Thou givest fever when we kisseth, fever with thy flaming youth
Fever I’m afire; fever, yea, I burn forsooth
"He’s the kind of boy you want to take apart."
Exploring the dynamic dichotomy within Sherlock and John and the effect they have upon each other, this fic is extensively immersive with references to events and popular culture in the realm of greasers and muscle cars. As if peeling away the layers surrounding the idealized American 1950s, Sherlock and John are caught in the scope of discrimination, self-destruction, and hazardous home environments. Appropriately tagged for underage sex with an emotional coercive initiating partner, all sexual situations proceed only after consent is given. However, there are also multiple mentions of and references to physical abuse and marital tension within the Watson household which might be distressing to some readers.
Full of period accurate lingo, media titles, and news stories, this piece builds upon the established foundation to breathe life into this alternate universe. While Sherlock is an intimidating physical presence and avoids questioning of that persona, his fascination with John becomes a desire to protect as well as selfishly consume. John is a stranger to the live Sherlock leads yet he provides a grounding normalcy and innocence. Together they corrupt and purify each other. One of the most striking aspects of this piece is the number of women influencing the boys along their whirlwind romance. Mrs Watson provides necessary evidence for Sherlock to deduce John’s familial unrest. Irene makes a brief appearance, reminiscent of The Pink Ladies. Harry and Clara spur on the evening of consummation. Regardless of their initial intentions, Sherlock and John reach a level of confidentiality and security with each other which solidifies their trust.
For an engaging 1950s high school romance, the piece offers considerable insight to the period and the dynamics of students with their own culture. As mentioned previously, the nature of Sherlock’s fascination with John is initially persuasive and emotionally coercive, but he develops genuine devotion to John (as evidenced by his reluctance to grant John “three little words…the easiest lie” and his confusion after using pet names for John in a significant moment). Overall, I adore this alternate universe but the dedication to detail in this fic makes it a standout piece to be noticed. MATURE READERS ONLY.
Word Count: 16122
My Rating: A-
8tracks playlist here, selections from the author’s provided playlist.
Review by: Becka