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The Discreet Charm Of Playing Cards

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I don’t understand why you bothered to find that annoying second class “job”. SH
 
I am your job. SH
 
I doubt that, since you’re not an incredibly boring epidemic of influenza. JW
 
And delete those inverted commas, if you please. JW
 
With my “second class job” we’re paying the electric bills that keep your precious microscope working. JW
 
Oh, how interesting. SH
 
This Diane Forrester is even duller than your last girlfriend. SH
 
Following around a parrot would be more fun. At least the conversation would be of some value. SH
 
John. SH
 
JOHN! SH
 
Stop screaming! I’m at “work”, remember? The one in which I wear a white coat and interact with human beings with more or less real health problems. Calm the hell down. JW
 
Accusing me of screaming is wholly inappropriate, John, since we’re communicating through text messages. SH
 
I’m bored. SH
 
No – you? Can’t be. Un-fucking-believable. Hell must be freezing. JW
 
Your sarcasm is as second class as your “job”. SH
 
I’ll make you swallow those inverted commas if you don’t stop using them RIGHT NOW. JW
 
Physically impossible, I’m afraid. SH
 
Don’t make me try. JW
                
Forrester is making  questionable use of a riding crop with his brother-in-law. I just knew he was the brother-in-law. SH
 
Sherlock, you beat up corpses with a riding crop. JW
 
CORPSES. JW
 
You just don’t have a say in the matter. JW
 
Anyway, I guess you’re less bored now. JW
 
Why? SH
 
I presume they’re not playing bridge. Are they? JW
 
No, John, what a stupid question. What’s bridge got to do with it?
 
…Nevermind. JW
 
I don’t understand. You’re out of context in an incomprehensible and frankly irritating way. SH
 
Oh for God’s s- bridge, poker, choose what the hell you want to! It was just-
 
You know what? Leave it. It’s useless. JW
 
They’re having sexual intercourse, John. Your mention of games involving cards is just nonsensical. JW
 
Exactly. As I said, leave it. JW
 
Your mind is very confused. Talking with you is unnerving. SH
 
Thank God a girl with chickenpox has arrived. An infectious disease is infinitely more pleasant than you. JW
 
I can see the husband heading home. If he’s wearing a silk scarf, then he is our man. SH
 
*
 
John, I need you to come here immediately. SH
 
Sherlock, I’m at work. I can’t. JW
 
Urgent. SH
 
Urgent for me too. Try knitting next time you feel bored. It has worked for mrs. Hudson. JW
 
Not bored. I’m currently locked inside a cupboard situated in Ricoletti’s bedroom. He’s come back earlier than predicted and has caught me by surprise. SH
 
!!! JW
 
Get out of that room right fucking now! If he finds you you’ll be a very unrecognizable corpse within minutes! SH
 
Do process what I have told you, John: he’s come back earlier than predicted. And he’s currently in his bedroom. It’s impossible for me to get out without being seen. SH
 
Jesus.  JW
 
How long do you think he’s going to stay there? JW
 
He’s playing bridge with his secretary. SH
 
If you will forgive me the theft of your witty sexual metaphors. SH
 
Shit. JW
 
According to recent researches in this field, the average duration of game of bridge played by a man in his fifties is about twelve minutes long. However, I have the suspect that the young lady will cheat, so maybe there’s hope of gaining something like two minutes. SH
 
Don’t move. Stay exactly where you are. And don’t do anything stupid. I’ll fetch Lestrade and I’ll come straight away. SH
 
I’m locked in a cupboard, John. Except Wonderland, I couldn’t go anywhere even if I tried. SH
 
It’s Narnia, Sherlock. JW
 
Is it? SH
 
Yes. You have to fall through a rabbit hole in order to arrive in Wonderland. JW
 
Hardly the most important detail at the moment. SH
 
You’re right. See you in 10. Please do try to stay alive. JW
 
I’ll do my best. SH
 
*
 
Tell me how you figured out that Ricoletti’s secretary would be cheating at bridge. JW
 
While he was completely immersed in the “game”, her right hand was slipping his diamond cuff links off his shirt. SH
 
