Author's note- Due to positive reviews on my 'A moment in time' fan fiction, I've taken the suggestion of making more one shots. So please review if you like them! And follow/favourite to know when I've uploaded a new one shot.
There's a major trigger warning for self harm in this.
If you have a suggestion or an idea for a one-shot, then please tell me about it! I need new ideas so just comment them on a review please!
Disclaimer- I do not own anything.
Behind The Smirk and Deceitful Lies
He strode through the corridors of New Scotland Yard, a smirk playing on his lips at the success of his most recent case. John, hot on his heels, chatted casually to Lestrade as they made their way to the main room of the building where the officers they knew worked. The case had been particularly interesting- albeit horrid. A child had been kidnapped, tortured by a cruel, twisted man whom she had trusted- her father. The consulting detective winced slightly as he remembered the state of the girl when he found her; but he was happy another case was solved.
Sherlock slowed down as he neared the doors; glancing behind to see how far away John and Lestrade were, he noted how loud the noise seemed to be from inside the next room. He frowned, what on earth do they have to be happy about? He wondered, after all, they did live miserably dull, pathetic lives. As soon as they opened the doors however, almost every police officer turned to stare at Sherlock- their hyped chatter quickly dying down at their entrance. Neither John, Lestrade nor the consulting detective knew what to make of their accusatory looks.
"Amazing isn't it?" Donovan stepped forwards, breaking the deafening silence- disdain for the detective evident in her dark eyes. "Well done Sherlock Holmes." Sherlock frowned and inclined his head slightly, confused at her sarcastic praise. But John and Greg had a feeling they knew where this was going- however they kept their mouths shut, giving Sally the benefit of the doubt.
"Impossible." Donovan said as an afterthought. "You're sick. Getting off on this. Especially on abused children!" A pause. "It's disgusting." Sherlock visibly flinched- much to the doctor's and Lestrade's concern.
"Enough Sally," John said, exasperated at her apparent hatred for the brilliant minded man. Sherlock's lips twitched up, before John, no-one would have defended him. He was so glad he had John as his friend, even if he never showed it enough.
"Oh come on," Sally ignored John and continued her rant, "He's a freak. A psychopath. I've said it before and I'll keep on saying it- because he'll never change." Sherlock looked down, avoiding eye contact. Why didn't they understand? His mind flashed back to previous day.
It had been the same words, the same names. He's been called a freak again, inhuman, psychopath. The names hurt him, more than anyone realised. They thought it wouldn't affect him; after all, he was supposedly a 'high functioning sociopath'. But maybe he called himself that and showed no emotions to avoid getting hurt. To avoid even more jests and hatred. John would wonder why he would never sleep; but little did he know that Sherlock lay awake all night, replaying years of constant hate in his head. Replaying all that tortured him. And a tear would fall into his shaking hands. But no-one cared. So it wouldn't matter. No-one would notice. Not that they would care if they did.
Blood. Sweet blood. Trails of red, shining in the moonlight, contrasted against his pale arms. And they wondered why he always wore long sleeves. White tissues blotted the blood of his pain, a silent cry in the lonely night- on that no-one would hear. Rows upon rows of hurt, anger, sadness... desperation. He longed for someone to care, but he always stood alone. So alone...
Another cut, he had nothing to lose; deeper and deeper- he felt dizzy, but he didn't stop. It was too relieving; it was like he was in a trance. Sherlock's vision blurred. From his position in his ensuite bathroom, he attempted to stand up; it was a mistake. The world span, his heart raced, and the sound of the blade dropping could be heard- echoing in the night as the troubled detective finally got some rest in the unconscious state of his depressed mind.
Since his teenage years he had self harmed; it had been an escape for him. And it kept him from doing drugs too often. But never did he think that he would become addicted to it, that he would come to rely on it so heavily that the scars littered his once flawless skin. He hated himself for it, but that wasn't enough to stop. Sherlock never had anything to stop for. He'd never had anyone who'd stay around long enough to care. His mind had flashed to John; the kind ex army doctor who refused to leave Sherlock no matter how bad things got. The consulting detective smiled very slightly, he always smiled around John; he brought out the best in him. To think, John Watson was probably the reason he had kept going. But Sherlock was far too scared to tell John about the cuts, about his long nights of dragging the blade across his skin. No, he didn't want to disappoint him; see the hurt in his eyes. John would leave him if he found out. This is why it was imperative that Sherlock always wore long sleeves, and hid any traces that he was a self harmer.
