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And The World Kept Turning Without Me On It

Chapter Text

In a world where the supernatural was just as normal and mundane as getting the milk from the nearest Tesco, you had to watch what you said. Of course, to Sherlock, this had always been just another piece of evidence. Somehow, he'd been able to put all of the rules the mad world they inhabited lived by into neat little folders of information inside that hard drive in his head.

If he'd been here, he'd have said to be more careful with the way he spoke, although knowing him he'd have probably said it in a really blunt and rude way, so you hardly knew he cared.

But he wasn't, and as John looked down at that bloody gravestone, he just kept talking.

"Do me one favour, will you? Just one... miracle. Don't- don't be... dead. Whatever's listening - make Sherlock not be dead."

The weather didn't change abruptly, either to pour down with Frankenstein's thunderstorms or the shining light of angels. There was no tingly feeling, no hairs standing up on the back of his neck.

Nothing had happened.

Steeling himself, he straightened. And walked away from the grave.

Still hidden behind a tree, Sherlock leaned his head back to rest on the scratchy bark.

"John, you idiot..."

...

AN: Just a short drabble-ish piece inspired by how someone had titled their prompt-fic 'Wish' over at watsons_woes.

Chapter Text

John Watson was far from stupid.

He had fought in a war, and survived. Perhaps more tellingly, he had come home, of his own free will, even if it was only due to an injured shoulder, a psychosomatic limp and the subsequent inability to fight for his country. He still had nightmares, even as he had missed the action, but he had stayed even after the limp had gone.

So when Sherlock started feeding him a pile of lies, he knew better than to believe him. He knew Sherlock - better than, perhaps, anyone, even his brother - and he knew that Sherlock was as much of a fraud as Moriarty was a good man.

When Sherlock had started going on about notes, and that being what people did, John denied it and told Sherlock to stop it, but he was far from stupid. He knew what was going on, even if it didn't make any sense at all.

So when Sherlock started falling anyway, the two pieces clicked together like some part of a puzzle where you've got all the pieces but they've all got the wrong pattern pieces on them, but still managed to find those crucial matching first two anyway.

He hated Sherlock for not being able to figure that out, that he couldn't make him believe the obvious lies. He'd been around him too long to.

He hated Sherlock for falling, and for hitting the ground at the bottom.

But he really hated Sherlock thinking he could get away with trying to make this easier on him like that, more than anything.

And when he came back, he was going to tell him so.

The idiot.

...

AN: Born from the idea that John could see right through the reason why Sherlock said what he did before he fell. It just grew from there.

Chapter Text

Sherlock Holmes was, all in all, perhaps the strangest pirate captain that any crew could ever hope for. He was, however, one that looked after his crew - in a fashion - and they all knew that with his keen insight into the minds of those chasing them, their ship The Irregular would never get caught.

Today, they had captured an enemy vessel, British, running back to England. It was a fine thing, and the crew had fought valiantly, but in the end they were no match for the pirate Captain and his crew.

"Mr. Melas, line up the prisoners on the deck."

Melas - a Greek man, did as he had been bid, along with the help of two others. It was not a hard task, since they had all been tied hand and foot the previous day. They were now tired, injured and hungry, as well as utterly defeated.

The first thing the prisoners heard of the captain was the clunk of the man's boots on the wooden planks of the deck, and the first they saw was the blood-red coat he wore billowing in the wind, and if they dared look up further, ice blue eyes hidden in a face topped with black curls.

Without asking any of his crew which was which, he went straight to the captain of the other vessel, although all of the officers had been stripped of anything that might denote their rank.

"You. State your mission in these waters."

His tone was bored, one hand on his hip, just above where his pistol was underneath his coat, but the man only responded with venom that he would say nothing that the other wanted to hear.

Sherlock Holmes merely rolled his eyes, and leaned forward, eyes boring straight into those of the naval captain.

"I already know what your mission was. I was merely asking to be... polite. You turned me down. That's not nice. You could have stated that you were taking wounded and injured soldiers back from the recent and ongoing war in the east; you could have stated the truth - that you hold no valuable state secrets, except for the current state of said war, and any news that these soldiers carry with them. Your loyalty to King and Country is admirable. Your intelligence rather less so. Mr. Trevor, do be so kind as to get the good captain out of my sight."

The captain's eyes widened in horror - both at the conclusions that the pirate he was facing had come to, and the sudden knowledge of his all-too-probable upcoming demise. He was taken away, his threats to the captain, the crew, the vessel and everything they held dear carried away by the wind, the pirate ship's captain completely unaffected by them.

A wave of uneasiness passed through the prisoners, and Captain Sherlock Holmes took no time in whirling around and stalking down the line towards specifically one man.

"You. You came on board that ship as an injured soldier - the uniform you're wearing is patched at the shoulder, with blood stains that haven't been properly washed out. When I first saw you, you were limping, and had gone as far as to request a stick - but in the fight for the Gloria Scott, you showed yourself to be perfectly capable of defending yourself, dropping said stick halfway through and forgoing the limp, which must therefore be something your mind has made up, discrediting the idea that your uniform was simply borrowed from a comrade with a similar size..."

By this point, everyone was staring at the two of them, one standing tall and cutting an imposing figure, the other forced to kneel on the deck, pain obvious by his face that the position was uncomfortable in the extreme, yet saying nothing, only staring defiantly back at the pirate who had captured his vessel, his way home.

"And?"

Sherlock Holmes' expression happened to be, for a whole minute, unreadable.

"Mr. Baskerville, untie his bonds."

A man approached the prisoner, one who looked like he may have been of good stock had he not been on a pirate ship, and did as his captain had ordered. The prisoner stood, favouring his leg just as Holmes had described, even while it had been the odd position of his arms that had caused him the most discomfort. He glared, having to look up at his captor due to a difference in height.

"Why? Why let me go?"

There was an unspoken message in his words - why choose someone who was discharged for his injuries, who isn't fit for the battlefield, to be on a pirate ship? - at which the Captain smirked, a quick and fleeting thing.

"Take a look around you. I've got almost everything and everyone I need. I'm just missing one vital ingredient, and the thing will be complete."

"And? What would that be?"

"A doctor, of course."

The man scoffed. "I'm not a doctor. I'm an injured man."

"Correction: you are an ex-army doctor who'd do better with us than you would back home." There was a pause, as the Captain was looked at with incredulity. "Oh, you know you want to. I saw you out there yesterday."

Still staring as though he were being confronted with a mad man, the prisoner put a hand to his head. When it came down, his expression had changed to one of wary consideration.

"Does this mean I'll have to wear one of those stupid coats?"

"Not unless you want to. And the coat isn't stupid."

"Right." Still unconvinced, he shook his head. "I'm going to regret this. I know I will."

"Oh, I'm sure you're not."

The Captain held out his hand to the man for the first time.

"Captain Sherlock Holmes of The Irregular. Welcome to the crew."

"Watson," supplied the new crew member, giving Captain Sherlock Holmes the only information he could not have found out for himself, "John Watson. Formerly Captain of the 5th Northumberland Fusiliers.

Another smirk tugged at the Captain's mouth.

"I could tell."

...

AN: I'd told Usagi I'd draw a pirate!Sherlock. Which I did. While working on it, I came up with this AU, which is chock-a-block full of historical inaccuracies and cameo appearances. I REGRET NOTHING.

Chapter Text

All his life, Rich had never once thought of himself as more than average.

School had been okay. Well, maybe not okay - he'd been bullied, and one of the kids had died, and they'd never found out who'd done it. But he came out the other end alive and, seemingly, sane.

Now, though, he wasn't so sure. He'd always had blackouts, short moments when he wasn't quite sure what he'd been doing from one moment to the next. Sometimes it felt like having sleepwalked, ending up down the road, or even on the other end of town. One time, he came to his senses wearing a completely different set of clothes.

There'd been one time when he'd been all dressed up in a suit, on his way to a prospective job, when he had almost started to feel his phone buzz, giving off an alert ringtone he didn't remember storing. He'd blacked out, and woken up several paces away, his phone holding no memory of whatever text had arrived or call he'd missed.

Then there'd been the time he'd come to in prison, just as the doors were opening, and people started to file in. They asked him about things he didn't know or understand, and he told them so. To his relief, they'd let him out after a while, but he'd blacked out so often that he hadn't been aware of what day it was, let alone month.

And now as he clawed his way back to consciousness, feeling a nauseous sense of something wrong, he found himself staring incomprehensibly at the face of Sherlock Holmes.

There was an awkward, terrifying silence, during which he realised that they were on a roof. They were the only ones there, and he was wearing a suit again - Westwooda part of his mind supplied - and there was a gun in his suit jacket. He didn't know how that had come to be there, and he wasn't sure he wanted to know.

"Oh, you're good."

An icy chill gripped him, and suddenly, he wanted to be anywhere but where he was. But he couldn't afford to black out again - if he did, he knew, just knew that something unimaginably bad would happen. That he wouldn't be walking away from.

...

AN: I wanted an AU in which Richard Brooks was a real person, but that didn't mean Sherlock was a fraud... so Usagi suggested he had a split personality, as per Jekyll/Hyde.

Needless to say, I thought this way of going about it was AWESOME.

Chapter Text

When he first woke up, everything was pristine. New. Untouched. Alive.

The nurses came in to see him, and they smiled. He felt like it was the first time he'd ever seen anyone smile, and maybe it was.

His first meals were difficult - he'd apparently suffered brain damage, so some things would take some relearning and getting used to again. That was okay. He'd be starting afresh with much more than how to eat.

He learned quickly, though, and the doctors and nurses were very impressed with him. It didn't take long at all to get reacquainted with reading, even if it took a bit longer to remember how to write.

Speaking took longer. He'd know what people meant when they talked, but it was another thing entirely to say the words himself, and that frustrated him. It was his own personal major achievement when he first strung a coherent sentence together, and the entire ward cheered.

It was around that time that he first started to watch TV. He'd heard it before, but this was a sort of turning point - he could talk, he could ask what was going on, he could say if he wanted to see something or not. He could walk away if he didn't.

He frowned as he watched the news. There was a man on the news with his face. He turned to one of the nurses on duty, and asked, both with hesitant words and signs, who that was.

"That's you," she said carefully. "We weren't sure if you'd remember, but - they found you there."

He was... the man on the news? There was something uneasy stirring in the back of his mind, as though some part of him didn't want to remember.

"I'm..." He couldn't quite say it. The name. Names were more difficult. They were usually unique.

The nurse nodded.

"Richard Brooks," the nurse said. "That's what the news is always saying. You're Richard Brooks." She smiled at him, and he smiled hesitantly back.

If something seemed off, he didn't say. How could he know? He was the brain damage man who couldn't remember anything. If that's what they said his name was, then who was he to say anything either way?

Who was he, indeed?

...

AN: Brought about by someone's comments on Tumblr. Just a random plot bunny that wanted to be written. :')

Chapter Text

John stared at him. He really couldn't help himself. Living with his flatmate was weird enough to drive a normal person insane most of the time, but this was just taking the cake.

Sherlock, for his part, glared up at him from his chair, arms crossed.

"John," he said with gritted teeth, "stop it. It isn't funny."

John shook his head, sure that if he wasn't seeing this, if the proof weren't right in front of his eyes, he wouldn't believe it. If it weren't so serious, he might have been laughing.

"No. No, you're right, it's not. But it's damn weird."

Sherlock rolled his eyes, looking positively childish as he did so. "I think that's a very large understatement, John."

There was an awkward pause.

"Well-"

"I mean, how am I going to be able to chase after the criminals I'm catching at this height? Not to mention that the table will need to be brought down, the files - everything - put into easy reach - and if you even think about child-locking anything, I'm going to do something drastic. Possibly involving tea. Or acid. Maybe both."

He ended by turning up the glare he was wearing, fingers twitching since he couldn't exactly pace around when his feet ended halfway up his trouser legs. John sighed, hand meeting face.

