It began with the death of a dog. He had been an Irish Setter named Redbeard, who was loved by no one more than Sherlock Holmes. Sherlock had been, up until this point, nothing more extraordinary than an exemplary student at Eton College with a singular talent for observation and logic. While he was not popular among his peers, one friendship he had always been able to count on was that of his dog. The news of Redbeard's death awoke something inside of him, something which had lain dormant, waiting to break free. It would change everything and send his life spinning in an unknown direction.
Sherlock's hands shook as he read his mother's letter over and over. Only when he finally looked up did he realize that everything else in the room was shaking as well. The other boys were looking at him with fear in their eyes and some of them were even running. Others shouted at him.
"Good lord! What the bloody hell is wrong with you, Holmes!?"
"Stop it, whatever you're doing!"
"You're a freak! One of those mutants!"
"Somebody knock him out! He's going to kill us all!" Now with both his emotions and his senses overwhelmed, objects began to fly about wildly and his chest heaved with the effort of maintaining what remained of his self-control. The letter in his hands had ripped in two and he dropped the crumpled pieces to grip the edge of his seat. The sounds of heavy footsteps coming rapidly down the corridor reached his ears and he heard voices in his head telling him that they were coming to restrain him and even hurt him if necessary. A fresh wave of panic took him and he launched himself towards the door. It flew open of its own accord, but just as he had made it through, three men grabbed him and wrestled him to the floor. Savage, throat ripping screams found their way out of him as he struggled. Thin blue arcs of electricity sprang forth from his body, effectively tazing the men who were trying to pin him down. They flew off of him and he scrambled to his feet, tearing off down the corridor as fast as he could. Other students leapt out of his way, fearing him the moment they saw him. He had almost made it out when the heavy weight of a thick tome came down on the back of his head and knocked him out cold.
When he came to, it was a week later and he was in his bed at home, wearing his favourite pajamas. He could hear Mummy and his brother, Mycroft, arguing about him, though they weren't anywhere nearby. He had been expelled and they were bickering over whether to take it up with the school or let him decide what to do with his life. Mummy was in favour of the latter. At the moment, however, he didn't care either way. His biggest concern was the fact the only friend he had ever had was still dead.
Throwing the duvet off himself, Sherlock shrugged on a dressing gown and shuffled barefoot out of his room, through the upstairs hallway and down the back stairs, and out into the garden. He heard Mycroft's footsteps behind him and sensed his brother's thoughts about convincing him of his position, which included, among other things, agreeing to suppress his newly emerged mutant powers.
"Stay away from me!" Sherlock snarled over his shoulder and when Mycroft persisted, he could not hold back. "I said stay away!" The elder brother flew backwards, slamming into the wall of the house. Sherlock did not look back to see if he was alright, instead continuing on to the tree at the very back of the garden, which he climbed with practiced ease, even with unshod feet. He perched there for many hours, ignoring the rest of the world and staring down at Redbeard's grave, wallowing in his grief. He did not realize that tears had been streaming from his eyes until he felt a drip on his arm. He saw his father coming, so he hastily rubbed the moisture from his face and pretended not to know his father was there. Even at this distance, he could sense his father's worry. Siger didn't want him to feel alone, especially in his mourning of Redbeard. The fact that his father was more focused on how Redbeard's passing was effecting him than on his status as a mutant made him more acquiescent than he otherwise would be to what his father had to say.
"Sherlock, would you like to come in for a cuppa? Kettle's just boiled and we've got some of your favourite biscuits," Siger called with a warm smiled. He had noticed Sherlock's red and puffy eyes, but wasn't going to say anything. After a moment of thought, the teenager climbed down from the tree and followed his father back into the house. Mycroft was now alone in the sitting room, sitting on the sofa and massaging his shoulder. He had been hurt by Sherlock's telekinetic outburst. Sherlock couldn't say that he felt at all sorry. In the kitchen, he he heard his mother thinking about the newspaper she had hidden away and how she didn't want him to see it, because it might upset him. He of course went straight for its hiding place and blocked out his mother's objections. There, right before his eyes, was a nasty article about a violent mutant boy being discovered at Eton College. The paper praised the school for expelling him and called him 'a danger to everyone around him'. Electric arcs jumped from his fingers and attacked the paper, quickly setting it ablaze. His mother knocked it from his hands to the floor and stomped it out.
