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Bri* demanded more Sherlock.

I sent her this, I think, but I'm posting it now so I can more love out of her. She writes wonderfully flattering reveiws and I'm a bit of a whore when it comes to reveiws so up they go.

(I would like to step aside and say, huh, I've posted quite a bit in the last few days. Strange of me. I'd say I should work on doing that more but it's kinda low priority. Sorry.)

SO! More Sherlock writing stuff.

Sequel/ bit that goes after THIS.

Title: The Accululation of Fee's, Coat Racks and Fishing.
Summary: Another converstation, this time Holmes and Watson.
Rating: Pg-13 again cause it's a good rating nd holmes knows too many large fun words to need very many four letter ones.

***

 

Holmes had been invited to the wedding. Watson had delivered the gilt trimmed heavy cream colored card himself, possibly with the intention of delivering the demanded level of respect and behavior that would be expected if he showed up.

 

Holmes had been out. Oh, physically he had been in but without a touchy physician in the next room to come over and complain he'd spent a sleepless night constructing an elaborate water pipe to get the maximum narcotic effect from the blue white smoke.

 

Watson had kicked the pieces into every corner of every room. Holmes remembered that vividly, but he also recalled the invitation folding and unfolding itself into something with wings that filled the room and danced for hours until the sky shone blue before bursting into flames and... Perhaps his memory was for once not to be trusted in this particular matter.

 

And that was why the invitation was charred on one corner with several bullet holes in it, and why Mrs. Hudson would be adding a 'damn nuisance' fee to the monthly bill.

 

The various fees were doubling the rent, curse her.

 

He wouldn't have gone anyway. He hated weddings, he truly did. They were in churches, to start with, stalwart buildings designed to awe the rabble and while he appreciated the architectural leaps made possible by the study and design of the great hulling stone things.... It was impossible to shake the lurking sense that had he been born in a less enlightened time he would have been burned at the stake.

 

Besides, they always included that bit about speaking now or forever holding your tongue and he knew in his soul that if he so much as commuted a minor act of flatulence within ten minutes of that phrase Watson would cause an awful ruckus running his sword through Holmes chest.

 

Holmes was fond of his chest, personally, his heart beat in there.

 

The wedding he had avoided had taken place almost seven days ago. He'd sent a gift. It had been a rather nice antique chest filled with baby clothes and lace doilies.

 

He'd expected to get those thrown back in his face. Well, at first he'd expected it. Then he'd been surprised he hadn't. Then disappointed.

 

Maybe, he has to admit, nudging a pile of letters with the tip of his slipper, he'd been wrong.

 

Oh, not about the bedroom preferences of the doctor and his new wife, both having to pretend to like what the other needed...

 

But....

 

Maybe Watson had simply moved on.

 

It was a possibility. All things were theoretically possible, if not probable.

 

He settled onto the only window seat not currently filled with experiments. The heavy curtain on this one was so moth eaten moonlight came through in a thousand pinpricks of light.

 

The first pull of the bow over the catgut made a sour note. He sighed, and carefully tuned and plucked the strings until, finally, he could make it sing. Could, but didn't. Instead, he made it weep.

 

Ran through the entire catalogue of his more sober tunes, before attacking the jauntier ones, slowing them to half speed and testing them out in minor keys.

 

He was half through a quite morbid rendition of the wedding march when he stopped on an abrupt note. "I'd go on but my arm is cramping," he said dropping the bow and flexing clawed fingers. "You are aware that the floorboards bow when you stand in the doorway like that?"

 

"I was once, but it had slipped my mind," Watson said, hanging his hat up. Attempting too. "Where the devil is the coat rack?" he groused as he turned in a tight pivot, coat over one arm, cane tucked to his side.

 

"The bend of the arms made it an ideal-"

 

"Just say you destroyed it."

 

"It may not be much good in the hat holding profession but it's still serving me well," Holmes said, leaning back against the wall. "The knob on the end in particular was stimulating."

 

Watson start to ask, then stopped. Then judging by his face made a guess and wished dearly that he had not. "Holmes, that is perverse, and depraved, and wasn't the damn thing mine?"

 

Holmes managed not to smile. "It is now depraved to need mechanical assistance kneading out a cramp in ones calf? I believe I shall continue in this practice anyway. I refuse to suffer because others would be offended if they found out. I'll simply not tell them."

 

"You," Watson started, and then stopped. Shook his head and attempted to find a clean spot to set his things. When that failed a judicious bit of paper shoving created a space. "I promised myself not to be bated by you, Holmes, and it's yet another broken vow."

 

"You'd think that you'd learn to stop making them," Holmes said, watching his notes on the life cycle of bread mold cascade to the ground. 

 

"Failure is sometimes an invitation from the universe to try again," Watson said, then stopped, staring in what could conservatively be called horror. "How long has this toast been on this chair? Two weeks?"