"The thought hadn't even crossed my mind," he said, words mumbled through his hands before he took them away. "You're going to have to be careful, though. If people thought you were weird before..."

"John, have you ever known me to care about what people think?"

John had barely opened his mouth to answer no, you've always been a prat to everyone or something like it, when the phone started ringing. So instead, he firmly told Sherlock to stay there - Sherlock glared even further, but didn't move - and picked up the phone.

"Hello, Dr. John Watson speaking-"

"John." He recognised the icy tone in Mycroft's voice and suddenly the phone didn't seem so safe. "I want you to hand the phone to my brother. Now, if you don't mind."

With a deep breath and a short prayer - Sherlock probably had already figured out who it was, from the distasteful expression he was now wearing - he handed the phone over.

Sherlock treated the cordless the same way a sane person would a dead rat, holding it gingerly in his now much smaller fingers, and somewhat away from his ear. Which was probably just as well, as this was what John thought - from Sherlock's shocked, somewhat confused expression - was the first and hopefully last time Mycroft sent a spiel of angry, barely concealed concern his younger brother's way for having allowed such a thing to happen to him. When it finally ended, Sherlock blinked.

"I didn't know you cared."

The derision back as though nothing had happened, Mycroft bit back. "I hope you understand just how much trouble you're putting me through, Sherlock. You can't go out like that and reveal that such a thing exists that could cause this sort of effect. The general public would be in panic."

"Oh, goodie. I get to play pretend. I do hope you're not going to tell me to start acting like one as well while you're at it."

"I had been thinking of fabricating documents to the effect that until a way to revert you back to your old self miraculously appears, you would be known as a cousin of some kind. Possibly from one of Daddy's younger brothers."

This seemed to mollify Sherlock slightly, but he still wasn't convinced. John would have had his curiosity piqued if it hadn't been for the situation; he didn't know that much about the Holmes family outside of the two brothers, after all.

"Oh," said Mycroft, tinny voice reaching them them both and sending Sherlock into yet another fit of ineffectual rage, "and yes, I have increased the security on the flat. Good day."

...

AN: Quite possibly a crossover with Detective Conan due to shrinkage. :')

Chapter Text

John had been travelling on board the pirate ship The Irregular with her Captain Sherlock Holmes for just over a month now, and this was their first call at a port. The rest of the crew seemed to know the town well enough, and were even familiar with the inhabitants, but that did not mean to say that he'd be willing to trust anyone he didn't know as far as he could throw them.

He was currently following close behind the ship's captain as the enigmatic man as he wove through the dingy alleyways of the port town, seemingly unaffected by the sights and scenes around him.

After a while - a rather long while, John was inclined to say - he started to notice the streets becoming cleaner and buildings more upmarket, and he realised in a beleaguered way that they had gone rather more uptown than he himself would usually dare go.

The pirate, still in his distinctive scarlet coat, strode into one of the shops as though he belonged there. And when the proprietor seemed to recognise him, he wasn't entirely sure any more that he didn't.

"Ah! Mr. Holmes - of course, of course, it is Captain now, I never do remember. And who is this?"

Sherlock spared a glance John's way before taking something - a small piece of parchment - out of one of his many inner pockets.

"Mr. Trevor, meet Dr. John Watson. He serves as ship's surgeon, and my very own chronicler, for reasons entirely unknown to me. John, this is Victor Trevor, an old friend of mine from my youth and an invaluable link to the outside world and England. I gather you have a message for me."

Victor Trevor shook his head, a certain kind of familiar amazement written on his face.

"I still wonder how you do that, even after all these years. But never mind that, yes. It's from your brother."

Sherlock immediately frowned, and took the proffered piece of parchment and putting his own down on the tabletop.

Dear Sherlock, it read. I understand that as I write this you are likely still out at sea on one of those foolhardy adventures of yours, and that it may in fact be several months before this reaches you, but I thought that I should send word just on the offchance that you weren't gallivanting for quite as long as usual. In fact, if it weren't deemed as important as it is, I would not have bothered at all. A case has arisen, and since I can hardly give up my post for such a thing, my hand, as they say, has been forced.

Here is to hoping that you do not use this as fuel as you did my last missive,

Your elder brother, Mycroft.

John looked, completely baffled, between the short letter and the Captain's face, which seemed intrigued. And intriguing.

"...What? What's all that about?"

"Gather up the men, John. We're going back to England!"

...

AN: Because I can't see Sherlock turning down a case as interesting-looking as that, worlds and universes be damned.

Also... yes. I may actually be continuing this, insofar as extra drabbles whenever inspiration strikes is a continuation. Same with any of my other drabbles and shorts here.

Chapter Text

Several hours since Mycroft had phoned, and Sherlock was still sulking. And the term, as it turned out, was actually very apt. Despite still being in his now oversized clothes that hung loosely from his much smaller body, John had found him pacing - or attempting to - after making tea. At first he'd panicked, not seeing him in the room, until he realised that he'd been looking for Sherlock at the wrong height.

As soon as their eyes met, he was greeted with a miniaturised yet fully functional Sherlock Glare. John sighed and put the tea down on the table.

Sherlock stubbornly kept up with his pacing, pointedly ignoring every little trip, every little snag as he caught himself yet again, or the many times he nearly lost his balance.

John himself tried not to make it obvious he was watching. Lord knew it had to be hard enough on Sherlock's pride already, without him coming to the conclusion that his flatmate suddenly thought he needed to be looked after the way his brother apparently thought he did.

All of a sudden Sherlock froze, looking rather comical as he did so, staring in the direction of the door, and John understood seconds later when he could hear the sound of footsteps. Thankfully, familiar ones, as the minute relief expressed, although apprehension was still there.

Mrs. Hudson opened the door to find her two tenants staring at her with strange looks on their faces. Predictably, though, she noticed John first.

"I didn't know Sherlock had a younger brother," she said, confused.

Sherlock cleared his throat loudly and pointedly.

"I don't," he said.

Mrs. Hudson looked at the 'boy' in disbelief, Sherlock defiant and determined not to be thought the less of for his lack of height. In the end, she shook her head as though it was just another of his experiments, like the severed head in the fridge.

"That would explain why that woman who stopped outside gave me this for you, then."

She carried through a large-ish cardboard box, the sight of which John was amused to see caused a faint blush on Sherlock's face. Regardless, he opened it with the air of one already knowing what was going to be inside and half dreading the contents. When the flaps of the box opened up, John was surprised to find that it was only clothes - all neatly folded up, perfectly arrayed and clean as though they'd never been worn, with the exception of a few permanent stains and the tell-tale sign of a sewn-up tear.

A folded letter lay on top of the entire lot, which Sherlock moodily snatched away before either of the others could so much as catch a glimpse of what it said.

Sherlock, you and I both know that you can hardly go out dressed as you are, and that none of the things you have on hand will fit given the current situation. I took the liberty of sending over a box full of your old things, which should fit given the age you seem to have been sent back to.

Do try not to make such a fuss of putting on your clothes as you did the last time I gave you any. It would not do to have you acting your 'age', now would it?

MH.

PS. Mummy isn't pleased.

...

AN: HAD to do that. And the reference to SiB was something that just came to me as I was writing it. Mrs. Hudson puts up with everything. And the last line says it all. XD

Chapter Text

The next time Lestrade reluctantly called Sherlock in for his help, he was certainly not expecting to see John ambling up, looking rather put upon with a child actually leading the way. The kid looked like Sherlock, dressed like him, and from what he could see even at a distance talked like Sherlock - but there were at least a good couple of decades between them.

The first thing he did was ask John why he hadn't brought Sherlock with him. The response was that Sherlock was away, indeterminately. And that he and his brother had left one of their younger relations behind to boot. Sherringford, John said. The kid's name was Sherringford.

Lestrade didn't believe a word of it. As good an actor as Sherlock was, and as much as John may or may not have picked up from the man, Lestrade was at heart a policeman, and he could tell a cover story when he heard one.

But before he had a chance to voice anything on the subject, the kid had started to wander off onto the crime scene. First he tried shouting, but that got no response - he was off in some other world, probably, thinking it was all a good lark. Well, it wasn't. He went over, and stopped the kid before he could go any further.

"Look, kid - Sherringford, whatever your name is. This isn't a playground, and you can't just wander off wherever you like. This is my crime scene, got that? Now go play somewhere else."

He briefly noted how the look the kid was now giving him was unnervingly similar to the ones Sherlock gave out on a regular basis - the patent 'I'm intelligent and the rest of the world is full of idiots' look. This time, tempered somewhat with a withering, patronising sort of air that made it somehow worse than usual.

Even so, a kid was a kid, Holmes or not, and he led him back to the perimeter by the arm, not noticing John facepalming as he did so.

And yet, a mere fifteen minutes later, Donovan was shouting for him to get rid of the kid. And he hadn't even noticed the brat slip past!

Thankfully though, this time it was John who dragged his charge away, and 'Sherringford' went along far more willingly than he had with Lestrade himself.

Then, the two started talking, John crouching in front of the kid, and the black haired boy gesturing about as he talked animatedly. The most curious part of the scene was that John was wearing that same look he did when talking to his flatmate; not one he'd use on a child.

Almost hesitantly, he started to edge closer, careful not to get into their line of sight. He wanted to know what they were talking about.

"...the man's watch was wet, but his coat sleeves should have kept it dry - unless he needed to tell the time as he was running. Which in turn would mean that he wasn't looking where he was going for a few vital seconds - just enough time for someone to get behind him and-"

Astounding. He did sound just like Sherlock.

"How does he do that?"

John looked up at him in alarm, but the kid just frowned.

"Lestrade, do me the first favour of the night and shut up. I'm trying to theorise and I need more evidence!"

Greg stared and John groaned.

"Great," the doctor was muttering. "Yeah, really great. How long was that? Two days? Three?"

The kid blinked and looked between them.

"What? I need to go back to the scene. And not be disrupted this time. Do you think you could do that?"

And then he walked off, looking for all the world like a kid who'd just had a temper tantrum. Lestrade turned to John.

"That... was Sherlock? Please don't tell me that was Sherlock."

"All right then, I won't."

From the distance, a childish cry of triumph rang out, closely followed by one of frustration.

"Anderson, get your hands OFF me!"

...

AN: Title thing doesn't actually have that much to do with the drabble itself, but still. I thought of this and the last one at around the same time, too. I might do a Molly one next in the same series, but there is a reason why they're here and not in a story of their own - they have no plot, and they're short enough not to warrant a new story 'folder'.

In case you're wondering, Sherlock, by the end of this, can't be bothered to pretend in front of Lestrade any more. He just reverts to being himself. The others, though? They're... is it lucky, or unlucky?

Chapter Text

For the first time since he had been shrunk, Sherlock was starting to feel real fear. It wasn't simply annoyance or frustration, or even the overwhelming sense of anger at himself for allowing this to happen that had first taken him over, but actual fear.

John was leaving. There he went, leaving the room, and him, utterly defenceless. There was nothing he could do as 'Sherringford' that would not cause his cover to be well and truly blown - meaning that there was very little that he could do at all.

And it had all started when he had told John, in no uncertain terms, that they did need to take a trip to the morgue today, as there was something he needed to check.

John had agreed to go with him. It was not as though he could not have gone on his own, but having someone along who could be assumed to be the adult if the need arose was beneficial. Not to mention, he enjoyed John's company, not only before but also after the incident - John still treated him as an equal.

This was a point that was a harsh contrast to the behaviour of the staff at St. Bart's. They would look down at him, literally and figuratively. They would ignore him. They would comment on how the hospital was hardly a place for children, especially as they drew nearer to the morgue. They would also assume that he was a relative of John's, even though it was obvious that they looked nothing alike, so there could clearly be no familial connection.

Then, there had been Molly Hooper.

Who had greeted John the way she did anyone who wasn't Sherlock Holmes and wasn't in her bad graces, and proceeded to look around for the detective who usually wasn't too far away. Little did she know.

