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Picspam Reaction/Recap: Sherlock Series 3 Episode 2 (Part 4 of 5)
WARNING: CONTAINS IMAGES AND DETAILS OF THE SHERLOCK SERIES 3 SECOND EPISODE. If you are not watching Sherlock Series 3 at UK pace, this post is CHOCK FULL OF SPOILERS. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.

Picspam Reaction for Sherlock Series 3 Episode 2 - Part 4
PART ONE
PART TWO
PART THREE
PART FOUR - "The Sign of Three"


-Mrs Hudson mothering John (and Sherlock, though he's apparently upstairs or something) is something that will never not be awesome.
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-A full English! Don't know if John's going to feel up for that just yet, particularly the runny eggs. A good greasy breakfast is actually one of the more renowned hangover remedies though, apparently, along with lots of water, caffeine, anti-inflammatory painkillers and vitamin C/citrus juice. *shrug* I hung out with some very experienced party people at a few at sci-fi cons in the '90's.
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-"Don't sound so final about it, I will be visiting, you know."/"Oooh, I've heard that one before." Awww. *pats Mrs Hudson* *snerk* Hudders! XD
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-"Marriage changes everything, John."/"Does it?"/"You might not think it but it does." Awwwww! She's giving him the same talk as she gave Sherlock, because even if they aren't a couple like she'd hoped, she wants to let them know to stay friends and make time for each other through the cautionary tale of her best friend she never saw again after the wedding and... hm. Sherlock's telling this in the best man speech. But isn't actually there to hear it, so, he, hm. Is either listening in the hall, or is collapsed on the *half-squints and wiggles in chair doing mental 221 Baker Street layout calculations* ...on theeee... *gets out a pen and paper* er, hm, stairs loop around... kitchen door and uh... *crumples paper and tosses* on the floor somewhere and can hear them talking. Because he's next to a duct or something. Sure. *handwaves*

-Yeah, no, he's not quite up to it yet. Aw.
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-"You just... let your old friends slip away."/"It won't be like that." Awwwwww.
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-"Did you think you'd found the right one when you'd married Mr Hudson."/"No!" Oh good, it would have made it easier to cope with the double murder business later if you weren't compelled to protect him or believe him against all evidence. YOU GUYS! MRS HUDSON BACKSTORY INCOMMINNNGGGG!! *flails*
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-Whirlwind romance, swept along, fantastic time. "Of course I didn't know what he was up to. Drugs." Ah ha! Drug dealer Mr Hudson, was there a pool for any specifics about Mr Hudson?

-"He was running a- ooo, ah. What do you call it? Cartel." AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Aw. XD
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-"When he was actually arrested for blowing someone's head off, it was quite a relief to be honest." *extended wheezing and flailing* COME TO MY ARMS AND LET ME SMISH YOU MRS HUDSON! Oh wow. I mean hell to live through, but the way she's just so blithe and matter-of-fact about it all. This does kind of add light to how she's so easy-going about all Sherlock's shenanigans. XD
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-"It was purely physical between me and Frank." John's face. Quite the standard face for 'oh god, mom's talking about her sex life'. XD
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Also yay, we have a canon first name for Mr Hudson now. Just need one for Mrs Hudson.

-"There was one night-" Ehehehehe. Yep. TMI.
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-And now Sherlock's got up off the floor and away from the vent or whatever he's listening through since he's not particularly interested in his surrogate-mom's sex life either, and is up clomping around and doing things now. See, totally works for how Sherlock can know about this bit he wasn't in the room for. *nods*
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-Oh dear. Major Sholto has had a very bad time of it in the press and otherwise, and the press certainly wouldn't be discouraging the otherwise. Otherwise is what sells papers. :-/
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-Sherlock: *hears John coming upstairs and switches browser windows* Oh yes, someone is doing some research on certain issues in the lives of the wedding attendees. Let's hope none of the surprises revealed at the wedding reception are too unpleasant or painful, hm? Seriously though, finding evidence to exonerate John's former CO and finding a long-lost relative for Mary would be one heck of a wedding gift, and it would suit as a gift from Sherlock. I mean, it's not as if he'd get them something like a toaster. Or if he did get them the toaster, they'd have to check it for body parts and even if it seemed completely normal they would probably never plug it in. Or perhaps especially if it seemed completely normal... o.O
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-"This ghost is willing to commute, look." He's got quite a broad range too. Very evenly spaced except that one red pin. *draws imaginary connecting lines (since I watch waaaay too much Criminal Minds) and fires up Google Maps* And it looks like the Ghost is centered/based at or near the Tower of London. Heh. No history of ghosts there at allll. Also... *thinks of Series 7 Doctor Who* Heheheh. Hm. Hee. Anyway. Gotta love a map with pins in it!
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Also, it's good for distracting John from other things Sherlock might be working on. I do take it from the lack of tearing hurry being exhibited that the wedding is either another day or late in the afternoon. I thought Stag/Stagettes were traditionally held the night before the wedding for the express purpose of getting the person being married as wasted and miserable as possible for the ceremony the next day, but having it on an earlier day makes far more sense to me.

-(Now I'm through the course of antibiotics etc and am less fevered, so the rest of this post should be far more rational and focused. Ahahahah, no, not really.)

