There is a great force pulling on him, desperately dragging him to the reaches of space. With all the strength he has built up through endless testing, he clings to MORiARTY.
Logically, Sherlock knows the vacuum of space should be crushing him and he's surprised he wasn't immediately crushed.
He can't breathe, he's losing his grip. I'm dead. Or dying.
Yet, Sherlock does not worry about dying. It's a relief to finally leave this world of endless puzzles and mazes. Never knowing who he really is, what life really is.
There's also great satisfaction in finally ending MORiARTY, who endlessly tormented him for years.
The image of the weighted companion John flashes through his memory. John.
Yes, it's very satisfying to rid the world of MORiARTY.
Sherlock was not surprised at MORiARTY's betrayal. He should have seen it coming sooner. MORiARTY was only trying to get control of the Aperture testing facilities, to get rid of MyCROFT, the proper, working computer core, and he used Sherlock to do it.
Sherlock now understands that MyCROFT was on his side the entire time, that he should have trusted him, not pushed him away because he was overprotective.
It's too late now. His hands lose what little grip they had, he begins to slip away. I'm dead. This is it.
Suddenly, a great metal claw grabs hold of him, yanking him back into the safety of the earth, away from the portal to the moon.
He loses consciousness.
The floor is cold beneath him. Slowly, Sherlock stirs and opens his eyes.
"Oh thank goodness you're alright!" a mechanical voice exclaims.
Feeling confused and disoriented, Sherlock sits up and looks around. MyCROFT is in his rightful place as computer core and, if it were possible for computers to do so, is watching him anxiously.
Sherlock doesn't respond.
Shock, he thinks.
He almost can't comprehend what is happening. Is it over? Or is this just another trick?
Sherlock doesn't think he'll trust anyone. Not after what he's been through.
MyCROFT continues to speak to him, but he doesn't pay close attention to what he is saying. However, one phrase captures his attention.
"…So I've decided to let you go."
Sherlock's eyes snap to the computer core in front of him. "What?" he asks harshly, more so than he intended.
MyCROFT sighs, or does the closest thing to sighing that a machine can do, and carefully explains himself a second time.
"I kept you here, in the Aperture facilities in an effort to protect you, but now I understand that I only compounded the problem. That was unfair to you. MORiARTY is gone now, so I've decided to let you go.
"You're too much trouble anyway," he adds flippantly.
Sherlock's brow furrows as he comprehends what he's been told. At first, he can't believe it. For too long Sherlock has battled through testing rooms, being held like a captive, never really knowing the outside world. MyCROFT isn't just going to let him go, is he?
Other concerns pop into his mind. What will he do in the real world?
He hardly knows himself. How can he function outside, in the real world? He doesn't remember his old life or family or friends.
He feels an uncomfortable pang as he remembers John.
He knows John. Or knew him.
With a grunt, he pulls himself up to standing.
Carefully, Sherlock responds with, "Thank you."
"Goodbye Sherlock Holmes," MyCROFT replies.
The ground beneath him begins to rise. He's on the elevator.
As the he reaches the eye level of the core in front of him, Sherlock feels a rush of… emotion? He isn't sure, he hasn't experienced much emotion before. He pins one of them to be gratitude. The other feelings feel similar to those he experienced with his weighted companion John. Friendship. Attachment.
MyCROFT has been there to help him, even when MORiARTY had convinced Sherlock he was against him. Sherlock almost… enjoyed spending time with him when they worked together to defeat MORiARTY.
Slowly, the computer core is no longer in sight. The elevator continues upward.
As the next floor comes in sight, a small amount of panic rises in Sherlock's chest. Droids line the surrounding area, prepared to fire at him. Sherlock braces himself, regretting his hope in leaving without a struggle.
But the androids never strike. They pause, as if confused. Suddenly, they begin to play music.
Sherlock's stance relaxes and he stares at them, almost uncomprehending.
The elevator continues upward. The next floor reveals hundreds of the same droids. Music floats through the air, serenading him. They're all singing to him. Like a goodbye.
He doesn't know how to respond. It's all too surreal.
Finally, the floor beneath him stops. There's a short narrow passageway and a door. With great care, Sherlock steps forward and slowly opens the door.
Nothing stops him.
Sunlight, bright and warm, shines around him. He blinks at the sudden brightness. He's in a field, surrounded by wheat. His gaze goes to the sky. It's blue and clear and… beautiful.
Sherlock is filled with exhilaration, ecstasy.
He's finally free.
He takes a deep breath, soaking in the new world around him.
From behind, there's a sudden metal clanging. Sherlock turns around quickly, facing the small metal shack he just exited, tensing up, still concerned for his new found freedom.
The door is thrown open and a small man is thrown out.
Sherlock stares in disbelief at what he sees.
It's the same blond little man who accompanied him through the test room. He holds himself with the same military air. His face has the same light aging. He's wearing the same grey sweater, the one with the heart in the middle. Though it looks scorched. The incinerator.
John struggles to his feet. He can move on his own. Sherlock staggers forward, the weight of feelings overcoming him. Guilt, relief, love.
"John," he whispers.
The man looks up at him, all confusion leaving his face when he sees Sherlock. A smile breaks out across his face.
Sherlock rushes forward, throws his arms around him, and to his own surprise, begins to sob with relief.
My faithful companion. He's back. He can face what's ahead with John. My one friend in the world.
Together they sink back down to the ground, embracing each other.
"I'm sorry, I'm so sorry John!" he cries, "I didn't want to!" All his regrets come, spilling out of his mouth. He grasps the the material of John's jumper, holding on to it ast tightly as he can. Never again.
John doesn't stop smiling as he comfortingly strokes Sherlock's back. He can do little else. He's alive and with the one man he trusts in the world.
"John, I- I won't ever-"
He's interrupted before he can finish. "It's alright Sherlock. I'm here."
It's a voice he hasn't heard before. Yet... it feels familiar. Sherlock freezes. He pulls back, looking at his friend. Can he speak?
The already huge grin on John's face becomes wider.
AN: There. I gave you a happy ending. Do you feel better now?
I never intended to write this, but after a few suggestions for an epilogue similar to the ending of Portal 2, I decided to give you one.
I decided to swap the roles of Wheatley and GLaDOS (and thus MyCROFT and MORiARTY) because I couldn't see MORiARTY letting Sherlock go. Hope that didn't confuse you too much.
Enjoy! Let me know what you think!