I’m not the biggest expert on the joys of shared physical pleasure, but I doubt that, if she had been equally taken by the “game”, she would have shown such flawless coordination of the limbs. SH
 
“Joys of shared physical pleasure” is even worse than “game of bridge”, as euphemisms of that thing go. JW
 
In any case, that was fantastic. JW
 
John, you don’t even manage to say “that thing” out loud. SH
 
In any case, thank you. SH
 
You’re welcome. Now I know that if a woman tries to steal my cuff links, it certainly means she’s faking an orgasm. I feel brand new. JW
 
Please notice that I said “orgasm”. I’m perfectly able to call things by their own name. JW
 
Bravo, John. Your high school sex educator would be proud. SH
 
Didn’t have one. I was schooled by nuns. JW
 
Never had any lesson about it. I’m just a natural. JW
 
Celebrating Ricoletti’s imprisonment with all that brandy has significantly weakened your already poor mental faculties. SH
 
Well, I don’t think you’re managing any better. You’re texting me from upstairs. JW
 
Just because I haven’t got nothing better to do at the moment. SH
 
Sleeping is boring, isn’t it? JW
 
Oh God yes. SH
 
Try to entertain yourself in some way. JW
 
Someone would have to kill someone else in order to entertain me. SH
 
Sherlock, I love you – really, I do – but I just can’t get out on the street and ask a passerby to commit a murder. JW
 
Definitely not. You would manage to choose the most boring repressed murderer of all London. SH
 
And that would be such an unforgivable fault of mine, I presume. JW
 
I am deadly serious. SH
 
So am I. JW
 
Any progress in falling asleep? JW
 
Nope. SH
 
You know, Sherlock, usually when a man is alone in his bed and he can’t fall asleep, he plays a game of patience to relax a bit. Take it as a piece of advice from your trustworthy doctor. JW
 
Playing patience is boring.SH
 
Well, obviously is not as fun as playing bridge. But there are definitely more boring things. JW
 
I have the vague suspect that my trustworthy doctor is drunk and that tomorrow morning he will regret every single thing he’s saying to me. SH
 
I just said you could play a game of patience. It’s all very innocuous. JW
 
And with some luck the hangover will wipe all this ridiculous innuendos from my memory. JW
 
In my opinion all games of cards are extremely overvalued. People are obsessed by them because they can’t find anything more productive to do with their time. SH
 
John, are you sleeping? Wake up! SH
 
Calm your voice, Sherlock. It’s four in the morning, I could very well be sleeping. It would be human. JW
 
Human, yes. And boring. SH
 
Sherlock, can I ask a question? JW
 
Technically, you just did that. SH
 
Stop it. JW
 
Have you ever played cards in your life? JW
 
And with cards I mean everything, black jack, poker, bridge, with another person, with multiple persons… JW
 
I played two times. And for very little. SH
 
Nothing transcendental. Between unpleasant and curious, I’d say, even if productive from the point of view of gathering useful data. SH
 
Did you play with acquaintances? At least people you trusted? JW
 
No and yes. SH
 
Two strangers, one male and one female. SH
 
Both professional players. SH
 
I see. JW
 
So you didn’t like it. JW
 
No. SH
 
There’s a considerable minority of people that don’t enjoy playing cards. It’s statistical. SH
 
There’s nothing wrong with it. You don’t have to justify yourself. JW
 
I’m not. I’m merely making use of public data to strengthen what I’m saying. It’s very different. SH
 
There’s no need. As I told you once, it’s fine. JW
 
It’s all fine. JW
 
Good. SH
Sleep well, John. SH
 
Sleep well, Sherlock. JW
 
*
 
Lestrade just called me to ask me if I want to join him, Anderson and Donovan tonight for a game of poker. JW
 
He didn’t understand why I couldn’t stop laughing. JW
 
What a revolting mental image. SH
 
I took a coffee break. My 12 o’clock patient is late. JW
 
You home? JW
 
Yes, just got up. SH
 
You woke up at noon? That’s lovely, Your Majesty. JW
 
Thank you, you miserable peasant. SH
 
I deduce you managed to fall asleep last night. JW
 
What a stunning example of spirit of observation, John. You’re on fire today. SH
 
Arse. JW
 
I just complimented you, isn’t that nice? SH
 
No, it isn’t, you arse. JW
 
Anyway, I got so mad with boredom that I decided to follow your piece of advice. SH
 
