This is my first attempt at a Sherlock fic, and I know I have other fanfics I'm supossed to be writing, but Sherlock is just stuck in my head at the moment. So I had to write this.
Read and Review.
The loud and obnoxious ringing of the school bell woke John Watson from his sleep. His eyes shot open and he jerked up from where he had been leaning on his hand. He sighed and ran a hand through his hair, moving to shove his book and pens into his bag like the rest of the students in the room, trying to stop his still tired fingers from fumbling clumsily and giving him away. He stood from his chair and pulled his backpack onto one shoulder like he always did, his left hand covering his mouth as he yawned tiredly and walked to out of the room, joining the stream of students filing down the halls, impatient to get to lunch.
"Fell asleep again John!" Someone said from beside him, and he gave a guilty chuckle when he saw it was just Greg, one of his mates who was in a few of his classes. They'd been friends since they were about 10, and had played on the same footy team before John decided he was no good and gave it up. Almost everyone called him Lestrade, he preferred it that way. John was one of the only people who could call him Greg. "Better be careful, don't want another detention do you?"
He rolled his eyes and shifted his bag so it was a little more comfortable. "I just need to catch up on some sleep. I was up all night finishing that bloody Essay we got last week."
"That's not due till tomorrow, you knew that right?"
"I'm not an idiot Greg. But I have some other stuff to finish tonight, so I wanted to get it done." The lunch room wasn't too crowded today, John noticed happily as they walked into the slightly large room. All the students in their last two years of school had a lunch area separate to the rest of the school. It was a bit smaller than a normal lunch room, but they had a small café type shop, and the food here was better. The got in line and bought some lunch (Greg got a burger, and John got a cup of tea from the café), and they wandered over to their usual table.
John wasn't overly close with any of the people he hung out with other than Greg, but Greg was friends with Donovan and Anderson, so they usually sat with them at their table. His mood perked up a little when he noticed Molly sitting at the table too. Molly was a nice girl, she was pretty smart, though she was shy and didn't like to show it off. She spent a lot of her lunches in the science labs or the library, so John was pleased to see her when she did show up. She was better to talk to than Donovan or Anderson.
"Hello Molly." He greeted as he sat down next to her, giving her a friendly smile.
"Oh, hey John, did you get that essay done yet?"
"Yeah last night, didn't finish until past 2 in the bloody morning. Had a bit of trouble with some of the research, it took most of the time. Want to read over it for me?" He asked hopefully. She giggled in amusement, her hand already held out for it before the sentence finished leaving his mouth. He handed it to her gratefully after pulling it out of his bag. She read over most of his essays for him, to make sure he hadn't missed anything.
He sat quietly for a while after that, the others talking with each other and Molly reading over his essay, making a few notes in a red pen. Less than he'd thought. That was promising. He sipped quietly at his tea, but he was drawn from his own thoughts by Sally's loud voice. "Hey, what's the freak doing here?" She asked, a little louder than she needed too.
John glanced up and followed her gaze, already knowing who he was going to see. A familiar figure had just passed the table, and John almost missed the way his head tilted as Sally spoke, but that was the only reaction she got. "Since when does he come in here with the rest of us?" She sneered, arms folding over her chest. John felt it was a little rude but didn't say anything.
He glanced again across the room, to where Sherlock Holmes was standing in line at the little café. Sherlock was more than a bit weird, everybody knew that. And almost everybody let him know it too, John had noticed. He'd only come to the school a year before, and everybody was interested in the new kid at first, but that hadn't lasted long. Sherlock was a genius, nobody wanted to acknowledge it, but everybody knew it. And it made them uncomfortable. John had never actually spoken to the other teen, but he'd been told that Sherlock had a freakish ability to know things about people he shouldn't.
He placed an order at the counter and then stood to the side, one hand in his pocket; the other typing on his phone, something John had seen him doing a fair bit. He had no idea who he would be texting, and that question was a popular discussion with a lot of the other kids. Especially Donovan, Anderson and few of the other kids that hung around with them. The woman behind the counter handed him a coffee cup, the disposable kind, and then he was walking through the cafeteria, his long legs carrying him quickly across the room, like he had somewhere to be.
