Title: Sherlock After Dentist
Author Name: CumberPatches
Genre: Humor, Romance
Main Character(s): Sherlock Holmes, John Watson
Summary: Sherlock must have his wisdom teeth out, with comical results.
Disclaimer: No money is being made and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended. Characters belong to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and BBC. The poem excerpt is from "Natural History" by E.B. White.
Sherlock After Dentist
It all started a few weeks ago.
Sherlock had taken to complaining about a toothache that he blamed on John putting too much sugar in his coffee. John, unable to withstand any more bellyaching, had eventually forced him to get it checked out at the dentist. The toothache had been a simple cavity, but the dentist had informed Sherlock and John, whom Sherlock had forced to go with him to the office, that one of Sherlock's wisdom teeth had become impacted and he would need to have them extracted.
Sherlock had been withering in his disdain for the diagnosis, but upon reviewing the x-rays for himself, was forced to admit that he would find himself with serious problems if they were not taken care of.
The day of the procedure proved to be quite the ordeal.
It would not have been quite such an issue had Lestrade not telephoned with a case just as they were about to leave. Sherlock is winding his scarf about his neck when the familiar ringing sounds from the pocket of his coat.
"John. Phone," Sherlock snaps crabbily. He'd done nothing but ooze resentment for the last twenty-four hours and John has half a mind to tell him to take the phone and shove it. However, he decides they don't have time for a row at the moment if they were to make it to his appointment on time.
He shrugs on his militaristic jacket and strides across to where Sherlock stands by the door, meeting his icy gaze as he slips his hand into the pocket of his coat. The intensity of Sherlock's stare and their proximity causes John's face to flush slightly. He steps back, phone in hand, and looks down at the caller-ID.
Sherlock holds out his hand, expecting John to drop the mobile into his palm, and is surprised when John answers the phone himself, glaring petulantly at Sherlock.
"Hello, Lestrade… Yes, it's John. I'm afraid Sherlock can't come out to play today, he has a dentist appointment," John says sarcastically as he ducks away from Sherlock's wild swipe for his phone. "No, just his wisdom teeth. We actually are headed out right now. Sorry, but we must pass on this one."
When John thumbs the button to end the call, Sherlock seethes, his eyes shooting daggers at the doctor.
"If there is a case, then you have no right-"
"If we don't get going now, we're going to be quite late," John interrupts, glancing at the time on the phone.
"Give me my phone, I'm calling Lestrade back," Sherlock demands, stretching out his hand again.
"You can have your phone back after your appointment," John replies smoothly, clasping his hands behind his back and returning Sherlock's stare with a firm one of his own. For a moment, Sherlock looks very much like he is considering punching him, and John responds by merely raising one blond eyebrow.
"FINE!" Sherlock exclaims in exasperation, throwing his hands up in the air and turning on his heel to stalk darkly down the stairs. John smirks to himself. He'd actually won, for once. About bloody time, he thinks as he closes the door to their flat behind him and makes his way after Sherlock.
The procedure had been without complications, which John is thankful for because, the older you are, the greater the risk there is that something can go wrong. He would have to monitor Sherlock over the next few days to make sure that he didn't rupture any stitches or get an infection. He can't help but feel grimly certain that Sherlock will make that task as hard for him as possible.
It is early evening as John and Sherlock rumble back towards their flat in a London cab. Sherlock slumps against John's shoulder, his head lolling from side to side and his pale eyes taking in the scenery as it passes by.
"Are you all right, mate?" John asks quietly, smiling at the wonder-struck expression on Sherlock's face when it turns up toward him, his mouth agape.
"John? Whath in ma mouth?" Sherlock mumbles loudly, his brows drawing together in confusion. He lifts a hand, going to poke a long finger inside his mouth before John gently slaps it away.
"It's gauze, Sherlock. You just had your wisdom teeth out, d'you remember?" John replies, struggling to keep the amusement out of his voice. Sherlock shakes his head dramatically from side to side and goes back to looking out the window.
"Doeth that mean I haff no more withdom?"
At this, John's shoulders begin shaking with supressed laughter. He had never seen the consulting detective like this before. Sherlock avoided alcohol because he disapproved of anything that interfered with his impressive mental capacity, so John had never gotten to see the man drunk. Now, he is strung out on a cocktail of drugs they had given him in order to perform the surgery.
