A/N: Hello all! This is my first adventure into a crossover story. I REALLY hope you like it. I would love your opinions, reviews, thoughts, what you like, what you didn't.
-Summary: 13 years of pain, suffering, & a wish for death is suddenly taken away when a man with slate/blue eyes gently grabs my wrist and just gives me a smirk.
-Story revolves mostly in normal London, with some mentions of the WW, maybe an 'adventure' to it later on. fem!harry, nonromantic john/sherlock, differentish Mycroft (to a point) and Greg just being Greg.
Ok, finally some Sherlock/John action…ok that came out wrong. Also, I wish I had Mycroft for an uncle.
It was strange to see Sherlock acting with kindness towards anyone; but if it was going to happen, it would with an abused little girl. She was a tiny thing, looking only around ten-years-old; her hair was almost as long as her. The jet black locks were slightly fussed up, but didn't hide the bruised and battered pale skin that was shown. Looking over at the whale of man, I can barely contain the rage building; child abusers were the worst sort.
Movement brings my eyes back to Sherlock and Stella, the latter passed out in his arms, which were wrapped securely around her small form, fingers rubbing small circles on her back, trying to ease the shivers raking her body. I can see his eyes moving from her to the obese man several times before Sherlock walks towards his brother, beginning a whispered conversation. Willingly talking with Mycroft? What is this world coming to? I see Greg's back up arrive, to whom he explained everything too, causing the responding officers to stiffen before dragging the man into the car, their body language not good for the prisoner.
A sleek black car pulls up behind me and Mycroft's assistant opens the door, standing by the car, her eyes & fingers on the Blackberry that seemed to run Mycroft's world. I see Sherlock move towards the car, Stella now curled into his chest; her face was buried into his scarf, obscuring a chance to see if she was still out of it. After a look from Mycroft, I slid in after my flat mate, surprised to hear him whispering into her ear. When Mycroft and Athena slide in and close the door, the car takes off, Sherlock still watching the small girl in his arms.
When I come to, I'm actually really warm for the first time in a very long time. But I freeze when I realize there are fingers on my head which is cradled on a lap; the fingers are gently carding through my hair. I can hear voices a few feet from me; they sound like those men from earlier. Most of my hair is over my eyes, allowing me to open them partially to find a soft red carpet below me in low, soft lighting. Someone stands suddenly, knocking a chair back, which hits the carpet with a soft thump.
"I will not allow you to just throw her into a hospital in the middle of strange city, Mycroft! It is obvious she is abused and has been attack recently; why would you stick her in an environment where she knows absolutely no one and can't escape from, seeing as she is underage?" That sounds like that blonde man, John? Yes, that was the name.
I somehow stop myself from reacting when another voice, this one female, sounds from above me. "Boys, do keep your voices down. You will wake her and frighten the poor thing."
"Forgive me mummy, but she is awake already, although she doesn't know what to do." It was his voice again.
Quiet footsteps bring a pair of soft black shoes near me before the man kneels down until his knees touch the carpet. I can't hold back the flinch as fingers push the fringe of my hair back, bringing slate/blue eyes into mine. Sherlock: that is what John called him. He gives me a small, soft smile before he whispers
"Welcome back, little one. Gave yourself a fright, didn't you?"
I don't answer, but sit up quickly, drawing the warm throw closer to me, taking in the room. I see John standing near a desk, the man with brown hair sitting behind it; that must be the Mycroft man John was talking to. Sherlock is still kneeling down next to the sofa, watching me. Movement next to me as me causes me to whip my head to the direction of the woman who had been cradling my head in her lap just moments before. She was very beautiful; tall, like Sherlock, with silver lined black hair that was drawn into a bun at the nape of her neck and eyes so similar to Sherlock's. Those eyes were locked with mine before she smiled and extended her hand, ignoring my flinch as she took mine in hers.
"My dear girl, you are safe here. No one will harm you, I swear." Her tone was gentle, calming me.
