The Tears Keep Falling
By Lizabeth S. Tucker
It had been three long years before Sherlock Holmes could return home, having totally dismantled or destroyed the late Jim Moriarty's criminal empire. He was eager to walk back into 221B Baker Street, to shed the clothes he had been forced to wear as part of his disguise, to shave the beard that hid his angular features. After greeting Mrs. Hudson and taking a long hot shower, he would slip his well-worn blue silken robe and flop onto the couch, perhaps playing his violin as his dearest friend came home from work. He didn't worry about his welcome. There would be tears and anger, perhaps a punch to the face, but ultimately they would be in sync again, Sherlock and John.
Sherlock stepped off the private plane to see his brother waiting for him. "Mycroft."
A quick review of his brother quickened Sherlock's heartbeat. "No."
"I'm sorry." The lines around Mycroft Holmes' eyes were deeply pronounced, large swatches of grey throughout his normally dark hair.
"How long ago?"
"Less than six months after your death."
"Come with me to the car. It will be more comfortable."
"Tell me here, Mycroft. Tell me now why you never told me in all that time."
"It would've distracted you. There was nothing you could've done."
"I asked you once, how did Doctor John Watson die?"
"The bicycle accident we used to distract and disorientate him caused an aneurism to develop in his brain. He tangled with some individuals at your…at the grave site who were defacing it. One of them hit John in the same spot and it burst."
Sherlock stumbled to the side of the car, leaning on it with both hands flattened on the roof. "I was gone for three long years, Mycroft, all to keep him safe. Three fucking years. I put him through the pain of watching me die, telling him that I was a fake, that everything was a lie."
The Holmes brothers were never the type of men to touch others, not even their own family members, but Mycroft made the effort to grip his brother's shoulder. "He never believed it. Not when you said it, not when the press continued to report it, not ever. John Watson believed in you, Sherlock. He knew first hand that you were lying to him. I think, although he never told me directly, that he suspected why you said it."
"This was all for nothing, Mycroft. Without my friend…if I had known I never would've come back to London."
"I couldn't allow you to stay away. You have others here who will be eager to see you again, to welcome you home."
"But they aren't my friends. They aren't John."
"Perhaps not, but maybe they are hurting as well. Allow them to rejoice in your resurrection, Sherlock. At least come and see Mrs. Hudson. She never doubted you either. "
Sherlock gave a quick nod before allowing Mycroft to usher him into the vehicle. It would be some time before any decision could be made regarding his future. "Take me to where John is buried first, Mycroft."
Mycroft nodded, directing his driver to the cemetery where a smooth brown granite marker stood next to the black stone with Sherlock's name on it.