Fic/poem/something rec: "Now advance they to the crime scene," by merripestin

Title: Now advance they to the crime scene
Author:  merripestin
Length: 755 words
'Verse: BBC
Pairing: John/Sherlock
Rating: R
Author's summary: Hwaet! I sing of those immortal heroes: The Tall Detective and The Shorter Man.

Now tall Sherlock, called the genius,       sees the parsley in the butter,
cries Oh! and soon declares the answer.       He knows the killer, has deduced it;
and John Watson, called the doctor,       whose gun is sure, whose hands are steady,
cries to him in admiration,       hails him Brilliant and Fantastic.


Reccer's remarks: Merripestin has been recced here before, and with good reason, what with the splendid writing and the general versatility. "Now advance they" absolutely slays me, and it may slay you too if you meet either of the following conditions: (1) you have ever studied Old English and/or Old Norse poetry; (2) you have backbuttoned out of one too many fanfics in which Sherlock is referred to as "the taller man"/"the dark-haired detective"/"the tall slender baby deer" and John is "the shorter man"/"the sandy-haired man"/"the clumsy typist." During a sex scene.

Condition 1, if you do not already meet it, may sound like a chore, but take a quick look at this lovely riddle-poem. Yes, this rec reflects an attempt to lure you into not only merripestin's delightful fic/poem/thing but also to one of my favorite literary genres.


Read on the AO3.



Fic rec: "Scattered, Smothered, and Covered," by okapi

Title: Scattered, Smothered, and Covered
Author: okapi
Length: 3867 words
'Verse: BBC
Pairing: John/Sherlock
Rating: R
Author's summary: Tourists Mike Stamford and John Watson literally blow into a Southern town where the only place not ravaged by tornadoes is a diner; behind the counter is a cook who deduces how customers like their hash browns before they order.

Reccer's remarks: People, this is the Waffle House AU you didn't know you needed. There are indeed tornadoes, John is a terrible driver, Sally the waitress calls the cook a freak, Molly the other waitress takes off her hairnet to no avail, and Mike Stamford needs to go to Georgia, but not the way you think. TW for atrocious puns and general lunacy.

Excerpt:

John stared, mouth open. “That was amazing!”

“Do you think so?” asked the man.

“Of course, it was. It was extraordinary. Quite extraordinary.”

“That’s not what people normally say.”

“What do they normally say?”

The man’s voice fell to an angry drawl, “Fuck you, Pretty Boy!”

John’s eyebrows rose. “Bit rude. But you are sort of, well, um, that is to say,” he looked at Stamford and then looked down at the menu, “never mind. ..."

Read on the AO3.



Fic rec: "Song of a Good Man," by goseaward

Title: Song of a Good Man
Author: goseaward
Length: 2168 words
'Verse: BBC
Pairing: not really; could be read as pre-slash, and my goggles are firmly attached
Rating: G (author says T, but nah)
Author's summary: After a few months of living with Sherlock, John gets used to the idea that Sherlock can do magic but chooses not to. But every now and then Mycroft will stop by and John will feel the teakettle lean towards him, or Anderson will get so annoyed that little flashes spark between his fingers and his tech, and John will wonder again why he never sees Sherlock display anything but the purest disinterest. [Your reccer, who edits for a living, itches to change that "disinterest" to "indifference."]

Reccer's remarks: You might expect (John Watson might expect) that if someone with Sherlock Holmes's intelligence, passion for knowledge, and demonstrated devotion to his own brilliance had magical powers, he would use them constantly, until everyone around him was sick of the showing-off. Right? But no; Sherlock won't so much as sing a mug out of a cupboard he can't reach. 

This lovely brief story explains why, and in doing so delivers some clever and efficient world-building as well as an affecting look into how much John matters to Sherlock. Take a moment to let the title sink in after you're done reading.

"Song of a Good Man" is set in an S1/post-S1 space and alludes to the first three episodes, but you need not fear any tedious recaps.

Excerpt: Odd, to walk through the streets of London and not catch the pale blue flashes of walls going up and down as soldiers and enemies move; odd to see people walking quickly without adding an extra jolt to their speed with magic-driven boosters or jumping into fusion magic/gasoline vehicles. Odd to look at a hastily-constructed force wall surrounding a classroom in a deserted college and know, deep in one's bones, that it's not good enough to stop a bullet.

