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Fic: Yellow Car Cab [BBC Sherlock]

Title: Yellow Car Cab
Fandom: BBC Sherlock
Rating: G
Characters: Sherlock Holmes, John Watson, OC
Length: 506
Alternate Link: AO3
Author's Notes: Written for the watsons_woes JWP 2015 Prompt #18, The Games We Play. Unbeta'd.
Summary: It might as well be part of The Knowledge. Every London cab-driver knows why its worth swerving across two lanes of traffic to pick up Sherlock Holmes.

"208 Sheen Road, and quickly," said the tall, well-dressed man, before his friend was even inside the cab.

"Of course, sir," Deepak said, pulling out into heavy traffic and wondering if he'd hit the jackpot and managed to pick up Sherlock Holmes as a fare. The tall man did look like Holmes, but Deepak had been wrong before.

Not a minute had gone by when the man huffed impatiently. "It's going to take forever, this time of day. We'll be stuck in this cab for at least twenty-seven minutes, and my phone's nearly out of charge."

"Yellow car," said the short one.

"What? Where?"

"The mini down the side street over there, see it?"

"What about it?"

"Nothing. It's just a game. When you see a yellow car, you say, 'yellow car'."

"Well that's pointless. And the mini wasn't even yellow; it was Tangerine Scream."

"Tangerine ... do you actually know the proper names for all the car colors?"

"Of course. Being able to accurately identify paint transfers from vehicles has proven invaluable in several cases."

Deepak wondered if those were criminal cases, or some other kind.

"That's amazing! Here, what about the sports car up ahead?"

"That's Solar Yellow. Very similar to Saffron Yellow, but with a metallic flake that shows up in direct sunlight. Also, Saffron Yellow paint was used on Lotus cars before 2006, Solar Yellow after. That's a 2010 model."

Deepak heard the click of a phone taking a photo, followed by the slow tip-tap of typing. That was very promising. It must be Sherlock Holmes. Or some posh, car-obsessed lawyer.

"We could get photos of all the different car colors, label them, and put them up on your website. Car enthusiasts would probably go nuts for a searchable database, and it'd be useful to the police as well."

Police? Evidence was mounting up.

The tall one sighed. "Sounds tedious."

"Unlike your analysis of 243 brands of tobacco ash?"

That was the clincher. Sherlock Holmes was the only man in London who would put something like that on his website.

"The tobacco ash analysis was interesting. I was able to smoke as part of my experiment, and the website allowed me to document my findings. I already know all the car colors."

"Well, I don't. Not yet, anyway. You said knowing the paint colors helped you solve some cases?"

"Mmm. The most recent was an armoured car heist –"

"Yellow car."

"The Subaru? Mimoza Yellow. With a 'z'. At first it seemed that the transferred paint on the armored car was fresh, when actually ..."

Twenty-eight minutes later Deepak dropped the two men off at a building swarming with police. The short one, who must be John Watson, left a decent tip before jogging off after Holmes.

Deepak parked in a nearby lot and pulled out his phone to tweet and Instagram a dozen photos, #yellowcar, #sherlockholmes. That should be good for a thousand new followers by morning, he decided, patting his Green Badge with great satisfaction before heading back into the City.

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Comments

( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
monkeybard
Jul. 19th, 2015 04:07 am (UTC)
Nice one! I presume the alternate name for Yellow Car is Distract Impatient Detective. ;)
keerawa
Jul. 19th, 2015 05:18 am (UTC)
Well-spotted! And John is an expert at that game. Thanks for the comment, monkeybard!
methylviolet10b
Jul. 20th, 2015 06:07 am (UTC)
Yay, you referenced The Knowledge! And what a great reason for cabbies to actively try to pick up Sherlock.
keerawa
Jul. 20th, 2015 10:14 pm (UTC)
There must be SOME explanation for why Sherlock can always get a cab. Thanks for the comment!
caffienekitty
Jul. 20th, 2015 11:26 am (UTC)
YELLOW CAR! You win. \o/
keerawa
Jul. 20th, 2015 10:14 pm (UTC)
:-) Thanks, caffeinekitty, I had fun with this one.
capt_facepalm
Jul. 26th, 2015 12:55 am (UTC)
Of course Sherlock would take "Yellow Car" to the next level... "Specific Yellow Car"!
keerawa
Jul. 26th, 2015 01:02 am (UTC)
It's not a game, its a training exercise! Thanks, captain!
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )