Convalescing in London after a disastrous experience of war in Afghanistan, Dr. John Watson finds himself sharing rooms with his enigmatic new acquaintance Sherlock Holmes. But their quiet bachelor life at 221B Baker Street is soon interrupted by the grisly discovery of a dead man in a grimy "ill-omened" house in southeast London, his face contorted by an expression of horror and hatred such as Watson has never seen before. On the wall, the word rache—German for "revenge"—is written in blood, yet there are no wounds on the victim or signs of a struggle. Watson's head is in a whirl, but the formidable Holmes relishes this challenge to his deductive powers. And so begins their famous investigative partnership.