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BBC Sherlock

Rating: 15 (violence, drug abuse, swearing, aggressively implicit slash)

Summary: written for a prompt on Sherlock BBC Make me a Monday: "A modern adaptation of The Adventure of the Illustrious Client". Sherlock is attempting to prevent the villanous Baron Gruner from marrying the young, rich, and beautiful Violet de Merville. Shinwell Johnson may be able to help him...

Betaed by Warriorbot


[From the Sherlock Holmes in Transcript (SHT) project, version 1.0]

Part 1

John hasn't mentioned Shinwell Johnson on his blog, which is just as well, since he's an informer, and they prefer to keep a low profile. (Lower even then the almost negligible readership of John's blog). Even if he could mention him, however, I suspect John wouldn't want to. Shinwell is one of my more useful, but embarrassing informers, at least for John's sensibilities: he's my advisor on London's sex industry. He was once a very dangerous villain, and has served a term not only at Parkhurst, but also one at Holloway. The more alert among you will be able to work out the significance of that...

For the less alert among you, Parkhurst is a men's prison, Holloway is a women's prison. As 'Sinwell Johnson', Shinwell had a thriving career as a madam before ending up in Holloway; she then had a sex change operation and the newly-male Shinwell set out to control various other sex-orientated establishments. Nowadays, he's 'Factual Programmes Advisor' for an adult channel: there's more of a demand for nude chat shows than one would initially imagine. In between, s/he has also been a professional sub, an underwear model, and a web designer. I still have to remind him sometimes that if he wants continued employment by me he should limit his critiques of the 'Science of Deduction' style sheet.

***

"So why are you getting Johnson involved?" John asked, once I'd sent off a few texts to him.

"He's a good observer, he's got an active brain, and if there's a sex scandal about Gruner he'll dig it out. And I'm sure there must be a scandal about him, if he's as irresistible as Damery claims."

"But if Violet de Merville won't listen to what she's already been told about him, why should any new discovery change her mind?"

“It's worth a go, John. A woman’s heart and mind are insoluble puzzles to men. Well most men, though obviously not me. I've known women who were prepared to condone or explain away their husband committing murder and yet who got very heated about them putting their feet up on the table." I realised at that point that we were getting worryingly close to one or two facts about Mrs Hudson that John really would be better not knowing, so I added. "I have other lines of enquiry, of course."

"Which are?"

"It's better that you don't know about them at the moment," I said. "I've got to go off and do things now. Don't touch anything in the bedrooms, close the door on your way out, and I'll see you this evening at Simpson's in the Strand."

"Simpson's? You mean you're actually paying for a meal?"

"Sir James Damery's client is, John. I've got an expense account for this case, and I'm not afraid to use it."

***

The real reason that I didn't mention the second half of my plan to John, was because even he would have realised it was uninspired and predictable. I went off to Kingston to talk to the Baron. I went to see him partly to get an idea of how dangerous he was, and partly to inspect his house. Oh, and to show off, of course. If you're tackling a would-be master criminal, you want him to know you're...interested.

John, who met Gruner later in the case, described him in the abortive blog post he wrote as "a real aristocrat of crime, with a superficial suggestion of afternoon tea, and all the cruelty of the grave behind it." Which tells you a) that John joining a writers' group was definitely not a good idea, and b) that he should be more careful when Mrs Hudson gives him tea.

He also described the Baron as “A purring cat who thinks he sees prospective mice." I dislike similes and metaphors – all too often they obscure accurate observation with misleading comparisons. So I'll say that Gruner was of medium height, muscular build, with symmetrical features, prominent cheekbones, large dark eyes, and artfully messed black hair. He also had a deep voice, a relatively slow way of speaking, and a falling intonation. A combination, overall, intended to evoke both innate evolutionary responses concerning mate selection, and culturally conditioned romantic ideals.

Which shows, of course, how confused humans can be. Killing's one wife, unless she is infertile, is a poor evolutionary stratagem, and there is nothing less romantic than a paracetamol overdose. Seen in that light, there was nothing sexy about the Baron at all. He was affable though, and able to maintain his affability. Which put him one up on both 'Jim' Moriarty, whose barking insanity tended to come out in any conversation with me lasting more than a minute, and Sebastian Moran, who thought that swearing was clever when done in an RP accent.

