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Vid Rec: Fix You

Title: Fix You
Music Title & Artist: "Fix You" by Coldplay
Vidder: givemeanimeanyday
Pairing or Character: Sherlock Holmes & John Watson, unresolved John Watson/Mary Morstan
Verse: Granada
Link: There is no announcement post for this vid, so this link goes to YouTube: Fix You vid

Reccer's Comments: I feel so lucky that there are so many wonderful Granada vids out there -- it's a tribute to how well the series has aged and how much it is still loved by Holmes fans. This vid is a favorite of mine, with well-chosen edits that highlight the inescapable melancholy of Brett's Holmes before showing the way his darker moments are transformed into energy, warmth, and joy in Watson's presence. It shows how Holmes helps Watson heal from the disappointments and loneliness of his life as well. A lovely tribute to their friendship and to the actors who created this wonderful series.

Fic Rec: It's Only Natural

Title: It's Only Natural
Author: esterbrook
Pairing: Gen
Length: 1,987
Rating: Teen
Warnings: none
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: "You mad bastard," John growls, "if you're planning to fuck off and do something dangerous without me, I will kill you myself right now to spare you the trouble."

Reccer's comments: Sherlock makes his way to the couch with half a dozen balled pairs of socks in his hands. "John," he says pensively, "what would you pack if you had to go on a long trip?"

Ah, the second hiatus! It was a glorious time for fic, thanks to all of the creative Reichenbach theories and fix-its. This is an older favorite I recently came across again and I'm so glad I did. In this, John finds Sherlock sitting on their sitting room floor, rucksack at his side and clothes strewn across the floor. He gives Sherlock some packing advice and makes a joke about surprise weekend getaways, but the conversation takes a turn when John's instinct tells him something is "extremely not good." I don't want to give it all away, but when John marches upstairs and comes back down with his own rucksack in hand, I cheered. This is a short but powerful story that showcases what a badass John Watson is (and Sherlock, too) and just how perfectly matched he and Sherlock Holmes are.

Fic Rec: Wait

Title: Wait
Author: roseselavy
Pairing: Sherlock/John
Length: 78,000 words
Rating: Mature
Warnings: drug addiction, discussion of emotionally abusive past relationship
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: Liberal arts AU. Sherlock Holmes is a reclusive literary writer in need of a flatmate after burning through his latest book advance, John Watson is midway through a PhD in art history.

Reccer's comments: This story is very dear to my heart. I am so happy to be able to recommend it here at last -- it was abandoned for several years and I honestly thought it would never be finished. But the author saw that it had a few readers who wanted to see an ending, and very kindly came back and wrote a beautiful conclusion for it.

The story starts out with a number of fairly familiar elements: intense mutual pining, hurt/comfort, and an evil ex (in this case from John's past, not Sherlock's). But for me, the internal narrative voices the author creates for John and Sherlock are so convincing that familiar story elements took on new life and reality. These are not quite the versions of Sherlock and John that we know from the series, but they are not as far removed as the story summary might imply. Sherlock still acts as a consulting detective on the side, and John still documents his work and shares his cases. But without the same history of war and depression and adrenaline addiction as BBC!canon, this John finds different ways to be a BAMF and draws clearer lines about what he will and won't stand for on the job. The communication between these characters throughout this story is difficult, but they work very hard at it and I find it compelling to see them work through their feelings and needs honestly.

The real heart of this story, especially once John and Sherlock declare themselves to each other after the first few chapters, is relationship negotiation. Sherlock is a recovering addict, not all that far into sobriety yet. His sexual history is, for him, inextricably and miserably entwined with using, and that area of his life so repulses him that he is not sure if he will ever be able to be with John in a way that satisfies them both. This fic takes the issue of sexual incompatibility seriously, it delves into the guilt that can dog people who love each other yet worry that they are respectively asking too much or offering too little. It does not rush to resolve these problems, but rather paints a 'one step forward, two steps back' pattern that honors the complexity of the characters and the situation.

The story also deals with the effect that Sherlock's professional life has on his sobriety, and in particular considers the issue of anonymity and the way that doxxing can do terrible damage to a person whose mental health relies on having the freedom to vanish into their writing. The story allows John and Sherlock to be flawed, to handle their relationship as well as their individual personal problems imperfectly, but their love for one another is unquestionably profound. I like that they acknowledge their mistakes, and get angry, and I like that they keep trying. In the end, they haven't worked through everything that needs to be addressed, but in the midst of their problems they are able to realize that they can actually be sure of each other's commitment and trust that the rest will come with time. So, to me, this is ultimately a very happy story. I hope you will enjoy it as much as I did.

