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06 August 2010 @ 10:29 am
Coincidence, Sherlock/John (PG-13)  
Title: Coincidence
Author: valderys
Pairing: Sherlock/John
Rating: PG-13
Word Count: 1,417
Notes: Ficlets are falling out of me :) I should be doing my kink_bingo, but instead I'm writing Sherlock!
Summary: It's an accident that Sherlock ever met John at all - so he can't be important. Can he?


John Watson worried too much. Given his background, and his experiences, Sherlock decided that was to be expected, of course. A man returned from any kind of killing zone was inevitably expected to have things on his mind. However, these days John had stopped worrying about his own issues and begun worrying about their problems, which Sherlock for one considered to be an improvement. Completely unnecessary, of course, because Sherlock always had everything in hand, but it was still, in all probability, much better for John's mental state than dwelling on the past. Sherlock despised people who wallowed in their own emotions, but he rather liked the way that John managed it. No emotional displays, no whining or moaning. He buttoned himself down rather, forced it all smaller and smaller, in the hopes that it would disappear. Sherlock had read a lot of current psychological thinking and knew that it wasn't the approved methodology, but he had to admit that on a personal level he much preferred it.

His judgement of John's emotional state was all theoretical, of course. Sherlock preferred to deal in facts, not the wooliness of emotions, but sometimes it was inevitable. It would be wrong to say that Sherlock himself didn't have emotions, an accusation that had been thrown at him from time to time by Donovan, among a myriad others. He had plenty of emotions. It was just that he was supremely uninterested in other people's, except as they pertained to his work, and even then, only barely. John suited him therefore. Sherlock would consider it lucky that they had met, except that he didn't believe in luck. It was merely a coincidence, and since he had been introduced to John just as he needed a flatmate, it couldn't have been an unlikely one. Sherlock therefore believed that there were many other men in London, in the world even, who also had the correct combination of vulnerabilities, and strengths, to coincide with his own.

***


When John introduced him to Harry, it wasn't a coincidence either. John thought it was, of course, because he had been careful - one might almost say pathologically so - to ensure that they would not meet. But since Harry was John's sister, and Sherlock was his flatmate, and considering in many sibling relationships there was a desire to socialise beyond the Christmas and birthday card rituals, it would have surprised Sherlock far more if one had not encountered the other at some point.

She was solid and blond like John, which given the genetics involved was a 75% likelihood, since Sherlock had once glimpsed a photograph of John's parents for approximately 3.2 seconds. The picture had been taken in 1977 [Queen's Silver Jubilee] and allowed for his judgement on her hair colour, among several other things, such as the cause of death for John's father. He had opened his mouth to tell John that at the time, and then shut it again, as John put the photograph away rather hurriedly. Sherlock had suddenly realised that John didn't know he was standing in the doorway to his room, and while such an interruption was not an intrusion, and Sherlock could barely tell the difference anyway, nevertheless there was something about John in that moment that meant Sherlock moved silently and swiftly away.

He felt like that in the presence of Harry too. Sherlock might have been disconcerted, if that was the kind of emotion he gave in to regularly. She had an unusually penetrating stare, or perhaps it was merely that she was John's sister. Everyone there was uncomfortable. John kept licking his lips - something he only did when he was nervous. Sherlock kept talking - although he would have done that anyway - but hoped he had some modicum of understanding of his own state of being. Harry held herself too stiffly, and despite the drinking problem, tremens had yet to set in so completely, which meant she was nervous too.

She solved the problem by going onto the attack. Sherlock was aware that John was in an extreme state of embarrassment, but he himself quite enjoyed it. No, he didn't have a proper job. Yes, he knew John was just out of the army. No, he didn't intend to have John support him. No, he didn't know what his intentions were towards John. Sherlock wanted to laugh, and then did, just a small crack, because it was funny. He wasn't going to marry John. It was coincidence that they were even living together. Sherlock happened to be gay but the observations that he'd made [Anthea, Sarah, Pauline, Kathy] indicated that John had a reasonably healthy hetrosexual libido. Harry appeared to be projecting. Given the shambles that her life was currently in, Sherlock supposed that might be considered normal. But it wasn't his problem in any event.

He did tease John about it afterwards however. He hadn't had so much fun in years.

***


It was coincidence too that meant Sherlock now knew the taste of the inside of John's left elbow. It was an inevitable part of such explorations, of finding out that a touch to the hollow of his hip and thigh made John moan, that a hand there, and a tongue there made John fall apart. It was happenstance that John was in Sherlock's bed [so much closer to the front door] and actually not improbable at all given that Sherlock was gay and John apparently had a healthy libido, and yet kept failing to attract any of the women in his life. He was never going to admit it, but Sherlock had been wrong about certain aspects of John's hetrosexuality, but he couldn't fault the method of discovery.