-My, what a visually interesting room. I have no idea what place this is, but it's not the House of Lords because that's laid out differently. Sort of similarish layout to the American House of Congress or the UN general assembly though, with that multi-level dais at the front rather than an open space as there would be if it was a lecture theatre, so I'd say somewhere where many representatives of roughly equal standing usually meet to hear and debate matters of *handwave* something or other, soooo... military tribunal regarding Major Sholto? Oh dear god, Sherlock giving evidence in front of a military tribunal. Eek. AAAAnyway. Visually interesting room.
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-Ahahaha. Or this is an examination room in Sherlock's mind palace. I see a room full of people who've dated ghosts here. Of course he'd need a space to put all the things for a specific case together and shake them up to see what falls out, right? Interesting wall art/wall covering combination.
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-Hee, had to cap the face.
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-Process of elimination! The little 'not you' dance is a tad too blurry to catch in caps though. But pointing!
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-Okay, I really totally love this physicalization of his thought process, because even though it's always terribly entertaining to watch Sherlock stare off into space and then spout out a load of stuff about what's going on, this... is a more inclusive way of seeing it? And since this is all part of Sherlock's Best Man speech (which I'm sure everyone at John and Mary's reception is glad is taking place after dinner rather than before or they'd be gnawing the centerpieces by now), seeing the internal side of his thought process makes complete sense. *nods*
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(Still want to know what room and building this actually is though. And that is a question that I am okay with anyone who knows answering. ETA: ANSWERED, by crimson_bride, it's the Debating Chamber at County Hall (London))

-"Love Monkey." Heee! I like her. They're all very different types and approaches though, wonder what links them? And the names the guy gave, I thought there was a pattern with 'Mike' and 'Oscar' being part of the phonetic alphabet, and (I am given to understand) 'Terry' being a derogatory term for opposing forces combatants used by some of the NATO forces in Afghanistan, but, heh, "Love Monkey" throws off that connection a bit. I was thinking for a while there that there might be a connection between Major Sholto's lost troop and the ghost daters, like maybe the kids are all fine and back in the UK living secretly. Which would be plenty messed up.
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(Although... "Love Monkey" does appear to be the title of a novel and TV series that's a romantic comedy set in New York in and around Sept 11th... hm....)

-All went to "his place", all different places, all the places being of someone who'd died, probably. And all strictly romantic. Hm. Sorry, I'm a puzzle-solver by nature, I can't not try to think it through. Could be one guy who's a deserter? OR. In hiding for other reasons. Heh. If it's Major Sholto, I think I'll be quite disappointed in him.

-"He had a lovely-" Hee! I don't know if the encounter with the lady in red (Vicky?) was entirely strictly romantic.

-"You okay?" HEE! And John gets through. Aw.
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-That's a lot of laptops. And... a ham steak with pineapple ring, fried egg and chips. I don't think getting cold would do it too much harm.
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-Oh, well, he's actually chatting with them all. Cool. The first client can't have told many people about him puking on her ghost date's floor and getting carted off to the drunk tank if that many people were still willing to discuss their encounters with him. Though, really, if they're posting about it on i-dated-a-ghost.com, their individual benchmarks for personal reticence are probably lower than average.
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-"He had a lovely manner." Well, four for four on the romance-only then.
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-Different colour hair (well three completely different and one mask (Vicky has an interesting social life. I really do like her)), but that could be hair pieces, considering to get one of each clearly with no repeats or 'reddish-brownish' would make it more likely it's one person changing their hair to be as different as possible rather than three or four people. That also implies another level of deliberation though, not that dating women and taking them to the homes of the recently deceased (which how is he finding that info out and securing the homes? Hm.) Starting to feel like this is part of something much bigger, or that I am seriously over-thinking all this and should just shut up and move on.

-Well that's how he's finding out who's died of course but gaining access is another matter.
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Hang on. *stares at the bottom edge of the cap* Augustus. As in Augustus Milverton, from ACD canon? ...who I remember next to nothing about except he's a blackmailer (and something about Holmes getting engaged to his maid to gather intelligence and feeling, eventually, bad about it) I'm not going to risk refreshing my memory just in case. Blackmail, though. The women aren't being blackmailed and haven't done anything blackmail-worthy aside from having a romantic evening in the former residence of the deceased with a person representing themselves as the proper resident. Hm. Probably over-thinking things again. Also it was Charles Augustus Milverton, I think, not just Augustus. And if is name's in the Obit section, he's dead, so... ugh. *headdesk* Never mind, carry on.

-"Getting the names from the Obituary columns." Well there goes a fine theory about the military connection, though to be honest it was quite a stretch. Hm. I either don't look at enough obit sections, or those are a little... hm. Extra-personal? 'Sleep well our pocket rocket'? O.o
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(Whatever actress named Slant who died at a nightclub in Ibiza that has the article/obit above may not have had a very big filmography, but she was important enough to print the same article twice in columns next to each other. Perhaps she was a pioneer actress in early 3D film technology and the dual print is so her dedicated fans can hold the paper at arm's length and do that diverging thing with their eyes to get a stereo image of the text. Yup. *handwaves*)

