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Title: PDAs, not of the Palm Pilot variety
Author: timberwolfoz
Rating: PG for hinted domestic abuse (offstage)
Disclaimer: Not mine. ACD’s, the Beebs and Moffatiss’s.(Though given we’ve just heard that filming on s3 won't start until next year, I’ve got a loooong time to play with them.)
Summary: Post Reichenbach. What would Sherlock and John do about those ‘…display things?’
Acknowledgements: Grateful thanks to ohcute for beta’ing and general brainstorming. Also to reapersun to her cartoon on the subject, which indirectly inspired the discussion.

“So, interesting background,” said the Medical Director at St Thomas’ Hospital. “Army medic, discharged on medical grounds, some time in a NHS clinic, some time in Colchester A&E – varied, there seem to be gaps? Is that for medical reasons?”

John shook his head. “No real medical problems since my discharge. I was also assisting my flatmate in his business – which also included ad hoc medical duties – and that kept me fairly busy. I wasn’t sure if I should put it in as a lot of it consisted of ‘stitch up cut acquired in duties, nag about taking follow-up antibiotics’, that sort of thing.”

“I would, it’s not blagging if it’s a genuine position,” said Dr Mansfield. “That’s all?”

“Well, I was sort of in witness protection after Colchester – in fact I never actually resigned or was terminated, they just received an email advising that I wouldn’t be available for the indefinite future and they sort of assigned someone in. Not much like the NHS, I know,” said John at his interviewer’s raised eyebrow.

“Wait. John Watson. Not that John Watson, the one with that detective fellow?”

John nodded, a smile pulling at the corner of his mouth. “That’s the one.”

“What the hell happened? I only vaguely followed it like everyone else, but there was all this stuff about this detective bloke with a hat who was all over the internet, then something about him being a fake, then he’d apparently killed himself because of it, then he pops up again about a year down the track and he’d faked his own death to go into hiding to take down some criminal overlord or something. Sounds crazy but with the stories that come through here…”

John raised his eyebrows. “You’ve remembered it very well for someone who ‘only vaguely followed it’, that’s dead on.” Realising what he’d said, he grimaced. “No pun intended.”

The interviewer grinned. “Yes. Well. So what’s going on there?”

“He’s – we’re – rebuilding the practice, broader variety of cases, I’m aiming to build my experience in my chosen profession, so it all works out.”

The interviewer raised his eyebrows. “I realise that technically speaking I shouldn’t be asking you this question, but – are you partners?”

A half-joyful, half-stunned smile spread across John’s face. “We are now.”


That had been an issue that they’d had to sort out.

Not the ‘partners’ thing. From the moment they’d fallen into bed with each other there’d been an unspoken knowing between the two of them, long before either of them had raised the topic.

Surprisingly, it had been Sherlock who had raised the issue. “So what are we doing about those…” he’d waved a hand in his customary gesture, “display things?”

John looked up from his computer. “What ‘display things’ would those be?”

“You know. All the kissing and hugging and handholding you see couples do. Are we going to do that sort of thing?”

John frowned in thought. “Well… not every couple does ‘that sort of thing’. It all depends on what you and your partner feel like doing. And let’s face it, being two men is going to up the staring and we do still have the odd journalist on our… hang on.” John put his laptop down on the side table. “This is something you wanted. Are wanting. Isn’t it?”

Sherlock shrugged. “Well yes, that’s something I’d wanted – assumed would happen – in a ‘relationship’.” The quotes were so visible in his voice he may as well have been making air quote signs. “But at the same time, I’m reluctant to make a public display. Does that make sense?”

“It makes a lot of sense,” John reassured him.

“So what do you want to do?”

It was John’s turn to shrug. “I suppose… go with what we feel like doing. If you want to take my hand or put your arm around me, do. If you don’t, don’t.”

“Are you all right with that?”

“Well,” said John, his voice deepening, “it’s not as if we don’t snog and such enough around the flat.”

“True,” said Sherlock, just before he proceeded to land on John’s lap and do just that.


And in the end it had been John who’d broken the ice.

They’d been on the way to an appointment at the IPO, following up a lead on a case they’d been engaged in when John had had a phone call from Mrs Hudson. “John dear? There’s a client here to see you both, but I know you said there’s something you have to chase up and she does look a bit banged around…”

“She what? Right, Mrs H., I’ll be there as soon as I can, have to check with Sherlock. If you could sit with her until I can get there, tell her I’m on my way?”

“Will do, dear. Should I give her a cup of tea and a few biscuits?”

John frowned in thought. “Not the biscuits, not until I’ve had a chance to look at her – if they have to do anything to her at A&E she should have an empty stomach. Tea – I’ll let you use your judgement; she might need a cuppa more than she needs to keep her stomach empty.”

“How about tea with lemon?”

“That would be perfect, Mrs H.”

“I’ll get that organised, then. Hurry home, dear.”

“Right, I’ll be there soon. Thanks again, Mrs H. Bye.” He ended the call and said, “Did you hear that?”

“Client, no details as yet, but she needs a doctor more than a detective at this stage.”

“Right, and you’ve got to get to that bloody place and get the info before it closes at five because what we need isn’t online…”

“So, you go back to the flat and handle our prospective client, I’ll find the information we need and be back with you as soon as I can.”

“Right,” said John, nodding decisively. “We’ll keep each other updated. Oh hang on, will they let you have your phone on?”

“It’s not like it’s an aircraft. I’ll just put it on vibrate. Text me once you know what’s happening and if you need to call, I’ll step into the toilet and return your call.”

“Right, right.” John stretched up to brush a kiss over Sherlock’s lips. “See you soon. TAXI!!” he shouted as he spotted one, running to grab it.

He was halfway home when the realisation struck him and he texted Sherlock: Did I imagine it or did I kiss you back there?

He received the reply shortly: The other patrons may be wondering why I keep touching my lips. S.

John found himself smiling sappily, even as he typed, Watch it with the dust on those files. ETA to flat 10 mins. Will update.

The reply came in a minute: Have just found information required. Hope to follow soon.

And as far as their client was concerned, it was reassuring for her when the tall besuited curly-haired man perched on the arm of the kind doctor’s chair, casually put an arm around his shoulders, and said, “Mrs Alden. Please tell us in as few words as possible about your husband’s business activities, and then we’ll accompany you to St Mary’s A&E, have a policewoman meet us there and have you treated.”


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