"Sherlock! You've got to stop doing things like this. You could have seriously injured Mycroft or started a housefire," his mother scolded.
"You think I can control it?" he snapped angrily and a bolt of electricity leapt from him to an empty mug on the table, causing it to shatter. He could immediately sense his mother's fear. "It's not reasonable to fight for my right to make choices about my life, only to turn around and tell me not to be what I am." With that, Sherlock turned right back around and stormed out of the house, returning to his perch in the tree. No one attempted to retrieve him and he did not come down until it was dark and he could no longer sense any active minds in the house. He slinked back across the garden and climbed up through his bedroom window.
Waiting for him on his bedside table was a plate of biscuits and a glass of milk, along with a note from his mother, which informed him that she was deeply sorry for what had happened early and that she would do her best to meet his needs, whatever they might be. It did nothing to fill the empty ache in his chest, but it did allow him to forgive her. He nibbled at his biscuits and sipped his milk, beginning to feel a little calmer than he had been before.
After having been sedated for a week, Sherlock didn't feel at all like sleeping, so he sat up and reread a book on anatomy. The following morning, he dressed properly and took his glass and plate down to kitchen, where his mother greeted him with a soft smile.
"Good morning, Sherlock dear. I was wondering if you wouldn't mind popping down to the village to get the shopping." She was trying to show him trust and give him something to do, which he found he honestly appreciated. He took the shopping list she had held out to him, more than anything wanting to prove to himself that he could function.
Wordlessly, he shrugged on his woolen peacoat and made his way out of the house. The chilly air bit at his face as he trudged to the shed, where he kept his motorbike. Tentatively, he tried to make the door open without him touching it. To his dismay, it flew off its hinges. He would fix it when he returned, but for now, he focused on getting his motorbike out and running. It took a few tries for him to kick it to life, but soon he was speeding along familiar country roadways.
Fifteen minutes later, he was in the village, outside the local grocer. Not many people were about, but those who were, he could hear their thoughts like persistent chatter in his head, it was irritating to say the least, but he soldiered on, gathering the items on his mother's list with as much focus as he could muster for such a mundane task. It was only when he noticed that people were staring at him that things started to go badly.
They knew who he was and they were afraid of him. Their thoughts grew louder and louder the more he became distracted by them and it was giving him a steadily worse and worse headache. As their number increased, he pain started to overwhelm him. The items he'd been holding dropped from his grasp as he fell to his knees, clutching his head. He desperately wanted the voices to stop, but he had no idea how to tune them out. God, it hurt so much, he was almost sure his skull would split open any second. With what remained of his willpower, he got back to his feet and ran out of the shop to climb onto his bike. A parked lorry was blocking his way out of the village and without him even willing it, the vehicle was lifted high into the air. When he had passed, it came crashing back to the ground, eliciting several screams from onlookers.
Sherlock sped home as fast as he could, knowing that no member of the constabulary was brave enough to pursue him. He didn't put away his motorbike when he got home, instead leaving it out by the front gate. Being away from such a large number of people cleared his head and allowed him to think. He had had decided that he had leave and stay away from people as much as possible for the rest of his life.
After quickly apologizing to his mother for being unable to get the shopping when he came storming in, he dashed up to his room and started to pack some of his things. He well and truly was a freak, a danger to himself and others. He had been kidding himself, thinking that he might learn to function around people. Even before all of this had happened, the idea that he could belong had obviously been a polite fantasy. With Redbeard gone, there was nothing left to keep him here among people.
"Sherlock, there's a couple of people here to see you," his father told him after appearing in the doorway, a worried expression on his long face. "They're not police."
"No one should be seeing me; I don't care who they are," Sherlock shot back, not even turning to look at his father.
"They're like you." That finally grabbed his attention and he went still. He could sense two new people in the house, but he could not hear their thoughts, like they were shielded from him. "They say they want to help you." Sherlock shoved passed his father and thundered down the stairs to the sitting room. There he found two unfamiliar people conversing with his mother. One was a bald man in a wheelchair and the other was a young woman with red hair. They all looked over when he burst into the room and the man smiled kindly at him.
"Who are you? What do you want with me?" the teen demanded. He was quite unnerved by the fact that he could not read the strangers, mentally or physically. The only thing that came back was that they were mutants.
