The Clown, the Drug Ring, and the Wardrobe
Chapter IVFlorence’s arrival at Baker Street was most definitely the grandest that John had ever seen. As soon as Mrs. Hudson caught sight of a female presence she took it upon herself to make tea and biscuits. Which both siblings almost chocked to death on when the landlady asked if they were a couple. They made sure to clarify their relationship. Poor Mrs. Hudson turned beat red when finding that out.
Flo took the time to look at the older woman. She was a widow but incredibly happy that her husband was executed; he never treated her right apparently. Mrs. Hudson was currently in a relationship with the manager of the deli next door; she constantly talked about how well managed it was. Flo could also tell that having another woman in the house was quite possible the best thing for her. Sherlock and John must have been a handful; she doubted Mrs. Hudson got out that often.
The siblings were able to escape the overly nice woman when John mentioned that they had a case. She ushered them upstairs at the very mention.
“Sorry if it’s messy, Sherlock likes to keep it this way.” John apologized as they entered the flat. Bohemian, the only way Flo could possibly explain it’s “style”. There were papers, clothing items, and books scattered everywhere; even on the walls things were held up by staples and knives. Flo tilted her head a bit when she saw Sherlock working diligently on John’s laptop and talking to a real human skull.
The Watson’s stood at the door for a few minutes before Sherlock noticed them. “Well where have you two been?”
Flo scoffed, “Trying to find where on earth you went off to after you left us at the crime scene.”
Sherlock shrugged eyes still glued to computer.
“So anything you’d care to tell us, Sherlock?” John asked grabbing his computer away from him and muttering something along the lines of ‘Once a week isn’t enough time in-between password changes’.
Sherlock hopped out of his chair and pulled a rainbow afro wig from a drawer.
“Did you get that from the crime scene?” Flo asked surprised. She had not seen in on him when they were checking the wardrobe and with the social skills she saw Sherlock display with the officers she was sure that they had not allowed for him to keep it.
The detective nodded, “Yes. I used it to track the shop where he had gotten the clown outfits and his choice in attire isn’t a fetish.”
“Well then that’s good.” John said sarcastically.
“Florence, John. The man was actually a clown. I recognized the thread used for the tags as one used in a complex of shops nearby and knowing that, was able to find The Gag And Drag Clown Shop...”
He stopped explaining to look at the Watson siblings who had begun giggling uncontrollably as soon as he had named the shop. “Gag...and…Drag!” Flo said before erupting in laughter. Sherlock was not remotely impressed with the younger Watson’s attitude, if anything he expected more from the girl who shared his gift. Sherlock could not help but feel the corners of his mouth twitch upwards at the sound of her ridiculously loud laugh, though. “Yes, it’s an odd name for a shop…”
John chuckled, “Odd, Sherlock?”
“John I’d expect more from you, being the older sibling.”
This caused John to stop his laugh and glare at Sherlock. A sight that Flo tried her best to refrain from laughing at, “Okay, so the ga-… clown shop. What’s its relevance?”
“They provide costumes exclusively to carnivals, and there’s only one that they provide to that Mr. Gaffen would have had access too.” Sherlock answered.
“So I’m guessing tomorrow we’ll be visiting the carnival?” John asked.
Sherlock smiled and nodded at his two companions.
Because Flo’s original lodging had been turned into a crime scene. Her brother decided to take upon himself to let her stay at Baker Street. When they told Mrs. Hudson that Flo was staying the night, the landlady made one of the best suppers in her career. She had taken a liking to John’s little sister and Flo was not complaining.
When the time came for the ‘normal’ people to go to sleep, John tried to be a gentleman and offered her to take his bed while he took the couch. However, after 2 yelling matches and 3 attempts at dragging her to a comfy bed, he gave up. Lying on the couch was not that bad until she realized she probably was not going to get any sleep.
“Damn it! Will you please turn that light off?” She whispered angrily at Sherlock. It was already past midnight and the man had been keeping her up with the only reading light that she could compare to the sun.
The detective looked up from his research and at the squinting Flo, “I’m preparing for tomorrow.”
“Don’t you sleep?” She said groaning.
“Not while I’m on a case and I don’t see why you do. I understand why John does, but you’re not normal like him.”
She immediately sat up, “Normal? He’s been through medical school, war, and survived a childhood in the screwed up Watson household! And you’re calling him normal?”
He knew that she admired her brother but this reaction was alien to him. Flo may have mentioned that Mycroft and his relationship was strained, but she had no idea how horrible it was. Seeing how wound up the younger Watson was getting, he tried to explain, “My comment was in no way purposely offending your brother. I understand that he has done heroic things but in the end he is still a normal person…”
Flo corrected him, “He’s an extraordinary normal person.”
“Yes. And you, though you are related to him have a skill that puts you above him. That was all that I was commenting on.” He finished. Sherlock noticed that she continued to eye him before she lied back down. The girl was similar to him because of her ability to deduce but their emotional responses could not be more different. “Fine, and just so you know I’m normally unable to fall asleep.” She said finally.
“I would think so. A nasty New York neighborhood and late night hacking…” Sherlock said casually glancing back down at his paperwork.
Flo’s eyes snapped up before a small smile appeared on her face, “What gave it away?”
“The scratches near the wheels of your suitcase. There was spit and sewer water embedded in each of them. And there was a splash of pepper spray on the handle.”
“And the hacking?”
“Though you worked at cybercrimes, your wrists have deeper marks that suggested more than the usual hours at work. Plus, your suitcase is out of your budget.”
The young Watson looked at the ground. She knew what he was implying, “I worked on domestic cases. I didn’t give out government secrets, Mr. Holmes. Though I did hack into British Government once, it was only an experiment…”
Sherlock smirked. An experiment. Yet another thing the two geniuses had in common.
“Though I do love this lovely conversation,” Flo began, “will you turn off the lamp!”
Sherlock did so. Even though his eyes could adjust to the dark quickly, he gave up on the papers and he reached for his violin. He placed the instrument under his chin as he made his way to the window. The detective looked back to see Flo glaring, “John has already informed me to not ‘wake the dead’ since you are lodging with us.”
Flo hesitated in closing her eyes, fearing that the worst violin screeching would just wake her up again. She was surprised to find that Sherlock’s violin playing was rather gentle and its soft melody lulled her to sleep.