|Those Little Things That Keep You Going
Author: JennaEf PM
Five moments in life with Sherlock John wishes to remeber, and the one he would gladly forget.Rated: Fiction T - English - Friendship - Sherlock H. & John W. - Chapters: 4 - Words: 13,467 - Reviews: 9 - Favs: 10 - Follows: 28 - Updated: 03-09-13 - Published: 12-23-11 - id: 7667126
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Okay, the second prompt from Nychta is 'Rain'. Hope you'll enjoy!
There are days when everything goes wrong straight from the beginning.
Before Sherlock, the number of such days in John's life was moderate; but after they met, those days started to make an appearance quite often.
John could unmistakably recognise a troublemaker when he saw one, and the moment he saw the tall, dark-haired man at Bart's lab, his sixth sense immediately screamed 'dangerous'. Unfortunately, right at that moment the ex-army doctor was desperately seeking the reason to continue living, and Sherlock's whole demeanour clearly broadcasted 'mystery' and 'adventure'. So, the voice of reason was completely ignored, and John fearlessly and recklessly threw himself into the mayhem that was Sherlock's daily life.
Of course John, being more normal than his extraordinary companion, realised with perfect clarity that such a crazy lifestyle was bound to have consequences, mostly related to aforementioned companion. But being the ex-army doctor, John thought of himself as being quite adept at handling extreme situations, so he decided to give this whole business a go.
The start was rather magnificent: Sherlock's amazing deductions, the incredible speed of his thoughts, the mad chase after the cabby, and the thrill of saving this brilliant but childishly foolish man. Yet, if there were any doubts in John's mind when they first met, they were swept away by Sherlock's charisma and irresistible magnetism.
Not to mention that the message in his fortune cookie on that fateful evening read: "Take a chance while you still have a choice". Not that John really had a choice: his former life was too bleak and too awful comparing to one he had now.
But besides being a proper genius, Sherlock nevertheless was human, and human psyche always tends to have its ups and downs. During the "Study in Pink" the younger man was as high as a kite, doped up on chills and thrills of the case. When it ended, however, the apathy set in rapidly, scaring the bejesus out of John.
Luckily enough, the next case came quite quickly and John breathed a sigh of relief, thinking that the worst was over. As it turned out, he was sadly mistaken.
It now was the sixth day of 'case drought', as John nicknamed it, and with each passing day Sherlock has seemingly spiralled further into madness. The previous case had ended quite badly as Sherlock had lost a few valuable members of his homeless network due to, as he acidly referred it, 'Scotland Yard's imbecilic meddling'. Sherlock and Lestrade had a couple of shouting matches over the matter, resulting in the Detective Inspector suspending the consulting detective for a month. John, of course, tried to set things right – more than once, in fact – but those two were too far gone to hear the voice of reason.
Cut off from participating in investigations, Sherlock made an attempt of striking a deal with Mycroft, but the older Holmes was too caught up in another international disaster to pay his sibling any attention. So Sherlock was doomed to continue sulking.
John attempted to help him as best as he could, but the irony of the whole situation was that the good doctor certainly wasn't as 'absolutely fine' as he tried to pretend.
It was because he had failed to save one of Sherlock's homeless operatives. The young girl, Dotty, died in his arms two minutes before the ambulance arrived. The paramedics repeatedly tried to explain to the devastated blond man that there was nothing he could have done, that the damage was too severe; but John, crushed under the tremendous weight of his failure, refused to be consoled by those explanations.
That was the beginning of each of two men's personal hell, and since they failed to seek support from each other, life at Baker Street 221B became absolutely unbearable.
Until the seventh day, that was.
It had rained heavily during the night, and in the morning the rain turned into a constant drizzle. The atmosphere in the flat was unbearably oppressive, and John made a hurried escape, leaving Sherlock alone with his gloomy thoughts and screeching wails of his violin. The ex-army medic was hoping to clear his head and try to find a way of resolving the current situation before his urge to commit suicide or strangle Sherlock to death would become too tempting to resist.