But I've heard that before; is that not what McGonagall said to the first years as they stood on the steps inside the Great Hall? Yet the worst damage happened within the walls of the old stone castle. I can feel the tears building again as my mind races, memories coming forward despite my best efforts to shove them away. Yet, a gentle touch on my cheek sends the thoughts away, bringing my eyes into Sherlock's again.
"Stop that." His deep voice cuts through the panic building in my mind.
Suddenly, my arms are wrapped around his neck, the tears now falling as I sob, a sense that I was finally safe overwhelming the fear that had been plaguing me the past week. His arms wrap around me and he stands with my legs around his waist. He is whispering in my ear, but I don't pay attention to what he is saying, although I do notice when he starts speaking to Mycroft again.
"I do not care what it takes; get me custody of her Mycroft."
"She can't be in Baker Street before that, brother."
"She can stay in my guest room here with me, Sherlock. She needs to be seen by a doctor and we all know a hospital is out of the question. Besides, this will give me a chance to bond with my first grandchild."
"Yes mummy, wonderful plan." Sherlock's voice vibrated through my head as I calmed myself down. "Are you ok with that, Stella?"
I lift my head to find him looking down at me, his face angled so our eyes were locked. A doctor would find all the scars and would… they would know what happened. Panic again grips my heart before Sherlock gently kisses my forehead, right over my scar. I nod before curling into his neck, eyes watching everyone around me. John gives me a sad smile before turning to the woman, 'Sherlock's mother?', and gives a small nod before turning and leaving the room.
"Ok poppet, we're going to go to your temporary quarters, all right? You won't be here long, but be good for mummy, won't you?"
"Yes sir." My voice cracks as I answer, but I feel him stiffen.
"No sir with me, little one. You can call me Sherlock; in fact I want you to."
I only nod, bringing a small smirk to his lips before he starts walking, his mother besides him. My eyelids start feeling heavy again, but I hold out until we walk into a new room. The walls are a deep brown while the floor was hardwood; it appeared to be a sitting room with three doors going off of it.
"There is a spare room through here, Sherlock."
He follows the woman through the side door, a largely undecorated room with a large twin four poster bed in the middle. Sherlock moves until he is at the edge of the bed, letting me drop onto the soft comforter. I'm shivering again, the cold seeping in again after leaving the previous room, prompting me to pull the cover over my feet. He lingers for a moment before leaning forward, stopping when I can't stop the flinch that is produced.
'I'm sorry, I'm still so scared.' I feel horrible; this man had done nothing but help me and I still doubt him.
He seems to sense my thoughts, but only nods before standing back up.
"When you are hungry, let mummy know. For now, I want you to rest. I'm sure Mycroft will have the physician in come the morning; we'll figure out what to do then."
Again, I only nod before pushing my trainers off and slide under the covers, glasses on the night stand. I feel like the bed could swallow me in one gulp; but it is softer than even the ones at school. I let myself drop into sleep, not seeing the pair of similar eyes watching me.
There is nothing like waking from a nightmare, screams held back in my throat, into an environment that I can't recognize. My heart is beating so hard I can feel it on my chest wall and my face is wet with tears. Combination nightmares were the worst; combining memories and perverting them further. The comforter is too tight, too close, I need air. I quickly free myself from the bed, & shove my glasses on, but the cold seeps in from the floor. No, I don't want to go back in the bed; I know I won't sleep again for a long time. I wrap my arms around my waist, avoiding the bruises before quietly walking out of the room, not seeing Sherlock's mother, assuming she was asleep. The outside of the door is unlocked, allowing me to slip out, counting the doors as I went.
'…four…five…six…seven, here it is.' I'm outside the room from earlier and it is unlocked as well. Slowly opening the door, I see what I'm looking for: the fireplace, thankfully still lit. I move forward, grabbing a hold of the throw still on the couch before moving to mantle. Wrapping the throw around my shoulder, I sit close to the red/orange flames, taking in the blessed warmth it was offering. Whenever I had a particularly terrifying nightmare back at school, I always found that the fireplace in the common room calmed me.
