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Kittens Cure Confusion
Sherlock's POV (sort of)
Sherlock Holmes turned his head slightly at the sound of soft foot falls coming from the stairs up to John Watson's room.
He was too busy setting his apartment back to its original state, before the fake drugs bust. The jar of human eyes on the counter was virtually calling for him to put it back in the microwave. He never had managed to figure out what it would do to them. He picked up the jar gingerly and dusted it off while he heard the soft footsteps enter the living room. He didn't so much as glance at John while he seated himself at the table and watched Sherlock as he placed the jar gently on the glass plate of the microwave and shut the door with a dramatic flick of his wrist.
"Are you always this dramatic?" The question came drowsily from the table behind the young sociopath.
Sherlock turned to his companion with a raised brow, questioning him silently.
"Of course," John said with a small chuckle. "What a stupid question."
Sherlock smiled slightly and inclined his head in a greeting, then turned back to his explosive experiment.
Sherlock kept his gaze locked on the jar of eyes as it slowly revolved around and around on the glass plate of the microwave. He refused to become curious about what John was doing behind him. He refused to glance, just to check.
"Toast?" John asked breaking Sherlock's mental argument. Now, he didn't have a choice but to look at him, did he?
"I'm sorry, what?" He asked haughtily turning to his greying companion.
"Would you like some toast while I'm here?" He asked again, hand poised over the toaster with another piece of white bread.
Sherlock shook his head briskly. "No, no. That's quite alright Watson. I'm more of a tea person." Sherlock noted that by the slight incline of John's shoulder it indicated that he hadn't slept well or needed more sleep. But John's eyes didn't betray any sign that he was, indeed, tired. Sherlock didn't blame him. John obviously wasn't used to this type of warfare. The one that happened in everyday life, crime and the science of deduction.
"Tea? Is that all?" John voiced his question as Sherlock turned back to the microwave.
"Yes, that is all." Sherlock replied.
"No wonder you're so skinny." John commented. "If all you have in the morning is tea."
Sherlock frowned at his comment. "I just prefer something hot to drink in the morning. Also, it keeps me awake."
Sherlock could practically feel John roll his eyes and move to the cupboards to search for the mugs. There was a slight clatter from behind him but he kept his gaze on the microwave. He heard John stirring his tea slowly and then dropping the spoon into the sink. He also heard the fridge opened and then closed with a sigh.
"There's no milk." John stated.
"Then go and get some." Sherlock muttered. "I like my tea with milk."
John murmured something before moving out of the kitchen and into the corridor.
Sherlock relaxed slightly and collapsed into a chair. Never having lived with anyone before it was all quite new. John could possibly have been the first person ever to have acknowledged his 'gift' as amazing. He said it several times. And even after solving the crime of the 'suicides' and killing the serial killer responsible, John didn't seem to want to leave. It was probably one of the simplest things in the world to Sherlock but it was definitely the most difficult. He would treat John exactly the same as the others but he still wanted to stay. It was understandable seeing as John missed the thrill of war and being with Sherlock gave him that same thrill but it still confused the supposed sociopath. Should he treat John as anything more than an assistant? No, of course not. They weren't friends just flat mates that tolerated each other. No, they weren't friends.
Sherlock frowned as he watched the eyes in the jar melt quickly in the hot microwave. That wasn't the effect he was hoping for. He opened the microwave and wrapped a hand around the jar. The jar was burning hot and Sherlock withdrew his hand with a yell of pain. He glanced at his red hot palm and cursed. He didn't know what to do.
John reached the ground floor of the house and reached for his coat on the hanger. He heard the scraping of a chair in Mrs Hudson's kitchen and he called a good morning as he slung his arms through his coat.
Mrs Hudson emerged from beside the stairs with a piece of toast in her wrinkled hand. "Good morning Mr Watson. Is there something wrong?"
John smiled warmly at her and shook his head. "No nothing's wrong. We ran out of milk."
Mrs Hudson frowned and scolded her new tenant. "You should've asked! Use some of mine." She was just about to move back into her kitchen to grab the milk but John stopped her by taking her arm.
