Title: Three Ways Sherlock Conformed to His Stereotype

Author: starjenni

Disclaimer: Not mine!

Pairings: Sherlock, John, friendship.

Warnings: None.

Rating: K+

Spoilers: None.

Summary: "It's a hat."

Urge to roll eyes, quashed. "Yes. I can see that."

"It's called a deerstalker."


To be fair, putting it under a throw under a cushion under a book on John's chair was a stupid place to put it, but John was far too riddled with guilt by the time it had happened to think about this. Plus, he was far too used to Sherlock's strange habits to be unable to excuse himself from not checking every surface for strange objects before he sat on it. But there was no point in regrets now, the damage had been done.

It was more Sherlock's horrified expression a moment before the loud crack that warned John of what he had done, and he leapt up immediately, but it was far too late.

He held up the broken pieces of Sherlock's violin to the light.

"Oh," he said, feeling numb.

"Oh," Sherlock said - no, whimpered.

It would have probably have been all right if John hadn't flung himself so heavily on the chair, but he had had a long day in the surgery and he had been feeling tired and overdramatic…

He pulled out another shattered fragment and said, "Uh."

Sherlock sat down very slowly on his own chair. John said, not looking at him at all, "Sherlock - I - er - God, I'm so sorry - "

"That was my violin," Sherlock said dully, and this time John did look at him, and the lost expression on Sherlock's face was enough to double his guilt. "My mother gave that to me," Sherlock continued, his voice still emotionless.

Sherlock's dead mother, John's conscience reminded him.

"When I was six," Sherlock added, effectively furthering the hole in John's stomach even more, and held his hand out for a shard of the recently deceased. John gave it to him, numbly.

"I'll get you a new one," he said. "I promise, I - Sherlock, I'm sorry."

Sherlock was too busy stroking the broken surface to reply, his hair hanging over his face.

John fled.

He came back some time later, and Sherlock didn't have to be the genius that he admittedly was to see that the case he was holding was violin shaped.

He cocked an eyebrow at John, who fidgeted under his gaze (he loved it when he did that).

"I was in Camden," John muttered, "And I mean, I saw it, I wondered if - I mean, it doesn't matter if it's any good, I don't know, I just - " He cut himself off and awkwardly held out the violin case.

Sherlock took it, because not taking it would be rude, and opened the case slowly.

And stared.

Can't be…

"Is it okay?" John was burbling somewhere in the suddenly misty background. "It didn't cost much if it isn't - I just - "

Sherlock, fingers trembling, very carefully removed the violin from its case. "Where," he said hoarsely, "Did you find this?"

"Uh. Just this antique place, back of the shop?" The confusion in John's voice was evident, but Sherlock was too busy being in shock to relieve it.

"How much?" he whispered.

"Not much - fifteen quid." John examined Sherlock, who was looking like he had been hit by a car. "Why?" he asked tentatively.

"Do you know what this is?" Sherlock whispered. "It's a Stradivarius."

"Oh." This meant absolutely nothing to John. "Is that good?" he tried.

Sherlock went white and touched the strings like a hard-travelled pilgrim finally touching their shrine.

"So it's good?" John prompted.

Very carefully, Sherlock picked the bow out of the case and then, closing his eyes as he did it, drew the bow across the strings. The note sounded nice to John, but he didn't know the first thing about violins.

However, Sherlock's sudden smile in response to the music, not razor-edged and cutting like his usual smile, but gentle and blissful and full of peace, answered John's question for him.

"Good," he said, and went into the kitchen to unpack the shopping.

He didn't complain at Sherlock's playing after that, even when it continued into the wee hours of the morning - he had never seen Sherlock so happy and that was more than worth a few hours of lost sleep.


"Merry Christmas," said John, and held out the offending article.

Sherlock eyed it warily. "What is it?"

John shifted. "It's a hat."

Urge to roll eyes, quashed. "Yes. I can see that."

"It's called a deerstalker."

Sherlock held it up. The tweed side flaps flopped around unenthusiastically. "I see," he said.

John scratched his head. "I don't know what I…I saw it in a shop and for some reason I thought. I don't know, it was like it already belonged to you."

Sherlock looked over at John. He hated Christmas, just like he hated everything to do with the ordinary, and he thanked God that John hadn't wormed his birthday date out of him yet, but John seemed to find it important.

He sighed, and wondered why he bothered (he shouldn't care about John's feelings, why did he care?), and put the hat on.

John's expression changed. "That's odd," he said.

"That would be the ear flaps," Sherlock said.

John shook his head. "No, no…I mean. It…kind of suits you."

Sherlock raised his eyebrows. He felt like a total idiot, but he wasn't going to tell John that. He shifted around to the mirror and inspected himself.

"Oh," he said, finally, and not mockingly. John joined him, the two of them staring into the mirror together.

"You see what I mean?" he said.

Sherlock nodded, slowly. It looked stupid, old-fashioned and peculiar, and it didn't match with his usual neat, trimmed suit, but…there was no denying that it gave him a certain…something. Maybe it matched the look in his eyes or something. But it wasn't bad exactly.

It made him look like…him.

"Thank you for the hat," he said, and realised he meant it, which was most probably the biggest shock of the day.

He wondered what Lestrade would say if he turned up at a crime scene wearing it.


John walked into the room and said, "Uh."

Sherlock, lying upside down on the sofa, with his legs up against the wall, withdrew the pipe from his mouth and said languidly, "Yes, John?"

John stared. "You have a pipe."

"Excellent deduction," Sherlock replied, and put the pipe back in his mouth, returning his gaze to the ceiling.

John frowned. "But I thought you were trying to quit smoking?"

"I am." Sherlock waved an arm full of nicotine patches at John and grinned around the pipe. "I'm preparing for my part."

John sighed, sat himself down on his chair and amused himself with measuring how long Sherlock's legs were. "Part?"

Sherlock took a deep breath, which meant he was about to start a good, long rant. "In order to decipher if James Turnbury is really responsible for the House Lane murders, I have to get closer to him, to the profession he works in, because I think that's how he meets his victims - and his contacts. He's a script writer, therefore I needed to get onto the stage, in a performance he was working on, therefore I needed to convince him and the director to take me on as an actor."

John frowned. "You auditioned for his play?"

Sherlock shrugged upside down, a very bizarre movement. "Wasn't hard. He's doing some boring Victorian murder mystery, and apparently I could look wonderfully Victorian." He put the pipe back in his mouth and grinned at John lopsidedly.

John surveyed him, at the pipe clenched between his teeth. Even upside down, he could see that Sherlock had a point. Like with the hat, a pipe seemed to fit Sherlock. As if he should have been born with it, or created with it, or something.

He thought about the acting abilities that he had seen Sherlock come up with before, the crocodile tears, his talent for worming his way into any situation if he needed to. He would burn the stage down.

"Sounds good," he said diplomatically.

Sherlock smiled at John hopefully around the pipe. "Does that mean you'll come and watch?"

John smiled back, because Sherlock looking like that was irresistible. "Wouldn't miss it for the world."