His gaze was on his phone as he walked past, paying no attention to anything around him, and considering that, John had to give him some credit, he was almost quick enough to miss the leg Anderson stuck out in front of him. John saw him notice it a second too late, the look of frustration that shot across his sharp features as he tripped, dropping his phone to grab the table on the other side and stop himself from falling completely. Some of his coffee spilt onto his hand, but he showed no sign that it hurt him, despite the steam rising from the cup, showing just how hot it was.
Everyone at the table, and those around who had seen started laughing, except John and Molly. Molly looked sad and just looked down at the table, obviously not game enough to say anything.
"Come on Anderson," John said, though he had a smile on his face as he spoke, "Don't be a dick, leave him be." John didn't like to cause trouble like the others did, he didn't actually bully anyone. He had too strong a moral code for that, but just like most teenagers, he was drawn in to stupid games, couldn't help be but at least a little amused by simple things.
Sherlock quickly scooped his phone off the ground, sliding it into his pocket and straightened the expensive looking jacket he wore, which was really quite tight. But he'd been dressing like that since he'd started coming to the school, tight shirts and tight jackets, and black coats when it was cold.
"Have a nice trip freak?" Sally asked, causing everyone to laugh again.
He wiped his hand on a tissue he'd pulled from his pocket and ignoring their laughs turned his blue eyes on Anderson. His gaze lingered for only a second before he smirked and picked his coffee cup up from the table. "Well, I can see that despite your act of bravado and attempts to look like your showing off, you actually decided to trip me because you have a subconscious need to cause somebody else pain, due to the fact that your father lost his job on the weekend and your mother is thinking about leaving him for the man she's been seeing for the past 4 months." There was an awkward silence as everybody looked between Sherlock and Anderson, no one sure what to say.
Sherlock's grin grew slightly more pleased, knowing he had won, and then he strode out of the room, leaving everyone else in shock.
'Well fuck." Was all John could say, when 5 minutes later Anderson awkwardly confirmed what Sherlock had said.
The rest of Johns day was rather uneventful. In his last class of the day, one of the two classes he shared with Greg, Donovan Anderson and Sherlock, they were told that tomorrow they would be getting a new major task. And after much moaning and groaning from the almost the entire class the teacher had given in and told them that this task was not a normal task, and was actually a program which would be undertaken by every student in the school but that was all they could get out of her.
By the time John got home later that afternoon he was exhausted. He'd barely managed to stay awake during the lesson, and had found himself drifting off more than once, but he knew he couldn't go straight upstairs and sleep. He had things to do. He pushed the door closed loudly behind him and kicked off his shoes. He could hear giggling and the clang of kitchen appliances from the other room and sighed in frustration. So Harry was over for a few days again. Probably kicked out by her girlfriend once again.
He slipped upstairs and stayed locked in his room for a few hours to do his homework, only emerging when he heard the smoke alarm going off the kitchen and had to rush down to put out a small fire on the stove. He'd had a good yell at Harry until she'd retreated to the spare bedroom. He glared in dismay at the burned mess that was supposed to be his dinner, knowing he didn't have enough money to get takeout, or anything else for that matter.
John wasn't amazingly poor, but his father was trying to support both of them and Harry on a shit salary and long hours, it wasn't easy and they couldn't afford much. He dropped the pan in the sink and walked angrily upstairs. He was pretty hungry, but the fridge was pretty much empty until their dad got back from whatever stupid work trip he was on, or until he put a bit of cash in the bank for John. But he was tired enough that at least he could just go to sleep without it bothering him.
He stayed up only long enough to strip out of his dark blue sweater, school shirt and trousers before he slid under the covers and fell into a relaxing and warm sleep.
By the next day news of the new program they would all be doing had spread, and the school was alive with rumours and discussions about what it could be. At first John was just as curious as the rest of them, and the rumours were interesting, but by the time it was the end of lunch he'd heard things so stupid he thought everyone in the school ought to be held back a few years. He'd heard one of the younger kids telling his friend he swore he heard a teacher say they were going to make them all take drugs to turn them into zombies. And another kid thought that the school was going to start a circus show and they'd be trained as the shows acts.
It was one of the longest school days of Johns life, and he was quite relieved when it finally reached his last period and they were all seated, their small, and very pretty teacher wandering around the room handing out envelopes to each student, their names on the front. Giving them very firm instructions not to open them until they got home. "The school has joined a new program the government has started to encourage socialising among teenagers." She explained, rolling her eyes as she handed out the envelopes. "An instant messaging site has been created for the students of the school. Each student has an account on this site. This task is being completed by every student in the school. You have been randomly paired, each of you given a partner from any age group in the school."
