THE AFFAIR OF THE ATIL ARTIFACT
A Professor Penniweather Adventure
By Nathan Hanawalt
Published by Nathan Hanawalt at Smashwords
Copyright 2012 Nathan Hanawalt
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It was a dark, foggy autumn day in late September of the year 1921 when I first met Professor Phineas F. Penniweather, the eminent and eccentric antiquarian. I was just recently returned from an archaeological expedition in the arid steppes beyond the Black Sea, where I had chanced to discover a unique and curious little artifact that had won me some minor fame in the archaeological community. Not that I was really an archaeologist, mind you. I was more of a professional gentleman, if you understand my meaning. My uncle had left me a sizeable fortune in Indian cotton when he died, and I was never the sort to seek out back-breaking labor when a cool glass of lemon fizzer beckoned.
I had been on one of my customary rambles about the world when, in Istanbul, I had fallen in with old Wheezer Jenkins, a chum from my school days at Eton. The Wheeze had got himself on to an expedition to find the legendary City of Troy, which some old professor had decided was out along the eastern shore of the Black Sea. Archaeology had always been something of an amateur interest of mine, so I begged on to the trek. There were some fairly miffed faces waggling their mutton-chops and monocles when I turned out to be the one to find my little artifact, let me tell you!