The Curtain Rises

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Alex, John, and Sherlock all got into a cab. Alex sat in the middle, as usual. She rested her head on her brother's shoulder, trying to get some sleep before they got to wherever they were going. John snapped his fingers to wake her.

"You sure you want to come, Alex?" John asked.

"Yeah." Alex nodded. "Where are we going anyway?"

"Scotland Yard." Sherlock answered. "I'm getting a case there."

"Oh." Alex said. 

When they got there, John paid the fee. They walked in and a man with silver hair and a black woman with frizzy black hair met them.

"Hey, Freak." She said to Sherlock. "You got a girlfriend?"

"No, just a friend." Sherlock said. "This is John's younger sister, Alex."

"You don't know what you're getting yourself into, kid." The woman scoffed.

"I think I do." Alex said. "I've been with worse men than him."

"He's a phyco." The woman said.

"He's a high-functioning sociopath. Do your research." Alex said. Sherlock smiled. 

"Alex!" John said, surprised at her sister's behaivor. "I'm sorry, Sally, she's usually not like this."

"Yes I am!" Alex yelled, following Sherlock and matching his walk.

"You're like the female me." Sherlock said. 

"You like the funny cases, don't you?" The silver haired man asked. Alex guessed that he was Lestrade. "The surprising ones."

"Obviously." Sherlock said.

"Well, you're gonna love this. That explosion-" Lestrade started.

"Gas leak, yes?" Alex said.

"No." Lestrade said. 

"No?" Sherlock said. 

"No." Lestrade said. "Made to look like one." 

"What?" John asked.

"Hardly anything left of the place except a box - a very strong box - and inside it was this." Lestade said, gesturing to a white envelope on the table.

"You haven't opened it?" Sherlock asked.

"It's addressed to you, isn't it?" Lestrade said. "We've X-rayed it, it's not booby-trapped."

"How reassuring." Sherlock scoffed. 

He picked up the envelope and carried it to another table, which had a lamp on it. He held the table under the light of the lamp, examining the envelope carefully. His brow was furrowed in concentration.

"Nice stationary. Bohemian." He said suddenly.

"What?" Lestrade asked.

"From the Czech Republic." Sherlock said. "No fingerprints?"

"No." Lestrade shook his head. Alex came over and Sherlock let her have a look.

"It's a woman's handwriting. I think it might be a fountain pen." She said. 

"Good, very good." Sherlock said. "Parker Duofold, Iridium Nib."

"Woman's?" John asked.

"Obviously." Sherlock said.

"Obviously." John repeated, rolling his eyes.

Sherlock took a pocket knife out of his coat pocket and cut the letter open. Alex craned her neck, trying to get a look at whatever was inside. Sherlock didn't let her see, though, in case it was dangerous. He looked inside carefully and his eyes widened a little. He pulled out a pink phone.

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