Great Minds Think Alike
This story is part of my request series All About Harry. Do you want to make a request? Look at my bio page for info.
This story deals with a version of Harry Potter that is absolutely brilliant, comparable with Sherlock, and what happens when he moves into one of the flats at 221 Baker Street.
I own neither Harry Potter nor any version of Sherlock Holmes, nor any other things you may recognize in this story.
Words: 2 389
John woke up to the sound of running on the stairs and a lot of thumping from the floor above. "What the..?" he mumbled incoherently, rubbing at his eyes. The noise continued and reluctantly he pulled the covers aside and got out of bed.
He entered the living room where unsurprisingly Sherlock was sitting on the sofa with his legs tucked under his body, dressed as he had come to expect, in pyjamas and robe.
"Do you know what's going on?" he asked, suppressing a yawn.
"New neighbour's moving in," Sherlock answered, followed by a particularly loud thump from above.
"Yes, John. You are remarkably observant today. Now hush, I am trying to think."
"About what? And how would me keeping quiet help any with all this ruckus going on?"
"We will not know unless you try."
"Fine. I'm going to find out what's going on."
John ventured out into the hallway, knowing that it was likely that Sherlock would follow him; the man wouldn't possibly be able to keep himself from finding out more about the person moving into their building.
"Oh. Good morning, John dear." Mrs. Hudson was standing on the flight outside 221B looking up the stairs, keeping her hand at her chest.
"Good morning," he answered. "Someone's moving in?"
"Yes, yes. The top floor. 221D."
"I didn't know there was a fourth apartment in this building."
"No, well, I've been renting it out for years, but the young man who lived here up and disappeared one day about twenty years ago, the rent never stopped coming though so I couldn't very well let someone else move in, now could I?"
"And now a young relative have chosen to take up the contract," Sherlock said, having come out into the stairwell as expected.
"Oh, Sherlock," Mrs. Hudson berated. "Do not startle me like that! I do not know how much my heart can take."
"He's just left school and wanted his own place to live," Sherlock continued as if Mrs. Hudson never said anything. "An uncle or perhaps godfather was your precious tenant before and when the young man discovered that this apartment existed he decided to move in."
Just then a man came down the stairs; he stopped in his tracks when he caught sight of them, looking for a fraction of a moment like a dear caught in the headlights, before he relaxed.
"Oh, hello," he said, smiling faintly. He was, as Sherlock had already told them, a young man, perhaps a bit over twenty years of age. He had dark hair that was longer atop his head and shorter on the sides; it fell over his forehead down to the frames of square rimmed glasses. He was wearing a cardigan that John had trouble deciding whether it was designer or homemade, pale blue jeans and finally a pair of rather ratty trainers on his feet.
John though he looked to be a nice enough fellow, and he was sure that if Sherlock opened his mouth he'd get the man's entire life story, so he made sure to open his mouth first.
"Hello," he answered, making sure to smile. "I'm John Watson and this here is Sherlock Holmes, we share the flat on this floor."
The man continued down the stairs and presented a hand, which John grabbed and shook. "I'm Harry Potter, pleased to meet you." Mr. Potter shook hands with Sherlock as well. That the Consultant Detective was agreeable to it surprised John a bit, but then he figured that Sherlock was probably gathering data.
"I apologize if I woke you up, I needed to vacate my previous home today and I'll not have the time to move my things later. Sorry for bothering you Mrs. Hudson."
"Oh," John said. "That's okay. It's no trouble." He did wish he'd gotten to sleep a bit longer, but neither did he want to make the man feel ill at ease and it wasn't as if Mr. Potter had tried to kill them or anything. He was just a young man trying to make the best of what was probably a tricky situation.
"Yes, yes, quite alright, Harry dear," gushed Mrs. Hudson. "Too bad about Mr. Black. Ugly story that."
"Yes." Harry's eyes grew dark, drawing John's attention to them, they were really green, an unusual colour.
"Sirius Black," Sherlock muttered, grabbing their attention. "A man thought to be a mass murderer, convicted for setting off a bomb in a street, killing thirteen people and injuring many more. Escaped twelve years later. Was on the run for three years before any evidence of his existence vanished and not least; he was your godfather."