Everyone exchanged glances, but no one interrupted. "You don't know who your partner is, and they don't know who you are. The partner you have been given is the only person you can talk to on the site. You are not allowed to try and tell your partner who you are, and they are not allowed to tell you. If you're caught breaking the rules you will be given detention, and suspension will be considered."
One of the girls down the front, a pretty red head who's name John always had trouble remembering put her hand up. "Is this compulsory?"
"Yes. Your teachers will be cutting down your homework load, and you will be required to spend a minimum of one hour on the site a night. The only rules are that you do the minimum time required, you don't reveal who you are, and you don't try and get your partner too. No one is allowed to share their usernames. This is a very serious program, it will go towards your final mark at the end of the year, so I urge you all to not be stupid about it. Any questions?"
A few people asked questions, but it was all pretty much a simple thing. A chat room with a possible stranger, anyone in the school without a way to tell who it was. They were told that for the first night everyone had to sign in at 6pm, and then they could discuss a time for everyday with whoever they got paired with. He didn't really understand the point of the task, but he accepted the idea rather quickly. He wanted to pass this year, and he wasn't going to complain about such an easy way to get marks.
At the end of the lesson John took his time packing his stuff, he was getting a lift from Sally today, so he wasn't in a rush. The teacher hurried out of the room muttering about something or other to herself, and the rest of the student's rushed out. John walked towards the front, eyeing the group for Sally and Greg, and sighed when he spotted them at the front of the room, blocking Sherlock Holmes from leaving the room.
He knew this was a bit of a common occurrence, they liked to give him a bit of trouble after school when there were no teachers around, but usually he wasn't around for it. Sherlock mostly just looked bored, his messenger bag slung over on shoulder and resting against his hip, his hands adjusting the scarf he had placed around his neck. "So, freak. Are you going to apologise for yesterday?" Sally asked her arms once again folded.
Greg was sitting on a desk, Sally, Anderson and one of their other friends standing in his way, grins n their faces. John wandered over slowly, but stayed back a little, keeping his mouth shut.
"No." Sherlock replied simply, moving his hands from his scarf to fix his hair a little. John frowned when out of nowhere Anderson stepped forward and shoved Sherlock hard. John was surprised when Sherlock just took it, but then what could he do. It was 4 on 1. And after a moment he realised it must seem like 5 on 1, because with the way John was standing there not doing anything it must look like he was in on it to.
"You should watch your mouth next time, loser." Anderson spat, shoving him again. "Do you think your clever, because you're sick and twisted mind can spot when some ones having troubles? I reckon you get off on it." He grabbed Sherlock's arm and spun him so he could get a grip on the other one, their other friend stepping forward to punch Sherlock in the stomach, causing him to double over in pain. But he made no noise.
"Guys," John said casually, after he'd been hit another few times, twice by Donavon. "I hate to spoil your little party here, but I really need to get home." Sherlock's hair was in his face and his breathing sounded kind of painful.
"Come on John, would it really hurt to wait a little longer?" Donavon asked, her smile a little twisted as Sherlock grunted as he was punched again, this time a little harder.
"Yes, it would Sally." He said, stepping forward. "I have to get home, Harry is over again." He glanced at Sherlock, who was hanging kind of loosely in Anderson's arms. "And if you hit him again it's going to leave proper bruises. He could have you charged. If you're going to be stupid enough to hit him at least don't leave proof."
"Are you sure John?"
John looked over at Sherlock again. He wasn't telling the truth, not really, if they hit him somewhere else, on the other side of his body, or higher up a little, the bruising wouldn't be as serious, probably not visible. But he decided they didn't need to know that. He only knew it because his mother had been a doctor, and he'd read most of her books on medical stuff like this. "Yes I'm sure."
Greg stood up from his spot on the table and grabbed Anderson's arm. "Alright let him go, I think he gets the point mate." Anderson let go of Sherlock's arms and he dropped to his knees, catching himself before he could fall properly. John shook his head as they laughed and started making their way out of the room, Greg tossing Sherlock's messenger back to him as he walked past.