The quiet of the room let's my mind start processing all the information that it has been hit with since staring Vernon down…last night? Has it been only that short amount of time? Strangers had done more for me that all my primary teachers, neighbors, or professors had ever done for me in less than 24 hours. Hell, one was willing to take me in, without knowing my past, without knowing who I really am.
'Do people like him really exist?' I let this question float away as I flex my now warm appendages, letting the digits pull the edges of the throw back from my arms. The bruises looked sicklier in the fire light, more fresh. 'How did it ever come to this? The wizarding world was supposed to be different, but I go from being a freak in the normal world to a freak in the magical one. How is an eleven-year-old supposed to comprehend what they threw at me? Then this year, everyone just assumes I'm behind the bloody attacks on everyone? Why? Because I didn't like that Creevey was stalking me with that blasted camera everywhere? Because I decided that I wouldn't let house lines keep me from trying to make peace with the Slytherins?'
"I didn't want any of this. I just wanted a home, is that too much?" I ask in a whisper, eyes lit up with unshed tears again. I was not expecting an answer.
"It is never wrong to wish for a safe place, my dear."
I jump, turning to find Mycroft behind me, in what must be casual clothes for him: brown slacks with his white button down shirt un-tucked. He sits down near to me, facing me the whole time. He looks different out of the suit; not as intimidating, but not weak. He gives me a small smile before turning to stoke the fire, embers crawling up the chimney.
"I'm sorry sir; I shouldn't have come in here without permission." I say in a small voice, curling into myself again.
His fingers catch my hand before it can slip back under the throw, bringing my eyes into his. 'Blue/slate, alike but dissimilar to Sherlock.'
"My dear, what did I just say?"
I don't answer, just watch his eyes.
"Does being around the fire make you feel safe?"
"Do you get cold often?"
"I can't stay warm."
He doesn't reply right away, his eyes far away for a moment. "The fire gives you comfort. It is never wrong to try and find a bit of peace. I'm not upset you came in here by yourself; I only wonder why now, when you should be sleeping."
"Bad dream." I mumble, turning away.
He makes a small noise to himself before standing, returning to his desk. I can hear cups lightly clinking before footsteps bring him back, pushing a steaming cuppa in my hands. He again sits next to me, his back against the ottoman so he could look straight at me.
"I'm sorry sir; I didn't mean to keep you from your work."
But he waved it off, taking a sip from his tea. "I would rather hear about this dream of yours."
"Too many bad things there, sir." I whisper, watching the steam rise from the cup.
"My dear girl-"
I almost burn myself with the tea from the flinch that rocks me at those words. That old, wrinkled bastard's voice never left me, always trying to guilt me into becoming his little tool. I head Mycroft move again and look to see him watching me.
"There's a story there, why don't you tell me?"
It takes only a moment before I open my mouth, "Do you believe in magic, sir?"
"Why don't you convince me?"
So I did.
I spent most of the night talking, pulling my trunk from my trouser pocket and enlarging it for proof, until I found myself leaning against him, already half asleep. He was currently reading my History of Magic book, asking questions every now and then, some of which I could answer, most I couldn't. He was warm and smelt like lemon & mint, a calming scent if I ever did inhale one. Sherlock had similar scent of pine and rain, reminding me of one my…'adventures' in the Forbidden Forest.
In the back of my mind, a voice was saying that I shouldn't trust these people, that I shouldn't be comfortable with them. A week ago, I was fine…ok mostly fine, with people touching me. These people only wanted to help me and they've only know me for 12 hours. After twelve years, no one with the ability to do so every helped when I needed them. I shut the voice away and curl into Mycroft, letting sleep fully take me as he reads select parts out loud, something about the wizarding judges and law makers.
When I wake again, I'm still curled up by the now dead fireplace, pillows from the lounge under my head, wrapped in the throw. For the first time in a very long time, I slept with no nightmares; I cannot recall when that last happened. The sounds around me slowly filtered through: the traffic outside, the gentle hum of the heating, and the sound of pen on paper, from somewhere behind me. Despite being on the floor, I have never been so comfortable in my life; I wish I didn't have to get up, but my limbs are stiff and the bruises re announce themselves as I re-adjust.