John prepared himself for the worst. This wasn't going to be good, he could tell.
"Yes. He was innocent though," Mr. Potter said, not a hint of irritation in his tone, making John blink, his muscles still tense in preparation of confrontation.
"Really. Any cases at the moment?" Mr. Potter asked, changing the subject. His tone was innocent, but Sherlock must have read something more into it judging by his next inquiry.
"Police work, Potter?"
The man didn't even blink before he answered. "Special Forces."
"Of course. Led there by personal experiences."
"Yes. And as with you I would find myself bored with a regular desk job."
"You know of us?" John felt obliged to ask.
Mr. Potter's lips twitched. "Naturally," he answered. "You need to keep an eye on the competition even if you don't move in the same field."
"National reach," Sherlock said surely.
"International," Mr. Potter countered.
"Yes and no."
"Having worked in the field, but only recently getting the credentials of education."
John followed the conversation as best he could, some dread building. They didn't need another Sherlock in the building. And the only other man he knew whose brain functioned at all like his flatmate's was a murdering maniac, it didn't bode well for them if Mr. Potter was anything like that. There was Sherlock's brother too, not that he was any better.
Sherlock stared their new neighbour down. "You know Mycroft," he claimed accusingly, apparently having been thinking something similar to John.
"I have met him on occasion," Mr. Potter said.
"Did he put you up to this?"
"No. Though when he did find out I was taking up residence here, he tracked me down and-"
"Offered you money to spy on Sherlock," John concluded.
"Not, money, but he did try to bribe me with other means."
"Not money, John," Sherlock scolded at the same time. "Potter is not in need of monetary gain. You should have been able to put that together just by knowing that his godfather, who's been the tenant of the apartment for two decades, though not living there has been paying for it, and as he has disappeared, likely deceased."
Mr. Potter nodded.
"Potter has inherited and for Black to have been his godfather he must have been friends with his parents. People with money befriend people with money. Mr. and Mrs. Potter were wealthy and they too are dead, leading to more inheritance. Potter here also works in Special Forces, a profession with high risk work and compensation to reflect that, meaning that Potter has no need for my brother's money."
"So what did he offer?" John asked.
"Shall you, or shall I?" Mr. Potter asked.
"Mycroft offered information," Sherlock said, answering both inquires at once.
"Interesting cases, naturally."
"Naturally. How can you possibly know this? No never mind! I didn't ask that!"
"It's easy to conclude. Did you not listen? I have already told you that Mr. Potter has no need for money."
"Yes, I am with you so far," John said exasperated, watching their new neighbour smirk, that was more like Moriarty than Sherlock, not good, but it was also more human than Sherlock which on the other hand could count as being good.
"He has also said himself that he works in Special Forces."
"Yes, I recall."
"And that he would get bored with a desk job and that he knew about us because he wished to keep up with the competition."
"Do you need more?"
"I think I'll go back to mine, boys, do try not to have a falling out," Mrs. Hudson announced and scurried down the stairs to her apartment before any of them could give an answer.
"Hmm. Well, I should get back to putting in the last of my stuff. I need to get to work soon."
"Yes, of course," John nodded.
"France?" Sherlock asked.
"Switzerland," Mr. Potter retorted. "Near the border though, so I'll let you have that one."
"I don't need charity," Sherlock sniffed.
"Then you will not want to know the answer to the case you are working on?"
"You claim to know it?"
"Would I bring it up otherwise?"
"We're all doomed," John muttered. The other two ignored him.
"No, I don't want it."
"How about this?" Mr. Potter said. "I'll write it down, you can watch me do it, and you can read it when you've solved the case."
Sherlock seemed to debate with himself, finally his curiosity won out over his arrogance. "Fine."
"Do you have some paper and a pen?"
"John, get Potter something to write on."
"Sure," he answered, moving into the flat, "It's not like I'm around for anything but to hand you stuff anyway." He wasn't all that perturbed though, he was intrigued. It was equal fascination and terrifying to see Sherlock converse with someone whose mind seemed to work on the same wavelength.
He got back onto the stairwell, handed Mr. Potter the notebook he'd grabbed and the fountain pen with black ink that he had picked up the last time he was at the bank.
