
Sherlock: He was spying on you. In all likelihood, keeping his eyes open for a vulnerable moment. The timing of De Clerq's murder, just as your investigation into the shooting was heating up, suggests he was killed to tie up a loose end.
Morland: Whoever killed Sabine and tried to kill me, De Clerq was working for them. It's a new clue. Thank you, son.
Sherlock: You said you were deliberately fed a false lead to cast suspicion on me. That is an affront to my reputation. An offense which I cannot abide. You stay, go, I don't care. But either way, I'm gonna find and stop whoever tried to kill you.