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A Long-Awaited Present

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Hyde’s triumphant laughed echoed through the streets as he ran as fast as his long legs could take him, black trench coat billowing out and flapping around in the wind behind him. In one arm he clutched a large, round policeman’s helmet and on his face there was a gigantic, egotistical grin of mischievousness. He glanced round behind him to make sure he wasn’t being followed, and to his relief he didn’t see a single person chasing after him. Hyde laughed once more and continued to run all the way back home.

It was Ravi’s birthday, his first since being in London, and while Robert Jekyll had gotten him presents, Hyde had not. He didn’t need to, of course, but an idea had popped into Hyde’s head, an idea that sounded like a whole lot of fun. This, of course, was the main excuse he used when he had nagged at Jekyll to let him have control on the evening of Ravi’s birthday, but secretly, deep down, Hyde really wanted to get his little brother a present even though the other half of him had already got Ravi some. But naturally, he couldn’t let Jekyll know that he was secretly a big softie who did give a shit about his friends and family. Despite this, Jekyll did indeed already know how much of a softie Hyde was, so he let him have control on the evening of Ravi’s birthday, even if he was somewhat reluctant at first.

Hyde decided to take the underground tunnel that led to the laboratory, as he knew that Ravi would not be in there on his birthday and so therefore Hyde could conceal his present effectively. He skidded to a halt in the middle of the circular room, still grinning wildly and seemingly not out of breath at all, curly black hair a complete mess. Hyde held out his hands and looked down at his achievement proudly. A black, round, tall policeman’s helmet with a shiny silver badge on the front of it, just what Ravi had asked Robert for when he left Ceylon.

He was so excited to give his present to Ravi, Hyde didn’t take the stairs up to the laboratory balcony, instead he decided to leap up from where he was and climb up the front of the balcony railing. He ended up at the doorway that led to the front room of the house, where Hyde knew Ravi would be, so he hid the policeman helmet behind his back and slowly sauntered down the hallway to the front room. Pausing in the doorway, Hyde leant casually on the doorframe with one arm, making sure to keep the other one hidden behind his back; he had a sly smile on his face.

“Hey Ravi,” he purred. Garson looked up from the armchair he was sat in and as soon as he saw that unmistakable sly smile, the unruly hair and heard the instantly recognisable growling voice of Hyde, his face snapped into an expression of intense disapproval.

“Why are you here? On Ravi’s birthday of all days?” Garson scolded from his armchair as Ravi spun round from where he was sat to look at his brother. He wasn’t actually upset about seeing Hyde, on the contrary, Ravi actually quite enjoyed his reckless shenanigans. Hyde tutted.

“Oh Garson,” he said, drawing out Garson’s name in an exaggerated tone of disappointment. “Am I not allowed to see my own brother on his birthday?” Hyde teased, slowly walking towards the pair while keeping the hand that held the policeman’s helmet behind his back. Garson proceeded to quietly grumble something to himself about how Robert had already seen his brother on his birthday, but neither of the other two were able to pick up any of his words. Ravi frowned, moving his head as if to try and look around Hyde.

“Robert, why are you holding one hand behind your back like that?” Ravi asked. Hyde’s smile grew bigger.

“Well, one half of me has given you birthday presents, so I thought I’d, ah, go out and get you an even better birthday present, since he can’t do it himself,” Hyde answered. Ravi chuckled slightly.

“I don’t need presents from both of you; it doesn’t matter whichever one of you gives me a present because either way it is still a present from my brother,” Ravi said, wholeheartedly. Hyde laughed in response.

“Trust me, Ravi, only I could go and get you a birthday present like this,” Hyde assured. Garson gave him a cautious look; he didn’t like what that sentence implied. “Now close your eyes and hold your hands out,” Hyde said, an eyebrow raised. Ravi hesitated at first before he did as he was told.

Hyde brought out the policeman’s helmet from behind him and placed it into Ravi’s outstretched palms. Garson gave a little ‘hah’ from behind Ravi when he saw what it was and he shook his head, a weak but warm smile upon his face. After placing the helmet in Ravi’s hands, Hyde took a step back, eager to see how his little brother would react.

“You can open your eyes now.”

As soon as Ravi saw what was in his hands his eyes lit up and his mouth dropped open. He looked up at Hyde in awe excitedly before looking back at the helmet he had in his hands. Hyde beamed at the sight of his brother’s eager face before taking a stride over, grabbing the helmet and roughly placing it on Ravi’s head. He tapped the top with a hand after placing the helmet and smirked as Ravi smiled broadly.

“Well would you look at that, it’s a perfect fit!” Hyde said, looking at the askew helmet that was so wonkily large it was covering part of Ravi’s face. Ravi giggled as he adjusted the helmet back so it wasn’t covering his eyes. He looked up at Hyde with an expression that was a mixture of admiration and astonishment.

“How did you get it? Did you steal it?” Ravi inquired eagerly. Hyde smiled smugly before playfully pushing the helmet back down onto Ravi’s head again.

“Oh I’m just that good, little brother,” Hyde boasted. “Besides, who cares how I got it? You have a policeman’s helmet now, just like you asked,” Hyde said, winking at Ravi. Ravi took the helmet off and stared at it warmly.

“Thank you, Robert,” Ravi said, affectionately. Hyde rolled his eyes.

“Alright don’t be getting sentimental with me now,” Hyde teased. “Anyway, isn’t it your bedtime?”

“I’m not a child anymore, Robert! But fine, I am feeling quite tired after today,” Ravi said before getting up and walking over to the staircase. He hesitated at the bottom to turn to Hyde and say thank you once again.

“Stop thanking me!” Hyde quipped back while flapping a hand at Ravi, but he couldn’t help but smile slightly. Once Ravi was out of sight, Garson’s voice came from behind Hyde.

“It’s nice to see that you’re not as mean as you’d like everyone to think you are,” he mused. Hyde spun round towards Garson, coat briefly wrapping round his legs.

“What? You know this was his idea, I only agreed because it sounded rather fun,” Hyde snapped with a snarl, aggression suddenly rising out of nowhere as his weak point was being poked at. Garson wasn’t intimidated at all and just chuckled lightly at this response, knowing that Hyde was getting unreasonably defensive.

“Sure, if you say so,” Garson said with a smirk, not looking at Hyde’s angrily scrunched up face.

With a roar of retaliation, Hyde twirled round and stormed down to the laboratory, coat splaying out in a highly dramatic fashion as Hyde threw another temper tantrum. He continued out through the secret tunnel that he originally arrived in and exited into the night. Garson was right, Hyde wasn’t so tough and cold-hearted as he wanted everyone to believe he was; his main “weakness”, as he saw it, was the intense love and duty of care that he felt towards those who were close to him. Well, as close as he allowed them to get to him.