My piece of advice? JW
 
Patience, John. SH
 
I told you to play a game of patience to fall asleep? Jesus, I must have been punch drunk. JW
 
Which doesn’t come as a surprise. My head is exploding. JW
 
John, drink your coffee and concentrate. SH
 
This childish jargon comes from you. I’m not explaining it to his creator. SH
 
Sherlock, I don’t understand. I swear! JW
 
It shouldn’t surprise me, and yet it does. SH
 
Try to circumnavigate the enormous rock called “literal sense” in the middle of the immense sea of nonsense that is your brain. SH
 
Oh. JW
 
OH. JW
 
Don’t repeat your intercalations. You’re not a demented parrot, even if sometimes I doubt it. SH
 
…Tell me that recommending you to play a game of patience as an euphemism of jerking off is the worst thing I’ve said to you last night.  JW
 
You boasted about your sexual prowess. SH
 
I don’t know which position it occupies in your personal hit parade of shame. SH
 
I’ll never drink again. JW
 
NEVER. JW
 
Liar. SH
 
Listen, I’m sorry. I didn’t understand what I was saying and I was drunk and lonely and pathetic. I’ll never do the same mistake again. I promise. JW
 
Don’t be too hard on yourself, John. As I said, you’re a fantastic conductor of light. SH
 
It’s been… enlightening. SH
 
Really? JW
 
Yes. SH
 
How so? JW
 
Your patient is outside your door, John. SH
 
How- JW
 
Nevermind. JW
 
Happy to have been of use. JW
 
You always are. SH
 
I admit I didn’t believe that you would demonstrate yourself useful in these particular circumstances – but, as you keep reminding me, even I make mistakes sometimes. SH
 
Gotta dash. But it doesn’t end here. JW
 
As you wish. SH
 
*
 
How’s Harry? SH
 
She’s fine now. The emergency consisted in a fall down the stairs, with consequent fracture of her right arm.
 
I am sorry. SH
 
You’re kind to say it. JW
 
I’m not sorry for her. I’m sorry for you. SH
 
I’m not the one who risked breaking his spine here, Sherlock. JW
 
You thought she had quit for real this time. SH
 
I know you believed so. SH
 
You always know everything, don’t you, Sherlock? You never miss one fucking thing. Do you want me to applaud you? Your hypertrophic ego must be desperately crying out for attention. JW
 
John, it’s not your fault. SH
 
It never has been. SH
 
I… JW
 
Nurse is calling me. Must go. JW
 
*
 
Forgive me. I said horrible things that I never meant. JW
 
There’s no need for apologies. You only said the naked truth. SH
 
Yes, I always know everything. Yes, I never miss one fucking thing. Yes, I want you to applaud me – as often as you can – and yes, I have an hypertrophic ego which is desperately missing you very much right now. SH
 
Thank you, Sherlock. JW
 
For what? SH
 
For making me laugh. I needed that. JW
 
Happy to have been of use. SH
 
For your knowledge, I’m also a discreet juggler. SH
 
?! JW
 
I needed to learn juggling for a case. I had to infiltrate myself in a circus. SH
 
Clown found hanged with the tightrope walker’s rope. SH
 
My God, how many things have you learned to do for a case?
 
Many. SH
 
Pertaining various fields of expertise. SH
 
I’m going to put the kettle on and check if Harry is sleeping. Back in a sec. JW
 
Here I am. JW
 
Tell me some other improbable thing you learned to do for a case. JW
 
Cooking Lebanese. SH
 
Classifying on the spot the value of stamps. SH
 
Dancing traditional Irish dances. SH
 
Crocheting. SH
 
I was right about the knitting then! JW
 
It was for a case, John. SH
 
Which one? “The Doily of Fear”?
 
