Author: A Study in Schadenfreude
Pairing|Characters: No strict pairing
Genre: angst, hurt/comfort, feelings
Warnings: Post-Reichenbach Fall.
Disclaimer: Moffat, Gatiss, and Conan-Doyle own the characters, we're just making them dance to our tune.
Summary: Companion pieces to the main fic "Mobile." You really should read "Mobile" to understand what's going on here, but you can read it as a stand-alone if you want. :)
Friday 10 August 21:00
He was in the Yard when his mobile rang. Greg was just about to leave - he already had his coat in one hand and case in the other. Greg sighed, knowing that the end of his day was too good to be true. It was probably going to be another case handed to him, off-the-clock be damned. "Hello?"
To Greg's surprise, the voice on the other end was John Watson, and he sounded a bit anxious.
"Greg, hi. I was wondering if you'd want to join me for a pint tonight?"
He glanced at the clock. His wife was probably waiting for him to come home, but Greg wasn't really up for her nagging. He smiled to himself. "Sure, where do I meet you?"
"I was thinking The Black Lion, off of High Street. Do you know it?"
"I can find it easily enough." He peered at the clock again. High Street was a good distance away, but Greg didn't mind. He had time to kill. "See you in 30?"
"Yeah, sounds good. See you then." Greg slipped the mobile back into his pocket, and headed out the door. He turned off the lights.
As usual, he was the last one for his shift left in the station.
As he had been the past couple of weeks. There were cases he needed to look into and solve, and cases that he'd solved that he had to look back into. And it was all because of Sherlock Holmes.
It was always Sherlock's fault when Greg had to stay in after cases. It was either Sherlock had tampered or touched evidence that he shouldn't and Greg had to magic it away, or he needed to magic his report that would show Greg himself making the deductions and the decisions.
Greg had seriously given thought to being a fictional writer, since he looked like he was doing a bloody good job of it.
But then Sherlock had to be found out, and Sherlock had to die. He threw a curse down Moriarty's path, and another down the chief's path. And maybe two in Sally and Anderson's general directions.
Sherlock had to die, and pretend to be fake (because he can't have been a fake- too much of an arrogant prat to be fake), now Greg had to work more hours each day and look at and assess all his former cases that may or may not have been touched by Sherlock and...
Greg sighed. This was all very... what was that word Sherlock used... tedious.
The cab dropped him off in front of the pub. He walked inside and looked around, hoping to find John. He saw John in a corner booth, already nursing a pint.
When the other man saw Greg, he waved him over. "John." Greg said with a tired smile, taking a seat in the booth. He dropped his things on his seat, and leaned back lazily.
The two men had been meeting every few days for a pint and to talk. Greg knew John could use the distraction, and hell, Greg needed it too. Especially now, since the Yard was convinced that he had to prove his abilities by overworking his arse, not to mention looking into all his case files to see if he should keep his job. After what had happened with Sherlock, the Yard had been keeping him under strict observation.
Greg looked like he'd been through hell. His wife always pointed out the additional wrinkles that gathered around his eyes, and that his hair seemed whiter.
John looked like he'd been through hell, blue eyes, normally clear and alert, were piercing him with the misery of a man who had lost so much. His normally resolute shoulders were slumped, even if his natural military air was still present.
Greg supposed that seeing your best friend jump off a building would do that. "Greg, thanks for coming on short notice. How's the Yard?"
"It's been hell. They've been looking into my records, lately." Greg said, choosing his words carefully. "They sent me some reports on cases they think I could have managed without Sherlock's help." Greg grimaced. "I needed this drink - your timing is excellent."
John gave a sympathetic smile. "I'm sorry to hear that. Sher-" The man's voice gave slightly, and Greg tried not to wince - "Sherlock would probably disagree with their assessment."
"I disagree with their assessment." Greg wasn't ashamed to admit that. It was the whole reason he'd gone to the consulting detective. He went to the bar to grab a pint, taking a large mouthful of the frothy drink when he returned. Honestly, Greg was concerned with how the doctor was coping. Hopefully he'd be able to pull it together with time. "How have you been holding up?"
John took another drink from his mug and swiped across his mouth before leaning heavily on his elbow. "It's been...it's been bad Greg. I turn to ask if he wants tea and...I remember he's not there." John appeared to sink into his chair, and his shoulders slumped further.
Greg shut his eyes, and sighed. He massaged the bridge of his nose. "I'm... sorry, John." He offered lamely. "We've been having some hard cases he would have enjoyed." He laughed bitterly. "Anderson's about to pull his hair out because of it. He almost admitted that he wanted Sherlock around." He frowned at John, at a loss on how to help him.
John gave a small chuckle. "Anderson? Miss Sherlock? I think it's the end-times Greg." They sat in silence, neither sure what to say. John opened his mouth a couple times, before closing it again. Greg watched John curiously, trying to decipher what the man had on his mind.
John's voice was quieter when he asked the question he'd been clearly mulling over. "Where...do you think we go when we die?"
Greg knotted his forehead in confusion. "I... why are you asking me this, John?"
John's gaze was fixed on the pint in front of him as he spoke. "I was just wondering where he's at now. I don't know what to believe. Heaven, Hell, Reincarnation...nothingness. Surely he can't just be...gone."
Greg had a sinking feeling that he knew what John was talking about, planning on doing, but he refused to acknowledge it. "I wouldn't know." He finally said, and took a long drink. "Some bloke in the Yard got shot once, and woke up proclaiming he saw heaven. Another insisted he floated above his body for a minute." He looked away.
There was silence between them. Greg exhaled audibly. "John, please don't do anything stupid."
John smiled at Greg bitterly. "Floating? That's interesting. Maybe he's a ghost now then, haunting his grave." John finished his drink and stood up. "I think I'm going to walk to clear my head. Don't worry, I won't do anything rash tonight. Bye, Greg."
"John, wait - " Greg stood up, his hand comically stretched out towards John, but the man was already too far for him to reach. He simply shook his head, before deciding to get another pint. Hopefully that would get rid of the knots in his stomach.
A/N: And that's chapter one! Basically, these are parts of Mobile that exist better outside the main story, but you needed to see anyway. Reviews/critiques are very welcome and adored.