The bloody experiment was going nowhere. Sherlock had been in the lab for nearly seven hours now, not a record for him by a long chalk, but certainly more than this relatively simple matter warranted. However, a series of interruptions from Lestrade about the case they had just closed, followed by the discovery that a batch of petri dishes had become tainted while in storage, had required him to restart his experiment several times and it was becoming truly frustrating.
During hour six, John had turned up with his laptop and a bag full of take-away Chinese food, and had settled on the other lab table to keep Sherlock company while he ate and blogged. While Sherlock didn't really appreciate the smell of black bean sauce and the staccato clatter of keys while he was trying to work, John's presence did assuage his frustration to some degree, so he put up with it manfully, breaking into his own concentration every now and then to give vent to his annoyance and make John chuckle.
A few minutes ago, however, John had buggered off. Oh Sherlock knew where he'd gone, of course. There was a pharmacologist whose office was down the hall, with whom John liked to flirt, and he'd no doubt gone off to exchange 'witticisms' with her. It was annoying, but they'd discussed the matter of Sherlock leaving John alone while the latter attempted to 'get off' with women before, and he decided, rather nobly, to leave his friend to it.
During a long wait for the centrifuge to finish its cycle though, he became bored, and couldn't help but notice that John had left his laptop out, and his blog logged in.
Having corrected John's most recent article on a few points, and also having removed a certain disdainful comment about his own laundry habits, Sherlock clicked the button to post it. With distressing speed, the hit counter on the website began ticking up again, John's legion of fans apparently stalking the blog in fear of missing an update. Sherlock tutted at the boring state of some people's lives that they had to rely on an internet blog for entertainment, and crossed the room back to his experiment.
The centrifuge hadn't finished yet. He frowned and drummed his fingers on the table, then looked at nothing in particular through the microscope for a minute or two, then jumped up onto the edge of the table and kicked his heels against the table leg.
Then, bored beyond belief, he went back to the blog.
Scrolling through the older posts exposed Sherlock to more than he liked of John's questionable sense of humour in the form of the titles he'd given to their various cases. 'The Cardboard Fox', 'The No-Good Builder', 'The Wisteria Lodgers', and so on and so forth...until he came to 'The Essex Vampire'.
That rang a bell. Why did it ring a bell?
They'd been discussing it a few weeks ago, hadn't they? That was it. Their discussion had been something of a loose end, and so had lingered in Sherlock's mind until now. Frowning, he clicked into the comments on the post and looked for the one that John had asked him about.
What on earth could that be?
Just as Sherlock was about to open another tab with which to look the acronym up, the door opened and Molly came in, smiling sycophantically at him.
"Hi Sherlock," she said nervously. "Mike told me you were down here. Mind if I come in?"
He grunted, which she took as an affirmative, and she crossed the room to him, the fingers of her right hand twiddling with those of her left.
"Doing anything interesting?"
"At the moment, no."
She opened her mouth on a no doubt searingly witty response, when it occured to him that Molly was an avid blog reader, and that she may be able to shed some light on the nature of this acronym.
"Molly, do you have any idea what the initials 'B.A.M.F.' may stand for, in the context of a blog post about John tackling a criminal to the floor?"
"Oh, Bamf!" Molly resonded brightly, pronouncing the acronym as if it were a word. "Of course. It stands for bad ass mother...um..."
People use it online all the time. It means somebody that...well, that...well, you wouldn't want to mess with one!"
"Hmm," Sherlock replied, not entirely certain about her definition. What on earth was an 'effer'? Did she mean some sort of cow?
He opened his mouth to put this to her, when the sound of running footsteps reached his ears from beyond the lab doors, along with John's voice, some way in the distance, shouting angrily. Sherlock rushed to the door, Molly at his heels, and pushed it open just in time to see a young man in casual wear go skidding along the corridor floor, face down, John's arms locked around his waist and most of John's weight on his back.
Textbook rugby tackle, Sherlock noted.
The flirty pharmacologist came running up as Sherlock steped out of the lab, yelling gleefully at the man John had brought down, calling him all manner of names, as John bent the young man's arm up behind his back and dragged him to his feet.
Sherlock took stock of the young man, and cut John off as the latter opened his mouth to explain.
"He broke into the server room to try and steal some computer equipment?"
"In order to pay off his online gambling debts, yes?"
"Um..." John said. The young man was staring at Sherlock with astonishment, confirming his deduction nicely. A couple of the hospital security guards came panting up to them, thanked John for his help, explained that the police had been called, and led the young man away. The pharmacologist went with them to speak to the police, but the look she gave John before she left communicated clearly that he would have little difficulty in attempting to 'get off' with her.
Molly had ducked back into the lab, leaving John and Sherlock alone in the corridor, John still slightly out of breath.
"John," Sherlock said. "You are a Bamf."
"...A what?" John asked, cocking his head to one side.
"A bad ass mother effer."
John cocked his head to one side and stared at him.
"Ask Molly," Sherlock told him, and went back to check on the centrifuge.
Well, that's the end, and I hope you've all enjoyed it.
I don't quite know where all these ideas come from, but I'm glad they showed up, as this has been very enjoyable to write. I've always been fond of the character of John Watson, in whatever form and setting, but when he is shown on television, the audience doesn't see, as they do in the original stories, the mental and emotional processes, the loyalty and light-heartedness, the conformity and abberations, that make up the man. So for me, it's little ideas like these ones that fill the gaps and make Watson into a more satisfactory character. They swim in my head with every watching of any Sherlock Holmes series, so I thought to write some down.
The stories referenced in John's blog were originally 'The Cardboard Box', 'The Norwood Builder' and 'Wisteria Lodge'.