Where I Belong

by Joy*Starr

Well, to start off my story, I should probably tell you a little bit about myself. For starters, my name is Allie. I am sixteen, going on seventeen. I live in the year 2005. I'm of medium height, about 5'7". I have blonde hair, blue eyes, and I'm absolutely nuts about anything Sherlockian.

Not that I can get my hands on too much of it anymore. You see, about three years ago, everything was smooth sailing in my life, that is, until my parents decided to go on a husband/wife vacation and never came back. The plain and simple fact is that their cruise ship sank, and the rescue crews were too late to do anything about it.

Well, enough with the painful memories. So now I'm an orphan. I take it an' live with it, 'cause there's nothing I can do about. Now to take you to the present. I'm living in Madame Humphrey's Home for Orphans, but to tell you the truth, I'd rather live on the streets then get scolded by her 24/7 about the things I do wrong.

As I was saying about the Sherlockian stuff, I can't get to much of it because Madame Humphrey doesn't approve. I have a cassette tape recording of a few episodes of SH22, which I cherish and listen to constantly. Other than that, I'm not allowed to make contact with that subject. Madame says it's "not proper reading material for a young girl." She's a big pain in the you-know-what.

Well, the other day I was just replaying the end song of SH22 over and over. (You know, the one that plays during the credits?) Anyway, whenever I play that song, I get this feeling deep in my gut that's pleasant, yet depressing at the same time. I love that tune, but listening to it makes me wish with my mind, body, and soul that Sherlock Holmes, the 22nd Century and all that was real. I wish that somehow, some way that I could go there and meet "The World's Greatest Detective" in person.

How do you know it's not real?

Wait a minute, where'd that thought come from?

Where do you think it's coming from?

What the?! Who is that?! I demanded silently.

Does it really matter? came the reply.

Am I going crazy? I wondered.

Now why would you think that? it came again, this time puzzled.

Gee, maybe because I'm hearing a voice inside my head? I offered sarcastically.

Yes, so what if it's in your head? Why should that matter?

Oh, I give up! I surrendered to the voice. What do you want?

Just to tell you that today, Allie, you should follow your heart.

My heart? I repeated, stumped. What do you mean by that? But the voice, or whatever it was, had already gone.

Even though I was mystified by the strange event, I felt deeply moved by the strange words, "Follow your heart." Whatever they meant, I would have plenty of time to decipher them, since we never had anything to do at the orphanage.


Later that day, I felt a strange compulsion to look in a mirror. Since there was a full-length mirror in the room I shared with some other girls, I decided to use that one. As I looked in the mirror, I had to do a double take. I could've sworn I had just seen -- no, it couldn't have been. But as I looked again, I saw the unmistakable face of the one and only Sherlock Holmes! And you know what? He looked just as startled as I felt, and I was pretty sure I looked the same way. "Um, I'm starting to agree with my earlier assumption that I'm going crazy," I said aloud.

Of course, I didn't expect Holmes to reply, so I nearly jumped out of my skin when he said, "If you are crazy, my dear, then I must be insane as well, for if I am not mistaken, I am seeing the same thing you are."

After I had recovered from my initial shock, I ventured to ask a question. "What do you make of it, Holmes?"

"Ah, so you know me," came the response.

"Excuse me, I have forgotten my manners," I said to him. "My name is Allie. So nice to finally meet my idol."

I could tell he was flattered. "Well, it is nice to know I am appreciated."

"Of course you're appreciated, Holmes. How could you think otherwise with Lestrade, Watson, and the Irregulars to praise your awesome observation skills?" I blurted, but then I blushed at my sudden outburst. Holmes looked rather startled, and I was secretly pleased with myself having surprised the Great Detective.

"And how, if you don't mind my asking, did you come to know about the others?" he asked me curiously.

"Well, I know this sounds crazy, but here, in the 21st century, there's a TV show about you guys."

"A television show, you say?" asked Holmes. Abruptly, the meaning of the first half of my sentence sank in. "The 21st century?!" he cried. "Fascinating! How intriguing that we are communicating between two different centuries."

"Yes, it is rather odd, actually," I replied calmly. He stared at me for a moment before responding. "I have to admit," he began, "that I am surprised that you have not started to 'freak-out', to use my companion Lestrade's words."

"Well, I am a bit out of place where I live, if you know what I mean."

"I understand completely," he said dryly.

"Of course you would. You're a bit out of place yourself, aren't you?" I said.

"Anyplace I have to go to fight Moriarty, that is where I belong," he replied, trying to hide any emotion, but I heard a twinge of wistfulness in his voice.

I sighed, and his attention was drawn back to me. "Is there something wrong?" he asked with a hint of concern.

"Oh nothing," I said, trying to hold back the tears that threatened to come rolling down my cheeks. "It's just that no one has been as kind to me as you have since...since...my parents died," I managed to choke out.