Molly couldn't hide a slight look of regret, but that changed quickly into curiosity as soon as John introduced the young cousin of Sherlock Holmes.

It was obvious that Molly was taken with him from the moment she set eyes on him. A small part wasn't at all surprised; many of the women he had passed had gossiped behind his back about how 'cute' and 'adorable' he was the moment they thought he couldn't hear them.

He'd almost groaned. He'd been hoping that she had more sense about her. Quite clearly he was sorely disappointed.

Then the dreaded thing had happened when he had been attempting to get up high enough to see the lacerations on the most recently dead man's fingers. Ridiculous, really, that an action that would normally have him leaning down would now require him to bend up and find a stepping stool of some kind. It was not to be quite so easily, however, as the moment he was high enough he felt arms around his waist - yet again, what was it with people and picking him up? - as Molly lifted him full clear of the body he'd been trying to investigate.

He didn't care that this wasn't normal childish behaviour - he wanted to go back to his investigation! He had to be able to see things for himself! And now-

No.

Oh no.

Now, John was talking to someone in the doorway. He looked like he was trying to protest, but he was gradually being talked around to whatever it was the person wanted him for, which would clearly take him away from the morgue.

Seemingly ignoring his friend, John sent over a quick "Could you?" to Molly, who responded with a cheery positive.

John left. Leaving him in the arms of someone who thought he was a child. Someone who had their arms still around him. He might trust Molly, but right now he just wanted out.

John. John, get BACK here! Surely whatever you're doing isn't as important as this. I'm- I'm- The word came to him, and he almost cringed at its adequacy, which was worthy of one of John's theatrical tellings of their cases on his blog.

I'm being Mollycoddled.

...

AN: ...The moment I realised that this is basically what she'd do if she could, and that here he can't fight back, and the WORD. I had to. I just had to. XD

Chapter Text

Several weeks on after the fall, and John received a text. He still looked at his phone expectantly, hoping beyond everything that the things he'd seen and gone through weren't real, that he was going to wake up one day and his best friend would be doing some mad experiment in the kitchen with severed fingers or something.

His eyes caught on the number. He'd know that number anywhere - it was Sherlock's. How, though - how could Sherlock be texting him? He was supposed to be dead.

Maybe today would be the day he'd woken up somehow without realising, and it was all a bad dream.

The contents of the text caused all of his hopes to come crashing down, though, replacing everything with anger and righteous indignation on Sherlock's behalf.

Hey, GuESS who's BB I got? LOL :P

He had to catch himself so that he didn't throw his own halfway across the room. That wouldn't do him any good. Instead, he sent a quick one back, teeth clenched and barely restrained anger showing in the short message.

Look, I don't know who's doing this, but it isn't funny. That's not yours, and the man it belonged to is dead. If you have any decency in you, you'll hand it in.

JW

That should do it. And if it didn't, he could tell Lestrade that some creep had gotten a hold on Sherlock's phone.

The next time, he got a voicemail. It'd been left to ring while he was at work, so he hadn't been able to pick up. There hadn't been a voice, just the sounds of what seemed like a city. He couldn't pick out any words, so he couldn't tell whether or not it was even in London.

Some time later, he had another text.

Go on, GUESS. Bet you can't guess where I am!

He didn't bother replying this time, but he did got to Lestrade. If someone was using Sherlock's phone like that, and kept sending him weird messages, it had to count for something, right?

Lestrade wasn't, it turned out, much help. There were so many other things going on that a stolen phone wouldn't really be that high on the agenda, though he did say he'd pass the message on to someone who might be able to help. It wasn't really his division, after all, but if there was anything he could do...

John thanked him, but left resigned to the knowledge that he'd keep being haunted by Sherlock's phone. After all, he could hardly block the number. It was Sherlock's.

The next time was several weeks later, and a photo. Bad quality, but it was obvious that whoever had the phone wasn't even in England. The weather was bright and sunny at least, and right when the picture had been taken there had been clouds covering Britain. It was at an angle, too, and blurred - as though taken by accident. But whoever had sent it must have done it on purpose.

He didn't know what kind of rise they got from doing this to him, but he really wished they didn't. He didn't delete the message from his inbox, though, just as he hadn't with the last few.

He knew that anyone would call him crazy, but he lived with the lingering hope that they'd all been duped, and that Sherlock was still out there, somewhere. And sometimes, when the emptiness inside of him became too much, he'd think of the anonymous texter, and pretend that it was Sherlock, trying to tell him that he was still alive, that he was all right.

When he felt better he'd realise what an idiot he was, projecting his dead best friend onto some punk who'd stolen a phone, but he never did delete the messages, not even when the next one came as a sort of text dialect that he couldn't even understand.

It was several months later when he checked his voicemail only to find that there was yet another one. This time, someone speaking in... Arabic? He wasn't sure. But it wasn't English, that was certain. And it wasn't Sherlock. Even if he'd tried masking his voice, John was sure that he would have recognised his old flatmate.

The next one came at New Years', and he wouldn't tell anyone why he was suddenly smiling when he got a text from someone whose grammar and punctuation weren't Sherlock's, but maybe it was the next best thing. It was only saying 'Happy New Year!', in the texter's usual way, but call him crazy - he did, by now - it made him smile.

May brought on something new. It was the anniversary, so to speak, of the fall. Of Sherlock's death. He spent the day at home, with Mrs. Hudson making tea and sharing stories. Late at night, after Mrs. Hudson had gone home, he received a text.

You want to

That was it. The entire message. The mysterious texter must have given up on the message but accidentally pressed 'send'.

Only, several minutes later, there was another.

OOPS wrong number

Something in him clenched. Wrong number.

After that, he started getting more 'wrong number' messages, which would all start with something similar, then cut off. And a few minutes later would come a variation on the 'wrong number' message.

He started to get increasingly annoyed with them.

Then, abruptly, they stopped coming. Absolutely nothing, for months on end. He almost started worrying, and he wasn't even sure who he was worrying for - the texter, this mysterious person who'd stolen Sherlock's phone, or Sherlock himself, as though he'd somehow survived and was in danger again.

He missed that false sense of hope. His delusion that something so miraculous could happen. He started to go back through his phone's history, looking over each one of the texts, but seeing nothing off with any one of them.

He'd been right before. He must be mad.

Then, out of the blue, there was another one. Very similar to the first, in fact.

Oi, u nevr guess wot.

He couldn't. How could he. He expected there to be another 'wrong number' text following, but it never came. Weird.

Christmas came and went, and so did New Years', without further messages. But that was all right - the news was enough to keep him occupied, full as it was of new evidence to prove Sherlock innocent and not a fraud, and what was more, that Moriarty was real, not that 'Richard Brook' persona. He had a smile on his face, something that had been starting to get rare.

Now that Sherlock's name was being cleared, he was starting to be asked back onto crime scenes, to act as a medical examiner on-scene, so to speak. There were strange, furtive looks from some of Lestrade's team, some distrustful still and others shiftily guilty. He and Lestrade would commiserate, though, how it wasn't the same without Sherlock. Sherlock would have made this an open and closed case. Sherlock would have loved this one.

On the way back from one of those, he was trying to hail a cab when a tall guy in a hoodie and trackie bottoms ran straight into him. He checked himself over as the man ran off, only to find that nothing was missing, and there were several things lying around that, instead, must have been dropped. Seeing no one running after him, John picked the things up and ran, calling at the man to slow down, that he'd dropped his things. He'd stopped, thankfully, but John hadn't been able to see his face - it'd been hidden by the hood and a large, oversized pair of sunglasses, not to mention a scarf.

He'd made some joke about not being able to get anywhere far without an oyster card, and left for the surgery. He still had some time before the place closed, and he could take on a few clients before then.

It was several patients in, when the door opened to the guy in the hoodie who'd run him over earlier. The moment he looked down at his files, a familiar voice caught his ears.

"You have no idea how refreshing it is to be able to use good grammar again, John, I..."

That was all he could make out before he blacked out. It's one thing to delude yourself, and another entirely to hear someone's voice, definitely him this time, not a stranger on a faraway street, right there. No denying it.

So I was right, he found himself thinking as he lost consciousness. It was you.

...

AN: Heavily inspired by a line in The Empty House. In which, after Holmes has revealed himself to Watson, he says "Several times during the last three years I have taken up my pen to write to you, but always I feared lest your affectionate regard for me should tempt you to some indiscretion which would betray my secret."

But here, he does. Only under the guise of a stranger, someone completely unrelated, quite possibly more than one. And with phones, it's always more than possible...

Chapter Text

 

If there was one thing about life with Sherlock that John found was a constant, it was that people stared and people talked.

Before, everyone talked because they automatically assumed that just because they were living in the same flat, they were in some kind of- of relationship. Which, he would like to say, they weren't.

Now that Sherlock looked like an eight year old, and wasn't calling himself Sherlock outside of private conversations, that was pretty much forgotten.

No, now people stared because there went John Watson, who was projecting his expectations onto his flatmate's cousin, just a boy at that. Who could, obviously, hardly live up to the great consulting detective's reputation. People stared because they talked one another as equals, and John didn't bother talking down to his friend just because their height difference went the other way nowadays.

And then there were the ones who came - somehow, he did NOT know how - to the conclusion that 'Sherringford' was his.

Which he certainly was not, thank you very much.

...

AN: Another shrunk!Sherlock drabble. This time only written to explain the picture I'd done of him and John. The idea of an adult and a child interacting as equals struck me as something worthy of note...

Chapter Text

The very first time John met Sherlock Holmes, the man had asked him - "Afghanistan or Iraq?" in such an offhand way that he'd felt positive that he was a reader of some sort. It wasn't that much of a leap.

Then he had explained his reasoning behind assuming that he was there because of the flatshare, and suddenly he was the most extraordinary kind of mundane he'd ever met.

He'd seen Sherlock in action, and he'd just been further confused. One moment he's saying Lestrade thinking is distracting him, the next he's showing us how he figured it out on his phone. It honestly hadn't surprised him to be asked his opinion on the dead woman at least - he'd said before that he was a good army Healer, and that included being able to tell more or less, medically at least, what a person had died of. A side effect of his training he mostly hadn't had to use up until then. It had been Sherlock's reaction that had been interesting. No glance at the leg.

...

"You aren't haunted by the war, Dr. Watson. You miss it."

Those few words were enough to set John on edge. Which was ordinarily hard to do - he was a soldier, he'd seen far worse things, been through far worse, and heard far more cutting.

But this had more far-reaching implications.

For a doctor, especially one in a war, nerves of steel were a must. For a healer, even more so. But there was a difference - a big difference - between being good at what you did in a combat situation, and enjoying the thrill it gave you.

John's father and his father before him had been gifted with the talent for healing. It was a family trait, one that not all of them used to its best advantage, but that they all acknowledged. It was there, better make the most of it. Though Harry generally wasted hers on getting rid of her own hangovers. John's grandfather had been in the army. But they'd all been surprised when John himself had signed up after completing his doctorate. He seemed so nice, they'd say. Five minutes out on the field, and he'll be coming home with nightmares. Right waste.

They hadn't known him all that well, not all of them, and he hadn't wanted them to. Not with something like that.

It couldn't be said that there wasn't any prejudice in the world. There was, even though it was so underlying, so under the surface, that you wouldn't always notice it if you weren't looking. The tensions between the black and white communities lingered on, crossing the boundaries of the talented and the mundane the same way the loyalties of duty to one's country did. The ones that were less noticed were simply never said. They didn't have to be.

Everyone knew that a healer had the skill and the opportunity to save lives and destroy them, equally. Everyone knew that a healer had to be above suspicion, above reproach, fully capable of taking that trust that you had to give them. Otherwise, how could anyone survive, knowing that they had an injury untreatable by mundane medicine, but that they could not go to the one kind of person who could make everything right?