Read on the AO3.


swissmarg: Mrs Hudson (Default)
[personal profile] swissmarg2017-07-01 03:05 pm

Fic Rec: The Lying Detective (alternative)

Title: The Lying Detective (alternative) 
Author: 221b_hound
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson, past Sherlock Holmes/John Watson/Mary Morstan
Length: 20K
Rating: Mature
Warnings: None
Verse: BBC
Author's summary: Mary was the bridge between them. Without her, is there still an 'us'? Perhaps, if John and Sherlock can survive the guilt, the grief, the game.

Reccer's comments: This is part of an AU series 3 & 4 that takes the basic plot of the episodes, adds Johnlockary, and changes a few other things, some minor and some more major. I’ve found it surprisingly engaging despite not being a Johnlockary fan and generally disparaging fics that re-hash the aired episodes in much detail. I also admit I haven’t read all of the parts, but you can dive in at any point, really, if you are familiar with the episode in question.

This one is a terrific slog through the depths of grief and despair in the wake of Mary’s death, made more painful and eviscerating by the fact that the Mary in this was genuinely likable and the three of them were involved in a loving and happy polyamoric relationship. (We only see one brief and sketchy flashback scene of the three of them in bed together, which is easily skipped if you are only here for the Johnlock.) At the same time, the Culverton Smith plot is revamped to work more authentically, a far cry from the broadcast “go to hell/save John Watson” scenario that viewers were confronted with.

The characters are all treated with respect and depth, with a marvelous ensemble cast involving several secondary characters in meaty and important roles. Harry Watson in particular is a shining star of an OC with a potty mouth and a heart of tarnished gold.

I really encourage anyone who was unhappy with series 4 – and especially the whiplash treatment of Mary’s character and gutting of John and Sherlock’s friendship – to give this series a try. It’s gutsy and bold, drawing on real emotion rather than flash and showmanship, and truly allowing the characters and their stories to touch hearts.
swissmarg: Mrs Hudson (Default)
[personal profile] swissmarg2017-07-01 09:03 am

Fic Rec: Before I Come Home

Title: Before I Come Home
Author: TooSelin
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 36K
Rating: Mature
Warnings: None
Verse: BBC
Author's summary: Sometimes you need to reopen old wounds before they can heal. Sometimes you need to get away before you can come home.

Reccer's comments: I raced through this breathlessly, both eager to see what would happen next and wanting it to be much longer. The most recent addition to the “couples therapy” trope, this is one of the very few that doesn’t involve a fake relationship. Instead, John and Sherlock attend the sessions with the specific intent of recovering from the events in series 3 and 4 (disregarding TFP and Eurus) and strengthening their relationship. I especially liked that there are no easy answers, but that both Sherlock and John are committed to each other from the get-go, regardless of whether they remain platonic best friends or allow the love they both feel to find its expression through romance and physical intimacy. (Check the tags to see which route they go…) This is also a Parentlock fic, with Rosie an integral part of the story and the family unit. With lots of delicious UST, quiet domesticity, heart-wrenching confessions, a day at the beach, a wise old woman, and all the time in the world to get things right.

Fic Rec: Totus Mundus, Agit Histrionem

Title: Totus Mundus Agit Histrionem
Author: Mistyzeo
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 42715
Rating: Explicit
Warnings: None
Verse: ACD books
Author's summary:
The stage lost a fine actor, even as science lost an acute reasoner, when he became a specialist in crime.

January, 1881: a despondent army doctor is offered a ticket to a Shakespeare play, and is instantly captivated by the fellow playing the Danish prince himself. Then there is a murder. Then they fall in love.

Reccer's Comments: As of now, this fic has something over 300 comments on it on the AO3. I don't know why it hasn't been recc'd before, but I aim to remedy that now.

Yet another take on that fateful first meeting. This one from the inestimable Mistyzeo. She hurls us right into the middle of the action as we see Watson attending a performance of Hamlet, where the Prince is played by one S. Scott Holmes. Their attraction for one another is immediate, a murder soon follows, and the game is well and truly afoot.
There is femslash, a compelling mystery for Holmes to solve, a nod to The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes, and not a word of the entire thing reads false. The period details are perfect as always, the characters are, well, perfectly in character. There are disguises, and picklocks, and even 221B complete with an aspidistra and a very knowing Mrs Hudson. And let's not neglect to mention some of the best written love scenes in the fandom.
There is a large cast of supporting characters, but they are all well-drawn enough that it's not confusing. A competent Lestrade makes his appearance as well, as in the end, the mystery is solved, the killer is caught and Holmes is launched on his true career.
Of course, like all detective fiction, it's a formula, but the genius of the thing is in its execution - and the execution is very, very well done.

