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The Adventure of the Unbreakable Speckled Band
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Herlock Sholmes
So then...let us unravel this mystery and discover what events led to this curious murder.

Episode II: The Adventure of the Unbreakable Speckled Band is the second episode of the game The Great Ace Attorney: Adventures. Uniquely to the trial-based Ace Attorney games, it is an investigation-only episode. Kazuma Asogi and Susato Mikotoba board the SS Burya to head to the United Kingdom as part of a student exchange program, but Asogi secretly brings along his best friend, Ryunosuke Naruhodo. About two weeks into the journey, Naruhodo suddenly finds himself in handcuffs, accused of murdering Asogi. He works with Mikotoba and Herlock Sholmes to clear his name and find the real culprit, but the supposed great detective's dance of deduction ends up leaving much to be desired.

Acts and chapters[]

Act Chapter
"Investigation, Part 1" "Opening"
"Sholmes's Appearance"
"Dance of Deduction"
"Investigation, Part 2" "Further Investigation"
"Investigation, Part 3" "Second Dance of Deduction"
"Conclusion"

Timeline[]

To edit the information in this table, go to Template:Timeline and edit the information there.
Date Event type / related incident Description Notes
c. December 25, GAA-1 (Meiji 34) The Adventure of the Unbreakable Speckled Band Ryunosuke Naruhodo, Kazuma Asogi, and Susato Mikotoba leave for London on the SS Burya. N/A
January 8, GAA (Meiji 35) The Adventure of the Unbreakable Speckled Band Nikolina Pavlova runs away from Novavich Ballet. N/A
January 9, GAA (Meiji 35) The Adventure of the Unbreakable Speckled Band Kazuma Asogi's body is discovered. N/A

"Opening"[]

In a corner of that small, dark room, Sholmes and I waited with bated breath. In time, there came from the ventilator a hiss and a soft, almost growl-like sound. Suddenly, Sholmes sprang into action, lashing furiously with his cane at a point in the darkness. 'You see it, Wilson?' he yelled, his tense voice reverberating through the air. I raised my dark-lantern's shutter, and the room slowly came into view. Sholmes was staring intently at one particular corner when he started whispering to me, 'The victim's most perplexing, final words --"the speckled band"-- I believe this is the terrible coil to which she referred, Wilson!' In front of us was an enormous adder, its fangs bared as it threatened to strike. It truly was the most terrible 'speckled band' I had ever seen.
Speckled
6:37 a.m.

A man suddenly arrived on the scene and began to investigate a murder. With four onlookers being rendered speechless, the man quickly went through his reasoning. The cabin had been locked from the inside. The victim had written a well-formed message in Russian on the floor with ink from a nearby upset bottle. A paper seal had been placed over the wardrobe just before the murder, presumably by the victim, but written by someone of a different nationality. As the man used special goggles to peer inside, the sailors started speaking up, demanding to know who he was. The man silenced them, announcing that he was about to reveal the killer, much to Susato Mikotoba's surprise. The man took the seal off the wardrobe and prepared to open the door, finally telling the others that he was the Great British consulting detective Herlock Sholmes.

The sailors dragged out the sleeping man inside the wardrobe and handcuffed him. Ryunosuke Naruhodo eventually woke up and realized that he had finally been discovered. However, he quickly learned that his arrest was not for stowing away. Kazuma Asogi, his best friend, had been murdered in the cabin while it was bolted shut, and he was the only possible culprit. Naruhodo screamed as he recalled that day, about 15 days ago, when he had gotten in one of Asogi's trunks, and then lived in secret inside the wardrobe, using the paper seal in an attempt to keep nosy passengers out.

Naruhodo and Mikotoba decided to share what they knew with each other. Mikotoba had been the first person at the scene, as she would wait outside Asogi's cabin for him every morning. There had been no external signs of injury, and the ship's doctor had no experience with post-mortem analysis, so the method of death was unknown. Asogi had intentionally smuggled Naruhodo, but had decided not to explain why at the last second, only showing a dark look in his eyes. As for the time of the murder, Naruhodo had simply fallen asleep after dinner as usual, and woken up with a headache.

