Patterns in Walls

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The Professionals Fanfiction
Title: Patterns in Walls
Author(s): Debra Hicks
Date(s): 1988
Length: 6000 words
Genre: gen
Fandom: The Professionals
External Links: online here

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Patterns in Walls is a Professionals story by Debra Hicks.

It was published in British Takeaway #3.

Reactions and Reviews


I thought the contrast between Sable and Bodie, in Patterns in Walls, interesting. Sable is critical of Bodie for using a loaded gun. But if Sable ever came up against the kinds of people Bodie faces, not only would he (Sable) be dead, he'd be mincemeat. They live in two different realities, and really have no right to criticize each other. [1]
Patterns in Walls was a nice adventure, but whether because it involved a character (Sable) with whom I was unfamiliar, or because it was set outside Britain, it didn't have the sense of atmosphere that can make or break a Pros story. Instead it became simply a Bodie story. Which is fine, if that was what the author was aiming for. [2]


A crossover with Sable, a show I've not only never seen, but one I know absolutely nothing about. That handicap has never impeded my enjoyment of this story a whit. It's set in Chicago, apparently Sable's home ground, as Bodie seeks out Jon Sable, whom he met in Africa, to request help:

Dark eyes were cold. "He's an escaped felon wanted back in England, and he has something that belongs to me."

What the quarry has taken, of course, is Doyle, and Bodie will go to any lengths to retrieve his partner. Although Doyle doesn't appear in the story until near the end, the intensity of Bodie's feelings about him as Bodie negotiates with Sable feeds all my slashy desires. I really enjoy this portrait of Bodie as a dangerous but controlled predator with one focus: retrieving Doyle--or, if Doyle is dead, avenging him.

Sable, committed to non-violence, is a fascinating foil to this potentially lethal, hunting Bodie:

[Bodie's] anger slowly turned into a look that was calm, level, not quite sane. "I don't give a toss how you get yourself killed, Jon. I don't even mind it being my arse on the line. But," the room went icy, "if anything happens to Doyle because that thing isn't loaded I will kill you."

I admire the way Debra Hicks manages to make Jon Sable and his computer hacker, Cheesecake, come alive for me in a relatively short story sufficiently so I can understand their roles in the tale. One of the cool things about crossovers is they usually give us third-party views of Bodie and Doyle; Sable's views of first Bodie, then Doyle, are very satisfying to me.

Most of all, though, I thrill to this portrait of a determined, protective Bodie. [3]


  1. from an LOC in British Takeaway #4
  2. from an LOC in British Takeaway #4
  3. 2010, comments by istia, prosrecs, Archived version