The Mystery of the Holmes House

By Melissa Mitri

It was a dark and stormy winter's night when Mycroft Holmes and his younger brothers Shadrach and Sherlock arrived at their father's house. Sherlock was not happy at being back home after leaving school and becoming a consulting detective. He would rather be back on Baker Street with his dear friend and partner Dr. John Watson, but his father had called the family together this Christmas. Shadrach sensed his twin brother's unhappiness and squeezed his hand.

"Sherlock, it's only for a few days. Besides, Dad mentioned in his letter that he had a mystery for us to solve."

"Shadrach, you know my habits when it comes to solving mysteries."

"Dad doesn't."

"Touché."

Just then, Mycroft stuck his head out the door. "Come on, you two. Dad wants to see the both of you."

"When has he wanted to see us?" Shadrach and Sherlock asked.

"I don't know. You better come in though, before he gets mad."

"We better go in," Sherlock said, clearly not happy about it. They went inside, not noticing someone following them. That is, except for Sherlock because it was indeed Dr. Watson following them. Looks like Watson figured out where I was going although I didn't tell him where I was going or who I was going to see. I may try to signal him tonight. He may be of help. Sherlock thought.

They entered the library, dark except for a lamp by a desk and a fire, per their father's habit. He was sitting in a chair by the fire, reading a letter. He appeared not to notice that his two youngest sons had entered the room. Finally, he folded the letter and looked up.

"I was just reading a letter that Inspector Lestrade of Scotland Yard sent about the both of you. I was surprised to receive a letter from him. He never seemed to me the type to go into police work."

"You know my superior!" Shadrach exclaimed.

"His family is a friend of the family's. What do you mean about him being your superior?"

"I'm part of the Scotland Yard police force. I started there after I left school. Inspector Lestrade is the head of my group," Shadrach explained.

Their father looked shocked. After all, Shadrach was shy during his elementary school years and made no sign of interest about entering into the force. On the other hand, the twins, as well as Mycroft, saw very little of their father during their youth. Turning to Sherlock, he said, "Inspector Lestrade also mention the help that you have been a lot of help as well to Scotland Yard, along with someone named Dr. Watson. Who is Dr. Watson?"

"He is a friend of mine and my partner in solving mysteries. Why do you ask, Father?" Sherlock replied.

"I ask because he praises your 'uncanny abilities in solving mysteries' as he put it. Also, his daughter Abigail is here, asking for you."

The next morning, Sherlock caught her. After they talked about the jewel thief, he placed his hand on her arm. "Abigail."

"Sherlock, what do you want?" She asked, interupting.

"Abigail, will you marry me?" Sherlock asked, pulling a ring out of his pocket.

"Yes," she replied, blushing and putting the ring on. "Did you tell my father?"

"I sent a telegram to him asking if it was okay. He said that it was."

They both became very aware of Shadrach and Mycroft looking out the window at them. Without saying a word, they both made snowballs and threw them at the open window, hitting Sherlock's brothers before they could close it.

"Why'd you do that for?" Mycroft yelled as he brushed snow off his sleeve. He then attempted to throw a snowball at his younger brother, but missing.

"We could ask you two the same thing," Sherlock replied, smiling.

Just then, a carriage rolled up. Inside were Inspector Lestrade, his wife Mary Watson, and Shadrach's wife Carrie. Now it was Sherlock's dad's time to smile. He had invited them all for Christmas and the wedding.

On the 27, Sherlock and Abigail were married. After the ceremony, Watson said, "Sherlock, you are the last person I'd thought would've got married. In fact, I remember you telling me that you wouldn't."

"A man's allowed to change his mind, Watson, can't he?"

"Touché."

Just then, a snowball hit him in the back of the head. Turning around, he saw that it was Mycroft.

"Mycroft, I don't think you want me to bury you in snow, do you? Besides, you're not supposed to hit the groom or the bride with snow."

"I didn't have any rice on me. Besides, how do I know you will?"

Just then, an avalanche of snow fell off the roof, burying Mycroft. Sherlock looked up to see Wiggins on the roof.

"Good aim."

"Thanks, gov'ner."

Just then, Mycroft got out of the pile of snow. Wiggins took off running. Sherlock and Watson went back inside before Mycroft could catch them.

"Where's Mycroft?" the elder Mr. Holmes asked.

"Outside. He managed to get snow on top of him."

His dad chuckled and asked, "How did he managed that?"

Before Sherlock could answer, Mycroft came in, snow all over him.

"Someone pushed a whole lot of snow on me," he said, fuming.

"When you stand next to a roof in the wintertime, snow may fall down on you," his dad said, trying not to laugh.

"It's not funny, Dad."

"Can't I give you advice?"

On the other side of the room, Inspector Lestrade and his wife were talking to his daughter about how grownup she looked. Sherlock went over and joined them, partly because he didn't want to get involved in his dad's argument with Mycroft. Lestrade then took the time to give some advice to him about his daughter. Mrs. Lestrade asked that Sherlock took care of Abigail. Sherlock reassured her that he would.