Sally Donovan didn't stop. Her tone was becoming more and more aggressive, her words formulated in such a way that was designed to hurt. And it was working. Anderson had happily joined in once or twice, with a few insults of his own, seemingly proud of himself to be able to tear down the genius detective for once. Lestrade had tried threatening them with suspension, but they were too far into it, taking pleasure in throwing everything they had at the troubled man now that they could see that he was slightly affected. John tried throwing words of abuse back- but that just earned even more hate. Months and years of pent up, built up anger were being released from being second best to Sherlock Holmes. But Sherlock had reached breaking point, already knowing that he needed to cut so badly, he snapped.
"Shut up, just shut up now." His shout was loud, but sounded strained.
"What? So the freak doesn't like it does he?" Donovan sneered, "You're pathetic."
"I said shut up you disgusting excuse for a human being!" Sherlock had gone past breaking point as he lunged towards the offending police officer. Before he was able to swing a powerful punch, he felt two sets of arms restrain him and haul him back. Lestrade gripping his right side and John gripping his left, both of their arms tense should Sherlock go for her again.
"Sherlock, leave it, she's not worth it," John murmured quietly. Sally had gone pale, not knowing what to say as she realised she'd really crossed the line. To have Sherlock go to hit her was on a completely different scale, and everyone in the room was wondering what had triggered the usually unfazed and indifferent man to lose it like that.
"Come on, let's get out of here," Lestrade said to both Sherlock and John. They began to lead the now worryingly quiet detective away, but Greg turned back to Sally and said, "You're suspended from investigating for a month for abuse to a colleague, don't even think of arguing." His tone was stern, and he didn't sound at all please, "And that's a warning for you Anderson, one word out of line this month and you get a suspension as well."
Sherlock said nothing to Greg or John, he had gone very quiet. The two men were concerned about their friend, Sherlock always had something to say, some scathing remark to make. He was normally Mr Punch line, front at the queue to launch an insult at a split seconds notice. But not this time, he barely even retaliated throughout the whole of Donovan's rant. All Sherlock wanted to do was get back home to 221B Baker Street and relieve all the useless emotions that threatened to overwhelm him. John asked if he was okay in the cab, and with tight lips, Sherlock nodded once. He must never find out.
As soon as they were inside their flat, Sherlock went straight for his bedroom.
"Wait a minute Sherlock," John called. The detective froze, he knew that John would want to talk, but he didn't want to. Sherlock just wanted to feel the coolness of the metal blade in his hand and the feel of the blood trickling down his arm. Nonetheless, he turned slightly in acknowledgement of what John requested. "What happened back there?" John asked the question, "You've never been like that before."
"I don't know," Sherlock mumbled, edging towards his room, "I was just getting annoyed with her."
"No, there's more to this," his flatmate pressed.
"There's nothing more to this." Sherlock said flatly, "Just leave me alone." And with that, he turned on his heel and went into his bedroom, slamming the door behind him- leaving a rather bewildered John standing in the living room.
Sherlock Holmes let out a breath he had been holding once he was safely inside the confines of his bedroom. He gritted his teeth and fought against the tremor that shook his clenched fists. He wouldn't cry. Not even in private. One traitor tear fell, as it often did- but it was swiftly brushed away by a shaky hand.
Sherlock Holmes wasn't depressed.
Of course he wasn't.
Even if he was he wouldn't admit it to himself.
No. He was fine. He was absolutely fine.
At least, that's what he kept telling himself.
It just sometimes became too much for him to handle, he needed something to help him feel better. He craved the rush of endorphins and the soothing release. Ever still the addict. An addiction of self harm- but an addiction nonetheless. Sherlock knew he shouldn't do it, but he didn't care. No one would find out. It would be the same cycle.
He would cut; hide all traces of the deed, the put on a smirk and confident eyes and a mask to hide the pain. Mind you, he was perfectly used to it by now.
For an hour he sat alone, undisturbed in his bedroom. The cool metal blade felt reassuring to him as he moved it carefully around his fingers. It was soothing. As the razor dug into the skin, bubbles of shiny red liquid began to surface, bursting and leaving trails of crimson in their wake. Over and over again in unpredictable patterns, criss-crossing, lines, wounds of pain. Of course it hurt, but he liked it, it was a type of pain he could control. He revelled in the high rush it gave him, feeling much better for doing it, before clearing all traces that he had ever cut. The blade was put away, his skin was wiped clean after making sure the cuts had stopped bleeding, and then the tissues were flushed down the toilet. He was okay again. He could continue functioning. His hard drive had been rebooted and refreshed; everything was fine... absolutely fine.
