Sherlock BBC Prompting Meme

"we get all sorts around here."

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Prompting: Part XVI
Giggles at the Palace
Please check the Sticky Post to find the newest active part and post your prompts there.

Prompts from this post can be filled on the Overflow Post

+Anon posting is most definitely allowed, but not required.
+All kinds of fills are accepted! Fic, art, vids, cosplay, interpretive dance--whatever. Go wild! :D
+Keep things neat! Read prompts before you post to see if something similar has already been done, and while you are encouraged to prompt as much as you like, try to fill as well.
+Please do not re-post prompts unless the last time they were prompted was on an older part. Simply put: ONE posting of each prompt per part.
+RPF (real person fic, i.e. fic involving the actors themselves) is not supported at this meme.
+Depending on the rate of activity, there may or may not be a prompt freeze when a part reaches 2000 and 4500 comments.
+However, there will be one when it reaches 7000. Also at 7000, after the freeze a new part will be posted, and all prompting should happen on the new part.
+Multiple fills are encouraged! :) Just because a prompt has already been claimed or written by someone, do not be afraid to offer up a second fill.

There's a link to this at the bottom of the post. I ask that if the part you wanted isn't up yet, just wait and one of the archivists will get to it, but please, once it is up, please make sure you post your fills there according to the guidelines. DO NOT skip out on doing this because it seems like too much effort.
Do not be afraid to ask questions about how it works if you are confused! The mod would be happy to explain.

Your mods for this meme are snowishness and marill_chan. If you have any questions, concerns, comments about anything at all on the meme feel free to send a PM or contact us via the page-a-mod post.

Please consider warning for triggery prompts (and also for fills, because some people read in flat view) and phrasing prompts in a manner that strives to be respectful.

Things which you might want to consider warning for include: Rape/Non-Con, Death, Suicidal Thoughts, Self-Harm, Underage Relationships, among others.

That being said, this is a kink meme. As such, there will be prompts that could offend you in a number of different ways. Not every prompt will have a trigger warning, and not every prompt will rub you the right way. If you have an issue with a specific prompt, feel free to bring it up in a discussion that takes place off the meme. However, flaming will not be tolerated regardless of origin.
You are highly encouraged to scroll right past a prompt that you dislike.

Remember, guys; Be civil, be friendly, but don’t be shy!

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Crossover with one of my fave poems, The Quiet World ( by Jeffrey McDaniel. Sherlock and John live in a world where they only have 167 words to say, per day.

All over this like a wet flannel, but there will never be too many fills for this GORGEOUS prompt.

Oh this is just a wonderful, lovely prompt. Can't wait to read your fill anon!

FILL - Measuring the Size of the Human Voice - 1/2

A/N: Thank you for such a gorgeous prompt, anon! I sincerely hope this is to your liking. :)

John’s heart is too big for his chest, much in the same way that Sherlock’s mind is too big for his skull. Both of them are so much bigger than their physical constraints and they are both so used to there being limitations on their self-expression that a one hundred and sixty-seven word quota per day is just something else to bear.

The depth of John’s feeling is something he cannot express in words. Likewise, the height of Sherlock’s genius is often trapped as it makes its way from his brain to his vocal chords to his mouth and out between his lips and all that comes out is nonsense or nothing comes out at all apart from a urgent stammer and a loud, pained sigh at his inability to convey what he knows, what he can see, what he understands.

John doesn’t use any of his words at work. He becomes adept at sign language, has a vast array of flashcards with careful illustrations of the human body on them and another set with instructions: SHOW ME WHERE IT HURTS; STAND UP, PLEASE; BREATHE IN; AND OUT AGAIN; VERY GOOD, THANK YOU.

Sherlock has frequently used up all of his words accidentally while working. One deduction and thirty seconds of frantic muttering to himself and one hundred and sixty-seven words are gone, and he is left with his jaw making desperate movements as he attempts to speak. It takes him a moment but he recovers, moves on, taps out deductions and instructions to Lestrade on his phone in a blank text, moves his hands in front of his chest in the sign language John teaches him in the quiet moments at 221b.

FILL - Measuring the Size of the Human Voice - 2/2

At the flat, it is much the same as it ever was before the new restrictions. The one hundred and sixty-seven word quota has, John supposes, led to a deeper understanding between the two of them. A lack of words leads to an abundance of action and with action comes remembering. John places a mug of coffee - black, two sugars - next to Sherlock as they read the morning papers at the kitchen table without needing to be reminded how many sugars or whether it’s coffee Sherlock doesn’t have with milk or whether it’s tea. Sherlock rubs John’s back and scratches his scalp when he returns home from work without being asked, provided he’s not wrapped up in a case or an experiment or himself. A nod or a tap or a pointed finger from either one of them leads to the needed item being handed or thrown to the other.