Sometimes, though, healers went bad. It wasn't unheard of. You'd see it in the news, in the papers, headlines about some guy who'd let people die, or killed his patients for money. Awful stuff. The kind of thing that made people sick to think about it. And because of that, everyone knew, without having to be told, that if a healer enjoyed combat… enjoyed war… the danger, the thrill, the feeling of being needed so badly to save a person's life and hold it within their hands, then that person was, well. A danger.

John had never told anyone what this man - this stranger - had just informed him so coldly.

He'd never say it to anyone, but it scared him. And now the man was asking him to… what? Spy on his new flatmate?

His answer was clear and without hesitation, an obvious no. And not just because, as the man had said, 'You are very loyal, very quickly'.

He said no because John Watson was a good man. And despite what society would want to label him as if he was outed, he wouldn't be turned, and he would certainly not be bought.

...

AN: Originally known in my head as the 'magicverse'. Which was developed after thinking too much on the 'Wish' drabble, the first that was posted in my collection.  And then I developed a verse that actually used proper magic, and so this became the 'Healerverse'.  I think.

The first part here was typed up on my mobile while I was on the coach on the way to the Peak District. There was a character limit, so I couldn't do all that much, unfortunately, which is why it's so short.

The second was done while my hands were frozen, and might well have been shorter than the first had it not been that it was eaten by a bad internet connection up there. Re-wrote it back home, and this is what you've got.

Chapter Text

A few weeks on from the events of the rooftop, and Richard Brook is able to start going back outside and attempt to live a somewhat normal life again.

It is, of course, limited. People stare. They stop in the street and then carry on, pretending it's for another reason, but he knows the truth. He tries to ignore this, and carry on so that he can live. Hoping against hope that another blackout won't happen, dreading the day he all but knows that it will.

It isn't long before he sees his first spray painted graffiti message, adorning the side of a brick building in the middle of London. I believe in Sherlock Holmes.

He walks on with a shy, tentative smile on his face and a spring in his step that had been missing. Because he believes, too.

...

The second time he sees the propaganda the movement is spreading, it doesn't bring a smile, but it does make him feel better, in an odd sort of way. It's graffiti again, but he's seen so many different types of ways to get the message across by now - posters, doodles, writing in the snow in faraway places and in the sand on the beaches.

He holds himself closer, arms hugging his body, but not planning on speaking out against it.

No, far from that, he agrees. He finds himself agreeing wholeheartedly, and still hoping - for this, at least - that the past tense would stick.

Moriarty was real.

Richard Brook wished that he hadn't been, but hoped that that the past tense that he saw stayed true.

...

People had started to get almost used to the movement. The campaign. You could see people buying and selling #believeinsherlock stickers and posters and bookmarks and badges. He didn't buy any. He was too afraid that they might recognise his face, and he didn't want that.

But he appreciated it. The truth had to be said, and he'd started to think that his therapist might be realising that as well, and maybe she was even telling the police, rather than just dismissing him as a nice but deluded madman who'd been used and then turned on his employer.

He'd never do that. He'd respected Sherlock Holmes. He'd thought the man was so clever, doing all those things, things he'd never be able to do.

He'd told him, before he'd jumped - "Oh, but you're clever,", but he really wasn't. If he'd been clever, he'd have known what it was that Sherlock wanted to know. He'd have made it so that his hero didn't have to die. That - now, that would have been 'being clever'.

So when he saw a poster that proclaimed, quite boldly, that Richard Brook is innocent, it didn't surprise him very much that he let his emotions get the better of him as he ripped it down from the wall he'd found it on.

Richard Brook might not consider himself a clever man, but if there was one thing he knew, it was that he wasn't innocent. Just because he'd been ignorant, shouldn't mean he had the right to be called 'innocent'.

No, that word had hardly anything to do with him.

...

AN: In case you hadn't guessed, it's a continuation of sorts in the lines of 'Richard Brook and Jim Moriarty are Jekyll and Hyde' short. Usagi and I came up with how he survived the roof, and I wanted to write what would happen next.

Chapter Text

It had been, obviously, the Baskerville case.

Nothing of the sort had been divulged to them, either of them, at the time. It had obviously been thought of as unimportant... somehow. No, the first sign, and one they really should have paid more attention to, had been the way that everyone treated Sherlock after he'd solved the case.

They would steal glances when they thought he wasn't looking. Too bad for them John had his friend's back and nearly always noticed that sort of thing, and Sherlock himself too observant for his own good.

But it was different from when Sally Donovan stared and called him 'Freak', from when the Yarders would stare when he was on a case and he was the only civilian in the room, let alone the smartest. These were all aimed, John was sure, at the place Sherlock had been bitten by the hound. It was a strange kind of look, too – morbid in their curiosity, almost in awe of something neither of them could quite figure out since it didn't have to be connected to the case, and respectful of something almost intangible.

It wasn't as though the bite itself bothered the detective much; he'd continued on as normal, barely favouring the once-bloodied arm at all. In what seemed like no time at all, it seemed to have vanished once and for all, the tears in his coat sleeve from where he'd been bitten affecting his temper far more than the pain. Although even that had been fixed not long after their return to Baker Street.

Then, predictably and inevitably, came the first full moon after the Baskerville case. They should have seen it coming. One moment he's heading out, the next he's home, a bag of shopping under his arm, and the next he's in through the door and the first thing he sees is that there's a wolf in Sherlock's chair, Sherlock's clothes in pool just in front of it.

The shopping fell to the floor as the wolf stared with blue eyes, unimpressed and bored, from his seat.

...

AN: This AU is brought to you by memebells, which made me wonder how a Sherlock could become a wolf for a day or so. Werewolf just... came to mind so easily. Especially what with Hound of the Baskervilles...

Chapter Text

Sherlock woke up, memories assaulting him instantaneously. Damn. Wrong again.

Twenty four hours. That was the one thing that remained the same, completely the same, each and every single time. He would wake up and come to himself exactly twenty four hours prior, not a single thing different aside from what he himself chose to change. To anyone else, there would be a moment of disorientation, a blink and then a shake of the head, unnoticeable unless he drew attention to it.

But then he would have to go through those same hours day after day after day. So far, he had counted fifty-three. Today would make the fifty-fourth.

"Sherlock?" That would be John. "Sherlock, are you all right?" Of course he was. Why wouldn't he be? "It's just, you look like you've seen a ghost or something."

Oh, that was why. 'Yesterday', on the previous cycle, that is, John had died.

Sniper shots again, one through the leg, where his psychosomatic limp had once falsely stated a similar injury should be - and then once through the head, and no others were needed.

"Fine. I'm perfectly fine."

And after that, things went on as expected.

So far, he had seen John die thirty-five times, Mrs. Hudson twenty-five and Lestrade thirty-one. Most of these were from shots fired from a sniper rifle; some were from a handgun, and a rare handful were by other means. Mycroft had even died, a total of fifteen times, small compared to the rest.

He had attempted to explain what had been happening to him to any one of the few people he vaguely thought might be able to assist him with his annoying problem. Or simply make things happen in a more profitable way.

Once, he had taken cocaine again, and the shock, the disappointment from John and the cold, resentful feeling he had from Mycroft the day after when he was still getting over the effect to his mind even though there was, by that point, none left in his system, as though it had never been there. But his mind remembered.

He had taken various and varied sets of individuals into his confidence, as experiments to test what kind of scenario would work. This had invariably caused their deaths.

He knew each and every line, by now. All of the stage directions were known by heart. All variations had been rehearsed, and all had been tried and tested.

He had died forty-seven times. He had taken a gun to the rooftop thirty-eight. Killed Jim in several more ways and still woken up twenty four hours before.

So, it was only logical to say, that he was doing something wrong.

The only thing now was to figure out what that was.

Very well. Approach this as though it were the first time he had seen any of it. No prior knowledge. Absolutely fresh.

Allow self to be arrested. Do not resist. John joins him moments later - exactly as expected. They run. This route - it's the one he'd choose if he hadn't known, and he still chooses it now. Intercept assassin. Go to Kitty's - you don't know who's going to arrive, pretend you don't, you're a good enough actor, now act like it - let him go, just... let him go. For now.

John had always followed him before now. This time... he went alone. There was an option he hadn't considered before.

He knew that she would be there. She, obviously, could not have known that he would be there.

She was wrong, he told her. She did count. There was something wrong.

He couldn't tell her what. And besides, there were so many things 'wrong' that he wouldn't know where to start. So he'd stick with the things that he could explain. That she could help him with.

Falling, later, he realised that something felt as though it had clicked, that things worked now.

It took him several more moments to get his bearings, moments taken realising that time was still going forward.

Jim had been right. It wasn't about simply 'Staying Alive'. It wasn't about surviving. It was about winning. And he'd just won the game.

….

AN: Think 'Groundhog Day'. On Reichenbach. Um, yeah. That.

Could be thought of as Mollylock, or could just be him realising that she's important (romantic or not).

Chapter Text

"Sherlock."

"What? I thought you didn't usually talk while healing, Jo-"

She was dead. Sherlock stood up abruptly from the low window pane he'd been inspecting, and made his way to stand somewhat behind John as the greenish-yellow glow from the doctor's hand faded.

"This merely means that our case has been elevated to murder. Tell Lestrade, and then get something to eat. You can meet me back at Baker Street."

John merely nodded. You could heal anything, almost anything, in his profession. Anything short of death itself.

...

AN: Done specifically for this picture of John healing. Or doing something with the glow still illuminating the body. VERY short because of that, but thought I'd share anyway. Healerverse, if you hadn't noticed.

Chapter Text

They were hunting a murderer.

Or, at least, that was what Sherlock was calling it. John still preferred 'on the case', or any number of other ways of saying it, but at least speech patterns didn't change too much, and were things you could get used to, if after a while.

Things such as having a rather large wolf take over the flat for anything up to three days of every month was something else entirely.

Things such as your flatmate acting weird even when it wasn't one of those three days of the month was, if it was possible, even weirder.

Now, John had decided, was definitely one of those times. He and Sherlock were in a large house, the police nearby but not close enough to come when shouted for, and Sherlock had hinted - with his usual enthusiasm - that the killer was likely still in the house.

John, obviously, was less impressed, following after his friend even so, if only so that he could make sure Sherlock didn't get himself killed by accident.

They were a few rooms in when Sherlock had decided to examine the various corners of the one room they'd found themselves in, and John decided to move over to the door. Sherlock didn't even look up.

"Don't."

"What? I just thought I'd-"

"You thought you'd be useful and look ahead. Don't. Stay there. No, yes, right there. Good."

He did so, not moving from that spot until Sherlock said he could with the patience of a saint, if he said so himself. Finally, though, he asked why.

Sherlock made a face.

"Pack instincts. Highly irritating, but there nonetheless, whether I'd like them to be or not."

John blinked. That wasn't what he'd had in mind at all.

"Yeah, but. What does that have to do with me?"

Sherlock sent him a look that was worryingly similar to the one he gave Anderson, or the one he did when he thought John should know the answer, because it wasso damn obvious.

"Humour me."

...

Um... before anyone gets mistaken? I don't intend this to be a hint at some kind of 'relationship'. But it is a nod to how much more like brothers John and Sherlock seem as opposed to Sherlock and Mycroft...

Chapter Text

I should be dead right now.

Those, to be precise, were the words going through Sherlock's head. His head hurt, but he couldn't move - not because it was impossible, but because if he did, he would be letting on to everyone around that he was not, strictly speaking, dead.

Even if by his own calculations he should be.

The point being, that there had been a variable that he hadn't thought of - couldn't have, it shouldn't have been able to affect anything. He was now lying on the pavement because of that, people rushing toward him, and he could hear John from the distance he'd told the doctor to stay.

He was starting to wish he hadn't. He didn't feel good, and logically, he knew that he shouldn't be thinking at all, but if he allowed anyone to believe that he wasn't yet dead, then either someone would rectify that, or they would fix the small problem of the few people alive on this Earth whose presences he actually considered worth something.

