Fandom: Sapphire and Steel, Doctor Who
Summary: According to Steel, Elements don’t get drunk. According to Silver, they also don’t try to eat poisonous plants. A brief tale of holiday traditions and syrup of ipecac.
Characters: Steel, Sapphire, Silver, Liz Shaw
Words: 745 words, per AO3
Notes: A few days ago, in an effort to get my creative juices flowing, and to pair that with an improvement in my writing discipline, I asked for prompts. The ever-lovely thisbluespirit was among those who obliged. This stems from her prompt "Steel/Sapphire/Silver - Mistletoe Kiss" (Her inspiration sent me somewhat sideways.) This is an advanced birthday gift of sorts for her, as thanks for introducing me to Sapphire and Steel.
TW: For overuse of alcohol.
All characters are the sole property of Peter J. Hammond, ATV, and their various creators. I intend no copywrite infringement and take no coin. I just love them all.
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“Oh, for heaven’s sake — keep your head down, between your knees. I’ll get a basin.”
“Well she told me to eat the —”
Silver tried not to grind his teeth. “No, she told you —”
“Silver, a word?”
Sapphire handed a basin to Silver, who handed it to Steel and glared at him before responding. “A moment.”
Sapphire’s expression was too polite to be called a grimace. Nor could it be called, precisely, anger. But Silver cleared his throat apologetically. “Sorry. Coming.”
As he turned toward her he made one last comment to Steel. “No, keep the basin. You’ll be needing it presently. That purgative will work quickl — oh, for … well now you’re going to have to clean it off your shoes. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.”
The only answer was a groan. Silver quickly moved away and toward his other companion.
It was rare to see anything but dispassionate composure on Sapphire’s face so Silver was nonplussed at the annoyance and amusement warring in her eyes and on her lips.
“What did you do?”
That sounded relatively neutral, but Silver still bristled a little. “Me? I did nothing. It’s Copper’s fault. And Ruby’s. Particularly Ruby’s. He saw the mistletoe in the next room — you know, the plant Ruby brought back from a Mission and decided to hang over the entry because, and I quote, “Why not try a Christmas tradition, since it’s become rather boring around here” — and asked what it was for. Ruby started to giggle, handed Steel a cup of punch —”
Sapphire sighed. “Ah, well. Ruby. Who had punch on hand for no reason.”
“Well, it is Christmas —”
“Good. So. Punch. And …?”
“And Copper told him that it was poison. Ruby interrupted and said it was also very tasty.”
“No, the mistletoe.”
Sapphire sighed again. “How many cups of … ‘punch’ did Ruby convince him to down?”
Now it was Silver’s turn to sigh, and his was much more pronounced than hers. “I think — and this is just a guess — that it was at least three.”
“I imagine he wasn’t really paying attention.” Sapphire sighed a third time. She looked less angry now, and a good deal more amused.
“Well, he was arguing with Copper about the mistletoe. He was determined to prove that it wasn’t poison at all, by eating it. He … ah … seemed to have fixated on the part where Ruby said it was tasty.” Silver, who could read a room very well, adjusted, although he did his best to stay serious.
From behind them, a second and even less dignified groan. After a moment, coordinated sighs from Silver and Sapphire.
“You take his right, and I’ll take his left,” Silver said.
A muffled “I can walk by myself” from Steel.
“No, you can’t,” Sapphire said serenely. “You’re drunk.”
“I am not. Elements don’t get drunk.”
“How many cups of punch, Steel?” She even made that sound friendly.
There followed a great deal of silence. At least it would have been silence, had Steel not reprised his last groan. This time it was significantly more liquid than before. “Five,” he eventually managed before adding, reluctantly, “Possibly six … Very well. I could use a little help.”
As his two colleagues moved him toward a bed that was extremely handy (Silver eyed the light blue sheets and fuzzy dark blue blanket, topped with robins-egg pillows dotted with fluffy clouds, and nodded thanks in Sapphire’s direction), Steel muttered something to Silver. Silver thought it might have been gratitude for the ipecac syrup, but he didn’t ask Steel to repeat himself.
There was the expected grumbling as Steel was divested of shoes and jacket (both were really unwearable, thanks to the ipecac) and put into bed.
What was more unexpected was his question, plaintively whispered: “I never did find out what the mistletoe was really for.”
Sapphire leaned over and kissed his cheek, then turned and kissed Silver’s. “There. Now you know.”
A delighted Silver smiled at Sapphire, as Steel drifted off to sleep.
After a moment, Sapphire smiled herself, but this smile was a good deal more edged. “I expect I should go and have a chat with Ruby. And Copper.”
Silver knew when to beat a judicious retreat, something Ruby and Copper would probably want to do in very short order.
As for himself … he put one hand to his cheek, and savored the warmth of a fading kiss.
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