Fic Rec: Aircraft Recognition

Title: Aircraft Recognition
Author: mydogwatson
Pairing: Sherlock & John
Length: 1,215
Rating: General Audiences
Warnings: None
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: Two little boys meet during the second World War. A different time, a different place, but the same magic.

Reccer's comments: This author writes a charming series called Postcard Tales, where they base a one-shot Sherlock fic on a postcard out of a set of vintage replicas. Their note from the very first Postcard Tale:

I have a set of postcards that are replicas of vintage Penguin book covers. Just before my recent trip to London [Hamlet!], I blindly selected one card for each day of the trip. Every morning in London I [again blindly] chose one card from the pile and then I would write a johnlock vignette based on the title that came up. I mailed each card to myself, every one covered with tiny print.

With that explanation, I've chosen a story from their third series of Postcard Tales. In the grand tradition of alternate first meetings, here we have Sherlock as an adventurous, mischievous little boy, evacuated from London during World War II. He's bored, and lonely, and takes to watching planes in the sky. One day, he's joined by a new friend. 

This story has a lovely and bittersweet direct sequel, Keeping Poultry and Rabbits on Scraps, where the boys are a little older and facing a separation, and a final story Siren Land, where they encounter each other once more as adults. The first two are John/Sherlock friendship, and the final tale is Johnlock.

Fic Rec: The Emerald Band

Title: The Emerald Band
Author: Firerose
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson (as Rache/The Limping Doctor)
Length: 27882
Rating: Explicit
Warnings: None
Verse: ACD books/A Study in Emerald - Neil Gaiman/HP Lovecraft Cthulu Mythos
Author's summary:
How can I describe the sight that so unmanned my imperturbable friend? That caused the giant of a baronet to faint dead away? I could say Drago’s green-soaked body would no longer haunt my dreams—or if it did, it would be but a pleasant respite from the horror of that thing.

Rache & his faithful doctor investigate the murder of Julia Stoner in the 'Study in Emerald' universe, but the deeper they delve into the Roylott family history, the darker things become


Reccer's comments:
This is a fic set in the Emerald-verse, which is itself an inspired fusion of the Doyle Canon and HP Lovecraft's Cthulu Mythos, which is then crossed back over with The Speckled Band. You don't really need to have read any of them to get the gist of what's going on in this suspenseful story, but you should anyway. (ahem)
Rache and his loyal sidekick, the Limping Doctor, set out to solve the murder of Miss Julia Stonor, while trying to elude capture by Moriarty as chief agent for the Great Old Ones, who rule Albion. From there on, the familiar events of the Speckled Band play out against a background of Lovecraftian horror.
In order not to spoil the intricate plot - which is a good one - I won't summarise more, except to say that there's a secret passage, a classic locked-room mystery with a distinct supernatural twist, a crew of sinister Indian fakirs, and lurking beneath it all, an awful sense of primordial, unspeakable evil.
Firerose manages to juggle all these elements into a coherent whole and produce a corker of a casefic that's hard to put down But you may not want to read it late at night when you are alone in the house.
swissmarg: Mrs Hudson (Default)
[personal profile] swissmarg2017-06-29 10:09 pm

Art Rec: Antidote

Title: Antidote (link goes to tumblr)
Artist: anotherwellkeptsecret
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 1 mini-comic
Rating: Unrated, SFW
Warnings: None
Verse: ACD
Author's summary: None given. First line: In the dim light of a foggy November day, I chanced upon a package addressed to Mr. Sherlock Holmes.

Reccer's comments: Based on the Adventure of the Dying Detective, this is the comic equivalent of a one-shot missing scene that packs the punch of a full-blown story, and as such is an absolute delight. The facial expressions in this little comic are everything. I just love the tenderness and sweet emotion, paired with a modicum of angst and a hint of eroticism.