"No, it's fine. I would have to go later anyway." He said and sighed with relief when Mrs Hudson moved back into her kitchen with little protest. John really didn't want to go back to that silent kitchen just yet. Sherlock was a strange man, yes but his behaviour was completely anti social and… somehow… comforting. He didn't like that he liked being in his company, even when the strange detective was staring at a microwave cooking a jar full of eyes. Oh yes, very strange man.
He left the house and took to the street. It was still early so not many people were walking. A few in cars but not many on the pavement, which makes spotting someone tailing you much easier than you would've thought.
A man with black sun glasses and a crisp black suit followed John up to the corner shop and went into the antique's shop next door.
John didn't like it. Who would want to follow him? And why the hell would the guy tailing him look like something from 'Men In Black'?
He shook his head smiling. It was so obvious it was almost unbelievable.
John picked up a pint of semi-skimmed milk and a paper and paid the friendly Indian cashier.
He left the shop and casually made his way back to 221 Baker's Street. The man was still following him but when he reached the door to the house his tail carried on walking until his turned into a dark alley. Probably to wait there until Sherlock or John left the house again. John rolled his eyes but was still slightly unnerved by the following agent like man.
He entered the house and was immediately greeted with a few crashes that could be heard from upstairs, in his and Sherlock's apartment.
Mrs Hudson was anxiously staring up at the apartment from the bottom of the stairs. She spotted John and quickly began pulling and pushing him up the stairs. "Oh, John! Sherlock's done something! I don't know what but he's been bashing about up there for 5 minutes! You're a doctor, aren't you? I heard in cry out and went up to see what was wrong but he just pushed me out again!"
John raised a brow but didn't say anything. Knowing how obsessive the detective could be he probably burnt himself on the jar of eyes. Yes, that was likely.
He entered the living room and saw Sherlock running around the living room with clutching his wrist. The dramatic man was stumbling all over the place until he spotted John standing, stunned, in the doorway.
"What on earth are you doing?" John asked incredulous.
Sherlock appeared to stutter. "Er… nothing. I was just…" He glanced to the window where he spotted a cat sitting on the sill. "I was shooing this cat away! Yes! That was all!"
John frowned a little. He was wrong? "Oh, alright." He held up the semi-skimmed milk for the detective to see. "I've got the milk."
Sherlock reached for the milk with his left hand. Odd, John thought. He could've sworn Sherlock was right handed.
As Sherlock extended his hand for the milk John snapped an experienced hand out and grabbed the detective's wrist. Sherlock jolted in surprise and tried to pull his hand back but John a firm grip. Like holding a rifle.
Sure enough, Sherlock's hand was red and his palm was already beginning to blister. John smirked to himself. So he was right.
"You burnt yourself on that jar of eyes, didn't you?" John asked his amusement radiating through his voice.
Sherlock managed to snatch his hand away and he stalked over to the kitchen not sparing John a second glance.
John followed his strange companion into the kitchen, smirk still in place. "You should really put a dressing on that." He commented.
Sherlock refused to acknowledge he had spoken which made John chuckle quietly to himself. John made it his business to help the man who was currently trying to fix another mug of tea with one hand. He moved back to the doorway of the living room and called down the stairs to Mrs Hudson. "It's alright Mrs Hudson! He's fine!"
Then he moved upstairs to his own bathroom (only because he knew where the medical kit was in there and not in Sherlock's bathroom).
When he arrived back in the kitchen he didn't look at Sherlock as he set the medical kit down and took out the bandages and tape.
Sherlock pursed his lips in annoyance. "I don't need any of that." He said sharply, hiding his injured hand from view.
"Yes, you do." John replied firmly not at all fazed by the malice in the comment.
Sherlock scoffed but reluctantly placed his right hand, palm up, on the table and let John bandage it. John noticed, from the corner of his eye, that Sherlock didn't flinch at all as he bandaged his hand. Not once. He just calmly sipped his tea from the mug in his left hand.
John tightened the bandage, perhaps more than he normally would just to see if he could get a reaction, and taped it.
"Are you done?" Came the impatient question of his flat mate.
"Yes." John replied slightly disappointed that his flat mate had a very high tolerance for pain.
"Good!" Sherlock suddenly exclaimed dragging John by the wrist toward the door again.