Fic Rec: The Little Things

Author: 221b_Hound
Pairing: Gen
Length: 1,160
Rating: G
Warnings: nonw
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: Someone asked for Mycroft whump on the kinkmeme. The full prompt is: I'd like to see Mycroft getting seriously injured/ill in a way unrelated to one of Sherlock's cases. Maybe he's in an accident, maybe related to *his* line of work. The injuries are not life threatening but potentially life changing. Sherlock then looks after him (graciously or not, up to you)

And then I did a really horrible thing to Mycroft. I feel kind of bad about it now. But at least he got cake.

Reccer's comments: But Sherlock knows all of Mycroft’s most secret tells. Even the ones Mycroft doesn’t realise he has.

This isn't the first story focused on the Holmes brothers that I've recced and it probably won't be the last. I love reading about these two and all of the love that's there, if pushed way, way down by the both of them. Here, Mycroft suffers a debilitating injury and summons Sherlock to his side. While waiting for Sherlock, Mycroft ponders all that he's lost. Sherlock's arrival, and his reaction to what has happened, show that not all really is. If you like fics with a gentle take on Mycroft and Sherlock's relationship, this one will not disappoint. (Just a note to reassure: Mycroft's injury is not life threatening. And there really is cake.)

Fic Rec: A Study in Rehabilitation

Title: A Study in Rehabilitation
Author: TheWhiteLily
Pairing: Gen. John Watson, Sherlock Holmes, OCs
Length: 12,500 words
Rating: G
Warnings: none
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: In a rehabilitation clinic in London, John Watson is just home from Afghanistan and having a difficult time coming to terms with the bullet in his shoulder’s devastating impact on his life. But now there’s a serial killer on the loose — and a certain consulting detective is on the trail…

Reccer's comments: This is a prequel AU to the BBC Sherlock series, answering the question: what if Sherlock and John had met just one case earlier? This is a brilliant casefic full of wonderfully smart deductions. It's also an intense and very well-researched medical drama that allows John to rise to an emergency with utterly convincing skill. Best of all, it catches the perfect chemistry of that first meeting once again, with clever allusions to certain elements of A Study in Pink but even more departures from it. I particularly loved seeing how a difference in circumstances altered what Sherlock got right and wrong in his deductions about John, and how the author created a fascinating backstory to explain the roots of John's psychosomatic limp. With the leads precisely in-character and an interesting canvas of OCs to act as suspects and victims, this fic drew me in and held me rapt from start to finish.
Title: I Prefer to Text (series): (1) House Rules; (2) On Holiday; (3) A Curious Incident; (4) Where the Lovelight Gleams
Author: songlin
Pairing: John/Sherlock
Length: 5,444 total
Rating: PG/T, verging on G
Warnings: Nah, unless you're seriously arachnophobic, and then only for House Rules
Verse: BBC Sherlock
Author's summary: There is none for the series as a whole.
House Rules: In which it is explained, via text messages and notes, exactly why John Watson has to put his foot down when it comes to the refrigerator and what is kept in it. Also: camel spiders, and why they are the physical manifestations of fear.
On Holiday: In which the happy couple takes a vacation to sunny Spain. Thank God for those funny little cards that make mobiles work abroad.
A Curious Incident: In which Sherlock has to see a man about a dog.
Where the Lovelight Gleams: They say you get to missing the people you've lost around the holidays.

Reccer's comments: The first three parts of this series provide some of the most sheerly hilarious Sherlock-and-John interactions I've ever read. Oh, the shoutiness and the carping and the complaining and the threats and the mutual adoration! The fourth is set post-Reichenbach. I've tagged for humor on account of the first three parts; the last changes mood starkly (but bear in mind your reccer requires happy endings).

Excerpt (brief, but surely sufficient to lure you):
"I know roughly 42 ways to kill you with my bare hands, I am armed, I literally know where you sleep and I spend a lot of time with my teeth in close proximity to your cock. Do not test me, Sherlock Holmes. John"

Read on the AO3.

