Round Robin

Part 7

by Maureen S. O'Brien (mobrien at

"Professor Moriarty? What, just like in the stories?"

Moriarty's brow creased with annoyance, then smoothed again. "As you say, my dear. Just like in the stories."

"And we're married? Wow, and I don't remember any of it."

"It will come," he assured her, patting her hand and smiling, this time more genuinely. "Never mind. I will take care of you, Beth."

She didn't know what to think. For all she knew, she might have been stupid enough to actually get married to this guy. He was cute enough, and people did do stupid things like that.

On the one hand, her gut told her not to trust this guy further than she could throw him, but on the other.... She felt that strange connection between them flooding with energy. There was something going on here, and she had to get to the bottom of it.

Best she didn't mention anything more about Holmes. Or New Scotland Yard, especially since he was asking her now whether she remembered her job.

"Remember my job?" she said blankly. She was in practice. "Nope, not a thing. What do I do?"

Moriarty smiled with real pleasure. "Why, you are a professional hacker, my dear -- a woman of 'leet skillz', in fact. That is how we met. But now you work for the family business."

It was a lie. She knew it. Holmes and the others had called her Inspector and said she worked at the Yard. But this hacker thing sounded right. Code and exploits had filled her head as soon as he'd said it. But no way a New Scotland Yard detective would know any of that, right?

Could all of that stuff with Holmes and the constable have been a trick? What purpose would it serve?

Her head hurt.

Moriarty took her arm with suave grace. "You will have the best of care, my Beth, now that you've come home. As soon as you feel up to it, I have a little job for us to do. It will make you feel so much more like yourself." He smiled. "Yes, the family that does crime together...."

...does time together, her mind murmured. This day was really beginning to get annoying. She should never have gotten up.

This section was inspired by Lestrade's line in "The Crooked Man": "My hacking skills are dustier than my first ionizer." They can't get dusty if you never had 'em...and that also explains why Holmes gave Lestrade that look when he was convincing her to let the "Sussex Vampire" hacker off.

On to Part 8!

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