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24 September 2013 @ 10:17 am
OTP Meme: John and Sarah Edition  
I enjoyed doing the 30 Day OTP Challenge thing with Alec and Molly, and so I thought I'd do John and Sarah as well. I cannot guarantee that there won't be more shipping to come, but I'm going to make an effort to write something ship-free soon. I promise.

In the meantime, here are ten drabbles and ficlets, about 2800 words total. I've tried to put them in order again. They cover before John and Sarah start dating again up to Abby at about six months old.

Fluffy fluffy. A passing reference to John's PTSD. About PG overall.




27-On one of their birthdays

Sarah looked up at the knock on her office door. “Come in,” she said.

John stuck his head around the door, and then entered all the way. Sarah smiled automatically at the sight of him, and then tried to tone it down to a less obvious level. Or at least a more friendly, less enamoured one.

“Is there a problem?” she asked.

“Nope,” John said.

“Okay,” she said, uncertainly. “So...what's up then?”

“Can I not come in here without a problem?” John asked.

“Of course,” Sarah said. “There's just usually a problem.”

“There isn't a problem,” John reiterated. “I just wanted to...erm...” He pulled a little box out from behind his back, and put it on her desk, setting it there before picking it up again and opening it, and putting it back down. “There.”

Inside was a little fairy cake with a chocolate covered strawberry on top and a candle.

“How did you know it was my birthday?” Sarah asked.

“Liz mentioned it yesterday,” John said. He produced a lighter and lit the candle. “I'm not singing. It's best if I don't. But you can make a wish.”

Sarah thought for a moment, and then blew out the candle.

“Happy birthday,” John said, with one of his really great smiles.

“Thank you,” she said. “That's really thoughtful.”

“I should get back to work,” John said.

He slipped from the room. Sarah pulled the candle out and then removed the strawberry from the top, smiling stupidly to herself. She made herself stop.

It was just a fairy cake, right?




20-Dancing

The surgery did a communal Christmas party every year, with a few other small surgeries sharing a large hall together. John hadn't gone last year; it was the first Christmas since Sherlock's death, and he found all the holidays hard that year. Just milestones for how long he'd been dead. This year, he was happy to attend.

A slow song was playing now, and John and Sarah were in a corner together while the others were out on the dance floor with their dates. John and Sarah were both solo.

“Want to?” he asked her, nodding toward the floor.

“Sure, why not?” she said.

She was wearing an amazing red dress with very little in the way of a back and her skin was warm under his hand as he took her into a waltz hold. He'd had trouble keeping his eyes off her most of the night. He'd had trouble keeping his eyes off her for the past few months, actually. Past several, maybe. She'd been very good to him. For him.

“I don't think we've done this before,” he noted, as they swayed.

“Nope,” Sarah said.

“Too bad,” he said.

“Mmmm,” she agreed.

John pulled her a little closer than was properly appropriate for a friend. She rested head against his.

“Sarah?” he said.

“Mmm?” she said.

“What are you doing on New Year's?” he asked.

“Nothing, as far I know,” she said.

“Okay,” he said. He took a moment to get his courage up. “Do you want to do something? With me?”

He could feel more than see her smile, and she nodded, her forehead rubbing against his. “Yeah,” she said. “I'd love to.”




22 – In battle, side-by-side

“JOHN!”

The cry was so urgent that John fled the examination room with his patient sitting topless on the table, mid-exam.

“Wha--oh!”

Sarah was doing compressions on a man in the hallway, who was very much in cardiac arrest. “Long QT Syndrome,” she said, a bit breathless. “His dad did this to me two years ago. Liz is ringing for an ambulance. AED.”

John ran and grabbed the AED. He was three steps ahead of the instructions, and Sarah glared impatiently at it while they waited for it to decide if it needed to shock.

“Shock advised,” it said.

“No, bloody kidding!” Sarah snapped. She pressed the button.

“Shock administered. Begin five cycles of CPR,” the AED said.

John took over chest compressions, and Sarah did the rescue breathing, working until the AED reassessed the rhythm and advised another shock. They did three cycles of this, Sarah going back to compressions after John's arms tired out.

“Come on!” Sarah said, as the AED analyzed again.

“No shock required, safe to move patient,” the AED announced, just as the paramedics arrived.

John and Sarah both collapsed after the patient was removed, sitting on the floor with their backs against the wall, Sarah's head on John's shoulder. He held out a shaking hand for a low five and she slapped it weakly.

“Er, Dr Watson?” John's patient called. “Sorry to bother you, but can I put my shirt back on now?




03-Gaming/watching a movie

“How many times has he stared out a window so far?” John asked.

“I don't know,” Sarah said. “I think he's supposed to be moody. You know, brooding hero.”