"It would take a lot more than minor surgery to dislodge something as great as your wisdom, Sherlock," he says laughingly, and Sherlock nods his head slowly against John's shoulder. Looking at the perplexed countenance of his companion, John feels a rush of affection for the childish detective. When the cab stops at a light, John twists his arm up and around Sherlock so that he is holding the younger man securely in place at his side.
Sherlock adjusts to this change in posture by bracing his hands against John's legs. He stares at them where they press into John's thigh before lifting one up in front of his face. John watches curiously as Sherlock wiggles his fingers in front of his face, his eyes in a daze.
"Ith like a thpider," he drawls, leaning his head back against John's chest so he can peer up at him, looking for John's agreement.
"I, um, I can see it. Just like a spider…" John muses, thinking it better to just indulge him. Sherlock stares at John's face for a few unsettling moments before he returns to looking at his pale white hand.
"Thuth I, gone forth ath thipders do… in a thpider'th web a truth ditherning," Sherlock says slowly, to John's confusion. He places his hand on John's chest and looks up at him with wide eyes before continuing, "Attach one thilken thread to you for ma returning."
John attempts to ignore the warmth radiating from that hand where it has landed directly over his heart and clears his throat; decidedly not looking at Sherlock's pouting lower lip.
"Sherlock… Did you just recite a poem?"
Sherlock nods again slowly and John can feel his breath ghosting against his neck, causing the hair on his arms to prickle.
"I thought you deleted anything having to do with literature," John says, mildly sarcastic, shifting uncomfortably under the detective's weight and thinking now that this whole thing was a bad idea. "It's pointless, right?"
Sherlock's mumbled reply is completely incomprehensible. Or perhaps it is the rushing in John's ears that just made it indecipherable. The two of them seem suddenly far too close and he hopes the detective is too far gone to realize how hard John's heart is drumming under his hand, but, as this is Sherlock (even if he is drugged), there is but a slim chance.
"Hmm?" John responds, turning his head to find that Sherlock's face is only centimetres away from his own, their noses nearly touching. There is ardency in Sherlock's eyes that John has not seen there before.
"I can't feel ma lipth," he says slowly, "Can you?"
Before John can respond, or even think, Sherlock closes the distance between them and brushes his lips against the doctor's. It isn't overly sensual because, as Sherlock had said, his lips were numb. But the brief touch sends a shiver down John's spine. He swallows hard and uses his arms to lean Sherlock straighter on the cab seat, away from himself.
"Yes, Sherlock, I can feel them," John says, blushing furiously. He just sodding kissed me. After all this time – He's off his rocker, he didn't know what he was doing… When John snaps out of his reverie, it is to find Sherlock staring at him intensely. When their eyes meet, Sherlock grins, looks suddenly confused, and then grins once more.
"You like me," Sherlock states matter-of-factly, reaching out a hand to flick his finger against the end of John's snub nose. Great, deducing me even when he's high. John forces a smile and nods indulgingly.
"Of course I do, you're my best friend," John says evasively. Sherlock frowns and shakes his head, thumping his hands against his legs like a child throwing a tantrum.
"No, no, no! I mean you liiiiiiike me," he says crankily. Just then, the cab glides to a stop outside their flat and John lets out a giant exhale of relief. He pays the cabbie and gets out, coming around to open the door for Sherlock. When he stoops to peer inside, Sherlock is sitting with his arms crossed and a stubborn look on his face.
"I'm not going until you admit that I'm right," he slurs, looking straight ahead and ignoring John's proffered hand. John sighs angrily. He can feel his ears burning. Well, why not? He won't remember any of this later anyway.
"Fine. Yes, Sherlock, I like you. I might even bloody well love you. Can we go inside now?"
Sherlock says nothing for a moment and does not move, but shifts his eyes to consider the former soldier. Then he breaks into a sudden smile, twisting to take John's hand and planting his shoes on the pavement. With a mighty yank, John gets Sherlock onto his feet and guides him up the stairs to the door of their flat.
John holds it open and ushers Sherlock inside, where Mrs Hudson is waiting for them with a plate of biscuits. Sherlock stumbles slightly and picks one up while Mrs Hudson begins dithering obliviously about the neighbours. John shakes his head and smacks the biscuit out of Sherlock's hand before he can bring it all the way to his mouth.
