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Sherlock Holmes (Granada) Fanfic: The Case of the Midnight Shaving (JWP#23) - CaffieneKittySpace — LiveJournal
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Sherlock Holmes (Granada) Fanfic: The Case of the Midnight Shaving (JWP#23)
Title: The Case of the Midnight Shaving
Fandom: Sherlock Holmes (Granada)
Alternate Postings: AO3
Rating/Content: PG13, pun, silliness, case-fic,
Warnings: none
Word Count: 935
Disclaimer: Not my world.
Notes: Written for watsons_woes July Writing Prompt #23: The Lowest and Highest Form of Humour. Use a pun. Fair warning.

Summary: The man standing in the doorway of our sitting room flushed furiously, right to the top of his bald pate. "I demand my case be taken seriously!"

The Case of the Midnight Shaving

The man standing in the doorway of our sitting room flushed furiously, right to the top of his bald pate. "I demand my case be taken seriously!"

"Whatever for, Mr Klein? The 'attack' on your person did nothing that nature was not already in the process of doing." Holmes' mouth twitched as he eyed the man's bald head. "By the state of your hat and collar you have been losing hair for some time."

"I am thirty-five years old and I was until this morning possessed of a fine and full head of hair!"

Holmes merely hummed.

As humorous as my friend might find this infuriated man's sudden baldness and his insistence that some miscreant had maliciously invaded his bedchambers and shaved every hair off his head, I was duty-bound as a doctor to inquire about medical causes.

"Have you been unwell recently, or noticed any rash?"

The man thumped his chest. "I, sir, am hale and hearty, aside from some minor digestive upsets now and then. However, I have thyme with every meal. The ancient Romans knew it prevented poisoning."

I felt my eyebrows rise. "Poisoning?"

"Did they really?" purred Holmes, seating himself in his chair.

"They most certainly did!" Mr Klein affirmed.

I frowned. "Thyme does well in warding off infections, we use it at the surgery. I don't recall a case of it being an antidote to poison, though."

"Well, of course not, Watson." Holmes smirked languidly from his repose. "You are, after all, not an ancient Roman."

Klein harrumphed. "Yes, well, besides the proof against poisoning, I also consume it for its renowned properties of bolstering bravery and courage. I am in constant need of such due to the endless stream of glad-handing malefactors I encounter. Turn-coats all. I expect to be poisoned by any of them at any time."

"Ahhh," I said, gently. "Do you often feel you are surrounded by enemies?"

Klein scoffed. "None of these imbeciles have the wits to be a proper enemy."

"I commiserate with you in that regard, Mr Klein," Holmes said.

I sighed. "Regardless, your nausea may be due to too much spice in your food. If you eat thyme with most meals-"

"Not most meals, every meal! In my morning eggs, in my luncheon soups, thyme-crusted lamb for supper. I have instructed my cook to make liberal use of the herb everywhere possible. I even regularly take a tisane of thyme before bed."

My eyebrows rose again. "Surely you must go through vast quantities of thyme using that much! Do you grow it yourself?"

"No, I have a steady supply of it arriving in weekly shipments from the Continent. My family has land-holdings in Erzgebirge, in Germany. A few mines, some tenant farmers. I'll not trust the free market of London not to sell me ground hemlock instead of proper thyme!" Mr Klein sniffed. "All the thyme I use is grown on my family's lands and shipped to me. Aside from a paltry amount for the shipping, I don't pay a penny for it."

"That would save on the cost, but-" I lost my train of thought when I realized Holmes was laughing.

"What is so humourous, sir!" Klein huffed, outraged.

"What sort of mines does your family have in Erzgebirge?" Holmes said through his rough chuckle. "Arsenic perhaps? Pitchblende?"

I began to gain an inkling of what my friend had realized, and looked again at Mr Klein's bald head, and indeed, bald face.

"Some, both, yes," Klein spluttered brusquely. "What business is it of yours?"

"Oh, none of mine I assure you. However it is very much business of yours." Holmes lifted his hand to his lips to stifle a smirk. "The only one shaving your hair or poisoning you, Mr Klein, is your very own self."

"What!?" Klein staggered back, a hand pressed to his chest. "I never did anything of the sort!!"

"That thyme you are bringing in from the continent was grown near one such mine, likely downhill from the mine tailings, which have leached extensively into the groundwater. The thyme which you are constantly consuming is likely to contain a high level of arsenic, which, Doctor?" Holmes gestured to me.

"Which has as a symptom of chronic heavy exposure, the symptom of hair loss." I smiled apologetically. "Nausea as well."

Klein's jaw dropped. "It can't be! Thyme is proof against poisoning, not poison itself!"

Holmes patted the distressed man on the shoulder. "If you had purchased your thyme from a local producer, or grown it yourself in English soil, you would have been fine. However, since you chose to bring in thyme from an area heavy with the mining of heavy metals, the amount and constancy you used it has caused a toxic buildup of these elements in your anatomy. For that I shall recommend you consult a physician with all haste. In fact, I happen to know an excellent one." Holmes twitched a smile in my direction.

I straightened my posture and smiled back, flattered.

"I have my own physician! Good day, sir!" Klein jammed his hat onto his hairless head and departing our sitting room.

"Good day to you as well, Mr Klein!" Holmes called down the stairs.

I shook my head. "A constant diet of arsenic. It would cause definite hair loss, though I'm surprised he didn't notice it happening over the past several months, and instead thought someone had-" I let out an involuntary guffaw. "Gained entrance to his rooms and shaved him bald in the night!"

"Vanity tells a person pleasing lies," Holmes sat back down in his chair, steepling his fingers.

"Until this final catastrophic moulting, he could believe there was nothing wrong." I chuckled. "And then his vanity concocts a tale of hair-thieves shaving him in the night!"

"Indeed," Holmes said, with a roguish twinkle. "But now we know the whole truth about the perpetrator of this 'crime', Watson."

"What's that, Holmes?" I inquired gamely.

Holmes smirked.

"'The shipped-in thyme shaved Klein.'"


(that's it)

Post Notes: All my knowledge of thyme lore comes from Hungry History's Page on Thyme, and the rest of the miscellaneous info about mining and arsenic poisoning and the Erzgebirge region comes from Wikipedia.

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Current Mood: rushed rushed

2 comments or Leave a comment
capt_facepalm From: capt_facepalm Date: July 27th, 2016 09:41 am (UTC) (Link)
(The only good pun is a bad pun)
Also I like all the detail you researched for this, and this *feels* very Granada. Smirky Brett Holmes is the best Holmes.
caffienekitty From: caffienekitty Date: August 3rd, 2016 08:00 am (UTC) (Link)
I thought I'd responded to this comment, sorry.

Very glad the Granada feel came through, I haven't watched any Granada for a long while, I really ought to.
2 comments or Leave a comment