| Quote #4
"Get out!" said [Holmes to first-time jewel thief James Ryder].
What do you make of this statement that "chance has put in our way a most singular and whimsical problem, and its solution is its own reward"? Why doesn't Holmes have a larger moral responsibility to supply the police in their deficiencies? Do you agree that Holmes's mercy is justified in this case?
| Quote #5
"With the result of driving it through the ventilator."
Here, as in "The Five Orange Pips," we have an example of a kind of divine or karmic retribution for wrongdoing. There is comfort in the belief that the world itself seems to be governed by a desire for justice, and that life really can be fair.
| Quote #6
I shall have to tell my tale to the police; but, between ourselves, if it were not for the convincing evidence of this wound of mine, I should be surprised if they believed my statement, for it is a very extraordinary one, and I have not much in the way of proof with which to back it up; and, even if they believe me, the clues which I can give them are so vague that it is a question whether justice will be done (Thumb.31).
Vincent Hatherley is speaking to Watson as he receives treatment for his lost Thumb. We get to see another reason why clients might prefer Holmes instead of the official police force. Holmes's position outside the legal system means he can accept any case he chooses, with or without initial proof of the client telling truth.