Something new and a little different from me. I wanted to do my own take on a Sherlock/drugs story. I've rated this T, with warnings for graphic descriptions of drugs use, references to child abuse, some violence, a very small amount of bad language.
Anyone's sexuality is utterly irrelevant.
Most of this is finished now, but with later chapters needing some revision, so I'll be publishing a chapter a day for seven chapters.
Friday, 27th December. 23:14
Today has been one of complicated and exhausting events, politically at home and abroad, and unusually, of a more personal nature. The news of events in Burma will have been televised by now. Of course the public won't hear about the fifteen hours of negotiations that took place from the early hours of this morning. I am hopeful that the indiscretions of the Young Royal can be kept away from the media. Said Y.R. has been spoken to, and I am confident that she understands the magnitude of her indiscretion, and the lengths that we have gone to in order to protect her tenuous right to privacy.
Following the somewhat difficult day, I allowed myself the rare luxury of leaving work early, so it was that I was able to eat my dinner at the respectable hour of 20:30. Darling Marie excelled herself as usual. I was quite prepared to relax with a book while listening to some music when I received an unexpected phone call from the Metropolitan Police Service. They informed me that my brother had been detained in the cells at Scotland Yard, and that mine was the only name he would give as a contact.
I will admit to being slightly shaken by this call, and I was certainly distracted as Martin drove me to collect him. My thoughts covered several areas, including, but not restricted to, feeling that such an incident, or worse, was bound to happen at some point. S has been on a downward trajectory for several years. I have tried to speak to him about it on several occasions, but he has resisted me. When he continued to refuse to answer my calls I sent a letter, followed by several text messages but he is uninterested and refuses to communicate with me. I sent an invitation for Christmas lunch, but I knew even before I sent it that it would go unanswered and I didn't bother to alter my plans.
I have reverted to monitoring his movements from afar.
A greater part of my thoughts dwelled on wondering why S had chosen me as a contact. I know that he has friends, if you can consider such people he associates with as capable of friendship. There are a few brighter spots in his society though. Certainly I know he is in regular contact with one Detective Inspector Lestrade, and he would be more than capable of handling this situation. I understand he communicates with several people who work at St. Bartholomew's Teaching Hospital, and they would probably be distant enough to be discrete and intelligent enough to provide the council he clearly needs.
So I wondered; why on Earth did Dear Sherlock contact me?
I was so distracted Martin had to tell me twice that we had arrived.
I was about to follow a desk sergeant down to the cells when Inspector Lestrade intercepted me. He apologised for disturbing me, but I was distracted by the black eye he was sporting, and the large and ugly bruise across his left cheekbone. I now understood why S could not have asked for his help on this occasion. I made a note to request the full medical file relating to these injuries, but he appears not to have sought official treatment.
"Listen," he said to me, "you will take care of him, won't you? He's a good kid, I know he is, but, well it's all got a bit out of control. I'm sorry. I think being on his own for Christmas didn't help."
I wondered what he was apologising to me for, but it occurred to me he felt responsible for S's habit. And perhaps even for not inviting him for Christmas himself. I suspect I have not been the only one keen on resolving the drugs issue.
I asked whether S would need legal counsel, but he stated that there would be no charges. He had called me because he wanted to ensure S would be taken care of.
I thanked him and as I walked to the cell I wondered what it would take to get the damned fool to listen. He's always been contrary and wild and if there was any time that he had looked up to me as a wiser older brother, that time was over long ago.
He has, however, always been vaguely logical, and though mildly incompetent in the area of self-preservation, he'd never been actively self-destructive before. I admit I was alarmed at this turn of events, and I discovered I was no longer prepared to watch him destroy himself from a distance. The thought of him dying chilled me sufficiently that I started to form a plan to prevent this happening at all costs.
S was sat on the bench in the holding cell looking surly and belligerent. It was an expression I remember well from his childhood and I could almost claim I felt a moment of affection for him. In retrospect, I suspect it was just nostalgia, exacerbated by my fatigue.
There was also something wholly new and unpleasant about him. He was tense, unfocussed and irascible. I could see that his breathing was short and I suspect if I'd have touched him to take his pulse it would have been elevated. He looked feverish.
He didn't say anything to me as I walked up to him. I stood several feet from him, and bid him good evening, and without speaking he stood and followed me from the cell. I realised that his brain was more affected than I had initially thought as he was quite willing to get into the car, and had not suspected I would do anything other than take him where-ever he wanted to go.
After sitting quietly for several minutes, he looked up and turned to me.
"Where are we going?" he asked me. "This isn't the way to my house! Take me home!"
The 'home' to which he referred was a single room in a house, currently occupied without tenancy agreements or contracts by four other men and a woman. None of them worked. I told him he was being ridiculous.
"Where are you taking me? Let me out now!"
I could see Martin glancing in his mirror to check on S, and I was comforted by his presence. Fortunately his intervention was unnecessary. S shouted a great deal but he didn't try to attack me physically. I cannot say for certain whether he decided that my actions were indeed for the best, or whether he simply forgot what we were arguing about. Certainly the verbal aggression continued the whole way home without any logical rhetoric at all.
Though he continued to slight my character from the car to my front room, he didn't attempt to divert from our path or indeed show any actual will to escape me. He followed me into the building like an angry and noisy lamb, which made things easier than I had hoped. When we got into the flat and I felt there was a fraction more privacy, I told him to be quiet and asked him if he required food. He's always been slender but he's taken this to 'emaciated' levels. I don't know whether he heard me, or he didn't understand, but I couldn't get a sensible answer from him.
