Notes: Here it is. Sorry it took so long, I'm starting my first year of Uni soon and moving out of home and trying to find somewhere to live, its been time consuming. But I managed to get you the last chapter (i'm pretty sure)

So as always, a massive thank you to all who favd/followed on the last chapter; catsgotmytongue, peaches3949, Sammie5254, AlexHamilton95, skybird716, bonstle, DCcomixfan, dannidoodles, thedannilion, that lionhearted vagabond, Crystalbird1769. InkHeart2273, RiverRunS, Beccy2495, NicoleGittens1, narniadreamer1, 16magnolias, Loves-L-Always007, BcloisB, YumeSonata, InfinityAndADay, carapenn, KatyaRR, YoQueenBeyonce, Silencebeyondthestars and infinitesparkle

Seriously! Look at all you amazing people!

And of course to those beautiful folks who left me a review. Long or short, it still warmed my heart and made my efforts seem worthwhile. So you get all the credit for this getting finished! The Beautiful Filth (as always, you amazing person!), SammyKatz, Rocking the Redhead (can't wait to read your analysis of this one!) TwilightJaviP, Madameroro16 (your far too kind!) The awesome beckster (haha! Went back and fixed it, love to know if i missed anything in this! Thanks!) Reina434 (thank you so much! And shes tough! =) ) Renaissancebooklover108 (again, i needed to WRITE that massage *meltsthinkingaboutit*) apedarling (your always such an amzing support, thank you!) LadyK1138 (haha! I've continued but its kind of the end =( ) Brightpath2 (you've always been so great and appreciative, thank you!) that lionhearted vagabond (thank you so much!) thedannilion (well the ALL the episodes are out and I'm sorry you had to wait so long, i started this a bit a go but life demanded attention. Still, hope you like it and thank you so much for the kind and hear-warming review!)


*IF YOU HAVEN'T SEEN SEASON 3 EP 3 DON'T READ THIS BIT*

oh wow i was soooo onto something! Sherlock having a dog is so canon! And did you see how much he meant to him?! Made the episode for me!

*OK, YOUR SAFE NOW!*


Apart from that rant, *NO SPOILERS FOR SEASON 3 AT ALL!*

So, I'm pretty sure this is the end but don't worry. Once I've settled down in my new life I will start the other stories I've already began drafting. Until then, hope you enjoyed this, enjoyed my writing as I enjoyed it so much more for having you all along with me!


XIV.

3 Months Earlier

'I'm not Sherlock Holmes, I can't help you.'

'Yeah, I know,' Lestrade replied with forced patience. 'But I can't have some vigilante going around and taking out all the bad guys.'

'He seems to be doing a pretty good job of it,' John couldn't help but mumble.

Greg frowned in outrage as if the embarrassment to Scotland Yard wasn't a reason s to why they needed to take out the hit man.

Both men took another sip of beer.

'Yes, admittedly he's doing good whoever this guys is; managed to infiltrate and take out some of the forces biggest problems, but,' the DI took another mouthful of his drink. 'Law and order does not fall down to the decisions and judgement of one man. That's not how it works. We've already tried to catch him bit he's clever, genius in fact. We've gotten to the point of shoot first, find out who he is later.'

'But why do you need me?' John asked slowly, exhausted almost with Lestrade coming to him for help as if he had the deductive skills of his dead best friend.

'Because,' Lestrade reassured with that chessa cat-like grin of his. 'I saw you at Baskerville; you're our best shot...literally.' Greg's grin was hidden as he raised his glass to his lips once more. 'So what do you say?'

John looked down and slowly took a sip to give him a few moments more to make a decision.

'Sebastian Moran?' Molly queried as she watched Sherlock get dressed in what she mentally dubbed "assassin gear"; a black military type uniform designed for danger and holding weapons.

Sherlock was sitting down on her couch and finishing lacing the boots and all felt the thick tension in the air as this was the last of Sherlock's big hits and despite the stiffness of his body, the aches of recent wounds. The evident gaunt weariness and heavy exhaustion lining his face, Sherlock was smiling in anticipation for its end while Dog and Molly watched on with growing nervousness.