But given that it was coincidence, Sherlock wasn't going to read anything more into such events either. It was circumstance and convenience, nothing more. Healthy libidos and proximity. The small snuffling sounds John made when wrapped around Sherlock in the middle of the night were just that - sounds. Meaningless noises. When Sherlock heard them [he always had been a light sleeper] he wanted to swallow, as though his throat was dry, but that fact meant nothing. It was another coincidence. The dryness of the cold air. On a winter's night, curling up to the nearest source of warmth was only instinct, nothing more.

***


It wasn't a coincidence however, that the night Sherlock punched his brother Mycroft in the face was the same night that John Watson lay unconscious in St Bart's on life support. It wasn't carefully planned or thought about, but it wasn't accidental either. Mycroft did not fall onto Sherlock's fist, for example, but it did come as somewhat of a surprise to him. He had underestimated Sherlock's overreaction to his jibe. And that was rare enough that he didn't even begrudge the bruise.

Harry was there and witnessed the punch. She held back Anthea - just - when she went to intervene. Harry was lucky it was only one blow because Anthea knew a great deal about causing pain to the human body, and might have educated Harry if she'd felt Mycroft was in any real danger. Harry's eyes were huge in her face, and there were tear tracks on her cheeks, but she'd smiled at Sherlock, she'd grinned with her whole body somehow, like she meant it. Sherlock had rather thought they'd bonded then. Random violence did seem to be Harry's metier [although usually drunken], and Sherlock wasn't at all sure he should be pleased in the sharing of it. But he was.

John pulled through, by the way. So eventually Sherlock was content to start talking to Mycroft again, or at least sniping, which was their usual form of communication. And he also found he was prepared to open up the possibility that what he and John had was... More important than he'd thought. Not a random collision of warm body parts and occasionally minds. A unique and destined partnership, not that Sherlock accepted the existence of destiny.

Sherlock had once believed that there were many other men in London, in the world even, who had the correct combination of vulnerabilities, and strengths, to coincide with his own. But when John was lying in Intensive Care and Mycroft had offered to do such an analysis [for the next such man] Sherlock had punched him. It meant something Sherlock knew, and it certainly wasn't coincidence.

It was to do with emotions. They were such messy things.
 
 
 
 Communicatorcommunicator on August 6th, 2010 09:49 am (UTC)
That's really good, very controlled
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on August 7th, 2010 10:42 pm (UTC)
Thanks hon - he has a difficult voice to get right. John is much easier...
f_flowersf_flowers on August 6th, 2010 09:55 am (UTC)
THIS.

I love it SO MUCH, I love Sherlock's denial and Mycroft's bruise and Harry restraining Anthea and how perfect the voices are. And because I can't write and eloquent review for anything I'm going to stop talking and just FLAIL WITH JOY.
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on August 7th, 2010 10:48 pm (UTC)
Yay! Such lovely things you say! It makes me very happy! Anthea seems so obvious - why else would Mycroft possibly need her? You don't need your PA with you at all times, after all? But bodyguard? Oh yes. Harry had a lucky escape! :)
Gemmaar_gemlad on August 6th, 2010 09:56 am (UTC)
Heh - I'm glad the fics keep falling out :)
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on August 7th, 2010 10:49 pm (UTC)
Oh god - there's already a third that will be ready to go in a day or two...
Mariana O'Connor: Hotchmariana_oconnor on August 6th, 2010 09:56 am (UTC)
Lovely... I really liked your Assessment of Harry, (and Anthea is so a secret ninja ^_^).

