In which John gets a cat and names it Sherlock.
We’ve all seen this trope before, but never have I read this plotline as well written and in character as this one is. Michi has this fantastic way of mastering the language she uses to exactly convey the tone she wants. The wording, arrangement, and use of humor are all working together to make the situation she’s describing interesting and engaging. You just get sucked into the story because of the writing. The humor was also perfectly balanced with the angst. Before it could get too sad there would always be something to smile at. The characterization of John is just perfect for me. He’s depressed but self aware, I love how often he’d break down his depression and try to figure out the stages he was in. He wasn’t completely right but he wasn’t delusional. Sherlock the cat is such a cutie. He’s not an exact copy of the human Sherlock but the similarities are present and obvious. There were so many moments with Sherlock that made me grin, the humor and joy in the little moments really made this story something wonderful. This isn’t a story to pass over, the ideas been done but never this well. This is one of my favorite stories for sure! Keep an eye out for the sequel!
Warning for suicide attempt.
Word Count: 10,328
In a world where the British Empire is still strong and slavery is her economic backbone, John has become a terrorist for the abolitionist movement. He is caught by Mycroft, enslaved, and given to Sherlock for training. The goal: To test a new kind of slave collar with the power to break even the strongest willed fighter. One that will make even John learn to love being a slave.
Oh my God this fic made my head spin. In this universe, slavery is totally okay. Slaves wear collars. John, a man resolutely against slavery, is a violent abolitionist. However, he gets caught and Mycroft Holmes decides to use his brother to “break” John. Now, I’ll be honest: I wanted to punch Mycroft in the teeth. But, like John and typical of psychological breakdowns, Stockholm Syndrome takes place. As John has to learn to accept that, despite his best efforts, this is where he is, so does the reader. And then, just as I was ready to go “GODDAMN IT THIS IS NOT OKAY”, some things start not adding up. What the hell is Mycroft’s agenda? What does Sherlock know? When it all comes together, the feeling of “OH!” is almost as satisfactory as the collar’s burst of euphoria. I won’t spoil it for you, but the ending was, as I said, satisfactory. That being said, the whole thing is still pretty damn unethical (which IS covered as to why, at least). So this is something dub-con and I’d go so far as to slap a non-con on this one. Just in case. I mean, John is a slave and he has to listen. Come on, kids. Make the jump. You know what happens. Anyways, it’s a good read. It kept me at it, despite the length of it, and I didn’t put it down. It has a lot of interesting aspects: cases, underlying politics, and plenty of action. The emotions are messy, which is perfect for the fic, since the whole thing is messy. I give massive credit to the author, because that is a huge web to string together on top of keeping the balance. The fic could have easily been “whoa that is way not okay” to “that’s far too nice for a supposed slave”. The reader experiences things through John’s eyes, and the fic is just like that too: a delicate perch of reward and punishment. It’s a little dark, but I think it could have been a LOT worse. Definitely worth taking the time to read (and possible reread to understand). MATURE READERS ONLY
My Rating: A
Review by: Taylor
Sherlock meets up with an old friend
I’m not usually one for Victor Trevor fics, but I really liked how this was written. It’s basically a giant headcanon, telling the back story of Sherlock and Victor. Their dynamic is an interesting one, and I like how this one is explored. Victor isn’t necessarily an asshole and Sherlock isn’t necessarily in the right, which is rare for Victor/Sherlock fics. My favorite element to it is definitely how Sherlock just eases into realizing what John means to him. SPOILER: This is not a fic to read if you want anything between Sherlock or John, so it ends with massive UST. There is also mentions of drug use. Just a warning. MATURE READERS ONLY
My Rating: B
Review by: Taylor
Love is a dangerous disadvantage for the Holmes family, immortals until they’ve given their heart to someone else. Nevertheless, it’s not like Sherlock planned to lose his to John.