-Ah, Augustus Bradley Carter, not Charles Augustus Milverton. Bit of a red herring there? Augustus isn't a common name these days; stick it near anything involving Sherlock and certain people come to mind (even if I can't remember exactly what they did). Augustus has a much more typical-sounding memorial message here, it's a bit short and lacking detail for an actual obit. Hm. Poor guy's folks weren't thinking when they picked his name, or they liked the idea of their son's initials being on every reading primer and classroom wall he'd encounter during his first five or six years. *quickly checks back to Michael's initials* Nope, alphabetical initials not a common element among the dead. The font in Michael's earlier column looks a trifle stretched though. The tricks these newspapers pull to fill column space, eh? Also their proofreaders appear to be on strike. *handwaves* Also also *peers at name above Augustus* J. J. Abrahams? Is that a poke at J.J. Abrams? Hee. And Grandad "Charlotte Doreen Knightman nee Lee" at the top sounds like he had some interesting stories to tell. ...Hmm.... *eyes extra spacing between JJ and Augustus* It does look like they want "ABC" Augustus to stand out a little more though. Ugh. Or it was just a quick layout and they didn't do a spacing distribution check. Far more likely given, as I mentioned, their proofreaders are on strike. *handwave*
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(Fill my screen with legible text and I will try to read it and possibly nitpick the layout. *shrugs sheepishly*)

-"Free love nest."/*assorted disgusted responses*/"Clever!" Heee! Everyone's grossed out but Vicky. I like Vicky.
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-Oh hi, um client who's a nurse but whose name- right, Tessa, the non-Reaper. Did she say 'busted' or 'bastard' there? Either fits.
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-Ah, bastard it is then.
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-I find it incredibly... touching? Amusing? Amouching? That John just sort of pops into Sherlock's mental forum-space with no resistance when he speaks. John gets Sherlock's attention. *smiles*
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-"He's a mayfly, he lives for a day." Ah, yes. Well-titled case then.

-"What was it he was looking for?" Hm. Hope they've all checked their credit card records and so forth, but that seems too simple.
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-"Job."/"Gardener."/"Cook."/"Private nurse."/"I do security work."/"Maid." All trusted jobs either for private households or hotels and places with security contracts all of which... OH WELL HELL. It is blackmail and Milverton isn't it? Only instead of Sherlock getting engaged to Milverton's maid to get information on him, Milverton's spending a romantic evening with each of the women to get information on the wealthy folks/employers/hotel guests they work for so he can blackmail them. Reversing things again, like they did with Rache. Is Milverton the Fire-Watcher then? There hasn't been much from his end of the pool so far and this is feeling more like an ongoing thread than a one-off case. Hm. ...unless that's all a red herring because they stuck the name Augustus up on the screen to bring him to mind (however vaguely), just so he would be distracting from whatever's actually going on.
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-"You all work for the same person!" Or that. Maybe. Though you'd think if they're all on the same forum dating ghost-man they'd have compared notes by now.

-And this is one reason why I don't have an openly accessible online resume. Although it's assuming quite a bit to take as read that they'd all have their resumes 100% current if they're currently in long-term employment.
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-Though... Vicky: Self-employed since 2009, number of clients, and does a lot more than cleaning, like accounts and social media support.
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Can't make this one out.
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But Chef Charlotte and Gardener Gail (they sound like characters from Bob the Builder! Hee!), are both also self-employed (Aw, the Chef Charlotte went to Coal Hill School! Doctor Who Reference! \o/) so multiple clients there too.
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Hm. Three out of five self-employed, couldn't make out the rest, but it would widen the potential blackmail target pool. Assuming it's Milverton and blackmailing which I really shouldn't assume. Arg. Damn red herrings.

-"Dungeon." Hee! Vicky does have some interesting pastimes. The head-bobble from Sherlock makes me think he might be wondering if Vicky's actually Vicky or a plant in the forum eavesdropping since she's rather significantly out of step with the rest. Which is possible, I mean if Moriarty can make the world believe he's a kid's actor for two years, someone can easily build enough of a background, profile and presence in the forum site to be invited in to a conference like this should one take place, and if one were to take place, whoever's being the Mayfly would definitely want to eavesdrop so... Hm. *ponders* All different again though. I think it's going to be something to do with the self-employment. Three out of five is statistically significant, considering the average self-employment rate for London is *googles* 18%. *nods*
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-Besides liking Vicky, I'm kind of loving how baffled Sherlock seems to be by her.
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-"Do you have a secret you've never told anyone."/"No." Instant, unanimous, and complete and total bullshit, because everyone has secrets. XD
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-And everyone buggers off. As one does when someone you barely know starts asking you about your secrets. (Vicky's little wink and "Sorry, Sexy, some secrets have to stay secret" is not speaking in favour of her not actually being the Mayfly eavesdropping. Moriarty called Sherlock sexy too.... Hm.)
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-"Enjoy the wedding." Which she'd know about since they've probably explained that it's a sort of stag party she's walked into and not their usual evening habit. Or at least John might explain. Still, that's kind of sweet of her after Sherlock threw up on her ghost-date's furry rug thing.
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-"You're missing the obvious, mate."/"Am I?"/"He's a man." HAH. XD

-"Maybe he's married." Aaaand segue! Just in case we forgot where we are right now.
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-And we'd back to Sherlock running down the societal construct of marriage, and John's having more qualms again, which was bound to happen again as long as Sherlock's still speechifying. Or speaking in general.
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Really though, a philandering spouse does not need to impersonate a series of dead people and break into their places in order to carry out a string of affairs that only last one night and were purely romantic. And one of the women did say he was a good listener... And I'm back to the blackmail thing again. *headdesk* It seems like a logical answer though, whether it's Milverton or not, although who knows, could be anything, maybe it's Molly's guy, Tom. Still don't know quite what the deal with him is yet, do we? Although if he isn't secretly evil (which I kind of hope he isn't because Molly's choice in romantic partners needs some calibrating if so), I'd guess he's going to be an early target of something bad in the third episode. Leading again to poor Molly. Aw.

