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Ricochet

BBC Sherlock

Rating: 12 (gen, non-graphic violence)

Spoilers: alternative ending to The Great Game, plus spoilers for Study in Pink

Summary: written several months ago for a prompt about John getting shot. This probably doesn't go in the direction the prompter intended, but that's ricochets for you.
 

 

As the shot echoed through the darkened swimming pool, Sherlock realised just what a terrible mistake he'd made. How had he been so careless, how he had let this happen? He could still remember the shock on John's face as the ricocheting bullet had hit him, the broken off scream. And then John's willed silence, as he concentrated on enduring the pain, not collapsing.

He was crouched down by John now, who was curled up against the lockers, Sherlock's scarf wadded against the wound in John's leg, keep the blood in, must keep the blood in. His other arm was around John, holding him close, his head against Sherlock's shoulder. Sherlock could see, smell the sweat patches on John's shirt where the bomb jacket had been, he still had the detonator wires around his neck, for God's sake. The relief at getting the jacket  off him, at having John safe, it was that euphoria that had so clouded his judgement, stopped him realising the continued danger till it was too late.

"You're going to be OK," he told John. "Do you hear the police outside, they've got Moriarty. We're safe now. You're going to be fine."

John slowly raised his head to stare up into Sherlock's worried gaze, his grey eyes bleak. At last he spoke, forcing the words out. "Yes, I know, it's just a graze wound, nothing lethal. But you are bloody well dead, Sherlock Holmes. I am not letting you get away with shooting me with my own damn gun."

"I, I didn't mean to-"

"No, of course not. And how could anyone possibly be expected to realise that pacing up and down while waving a loaded pistol around, when your hands are still shaking, is not a good move?"

"I thought-"

"You didn't think, you just reacted, Sherlock. You're not safe out alone. Actually, sod you, you're safer off alone, at least then you wouldn't have a...colleague to endanger with friendly fire."

"I wasn't alone," Sherlock insisted, "I had back-up. Which is why the police are out there now, and with luck even those dozy paramedics will finally turn up."

"Oh God, I'd forgotten that! Sherlock, Lestrade will be here any minute now as well.  So go and pick up that bloody gun and hide it!"

"I-"

"We are not going to live this down if the Met know you shot me. And I'm not bleeding to death, which is just as well given your complete inability to maintain steady pressure on a wound. I have got to get you on a first-aid course if it kills me, before you kill me. But first of all, go and sort out the damn gun."

Sherlock did so, jamming it hastily into his pocket. A croaky voice came from the curled-up figure on the floor: "Have you remembered the safety catch this time? And are there any powder-"

John's voice cut out abruptly. Oh God, thought Sherlock and rushed back to him. But it was just Lestrade coming through the doors that had prompted John's slump forward, hiding his face.

"Where the hell are the paramedics?" Sherlock yelled, as Lestrade spotted them and started to run.

"I'll get them at once," Lestrade said, "God, I didn't realise John was hurt."

"It's just a flesh wound," said Sherlock. "But even so, he ought to get seen to."

Lestrade started rattling out details on his radio. "They'll be along in a minute. What the hell happened? I swear Moriarty's mob were out of the building before the shooting started. That's why it took me so long to come in, there's been all hell let loose out there, but I thought at least you two were safe inside."

"Are you sure about the timing?" Sherlock demanded. "Human perceptions under stress are often distorted. In one experiment witnesses averaged only 32% identification accuracy for someone they'd seen for more than half an hour. "

"I'm not an average witness, I'm an experienced policeman." Lestrade said doggedly.

"Yes, but it was very confusing situation, there were a lot of them, weren't there?"

"It was chaos. Damn near ended up with a complete bloodbath. Thank God no-one got caught in the cross-fire. I'm sorry the paramedics are taking so long, they're probably still trying to stop Moriarty bleeding to death, which seems entirely unnecessary. So what did you say happened?"

"I'm not sure, I was concentrating on the bomb jacket. One of them must have squeezed off a shot just as they were leaving," said Sherlock. "Ricochet, a random thing."

"But that's not...a sniper's rifle didn't do that, surely?"

"Keep calm, John, you're safe now," said Sherlock, feeling John's body tense under his grip. "Maybe one of them had a handgun as well."

"None of the ones we picked up had anything like that on them."

"Perhaps you didn't get them all, maybe the gun got dropped somewhere. But of course it was one of Moriarty's men. When you pick up the bullet, you'll find it matches one you already have, Lestrade." There was a groan from John.

"What do you mean?" Lestrade asked.

"We've had handguns before, haven't we? The shooter who took out the taxi driver last month. Must have been Moriarty's man, that's obvious now, worried the cabbie was going to spill the beans. I'll bet you £50 that the bullet will match that one."

There was noise from John that was less a groan and more a...giggle. Sherlock grabbed him tighter.

"Where are those bloody paramedics? I think John's hysterical, he must be going into shock. Why is there never an orange blanket around when you need it?"

 

Comments

( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
http://www.google.com/profiles/cloe.sky
Nov. 12th, 2010 09:35 pm (UTC)
that last line is made of win *g*
ginbitch
Nov. 19th, 2010 12:04 pm (UTC)
Oh so very satisfying! A beautiful reposte to Sherlock's approach to gun safety!

<3
marysutherland
Nov. 19th, 2010 05:02 pm (UTC)
When you see Sherlock at the end of The Great Game, awkwardly thanking John for having tried to save him, he is waving the gun around like crazy. I'm surprised he doesn't accidentally shoot himself at that point, that's what made me think of this fic.
aelfgyfu_mead
Dec. 29th, 2010 01:34 am (UTC)
That scene with Sherlock waving the gun around drove me insane! HE SCRATCHED HIS HEAD WITH IT! I was screaming at the screen, and that was before I knew what the writers were about to do with it! It still bothers me even that the actor did it; I have to tell myself it wasn't a real gun with fake bullets but a completely fake, prop gun.

Thank you for letting me get that rant out. My husband already heard a version of it and tired of it.

Sherlock telling Lestrade that it will match the bullet from the cabbie makes the story brilliant, and John's giggling (and Sherlock's response of "shock") absolutely perfect.
marysutherland
Dec. 29th, 2010 09:40 pm (UTC)
I think The Great Game gunplay bit was intended to rub in how totally Sherlock loses it in the aftermath of John nearly getting killed (along with Sherlock's absolute incoherence). But it does nicely lend itself to a bit of health and safety conscious fic.
warriorbot
Nov. 19th, 2010 05:20 pm (UTC)
About time someone pointed out to Sherlock that guns =/= [toys,combs,headscratchers]

And yes - seconding the last-line love!
zevbaldwin
Aug. 6th, 2011 06:49 pm (UTC)
"We've had handguns before, haven't we? The shooter who took out the taxi driver last month. Must have been Moriarty's man, that's obvious now, worried the cabbie was going to spill the beans. I'll bet you £50 that the bullet will match that one." - Oh, great! Well done Sherlock!
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )