A/N: This is the day when I pretend the Fall didn't happen and I'm just a happy little duck. I also don't have this story planned out yet sooo there might be some gaps in between updates.
Once again John was captured, out of the loop and angry. He had been sitting tied to the chair, blindfolded and gagged for several hours listening to his captors, of unidentified affiliation, threaten him and Sherlock. Then Sherlock showed up and, of course instead of untying John and letting the trained army man help fight the dangerous group of men, he just fought them all himself. Then he untied John's hands. Even as the blindfold was removed and the gag was taken out, he has the urge to come up swinging at Sherlock Holmes.
He didn't speak from the time Sherlock untied him until Lestrade addressed him directly asking if he was ok. Even then he only managed a short, "Yes, thank you." Anderson made a cutting remark about John being a damsel in distress, and after that John walked off the crime scene right then. He walked away from the police, the criminals, and especially Sherlock. He kept walking and walking until it was 3am and he was sitting on a bench in a park on the other side London from the flat in the soaking rain. He shoulder hurt from the damp, and his clothes were soaked through. His phone had rung about 25 times in his pocket but he continued to ignore it.
He sat there angry and fuming until a silhouette of a man in a long black coat walked up the path. He sat down next to John and waited. John was so angry he couldn't form words, but he had decided against talking anyway. He was sure Sherlock was deducing everything anyway so what was the point of saying anything? Finally Sherlock spoke as the rain started to let up.
"You're upset?" Sherlock asked but John was sure it wasn't a question. His anger continued to build. Sherlock never needed to be told anything. He always knew everything. He could just leave John out of the picture without even thinking about it. After 18 months of this, John was sick of it. He didn't need praise, but acknowledgement of his existence would be nice every once in a while.
"John, I didn't mean for you to get kidnapped. I didn't know they were waiting…" Sherlock's voice was completely innocent, but John knew Sherlock too well to fall for it. He just looked at Sherlock for a moment.
"Sherlock, you know everything. You knew this was going to happen. You always know when this is going to happen. You never stop it. You never warn me. You deliberately put me in the way so you can come and play hero." John started out calmly but slowly his volume increased until he was shouting.
"Even I don't know everything and I don't play hero." Sherlock scoffed.
"Right," John growled and walked away from the other man again.
"Where are you going?" Sherlock called after him.
"Why don't you guess?" John shouted back. He continued walking away.
John hailed a taxi after he left the park and headed back to 221B. He got back to the flat and there were no signs of Sherlock which did not necessarily mean he wasn't there. He peeled off his soaked jacket and hung it up. It didn't really make him anymore comfortable though. John put the kettle on hoping to make tea before Sherlock appeared to bother him. He just wanted a cup of tea before getting away from Sherlock and going to bed.
Of course that didn't work out.
Sherlock came running up the stairs and turned to look at John in the kitchen. He stared at John through his soaked mop of curls for a few moments.
"Still angry. Hmmm. So you weren't mad until I untied you at the warehouse. You aren't mad that you were kidnapped. This has something to do with me. Don't listen to Anderson John. He doesn't know anything. " Sherlock was still coming down from the high of the solving the crime so he was talking very quickly.
"That's not the problem Sherlock,"
"You don't care what Anderson thinks?" Sherlock asked. He looked a bit puzzled.
"Sherlock, do you ever EVER consider letting me know what you are planning? Ever? Just so I know because having no idea who I'm going to run after or who is going to kidnap me has been working out so well." John fumed.
"No I'm not going to tell you. I'll always keep you in the dark. Its best that way." Sherlock threw himself down in his chair in front of the fire while John shouted. For a moment John stood there gapping at the other man. He expected Sherlock to be unaware that he was leaving John out of the plans or something similar. He had never expected Sherlock to deliberately use him as bait or keep him in the dark on purpose. Suddenly John's anger came roaring back.
"Why?! Oh wait I know because you can't slow down to tell me." John turned his back on Sherlock again. He focused on making his tea trying to calm himself down. He really really didn't want to punch Sherlock but he was starting to lose his self control. He had thought Sherlock and him were friends, colleges, partners. He didn't know what his place was in this life with Sherlock was if it wasn't to help the other man solve crimes. But the longer he stayed, the more it seemed like Sherlock didn't need anyone let alone an average ex-army doctor with a tremor in his hand and limp in his head.
"No that's not it." Sherlock said after another moment.
"Then why not?" John shouted as he whipped around again.
"Because sentiment is a chemical defect found in the losing side," Sherlock spit the words he had once said to Irene Adler, but never looked away from the fire. "And I cannot lose the game again John. I lost once but not again. I can't lose you either."
"What are you talking about Sherlock?" John shifted his weight suddenly aware that the conversation had shifted. His tone was still sharp, but he didn't shout this time.
"If I tell you, if I tell you anything that I deduce or that I know before you head out and get kidnapped, they will know. Someone will figure it out and you won't be sitting there blindfolded as bait for me anymore. You'll be sitting there screaming as they try and pull the information out of you." Sherlock's voice trembled a bit at the end of the speech.
John didn't move. He didn't say anything. He just stared at Sherlock. Finally after a few moments, he could collect his thoughts.
"I was in the army Sherlock. You think I can't handle them?"
"I don't want you to have to handle him." Sherlock spat. John caught the essential word though.
"Him?" Sherlock looked even paler than usual to John.
"I mean, them." Sherlock corrected himself, but John understood perfectly.
"He wants to hurt me John. He wants to burn out my heart but he doesn't want to physically hurt me, not yet at least." Sherlock whispered. He sounded concerned.
"And you think he will come after me?" John sounded incredulous, but even he knew there was some truth to that. He was probably the most emotional attachment the taller man could handle. A friend. John was so broken himself that he couldn't leave for fear of never finding someone who him understood again. John was sick of the soaked clothing clinging to his skin. He pulled off his jumper and plaid shirt and hung them by the fire.
"I know he will." Sherlock looked up at John was now standing shirtless by the fire. He quickly looked back down.
"Because he figured it out before I did."
"What did he figure out?"
"Everything essential! If he hurt you, it would be…" Sherlock trailed off. For once it seemed he couldn't think of a word.
"Sherlock, half the time I just stand there. You figure everything out."
"Your input is valuable to me." Sherlock insisted looking at John with those pale eyes. John shrugged. The doctor didn't believe him. How often had he been ignored, talked to when he wasn't there, or left behind? How could his input be valuable to this man? Sherlock's gaze bore into him and left him feeling very venerable.
"I'm going to bed." John said suddenly. He was uncomfortable in his soaked jeans and he didn't understand what Sherlock wanted from him. Sherlock looked at him curiously but didn't say anything and John went upstairs to his room.