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Sherlock Fanfic: The Deal (JWP 2015 #28) - CaffieneKittySpace
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Sherlock Fanfic: The Deal (JWP 2015 #28)
Title: The Deal
Fandom: Sherlock (BBC)
Alternate Postings: AO3
Rating/Content: PG13, cleaning, movies
Warnings: none
Word Count: 1870
Disclaimer: Not my world.
Notes: Written for watsons_woes July Writing Prompt #28: Bad, Bad, oh so Bad! Extensive film quotes, film linked at end, and only a few might recognize it.

Summary: The odd smell that built as he mounted the stairs should have prepared him for what lay ahead, but he stopped still as John turned to enter the kitchen.

The Deal

John had no idea how bad it had gotten in 221b until he returned from honeymooning with Mary to find fifteen texts from Sherlock, starting the second their flight landed.

The odd smell that built as he mounted the stairs should have prepared him for what lay ahead, but he stopped still as John turned to enter the kitchen. Dishes were heaped in the sink and along the counters. A strangely purple fern was growing in the kettle. Under an assortment of beakers and tubes on the kitchen table languished a treacle-coated wetsuit. At least John hoped it was just treacle. And just a wetsuit.

"Sherlock?" he called, not quite daring take his eyes away from the kitchen lest something jump out of the piles of stuff.

"Done with your sex holiday, are you?"

John glanced over his shoulder to see Sherlock had moved the microscope to the breakfast table rather than clear the one in the kitchen where it usually sat.

"What's happened in the kitchen?"

"You're not here, Mrs Hudson's on a package holiday in Greece, couldn't be helped."

"You could tidy it yourself, you know."

Sherlock grunted dismissively. "But you're here now."

John felt his face clench. "Did you ask me to come over immediately just so I could tidy your flat?"

"No. I invited you over to help me with this case, and what would help me most with the case is the flat being tidy." Sherlock flashed a grin, scooped some unnameable goo onto a microscope slide and bent back to the eyepiece.

John tapped his fingers on a tiny clear space on the counter and counted backwards from one hundred. At twenty-five, he had an idea.

One day's cleaning, but if this works... "Sherlock..."


"I've got a deal for you. I'll tidy the kitchen-"

"Don't disrupt my experiments."

John raised an acknowledging finger. "Without disrupting your experiments, and do the washing up, if afterwards you agree to sit down, on the sofa, with me, and watch any film I choose. Uncomplaining. Silent."


"No phones, no laptops. Once the film has loaded I'm shutting down the wi-fi and confiscating your mobile until it's done."

Sherlock's eyes narrowed. "How long?"

"About an hour and a half."

"Nothing animated."

"No, nothing animated."

Sherlock peered at John, who had focused on making his expression as bland as possible.

"Fine." Sherlock settled back down to his microscope.

"Excellent." John exchanged a few quick texts with Greg, then set to cleaning.


Hours later someone knocked at the door. Wiping his hands on a dish-towel, John went downstairs to answer it. A confused young constable handed him what was obviously a DVD case in a plain brown paper bag.

"From Inspector Lestrade," the young man said. "He says he expects it returned in one piece and he wants a full report tomorrow?"

John smiled in the way he usually smiled at patients who'd looked their symptoms up on WebMD before coming in to the surgery for an appointment. "Of course. Full report. 9 AM sharp."

The young constable, seeming somewhat reassured that this strange urgent delivery he'd been asked to make was somehow legitimate Police business, nodded curtly and left. John went back upstairs and pitched the dish towel in the 'hazardous' laundry bin before entering the sitting room with the bag.

About an hour ago, Sherlock had snatched up his mobile and viciously texted someone while muttering 'boring, 3 at best' then abandoned his microscope and moved into effigy position on the sofa. His laptop sat on the coffee table beside him, screensaver looping and swooshing.

Perfect. John collected the laptop quietly as Sherlock glared at the ceiling. Minimizing everything, he turned off the Wi-Fi and the sound before cuing up the DVD to the start of the credits. The less warning Sherlock got, the better the effect would be. John kept the sticky note in Greg's handwriting he'd pulled off the disk: If Sherlock lasts more than half an hour, I owe you a beer.