Sherlock's analysis was well in character and his denial was understandable, even with his skill at deduction.
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on August 9th, 2010 10:32 am (UTC)
Anthea must so be a secret ninja - you don't take your PA everywhere you go these days, there's no need! And I want to see Harry in the show - I wonder if we'll get to see her in the future? I do hope so. Oh dear - we've got to wait at least a year now. Woe.
RubyChan05rubychan05 on August 6th, 2010 10:10 am (UTC)
Beautiful fic, and very in character. I loved Sherlock's whole thing about coincidence (and his re-evaluation of John's heterosexuality!)
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on August 9th, 2010 10:33 am (UTC)
Even Sherlock has some blind spots when it comes to himself - and indeed, Watson - although less so :) Thank you!
(Deleted comment)
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on August 9th, 2010 10:34 am (UTC)
Cheers m'dear! Glad you liked! It was hard though - Sherlock's head is a difficult and strange place :)
FayJaypandarus on August 6th, 2010 11:04 am (UTC)
Oh, now I LIKED that. Very good! Especially Harry - yay for including Harry!
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on August 9th, 2010 10:35 am (UTC)
I wanted to see Harry! Dammit. Now it's going to be at least a year. *sobs*
prochytesprochytes on August 6th, 2010 12:39 pm (UTC)
This was very nice. I love how the elaborate, periodic sentence structure conveys the intricacies of Sherlock's mind. The incidental touches are lovely too: what Sherlock can derive from a photograph glimpsed for approximately 3.2 seconds; and the restrained, chilling, and very plausible glance at Anthea's real function (Anthea knew a great deal about causing pain to the human body, and might have educated Harry if she'd felt Mycroft was in any real danger).

Typo watch:

hetrosexual

was lay unconscious

occaisionally
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on August 9th, 2010 10:47 am (UTC)
Done! Edited! Cor, at this rate I should send things to you for a quick beta before I post! :) I'm glad you liked more genreally, although I wasn't entirely happy with my Sherlock voice - it's incredibly difficult to write someone that much cleverer than me!
prochytes: Clever Toshprochytes on August 9th, 2010 06:26 pm (UTC)
it's incredibly difficult to write someone that much cleverer than me!

I sympathize entirely. I like writing about smart people, but Toshiko (who is cleverer than me, at least where her work is concerned, but not, I think, inconceivably cleverer) is about the smartest I am comfortable with handling. I tend to fight shy of writing, e.g., The Doctor, or Bruce Wayne (the comics version, anyway; the Nolan!verse version is not as smart as that).
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on August 10th, 2010 10:55 am (UTC)
Isn't that funny? I can write the Doctor reasonably well, although I have done only once - but it's not trepidation that's keeping me from it, more a lack of fannish drive in that direction. But the Doctor is surprisingly emotional and I think that's why Sherlock is more difficult for me to write, and the Doctor less so - I understand him emotionally a lot more, so the cleverness is more intimidating in Sherlock, than in the Doctor. Not that I've written it yet but Moriarty would be easier, I think, for the same reason (if that was actually Moriarty, which I have my doubts about... :)
prochytes: Clever Toshprochytes on August 10th, 2010 12:32 pm (UTC)
if that was actually Moriarty, which I have my doubts about... :)

Same here. A thought that struck me: all the students at Carl Powers's school checked out, but did anyone think to look at the teachers? It isn't just other kids that obnoxious schoolboys laugh at.

I would start with the Maths Department...
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on August 10th, 2010 01:56 pm (UTC)
For a man who is so paranoid about not revealing himself to his clients, would Moriarty suddenly start prancing about in a pool in front of an estimated eight winesses? (Given the numbers of wavery red dots and John and Sherlock themselves) It seem rather unlikely to me.

And yes, I like the school-teaching idea - 'professor' used to be his classic title, but it doesn't have to be at a university, or it could be a nickname. Although I am unsure it would be so easy to narrow down, so I'm still wary of the directness of this link to Carl Powers...
Pollyjane_somebody on August 19th, 2010 12:30 pm (UTC)
I think there's a 'hetrosexual' that got away still, and right near the end there are some square brackets - were you going to edit something?

I *loved* this! The comment above about the elaborate sentence structure conveys exactly what I wanted to say but put more elegantly than I could, so I'll just say "word". I love the way it all wraps round back to the beginning but with everything changed :-)
Mushroommushroom18 on August 6th, 2010 02:18 pm (UTC)
This was very well-done and IC. Good job!
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on August 9th, 2010 10:36 am (UTC)
Thank you! Particularly as getting into Sherlock's head is tricky and difficult, and I wasn't sure I'd managed it 100% sucessfully...
Our Drama Queenourdramaqueen on August 7th, 2010 02:35 am (UTC)
You have Sherlock's voice down really well. *is suitably impressed*

You'd think this story would help me overcome my impatience for Sunday night to come... but it only makes me crave morerightnow!
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on August 9th, 2010 10:39 am (UTC)
It was good wasn't it? I really liked this episode - thank goodness for that. I really wasn't sure Mark Gatiss would pull it off, but he really did! And now we have to wait at least a year - woe.
Our Drama Queenourdramaqueen on August 9th, 2010 11:21 am (UTC)
omg I know!!! *flailtwitchflail*

This episode was SO MUCH better than the second one! And the end actually had me shout at the TV, something I don't do that often!