Fic rec: Falling

Title: Falling
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 1,260
Rating: Teen
Warnings: none
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: arms, beds, love, sleep, rain
Reccer's comments: This one hits so many of my sweet spots- there's the slow build, lots of easy-going banter, intimate confessions, and sensous, heartfelt kissing. It's a lot to throw into a fic barely over 1,000 words, but the author does it perfectly. There is so much love here in so few words. It's a cozy fic full of humor and comfort, perfect for when you need to step back from the angst and wrap yourself in something warm and loving.

Art rec: It is quite a three pipe problem

Title: It is quite a three pipe problem
Artist: sheeplocked on tumblr
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes portrait, Gen
Rating: G
Warnings: none
Verse: ACD Books
Author's summary: It is quite a three pipe problem, and I beg that you won't speak to me for fifty minutes.

Reccer's comments: Oh, this is such a cosy, delightful image of Holmes in his dressing gown, cross-legged on the rug before his fireplace, facing away from us and reading through his beloved agony columns. I adore the little details -- the persian slipper next to him on the floor; the crazy-quilt remnants of red thread on the corkboard above the fireplace, probably left over from his last impromptu mural of evidence; the wreaths of smoke curling around his head; the scribbled notes on bits of paper; the empty teacups. There is something so charming about the rich color and sort of crooked cartoon style that sheeplocked specializes in, it's just perfect for something as ridiculous, beautiful, and domestic as Holmes.

If you enjoy this, I recommend exploring sheeplocked's fanart tag, she's got lots of great stuff, including quite a bit of BBC Sherlock art covering both the major and secondary cast.

Vid Rec: Hallelujah

Title: Hallelujah
Music Title & Artist: Hallelujah (cover) by Imogen Heap
Vidder: hotandcoldcollision
Pairing or Character: Sherlock Holmes, John Watson (the pairing is however you see them in canon)
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Link: No announcement page exists, so this link is to YouTube: Hallelujah vid

Reccer's Comments: This vid was made within a week of the airing of the BBC series 2 finale, The Reichenbach Fall. The whole fandom was riding high on emotion, and this vid remains my favorite response to the Reichenbach storyline. I love its slow pace, its deliberation and simplicity. The vidder selected just the right images for every line of the lyrics, and Imogen Heap's rendition of this iconic song is so haunting and soulful. Even years later, this creation still touches my heart.

Fic Rec:

Title: The Pillar upon Which England Rests
Author: DiscordantWords
Pairing: Sherlock/John, Gen
Length: 27038
Rating: Mature
Warnings: none
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: They have all saved him, at one time or another, in different ways, these people Sherlock Holmes has come to call friends. But she was the first.

Reccer's comments: How to begin? She can still see him, so painfully young, pale in the Florida sun, with a beet red stripe of sunburn across the bridge of his nose. Frank had favored Hawaiian print shirts, had just about insisted on them for anyone who worked for him in any capacity, and hadn't Sherlock just looked thunderous in those garish prints? She wishes, not for the first time, that she had a photograph. But that's the thing about living. You don't always know which moments are the significant ones until they're long gone.

snarryfool's recent rec of a Mrs. Hudson-centric reminded me of this heart-wrenching story. The Fall has just happened, and in a bid to comfort a distraught John Watson (and herself), Mrs. Hudson tells the story of how she met Sherlock Holmes. The story moves flawlessly between the past and the present as Mrs. Hudson spins the tale of a young and terribly lonely Sherlock and how they ended up saving each other. Hello, new headcanon! This is an intense, emotional read, bittersweet and melancholy, with one of the best characterizations of Mrs. Hudson I've read.

This is tagged Sherlock/John, but there is no overt romance here, just Mrs. Hudson's observations of the two and their mutual pining. I left it tagged as such, to follow the author.

Fic Rec: The Shawl of Sherlock Holmes

Title: The Shawl of Sherlock Holmes
Author: luchia13
Pairing: Gen
Length: 2,000 words
Rating: PG
Warnings: none
Verse: Sherlock BBC
Author's summary: John's a Weaver, capable of channeling the abstract into fabric. After meeting Sherlock, his abilities are put to the test more than ever.