-Ahahahah. Sherlock is doing better at catching up to the mood in a room. Marginally better. But better.
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-Mary's extremely subtle face and headshake is of course helping tremendously.
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-Still not believing the Mayfly Man was a philandering spouse. Too complicated and too much effort for something that simple. And I still want to know if the other two were self-employed and who's been on their client lists recently. It's all still 'on the wall' to me. *steeplefingers*

-"I can read a crime scene the way he can understand a human being." and "I will solve your murder, but it takes John Watson to save your life. Trust me on that I should know, he's saved mine so many times, and in so many ways." Including of course occasionally shooting people with the gun he totally doesn't have that Lestrade can go on ignoring as long as he can deny knowing about it. Anyway, all of it, awwwwww. *flappy hands*
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-"This blog is the story of two men and their frankly ridiculous adventures." Heee! Know thyself.
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-"Pray charge your glasses-" if there's any wine left on the table after the Best Man speech that never ends.
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-"The adventures of Mary Elizabeth Watson and John Hamish Watson." Heee! Look at that face. It's edging a little past happy and a little into 'yay we made it through the Best Man speech without a brawl breaking out'. As is entirely understandable.
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-"The two reasons why every single one of us is-" Oh crap, he's having a deduction stall out. Since the rest of that sentence was likely going to be "-why every single one of us is here" or something like it, he's just seen something that's caused an avalanche of pennies to drop in his head on his combined ongoing cases/projects, and will be revealing, in no particular order: a long lost relation of Mary's, something that exonerates Major Sholto, the explanation of the attempted murder of Bainbridge, and the real reason the Mayfly Man was out seducing women in such an overwrought manner. And possibly someone is there who wasn't on the guest list and bypassed his security checks might be about to attempt an assassination. All the guests are standing now. Maybe one of them is the wrong height. And has Lestrade's teeny-tiny ballista.
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-*chokes on air at this particular deduction stall face* Very little change but somehow looking now less blank and more demented. XD
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-Wonder if dropping the glass for the toast is a bad omen. Or maybe it's poisoned in which case all the guests are doomed as the majority of them have probably been drinking steadily to make it through the speech. This deduction stall/mind palace freeze thing he gets really would look a lot like a sort of mild absence seizure when seen from outside.
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-"You said 'John Hamish Watson'." YES! I THOUGHT SO! And despite being wasted Sherlock remembered it. \o/ Ooo, is she somehow in on it all and brought the case deliberately to draw Sherlock and John into some kind of trap thing? *bounces*
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-"He never tells anyone, he hates it." Right. Pool of people who know John's middle name or could access it: Sherlock, obviously. Irene Adler (doubt this has anything to do with her, she wouldn't be able to resist the temptation to play with Sherlock more than this). Anyone who got an invitation to the wedding if it was written in full, and it might not have been. John's family which he doesn't have much of but at least Harry (and maybe some of Harry's friends or girlfriends, since Harry seems the type to snicker about her brother's weird middle name if the topic of names came up?). Mary, since even if he hadn't told her, it'd be in all the paperwork they've been signing surrounding the wedding. Wouldn't be on the blog, not checking his blog now, spoilers everywhere. It might be in his military records (if so, Major Sholto would likely know, and we haven't quite gotten an elaboration on the grim way he was getting into uniform before yet...) or hospital records, and Tessa is a nurse or posing as one. She seems a bit young, but maybe she's one of the nurses from when John would have been in hospital for a bit after coming back from Afghanistan? No. He'd have recognized her, even drunk. No driver's license. Anyone with access or who had gained access to government info (birth certificates) through the General Register office or Passport office could know, but why look it up? However, the more interesting thing is why would she know it? And why she said it so deliberately. She's not presenting as a stalkery sort of fan, much (though the 'enjoy the wedding' comment now seems quite creepy), so it wasn't a compulsion to display her dedication to getting the details right. If it wasn't a genuine slip which it didn't really seem like, then it was a plant to trigger just this sort of realization for Sherlock, planted when he wasn't really at his observational best. And we've yet to hear from the Fire-Watcher this episode, so probably something connecting to him in some way.
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-Ahahahaahah, oh god. Sherlock, honey, I don't care how desperate you are, or if you think that smoking all that at once will be a form of aversion therapy, just don't. Even if you don't burn your eyebrows off you'll be incredibly sick and regret it.
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-Ah, they're all going into the toe of the Persian slipper. Of course. *canon reference fistpump* Surreptitious Sherlock is surreptitious. Or John is exceptionally oblivious as Sherlock just walked through the sitting room behind him with an entire pack of cigarettes in his mouth. Either way, Sherlock's face, hee!
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-"Henry?"/"Shut up." Oatmeal jumper! And John's looking through the paper, so probably looking for work, so, pre Blind Banker. Cool. I was thinking Sherlock might have forgotten being told it in Study in Belgravia, but these are actually really early-days flashbacks. Awesome!
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-"Humphrey."/"Shut up." The increasing exasperation of John's 'shut up', hee. Sherlock's guesses are improving, it's less likely to be something commonplace and more likely to be something he might have got teased for in grade school, and any name that can be easily shortened to 'Hump' is an excellent guess.
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-"Higgins?"/"Go. Away." *snerk* Also, in case anyone was still wondering where the shower in 221B was, voila.
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-"Took him years to confide in me."/"...that's my birth certificate." HAHAHAHAAHAHAH. Yes, exactly. If the clues are exhausted and you can't get anything from the only person who knows, do research. XD
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-"The Woman. She knew." EEE!!! HI IRENE! HI! *flails a little just because continuity and yay*
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-"God knows where she is." EEE! *waves hi again* Other than in your head, and possibly naked. Just like she was when he first met her and her measurements turned out to be a thing he used to keep John from being executed (oh and open a safe and get Irene's phone and kick the asses of a bunch of rogue CIA agents, but really, priorities) so it's important data. Yup. *nods*
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-"Out of my head, I'm busy." *snerk* I can imagine how that was taken generally by fandom. Myself, I think he'd remember her fascination with him since it's what he used against her to defeat her, whatever its source, and he may be inclined during slack moments to occasionally wonder where she is now and what she's up to, as one does with people you've actively prevented from getting beheaded. Or something. Anyway, the glass is still falling so not a slack moment now. No time to wonder about Irene. *handwave*
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-"Does it have to be on the invitation?" Well, with that format, just having an 'H' would be visually unbalancing and look silly, as would reducing Mary's 'Elizabeth' down to an 'E.' Not bad layout overall though as it puts the names side-by-side and equal rather than one above the other. The line spacing below really needs to be tightened up though, and might consider a slightly less stark secondary font for the rest of the info on the invite, hm, perhaps something with humanist or baroque serifs.... *loses half an hour looking at font sites* Sorry. I am easily distracted by desktop publishing at the best of times.
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-"It's your name, it's-"/"It's funny."/"-traditional-" Not helping, Sherlock. XD
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Mary's face! She has such a great face. XD

