Chapter 3- Terrible Depth
"There are no beautiful surfaces without a terrible depth."
Sherlock had never really considered having a family, the concept seemed dreadfully dull and he had not wanted to be trapped in a marriage to someone he would tire of. However, he found that having Hamlet in his life was actually quite entertaining. The books said that his development was much more advanced than a normal child and Sherlock was very thankful for that. If he had to deal with a screaming bumbling idiot of a child he was quite sure he would do some damage to the child mentally and emotionally.
He was not a man known for his patience and Sherlock knew himself well enough to admit that he was endlessly grateful that he would not have to deal with dull normalcy from his infant. Hamlet was a quiet child, easy to entertain and easy to handle. Still after only a few days together the apartment was beginning to feel cramped and the boredom with his surroundings was kicking in. So today Sherlock was going out, and that meant Hamlet was coming with him.
However this lead to an unforeseen problem as Hamlet was a small child it would be unrealistic to think he would be able to keep up with Sherlock's long strides. So that meant Sherlock would have to carry him but this left him with limited ability to do anything with his hands which was unacceptable. The problem was solved when he was plundering through the things Lily had given him looking for the solution. He had come across a very useful device that would strap Sherrinford to his chest leaving his arms free. It would have been perfect if not for Amadeus' refusal to get into the damn thing.
"Come now Ramsey, surely it is not as undignified as you perceive it to be?" Sherlock said in low tones. Hamlet looked up at him with a very familiar pout and popped the collar of his coat up as he mimicked Sherlock's stubborn stance unconsciously. "You have not had to ride in one!" Hamlet said in a low whine. Sherlock looked at the device speculatively and then back to his son. "Perhaps a bribe is in order?" Sherlock said with a raised brow. Sherlock knew his brother Mycroft often resorted to bribes when they had been younger and he had wanted Sherlock to do something unpleasant (like put clothes on when company was in the manor).
Roderick looked curious enough that Sherlock felt that was the right direction to go. "Alright, how's this, you get in the device for the day and tonight I shall let you choose the experiment we perform on that jar of eye balls I have been saving?" Sherlock bargained. Harry took a moment to think it over, "You'll let me use the microscope?" Ylli challenged. Sherlock sighed grievously, "Alright but I get to make the adjustments!" Hamlet nodded very seriously then with a grim expression Sherlock usually wore only during the most serious of occasions little Hamlet allowed himself to be placed into the device.
Then Sherlock following the instructions in the books tugged an emerald green bobble hat onto his son's head as well as matching emerald mittens, a cashmere emerald green scarf and thick socks along with black fir lined boots. It was winter after all and it was very cold out this time of year with intermittent snowfall. In the end Hamlet looked quite adorable his face half covered in a scarf and pouting while strapped to Sherlock's chest. Sherlock picked up his London map and headed out the door.
"I thought we could see to educating you on the layout of London, I am told it can be quite challenging for some people but I confess I have little understanding of what goes on in most people's dull little minds. I am sure you will pick it up as easily as I did Hamlet." Sherlock said as he unfolded the map for Harry to pursue. They spent a while with Sherlock quizzing Harry on the various streets and challenging him to discover the best routes to various places.
After a while they somehow ended up in a café on the other side of town with Sherlock sitting sipping tea with Harry still quite firmly strapped to his chest. "Shall we play a game Sherrinford?" Sherlock asked as Hamlet nibbled on his scone. "I shall pick someone in the crowd, tell you what I see and why. Then I shall pick another for you, and you will tell me their occupation as well as how you came to your conclusions." Sherlock said as his keen eyes scanned the crowded café. "Alright," Harry agreed.
"There the man in the corner, he is a teacher," Sherlock murmured, "he has chalk on his coat sleeve, from a school district with low funding then, still using out of date chalkboards. He has an ink stain on his shirt, by his belt, smudged as if from a small finger, primary school teacher then. He has a small dog and two cats. There is animal hair on his trousers; the height suggests a small to medium sized dog. However there is also animal hair on his coat shoulders, more animals then, not from the dog they are not prone to going that high and the colors are wrong. Two cats then, one orange, another gray, he has shaving cream behind his ear. Evidence of this happening before, no one has been telling him, so he lives alone." Sherlock summed it up and looked at his son expectantly.
Harry smiled and clapped lightly, "Bravo!" Sherlock smiled smugly and said, "Your turn, the woman at the register, what is her profession?" Hamlet turned his bright green eyes on the woman and for a while he didn't say anything. "A reporter," he said tentatively. Sherlock smiled, "Good, now why?" he asked eyebrow arched. "She is wearing all purple, her hands are soft, her hair is done, and she has a press pass in the pocket of her purse." Harry listed.
Sherlock smiled and for a while they enjoyed a game of telling the life stories of the people around them. Sherlock was the unquestionable master at it, however, as they went along Hamlet picked up more and more. Their fun came to an abrupt end when Sherlock spotted a most unwelcome visitor. He strode into the café, his face a picture of superiority as he swung his umbrella about like it was a scepter and he a king. As the gentleman sat down and ordered a tea from the waitress Sherlock hissed out a cold greeting, "Mycroft."
