All Hope Abandoned

A/N: Okay, haven't done this in a while. Hopefully this will allow me to get back into the saddle. Don't allow this chapter to scare you off, wait till the next one. It should be up tomorrow at the latest. Enjoy!

Disclaimer: Not mine, never were.

Ch. 1-The Discovery

It was some six months ago that my husband and I purchased this quaint little cottage in the countryside. Both of us had tired of the hustle and bustle of life in London and here we might raise children in relative peace. But I am delaying the start of the tale.

It was a little over a month ago when my husband was repairing one of the cottage walls that he ran across a much battered tin case. It took some effort to pry it open, for time had rusted it shut, but the effort was quite worth it when several journals, perfectly preserved, proved to be its contents. Upon seeing this, Tobias handed them over to my care as he could not decipher their scribbles and I, an English scholar, might have more luck. I was grateful for the distraction for he had refused to allow me to help with this stage of the restoration. Setting myself up in our bedroom, I had only managed a quick glance at the yellowed page and faded ink when my screams brought my husband to my side. With some concern, he drew one of my hands to his and asked what was the matter. My other hand, which was not held prisoner, trembled something awful as I pointed to the faded signature and date at the bottom of the page. Tobias lifted the journal from my lap and released my hand in favor of the magnifying glass I kept close at hand. When he finally determined what had made me scream, he too paled, for there, at the bottom of the fragile page was:

John H. Watson 1894

We looked at one another and I just knew that our thoughts were a mirror. We had bought the cottage of the Great Detective and his Boswell.

I believe that it was some time before either of us could recover and when we did we discussed what we must do with such an enormous find. It was eventually decided that we would present our discovery to the public after, as my Tobias insisted, I had transcribed the nearly illegible scribbles. Who knew what tales might lie within, but I was hesitant, at least, on the point of making them public. What were the contents of these pages that they must be sealed away from prying eyes in a wall? Tobias conceded my point but was quite insistent on the matter of my transcribing the works. Only I, he insisted, would be able to handle such a feat, and do so faithfully. While he undoubtedly exaggerates, I certainly appreciated the sentiment and was flattered by his belief in me. It was only after he had left me to my enormous task, that I began to flip through the pages with care and realized that this was not just another tale of the Great Detective's cases, but a private journal of the doctor's. That, at least, shed some light on the subject of why it was hidden away so, but still, what sort of secret did they conceal? Abandoning the first journal, I moved on to the others and found that the next two followed along in a similar vein and were, I determined, in the doctor's scrawl. It was the remaining slim green volumes that showed another hand all together. They showed the hand of the Great Detective and were a quite a bit easier to read for their neatness of script. If there was ever any doubt as to the doctor's occupation, one only had to view a sample of his handwriting for their doubts to be banished. After a brief comparison of dates, I realized that the two sets of journals ran parallel to one another and therefore picked up the detective's first. I was sure that the contents would allow me to better interpret the doctor's scribbles but nothing could have prepared me for the opening line.

"I have finally succeeded in doing what I had thought impossible. I have driven my Watson away."

The journal dropped from my nerveless fingers. Driven Watson away? But that just wasn't possible. History had clearly shown the doctor remaining faithfully by the detective's side since their first meeting in 1881 through marriages, deaths, and even Reichenbach Falls. No indication had ever been given that the doctor had willing been separated, nay, driven from Holmes's side. By all accounts the two had died together in their cottage, this cottage, some years after World War I, though no one had determined the precise date. By that point the two had bowed out of the public eye and the world had let them, too intent on rebuilding itself after such a devastating event. No one even knew where they were buried.

Picking up the journal again, I shut it with great care. Perhaps it would be best, despite the headache it would likely give me, to begin with Dr. Watson's account of the event.

Now, after two months worth of long hours and bitterly shed tears, I present to you, dear reader, the combined accounts of the tragic separation of the detective and his doctor as told by the men themselves. I have done my best to be as faithful as possible, but, dear reader, take into account that this is a private journal. It was never meant to be read by the public, so you might find Dr. Watson's and Mr. Holmes's writing somewhat different than what you are accustomed to.

End Chapter 1

A/N: Okay, so I played with Canon timeline just a bit, but we base Canon timeline on what Watson tells us so I don't see why he would always tell us the truth. This story is not finished but I am several chapters up. I haven't put anything on here in a long time. Hopefully I will grab your attention.

Reviews are always welcome!