"There," John said, setting down the laptop and gesturing at the clean-as-it-ever-got kitchen behind him. "I've cleaned the kitchen and left your experiments alone, as agreed. You'll need to get another kettle if you intend to use that one as a planter."

Sherlock waved a hand as though swatting away an insect. "It stopped working after the sodium perchlorate and sheeps' bladders."

John opened his mouth, closed it, closed his eyes and shook his head. "Don't want to know. Ever."

Sherlock rolled his eyes. "Really, John. It was the only way to extract the-"

John clapped his hands together abruptly. "Anyway! I've done my bit, as agreed, now it's your turn to hold up your end of the deal."

"What?" Sherlock blinked blankly.

"You need to sit on the sofa and watch a DVD with me, no interruptions. And not say a word about it."


John held out a hand. "Mobile?"

Sherlock waved in the direction of the fireplace mantle. John collected it, switched it to silent and stuck it in his pocket before sitting down on the end of the sofa by his former flatmate's bare toes.

Sherlock contracted into a tighter ball on the sofa, pulling his feet in and eyed John suspiciously. "Ninety minutes, you said."

"Eighty nine." He'd checked the box.

"Even better." Sherlock sat up and peered at the paused image on the screen. "Black and white. A classic film?"

John smiled innocently. "You could say it's an homage to a certain type of classic film."

Sherlock looked dubious, then waved a hand imperiously. "Hit play. The sooner it starts the sooner it will be over."

Smile slipping from innocent to evil, John turned the sound back on and hit play.


As the credits drifted across the screen, John didn't watch the film so much as watch Sherlock, who seemed briefly mollified by the inordinate amount of skulls in the opening credits. John grinned. That wouldn't last long.


"Seriously, Betty, you know what this meteor could mean to science. If we find it, and it's real, it could mean a lot. It could mean actual advances in the field of science!"

Sherlock's eyes narrowed. He looked from the screen to John.

John pointed at the screen. "We had a deal Sherlock."

Frowning intently, Sherlock turned to face the screen again, his face settling into something pained but determined. The movie continued.


"Oh, say... You don't believe those old legends about the Lost Skeleton of Cadavra, do you?"

"Ranger Brad, I'm a scientist, I don't believe in anything."

Sherlock opened his mouth, then closed it, tilting his head to the side with a facial shrug. John raised an eyebrow and smirked.


"This silly old meteor as you call it could be made of Atmospherium."

"That's not an element," Sherlock grumbled, arms crossed.

John tsked. "No complaints, that's the deal."

Sherlock muttered and crossed his arms harder.


"Tomorrow let's say you and I go searching for our rocky glowing radioactive friend from space... together."

"Paul Armstrong, I do believe there's hope for you yet. Shake on it?" On the screen the wife character awkwardly held out a hand to her husband.

"Why shake when we can touch other things... like lips?"

Sherlock's eyeroll was nearly audible.


On the screen, a rocket obviously made from a kitchen roll tube landed in an obviously fake clearing. John was surprised at the lack of audible reaction and looked closer at Sherlock.

Eyes glazed, Sherlock stared straight ahead, hands twitching slightly.

"Oi!" John slapped him on the shoulder. "No visiting your mind palace to get away from it. That's cheating."

Sherlock harumphed and re-focused on the screen.


A man in a cave addressed an immobile skeleton. "Then you are alive!"

"That is how stupid you are," replied the skeleton. "Only my skeleton brain lives."

Sherlock's mouth opened, but then his face contracted like he'd been sucking on a lemon. He glared at John. John smiled mildly back.


The two aliens who had 'transmutatroned' themselves into humans expressed bafflement at a short flight of stairs, then began climbing them as though free-climbing Mount Everest.

Sherlock sat with his hands clamped across his mouth, eyebrows drawn together as though he was suffering a serious headache. Still watching and not saying anything though, John noted. Not sure if covering his mouth counted as cheating or not.

