The next morning, Doctor Watson awoke and saw that Holmes was sound asleep. He hated to wake him, as the young detective had barely been able to rest since he was shot; but Doctor Watson needed to know if his sight was gone.
Doctor Watson stood and, with a quivering hand, shook Holmes gently by the shoulder. After awhile, the exhausted Holmes looked up at his friend.
"Good morning." said Holmes.
Doctor Watson breathed a sigh of relief. "Good morning, Holmes. How do you feel?"
"What of your vision? Can you see me?"
"Well, everything is a bit blurry, but I do see you."
"I apologize for waking you, I just wanted to tell you that I have to go downstairs and find myself something for breakfast. I'll only be gone a short while, and I'll just be downstairs."
"Very well." said Holmes.
Doctor Watson left the room, confident that he had misdiagonsed Holmes' condition, and that he would be able to keep his sight. He went downstairs and to the kitchen, where Marie was preparing breakfast.
"Good morning, Marie." said Doctor Watson.
"Good morning, doctor! I never thought you would leave his side." said Marie.
"Well, I was getting hungry. Besides, he's resting for the moment."
"How is he?"
"The same. He still has a severe fever from the infection, and his pain has yet to subside."
"Have hope, Doctor. In time, he'll recover. Would you care for some coffee?"
Just as Marie was about to hand Doctor Watson his coffee; the two heard the most terrifying scream come from upstairs. Doctor Watson, fearing the worst, ran back up the stairs and to Holmes' room. The sickly man was sitting up in bed, and calling out for Doctor Watson.
"I'm here, ol' boy." said Doctor Watson, laying a hand on Holmes' shoulder.
"Watson, where are you?" asked Holmes.
"By the bed. Can't you see me?"
"No, I can't. Watson, I can't see you. I can't see anything."
Holmes whimpered and Doctor Watson took his hand and allowed him to squeeze it.
"Don't be afraid, Holmes. I'm here now. You aren't going to be alone; I won't leave you again." said Doctor Watson.
Holmes took a brief pause from his crying, and exhaled deeply. "When I was a boy, I would often play games with Mycroft. We always loved hide and seek; as Mycroft could never find me. One day, I chose to hide in a wardrobe in our father's room; not knowing of the price. My father returned early from his work and went up to his room; not even knowing where I was. He closed the door to his wardrobe, and locked it; complaining that he didn't want his sons to ruin his clothes. I started to bang on the door, hoping that father would hear me: he never did. It wasn't until morning that I was found by my father and Mycroft. Ever since, I've feared the dark. Now, my fear is eternal. I'll always be in the dark."
Suddenly, tears began to fall from Holmes' sightless eyes. Doctor Watson felt his heart drop to his stomach as he helplessly watched his sobbing friend; knowing he could do nothing to bring back his sight.