Sherlock pushed himself to his feet quickly and eyed John after pushing his hair out of his face. He straightened his clothes and John held out his bag without a word. Sherlock, trying not to show his pain stepped forward and took it, and then walked past him to the door, hanging his bag over his shoulder despite how uncomfortable it would be after being punched multiple times in the torso. "Idiot." John mumbled as he walked out of the room and jogged after his mates, taking barely a second to notice that Sherlock had walked in the opposite direction, to take the long way out of the school.
"How was school John?" Harry slurred later that night at the table, as they ate their crap dinner of hot chips and a piece each of crumbed fish from a box. "Have a good day?"
"Sure Harry." He mumbled around his food. "I have spend an hour every night talking to someone I don't even know and I watched my friends beat up a guy in my class."
Her hair fell in her sauce as she slumped a little, and he reached over and pulled it out, cleaning it with a napkin trying to get it out as best as he could. "Well, that's no good is it John, you shouldn't be a bully."
"Well he was a bit of a smart ass, not surprised they did it really. But yeah I probably could have stopped it before I did. I dunno. It's not really my business is it? They would have done worse had I not stopped them at all. That's got to count for something."
Despite how drunk she was the look she gave him was completely serious, the look an older sister always gives her brother when he's wrong and should probably know it. He sighed and dropped his fork. He'd barely eaten half the meal, which wasn't good considering all he'd eaten at school was an apple and half a pack of crisps, but he just couldn't eat anymore. He mumbled an excuse about doing his homework and wandered upstairs.
It was almost 6 already so he turned on his laptop (a gift from Harry before her alcohol problem got as serious as it was now), and fished his envelope out of his bag. Inside was a piece of paper reminding him of the rules of the task, and a sheet of paper with his username and password and the website he had to go to.
He quickly signed in, and realised quickly that the site was designed to be easy to figure out and use. It was just a normal chat screen, and in friends list it had just a little box that was lit green, the words online next to it. He didn't know if it meant him or the person he was meant to be talking to, so he hesitantly typed out a short message.
Host795: Hello? Its 6, anyone there?
He waited patiently for a moment before a little picture of a pen appeared in the bottom left of the screen, which he took as a good sign, usually that meant someone was writing a reply message.
Lament975: I'm here.
Host975: Oh, hey :) I guess we're partners for this then.
Lament975: It would seem so.
John rubbed the back of his neck awkwardly. What was he supposed to say now? He hardly spoke to his friends online, so what was he supposed to say to someone he probably hadn't met. Someone who obviously didn't seem too keen on this conversation thing either.
Host975: I don't really know what to talk about actually. This is a bit weird. I think it would have been easier if we could know who we were talking to.
Lament975: I doubt that making things easy for us was on their minds. They never seem to enjoy making things easier for us. Of course I don't know how old you are. You might not have experienced that yet.
Host975: I'm in my final year. I know all about how much they hate us.
Host975: What is?
Lament975: I'm in my final year too.
Host975: We're in the same year? I probably know you then.
Lament975: Perhaps… But it is a rather large group. What was your view point for the essay due tomorrow? I'm curious.
Host975: How do I know you're not trying to copy me?
Lament975: Because I'm already done, and if someone copies you this conversation is proof that it's your work not mine, though that's not a problem because I'm finished mine. Tell me?"
After a moment's hesitation john finally gave in, and they spent the next two hours discussing the topic for the essay, arguing with each other over certain aspects and agreeing on others, but eventually John found himself too tired to concentrate, despite how early it was.
Host975: I'd better go, need to sleep. I'm pretty tired.
Lament975: It's only 8. Are you ill?
Host975: Just tired, haven't been sleeping well.
Plus his not eating properly hadn't been helping much either, but he wasn't going to mention that. He rubbed his eyes and pulled his shirt off while still sitting at his desk, getting ready to sleep while he waited for a reply.
Lament975: Alright… same time tomorrow? Or would another time be more convenient?
Host975: 6 is fine. Talk tomorrow.
Your partner has gone offline.
John snorted and closed the laptop, standing to strip to his pants and climb into bed. He felt tired and sore, even though he hadn't done anything during the day, but he was grateful to be in his bed anyway. He fell asleep with the sounds of the TV and Harry's drunk giggling drifting up the stairs to his room.
So? Thoughts? It's pretty crap, but meh, I'll still probably write more anyway.