AN: This is my first Sherlock fic, but feel free to critique. I had some friends look this over, but no britpick, so please forgive any weird Americanisms I didn't realize were Americanisms.
This takes place over 9 years after Reichenbach.


On most Sundays John would join Mary and her family for mass and lunch, but after four rather sleepless days of chasing Sherlock around the city, he needed some serious quality time with his armchair. Which is just what he was doing, sitting and sipping the first of what should be many cups of tea while reading the latest commets on his blog, when the doorbell rang.

He sighed. It was half past nine and his day of solitude had barely started. If it was Sherlock with another case, he may have to punch him.

John didn't see anyone through the peephole, which was a relief. He opened the green door, expecting to find a package that hopefully wasn't explosive.

It wasn't a package. It wasn't explosive either.

John gaped. There was a child in his doorway. A child no older than five, much too short to be seen through the peephole. He looked like an elf, with a pointed nose, rosy cheeks, a mop of black hair, and ears that were too big for his face. He wore black pants and a light blue button down that could have been a school uniform, and had a green backpack that appeared to have dinsaurs printed all over it.

"Um... hello," John managed at last. He looked up and down the hallway, but there wasn't a sign of anyone else. But surely the boy was too short for their high doorbell?

"Daddy dropped me off," the child said, as if he knew just what John was thinking. "He said you'll watch me today."

"And who is your father?"

The boy looked at him, startled at being questioned, and then his face scrunched up as if he were concentrating on a difficult problem.

"I don't know his name," he said in a soft voice, after much thought. Then, seeming to forget his sadness, he looked up at John with a bright smile. "Can I come in and color?"

Quite nonplussed, John nodded and moved out of the doorway. The child ran right in and plopped on the floor, pulling a stuffed animal, a box of crayons, and coloring books out of his backpack.

"This is my dragon," he told John, holding up the stuffed animal.

"Hello, dragon," John said. The children who brought stuffed animals with them to the surgery liked it when he talked to their toys. This child, however, looked at John like he was an idiot.

"My dragon isn't real, you know."

"That's good, I wouldn't want him breathing fire in my sitting room."

The child looked bewildered at John for five more seconds, and then gave it up to continue coloring.

"So, what's your name?" John asked.

"Hamish," the boy responded without glancing up.

"That's my middle name," John told him. The child didn't seem to care. "My first name is John."

"I know," the child said, as if annoyed John thought he didn't know everything.

"How old are you, Hamish?"

Hamish held up his left hand, the one he wasn't coloring with, and spread the fingers wide. "Five!"

"What's your last name?"

"Shooler."

John paused. That name sounded familiar, but he couldn't quite place it.

"Do you have a mother?" John asked, hoping to find the boy's guardian and get to the bottom of why he was here.

"Of course." Hamish shot him another odd look.

"And her name?"

"Addy!" Hamish responded, proud to show he at least knew something about his parents.

John sat in armchair and pulled out his phone to text Lestrade. Do you know an Addy Shooler?

The reply came in two minutes later. Never heard of her. Don't even see anything on the registry.

John sighed. That was going to be his next question. A five year old boy was left on my doorstep.

The next reply came in much quicker. Blimey, who'd leave a kid with you?

The unnamed father, apparantly. The boy says his name is Hamish Shooler, and his mother's name is Addy.

No records of a Hamish Shooler either. Is he British?

Sounds like it, though his accent is a bit off. I think he's been moved around a lot.

Bring him in. It could be that he was dropped off at the wrong flat, but I wouldn't put it past your and Sherlock enemies to try and frame you of child abuduction.

Hamish wasn't happy to have his coloring interupted, but his face lit up when he learned they were going to the police station.

"I have a police car at home!" he said excitedly. "I wish I had brought it! I have a lot of cars!"

John soon learned that Hamish did, in fact, have a lot of toy cars. He spent the entire cab ride to the police station describing each and every one of them in great detail.

