Obviously, post-Reichenbach. Now with Sherlock gone, John is telling people what he really sees about them.

First up is Sally. I always wanted to see John Watson stand up to Sally. Sally has her own reasons, but so does John.

This is has now been beta'd by Chalcedony Rivers!

Disclaimer: I do not own.

Sergeant Sally Donovan is finally confident at her job. It's been two weeks since the fall of Sherlock Holmes. She feels confident on the job more than ever. She never wanted him dead, but at least she can concentrate now.

She's at her desk when one of the new officers, Jones, knocks on her door.

"Sergeant Donovan, you have someone to see you."

"Right. Sure. Send them through."

Jones blinks. "Don't you want to know who it is?"

"You cleared them through. So I'm sure it's not an axe murderer. Probably a witness." Sally is very secure in her thinking. She isn't afraid of anyone.

She sees Anderson turn his head toward her. She wishes he would just divorce his wife already. "Don't you want to know who is seeing you?" He mouths from his desk. She walks over to him as the officer goes to collect her guest.

"We work for a police department. It could be anyone," Sally says. There is an edge of excitement in her voice. She stands by the door as it swings open.

"Or it's not just anyone." Anderson whispers back. Sally Donovan ignores his comment the best she can. She instead, stares back into the eyes of her visitor.

It is not an axe murderer, she can proudly say, but the excitement also drops from her voice. It is Doctor John Watson who stands before her. She notices that he looks on the edge of death. The only thing she can think of is to nod and welcome him in. She had been expecting a visit, but hadn't known when it would happen.

"Doctor Watson."

"Your office is that way, correct?" John's voice is pleasant enough she decides, but that's about it. He doesn't say hello or use any pleasantries. It's odd because John was always the more pleasant one. He always nodded to her and Anderson after Sherlock insulted them. John Watson and Lestrade were the buffers between the Scotland Yard and the Consulting Detective.

John is still standing there in front of her, waiting for an answer. She answers by pointing to the open door and he starts to walk in that direction.

Sally is glad Lestrade is not in right now. She's confident her boss would side with her, but sometimes she knows John Watson is not to far from his mind. Sally notices that the doctor is taking great strides to walk, he has begun to drag his one leg slightly. She remembers their first meeting and that metallic cane. She often wondered where his limp had gone.

Anderson leans over as Sally begins to follow the Doctor. "Sally, I'd be careful. You want me to come in?"

She shakes her head and laughs in her head. Anderson defending her? Thanks, but she's the one with the gun. As she closes the door behind her, she notices John Watson is not sitting. He leans against the wall, staring out her window.

"Would you like to sit?" She thinks his leg must be bothering him.

John shakes his head as he stares at the window. She wonders what he has come for.

"What can I help you - " She stops upon seeing John not listening. "Doctor Watson," She tries a different tactic. "What have you come to see me about?" A little more assertiveness might get his attention.

John still does not answer. Sally notices that John zones out like Sherlock, blocking everything from his mind. She can't figure out of it's still rude now that instead of Sherlock, it was coming from John. Sally is about to ask again, but then he starts to speak, coming out of his trance.

He still stares out the window. It is a rainy day in London, no surprise. The streets are extra packed since there is a parade today. She can't quite remember why there is a parade. It doesn't matter because John Watson is finally about to speak. "You told me he was a freak and to be careful."

Anderson is right, she thinks. She better be careful. John's past army career and his days with Sherlock are not to be taken lightly. Now she isn't so sure if John isn't an axe murderer.

"I'm sorry for your loss."

John chuckles to himself. "You aren't sorry. You're glad." He speaks still looking out the window, gazing at people on the balconies. Sally eyes John. What is he thinking, she wonders. Has he seen anyone since the fall? She heard he was cooped up in 221 B Baker Street, not having any visitors. She hopes she isn't the first one he has come to see.

She wants to speak up, to defend her statement. She does feel bad that the freak offed himself because he left behind people like this. She knows John Watson is a decent person. She doesn't speak because he speaks again, still staring at the people.

"It's such a shame too because I've noticed your crime rate have risen rapidly. Not doing your job very well, are you?" There is a pause in his statement. "You said he was a freak," he repeats.

She no longer has pleasantries for this man. "You're his mate through and through, huh? Going to defend him still? Haven't the papers destroyed him enough? Go home, Doctor Watson." She feels sorry for this man. He fell so low, an army doctor to the pet of a sociopath.

She sees John squeeze his cane, tightly. She decides he must have seen a professional because he is doing a very job of not getting angry. She remembers how he hit Chief Inspector after Sherlock was arrested.

John continues to talk in his pleasant tone, but this time he turns to face her. His eyes bore into hers and she can see that there is a scary intensity beneath the tiredness and the sadness.

"Sher-lock," Sally notices a slight hitch as he says the name. She notices this is the first time his name has been spoken by either one of them. He doesn't look away, but continues to stare at her. She realizes this must be the real reason he came to her, not to her boss or his friend, Lestrade. He has something to say to her.

As he opens his mouth again, she feels the weight of her gun. She would never shoot the doctor, but as a form of protection, she always feels safer feeling the weight of her gun against her back.

"Though you might not have liked him, he knew what he was talking about. He knew you." She wants to look away from those eyes. She feels like John Watson has stolen the glare of Sherlock Holmes, the glare that was always searching people.

"He knew you had low confidence especially the fear of losing your job. You were afraid of him - not because he would end up crazy, no…." He shakes his head, breaking eye contact. It's not more than two seconds before he finds her eyes again. He's not finished. "The number one reason why you were afraid of him was that he would run you out of your job."

All of sudden, John relaxes, he's finished. Just like that, he's finished what he came to do. He nods to Sally Donovan who is now the silent one. What difference a visitor can make, she thinks. He starts to walk toward the door back to the darkness of 221 B Baker Street, but turns around, leaning on his good leg. Just for good measure, he has one last comment. "Even with him gone, Lestrade believes him and you sent his consultant to the grave. Sergeant, does my friend still scare you?"

Sally does not answer. Instead she tries to keep her one hand from shaking and to not let the doctor see. Instead she focuses on one last question to ask him.

"Why did you care I called him a freak? He never did."

"But I'm different," John says. She knows he sees her trying to hide her hands, one slightly shaking under the other. She can't let him see what his words have done, but it's to late for that. His eyes show that he knows he broke her. He is now the confident one. "Because like Lestrade, I believe in him too."

John turns and pushes the door open leaving her standing for the whole department to see, hands shaking, just like she was on the first day she met Sherlock Holmes.

Review and Critique... all is welcome. Sally's reaction is next.