"I rather thought I should see you sooner or later, Mr. Holmes," Gruner said to me. "You have been engaged, no doubt by General de Merville, to endeavour to stop my marriage with his daughter, Violet?"

"Not precisely," I said, "but roughly along those lines."

“My dear man,’ he said, "you'll only ruin your own well-deserved reputation. It's not a case in which you can possibly succeed. You'll waste your time, to say nothing of incurring some danger. Let me very strongly advise you to give up now."

"That's curious," I answered, ‘because that's remarkably near the advice I'd intended to give you. Let's be clear, Baron. If you persist in undertaking this marriage you'll make a lot of powerful enemies, who'll never leave you alone while you're in Britain. More specifically, I know several who are experts at rendition. Not as in performing dramatic roles, though at least one of them could also do that rather well. But extraordinary rendition, as in ensuring that you wake up in a Middle Eastern jail – I hear Tunisia has some cells free currently – with unscrupulous guards and no human rights lawyers handy."

The Baron broke into a gentle chuckle.

“Excuse my amusement, Mr. Holmes, but it is really funny to see you trying to play poker with such a pathetic hand. Do you think I would have come to this country if I didn't have...protection from your government?"

"You think so?"

"I know so."

"It may not matter to you what the government thinks of you," I went on, with determination. "But what about Ms de Merville? She might be interested to hear certain facts about your past."

"Let me make something clear to you, Mr Holmes. I have been fortunate enough to win Violet's affection entirely, in spite of the fact that I told her very clearly all the unhappy incidents in my past life. I also told her that certain vicious muckrakers – I hope you recognise yourself - would come to her and tell her these things, and I warned her how to treat them. You'll have heard of neuro-linguistic programming, subliminal messages, and post-hypnotic suggestion, I presume?"

"Of course," I said calmly, "and I know the ways to replicate such procedures and reverse them."

"Then it's a good job I didn't use them, isn't it?" he replied. "Do you know what my hold is on Violet?"

"Tell me."

"Really hot and filthy sex. You're not going to be able to replicate that, are you, Mr Holmes? Not with a woman, at least."

There seemed to be no more to say, so I took my leave with as much cold dignity as I could summon. As I had my hand on the door-handle, Gruner stopped me.

“By the way, Mr. Holmes, did you know Le Brun, the French detective?"

"Yes. I worked with him on the missing Eurostar case."

“Do you know what happened to him recently?"

“I heard that he was beaten a gang in Clichy-sous-Bois and crippled for life."

“Quite true, Mr. Holmes. By a curious coincidence he had been inquiring into my affairs only a week before. Don’t do it, Mr. Holmes; it’s not a lucky thing to do. Several people have found that out. My last word to you is, go your own way and let me go mine. Good-bye!"

***

I told John the gist of the conversation when I met him at Simpson's that evening.

“So there you are, John. You're up to date now.”

“Gruner sounds...dangerous," he said hopefully.

"Doubt it," I said. "It's your screaming lunatics, like Moriarty, who are far more lethal than the quiet ones. But I'm not sure I can see how to gain any leverage against Gruner at the moment."

“Do you have to stick with the case? Does it really matter if he marries the girl?” John always worries if I have cases that end as failures, after the effect on me of being beaten by Irene Adler. (Defeated by Irene Adler, I mean - so wipe that stupid grin off your face right now).

“Considering that he undoubtedly murdered his last wife, I should say it mattered very much. Besides, the money! All right, we won't discuss that. When you've finished your coffee, you'd better come home with me."

John looked hopeful, and I wished I didn't have to disappoint him by adding: "I've got Shinwell coming to give a report."

***

Shinwell is a huge, coarse, red-faced man, with a pair of vivid dark eyes which are the only external sign of the very cunning mind within. I don't know what he was like as a woman, but I always wondered if his success as a sub was partly down to there being so much flesh to dominate. Beside him on the sofa there now sat, and I quote John here: "a slim, flame-like young woman with a pale, intense face, youthful, and yet worn with sorrow, so that you could see the terrible years which had left their mark upon her." Or in other words, a skinny woman burning up from her drug habit and with track marks down her arms. It takes a lot to ruin a woman in the twenty-first century, but diamorphine's one of your better bets.