"Hello, Sherlock. My name is Charles Xavier. This is Jean Grey. We want to invite you to attend a school where you can learn to control your gifts in a safe environment, among others like you," the man began patiently. "I know you're frightened and grieving and you don't want anyone to notice, but what happened at Eton and what happened at the shop don't define who you are forever after. I believe in your potential to do good things, for others and for yourself. There's a whole world out there, waiting for you to explore it." Xavier's voice was in Sherlock's head then, startling him. He quickly realized why he could not read Xavier and Grey. They were telepaths who were powerful enough to easily block him out.
"You're a very clever boy," Grey commented in a noticeably American accent, giving Sherlock a small smile. He started to form a favourable opinion of her for her ability to recognize his brilliance.
"At my school, you would have all the space you need to live comfortably. We even have labs which you would have access to under Dr. Grey's guidance," Xavier continued encouragingly. This man had a strange power to make Sherlock feel like he had a future. It was the validation he hadn't even known that he desperately wanted.
"When do we leave?" Sherlock answered stoically.
"As soon as you'd like."
"I'll finish packing my things." With that, the teen retreated to his room and moved his possessions back into his school trunk. It only took a few minutes and then he was back down to the sitting room, where both his parents now waited with the people who would be his teachers. "I'm ready." His mother promptly enveloped him in a tight embrace. He could sense that she was...happy for him.
"Are you sure this is what you want?" she asked softly.
"Then you stay out of trouble and remember to write."
"I can't make any promises."
"You never do," his mother said with a watery laugh as she stepped back from him.
"Good luck, son. Remember that we love you," his father told him, to which he gave an uncomfortable nod.
"Don't tell Mycroft where I've gone. I don't want him to stick his big nose in this the way he does with everything." Without saying goodbye, Sherlock walked out of the house, trunk in tow, followed by Xavier and Grey.
"I saw your motorcycle on the way in. You can bring it too, if you'd like," the woman piped up.
"I would." If he left it here, Mycroft would probably have it sold. It might be useful where he was going, anyway. He had already figured out that this school for mutants was in America, which was a much bigger place than this little island. On their way out the gate, Sherlock handed off his trunk to Dr. Grey and grabbed his motorbike. He was then led to a field on the property adjacent to that of his parents, which was currently occupied by a rather impressive jet. It was like nothing he'd ever seen before, really, both outside and in.
There were two others on the plane already when they arrived onboard. One was a furry blue man in glasses at the controls and the other was a boy with an afro, not much older than Sherlock, in one of the passenger seats. He looked around and beamed at the sight of Sherlock.
"Sherlock, I'd like you to meet Dr. Hank McCoy, one of our teachers, and another new student, Victor Trevor," Professor Xavier introduced and Victor immediately offered Sherlock his hand.
"Nice to meet you." Awkwardly, he shook Victor's hand and took a seat. "What do you do?"
"What's your gift?" Sherlock looked over to Professor Xavier, knowing that his ability was not best performed on an aircraft, especially one so full of electrical equipment. Still, he received a nod of permission and thought telling him not to read Victor's mind without asking.
"I can read minds, but also move objects without touching them and, er, this." Sherlock raised his hand and stared at it, unsure if he would achieve a few a sparks or electrify the whole jet. The lack of control he had was extremely frustrating. Concentrating, Sherlock willed blue arcs of energy out of his hand. They were small and travelled playfully along his fingers. Victor gazed at it in awe and Professor Xavier's smile widened. To be honest, Sherlock was rather proud of himself. For what seemed like the first time, his powers had not done anything harmful. He closed his hand, ending the electrical flow, and looked back at Victor expectantly.
"You're turn, then. What can you do?"
"I, er, I have heightened physical abilities and, er-" Victor bared his teeth and Sherlock watched as they grew sharp, mimicking those of a canine. He had to admit that he was intrigued. "It's not quite as exciting as yours, I know."
"No, it's…interesting." Sherlock did mean that. He had yet to meet another mutant who wasn't interesting. His response earned him a full on grin from Victor.
The rest of the flight was spent asking their teachers questions about the school, like what kind of facilities it had and how many other students were there. Sherlock quickly engaged Professor McCoy about scientific topics upon learning that he was the instructor in the subject. The man, to Sherlock's surprise, took a liking to him and even let him sit in the co-pilot's seat and interrogate him about the workings of the jet. Still, the teen didn't let himself get too attached. In all probability, he'd do something to fall out of favour with the professor sooner or later.