The next morning came around and with an annoyed huff Sherlock paced in his room, bored due to the fact that he had no new cases. John was awake and up and was currently busying himself in the kitchen, most likely making himself toast by the way he moved around the kitchen in the pattern Sherlock had come to quickly recognise. Knowing that he should show himself before John became suspicious (the doctor was always bloody worrying) Sherlock went to exit his bedroom. He paused; glancing in the mirror he yanked down the sleeves of his shirt. Even the consulting detective admitted that he had gone a bit far last night, dizzyingly so. Deep cuts littered his arms and wrists and almost showed on his hands, so he would have to be careful.
"Morning," John greeted. Sherlock merely grunted as he launched himself onto the sofa in his thinking position. "I'm off to get some shopping," John continued as he finished his toast. Sherlock grunted again.
By the time John had returned, Sherlock still hadn't moved a muscle. Concerned, he sat on the chair opposite. "Look, Sherlock, what's going on?"
"Nothing." He muttered.
"I know you," John said, doing his best to be gentle, "I can tell when something's wrong." Sherlock just sighed, if only he knew...
"There is nothing wrong, I assure you," the detective said blankly as he sat up to look at John.
"You wouldn't have acted the way you did yesterday if there wasn't anything wrong."
"She annoyed me."
"Everyone annoys you, but not to that extreme before." John was right, never to that extreme before.
Suddenly, John frowned as he looked at his best friend. Feeling very self-conscious, Sherlock unconsciously pulled the sleeves of his shirt down even more; this caused John's frown to deepen. A deafening silence loomed over the flat. There was no way that John could have seen anything, Sherlock's sleeves had covered all of his wrists and arms. He fidgeted, feeling... scared? For one of the very few times, Sherlock Holmes felt scared.
"Show me your arms."
The dark haired man felt his troubled heart drop and his eyes visibly flashed with panic. Unsure what to now do, he got up and backed towards his bedroom, mumbling something about an experiment. Never in a million years did anyone come so close to finding out; in fact, the consulting detective never thought that anyone would ask, or even think about it. Just before he made his getaway, John swiftly got up and gripped his flatmate's arm to stop him moving. Sherlock yelped softly, mentally hitting himself for being so stupid and for having such hindering feelings.
"Sherlock," John's voice was soft and quiet, "Show me your arms."
It was like he was on automatic. The soothing lull of his only friend's voice made everything seem okay. He didn't feel like he had to lie anymore, or hide behind the smirk. For the first time in what seemed like forever, Sherlock Holmes felt really and truly fine. With shaking hands he wordlessly revealed his scarred and cut skin, his heart thumping a million miles a second as he waited for the anger and rejection.
It was over.
What had he been thinking?
He hadn't even been thinking dammit!
And now he lost everything that meant something to him.
Not a colleague.
Not a flatmate.
And a true friend at that.
And for the first time, he felt more than one tear betray him.
With tentative hands, the doctor took a look at the sorry sight of his friend. Wondering what the story was behind each scar and cut. He saw the tears his friend cried, his heart breaking at the sight.
"You don't have to hide from me Sherlock." John murmured.
"How did you know?" Sherlock's voice was choked.
"I know you better than you think you idiot," John half smiled, "I'm a doctor, I know the signs. And you're my friend... my best friend."
"You don't hate me?"
"I could never hate you."
"You won't leave?" Sherlock looked on in disbelief at the fairy tale scene.
"Never." John smiled, "It's going to be okay now."
Sherlock felt a smile creep onto his face. It was going to be okay. He had finally found someone who would care enough, someone who would stand by him and make sure he was okay no matter what the circumstances were. John Watson... he was a lifesaver. John Watson was the reason Sherlock had gotten his true smile back. Of course things didn't get better quickly- they never do though do they? But everything would be better in time.
Sherlock Holmes smiled as John Watson- his one and only friend- said something that was so meaningful, that it almost made him think sentiment was a good thing. And it was something he wouldn't forget:
"In the end it will be okay, and if it's not okay, it's not the end." John had smiled, brushing his thumb over the scars as Sherlock realised that things were truly going to be okay for the first time in years, "Nothing you do will change my opinion of you... You don't have to hide behind the smirk and deceitful lies any longer.