'He's a military man,' Sherlock continued as he adjusted knives and hidden guns. 'A dangerous marksmen who is about to take down a very important official, the death of which would most definitely bring war and terror right to England's doorstep. If my Intel is reliable, I should be able to catch him in the act across from the hotel the target is staying in. Moran will be focused on his one shot while I come up from behind and take him out. He's over confident, which is where he'll go wrong.'

Sherlock looked up to Molly with a cocky smirk. 'Quick and easy,' he said and stood, letting the small smile immediately drop as he gave a short, sharp whistle to Dog who followed him out the door.

Molly felt sick to her stomach and she prayed to God that this really was going to end tonight. She was terrified of the man Sherlock had become and hoped that once the burden was lifted, the old Sherlock, who had been buried deep, would come back to them.

The worst part was that Sherlock couldn't even recognise how much he'd changed.

Sherlock watched from the shadows.

Cars passed in flashes and obnoxious cries of laughter and squealing could be heard from the groups of passing party-goers.

Few people entered and left the hotel he was currently watching at different stages yet none of them were the Honourable Ronald Adair.

Sherlock had already checked the dignitary was still in his room, all that remained was to wait for the tiger to begin the hunt.

An hour later, a man that could only have been Sebastian Moran suddenly emerged a few meters away from Sherlock before crossing the road.

Dog growled at the man and Sherlock placed a reassuring hand to her fur; Moran had caught them both by surprise.

The ex-soldier gathered the hood closer around his face. Sherlock had yet to confirm it was indeed Moran but the way he carried himself said military and it was easy to spot the distinctive shape of a gun bag.

Sherlock waited exactly eight minutes before casually following the assassin across the road and down the side alley before cautiously entering a side door and moving up the cigarette burnt and rotting carpet stairway.

Nearing the top, Dog began to growl softly behind him causing Sherlock to quickly turn with a frown and a finger to his lips. She immediately stopped, ears pricked and looking to her master for guidance.

Sherlock withdrew his handgun and continued to creep closer to the open doorway leading into the room where Moran was setting up for the kill.

Although dark, Sherlock watched as the hit-man broke the glass from the window and settling in a comfortable position, eye up to the scope of the assembled rifle.

Without making a sound, Sherlock moved a few steps into the room and behind Moran, gun cocked and aimed at the back of the hooded head. With his finger dancing on the trigger, the man suddenly turned before Sherlock could even blink. Sherlock froze while everything blurred in disbelief. His eyes showed him the truth and yet he disagreed.

It couldn't be John!

And yet there he stood, after three long years, Sherlock was finally looking into his best friends face. But it wasn't meant to be like this, the situation was out of his control and the worse that could have happened, like a nightmare come true.

Dog growled but neither man moved, guns still poised at each other and eyes unflinching.

'I know you think you're doing good,' John finally spoke. 'But you can't go on like this; the world doesn't work that way.'

It was then that Sherlock realised John didn't realise it was him.

The dark in the room was too deep with Sherlock's hood shadowing his face while John drew back his own; causing the leather of his heavy jacket to creak as Sherlock hungrily took in every new detail of his friends' face that was revealed.

John's hands were steady, the gun not wavering. Sherlock himself bringing up his other hand to steady hid own grip as he felt his own body beginning to quiver with the shock and horror.

'As you can guess, I'm not Sebastian Moran. He has been taken care of by the police who are now here, to take you in. Your fight for justice is over.'

Sherlock took a step back as he began to fret. What was he doing? He needed to get out of here. Lights began to dance across the building and room as sirens and shouting voices became louder.

Sherlock edged further back and gave Dog the hand signal, relieved as she reluctantly slinked away to run as told.

'I'd advise you not to run, you're still a criminal and they're going to treat you like one. You are still a murderer, despite your cause.'

The words from John himself hit Sherlock hard, the hidden truth he convinced himself was necessary had just been spoken out loud by John himself and with such disgust it almost caused Sherlock to buckle, fall to his knees and try to apologise and defend his actions.

Instead he hit the light switch with his elbow and was already halfway out the door as he felt a bullet breeze past his shoulder as John swore from the light that temporarily blinded him and caused his mark to miss.

