Sorry for the wait, but hey, at least you had the new episodes to entertain you! I loved them both, but the first was definitely my favourite. Enjoy!
Harriet had been right when she had said other people would want to say goodbye. They filtered in an out of the room regularly, but Sherlock remained closed behind his curtain, sitting cross-legged on his own hospital bed, trying to figure out a way to bring John Watson back. He sat through expected tearful visits from old lovers of John's and less expected tearful visits from army buddies, presumably ones John had saved. Sherlock had never known how well-loved John was, because John was his. He often forgot that John had been anything before he had been the best friend of Sherlock Holmes. Sherlock imagined John forgot that himself, sometimes. Sherlock tried to avoid John's old acquaintances, especially when they cried.
He was caught a few times, when he had to go to the bathroom or take medication. They would stare at him, he could see it dawn in their eyes that he had heard every word they had whispered to John. Sherlock imagined they considered those words very private, he knew some of them were very private. He had no idea how many male friends of John's though he had a nice bum. Sherlock knew it was his hospital attire and the injuries that speckled his face that kept him from any sort of assault sometimes.
It was at night that he emerged from hiding to sit by John's side. Sherlock had not slept or ate since he made his promise to Harry. This was a case. He imagined John would not like the idea of being a case. Sherlock had read entire books on the matter, but nothing he tried seemed to help.
Sherlock Holmes was a factual man. When the impossible had been eliminated, whatever remained, no matter how improbable, had to be the truth. So, why did he still believe John was in there somewhere? He had no idea. He wondered if facts had ever fit well with John.
People visited him. He refused to see them. Nurses brought food. He refused to eat. The cycle went on.
Smith entered his room late one afternoon with a very concerned expression upon his face.
"Mr. Holmes," Smith said softly, as if he were afraid of breaking Sherlock out of his reprieve. Sherlock was laying flat on the bed, his hands steepled beneath his chin, an obvious sign that he was submerged deeply in his own thoughts.
"I understand you haven't been eating, or sleeping. I am required by the board to ask if you personally believe that you require mental treatment due to the trauma you have endured. If you cannot give me a satisfactory answer then I will set you up for a psych evaluation."
Sherlock's eyes remained glued to the ceiling while Smith waited in silence for his answer.
"Mr. Holmes," the doctor prompted, rather impatiently.
Sherlock's intense eyes were red-rimmed and deeply shadowed. In the strongly lit room the hollows of his too-thin face were accented to a frightening degree. Smith found himself easily comparing him to someone who had abused drugs for years. Sherlock glared at him with all the intensity of a wild animal about to strike its prey. Sherlock Holmes looked like the kind of man who went for the kill with every strike. A small wave of panic bloomed somewhere deep inside the young doctor and he found himself unnerved by the icy anger in the eyes of that man. The panic welled over him and dispersed quickly. Sherlock saw all of this occur in the blink of an eye.
"Doctor, I am your patient in body only, and at the moment my body no longer requires your services. I take your medication and I stay here because that is what is required for my body to continue its function as transport for my mind. I regard you as I regard all other medical items. To me, really, you are no more significant than a used sticking plaster."
Sherlock watched with a feeling he supposed could be equated to watered-down horror as Smith's expression hardened. Sherlock likely should have chosen this one time to say something kind, or at least not compare the doctor to something that belonged in the rubbish bin.
"That was not a satisfactory answer, Mr. Holmes. Someone from the psych ward will be down to see you this evening," with that, he exited the room with a flourish.
Sherlock flopped back into this thinking position for a moment before giving in to the urge to talk to John. Sherlock took the seat by John's bed, and looked down at his friend with a sigh.
"This is ridiculous," he sighed heavily again. "Really, John, I've read books that say coma patients can hear and may even heal faster if someone talks to them. You've had plenty of people in here talking to you. Apologising mostly, but I can hardly expect you to come back for something as boring as apologies; they're too final, anyway. So, let's discuss—or let's let me discuss— the fact that I am evidently going mad without you. Our lovely doctor has me scheduled for a psychological evaluation today. I do hate medical professionals; they always want to be the smartest people in the room, which, of course, is impossible when I also occupy that particular space. Besides, a few minutes of talking with me and the shrink will have me committed. People simply do not react well to my superior intellect."
There was silence from John, but Sherlock was hardly expecting anything else.
"No offense, by the way. You're one medical professional that I do not hate in the slightest. Sure, it's annoying when you tell me to eat or sleep or get the thumbs out of the crisper, but I am apparently incapable of hating you. I recently came to the realization thatIloveyou—"
More silence. Heat flooded to the tips of Sherlock's ears.
"Actually, I hope you didn't hear that."
Nothing. Sherlock took a deep breath and continued, "They tell me to eat and sleep here, too. But I can't, I'm on a case. Your case, John. I'm going to figure out a way to get you to wake up. Preferably, before the end of the week, given that they intend to kill you if I can't. Any ideas?"
"Well, you keep thinking on it, John. I'll do the same. We'll see who comes up with a solution first. If you could speak, I imagine you would put your money on me."
Sherlock sighed and let the one-sided conversation lapse into silence while he stared at his friend, studying the features beyond the bandages and blood. John still looked like John. Sherlock pulled his knees up and rested his chin upon them. He wished he had his violin. John almost always woke up in the night when Sherlock played his violin.
Sherlock spun around in the chair, nearly twisting himself right out of it.
"Sherlock," said a woman standing only a few feet behind him. Her attire suggested a working professional, and her clipboard suggested medical. This had to be his evaluator. John would have found her attractive. Sherlock realised that she was waiting on his answer. He chose not to speak. Maybe if he was silent for long enough, she would simply leave.
"Sherlock, I think it would be best if we returned to your side of the room.
Silently, and with a shocking new obedient streak, Sherlock stood and followed the woman behind the curtain. He collapsed backwards on the bed, allowing himself to think clearly once again.
"Sherlock, my name is Doctor Carleton," she began. "We just need to talk for a little bit, so I can get a sense of the kind of help you might need."
All of Sherlock's intent to stay silent faded away, "The person in need of help right now is not me."
"Is that a threat, Mr. Holmes?"
"No, no, no," Sherlock said, exasperated, throwing his arms towards the ceiling with a heavy sigh. "John is the one in need of assistance. I need to help him. I don't have time for you, or any of your psychological babble."
Carleton seemed to relax, "I see, so you are very worried about your colleague?"
"Alright," she said weakly. "The nurses tell me that you haven't eaten since you arrived. How long has it been since you slept?"
"About the same."
"Why is that?"
"Waste of time."
"Digestion takes work, I need all of my resources dedicated to thinking. I need to think of a way to save John Watson. Eating is completely unnecessary, anyway."
Carleton's face creased with concern, "That's a very dangerous way of living, Sherlock. I also understand that you may have hallucinated that your friend was alive and in your room. That's very concerning. I think it might be a good idea if we started meeting more regularly, perhaps, if you came to my office—"
"Let's cut the small talk. You think I'm a wee bit mad and maybe you should institutionalize me, before I hurt myself, but you're not sure yet. You like to be sure. It's clear that I am sleep deprived and possibly in some form of psychological shock. You also have control issues. That's why you are a psychiatrist. You like being in control of the lives of other people, almost as much as you like helping them. You don't want to jump to conclusions, but you've lost patients before due to inaction so you want to continue our session with further detail in your own environment, an environment you can control. So, I shall have to politely decline your offer, for I have a significant amount of thinking to do, and the time I have left to do it is very quickly dwindling away so—"
Sherlock waved his hand dismissively in her general direction.
What was your favourite episode of Series 2, so far? :)