Without a Clue-do

"You want me to what?"

"Tell him that playing board games is part of normal pub-frequenting behavior, John."

"That is ridiculous. He might not hang around in pubs much, Lestrade, but he's not stupid. You know he's been for cases."

"Okay. What if you tell him that we have a game night? That it's tradition?"

"Who will be there?"

"You, me, Anderson, and Bradstreet."

"And you think he'll believe that?"

"He'll know we're up to something the moment he gets there. But if we could convince him that Anderson is unbeatable at Cluedo … that might tempt him..."


When John followed Sherlock into the pub, Sherlock rounded on him.

"You lied to me. These men do not usually spend their Thursday evenings playing games together!"

John sighed. "Fine. I wanted to see how you'd interact with a group of people you knew. You don't know many of the lads who come here regularly."

"Besides," Anderson piped up, "We all want to see me beat you at a game."

"What? You couldn't beat me at anything, Anderson."

"I've never been beat at Cluedo before, Mr. Sociopathic Detective."

"Cluedo! That travesty of detective work?"

"It's a logic puzzle, Sherlock. I'd think it'd be right up your street."

"Well, I certainly could beat Anderson at anything that involved logic and observation."

"Let's see you do it, then."

And thus the game began.

Sherlock never took his eyes off Anderson during the first two rounds. On the third he was beginning to look as smug as Anderson wasn't.

When his turn came at the end of the third round, Lestrade made his accusation.

And he was right.

"What? How did you do that?"

"I'm good at the game as well."

"Anderson's not a Cluedo champion."

"No. I am. I was afraid I would give you too many visual cues if you knew it was me. Anderson was a distraction."

"And well worth my time, too."

"Shut up, Anderson. That wasn't fair, Lestrade."

"It isn't against the rules of the game."

"I want to play again."

"Sorry, Sherlock. I have to be awake early tomorrow. Angela and I promised to take the kids to the zoo."

"A rematch, then. Next week."

"No. I know to quit when I'm ahead."


"Fine. Next week. And you can take the game home to practice."

Sherlock glared at Lestrade but he did take the proffered box before sweeping out of the pub.

Lestrade handed John a slip of paper as he turned to follow.

"Explanation of the markings the kids made. Use it well!"

John winked at Lestrade and walked out the door.