“Sherlock! I’ve got the shopping,” John struggled past the door and up the steps toward the flat; “Might need a hand with –“
John stopped, and he nearly let all of the bags fall on the floor right there.
“Ah. John,” Sherlock said in an even, casual tone. “No trouble with the Chip & PIN machine this time, I trust.” He was sitting at a sideways angle, watching a film on the wall-mounted telly. His eyes did not leave the screen, but his face was perfectly calm.
“Sherlock, how the HELL did you get –“
“I never knew you were a Thespian, John. You really are quite talented. Even with this poor script and atrocious dialogue, you have a real presence. Your co-star was quite fortunate to work with someone of your caliber.”
John eased the shopping onto the floor. For a moment, he considered turning on his heel, Army-fashion, striding out of the door, and booking a flight to Kathmandu. Possibly the only thing that stopped him was concern over whether his passport was up to date.
From the television, a familiar masculine voice was chanting “Oh… Oh… Yeah baby… Oh…Oh, GOD Yes!”
John’s hands were trembling, and his knees felt weak. His mouth had gone dry. He licked his lips. “Where did you find that? Because last I checked, every copy had been erased or destroyed, thank God.”
The younger John Watson on the television also uttered the word “God” at the same time, and with nearly the same inflection.
John in 221b shut his eyes hard and creased his brow at the coincidence.
Sherlock’s eyes still did not waver from the somewhat-grainy images. “Oh, Mycroft does routine checks on both of us; surely you knew that. He happened upon this charming piece of cinema and thought we might like to have it in our collection.”
“MYCROFT has seen this?”
“I think I’m….I think I’m about to vomit…” John was not speaking figuratively.
"Mmm. Too bad you don't share the talents of your leading lady. She apparently has no gag reflex whatsoever.” Sherlock pressed his steepled fingers against his lips. “Ah, what’s this? Her character has a twin brother? Perhaps an homage to Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night? Oh, but he seems quite keen to befriend you as well, John. Interesting plot device.”
John knew his voice sounded unsteady and feeble. “What do I have to do, Sherlock? What do I have to do to make you destroy that and never speak of it again?”
Sherlock turned his head and finally met John’s pained, panicked eyes.
“Well, John,” Sherlock picked up the remote, “Allow me to skip ahead to 18 minutes 47 seconds, and I will show you - exactly - what to do.”
John closed his eyes, uttered a soul-bruising sigh of resignation, and began unbuttoning his shirt.