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A Pirate's Life for Me

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Easter, birthdays, Christmas... the Watsons observed them all, of course. With two small children and an army of in-laws, they could hardly hope to escape the fuss of decorating, gifts, and a carefully choreographed visitation schedule (Christmas Eve with Aunt Harry and Aunt Whomever-Harry-Was-Seeing-Now, Christmas Day with Auntie Hudson and Sherlock, Boxing Day with Granny Morstan). But there was one holiday above all others that the twins anticipated, prepared for, and celebrated the heck out of.

"Happy Talk Like a Pirate Day, Greggy!" John scooped up his son and planted a resounding kiss atop the boy's tiny tricorn. "And to you, Emily, Happy Talk Like a Pirate Day."

"Thankee, Dad!"

"Merci, Papa!"

John Watson, after sharing living quarters with a platoon, a self-proclaimed sociopath, and two bona fide twin geniuses, rarely found himself nonplussed. However, at his daughter's offhand thanks, he had to admit that his plus was very non, indeed. "Emmy," he said, hunkering down so that he could look into his daughter's eyes--well, into her eye and her eye patch. "Did you just talk to me in French?"

"Aye, that she did." The tall man blew into the room like a squall, his trademark scarf and tweed coat temporarily forsworn for a blue velvet frock coat with cuffs halfway up his forearms, a tricorner hat that could have sheltered a small army, and a snowy cravat that looked as if a lace factory had taken up residence under his chin. "For it be Talk Like A Pirate Day, and Mistress Emily, she's gone above and beyond. Haven't ye, me beauty?"

"Oui. Tu peux parler comme un chien de mer Anglais incultes. Je vais parler comme le Capitaine Lafitte."

John looked blankly (and, it must be admitted, a trifle exasperatedly) at Sherlock. "I have no idea what she just said."

"Oh, come now, John." Sherlock, shocked out of his anachronistic affectations, stared at his old flatmate. "I've heard you natter on with Mr. Sahar for hours in Pashto, despite it being decades since you were anywhere near Afghanistan, but you can't be bothered to remember any French?"

"You can't be bothered to remember that Pluto isn't a planet!"

"Yes, well, the next time Pluto consults me on a case, I'll read up on the status of its citizenship in our solar system. Until then, Pluton peut aller se faire pendre."

Greg, tired of a conversation that didn't include or revolve around him, chirped, "Me hearties. Pluto can go hang, me hearties."

John threw up his hands and stalked out. "I give up. Teach them French if you want to. Teach them French slang, French profanity, and French flirting. I'm crawling back in my bunk, where there's a human being who'll speak to me in a language I understand."

The three pirates, abandoned in the living room, said nothing for a moment. Then the tallest one said, "Well. Which of you sorry sea dogs wants to see if me treasure is still buried under your mum's roses?"

"I do!"


And they were off.