A/N- The second in my 'Reunion' series. It can stand alone, but I'd prefer it didn't. :) I'm not sure how well I do where character authenticity is concerned- therefore, you must tell me. ;D Feel free to share any thoughts you have concerning this, or anything else that I write!
It's not without an eagerness that I reach for my computer, though I admit I've been putting this off. As I get into bed with it settled on my lap, I convince myself that this is more to aid the closure I've been unable to find, and less to drudge up the past.
It was rare that I remembered even having my old camera, and I credit using it at all last year to one night of sleep deprivation.
Under the video link, I select the one titled simply "Violin," and let it play.
As the video starts, there is already a background of my old flatmate's instrument in use. My heart lightens at the sound I've caught myself missing so often.
The picture swings from dark carpet to a string of colored lights lining my bedroom window, marking the date as December. This informs me of nothing, however. I've never forgotten the date to have been the seventeenth of that month.
The violin's sound heightens a bit when the image settles on the door that I had cracked open.
"He's been at it for hours," I said to the camera in a hushed tone- partly for the instinctive embarrassment of speaking to a machine, and because I didn't want Sherlock to hear. I faced it toward the digital clock on my bedside table, the blue numbers glaring 11:58 into the dim room.
"It's nearly midnight, as you can see," I continued. "He's keeping me up again, and since I can't sleep with it going on, I'm going to film him in action. And I'm always telling Sherlock to record his compositions- I'm pretty sure this is one of his own. So really, I'm doing him a favor. And anyway, we'll get to see how he reacts."
As I finished speaking, I carried the camera into the hall, slowly approaching the source of the music. Into the picture's view comes the image of Sherlock's half-open bedroom door, where as silently as possible, I eased it open and took a couple of steps in.
To this point I wasn't sure how I'd react to seeing my friend in any picture that wasn't frozen, and this is the first time since his death. I tried to prepare myself; yet I find my throat catching at this familiar sight. Sherlock stood with his back to me, dressed in his pajamas and red dressing gown as he played his violin in a steady, loud rhythm. This went on for a few seconds longer before he brought it to an abrupt stop.
"I know you're there, John," comes his voice through the laptop's tinny speakers, "and you don't need the sleep that badly." At this point I'm fighting to take in a normal breath, horribly aware that I'm hearing the voice of a man who's been dead for four and half months. At the time that I filmed this, however, no such grief was present in my life.
"I do believe I have something of a right to be here, Sherlock," my own voice answers his lightly. "When you're making racket at this hour of the night."
"I don't make racket," Sherlock defended as he loosened his bow, still without turning around. Instead he ran his forefinger along the bow hair and rubbed it against his thumb as he set the violin on his desk.
"It's not that it's actually bad racket," I said.
"As if any other kind exists. I did warn you of my habits before we began renting the… flat."
He paused when he finally faced me, looking directly into the camera for a moment with such an expression of actual shyness that I would smile did it not feel so inappropriate. The picture shakes with the laughter I let out as I filmed, though.
Sherlock recovered himself quickly, straightening as he fixed his eyes on me rather than the machine I carried. "What on earth are you doing with that thing, John?" he asked, in his bari-tone-of-authority, as I liked to call it.
"Don't you think you should use your deductions on that one?" I responded- with an irrepressible grin, as I remember.
"What I mean to ask is 'why'," Sherlock corrected, in that irritated tone which I also find it easy to recall. Without allowing me time to reply, he went on speedily while approaching, "because if you think you're going to put this on your blog, you're out of your mind. Turn it off."
He gave my camera a dismissive gesture, his arm the only thing still visible as I relented.
"Okay, okay," I said, turning it at an odd angle as I thought I succeeded in stopping the film.
I'm glad now that I failed.
"I'll expect you to delete that," Sherlock told me, for while I'd set the camera on Sherlock's desk facing the wall, we remained in the room, with our voices still quite easy to hear.
"You should record your music, Sherlock," I encouraged him.
"Even were it not of a poor quality and interrupted, I don't want that video; the piece is unfinished," Sherlock answered. I remember giving him an incredulous look as he flipped through a music book and pretended not to notice.
"No one would know it," I told him.
I can picture the underused grin he sent in my direction at that like it was yesterday. "Thank you, John," he said, three words that- from him- truly meant something.
"I have to say though- it would sound a good deal better in the day time."
His smile then widened. "Point taken," he replied.
Footsteps can be heard and my shadow passed over the wall before the camera as I walked out.
Sherlock, of course, remembered what I would otherwise have forgotten. "John," he called, and the picture is jerked around as he turned it about, the lens passing over his face once as he studied the device.
And then, in line with the moment that he corrected my error, the video stops, abandoning me to reality once again.
For several long seconds, I simply remain staring at the still, dark carpet image that has returned to my screen. Becoming conscious of this, I close the window and shut the laptop down before setting it aside. Again in the dark, I pull the blankets up to my chest and then try to relax. It's a pointless pastime, I soon find, for my mind is more occupied than before by my loneliness, and my heart is both restless and pained by the nostalgic experience.
I sigh as I consider how almost every night that I've lacked sleep in these past two years has been Sherlock's fault. I haven't the heart to be angry toward him for it, though. It's for the very same reason that I miss him so dearly, I suppose. Sherlock's ways could be maddening at times, and yet all the while I found him to be remarkably endearing. His violin playing in many ways resembled his personality. It was brilliant, if at times unusual, but always captivating. I really wish he had taken recordings of it, for what comfort hearing it might offer me now.
After a few hours' restless drifting, however, I fancy I can hear it once again, lulling me before I'm finally taken into a heavy, dreamless sleep.
And it's the next best thing to having him here again.
A/N- Yes, I know I said 'Reunion,' but I also said 'series'! Hope you liked it enough to keep reading!