So he spent all day wandering the streets of London and simply letting everything go; and while he didn't manage to find a solution to their problem, his mood had improved so much that he decided to try and improve the situation at least.
Decision made, he hailed a taxi and made his way back to their home.
Everything was dark and quiet when he returned; so Sherlock either had decided to go out, too, or finally fell asleep on the sofa in the living room. Either way was fine with John; they had all the time in the world to set things straight between them and around them.
Comforted by those thoughts, John set his foot on the stairs leading to their living room when his phone suddenly beeped with an incoming message. Frowning, the ex-army medic reached for his mobile and pulled it out, peering at the short text on the screen.
On the roof. SH
The phone slipped from his suddenly numb fingers and he cursed a blue streak, scaling the stairs toward their flat.
The fire escape. It had to be the fire escape. There was no other way up there.
What the hell was that bloody fool thinking?
He was on the roof in a couple of minutes, anxious and dreading the worst.
What he didn't expect to see was the sight of Sherlock crying, his tears mixing with raindrops and his entire body shaking with suppressed sobs.
Sherlock's silk dressing gown and grey pyjamas were sodden wet, and John found himself lunging forward and dropping onto his knees beside his distraught friend, then reaching out to touch his shoulder carefully.
Sherlock winced and turned his head, his red-rimmed eyes locking onto John's sympathetic ones.
"John," he said quietly, visibly taking control of himself. "You got my message, I presume?"
"Of course I got your message, Sherlock," John hastened to reassure, moving forward and sliding his arms around Sherlock's slim body. "Why?"
The younger man, reassured by his presence, closed his eyes and tentatively leaned against John, causing the doctor to tighten his embrace protectively. "I just wanted to know what it feels like."
"What what feels like, Sherlock?" John frowned in confusion. "What are you talking about?"
"Crying," the dark-haired man said simply. "I can cry on occasion, when a case demands it, but I have never cried because of loss. When Dotty died..," he paused, his voice catching slightly. "I couldn't... They always called me a freak, because I never cried when I was hurt. I just... I couldn't let them win, John, couldn't let them break me..."
Tears were streaming down Sherlock's pale face now as he cried out his pain, his despair, his sorrow. And John was listening, cradling his tortured friend closer and stroking his back gently.
Finally, after a while, Sherlock's tears subsided, and he shivered slightly, trying to cling closer to John in order to restore some needed warmth.
It was time to get out of the cold rain, so John patted Sherlock on the back and carefully pushed him away.
"Alright, up you go," he said firmly. "Feeling better?"
Sherlock tilted his head to the side, his expression thoughtful. "Much better, in fact. Thank you, John."
"Nothing to thank me for, Sherlock," John smiled slightly. "Time to get you back into the flat and into some dry clothes. Take a hot shower, and I'll make you a nice cup of tea. We wouldn't want you to catch a cold in those wet clothes, would we?"
John's matter-of-fact voice drew Sherlock back to reality, returning an expression of confidence onto his face.
"No, we wouldn't," he agreed shortly, pushing himself up, and the two friends carefully made their way back into the flat.
It took half an hour for Sherlock to take a shower, change into the dry clothes, and drink his tea; after that John escorted his yawning flatmate into his bedroom and made sure Sherlock was comfortably tucked in.
"Okay, a full night's sleep for you now, Sherlock," John said amiably. "And tomorrow we will sort everything out, alright?"
Sherlock nodded, a smile tugging at his lips. "Good night, John."
"Good night, Sherlock," the doctor answered, taking a step towards the door.
But Sherlock wasn't finished yet.
"John," the younger man said quietly, causing his flatmate to stop and turn around. "Thank you... for listening."
The blond man smiled broadly. "You're always welcome, Sherlock."
The great detective hummed, closing his eyes, and the doctor headed for the door. Near the threshold he stopped again, a mischievous smile tugging at his lips. The temptation was too strong to resist.
"Oh, and Sherlock," he paused, the smile evident in his tone. "Next time you feel the urge to cry... just use the shower, will you?"
The sound of the closing door was accompanied by Sherlock's amused chuckle.
And that's the last chapter for this year.
Happy New Year, everyone, and see you in 2012!