This must be what dying feels like.

How many times has he felt like this before? Too many to count. Counting. No, not now. Numbers... no. He'll stick with words. Words are difficult enough now.

They're sticking. To his brain. Are they getting trapped inside his skull.

Note to self: try an experiment with the skull re: words and their ability to get trapped.

John would find it amusing if he came home one day to find Sherlock trying to pull words out of his friend...well, he says friend.

John. Where was that wonderfully complicated army doctor when Sherlock needed him?

He's missing out on all the fun. Is he? Is this fun? No, Sherlock decided, this is most definitely not fun. He needs John to be here. To come home. Is he at home? Where is John? Where is home. Baker street. Yes. Baker street is home. And am I here? He needs John. Needs his doctor. His blogger. His friend.

He wanted to shout it from the rooftops.

"John Hamish Watson, army doctor and blogger is my friend!"

Maybe. Maybe...

First, John needed to rescue him. Then he would see about rooftop shouting.

Rescue. He felt vaguely like that was what he needed. But it smells like the flat.

Flat is home. Home is safe. Ergo, he should not need rescuing from the flat. Conclusion?

Oh... that hurt. Too much thinking. Less of that then.

In the flat. Obvious. But not normal. Not right. Wrong. Very much so.

As John would say, 'a bit not good.'

Understatement.

Little words. Good. Better.

Home. Wrong. Hurts.

What hurts?

Head. Words. Thinking. Numbers are dreadful.

Brain hurting then? Not head?

What makes brains hurt?

Concussions. Strokes. Dying. (No, dying means dead. Not dead. Dead means no thinking. This hurts. Means I'm thinking. Not dead.) Tumours. Drugs. No drugs.

Not drugs. No drugs because of John. John is his drug.

That can't be right.

Not literal.

Ah. Of course.

Focus.

Hard. Very hard. Senses. Other senses. Smells like the flat. Sight... drawing a blank on that one. Absence of stimuli. Oh. Perhaps opening them...

Yes. That was the issue.

ALERT! Too much stimuli! Danger! Danger!

Definitely the flat though. Yes. But... different. What was it...

Vantage point. That was it. He had spent many hours on the couch, in his chair, studying the ceiling. He knew every bit of it from both angles. This was neither. Why.

Other senses. Hearing?

Not much. Doesn't mean anything. Could be quiet, could be deaf. He does that sometimes. Explosions, accidentally. Earplugs, on purpose. Can't rule either out.

Touch. Touch should help. Very useful.

Clothing. Please be more than just the sheet... Yes. He's wearing clothing. His robe. Blue. Comfortable. Not for going out in. Wearing between cases.

He's between cases then. Or is he?

After clothes. Surface.

Hard. Hardly helpful.

Why, though, is he lying on something hard? Seems rather stupid. Sherlock is not stupid.

Must not have been by choice.

Maybe John put him here. Preposterous. If anything, John would have moved him. So why hasn't he? Where is he?

Perhaps if he called for him...

Should have thought of that earlier. Stupid. What's wrong with him?

He opens his mouth and shouts for John. But not. Intentions are different than outcomes.

And memories. They are lacking. Evading him. He has an excellent memory.

But... it's inaccessible. Dull. Irksome.

Where is John?

He's tired. How had he not realized this before? So, so tired. No wonder thinking was failing. Could also explain why he was on the floor. That's it, the floor. Floors are hard. Conclusion reached.

Now just to figure out why he's tired. Body is just transport, it's betraying me, traitor, should just disown it already. No, can't tried. John says no. Or perhaps not.

Perhaps he could give in. Sleep is beckoning. But the puzzle... Tired. Even little words are too big.

John?

The floor is vibrating. It's significant. Somehow.

It stops.

Imaginary? No, no, no...

He's tired. And heavy. Perhaps he'll sink into the floor. The weight of his body will create a nice Sherlock outline for him to fit nice and snug in. Yes. That sounds appealing.

Oh, but he can't. Not imaginary vibrations. Because there are more and more and bigger and so much. And they hurt. And they don't stop and he thinks they just might split his head open because they are coming so close. But they stop, and Sherlock sighs, but not even for a second, because just when he thought that was over it's worse.

It must be John, because no one else is this bloody annoying to him. Shaking and poking and pulling and yelling. And Sherlock wants to sleep. Impossible of course. John...

John is using many words, all in decibels beyond necessary, but Sherlock can't make them out.

Oh but there's one. He caught it. The other ones all flew away, but this one has a broken wing and can't fly as well.

Drugs.

Sherlock wishes he could throw it back. He begs his body to work. Begs his head to shake nononono. Because he didn't. No drugs. Drugs upset John. Begs his vocal cords to vibrate. But nothing is listening. Nothing works.

Except then everything begins working at once. It's a flood. But instead of water drowning tiny houses as he watched from above, it's sodium ions all moving at once to contract all the muscles, and he's helpless to stop it, no matter how many times he repeats you're just transport, you have to listen to me, no, no, no, justtransport, nononono...

So he only waits helplessly, feeling John's panic as his transport betrays him completely and keeps contorting and contracting on the floor of their flat.

Until there is no more anything, just sweet blissful nothingness. Maybe he did take drugs...

No. Not drugs, John explains where he wakes up in hospital, feeling no better, but at least his transport is back to being his own. Poisoning. Apparently he was on a case. Poison led to seizure, John explained. He was in status for hours. Sherlock hears how hard this was for John. Sees his cracks. Wants to smooth them over with fingerprint powder and stick him back together with butterfly band-aids.

Impossible, he knows. Band-aids don't work on broken insides.

So he sleeps. And sleeps. And recovers. Without protest.

Without much protest.