Eventually, they arrived at the Xavier School for Gifted Youngers and it was an impressive sight, beautiful even. A sudden feeling of excitement, and something warm and undefinable, gripped Sherlock as stepped off the plane. There to greet them was a young woman with dark skin and white hair.
"Welcome home," she said and Sherlock understood what that unnamed emotion had been. Here, he belonged.
"Sherlock, Victor, this is Professor Munroe," Prof. Xavier introduced and Munroe shook both teens' hands.
"Come on, I'll show you your rooms."
6 months later
"Move! Move! Move! It's coming closer!" Victor called, scurrying out from behind a wrecked car, followed closely by Sherlock. Bullets began to fly and they took cover behind what remained of a cement wall.
"Hey, Bulldog!" Another dark haired teenaged boy stepped into few as his skin turned to diamond, easily deflecting the bullets. "What's the matter? Got your tail between your legs over a few silly bullets, have you?" he snickered, amused by his own jokes.
"Shut it, Seb!" Victor barked back. Sherlock rolled his eyes and stood up, exposing his upper body to the onslaught. "What the bloody hell are you doing, Sherlock?" The bullets that came at him effortlessly curved around him and he paid no mind to Victor's alarm.
"This is a waist of time," he murmured in an annoyed tone. He threw a strong bolt of lightning at their adversary and then made a clenching motion with his hand, as if he were crumpling paper. The gunfire stopped and there was a loud crash.
"Simulation complete," a computer voiceover announced and their surroundings faded.
"I'm disappointed in you." Professor Munroe approached them, looking none too pleased at Sherlock and Seb. "This is supposed to be an exercise in teamwork, not a time to fool around." She looked to Seb. "Or to show off." She glared at Sherlock. "Victor is the only one who made any effort."
"Maybe we'd try to work together if we actually needed to. This assignment was beneath our skills," Sherlock grumbled.
"You mean it was beneath your skills," Storm corrected. "Just because you can do it all yourself, doesn't mean you should. What if something were to go wrong and no one was there to help you?"
"I'd worry about that if the problem at hand was something actually challenging. Now if you'll excuse me, I have things to do that aren't a waste of time or an insult to my abilities." With that, Sherlock turned on his heel and stalked out of the room. He knew he'd be reprimanded for it and would probably be asked to see Professor Xavier again, but at the moment, he really didn't care. He hated being treated like a child and that's what this had felt like.
For two hours afterward, Sherlock stayed in his room and sat on his bed, plucking at his violin and brooding over his bad day. Things weren't always like this. He had an unlikely (in his eyes) friendship with Victor Trevor and most of his peers respected him, even if they didn't particularly like him, due to his abrasive personality. The past few months had been some of the best of his life. Still, he could benefit from a joke about the time Victor bit his leg right then.
That afternoon, a knock came on his door and he moodily set aside his instrument before answering it. Victor stood there, looking rather apologetic.
"What?" Sherlock asked somewhat sharply.
"Professor Xavier wants to see you. Sorry."
"Brilliant." Sherlock shoved past his friend and trudged off to the headmaster's study, muttering to himself about the injustices of his life. He was even more displeased when he saw that someone else was already there with Xavier, someone with whom he did not get along easily.
"Dammit. Of all the kids you could have picked, you went with Brainstorm," Professor Logan complained and Sherlock cringed at the use of his nickname.
"He's the best candidate, Logan."
"Best candidate for what?" Sherlock asked. All he'd been able to glean from observing the two men thus far was the fact that he wasn't being punished and that he was going somewhere on the jet.
"Storm told me about the results of your combat simulation this morning." Ah, so he wasn't going to get out of that entirely. "We've agreed that we need to look at teaching you differently, so I would like to give you the opportunity to do field work."
"I've recently become aware of a girl with a very unusual ability. She can heal others with just her touch, but she can kill with that touch as well. It's hard for her to control her power and she's understandably very afraid and vulnerable right now. She needs guidance and safety and I would like you to accompany Logan to visit her," Xavier explained. Sherlock opened his mouth to object, to remind the man that this was not his area, even if he had been under similar circumstances before, but he stopped him. "Her name is Molly Hooper and she lives in a small town in the north of England. Magneto seems to have set his sights on her and that means that she could be in terrible danger. It's extremely important that we reach her before he does."
