It couldn't be argued that Sherlock Holmes was an odd man, but Sgt. Sally Donovan could hardly resist the urge to punch the man in the face whenever he appeared. She had never really considered herself to be a particularly violent person or one prone to silly things like name calling, but just being in his presence made her angry. And anger was very unbecoming of the professional considered herself to be-at least when that freak wasn't around.
Hating the man hadn't been a conscious choice for her. It was just that the she found his eyes unnerving. When he would look at her and tell her things about boyfriends she was dating, meals she had earlier, and how much weight she'd gained in the past few days, it was all she could do to not beat the man to death in front of every other officer in the station and simply stop herself at calling him a freak. Later, she'd make attempts to relax herself by imaging Sherlock's face on the punching bag in her living room which usually helped a bit, but that violated feeling that she got when others stared at her, or picked apart her life still remained. And no amount of sweat could wipe that away.
At the very least Lestrade was understanding enough. He understood the discomfort she felt around him and was as accommodating as he could be-within reason anyway. He leaned on the man like a damn crutch...
"You haven't called him again have you?" Sally asked. Lestrade looked up from the fresh corpse of a young blond they were both standing over to meet her rather intense gaze.
"Actually I have as a matter of fact." Sally rolled her eyes.
"Couldn't leave one case to us, sir? Got to send for the man every time a prostitute gets stabbed? I mean this shit seems like a pretty clear situation to me." Lestrade winced slightly under her accusing tone. Sally knew he agreed with her, after all this was probably one of the fastest a case had solved itself for them.
An elder couple had discovered the blond in the alley on their way to a nearby store. She was scantily clad, showed clear signs of recent sexual activities and had been stabbed half a dozen times and her throat had been cut. The couple had phoned the police and in under an hour officers had picked up a man passed out in an adjacent alley with his clothes drenched in blood. It had been clean and simple. Something they could brag to the press about.
Sometimes a murder was just exactly what it seemed. And they could really use a closed case to improve the department's stats.
"Yeah, I know how it seems but I've just got this feeling in my gut that I can't seem to shake." He said.
Sally nodded her head in mock agreement. "Alright then we won't go that Italian restaurant again, but can we not have that bastard barge in here and make an ass of the entire department?"
"Bit late for that I'm afraid."
Sally closed her eyes with a sigh. "And how long have you been lurking about the crime scene?" She asked without turning to where Sherlock stood behind her. Lestrade greeted the man politely enough.
"Long enough to know your 'prostitute' isn't actually a prostitute and the man you have locked up didn't kill her." Sally could feel a headache begin to form in the front of her skull.
"Is he serious?" She said turning to Lestrade. Sherlock shuffled past Sally and knelled behind the girl's body. The girls blue eyes were open and cloudy beneath the piles of green make up. Her face was surprisingly pretty beneath the dried blood and Sally felt a slight knot in her stomach at how young the girl was. There was no doubt that the girl was underage. Her short denim skirt was hiked up over her waist and as the only female officer on the scene, Sally wanted desperately to pull them down over her pink panties to give the girl at least a tiny shred of dignity in death. Sherlock seemed extremely comfortable picking and poking at her dead body with his magnifying glass.
Lestrade's eyes followed his movements. "So what do you see?" Sherlock stood up suddenly and pocketed his magnifying glass. Here it comes, Sally thought, the 'you guys are all idiots and I'm here to save the day' speech.
"As I thought this girl was definitely not a prostitute." Sherlock said, his voice oozing excitement. The desire to punch something was resurfacing in Sally's mind.
"And how hell do you figure that?" She asked.
"Your killer was left handed and by the look of this girls' clothing I'd say so was the person who dressed the victim. She was right handed I'd say by the callouses on her hand. They most likely came from some sports based activity, I'd say tennis. That should help you identify her."
Sally bit down on her thumb in annoyance. Lestrade threw her a warning glance to calm down. "How do you know the killers left handed?" He asked.
"Oh come on, that one is easy." Sherlock brought an un-gloved finger up to the dead girl's throat and Sally slapped it away before he could actually touch her skin. He continued, not bothered by the action. "The direction of the cut on her throat would suggest as much. And I can guess from the blood splatter on the clothes of the man you arrested that he was nearby during the killing."
"Yeah, because he was busy killing her." Sally said sternly. Sherlock shook his head with a sigh.
"He was clearly far too high to remember if he did any murdering last night but it's not that it matters since he's right handed as well."
"Right, right." As much as she wished it wasn't true, everything he'd said made perfect sense. And it meant once less case closed without Sherlock Holmes.
"No need to worry Detective Inspectors, you're looking for a man, white, late teens or early twenties, blond, and with a tattoo on his inner thigh." With that Sherlock walked off leaving Sally and Lestrade to stare at the girl's body in confusion.
"Might wanna close your mouth, sir." Sally said. He did, clearing his through uncomfortably.
"Alright then." He said. "Now we know what to look for in our killer."
"I guess so."
Lestrade turned and headed out of the crime scene, leaving Sally alone to gaze at the cold body of the unnamed teenage girl. Sure they knew what the killer looked like, but they still didn't know who the girl was. She was young, she was blond, she'd had a twenty in her wallet, and she wasn't a whore. But apart from that, nothing. As much as she didn't want to admit it, if Sherlock being involved in the case would help identify the girl, then she would swallow her pride.
But maybe she'd do something about her headache first.
Sally's fists began to feel slightly numb after hours of repeatedly pounding them into her unlucky punching bag. Beneath her knuckles the bag's plastic covering began to flake and peel, leaving blue plastic pieces scattered across her apartment floor. She paid no attention to that, and kept right on punching into the bag, the image of the blank eyes of the dead girl burned into her brain and Sherlock's scornful voice ringing in her ears. It made her head hurt to the point where her eyes actually began to water. But Sally had no intention of letting herself cry.
Sherlock was annoying, he was rude and honestly an ass, but he'd done nothing to her. Sure he'd been far to blunt about things she didn't want to talk about, but she had boyfriends who'd said more hurtful things. No, that wasn't really what bothered her about Sherlock at all. It was his eyes.
His eyes that reminded her so much of another person who been so good at reading her thoughts, at telling her exactly what she needed to hear. Sherlock's eyes had that same piercing feeling, that same cold aura that made her feel just like a frightened little girl again. And Sally had promised herself that she would never let herself feel that way around another person. She would never be like that weak little not-a-whore, lying cold in an alley full of holes. So she kept right on pounding away at that punching bag. Punching, until the chain holding up the punching bag strained its and the scars beneath Sally's underwear lining ached.