A/N: So I've written two Sherlock/Irene one shots before and I'm definitely going to continue that little series but I wanted to write one just on Irene. I love her and I think she's such a brilliant character!

Also, I've written an Irene/Moran story which should be up soon!

Anyway, enjoy this one!


Irene has always been good at separating her head and her heart.

Since she married her first husband, Irene knew it was important to keep her heart closed off and her head sharp. Money, Irene cared about. She could not care for her husbands as well. There wasn't enough time and, frankly, it always became far too tangled and messy to be a success.

After she left home, Irene never struggled for money. Not many people knew her family were poor and had always struggled for money. When Irene left, she swore to herself that she would never struggle for money again. She had tried working hard, she had tried studying hard and neither worked for her. So she soon discovered that playing hard was the best way for her to make some money.

With what little she had, she changed her appearance. She bought lipstick, pinned her hair up neatly and spent her last savings on a dress made of silk and lace in a deep plum colour. She hoped it was worth it otherwise she had just blown all of the money she owned. She invited herself along to a grand opening of hotel in New Jersey and drank and talked like a lady.

People believed her. Why wouldn't they? Miss Irene Adler was the perfect vision of beauty and femininity, not like the underprivileged, muddy girl who had grown up in the sticks with a loving but poor family. Miss Irene Adler said all the right things and never let her feelings run away with her.

Irene met her first husband at that party. The most eligible bachelor in all of New Jersey: Lord James Kennington. They married not a year after, his mother anxious for him to be married and Irene anxious for money. In that first marriage, Irene let herself down. She began to care for him. That was difficult when she had leave. She hated the expression of hurt on his face as she left, more rich and powerful than before. He wasn't a fool; he understood then who and what she was. It hurt the first time.

No matter. Irene thought of her first marriage as a learning curve.

Her second and third marriages were so much easier. For a start, she married men she didn't like. That way, she took pleasure in leaving them and relieving them of some of their fortune.

Then she met two men and her life was never the same.

Sherlock Holmes was a fascinating man. Handsome in his own way and he looked at her with an odd expression, one of distrust and admiration. Irene respected him for his talents, and she enjoyed his mad-cap theories and his friendship with the sensible, weary Dr. Watson. But Sherlock was cocky. And Irene took pleasure in tricking him. Twice.

But as soon as she had left his company, she longed to see him again. But she was without reason.

Until she met Professor James Moriarty. Irene had never been scared of anyone in her life; she was intelligent, quick and had no reason to fear anyone. But Moriarty...he was a different matter. He was completely unpredictable and incredibly dangerous. But he gave her reason to see Sherlock again and she agreed quickly, not thinking about the consequences of her contract with him.

And so it began.

Irene has always been good at separating her head and her heart but right now, they were too separate. They were fighting and it kept Irene unsteady.

Her head belonged with Moriarty; she saved her own skin by doing what he asked. She got money, status, contacts.

Her heart stood firmly with Sherlock; the excitement, the feeling of doing good, being with the man who drove her crazy. She got friends, thrills, love.

She went on obeying both without consulting the other. Dangerous, volatile.

"I have known for some time that you had surrendered to your feelings for him."

And so Irene knew she was dying for her indecision. If only she could have pushed one out, she could have made it. She could have been richer, more powerful, more dangerous. Or she could have been cared for, nurtured, happy.

But it was too late now. Her head had overwhelmed her and her heart beat no more.

So what did you think? If you've read my two Sherlock/Irene one shots, you'll know that I refuse to believe she's dead! So if you haven't read those, go and check them out now!

And please leave a review before you go...I'd love them so much! Thanks :)