"The physician will be here in an hours' time, my dear. You may want to refresh yourself and change before that."
I sit up at his voice, turning to find him at his desk; he himself changed into a gray three piece suit and what looked like a light breakfast next to a pile of work. I only nod before standing, replacing the pillows and throw on the lounge as I do so. When I face him, he gives me small smile before turning back to…was that my charms book? Oh, there was my transfiguration book as well, in fact, most of my first year books were on his desk, all with different bookmarks.
"I had some knowledge of your world before last night, but only enough to keep this world safe from that one. I had no idea that it was this complicated. Your books are most fascinating, forgive me, I helped myself." He says all this without looking up at me.
I quickly locate my open trunk with some panic, kneeling in front of it.
"I did not look at anything but your school texts."
"Thank you, sir."
I close the lid and whisper the counter password and the trunk shrinks, allowing me to pick it up and stand.
"Sir? Thank you."
Again, he waves my words off, but looks up at me. "It was my pleasure my dear. Now, please go refresh yourself. I'm afraid that I will not let you avoid the doctor."
I simply nod before leaving his study, passing his pretty assistant on the way out, who gave me a small smile, before an "Athena." called her into the same room, the door clicking close behind me. When I walk back into my, 'what was it that Sherlock called it?', oh my temporary quarters, she was there, looking frantic.
"Oh my dear sweet child, where have you been? I've been worried."
"I'm sorry, madam."
"Oh no, my dearest, you don't have to be so formal with me. I'm going to be your grandmother."
"I don't know what else to say."
"Call me nan, if you wish then. I am anybody but madam."
"Yes miss. I need to shower."
Her smile dropped a little before she recovered. "Of course love. It's attached to your bedroom, right next to the wardrobe."
Nodding, I move into the room and quietly close the door, leaning against it. The room again seems to swallow me, I know I am small for my age, but I feel like Professor Flitwick at times. Seeing the door next to the dark wardrobe, I make my way into the bathroom, pulling of articles of clothing as I did so. My trousers were torn only the hemline from where Vernon had dragged me out of the car, but the rest of my clothes were thankfully still intact. Regardless, I lay my trunk on the floor near the door, unshrinking it before walking on the cold flooring.
I don't linger, used to being rushed through my routine by the Dursleys and the girls in the dorms. My hair always took the longest; I hate its length, but whenever I try to shorten it, I always wake up with it back to the same length. The bruises from a week ago have faded into green/yellow splotches, making the pale form underneath show up dramatically. I am not looking forward to the physician seeing the marks and scars from years past.
'What if Sherlock decides I'm not worth the time? He seems like a busy man, why would he want an annoying little freak bothering him?'
"Stella? The doctor is here."
I jump at her voice, the echo reverberating around the small room.
"Ok." That's all I can get out, my voice already shaking along with my hands. I can feel the panic building.
My getting dressed is hazy, throwing on loose bits of clothing. But, I don't go out into the other room; I sit in the middle of the bed, knees drawn up my chest, tears running down my face. I don't want another person to see my scars, to see my shame, to see the marks from Vernon and those ogres. I don't want another person confirming that I'm broken, that I am worthless and should just be thrown out on the streets, like Aunt Marge suggested multiple times. I hear the door open, but I just ignore it. I can't find the strength to look up and see another face ready to reject me. The bed dips before the person settles, fingers soon pulling my chin up. Sherlock is watching me carefully, aware of the violent shivers raking my body and the tear streaking down my cheeks. He only scoffs gently before pulling me into his arms, resting his chin on my head.
"Never let your fears overtake your mind, poppet. You'll learn that once something is mine, I don't give it up."
This causes me to pull back, eyes wide. 'What? Is he serious?' He only gives me a nod before sliding off the bed, pulling me along beside him. He doesn't remove his arm wrapped around my shoulders as he directs me to the sitting room. I see Nan & Mycroft talking with another woman with short blonde hair; this must be the physician. She turns when we enter, her brown eyes already assessing me.