-Yep, glass hasn't hit the ground yet (and apparently Sherlock's standing further back from the table than I thought he was).
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-So Tessa's seen an invitation and she knew about the wedding, and evidently John didn't tell her about it being a stag at least not while Sherlock was aware. Though Mrs Hudson could have told her about it as she was leading Tessa up the stairs as a way of explaining their state, though I don't think she'd have mentioned John's middle name then.

-"For one person to be in both groups, could be a coincidence." ...Ooo, I had a bit of a deduction stall there myself, that was fun. Completely wrong though, because it was based on her legitimately having received an invite and the Mayfly being out looking for a way to get into John and Mary's wedding reception, but neither Sherlock or John recognized her, and Sherlock certainly would have as he's vetted the entire guest list down to who doesn't like Mary. SO. The Mayfly Man was invited to the wedding, or has otherwise gotten an invite from somewhere? *eyes Tom and Major Sholto*
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-"Oh Sherlock. What do we say about coincidences?" You know, aside from its use as a thinking space, a psychologist could have a field day with Sherlock's mental examination room. Mycroft in the high seat in Sherlock's own head, passing passive judgement as Sherlock builds his case from the floor. Aw. *pats Sherlock*
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-"Someone went to great lengths to find out something about this wedding."/"What great lengths?"/"They lied, assumed false identities."/"Which suggests?"/"Criminal intent."/"Also suggests?"/"Intelligence, planning."/"Clearly. But more importantly-" ME: *hits pause button on falling glass* "DOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOM!" *intense flailing victory arms* BWAHAHAHAHA! *bounces in chair* Sorry, I was overcome by evil machinations. Yes, yes, also it's the Mayfly Man, because really, the M.O. is the same, isn't it, and that borrow a dead guy's house business was never about cheating on an unhappy marriage. Hm. The newspaper article image of Major Sholto was the same as his current face except for the burn (did that injury happen after then, or did the article just use a photo from some time during his career? Probably the latter, unless he had a really bad chip pan fire which would be one hell of an anti-climax), so it's not him unless that's a life-mask (which I am not going to neglect suggesting again, thank you Anderson :-P) but they'd need to have access to Major Sholto's face to make a life mask of him... unless they found Major Sholto and killed him or something and made the mask, and stolen his medals and uniform etc... hm. Bit baroque. Which leaves Tom, Molly's beau with the meat dagger theory. Maybe Tessa's his sister, in collusion with him on the Mayfly Man business, and took the case to Sherlock and John to clue them in to something going on and to get them out of 221B for the night and leave the flat empty for... hm. Some reason. Relating to other things. *ponders*
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-"The Mayfly Man is-"/"-here today." Hee! It didn't even disrupt the flow of his toast.
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-"Something is going to happen, right here." EEEE! And now we flail. *FLAAAIL*
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-Sherlock's faaaace as he's looking around the crowd trying to figure out who out there is here to hurt John or mess with John and Mary's wedding and happiness and just that combined hint of anger and distress and his eyes and something going on with his chin that might be the beginnings of a wibble at the thought of this all going to hell right now and gaaaaah. *flails*
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-Major Sholto. Mayfly or red herring? I'm thinking red herring. Maybe. Or if it is him, it's not him him, it's just someone with his face, or he's being seriously blackmailed (I know, I know, sorry, I blame Augustus), but what with? His life's pretty much screwed already. Still pondering Tom but that's just weird, and would be a bit too like the Moriarty reveal, and I'd like to think that Molly's not completely cursed in the romance department, though those two-shots with Lestrade are making me wonder in different directions now... O.o The only other one with significant screen time and lines (because I doubt it's going to be a random face in the crowd, but that's meta-theorizing by using film and TV production *handwave* things. If this was a real event and threat, it'd be an unknown member of the event staff. Though I suppose it could be the guy with the meat skewer and water-proof phone...) would be Mary's stalker-ex, who... Hm. Isn't necessarily out of the running either. Hm. And he's really close to the head table... hmmmmmmm... O.O
648648