Fic Rec: Witness and Testimony

Title:Witness and Testimony
Author: Violsva
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 11763
Rating: Explicit
Warnings: None
Verse: ACD books
Author's summary: Men of certain dispositions should not take up residence with consulting detectives. Having done so anyway, Watson is finally forced to face the consequences. Not quite the consequences he expected, however.

Reccer's comments:
Another coming out story, but with a convincing murder mystery and a lot of suspense. Watson is a suspect, Holmes defends him, but how much has he deduced about what really happened? Lestrade is dense, Watson is nervous, and Holmes is...Holmes. "Watson," he said, “that’s Courvoisier. Kindly don’t use it for dyeing the rug."

Oh, wait. I almost forgot the red-hot finish.
swissmarg: Mrs Hudson (Default)
[personal profile] swissmarg2017-06-26 07:48 pm

Fic Rec: The Vampires of London

Title: The Vampires of London
Author: consultingdetective
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 72K
Rating: Explicit
Warnings: Major character death
Verse: BBC
Author's summary: Over one hundred years after the first battle, a series of murders have caught the attention of London's police force and Sherlock Holmes. While most of the city has forgotten the vampire that once walked its streets, the descendants of the Van Helsing, Harker, and Seward families have not.

Reccer's comments: Perfectly timed to coincide with the recent announcement that Steven Moffat, Mark Gatiss, and Sue Vertue will be teaming up again to bring Dracula to the BBC, this unites Sherlock Holmes and Bram Stoker’s Dracula in a casefic full of classic Gothic horror, secrets, ancient magic, and the past coming back – sometimes quite literally – to bite. The fic delights with twist after earth-shattering twist, simmering Johnlock UST, and John Watson as the baddest BAMF to hit the streets of London since 1897. The OCs are deliciously wicked, and in true ensemble style, secondary characters such as Mycroft, Molly, Moran, Lestrade, and even Sally Donovan all have crucial and prominent parts to play. There is a modicum of gore and major character death, but it’s not a sad ending and I mean, without spoiling… vampires. ;)
swissmarg: Mrs Hudson (Default)
[personal profile] swissmarg2017-06-24 06:31 pm

Fic Rec: A Real Deal

Title: A Real Deal
Author: toyhto
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 10K
Rating: Mature
Warnings: Major character death
Verse: BBC
Author's summary: Please be real, he thought and pulled Sherlock closer.

Reccer's comments:  I’m honestly not sure whether I’m more horrified or comforted by the direction this fic went. It takes a huge detour off the beaten path and tries to answer the question: Is it better to have loved and lost, or never to have loved at all… or maybe there is a third option? One that will get under your skin and stick with you.

Fic Rec: Venezuela

Title: Venezuela
Author: Fillyjonk
Pairing: Sherlock/John
Length: 1,312
Rating: Not Rated (I'd say suitable for general audiences or teen)
Warnings: None
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: I imagine the purloined kidney of Sherlock Holmes: iced, in a rusting cooler, dangling from a long stick slung over the bare shoulders of two native men, transported through the Amazon rain forest to the hidey-hole of a drug runner. Demoted. Destined to filter less rarified blood.

Reccer's comments: This underappreciated little gem is a beautifully executed slice-of-life. Sherlock is immersed in his work. John is, in turn, frustrated, amused and bemused. The story unfolds largely through dialogue, John's words intruding on Sherlock's thoughts (often mid-thought) and vice versa. There is a comfortable, quiet domesticity to their interactions, and it's easy to imagine many a day in Baker Street passing by in exactly this fashion.

"Between Mary and the clinic and your ridiculous pollen obsession, I sometimes think I'd do well to... disappear. Go where no one knows me or Mary. Start fresh. I could do it, you know. I've got money. Pack a bag and go to Venezuela. British Columbia. Tahiti."

He stops talking. He seems to be done.

"If you go to Tahiti," I say, "Would you visit Samuel Wheaton and ask him to respond to my texts? He's assisting at the Harrison Smith Botanical Gardens. A murder investigation hinges on it."

There are no sweeping statements of love or devotion to be found here, just a slow, understated affection that permeates each and every spoken (and unspoken) word.

swissmarg: Mrs Hudson (Default)
[personal profile] swissmarg2017-06-18 07:42 am

Gif Story Rec: S4 AU

Title: S4 AU (link goes to tumblr)
Author: johnlockiseternal
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 17 tumblr posts
Rating: Not rated, contains 1 NSFW gif
Warnings: None
Verse: BBC
Author's summary: AU where S4 doesn’t happen at all, Sherlock hallucinates everything after Mary shoots him.