 

"Judging by the color and spread? Sixteen days," Holmes said. "Twenty if it's on rye."

 

"That's horrifying."

 

"That's science! Someday it may come in handy on a case."

 

"Sixteen days in conditions that would put mold on bread? If a body that putrid is not found by the stench alone," Watson stopped, the conceded, "Well, maybe by the stock yards. Or the tanners... Fine, alright. This is London. But any corpse in a place that was foul enough to mask the odor would have any useful bread eaten by rats."

 

Holmes blinked, and then absolutely beamed. "Very good! Very good indeed! But I think there's a flaw in your theory of failure. Sometimes failure means an entirely new approach is needed."

 

"I've tried many approaches, and you've never failed to bait me yet."

 

"And yet you only mouth at the worm," Holmes said with a sigh.

 

Watson started to reply, stopped, and pinched the bridge of his nose with a grimace. Eyes shut as he took a long breath, let it out, and looked sideways at Holmes.

 

Holmes was trying not to laugh. It didn't show on his face, he knew it didn't show on his face, but he also knew that Watson could tell.

 

Watson shook his head, allowing himself a small, amused and slightly put upon noise. "You are bound and determined not to change, aren't you?"

 

"I change every day, everyone does. But certain core aspects of the personality, the psyche, the soul? Why change those?"

 

"Because someday someone's going to get to know you as well as I do and shoot you as a public service to human decency."

 

"Well, it's a good thing I know a proficient doctor," Holmes said, standing up, brushing himself off. Adjusting his cuffs fastidiously for a bit longer than needed. "A public service?" He murmured.

 

"Yes!"

 

Holmes laughed.

 

Watson had to settle for the cleared corner of an end table that creaked ominously under him but quieted. He picked his hat back up and spun it on the knob of his cane. "I had quite the conversation with Mary," he said, finally. "It was interesting."

 

Holmes very nearly asked 'before or after consummation' but the same self preservation that kept him from drinking kerosene (ever again) came to his aid. He went with an inquisitively polite and moderately expectant smile. "It's good to hear she's capable of that."

 

"Conversation?"

 

"Interest."

 

"Must we have a talk about that again?"

 

"It is a sort of habit now-"

 

"Lord knows you need a new habit," Watson interjected.

 

"It is a sort of habit now," Holmes repeated. "But I have warmed to her somewhat."

 

"Since she spoke to you the day I collected the last of my things?"

 

"Since you came up those stairs ten minutes ago," Holmes said. "I was starting to think you'd done what you'd so clearly set out to do."

 

"Live a normal life? I had intended too, Holmes. Imagine my surprise to find my wife had conspired with you, of all people, to encourage my..." Here he hesitated. "Weaknesses."

 

"Well, who else would she conspire with?" Holmes said. "I think she has excellent taste in co-conspirators. Blackmail is rendered null by mutual leverage, and no one new is involved, keeping participants low. It's easier to maintain a conspiracy between three, after all." 

 

"It's easier if one of the three are dead."

 

"And I thought you liked Mary."

 

The end of the cane tapped out an audio component to the glare. This was fitting, as the glare itself had an almost physical edge to it.

 

Holmes shrugged it off. If Watson had not resorted to physical violence, then he wasn't that perturbed. And if Watson's irate glare could leave a lasting mark on Holmes, all of Baker Street would have been charred embers years ago. Possibly all of London.

 

"Are you coming to officially accept my invitation to visit the countryside?"

 

"I came to inform you that I did not forget you existed, but I did not change my mind. I will work through my foibles, and Mary will work through hers."

 

His expression didn't change by any measure known to man. Holmes knew this, because every muscle in his head went still until he forced the ghost of smile up.

 

It was statistically likely, Holmes knew, that more words were spoken. They had probably been polite if shallow, and they had probably sounded sincere enough. He was good at that, at sounding sincere. Or perhaps he was bad at sounding sincere even when he meant it, so when he didn't, he wasn't sure.

 

It didn't matter. It didn't even need to matter.

 

It was also statistically likely that after Watson left, time passed. Statistically a certainly, really. The light changed, at least at that was an acceptable sign of the passage of time in a room like this with windows. Even if they were rather filthy.

 

Silence,  stillness. One long slow note dragged out of the violin before...

 

A manic frenzy of motion and energy. Shoes, jacket, violin, opening the lowest desk drawer with a well placed kick to the key. Pipe, bag, violin in bag, note on desk, no, no, on the door Nanny Hudson needn't bother herself with the internal workings of the rooms. All she need concern herself with would be the constant sounds of silence, after all.

 

Time was merely the minds way of lining up events, but from the outside in the space of an hour the rooms as 221 Baker street went from two occupants to none.

 


***



*Who played the most fabulous Orochimaru I have ever seen to the most fucked up Kabuto I could think of in a now defunct RP forum.

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Messypeaches

February 2012

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