ysabetwordsmith: (Schrodinger's Heroes)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
This story fills a square on my card for the [community profile] hc_bingo fest. This fest encourages the creation of boundary-pushing material that explores what happens when things go horribly wrong and people actually care about each other. I'm hoping to attract some new readers for my writing.

The following story belongs to Schrodinger's Heroes, featuring an apocryphal television show supported by an imaginary fandom. It's science fiction about quantum physics and saving the world from alternate dimensions. It features a very mixed cast in terms of ethnicity and sexual orientation. This project developed with input from multiple people, and it's open for everyone to play in. You can read more about the background, the characters, and a bunch of assorted content on the menu page.

Begin with Part 1, Part 2, Part 3.  Skip to Part 6.  This is a crossover with BBC Sherlock. You can read how these characters found each other in "THE Woman," and the beginning of the morning after in "Texas Sunrise." Additional inspiration came from a threadwith [personal profile] siliconshaman, [personal profile] jeshyr, and [personal profile] thnidu.


Fandoms: BBC Sherlock / Original: Schrodinger's Heroes
H/C: Panic attacks
Medium: Fiction
Summary/Preview: Sherlock, who does not deal well with bizarre surprises, has moved into a place where those are ubiquitous. Also he is hungover. Won't this be fun?
Content Notes: Spoilers for BBC Sherlock Season 2. Home cooking. Friendship. Tentacles. Happy ending.


"Seeing Things" Part 4

"Hallucinations tend to be vague," Quinn said. "If you see something that casts consistent shadows and reflects the light the same as nearby objects, then it's probably solid. Also for comparison, holograms tend not to blend in perfectly with the surrounding photoscape. Check the light sources; if they're clear instead of hazy or haloed, you're probably sober rather than under the influence of foreign substances."

"Okay," Sherlock said, a little breathy still, but better.

John wondered what was going on here, that Quinn knew all of that off the top of his head and could recite it fluently at need. Plus he had gauged Sherlock well enough to decide that an appeal to logic would work, then framed the contextual information in that way. Suddenly John suspected that Tim was not the only oddity around. In that case, Sherlock's rigid attachment to "Once you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however impossible, must be the truth!" was about to bite him on the arse in a situation where the impossible was indeterminate.

"Touch is another good measure," Quinn said. "Most hallucinations are visual or auditory only, and so are most holograms. Even the ones you can touch tend to feel different, not as precise as a solid body feels. So if you shake hands with Tim, that's another indication that he is real. I promise he's friendly."

Tim obligingly held out a tentacle.

"Ought to be able to control myself," Sherlock muttered. "Divorce myself from the feelings. Feelings are nonsense."

"Feelings are information," Quinn said. "They just process information in an analogue way rather than a digital way. Don't ignore the input from your hindbrain just because you use your forebrain to decide how to act on the information you have."

That was brilliant, John realised, giddy with the sudden wonder of it. Why hadn't he ever thought to phrase things like that? Well, probably because he had clinical training in how to handle panic attacks, complete with memorised scripts that worked for most people; but Sherlock wasn't most people and Quinn's framing clearly worked better for him. John felt a sort of fluttering sensation in his head as whole drawers full of ideas reorganised themselves into a new configuration that he himself could use to help pull Sherlock back from the brink the next time this happened.

Quinn was amazing. All these people were amazing, really. It was like being surrounded by funhouse-mirror-versions of Sherlock, all some flavor of genius, yet each with different specialties. That image was utterly captivating for John. He wondered what it was like for Sherlock --

Of course, Sherlock wasn't thinking about that just now. He was still bullying himself into reaching out to Tim. For his part, Tim was standing perfectly motionless and not at all like a monster, one tentacle extended.

Sherlock grabbed the tip of the tentacle and shook it brusquely. Then he let go and wiped his hand on his pants. John gave an inner sigh at the rudeness. Tim did not seem to take any offence, though.

Then Sherlock frowned at his hand. "It's not slimy," he said.

"Tim has warm, dry skin like a mammal," Quinn explained, "although he isn't actually mammalian. Don't ask him to explain his species' reproduction, though; it's too confusing to follow."

Sherlock wrinkled his nose. "Reproduction really isn't my area," he said.

"If I may be excused, gentlemen, I need to check some of the kitchen software," Tim said politely.

"Go ahead, Tim, and thanks for your patience," Quinn said, waving him past.

* * *

Notes:

Some of Sherlock's lines were partly inspired by "The Hounds of Baskerville"


[To be continued in Part 5 ...]

(no subject)

Date: 2012-11-17 02:01 am (UTC)
technoshaman: Tux (Default)
From: [personal profile] technoshaman
I admire Tim's equanimity... and, well, John has the right of it the rest of the way: Quinn is freakin' brilliant.

Though I did wonder about Tim's reproductive method back when Ash had to do that lube job... if it doesn't work, it's ok, but one *is* curious. (Meow?)

Meta-translation: I'm way past "like" here... :)

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