A/N: set six months after the fall. Irene is hard to write.

Irene and John

Irene was waiting in the warehouse when she heard John start shouting as he entered the building. She smiled a little despite herself. Would he always think Mycroft was the one who summoned him?

"Mycroft! I'm still not going to help you. You can take your bloody government position and get the hell out of my life because I'm sick and tired of this. I don't need you hanging around to remind me. I remember all the time!" John kept shouting for a while and Irene heard his footsteps approach the shelves where she was waiting. She steps out into the isle and John took a step back in surprise.

"Not who you were expecting?" she asked.

"I thought you were dead," John stared at her.

"Obviously not."

"Then what are you doing here?" he sounded so suspicious. She smiled.

"I need information Dr. Watson." Well, really she didn't. She was here to implant an idea into John's head. She was here to help him. She was here at the request of Sherlock Holmes. In truth she was playing a game with John Watson to save him from himself.

"How do you keep doing this?" John asked still staring at her.

"It doesn't matter really and that's not why I'm here. Is he really dead?" she asked. Of course she asked about Sherlock. She never really cared about anything else did she? She was the jealousy flicker across his face. Even though Sherlock was dead, John wasn't as interesting as the dead man to Irene Adler.

"Yes." John answered her shortly and nodded.

"You're sure?" she asked. Her voice waivered just a little and her eyes were shinning.

"I saw him jump from the top of the hospital and hit the pavement. I took his pulse. There wasn't anything." John struggled to tell her all of these things.

"Are you sure that's what you saw?" she asked again. She tried to make him remember that he actually hadn't seen the body hit the pavement.

John paused. As much as he struggled to forget that day, his dreams kept it fresh in his mind. He would never forget those moments. He saw Sherlock jump and then…the biker ran into him. Did he actually see Sherlock's body hit the street?

"Well…I mean…he jumped. I saw him jump and I started running. I collided with this biker as I crossed the street. I got knocked down and slammed my head on the pavement. I know he was on the ground… I don't know…" he stopped and stared at her.

"Yes?" she looked at him intensely. His brows furrowed together.

"No…he died. He. Died! I saw him die. I took his pulse. I went to his funeral." John insisted. Irene sighed. He was so stubborn.

"Did you? Was there a body in that casket? Did you carry it?" She tried another approach.

"It was already at the grave for the service. Mycroft had a closed casket."

"Why?" a smile played across her lips. Enough holes in the facts would make him doubt.

"Molly suggested it. She begged really. She said doing his post-mortem was bad were only a few of us that went and Mycroft agreed. He said it would be easier." John remembered the scene. Molly had been crying and a wreck with big circles under her eyes at his flat. Molly begged John to just keep the casket closed for her because she couldn't look at him anymore. Mycroft had agreed so easily. John's mind was racing with confusion and Irene saw it on his face. "Why are you here?"

"Because, Dr. Watson, I needed information." She told him again.

"But how are you here? You were beheaded," John scoffed looking at her. He had never wanted to be part of her games.

"Ah, you don't know the whole story…but it doesn't matter. It sounds like things aren't adding up doctor." She chided him like he was a school boy.

"Sherlock is dead. I cannot change it. God knows I wish I could." John snarled at her. She could see all the questions running behind his eyes. Irene walked over to him and pressed on his chest and started to say something when John winced away. Her eyes flickered down to his chest and back up. She furrowed her brows together. She abandoned whatever she had planned and smiled.

"I believe you would change it," she purred, but she was caught off guard. Men did not flinch away from her. Everyone wanted her, except this funny little man. She wondered why Sherlock seemed to care so much.

"It's none of your business," he followed her eyes and pulled away.

"Still not a couple?" she called after him. John paused. "Did you love him?"

"Sherlock didn't understand sentiment," John spat. Only Irene knew how wrong John was.

"That's not what I asked."

He didn't answer her and that was answer enough for her. She walked over to him again. Irene put her hand on his chest and when he met her eyes, he nodded. Somehow this woman who had come back from the dead, twice, had gotten him to trust her with this. The secret he kept from everyone.

She unclasped the buttons. Irene had been expecting a fresh injury or the scar she had heard Sherlock describe. However, what she saw was a violin perched on John's chest with Sherlock's name in script as the strings. She ran a light finger over the still raw flesh.

"You are not what I expected," she whispered. John surprised her. She had never paid much attention to him during their last encounter. She needed to push him in the right direction. Now she could see that he would be willing. She needed him to believe that Sherlock could be alive. Sherlock feared that John would go insane because of the way he had been behaving recently. He quit his job and withdrew lots of money. Sherlock worried he was suicidal.

"Well, Miss Adler, you are exactly as I remember." He pulled away from her but she held his wrist.

"Why?" she breathed looking up at him. Her face was almost touching the tattoo as she examined it.

"Maybe, I'm trying to fulfill a wish that I never made until it was too late. Maybe I'm worried he meant what he said. Maybe I'm worried I'll forget that Moriarty was real," John told her and he kept telling her all the things he worried about. He told her and she listened quietly. John had never told anyone about his doubts. Doubts about Sherlock, about their friendship about Sherlock's abilities. The doubts that constantly plagued him now that Sherlock was dead and John's heart was ripped apart. Somehow he could voice them to her and he told her all of them.

"Oh you poor boy," she sighed genuinely. Like that the spell was broken and John realize what he had just said to her. He was embarrassed and angry when he turned away.

"I'll be going then," John closed up his shirt and turned to leave again.

"I have a theory." She called. John stopped but did not turn to face her.

"Will I care?" he asked his voice was strained with anger.

"I don't think Sherlock Holmes is dead," she called after him again.

"He is dead. He made me watch."

"You keep saying that as if you are the ultimate authority on it. You thought I was dead. Twice! And here I am. Why couldn't he? He bested me after all," she smiled at him. "One more miracle?"

Sherlock had told her the line that he had overheard at the grave that day. He told her to say it when everything else failed. She needed him to believe that Sherlock could be alive. The tattoo shook her and she knew that John wanted him to be alive. His doubts about Sherlock would resolve and he would go back to his old self. She knew this would happen now.

"How do you know about that?" John looked at her incredulous. "No one was there!"

"A little birdie told me. Don't worry he'll be back," She smiled and left him standing there thinking. She had planted the seed. Now John had to act on it.

A/N: Also my updates maybe a little more spread out because I'm going back to school!