221B, 3:15 a.m.

He was fighting. Fighting as hard as he could, but nothing could stop the screaming, the crying, the horror.

Please not John, not, John, anyone but John! No! Stopstopstop…


It took Sherlock a moment to realize that he was staring at the ceiling of his own living area. Was he on the couch? Why was he on the couch? That didn't make sense…

The memories came back to him in a flash, and he sat straight up, terrified. "John!"

"What, Sherlock?"

John was standing at the foot of the stairs, frowning and confused. He wore rumpled pajama pants and a striped jumper, his hair sticking out as if he had slept on one side particularly.

"I heard you yelling," he said. "Are you all r—?"

Sherlock jumped to his feet, stumbling a bit but not caring, and caught his friend by the shoulders. "You're all right?" he asked, desperate, aware that he wasn't making much sense, and not caring in the least.

"Yes, I'm fine… Sherlock, I'm fine!" John insisted, pushing away Sherlock's hands. "What's wrong?"

Sherlock ran a hand over his face, and hid his eyes behind it. He was shaking. Why? Fear. Why am I afraid? John is—No, John's fine. He grabbed his friend by the arm with his free hand, not looking out from behind his fingers. John's fine: confirmed. But I saw—Nightmare. I don't have nightmares. Very vivid. Drug-induced? No, no, I'm clean. Stress. Caused by the Pool and the events of Baskerville…

"Sherlock?" John interrupted.

Lock took a deep breath and dropped his hands to his sides, meeting John's confused hazel eyes. "Nightmare," he explained simply.

The response was immediate. Understanding and empathy crossed John's features, complete and calming. "Baskerville?" he asked.

"Something like that."

John nodded. "Sit down," he said.

Sherlock didn't argue; in fact, he was glad to have good old John giving him orders. He sat at the kitchen table while his blogger prepared the tea and brought him biscuits. After he was finished, they sat in a tense silence for several seconds.

Sherlock took a sip of his tea and then closed his eyes, thinking, placing his memories. "You weren't kidnapped again, were you?" he asked.

John looked surprised. "That vivid?" he asked.

Sherlock winced. "I don't… dream often," he said quietly. Or ever.

"Right. I haven't been taken since the Pool."

Lock nodded. "And… Moriarty…"

"Haven't seen him since." He grabbed Sherlock's hand, warm and comforting. "Look at me, Lock. I'm fine. Honestly, no one's hurt me or anything." Smiled. "See? Good old John."

Sherlock nodded gratefully. Words failed him for a moment, and then he simply said, "You're fine." Reassuring himself.

"Tired," John said with a smile, "but whole and unharmed. You don't have to worry about me."

Lock smiled in a tired sort of way. "I will though," he said. He changed the subject to give himself time to bury those blasted emotions. "Were you sleeping in your jumper?"

John released his friend's hand and looked down at himself. "I was cold." He grinned.


"Well, at least I made it to my own bed!"

Sherlock laughed, and it was the kind of laugh that released the tightness in his chest and made him feel sixty-seven percent better. "I fell asleep," he said simply.

"Maybe if you slept regularly."

He rolled his eyes. "Sleep is dull." Neither of them pointed out that it hadn't been very dull tonight.

John smiled. "Well, no one's sleeping anymore now," he said. "Doctor Who?"

"Yes!" Sherlock said, smiling.

"I'll get the tea; you pick the episode and put it on."

Sherlock paused, already halfway to the telly. "You're sure—?"

"We can watch 'The Big Bang' again." John pointed at the detective with a mock-serious expression. "Just this once."

Sherlock laughed and went to put the show on, already feeling eighty-four percent better than when he woke up. John let them watch his favorite two-part episode (which they had both seen twenty times over because of Sherlock) and ate chocolate digestives while Sherlock collected and drowned his emotions and reassured himself that none of it had been real.

A little after five o'clock, John had fallen asleep. Sherlock watched him for a moment, noting the peace in his expression (no nightmares then) and the way the television screen lit up parts of his face a bluish color while throwing shadows over his eyes.

Nightmare: delete?

No. I mustn't forget why I keep him safe.

Nightmare: saved.

I wrote this... to help myself cope with something, honestly, but I thought others might enjoy it. As kind of an experiment, my Jawn (TYRider) wrote one as well (completely different but with "nightmares" as the core idea), and we compared after. Hers is called "You'll Be Okay." Go check it out.

Blah, blah, blah, copyrights. This site is called "fanfiction." Do I really have to explain that this is not mine?