Despite himself, the world started to go hazy, blurred, and, finally, dark.

...

The next thing he knew, he was in a tightly enclosed space - bag, he was in a body bag. That wasn't, couldn't be good. Not enough air, and he'd die of oxygen starvation even if the concussion and possible contusion didn't do him in first.

Then he realised that there were voices, conversing among themselves but too faint and far away for him to actually make any words out. After what seemed like an age and no further data to put towards any further deductions, the voices faded ever yet out of reach. Or - no, one of them, the other was still present, footsteps on the floor, he was inside, shoes not boots, female gait, slight swish of lab coat-

Molly?

The presence, he couldn't be absolutely certain yet, came closer still, up to where his head was, and he could almost feel, hear the hand reach toward the zip that was, he now realised, maybe half a centimetre open, and undid the thing, down to his chest, enough that he could get an arm out and do the rest if his arms hadn't seized up from cramp already.

It was Molly. She was looking down at him, smiling slightly, eyes shining - wet? Crying? He'd told her what he'd been planning, why should she be crying? - but trying so very hard to still look like she knew what she was doing.

He started to move his hands and feet, and was not completely surprised to find that there was something attached to one of his feet, but still-

"I have a toe tag?"

Molly blushed, looking away slightly - embarrassed? There was something else there as well, but what...

"Um, well. You were kind of pronounced clinically dead for a while there."

"...I see."

He shifted his elbows somewhat, just enough so that he could start to inch himself into a sitting position, ignoring his body's protests and the pins and needles lancing through his veins. He'd been through worse. He should be dead right now, and he'd won. Even if his head did still hurt.

"No, um, really. I looked. I- I knew what to look for! You told me! But... you were just..."

Ah, so that was it.

"You thought that I'd failed, and that I wasn't just faking it."

"I somehow managed to get them to put off doing an actual autopsy, that was them just now, but they're going to want to, I know they are, and-"

"Molly? Stop. Breathe."

"...You weren't breathing."

There was an awkward silence. Sherlock knew Molly, and despite her tendency to the melodramatic in some cases, and despite not being the same kind of doctor as John, he did trust her judgement. He had told her all of the signs to look for, just in case something like this had happened. And yet, even then, she had looked after him while he had been unable to do so for himself, and denied what the evidence had told her, and just as well.

But what the data was telling Sherlock did not make sense, was illogical and purely improbable. One could not die and return to life without the sustained care and quick attention of at least one very good doctor, and he was fairly certain that John hadn't been allowed near him. He had expressed that very clearly, in fact.

Still. There was nothing to be done about it now. He was alive, regardless of anything that may or may not have happened from the time he had been on the roof with Moriarty, until this very moment.

"Aside from that," he said, uncharacteristically awkward but growing in confidence as he focused on the here and now, "things go ahead as planned."

"R-right. Yeah. Of course they do, I mean, why not?"

"Shoes, Molly. I'll be needing my shoes."

...

AN: AKA Sherlock did a Jack Harkness. Or a Highlander. Or one of the others where people randomly come back to life without any help.

NOT related to one of my other stories, which also has a (technically) immortal Sherlock.

Chapter Text

He'd been twenty-five, still young, an idiot, and with a higher opinion of his abilities than, perhaps, he should have displayed so openly.

It had been a murder, so absurdly simple. He'd not known the man, but vaguely remembered brushing past him two or three days ago. Nothing more, nothing less.

It should never have gone so wrong.

The forensics team had been idiots, and had forgotten to pick up a key piece of evidence, and several of the detectives on scene didn't like him - that, at least, was a constant, always had been, nothing new, but it hadn't helped.

Too easy, he heard. No one can be this good.

Lestrade had been taken off the case. 'Conflict of interests', they'd said, and the detective had apologised, said that all he could do was to act as a character witness. Sherlock had scoffed, finding the notion that it would even be necessary frankly absurd.

Mycroft, importantly enough, had been out of the country, supposedly acting in a small role but in fact acting as the British government at peace talks with some foreign nation, and could not put the meetings on hold for even one day - he had arranged for Sherlock to have a good lawyer, but for some reason, it hadn't been enough.

Only now, years later - years, Mycroft, years. What took you so long - was he out, and in his own clothes, and free. He felt older, and not just in age, more cynical if that was possible, and worn.

But never had he been more thrilled to be back in London, back on the street, finally able to do what he had been doing before the interruption... put his mind back to work as adetective, even if the police would probably not allow him to officially be in on their cases any more for at least a while.

Mrs. Hudson had, within the past few months, lost her last tenants to better paid jobs and housing all of their own, and she had invited him to take 221b the moment she had heard that he was out of jail. It had, she'd said, been the least she could do.

So he'd moved in, with nothing at first, but gradually building up worldly possessions bit by agonising bit.

Some things had been simple, like the carpet and the cushions and the mirror. Others had been harder, like the moose and the chairs. That wasn't even going into the trouble he'd had trying to get a knife that he could use to keep his correspondence in check, or the lab equipment. For some reason, there were things that people generally didn't like giving or selling to ex-convicts, even if they had been found innocent, thank you very much.

It was for the same reason that business was getting off onto a rocky start. Cases came in dribs and drabbles, usually boring ones, which he took only because, damn it, but he needed the money, and it was just like starting anew. No one knew him any more, and he needed to rebuild his torn reputation.

That, however, still wasn't enough. He was, he was embarrassed to admit, finding it difficult keeping up with the rent. He even did admit it to someone - Mike Stamford, someone he knew through St. Bart's, one of the few places that would still let him through their doors. Which was good and useful, even if he would have found a way in somehow even if they hadn't.

"Well," Mike had said, a thoughtful look on his face. "You could always try a flatshare?"

Sherlock snorted.

"Seriously?" He rolled his eyes. "Who'd want me as a flatmate?"

Mike had laughed, but left the matter alone.

Later that day, he met John Watson.

Slowly, very, very slowly, the police started to trust him again. After all, he had been found innocent, and they knew that without him they'd be lost. They'd already experienced that once, and they had already started to come back to him like a pleading dog with its tail between its legs, begging for scraps. And he was only too pleased to comply, so long as it gave him interesting cases.

And then-

Moriarty.

He'd heard whispers, while in prison, whispers without a name, without a face, without anything but the notion - if you had a problem you wanted... solved... you went to that one man. He'd sort it all out. Fix it for you.

Finally he'd had a name a few weeks ago, but then- then things got personal, and that was when it became fun. It was a game, it was all one great game between the two of them, and it was all about winning, and this time, he knew the rules far better than he could have before, and was willing to risk anything-

Almost anything.

Lestrade would probably give him an earful for even touching a gun, and Mycroft for the plans, but he hadn't found it within himself to care less about either thing at that moment. He had the spider.

Or... maybe he didn't. But now he had a name and a face. That was more than he'd had before. And both he and John were still alive.

There had been, later on, when Mycroft and his... distinguished guest... had come into his flat uninvited, a momentary sense of brotherly solidarity that he doubted would reappear soon. His supposed client had suggested that he might not be completely trustworthy. Mycroft, risking quite possibly more than his job, had come back with a single sentence.

"He may be my brother, but I believe that it is this exact fact that allows me to say that he is, while entirely infuriating at times, perfectly capable of looking into the matter at hand with the utmost of confidentiality."

Their eyes met, with a certain understanding. For Mycroft's part, the look said at the same time I am trusting you with this and You had better not mess this up.

The smallest of mistakes in his chosen career could, as he had already experienced, cause the most sticky situations. As later events would happily remind him.

And now... there he was again.

"I thought it'd be poetic," stated the simple, rolling voice sitting on the edge of the roof. "Go back to the beginning, you might say."

"I can certainly see why you might think that."

Sherlock started to walk further on.

"It was easy enough to do, you know - almost too easy. Boring. Almost like everyone expected you to do it again, you know!"

Sherlock twitched in distaste. It had certainly been hard enough regaining everything he had lost the first time - this time... it would be hell.

But if that was hell, he'd take Moriarty with him, for better or for worse.

He wasn't an angel. Angels didn't play dirty, and Sherlock had learned from the best.

...

AN: I don't know where the inspiration for this came from, but it struck me this morning and would not leave me alone.

I'm glad it didn't, though, but the first bit with his 'arrest' was hard to write...

I might do more... at some point.

Chapter Text

John closed his eyes, feeling the weight of the gun being held up against him, loading the air with tension and immediate danger.

"You're not Sherlock Holmes." Well, at least this lot had that right. "Tell us where Sherlock Holmes is."

He let out a breath, carefully, slowly.

How did you tell complete strangers, who wouldn't believe you even if you were telling them the truth… the truth?

"I don't know."

It was the full moon, and night had fallen several hours ago. The moon had risen not long after, and who knew where Sherlock was now.

"You lie. You know where he is. You know where he might be. You will tell us."

"I'm telling you the truth! I don't. Know where. He is."

The one behind him tightened his grip on John's arms, making it even more painful than before, and his shoulder makes him grunt when he wants to scream in agony.

"I told you! I don't know where he is! I-!"

He was cut off by a fist to the face.

He was going to die here. Or, at least, go through hours of agony while he waited for sunrise, and for Sherlock to trace him down, and he was going to be late this time, really late, and maybe he would be, too.

"You are lying, John Watson. And we will not let you be free until we have what we desire."

Breathe. Slowly. One, two. In, and out. Calm. He was going to be alone on this one, but he'd have to pull through.

It was only then, by being quiet, and listening, that he realised that there was a now familiar sound coming towards them.

Pad. Pad. Pad. Pause, while the men talked amongst themselves. And then it continued.

It wasn't much of a help when the man who had spoken before started coming back towards him, with a look on his face that John didn't like one bit.

Apparently, neither did the one other member of the group, as moments later, fur was flying and snarls echoed, giving John enough of an adrenaline rush from the sheer instinctual reaction of being so close to a very angry wolf, let alone werewolf, to throw off the person who'd been holding him in that painful arm lock. It helped that they'd also been caught off guard by Sherlock's appearance.

And it was Sherlock. There was no disguising that particular non-breed of wolf, nor, of specific note, the dark blue scarf tied loosely around his neck.

Shots were fired, but he didn't hear any whines of pain, so he had to assume that they had all missed, thank god. Neither of them knew enough about which of the myths were true and which weren't, and neither particularly wanted to experiment in certain cases.

The 'fight' didn't last very long, from thereon in. John ran from the place, before the adrenaline stopped and relief kicked in. He didn't need to check to see that Sherlock was following, as he could hear rapid paws making their way alongside him, and light canine panting. Apart from the obvious, it was almost like normal.

He wasn't too much the worse for wear in the end, Sherlock was, again, late, but they'd ended the night by running, and after they'd stopped running, by laughing. He could see the laughter in Sherlock's eyes.

Nothing had really changed, had it? He got into trouble, and Sherlock was late. Like always.

...

AN: At first, this was going to be someone goading John, telling him that Sherlock wasn't there, he only had a dog. And Sherlock getting understandably pissed.

Then this started to get written, and I don't know where the heck that came from. Seriously.

Chapter Text

Full-humans who lived in a world full of supernatural creatures and beings tended to toughen up fairly quickly. There had, of course, had been no exception for John Watson, who had trained as an army medic, specialising in baseline human injuries, but with a fair bit of knowledge on the somewhat non-human due to people there not always being a choice - on the battlefield, if you were the only medic in the area, then you were that person's only choice.

So while coming back to England with a shot shoulder and a limp in the leg wasn't humiliating - for some, it could have been, since there were so many who'd simply carry on, heedless, never mind the fact that they weren't so human - it was still somewhat embarrassing, not to mention a liability.

If he couldn't move quickly enough- if he couldn't reach far enough- if… There were far too many 'ifs'. And far too many dangers in the world he lived in.

Which was why, he supposed, the idea Mike Stamford had given him of being someone's flatmate had held so much appeal. The theory being, you looked out for each other. Harder to get caught out, with two.

