No matter how much one may love their job, there will always be an aspect or task in it that one does not particularly enjoy doing. Molly Hooper did indeed love her job. Most would find that odd, since it consisted of slicing up cadavers, but Molly Hooper always knew she was an odd duck. As a pathologist, Molly was one of the best in London. If she hadn't been, Sherlock Holmes would never have first walked into her morgue five years ago.
However, even though Molly loved her job that she was very good at, there was a part of that job she found incredibly dull, tedious, and a pain in the ass: paperwork. With each new cadaver came a boatload, even if it were due to natural causes.
Under normal circumstances, Molly was very good about keeping up with paperwork. Though she never liked doing it, Molly hated to fall behind in her work. Unfortunately, since Sherlock Holmes had entered her life, Molly rarely worked under normal circumstances. His constant demand to look at cadavers or her help in the lab meant that she would always fall behind in her paperwork. After all, if Sherlock Holmes wanted your help, wouldn't you rather do that than tedious paperwork. In the end, Molly would always manage to get everything organized and done (if she didn't, she'd have lost her job long ago), but it was never easy.
This week had been particularly difficult. Sherlock and John were working on a serial murder case with Scotland Yard. This killer preferred petite blondes that he would strangle after having his way with them. Yes, this was an ugly one, and the killer was proving to be slippery. Any moment that Molly had not spent on the cadavers had been with Sherlock and John in the lab, doing all of the odd tasks he asked her to do. Molly didn't mind as much this time, because after examining these women, Molly wanted this bastard caught as much as anybody.
Now, it was Friday, and she had the whole weekend off before her. After this week of non-stop stress and work, Molly could think of nothing better than a weekend of much needed relaxation. All she had to do now was make sure her work was all organized and done with so she wouldn't have to come back to a mountain of paperwork Monday morning.
Because of the case and Sherlock's never-ending demand for her help, Molly's paperwork had really piled up over the week. But Molly was quite sure that she could take care of it all by the end of her shift this Friday. Sherlock had been coming in every morning this week, but he had not come in today at all. Normally, Molly was always happy to see him, but she was just fine with not seeing him now. Nothing would stand in her way of a free weekend.
However, around one o'clock in the afternoon, the door to her office opened and a familiar voice spoke. "Molly! I need you in the lab to –"
But the consulting detective didn't get any further than that, because he had stepped on Molly's last nerve.
"No, Sherlock! You don't need me to do anything right now. John is more than capable to help you in the lab – he is a doctor, after all. I understand how important this case is, because all of the paperwork on the victims needs to be done right now or Lestrade and my boss will give me hell. So forgive me if I find doing tedious paperwork more necessary than fetching your own phone from your own pocket in the lab. Now just go, and leave me in peace!"
Molly didn't even look at Sherlock when she snapped at him. She just lifted her head from the paperwork and directed her burning gaze at the miniscule crack in the wall in front of her. She felt that if she looked at him, her resolve would break and she would leave a mountain of paperwork to be done over her free weekend. And once she was finished, she bent back down over her paperwork, not regretting her actions one bit.
It worked, though. She heard John mutter to Sherlock, "She's right, Sherlock, come on…" John continued to mutter to him as the door to the office closed gently and their footsteps took them away.
It wasn't until hours later, when she closed the last file of now-completed paperwork with a sigh of relief that she really thought about her actions. Remembering what had happened, an exhausted Molly groaned held her face in her hands. Great, she thought. All I've ever wanted for five years, and I've blown it after only three bloody weeks. That's pathetic, even for you, Molly…
As she felt tears fall into her palms, Molly also felt warm and gentle fingers begin to rub her neck. She jumped in surprise, but immediately realized who it was because his scent filled her nostrils.
"After being in such strain for hours in a hunched over position, it is necessary to stretch and massage the muscles lest you develop cramping and further discomfort," she heard him say matter-of-factly, but his tone was soft.
This brought tears down her cheeks when she closed her eyes. "Sherlock, I'm sorry for snapping at you like that." She wiped her cheeks. "I'm just so tired, and it's been a long week…But I should have realized it has been more frustrating for you, what with the case and all…"
"I solved it an hour ago," said Sherlock, continuing to massage her neck. "A construction worker who's wife had an affair with his brother and looked just like the women he killed."
"Was it the blood I found under the fourth victim's left fingernails?"
"Yes. She was smart enough to fight back, and he was dumb enough to slip with us on his trail."
"I'm glad," she murmured, feeling like she could fall asleep right there, with his warm fingers on her skin.
"Now that the case is over, I had planned to take you to Angelo's for dinner, but clearly you are too tired," said Sherlock.
Molly's eyes flew open, and she immediately stood up and walked around her chair to face Sherlock. It was the first time she had really looked at him today, and it hurt how beautiful he was when she knew she must look a fright after a long day hunched over paperwork. "No, Sherlock, if that's what you want to do, I'll do it!" But then, her words were cut by a yawn she couldn't quite suppress. Feeling quite humiliated and run-down, she hung her head in her hands again. "Oh, Sherlock, I'm sorry."
Gentle hands guided her head to rest against a strong, warm chest, followed by gentle fingers taking down her pony tail and running through her hair. "You have nothing to apologize for. John told me I should have realized you would be busy and stressed because of the case, as well, and I should have taken that into consideration."
"You've nothing to apologize for either, Sherlock," murmured Molly, shaking her head on his chest. "I was just having a bad day at the end of a long week, and the fact that I was doing stupid but bloody necessary paperwork just made it worse."
"Understandable. I can't think of anything more dull than paperwork." Sherlock spit the word out in contempt.
Molly giggled. "There isn't, but unfortunately in my career, it's necessary." Feeling much better but still tired, Molly lifted her head and looked at Sherlock. He too looked tired, but in a good way. He'd just solved a case, after all. She smiled. "How about a compromise?"
"Elaborate, Dr. Hooper," said Sherlock, his fingers still playing with her long locks.
"How about we pick up some takeout from your favorite Chinese place, and then go back to my flat to eat it. I can find an episode of Doctor Who that's particularly illogical, and you can criticize it all you want." Her smiled widened, knowing that the more Sherlock criticized an episode the more he enjoyed it.
Sherlock smiled. "A more than adequate compromise." But then he seemed to get a nervous and shy look on his face.
"What is it?" asked Molly, raising a gentle hand to rest against his cheek.
Sherlock closed his eyes at the gentle contact, but opened them when he spoke again. His beautiful eyes entreated her hopefully, even timidly. "You know that I not only do not eat on a case, but I also do not sleep. May I sleep with you tonight, Molly?"
They had only officially become more than friends only three weeks ago, and both had agreed to take things slowly. Molly knew that he was asking for nothing more than what he said. Molly was no stranger to sharing a bed with Sherlock. Immediately after The Fall, when he'd needed to recover from his injuries at Molly's flat, they had shared the one bed. She would even hold him when he had nightmares.
In response, Molly went on her tiptoes, gave Sherlock a gentle kiss, and said happily, "I think, for the both of us, that would be absolutely necessary."
A/N: There's the first one! Thank you LadyK1138 for the idea. Please review and give me some ideas for the next one!
The next one-word prompt is…journey.