And I must say, Benedict Cumberbatch is absolutely delectable... I believe I'll have some catching up to do. Oh my.

Edited at 2010-08-09 11:22 am (UTC)
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on August 10th, 2010 10:49 am (UTC)
It was like the second one didn't even have an editor who could make it fit in a bit better - I hope they don't employ that particular writer again!

And Benedict has been in a fair amount of things so if you want more, it's going to be reasonably easy to find stuff... :)
Our Drama Queenourdramaqueen on August 10th, 2010 01:06 pm (UTC)
Hear hear! I'm curious to see the unaired pilot, which apparently will be on the DVD.

And Benedict has been in a fair amount of things so if you want more, it's going to be reasonably easy to find stuff... :)

That's what I'm afraid of... ;)
Vera S.: SH Sherlock with bookverasteine on August 9th, 2010 08:22 pm (UTC)
Oh, I like this. Nice and subtle, bit analytical. Good one!
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on August 10th, 2010 10:46 am (UTC)
A little bit indulgent on my part, I know, but I'm testing Sherlock's voice... That's my excuse and I'm sticking to it! :)
(Deleted comment)
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on August 11th, 2010 03:05 pm (UTC)
Aha! You have been drinking - it explains everything! These lovely words you say - they have been lubricated with libations! That sounds dodgier than it actually is :) But thank you very much nonetheless!

And yes, the fandom is on such a roll at the moment - long may it continue!
But what if I'm a mermaid?: Queen of Wands - readdeepbluemermaid on August 12th, 2010 01:42 am (UTC)
This is a really nice look at the inside of Sherlock's head - fascinating, strange place that it must be!
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on August 16th, 2010 08:00 am (UTC)
Writing Sherlock's thought processes was not an easy thing - diving in among the shoals and the tempests :) So glad you liked!
misspamela: Sherlok Looking - lamardeusemisspamela on August 15th, 2010 12:16 am (UTC)
Wow, so many great moments in here. Loved it.
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on August 16th, 2010 08:00 am (UTC)
Yay! Thank you so much!
laura_trekkie: Holmes BBClaura_trekkie on August 23rd, 2010 09:33 am (UTC)
Great characterisation. I could really see Sherlock coming to this slow, yet abrupt realisation of what John means to him. And I'm not surprised that Mycroft would be the one to make him see it with one of those little jibes they thrive on.

Laura.
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on April 1st, 2011 02:48 pm (UTC)
I would love to see Sherlock punch Mycroft for something - Mycroft is someone who needs mussing :)
(Deleted comment)
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on April 1st, 2011 02:49 pm (UTC)
Yay for Harry - I'd love it if they introduce her into an episode sometime!
cold_teacold_tea on February 12th, 2011 10:53 pm (UTC)
Very nice :)
oh Sherlock, some things do come as a surprise even to you :)

so, why don't you use tags? They make everything so much better...
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on April 1st, 2011 02:51 pm (UTC)
Yay Sherlock - he just hates all those hormones, and other messy endocrine secretions!

(And tags are good, I agree, but I'd have to go back and sort out all my fic and I'm lazy and I do have a master fic list both here on my lj and on AO3, so I thought they'd sort of do... :)
cold_teacold_tea on April 1st, 2011 03:41 pm (UTC)
~facepalm~
so I FAIL at paying attention (I'm just too used to looking for a sticky note/Masterlist)
but also,
there is NO Sherlock on that list :(

(goes off to AO3 to read the rest)
Shefa: animated shipping gif SHshefa on March 3rd, 2011 02:11 pm (UTC)
Ah, emotions. Messy, indeed. Very well done. Tight and controlled and intense. Beautiful.
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on April 1st, 2011 02:52 pm (UTC)
I know - Sherlock wants no truck with any of them - such a pity he met John (not) *grin*
ginbitchginbitch on March 25th, 2011 09:56 pm (UTC)
This was one of the first fics I read in the Sherlock fandom! Way back in the early days of my lj, when I hadn't worked out how to mem! Memmed now, though - gorgeous with such a _perfect_ last line!
Valderys: Sherlock - three patch problemvalderys on April 1st, 2011 02:54 pm (UTC)
Thank you! It's funny - I wrote this in such white heat when Sherlock was on, and once it had finished I mostly stopped - I still read a lot in the fandom though. Maybe I'll write some more when the new series is on :)
Lauratavella on May 9th, 2012 01:29 am (UTC)
I find this... a really believable look at the inside of Sherlock's head. He does lie to himself sometimes, I think.