The cold dark sky enveloped John as he sat on the kerb outside 221B Baker Street. Delicate, unique snowflakes drifted from the sky and landed on his shoulders like the tears in his eyes. The night had been going so well. Drinks and laughter had been flowing like the cold winter wind.
It wasn't a big do - they weren't renowned for their popularity - but there was a cheerful, festive atmosphere in the air of their living room.
Lestrade and Mrs. Hudson had had one glass of mulled wine too many and ended up slow dancing to Christmas carols round the room. Harry, John's sister, had brought her new girlfriend: a pretty, red-haired girl who makes her own jewellery for a living. They had all exchanged gifts and Molly had got Sherlock a new cashmere scarf. Of course, Sherlock dismissed this act of generosity with a casual 'thanks' even though it was quite clear the scarf was an expensive one.
Molly seemed a bit put out but after a drink or two she relaxed into the swing of the party and was soon laughing along with everyone else.
John could see Sherlock was visibly bored of the evening: he was restless; wouldn't sit down, wouldn't even have a vol au vent (not surprisingly, after all he'd had a meal only two days previous). He wandered around the living room, picked up his violin and began vigorously playing Christmas carols, his sharp eyes scanning over the street through the window.
"Sherlock," John tried to break his guard.
Sherlock continued to play, the notes getting louder and more urgent with every sweep of the bow.
"Sherlock." John's voice was stern; final.
His flatmate turned sharply, put down his violin, and sat in his armchair dramatically.
"Oh, Sherlock dear, have a drink." Mrs. Hudson placed a glass in the detective's hand not waiting for an answer.
As the alcohol flowed through Sherlock's body, loosening up his rusty joints he and Molly began chatting.
At first it was just friendly chit-chat; small talk about the holidays, but as the evening drew darker and time ticked by effortlessly they got quite comfortable together. A bit too comfortable, John noticed.
John could tell Sherlock was leading her on. It was just an easy way to entertain himself; make the evening go quicker.
Unfortunately Molly must have misinterpreted his actions and before Sherlock knew it she leant forward and kissed him.
"What are you doing?!" Sherlock leapt back.
"I... I'm sorry, I thought.." Molly mumbled, her face alight.
"Molly, I don't -"
"It's fine, don't bother," Molly cut him off embarrassed.
Sherlock didn't say anything more while Molly rushed to the bathroom.
"Go and apologise," John commanded his friend.
"I haven't done anything, John."
"You were messing around with her; you knew exactly what you were doing." He glared at Sherlock.
"Maybe, John, you should stay out of this. If you spent the whole evening watching us then that's your business but you're quite clearly jealous and I think you should stay out of it. I just think maybe it's time you found a hobby instead of stalking me all the time."
John didn't say anything; he just looked at Sherlock, fury in his eyes and walked out the flat.
Sitting outside on the kerb John looked up at the grinning crescent moon, snug between the winking stars. The snow crunched underfoot and glistened in the orange glow from the street lamp.
As he breathed out a cloud of breath twinkled in the night air. He tilted his head back and closed his eyes.
The voice was soft, gentle, tentative.
"John, I'm sorry." Sherlock closed the door of 221B behind him. "Come back inside?"
"I need some fresh air," John replied curtly.
Sherlock took a few steps closer marking a trail of footsteps in the untouched snow. "I didn't mean those things I said. I'm sorry, John. Really. I just had a few too many drinks, that's all." His hand touched John's shoulder and he let him.
"You're freezing," Sherlock worried. "You'll catch your death of cold out here."
John opened his eyes finally. "I'll be alright." He smiled slightly, only slightly.
"Here." Sherlock took off his jacket and put it over John's shoulders.
"Thanks," John murmured quietly.
Sherlock sat down beside his friend, putting his arm round him delicately.
John smiled and rested his head on Sherlock's arm.
"I'm sorry," Sherlock whispered into his ear.