"Hi there Stella, my name is Dr. Julia McNamera. I'm going to take care of you, is that alright?" Her voice is coming out at a slow pace, as if she is talking to an imbecile.
I don't know how to respond, but I can see Sherlock looking at the woman with open distain before answering for me.
"She's hurt, not an idiot."
Julia looked taken aback for a moment before recovering. "I was informed that the patient has been abused in the past, Mr. Holmes, and I didn't want to startle her."
"The patient is right here and can hear everyone you are spilling out of your idiotic mouth. I do not believe she would like to be taken for a fool, doctor." The gentle tone of his voice was gone, ice on every word directed towards the woman, though his arm was holding me closer, almost pushing me behind him. I grip the edge of this coat before deciding to defuse the situation before it could implode.
"Nice to meet you, doctor." After all the semi-yelling, my voice cuts through, drawing the woman's eyes to me again. But I'm not looking at her as I look around the room, not seeing John; I don't know if he was supposed to be here or not.
"He's at the flat; apparently it's barely even tolerable for the two of us to live there at the moment, so it needs upgraded to accommodate all three of us. He is also explaining everything to our land lady, Mrs. Hudson."
Sherlock whispered this in my ear, without me having asked. 'Does he always do this?'. Before he could say anything further, Julia draws my attention back to her.
"I would like you to have a seat here, if you would. Then we can begin; as I was explaining before, I understand there is some history with ab-"
I cut her off, surprising myself at the rude interruption. "Abuse? You don't know the half of it; the marks are from an attack that occurred a week ago at my school. The headmaster did nothing to punish the boys involved, so I removed myself from the environment, with some help."
I again surprise myself, this time from the lack of stuttering, but I can't stop shaking and I'm cold! Moving to the lounge, I pull the nearest throw over me, leaving my neck & head exposed.
"That is something I wanted you to look into, Dr. McNamera. She is more than likely highly anemic from the apparent lack of temperature control in her body. She will need to diet plan to put weight on; she can't be more than 36 kilograms." Mycroft said, leading the conversation.
"Agreed, she is small for her apparent age. My dear how old are you and what are your eating habits like?"
"I'm twelve and I guess I eat when I can or remember to. I always get sick when I eat too much too soon. I only ate when I was allowed to before." I answer quietly.
I see Sherlock's mouth tighten suddenly at my words, but he doesn't say anything. It's Mycroft who speaks next.
"When is the last time you ate, my dear?"
I opened my mouth to give my automated response, but I knew oh last night wouldn't be believed. I don't recall eating much of anything while in the infirmary and Vernon left me no chance to eat anything while I was there, so that would mean
"…four days ago? Maybe five, maybe even six. I don't know."
Julia's eyes were wide before standing, fast talking with Mycroft and Sherlock about an extensive dietary plan that would need to be implemented. Nan moved across the room and sat down next to me, holding my hand in hers. She doesn't speak, just pulls me to her side while I watch the others make plans. After ten minutes, my exam re-starts and lasts another hour and a half, Sherlock actually pulling Julia back when I couldn't contain my reaction when she prodded a bruise on my abdomen harder then I think she meant to. When she finished, Julia had a grim expression covering her face, again turning to Mycroft, this time speaking in quiet tones. Sherlock had replaced Nan's position at this point, my form cradled into his side, his fingers carding through my hair. After a moment, Dr. McNamera leaves with a pile of notes in her hands while Mycroft and Nan turn to me.
"I know you most likely don't feel hungry, but we are going to start you with very small portions throughout the day to start building up a tolerance. Not eating for six days is…unsafe, no matter how much you are used to such schedules, my dear." Mycroft explains, moving to stand in front of me.
I nod, knowing it wasn't healthy. "I tried to do something like that at school, sir, but I only ended up throwing up what I took in."