That did it. The wave of tears suddenly came flooding out. I began to sob, all those years of pain coming flooding out in those few minutes. Holmes gave a start at my sudden outburst, and then a concerned look crossed his face. "I'm so sorry," he started. "I didn't realize...."

His voice faded in shock. He had reached out to touch the mirror at the height of my shoulder...and his hand came right through, onto my shoulder! "What on earth...." we began at the same time. Then we looked at each other and started laughing.

My painful memories left me as quickly as they had come, and a cheerful attitude came in their place. To my delight, Sherlock's hand was still on my shoulder. "So," I remarked casually. "We can make contact through the centuries, too." Holmes chuckled. "Apparently so, my dear," he agreed.

"I wonder," I said, more to myself than Holmes. "Could you please move back a little?" I asked him.

"Of course, but why do you...wait, you aren't seriously going to-"

"Yup!" I interrupted him, and with that, I took the steps into the 22nd century that would change my life forever.

Passing through the mirror was like walking through a wall made out of water. In an instant, I was standing by a very shocked Sherlock Holmes. "Well," he said after a moment. "That was interesting."

"You got that right!" I told him.

A sudden thought hit him. "Will anyone miss you?" he asked anxiously.

I laughed bitterly, and he looked like he regretted his question. "The only person who will miss me is Madame Humphrey, and only because the government will give her less money since she has one less child. And you know what? Now that I'm here, I don't think I'll ever go back, even if I have to live on the streets."

Holmes stared for a minute, the gently asked, "Was it really that bad?"

"Worse," was the only answer he was going to get just then. He bent down a little so he was at my eye-level, then said, "If you'd prefer the streets, that is your choice, of course, but if you like, you are more than welcome to stay here until we can find you a more permanent living situation."

I let the words sink in, then cried, "You really mean it?!" When he nodded, I threw my arms around his neck. Apparently, he wasn't used to being treated in such a fashion, for I could sense his discomfort, and released my hold on him.

He cleared his throat and had just straightened up, when a familiar metallic voice called out, "Where the devil have you gotten to, Holmes?"

Before Holmes could answer, I called back, "We're in the bathroom, Watson!"

"What are you...what do you mean 'we'?" he asked, sounding like a very confused robot.

This time Holmes beat me to it. "Why don't you come see for yourself?"

Suddenly, a large (around the middle, anyway) robot appeared in the doorway. "Who is the young lady, Holmes, and how on earth did she get into the bathroom?"

Holmes and I suddenly realized how strange the whole situation must look for Watson, and we both began to laugh.

"I don't see anything funny about it," said Watson, rather indignantly.

"Don't worry, Watson, your questions shall be answered in a few minutes, as soon as Lestrade and the Irregulars get here," I reassured the robot.

Holmes looked at me a little strangely. "How did you deduce that they were coming?"

"Elementary, my dear Holmes," I said with a twinkle in my eye. "If you listen close enough you can hear three sets of feet pounding up the stairs, one a bit heavier then the other two, which will be Lestrade's, and then of course there's Tennyson's hoverchair." Holmes looked a bit astonished that I had figured this out all on my own, and I smirked at him. "They should be arriving just about -- Now!"

With that, the door to Holmes' apartment burst open, and just as I had predicted, in came the Irregulars and Lestrade. Holmes gave me an approving glance, then greeted his comrades.

"So nice of you to join us, Lestrade," he said with a grin, and led the way to his sitting room. Then, to me he called, "Why don't you come and meet my new arrivals, Allie!" I gladly obeyed.

Lestrade looked startled to see me come out of the bathroom, and I grinned at her. "Allie Troy, at your service, Inspector Lestrade."

She groaned. "Please don't tell me she's anything like you, Holmes."

Now Holmes was grinning at Lestrade as well. "Actually, her observation skills are quite good." At his remark, I blushed, because everyone who knew Holmes knew that his compliments to others were rare. And it was considered an accomplishment to receive one.

"Well, I suppose one more Holmes wouldn't be too bad," relented Lestrade. "So kid, where're you from?" I related my story to all present, watching their looks flicker back and forth between disbelief and amazement. "So how are you going to get back?" Lestrade asked finally.

My voice turned hard. "I'm not," I said simply. They all looked at me in astonishment. (Except for Holmes, of course.)

"But, where will you go?" asked Deidre.

"She will stay here with Watson and me," Holmes told them.

Now it was his turn to receive looks of utter disbelief. (Except from me.) "Holmes, I will never cease to be amazed by you. You realize of course you're the last person -- other than Moriarty -- that we'd expect something like that from." said Lestrade. The others nodded their heads in agreement.

Holmes looked indignant. "Since when, Lestrade, have I refused to help those in need?"

We all had to laugh at that, but then I apologized to Holmes. I didn't mean him to take offense or anything. He grinned in acceptance to my apology, and the conversation resumed.

"How old are you, Allie?" asked Lestrade.

"I'm sixteen, but I'll be seventeen on May 21st," I told her.

"Hey, that's only two months from now!" exclaimed Deidre.

