Oct 23, 2019 7:56 PM
Holmes and Watson in Kith
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Holmes and Watson are on their way back to Baker Street from a freshly wrapped-up case when they hear shrieking from around the corner, and naturally they charge around the corner to see what's happening. What's happening turns out to be a giant snake with a mirror for a face. They get the woman it has cornered out of the way, and Watson goes for his revolver, but before he can bring the snake down it gets its face over both of them and they're somewhere else.

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Somewhere else is a field of lavender, which looks ordinary except for the strange curvature of the ground out at the horizon, the larger-than-usual size of the sun, the... extra sun... a bit further off... the six visible moons with visible greenery and water and civilization on them...

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They stare around in bewilderment for a moment.

"I'd suspect this of being an opium dream, if I ever touched the stuff."

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"No, Watson, this is definitely real, albeit strange. It would appear that the snake has transported us elsewhere. Perhaps whoever cultivates this field will be able to shed some light on the how and why." 

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There's someone over there, picking the lavender and putting it in a basket! She's wearing a nicely tailored tunic and hose out of hard-wearing cloth and has her hair cut short.

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They make their way over to her.

"Pardon me, miss, but I'm afraid we're rather lost. One minute we were being pursued through a London alley by an exotic serpent, the next we were in this field."

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She looks at them and says something in an unrecognizable language.

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They try French, German, Hindi, and Latin, getting increasingly less confident.

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None of these work. Eventually she points in a direction with a helpful expression on her face.

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Then they'll smile gratefully and head that way.

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There is a little village there a mile on, with a few dozen houses and a handful of other buildings, in an unrecognizable architectural style.

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They proceed to the one that has the most people going in and out.

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That would be this one with the big sign out front with unrecognizable characters - too many and too complicated to be an alphabet. People look at them with interest but not alarm.

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Holmes can deduce plenty about these people's occupations, pastimes, and level of material wealth, but none of that gets him any further on the language or on what happened to him and Watson. It's fascinating and troubling in equal measure. They head into the building and look for, if not someone who doesn't seem busy, at least someone who isn't actively going somewhere else.

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There are offices; this one has the door a bit open and a man inside. He looks up at them when they approach and asks a question.

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They run through the languages they know again, trying to ascertain if the man speaks any of them or recognizes the phrase "British consulate".

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Nope! The guy looks increasingly intrigued as they try things and none of them land.

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Watson has the most experience communicating across language barriers; he steps to the front when it becomes clear they're going to have to start from scratch. He points at himself and Holmes and gives their names.

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The office fellow is called "Gorin", apparently. He calls in a young woman from across the hall, who wants to hear all their languages again and try some of hers - she knows a lot.

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Not only do they not speak any of those, they don't even recognize any. Not really a surprise considering the extra suns and moons, but still strange. Watson starts soliciting vocabulary in mime.

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The woman waves a hand and turns to the man. They converse for a bit. Eventually the man looks through his files and finds one he's looking for, and hands it to the woman, who meanwhile has introduced herself as "Serca". Serca flips through the file, more as though reminding herself what's in there than as though reading it for the first time, and then steps back from everyone and closes her eyes. The man goes into a closet and opens a box and pulls out an entire outfit like the one Serca's wearing.

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They watch this procedure with interest.

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Over the course of the next minute and a half, there's a shimmer in the air, gradually getting denser and taking shape and finally materializing in the form of a teenage girl, stark naked, who accepts the clothes Gorin hands her and puts them on in a businesslike fashion. "Well, hello there," she says to Holmes and Watson in perfectly comprehensible English, matching Holmes's accent with eerie precision, though her voice is a charming bell-like feminine one. She puts her hair into a sort of knot that doesn't need an accessory to hold up at least temporarily and pats it into place.

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"Truly there are more things in heaven and earth," mutters Watson. "Pleased to meet you; I am Doctor John Watson and this gentleman is Sherlock Holmes."

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"Miriqua. Charmed," says, apparently, Miriqua. "Welcome to Sorvay Village, Springround. What brings you here?"

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"The purest accident, I'm afraid. We appeared in a field outside this city with no knowledge of where we are, except that it's very far away from anywhere we've heard of."

Total: 443
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