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    Family Deductions

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    His-Doctor

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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by His-Doctor on Thu Nov 08, 2012 1:04 am

    As they reached Stanley's car he pressed the remote unlocking and getting in the back seat Sherlock gesticulated to John to sit with him. John hopped in gratefully and put his seat belt on while Stanley started the car and pulled his seatbelt on.

    The Inspector waited for traffic the smoothly pulled out onto Broadway heading slowly for Parliament Square. John took Sherlock's hand to give him some reassurance as they looked across to the Thames. There was an air of silent expectancy that nobody wanted to break as Stanley concentrated on the busy roads.

    Hopkins spoke up when they veered onto the A roads where traffic was less congested. “Work going ok for you, John?”

    “Yeah, good, always busy.” John tried to sound like he meant that it was going well. “Hamish is doing great got an A in chemistry practical test.”

    The two men exchanged a few words about how their children were doing until Stanley needed to put all his attention back onto driving.

    John was feeling a little uncomfortable that he still had Winters' gun in his pocket. He didn't know what to do about it but he thought it would be confiscated as evidence if he owned up to it and his husband would be better off armed. He pulled Winters' firearm out of his right hand pocket and passed it surreptitiously to Sherlock to decide if he was going to pocket it or hand it in.
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by Sherlock Holmes on Thu Nov 08, 2012 2:28 am

    Sherlock took up the offer of John's hand gratefully and gave it a squeeze, staring out of the window as they set off on their journey. Knowing it would take them a little while to get to their destination, he sighed and settled back in his seat, listening to John and Hopkins make small talk but not joining in.

    He was thinking about the possibility of their being a bomb involved somewhere and whether they were purposely being lured there by the message scrawled on the side of the van. There was also the fact that the clue had mentioned Tuesday. What was it that was going to happen on Tuesday that they hadn't worked out yet. 3/1. 3 2 1. Tuesday. What if the bomb explosion wasn't till Tuesday? Where were they taking the printing machine and what would they be doing in the meantime?

    Sherlock looked up from his musings as John past him the gun. He glanced quickly at Hopkins and smoothly took it from John's hand, slipping it into his pocket.
    "Clever move," he whispered, and gave him a sneaky wink.

    His heart gave another surge in his chest at the thought of what might be ahead. This job definitely kept him young, he thought with a smirk to himself.
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by His-Doctor on Thu Nov 08, 2012 5:41 am

    “Thank you.” John whispered as Sherlock pocketed the spoils of war in the shape of Mr Winters' gun. “About 10 pounds.” John added quietly with a blink squeezing Sherlock's hand with a sturdy finger. That would even the odds up.

    John did what he always had done in the interminable wait to go up to the front line. He thought about the past, all the good bits, of his life and of history and how he was a small cog in a large wheel and what he would do after. Here was Whitechapel of Ripper fame. Big Ben and the Liberty bells from The Bell Foundry, still there. Then the Roman soldiers marching along the first paved road bridge at Bow and Henry I bridge of Bow. The Olympic Park. Then Epping Forest on the ridge.

    He thought of kicking a ball around with Hamish, his little face pale and framed with curls in the school play, wonderfully observed drawings from being a little kid, Sherlock's artistic blood there, coming home to tea or coffee made by his husband's own hands, always so perfect as if measured. Made with love every time. The most unlikely and wonderful thing that had ever happened to him was Sherlock. Yeah, a lot of good bits and he was going to hug Hamish, feed him and dab antiseptic cream and then attend to Sherlock with some fantastic life affirming loving. It felt good to feel really alive like this.
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by Sherlock Holmes on Thu Nov 08, 2012 8:14 pm

    Sherlock cast a couple of quick glances at John and smiled to himself. It was easy to read the expressions on his face, the small changes in his body language as he flittered through different thoughts, clearly reminiscing, remembering. It was the natural thing to do, he supposed, when in a potentially life threatening situation.

    "We're coming up to the M11 now chaps," Hopkins explained. "Where abouts exactly do you want to go?"
    "Need to check the slip roads," Sherlock replied. "Any roads that lead onto the motorway. Not sure what we're looking for exactly but - wait - stop here, just pull up a minute."