"Well, at least you're old enough to get a decent job," Lestrade informed me. "You should start to think about what you'd like to do."

"Um, how am I supposed to do that if I don't even know what jobs are out there?" I asked.

"Oh yeah, that. Well we've got holo-learners to get you educated," replied Lestrade.

We talked awhile longer, and then Lestrade got me settled comfortably in a chair with the learning vids. With a warm farewell, she and the Irregulars left for the day. I was fascinated with the 22nd century. So many new things to learn, I thought, and lost myself in the vids.


A few days later as Holmes and I were sitting down to a Watson-made lunch, he casually asked, "Any further on your job search, Ms. Troy?"

I sighed. "No. I'm just not sure what I'd be good at," I told him.

"You know," he said thoughtfully, "with your observation skills and a bit of training, you'd make a promising Inspector at the Yard."

I perked up. "You really think so, Sherlock?"

"Why not? And I'm sure Inspector Lestrade would be more than happy to help you apply."


Three days later found me riding in a hovercar with Lestrade. "First things first, kid," said Lestrade. "Before you can apply, we need to get you some identification, I think Chief Inspector Grayson can help us with that."

I looked at her in surprise. "Isn't he usually really crabby?"

Lestrade laughed. "I'm one of the few people at the Yard who really knows how to press all Grayson's buttons, manipulate him and all that." She grinned, and I grinned back.

Since I decided I'd rather not listen to Inspector and Chief Inspector argue, I remained in the hovercraft. About 15 minutes later, Lestrade walked out smirking triumphantly. I just grinned at her and said, "I'm not even going to ask."

"Grayson called the Information and History Center to explain the situation. All we have to do is go there and fulfill all the requirements," Lestrade informed me.

At the I and H Center, samples of my DNA were taken, recorded, and stored. My age, date of birth, and all that junk were also recorded. Then I was given an ID card, and a credits account was opened for me.

"Well, Allie Troy, I officially welcome you to the 22nd century," said Lestrade. "Now the only thing left is to bring you clothes up to date." She caught my worried look and told me, "Don't worry. I'll buy." I gave a relieved sigh. Things were finally starting to look up.

We picked out a white long-sleeved shirt, a red hooded vest, a pair of 22nd century jeans, some black boots, and a sky blue t-shirt for hot weather. We were both pleased with my new look. The next day Lestrade took me to apply for admittance to Yard training.


The week that followed seemed to drag by. Holmes noticed my boredom and suggested I read Watson's journals.

"Really?" I asked.

"Of course."

"Thanks! I love these stories!" I exclaimed, and Sherlock smiled at my enthusiasm.

Finally, one day at breakfast Holmes' computer informed me I had mail. When I read its contents, I could not resist a shriek of delight. Holmes popped his head through the doorway to find the cause of my outburst. I knew he felt awkward about hugs, but I threw my arms around him anyway and told him the good news. "I've been accepted by the Yard, Holmes!"

To my surprise, he gave me a small squeeze and his eyes twinkled at my announcement. "It shouldn't be long before you are fighting crime right alongside with Lestrade," he told me. To that he added, "I couldn't be any prouder of you than I am right now, even if you were my own daughter."

In the weeks afterward, I was much too busy with completing training at New Scotland Yard to be bored. I was allowed to keep an ionizer once I learned to use it, and my muscles were developing greatly.


One day, I arrived at 221B to find Holmes' apartment empty. I wondered if he'd left a note or anything, but I found none. Well, today is my birthday. Maybe he's just getting a holocard or something. Suddenly the doorbell rang and I went to answer it. I was pleasantly surprised to be greeted by the gang. "Surprise!" they all yelled and came into the apartment loaded down with presents, cake, etc. We had a meal even more extravagant than usual (prepared by Watson, of course) and when it came time for cake they all sang "Happy Birthday".

Then I got to open presents. From Deidre, a new hat; Wiggins, a watch; Tennyson, a computer game; Lestrade, a handheld computer; and Watson, a photo album. The present from Holmes I saved for last. I was amazed to find a complete set of copies of Dr. Watson's journals. I kept looking from the books, to Holmes, and back again. "Thank you so much, all of you!" I exclaimed. My eyes watered as they filled with tears of joy. "I haven't celebrated my birthday since my parents died, and I just want you to know how much this means to me. The tears rolled down my cheeks, but I could see they all understood I was happy. I gave each of them a hug, and then the party resumed.

As I lay on the couch in the apartment that night, I thanked God for the change in my life. I knew that this was way better than anything I might have experienced in my century. With that in mind, I drifted off to sleep.


*A few months later*

Well, I was through with my training. Now I was a full-fledged Inspector, and I leapt at every chance to live up to the title. I also had my own living quarters in the same apartment building as Lestrade. I also had my own hovercraft, and I loved driving it. Whenever I was in it, I couldn't help but think that those in the 21st century were really missing out. All they got to drive were cars and airplanes, boring stuff like that.


