Epilogue

"So, the security guy was in cahoots with Straker?" Lestrade asked.

"He was," Sherlock said. They were sitting in the armchairs in 221B Baker Street with a cup of tea apiece. "He had the knowledge of the security systems and the ability to disable them, and Straker had the ability with the horse. They agreed together that it could be done if they worked as a team. The security man's name was Thomas Blackwell…"

"Blackwell?" John asked as he lay on the sofa with his eyes closed. "Same name as Jennifer's Lad's owner."

"Yes, his half-brother in fact. Gregson's taken the owner and that Brown character from Mapleton in to talk to them too. It seems that the plot extended quite some distance. So Thomas Blackwell's job was to disable the security and to give the poison to Clarke. Blackwell says that Straker gave him the LSD tabs to hand on, and I believe him. Straker probably bought the tabs from a stranger and added the sedative himself. I'm fairly sure only intended to make Clarke sleep and didn't know that the tabs had been made by an incompetent fool, but he was wary enough to try to ensure his daughter didn't take the extra dose. When Clarke was safely asleep, he led the horse out onto the moor with the kitchen knife that poor Edith saw him with, and seemed to be intending to hobble the horse. Probably nothing permanent; just enough to take him out the running for Saturday. It was entirely fortuitous that Blackwell returned to King's Pyland to check the equipment." He paused. "Well, I say fortuitous…"

"You arranged for him to come back?" Lestrade asked.

"Well I knew that it must have been someone at Doberman. I had been hoping to interview him when we'd finished with Edith, but she saw him and it was no longer necessary."

Mrs Hudson bustled in with a mug and a plate. "I brought you another cup of tea, John. And some cake."

John opened his eyes and sat up. "Thank you, Mrs Hudson."

"Why don't I get cake?" Sherlock asked.

"You didn't get hurt," Mrs Hudson said.

"Yes, and I think it really is your turn," John said through a mouthful of cake. "I got knocked down twice on one case and you were untouched. It really is unfair."

"Oh it was a little knock!" Sherlock said.

"He needed two stitches," Mrs Hudson said.

"I know! I was there! I took him to the hospital when he was being all stubborn but barely able to stand. I think you'll find I'm looking after John perfectly well."

"Well, Gregson seems perfectly happy with it all," Lestrade said, bringing them back to the case. "I've also been contacted by a doctor Philmore who wants to come and work for me. Gregson says he doesn't want to lose him though."

"No, he's the only decent man that he's got," Sherlock said.

"Stafford wasn't bad in the end," John said. "She was just overworked, that's all."

"Stafford?" Lestrade said. "That name rings a bell. I think she's put in for a transfer down here too."

Sherlock smiled. "And you thought I'd offend them all."

"Well, I only had your past form to go on. Maybe you're finally maturing, Sherlock."

Mrs Hudson laughed. "Don't hold your breath, Detective Inspector. He still hasn't rehung my curtains. Don't think I've forgotten, young man."

"You threw my liver away!" Sherlock called after her as she went into the kitchen. "You don't deserve your curtains!"

"I beg your pardon?" she said, turning to him.

"Nothing," he muttered. He sank into his chair a bit.

Lestrade looked over to John. "How's it all going with you?" he asked. "Aside from the face, I mean."

"Well, I haven't been served with divorce papers yet, and I'm seeing Ben at four o'clock, and I'm allowed to stay and do bedtime. Mary won't be there, but it's all progress. At least I'm allowed in the flat."

"Well, I hope it all settles down soon."

"Thanks."

"I'd better be off." Lestrade pulled himself up. "Thanks for the tea, Mrs Hudson."

"You're welcome. I'll come down with you; I've got a box of cupcakes I want you to take down to the station."

"My force is getting fat, Mrs Hudson."

"Oh they're allowed a bit of cake every now and again."

Lestrade waved again, and they left John and Sherlock alone. John was sitting up now, and looking tense. His eyes kept flickering to his phone.

"Shall we walk there?" Sherlock asked.

"What?"

"If we walk we could set off now, and you wouldn't have to sit about the flat waiting for ages."

John frowned. "Sherlock, you can't come to my access time."

"Why not? Anyway, I wasn't suggesting that. I'll walk you there to make sure you get there safely, and then meet you at six thirty to make sure you get safely home."

John boggled. "In case I get…. Oh. You want to make sure I don't pass the time anywhere inappropriate."

Sherlock flushed. "No, I just…"

"Like you set my computer so that I can't access inappropriate sites."

"No, I didn't, and why were you trying?"

"If you must know, I was trying to do something with some of my accounts to see if there's a way of disabling them while I'm paying them off."

"Oh. I deleted your accounts. I deleted all of them."

"How? You can't unless… Oh."

"You can pay me back later."

John closed his eyes and took a deep breath. Sherlock watched him nervously, but when he opened his eyes, there was a faint smile there.

"What happened to 'I can't control this'?" John asked.

"I'm not trying to control you." Sherlock said. John raised his eyebrows. "I'm just making absolutely sure you control yourself."

John grinned. "Come on then. Let's walk to Mary's. There shouldn't be a rule that I can't let my friend see my son when I do."

"Yes," Sherlock said, standing up and reaching for his coat. "And when we get back, you can hang Mrs Hudson's curtains. You're clearly mature enough for the task."