His first sight of Sherlock Holmes had given him three impressions; that he was, apparently, at first sight, human, that he was extremely intelligent to the point of being able to figure out obscure facts simply by looking at his phone, and that he was also extremely rude.

One of these things, as he later found out, was wrong.

...

AN: This started out as an offshoot of the werewolf!Sherlock verse. In that instead of Sherlock just being a werewolf, almost everyone else is a strange being as well – vampires, witches, etc. Then I had another idea, and it's grown from there.

could not help that last paragraph and its reference. Internet cookies for you if you got it!

Chapter Text

Unlike some people, John had always believed in ghosts. He wasn't sure about any kind of afterlife they'd have beyond that, but ghosts? Those, he was perfectly fine with. Possibly, because he could see them.

He couldn't hear them, though, and that was something that frustrated both parties to no end countless times - you couldn't tell someone what to do in order facilitate your moving on if you couldn't tell them what it was that needed doing.

Sherlock was, ironically enough, the most ghost-blind and ghost-deaf person he'd ever met. Strangely, though, he also had the most interesting effect on the dear and departed.

Upon walking into a room, the resident ghosts, should there be any, would generally either calm down or freak out. The ones that calmed down were usually the victims, and the ones who freaked out were usually ones who had died and did not, for whatever reason, want the real method and means and perpetrator to be figured out. They knew about Sherlock Holmes, and apparently word travelled fast among the dead, because it hadn't taken long before they knew that they could get to Sherlock through him, and that had quickly become awkward.

Sherlock, of course, assumed that when John stared off into space it was either because he was lost in thought, or due to a side effect of his - admittedly odd - PTSD. He never even suspected the actual truth.

This, of course, could make cases both extremely easy and very, very complicated. If John was lead to a clue that solved the case which no one would ordinarily have looked for, then all was well, and it could be blamed on a happy coincidence. If the ghosts were trying to make things difficult for him, then he had to keep up with Sherlock while trying - and he did notknow how he succeeded most of the time - to keep their antics to a minimum.

The dead themselves tended to follow him around, and they followed Sherlock just as much. Some for gratitude, some because he was the one thing that tied them to the real world, some because they were always looking for new ways to trip his friend up.

Maybe that was the reason why he'd not been all that affected by the idea of a hell hound. He faced the results of death every day and saw that he had nothing to fear, so why should he be afraid of an ominous dog?

Being trapped in a prison of his own making, the ghosts unable to tell him that everything was all right and only capable of crowding around him - which did not help one bit - was more nerve-racking, to say the least.

The ghosts had always been a part of his life, for better or for worse, and while sometimes it was sad, and they had made him cry when he was younger and when he was not that much younger, at the very fact that they were there, but he was glad that they were, in the end.

And that very fact was, quite possibly, what saved him his sanity.

When Sherlock had fallen from the roof of St. Bart's, he'd seen him fall, and seen him die. He really had.

Or, at least, he thought that he had.

He waited, in the coming months. It was a world-weary wait, and sometimes he felt more like he was waiting for death than for an old friend, and sometimes wondered if the two mixed up a little at times in his mind.

Yet Sherlock did not once appear to him in sarcastic transparency, walking through walls or ranting off bitter deductions that John was no longer able to hear.

Not once did any of that happen. Ever.

For a while, John wondered, and thought that perhaps Sherlock had merely moved on, but he had got rid of the thought upon remembering how much unfinished business the detective had left behind. Even if he wanted to, Sherlock wouldn't be able to move on.

So after a while, John stopped waiting, and started to hope.

Maybe, if Sherlock wasn't following him around, it wasn't because he hadn't arrived yet or because he didn't want to see him again after his death.

Maybe, just maybe, it was because he had not, in fact, died.

John was not sure how this fitted together with what he remembered. He clearly remembered seeing him fall, seeing him lying there, blood everywhere and eyes so glassy, no pulse, no breath.

But hope was a funny thing, and from the first moment the idea had come to him, he wasn't able to get rid of it. And nor, in fact, did he want to.

...

AN: ...waiiiiit, where did THAT come from?

Me? I do not know.

Chapter Text

When John had first arrived home from a late night shop, he had thought that the flat had been burgled. What else was he supposed to think, when the place was a mess, and there were scratches on the furniture and Sherlock's experiments scattered across the floor?

Sherlock himself must, obviously, have been out. There was no other way that someone could have come in, done this, and then got out again, and he'd had no call from Lestrade.

Except, that was when he noticed the large canine creature sprawled out on Sherlock's chair.

Shock overcame him at first - the shopping dropped dramatically to the ground - and then he started to back away step by step. There was a wolf in his flat. And if Sherlock was behind this, then- then- he didn't know what he'd do, but it wouldn't be nice.

As the shock wore off, however, he started to try and think clearer. Phone, did he have his phone on him? Yeah, jacket pocket, and he could use it to call the police, or London Zoo - somethin-

The wolf whined. Like a dog. Was that- did they even do that? Curious, he peered closer, as close as he could get without putting himself in harms' way more than he already was.

Those claws - especially the front ones - looked like they'd just been used, and they fitted the marks in on the furniture perfectly. Dark fur, but with a silky sheen, as though brushed through, but with a few sore looking areas. And the eyes-

John breathed in sharply, trying to ignore what he saw.

The wolf had Sherlock's eyes.

Animals weren't supposed to have eyes so cold and alive a blue as that, and nor were they supposed to be so perceptive. And yet they were full of pain as well, pain and confusion, and Sherlock's scarf was wrapped almost comfortingly around the wolf's paws.

In the end, the shopping didn't get put away - that was another lot of milk gone to waste - and he spent the night in the living room, waiting for Sherlock to get back in and explain the situation or deal with it.

Sherlock didn't come home. At least, not before he'd already fallen asleep waiting for him to arrive.

...

John awoke to the sound of the shower, and instantly made the connection between that and the fact that he'd slept in an odd position on the floor and drew the conclusion that he was going to ache in far too many places before the day was through.

His eyes darted to the chair he'd seen the wolf lying about on, only to find it currently abandoned, scarf gone.

He groaned, knowing that Sherlock was going to be pissed when he found out. He liked that scarf.

Resigning himself to the inevitable and deciding to get it over and done with and out of the way, he heads off to the shower, and arrives just in time to see Sherlock coming out of the bathroom and heading off to his room, a towel around his waist - giving a perfect view of the now perfectly visible scars from that damn dog that he thought had healed up properly.

And, when he came to think about it, Sherlock had looked positively haggard. As though he'd been kept up all night, and not - for once - by a case.

Which was worrying. Because if something had Sherlock that concerned, then it had to be bad. Or personal. Although John wasn't too sure what kind of personal things would affect him that much.

Mrs. Hudson came up a couple of hours later with bacon, for some reason or another, but Sherlock had been watching the stares with a haunted expression long before she'd actually appeared.

The rest of the time, he was eerily silent, with an introspective look on his face. Normally, silences were accepted as part of Sherlock's usual behaviour, but this wasn't a case and he wasn't focusing on... anything much.

"Sherlock?"

Sherlock's head came up sharply, attention suddenly entirely on John himself.

"Er, it's probably something you already figured out, but... your scarf. I think it was taken. Last night. There was-"

"A wolf. Dark fur. On my chair."

Clipped words, but not entirely out of character.

"You knew? You- you knew?"

Sherlock snorted.

"Of course I knew. I was there."

"There? What- what were you thinking?"

The unspoken 'I could have died' hovered in the air between them. But Sherlock didn't say anything else, just turning back to his breakfast.

Assuming that Sherlock would be all right again given a few hours in order to get his head back on track, John went out, met some friends, and bought a second lot of the shopping he'd not got into the fridge the previous night.

This time, though, he came back earlier. It was still dusk, and the moon had not yet risen.

He had put away most of the items - milk had gone in first - when he'd heard a noise coming from the direction of Sherlock's room. Quickly, he shoved in the last few things before hastening to where the noises were coming from. He knew that sound. It was Sherlock - Sherlock in pain.

His door had been locked when he'd tried it. Irritably, he'd tried calling in, but had received a breathy reply, only asking him to stay away, with a little more desperation than he had thought Sherlock capable of.

The problem was, John was a doctor, and right now, Sherlock sounded as though he was in, to be honest, agony. He was doing his best to pretend it wasn't as bad as it was, but John knew him better than that.

"Sherlock, I don't care what kind of sick experiment you think you're doing in there, but if you don't open this door right now, I'm kicking it down!"

No response. And with all he knew, the time it would take to go downstairs and get Mrs. Hudson to give him the master key could well kill Sherlock. So, in went the door.

He was greeted with a sight that he hoped that he would never have to see again. Sherlock, always so full of pride, was hunched over, sheets covering him. But there was something else that was wrong, so very, very wrong. He looked- his body was- was changing...

And Sherlock wasn't taking it too well.

"All right, breathe. I know this probably sounds stupid right now, but breathe. Follow me. One, two..."

Miraculously, it seemed to be working. Or at least, it did until Sherlock threw back his head and tried his best not to scream so loud that the entire street heard.

"John - you have to - get out. It- it's coming..."

"No, Sherlock. I'm going to help you. But I can't help you if you don't let me!"

"What I want," Sherlock somehow managed to pant out, "is for you to get out. You're going to get yourself killed."

"I don't see anything dangerous in here other than your singing ability just a couple of minutes ago."

Sherlock laughed, the first time all day, and John started to smile again too, except that was when Sherlock's body spasmed, and he seemed to be growing smaller, somehow, though larger in other ways.

He was scared. Sherlock, the great detective renowned for how unflappable he was, was scared. John hadn't seen him like this since...

...Since the case with the Baskerville dog.

Sherlock's panting had changed. It sounded different. Different yet familiar.

Wary of what he might see yet overridden by concern and not wanting to find Sherlock dead, he pulled back the covers.

There, eyes taut with recent pain, was the exact same wolf that had been sprawled on Sherlock's chair the previous night.

Within that small moment John's paradigm shifted.

Sherlock hadn't seen the wolf because he'd been watching from afar, but because he'd been there all that time. Sherlock was, and had been, the wolf.

And his scarf was right there on the floor next to Sherlock's bed.

...

AN: Okaaaay. So this turned out darker and longer than I'd expected.

But I realised that I needed more than just 'John came home and realised Sherlock was a wolf'. That wouldn't work. It was too easy. So something had to give. And the scars came back for reasons, I say. reasons.

Woke up this morning and thought I was dead

What a terrible pounding in my head

The world had changed and left me behind

Over and over I wish time would unwind.

Chapter Text

When he was seven years old, Sherlock Holmes had been kidnapped.

He would later tell everyone who asked after him that he had been in no danger at all; the kidnapper hadn't hurt him, had never threatened outright to kill him, and the only weapon - a handgun, non-military - had never had the safety off. The kidnapper had only ever wanted the Holmes family's money, and had merely not cared much for the extra charge of injuring or murdering a child, even if they were a pain in the backside for asking all of those questions.

Maybe that's why he'd found himself locked in a cupboard the moment the kidnapper and he had reached the drop-off point. Just big enough to fit in one small, somewhat skinny boy - he'd not get tall until his growth spurt, thank goodness, and most of that was spent as a gangly youth.

At first, he was fine. Perfectly fine to wait until his family had apprehended the criminal stupid enough to think he could outwit a whole family of Holmes'. Then, he started to worry. It was taking too long. Why was it taking too long? Had something happened? He couldn't tell. He couldn't see anything other than the insides of the small, tight space, and the cupboard was too far away from the meeting point to be able to hear a single thing. He might as well have been floating out in space.

When his father and Mycroft found him hours later - Mycroft, at fourteen years old, had been scared out of his mind worrying about all of the things that could have happened to his baby brother, doing his best to put it all behind a mask that only his parents could truly see through - he was unconscious. Sherlock had started to hyperventilate, and passed out due to lack of usable air. The small gaps that the door made at the corners simply hadn't been enough.

