Author's Notes: Oh dear, a new fandom never bodes well for my ongoing stories... On the plus side this is the first bit of writing I've done in months.

Unusual Relationships

Sherlock strode through the door, shedding his coat as he went. "John, I need you to go to the store to pick up a few things for an experiment."

"You were just out!" John said.

"And now I'm not," Sherlock responded, collecting various oddments from around the room. "Besides, I have far more important things to be doing."

John grumbled under his breath. "No, Sherlock. I have plans. Do your own bloody shopping."

The consulting detective paused just long enough to get a look at his flatmate. "No you don't. Unless you count watching telly and moping over your latest break up as plans," Sherlock said by way of reply.

"How did... never mind. I'm not doing your shopping for you." John slumped further into his chair to make his point. "Besides, I have the right to a night of crap telly if I want."

Sherlock merely rolled his eyes, depositing his microscope and a box full of various tools of science on the kitchen table. "Please, John. I require you to go shopping, which is far more important than your pining over a girl you didn't even like."

John scowled. "I liked Mary just fine."

"You liked her breasts," Sherlock said, "and otherwise found her just as dreadfully dull as I did. Really, your taste in companions is steadily growing worse."

"I don't want your opinion on the matter, Sherlock."

"Obviously you do or otherwise you would stop insisting I meet every woman who sets your libido going," Sherlock countered. "Now, I'll text you a list of what I need you to get. And do be precise about it, John. Substitutes simply won't do."

John continued to sit there and glare at him.

"Oh, for -" Sherlock abruptly stopped setting up his microscope and stomped over to the couch.

"Fine," he muttered, throwing himself down into the cushions. "Tell me about what happened then."

John let out a disbelieving laugh. "You can't possibly be interested."

"Of course I'm not," Sherlock said. "But you seem to feel the need to obsess over it. Therefore it is my duty as your friend to listen and attempt to express empathy."

"You? Empathy?" John replied.

Sherlock waved him off. "I'm listening now. And my experiment is going nowhere while you are upset."

John snorted. "Typical," he muttered.

They sat in silence for a good two minutes before John gave in.

"Alright. I wasn't really interested in Mary," he said.

"Then why in the world are you upset?"

"I'm not -" John cut off his denial at the sight of arched eyebrows. "Okay, yeah, I'm upset. Not about Mary in particular. Just... damn it, Sherlock. Why can't I keep a normal bloody relationship going? And don't you dare ask why I would want to."

Sherlock, having been about to ask just that, clicked his jaw shut.

"It's always the same damn thing, too," John continued. "They always..." he trailed off with a frustrated huff.

Sherlock was frowning now. "'They always,' what?"

"They always give the same damn reason."


"Have you considered that you may be looking for the wrong thing?"

John groaned and rubbed the bridge of his nose. "Sherlock – "

"No, listen for a moment, John." Sherlock abruptly straightened up, elbows on his knees and his fingers stapled together in thought. "You may have an ordinary mind –"

"Sherlock," John growled.

Sherlock ignored him entirely. "- and you are quite normal. But both of these are largely only true in comparison. To myself in particular... and I suppose Mycroft might count as well."

John's jaw dropped.

Sherlock plowed on with his assessment. "When compared with most other people you fall quite far away from the norm. You are, by your own estimate – which I am inclined to agree with – a very good doctor. You are a former soldier. You are an adrenaline addict, as evidenced by our continued partnership. And –" Sherlock coughed, "you are my friend. Which puts you in a rather unique category."

The corner of John's lip twitched, threatening to break out into a smile. "Sentiment, Sherlock?"

Not dignifying that with a response Sherlock merely continued his miniature tirade. "Thus it makes absolutely no sense for you to go looking for a 'normal' relationship when you are obviously not built for one." Sherlock held up a hand to forestall any argument. "And given your willingness to ditch a date in favour of a case, or the possibility of one, I'm inclined to believe that you know this as well. You just have not yet admitted it to yourself."

John opened and closed his mouth several times before letting out a huff of air that was somewhere between a laugh and a sigh. Eventually he gave it up with a strained chuckle. "So what should I be looking for?"

"But it's so obvious!" Sherlock replied.

"Is it?" John questioned.

"What you require, John, is a highly unusual relationship." Saying that Sherlock got up and went back to setting up his microscope.

John stayed sitting in his chair for several minutes before shaking his head and pushing himself up. "Right then, everything you need is in the text? Might as well send it then."

"Already have," Sherlock replied not looking up but waving his phone in John's general direction.

An unusual relationship, huh? John thought wearily as he pulled on his coat.

Wonder where I'm going to find one of those.