At lunch one day the news suddenly turned on. "The Swan Diamond," began the reporter, "has been reported stolen from the Museum of New London."

"More!" I commanded the computer, and the reporter relayed the details. "The Swan Diamond is one of the largest diamonds existing that is known to man. At about 1:30 AM this morning, one of the guards at the Museum noticed it missing and called the police."

I turned to Holmes and gave him a lopsided grin. "How long do you think it will be before Lestrade gats here?" I asked him nonchalantly.

"I give her about, oh, shall we say, five minutes?" he replied just as casually.

Sure enough, we were just sitting down to lunch when Lestrade burst in. "Holmes, did you-," she began, only to be interrupted by Holmes and myself.

"The Swan Diamond was stolen," we responded dispassionately.

"I shouldn't have asked," Lestrade said dryly. Then she asked, "You planning on lookin' into it?"

"Of course, Lestrade," Holmes replied. "Just let me put on my Inverness and deerstalker and retrieve my cane. Then we shall go to the Museum of New London."

"Why do I bother?" Lestrade muttered under her breath, causing Holmes and I to chuckle.

The ride in Lestrade's hovercraft was uneventful. Holmes was deep in thought, and no one talked much. Once at the Museum, Holmes immediately began to interview the guard who had first noticed the Diamond was missing.

Then I got to see firsthand what Dr. John Watson had meant when he had described Holmes as a bloodhound. Watson scanned for DNA traces, while Holmes checked the ground for footprints and who knows what else. Then he sniffed the air for any unusual scents. I did a little analyzing of my own. Lestrade discovered the alarm system taken apart, and I took a look at that as well.

Abruptly Holmes ended his search and thanked the security guard for his help. On the way back to 221B we discussed the case. "Apparently at least one of the intruders was a good mechanic, because the alarm system was disassembled," I reported.

"You mean, there were more than one?" asked Lestrade.

"Yes. According to our security guard, the floors had been cleaned just before his shift. Therefore there should only be two sets of footprints: the guard's and the thief's. But there were three sets, two of them going alongside each other. One of those two sets detoured to take apart the alarms," I explained. Holmes looked put out that I had beaten him to that portion of the analysis

We all then turned to him expectantly to hear of his findings. "There were no DNA traces, so they must have covered themselves well," Holmes began. "However, I did find this," he said and held up worn-out picture of a young woman with curly brown hair and a red hat.

Lestrade and I gasped. "That's Jill, Fenwick's old girlfriend!" I cried.

Holmes grinned. "Precisely, and that can only mean one thing: this theft was Moriarty's doing," he told us.

"What could Moriarty want with the Swan Diamond?" Lestrade wondered aloud. She spoke for all present.


The next day the three of us (four including Watson) met at 221B again to talk about the case. Unexpectedly our conversation was interrupted by a knock at the door. "I'll get it!" I said and walked to the door. When I opened it I gave a violent start. Standing in the hall was an almost exact likeness of Holmes, though his eyes and hair were a few shades lighter than his brother's.

I was shocked, but I manage to keep calm. "You must be Mycroft," I said casually. He looked mildly surprised, so I decided I was probably correct.

"Oh, I'm sorry, I forgot my manners. Come in, please!"

"Thank you, my dear," he said, stepping inside. As I followed him back to the others, I couldn't help thinking, Zed, he's cute!

When we reached them, them, they were in varying states of shock. "Lestrade, Watson, meet Mycroft Holmes." There was no need to introduce him to Sherlock; they were brothers.

"Hello Brother Mycroft," said Holmes. "I haven't seen you in about two centuries. Who brought you back to life?"

"Sir Evan Hargreaves," came the reply. "He wished to try his-ahem-process on another human subject, and since I was preserved in honey just like my brother, he decided he wanted to use me. Since the government of New London gave him permission, here I am."

The story was interesting of course, but not shocking like his appearance. We were pretty much used to strange and unusual happenings.

"Well, you came at a most opportune time," said Holmes at last. "Perhaps you can help us on our latest case."

We took turns at filling him in on the details. After listening intently, Mycroft asked, "Has anything else been stolen as of late?"

"Yes, different mechanical parts and computer chips, but the robbers that were caught didn't have anything on them. They have all been previously charged with petty thefts, so I highly doubt they have anything to do with the Swan Diamond."

I had been listening quietly, but now I spoke up. "No offense Lestrade, but I think they are connected. I'm guessing that Moriarty is planning to build something with all this stuff. Since the thieves were caught without anything on them, Moriarty must have relieved them of their loot just before they were caught."

Lestrade opened her mouth to speak but Mycroft beat her to it. "I am inclined to agree with Ms...I'm sorry, I have yet to learn your name," he said.

When he turned to me our gazes locked, and I became so lost in his blue eyes that I almost forgot to answer him. By now the others were staring, so I quickly told him, "Allie. Allie Troy."

"Well, then, Ms. Troy, it's a pleasure to make your acquaintance," he said, causing me to blush.