"Thanks," Mr. Potter murmured and he used a wall to steady the book while he scribbled down a few lines. "There you go." He handed the book back to John. "It's been a pleasure meeting you two. By the way I'm a big fan of your blog, Dr. Watson. Mr. Holmes, I feel like I should bring up the solar system, but I shall refrain. Oh, and if you want people to stop thinking that you are partners in more then one sense, do stop wearing matching colours." With that the young man, who had made what had looked to be a normal, slightly boring Wednesday in November rather more exiting, went down the stairs and out through the door.
"I didn't know we were working on a case," John said as they moved back inside their apartment, he went over to the kitchen and put on water to make some tea for breakfast. He would have liked coffee but they were all out.
"I got a text from Lestrade a couple of hours ago."
"And how could Potter know about it?"
"Am I going to have to repeat myself again?"
"He's in Special Forces, okay, I got it," John said to get Sherlock off his back. "Not that it be enough for a normal person to draw the conclusion, but what do I know," he added under his breath.
"We're going out," Sherlock suddenly announced.
"What? Now? I haven't eaten anything yet, and I have to be at the clinic at nine."
"All the more reason to get going. Lestrade sent another text."
"Fine, but you are getting dressed before leaving, or so help me, Sherlock." He poured a cup of tea and froze with the rim at his lips. "We don't wear matching colours do we?" he added, with a frown, thinking back to what their new neighbour had said.
"Yes we do," Sherlock answered and scurried off into his bedroom.
John sighed. "This will be a long day."
:221 B Baker Street:
It was a few days later, Saturday to be more precise and Sherlock and John dragged themselves inside their flat, exhausted but satisfied as the case was done.
"I can't believe that it was the greengrocer who killed all those people. That's even more bizarre than a cabby."
"He did have the incentive. The victims were if not directly, causing problems for his suppliers, and in turn his and his family's livelihood. But you are correct that it didn't seem likely. He had no education; he had no direct connection with the murdered people. He used middle hands to deliver the poisons, and different ones each time, though just as deadly. Fairly brilliant."
"Is that a compliment?"
"I said fairly brilliant, not brilliant."
"Shall we have a look at what Potter wrote then? Do you think he got it right?"
Sherlock didn't answer. He swished through the room, took up the notebook, flicked to the right page. He eyed the page and dropped the book.
"What?" John asked.
"I'm going out."
"I'm going to wave at a camera."
"Okay," John muttered, too used to Sherlock acting strange to care anymore. "You know it would be easier to call your brother!"
"You can't flip off people by mobile!" Sherlock called back, already halfway down the stairs.
"Right. Never heard of video chat I suppose."
He walked over to where Sherlock had dropped the book and picked it up to read what Mr. Potter had written.
"Mr. Cuberth: belladonna, on the broccoli bought by his niece.
"Ms. Rolands: wolfsbane, in the elderberry juice she is so fond of.
"Mrs. Lloyd: tetrodotoxin, in the herbal tea that her husband insists she drink for her varicose.
"Mr Thomas: Hemlock, ingested with his toast of all things and finally:
"Mr. Irving: Arsenic (switching it up a bit) this got in his system through consuming water from bottle tapped in Norway.
"I shouldn't need to say any more. I'll be back on Sunday, if you want to discuss the case or any other please come to dinner at seven pm. If you don't show up I'll take that as you failing to solve the case and I'll be most disappointed. Dr. Watson you are welcome to come too."
The note wasn't signed, but there was no need to. They did know who wrote it, and Potter had gotten everything right.
"Well he's going to be insufferable now," John muttered in a resigned way. "I hope Potter serves good food."
End Chapter 1
AN 28th July 2013 (9th October 2013):
I wrote this up (mostly) in one go (I've edited since then), got the request today and all. It might not be very refined, but I think it fills the prompt and does carry its own weights as a neat little story about Harry moving into Baker Street. It felt natural for me to just have a lot of dialogue in this. It moves quickly this way, like Sherlock's mind, and in this instance Harry's as well.
I recently watched BBC's Sherlock and I must say that the show is brilliant. It blows your mind and all the British English… yeah… I love it.
I hope you enjoyed the story.
I am working on a second chapter, but I don't know when it'll be done.