I showed him to my spare room, and he went inside and slammed the door behind him. I suspect he's going to attempt to climb out of the window, but I'm happy that he will be thwarted by my security systems. I doubt he will try the front door. I will need to have a conversation with him at some point, either tonight or in the morning. I find I am currently uncertain as to what to say to him, and what to do next. It's an unfamiliar and altogether unpleasant feeling.
My choices are few and I shall describe them here.
The first, and possibly easiest option would be to allow him to sleep here tonight, give him something to eat in the morning, and then to send him on his merry way.
While this is more than I'd do for any other person, and arguably S has done nothing in his life to earn greater effort, it still feels unsatisfactory. I am quite clear that if S will die if nobody intervenes, and the time of crisis is rapidly approaching. Once again, I have become chilled at the image of watching my brother die while I do nothing.
The second, and the most sensible option, would be to start researching facilities that specialise in resolving addictions of this kind. (Side note; is this an addiction? How does one tell?)
This option has many merits. The people in charge of such places have a wealth of experience. They, for example, would not need to question the status of his addiction. They would be required to tend to his physical and mental needs. They would know what his physical and mental needs might be and I am quite ignorant about these things myself. They will be discrete.
I have searched my mind for any negatives to this plan and I can only think of one. While I am certain that a good facility would be more than capable of mending the average person, would they be equal to the task of mending S? Unfortunately, this is a fairly major consideration. There are factors relating to S that make his care quite out of the ordinary, and this has been the case as long as I can recall. I remember the endless line of nannies streaming into the house with eager anticipation and optimism, and them streaming out again when the realities of S were revealed to them.
I am romanticising the issue, a clear sign that I am tired. Poor, dear Sherlock. I cannot rest yet; a decision has to be made. I'm glad our parents are dead and the task falls to me. I could not imagine two such spectacularly useless parents for a child such as Sherlock Holmes.
I must force myself to be calm.
There is only one other option that I can think of at this time. S stays with me until the issue relating to his drug is resolved.
I cannot think of a single positive to this plan. The negatives are endless. I haven't the first idea how to go about solving such a problem. I haven't the time to devote to such a task. I don't particularly want S as a houseguest for an extended period as I personally prefer quiet and solitude. I don't have any facilities here to aid him. I don't believe I have so much as a spare toothbrush and it's unmistakable that his personal hygiene needs taking care of.
There is something that stops me abandoning this idea altogether. A part of me recognises that I would quite like the challenge. It would be something different, something new to me. I have a strong belief that if I put my mind to it I would succeed. It is ridiculous, of course, almost childish in its naiveté, and I must not allow myself to be distracted by that.
There's something else though. My mind is taken back to the day before the garden party. That was the day that the final Nanny left the Holmes residence. I remember Nanny Claire's outburst to this day. I remember the look of utter confusion on Sherlock's face as she tore character to shreds in front of our mother. She used the words 'Hell's beast'. I remember the look of exhausted resignation Mummy's face as she accepted without question that Nanny Claire was justified and correct, and that there was no-one left to turn to who could help take care of him.
Though I was not yet twelve, I remember clearly the feeling that one by one, everyone in the world was giving up on my five-year-old brother, and even at that time it didn't seem quite right. Mummy gave up there and then. Father stayed the course for several more years, but was blighted by his own incompetency and general stupidity.
I can look back on Sherlock's life and it is largely characterised by people turning their backs and walking away from him. I am lead to wonder, perhaps if this pattern is broken there might be a greater chance for him.
Goodness I am quite exhausted. Obviously the clearest solution is to ask Andrea to research recovery places and to arrange for one of them to take him off my hands. It would be better for both of us, I'm sure.
But every time I think of this decision, I find I have an inescapable voice inside my head repeating the words: "But he's my brother."
I am clearly over-tired so any decision made tonight will be unsound. Nothing needs to be done until tomorrow morning. As I look at the clock, I am inclined to correct that to 'later this morning'.
Saturday 28th December. 02:43
A decision has been made.
Shortly after I finished my previous entry, S appeared in my living room. From what I could understand through the general rage, he had indeed attempted to break out of the window and he was furious that I was detaining him.
He started by being vocal once again, but it quickly degenerated until he was overturning my furniture and throwing my possessions to the floor. I tried to restrain him, and I remembered that S is really quite strong despite his deceptive lack of breadth. There's not much of him, but he seems to have been formed entirely of sinew and muscle. We wrestled in the way we used to when we were young and our passion overtook our ability to debate like civilised beings. Previously, the six and a half years I have on him was sufficient to ensure I would always be the victor. It was quickly apparent that this was not the case any more.
Certainty I was glad to know that Eddie was outside, along with the building's general security guard, but as it happens I was able to avoid their intervention. I can honestly say I would not have beaten him was it not for blind luck and his lack of focus. The chiming of my grandfather clock distracted him and I was able to strike his chin with a right hook. He was not knocked unconscious, but fell to the floor surprised and confused. It marked the end of the fight and he stayed where he was.
I tried to drag him to his feet but he was too heavy for me alone, so I did call for Eddie's assistance and between us we half carried and half supported him back to the bedroom. He sat on the bed, continuing to look dazed and before I left I told him not to make himself comfortable, as he would be shipped out in the morning.
I find I am still angry, not least because I lost my composure and shouted at him in front of my staff. Eddie will be discretion itself outside of our household, but certainly my personal staff and the building staff will have heard by tomorrow morning and while I respect them individually, I do not care to be the focus of gossip among them. In addition, I will have to ask Dianne to work additional hours on a weekend just to clean up all the mess he has made. I am outraged and disgusted by him.
In the morning I will instruct Anthea to find a suitable place for him.