Oh, man, I wouldn't have done that if Holmes had said the same thing. What's going on with me?

As Mycroft turned back to Lestrade, I couldn't help but notice that the tips of his ears had turned slightly red. "As I was saying, I agree with Allie. The question is, what does Moriarty plan to build?"

No one spoke for a while. After about a minute the silence became too unbearable for me so I broke it by asking, "Anyone want cookies?" The others were obviously glad that someone had spoken finally, and they accepted the offer. I went down and got them from my hovercraft. I had baked them myself, so I hoped the others would like them. They were my favorites: peanut butter cookies.

My friends and I each took one, and they gave little exclamations of enjoyment as they bit into them. Mycroft and I reached for seconds, and ended up going for the same cookie. Our hands touched briefly, after which we both drew them back. "Sorry!" we apologized at the same time. We looked at each other, then to the others, (who were staring at us once more) and back again. Sherlock started to chuckle, and soon we were all laughing heartily.

Later that evening as we were preparing to leave, I suddenly thought of something. "Mycroft," I began, "do you have anywhere to stay?"

"Not yet," he replied.

"Unless Holmes would rather have you here, there's a pull-out couch in my apartment that you can use."

"It doesn't matter to me where my brother stays," put in Sherlock. "It's up to Mycroft entirely."

Mycroft looked at him and then at me. "I think I shall take you up on your kind offer, Allie. I'm not sure exactly how long my brother and I could stand to live with each other." I was delighted, though at the time I wasn't sure why. We all said goodnight, and proceeded to go our separate ways.

In my apartment I got Mycroft settled in, and then went to get into my pj's. They happened to be a sleeveless top and shorts. When I came back out to turn the lights off, I noticed Mycroft was staring at me. I glance down at myself and started laughing when I realized he had probably never seen this much bare skin on a female before. I also noticed that his ears had turned red again.

Zed! He looks adorable when he does that! "Goodnight, Mycroft," I said, still chuckling.

"Goodnight Allie," he replied, and with that I shut off the lights. The next morning the gang was unable to meet. Lestrade and I, who had been enjoying some crime-free days, were called into work to take care of some kidnappers. With the two of us working together, the job went smoothly. Soon we were free to go, since there was nothing else for us to do at the moment. Lestrade went straight to 221B while I detoured to pick up Mycroft.

Upon entering my apartment, I called his name, but no one answered. I discovered a note on my kitchen table. It read:

Dear Allie,

I have decided to take a little walk and get some fresh air.

I shook my head and smiled. Well, he better not get lost. Suddenly there was a knock at the door. At least I didn't have to wait for him long, I thought. I went and opened the door, but instead of Mycroft, there was a freak with black spiked hair and a pierced ear pointing an ionizer at me. He pulled the trigger and my arms were pinned to my sides by the green energy. I tried to shout, but he stuffed a kerchief in my mouth. Then, grabbing me by the shoulder, he proceeded to shove me down the hall. At first I struggled, until he pulled out a very sharp looking knife. I glared daggers at him and began to march stiffly alongside him.

Once outside, he propelled me towards a waiting hovercraft. Just then Mycroft rounded the corner, his nose in a book. I somehow managed to spit out the kerchief and yell, "Mycroft, hel-mmph!" The creep had stuffed the gag back into my mouth and tried to get me inside the hovercar, but it was too late. Mycroft had heard my cry for help. His head jerked up, and instantly he began to run towards us.

With a great leap, he knocked over my captor and landed on top of him. The knife and ionizer clattered to the pavement. Mycroft grabbed the ionizer and shot the man with it, (after changing the setting to stun) rendering him unconscious. Then he walked over to me.

He gently took the gag out of my mouth and asked, "Are you all right?"

"I think so," I said while he used the ionizer to remove my bonds, "but I feel a little shaky." Mycroft took my arm and put it around his neck and helped me walk to my apartment. "I'm going to call the Yard and tell them to pick up the goon, and then I'm going to call Holmes and tell him what happened," I told him.

When I related the story to Sherlock, his face took on a look of momentary astonishment, but he quickly recovered his usual composure. "I'm just glad you two are all right."

"We should be over in a few minutes, brother," said Mycroft, placing his hand on my shoulder. Holmes nodded and I signed off. After Mycroft took his hand off, my skin was left tingling from his touch. What's happening to me? I thought, somewhat bewildered.

At 221B Sherlock had compiled a list of everything that had been stolen lately. As I looked over it, an image began to form itself in my mind. "Watson," I said slowly, "could you please check to see what sort of things are needed to make ray guns?"

"Of course!" he said and began immediately to search his databanks.

"Start listing some of the components once you have found a list," I commanded.

He did so, and as we listened to the parts being told to us, Lestrade gasped. "A lot of those are parts that have been stolen!" she exclaimed.

"By Jove, you're right!" agreed Watson. "But how did you-"

"Eyes and brains, Watson," I said with a grim smile." Holmes looked pleased at the use of one of his favorite phrases. "Of course, sometimes I'd rather not be right," I added.

