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the liar

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‘Welcome to London,’ Viola thought to herself, groggily stowing away her worn sketchbook as the plane started to tilt downward. She had recently boarded a fight and moved out of her small, humble apartment in Toronto, Canada and decided she would move back to London. She was beyond excited to see her older brother, John Watson, again. The last time she had talked to him in person was six years ago. Of course, the two still kept in touch, but as those six years went by, both Viola and John talked less and less. A month earlier, he texted her, asking if she ever planned on visiting London anytime soon. Viola took this chance to move out of her suffocatingly quiet Canadian life and packed up her few belongings. Now she was waiting patiently in an airport terminal, violin case in hand, waiting for her brother to pick her up. She shifted her bass case as she heard someone call her name.

"Viola!" She spun around to find a beaming John jogging towards her.

“Johnnie!” She found herself engulfed in his warm bear hug and cream jumper. "It's so great to see you again," John chuckled, finally pulling himself off of her. "I've missed my scrawny little Pip." He playfully ruffled her chocolate curls, which closely resembled a bird’s nest.

"When will you ever forget that silly nickname?" Viola laughed and playfully nudged him. Pip was short for Pipsqueak, the nickname John called her since childhood. When she was a child, she wasn’t able to speak until the age of six. The only form of communication she had was a system of squeaks, which was where the nickname originated.

“I’m always going to bring it up,” he replied fondly, messing with her hair again. He picked up her heavy bags, helped her lift her instrument cases, and walked towards the exit, chatting the entire time. “To be honest, I’m quite surprised you haven’t developed a Canadian accent.”

“Well,” Viola chuckled. “We’ll see about that, eh?”

John snorted.

“What?” Viola looked confused.

“You say “eh,” he laughed. “Y’know, like the stereotypical Canadian.”

“Mhm,” she giggled. “God, you’d be surprised how many Canadians actually say “eh.”

As the two made their way out of the airport terminal, John offered her a stay at his flat, 221B Baker Street. "You're going to have to endure my arse of a flatmate Sherlock until you find your own place to stay," he told you, adding emphasis on the word "arse." Viola beamed and replied, "At least he isn't dull, I assume." Once the pair got into the taxi, they started catching up on each other's lives. By the time they arrived at the flat, Viola knew the basic facts about this “Sherlock Holmes” man. She had few belongings, so there were only a few suitcases. John introduced her to Mrs. Hudson, his landlady. She offered Viola her second flat, 221C. Viola gladly accepted and immediately brought all of her luggage down to her new place. It would require some fixing, but thanks to her artistic abilities, it wouldn’t be too difficult. The biggest problem was her lack of a job, but she supposed she could fret about it later.

After an hour of organizing her belongings, John popped in, stepping over an open luggage and sitting next to Viola on her mattress. "Hey Pip," he said, smiling warmly. "Since you haven't got any groceries, would you like to have dinner with Sherlock and me?"

"Of course," she grinned, throwing a bag of toiletries in the general direction of the bathroom. "It’ll be interesting to meet Sherlock Holmes."

"Uh yeah," he replied, surveying her mess of a flat. “If interesting involves him discovering your entire life story just by your clothing.”

"I’m sure I can handle this arse. Anyway, I'll be there in a bit." Viola quickly got up and shooed him out the door. "Now let me change."

A few minutes later, she hesitantly walked up the stairs to 221B, wearing the plain white t-shirt and pale blue jeans she dug out of the bottom of one of her luggages. Before she could even knock, a rumbling voice spoke. "Come in." Curiously, she slowly opened the door and peeked into the flat. She found a slim, curly-haired stranger sitting in an old chair. She steadily met his cold, icy blue eyes as they stared her down. She then realized he was studying her very carefully. The stranger, Sherlock, she realized, sighed and narrowed his eyes at her. Finally, he spoke. "John is out getting groceries. I have one important question.”

“Fire away,” Viola spoke calmly, hiding the nervous butterflies in her stomach.

“Who are you?”

"Mr. Holmes, I would have assumed you already 'deduced' me, as John calls it," she replied smoothly, allowing a small smirk. "I'm sure you already figured out exactly who I am."

"No, actually," he said, frowning. "I can figure out where you've been and such, but you are a closed book.” He narrowed his eyes carefully, giving Viola another look.

"Oo~ I'm a mystery," she teased in response, wiggling her eyebrows and sitting on the chair across from him. "I'm such an enigma. So, Mr. Holmes, tell me what you already deduced about me." She then rested her chin in her hands and stared, as if she was challenging the man.

"Well," he drawled, his clear eyes boring right through her emerald eyes. "You’ve changed your clothes, and you can see it from the creases on your shirt and pants. The creases are very sharp, which, in turn, means you’ve kept it in a tight area. A luggage. Anyway, why would you change? Airplane flight. From the state of your hair, it was an overseas flight, which you slept a majority of the time. Same goes for your lack of makeup, meaning you haven't had any time to put it back on. I heard you come in an hour ago, so I checked the airplane flights within the past two hours. The only overseas flight that landed at that time was Air Canada, arriving from Toronto, Ontario. Am I right? Of course I am. You lived in Canada for a significant amount of time, but you haven't lived in Toronto for long, have you? You have a slight French accent, but you wouldn't need French in Toronto. You must've lived in a city that spoke a lot of Canadian French, so I deduce you previously lived in Quebec before moving to Toronto. Also, looking at the calluses on your fingers - only the tips of your fingers - you play the violin. Strangely, you also have a callus on the pointer finger of your right hand. It is much more prominent, suggesting you play more than one string instrument. The contrabass. I would've said cello, but the bass is well known for its pizzicato in genres like jazz. Cello pizzicato isn’t as necessary as bass pizzicato. Therefore, I eliminated cello. You have an abnormal amount of pencil lead on the side of your left hand, suggesting you are an artist. There's a mark around your neck, perhaps from a camera or a camera bag. How do I know? Since you're a musician and an artist, it made sense to assume you were into photography as well.”

Viola barely managed to keep the surprise off of her face. “Impressive,” she smirked. “But you got one thing wrong.”

“Is that so,” he said, raising an eyebrow. “What did I get wrong, Miss Watson?”

“I play the viola, not the violin. It’s in the name, Sherlock Holmes.”