This, the last of twelve mystery stories writtesn by the late Annie Haynes—who died last year—was left unfinished. One of Miss Haynes's friends, also a popular writer of this type of fiction, offered to undertake the work of completion, and it says much for her skill that she has independently arrived at Miss Haynes's own solution of the mystery, which was known only to myself.
It is not generally known that for the last fifteen years of her life Miss Haynes was in constant pain and writing itself was a considerable effort. Her courage in facing her illness was remarkable, and the fact that she was handicapped not only by the pain but also by the helplessness of her malady greatly enhances the merit of her achievements. It was impossible for her to go out into the world for fresh material for her books, her only journeys being from her bedroom to her study. The enforced inaction was the harder to bear in her case, as before her illness she was extremely energetic. Her intense interest in crime and criminal psychology led her into the most varied activities, such as cycling miles to visit the scene of the Luard Murder, pushing her way into the cellar of 39 Hilldrop Crescent, where the remains of Belle Elmore were discovered, and attending the Crippen trial.