"Since all of the robberies are most certainly connected with the theft of the Swan Diamond..." began Holmes thoughtfully.

"...then Moriarty must be going to use the Diamond as an energy beam amplifier," Mycroft finished for him.

Meanwhile thoughts were tumbling around inside my head. "Watson," I started," will you please give a list of all the parts that Moriarty still needs?"

"With pleasure!" stated Watson and went straight to work. As he rattled off the names of the parts I was scribbling them down on paper, and then walked over to Holmes's computer to do a search.

"Bingo!" I cried suddenly, half startling the others. "You see," I explained, "there's only one warehouse in New London that sells those particular parts that are left. They are receiving a new shipment tonight at 5:00."

Lestrade brightened. "And when it arrives we'll be there to stop Moriarty!"

"No, we won't!" chorused Holmes, Mycroft, and myself.

Lestrade stared at us and then said, "You know what? This whole talking at the same time thing that you three keep doing? It's starting to get really old."

Everyone except Lestrade had to laugh at that. Then she asked us, "Why shouldn't we stop him? And please, one at a time!" She gave us a meaningful glare. We looked at each other and nodded in silent agreement: Sherlock would go first.

"Because if we stop them, my dear Inspector, there shall be no way to know exactly where Moriarty is building his weapon."

I was allowed to go next. "We will be there, but we'll stay hidden."

Mycroft finished our train of thought. "That way we shall be able to follow the thieves back to Moriarty's hideout."

Lestrade let this sink in, then sighed. "Well, they do say that great minds think alike," she said finally. "Guess that tells you how great my mind is!"

The look on Sherlock's face became gentle, and he placed a comforting arm around Lestrade. (While Mycroft and I looked at each other and grinned knowingly.)

"Don't worry, Lestrade," he soothed. "Yours is just a different type of great mind. That does not make it any less intelligent."

Mycroft and I made noises of agreement, and soon Lestrade's mood lifted. "In that case, what say we go get ready to do some bad guy tracking?" she said enthusiastically, her famous kick-butt gleam now shining in her eyes.

By 4:00 that afternoon we were all set. The plan was to hide while the robbery was taking place. When Moriarty and Fenwick got out of their transport to retrieve the loot, I would place a tracking device on their vehicle if possible. That way we wouldn't have to keep them in sight once they got moving.

When we got to the warehouse, it was only 4:15, so Lestrade and Holmes voted that I share my story (of how I came to be in the 22nd century) with Mycroft. His face took on a look of fascination as I told my tale. As I finished, he told me, "You mean you are not from this century? I wouldn't have known it if you hadn't told me!" Then we began to discuss the story.

Suddenly I noticed movement out of the corner of my eye. We were concealed in some trees near the warehouse, but we had a good view for spotting intruders. Quietly I said, "I spy a crook!" Casually the others took turns looking to see whom I had noticed. Looking at my watch, I noted that it was exactly 5:00. "At least we have a punctual criminal on our hands," I said sarcastically.

We watched as Moriarty and Fenwick headed for the back of the warehouse after parking their hovercar. "Well, here I go!" I quickly and silently got out of the cruiser and made my way to the hovercraft. Suddenly the tracker slipped out of my grasp, and I had to spend precious moments fumbling around on the grass for it. Not wanting to waste any more time, I sprinted the rest of the way. I crawled underneath the vehicle (it was still on and slightly off the ground) put the tracker in place, and switched it on.

I was about to crawl back out when the sound of Moriarty's voice caused me to freeze. I looked up at the underside of the hovercar, and found a few grips that suited my needs. I quickly latched myself to the underside of the vehicle so my body parts were not touching the ground. I hoped they would not see me underneath. They loaded their stolen goods and got inside the hovercraft. I heaved a sigh of relief, but it was short-lived. The hovercar was lifting farther and farther from the ground. I realized that by the time I was able to detach myself from the hovercar we would be too high off the ground for me to get off, so I could only hold on for dear life as we sped away.

Suddenly my comlink beeped and I manage to take my left hand off its grip to look at the caller. It was a very worried-looking Holmes. "Are you all right?" he asked anxiously.

"For now," I said, "but I'm not sure how long I can stay on."

"The tracker is working perfectly, so we are on your trail," he said, trying to reassure me. Then he gave me a lopsided grin. "You will most likely receive a severe lecture from Mycroft, who was scared out of his wits when the hovercraft took off with you on it-or rather, under it."

"Really?" I asked.

"Oh yes," replied Sherlock. I pity you once we reach you. Good luck!"

"And be careful, please!" I heard Mycroft plead from the background. Then Holmes signed off, and I replaced my left hand on its grip. Thankfully, it was only a short while longer before we landed.