“This is Kitty Winter,” said Shinwell Johnson, waving his fat hand as an introduction. “What she don’t know — well, there, she’ll speak for herself. Put my hand right on her, Mr. Holmes, within an hour of your message.”

“I’m easy to find,” said the young woman. She spoke with the broad Cockney accent of someone who'd been raised in a nice middle-class suburb, and always resented the fact. "Shooting Alley, London, that's my address. We’re old mates, Porky and me. I hear you're interested in Baron Adelbert Gruner."

She then proceeded to discuss the Baron, with intense hatred in her blazing eyes, and almost total lack of coherence in her speech. John listened intently and made sympathetic noises, and I attempted to wrestle hard facts out of her tiresome ranting. She'd been the Baron's mistress and unfortunately, it sounded as if all he'd done had been treat her cruelly, cheat on her, destroy all her friendships, and drive her to despair and drugs. I say unfortunately, because those are the kind of allegations where 'there's another side to the story', as the gossip columnist idiots put it. What we needed was him to have beaten her, supplied her with drugs himself, or pimped her out. Or would a well-brought up woman like Violet worry that her fiancé used to hire out women for cash? Nowadays, it's hard to keep up with what sexual behaviour is shocking, and what's just strikingly original.

"Most of this is no use," I said eventually, breaking in on her tedious account of a vicious argument over her failure to appreciate a piece of blue and white ware. "You want to stop him marrying Violet de Merville, do you?"

"Course I do. Any sensible girl would run a mile from him."

“Violet isn't sensible, she's madly in love. She's been told all about the Baron and she doesn't care.”

“Told about the murder?”

"She discusses it in minute detail on websites."

"My God, she's got a nerve!”

“She puts it all down as slander.”

“Couldn’t you stick some proof before her silly eyes?”

“Well, can you help us do so?”

“Ain’t I proof myself? If I stood before her and told her how he used me-"

“Would you do that?”

"Course I fucking would!"

“Well, it might be worth trying," I said, which shows you quite how desperate I was by that point. "But Gruner's told her most of his past, and she's forgiven him.”

“I bet he didn‘t tell her everything,” said Ms Winter. “I caught a glimpse of one or two murders besides the one that made such a fuss. He would speak of someone in that silky voice, and then look at me and say: ‘He died within a month.’ It wasn’t hot air, neither. But I didn't take much notice - you see, I loved him myself at the time. Whatever he did went with me, same as with this poor sucker!"

"So when you were in love with him," I asked, "was there anything that worried you about this drug-taking, womanising, murderer?"

As I'd hoped, her sarcasm detector hadn't survived the pharmaceutical onslaught. "There was this one thing," she said. "He had this book."

"Go on," I said.

"A small black leather book with a lock, and his arms in gold on the outside. I think he was a bit high that night, or he wouldn't have shown it to me.”

“What was it, then?”

“Mr. Holmes, he collects women, and that was his catalogue. Photographs, names, measurements, everything about them."

"I see," I said. Old-fashioned to keep details in a book like that, but much less likely to go astray as compared to, say, a PowerPoint presentation. "What happened when he showed it to you?"

"I got a bit upset, obviously. But then he said he'd kept it to preserve his memories of them, but he'd never need to put me in it, because he could never forget me." Even John rolled his eyes at the corniness of that line.

"And where is that book now?"

“Dunno. It’s more than six months since I left him. I know where he kept it then. He’s a tidy man in many ways, so maybe it's still in the pigeon-hole of the old bureau in the inner study. Do you know his house?”

“I’ve been in the study,” I said.

“Have you, though? You haven’t been slow on the job if you only started today. Maybe dear Adelbert's met his match this time. The outer study is the one with the Chinese stuff in it - big glass cupboard between the windows. Then behind his desk is the door that leads to the inner study - a small room where he keeps papers and so on.”

“He's not afraid of burglars?”

“He's not a coward, his worst enemy couldn’t say that of him. He can look after himself. And there’s a burglar alarm he puts on at night and when he goes out. Besides, what is there for a burglar - unless they got away with all that fancy china?”

