I do not own these lyrics, the band, the characters, the show nor the novel. These are things that sadden me.
Use of drugs, slight slash if you squint.
You'll also have to turn a blind eye to the deductions. God love Sir Conan Doyle and how he managed, because I can't write two.
Now, onwards and enjoy, hopefully :)
All this talk of getting old
It's getting me down my love
Sherlock had never truly planned on growing old. Not since he was about 6 years old and landed in hospital after falling out of a tree. Mummy had been upset and Mycroft had just been annoyed at his idiotic antics.
He had ended up with just a broken arm, which was pure luck on Sherlock's behalf.
Mummy had been angry, after all, why had Sherlock been up in the tree in the first place?
(Experimentation, he had replied. Mummy had tutted and frowned, but no one could miss that small dash of pride gleaming behind her grey eyes).
Mycroft was still annoyed upon returning home.
"You'll die young, you know," he had muttered over a quiet supper of soup and soda bread that evening.
Sherlock wasn't quite sure what he had said in retaliation to that. Probably something smart-arsed but, ultimately, idiotic and childish.
The words, however, lingered in his head for years to come. When he first let the needle puncture the skin for a moment he could hearthose wordsonly, amplified, rattling around his skull. They were removed as quickly as he depressed the plunger. They were forgotten completely as the drug hit his system.
Like a cat in a bag, waiting to drown
This time I'm comin' down
He was tired.
God, he was so fucking tired.
His skull was splitting open, it truly was, there was no exaggeration in such a statement. Some stupid bastard had left the curtain open (Jimmy, his brain supplied, albeit reluctantly), and someone beside him was shuffling on the dirty, greasy mattress.
His mouth was full of cotton wool, his lips cracked and his heart was fluttering like a hummingbird in a cage. Said hummingbird was probably also on something.
He couldn't sleep. Nor could he stay awake. He regretted not taking the benzo's, like he was offered (to stop the comedown, they had whispered in his ear, but then he had felt good, surely nothing, not even the comedown, was going to ruin that?). He wished he had a few Valium rattling around (like the ones Mummy used to take, after he had that 'episode' aged fourteen).
Or alcohol. Wasn't it Sara that had recommended alcohol? Sara didn't know what she was on about half the time though. Alcohol would also involve movement, something which Sherlock wasn't quite sure he could manage at this current moment in time.
His muscles ached and twitched.
He tried to roll onto his side (vomit induced asphyxiation floated around his head) but his face was on fire, but his body was cold. He was shaking, sweet Lord, his hands would never stop trembling at this rate, and the hummingbird was determined to be free.
Why was he so cold? He tried to get up. For what, he wasn't quite sure, but he'd figure that out when he reached that bridge, arms straining despite his lack of excess weight(drugs before food, the rest was just transport after all). The room was dim; some squat near Bromley Common. Bodies was laid out on the floor with a few, most likely infested, mattresses and old sofa cushions providing a bed for some of them. Sara was slouched in the corner, eyes open and glazed over, crusted blood on her upper lip. She raised her eyes up to Sherlock but he saw no sign of recognition in them. Her head was thrown back onto the stained wall, the early morning street-light illuminating her face through the filthy window, casting a sodium glow.
He couldn't hold himself up, like a child learning to walk all over again; his legs simply weren't strong enough. He managed to get out the door and into, if it was possible, the even grimier hallway. There was a couple entangled on the staircase, and he passed them carefully as to not trip, for fear on landing on the used needles that littered the stair wells (this was long before he gave up all regard for clean needles, clean drugs, long before desperation would let him use a needle that had been used 7 times previously, because it was quicker and it was so God damn bloody necessary).
He almost made it down the stairs, but his head was spinning and the walls were moving, never mind the stairs. He grasped harder at the wall, but it provided no grip, long fingers ghosting uselessly against the crumbling concrete.
His legs gave out on the third last step, sending him crashing into the stair well.
Perhaps he shouldn't have bought that 8-ball last night.
Perhaps Mycroft was right. Maybe he would die young, he certainly felt like he was dying now.
But at least the world was no longer spinning. It was, instead, black.
And I hope you're thinking of me
As you lay down on your side
He met Lestrade long after he stopped worrying about hygienic use of needles. Hygienic use of anything, really. His inky, curly hair was matted, his t-shirt old and far too large for the skeletal frame that occupied it. He was well aware of the fact he hadn't showered for a long time, bar quick showers in The Passage beside Victoria Station. They had offered him help many a time, but as much as he, deep down, wanted there help, he sure as hell didn't want to admit to it. He also feared that Mycroft would interfere and there was no way, after all these years, he was going to accept Mycroft's offers of money and lavish homes.
It had all started with Sara.
