Valentine’s Day 1938: All Richard Blakemore a.k.a. the masked crimefighter known only as the Silencer wants is to have a romantic dinner with his beautiful fiancée Constance Allen.
But on his way to his date, Richard happens upon a mugging in progress. Can he save the victim and make sure that young Thomas Walden has the chance to propose to his girlfriend? And will he make it to dinner with Constance on time?
This is a short Valentine’s Day story of 5500 words or approx. 20 print pages in the Silencer series, but may be read as a standalone.
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- A Valentine for the Silencer is a short story of 7200 words or approximately 24 print pages in the Silencer series, but may be read as a standalone. This story is a digital premiere and has never been published previously.
- Like The Great Fraud, Elevator of Doom, Fact or Fiction, The Milk Truck Gang and Mean Streets and Dead Alleys this is a more low-key Silencer adventure with smaller stakes.
- The inspiration for this story was setting up a round-up of Valentine’s Day themed mysteries and crime novels for the Indie Crime Scene, when it suddenly occurred to me that it would be cool to write a Valentine’s Day Silencer story. Unfortunately, this idea occurred to me only six days before Valentine’s Day.
- Today, Manhattan’s diamond district stretches along 47th But that diamond district only started up in the 1940s, several years after the time the story is set. But in the 1930s, the diamond district was in Lower Manhattan, clustered around Fulton Street, Nassau Street and Maiden Lane.
- The buildings mentioned in the story really exist and – with the notable exception of the Singer Building – can still be seen today. Ditto for the fountain in City Hall Park.
- The Temple Court Building really exists and Edgar Allan Poe really used to live at that address. However, the restaurant The Edgar is fictional, though it is loosely based on the atrium bar of The Beekman Hotel, which occupies the Temple Court Building today.
- Zuccotti’s, the restaurant where Thomas wants to go with Daisy, is fictional and was named for Zuccotti Park, which is in the area today, though in 1938 its location would have been occupied by the Singer Building.
- The Beekman Pub, briefly mentioned as a favourite watering hole of Justin O’Grady, really exists and has been continuously operating since 1936.
- Abraham Bernstein & Sons – Diamonds and Fine Jewellery is fictional, though based on similar shops I have seen in the diamond districts of Amsterdam and Antwerp.
- There really is a chocolate shop on the corner of Nassau Street and Maiden Lane, by the way, and there are not one but two pharmacies opposite each other on the intersection of Nassau and Ann Street. I have no idea, if any of these businesses existed in 1938 – most likely not – but they were too conveniently located not to use.
- The cover is stock art by Phil Cold.