“No good,” said Shinwell Johnson with the decided voice of experience. "Market's flooded with Chinese stuff at the moment. You can't go anywhere in London now without someone trying to sell you a jade hairpin."

If I'd asked the right question at that point I might have saved us all a lot of trouble. Well, if I'd asked the right question, and got a coherent answer from Kitty Winter, and been able to cross-check my data. As it was, I was reduced to plans so desperate that John approved of them.

"Right," I said. "Well, Ms Winter, if you're available tomorrow, I'll see if I can arrange for us to go and meet Ms de Merville personally. I'm very obliged to you for your cooperation." I got a smile from John for remembering that one. "And I need not say that my clients will be happy to compensate-"

“No way,” the young woman cried. “I'm not out for money. Let me see this man in the shit, and I’ve got all I've worked for."

I took that to mean she'd got enough heroin for the next couple of injections.

**

I still don't know why I bothered to go round to talk to Violet de Merville. The chances that she'd listen to me or even Kitty Winter were no higher than 6%. But if I didn't talk to her, Damery might think I wasn't taking the case seriously, and I didn't want that. And she agreed to see us, so we went round the next afternoon to 104 Berkeley Square, where she was living, in a huge awful gray London house.

Violet de Merville had the kind of pale, self-contained, inflexible and remote beauty that suggested she'd taken a lot of drugs in her past too, and had recently started using Botox. I decided it might well be a good thing that it was Gruner she was obsessed with, because if she'd fallen so hard for a different kind of man, she'd have been happily strapping bombs on herself by this point: she had the air of a fanatic whose thoughts were set on higher things. I'd seen such faces in martyrdom videos.

And when we started to talk to her, it was plain she was not just an idiot, but a high-minded idiot. She was going to redeem Baron Adalbert Gruner if it killed her, which it probably would. I tried to channel John, make myself temporarily at least, into somebody who cared that this idiot was going to do something idiotic, save her from herself. Talked high-minded rubbish about shame, fear, agony, hopelessness, and other emotions that I've heard that non-sociopaths experience. Kitty chimed in, and was surprisingly eloquent for a woman whom you'd have thought had her brains completely scrambled by now. Maybe the capacity to talk sentimental garbage about being 'tempted and used and ruined and thrown into the refuse heap' is the last brain function to go. But her high-mindedness and Violet's high-mindedness unfortunately cancelled each other: tripe and anti-tripe.

***

I started telling John about my meeting with Violet that evening, when we were dining at Simpson's again. He asked whether I'd spotted any nightingales in Berkeley Square, which showed a disturbing ignorance of urban ornithology, and I then gave him a rather softened version of our conversation.

"It ended," I said, "with Ms Winter losing it completely, swearing, and trying to grab Violet de Merville by the hair. I restrained her, dragged her towards the door, and was lucky to get her into a taxi without a public scene. She was beside herself with rage. In a cold way I felt pretty furious myself," I added. John looked sceptically at me.

"OK, in a not-that-cold, more furiously sulky way," I corrected myself. "It was indescribably annoying, given we were trying to help her: the calm aloofness, the supreme complacency. Anyhow, you now know exactly how things stand, and it's clear that I need to plan some fresh move, because that gambit didn't work. I‘ll keep in touch with you, John, it's very likely that you'll have your part to play. Though it's just possible that the next move may lie with them, rather than with us.”

By which I meant that I didn't have a clue what to do, and that I couldn't think straight when John was sitting opposite me in a restaurant anyhow. This was the second evening running I was eating out with him, and it included actual eating on my part, which tells you all you need to know about my confused mental state by then. We'd ordered - no, on second thoughts, I won't tell you what we had – it's all just fuel in the end, and it might offend your pale vegetarian sensibilities

What about the case, I hear a few of you ask, those whose tiny little minds aren't now fantasising about John and I exchanging glances over a table at Simpson's. To which my answer is: what about the sodding case? It's not as if there was anything complex to detect. What Damery really needed was an ordinary private detective to dig up some really juicy dirt on the Baron, and then the paramilitary wing of Relate to get Violet de Merville to listen to it. No need for my unique skills, which were better employed elsewhere.