Naruhodo desperately wanted to investigate and find out who had done this, but Mikotoba demanded that he exonerate himself with evidence, like he had done weeks ago. Naruhodo obliged, pointing out that the paper seal had been applied before the murder, and thus he could not have left the wardrobe until he was discovered. Mikotoba agreed to let him investigate with her supervision.

"Sholmes's Appearance"[]

Demiglaski Newspaper

"Revolutionary Vilen Borshevik Flees Russia via Shanghai."

Suddenly, the two saw Sholmes kneeling on Asogi's desk, peering underneath it. The detective looked at Naruhodo and determined that he was Vilen Borshevik, a merciless Russian revolutionary with sixteen assassinations to his name. According to that morning's paper, Borshevik had recently returned to his homeland from Afghanistan, before fleeing to Shanghai, China, where the SS Burya had stopped. He was reportedly planning to destroy the Crystal Tower in London.

Asougis Dying Message

Asogi's final "message", wardrobe written in Russian.

Sholmes introduced himself to the bewildered student with the help of a copy of The Randst Magazine, containing stories of his exploits titled The Adventures of Herlock Sholmes. He explained that the message on the floor was the Russian word for "wardrobe", prompting him to look there and find Naruhodo. He had taken a photograph of the message while Asogi was still there. Sholmes had also investigated the diary on Asogi's desk but was unable to read it, so Mikotoba did so:

  • 1:23 a.m. - I can hear a faint whistling sound.
  • 1:35 a.m. - What looks like some sort of speckled band is dangling from the ventilator grille.

Sholmes decided to leave and investigate a neighbouring cabin, which was connected to Asogi's cabin via an air vent, while Naruhodo was forced to stay. Naruhodo continued to investigate, and noticed that the bolt used to lock the cabin door was not very sturdy, and could simply slide across. Nearby was a sign detailing the "Rules of Passage", forbidding weapons and pets. Naruhodo also noticed that the books and statue on a shelf had all fallen over in the same direction, and Mikotoba righted them. Naruhodo's plate from the previous night's chicken dinner had also somehow fallen to the floor, where there was a broken piece of glass with a dark streak beside it.

Eventually, another sailor arrived, one who could help Naruhodo with his predicament: Satoru Hosonaga, who had been sent by Minister of Justice Jigoku as an undercover bodyguard to Asogi, something that struck Naruhodo as odd considering he had simply been on a study tour. To help Naruhodo, Hosonaga needed something to help convince the captain to let him investigate the adjoining cabin. Naruhodo showed him Asogi's diary, saying that he needed to investigate the meaning behind the "speckled band".

7:48 a.m.

In the first-class cabin passageway, they saw another sailor, Bif Strogenov, standing watch and guarding the way to the second class cabins. They tried to convince him to let them inside the other cabin or divulge anything he knew about the incident, but he would only say that the passenger inside was a man named Grimesby Roylott, who he insisted was unrelated to the case. Strogenov left to report to the captain, giving them a chance to knock on the other cabin door, but there was no answer. They also examined an alarm, which apparently set alarm bells all over the ship and brought it to a complete stop.

"Dance of Deduction"[]

Suddenly, there was a high-pitched scream from inside the cabin. Together with Sholmes, Naruhodo and Mikotoba hurried inside, only to find an older Russian gentleman and a small trunk, which was shaking. Sholmes stared at Roylott's face, suspiciously covered up in a beard and sunglasses, and would not be dissuaded even by Mikotoba quoting A Study in Scarlet to suggest not coming to any rash conclusions. As Sholmes demonstrated his "Logic and Reasoning Spectacular", however, what initially appeared to be two solid deductions were quickly derailed. He claimed that Roylott was Vilen Borshevik despite their appearances not being remotely similar, and that he had abducted a ballet dancer from the troupe Novavich Ballet by the name of Nikolina Pavlova, hiding her underneath his trunk, despite the trunk being too small for even a small child to fit in. Mikotoba and Naruhodo agreed to have the latter step in to make small corrections to Sholmes's reasoning, resulting in a "dance of deduction" between Sholmes and Naruhodo.