I have never used the word ‘pretty’ to describe a fic before, but I feel like that works. The content is not being described, but the fic as a whole. It’s deep and thoughtful with a touch of magic. Sherlock has immortality, but only if he protects himself from ‘giving his heart away’. That way, he can preserve his immortality. Mycroft warns him, but it doesn’t matter once he meets John Watson. As far as the fic goes, I should probably do th actual review part now. Reading about Sherlock’s heart and how he gives it away and trying to know if John will give him his in return is beautiful. On top of that, if he does give his heart away, any injury that comes to John also comes to Sherlock. I somewhat wish that could have been played on more, but I like how it IS revealed. SPOILER there is a scene where LMycroft does something to check on whether or not Sherlock has given his heart to John. I have to say that is my absolute favorite part because it’s a bit not good, but it’s perfect. Of course Mycroft would do something like that. Anyways, I really liked this and I want to read more of this magic idea in the future.
My Rating: A-
Review by: Taylor
Sherlock’s refusal to talk about his past hides far more skeletons than John could ever have guessed at. Halloween-esque AU.
Wow, can I just send a thank you to Maz for telling us about this story? You weren’t kidding when you said it was good! This is a very creative and well told crossover fanfiction, that never once seemed like crack to me. The movie it’s fused with is kept a secret at first(trust me you’ll probably know it) and it really helped to strengthen the story. I knew the crossover because of Maz but I was still unsure of how it was going to come into play and what would happen. The uncertainty of the plot made it a more interesting and invested reading experience for me. So I really recommended you do not try to spoil yourself with this! The story is told very well, it never once dragged and had just enough humor added to lighten the mood, but it was never cheap comedy. Characterization was also very interesting; Sherlock is not exactly how I personally see him but with his background here I understand the choices this author makes. I really do love his background in this story! It was told in such a wonderful way! The only thing I noticed was the way some parts where told almost too fast for me, it skips over the information we already know from the show (which I agree with) but I think it skips over too much too fast. Spending just a bit more time on those parts, not much just a little bit, I think would make it feel more natural and not rushed. Same with the Moran part, it was a really big scene that I would like to have had more time with. Would love to compliment a few more things but in order to avoid spoiling anything I’ll end the review now. Overall this story was told very well and in an interesting way. I’ve been waiting for a crossover like this for a long time! So happy that this was done well!
Word Count: 57,711
My Rating: A-
There are so many different ways to die.
I have never wanted to so badly start a review with a pained AHHHHHHHHHHHH! But this one deserves that. I really can’t say much about this fic, because I do not want to spoil it, but it is a slightly terrifying notion. It makes a character that is already an intimidating figure and make him ten times worse. This fic goes through as Sherlock experiences John’s death over and over (Imagine that Supernatural episode, but without any comic relief. At all.). The tale is compelling and it makes a reader want to reach in and just hold the characters and keep them safe. So the question is does John eventually make it out alive? Or will Sherlock figure it out and end the endless suffering? The writing style is brilliant and poetic without even trying, and I credit the writer with giving the emotional weight without actually ever stating it outright. A phenomenal read, and one you’ll read again.
My Rating: A
Review by: Taylor
John Watson walks into his apartment to find an apparition sitting at the kitchen table. After that, they start trying to put their lives back together.
As a post Reichenbach piece, this fic does a fantastic job of hinting at Sherlock’s successfully faked death without allowing specifics to dominate the plot. First and foremost, this is about John attempting to move on after Sherlock. His lingering anger and fear are portrayed with believable emotion, but I don’t wholeheartedly agree with the suicidal feelings he begins to feel. Although Sherlock was — and is — his best friend, John is still a soldier and canonically assured Sherlock that he has seen good men die and been able to sublimate that pain. Within the scope of the entire fic, it is a small detail easily woven into the process of his emotional healing, which includes moving out of 221B and his dangerous dependency on drink.
I love that Sherlock’s return physically shakes John and reveals the hesitation between these men despite their past friendship. It confirms that they are not the same men they once were before Moriarty ruined Sherlock’s reputation. They take their time moving back to Baker Street, sorting out the legal consequences of their behaviors with Lestrade and the Chief Superintendent, and initiating a sexual relationship. Despite being between two grown men, the sex is very sweet and would more accurately be called love-making in how they dote on each other. Perhaps the strongest moment I will take away from this fic is the recurring obsession with each other’s pulses. MATURE READERS ONLY
Word Count: 10338
My Rating: A-
Thanks to madlyscout for your submission.