***

For the next two days, however, I did try and do something constructive about the case. It mainly involved trawling the anti-Gruner websites seeing if any of their allegations might hold up sufficiently to get the Baron put in jail. Then I made what I thought was a breakthrough. Someone on one of the forums, going by the name of GuiltyBert, agreed to meet me, because he said he had definite evidence of Gruner having killed someone in Paris.

In the light of what happened at that meeting, can I point out three things? One is that I met this man in a public spot, outside the old Cafe Royal in Regent Street. The second is that I met him at 11.45 am, and in my experience, there are few thugs who are active before 1 pm at the earliest. The third is that I've had a thorough training in some very obscure martial arts.

Anyhow, I was there early and saw the man arrive. He was a tall well-built man, whom I identified easily as being an ex-butcher, now working as a chauffeur. He was using a cane, but I was sure his limp was psychosomatic. My diagnosis was confirmed thirty seconds after we shook hands, when he started hitting me with the cane. The London crowds flowed round us as we fought, cursing us as an obstruction on the pavement. Well, except, for the few who stopped to watch this exciting piece of street theatre. It was perhaps the consciousness of an appreciative audience that encouraged me to linger, making mocking comments, after I'd swept the man's feet from under him with one smooth and easy move. Which was my mistake, because at that point his accomplice coshed me from behind.

***

I woke up in hospital – a moment's consideration told me that it was Charing Cross, and that I was high up in the tower block, which meant I was in a private patients' room. Then I looked round and saw John sitting at my bedside.

"Afternoon," he said. "I hear you got beaten up again."

I didn't ask how he'd known where I was. Maybe he has some sixth sense that tells him when I'm in trouble. More likely it was Mycroft...or perhaps every A and E department on London now has John on speed-dial, for when I'm brought in. All that mattered though, was that he was there, as usual.

"Do you want me to check you over?" John asked. I nodded, and then wished I hadn't.

It was another familiar routine. His hands started to move gently over my body. It's almost the only time he can touch me and not arouse me, when he's inspecting me for injuries. He finds it reassuring, and given that he's an excellent doctor and knows my body so well, once or twice he's spotted things that hard-pressed casualty departments have missed.

Not this time, though. "Scalp lacerations and a lot of bruising, just like they said," John commented. "Strangely inefficient beating if was Gruner's men, as I presume it was. Do you need me to go and have a word with them?"

"No," I said. My voice was surprisingly weak. "And anyhow, I think it was her thugs rather than his, Violet de Merville's, I mean. It would explain the inefficiency, because you're right, his would have been more forceful. I'd probably have escaped from this unscathed if I'd had the sense to run earlier."

"Story of our lives," John replied cheerfully. "What happened?"

I gave him an edited account, and he politely and kindly pointed out how anyone half-competent could have inflicted near-fatal injuries on me at several points. Then he smiled and said: "I'll go and see about springing you," and wandered off to find some poor junior doctor to hassle, in the nicest possible way.

It took him about an hour, but then he was back, bringing some coffee for me with him.

"You'll be discharged this evening," he said. "I need to get 221B sorted, as in not an infection hazard, so I'll head off there now. Anything else you want?"

"You," I muttered hoarsely.

"Quite possibly, but you need rest first. Anything else?"

"Phone Johnson and tell him to get Kitty Winter out of harm's way, in case Ms de Merville has taken a dislike to her as well."

"Right. I'll come and get you later on. For now stay here and try to relax. Even your body needs a bit of time to mend." He gave me a very chaste, gentle kiss on my forehead and left. I groaned, and wondered if I could ask for more painkillers.

***

As promised, I was taken home that evening and spent the rest of the day in bed, almost blissfully happy. Mainly because John, unlike most A and E staff, is prepared to give me a dose of morphine large enough to have a decent effect. He knows from experience exactly how much I can take without any risk. And of course, I was happy just having John around. There are times I think he's wasted at a doctor: he'd have made a damn good nurse.

That sounds patronising, and it's not meant to be. Too many doctors treat patients as a collection of symptoms, conditions, diseases; a good nurse can make you feel that you matter as a person, help you heal at all kinds of levels. Although, admittedly, some forms of John's care would get him had up for professional misconduct if I was officially his patient.