    They had just past a small newsagent and Sherlock had a sudden idea. As Hopkins indicated and pulled the car to one side, the detective leapt out and ran into the shop, coming out moment's later with a copy of the Evening Standard and getting back into the car beside John.

    "Check if Moriarty's left any more coded messages, instructions for Moran," he explained, quickly thumbing through the pages to get to the personal ads.
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by His-Doctor on Fri Nov 09, 2012 2:43 am

    John came out of his happy reverie when he realised that they would soon be on the M11. Hopkins asked where they needed to go and Sherlock told him but abruptly asked to stop the car and dived out to vanish into a shop.

    “What's he doing?” asked Hopkins screwing himself around in his seat to face John as best he could.

    “Dunno, he does this sometimes. It's ok.” John reassured smoothly.

    Hopkins sighed and peered out of his window fidgeting with his seatbelt.

    John's eyes remained on the shop doorway until his husband quickly came out waving a newspaper and got back into the car. He saw it was the same paper that had contained the coded advert. Sherlock proceeded to see if there was another advert intended for Moran. That was smart thinking.
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by Sherlock Holmes on Fri Nov 09, 2012 6:35 am

    Sherlock hummed to himself under his breath. It probably sounded casual and carefree, but it was really just a type of displacement activity to cover up his excitement as he scanned his eyes over each advert.

    "Aha!" He suddenly exclaimed triumphantly. "Yes! Yes, this is it. This is beautiful!" The detective grinned and threw an arm round John, bringing him in for a quick cuddle before sitting up and folding over the paper, beckoning for Hopkins to lean over so he could show them both. "Look at this..."

    Mustard's party is today at Big Bang. (Unfortunately, Heath couldn't get the invitations printed till tomorrow). No pets or children please. Photos to be developed on Tuesday in Luton.

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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by His-Doctor on Fri Nov 09, 2012 11:38 am

    John saw the vibrant energy and concentration that bubbled below the surface of his husband as he thumbed the paper through for the personal ads then looked down the columns. It was obvious that the sparkling, verdigris eyes had found the advert when Sherlock leaned across and John was treated to a joyful hug. John leaned in to look for the advert and see what was getting Sherlock fizzed up. A couple of things stood out immediately to him.

    “Oh. You know that, Colonel Mustard, Cluedo.”John cried as he spotted the first line of the ad.

    “You two play Cluedo?” asked Hopkins incredulously while wriggling furiously to turn and look at the section of newspaper.

    “Er, no.” John deflected the question. Once had been enough but he liked to keep some things about their lives private.

    “Was gonna say.” Stanley chortled then went back to the matter in hand. “You sure that's right? Another message, I mean?”

    “Yeah, it is.” John was certain. He recognised Moriarty's favourite insulting word for him in the ad.
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by Sherlock Holmes on Fri Nov 09, 2012 7:14 pm

    "Colonel Mustard, that was the first thing I thought too," Sherlock grinned, glad that he and John were on the same page, it was always pleasing.

    He smirked at the Inspector's question and the way his husband had answered. He found it amusing that Cluedo had been banned in their household for so long. He'd tried to teach it to Hamish once, but John had intervened and it ended up with an argument over the rules.
    "It's just because I'm too good at it," the detective joined in. "He's a bad loser."

    Sherlock cleared his throat and returned to concentrating on the code. "I'd say 'Mustard' was referring to Moran. Seeing as it made us both think of Colonel, and Moran was a Colonel. Now then...party...a cause for celebration, and 'Big Bang', trying to pass for some kind of location for this fictional party but actually this brings me back to my original suspicion of their being a bomb involved somewhere...a big bang? And it's happening today. That's good news." He frowned, realising he might have said something wrong. "I mean...bad news."