-"You have control of the room." HIS INNER MYCROFT COACHING HIM ON *KEYMASH FLAIL* LIKE, SECURITY CRISIS MANAGEMENT THING, WHATEVER YOU CALL IT. 'BAD GUY WITH INTENT TO DO BAD THINGS IN ROOM TAKEDOWN WITH MINIMAL DISRUPTION' TYPE STUFF. *SQUINTS* WHILE POSSIBLY WEARING HIS UMBRELLA TIE. WHICH I WILL NOW AND FOREVER ASSUME WAS A SNARKY GIFT FROM SHERLOCK THAT MYCROFT TAKES DELIBERATELY OBTUSE PLEASURE IN WEARING LIKE IT'S A PERFECTLY SERIOUS TIE, JUST TO MESS WITH SHERLOCK. I slightly lost control of the caps there, sorry, but I've gone too far to turn back now.
649649


-"Yes, raising glasses and standing up. Very good." Yep. If you can keep whoever it is in place wherever they are and in a visible position where sudden movements wouldn't go unnoticed by the crowd, while keeping him (presumably 'him') unaware you know he's there so he doesn't twig and... yikes. Any number of bad things could happen at this point. Bombs *eyes stack of presents and hopes again someone x-rayed that stuff*, guns (don't think there'd be a security checkpoint at this venue, and guns aren't too common among civilians in the UK) and, well, sudden berserker sword charges *eyes "Major Sholto"*
650650


-"Don't lose it."/"And down again." Hehehe. That wasn't the actual toast, gosh no! That was just the mid-speech standing intermission to stave off deep vein thrombosis! Ahahah. Sherlock's going to end up looking completely mental before the situation is revealed. Not like he doesn't already.
651651


-"People tell you not to milk a good speech-" The look between John and Mary regarding that comment, hee.
652652


-"Part two!" Woo! Table-hopping at receptions usually doesn't have quite such a literal meaning.
653653


-"I'm gonna walk around, shake things up a bit." One one hand, this is hilarious, on the other hand, Sherlock's quietly freaking out that someone is here to in some way harm or disturb John and Mary and frantically trying to determine who to neutralize before they put their plan in motion, and if he picks wrong, his apparently random attack on a wedding guest will provide a distraction for the real threat to enact whatever they're doing faster. So yeah. No pressure. No wonder he's taking the advice of his inner Mycroft.
654654


-Could be a bit of a mistake only examining the men as possible threats. If Tessa was a plant, Mayfly Man could have other accomplices or could just have set something in place and be sitting back watching everything through hidden cameras in his vaguely circus-themed warehouse with all the big TV screens. Because whether the Mayfly Man is the Fire-Watcher himself or not, this is totally, in the end, some part of whatever the Fire-Watcher is up to. Threaten John and watch what Sherlock does? That's him all over, isn't it?
655655


-"Weddings are great! Love a wedding!" I'll just be choking for a second here at the look on Sherlock's face, don't mind me.
656656
Does sound like he's aiming for Major Sholto right now with the 'who'd go to any lengths to go to a wedding?' bit. Hm.

-"What's he doing?"/"Something's wrong." *FLAILS AND SMISHES JOHN WATSON ALL TO ITTY BITTY BITS* GO YOU, YOU PERCEPTIVE CUDDLY BAMF!
657657


-"I could go on all night about the depth and complexity of his jumpers." BWAH!!! XD

-"Does a thing. Thing with peas." Yeah, this is probably not helping control the room, though Greg might be wondering if you've started using drugs again. This is Sherlock, overwhelmed with possibles and without enough time or attention to focus on all of them to narrow the options down to a single definite threat while still saying anything remotely sensible, trying to hold the attention of a bunch of random average people.
658658
(I am oddly gratified to note that Tom has his own set of Mayfly Man flags, so at least if I'm totally wrong about including him in the suspect pool I'm in good company. Although I can't tell from this shot if Sherlock's flagged Lestrade as a possible as well, so it could just be a tiny bit of panic.)

-"Might not be peas. Might not be him. But he's got a great singing voice, or somebody does." Heeeeee. Yep. There's controlling the room and there's babbling randomly as your processors bog on too many possibles and not enough data to start eliminating them. Also, confirmed, no flags on Lestrade. *flails a little because trust, awww*
659659


-"TOO MANY!" That's what I've been saying! En masse there's too much data to process effectively and focussing on one at a time could tip the guy off. Not that this sudden shouting fit might not do that anyway.
660660


-"Sorry, too many jokes about John!" HA. Nice cover. *golf clap*
661661
662662


-"Criminal intent."/"Where was I? Ah yes."/"Extraordinary lengths." Ooo, desperate enough to make a quick trip back to his head-Mycroft to find a thread to follow. *bounces*
663663
664664
665665


-"All of which is suggestive of-"/"Murder."/Guests: "*groan*" Heh, yeah the guests are getting a little worn down by the speech that never ends. Eeep, though. I mean I figured the guy wouldn't have gone to so much trouble just to make off with the tableware, but it's a little more alarming stated outright that he (or his possible accomplice of unspecified gender) is there to kill. Whether that's a targeted killing or a wholesale "blow up the building, the target's in there somewhere and the rest can die as cover" sort of a thing. One of which is personal and hard to do in a crowd unless by poison or sniper, and the other is best done from a very long distance away, assuming the perpetrator intends to survive it, which... Eep.

