AN: Boy, it's been a while since my last SH22 story. I hope you all like it :)

Pairings: There is some very slight one-sided SH/BL.


Lestrade couldn't understand it.

He was brilliant just like he was supposed to be, he was sarcastic and witty just like he was supposed to be, he was even tall and skinny (if a bit more muscular than expected) just like he was supposed to be. He acted exactly how she had always thought he would act, more or less.

But, he was blond. Blond! Sherlock Holmes was not supposed to be blond. And his eyes, the precise shade of which she'd spent much of her childhood and early teen years trying to decide, were definitely not the stormy grey that she had read about in Dr. Watson's journals. They were a deep blue which, while nice enough on their own, were simply not the colour she had always associated with the clear, bright eyes of the Great Detective.

However, she was an inspector of New Scotland Yard, and she was not about to let something as trivial as the hair and eye colour of her colleague distract her from the job.

It wasn't until several months later that she was relieved of her earlier confusion and, even though she refused to admit it to herself, disappointment.

... ... ...

Lestrade jogged up the seventeen steps that led to 221B and knocked on the door. She could hear a rather loud argument going on behind the door. She knocked again, harder. After one more try she gave up and opened the door herself.

"Holmes, you are being unreasonable!"

"It is not I who is being unreasonable, Watson."

"You most certainly are!"

"I most certainly am not!"

"SHUT UP, BOTH OF YOU!"

Both heads turned to face Lestrade who was standing in the doorway, arms crossed.

Holmes was the first to speak. "Apologies, Lestrade. I did not notice you arrive."

"That much was obvious, Holmes." Lestrade scoffed. "What are you two arguing about anyway? It must be quite the debate if it prevented one of the most observant men in history as well as a level-seven law enforcement compudroid with life-form sensing capabilities from recognizing the presence of a visitor."

"The explanation is simple enough," Replied Holmes. "More so, apparently, than is the solution." He shot a glare at the compudroid standing across the room.

"Holmes and I paid a visit to Sir Evan Hargreaves earlier today." Watson began. "Holmes had some questions for him regarding the cell rejuvenation process."

Here Holmes interrupted him. "I only had one line of enquiry, Watson. I wanted to know if I was going to be stuck like this for the rest of my current lifetime!"

Lestrade turned to him, confused. "What do you mean? Like what?"

"Like this!" He shouted, gesturing vaguely to his hair. "I am tired of glancing in the mirror and having to look twice before recognising myself." He replied hotly. "Despite my Christian name I have never, until now, been fair haired. During my previous life, my hair was black and my eyes were grey, not the dark blue which they are now."

Inwardly, Lestrade was cheering. I knew it! I knew he wasn't supposed to look so… Anglo-Saxon. "So, what were you arguing about?"

Holmes sighed. "I was getting to that, Lestrade."

"Sorry Holmes, please continue."

He cleared his throat before speaking again. "As I was saying, I am unused to seeing myself like this. After speaking with Sir Evan, I now know that it will most likely take several more months before my natural colouring begins to return. Watson is strongly against my using any form of artificial colouring until then."

"That is because we do not know whether or not it will affect the process, Holmes! For all we know, it could do permanent damage, or prevent your darker hair from returning naturally."

"There is nothing natural about any of this!" Holmes countered grumpily.

Lestrade figured it would be a good time to interrupt, before it got out of hand again. "Alright, that's enough! Holmes, I'm sorry to say that in this case I do agree with Watson."

"But—!"

"No, listen. The cell rejuvenation process is still in the research stage, we don't know if any changes done to a body afterwards will affect it or not. Besides, you have lasted this long being blond and blue eyed. I'm sure a few more months isn't going to kill you."

Holmes looked as if he would like to argue further but finally sighed. "Very well, I suppose that is the logical choice." He turned and stalked away, muttering under his breath.

Watson turned to Lestrade. "What was it that you came here for, Inspector?"

"I was planning on asking Holmes for some advice, but I think I'll come back later."

"Oh, no need. I'll just put the kettle on and bring out some biscuits. They tend to do a good job of cheering Holmes up and perhaps we can coax him into being civil."

Lestrade grinned at the helpful compudroid. "What ever would we do without you, Watson?"

... ... ...

True to Dr. Hargreaves predictions, about four months later, Holmes' hair did begin to darken. His eyes also started to slowly change from dark blue to a lighter shade, till they were almost aqua. By the time his hair had gone from reddish blond to a medium brown, they were just on the line between pale blue and light grey. Holmes was extremely pleased that he was beginning to look like his old self again and Lestrade caught herself giving him double takes whenever she stopped by the Baker Street flat. He really did look very different.

The next time Holmes strode with Watson into NSY head quarters his hair was just a few shades off pure black, and his eyes had darkened from the light, blue-grey to a steely slate with flecks of silver that flashed as he argued with Grayson about the latest developments to a kidnapping case they were working on.

Lestrade sidled up beside him as Grayson stormed off and Holmes turned to smirk at her.

"So, is it nice being back to normal? Well, almost anyway."

His smirk turned into a grin. "Oh, absolutely. I must admit that the black and grey may be a slight bit monotone, but it is certainly more striking."

"Narcissistic much?" Lestrade laughed.

"Well, you did bring me back for my good looks and sparkling wit, did you not?" He shot back, grinning even wider at their private joke.

Lestrade rolled her eyes good naturedly as Watson walked up to them. "Well Holmes, are you finished with the Chief Inspector?"

"Yes Watson, we are all done here. Good day Lestrade." Holmes bowed before turning away with Watson on his heels.

Yes, Lestrade thought, smiling to herself as she watched them leave. It definitely is more striking. The blond and blue was alright, but… Holmes just isn't quite Holmes without his black hair and grey eyes.


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Jfreak