Then he and Abigail spent some time talking about their new life together. They then kissed, but soon realised that the room had gone completely quiet. They broke apart and saw that everyone was looking at them. Even the Baker Street Irregulars were looking through the window.

When the next day came, Sherlock and Abigail got on a train, heading to Dumfries for their honeymoon. They both were really nervous, but excited.

"I hope that you don't mind living in London, Abigail."

"I don't. I grew up in London."

They were quiet for a few minutes before Abigail asked him if he wanted to have children. He replied that he did. They started talking about different things like him being a consulting detective. After a few hours, she fell asleep in his arms and he fell asleep a few minutes later. A conductor awoke them when they had stopped at Dumfries. They got off, got their luggage, and hailed a taxi. After they got to their hotel, registered, and went up to their room, they started to unpack. When they were done, they went down and ate a late supper.

They spent a week at Dumfries. While they were there, Sherlock found that his wife had studied the reports of his cases that had been published and he soon taught her a game that he, Shadrach, and Mycroft used to play in terms of deduction. He soon realised that she was a quick learner and was correct about many things that she deducted. For instance, she managed to deduce that it was Sherlock and not a bellhop who came to their room on their last day, even under his disguise.

When they were about ready to check out of the hotel, a bellhop came to them and asked, "Which one of you is Mr. Sherlock Holmes?"

"I am. Why?" Sherlock replied.

"I have a letter for you from your father. It just got here this morning." Sherlock took the letter and opened it. Reading it quickly, he saw that the Merry Men gang had moved into stealing the Royal Jewels. The royal family would pay a reward of 1,000 pounds to whoever solved the mystery.

"Abigail, we better get going. I'll tell you why on the ride home." They checked out and got a fast taxi. When they got on the train, Sherlock told his wife everything. When they got back to London, Inspector Lestrade was waiting for them. So was the entire Holmes family-Sherlock's brothers, their father-and Watson. This was a serious matter.

As they headed to Scotland Yard, Inspector Lestrade told Sherlock and Abigail what was going on. Thanks to their information, they had been able to track down all but 1 member of the gang. This member, by the name of Kurt Summers, was the one who had the jewels, they thought.

"When did the gang get in?" Sherlock asked.

"During the day," was the reply.

"For a burglary that big, they would have needed inside help," Abigail mused.

"You're right, Abigail. How else could they have done it?" Sherlock replied to his wife's comment.

"Any idea who would be involved with this?" Inspector Lestrade asked.

"I think that's something we all want to know," Mycroft said.

"I know this Kurt Summers guy. He went to secondary school with us, remember, Shadrach?" Sherlock said.

"Yes, he was a bit of a trouble-maker, wasn't he?"

"Yes. I was friends with him."

"Really? The only time I remember you hanging around him is when he was teaching you the things he knew," Mycroft said thoughtfully.

"How do you think I learned how to pick locks?" Sherlock asked with a sly grin on his face.

"I always wondered about that!" Watson exclaimed.

"Now you know."

That day, Sherlock, and Abigail went down to where Kurt's last known address. When they got there, Sherlock knocked on the door. When the door was opened, a man was standing there.

"Whatever you're selling, I don't want it," he said.

"I'm not selling anything. I'm looking for Kurt Summers."

"That's me. Who are you?"

"Sherlock Holmes." With that, Kurt's face broke out into a grin and he shook Sherlock's hand enthusiastically.

"How are you? I haven't seen you in ages. Come on in, both of you!" They went in to his house, Kurt showed them to his living room and they sat down. "Sherlock, what brings you over my way? You don't normally come to my place, not since, well you know."

"Since I almost got caught helping you pull off a practical joke on my dad?"

"Yea."

"Kurt, what do you know of the Merry Men gang?"

"The group that pulled off the jewel heist?"

"How did you know that?"

"I heard about the reward that the royal family was offering. Why?"

"The bobbies think that you're the one who helped the gang get away with the jewels."

"Why would they say that?"

"Because you have connections to the gang, or at least some of the members, and you work at the Buckingham Palace."

"They think it was an inside job and that I was the one who helped them pull it off?"

"Yes. They also think that you're hiding the jewels here," Abigail replied.

"Let me tell you something, besides the fact that I don't have the jewels. One of the members of the Royal Family is also a member of the gang. Not the heir to the throne, but a relation to the heir. It was Duke Cunningham's young 18-year-old son and he told me that he was going to steal the jewels. He gave me his entire plan design. I hid it here, behind the painting." With that, Kurt went to the painting, took it off the wall, and opened the safe. He took out the papers, showing Sherlock and Abigail that there was nothing hidden there. "You can take these back to Scotland Yard if you want."

"Thank you, Kurt," Sherlock said. He had been watching his friend's face the entire time. Kurt's face had shown all honesty the entire time. When Sherlock and Abigail had left, after getting the Duke's address, Kurt realised that his friend was really going to get to the bottom of the mystery and would need help. He then ran out after his friend.

"Sherlock!"

"What, Kurt?" Sherlock asked, turning around.

"Let me help you. I know Duke Cunningham's son, Andrew, better then you do."

"You mean, you'll be the bait?"

"Yes."

"Are you sure that you will be able to pull it off?"

"Yes. Don't worry."