Found dead in some old house in Battersea. The police had seen the marks on her arm, collapsed veins and put the whole thing down as a simple junkie OD. Nothing exciting, nothing new, nothing anything at all strange with the entire incident.
Except the cocaine had been injected. Sherlock was one of the few people that injected cocaine (7% solution; snorting was just so undignified). Sara most certainly did not inject cocaine, it was too fiddly, to painstakingly slow (even if the high did hit like a freight train). The post-mortem only backed up the police's belief. Why would they know better? No one would.
Sherlock, however, did. The drugs had been forced into her, she had been robbed (Sara had started making a bit of money in dealing, carried it around in her bra, but how were the police to know that?) and left for dead. Simple.
In the end he managed to track down a grey haired DI working at Scotland Yard, after days of waiting outside. He followed him into a small greasy spoon on Strutton Ground. Waiting outside until he had ordered his coffee and bagel, Sherlock took his chance to pounce when the waitress had left, smiling a yellowed smile.
Flopping down, boneless, into the small plastic chair with its worn seat and foam padding poking out the edge, the grey haired detective glanced up, eyes darting around the almost empty café, questioning why Sherlock had chosen to sit at that particular table.
"You're wrong," declared Sherlock, cutting straight to the chase.
The man frowned.
"Um, sorry, what?"
"Sara Crewlins didn't die from a drug over-dose. She was attacked, drugged and robbed by a man, probably about 5"9 in height. Not a homeless man, I'd have heard if it was. Sara didn't inject drugs yet the body showed puncture marks, in the vein, neat. Not something long-term junkies, which she was, tend to go for. The attacker isn't a drug user. The bruising, if you look at the right ones, back this up. She bruised easily; lack of vitamin K does that, but there was, most likely, bruising along the sides of the torso where she had been grabbed from behind. She was already on drugs by that time, or else she would have noticed. The extra morphine and cocaine mix in her system pushed her over the edge. Robbery gone wrong. Simple."
The man stared at him for a long time, eyes narrowing as he took in the brunette's tattered appearance.
"Who the hell are you?" he asked at last.
"Mycroft Holmes. You're Detective Inspector Gregory Lestrade, if the papers are correct, they so rarely are," he retorted. He had spent several days after Sara's death searching through old papers until he became almost certain that the man he was stalking, the lack of better word, was indeed Gregory Lestrade.
"Well, Mr. Holmes, we do appreciate the public's interest in our cases, but I'm afraid that's all we can do. Appreciate."
"You don't think I'm right, do you? I am. Go back to your office, recheck the evidence. You will find proof."
"And you know this, how?"
"The same way I know you have a slight drinking problem by the condition of your shirt, and that your wife is cheating on you. Milk-man too, so cliché, by your wedding ring."
"Right, well, I think we've spoken enough Mr. Holmes, if you'll excuse me," he pardoned himself, scraping back the cheap chair on the tacky linoleum floor.
"Sara was a friend of mine. I would be most disappointed if you did not even look into the matter once more, out of pride."
Lestrade stopped, his hands resting on the back of his chair.
"I am terribly sorry for your loss, but like I said, we cannot take advice from amateurs."
With that he left, leaving Sherlock with the coffee and bagel he ordered. Devouring it, he was grateful the café required you to pay when you ordered.
Now the drugs don't work
They just make you worse
But I know I'll see your face again
It was 5 weeks after their first meeting when Sherlock and Lestrade met for the second time.
"Mycroft, isn't it?" Lestrade had called over to him as Sherlock stood on the border of the crime scene (young woman, murdered, the fiancé was the suspect, but it was the sister. The locket made it so clear, even to his drug-addled mind).
"Lestrade," Sherlock responded, squinting up into the glare of the sun-light. He was well aware of the sight he made. He had fallen again, for reasons he couldn't clearly remember (remembering anything clearly has become a challenge), leaving a gash across the side of his forehead. His hair was growing far too long, he would get it cut on his next visit to The Passage, and he hadn't showered in a long time. He needed a shave and a clean change of clothes, his log coat was no protection against the cold and damp. He hadn't found his way back to the squat last night so he resorted to sleeping it off on a park bench.
"What brings you here?"
"Curiosity. A loathing of the police's stupidity. Pick whatever option you prefer."
"You were right, last time. I tried to contact you, but it's hard to do with a fake name, isn't it?"
"It's not fake."
"So you do live in Mayfield then? Must say, comes as a bit of a surprise. Don't get many drug addicts like yourself that can hold down the rent of a Mayfair penthouse."
"I work extraordinarily hard," Sherlock bit back.
"Fine, I don't need your real name, if you don't want to give it to me. I just wanted to thank you."
Sherlock hummed in agreement, planting his glare back onto the crime scene.