    Sherlock hesitated, wondering whether that was right, then shrugged and carried on. "Now, there's...there's three days referred to here. Today, tomorrow and Tuesday. Tuesday was in the original message remember? And there's a resemblance here between 'Camera' which was in the previous code referring to Milverton and 'photos', so I suspect 'photos' is referring to Milverton too."
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by His-Doctor on Sat Nov 10, 2012 1:34 am

    John grinned back at his husband as they were in agreement about the reference to Colonel Moran.
    “Sherlock, all of us in our household are bad losers.” John reminded his husband. John's biggest difficulty in bringing Hamish up had been making his childhood balanced and rounded so that he understood how to play by the rules and avoid making social gaffs while realising that the people his parents dealt with didn't play by those rules and, yes, sometimes there was a grey area where the rules were wrong. He knew that Hamish was a bad enough loser to have kicked himself soundly for getting abducted but it would be shoring him up too with luck. “A party is also a number of people, but a double entendre makes no difference.”
    He noticed Hopkins struggling with the idea that Sherlock could be happy about a bomb and fortunately Sherlock must have also because he amended himself. “Yeah. Knowing when it's going to happen is good” John murmured wallpapering over the gap.
    “Yes.” Hopkins chipped in trying to be positive, finding it disconcerting to be reminded that his passengers were adrenaline junkies. He liked to think they were seekers of justice, like himself, even if he was forced to admit he needed them to tread where he couldn't because he was answerable his boss and the public as a D.I.

    “Yeah.” John agreed. “No idea what the Heath reference means but it says no pets or children meaning me and Hamish, I think.” he had himself firmly under control to at least not look disturbed about that, at least not to Stanley's eyes.
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by Sherlock Holmes on Sat Nov 10, 2012 3:51 am

    Sherlock listened to his husband's reasoning and nodded in agreement, glad that John had been there to make things alright with Hopkins. He still wasn't great at knowing what were the right and wrong things to say.

    "Definitely you and Hamish. And it wouldn't surprise me in the slightest to learn that he meant it quite literally," Sherlock muttered rather gravely. "I'm sure Moriarty and Moran would like nothing better than to see you both, and myself, wiped off the face of the planet for good." Then he grinned and brightened up with, "but obviously that's never going to happen so they'll just have to be disappointed.

    He hoped his cheerfulness effectively covered his own insecurity about the whole thing. He definitely saw the message as a direct threat on his husband's and son's life and he wasn't exactly comfortable with it, although he was still confident in their ability to stop it.

    The detective re-read the message again to see if anything else would jump out at him. "Oh wait, hang on," he murmured, frowning and pointing at the relevant phrase. "Printed. Printing. The printing machine. It's a connection. Whatever they're going to do with it, they're doing it tomorrow. Or at least, Heath is. Heath. The name doesn't ring a bell. Unless...oh...ohhh, John, yes, yes!"

    Hopkins turned up his nose and gave Sherlock a rather strange look. The detective was acting and sounding like he was about to have an orgasm and it made him feel a tad awkward.
    "What...what is it?" He asked.

    "If you had an amazing but rather illegal money printing machine and had just been found out, what would you do?" Sherlock asked, his eyes sparkling.
    "Destroy it?"
    "No no no NO! They've spent time and money on this thing, and it has the potential to make them thousands, millions even. They won't want to destroy it, they'll want to hide it. But they can hardly hide it here in London with the whole of Scotland Yard looking for them, and even England is risky, so...Heath is not a person, it's an airport. Heathrow. They're planning to fly the machine out of the country. Tomorrow."
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by His-Doctor on Sat Nov 10, 2012 5:56 am

    John smirked humourlessly. “Too right, they'll have to remain disappointed. Yeah, it was when the image of the M11 came up, I sussed then it was directed at me as well. But I didn't think they intended to kill Hamish as well until this.” he fingered the newspaper. “It could be worse.” his stomach lurched at the thought and he knew that his husband would feel the same way.

    “How, in God's name, could it be worse, man!” Hopkins spluttered.

    John dropped his head back down to look at the newspaper to avoid throwing a withering look at Stanley and refrained from giving him an answer. It was a gut reaction, the man wasn't stupid, the penny would drop sooner or later. He went back to studying the advert then Sherlock came up with an answer.

    “Heathrow, of course.” he wanted to hug his husband and with the adrenaline in his system he fidgeted. “Airport at Luton too, Stan, there's a chance that Milverton might fly up there.”

