EDITOR'S NOTE: We continue to interrupt our regular blogging for a brief interlude of fan fiction from the world of Asylum "Sherlock Holmes," a.k.a. "Sherlock Holmes and Dinosaurs." By reading further, you are also giving your word, upon your honor, that you are of an age to read something that could be, perhaps, quite shocking and scandalous in nature.
"You Really Are An Automaton!"
A memoir of Anesidora Ivory
Chapter Two: Somewhat Expensive Tastes
Chapter Two: Somewhat Expensive Tastes
Sherrinford Thorpe Holmes, the elder brother of Robert Sherlock Holmes and Edwin Mycroft Holmes, was never the man you wanted in charge of the family estate and fortunes.
It was not that his intellect was not capable of such -- to a Holmes -- quite uncomplicated doings.
No, Thorpe Holmes was the sort of man whose search for intellectual stimulation took him to places no country squire should normally be. Scotland Yard, for example. And after a bullet cost him that profession, to advanced mechanics. The cost of that avocation was something else entirely.
"So that is what happened to the old place," Sherlock Holmes mused quite calmly for a man who just learned his family estate had been sold off to pay for kraken and tyrannosaurus parts.
"If you had visited him more often, you might still have your childhood home," I told him. "And he might have not become so deeply disturbed."
"My brother's issues went far beyond the curative powers of fraternal affection, Miss Ivory. And I'm afraid those issues come a little too close to my own inner workings to discuss with such a new, and formerly criminal, acquaintance." The detective jabbed at the coals of the autumn hearth with 221B's slightly bent iron poker.
"I'm a bit surprised that you haven't shown any curiosity about my own inner workings," I told him. "I've been living here for almost a month. I was certain a man of your intellect would wonder what was under this costume at some point."
Sherlock Holmes smiled, bemused by that thought. "I have been much more interested in your behaviour, the range of your human characteristics and intelligence, the results rather than the process. I must say I am rather surprised to have not found your limits yet."
"Your brother was quite fond of testing my limits . . . in certain capacities."
"We haven't really spoken of your relationship with Thorpe since you've been here. I know you have visited his grave during the dead of night on at least three occasions, which led me to believe you might need more time to process his loss." Had the word "process" come from the lips of any other man, I might have taken it as a slur upon my automaton nature. But this was Sherlock Holmes, a man whom I was coming to understand might be as close to a soul-mate as I might ever find without my late creator to build one for me.
Which is a bit how I came to be.
"Your brother was his own Frankenstein's monster. After he had recovered certain physical abilities through his mechanized advancements, he decided he needed a bride who would share his new nature."
"That much seemed plain. But I really never fully understood his progression from kracken to dwarf tyrannosaurus rex to dragon in his later creations. For a man as apparently brilliant as my brother was, and as knowledgeable of crime, he seemed to take some outlandish routes to accomplish rather ordinary tasks."
I paused for a moment, deciding if I should reveal the less . . . lady-like portions of my past. If it was ever to be told, I concluded, this was the man to tell it to.
"Your brother Thorpe was a man of expansive tastes," I told Sherlock Holmes. "You have heard, of course, of the Sanskrit work, the Kama Sutra?"
"Of course," he replied.
"Well, consider that a primer in the case of your brother. Just the earliest steps in a course of study that went far beyond what any man could imagine."
"Men, in general, have quite broad imaginations, I think you will find, Miss Ivory."
"Do you know of many men who stage their own depravities featuring a dinosaur and a young woman? Or of a tentacled creature and that same young woman?"
"Are you saying he built those monsters for amusement and not to commit crime?"
"He spent every penny he could raise from the family fortunes and properties on seeing his personal fantasies come to life. I don't know why he couldn't just have put on some desktop marionette show at a more reasonable cost, but Thorpe Holmes was not a man who had such small visions. And he did like to involve himself occasionally, so as not to seem the cuckold."
Sherlock Holmes gave something of a smirk. "I would like to say I'm surprised, but it all sounds just so . . . Thorpe. So I take it the dragon was only half-done when the funding ran out, causing him to resort to using his earlier creations to steal needed parts and funds?"
"Yes, and by then he had become quite bitter and jaded, and just wanted to see London burn for not being capable of giving him the level of entertainments he craved. But . . . there was that one last scene between the dinosaur and Inspector Lestrade before the dragon launched. I suppose you might have wondered why Lestrade was making that funny sound."
"It is why Watson and I have sworn not to speak of the case. Inspector Lestrade had to confide in someone about his ordeal, and he knew Watson and I had kept many a much worse secret when called upon. Though, I really can't think of a worse secret at present."
"You are a good man, Mr. Sherlock Holmes. I hope you do not think less of me for the nature of my past lovers."
"Don't be silly. I am even more impressed that you have gone through such an ordeal and come out the woman you are today, Anesidora."
And that was the first time Sherlock Holmes called me by my first name. I definitely think I found more joy in it than he did my reply.
"Thank you, Robert."