Review by: Becka
John Watson works in a book shop, and everything is well in order and predictable until he lets Sherlock Holmes borrow a book.
This was a very cute AU! John works in a bookshop and I really can’t think of anything better than John Watson helping me find books, can you? It flows very nicely and just has a very warm and comforting tone to it. I like the interactions between Sherlock and John, how John would lend Sherlock books and just wait for his next return like an eager schoolboy. The books he recommends are maybe not the books I think would be John’s favorites, but that is my personal headcanon and I can’t blame this fic for not having my ideas. I like that Sherlock openly admits to not really being interested in the books but that he still reads them. It was adorable! I really loved the idea of Sherlock’s game but it didn’t go anywhere, I’m a little disappointed in that. It could have been a very interesting and unique study of Sherlock’s character but it fell through. I’d love to see more of that. The fic in general could use just a bit more at the end, I think the last chapter would flow better and not seem as rushed if some parts were expanded on. Overall pretty cute, and now I want to go book shopping!
Word Count: 9,724
The thing is: Sherlock thought that the two of them would have forever to figure it out.
OW OW OW OW! Now that that is out of the way, onto the actual review bit. For starters, I love the characterization of this one. Mary is a star. The scenes between her and Sherlock sting like salt on a wound. Sherlock’s internal monologue is painful and desperate. The reader and Sherlock are clinging to sanity, it feels like, but it’s far beyond his grasp and you have to struggle with him. I especially hate (love) the “universe” comparisons. They are tragically heart breaking but you know it’s what Sherlock is doing. Some of the lines in this are absolutely brilliant and I think a few are unintentionally brilliant as well (which you will have to read and analyze to understand what I mean). The conversation between Mary and Sherlock, in which Sherlock goes through “five years from now” is extraordinary. I love how Sherlock tries to be strong, insist that John is still tied to him entirely, even though he knows it’s not true. And you get a sense that Mary feels almost the same Sherlock does at times. Molly is also amazing, and you know she would be like this if she picked up on it. It’s short, but it takes you on a gut-wrenching, tear-inducing ride. There is one particular scene in which Sherlock and the reader truly accept it, and then it just hurts even more. Spoiler alert, so look away now: the absolute worst part is you wanting it to just be John and Mary not noticing. You want the story to keep going. You’d rather Sherlock just be suffering, but then John says it and acknowledges it, and it just hurts more. Read with tissues, kids. This one’s a doozy.
My Rating: A
Review by: Taylor
Ten years after the fall, Sherlock goes back to London to find that John no longer lives there. Instead he resides in a seaside town, a widower, and the father of a seven year old son. Now, Sherlock must struggle with the fact that there may no longer be a place for him in this new world.
This is excellent. I’m really impressed with this story! It’s been awhile since I’ve read a fic that blew me away with it’s characterization, writing, and story so much so that I haven’t even been reading fanfic as much as I used to. I’m really happy to have found this one. Sherlock comes back a decade after the fall, a bit more than the three years we’re used to, and it’s done in the best and most realistic way possible. John’s angry but the pain is dulled by the years so that we don’t get a huge emotional and violent return, that’s exactly what this story needed. John has a son who I have to give major kudos for because he actually acts like a seven year old! My main pet peeve in fics is when the author tells us a child is one age but they act like babies. Samson was very well written, much like his dad. I love that Sherlock is good with Samson but not in an out of character way. He doesn’t have a filter and says something that hurts Samson but deep down he cares and treats him with respect. I was worried that the story wouldn’t be wrapped up enough towards the end where I felt good enough closure but actually it wrapped up perfectly! It said exactly what it needed to and I feel really satisfied with the ending. Again, very realistic but heartfelt and exactly what my shipping mind wanted! The writing is wonderful, very poetic at times and the imagery is beautiful. The only thing I would suggest is to break apart some of the paragraphs. Often there’s just huge blocks of text which didn’t flow as well as a couple smaller paragraphs would. Otherwise I can’t think of one thing I would change about this story! I loved it.
Warnings for drug use in the prologue
Word Count: 22,135
My Rating: A