    He turned to Sherlock “I don't think they know you could decipher this, yet. It's an advantage in our favour. Ok, I'm just guessing so I could be wrong here...ok, but if they think we are only following the motorway clue? Moriarty loves his Semtex vests...then Hamish could be...”
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by Sherlock Holmes on Sun Nov 11, 2012 6:36 am

    Sherlock ignored Hopkins's reaction. The inspector hadn't worked with them long enough to understand their grim humour, although it was in fact, a way of coping for both of them.

    "Yes," he cried excitedly. "Luton too. Which means...the printing machine will be smuggled out of the country tomorrow at Heathrow, no doubt on a private chartered jet. And Milverton will be snuck out on Tuesday from Luton airport. Perfect."

    He couldn't help but clasp his hands together in delight, feeling like the game was truly on. "And you're absolutely right, John, we're one step ahead of them."

    The detective frowned at the next remark. The thought of his son strapped with semtex made him liable to kill someone. "Let's check out those slip roads as we agreed, Inspector," he mumbled quietly, folding the paper in half. "Looking for any kind of abandoned buildings, warehouses, anything where they might be able to hide something or someone."
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by His-Doctor on Sun Nov 11, 2012 8:02 am

    “Right, let's get cracking if you know what we're looking for now.” Hopkins replied when Sherlock had outlined what to keep an eye out for. He got the car back out into the traffic stream and into the outside lane to head up the North Circular Road to join the streaming lane up to the M11.

    John kept his eye out but much of the stream road which was still classed as the A406 had no turnoffs. There was nothing that led off the M11 via the Non-existent Junctions until there was a sign for a Works Access Only road.

    “Works Access road coming up, what do you think?” asked Stanley with an urgent tone while keeping in the left hand lane.
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by Sherlock Holmes on Sun Nov 11, 2012 8:53 pm

    As they drove towards the M11, Sherlock leaned forward and stared keenly out of the window, trying to spot anything suspicious, but the roads were essentially clear with no off-shoots or slip roads. As they approached the Works Entrance, Hopkins spotted it at almost exactly the same time he did.

    "Yes, down there," he urged, leaning forward with his hand on the back of the Inspector's seat. His heart was racing as they slowed down the car and made the turn up the quiet windy road. In the distance there were several buildings that made up part of an industrial estate, still fully operational.

    "In there, we need to try in there," he pointed. Hopkins nodded and approached the entrance to the industrial estate, which was fenced off with an electronic security gate.
    "We need a pass to get inside," the Inspector mumbled, nodding towards the key card reader required to open the gate.
    "No," Sherlock corrected him. "We need a pass to get a car inside." He grinned at John.
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by His-Doctor on Mon Nov 12, 2012 12:11 am

    John's heart began thumping loudly again when Hopkins drew their attention to a turn off and drove up a winding lane which led towards a ring fenced industrial estate. The gates were closed and required a card for admittance. Hopkins, thinking of driving in, balked at the obstacle.

    Sherlock knew how to get in and grinned at John. John was already looking at the collection of buildings and, catching the grin, smirked back at his husband. “We can both go in. There should be a dustbin for me to stand on to get back out over the fence.”

    John trotted over to the nearest post where the metal fence was the least wobbly and braced himself sideways against it ready to give Sherlock a leg up.

    Hopkins covered his face with his hand with a look of near despair but took the decision to let the unorthodox duo get on with it. "Oh, go on then."
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by Sherlock Holmes on Mon Nov 12, 2012 4:14 am

    Sherlock grinned and jumped out of the car, John already one step ahead of him, bending down to give him a leg up over the fence.

    "Perfect John, thank you," he muttered, putting his foot into John's hands and clambering over the fence.

    Landing safely on the other side with a small thud, he quickly got to his feet and scanned his eyes around. He spotted a dustbin like John had suggested near the outbuilding. He grabbed it and hurled it over the other side of the fence.

