It was the first day of the new school year after the hols, and John was sitting down to lunch with some of his classmates. He was just setting his tray down when he felt a tap on his shoulder. It was that boy from the playground. What was his name? Oh right: Sherlock. An odd name. He appeared to have grown over the summer and was now only a few inches shorter than John.
“Can I sit with you?” he said. John was about to reply when another of the boys at the table said scornfully, “Don’t let him; he’s a freak.” John turned to the other boy. “What do you mean he’s a freak?” John asked, a bit harshly. Turning to Sherlock, he said, “Of course you can sit here.” The other boys at the table stared at John, stunned, and turned to glare at Sherlock. The boy who had spoken to John answered his question after the two boys had sat down.
“He has this trick he does where he can tell you everything you’ve done and everything your family has done just by looking at you,” the boy said derisively. “It’s not a trick,” Sherlock muttered, spearing a green bean off his plate. “I just observe, that’s all.” “It is too a trick,” the other boy jeered. “And you’re a freak; everyone knows that. I’m not about to eat lunch with a freak!” And with that, all of John’s classmates got up and moved to another table, leaving John and Sherlock alone. They ate in silence for a few moments before Sherlock spoke.
“I’m sorry I made your friends leave,” Sherlock said, still speaking in his quiet voice. “They aren’t really my friends,” John answered, also quietly. “I guess I don’t really have any friends here. We’ve just all been in the same class together for the past five years.” “Five?” asked Sherlock, looking up at him. “How old are you?” “Ten,” John answered. “Fifth year. How old are you?” “Six,” Sherlock said, looking back at his food. “I’m a third year.” John stared at him for a moment confused, then decided that this was probably just one of Sherlock’s quirks and went back to eating.
He stopped a moment later, though, when he felt Sherlock’s eyes on him. He looked over to see the young boy staring at him. “What?” John asked, his mouth full. “You want me to prove it,” Sherlock said solemnly. John swallowed. “Prove what?” he asked. Sherlock sighed and lay down his fork. Turning to get a better look at John, Sherlock took a deep breath.
“You’re ten years old and in the fifth year. You go to a posh school, but you don’t particularly like it, and you don’t appreciate your mom sending you here. Your favourite colour is red, as is obvious from the red jumper you wear under your uniform almost every day. You don’t have many friends here, because they’re all richer than you and feel awkward around them. Besides, none of them are really your type. You have a sister who’s a year older than you who also attends here. You like her well enough, but she gets on your nerves, particularly at lunch time. You are an excellent artist, you want to be a doctor, and you’ve been thinking about me ever since that day on the playground. Did I get anything wrong?” John stared at Sherlock, forgetting to keep chewing the food that was in his mouth. He remembered after a moment, swallowed, and then said rather hoarsely, “No. That was brilliant. But how did you-“ Sherlock cut him off abruptly, saying, “Here comes my brother, with your sister by the look on your face. Hello, Mycroft.” The “hello” was addressed towards a tall, imperious-looking boy, about the same age as John, who had approached while Sherlock was talking and had just sat down at the table. He was quickly followed by a blond girl who plunked her tray down and swung her legs into her seat in a very unladylike manner. “Hello, Sherlock,” the boy said in a rather bored tone. “Who’s your friend?” The girl piped up: “That’s my brother, John,” she said cheerily. “John, this is Mycroft Holmes.” The two boys shook hands across the table. “Pleasure to meet you, Mycroft,” John said apprehensively. “You were in my class last year, weren’t you?” “Indeed I was,” said Mycroft in the same bored tone. “They moved me ahead a year, which is why I am now in the same class as Harriet.” “I see,” said John cautiously. There was an awkward moment of silence at the table as all four children took a bite of their food. John noticed that Sherlock had gotten a tiny portion, and Mycroft had gotten rather a large portion, but was trying to eat very little of it. John was the first to speak again. “So, Sherlock, you and Mycroft are brothers?” The two boys glared at each other. “Yes,” Mycroft answered. “I know your sister, John, because we are currently seeing each other. Sherlock is my brother. How he met you, though, John, I can only wonder.” Sherlock glared even more vehemently at his brother, if that was possible. John raised his eyebrows at Harriet, who rolled her eyes. “Not my type,” she mouthed. John remembered Sherlock saying the same words a few minutes ago, and turned to ask him about it, but decided against it when he saw the two Holmes brothers glaring daggers at each other from across the table. John sighed. It was going to be a long lunch.