"So, are you up for it, kid?" Logan asked, his impatience quite evident to Sherlock.
"I'll do it," he replied, squaring his shoulders, and ten minutes later, he was behind the controls of the X-Jet, which Professor Grey had taught him to fly, with a rather uncomfortable Wolverine seated behind him. "Professor Xavier obviously didn't choose you for this mission based on your attitude towards flying," Sherlock commented wryly.
"Hey, shut it, kid, and fly the damn plane," Logan snapped.
"Only if you stop calling me 'kid'. I'm not a kid. I have a name. It's Sherlock. Use it."
"I was fighting wars before your mother was in diapers-"
"How many times have you used that to reaffirm authority over students? Probably more than you can count. Yawn."
"Jesus, you're worse than Scott. Just shut up and get us to England," Logan growled and Sherlock was all too happy to comply, since it meant that he could ignore the man for a few hours. He enjoyed the focus involved in flying. There wasn't a mass of other minds whispering to him and distracting him. The white noise of the plane helped fill the silence that his own mind would usually use to rocket around chaotically at a million miles a second. Flight for Sherlock was almost like meditation.
The time passed quickly and he soon had them neatly landed near a small town. He took Logan's lack of snide remarks as a sign that he'd done well.
"Do you remember the girl's address?" the rugged professor asked as they made their way towards the road.
"Of course I remember." As it turned out, knowing Molly Hooper's address wasn't all that necessary. It was pretty obvious where she lived, considering that everything in the garden was dead, including the grass. It was as if the property had been transplanted there from some place near where a nuclear power plant had melted down.
"That'll be the place then," Logan commented dryly the moment he saw the little house. The adjacent properties were noticeably vacant as well, suggesting that those who had once been neighbors had moved away out of fear of Molly Hooper. The mutant pair came to the door and Sherlock firmly knocked. "You might want to stay back, kid. I'm the one who can't get hurt," Logan warned.
"I'm touched," Sherlock replied sarcastically. "She's not going to harm either of us. Right now, she's more afraid that we've come to kill her." To his surprise, his teacher took him seriously.
"Molly Hooper?" he called out. "We're not here to hurt you. We wanna help."
"Now she's thinking about how dangerous she is to us," Sherlock noted.
"Please get back from the door. I don't want anyone to get hurt when I open it," came Molly's muffled, trembling voice in reply. Logan raised an eyebrow at an annoyed Sherlock, who took a step back. The door opened to revealed a thin, bespectacled teenaged girl with long, light brown hair, who looked very unimposing in her pale pink kitten jumper. Sherlock could sense Wolverine's disbelief that such a person could have the power of life and death at her fingertips.
"Wh-Who are you?" she inquired, looking between them.
"The name's Logan and this is a student of mine, Sherlock Holmes. I know you can't shake my hand. That's fine."
"We represent a school for mutants. I'm here to provide you with proof of a person with a dangerous gift who was able to gain control under the guidance of the institute in question," Sherlock cut in bluntly. Molly stared at him for a long moment before stepping back and allowing them into the house. "You've lost a loved one recently. Who?"
"How did you-"
"I can see it."
"Is that your power?"
"I don't need a superpower to see what's obvious. You're alone in this house and not because the other person left. There are still plenty of possessions that aren't yours sitting around, most notably the coat on the peg next to yours. No, this person died and judging from the empty ramen cup on your coffee table, I'd say they used to do the cooking. A parent, then?"
"Y-Yes," Molly gasped, quite taken aback by Sherlock's words. "My...my dad...he died of cancer a week ago. I used to only heal things, but after...after..." She trailed off, but they didn't need her to finish. It was pretty clear what had happened.
"Do you have any other family?" Logan asked.
"No. Social workers tried to take me away, but they stopped coming after I, er, after one of them l-lost an arm." Molly appeared to be extremely ashamed of herself over it. Tears welled up in her eyes and she put her fingers over her mouth.
"Hey, hey, don't go crying over that. It's not your fault," Logan consoled, placing a hand on the girl's shoulder. A look of horror came across her face as his flesh turned black like horrible frostbite. She hurriedly stepped away from him and her wide brown eyes grew even wider when he healed. "You don't have to worry about me, kid. I've got a few tricks of my own." He gave her a slight smile, one which she echoed as she wiped the built up moisture from her eyes. Sherlock could sense that she felt much safer now, which was a relief merely for the fact that it would makes things run more smoothly from here on out.
