Holmes and Watson are on their way back to Baker Street from a freshly wrapped-up case when they hear shrieking from around the corner, and naturally they charge around the corner to see what's happening. What's happening turns out to be a giant snake with a mirror for a face. They get the woman it has cornered out of the way, and Watson goes for his revolver, but before he can bring the snake down it gets its face over both of them and they're somewhere else.
"Excellent, thank you." They head downstairs and request some breakfast in accented but comprehensible vernacular.
The familiarity is reassuring. When they're done eating it they do whatever everybody else is doing with their dishes.
How convenient. Back upstairs to ask Miriqua for more language lessons, ideally including a start on their troublingly non-phonetic writing system. They've learned a handful of words from context cues but something more systematic would be appreciated.
"Unsurprising, since your language is not constrained by being easy to teach. We shall simply have to make do as best we can."
Are there any patterns whatsoever in what collections of lines correspond to what meanings, or is it entirely arbitrary?
Then it has that advantage over memorizing the properties of three hundred kinds of tobacco ash. It's not as orderly as the Latin-derived names of every bone and muscle and nerve in the human body, and Watson will never complain about English orthography or Latin grammar again, but they both press on.
They'll keep at this all day, minus the time it takes to get some lunch and bring it upstairs.
They eat their eggs and rolls and go right back to studying.
They copy the notes into local characters for practice.
"And probably even more to read a medical journal."
"Are there enough of those that it's possible to be illiterate without being a burden on society? I do still hope to open a practice here."
"Then I think I'll get really good at the spoken language first," he says in the local language.
They keep up their lessons for the rest of the day, if Miriqua is willing. At some point they'll probably want to wander around outside getting used to voices and cadences other than hers, but it doesn't need to be this afternoon.