Quickly, they took him outside, where he could breathe again, and he was given a blanket to warm him up.

When he woke up, there was a moment of disorientation where he was still afraid, but this quickly resolved itself - he could see clearly that he was no longer in the cupboard, that he was in fact with his family, so obviously everything had gone well.

He never willingly brought the incident up again, and when he did, he left out his time in the cupboard.

Mycroft never brought it up either, although that was because it was perhaps one of the few times when he had publicly panicked, even though he'd been fourteen and fully justified in doing so.

...

John doesn't know why he'd never thought about it before, but then again it had never come up before.

Sherlock was all right in taxis, and he found the small spaces that the flat allowed perfectly fine. He would even occasionally secrete himself away someplace or other and he'd come out looking normal.

In fact, it was only after the whole Baskerville incident that he realised that there was anything wrong at all.

They'd been arguing over the whole 'let's experiment on John and not ask John first' thing. It had all just blown up again several days later, and John had, in the end, said something that he only afterwards realised was the wrong thing to say.

He had, not so politely, suggested that if the idea of being drugged with fear and forced into hiding in a cage was so inconsequential, Sherlock could maybe do it himself next time?

Sherlock had stopped what he was doing, and hadn't gone back to normal for several minutes. When he did, he turned to look at John with an indescribable expression on his face.

"I'd thank you not to bring up that idea again," he said, and then proceeded to ignore his - now curious - flatmate.

From then on, John paid more attention. Sherlock was fine in taxis because he spent nearly all of the time looking out of the car windows, or talking with whoever else was in there with him - namely, most of the time, John himself. The flat was perfectly normal for him because he could associate it with 'home', and he could go out whenever he felt too cramped. And he started to realise that Sherlock never did, not really, come out looking normal when he'd hidden himself away in those small spaces. There was almost always something off - his breathing would hitch, or he'd snap at whoever was in the general vicinity with more vitriol than normal.

It didn't seem to impede on his day-to-day life, though, so John simply kept an eye on Sherlock, and said nothing.

...

AN: I wanted to do three parts to this - kid!Lock kidnapped, John figuring things out, and then a moment where Sherlock and John are trapped somewhere. But I can't think of the third one...

Might write it later. When inspired. But if you want to fill this, pretty please do?

Only thing I want is no slash. Close friendship only.

Chapter Text

After only a few months, John is used to patching up Sherlock like an old rag doll that kept being torn. It's a bit more complex than that, really, human beings generally were, but he found the analogy rather apt.

Sherlock would come back home after a long night out on a case, and John would find him about ready to collapse for one reason or another. Without needing to be asked, the healer would take to his flatmate and friend as though he were just another patient, albeit one that tended to grouse most of the time about what was going on in John's head.

And then, the next day he'd be perfectly fine, right as rain, as though he hadn't almost died the previous night. John would be more annoyed with him than normal, and Sherlock would try harder to be less annoying than normal, but apart from that, life would go on as though nothing had happened.

It becomes similar to a routine, and it happens even when they're out - if there's another medic nearby, Sherlock will go to John first. First they'll deal with the worst of it - "Sherlock, don't move. No, I know it's going to hurt, so don't be a baby and deal with it. You could have ducked." - and then there'll be the minor things, the cuts and scratches and bruises that are bad enough to make life miserable for several days, and John knows Sherlock would complain endlessly if he just left them as they were - "Can I move now?" "Yes, but only if you don't jolt me while I'm working on that hand of yours." "How long is it going to take, then?" "Don't be impatient. It's almost done, see?" "…I'm bored.".

It became a scene to watch, if it happened - so long as John himself wasn't injured, it was more of a comic show than something to be worried about if Sherlock got hurt, to see him acting like such a child.

And then Sherlock fell, and there wasn't any time - let me pass, I'm his friend, I'm his healer - and when he was near nothing was working, it wasn't supposed to be like this, there had to be enough time, and Sherlock wasn't moving. He always, always fidgeted and moved whenever he wasn't supposed to, twitched at just the wrong time, drummed his fingers as John's hand, glowing pale green, lit up and healed his broken lung or bust arm.

But he wasn't this time. This time, he just lay there, so limp, unresponsive, no life, not working. It wasn't working.

There was a word for when a healer could not heal their patient. One small, very specific word, but John didn't want to admit to it. Not just yet. He'd been able to do it all of those other times, so why not now? Why not?

One more miracle… that was all he needed… just one… one more miracle.

...

AN: Inspired by rp involving that John, and talk of how he's used to being able to patch up a badly hurt Sherlock.  And then came the consequences of that...

Chapter Text

As John left the house - the crime scene, really - in Brixton, he looked around. Out after dark, and... oh, great. Just his luck it'd be a full moon as well.

Sighing and now expecting to see werewolves running amok in the streets on his way home and unable to find his flatmate, he made his way to that policewoman, Sally, the one Sherlock had introduced him to earlier.

"Looking for Sherlock Holmes, are you?"

"Er, yeah, actually-"

"Don't bother. He already winged it. Left a while back."

"Oh. Right." Well, there went that idea. He started to walk off, before turning back around, resigned. "Look, d'you know where I could find a-"

"What?"

"My leg." He gestured, and her eyes followed the movement before she took on a look of realisation, and told him both where he was, and where the nearest cab stop was. He thanked her, and started readying himself to walk away in that direction, before being stopped, this time as she'd called over to him.

"Look, if I were you? I'd be more cautious around Sherlock Holmes. You do know he doesn't do this for the money, right? He gets off on it. There's something plain inhuman about him, something of the predator. And you know, at some point the hunt's just not going to be enough, for him. There'll be a body, all right. and it'll be Sherlock Holmes who put it there."

John left, and this time, he got as far as the main road...

...and then the phones began to ring.

...

The car ride hadn't scared him, much as he was sure it had been meant to. He might only be human, but the woman sitting next to him seemed human enough too - even if she did seem to have some sort of thing for that phone of hers that suggested something more than just baseline human. He'd bet anything the driver wasn't fully normal, either - but neither of them intimidated him.

When the car stopped and he got out, at first he didn't realise the enormity of the situation. It could have been anyone, anything... at all.

And then he saw the form of the one who was standing tall in the middle of the empty warehouse, and his mouth thinned into a sharp, troubled line. This was going to be interesting.

The umbrella was, technically, not needed to counter-balance him - the tail did that for him. Immediately noticeable after that were the horns on his head, sweeping back over the skull with a smooth, slight curl at the tip, a ruddy red in colour.

The rest of him was mostly human, if you ignored the way his hands ended in claws. He was dressed in an immaculate suit, feet in expensive shoes and a languid expression on his face.

A Dragon. The one who'd kidnapped him straight off the street was a ruddy Dragon. He should have known...

Dragons, in particular, were the only race that could partially transform between one form and the other; demons could mask their true identities, and other were-creatures could go between, sometimes at times other than the full moon. But the Dragons were the only kind who could simply not be or appear to be what they really, truly were.

But aside from all of that, Dragons were, traditionally, almost always in positions of power. Either through their status as being a part of the great race, their bloodline, or their connections, although rarely simple ability in a certain area would suffice.

All of which pointed towards the idea that the man in front of him was very, very influential, and at the same time, very rude as well.

"You know, I've got a phone. Wonders of modern technology - not to say that what you did wasn't clever. But you could just phone me. On my phone."

"When one is attempting to avoid the attention of Sherlock Holmes one learns to be discreet. Hence this place. Your leg must be hurting you - do sit down."

Sherlock- Sherlock Holmes? That was the one he'd agreed to flat share with. There couldn't be another man with that kind of name, right?

But why would this kind of man- Dragon- man- person - want to know about Sherlock?

...

One suitcase and a text to a murderer later, and the two of them came back to find the flat occupied by police – specifically, Lestrade's police.

Sally was there, as were quite a few others that John had never seen before. Finding all manner of things he wasn't sure were safe in an all-human household.

But he really hadn't expected the idea that Sherlock could possibly have- He just didn't seem the type. But then, with Sherlock, or what John knew of him so far, who knew?

"Shut up," Sherlock was saying, and he was pretty sure it was directed at him. This time, he did. Then the man turned to Lestrade. "I'm not your sniffer dog!"

"No," Lestrade said, "Anderson's my sniffer dog."

John had seen Anderson earlier that night. He couldn't see him there in the flat right now...

Unless... oh, no. It couldn't be.

"What? Anderson? What's he doing on a drugs bust?"

That wasn't a dog. It was a wolf. And it wasn't even just that, either – it, or rather, he, was a werewolf.

"He volunteered. They all did. And strictly speaking, they're not on the drugs squad, but they're very keen."

Sherlock breathed in with a sharp his that sent Anderson – and now that John knew that it was him, he would be keeping a wide berth from the forensic – whimpering back a step.

Lestrade narrowed his eyes slightly in a moment that John didn't get and almost missed, but the moment was cut short by Sally wandering in asking about why there were eyeballs in the microwave.

...

AN: Funny thing is? I did the middle bit first, then the top, then the bottom. These, of course, should make the reasoning behind the AU title rather... obvious, really.

And I'd had the Anderson thing planned out ever since first creating the AU as something where everyone was weird, not just the version of Sherlock who turns into a werewolf following Hounds!

Chapter Text

Error. Error. Systems Malfunction.

The unit's eyes whirred between wide- and close-range viewing. His optical receptors saw nothing new, still aimed in the same direction as they had been when he had just been booted up. He identified as 'male' despite being ninety-five percent mechanical, as that was the gender of the 'body' his central processing unit had been downloaded into.

The rest of the batch were spread out in military lines to his front, back and sides. All of them wore the same nondescript t-shirt and trousers, the shirt being mainly for the use of the users, as their individual batch number was on each individual's clothing, the same 'expression' or lack of, on each and every one of them. He did not have to have seen their faces to know. His own face was similar. Having not received a mission, the personality core was still blank.

Mission parameters could be anything from a simple human integration experiment to the assassination of an individual or individuals unknown with the possibility of final termination should the unit be discovered as non-human. Before a unit's mission was decided and the personality core written onto, emotions were not necessary. Nor was curiosity.

This was why he powered his eyes down as his auditory receptors picked up the sound of the door handle of the storage facility turning, and then the following three sets of footsteps as one more individual than usual made his way into the area along with, if he was not incorrect, the chief coordinator and the head scientist and technician.

"And these are the 'units', then?"

A pause. The tone used had been what could be called 'emotionless', however the unit questioned that. Humans were full of emotions. The theory therefore had to be that whichever emotion was being run currently, was being hidden. The emphasis on the term 'units' was also of interest, and he filed it away for later perusal.

"You'd be right. This is the 'S' batch - they're all different, as you can see. That's due to using varying heights and weights rather than one single template. And of course, then there are the skin grafts..."

That would be the chief coordinator. Mr. Langdon Farefellow. The scientist, Dr. Ezekiel Kristoff, rarely said a word when not coerced. The few words he did speak were never about anything other than his work. The units themselves.

"Hm. Yes, they do look rather lifelike, don't they?"

Tap. Tap. Step. The new man had something with him, that clicked against the floor.

"That would be the skin grafts - well, when I say skin... It's really so much more than that." The chief coordinator could always be trusted to find something to be proud about with the work he'd done. And very rarely was there a chance to show this to another living being. "DNA taken from a living human being, while they were still alive. Yet for whatever reason - murder, accident or natural causes - they aren't any more. None of the faces you see here should be recognised as machines, because the faces themselves really aren't! Or the rest of their skin - go on, touch one!"

There was a slight pause, and then more echoing footsteps.

"I think I'd rather not, thank you all the same."

An odd tone, there. One he'd never heard before.