-Meanwhile, I'm not sure if John has caught on and is concerned, or hasn't caught on exactly and is thinking of some murdering himself.
666666


-"I meant to say 'marriage'." Pffffft!
667667
668668


-"Quite similar procedures when you think about it. The participants tend to know each other and it's over when one of them's dead." Laughing. Can't breathe. Literally crying with laughter. Oh god. I mean when you think about the situation it's rather horrific, being the only person in a room full of happy (and currently very confused) people who knows one of them is there to kill, but, just AHAHAHAHAH. Oh poor Sherlock. XD
669669
670670


-"Janine! What about this one?" And he drafts the Chief Bridesmaid as an excuse to deduce men in the crowd. AH HAH HAH. I think I was saying something about this earlier, though in fairness, I thought it would be a lot more subtle.
671671
(Janine's face! XD)

-Oh hello, emergency texting. Better hope your Mayfly Man isn't at the table behind you, Sherlock.
672672


-"Also he's a comics and sci-fi geek, they're always tremendously grateful, really put the hours in." Pfffft! Well, some do.

-"Geoff, the gents? Loos now please?"/"Greg!" Ah, he's sending Lestrade a text to clue him in to the situation. I thought it might be to Mycroft, but he'd take longer to get mobilized from wherever he is on a possible day off as we saw him before, wouldn't he. Also Geoff! \o/ The more commonly seen pre-Hound fandom favoured first name for Lestrade. YAY!
673673
674674


-"Oh I don't know, maybe it's your turn." Sherlock Holmes, king of subtlety.
675675


-"Yeah actually, now you mention it." Oh, well covered Lestrade. See, that's subtle. And also, that's how you send a request for help. Details and a specific request for action. *nods*
676676


-"Any chance of an end date for this speech? Gotta cut the cake." Can't decide whether he hasn't actually caught on that something is going down, or whether he's playing the oblivious groom to help Sherlock's cover as long as he's trying to maintain it and is trying to give Sherlock an opening to pass him some kind of information, because if the nonsense and random ranting didn't fully tip John off, Lestrade being sent to the loo should have done.
677677


-"Can't stand it when I finally get the chance to speak for once, Vatican cameos." OH HELL YES! AND THIS IS WHY YOU HAVE WEIRD LITTLE CODE PHRASES, SO YOU CAN TELL EACH OTHER WHEN SHIT IS HITTING THE FAN WITHOUT TIPPING OFF THE THREAT/S IN THE ROOM! Although seriously, it could have been worked in more organically, Sherlock. Something like "John just doesn't want me to tell you all about the Case of the *pointed look* Vatican Cameos." But Sherlock is desperate and a little panicky and any old method of communication in a storm. WOO! CODE PHRASES! \o/
678678
679679


-"What does that mean?"/"Battlestations. Someone's gonna die."/"What!?" And then John grabs her hand. WELCOME TO THE FAMILY, MARY! \o/
680680


-"Narrow it down." And yes, Sherlock is under just a tiny bit of pressure here. Just a tad.
681681
682682
683683


-"Not you! Not you!" Oooo! Telling his head-Mycroft to go away, because more pressure is not helping.
684684


-"It's always you. John Watson, you keep me right." Aww.
685685


-"What do I do?" Ready to kick some butt at a word's notice from Sherlock. *burbles about Watsons and smishes everyone*
686686


-"Don't solve the murder, save the life." You know, as far as instructions go, that's not terribly helpful. I mean obviously, stop the guy before he can kill, and do it without tipping him (or hypothetical accomplice etc) off. A 'how' would be helpful, but it's not like Sherlock can say "take a good look at everyone here and if any of them is even slightly off or unfamiliar, holler and we'll dog-pile on him."
687687


-Distressed Sherlock makes some awesome (if blurry) faces. And I had a faint thought there, about Sherlock being distressed and trying to deal with it on his own, realizing he couldn't and realizing he could find a way to reach out to his friends for help and just aw, but then it got incoherent and flaily, so just *flail* and faces.
688688
689689


-"Let's play a game." YES. Let's play 'how did you first meet the bride and/or groom?' because if someone's pretending to be someone else, they might not have all their research done in detail, or might sound sufficiently off for John (who is looking wonderfully grimly determined to kick all the ass ever in the blurry background there) or Mary to give the nod about them being not right. AND it sort of could be fit into a Best Man speech to ask the crowd for anecdotes. Would take an awfully long time though. Hm.
690690


-"Let's play 'murder'." Well, there's that too, I suppose. Particularly if it makes Sherlock go all stalky-panthery like that.
691691
(aw, Mrs Hudson's little off-screen "Sherlock", aw. It's okay, you'll find out why he's apparently gone nuts when the truth comes out. *pats Mrs Hudson*)

-"If you were going to murder someone at a wedding, who would you pick."/"I think you're a popular choice at the moment, dear." Awww. *smishes her and her fantastic hat*
692692


