Sherlock wandered aimlessly through the house. He didn’t feel the need to do anything, work any cases, invent anything, none of it. Ms. Hudson was threatening to evict him if he didn’t start paying rent again, but quite frankly he didn’t care. It was either be dreadfully lonely in this house, or be dreadfully lonely in the streets of London, he didn’t really have a preference. Watson moved away out to the country with his wife, and had decided to take a vacation, not just from solving mysteries, but from Sherlock. Sherlock had attempted visiting, but he was only ever welcome for very short periods of time. Watson seemed to still be angry with him for faking his death. Which Sherlock couldn’t understand, he had expected Watson to be thrilled with his return, but if he was he didn’t let on about it. Sherlock had been moping about the house for quite a few weeks now, ever since he finally realized that Watson done putting up with him, at least for the time being. Sherlock had tried working a few cases, and he had tried making a few inventions, but nothing had clicked. At the current moment he had the whole house to himself. Ms. Hudson had gone out for the night. She had told him that the house had still better be standing when she got back, Sherlock didn’t see any reason why shouldn’t be. He trudged slowly up stairs and into his room. He lit a lamp and walked over to the window, and sat down in the window seat. There was a horrible mix of rain, sleet, and snow coming down outside. Sherlock stared out the window gloomily. He was dying for the will to do something. He began to doze off, but was woken a loud thud from the other room. From the sound Sherlock gaged that something approximately 80 kilograms had fallen from approximately two meters. Sherlock got to his feet and moved swiftly and silently across the room, he was careful to step over the creaky floor boards. He had spent a day the previous week mapping how to walk completely silently through the whole house. He slipped silently into the dimly lit hallway. Sherlock crept along close to the wall, until he came to the door of Watson’s old room. Sherlock had the layout of the whole room mapped out in his head, he wouldn’t need any light to maneuver through the mostly empty room. He took a deep breath and prepared himself. He would have only a few seconds to read the situation before he was forced to act. He opened the door, and stepped into the doorway. There was a man of Sherlock’s height and build standing in the middle of the room, with his back to the door. He had dark tufty spiked up hair, and the way he was standing said all to clearly that he was dazed, and his left shoulder looked slightly out of place, dislocated no doubt. Sherlock moved forward and accidently stepped on one of the creaky floor board. The man spun around
“Where am I?! What the hell did you do!?” The man shouted and ran at Sherlock. The man’s fist flew toward Sherlock’s head, but he took a look at Sherlock and hesitated, confusion in his eyes. Sherlock was briefly confused, the man was almost a mirror image of him, but his confusion did not make him falter. His brain was far to fast for that. Almost as soon as he had seen how much this man looked like him, he had put together that he was probably the work of Dr. Hoffmanstahl, which could only mean that either Moriarty had survived the fall, or he had planned for the event of his demise. It had only taken Sherlock a split second to come to this conclusion.
He dodged the man’s enraged punch, and gave him a good solid punch to the floating ribs. The man’s elbow flew back ward and struck Sherlock in the jaw, he had not anticipated a blow from the left arm. The man ducked away from Sherlock, and coughed clutching his side. Sherlock rubbed his jaw, he was grateful that it was just a half hearted elbow to the face and at an awkward angle, it could have easily broken his jaw if it had been carried out with a little more aim and force.
“Where is she?!” The man said through gritted teeth, he looked exhausted and in more pain than he should be in from that blow to his ribs. Sherlock took a split second to further assess the situation. The man had blood dripping out the corner of his mouth, a nasty cut right above his eyebrow, his posture told Sherlock that he had taken quite a beating around the abdomen, which meant he had probably just gotten out of a fight.
The man lunged at him again, Sherlock swiped the blow out of the way, and slammed his knee just under the man's rib cage. He coughed and stumbled backward, Sherlock quickly spun around behind the man, and hit him in between the shoulders; Sherlock had expected that to knock him down, but the man managed to stay on his feet. He came at Sherlock again, this time attempting to kick him. Sherlock stepped aside and swiped his leg. The man fell backward, and his head slammed into Watson’s desk. He crumpled to the ground, and did not move. Sherlock rubbed his jaw as he looked down at the intruder, it still hurt. He needed to get word to Watson, and warn of the possibility that Moriarty was still out there. He would send a telegram to Watson after he took care of this guy. Sherlock cautiously approached him and checked him for a pulse. He was quite pleased to find one, this meant that Sherlock could still question him. Sherlock took a coil of rope out Watson’s desk, and set to work tying the man up. When Sherlock was satisfied with his work he dragged the man over to a corner of the room and propped him up against the wall Sherlock then went about the room lighting lamps; he glanced over at the man, it was rather unnerving how much he looked like him. Sherlocks malice toward him eddied away the longer he looked at him. At first all he had seen was a threat that needed to be neutralized. The man had looked much more imposing and threatening when he was awake, but now he just looked small, broken and pitiful. For the first time in his life Sherlock Holmes felt guilty for handing someones ass to them. Sherlock shrugged the guilt away. The uncanny resemblance that the man shared with him, was probably just getting to him. This man had probably been sent to kill him and then impersonate him, he didn’t deserve pity. Sherlock decided to do some investigating while this man was still unconscious. Sherlock was in the process of searching the man's pockets when he noticed a light blue glow coming from under his shirt. Sherlock tipped his head curiously, what could it be? He gently peeled the shirt up, and it revealed a small glowing circle that appeared to be actually in his chest. Sherlock poked at it gently. He was tempted to pull it out and examine it better, but he decided it was probably best not pull glowing foreign objects of people's chests. Sherlock folded the shirt back down and gathered the things he had dumped out of his pockets, and carried them over to Watson’s desk. He laid the items down on the desk, there was some sort of brown leather pouch, probably some kind of wallet, there was ring that had some peculiar looking keys, and lastly there was a knife, with the initials T.S. engraved in it. Sherlock examined it closely, it was a very nice folding knife, Sherlock set it down and turned his attention to the wallet. He didn’t expect to find any real credentials, if this person was actually sent by Moriarty to impersonate him, he probably would not be carrying any real identification. Sherlock flipped open the wallet. Inside there was some paper money, and what appeared to be some form of business cards, on the front that had the word Stark printed under some kind of an arrow.
