'Twas the Night Before Christmas

by D.E. Lewis (Sherlockian221 at aol.com)

'Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the house
(Okay, the New London auditorium. So sue me)
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.

But all that changed in a second, as Holmes, Lestrade, Watson, and the Irregulars all entered to practice for their Christmas pageant -- basically, a medley of songs and skits. Moriarty sat hidden in the back. Unseen by Holmes and the others, he had been watching the progression of this little performance for days. He knew what everyone was doing: Tennyson was playing the piano (he'd figured as much from his way of communication), Watson was putting the lights together, and the others were practicing singing. They would sing duets and trios, but often all together. Tonight would be the only night they would perform. This was dress rehearsal.

About an hour later, they finished their work, and went home to get ready. "Back here at eight, everyone!" Holmes called. "Good work today. We should do well tonight." The others nodded in assent.

When the stage was empty, Moriarty went home himself to put together a room for Fenwick's 4-year-old niece, Rebecca. She was being raised in Sussex, so she spoke English fluently, without a French accent. She would be there in a few hours, and the two men would be taking her to the pageant.

Rebecca was there by six. They had eaten dinner, and were getting ready to go. They got there in the nick of time, since quite a few people were coming, and the theater was getting full. They sat in front of a short and rather insane Yardie. The friend he had with him called him Bradstreet.

Disregarding the little crazy man, they prepared to watch the show. Soon the lights dimmed, and the curtains opened. The stage was set beautifully, looking just like the living room of a house. The music began, and they were all quickly lost in a sea of music rushing over them. Then, Tennyson began to play a song Morriarty hadn't heard in rehearsal: "I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day". He figured Holmes must have known he had been watching them practice. Sherlock started solo, but Lestrade joined him. He had a beautiful tenor, while her alto mixed and blended well. It was beautiful music.

Before long, Rebecca had fallen asleep on Fenwick's lap, and the play was over. Morriarty told Fenwick to go on ahead, that he would catch up. He snuck backstage. The actors were packing up.

"Hey, uh, Mister Holmes, why didn't you let Deidre and me in on your secret song? We know it." Moriarty couldn't see the faces, but knew the voices.

"Wiggins, there was a reason. I would rather just not explain."

"Fine by me. Just wondering, that's all." The Irregulars left, and the only one who he supposed got a glimpse of him was Deidre. Lestrade looked cozy in her sweater, and Holmes looked like he always did. Deerstalker and Inverness. Nothing fancy. Lestrade left, and Watson had gone to start the car up -- get it warm.

Holmes looked in his direction. "James, did you wonder why we didn't practice in the stage?"



"Please tell me no one gave you egg nog."

Holmes laughed at the inside joke. It was a long story, going back to when they were boys. They walked outside. Moriarty began walking home.

"Oh, James, Merry Christmas!"

"And to you too, Sherlock Holmes."

And I heard him exclaim as he drove out of sight,
"Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!"

And a happy holidays to everyone here.


Back to the fanfic index