-"Who could you only kill at a wedding?" Ohhh. Save a life by determining the victim rather than the murderer who hasn't murdered anyone yet. *facepalm* Arg. Making Major Sholto the target, not the would-be killer. Of course. Which makes Tessa and/or the Mayfly Man related to one of the kids that died in his troop? *looks back at caps of news article* The person mentioned in that was a Madeline Small, age 52, who lost her 18-year old son Peter. ...Peter Small? Really? Meaning every time he was listed anywhere last name first he'd have to answer to "Small, Peter"? That's like "Little, Willy" or "Short, Dick". Poor kid, even before he got killed.
693693


-"As a mental exercise, I've often planned the murder of friends and colleagues." Ahahaha! Not something you usually admit in front of casual acquaintances of said friends and colleagues who are less likely to understand you, particularly when you rub your hands together evilly like that.
694694


-"Now John, I'd poison." And occasionally the people who do know you get a bit concerned too.
695695


-"I've given him chemicals and compounds that way, he's never even noticed." PFFT! Well, he did notice the sugar in the coffee back in Hound, he just didn't think you thought it was anything but sugar until afterward.

-"He missed a whole Wednesday once, didn't have a clue." O.O Oh my, that is a statement rife with all kinds of fanfic potential. Was John conscious, roaming around the flat being normal that missing day and then just forgot it happened? Was he giggling drunkenly and burbling nonsense while Sherlock tried to keep him from doing things like taking a header down the stairs or jumping out a window? Or was John totally unconscious and unwakeable while Sherlock had a slowly-building freak-out about whether he'd gone too far and John would never wake up again before John did wake up (with or without further intervention from Sherlock to bring him around) and Sherlock acted like everything was normal and then had a major panic attack quietly where John wouldn't see? Regardless, I think the extensive fanon of Sherlock randomly experimenting on John on a semi-frequent basis has just gained official canonicity. *nods*
696696


-"Lestrade's so easy to kill it's a miracle no one's succumbed to the temptation." Heheh, probably a good thing Lestrade's 'in the loo' whistling up all that Met backup he called in at the start of this episode, or he might have a very disgruntled look to shoot you with.
697697


-"I've got a pair of keys to my brother's house-" Making note of that. Also awwwwwwwww. *flails* "-Easy to get in there and asphyxiate him, if, if the whim arose." Hee. I'm sure it would be more difficult than that.

-"He's pissed, isn't he?"/Molly: *stabs with plastic fork* Heh. Tom's lucky it wasn't one of the actual forks from the dinner service. Molly must carry around a stash of plastic forks to fancy dinner-type events just so she can have something to stab people with that won't cause lasting damage. (*handwave*) I like Molly. Tom's coming across as a bit thick though, or perhaps as just a normal person in a world of entertaining murder-obsessed lunatics with no idea there could be any danger in his current situation (other than Molly stabbing him with a plastic fork).
698698


-"Who could you only kill here?" Major Sholto. Next question? Well since we're playing murder, the how would be... tricky. Doubt he's been away from the table or left his drink unattended long enough to get poisoned, unless the killer is on the serving staff, which is possible. Violent means are feasible but not terribly likely to succeed as even with the injuries, he is still trained and although the sword is hung on his injured left-hand side, it's a cross-body draw and there is nothing evidently wrong with his right hand. Hm. Playing Sherlock's 'game' for a second re: killing Sholto, I'd be inclined to A) not be at the event myself, B) watch the event from nearby to locate and follow Sholto to where he's hiding out from the world, c) observe the patterns of his life and D) figure out some way for him to die that looked either completely natural, or like a run-of-the-mill accident, sometime after he's re-settled from being out in the open and resumed his regular routines. Just playing the game there, I wouldn't actually kill anyone. And also actually, with a situation such as the one Major Sholto is in with the lost troop and receiving death threats from family members of the deceased, I'd be inclined to reach a peace with his role in the incident. A warzone is hell and shit happens, horrible and tragic though it may be, and anything the media or the families are saying to him or about him is doubtlessly nothing compared to the hell he's going through in himself for losing that troop. Going over what went wrong again and again, seeing ways he could have stopped it, too late, and beating himself up for it 'til the end of his days. ...So, yeah, anyway, there you are.
699699


-Yep, Sherlock's caught up. In his defense, he's in the middle of a some-what alien-to-him social setting and swimming in junk data. The signal to noise ratio for deduction purposes is atrocious.
700700
701701


Continued in...
PART FIVE


(PLEASE, NO SPOILERS OR REFERENCES TO ANY INFORMATION AT ALL FOR OR ABOUT EPISODES PAST 3.02 IN COMMENTS! )

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Comments
crimson_bride From: crimson_bride Date: January 26th, 2014 10:38 pm (UTC) (Link)

(Still want to know what room and building this actually is though. And that is a question that I am okay with anyone who knows answering.)

(OK, first attempt was marked as spam, so just Google for pics.)

It's the Debating Chamber at County Hall (London).

Enjoying your reaction posts very much!
caffienekitty From: caffienekitty Date: January 27th, 2014 03:11 am (UTC) (Link)
Thank you! I did get the other one in my email (when it marks a comment as spam it usually just hides it until the poster can review it and unscreen it, though the 'to be cleared' area on this post is empty, so I don't know what happened there) and that is a fantastic location. Love it, and thanks for the answer, I'll add it into the post. :-)
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