"Where are we going?" John asked still slightly shocked from their sudden departure.
"We're going to see a friend of mine." Sherlock murmured, completely ignoring Mrs Hudson when she came out of the kitchen to greet them.
"Sorry Mrs Hudson. It's urgent." Was all the John could tell the old landlady before he was dragged out of the door and half way down the street before they could hail a taxi.
After telling the driver where it was that he wanted to go, there was silence in the taxi. Sherlock loved working in complete silence so it was good that John didn't have anymore questions. They'd only known each other for a few days and were already comfortable with each other's presence.
Sherlock noticed the black car that was now tailing them and by the glances that John sent through the back window, he had too.
"Don't worry, Watson." Sherlock reassured him. "It's just Mycroft."
"Mycroft? Your brother, Mycroft?" John asked and smacked himself on the forehead mentally.
Sherlock scoffed. "Are there any other Mycroft's that you know of?"
John didn't bother to answer the obvious question. Of course there would only be one Mycroft. It's just such an unusual name, quite like Sherlock, John surmised.
The rest of the journey was silent. Sherlock continued to ponder on problem after problem and John… well… John just stared out the window and wondered what the hell he was doing in a taxi going to see a 'friend' of Sherlock's and considering the fact that he was the closest thing to a friend Sherlock had John assumed this man was either an enemy or someone he had helped out of a prison sentence.
The taxi stopped with a jerk and John got out onto the pavement followed shortly by Sherlock.
"John," Sherlock addressed the soldier. "I need you to wait out here until I return."
John nodded and Sherlock jogged up the steps to a large house with an ominous black door. John pulled the collar of his coat up against the biting wind and jogged lightly on the spot. Some people looked at him curiously and he just smiled warmly and waved to them as they past feeling slightly better at the warm smiles he got in return.
John glanced around the street and noticed his tail 'casually' leaning against a tree not too far down the road.
John jogged up to the man, partly to try and raise his body heat, and partly because he wanted to have a chat with his 'stalker'.
"Excuse me," John said as he reached the suited man. "Do you have the time?"
The man grunted, pulled his arm toward him and pulled up his sleeve. "7 o'clock." The man replied in a deep, gruff voice.
John nodded. "Thanks." He turned to leave but decided better of it. "Um, you aren't one of Mycroft's men, are you?"
The man seemed slightly stunned by the question. "Mycroft?" He asked sounding genuinely confused.
"You know," John said in a light teasing voice. "He's all business like and he has a cane… oh! And he's the one who sent you to… keep an eye on, John Watson and Sherlock Holmes."
The man's face became stony and he didn't answer my question verbally, but his expression was all the answer I needed.
"So what do you call him then?" John asked.
The man seemed to realise that John knew who he was and he sighed in annoyance and anxiousness. "Boss."
John chuckled and nodded in understanding. "That's so classic. It's like a proper James Bond film."
The man's mouth seemed to quirk upward at the comment. "Yeah, kind of."
John regarded the man for a second. "You aren't being a very good agent. Aren't you supposed to ignore me, or something?"
The man shook his head and turned his whole body around to face John. "I'm not an agent. I'm a babysitter."
John stared at the man, stunned. "A babysitter? You don't really look like a- hang on, you're babysitting Holmes?"
The man smiled slightly. "And you."
John scoffed. "I don't need babysitting." Though the amused comment did annoy him he didn't want to stop his conversation with this 'babysitter' of Mycroft's. Holmes wasn't someone you could ask questions and get actual answers, so John would have to get the information for himself. He wanted to know more about Mycroft and how powerful he was.
But he didn't need to strike up another conversation with the man because he started it. "So, you come here often?" He said with a smirk.
John smiled and shook his head. "Holmes' idea; not mine."
The man took off his glasses and looked around with a sigh.
"What's you're name?" John asked leaning against the same tree as the 'babysitter'. It would be nice to call him something other than 'the man' or 'the babysitter'.
"Rick." He chuckled quietly.
"John, but I suppose you already knew that." He said extending a hand across his body and toward Rick. Rick shook his with a large, calloused hand and returned it to his coat pocket.
