Disclaimer: Sherlock and John belong to ACD's grey cells, and each other in that order... Although the B.B.C. version receives full credit for inspiring me to put a pen to paper.
Author's notes: Written for a prompt (as in the summary) on the Sherlock BBC Kink Meme, so credit for inspiration goes to the OP. Please do review!
There had been five men… six, if you counted the driver of the van they were currently stuffed in. In a detached corner of his mind, John smiled as he felt a perverse pride that all the five had been needed for the kidnapping. The smile disappeared when he saw blood trickle down Sherlock's nose.
He slid over to his friend, who was sitting with his eyes closed, leaning against the side of the moving van. Even then, John could deduce that the Detective was analysing the twists and turns the van was taking…a human GPS at work. John didn't say a word. He only placed a hand on his shoulder to brace him as he tilted his head slightly backwards to halt the bleeding. Sherlock whined at the intrusion, but didn't protest.
John understood why, when he suddenly threw his head forward and had a long, dry coughing fit.
He stopped, breathing heavily through his mouth for the moment, as John soothingly rubbed his back. Sherlock threw him a wry grin. "Shouldn't have said no to the inane movie marathon tonight, right?"
John saw the slightly furrowed eyebrows that belied the grin. He was worried and feeling guilty, especially for him. No matter how many scrapes they got into, or how many times John tried to reassure him, that (as proven by Mycroft) an occasional kidnapping was only good for his limp, Sherlock never stopped feeling guilty.
He grinned back, trying to defuse the tension. "James Bond is highly overrated. Besides, actually doing what he does, beats watching him have all the fun. Although I do admit that it would have been quite a bonus, if you had been a leggy blonde. He does get to sleep with them, when the adventure is over."
Sherlock had a completely innocent expression on his face. "That shouldn't be a problem. You have my permission to shag me if you wish, after we are done here. I already possess a blonde-haired wig, among my disguises." He maintained the deadpan expression for a whole of ten seconds, before they burst out laughing together.
Because he was laughing, he didn't realise immediately, when Sherlock started coughing again…this time he couldn't stop…
"Sherlock…Sherlock…what the hell!"
Dr. John Watson, ex-RAMC veteran, had a lot of experience patching up broken human bodies in the middle of a battlefield. He thought he had run the entire gamut, when it came to the term 'difficult patient'. Of course, at the time he hadn't met Sherlock Holmes…
The problem wasn't that the man thought that his body was just transport, or that doctors were a nest of vipers in general, or that a kidnapping was preferable to a Hospital stay. The problem was that John was his friend as well as a doctor…so all of the above was automatically transferred to his shoulders, by default. Being the consummate professional, he took it in his stride, not flinching even when Sherlock had collapsed like a damsel in distress at a crime-scene, purely out of starvation…
Now he realised that he had only been able to keep it together, because he had known, he could help.
Sherlock was wheezing audibly now, while coughing intermittently, clawing at his collar like it was strangling him. John knew that he was trying to say something, but wasn't finding the breath to string two words together. "John…. Inhaler…coat…"
Shit! Sherlock was a bloody asthmatic… when they got through this; John was going to kill him…
John immediately grabbed him by the shoulders propping him up straighter; slumping or lying down would only make it worse. His heart rate and respiratory rate were both alarmingly elevated. "HEY!" he yelled towards the driver's side of the van, while loosening the buttons of Sherlock's shirt. "YOU BLOODY SODS…" he tried again…No one responded.
He balanced his friend gingerly, leaning to whisper reassuringly in his ear, "Hold on, Sherlock, just be calm, breathe… I'll be right back…" Unable to speak, Sherlock grabbed his wrist tight, showing that he understood.
Without thinking, John threw himself desperately against the driver's partition, yelling even louder. He slammed his fists, kicked, and threw himself bodily over and over again, ignoring his screaming shoulder. Finally, he felt the van slowing down and coming to a stop.
When he got back to his friend's side, he saw that his normally sharp eyes were glassy, his lips cyanotic and his breathing shallow. He had slumped downward, not having the energy to keep himself upright anymore. John pulled the limp form towards him so that he was cradling Sherlock's back against his front, maintaining the propped-up position. He wrapped his arms around his chest in a loose embrace, grabbing both his hands in his own, using one of his hands to monitor the pulse. Sherlock's hands were very cold.
He pinched him, trying to arouse him into making more of effort to breathe, while whispering viciously in Sherlock's ear. "Don't you dare!...You have promised me a shag when we get home. You better keep your promise."
He couldn't see Sherlock's face, but there was a painful shuddering breath in response. The door to the back of the van was flung open. John squinted against the light, not waiting to see who it was, taking in a deep breath to start screaming bloody murder, only to realise that the person climbing urgently into the back of the van…was Anthea.
John Watson had never felt more relieved to see someone, in his entire life…
The ambulance had taken a further two minutes to arrive, at which point Sherlock had stopped breathing and his O2 sats had dropped to alarming levels. He had to be intubated enroute, and was directly shifted to Intensive Care on arrival. It was a harrowing hour during which John sat alone in the waiting room, torturing himself, calculating the probability of possible brain damage.
Sherlock was stabilised and shifted to a private room, where John was given complete access, courtesy Anthea. It was hours later when Sherlock finally regained consciousness, and focussed bleary eyes on John to mutter, "Now let's see YOU keep your word!"
On hearing those words, John gave a shaky laugh and collapsed in his chair out of sheer relief, eyes hidden behind trembling fingers…
"How long are you going to persist in not talking to me?"
"Am I expected to apologise, when I am clearly not at fault in this instance?"
"I did have the inhaler in my coat pocket, you know. Is it my mistake if the coat was left behind in the skirmish?"
"If you must know, I'm not an asthmatic per se. I just experience exacerbations during the winter months and I take all the pre-emptive medications. I just missed one dose, as we were being kidnapped…Surely, that doesn't make it my fault, right? JOHN?"
"Fine…If you're not going to listen to reason…have it your way!"
"John...please talk to me…"
"...In the end you stopped breathing, Sherlock… you were in my arms, and you weren't breathing… Can you possibly understand what that was like?"
"But that's a normal end-stage in an untreated severe Asthma attack, when the patient…Oh! ..ok…"
"When I was three, I had Chicken pox, from which I made a full recovery. I was bitten by the neighbour's dog when I was seven, and then developed a serious allergic reaction to the anti-rabies shot. I'm also allergic to mint, but not peanuts."
" ? "
"I had my first asthma attack when I was ten. I need an inhaler, only for the winter months each year. I have stopped using drugs since two years before meeting you. Despite the drug use during Uni, I haven't contracted any blood-borne diseases or STD's…"
"Sherlock…you're a daft bastard!"
"That maybe…but this is essential information. After all potential shagging partners should know the worst about each other…"