Hey Epic Dreamers! This is the first of many flash fiction post from the 13 Week Streak – Summer Flash Fiction Challenge. Hope you enjoy the fun just as much as I am. 🙂
Out of all the people in Story Land that Sherlock Holmes had to interrogate, why did it have to be these six? This was supposed to be a place where book characters could get away from the stressful lives the author gods penned for them, but these six never seemed to realize that. They were always getting into trouble.
He scanned the group, lined up on one of the dock’s benches. His eyes settled on the blond young man. His knee was bouncing, and he kept looking guiltily at his girlfriend sitting beside him. “Peeta, this morning, the six of you set out on a boat with Captain Ahab the whaler. What was the purpose of the trip?”
“It was a whale watching tour,” Peeta said, glancing at his girlfriend, Katniss.
Sherlock looked to Katniss, bow resting across her lap. “Do you see any whales?”
“When the first one was spotted, the Captain started calling it Moby Dick and told us to help him kill it.” Katniss adjusted the collar of her shirt as she was speaking. Sherlock saw a flash of blue skin, freshly bruised.
“And did you help kill it?” Sherlock asked the boy with glasses and a lightning scar on his forehead who was sitting up very straight. Almost as if he had a stick shoved up his back.
“We didn’t want to.” Harry said, stiffly. “It may not be as great as a magical creature, but we didn’t want to kill it.”
“The captain was very rude,” said the girl sitting next to him, Hermione. The frizzy brown hair that stuck out around her head didn’t even move, she was being so still as she talked. “He started acting like we were his crew, ordering us about. We don’t even have our wands anyway, so how could we help?”
“So none of you helped him kill the whale?” Sherlock asked the man with a grey beard spilling down his grey robe.
“Of course not,” the man, Gandalf, huffed. “I must save my power for fighting the creatures in Middle Earth. Besides, I wouldn’t want to risk him getting hurt.” Gandalf glanced at the small person beside him. “I need him for a very important mission.”
“Then what happened to Captain Ahab?” Sherlock asked the last member of the group. He was small, as all hobbits were, and dripping wet.
“He attempted to stab the whale,” said Frodo. “But got tangle in his harpoon line and was hurled to his death.”
“Now that you’ve had your say,” Sherlock said, clasping his hands behind his back. “Let me tell you what actually happened. By the guilty way that Peeta keeps glancing at Katniss, I know he had a laps and thought he was back in the Hunger Games. Probably induced by the excitement Captain Ahab caused over the whale. He grabbed a harpoon to throw at the whale, but Katniss shot it, hoping he’d drop it.”
“You can’t prove that,” Katniss said.
“I had a look at the boat a few minutes ago,” Sherlock said. “One of the harpoons is missing. It was thrown overboard so I wouldn’t see the hole the arrow made.” Sherlock paused. When Katniss didn’t argue, he went on. “Peeta did drop it as Katniss hoped, but because he still thought he was in the Hunger Games and thought Katniss was trying to kill him, he tried to strangle her.” Sherlock looked at Katniss. “You can put your collar down now.”
She glared at him as she revealed the bruises.
“Then Harry and Hermione both shot a spell at Peeta to immobilize him. One of them missed and hit Frodo, knocking him overboard. Since he is the only one wet, either Harry or Hermione used their ‘leviosa’ spell and brought him back. Gandalf got angry at them for knocking Frodo in the water, because he needed him for ‘a very important mission.’ And then the wizard’s duel began.”
“We weren’t dueling,” Harry said, still sitting like his back would break if he moved. “We didn’t bring our wands with us.”
“Didn’t you?” Sherlock raised a brow. “Then what is it you have shoved in the back of your belt?”
Harry and Hermione looked at each other.
“Are you going to pull them out or do I have to get them?” Sherlock asked.
They sheepishly lifted the back of their shirts and pulled their wants from where they rested against their backs.
Sherlock continued. “Harry, Hermione and Gandalf began to dual, but as they did, someone accidentally hit Captain Ahab with a bit of magic and knocked him overboard. None of you know exactly who did it, or you would have pointed the guilty person out right away instead of agreeing to tell the story you just told me.”
He took a moment to enjoy the shock on their faces. Well Gandalf was impassively smoking his pipe. But he did enjoy the shock on the rest of their faces.
“We didn’t kill him,” Hermione said.
“Of course not,” Sherlock agreed. “Because he isn’t dead.”
That earned him another round of shocked looks.
“He’s still in the belly of the whale.”
“But it ate him,” said Harry. “There’s no way he survived that.” Hermione nudged him. “What? He figured it out anyway.”
“It was the whale from the story of Jonah and the whale,” Sherlock said. “Captain Ahab will turn up on an island somewhere, stinking of fish, in about three days.”
“The story of what?” asked Frodo.
“I’ll explain that to you later,” Hermione said before turning to Sherlock. “How do you know it was that whale?”
“Because if Captain Ahab simply fell in the water, then one of you would have pulled him out the same way you pulled Frodo out. And since whales don’t generally eat people, it must be Jonah’s whale. This isn’t the first incident where he’s swallowed someone.”
“So, we’re free to go right?” Peeta asked.
“Everyone but the three wizards,” Sherlock said.
“I’m a witch,” Hermione huffed.
“But we didn’t make the whale eat him,” Harry said.
“You didn’t,” Sherlock said. “But wizard duals are illegal in Story Land, so you’ll have to be arrested for that.”
Gandalf began muttering to his hand. Of course, Sherlock noticed the small moth in the center of his palm.
“Stop that!” Sherlock said.
It was too late. A giant eagle swooped down and carried all six of them away, over the sparkling blue water.
Why did the author gods have to give Gandalf the ability to do that?