    "Stand on that, I'll give you a hand."
    He waited for John to set it up, his hands outstretched to help him over.
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by His-Doctor on Mon Nov 12, 2012 9:54 am

    John made ready for helping Sherlock out with a leg up. Thanking him in advance the detective stepped neatly into his hands and athletically went up and over the wire mesh fence landing with only a quiet thump on the other side. Sherlock finding a conveniently sited dustbin dashed off and quickly came back with it throwing it over the fence. Unwieldy to catch John still made a grab at the dustbin and the lid rolled off but Hopkins, stemming back a laugh, retrieved it. “I didn't do that.” he claimed in a stage whisper.

    “No.” John smirked. He stacked the bin by the fence then climbed on it and hopped up to get an arm over the mesh. Taking Sherlock's arm for support John slid over the barrier and dropped onto his feet with a quiet scrunch onto a patch of grass that was fighting to grow through grit.

    John checked his gun safety catch before moving and was then ready to go again.
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by Sherlock Holmes on Mon Nov 12, 2012 7:55 pm

    Sherlock helped John over the fence and made sure he was safely on his feet. "Ready?" He asked with a smile, before leading the way off the gravelly dirt path and onto the main road where they would have drove up had they had a pass to open the gates.

    Further up in the distance were several large buildings, factories, warehouses and storage centres lining each side of the road. As they passed the first building there were a couple of workmen outside with yellow jackets on having a cigarette break. They barely looked up as Sherlock and John walked past.

    "It's Sunday so we have an advantage," Sherlock explained in a quiet but urgent tone. "We're not neccessarily looking for somewhere abandoned or unused, just somewhere that's closed today. They need somewhere to hide the printing machine until they can get it out of the country, and we know the van came this way."
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by His-Doctor on Tue Nov 13, 2012 2:14 am

    John looked up smiling and set off following Sherlock at an unhurried pace towards a disparate cluster of red brick buildings fronting both sides of the roadway. They passed a couple of workmen who were leaning against the wall of the first building, a warehouse unit. The men hardly noticed Sherlock and John and carried on smoking and talking.

    “Uhuh, looking for a unit with a van size loading bay or larger size doors.” John replied quietly when Sherlock turned his way and shared what he was looking out for. “So not that one, not those three.” John murmured discounting units on both sides of the road as they walked. “Too narrow for a van.” he dismissed the next building with a grey metal roller door and looked back for a moment to see if the workmen were still there. Neither of the workmen were looking their way. One was stamping his cigarette end out on the concrete and the other was stretching.
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by Sherlock Holmes on Tue Nov 13, 2012 7:22 pm

    "That's right," Sherlock nodded in agreement, studying every building carefully as they walked past, none of the drive ins, lock ups or garages were big enough to hold the type of van they were looking for, so he ruled them all out instantly.

    The detective's phone began to ring and he stopped walking, quickly taking it out of his pocket to answer it, not wanting the loud ring to attract any unwanted attention. "It's Hopkins," he muttered to John, spinning round to look back along the road. They had walked quite far, but he could still see the Inspector hanging around by the gates, leaning against his car door, phone pressed to his ear.

    "Hopkins, what is it?" Sherlock spoke into the receiver.
    He listened silently for a minute, his mouth falling open slightly and his features paling, then he frowned, apparently unsure, thinking. "I'll call you back," was all he said, then hung up.

    "There's been an explosion on the M11," he explained to John in a flat, emotionless voice. "4 people dead, 9 injured. It was the white van we're looking for, John. Apparently empty except the explosives, parked on the hard shoulder then detonated. Naturally caused a massive pile up."

    Sherlock placed his palms together, cradling his phone in between them and walking up and down where they stood. "Hopkins wants to know whether we want to go over there," he mumbled. "I'm not so sure..."
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by His-Doctor on Tue Nov 13, 2012 11:16 pm

    John was scanning the buildings for a hiding place for the white van with Sherlock when the detective's phone rang. Sherlock hurriedly answering it suddenly went very pale and John halted to find out what was wrong. Hopkins had informed Sherlock of an explosion on the motorway.

