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JWP #28: Thermometer at Ninety (ACD-verse)

Author: methylviolet10b
Rating: PG
Universe: ACD
Characters: Sherlock Holmes/John Watson
Word Count: 451, plus quote
Summary: Watson in warm weather. Written for JWP #28: A Song of the Weather: "In July the sun is hot; is it shining? No it's not."
Warnings: References to canon. Not much action or plot. And absolutely no beta. This was written in a complete rush. You have been warned.
Disclaimer: I don't own them.

“For myself, my term of service in India had trained me to stand heat better than cold, and a thermometer at ninety was no hardship.”

So Watson wrote in the story he named, rather more prosaically than his usual wont, “The Adventure of the Cardboard Box”. And while much of what he wrote in that chronicle was closer to fiction than fact (among other things, the actual events took place in July, not August, and there was rather more organized crime and cold-blooded villainy, and rather less crimes of passion, than the tale he chose to tell), my Watson was perfectly truthful about one thing: he physically tolerates hot weather very well indeed, far better than he withstands cold.

Some of this is due to simple physics. The scar tissue that he carries as a permanent reminder of his time in the Army is more flexible, more pliable, when warmed; and therefore less painful. He can stand more easily, stretch and move in a greater range, which in turn provides a different kind of relief for him. Watson both believes himself to be, and is in fact, an active man by nature.  He can be more true to that nature, with less discomfort, when temperatures rise.

Other aspects of his tolerance, however, are not due to his old injuries. For while heat does not make Watson lazy, as it does some men, it does bring out a languid grace in him; a fluid economy of movement that is intrinsically all his own. No gesture, no motion on his part wastes energy when the weather is sultry, no matter how active he is. He is a quintessential Englishman, and yet his manner of movement in the heat seems exotic. It draws the eye and attention of women and men alike.

Yet despite all of these advantages, Watson does not often wish for hot weather. He claims that this is because putting up with the diverse foul tempers of the innumerable people (Londoners, British, or Continentals, depending on where we happen to be) who do not like it when the mercury rises is far more annoying than the worst aches brought on by damp and cold. There is some truth to that; and I will not pretend that my own temper is one of those that factors into his feelings on the subject. What is even more true, however, is that my Watson does not sleep as well when the nights remain hot. His nightmares, echoes of the hardships he endured in India and Afghanistan, are more prevalent when blankets are superfluous and sweat is a constant companion.

I too do not sleep well when the temperature is high. I spend large portions of the night hours watching, waiting, and softly playing my violin.

There were no violins in Afghanistan, I believe. It seems to make a difference.


( 12 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 29th, 2016 05:40 am (UTC)
Thank you! What a deep and true depiction of Watson; and then that good Holmes at the end, too.
Jul. 30th, 2016 05:28 am (UTC)
Thank you so much!
Jul. 29th, 2016 06:25 am (UTC)
Oh, Holmes' love for his Watson shines through.
Jul. 30th, 2016 05:28 am (UTC)
Thank you!
Jul. 29th, 2016 10:26 am (UTC)
Aww... I love the depth of Holmes' observations.
Jul. 30th, 2016 05:28 am (UTC)
Thank you!
Jul. 29th, 2016 01:22 pm (UTC)
Awww, Holmes. So observant and so sweet.
Jul. 30th, 2016 05:29 am (UTC)
Jul. 29th, 2016 07:57 pm (UTC)
"It seems to make a difference". Oh, experimental science is not any more hard and cold than the use it is put to...
I love them.

Edited at 2016-07-29 07:58 pm (UTC)
Jul. 30th, 2016 05:29 am (UTC)
Thank you so much!
Aug. 10th, 2016 02:06 am (UTC)
Oh very well done!
Aug. 20th, 2016 04:51 am (UTC)
Thank you!
( 12 comments — Leave a comment )