At least that's what Sherlock thought until he noticed Logan narrow his eyes and sniff the air.
"Professor-" Before the teen could finish his question, Logan was slammed into the nearest wall and immobilized there.
"Magneto!" he snarled and Sherlock's heart rate spiked.
"Good evening," a calm, deep voice greeted and Sherlock looked around to see an elderly man in a maroon cape and helmet enter the house. Why hadn't Sherlock sensed him? This man's mind was silent to him and that terrified him more than anything else. Being able to anticipate his opponent's actions was what made him able to hold his own against more experienced and powerful mutants. Right now, he was completely out of his depth, and he knew it the moment his eyes met Magneto's. "I apologize, Ms. Hooper, for alarming you. Mr. Logan has a habit of making sudden, ill advised decisions in my presence." Magneto's gaze fell on Molly, whose knees were trembling like spaghetti. "My name is Erik Lehnsherr, though you may have heard of me by the name Magneto."
"H-H-Hello," Molly replied meekly.
"What have they told you about that school they want you to go to? Not the whole story, I'm sure. You have great power, Ms. Hooper. Humans would kill you to keep themselves safe and yet the school teaches that you should strive to live in harmony with people who will never stop hating and fearing you. If you come with me, I can show you a better path, one where you will never have to hide and live in fear again, one that acknowledges that what you are is beautiful."
"You really lay it on thick, don't you?" The words fell from Sherlock's lips before he could stop them and Magneto looked to him with raised eyebrows.
"You're a very observant boy, but I wonder if you've thought carefully about why you're here. Charles sent a man who can't die to meet a girl who kills and a handsome young man to placate her. Logan is the switch, you are the carrot. That doesn't speak of trust in Ms. Hooper, does it?" the elderly man questioned persuasively.
"Molly, don't listen to him; he's just-" Logan growled before Magneto forced his jaw shut.
"Thanks, but I can think for myself," Molly responded quietly and Sherlock's heart sunk while Magneto smiled. The girl looked to Sherlock, who stared back at her with his intense blue gaze. He knew what her decision was before she said it and the pounding in his chest grew louder. "I'd rather go to school. I'm not interested in being your weapon." A shiver went down Sherlock's as he realized that Molly had deduced Magneto and seen right through him, but he had little time to think on it any further before things immediately went south.
"That's unfortunate. I was so hoping that you would cooperate," Magneto sighed, looking more disappointed than angry. A silver chained necklace with a little crystal heart hanging from it floated out from under Molly's jumper and snaked down to her wrist, allowing Magneto to lift her by the chain and her watch. Sherlock sprang into action, shot a bolt of lightning at the caped man, but a lamp flew up to intercept it. The object shattered and Sherlock threw up his hands to stop the pieces from hitting him. Only the metal parts didn't swerve around him, instead hanging there in there air right in front of him as he struggled to keep the pieces at bay. In the end however, Magneto was much stronger than him. The metal pieces pierced clear through his body.
Sherlock took in a sharp breath and collapsed, Molly's scream ringing in his ears. He was overwhelmed by the keen agony that now coursed through him and he tasted blood in his mouth. With what remained of his concentration, he sent a static shock through the carpet to zap Magneto, who was stunned long enough for Molly to take off the chain and her watch. With a roar of anger, she took up the small wooden coffee table with one hand and swung it at her enemy. Magneto had not anticipated this and was quickly reduced to an unconscious body on the floor. Molly set aside the coffee table and rushed to Sherlock's side, her chest heaving with anxiety.
"Oh God, oh God, oh God..." she muttered, fidgeting as she waffled over whether or not to touch Sherlock. Knowing that he would die for certain if she did nothing, he made the decision for her and telekinetically pulled her hand to his chest, near one of his wounds. Nothing happened at first, but then his injuries began to heal. Molly's look of horror morphed into a teary eyed grin until Wolverine grabbed Sherlock by the collar and hoisted him back to his feet.
"We have to get out of here now," Logan urged. Sherlock could read his underlying desire to slit Magneto's throat, but he was pushing that aside to prioritize the teenagers' safety. For the first time, he felt a little respect for his teacher.