***

I'd asked him to put out an exaggerated account of my injuries, say I was in serious danger, and get Gruner and de Merville off their guard. His blog post was suitably alarmist, with comments about concussion, and delirium, and infection risks. 28 minutes after he'd posted it, when he'd gone to make himself a well-deserved cup of tea, the first comment arrived, from Harry.

Yeah, yeah, of course Sherlock's really seriously injured, that's why he's back at Baker Street and not in intensive care somewhere. Oh, wait. But I'm sure you don't want to be disturbed for a bit, so have a nice shagfest guys. ;-).

I deleted the comment. John finds Harry hard enough to cope with at the best of times. Especially when she's indiscreetly and completely right.

***

I was in the middle of a case and yet I supposedly spent a week recovering from some not particularly serious injuries. With John 'coming in each morning' and making 'continual visits', as he put it in his blog posts. Do I need to draw diagrams? (No, I'm not going to. You sicken me sometimes, you really do). And do you understand now why I insisted that John moved out when we got together?

It's for his sake as much as mine. Because John that week cancelled or rearranged all the shifts he could, left his dog to be cared for by his landlady and his flatmate, missed his writers' group meeting, skipped nights out with his friends, and barely left 221B except to get supplies. When John came home from Afghanistan he was pretty much addicted to adrenaline, the thrill of adventure. I cured him of that. Now he's just addicted to me.

Oh, he swears off me, of course, on a regular basis. That's why Queen Anne Street is useful for him, as well as me. He can go off there for a few weeks, be with his dog, and talk to Miss Morland, his elderly landlady, and to a succession of young and mostly Australian female flatmates, to whom he is the world's straightest-acting gay friend. He can work as a locum, and live the kind of humdrum life that he says he really wants. And then, something'll crack, and he'll be chasing after villains with me again, or fucking my brains out in a hotel room, and he'll be happy for a bit, we both will be. After that, we go our separate ways: he goes back to trying to be normal, and I go back to being great, but not good.

***

I'm not going to tell you about that week. I couldn't anyhow, it's beyond words. Think of the most beautiful equation you've ever seen, and that's the nearest you'll get: e + 1 = 0, that's John and I together. John as 1, the one, of course. The identity element, makes you what you are, what you should be. Myself, I'm zero, the annihilator, reduces everything to nothingness. And i, naturally, is love: a useful construct for deriving theorems, but in the last resort utterly imaginary. Pi and e - who the fuck knows? That's the other reason I dislike metaphors: if you do try using them, they never end up working properly.


Part 3

Comments

( 16 comments — Leave a comment )
2ndskin
Feb. 22nd, 2011 08:18 pm (UTC)
You . . . argh. I was just enjoying obnoxious, delightful Sherlock and all the funny lines--and then you had to turn this thing into a dammit-I-may-faint-from-the-OTPness romance. "Now he's just addicted to me." The equation?? John . . . makes you what you are, what you should be." Oh bollocks, as you people say. I have no time for tearful "awwing" right now, but I have to go get a shawl, tea, and a hanky and read it again. Hmff.
marysutherland
Feb. 23rd, 2011 09:53 pm (UTC)
My S/J fics are always prone to end up as OT3s - John, Sherlock and Sherlock's massive ego. (It's not really the work, because he's only interested in cases where he can prove he's cleverer than anyone else). In this version, Sherlock's ego is mostly winning, but obsession gets a few blows in.

But there is definitely something weird going on in the ACD original as well, where Holmes spends a week recovering from not that serious injuries and not doing anything else, while concealing from Watson how fast a recovery he's making.
2ndskin
Feb. 23rd, 2011 09:59 pm (UTC)
well, you've hooked me enough that I'm going to read the original tonight. am in a very blue funk, and I suspect the weirdness factor might just cure that. if so, i'll owe you a fee.
kalypso_v
Feb. 22nd, 2011 08:33 pm (UTC)
I always wondered if his success as a sub was partly down to there being so much flesh to dominate.