Reccer's comments: This is a beautiful and haunting magical realism fic that always carries the feeling of October for me. It's about a special kind of witchcraft woven with thread and intention, and the way John tries to heal and protect with sometimes reckless abandon. I love the way the story cleverly plays with details of the BBC series, like Sherlock's scarf and John's endless jumpers. Written in 2011 before the second series aired, it diverges quickly from what has since become canon, but it maintains a perfect, understated grasp of the main characters and the depth of their concern for each other. I love this fic for its prose, its imagination, and its delightful mixture of melancholy and warmth.
Title: The Other Tenant
Author: tweedisgood
Pairing: Holmes/Watson
Length: 6,134
Rating: G
Warnings: none
Verse: ACD
Author's summary: “The Doctor made no mention of the other tenants of Baker Street when he began to write about Mr Holmes and his cases.” The Landlady, however, has quite a few things to say about one of them.
Reccer's comments: Are you as slackjawed with amazement as I am, to discover that there's a fic by tweedisgood that hasn't been recced here already? So. Tweed is one of the preeminent writers in ACD 'verse, with superb command of the idiom, of the characters' voices, and of the scientific, sociological, and ethical preoccupations of the era. This fic, a 2012 Holmestice gift for the lucky coloredink, takes up some events at 221b as seen by Mrs. Hudson.

If you give Mrs. H's position and role some thought, it becomes apparent that she must be more than a maundering ninny; after all, she's the sole owner of a respectable property in the heart of London, and there's no Mr. Hudson in view. In "The Other Tenant," Mrs. H turns her eye on the relationship between Holmes and Watson, on Holmes's loneliness, on the Victorian interest in eugenics, and ultimately on the meaning of marriage and love. The moment in which Holmes takes her into his confidence -- the risk and the trust that moment represents -- just breaks me every time.


When the Doctor and Mr Holmes took residence in the Spring of 1881, I had already let the ground floor to an oculist (who never seemed to have any patients) and the single set of rooms across the landing on the second floor. He had seemed respectable, reliable and sober, quite the ideal tenant, Mr Barnaby Forbes. So, in many respects, he proved to be; but as there is more to life than bread, so there is more to a harmonious house than neatly stacked crockery and a man who cleans his own boots. I came slowly to discover that I had unwittingly let a snake into the nest.

Read on the AO3.
Title: Poets Lie
Author: A_Candle_For_Sherlock
Pairing: Holmes/Watson
Length: 5,587 words
Rating: G
Warnings: none
Verse: ACD
Author's summary: "Love was a proven irrationality for men of his kind. To say to anyone, "My heart is yours," would bring on his beloved the permanent threat of being cast off from society, safety, home--Unconscionable. He'd thought the impulse long conquered. Now he saw that time had only distilled it. It was no wild, unfocused longing now, but a concentrated need. To touch a loved face tenderly--it was such a simple thing to be so entirely out of reach."
Reccer's comments: Oh, this fic is my ACD jam. UST! Longing! Fear of the law! Suffering in silence! The slip of the tongue that Reveals All! Tropey, you may say, and so I suppose this fic is, but as you can see from the author's summary, A_Candle_For_Sherlock has an excellent ear for the tone and idiom of the period, and a gift for the beautiful, poignant turn of phrase. "Poets Lie" weaves skillfully in and out of ACD canon, as well.

An excerpt:
The streets were flooded with crowds, criminal and civilized, and Holmes watched them pass with a curious feeling in his heart, wondering who else had a wish that could never be fulfilled. It was not a common thought for him. His perceptions ordinarily extended primarily to the professions and intentions of unknown passers-by; he deduced emotions only when relevant to the case at hand. But now he studied faces for traces of discontent, longing, confusion, and found them everywhere. The sense of being alone with his treacherous heart was no less real, but the weight of it had grown less by the time they reached home.

Read on the AO3.

Joining the party

We'd like to welcome rachelindeed and write_out, who have also volunteered to rec for October!


October 1 already!

Welcome to this month's reccer, snarryfool. We're looking forward to your recs and insights.

We also want to thank our reccers for September: tripleransom, tarimanveri, and biswholocked! Thanks for volunteering and we've enjoyed your posts.

We're still taking sign ups for October.

For prospective volunteers, you only need to make four recs a month, for works created for any version of Sherlock Holmes, as fic, art, vids, podfic, or meta.  Sign up here!  Info and Guidelines here.  We want to keep this community active for as long as volunteers are interested in making recs.