Mycroft arched an eyebrow at him, "Sherlock, I was unaware you had started a nanny business. Pray tell, who was the woman fool enough to trust you with their child for more than a moment?" he said scathingly. Sherlock smirked at him, "Hamlet, meet Mycroft, Mycroft say hello to your nephew." If he was being honest with himself Sherlock was certain he would remember the flash of shock and the stunned look on Mycroft's face as one of his fondest memories. Mycroft was just as brilliant as any Holmes, however, he still fell into the pitfalls most siblings do.
Sherlock was certain Mycroft was under the impression Sherlock was a virgin and as uninterested in sex as he was normal social niceties that are involved in convincing a partner to bed. However, that was the furthest thing from the truth as evidenced by Sherrinford's existence. Sherlock was not oblivious to the enjoyment carnal pleasures could bring, he was just very picky on his partners and his standards were very high. Male or Female, it didn't matter much to Sherlock you got to the end easy enough with both. No what mattered to Sherlock was the mind, and a little mystery about them helped too.
So far there had only been three people who have had the pleasure of Sherlock's company, two women and one man. Lily was one, and she had been the last in a very long while and Sherlock expected he wouldn't find another partner anytime soon now that he had Amadeus to worry about. "And what is this newest Holmes' name?" Mycroft asked challengingly. "Hamlet Amadeus Ramsey Roderick Ylli Sherrinford Holmes, I also call him Harry." Sherlock quipped. Mycroft gave a long suffering sigh, "Where is the boy's mother? I would hope she would know better than to leave you with the child for long?"
Sherlock scowled at him, "Lily has died, Harry is mine now," he said tightening his arms around the silent toddler even though he was still firmly strapped to his chest. Mycroft looked genuinely alarmed for a moment, "You know mummy is going to be very upset with you when she hears about this. You always seem to manage to upset her so." Sherlock glared, "It wasn't I who upset her Mycroft! You were the one the managed to set fire to her curtains!" Mycroft scowled at him and Sherlock counted it as a victory that he had managed to get the poker faced bastard to show so many emotions.
"What do you plan to do with him?" Mycroft asked with a calculating gleam entering his eyes. "Obviously, he cannot remain in your care; you can barely take care of yourself let alone a small child. Shall I set an appointment with mummy and have her take over rearing him for you?" Mycroft said. Sherlock hated how he made it all sound as if it was a given fact that Harry couldn't possibly be raised by him, his father. "In case it has escaped your notice Mycroft, Harry is mine, I will raise him as I see fit and you would do well to leave it." There was something very dangerous in Sherlock's voice that sharply caught Mycroft's attention.
"Surely you cannot be serious Sherlock? You raise a child, he will need care and a stable environment, which is something you lack and are unlikely to gain in the foreseeable future. Think of what is best for the boy," Mycroft said. Sherlock noticed that this entire time Mycroft had been studiously ignoring the child in Sherlock's arms. He knew Mycroft would be uncomfortable around Ylli because the man was always uncomfortable around small children.
Sherlock wasn't much better since he had very little experience with children and before Harry had no desire to be exposed to babies either. However Mycroft callous disregard for Harry was putting him on edge as he remembered a large empty manor and his brother's back as he walked away from him. Mycroft was several years his senior, he had been close to finishing secondary by the time Sherlock had been starting Primary. Sherlock had looked up to him then, would have given anything for Mycroft to just acknowledge him and spend some time with him. He had been so alone, none of the other children wanted anything to do with the weird smart kid and the older children had no time to 'nanny' him.
He had so desperately wanted Mycroft to be his friend then, because Sherlock had been sure Mycroft would understand. However, Mycroft hadn't had the time to indulge his silly little brother. Eventually Sherlock had grown to dislike his brother very much until his brother had transformed from someone he had most admired to his greatest arch enemy. Sherlock stood up and looked at Mycroft with glowing distain, "Harry is mine, Mycroft, I will be the judge of what is best for him."
Then Sherlock swept out of the café with a snap of his coat and did not look back. He hailed a cab in silent Hamlet was quiet playing with the straps of the device and seemingly understood that Sherlock needed silent for his thoughts. Mycroft was many things; the man was practically the British government now when he wasn't freelancing for MI-6 or the CIA. Mycroft was stubborn, arrogant, and entirely too sure of himself. He would do what he thought was best for Harry and for Sherlock which didn't always mean what would make them happy.
Mycroft was convinced he was unsuitable as a guardian and it was very likely he would use his considerable influence to ensure that Hamlet went to Mummy's possession. That was entirely unacceptable. They made it to the flat and Sherlock set about packing everything away. Sherrinford's things went back into the trunk Lily had sent and Sherlock's went into his own collection of suitcases/trunks. Britain was Mycroft's territory and so they would have to leave if Sherlock wanted to keep his son in his possession.