John reached over her shoulder to get the popcorn from her lap, and tossed a few kernels to Gladstone on the floor. “Is that attractive?” he asked. “Because I could stare out more windows if it turns you on.”

“Yes,” Sarah said, deadpan. “There is nothing sexier than a man looking vaguely bored and staring at foliage.”

“We could get a pot plant,” John said.

“No, I'd never be able to contain myself,” Sarah said. “We'd get nothing accomplished.”

“Oh God, is there another ball?” John said. “How many balls do they have to go to? We've been watching this for an hour and she hasn't even spoken to him yet.”

“He's probably too busy staring at pot plants,” Sarah said. “Oh look, they're heading toward each other...”

“C'mon,” John encouraged.

“Oh!” they both said, as the hero and heroine were separated by some waltzing dancers.

“So close,” Sarah said.

“He'll be okay, look at all those windows in the ballroom.”




18-Doing something together

One of John's most endearing quirks was his absolute OCD about the bedclothes. The first night they'd spent together, he'd woken up and made her bed. She thought this was adorable.

It was less adorable when she tried to get into it later on and discovered the sheets were tucked in so tightly she had to take them off and do it over again.

“John, we have a fitted sheet so we don't have to tuck it in,” Sarah said, as John attempt to pull it free of wrinkles. “It won't go any tighter.”

John smoothed out a wrinkle and stood straight. At attention, really.

“I promise I won't tell the sergeant,” Sarah said.

“Sod off,” John said, with a warning point of his finger.

Sarah picked up the top sheet from the floor beside her and unfolded it, tossing it up to spread it out. John caught the other side, and they played tug of war for several seconds, until John was satisfied with his hospital corners. Which were, she admitted, impressive. They repeated the process with the duvet, John tucking his in, her leaving hers out. John folded his side up under the mattress; Sarah left hers out. John calculated the appropriate distance to fold the top of the sheet down over the duvet, and she matched, then John smoothed out the pillows.

“There, thanks for the help,” Sarah said.

“No worries,” John said.

Sarah started to leave the room. John followed her. “Touch my side and I will kill you,” she said.

“Yeah, sorry.”




26-Getting married

“You okay, Sassy?” Dad asked, as Sarah took a moment to breathe in through her nose and out through her mouth. “Should we make a run for it?”

Sarah laughed out some of her nerves. “I can't run in this dress,” she said.

“I'll carry you, you just let me know,” Dad said, 'solemnly'.

“I'll keep it in mind,” Sarah said. She smoothed out her skirt for the hundredth time since she'd put the dress on.

“You look beautiful, Sass,” Dad said, putting his hand on her head. “Stop fussing.”

Sarah grinned. “Thank you,” she said.

The door to the church opened a crack, and Angela stuck her head out. “Sherlock's here, we're good to go,” she said.

Sarah was so relieved at this news that her legs went to jelly for a moment. “Don't let me trip,” she said, to Dad.

“Never,” he said. He took her arm as the music started up.

Sarah smiled and took another deep breath. The doors to the church opened properly, and then they were walking. Sarah made sure for herself that Sherlock was there. He was, looking perfectly put together and a little bit...not quite bored. More...oh, who cared, he was there. John was the important one, and he looked thrilled. Mrs Hudson and Mum were both crying, as was Molly. And both Sarah's brothers, which surprised her. John stepped forward to meet them at the front.

“You look brilliant,” he murmured.

“Snap,” she said. “Everything okay?”

“Bit hairy for a few moments, but we're copacetic,” John said.

Dad put her hand in John's. “She's all yours,” he said.

“Thanks, Dr Sawyer,” John said. “You ready?”

“Let's do it,” Sarah said.




09- Hanging out with Friends

“Ready?” John asked.

Sarah grabbed his hand, and nodded. John rapped on the door to 221A. Mrs Hudson answered a few moments later, and gave them a warm smile. They exchanged greetings, Mrs Hudson looking a bit confused at the formality of the occasion.

“We have something to tell you,” Sarah explained. “A good something.”

Mrs Hudson smiled expectantly. John held up an image from the baby scan Sarah had had that day. A high-pitched shriek of joy made both John and Sarah jump, then they were wrapped up in her arms.

“Oh, this is wonderful! I'm so pleased!” she said, squeezing them together uncomfortably. “Congratulations!”

“Oh,” came a glum voice from behind them.

Sarah was able to turn her head enough to see Sherlock standing in the hallway, wearing goggles and his dressing gown, and looking a bit frazzled, as though he'd rushed down.

“I thought you were under attack,” he explained.

He turned to go, but Mrs Hudson stopped him, bursting out with the news in her excitement.

“Oh, sorry!” she said, covering her mouth with her hand. “You probably wanted to do that.”

“It's okay, he already knows,” John said.

John had told him a few days earlier. He was apparently both unsurprised and unenthusiastic. Mrs Hudson made up for his unenthusiasm in spades. She ordered Sherlock in to celebrate with them.