"I'm very impressed. Even riddled with holes, he kept fighting," Charles marveled after listening to Logan give a report of what had happened in England.
"He's an arrogant little shit, but his heart's in the right place; I'll give him that."
"And Molly sprang into action the moment she had the opportunity, you say?"
"It was like clockwork. If I didn't know any better, I'd've thought they'd been fighting together for years." Logan had been quite impressed with it, if he was honest, especially with regards to Molly. That kid had a mean swing when she was angry.
"That's very interesting. I look forward to seeing how their relationship develops. Thank you for the report, Logan. You've given me a lot to think about and I'm glad you all made it back safely."
One Year Later
"Two drones at nine o' clock!" Victor called out, stress quite evident in his voice. Molly turned just in time to grab the drones and smash them together, destroying them. A few yards away, Sherlock was busy frying a cloud of drones, which all dropped dramatically to the ground together, creating a circle of carnage around him.
"Seb, cover me!" Molly ordered as a much larger drone approached them.
"I thought you'd never ask," Seb replied with a leer before shifting to diamond form and running out ahead of her. Nothing that the drone threw at him affected him. Once he was close enough, he knelt down and allowed Molly to use him as a ramp off of which to launch herself. She landed on top of it and ripped it apart before gracefully tumbling back to the ground. "Good show, Persephone."
"There's an obscene double meaning in there somewhere, isn't there?" Molly narrowed her eyes at Seb, who snickered. A rocket hit nearby and Molly's body was suddenly yanked away from the explosion and backwards into Sherlock's arms. They dropped and rolled together away from another blast, into an alcove of rubble.
"Don't let that clown distract you," he scolded in her ear and she blushed, her features growing even redder when she looked down at his hands on her stomach. He peeked into her mind to understand why she had reacted to him in such a way, but he only ended up getting confused and rather uncomfortable. She was imagining him touching her in much more intimate ways. It wasn't the first time she'd done it, but he still didn't understand how do deal with it. Fortunately, they were both spared from having to think on it any further by the needs of their teammates.
"A little help here, if you wouldn't mind!" Victor shouted and the pair rushed out to aid him, dodging laser blasts as they went. Victor was pinned down by enemy fire behind an abandoned car. Sherlock moved bits of rubble to intercept the blasts, giving Victor enough time to escape, swatting drones out of the air as he went. Molly lifted the car and threw it at a large drone, crushing it.
"We need the main drone to come a little closer. It's still too far off for me to get the job done," Sherlock told her after zapping a little drone that tried to come at her from behind.
"How do we do that?"
"We get Sebastian Wilkes to stop fooling around and get out there to lure the thing."
"You called?" Seb popped into view five yards away.
"You obviously heard me. Get a move on!" Sherlock barked back. Bearing his usual smarmy grin, Seb obeyed. A few minutes later, Sherlock reached out with his mind and managed to take hold of the main drone. Molly and Victor watched his back as the calm of hyperfocus washed over him. His arms began to shudder with effort as he made a pulling motion. There came a loud screeching of ripping metal and then all fell silent but for the sound of Sherlock's deep breaths. The enormous head of the drone flew towards him and landed with a resounding thump at his feet.
"Simulation complete," the computer announced and the scenario faded away.
"Well done, all of you. You've made a lot of progress," Professor Munroe told them with a smile. "I'll be writing up full feedback reports for each of you, but I'll tell you now that you all got high marks. Class dismissed." With that, they filed out of the training room.
"Keep up the good work," Seb murmured to Molly, slapping her lightly on the ass as he went out the door. She calmly grabbed his wrist and twisted it until he made distressed noises.
"If you'd like to keep this hand, never lay it on anyone again," she warned in her usual cheerful tone before letting Seb go and continuing on her way.
"Christ, Molly, that was creepy," Victor commented.
"That's what he gets for being a creep."
"Touché." The boy laughed and pushed up his glasses. "I've got some things to do. I'll catch up with you two later," he added as they came to the main hall. He separated from Sherlock and Molly and went up the stairs.
"Would you like to have a walk?" Molly asked. "The weather's quite nice today." Sherlock had little else to occupy him at this time of day, so he agreed. Shoving his long hands in his trouser pockets, he followed Molly out across the school grounds. She was right, it was a nice day. The sun wasn't too bright and breeze was just strong enough to be refreshing. "You did really well in training today," she spoke up after a while.
