"Yes, because you need me."
"Yes I do."
Lestrade looked away from Sherlock's hard face and looked back at the woman who was laying lifelessly on the wood floor. But he that was not what he was seeing.
Instead, Lestrade was picturing a young man, 19 years old, laying face up in the grass of a wooded area. He could smell the morning dew in the air and the dampness around his feet.
His first case.
At the first sight of the body, Lestrade had thrown up. He had been brutally beaten with a blunt object, there was a lot of blood.
When he regained his crime scene legs, he returned to the body and had a quick look around. His heart went to the victim. To the police he was just a case, a statistic. But somewhere out there, there was a mother waiting for her son to return home and give her a kiss, a father waiting to challenge his son to a game of football, a girl that will never meet her soul mate.
"And a murderer who will not get away with it."
"No he will not." Lestrade stood up startled. He did not mean to think out loud, or for anyone to hear it. Nor did he expect to find a stranger tugging at some white gloves, his eyes drifting over the scene.
"I'm sorry, who are-"
"You're new here aren't you? What do you see?"
"I... I..." Lestrade stammered.
"Come on, first impressions?" The man's smile was forced, but at the same time still seemed intrigued about what conclusions he had come to. Lestrade did his best to come across as a professional policeman, listing everything he had noted clearly and concisely.
"Young man, 19, had a bit to drink by the smell of him. There was a struggle from the pathway to this spot in the woods, so he didn't want t come here, but there is no defensive wounds on the body. The killer was probably weak due to the number of hits it took to kill him. It was probably not planned as the weapon is not something we recognise."
"Not bad, for a newbie." Lestrade had the nasty feeling he was being judged by this strange man, he felt as if he should assess him too. He certainly wasn't a policeman, his expensive suits and the way he address him told him that. A reporter? No, same problem, and he was asking all the wrong questions. So who was he?
"I'm sorry, who are you?" Before the man had a chance to reply, Lestrade's superior answered for him.
"Sherlock Holmes, come to get in the way of yet another investigation." Sherlock Holmes? Lestrade stared at this man with new found adoration. Mr Holmes was like a myth amoungst the police force. His genius above all others in the profession, Lestrade had always wanted to meet him.
"I just happened to be passing and noticed the police cars."
"And you thought you would offer your services." Mr Holmes shrugged. "Well thank you for your concern Mr Holmes but we do not need your help here." Sherlock looked annoyed as DCI Johnson turned his back on him and proceeded to talk to a scene of crime officer.
"Mr Holmes," Lestrade began in a meek voice.
"Sherlock please, inspector...?"
"Lestrade, sir - Sherlock." Lestrade blushed. "Sherlock, if there is anything you can tell us that will help to get this murderer behind bars then I am happy to listen, even if my superior isn't." Sherlock seemed genuinely surprised by Lestrade's immediate trust in him and his intelligence, and perhaps it was this flattery that caused him to give up the information he had more readily than he would normally have done.
"This is a particularly nasty case. I suspect the murderer was also a victim. You are looking for an emotionally weak girl, about the same age as the victim. She may have even known him. This boy brought the girl unwillingly to this spot, you noticed the signs of a struggle here but the lack of defensive wounds on the boys, thats because it was the girl that didn't want to be here. The victim's belt is undone-"
"Oh no," Lestrade muttered as he began to see what Sherlock had seen the moment he walked onto the scene.
"Yes. This man had attempted to rape a girl, who, in fear and desparation proceeded to hit him repeatedly on the head with the first thing she could find, most likely a log of some sort due to the amount of wood splinters in the wound. I doubt she meant to kill him."
There was silence between them as Lestrade tried to get over the shock of what had happened.
"That was..." he couldn't finish the sentence, it was just incredible! Sherlock was more amazing than anyone could ever describe. Sherlock appeared to be wincing, as if he expected to be scolded for his genius. "Thank you," was all he could say.
Lestrade could see Sherlock was really touched by this faith and appreciation of his work, and he gave the first real smile Lestrade had seen.
"We have to tell Johnson about this, we have no idea what this girl must be going through." Sherlock frowned.
"Johnson doesn't like me, he won't listen to my findings no matter how obvious they are!" Obvious? Lestrade laughed to himself. "You tell him, make him think it's your theory."
"I couldn't possibly-" Lestrade began to protest.
"He will listen to you, and you will be able to find the killer quicker." Sherlock spoke with authority that Lestrade could not refuse. He knew he was right, his superior hated Sherlock. He nodded to Sherlock and then turned and approached his DCI.
"What is it Lestrade?" he barked. Lestrade turned to Sherlock for encouragement, but the consulting detective was nowhere to be seen.
The girl was found within 24 hours, she had admitted herself into a hospital with minor injuries and had broken down when he was interviewed.
A few days later Lestrade had been sitting in his local cafe when a familiar face planted himself in the seat beside him.
"Hello." Lestrade jumped, he had not seen him. "I see you found her."
"All down to you!" Lestrade replied. Sherlock waved away the compliment. Instead he fished around his coat pocket and drew out a small white card, handing it to Lestrade.
"What is this?"
"My business card," he smiled. "It will come in handy with those big Scotland Yard cases."
"But I don't work for Scotland Yard," he replied confused.
"Not yet," Sherlock grinned. Lestrade looked down at the small piece of paper Sherlock had handed to him. Sherlock Holmes - Consulting Detective - 221b Baker Street.
"What do you mea-" But once again, the mysterious detective had disappeared.
The silence brought Lestrade back to the present, and the woman still lying lifelessly on the wood floor.
"God help me."