Now I was face with another problem: this time when we reached the ground, the hovercar would be turned off, trapping me underneath. The underside was up a little higher than the edges of the vehicle, which would touch the ground, so thankfully I would not be smooshed. Still, I wondered how the others could get me out without attracting the attention of whoever was going to be inside the hideout. Suddenly, I heard Fenwick and Moriarty unloading the goods and carrying them inside. Well, at least they were gone now.

My comlink turned on again. This time it was Lestrade. "How ya doin' kid?" she asked.

"Just fine," I replied, "but we may have a little difficulty getting me out, since the hovercraft is now on the ground."

She smiled. "Compared with some of the things I've done, this should be a piece of cake!" she reassured me. "There are usually panels in the bottoms of hovercrafts, so we shouldn't have to turn it on to get you out." I heard faint sounds of their hovercar settling to the ground, and I was relieved to know that I should be out soon.

True to Lestrade's word, there was panel that opened in the floor of the hovercraft. Soon it was pulled open, and Holmes and Mycroft helped me to crawl out of my temporary prison. They each pulled me into a brief embrace, and I couldn't help saying, "Boy, am I glad to see you guys." Then we proceeded with our plans.

Cautiously we made our way into Moriarty's hideout. Since Moriarty had been sure that no one would discover it, the security was decidedly low tech, and we easily slipped past it.

"The room where the ray gun is being built will most likely be the farthest room from the entrance," Holmes whispered, and we followed him down corridor after corridor. We arrived at a room with its door halfway open we peeked in, and could see the beginnings of the large gun being built. I was about to quietly ask what we should do next when there was a bunch of clicking noises behind us.

We all slowly turned around. "Oh..." I said.

"...my..." said Holmes.

"...word!" finished Mycroft. Of course, this was all said much faster than I can write it. Lestrade gave us a glare, since we had just finished each other's sentence.

Anyway, we turned around to see a bunch of robots pointing ionizers at us. We jumped out of the way just as they fired. Suddenly we found ourselves in combat against them. We moved so that our backs were touching each other, and we faced outward to fend off the robots' attacks. Holmes and Mycroft used their retractable canes to deflect the shots (Mycroft had equipped himself with one before we left), while Lestrade and I returned fire. One of the robots managed to get a shot in-between us, and we were forced to dive apart.

Abruptly, Lestrade and I found ourselves being herded away from the Holmes brothers. We tried to continue our battle, but there were too many of them. We were stunned with the ionizers. The last thing I saw was the pair of horrified looks on Holmes's and Mycroft's faces. Then everything went black.

Since I was unconscious for this part of the story, I will tell it to you as Holmes and Mycroft later told it to me, so it's basically in third person now.

The Holmes brothers watched helplessly as Lestrade and Allie were stunned and carried off by the robots. They could only continue to defend themselves. Finally it became too much for Sherlock, and he carelessly jammed his cane into the head of a robot, ruining its circuitry. Mycroft followed suit, and together they bashed, crushed, and stabbed the rest of the robots out of order.

"Quickly, Mycroft!" cried Sherlock, but neither needed any prompting from the other. They were soon sprinting in the direction the women had been taken. They were stalled yet again as they almost collided into an energy field. Holmes and Mycroft worked together to take apart the tiny devices on the walls that controlled the field, as only they could.

By now they had been delayed for about ten minutes, and anything could have happened to Allie and Lestrade. Holmes could see his brother was becoming agitated, and he himself was beginning to feel frantic. Where are they?! he thought as they rushed down the hall.

Abruptly they halted. Before them stood another doorway, and they crept silently into the room. Once inside, Mycroft noticed a stack of crates close to the door. Pointing them out to Sherlock, he hid behind them, his brother following. From here they had a good view of the room. Suddenly Holmes felt Mycroft stiffen beside him.

When he turned to see why, he had to bite his tongue to keep from crying out in anger. There was an object something like a wall, and it was made out of metal. Attached to it were two familiar figures: Lestrade and Allie. Their wrists were bound above their heads by handcuffs, which appeared to be stuck to the metal thing. Their ankles were bound as well, and their feet weren't even touching the ground.

Suddenly Holmes heard footsteps. He noticed a doorway on the side of the opposite him, and suddenly Moriarty came through it. He walked over to where his captives were and grinned evilly. "Well, what have we here? Two female Yardies if I'm not mistaken. They shall probably be of use as bargaining chips of some sort." Then Mycroft noticed that the two women were starting to awaken.

Okay, I'm awake now so it's back to my viewpoint. As blurry forms came into focus, I realized that Moriarty was standing in front of me. I turned to Lestrade and found that while she was conscious, she had not yet opened her eyes. "Lestrade? I'm thinking you'll want to keep your eyes shut," I told her.

"Ya, right!" she said, but she groaned when her vision cleared.

"You know, Lestrade, I don't say these things lightly," I scolded her.

"No kidding," she said miserably.

"So nice of you to join me," said Moriarty.

"Our pleasure -- not!" said Lestrade sarcastically.

"Tsk tsk, my dear Lestrade, such bad manners."

Holmes stiffened at Moriarty's use of his pet name for Lestrade.