Once everyone was settled with something to drink (juice for Sarah, spirits for everyone else) and a toast was made, John went over to where Sherlock was sulking on the couch. Mrs Hudson chattered happily about baby names and knitting patterns she'd seen for newborns and did they think it was a boy or a girl, or what if it was twins? Sarah kept the conversation going, but had one eye on the boys.

Sherlock looked indifferent as John tried to talk to him. John showed Sherlock the scan image, his excitement obvious even from across the room. Sherlock took it from him, eyeing it like a clue in a case. He caught Sarah staring, and she shot him an entreating look. He sighed, pushing the goggles to the top of his head and giving the scan a better look. He smiled. John's excitement doubled.

'Thank you,' Sarah mouthed to him. He gave her a brief nod.

Sarah turned her full attention to Mrs Hudson now, knowing that they'd work it out between them. Sherlock took ages to come around, but he usually made it there in the end. It would all be okay.




13-Eating ice cream

“This is so cliché,” Sarah said, as John brought her sundae out to her. “I'm so sorry.”

“I have run out at later hours to get weirder things for Sherlock,” John said, licking his own spoon before the chocolate dripped onto the couch. “And he didn't have as good an excuse.”

“This isn't an excuse,” Sarah said “This is me being pregnant and hormonal and demanding. Please don't hate me. I love you.”

John laughed. “Snap,” he said. “But eat it before it melts, it took me three stores to find bloody raspberry marshmallow fluff. Even Siri was pissed off with me.”

“I'm sorry,” Sarah said. “Please don't hate me. I love you.”

“Snap.”




02- Cuddling somewhere

Sarah had been aware of Abby crying, but she didn't seem to have woken up to do anything about it. Yet, the baby monitor was silent. She was also notably lacking John's usual death grip around her waist.

She got out of bed and went down to the hall to Abby's room. She wasn't in her cot. The light was on in the den, and Sarah peeked in. John was sat on the couch, looking as still as a statue, and humming softly. 'Hushabye Mountain', she thought, if it was on-key.

“Hi,” John said, in a whisper. “I can't move. I'm afraid to move.”

Sarah tip-toed in. Abby slept in his arms, her face still red from crying. “You should have woken me up,” she whispered back.

“Well, when she started crying you went 'no, no!' and put your pillow over your head,” John said. “I thought maybe it was my turn to get up. She just needed her nappy changed, I don't think she's hungry.”

Sarah sat down next to him, and curled up, putting her head on his shoulder. “She's so pretty when she's asleep,” she said.

“I know,” John said. “And one day, she's going to be asleep all night long.”

“No, don't tell lies,” Sarah said. “You'll just get my hopes up. It's cruel.”

Abby stirred, and John quickly resumed his low, off-key humming, this time something vaguely reminiscent of 'Lavender's Blue'.

You'll be my Queen,,” Sarah sang along, before a very large yawn made her stop. She buried her face deeper in John's shoulder, and listened to him hum. Abby went back to sleep.

So did she.




16-During their morning ritual(s)

Sarah woke up with an abrupt jolt as John's alarm clock went off. He had an old-fashioned analog clock, and the ringing bell noise reminded her of school bells. For a moment she was panicked that she was late for class. Until she remembered she was thirty-eight years old and didn't go to school any more. She really needed to get a new alarm clock; hers had died and John had pulled his out of a wardrobe to use in the meantime.

“...'copters,” John muttered, waking up with a snort.

“No, you're fine,” Sarah assured him, as she fumbled to turn off the alarm.”No patients coming in, go back to sleep, John.”

John took the clock from her and shut it off, then threw it on the floor. He wrapped his arm more tightly around her, and pressed his forehead to her shoulder.

“I have to go to work, let me go,” Sarah said, laughing.

John's grip merely went tighter. She wrestled a little, and finally he made a very displeased noise, and rolled over, curling into a little ball around his pillow.

Sarah got out of bed and went to Abby's room, where she lay babbling to her mobile contentedly. She got her up and fed her and changed her nappy. John stumbled in as she was finishing, scratching at his head and looking like a bear coming out of hibernation.

Sarah left Abby with him to go and have a shower and get dressed. John had his phone to his ear when she came downstairs, dancing Abby around the kitchen while he talked.

“No, I'm not saying I'm not coming, I'm saying you'll have to wait until I get Abby to the minder, who doesn't let kids in before seven-thirty,” he said. He pointed to the toaster, where cooked toast lay abandoned. “It's only twenty minutes, Sherlock, what do you think is going to happen that I need to be there for? Well, text me photos and I'll look at them.”

Sarah buttered her toast and scarfed it down. She took Abby from John for a quick snuggle before she went to work. She gave John a kiss on the cheek when she handed Abby back.

