The cool morning air outside Baker Street feels like breathing again after the swamp of the flat. I put my hands in my pockets. Head down, I start to walk to work-

And I am stopped: hands, all over me. There are too many to fight. My vision is gone - a cloth. When I open my mouth to make a noise, any noise as long as it's loud, another piece of material is stuffed between my teeth and my jaw is wedged open until I strain. My arms are tied behind my back with rough rope; my neck is pulled taut as I'm dragged backwards, feet sliding beneath me, struggling as my shin hits something hard, a ridge of metal, and I topple, acting as my own lever, my feet leaving the ground. I fall in a surreal, blind airlessness until I bounce once –twice – teeth clashing together. Hot liquid flows from my scalp. Blood.

Yet more cloth is near my face, pressed against my nose this time. I try one more futile struggle before, unable to hold my breath anymore, I inhale the chemical.

All I know is pain as I slammed on a cold metal floor, hear the bang of a door and, after a few seconds of silence, rumbling beneath me.

I wish I were Sherlock. I wish I could know who these people were from the sounds of their voices or the squeeze of their hands. I wish I could know their exact intention and the flaws in their lives with which I could manipulate them. I have observations, but no conclusions. I should be memorising each turn. But I am not Sherlock: Sherlock is oblivious at Baker Street, and I only have my brain to help me. My useless brain. My now drugged, useless brain.

I squeeze my eyes shut and my last thought (please, God let me live) teeters on the edge (please) of the darkness (live) before it falls and all is dark.

I hurt. That is my first thought. The basic human feeling: pain. I blink several times, but the blackness doesn't pass; the cloth must still be wrapped round my eyes. Even though I know it's stupid, I groan. Even though I know it will bring me to the attention of my quite-obviously-dangerous captors; I can't help it - and it's not due to pain, but this entrapment. Hot. Close. I need to get out.

Footsteps echo, closer and closer. A single finger runs down my cheek. I don't have to stop myself squirming; I am bound tightly to a chair, which – in a strange way – is one mercy, at least. The finger slips under my blindfold and rests on my flickering eyelid. I bat my eyelashes; how pathetic, reduced to fighting back with mere hairs. The finger snakes its trail round the side of my face to the back of my head, then the cloth of the blindfold loosens, falling with a whisper to the floor.

But I keep my eyes closed. There is hot breath near my ear. "Hey Johnny, Johnny, Johnny. Open your eyes."


He forces my neck forwards with a snarl. I try to straighten it in a bout of dizziness and pain. My hands are still tied by me, unable to protect me if the chair topples and falls to the ground.

"Stop," I grind out, my eyes squeezed shut.

The pressure stops.

There is a harsh pain on my face, the noise of a slap. I have never been slapped with my eyes closed before. The suddenness, the lack of prior knowledge, hurts more than the sting.

"Do as Daddy says, John."

He rests his hands on either side of my face, bracketing me; the gentleness of his touch after the slap, after everything he's done in the past, nearly makes me lash out. If I could.

"I can feel your pulse, Johnny, under these red cheeks. It's very fast. Passion, perhaps? Fear?" Both hands pat my face like I am a dog. "But I find the two are interchangeable, are better together in fact. Now aren't you going to open your eyes?" He must be speaking with his bottom lip jutted out; he sounds like a toddler pretending to cry. "I want to see their delicious blue".

I want to scream. Opening my eyes to his face - the stretched smile of white skin that is his grin - will confirm that this is reality rather than a twisty, sweaty nightmare I can wake up from, to find Sherlock playing the violin in the corner and turning to me, are you alright?

My heart beats; my fists tense behind me; I open my eyes.

Moriarty is grinning wildly.

Not a nightmare at all.

A/N: Sorry it's so short! This just seemed like an appropriate break. Hope you enjoyed.