Title: In Which Baker Street Acquires a New Tenant
Category: Harry Potter/Sherlock crossover
Characters: John Watson, Mrs. Hudson, and Harry Potter.
Source: Inspired by esama's various HP/SH crossovers…especially "Potter in Baker Street" and "Whispers in Corners".
A/N: Takes place after The Great Game and the Deathly Hallows (ignoring the epilogue).
There was a new tenant at 221 Baker Street. John Watson was mildly surprised—a rather difficult feat in itself these days, as living with Sherlock for the last year and a half had more or less cured him of that emotion. And it wasn't so much that someone was finally moving into 221C; six months ago Mrs. Hudson had finally recruited John's help in stripping the place and remodeling the kitchenette, bathroom, and putting up new wallpaper. (She'd paid him for it, too, and didn't mind that his work schedule revolved around whenever Sherlock wasn't running around London on a case, something that the clinic simply didn't understand.)
No, what really surprised John was the individual who was moving into the basement flat: from the looks of things, he was barely legal; he also had a baby in his arms, which could only be a few months old.
John observed all of this in the two second span from when he stepped through the door to when Mrs. Hudson noticed him. Sherlock, for lack of a better word, appeared to be rubbing off on him (though he had no doubt that the detective would have noticed a great deal more).
"John!" Mrs. Hudson exclaimed, waving him over, "Welcome back! How was your trip to Cardiff? And where's Sherlock?" this last bit was added in the slightly wary tone of one who knew the detective well and wanted to keep an eye on him at all times to make sure something didn't explode.
"It was fine, Mrs. Hudson," John replied warmly, "Sherlock revealed a number of scandals and even an extortion ring, as well as infuriating the police department so badly that they almost threw us out of the place—all on the side of what we went there for, of course," he sighed with a rueful grin. "He's at the Yard right now; Lestrade texted him on the train back, needs him to look at some case or other." John then turned expectant eyes on the teenager who was watching the exchange with interest.
"Oh yes," Mrs. Hudson suddenly remembered their audience, "Mr. Potter, Dr. John Watson," she gestured accordingly, "He's taking the 221C flat, John."
'Mr. Potter' shifted the sleeping baby in his arms and offered his hand. "It's Harry, please," he said with a small smile.
"John," the doctor responded likewise. The kid had a firm, solid handshake, his thin hands surprisingly strong. That, combined with the way he carried himself—open and inviting, yet with a shadow of wariness and very, very alert of his surroundings—brought back memories of his days in the army. In fact, if it hadn't been for his age and the baby in his arms…
"Military service?" John asked lightly, very much aware in the back of his own mind how reminiscent this was of Sherlock.
"Hmm?" Harry glanced back from where he had been turning to talk to Mrs. Hudson again, "Oh no. Just a very strict boarding school," he answered in equal tones and with a faint smile.
Lie, John's gut instinct informed him. But the kid wasn't really lying, more just avoiding the truth. And the doctor got the feeling that the new tenant was lying more for his own safety (and perhaps that of the baby?) than as any means of a threat. Interesting.
Either way, the kid was pinging all kinds of radar. John had seen a few people like this back in Afghanistan: quiet, soft-spoken, generally mild personality, tended to be on the smaller slide of the height and weight scale…and absolutely, utterly lethal when the situation arouse.
He shook his head with a sigh. The kid couldn't be a day older than 18, and his reasoning for that was that he couldn't be on his own in a flat any younger (he certainly didn't look old enough). John was probably over-reading the situation. God knew, his paranoia scale had yet to recover from the case in Cardiff this past week. Yes, that was probably it. The kid looked harmless enough.
John said a polite good-bye and headed up the stairs to his flat, listening to Mrs. Hudson coo over the baby in Harry's arms and the idea of having a child so young around again. He wasn't as thrilled, but then again, there was no possible way that a baby could come close to the noise Sherlock made at night, so John probably wouldn't even notice.
He was very, very interested to see his flat mate's opinion of the new tenant, though.
A/N: Sherlock Time Line:
In this universe, the events after the screen went black in The Great Game episode go as follows: Sherlock shot the bomb. Just as he did so, John launched himself at Sherlock and thus toppled them into the pool at about the same time the bomb went off. The bomb was a fake—explains Moriarty's facial expression when he sees Sherlock aim at the bomb in the episode—or at least, it was supposed to be a fake. However, Mycroft had planted a mole in Moriarty's network ever since A Study in Pink, and this mole switched the fake explosives for real ones. Of course, Mycroft didn't expect Sherlock to get into a situation where he would end up detonating the thing. So…Sherlock and John survive the incident with serious, but not permanent, injuries. Moriarty dies (yes, I know, not as dramatic as in the books, but I don't want to deal with him and it makes sense with this for background). It is now a year and some months later. (actually, that's a rather good plot. This might become a short story a little farther down the line).
Harry Potter Time Line:
Everything happens according to what the books say except that Harry doesn't get rid of the Hallows, and thus remains the Master of Death. About a month after the final battle, Harry is absolutely sick of all the attention and fame he's getting. He's constantly hounded by the press and mobbed in public.
In order to escape from this, he casts a very powerful spell that he and Hermione worked out. It works something like this: people don't recognize him anymore as "the boy who lived". The Harry Potter that defeated Voldemort is, in essence, wiped off the face of the map—when asked, no one really knows what happened to him after that event (essentially, anything they "know" is based off of rumors, such as "I heard he died", "No, he's going on a tour of the world", "Oh really? I could have sworn he got settled down and married", etc). No one connects this Harry Potter that is wandering around with the HP that killed Voldemort. People recognize him ("oh yeah, he was in my charms class"), but the BWL material is all gone. The exception to all of this is his friends (the Weasleys, Hermione, the Hogwarts professors, Neville, Luna, etc) and the upper positions in the ministry, of which the "knowledge" is tied to the position as opposed to the individual (so, if they quit, they forget. This is also so that when certain individuals—read, Mycroft—go digging about for his history, people they would ask in the Ministry will know exactly who HP is).
Finally, his own personal relationships work out like this: he doesn't end up with Ginny (she's moved on and so has he, really). He keeps in touch with the Weasleys, Hermione, Neville, and Luna, but that's about it. He also ends up—at age 18—with full custody of Teddy Lupin. Harry's rather sick and tired of the wizarding world and their expectations, so he decides to once more join the muggle world. Searches for flats in London, and comes across 221C Baker Street.