Reccer's comments: I'm not sure if there's a name for this kind of thing, but this is a story told through gifs of the series (plus a couple from other sources), with the author inserting their own subtitles. It's kind of a cross between a vid and a fic. It's short and sweet, but manages to pack in the full range of emotion, from the stomach swoops of flirty texting, loin-tingling teases of a consummation many years in the making, to a heart-in-throat confrontation and the heartfelt sighs of a happy ending. And all rendered in slick, high quality gifs with in-character dialogue. It's cute, sassy, sweet, and just great fun.

Editing to add: There is now a 1:25-minute fanvid version.

swissmarg: Mrs Hudson (Default)
[personal profile] swissmarg2017-06-16 08:01 am

Fic Rec: On the Rack

Title: On the Rack
Author: 7PercentSolution, J_Baillier
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 286,966 words
Rating: Explicit
Warnings: None
Verse: BBC
Author's summary: The sequel to The Breaking Wheel, in which Sherlock goes to rehab (of the other sort), starts scraping his life back together, attempts to solve a case, and tries to make sense of what it actually means to be in a relationship.

Reccer's comments: This is the second part of a series, and although I would recommend reading the first part for best understanding (and because it’s an awesome fic), all of the most important points are explained within this installment so it could also be read as a standalone.

This is quite simply an incredible journey into the mind and body of Sherlock Holmes, charting the physical and emotional journey of the aftermath of Sherlock being stricken by Guillain-Barré syndrome, an autoimmune disorder of the nervous system. We really get a vivid picture of Sherlock’s frustration and fear over the weeks and months, not just at his physical and mental condition but also at his fledgling romantic relationship with John. To add to the angst-mix, Sherlock is depicted as neurodivergent, bringing a lifetime’s worth of baggage and mishandling that needs to be dealt with before any of the hated “Progress” can be made.

What I really liked is that this fic tackled the problem from several angles, involving athletics, music, chemistry, and a new case. I thought at first that the title referenced a torture rack (which it might also do) but there is also a beautiful metaphor that’s developed through the course of the story which I didn’t pick up on until quite near the end, adding another layer of brilliance to an already masterful piece of writing. Sherlock’s past, especially relating to his brother, is also given a particularly good exploration. With obscure poisons, flashback nightmares, a twice-murdered corpse, drug dealing, and fresh medical drama to twist the knife just a little more.


Fic Rec: The Illustrious Client

Title: The Illustrious Client
Author: Arabella Strange
Pairing: Sherlock/John
Length: 113,288
Rating: Explicit
Warnings: Violence, case-related references to human trafficking/sexual abuse
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: ‘We’re a couple!' John burst out, bluntly. His face was nearly twitching with rage. He hadn’t even meant to say anything, to anybody, because he wanted what they had for himself just a bit longer, for a million reasons half-romantic and half-defensive, and yet here he was, gripping Chez Francine’s thick cream tablecloth with enough force to tear it in half, suddenly wanting nothing more than to tell everyone within earshot that Sherlock was absolutely infuriating, surprisingly good at blowjobs, and probably in love with him.

Reccer's comments:  Where do I start? This incredible case fic is the third in a series (Ode to Broken Things.) It's not strictly necessary to read the first two stories in order to appreciate this one, although doing so provides a richer context and background for the state of John and Sherlock's relationship. Also, they're excellent, and well worth the read!

The universe this story is set in diverges from canon prior to the start of Series 3, though it remains very much informed by canon events—picking and choosing from the established storyline to weave an entirely different tale. Essentially: John broke things off with Mary prior to Sherlock's return, and he and Sherlock have subsequently fallen into a sexual relationship. John is in love with Sherlock, Sherlock is in love with John—should be simple, right? Instead, our heroes struggle under the weight of their own insecurities and worries, navigating a relationship fraught with miscommunications and misinterpreted intentions, with neither one quite willing to show his hand. This alone would make for a compelling read, but there's also a case that needs solving and a truly heinous villain to be vanquished.