“Have a good day, love you,” she said.

John smiled, then listened to the mobile for a moment and rolled his eyes and laughed. “Sherlock says he loves you, too.”

Sarah could imagine the sarcastic tone in which that was delivered, and laughed herself. “Tell him thank you,” she said.

She kissed Abby goodbye, and went to work.
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frozen_delight: sarahfrozen_delight on September 24th, 2013 05:07 pm (UTC)
Oh this is sweet! And hilarious. Particularly this line:
“There is nothing sexier than a man looking vaguely bored and staring at foliage.”

Also, I think Sherlock should really reconsider all the benefits that romantic relationships can offer. Having a boyfriend can get you out of a boring dinner and being pregnant makes John wait on you hand and foot! :)
The Writer They Call Tayawanderingbard on September 24th, 2013 08:04 pm (UTC)
Ha! I'm not sure if John would be quite as solicitous towards Sherlock as he is wth Sarah. Although his ability to procure obscure items is a direct result from living with Sherlock, as is his ability to do it on no sleep in the middle of the night.

Thanks for commenting!
aelfgyfu_mead: John Watsonaelfgyfu_mead on September 24th, 2013 09:22 pm (UTC)
“There is nothing sexier than a man looking vaguely bored and staring at foliage.”
Aha! I was already dying at this—and thinking of Sherlock staring moodily out windows, but usually onto Baker Street, which doesn't have a whole lot of foliage.

And then you added:
“We could get a pot plant,” John said.
“No, I'd never be able to contain myself,” Sarah said. “We'd get nothing accomplished.”

and I nearly shrieked out loud. I can hear both their voices so clearly!


“Oh,” came a glum voice from behind them.
. . . .
“I thought you were under attack,” he explained.

Disappointed? Oh, Sherlock!

I was very sorry when Sarah was dropped from the show, but you keep the character alive and do much better by her than the writers ever did! And, come to that, much better by John.

I never once sent my husband for ice cream or anything while I was pregnant. I think I should have sent him out for sundaes. (Well, I did once ask him to get cottage cheese when he was about to do the shopping anyway, and that resulted in so much cottage cheese that it was years before I could eat any of it again. So maybe sending him for ice cream would have been a bad idea.)
The Writer They Call Tayawanderingbard on September 24th, 2013 10:58 pm (UTC)
I was very sorry when Sarah was dropped from the show, but you keep the character alive and do much better by her than the writers ever did! And, come to that, much better by John.

Thank you! I do find John is very relaxed and happy in my Abby 'verse. It's interesting to see. I think the idea of having someone very capable and reliable to have your back is soothing to John. She calms him down a bit.

(Well, I did once ask him to get cottage cheese when he was about to do the shopping anyway, and that resulted in so much cottage cheese that it was years before I could eat any of it again. So maybe sending him for ice cream would have been a bad idea.)

Haha! I feel like that's sort of what would happen if you could convince Sherlock to go shopping for you. "You said you wanted cottage cheese, you did not specify a variety or flavour, there were far too many there, I have bought one of each'.

shadowfireflame: Sherlockshadowfireflame on September 25th, 2013 12:25 am (UTC)
He held out a shaking hand for a low five and she slapped it weakly.

Awww, so cute!

He caught Sarah staring, and she shot him an entreating look. He sighed, pushing the goggles to the top of his head and giving the scan a better look. He smiled. John's excitement doubled.

Oh, this is lovely—my favorite one. I love how much these lines say about Sarah, John, and Sherlock that Sarah wordlessly communicates with Sherlock, who obeys her and can so affect John’s mood. They’re such a great team. Love it. :)
The Writer They Call Tayawanderingbard on September 25th, 2013 04:59 am (UTC)
Thanks! I quite enjoy writing the three of them together. It's fun to play around with the Venn diagram of John's life; Sherlock on one side, Sarah and Abby on the other and John overlapped in the middle. I think it makes for some fun dynmamics.

Thanks for commenting! I'm glad you enjoyed it!
formerly lifeinsomniacjoonscribble on September 25th, 2013 01:26 am (UTC)
I started quoting but I was basically copying the whole thing.

I love your depiction of Sarah and John. They're so wonderfully sweet and functional! Their poking fun at the movie was a particular favorite.
The Writer They Call Tayawanderingbard on September 25th, 2013 01:32 am (UTC)
Thanks! I'm having a lot of fun with these. I'm trying to resist doing Siger and Dora, now. I think it would be impossible but a lot of fun to see what kind of romance I could get out of them. Plus, opportunities for baby Holmes brothers.

I need help.

Their poking fun at the movie was a particular favorite.

I imagine this is what they do with anything they watch. It's not about the film or show at all. It's just about sitting there, taking the piss.

Anyway, thanks for commenting! I'm glad you enjoyed them.