"So," Again it was Rick who started the conversation. John felt slightly uncomfortable with the obvious want to keep up a conversation he felt from the other man. He wouldn't bother if he didn't want to know more about John Watson so what should he do? Brush him off? No, that would be horrible. "Are you and Holmes together?"
John was momentarily stunned by the question. "No, we're not. Why would you ask that?"
He glanced at Rick only to find a predatory smirk on the bigger man's face. John attempted to swallow the lump in his throat but it didn't seem to want to go. John pushed back off the tree, determined to get some distance between him and the other man but Rick obviously didn't like that idea because John felt a hand wrap completely around his arm and pull him back to the tree.
"Going already? Holmes hasn't come out yet." The man's predatory stare was enough to make John flinch and try to pull away from him.
John felt extremely uneasy with this man.
Suddenly Sherlock burst from the ominous black front door and jogged down the steps to the taxi. He didn't spare a glance at John as he got in the taxi.
John, certain that he would leave without him, jerked his hand out of the grip and ran to the car. He opened the door just as the taxi was about to pull out of the space.
John turned to stare at Sherlock accusingly. "You were just going to leave me?"
Sherlock didn't respond for quite a while and John was beginning to think he'd never get a response but Sherlock proved him wrong. "You seemed slightly busy with your friend." He spat.
John was shocked by the irritated comment. He noticed Sherlock wince slightly at the tone of voice he used but he didn't say anything else. John didn't say anything else. The taxi was silent but not the kind of silent that helped Sherlock think. No, this silence was awkward and confusing. Sherlock didn't like this type of silence at all.
Sherlock made a few more stops that John wasn't allowed to know about and a break at the café, then back to 221 Baker's Street and to Mrs Hudson.
Sherlock entered through the door and didn't bother to greet Mrs Hudson. He threw his trench coat and scarf onto the hanger and without a word took two steps at a time up to their apartment. Sherlock entered the living room and brought out his laptop. He logged onto the BBC news site and got out his nicotine patches. He heard John greet Mrs Hudson and inform her off their visits, but the conversation didn't last long because, well, John didn't know anything about what Sherlock was doing. And why should he know? It wasn't like he was really involved with what he was doing. A flash of the morning zipped across his mind; the burnt hand; the bandage; the 'dragging John out and into the taxi with him'; Okay, so he was slightly involved.
He scanned the pages and looked for something new, anything new.
A murder, a suicide, a robbery, anything to occupy his mind other than his flat mate. It was confusing. All of it was confusing. Why was John talking to the tail anyway? What on earth would have possessed him to do something like that? And what was he doing grabbing Watson like that? It just didn't make sense and everything made sense to Sherlock Holmes. But this one thing, he didn't understand, and it irritated him.
He finally came up to a conclusion, Watson was getting bored standing out in the cold and decided to find something out from the man. He was just about to walk back to the taxi when the man grabbed him in order to get some other information out of him.
Yes, that was plausible.
But something at the back of Sherlock's mind was saying it wasn't. That that excuse was just to try and make him feel better and he couldn't shake the feeling. It was gnawing away at the back of his mind and he couldn't stand it. A little voice was telling him that the man's expression had been conveying something completely different to someone wanting another's information. That same voice was also telling him that if he hadn't left the house when he did the tail could have pulled John to him and tried to –
Sherlock shook his head as that image seemed to put a very ill feeling in the pit of his stomach. It was strange that that little encounter was making him feel so… odd. He'd never before felt these things and therefore couldn't recognize what he was feeling. He could recognize every feeling in others. He could tell, just by looking at them. But this was all new. He didn't know what was happening but he didn't like it nor would he acknowledge it. He had enough to worry about… well actually he didn't.
He bashed the side of the laptop in frustration. Won't something happen!
He heard the soft foot falls from this morning and the sound seemed to echo around his brain. It seemed the only thing he could think of. This didn't make sense!
"I'm going to make some coffee, do you want some?" John asked wearily.
Sherlock didn't look up from the screen. "No. Tea, milk no sugar."
He heard John scoff lightly at the demanding tone he used but didn't comment on it. He kept his gaze fixed on the uneventful news. All of the people he'd seen today, all of his 'friends' hadn't heard anything new, nothing worth investigating. That was the worst news he could have possibly had. He was already becoming increasingly annoyed at his emotions and now he didn't have anything to do that would help him ignore them. He'd have to find something to occupy his mind other than John.