It’s a shame that you started christening my triumphs only recently. SH
 
You serious? JW
 
Of course not. SH
 
Sherlock, I don’t want to steal your line but… I’m bored. JW
 
Welcome to the club. SH
 
Harry’s house is half an hour away from anything resembling civilization. Damn her and her hippie love for the countryside. It’s all so calm and silent it makes me want to scream. JW
 
Play a game of patience. SH
 
Ha bloody ha. JW
 
You’re never letting that one go, aren’t you?
 
I wasn’t talking about cards. SH
 
…Yes, I know, and that is why I asked you if you were pulling my leg. JW
 
I’m not. SH
 
I did it while you were making tea. You were right: there are things that are definitely more boring. SH
 
WHAT- JW
 
Why? JW
 
I think that the most common answer is that I wanted to play cards, but I didn’t have anyone to play with. SH
 
I thought you didn’t like playing cards. JW
 
I thought so myself. SH
 
But maybe I played with the wrong people. SH
 
I need to gather more data. It’s the only reliable process to find out the answer. SH
 
There’s… There’s someone, then? JW
 
It would seem so. SH
 
Well, call this someone. Maybe he will pick up. It’s not so late after all. JW
 
Again, I’ll confess my ignorance regarding these delicate social dynamics: but isn’t asking out of the blue availability for a sexual encounter a bit too forward? SH
 
Ask this person if she would like a game of cards. Just to get the ball to run. JW
 
He. SH
 
Ask HIM, then. JW
 
SH calling
 
You dialled the wrong number. JW
 
I certainly did not. SH
 
John? SH
 
I’m one hundred kilometers away from you. And I never wanted to play cards more in my whole life. JW
 
Not FAIR, Sherlock. JW
Should I have waited? SH
 
No. No, no, no. JW
 
It’s fine. It’s all fine. Fuck it - it’s so much more than fine. JW
 
Just, Sherlock… I’ll try to see the silver lining of things and take advantage of the distance to maintain a minimum of lucidity. I must be sure of something. JW
 
Go ahead. SH
 
I’m not jeopardizing… whatever it is that’s between us, for one, or two, or three games of cards. JW
 
It’s not a game for me. SH
 
No? JW
 
No. SH
 
What is it, then? JW
 
At the moment I can’t explain it with sufficient clarity of thought. I need empirical data. SH
 
The one thing I know is that, before meeting you, the mere thought of touching my own body repelled me. But now… SH
 
But now? JW
 
But now I feel a curiosity I’ve never felt before. I want to touch you. And I want you to touch me, too. If you’re amenable. SH
 
Amenable is a ridiculous euphemism. I don’t remember the last time I’ve been this euphoric. JW
 
Good. As I said, I’m very curious. I want to try a bit of everything. The thought that maybe sex with you won’t be disgusting like the other times is very stimulating. SH
 
And that’s the pinnacle of your romantic side, I think. JW
 
The pinnacle of something which has never existed, that is. SH
 
I appreciate the sincerity. JW
 
God, how I want you right now. Even your brilliant mind couldn’t understand how much I want you. JW
 
The feeling is entirely mutual. SH
 
Come back. SH
 
*
 
Sherlock, get out of the bathroom. Please. JW
 
Gve mE a m0ment(. SH
 
G0ddda56mmitt, I cANt thipe!11 SH
 
It’s normal. You came barely ten seconds ago. I don’t even know how you managed to stand up without falling. JW
 
It’s like someone has filled my skull with foam. And I don’t feel my legs. SH
 
I can’t think with order and method FOR GOD’S SAKE SH
 
Sherlock, IT’S PERFECTLY NORMAL. JW
 
Now get out from there. Exchanging texts while being just a door away is ridiculous. JW
 
The other times weren’t like this. I managed to remain detached even during climax. SH
 
Don’t call it “climax”, Jesus. JW
 
Get out so we can talk about it face to face. JW
 
Please. JW
 
It’s getting better. Way better. For an horrible moment I thought I couldn’t recall the periodical table by heart, but now I can. SH
 
Nice to hear that. Now GET OUT. JW
 
John? SH
 
This is the last thing you’re telling me via text. Next I’m kicking down the bathroom door. JW
 
It’s been… good. SH
 
Terrifying, but good. In a strange, unknown way. SH
 
If you don’t get out this very moment and you don’t let yourself be kissed to death, I’ll show you terrifying. JW