"You had no one to guide you, unlike now. But, we need to get you a new wardrobe. I think a day out with John and mummy would be adventurous, right Stella?" Sherlock asks me this all while I am still curled into his side, so he doesn't see my eyes go wide.
"I…I don't…I don't need…new…"
"Nonsense darling. You have maybe one or two nice things, but most of the other clothing you have is either school uniforms or hand-me-downs from someone rather larger than you." Nan replied.
But I keep shaking my head, the tremors reappearing in my hands.
"Hmmm, best keep that until after you're settled into Baker Street I would think."
Sherlock's words put his own idea down, but he didn't push me away, only continued to let his fingers lull me in a soft sleep, my head tucked into his shoulders.
The follow two weeks were spent in Mycroft's townhouse/ private office, activities varying from appointments with Dr. McNamera or the dietician, small tutoring with Nan, who wanted to know where I stood in my primary education, since my actual learning had been stunted a bit from Hogwarts. Apparently, she and Sherlock had been informed by Mycroft of my…previous world, much to my horror. I thought this would surely drive me out the door; but it only seemed to fuel Sherlock, who then spent the majority of the time he was at Mycroft's house with me in his lap, back flush against his chest while he poured over all my school books, minus the Lockhart books, which I had left out of my trunk separately on purpose. He had his face next to mine, asking a million and two questions about every aspect I could explain, his long fingers deftly holding two books at once while I left my magic out, trying to show him what I could without the guidance of a wand. John would be over, talking about everything else that Sherlock didn't cover, meaning everything other than magic and my personal health, although John touched on that too. In the span of the two weeks, I found myself calling these people my family in my mind, something I never thought I would truly have.
Then one day, while Sherlock was watching me go through the process of producing a levitation charm, for what must be the twentieth time, Mycroft walked in with an official stack of paper that had his brother freezing.
"I do hope Baker Street is ready, brother."
I knew what that meant; I would be going home with Sherlock today, within the hour if he had his way. A small nod from Mycroft had me gathering all my books from the coffee table and racing to my room, throwing them and any other item that had made their way out of my trunk back into it. Satisfied that everything was back in it, I shrink the trunk and place in my coat pocket, once I dawn the warm item. I fast walk back Mycroft's study, seeing Sherlock ready as well, mobile in hand, meaning he was texting John. As we leave, Mycroft hands me my own mobile, the smooth black item cool in my hands. Two weeks of being on an insane dose of iron pills and vitamin b-12 had finally started working, letting me enjoy the environment around me without freezing my hands and fingers off. I had to admit, that once it was explained to me why being anemic made me so fatigued and cold all the time, I was more than happy to take the large doses of pills.
"If anything goes wrong and you can't contact Sherlock or John, I want you to text me with the code word: salutem. That's all you need to do and I'll find you."
I nod quickly, giving him a quick hug before turning back to Sherlock, who was watching me closely. He grabs my hand when I'm in reach and picks me up, settling me on his hip as he walks down the several flights of stairs until we get to the front door, where he sets me on my feet before holding my hand again. When we walk out the door, we walk into a light snow fall to Mycroft's waiting car. After a thirty minute drive, we arrive and Sherlock steps out before me, scans the area before he lets me slide out after him. He walks quickly into the building in front of us, before placing his hands on my shoulders.
"Welcome, Miss Stella Potter, to 221 B Baker Street."
A/N: oh my god, 11 pages. And this chapter took the better part of three days to write. It's also ones like these that make me wish I had any drawing skills, because every major scene starts off as a picture in my head; I just WISH I could put those to paper. Like I would love the world to see when Sherlock is first holding Stella on the street or how Mycroft is comforting her by the fire, & oh, the part with Sherlock pouring over her magic textbooks with her on his lap. I have the WHOLE image in my head, but alas, I do believe a fifth grader would have better skills at drawing then me.
OK. So we have covered the journey from Hogwarts to 221 B. lots more detailed then I thought it would be. I may take a small break, don't want to run out of steam too quickly; but again, reviews are my bread and butter. I LIVE to know your thoughts, opinions, likes, dislikes, and theories. Feed Me!