"Sorry, Mrs Hudson," John apologises, "He can only have soft foods at the moment. Just had his wisdom teeth out, y'see?"
"Why of course, dear. I was wondering why he was smiling like that," she says, glancing at Sherlock's vacant grin. "Best get him upstairs and squared away. I'll be up with some ice cream later. Just this once, because he's ill; I'm not your housekeeper…"
John gives her his thanks and takes Sherlock's arm to guide him up the stairs. Sherlock makes the trip fairly easily and, upon entering the flat, turns in a slow circle in the middle of the common room. It's as if he is just seeing it for the first time. John approaches the lanky fellow cautiously and begins to unwind his scarf from his neck.
Just as he is about to begin working Sherlock's jacket off of him, the detective lets out an exclamation and lurches towards the fireplace. He seizes the skull off of the mantle and holds it out in front of him, and the slight madness of his gaze reminds John of Hamlet. Sherlock brings the skull up until he is staring into the empty sockets.
"Ith this in ma head?"
For a moment, John isn't sure what he means. Does he think that he is hallucinating? Then John understands and walks forward, plucking the skull gently from Sherlock's hands and setting it back in its "proper" place. Really, the proper place would be in a grave, John thinks with exasperation. He has a moment where he conspiratorially contemplates taking advantage of Sherlock's state to rid their flat of the more objectionable objects, but he knows he would be in for quite the fight if he did.
"Yes, that is a skull and you have one in your head, but that one isn't yours. Well, it is yours, but it's not the one from –" he cuts off when he spies that Sherlock isn't even listening anymore and sighs. He places his hands on Sherlock's shoulders and slides the coat off and hangs it by the door. When he turns around, Sherlock's eyes are heavy lidded with sleepiness and he is leaning against the experiment strewn table.
"It's about bedtime, Sherlock," John says carefully, aware of his companion's distaste for sleep and hoping that this is an opportunity to get him to actually rest for once. Sherlock shakes his head slowly, but he doesn't seem up for putting up much of a fight. John crosses to him and gently clasps his wrist.
"How about just a nap, then?" he suggests, tugging Sherlock towards his bedroom. Sherlock allows himself to be pulled along, his eyes not really focusing on anything in particular. Once inside Sherlock's predictably dishevelled room, John sets him on the side of his bed and clicks on the lamp.
When he kneels down to untie his shoes and work them off, he freezes as he feels Sherlock's long fingers suddenly working their way into his hair. He looks up sharply and sees a softness in Sherlock's eyes that he has certainly never seen there before. For a moment, John can do nothing but stare, and Sherlock stares back unblinkingly.
Sherlock says the words on an exhale, and once again John isn't certain what he means. He decides to answer him with a smile and he gets to his feet. He fights the ridiculous urge to push his own fingers through Sherlock's raven locks. His hair always just looks so soft.
He draws the line at changing Sherlock into pyjamas, so he pulls back the sheets and helps Sherlock to climb into bed. He clicks off the side table lamp and is about to walk back out of the room when Sherlock's voice stops him.
John hesitates slightly before returning to the bed, where Sherlock lay curled on his side facing him. He stands there awkwardly, waiting for Sherlock to say something.
"Yes?" he asks, finally, unable to stand the silence any longer.
"I love you," Sherlock says with certainty, even though his eyes are still hazy with drugs and sleep.
John feels a million things at once. Confusion, elation, hope, disappointment, happiness, despair, and more confusion. They all convalesce into a bittersweet truth: Sherlock is drugged and probably doesn't mean it.
"Oh, brother," is all he manages, but he can feel his face flushed and embarrassed as he turns and leaves the room. He may not mean it, but I'll take what I can damn well get.
Sherlock props himself up on his elbow and watches him go with a stupid grin on his face. Then he sighs and lies down on his pillow, falling into a deep, contented sleep.
Author's Note: This was something that just popped in my head while I was bumming around YouTube one afternoon and I thought it might be fun to write about. I mostly did this just to waste some time and entertain myself, but I hope it entertained you, too. I haven't quite decided if I want to continue this or not, so let me know if you'd be interested in more (like the aftermath of this incident or whatnot). By the way, that last scene in Sherlock's bedroom was a shout out to The X-Files episode "Triangle." Love that show! Anyway, thanks so much for reading! ^_^