When they are lying in bed together, wrapped up in tangled sheets, Sherlock moves his mouth down the line of John’s arm from his shoulder to the tip of his middle finger and breathes out against John’s skin. ‘I love you too,’ John murmurs, correctly interpreting Sherlock’s action. He does not consider the four words as a waste.

Sometimes, when Sherlock is in one of his moods and hasn’t spoken for some time and his one hundred and sixty-seven words for the day are still unused when it grows dark outside, sometimes when the clouds refuse to lift and he feels as though he could close his eyes forever and ever and ever, sometimes, on those times, he wraps his arms around John from behind and he squeezes tightly, his hands fisted in John’s shirt against his sides and he sighs against the back of John’s neck. He begins to speak and doesn’t stop until he has to, until he is made to.

‘I love you, John, I don’t tell you enough, I never tell you enough, but I do, I love you, and sometimes I watch you sleep and I wonder where I’d be if it weren’t for you, and I usually come to the conclusion that I’d be dead, or on my back on a mattress with a needle shoved in my arm because you make me sane when I’ve no cases and you teach me how to be better, how to be good, John, and I love you, I don’t know what I’d do if you went away, please don’t ever go away, not ever, there’s only so much I can say in making you your tea right and I want to be good, John, I try to be good, like you, I love you and a hundred and sixty-seven words isn’t enough, it won’t ever be enough, and I’m scared that I’m not enough, but I want to be good, John, I love you, and I--’

And then he stutters and stops and no noise escapes him and he is left wanting.

John’s words, when he uses them, do not come in the same crashing flood as Sherlock’s. They are rationed throughout the day, like water is saved in the act of a tap being twisted on and off several times. ‘Morning, Sherlock,’ he says on the rare occasions that Sherlock is still asleep when John wakes up. ‘Eat this, Sherlock.’ ‘Come here, Sherlock.’ ‘Brilliant, Sherlock.’ ‘Go to sleep, Sherlock.’ His speech largely consists of instructions and Sherlock’s name. He is afraid that if he stops issuing instructions, if he stops reminding Sherlock to take care of himself then Sherlock will forget how much he cares. He is afraid that if he stops saying Sherlock’s name then he will forget Sherlock, that Sherlock himself will be buried underneath all the already long-forgotten words and intonations and expressions that are not used anymore.

But they are so much bigger than the physical limitations placed upon them.

And in measuring the size of the human voice, there is more to count than words.

Re: FILL - Measuring the Size of the Human Voice - 2/2

This is so lovely it makes my heart break a little bit. I especially love the paragraph about John's words -- it's so wonderfully in character -- but all of this is amazing, really, it's beautiful. Oh. I'm so incoherent. I love this.

Re: FILL - Measuring the Size of the Human Voice - 2/2 - A!Anon

Introoo, thank you so much! Your comment made me grin like a mad thing, I'm really glad you enjoyed it. :)

Re: FILL - Measuring the Size of the Human Voice - 2/2

Oh goodness. This is...honestly, it's incredible. Maybe it's more apparent because of the theme, but you use your words well; every paragraph here is beautiful and adds just the right amount to the story.

I also love how Sherlock and John are so different in how they use their words, but they both use them, when they're able, to show how they care for each other. Wonderful job.

Re: FILL - Measuring the Size of the Human Voice - 2/2 - A!Anon

Oh, thank you so much! I'm really glad you thought the paragraphs were about right, I wasn't overly sure with them. This is such a nice comment and I'm very glad you enjoyed the fill. The prompt was too beautiful to pass up! I'm a sucker for poetry.

Re: FILL - Measuring the Size of the Human Voice - 2/2

This is really lovely.

Re: FILL - Measuring the Size of the Human Voice - 2/2 - A!Anon

Thank you very much. :)

Re: FILL - Measuring the Size of the Human Voice - 2/2

Oh, that was beautiful, anon! I'm bookmarking this fill.

Re: FILL - Measuring the Size of the Human Voice - 2/2 - A!Anon

Thank you so much, I'm really pleased you enjoyed it! :)

Re: FILL - Measuring the Size of the Human Voice - 2/2

This was absolutely gorgeous. Very very well done, author. I could feel that each word you wrote was also deliberately chosen and its use maximized. So lovely.

Re: FILL - Measuring the Size of the Human Voice - 2/2

this was so gorgeous! I love the different ways John and Sherlock use their words - it's so in character and so touching.

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