Oh, that sort of sub... the mention of the style sheet made me wonder whether he was my sort of sub. Disappointing; I was seriously considering a Shinwell sockpuppet account for use in pointing out Sherlock's typos and grammatical slips (since there is no other field in which I can possibly compete with him.)
marysutherland
Feb. 25th, 2011 09:13 pm (UTC)
Maybe it's just me, but I tend to imagine sub-editors as naturally the more dominatrix type: 'You've been a very naughty author, I'm going to have to punish you for getting your footnotes muddled yet again'. (This is followed, of course, by a few sharp blows to the semicolon).
kalypso_v
Feb. 27th, 2011 02:19 am (UTC)
The reporters we respected most (which may not have been all that much) were those who appreciated that "If you don't look out, we'll print your copy exactly as you wrote it" was a very serious threat.
shezan
Mar. 19th, 2011 09:36 pm (UTC)
VERY serious threat indeed. There have been instances in which I still felt the editing damaged my copy after sleeping on it for a couple of days, but not that many.
fengirl88
Feb. 22nd, 2011 10:48 pm (UTC)
hurrah, part 2!

enjoying the results of John's writing group, Sherlock's comparative assessment of his enemies, the confirmation of his accurate diagnosis about the cane, and so many other things here.
2ndskin
Feb. 22nd, 2011 10:50 pm (UTC)
sigh. just read again. it is still in the running for my favorite ms story. sigh again!
marill_chan
Feb. 27th, 2011 01:41 pm (UTC)
Wah! I love your Sherlock and his dickishness! This is progressing nicely. The narrative style is very captivating! On to chapter three!

My favorite line: There are times I think he's wasted at a doctor: he'd have made a damn good nurse XD
lawless523
Mar. 4th, 2011 10:55 pm (UTC)
"Really hot and filthy sex. You're not going to be able to replicate that, are you, Mr Holmes? Not with a woman, at least."

Burn!

Also, although I know you did it maintain symmetry with the original, Sherlock making John move out because he can't concentrate with him around is brill. In my mind, one of the biggest problems with the pairing is the potential for unhealthy obsession.

I'm enjoying this a great deal. This case updates nicely. It would be nice, though, if I didn't keep confusing it with the Case of the Noble Bachelor. *headdesk*


darthhellokitty
Mar. 5th, 2011 04:44 am (UTC)
one of the biggest problems with the pairing is the potential for unhealthy obsession

Sure, but it's also one of the greatest appeals... XD
lawless523
Mar. 5th, 2011 04:52 am (UTC)
That's what gives it its drama and passion, but where do they go from there?

It will be interesting to see how they deal with the whole "Moriarty knows Sherlock cares about John and fear for John's safety is eating Sherlock up" dilemma next season. Or not; I wouldn't be surprised if they don't deal with it until the last -- presumably Reichenbach -- episode.
marysutherland
Mar. 6th, 2011 05:45 pm (UTC)
I suspect they're going to take the ACD approach to this, and keep the 'Sherlock cares for John' angle as something that is expressed only in extremis, with Sherlock managing/pretending indifference for the rest of the time. As Stephen Moffat points out in the commentary on Pink, ACD only has one or two bits in all the stories where Holmes is actually emotional about Watson. Though what I do wonder is whether they will go the whole hog and marry off John (very canonical, but terrible for the slash).
darthhellokitty
Mar. 5th, 2011 04:43 am (UTC)
"I see," I said. Old-fashioned to keep details in a book like that, but much less likely to go astray as compared to, say, a PowerPoint presentation.

God, I can picture that... sometimes the old ways are indeed best.

And John had to move out once they got together, because why exactly? I'm not sure this was for John's sake, as much as Sherlock tries to present it that way. I suspect that Sherlock would be too distracted to do a damn thing else but John.

Think of the most beautiful equation you've ever seen, and that's the nearest you'll get: eiπ + 1 = 0, that's John and I together.

This may be as romantic as this Sherlock gets! It's very charming, very much him.
marysutherland
Mar. 6th, 2011 05:49 pm (UTC)
The PowerPoint line was inspired partly by a recent internet scandal in which a female student (from Duke University, I believe) did create such a listing, and it then got leaked. And I'm with Sherlock all the way on the beauty of a really good equation.
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