And yet John had marched unevenly into a lab in Bart’s Hospital and Sherlock had, within seconds, begun devising the plan to rid of him that abhorrent cane. Not only because it was unseemly (though it did nothing to flatter the too-young man who had no sound need for it), but because John — clearly — hated it. And John had loved the run from Angelo’s after the cab, even the wrong cab; had laughed against the wall until Angelo himself had appeared and delivered the punchline to the night’s best joke.

In spite of all subsequent efforts of Sherlock’s to undo this one shining act of generosity, John stood here, on two healthy feet, breathing like a bull facing off against a red flag (and the moron who was waving it), hating to the depths of his being the person who had relished, even for a moment, the opportunity to take the wind out of Sherlock’s insensitive, selfish ego.

‘Many would disagree with you,’ Sherlock muttered.

‘Yeah, well, sod them, all right, because —’

‘I love you,’ said Sherlock.

Had he said it purely to watch the incredibly plasticity of John’s face change arrangements at the speed of lightning, he would not have been in the least disappointed; equally, had he blurted it out in order to test the fortitude of his still-recovering bowels, it would have been a compelling experiment.

John was still standing there, watching him, stranded amidst a sea of tile and sterilised furniture, but some of the warmth in his expression seemed to be receding.

‘Is that meant to be a joke?’ John began, stiffly, eyes scanning Sherlock’s face. 

There was no clear grammatical way to refute what John said whilst reasserting Sherlock’s statement, but nor was there any plausibility to blaming the thudding in his chest on his recent cardiac history.


I could go on forever about how much I love this story. It's long, intricately plotted and well researched, sprinkled with loving references to canon events. The character voices are spot on, for John and Sherlock both. The dialogue is snappy, witty, and at times heartbreaking. And perhaps my favorite thing is that it has a wonderful happy ending that feels earned, true to the characters and their circumstances. I can't help but feel that it's tragically underappreciated (not even 200 kudos as of the time of this post!), and that it deserves mention right alongside many of the other beloved casefics in the fandom. 

Do be sure to read the author's tags. The villain is, as I mentioned, heinous, and descriptions of his crimes could be potentially upsetting or triggering. Nothing is shown explicitly in the story itself.

swissmarg: Mrs Hudson (Default)
[personal profile] swissmarg2017-06-05 01:52 pm

Fic Rec: He Was a Friend of Mine

Title: He Was a Friend of Mine
Author: SinceWhenDoYouCallMe_John
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson, John Watson/Alma Watson
Length: 38,387 words
Rating: Explicit
Warnings: Suicidal ideation, infidelity
Verse: BBC Sherlock/Brokeback Mountain crossover
Author's summary: Sherlock presses his nose into my hair and inhales. “Told myself the whole way here we wasn’t gonna get into this again,” he says low. His breath moves soft against my scalp, and his words rumble deep into my bones. It sounds like the open sky throwing wind against the boulders up on Baker, rattling the thin walls of the tent with the rushing force of the mountain. I hum. I don’t believe him for a second – steppin’ out of his gleaming white Ford back in Signal with his best shirt on and his curls all combed lookin’ up at me like he just took a breath after five years of holding it. I know because I did the same.

Reccer's comments: Stunned silence. What. This author. What. This author writes better than Annie Proulx. I just. ??

Okay. Trying to put together words coherently here. This is a fusion with Brokeback Mountain, and the author says at the beginning that they “borrowed heavily” from Proulx’s short story and the screenplay. So when I started reading the first paragraph I thought, yeah, okay, they’ve copied all this description stuff from Proulx to set the mood. I mean because look at this:

There’s a place up round near Bighorn where the little streams all crisscross each other like a handful of grass tossed down onto hot summer pavement. You can walk alongside the water in places where boots and hooves and moccasins and bare feet and whatever other goddamn footwear there is have been trampling for hundreds of years, and nobody pays you no congratulations for finding those paths. 

Poetry, right? This author has obviously won numerous writing awards, right? But. Then there’s a link to Proulx’s story at the end and I checked and this is all this fic author. 100%. I went so far as to google those phrases because good goddamn. This fic is the only hit in the entire internet. The only hit for the handful of grass on hot summer pavement and no congratulations for finding the paths. And it just goes on like that for 38K words. Yes, there are a few lines of dialogue that are cribbed but that’s really about it as far as I can tell. So. Maybe they have won writing awards. Worth reading just for that. But then there is the story.