Young Dance Prodigy Goes Missing from Prestigious Novavic Ballet School

"Renowned Prima Ballerina of the Novavich Ballet Disappears from Shanghai!"

Regarding Roylott's identity, Sholmes had noticed the large shears that the man was carrying. He reasoned that Roylott was going to cut off his beard, but Naruhodo found that this "man" was sporting the golden locks of a young woman. Thus, Roylott's true identity was revealed as Pavlova. When accusing her of committing a crime, Sholmes had noticed her quickly glancing in the direction of her trunk, which was moving, and a copy of the newspaper, leading to his original abduction hypothesis. It turned out, however, that her first glance had actually been targeted at a tiara that she had taken with her when running away from Novavich Ballet. Her second glance had been toward the Rules of Passage sign, leading to her true crime: smuggling a pet on the ship.

Pavlova admitted that they were correct about everything. She added that she had screamed after seeing an article about her being missing in the newspaper, causing her to move to change her appearance more permanently by cutting her hair. However, she was less forthcoming about any further information about the incident, her pet, or the "speckled band" mentioned in Asogi's diary. The article stated that she had run away only the previous day, leaving unexplained how she had gotten on the SS Burya. That was all that the three could learn from her before Strogenov arrived to kick them out and take Roylott to see the captain.

"Further Investigation"[]

Naruhodo and Mikotoba returned to Asogi's cabin, Sholmes having disappeared from their sight. They talked with Hosonaga, who had sustained a beating from the captain. The post-mortem report had been released, revealing that Asogi had died instantly from a broken neck, and no poison or other sign of injury had been detected, suggesting the use of a blunt object. Sholmes had also just been here, examining the dark streak on the floor before saying something about shoe polish and leaving just as quickly as he had arrived. After the discussion, Hosonaga informed them of a headache that he was suffering before returning to his post.

Back outside, Strogenov was gone, finally allowing them an opportunity to examine Pavlova's cabin. They also saw Sholmes, who informed them that the ship's log was mostly blank after 2 a.m., as opposed to other times, when Strogenov would dutifully write, "Nothing to report" every 30 minutes. Sholmes then complained of a headache and headed elsewhere, and Mikotoba admitted that she was also suffering from one. They investigated the cabin, but suddenly, an alarm rang and the ship came to an emergency stop, causing the books on the shelf to fall and the bolt to slide, locking the door. Hosonaga returned to the cabin door to check up on them, but Naruhodo felt a sense of dread, knowing that he was not alone...

"Second Dance of Deduction"[]

Strogonav band

The speckled band?

The undercover inspector was accompanied by Strogenov and Pavlova, who accused them of opening the latter's trunk, and threatened to send Naruhodo to a holding cell until he could be handed over to the police in Hong Kong. Before they could do anything, however, Sholmes showed up and announced that he had solved the case. A large, striped snake wrapped around Strogenov's head, preventing him from speaking. The conclusion that Sholmes had reached was that the snake was Pavlova's pet, who had trespassed into Asogi's cabin through the ventilator and killed the man inside with a venomous bite. According to him, Pavlova had trained the snake to respond to a whistle, and had used milk to reinforce the training. Even Naruhodo was convinced, but Mikotoba pointed out some basic facts about snakes that made it rather impossible for one to fit what Sholmes had described, namely that snakes do not drink milk, lack ears, and are unable to climb a flat surface like a bell cord to reach the vent in the first place.

Nekomina haha get it

Pavlova and Darka.

