While many see St. Patrick’s Day as a simple holiday in which to get drunk and wear green, Sherlock Holmes likes to complicate matters. In the course of solving mysteries, he often construes layers of meaning between things and/or people that would normally not be noticed.
Therefore, he proposes a connection between three diverse figures: the famous saint of Ireland, the Pied Piper and the Slenderman. St. Patrick was of course renowned for having driven the snakes out of Ireland; he was so good at it there is no evidence any snakes ever WERE there! He simply charmed the serpents away. Centuries later in Germany, 1284 Hamelin to be exact, 130 children allegedly vanished “after the appearance of a piper.” The following is from a contemporary record: “A young man of 30 years, handsome and in all respects so finely dressed that all who saw him were awestruck by his person and clothing came in by way of the bridge and the Weser Gate. On a silver pipe which he had, of wonderful form, he began to play through the whole town, and all the children hearing him, to the number of 130, followed him beyond the eastern wall almost to the place of the Calvary or Gallows field, and vanished and disappeared so that nobody could find out where any one of them had gone. Indeed the mothers of the children wandered from city to city and discovered nothing.” This was witnessed by Herr Johann de Lude, mother of the deacon, amongst others.
Flash forward to our times and the Slenderman, who first appeared on Creepypasta, an internet site devoted to modern supernatural tales. The Slenderman is a shadowy, tall, willowy man, clad in a black suit, who children see out of the corners of their eyes, and who lures them away from life into an otherworld where they either become his slaves or his enchanted guests, depending on which version you believe. Most people are aware of the recent sensational event in which two young girls stabbed a middle school classmate repeatedly, apparently in order to get into the Slenderman’s good graces. This was the subject of HBO’s documentary, Beware the Slenderman, eerie for many reasons, one of them being: the girls’ parents seemed to have no idea their daughters were devoting so much time to becoming involved in the Slenderman legend. One day they were normal children–the next they had disappeared into the bodies of would-be murderers.
So beware of all enchantment, even that of saints, as you never know where it may led you. So sayeth Holmes, and so sayeth the departed snakes of Ireland!