The plot largely follows that of the movie but there are a lot of deviations, some minor and some major, as Sherlock and John’s characters and back stories meld with those of Ennis and Jack. It was a tricky line to walk, I think, to bring Sherlock and John as we know them to the rural American west of the 1970s and 80s, including the speech patterns. But they are definitely there, with John’s anger and struggle between wanting outward normalcy while craving adventure, and Sherlock’s paramount loneliness and underappreciated brilliance seeking an appropriate outlet but getting sidetracked in violence and illicit substances.

For those who are afraid of how the movie ended, check out the “eventual happy ending” tag. ;) Eventual being the key word here because believe me, you will go through that box of tissues on the way. We are taken on a lifelong journey that hurts with every step as the two men drift between moments of happiness with each other. The characters may be fictional, but their emotions are made real through the telling, and that to me is the mark of a truly great story.

swissmarg: Mrs Hudson (Default)
[personal profile] swissmarg2017-06-04 11:14 am

Art Rec: Oh, What A Night


Title: Oh, What A Night Series (AO3Tumblr)
Artist: penumbra/anotherwellkeptsecret
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 3 multi-panel comics
Rating: Mature to Explicit
Warnings: None
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: Part 1 "Oh, What A Night": John and Sherlock go on a date. Hilarity, kissing, and egregious amounts of fluff ensue.
Part 2 "The Losing Side": Sherlock wants to marry John, but he's not sure of the best way to propose. Who better to run ideas by than, well...John?
Part 3: "Points of Interest": Sherlock and John's wedding night.
Reccer's comments: This is a set of 3 complete comics with over 100 panels telling the story of Sherlock and John’s courtship. Sweet, funny, awkward, cute, and a little bit sexy, and of course it wouldn’t be Johnlock without at least a smidgen of angst, a case, an interfering brother and well-meaning friends to spice things up. The judicious use of small amounts of animation add to the charm in part 1, and in part 3 things get very hot yet very tasteful with an intimate glimpse John and Sherlock’s lovey times as husbands. Seriously heart-melting adult fare.

Fic Rec: Kitty Kisses

Title: Kitty Kisses
Author: TheWhiteLily
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes & Molly Hooper (gen or more if you squint)
Length: 3,075
Rating: Teen
Warnings: None
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: Molly Hooper has one bad day that gets worse, and one that gets better.

Reccer's comments: The note I made when I bookmarked this story was "absolutely perfect apology-to-Molly fic." This fills in the gap between the wrenching phone call sequence in TFP and the final scene where Molly is smiling and all seems forgiven, and it does so beautifully. Molly's voice shines here: awkward, sweet, and, yes, practical about death.

She realised he was frowning at the disturbed soil as he did so with a disturbingly familiar focus.

“You’re not to come back and dig him up to observe the decomposition process,” said Molly firmly.

“Never even crossed my mind,” Sherlock said, avoiding her eye.

She glared at him for a long moment, and then at the carefully smoothed-down dirt at the base of the hydrangeas.

“Once,” she conceded. “Twice maximum, and don’t let me notice you’ve been.”

This story does a wonderful job of getting to the emotional core of both of these characters, highlighting the strange and lovely ways that they truly do complement and understand one another. There is love there, yes, but whether it is romantic or just a deep friendship built on mutual understanding is up to the reader, I think.

Be advised that this story does deal with animal death, if that's a sensitive issue for you.

Fic Rec: The Camford Dares

Title: The Camford Dares
Author: writerfan2013
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 17,000 words
Rating: T
Warnings: none
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: Sherlock is being mysterious and secretive and John is being particularly stubborn and their annoying case in a well-known university town is not helping anything. Casefic! Mystery and infuriation but ultimately Johnlock.

Reccer's comments: This is a really well-done combination of casefic and relationship fic. Full of many beloved tropes: mutual pining, UST, working undercover, bed-sharing, and more, plus some midlife not-really-crises-but-definitely-annoyances as John is forced to run around a college campus after Sherlock and attempt to blend in with undergrads. The mystery is interesting and clever, and the writing is sharp enough to refresh familiar tropes and make them feel memorable and unique. Best of all, John and Sherlock's relationship is suffused with both infuriation and affection -- the author catches its difficulty and its sweetness at the same time, which is hard to do. I enjoy and admire this fic very much.