Whenever Pavlova thought about the incident, she would look at her hand in sorrow, and when thinking about her pet, she would seemingly look toward the snake. Sholmes interpreted her first gesture as emotional pain, but she was actually reacting to a fresh claw scratch on her hand. This meant that she was not looking at the snake, but beyond it to a photograph of herself and a black cat, named Darka. Sholmes then remarked that the snake's skin did not actually fit the description of a speckled band, and looked at Pavlova, causing her to panic and take what appeared to be a speckled band out of her pocket. Sholmes believed this to be the snake's sloughed skin, but careful examination revealed it to be a cat's toy. Darka had scratched Pavlova and gone into Asogi's cabin, causing Pavlova to whistle and dangle the toy through the vent in an effort to get Darka to return.

To determine the real cause of death, Naruhodo drew attention to the post-mortem report and the shoe polish mark on the floor, whose colour matched Asogi's leather shoes. They discussed the possibility that Asogi had slipped and hit his neck on something, breaking it. Pavlova, who had apparently tried to hide evidence of the incident, involuntarily glanced in the direction of the travelling case and the wastepaper basket. Inside the basket, there was glass fragment, which fit together with the fragment near the shoe streak to form a bell, as Darka was seen wearing in the photograph. They concluded that Asogi had stepped on the bell and tripped. As for the snake, Strogenov, finally able to speak, informed them that it was his pet, named Pirozhko, who had escaped during the alarm. It was not even venomous.

Though Pavlova admitted to everything that they had described, it soon became apparent that there was more to the story. Asogi had died instantly, so he could not have written a dying message. Moreover, the cabin doors had been locked, so it was odd that the two halves of the bell had ended up in different cabins. All this pointed to the presence of another person at the scene, who had somehow entered and taken half of the bell.

Naruhodo proposed that there had been an emergency stop, like the one just earlier, which had toppled the books and locked the door without anyone having to touch it. Sholmes admitted to pressing the emergency alarm button earlier out of curiosity, demonstrating that anyone else could have done it. As further evidence of an unusual event, Naruhodo brought up the blank ship's log entries. To explain why seemingly no passenger had noticed such a major event, Sholmes brought to attention the headaches that all of the passengers in the room had reported suffering from. He revealed that the chicken dinner from the previous night had been laced with sleeping drugs, a plan that the entire crew would have been in on. Asogi had not slept because he had given his chicken to Naruhodo.

Naruhodo now drew attention to the photograph showing Asogi and the writing that he had supposedly written on the floor. He pointed to a purple ink stain on Strogenov's uniform, which matched the writing, indicating that he had been there when the ink was still fresh, forcing him to admit that he had tampered with the crime scene. The photograph also showed Asogi's hand in a fist. Sholmes revealed that he checked that hand and found a crescent moon, which, judging from Pavlova's earrings, had broken off from one of them, indicating that Asogi had grasped it when he fell.

Nikomina recall

Nikolina admits to the events of the incident.

Asogi death

"Then it happened... Everything at once... It was only a second, but...it felt like forever..."

At this, Pavlova finally confessed, and described how she had gone to Asogi's cabin to get her cat back. Asogi had assumed that it was an "Inspector" at the door, only to find Pavlova instead. He had helped her and promised to keep her pet a secret. However, he had recognized her from a ballet performance that he had attended in Japan, forcing her to admit that she had run away. Unsure as to what to do, Asogi had turned away, seeking a second opinion.

At that moment, Darka had suddenly leapt to Asogi's feet, and, believing that he was about to pull the bell cord, Pavlova had panicked and pushed him, fearing that his "Inspector" friend would find out about her. The noises had attracted the attention of Strogenov, who had discovered Naruhodo and tampered with the scene to implicate him. Mikotoba and Naruhodo wondered if Asogi really had been turning toward the bell cord, suggesting instead that he had intended to consult Naruhodo in the wardrobe right beside it. Whatever the truth was behind that critical moment, the case was solved at last.