“Interesting,” Sherlock whispered, and set the business cards down on the table. He looked through the wallet farther and found a hard plastic like card. He looked at it closely. It had an in color picture of the man, there was also a name which read: Tony Stark. Sherlock wasn’t sure how they had gotten a picture in color, and became even more perplexed when saw the date of birth printed on the card: May 29th, 1970. That made no sense at all. That was 75 years from now. Sherlock tossed the card down on the table. He glanced over at the corner, Tony Stark, this was going to be a fun mystery to solve. Now that he was thinking about it, this Tony Stark person really did not look like he belonged. Sherlock had thought that that was just the kind of clothes Americains wore, but now he was having second thoughts. Nothing was ever as it seemed. Sherlock sat looked the man up and down from a distance. He was twitching nervously in his sleep, as though he was having a nightmare. Sherlock remembered then that he was going to send a telegram to Watson. He rose from his seat, exited the room and made his way quickly down the stairs. He went into the the room where Ms.Hudson stored the telegraph machine, and started tapping out his message to Watson. He had just finished explaining about his look alike and what he had discovered in the wallet when something shattered up stairs. Sherlock stopped typing. At first blanch he thought that maybe his prisoner had jumped out a window, but the sound came from the wrong room, and from the sound of things the majority of the glass had hit the floor, which meant someone or something had broken in, not out. There was a heavy clunking thud, like something heavy and metal hitting the floor. Sherlock slide quietly into the living room, and went to the fireplace. On the mantelpiece there was a sword, it had been Watson’s from his time in the military, but for one reason or another he had decided to leave it behind when he moved. Sherlock drew the sword from the mantle. He snuck back to the stairs avoiding all of the creaky boards. He stayed close to the wall as he ascended the stairs. What ever had come in through the window, it had entered through his room. Sherlock peeked his head around the door frame to see into his room cold air wafted in through the broken window. Nothing but the shattered window was out of place; it was just like he had left it. Sherlock slipped into his room, and as soon he had a metal hand grabbed him by the throat. He was lifted off his feet by some sort of metal suit robot thing. It was heavily armored, and had horns on the helmet and glowing red eyes. Sherlock had never seen anything like it. It slammed Sherlock up against the wall, and pinned him there. Sherlock lifted the sword, and uselessly hit it against the arm pinning him to the wall. That failed so he decided to take a different approach. Sherlock went completely limp, the had loosened its grip slightly, Sherlock took advantage of that, he pulled his legs up, and slammed his feet into the thing’s chest. It stumbled back and dropped him. Sherlock picked up the sword off the ground. If he could get on its back, then he could drive the sword into its neck. Sherlock couldn’t wait for this to really get started, this is exactly what he had wanted, a challenge, excitement, he cracked his neck, and got himself into a fighting stance. The metal suit straightened up, it made a weird clicking noise, almost like a laugh, and then long metal claw like blades extended from its fingers. Maybe this wasn’t quite what Sherlock had wanted. He was just now taking in the full forasity of his present challenge. The robot was at least 3 meters tall, the black metal plates covering it appeared to be very thick, It had spikes on its shoulders knees, elbows, and its chest, and its long metal claws had barbed ends. Sherlock weighed all of his options, and possible approaches to fighting this thing. None of the scenarios ended well for him. Sherlock hated turning down a fight, but he knew this was one that he need to avoid. He wasn’t going win this one. He hurled the sword at the robot’s head, and ran out of the room. He ran into Watsons old room, grabbed a vase of water and threw it on Stark’s face. The man coughed and sat up.
“What the he-”
“No time time to explain,” Sherlock grabbed him by his shirt and pulled him to his feet. “See that roof just over there?”
“What about it? What is going on? Who are yo-”
“All very good questions but right now we have to go!” Sherlock said interrupting Stark again. “Jump over onto that roof!”
“Shut your mouth stop asking questions and---” Sherlock trailed off as the robot busted through the door into the room, “Jump now.”
Stark didn’t move. Sherlock rolled his eyes, grabbed Stark and dove out the window. They landed on the roof next door. Stark almost slid down the roof, but Sherlock grabbed him just on time, and pulled him up.
“Can you at least untie me? Please?!” Stark said holding out his hands. Sherlock pulled out his knife, and cut the rope.
“Don’t make me regret this.”
“What ever. Let's get out of here before that thing follows us.” Just as Stark had finished speaking the robot jumped out the window and landed right behind them.
“Go! Lets go!” Sherlock shouted and he took off running across the top of the roof, Stark was right behind him, and right behind Stark, was the robot. The snow and sleet stung Sherlock's eyes and face, and made it very difficult to see, it also made the roof very slick. Sherlock and Stark ran nimbly along the top of the roof, but the robot was having a hard time staying balanced on the slick roof. They ran, jumping from roof to roof for a long time, Sherlock was starting to grow tired, he could here Stark’s breath getting faster behind him.
“We have a problem. We are running out roof!” Stark panted from behind Sherlock.
It was true, they had run far enough that the Thames was right below them to the right, and it looped around in front of the house they were on. Their best option might be just be to jump into the river. It was right below them after all, they were more likely to survive that, than they were by being mauled by a giant metal robot. They reached the end of the last roof. Sherlock tried to stop, but slipped, his head slammed into the roof and everything went black.