Title: This is how the fall begins
Author: dogandmonkeyshow
Pairing: gen
Length: 14,268
Rating: teen
Warnings: no warnings
Verse: Sherlock BBC

Author's summary: What happened between the gunshot and the good-byes?

Mycroft gets busy, John gets angry and Mary's cunning comes to the fore. Featuring political manoeuvring, unstable alliances, and Sherlock on the psychiatrist's couch.

Reccer's comments: This is the prologue to dogandmonkeyshow's fantastically plotty Unforgiveable Things series, which I highly recommend. In itself it's also an interesting and plotty take on what might have happened behind the scenes in His Last Vow after Sherlock shot Magnussen, full of complex strategizing, verbal duels, and political maneuvering - all sparsely and subtly written such that part of the pleasure of reading the fic is figuring out for yourself what's going on under the surface. I particularly like dogandmonkeyshow's take on Mycroft (never too much His Last Vow Mycroft) and his (mostly) iron control of itself, but it also features excellent versions of Mary and Lady Elizabeth Smallwood. Finally, if you want to whip yourself up into a lather of curiosity about the Moriarty video, in both this universe and in the show, this is definitely the fic to do it.

Fic Rec: The Smart One by Basser

Title: The Smart One
Author: Basser
Pairing: gen
Length: 2546 words
Rating: general audiences
Warnings: none
Verse: Sherlock BBC

Author's summary: And this, Mycroft thinks, is why sitting vigil at his brother’s bedside was a terrible idea. A conversation in the hospital. Missing scene from HLV.

Reccer's comments: Following Sherlock's second hospitalization in His Last Vow, a heavily-medicated Sherlock deduces that Mycroft has been smoking, and the brothers have a short, revealing conversation about self-medicating. A delightfully plausible missing scene that beautifully conveys Mycroft's caring and anxiety for Sherlock, while suggesting new depth to the two canon scenes in which we see Mycroft smoking.

Fic Rec: A Slight Case of Misunderstanding

Title: A Slight Case of Misunderstanding
Author: taleya
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 7,366
Rating: M
Warnings: none
Verse: ACD books
Author's summary: Kinkmeme prompt! Watson is in love, Holmes is an ass and Watson throws a snit.
Reccer's comments: This is a thoroughly traditional fic which explores that beloved trope, the first time, but with a difference: the emotions portrayed are convincing, the setting is period appropriate, and our heroes don't immediately produce a bottle of lube and go at it like rabbits. All these things transcend the cliched subject and make me like this fic very much, but the fact that it's well-written and the ending is simply exquisite tipped me over the edge into recommending it.

Fic Rec: To Perceive is to Suffer

Title: To Perceive is to Suffer
Author: wraithwitch
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 42,853
Rating: T
Warnings: none
Verse: Ritchie films
Author's summary: It has long been known, Watson is an unreliable narrator. What he wrote in The Strand about the adventure at Reichenbach however was an outright lie. The truth rests here.
Reccer's comments: Everybody has to tackle Reichenbach sooner or later. This is Wraithwitches take on it. She know Londons in and out and has a wonderful command of canting slang also, which lends an air of authenticity to the fic. She has written a series of works which can be found on FF dot net, of which this is the second or third. It stands alone, but the others are worth reading also. This one has an intricately woven story, well-constructed OCs, and a highly satisfactory ending. It's an unusual fic, but give it a try.

Fic Rec: Commentadore

Title: Commentadore on the AO3 or on cox_and_co here in 2 parts
Author: cognomen
Pairing: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Length: 15,835
Rating: M
Warnings: Major character death (sort of)
Verse: ACD books
Author's summary: The first perjury I committed to paper, as a method originally of self-placation and comfort, was on the eve of that darkest day of my life - that lie that many have undoubtedly read and believed within the text of The Final Problem, as that 'adventure' came to be titled when finally I had wrung from it most of my desperate emotion to make it suitable for publication.
Reccer's comments: Don't be scared away by the character death tag. Sherlock Holmes is very much present in this fic and it is very much about the relationship between him and Watson. (It is also a rather ingenious casefic, by the way.) The description of Watson's anguish after Reichenbach is vividly drawn, Lestrade is there, puzzled as usual, and Holmes himself is as incisive as always. The dialogue is wonderfully done and the ending, though not quite what one might wish for, is nonetheless satisfying. Cognomen evidently wasn't sure about how good this fic was. She needn't have worried.


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