Sherlock hoped Dog was already far away as he dived through the half-opened window, crashing down onto the metal of the fire escape below.

Everything had changed, turning so badly so quickly and leaving Sherlock feeling as if he was running from one of his nightmares except this time, he wouldn't be waking up no matter how much he screamed.

The window smashed behind him as John's bullet ripped through the glass.

Sherlock crashed down the metal steps, feet just keeping up with his frantic escape. He jumped the last few feet to the ground, wasting a few precious seconds as he stumbled.

John gave another curse but Sherlock was already fleeing down the narrow road. He needed to get through the SWAT team perimeter. He made a dash for a door but quickly abandoned the effort once finding it locked and continuing to run down the road.

There was a tall wire fence at the one end, he could maybe just scramble over but all thoughts were quickly lost when a red hot poker was lunged into his lower back. Sherlock couldn't help but cry out in pain, continuing to stumble forward to the wire barrier until his legs finally gave way and his body slammed forward to the ground.

John had stayed at the back window above the fire escape, taking the time and the use of a windowsill rest to get out the one steady shot he needed.

Sherlock couldn't help but smile through the burning agony; John was still an excellent shot.

The sharp wail of sirens grew closer along with the frantic yell of voices as Sherlock watched the approaching lights that bounced off the tall walls of the buildings lining the street as he laid on the ground, panting and bleeding as all he had fought fall crumbled around him.

He felt sick to his stomach, John wasn't meant to be there at all, see him like this and yet he had called it with his own eyes, Sherlock was a murderer, a killer. It had all been for his friends and John, but they were never meant to find out to what extent Sherlock would actually be forced to go to ensure their safety, their freedom, as he sacrificed his.

So Sherlock laid still, determined not to move, determined not to speak. To not let John know, realise it was all actually him, the killer he had become.

His body began to shudder in waves uncontrollably as he heard John cautiously approaching while the blood seeped from his body.

With a jolt, Sherlock realised Molly would be waiting for him, worrying about him and the guilt mixed with the anguish of the past three years finally caught up with him and told him to let go. If he died tonight, he would be okay with that. They'd be fine without him; they were safer now, ignorant but safe. So he may as well slip into the darkness or die trying.

John stopped a few metres away from Sherlock's prone figure. Handgun raised, ready to shot again if needed before the backup arrived when Dog suddenly bounded into the scene.

Sherlock turned onto his side with a grunt and felt his insides squeeze some more. Dog stood over him defensively, growling deep within her chest with hackles raised as she ignored all of her masters' frantic pleads to run.

John took a step forward, causing Dog to threaten a further advance with a snap of teeth and angry barks. Sherlock could see her tense, ready to spring on the attacker at any moment.

His eyes locked onto John's although his were not on Sherlock's, instead focusing on the snarling animal and moving the gun to the right to point it at her chest. Sherlock's heart fluttered with panic and he desperately tried to lift himself up to push Dog out of danger. He knew John would shot her, to him she was a dangerous animal that was in the way and could cause some unnecessary damage.

It was with dread but determination that Sherlock had to forgo his original plain. With one last effort, he was determined to keep his one last friend safe. She was still barking loudly as John was about to tap the trigger when Sherlock shot out a hand.

'John! DON'T!'

Everything seemed to slowly come to a stop as John stared at him in shock, his eyes wide and mouth gaped. Sherlock didn't move, hand shaking with the effort of keeping it our straight as his whole body quivered with exhaustion and pain as his blood emptied from his body. Dog had even stopped barking but still stood poised defensively over her master.

The two men's eyes only held the others, despite the chaos around them and the emotions and the thoughts that were building in momentum with each passing second like a suffocating avalanche.

The world had slowed right down around the two of them as the gravity of the three past years sunk in. John's eyes never left his despite the rest of his body beginning to tremble with the gun slowly lowering, forgotten.

Dog whined with the change in tension and Sherlock himself felt his hand fall back to the ground. His body and mind were shutting down but he had no more choices to make.

The black clad SWAT team where now surrounding them with guns and lights that danced and John took one gasping breath as if it was his last.


Love to hear your final thoughts!

(basically the end of Ben's Little Favour if you haven't seen it, do so)