"I could have done better. Ripping that drone apart should have been nothing, should have been effortless for me. I need to be stronger or I won't be able to meet the next challenge," Sherlock replied without looking at her.
"Don't push yourself too hard. If you're not careful, you'll wear yourself out." Sherlock looked at her then, meeting her brown gaze with his blue. She was always taking the time to be concerned about him. That thought created a flood of warmth in his chest and he involuntarily smirked.
"I'd better keep you around, then, so you can heal me when I burn out," he joked and Molly giggled, blushing again and adjusting her glasses.
"I want to try something. Do you trust me?"
"Yes. Of course." Sherlock stopped and stood back from Molly. Slowly, he lifted his hands and she rose in the air. She let out a squeak of surprise at first, but her shock quickly turned to delight. He was making her fly.
"Would you like to take a turn around the top of that tree?" She nodded excitedly and he carefully moved her, not letting his focus waver for a single second. Once she'd gone around the tree, she did somersaults high in the air and even danced a little bit, completely trusting in him.
"That was brilliant!" she exclaimed when Sherlock set her back on the ground.
"My turn." Before Molly could ask how that would work, he had already begun lifting himself. It was much more difficult than he had anticipated. It took twice the concentration needed to lift someone else. His movement was very slow, but he managed to make it to the upper branches of the. He reached out to grab hold of one, but the moment he did so, he slipped and his stomach was rudely introduced to the thick branch below, knocking the air out of him before he fell to the ground, where he lay sprawled, too stunned to move.
"Sherlock!" Molly yelped and she sprinted to him. By the time she had reached him, he'd managed to regain his breath and started to push himself into a sitting position. "Oh thank God. Are you alright?"
"Ye...Yeah, I'm fine," he assured her, getting to his feet.
"You've got a cut on your cheek. Would you like me to fix it for you?"
"Okay." He did not anticipate that she would choose to touch him by kissing his cheek. Her lips were pleasantly soft and he enjoyed the contact far more than he should have by his estimation. He stared at her in shock when she pulled back from him. "Why did you do that?"
"You're a hyper-observant telepath and you don't know?"
"I don't understand. This isn't...I don't..." Sherlock struggled to express himself. This wasn't his area at all. Molly immediately looked downcast.
"It's okay if you don't feel-"
"No! No! I do! It's just...I-I..." Sherlock responded hastily and the light in Molly's eyes returned.
"Do you trust me?" she asked with a small smile and he nodded. Gently, she took his face in her hands and pulled his lips to hers in a soft, sweet kiss. To him, it was the sensual equivalent of fireworks. Good lord, did he like it. When she pulled back, a tiny static arc jumped from his bottom lip to hers and she gasped.
"Sorry! Sorry. I didn't mean to do that," he apologized nervously.
"It's okay. It only tingled," Molly laughed, before adding, "I actually kind of liked it."
"Can I do it again?"
"Later. Professor Summers wouldn't be happy if we skipped his class. Come on." Taking a grinning Sherlock's hand, Molly led a him back inside.
"You'll never guess what I heard today," Logan said as he sauntered into Charles' study. "Not without reading my mind, anyway." Charles expectantly looked back at him with smile, the kind of smile he wore when he'd had a really good day. "What's got you so happy?"
"Oh, nothing. You were saying?"
"Apparently someone saw Brainstorm making out with Persephone. Sounds like the kid finally pulled the stick out of his ass and did something about that crush," Logan mused. He wasn't normally one for gossip, but when it came to Sherlock Holmes and Molly Hooper, no one was safe from the temptation.
"Oh yes. Though the way I heard it, she made the first move," Charles replied knowingly and Logan narrowed his eyes.
"That's what you're so pleased about, isn't it? I bet you've been watching them like a soap opera."
"Nothing quite so obsessive, I assure you. Ever since you told me about what happened when they first met, I've been curious to know where the affinity their abilities seem to have would lead them. I'm quite happy that this is the result. They make each other stronger and I have hope that some day they will do great things together."
A/N: Sherlolly is totally Professor X's OTP. I'd like to write a part two, since I have a bunch of ideas for one that I've had from the beginning, but they haven't yet formed into a coherent narrative in my brain and I don't know when that'll happen. Anyway, thank you so much for reading. I do hope you enjoyed it.