When they got to the station John took Hamish's hand and led him up to Lestrade's division. Hamish's joyful mood seemed to leave him in a hurry as they walked along, and by the time they got to Lestrade's office a deep frown was set on his face.

"What have you been doing to him?" Lestrade asked in greeting.

"He was fine a moment ago," John insisted. "Hamish, what's wrong?"

"They aren't wearing uniforms!" he said, glaring at Lestrade's suit as if it had offended him personally.

Hamish cheered up when Lestrade collected his fingerprints, seeming to find the electroic finger scanner fascinating. Though he also demanded Lestrade bring out the old fashioned ink for him to play with, and proceded to cover his coloring books with black fingerprints.

The prints brought up nothing, which was expected. Lestrade looked through reports of missing children from around the country while John made sure Hamish didn't put any prints on the walls. Donovan brought them some sandwiches, biscuits, and milk around noon, which is what they were busy eating when Sherlock burst into the room.

John had rarely seen Sherlock so coolly furious. He swished it, mouth open to start in on Lestrade, when someone cut him off.

"Daddy!" Hamish jumped off the couch he had been sitting on. John had to grab his milk to keep it from spilling, and when he looked up Hamish was in Sherlock's arms.

He wouldn't be surprised if his jaw fell to the floor.

Sherlock glared at John. "Why did you leave the flat?"

John moved his jaw up and down a few times, but no attempts at speech were successful. Luckily Lestrade spoke for him.

"You're Hamish's father?"

"So far so obvious," Sherlock annoyingly muttered.

"Why didn't we know you had a bloody five year-old?"

Sherlock narrowed his eyes at Hamish. "You're four."

"Five next month!" Hamish exclaimed, as if that meant he could claim the age already.

Sherlock looked at Lestrade. "It was unnecessary to share the information with you."

"It just may be necessary if you get charged with child abandonment!"

"I left him with a perfectly capable minder," Sherlock said.

"And what if I wasn't home?" John asked, finally finding his voice.

"You were," Sherlock said, as if that settled it.

"Daddy!" Hamish started squirming, not pleased with the lack of attention on him. "Come look at my coloring books!"

He dragged Sherlock to the couch and held up the fingerpring-covered books with pride. Sherlock grabbed his hand and quickly examined his fingers between shooting John and Lestrade another glare. "You took his fingerprints?" Sherlock pulled his phone out and started rapidly texting.

"Sorry that we didn't magically realize that he was your son."

"I thought you would have deduced it, from the name and the hair," Sherlock said without looking up from his phone.

John's eyebrows raised. "You named him after me?"

Lestrade ignored that. "Why didn't you stick around and introduce him to John? It would have saved us all this trouble."

"I was in a hurry," he said. "I had to get his mother out of trouble. Again."

"Who is the mother?" John asked. He couldn't think of a woman alive who Sherlock had expressed even a hint of interest in.

"Come on, John, think! You were the one who suggested the name to her."

John stared at him blankly while he mentally went through every female acquaintance they had, and if he had ever brought his middle name up to them. And then he remembered making a joke, once, nearly ten years ago, when Sherlock and a Woman were gazing at each other as if he wasn't in the room.

"She's dead."

"What?" Sherlock looked at him, surprised. "Oh, no, she's not. I've faked so many deaths I forget which ones I've told you about."

Hearing Sherlock nonchalantly talk about forgetting to tell him things finally sparked John's anger. His best friend of over ten years, the best man at his wedding, had not bothered to mention that he had a child. Had a child with a woman he had claimed to hate.

A woman whose death he apparently had helped to fake. Much like he had faked his own, just three months later.

It had been a long time, but John suddenly felt his old wounds opening up again. How dare that mad bastard act like this? John was about to tell Sherlock just what sized dick he was, when Sherlock suddenly let his child take his hand and press his fingers in the ink. And then he just had to ask.

"So she liked the name Hamish, did she?"