    “Oh, no.” John muttered almost under his breath and, open mouthed, helplessly looked from Sherlock to the gates, where Hopkins was just visible, and back again. His medical training, screaming at him to go and help the injured, was in conflict with his gut churning anxiety about Hamish. “Have to leave the emergency services to deal with that.” he replied unhappily. His husband, pacing, was visibly affected by the news and it's ramifications. “Sherlock, we have to find Hamish.”

    The doctor listened to the traffic swooshing up the motorway and hoped that drivers on the opposite carriageway would do the sensible thing and pay attention to where they were going and not get into a shunt and pile up on both sides of the M11.
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by Sherlock Holmes on Wed Nov 14, 2012 3:15 am

    Lnted us to follow the van...that's why he had it painted. But he can't have been certain we'd be injured or killed, so why send us there? Why...other than a distraction. But we're one step ahead, John, because we decoded the message. We have to keep going."

    He took out his phone and sent a quick text to Hopkins, explaining they were staying here, then carried on walking. "The cameras saw the van coming straight from the casino, they didn't stop anywhere else along the way, yet it exploded on the motorway empty. That means the printing machine has to be here somewhere."

    Sherlock put the phone away and looked straight ahead. "Only two buildings left." Beyond them was a large expanse of tall wild grass that eventually lead to the motorway. He set off walking towards the last two buildings, one on either side of the road.
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by His-Doctor on Thu Nov 15, 2012 12:45 am

    John was sorry that they couldn't have prevented the destruction the van bomb had caused and said nothing about that because it was pointless to mention it. He agreed with Sherlock that the bomb was there purely as a distraction and on a positive not they were still ahead in the game. They had to stay ahead too. There were only two buildings left to survey and both had loading bay doors that were wide enough for a large fork lift truck to prise a printing press out of a van.

    “Not much to choose between them.” John whispered although there was no need for it. It wasn't like anyone was going to hear them talking. “I'll try the far one.” he volunteered.

    He jogged off quietly to the other side of the road and plastered himself to the brick wall of the building listening for sounds of life from within. His heart thumped against the wall of his chest. He glanced across to Sherlock for about the fifth time and was about to signal that there was, apparently, nobody in the building when he saw a trace of white paint on the frame of the loading bay door. He made an urgent beckoning motion with his hand.
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    Location : 221B Baker Street, London
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by Sherlock Holmes on Thu Nov 15, 2012 2:58 am

    Sherlock was pleased with John's idea and set off to the opposite building to investigate further. It was definitely closed, which fit the profile. He gave the door handle a rattle. Locked. There was a small window further along and he peered in. Some kind off office building. The door inside there was open and he could see a small factory just beyond it.

    "There's some kind of factory in here," he shouted over to John, turning his shoulder slightly to have a look. He realised his husband was frantically waving at him so he jogged over, intrigued.

    "What is it?" No sooner had he asked the question than he spotted the paint marks emblazened onto the wall. White paint. He ran a finger along it slowly. "Looks like they've been backing the van into here to unload the machine, scratched it," he mumbled, then strode over to the main door and rattled the handle.

    "We need to get in," he stated, pressing his hand against the small crystal glass window to test whether he could break it, then crouching down and inspecting the lock. "I think I can pick this," Sherlock claimed excitedly, digging in his pocket for his tools. "Keep an eye out."
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    His-Doctor

    Posts : 2484
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    Re: Family Deductions

    Post by His-Doctor on Thu Nov 15, 2012 4:32 am

    Sherlock's discovery of a factory had sounded promising to John but the detective was soon jogging over to have a look at the scrape of white paint on the loading bay door frame that John had been alerted by. Sherlock noticed the paint immediately and began looking for an easy way into the building and resorted to picking the lock.

    John stood guard, pretending not to be doing anything more untoward than a workman standing around idly having a break, and covered up what Sherlock was working away at in case anyone did happen to emerge from another unit. In less than a minute though he heard a tiny metallic click. John looked behind to follow his husband's progress and grinned at the sight of the door being ajar. He waited until Sherlock had stowed his folding toolkit before turning round “After you, love.” he invited and taking a quick look behind them to check that nobody was about followed Sherlock through the door.

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    Re: Family Deductions

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