"Any ideas?" Lestrade ventured after a few moments of tense silence.
"Plenty. Only one that fits. You've noticed the locket, I assume?"
Lestrade nodded, hands clasped behind his back.
"It was her mother's, left to her daughter in the will. The rest of the jewellery was stolen, bar the locket. So someone didn't want to steal the locket, not because it was worthless, because it's most certainly worth quite a lot. So someone didn't want to take it for another reason. Sentimental reasons. Someone with a connection to both the mother and the daughter. A sister, jealous of the victim, most likely due to the upcoming wedding, but it's hard to tell without more information. The sister left the locket; couldn't bring herself to take it from the body. She had doubts about the killing; she knew it was wrong but she was desperate for the woman to be dead. She tried to cover it up as a robbery gone pear-shaped, even stole the change from her pockets, but not the locket."
"So, the fiancé is in the clear and the sister murdered her?"
Lestrade watched him for a long moment, before the corners of his lips turned up.
"Course I did. Wasn't the hardest problem. Let's say, 'Mr. Holmes'," Sherlock chose to ignore the implied doubt regarding his name, "that, hypothetically, if I were to want your, shall we call it assistance? If I were to want your assistance, where would I be able to find you?"
Sherlock paused to study the detective. He didn't seem to be mocking him, his offer seemed genuine.
"The Passage, they'll be able to contact me."
"The homeless centre next to Victoria Station?" There was no pity in Lestrade's voice, something that Sherlock felt inexplicable relief for.
"Great, well then, Mr. Holmes, perhaps I'll get in contact with you some day." Lestrade said, turning around to duck back under the police tape.
The detective spun around on his heels, a questioning look plastered across his tired face (he confronted his wife about the affair then).
"It's Sherlock. Sherlock Holmes."
The other man grinned, a full, bright smile. One that Sherlock decided there and then he wanted to see more often.
"I'll be in contact then, Sherlock Holmes."
Now the drugs don't work
They just make you worse
But I know I'll see your face again
It was a busy morning at The Passage. The tables were cramped and the smell of body odour hanged undeniably in the air.
He had turned up earlier, remnants of a hangover thrumming in his skull. Lestrade had told him to be at The Passage this morning, to give assistance on the latest case. He had shot up just enough cocaine to give him that pleasant buzz that he so desperately relied on these days.
He had showered, shaved, cut his hair and washed his clothes (making sure the sleeves were long enough to cover the track marks). He was sitting in the crowded dining room, hunched over a metal bowl of some kind of porridge concoction, when Lestrade appeared, seemingly out of thin air, placing a heavy hand on Sherlock's shoulder.
Sherlock started, glaring up at the man.
Lestrade looked Sherlock up and down approvingly, taking in the neater appearance.
"You look better, not fantastic, but better Holmes," Lestrade finally said, starting to make his way back outside.
"Glad to hear you approve," Sherlock's tone was sarcastic, biting even, but he was somewhat pleased that Lestrade had noticed.
"Where did you sleep last night?" He asked once they were stood on the pavement outside on the terracotta building, looming impressively and importantly above them.
"The Ritz," Sherlock replied, not willing to admit that he had ended up falling asleep in Victoria Station's toilets.
"Mm, forgot you worked so incredibly hard," joked Lestrade, paraphrasing Sherlock's earlier comment.
That was where it began, the career of Sherlock Holmes the Consulting Detective. A lot of things begun that day, including Sherlock realising that Lestrade wasn't such as idiot after all (well, he had asked Sherlock for his help, which was an improvement).
Lestrade had asked for Sherlock's opinion of a particularly brutal triple homicide, which ended up in Sherlock successfully proving the main suspect had, in fact, been house-breaking on the other side of the city.
Sherlock had met the rest of Lestrade's core team, as small as it was. It consisted of the unlikeable forensic scientist named Anderson, and young sergeant that had potential, should she be willing to exploit it, named Donovan. That was a beginning of a mutual dislike from all parties.
It was also, although he didn't realise it at the time, the beginning of a time where Sherlock Holmes did not need drugs to function.
"Look, Sherlock, we appreciate your help, seriously, we do. But I'm getting stick for this already and at the end of the day I, we, cannot have a drug addict working in liaison with the police force. The media would have a field day, Jesus; I can see the headlines now. So if you want to continue this with us, we're gonna need you to sober up, get clean. We can provide the treatment, keep it tidy and in order and safe. No need for you to go cold turkey in some dingy squat. We'll be able to start paying you, fees for your help, it'll all be above board, none of these messing around nonsense," Lestrade had said, and Sherlock felt sick to note the look of pity and sympathy was now so painfully evident in his eyes that it practically screamed.