Once everything was packed Sherlock called his ride out of the country. A few years back Sherlock had managed to prove that this man's daughter was innocent of murdering her ex-lover and as a thank you the man offered his services whenever Sherlock should need him. A very accomplished pilot that owned a very comfortable Learjet and willingness to abstain from listing Sherlock on his travel logs. A very valuable asset since Mycroft had not been able to link them and thus Sherlock had been able to use the man to leave the country undetected quite a few times.
Sherlock knew getting out of the flat without being seen by Mycroft's damned CCTV camera would be a challenge but one he had managed before. It was around midnight by the time Sherlock had settled into his seat on the Learjet with Hamlet secured into the seat beside him. He didn't feel at ease until the plane had lifted off and they were well over halfway to their destination. Sherlock despised Florida, it was entirely too hot and humid, and filled with an overabundance of idiotic people on holiday. Mycroft knew how much he hated it, so they were on their way to Miami a place where Mycroft would never search for Sherlock Holmes.
Sherlock had sent a letter off to mummy before they had left, she would be upset of course but she would direct her ire to Mycroft since Sherlock was unavailable. Sweet revenge. The one good thing about Miami was that it had a rather high murder rate and Sherlock knew he would enjoy putting his talents to use there. Now he would just have to find a suitable liaison that was inside the police force so he could have someone alert him to the more interesting cases. That part was always a challenge since there were rarely any competent people inside the police force these days.
Amadeus turned over in his seat and reminded Sherlock that he had a child to think of also. Sherlock supposed it would be a bit harder to convince the bloody idiots to allow Sherlock to bring Hamlet along as well. People were so strange when it came to having children around dead people. Sherlock had remembered having a hell of a time when he was younger convincing the police to listen to him. It wasn't until his teens that they had even begun to be reasonable about taking his word as gospel.
His son deserved only the best education of course and Sherlock was sure he could do a better job of it than any establishment. Sherlock might have grown past allowing other's ignorance to harm him but Hamlet was still young. He had not been exposed to the venom of the ignorant people that populated this world. Sherlock was determined that his son not be held back by associating with people of smaller intellect. Besides Sherlock thought that by using independent study methods Hamlet might be able to be done with the drivel of primary and secondary education by the time he was seven. (maybe six) Allowing Sherlock to begin his son's real education sooner.
Sherlock was determined that his son would have the very best of it all and Hamlet would never have to suffer through the agony that was intellectual boredom as long as Sherlock had anything to say about it.
A.N.: I thought I would take a moment to address some of the concerns I have been seeing in the reviews. First off I would like to remind everyone that Harry at this point is a year and a half old. That means we have a lot of things to factor in. Now as far as my research goes babies usually don't develop the ability to have solid memories until they are around two. Before that point their memories are more impressions then anything, they remember emotions, they form attachments, but no 'true memories'.
Now taking this into account I remembered that one of the earliest memories Harry had was of his mother begging for his life. While sad it should not have been possible for him to have the memory, only an impression of it, a great unexplainable dislike of green perhaps. Now since he shows in cannon that as a magical baby he must develop faster as he has memories nearly half a year before it is supposed to be possible that means his development is accelerated.
I factored this in and then used my own life experiences with a few very gifted babies as a base on what Harry is now. I am lucky enough to know a little girl, a friend's daughter that is not only very intelligent but also very cared for. This little girl was having full blown conversations with me over the phone by 20 months old. I am being completely sincere here! She would have her mom hold the phone while she talked. She would ask me about my day as easy as you please with her little Minnie mouse voice and even though I knew I was having this conversation with a baby/toddler I also knew she understood me.
Now there are a lot of factors to consider here, children learn frighteningly fast. If given enough attention and tutelage I have seen babies that have learned to read by the time they were two! Two! That is not only because these babies were smart, but also because they had a parent or parents that could devote some real time to teaching them. So I took into account that Lily has been in hiding with only James Potter and her son for well over a year. This means she would have little else to do but devote her time to Harry.
Which brings me back to my point, even in cannon it is evident that Harry is at least six months ahead of his non magical equivalents. He has had the concentrated efforts of an extremely intelligent and devoted mother. Now factor in that he is the son of freaking Sherlock Holmes in this story. A man who can literally tell your entire life story just by looking at you whose frightening intelligence makes him idealistically good at his job and a general ass to be around. Now, factoring all this in: Harry's accelerated development, his focused learning environment, having two (TWO) frighteningly intelligent parents, and well maybe it's not so unrealistic to think Harry can know how to read/talk/be ridiculously developed.
I think the movies have people picturing Harry as a tiny baby swaddled in diapers when he was closer to a mischievous toddler approaching his terrible twos with frightful velocity. I just ask that you keep this all in mind when you read this story. Harry might seem a bit ridiculous to you but not so much when you have all these things to consider. Besides, this is Harry Potter a story where a twelve year old slays a giant freaking thousand year old Basilisk that can kill you with a look! Is my Harry talking in full sentences and reading really so farfetched? Lol