John saw Sherlock's eyes flick to the corner of the screen where the counter was. 25 minutes had passed. Sherlock emitted a noise that was half groan and half whimper.

"Keeping your mouth covered may constitute cheating, Sherlock."

Sherlock removed his hands just as the aliens rounded the corner of the cabin deck, encountered the door and proceeded to be baffled and frightened by it. Sherlock slumped, his mouth hanging open a little as he stared at the screen while the aliens continued to be horribly inept.


The screen showed a group of people around a table drinking while saying "Tiptiptiptiptiptiptip." After a bit of awkward conversation, the aliens followed the example of the woman created from several forest animals by a mad scientist using the aliens abandoned transformatron ray gun, and mashed their faces into their dinner plates.

Sherlock dropped his head into his hands with a pained moan.

"Eyes front."


"A deal is a deal Sherlock." John grinned.


"Listen. I don't want to frighten you folks but a farmer nearby was horribly mutilated, and I thought I should tell other folks, folks like yourselves, so that maybe, just maybe, you wouldn't be horribly mutilated, too."

"Well, I've certainly never been horribly mutilated, but I don't want to start now, thank you!"

"AUGH!" Sherlock clutched his hair, "I can feel my brain rotting, John!"

"No complaining Sherlock, that was the deal."

"I am not complaining, I am informing you as a doctor that I am experiencing a catastrophic mass die-off of brain cells and should be permitted to remove myself from the hazardous environment."


Shooting an abjectly pathetic look at John, Sherlock turned his attention back to the screen, twitching slightly.


John was elated. Sherlock was now gaping openly at the screen, hands on either side of his head (but not covering his ears, John had checked), doing a passable silent impersonation of Munsch's "The Scream".

In the film the disembodied voice of the skeleton spoke. "You must find the atmosphereum."

"Amish Terrarium. Must find Amish terrarium," said the animal woman.

The scientist looked confused. "I don't understand. Why does she need an Amish terrarium?"

"Don't the Amish live in open air, like us?" asked his wife.

"Of course, Betty," the scientist said. "It's absurd. Putting the Amish in glass cases would be inhumane."

"STOP!" Sherlock shouted, twisting and flopping over to bury his face in the arm of the sofa. "For god's sake, just stop this now!"

"You're nearly halfway through though," John said in his best 'inoculating toddlers' voice. "Don't you want to know how it ends?"

"God no!" Sherlock muffle-shouted into the arm of the sofa.

"We did have a deal though, Sherlock."

"FINE!" Sherlock sat up. "I will try harder to keep the flat tidy."

"And do the washing up now and then. Don't leave it for Mrs. Hudson, because that's simply not fair."

"Whatever! Just never subject me to the rest of that, that," he waved at the laptop as though it was emitting a foul stench, "whatever that is!"

"Right it's a deal." John stood and ejected the DVD, returning it to its garish case. Forty odd minutes in. Lestrade owes me a beer. "If you do ever break this deal though, Sherlock, I have 'Sharktopus' and I am not afraid to use it."

Sherlock pulled a cushion over his head and moaned.

(That's it)

Notes: Extensive quotes from The Lost Skeleton of Cadavra a deliberately bad B movie made in 2001.

Tags: , , ,
Current Mood: sore sore

4 comments or Leave a comment
capt_facepalm From: capt_facepalm Date: August 16th, 2015 02:33 pm (UTC) (Link)
That was cruel and inhumane (and also wonderful)!
caffienekitty From: caffienekitty Date: August 28th, 2015 02:40 am (UTC) (Link)
Thank you! (sorry I missed your comment earlier!)
gardnerhill From: gardnerhill Date: August 27th, 2015 06:12 am (UTC) (Link)
Haw haw haw haw haw!!! Oh, "Lost Skeleton of Cadavra" is SO painful to watch if you don't MSTie it. Perfect punishment. A truly awful film draaaaaaaggggsssss.
caffienekitty From: caffienekitty Date: August 28th, 2015 02:41 am (UTC) (Link)
Have you seen the sequel?
4 comments or Leave a comment