"Oh, well you can take my word for it - they really do feel indistinguishable from your average, every day human being like you or me! You can't even feel the mechanics underneath the skin layer, due to the fine gel that sits in place underneath - took us ages to develop that, but now we've cracked it. "

"I'm sure it was well worth the effort, Mr. Farefellow.

"It was indeed!"

The footsteps were now echoing in his direction. Although not quite within a hundred yards.

"And what about the rest of their... functions?"

The 'emotionless' tone was back. Disguising either the same set of 'feelings' or a different one.

"Completely logical, but they're programmed to blend in. To integrate into human society - this means they can eat, drink, sleep... there's a way for them to achieve everything. It's simply remarkable, don't you think?"

"Indeed."

A creak of leather. A rustle of fabric. The third man was leaning back on his heels, before he started to walk forward again. Close, now.

"Very well, then. Show me."

"They aren't programmed yet..."

Possibly the first sign of the man's wavering that evening. The third man was confident. Not desperate. Not greedy. Not swayed by their arguments.

Mr. Farefellow would have a challenge on his hands.

"Yet surely they can talk?"

"What? Oh, yes! All of them can talk. Not much, but they can. There are always two options available to them - imitate the speech of a normal human being using their approximation of a voice box, situated in the throat, or digitally recreate the words they want to say using..."

"Yes, yes." Impatience. "I think I understand the theory. What I would like would be to see it in practice. If you don't mind."

"Of- of course." And now, one of them would be called upon. "Unit S-516. Username Farefellow, allow boot-up and normal running procedures."

[User: Langdon Farefellow {request=boot-up and RUN.} Pre-Existing Command Present

Replace Pre-Existing Command?

[QUERY] Command = Leave Unaltered.]

"Unit 516, listen to and answer the new user."

[User: Langdon Farefellow {Command=Obey} Command Accepted]

There was a pause. The unit waited, patiently, for it to end and for his first command to be given.

"Very well, then. State your name."

"They-"

"I am called Unit S-516. I do not have a name. We are named once we are on our mission. Not before."

Something must have created a change in temperament in the third man, the new user, as his auditory receptors picked up a hitch in the man's breathing completely unrelated to any health problems he may or may not have. The logical answer was that this was an emotional response to a cause unknown.

"Can they open their eyes yet? Or is that also something that is given to them upon their first mission?"

"Oh, no. Their eyes are complete. Unit S-516, open your eyes."

He did so.

It took a moment for him to adjust to his surroundings, the human users in front of him a change from the constant sight of the others in the batch. Langdon Farefellow was standing in front and to one side of him, and the scientist had put himself at the end of the line. But the one who had his attention completely was the one who was standing directly in front of him.

The third man was not quite of the height that his body had given him, but did carry himself with a superior air. The object that had previously tapped against the floor was an umbrella. He had streamlined features and a sharp nose. His body suggested a bad diet and a lack of exercise, although his eyes-

The third man's mouth opened just wide enough for him to whisper something under his breath. One word. No more. No less. Obscure enough not to be understood immediately. Low enough not to have been heard by human hearing.

Sherlock.

Unit S-516 did not know where the word came from, or if it could be something he had simply not encountered yet. It was possible.

"My name," said the third man, drawing himself up to his full height and bringing the umbrella in front of him, "is Mycroft Holmes. Do you recognise that name?"

This time, Langdon Farefellow did not attempt to interrupt before the unit had started to speak.

"Username noted and stored. Nothing of the world is known until we are given a mission. Once the mission is complete, we are wiped and made ready for the next. Answer - recognition unsuccessful."

"I see," Mycroft Holmes said, deep in thought, as he stepped away. "I... see."

...

Walking out of the building, factory and all, Mycroft shuddered. Say what you like about his cold exterior, but even he was able to be chilled by the countless faces simply staring blankly into space, many with their eyes closed, standing stock still all in their rows.

One of them still yet bothered him, though, even well after he'd started the drive home, his driver at the wheel and his PA sat on the other side of the car's passenger seating.

"Not what you wanted to hear?"

"Hm? What? Oh, no, in fact. They were doing remarkably well. Almost too well, I'd say."

"Hm. I think I see. Spring cleaning?"

It was nowhere near spring, being still only halfway through February. But that wasn't what she'd meant. He nodded, wearily.

"They looked like human beings without souls. I can't think of a better way to describe them. Aside from one."

"Oh?"

"Quite. Alert the cleaners to spare 'Unit S-516'. I have my suspicions..."

His assistant turned to face him, a question filled with worried curiosity written on her face, but said nothing to that effect.

"Understood, sir."

They spent the rest of the car ride in silence, aside from the tapping of his assistant's phone.

 

...

AN: I've been playing this character for a bit in roleplay over on livejournal, but this is the first actual fic of him that I've written up. I'm hoping to explore a lot of his backstory before going into the already-travelled areas of canon, although those will be vastly different, when told from such a different viewpoint.

Chapter Text

Sherlock glanced over at the man dressed in Naval red, who had just shot an officer - granted, a minor officer, but an officer all the same - for him, Sherlock Holmes, Pirate.

The pistol was no longer smoking, but it might as well have been, for this would kill the man as surely as if the hangman’s noose was already around his neck if anyone unfriendly to their cause saw the evidence.

“So,” said Sherlock, mouth quirking up in a smirk, “I suppose that means you’ll be coming with me, Dr. Watson.”

...

AN: Done for a three-sentence fic prompt over on tumblr.  No relation to the Piratelock story elsewhere in this collection.

Chapter Text

“Sherlock, I don’t like this,” said the boy in the knitted sweater.

Sherlock rolled his eyes, and kept pushing through the brambles, ignoring any scratches - the best fun was after all not had without a few scratches, even though mummy would scold him for tearing his clothes, and said, “You’re boring.  I don’t see why I let you come with me if you’re boring.”

John scowled.  “Because I’m the only person who’ll choose to any more.”

Sherlock paused for a moment.

“Oh.  Yeah.”

They continued on for a bit, until suddenly there weren’t any brambles, and it was a lot softer underfoot, and suddenly, they could see someone’s feet.

With a sinking feeling, the two boys looked up, and up, until they saw a face.  A very familiar face.

“Mummy!”

Sherlock, John realised, sounded for once very dismayed.

Sherlock’s mother, in a beautiful dress and pointy ears just like Sherlock’s, was tutting.  Likely about Sherlock’s clothes, maybe about the fact that she’d brought John with him, but whatever it was, she always made John nervous.

...

AN: Another fic done for a three-sentence prompt, but this one couldn't be contained by three sentences.

I may end up doing more with half-fae Sherlock.  And the idea of a half-fae KIDLOCK is ADORABLE.

Chapter Text

Sherlock strode through the doors of the laboratory with the ease of a long familiarity. Not, perhaps, of this place specifically, but of the general idea of such places where research was conducted and discoveries made.

It was with a cold, analytical eye that he looked around, making his own observations on the scientists involved and their very workspace.

It wasn't a 'happy' feeling of familiarity that was running through his mind, attaching feelings to the known, but it wasn't tinged with sadness, regret, or fear, either. Perhaps 'nostalgia' was a word ambiguous enough, yet even that did not seem to fit.

After all, regardless of whether or not John knew, regardless of how he actually thought of himself nowadays, his claim to humanity would always be marred by the fact that he was made of wires and circuits, created on a table not too far different from the pristine white surfaces that he saw around him now.

Perhaps the notion of 'coming home' would suffice to explain the emotions. He had encountered enough cases to know full well that 'home' was not always a place one actually wish to go back to.

...

AN: Short piece that was really only written to go with a gif on Tumblr, where Sherlock's striding straight into the lab in Baskerville. It made me think of this, and couldn't help but write it out.

Click here for the Tumblr post with the gif.  It story makes more sense that way.

Chapter Text

Time stood still. Everything else rushed by, or slowed down so far that he could touch the raindrops and watch them shatter. But everything else was nothing compared to the fact that the only other person moving around like all of this was normal was dressed in a familiar coat, that hair, that face, his friend. The world felt unreal, and this made it only ever more so - he'd seen the man die, and yet there was not a scratch on him where there should be if he had.

They met in the middle of the road, cars blurred, having been stopped mid-motion, no danger at all in where they stood, and surveyed each other with a critical eye - Sherlock more than he, and something seemed like that should catch his interest for some reason, but the dreamlike state of things made him put it to one side, forgotten. Instead, he took the necessary steps, and reached out with his arms, holding the detective there as the friend he hadn't seen for so long, the same way he'd have held Harry if he'd thought he'd lost her. Like he'd never let go, because letting go meant losing again, and he couldn't risk that.

He could feel Sherlock not know precisely what to do at first, and he smiled - such a Sherlock thing, that - but eventually, the detective, his friend, returned the embrace. It was different, but at the same time, the same, along with the hesitance there being that feeling of impending loss.

He stepped away - still touching, though, he had to be sure that this was real, had to be real - to see Sherlock smiling, and there was something sad there.

"John," he was saying, "John." Clear, his voice was, like it was right next to his ear. "John," yet so far away, so very, very far away. "You have to wake up now, John."

And wake up he did, imagining for one moment that he could still see that coat billowing in the wind as the ghost of his friend walked away as he sat up from the pavement, head spinning.

...

AN: Written in Tumblr as a response to a picture I saw. Post-Reichenbach, John is walking down the road when time stands still. He thinks he's seen Sherlock, and who knows? But then he wakes up, and it turns out he's been knocked over, or that's what they're saying happened...

Link is fic in context with the art that inspired it. Go look. It may make more sense that way.  Plus, pretty art!

Chapter Text

John had grown up quite a bit since wandering the woods with his half-fae friend, had grown up and grown taller and less of a child.  Years had passed each time he left the human world for that of the faeries, though, and by now most of the people who he had grown up with had moved on, or passed away, while he was still a young man, older than he was but younger than he should be.

When he was eighteen he became involved in the human-fae war, a war to turn rivers red with blood and slaughter hope.  It had lasted for a hundred years, and his mates had wondered - how, they had asked, had he been able to stay so young-looking, while they grew old?  Some had friends in the fae, and some of those even defected, and some humans did the same, going over to the other side. 

John himself never fought for or against anyone.  He was merely there, and healed, and lived, knowing that he was changed, for better or for worse, by his many years in the faerie lands.

He was still human.  He would tell anyone and everyone he met who asked, that he was human.  But he was no longer mortal.  Not quite the same as they were.

By the time the war was over, at least for him, he was close enough to a hundred years older, but only looked as if he had aged by five.  Instead of one hundred and eighteen, he instead appeared only twenty-three.

He had suffered an honourable discharge, via an iron gunshot to the shoulder that had hurt like hell when it was in, and had given him a fever while they’d taken it out.  Apparently, he’d been in and out of consciousness for several weeks afterwards.

And so now he was back in England, home of one of the Faerie Crowns, and trying to find a place for himself once more when his magicks were sketchy and, though his arm had healed over perfectly well if over a long time once the iron was out, his leg had started to act up for no apparent reason.

He had found himself a small place to rent, but after the Fae had invaded and taken him and turned him near enough into a changeling child, and after the war had shown him how much and how far he had changed, after he’d heard the songs of battle when no one was singing and the blood rush in his ears-

There was nothing here for him any more.

He was, however, a soldier.  He would live on, in the hope that one day he would be needed, because he needed to be needed.  To live and to serve, in duty whether healthy or sick.  He would be there.

But right now there was nothing for him to do; no fae to come and take him away, no war as he pounded the streets with three legs in the afternoon, well before the evening of his life.

He was beginning to lose hope.  If only he would lose his fight as well.

Yet there were some things that could not be taken away, and he gazed, listlessly, from his seat in the Wisteria Gardens, remembering faerie rings and women with pointed ears who made him nervous, and a little boy who seemed his age yet could have been ancient, whose face and name he could not, by now, quite remember.

 ...

AN: A continuation of the half-Fae Sherlock snippet I created for someone's three sentence fic on Tumblr, this probably will go further, but I didn't entirely expect a full AU out of it!