Lestrade mistook his silence for thought, rather than disgust, and he pressed his address, scrawled in his illegible script onto the back of an old cereal box, into his calloused palm.
Sherlock had said nothing, only scoffed in response, leaving Lestrade alone as he weaved his way through the crowds of Oxford Street. But he never did throw that address away.
But I know I'm on a losing streak
'Cause I passed down my old street
And if you wanna show, then just let me know
And I'll sing in your ear again
Lestrade hadn't contacted him for 3 weeks.
His head hurt, it was a bad drug. Cut with something that could only be poison. Needles had been scarce, so he ended up snorting lines, how many, he lost count. It wasn't particularly hard these days.
For a while, it was good. That shimmery feeling right behind his eyes that he so loved.
Then it hit him, the wave of nausea that threatened to overwhelm him. He darted to the small bathroom, ignoring the young girl that was tapping air bubbles out of a hypodermic needle (ridiculous, if air bubbles could kill you then all junkies would be dead).
He leaned his head over the toilet bowl, retching, bringing up everything in his stomach. Half a bottle of vodka, in all honesty. He hadn't thought about even buying food in the last few days. He lived off a diet of cigarettes, alcohol, coffee and drugs.
He lifted his head of its resting place on the toilet seat (he tried his bets to not imagine what was on the seat).
Water, he thought. Water would help.
He made his way shakily over to the sink, ducking his head under the tap and gulping it down.
His heart was beginning to hammer in his chest, so loud he could almost swear he could hear it.
The water refused to stay down and he collapsed back over the bowl, heaving.
It was when he saw blood he began to panic.
He darted up, almost collapsing in the process. Skipping down the staircase, keeping a tight grip on the banister at all times. He almost fell out the front door, his arm wrapped tightly around his stomach in some childish hope that it would stop the nausea.
He made his way shakily over to the nearest telephone box. It stank of piss, windows smashed in. Someone had pasted up flyers for call-girls and sex phone lines.
He scrambled in his back pocket for Lestrade's phone number, on the now tattered piece of card.
It was only due to luck he remembered the reverse dialling code from his teenage years, and it was only due to Lestrade's day off work that Lestrade even answered.
"Lestrade, it's me, Sherlock. I need help," his voice was panicky now, shaky and broken and he was sure Lestrade could hear that. He let the phone dangle loose as to vomit onto the floor, glittering with smashed glass.
"You still there? Sherlock?" came Lestrade's disembodied voice from the receiver.
Sherlock grabbed the phone back up.
"I'm here, I'm here. Sorry."
"Where are you Sherlock?"
"Dorset Lane, Lambeth."
"Do you need an ambulance?"
Sherlock didn't know, but even if he did, he would refuse to be hospitalised. Mycroft would inevitably find out and Christ, Sherlock could imagine his smug face even through the haze of nausea and panic.
"No, no, I just need you."
There was a pause on the other line.
"Okay, I've got an ETA of about 13 minutes. Is that okay?"
"Yes, yes. Sorry. Thank you." And with that Sherlock hung up, collapsing down, narrowly missing the mix of vomit and glass. Bowing his head between his knees and trying to calm his heartbeat (tachycardia), he prayed to a God he had never believed in that Lestrade would stay true to his word and turn up.
He must have passed out at that point, because he awoke in a bed, an experience that he had not felt in years.
A clean bed, with clean sheets and no stench of piss and vomit stinging in nostrils.
A bucket was propped beside the bed, which Sherlock was grateful for when he rolled over to rid his stomach of its meagre contents once more.
Lestrade's his brain provided, memories of the past few hours trickling in again.
The room was clean, sparse of any personal items bar an old quilt thrown onto a wooden chair in the corner. The large window was inched open, filling the room with a pleasant breeze on the summer's night.
In the distance Sherlock noted he could see the golden sun lowering itself down over the city's rooftops, casting a buttery glow over everything.
Groaning, he curled up in a ball. His head ached, his nose was blocked with what he assumed was blood.
Lestrade took this moment to make his presence known.
Creaking open the heavy wooden door, he crept over to the side of Sherlock's bed, crouching down until he was eye-level with the sick man.
"You're awake then," he said, far too cheerily for a man that had been called up on his day off to pick up some homeless man's OD'd body.
Sherlock grunted in response.
"I've made you tea," he informed the brunette, clattering the mug down on the bedside table, "milky, three sugars. You look like you could use them."
Sherlock just burrowed his head further under the duvet.
"I'm glad you called me. I can help you, you know. I'm just sorry it has to be so damned rough for you. But that said, you knew the consequences."
When Sherlock still gave no reply the detective just sighed, straightening himself up and leaving the room in quiet, coming back later on that night to clean out the basin and offer a new cup of tea.
Sherlock both hated and loved that man.