"Conclusion"[]

7:14 p.m.

Pavlova would be handed over to Scotland Yard, and Strogenov would hand himself over as well. Sholmes would negotiate with the immigration office for Pavlova's asylum, but she would live as an exile, never to return to Russia.

Hosonaga apologized to Naruhodo and Mikotoba, declaring that he would do anything to make up for failing to protect Asogi. Unfortunately, the study tour could no longer go ahead, as the agreements between the Departments of Justice in both countries was for Japan to send over one lawyer and one legal assistant, which no longer seemed possible. Sholmes argued that any qualifications from Japan would mean little in Britain, and that they still had ample time before getting there to find a suitable lawyer to replace Asogi.

Naruhodo offered to study every day for the rest of the trip, and work to his utmost to qualify as a lawyer in Britain. Asogi had informed him that he had something that he had to do in Britain no matter what, which he wanted Naruhodo to see through with him. Sholmes pointed out that Naruhodo had already demonstrated his resourcefulness, intelligence, and courage throughout the day's investigation. Hosonaga reluctantly agreed, having promised that he would do anything to make it up to them, and left for the captain's quarters to discuss the incident and the report that he would have to send to the Department of Justice in Japan. Mikotoba agreed to assist Naruhodo, and gave him the prized Asogi clan katana, "Karuma", which Kazuma always had with him. Naruhodo had never found out what Asogi's mission was, but he was determined to go to London and work it out.

Cultural references[]

  • When Ryunosuke Naruhodo tries to deny that he is having fun during the dance of deduction, he says, "This is strictly business. Not strictly come-" before getting interrupted. This is a reference to the UK show Strictly Come Dancing.
  • The song that Herlock Sholmes is singing when investigating the ship's log is a parody of the Frank Sinatra song "My Way".

Holmes references[]

  • One of Sholmes's first inferences when meeting Naruhodo is that he has come from Afghanistan. This mirrors Holmes's first meeting with Watson in A Study in Scarlet, where he correctly remarks that the latter has been in Afghanistan while they are shaking hands.
  • Just before the first dance of deduction, Susato Mikotoba quotes a line from A Study in Scarlet: "It is a capital mistake to theorise before you have all the evidence. It biases the judgment."
  • The plot shares many similarities to "The Adventure of the Speckled Band", including the low whistle, the bell sash near a vent that connects to another room, and the snake being the murder weapon, though the setup of the crime in this case is pointed out to be rather impossible for a snake to pull off in many respects.
    • Nikolina Pavlova, while under disguise, goes by the name Grimesby Roylott. This is a direct reference to Grimesby Roylott, the main antagonist from the original story.
    • The intro scene is almost exactly how the original story went near the end. Except, the adder apparently went to a corner of the room that Holmes and Wilson were in, instead of going back through the vent and killing Roylott.
    • The bell sash does not trigger any crew response when used. In The Adventure of the Speckled Band, Holmes investigates a bell cord that is not attached to any bell but rather a vent so Roylott can manipulate the snake.

Errors[]

  • In the original Japanese version, Herlock Sholmes says Kazuma Asogi wrote "closet" in Russian, but "гардероб" actually means "wardrobe". The English release fixes this by correcting Sholmes' translation of the word.
  • After Sholmes has left the cabin, Sholmes will still appear in the dialogue and help translate when examining the Article About Revolutionary.
  • During the Meiji/Victorian era, Russian language utilized different spelling rules. "ГАРДЕРОБ" writing on the floor would be actually spelled "ГАРДЕРОБЪ", and one can see the last letter not being finished. However, newspaper article titles and subtitles are spelled wrong. For example, "Революционер Вилен Борщевик убегает из России через Шанхай" should be "Революціонеръ ​Виленъ​ Борщевикъ убѣгаетъ изъ Россіи черезъ Шанхай" and so on.
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