He shook his head vigorously. Who had said he was thinking about John? Oh, right, himself. But he wasn't thinking about John… was he? Could all of this be linked in with John? That's… impossible! Sherlock wasn't looking for a love interest! What on earth could be happening? He was too busy with his work! He'd told John himself that he was 'married to his work' in the sense that he wasn't looking for a relationship but he hadn't told him what his sexual orientation was. What was it anyway? Sherlock had never had a relationship to speak of, he was too strange for his class mates in school and university, they all hated him for his strange behaviour but this was different. John didn't hate him for his… gift, he thought it was amazing.
Deep down, when John had said that he was delighted. It was wonderful to be able to hear that someone thought you were amazing and appreciated you. Could that be it? Was he attracted to John because he showed him attention that no one else had before?
The questions and answers that rolled around in his head were almost too much to bear, that is until he was presented with a perfect cup of tea. Brilliant!
Sherlock snatched the tea from John's hand greedily and sipped it immediately. "Thank you, John."
John frowned. "You're welcome." He replied walking back into the kitchen to finish his coffee.
John was feeling a little shaken from the morning. The 'babysitter' Rick had been a little too comfortable to invade his personal space and John couldn't help but be slightly suspicious. Why would he just suddenly come onto him like that? No man had ever… well, not recently anyway. He was getting older and it didn't look like he would be getting any attention… sexually.
He sighed and placed this coffee cup in the sink.
"I'm going for a walk." He informed Sherlock and before the detective had time to respond he was out of the kitchen door and down the stairs grabbing his coat.
John stepped out of 221b Baker's Street and into the crisp night air. It was a cold night for July. The clouds hung heavily above London with the promise of a storm or at least, heavy rain. Not many people pottered about London at this hour. John didn't even know what time it was nor did he have any means to check it either. He sighed zipped his coat as high as it could go, dug his hands deep into his pockets, and set off down the road. John knew that there was a park at the end of the road. He could sit there and think properly. It didn't help anything that he felt eyes following him down the street. He couldn't see Rick anywhere but he knew he was watching him, he could feel it.
All the windows in the tall, old houses were curtained and dark. No one was awake at this time so John assumed that it was quite late. The little paranoid voice in the back of his head was warning him to never go into the shadows where no one could see what was happening but being a soldier; he never listened to that voice. He carried on down the road until he reached the pelican crossing that would lead him to the park entrance on the other side of the quiet (well, as quiet as a popular London road can get) road.
John reached the park five minutes later and sat down heavily on a bench. He sighed and began to fully take in his surroundings. Everything was mostly dark, apart from the eerie silver shine the moon gave to the park itself. The glass glowed faintly along with the trees and a box full of kittens… hold on what? A box full of kittens?
John stood at the odd sight. Across the grass area of the park sat a box of kitten with a piece of paper attached to the front.
Just as John began to jog over the green the heavens opened and the rain fell in torrents, soaking John as he reached the now soggy and falling apart card board box.
The kitten mewled helplessly as their box filled and spilled over causing the box to break and the kittens to lay splayed across the path of the park.
John fell to his knees near the kittens and forgot all his manly pride as he began cooing and reassuring them that everything would be fine.
He picked up the three little kittens and curled them into his coat for warmth and hopefully dryness. Luckily for the kittens the inside of John's coat proved to be warm and dry and they mewled their gratitude as John hugged them to his chest.
He noticed the piece of paper drifting down the path on a stream of water and quickly snatched it up reading while the rain poured down on his head.
The kittens had now fallen silent and were happily clawing at his chest and attempting to find a comfortable position for sleep.
John on the other hand read the soggy note in wonder. They had been abandoned in the park. That was cruel. He couldn't just leave them here!
The ink of the note was already fading and dripping off the page so he tossed it into the box and threw the box in the litter bin by a bench along the path.
John ran across the grassy sludge toward the shelter of a tree. The grass made squelching noises while he jogged along, the kitten bobbing their heads with the rhythm of his strides.