Moriarty continued. "First you intrude on my property, and then you treat me with scorn. Tsk tsk!"

All of a sudden I noticed Holmes behind a pile of old crates, and realized he and Mycroft must be trying to figure out what to do. I had to keep Moriarty from finding them before they were ready to face him. An idea came into my mind. "Moriarty, we have a dinner party tonight, so if you let us go we'll beat you to bloody pulp and be on our way."

The grin on his face faded, and was replaced with a scowl. I feigned a yawn and told him, "This is really boring. Can we do something else now? I know! Let's play, 'Throw Moriarty in Jail'! That's a fun game."

Moriarty was getting angry, but the only thing that I cared about was keeping his gaze on me, and not anywhere else in the room. I think Lestrade caught on, because she joined me.

"How many Moriartys does it take to catch two women? None! He lets his robots do all the work!"

We were actually starting to enjoy ourselves now. The look on Moriarty's face was incredibly amusing. "Do you realize you're the only man who's spent two lifetimes so far trying to outsmart Sherlock Holmes?" I asked Moriarty.

He growled in response. I was about to speak again when he slapped me and shouted, "That's enough!" It stung, but I only stared coolly at him.

"What's the matter?" I taunted, keeping up my tirade of sarcastic comments. "Did I hurt your feelings? Ohhhh, poor baby!"

Moriarty raised his hand as if to slap me again, when a voice dripping with venom spoke behind him. "How dare you! I know that you are evil, Moriarty, but I have always considered you a gentleman. Perhaps now I shall think differently," Holmes told him, while pointing Lestrade's ionizer at him. (Lestrade and I had been disarmed while we were unconscious, and it appeared that Mycroft and Holmes had picked up our weapons from the table where they had lain.)

Moriarty had whirled around to face the Holmes brothers, and was now scowling angrily at them. Holmes fired, and Moriarty was bound with the ionizer's energy ropes.

Then the brothers walked over to us. "Hmmm. I wonder if there is a button or switch around here…" murmured Holmes. "Hallo, here it is!" He pressed it, and hurried over with Mycroft to catch us as we fell off.

Suddenly Moriarty laughed behind us. "So sorry, Holmes, but it just so happens that I have an appointment elsewhere. I guess I shall have to destroy my weapon, but I will most likely build another someday!" Fenwick had come in and had freed his master. They ran out of the room.

Mycroft and Holmes were about to go after them when a robotic voice caused us all to freeze. "Self-destruct sequence will begin in 1:00." Then it began to count down the seconds until the partially built ray gun would blow up. While Lestrade and I were no longer stuck to the wall, our bonds were still in place and we could not get up. We were simultaneously gathered into the arms of the Holmes brothers, and then they began to run.

As we moved through the long corridors we could still hear the countdown. "39...38...37..." The voice got fainter as we got closer to the exit. "...25...24...23..." Come on, I thought, you two can do it! "...10...9...8...7..." Almost there! "...3...2..."

The last number was cut off as we burst through the door to the outside. Lestrade and I were thrown onto the ground, and then Mycroft and Holmes shielded us with their bodies. Kablaam! The building exploded into millions of pieces as the ray gun blew up.

"Do you have it, Mycroft?" I asked him as we sat up, covered only in a few bruises and scratches.

He nodded and reached into his Inverness to pull out the object in question. "The Swan Diamond!" exclaimed Lestrade as it glinted in the moonlight.

Holmes gave a low whistle. "When did you...." he said, his voice trailing off.

"While you were chatting with Moriarty," explained Mycroft.

"Well, the Museum of New London should be happy to have this back," said Sherlock. Then the two brothers carried us to Watson, whom we had told to stay in the hovercar. He was looking very worried for a robot, and was more than happy to remove the cuffs that restrained Lestrade and myself.

I couldn't hold back any longer. I turned to Mycroft and asked, "Do you care if I make a scene?" He looked at me surprised, but shook his head. I wrapped my arms around his neck and he leaned down a little, inclining his head. When our lips met, I almost felt as if I had stuck a piece of metal into an outlet, but it wasn't painful, only wonderful, and I could tell Mycroft was enjoying it as well. He held me close even after the kiss had ended, but we turned to Lestrade and Holmes together. Holmes was looking at us funny, and Lestrade was grinning from ear to ear.

Abruptly she turned on Sherlock and grabbed him by the collar of his Inverness. He utterly failed to break away. "Your turn, Sherlock!" she said, and kissed him tenderly. We watched them in silence, my head on Mycroft's shoulder.

When they were finished, Holmes smiled at her. Then he put his arm around her waist, and we all walked to the hovercraft. When we noticed that Watson was staring determinedly in the opposite direction, obviously not wanting to invade upon the moment, we all had a good laugh. In the joy of the moment, one thought stood out in my mind: I belong!

When Watson asked, "How ever did you make it out of the building? I thought for sure you were goners!" we all replied, "It's elementary, my dear Watson!" and with that we were on our way home.


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