When he reached the tree he snuck a peek at the little bundles of fur, happy and safe in his coat. He smiled widely as he watched their alert faces. One, a black and white kitten, was slumped against his breast, her eyes slowly falling closed before she opened them wide again and this repeat until John let out a little chuckle. The vibrations sent the kittens into a panic and they began clambering up his chest again but they didn't get far before John pulled them back into the warmth of his coat.
He gently nuzzled the most inquisitive of the kittens, its fur bright ginger. The other cat was a grey, black, and white tabby which seemed the most nervous of the bunch.
John didn't need to wait long in his shelter before the rain thinned and became a slow drizzle from the sky. Not enough to matter.
He began the walk back to 221b Baker's Street and cuddled the kitten close to his chest. Perhaps it was good that he'd found the kittens. Sherlock would like them, he was sure.
John's been gone too long. Sherlock paced about their apartment in anxiousness while he awaited the return of his flat mate. He couldn't have been that angry. He didn't seem angry about Sherlock's need to ignore him. Well, that's what Sherlock hoped for.
What on heaven or earth could be taking him so long? It wasn't like a walk should take over an hour. They were in London after all. Granted, the park was quite a way down the road, and yes, it would've taken a while for the traffic to clear enough for him to cross but that didn't stop Sherlock's troubled thoughts from sprouting the ridiculous. Hit by a car; attacked in an alley; mugged in the park; the last two were out of desperation for answers because Sherlock knew full well that John had just recently left the army and therefore would be able to look after himself. Though all of those reasons told him not to worry he still was. It was completely illogical but he couldn't help it. The more he tried to reassure himself the more the absurd ideas about grizzly deaths and backstreet rapes invaded his mind. He shouldn't be thinking like this he knew but it just wasn't –
The sound of the door creaking open downstairs caught his attention immediately. He schooled his relieved expressions and seated himself at an armchair with the paper. He opened the news paper at a random page and began 'reading'.
Again, those soft footfalls echoed throughout the apartment as the only sound.
Sherlock schooled his expression to one of indifference when he glanced at a dishevelled John standing in the doorway with three fury heads poking out of his coat.
Sherlock blinked in surprise. Not only did John look like a drowned rat but it stirred a strange feeling in the pit of his stomach. Ignoring the feeling he glanced again at the kittens that were peeking out of John's coat to stare at him.
Sherlock dropped the news paper onto the side table and stood, pointing an accusing finger at the small animals. "What are those and why are they in my house?"
John scowled at the harsh tone Sherlock used. "Kittens and this isn't your house. It's our apartment."
Sherlock crossed his arms over his slim chest. "What are they doing here?"
John blinked quickly and realised there was no malice in that question. He smiled slightly. "I found them in the park." John said walking close to Sherlock and placed the black and white kitten in his arms. "They were in a cardboard box and it started to rain so the box broke. Poor little things, I couldn't have just left them out there in the rain. They would've died."
Sherlock stared with wide eyes at the kitten now in his arms. It didn't seem to want to do much apart from sleep. The kitten slumped against his arm and it's front paw and back leg hung off his arm limply.
John chuckled at the position of the kitten and the incredulous look on Sherlock's face. "It…It's…"
"Asleep… cute?" John asked expectantly.
"Asleep sounds good enough." Sherlock murmured trying and failing to place the kittens paw back onto his arm.
"They are cute thought, aren't they?" John said picking out the other two kittens from his coat and cradling them in his arms.
Sherlock didn't reply immediately. He found it extremely difficult to express his feelings toward the kitten in his arms but cute seemed like a good enough word… so why couldn't he say it?
Sherlock glanced up at his flat mate and saw for the first time what he meant. Cute, pretty, beautiful… they were just words. They couldn't describe some things, and right now, none of the those words could describe his feelings toward the small black and white kitten in his arms, or toward his flat mate, assistant, and first true friend, John Watson.
* Yeah.. he is a bit full on... after I wrote that scene I thought 'wow, that's a bit... creepy' but Mycroft wants to set Sherlock up with John because he thinks he'll get old and lonely, so he kind of gets his pervy-est agent bloke to come and look after them!
If you've got this far then GO YOU! Have a cookie... and a kitten because there were more in the box than the ones John took back :P
- Xiah-sensei XD