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And Blood Doesn’t Count

By Usagi_Atemu_Tom

Romance / Drama

Chapter 1

"I'm not sure this is a good idea, Sherlock."

John Watson was sitting on the edge of the big bed that took up most of the bedroom belonging to his best friend, watching the taller man pack some spare belongings with painstaking precision into a small overnight bag. Sherlock Holmes, the only consulting detective in the world, did not even deem the comment worthy of looking up from what he was doing.

"Well, if you hadn't been in the unlucky position of being unable to leave your office behind, my dear John, you could have simply come with me, thus resolving the small problem of our separation", he answered coolly, his tone neither sympathetic nor angry. Shaking his head in exasperation, the former army doctor sent a half-hearted glare towards the dark-haired man.

"Oh, excuse me for my poor attempts at getting on with life while you were pretending to be dead to the world and to your best friend", he scowled with obvious sarcasm. "Of course, I should have simply sat around those two years and waited for a miracle to happen instead of trying to keep myself occupied with something as ridiculous as the practice."

"Exactly!" Sherlock exclaimed, not getting the point at all as he finally looked up towards the smaller blond still sitting on the bed. Rolling his eyes, John threw his hands in the air, caving in.

"All right, I give up! This is just lovely. Why the hell did I ever think I missed this again?"

Sherlock couldn't help a small quirk of his lips in response to his friend's antics.

"Don't be overdramatic, John", he reprimanded, though his tone was far gentler than he would have used towards anyone else. "It's just a few days, maybe a week at best, if the case even turns out to be any more challenging than a seven. I rather doubt it, though. The Germans tend to be just as stupid as the people at New Scotland Yard, therefore I wouldn't worry too much."

"But I can't help it, Sherlock", John replied softly now, the bite gone from his voice. "It's been barely a year since you returned from your self-imposed trip to destroy Moriarty's network and only a few weeks since our relationship changed. I know this sounds crazy but something in my gut's not sitting right and the last time that happened I ended up witnessing my best friend jumping from a fucking rooftop, no matter how fake that one turned out to be in the end."

Sherlock, finally finished with his bag, zipped it closed, before setting it in a corner and taking a seat beside the smaller man on the bed. The consulting detective wore a very open expression of frustration and regret on his face as he looked at John, observing the other man's every frown and gesture.

"I AM sorry about not telling you, John", he said more than a little perturbed, "and you know I had no choice there, I've told you so."

"And I've forgiven you long ago, Sherlock", the blond doctor interjected.

"But you cannot allow your feelings to dictate your actions. There are no facts indicating that there is any danger ahead, at least no more than the usual that come with solving crimes. If there was any serious trouble such as we encountered with Moriarty, Mycroft would have known long before now and warned us."

As always, Sherlock grimaced at the mere mention of his brother's name but it was obvious his determination to cheer John up counted for more in his eyes than the reminder of his brother's existence.

John couldn't help a smile when he noticed the sour expression, knowing the consulting detective's thoughts too well. He let out a defeated sigh, daringly leaning sideways until his head rested against the other man's, a gesture Sherlock usually considered with contempt, except on very few, special occasions.

The doctor noticed that he seemed lucky since there was no protest this time. Instead Sherlock was staring out of the window, lost in his thoughts. Still, his arm automatically wound around the smaller man's waist the moment John rested his head against the dark curls of his best friend and current boyfriend.

Sherlock allowed himself some minutes to be lost in his mind palace John sitting by his side, eyes closed and breathing him in. Finally, the consulting detective's eyes focused once more and he gazed at John from the corner of his eyes, his head never moving an inch.

"We have six hours left until I need to leave for my flight", Sherlock told the doctor matter-of-factly. "How about we use the time sensibly?"

Of course, if Sherlock used the word 'sensibly' it immediately made John wary.

"What exactly are you thinking about?" he wanted to know. Sherlock answered his question with a turn of his head, showing John the smirk on his face.

"Why, take me to bed, John Watson", the younger man declared gleefully. The doctor was so surprised by the demand that he started to laugh.

"Why, Sherlock Holmes, who would've thought?" he snickered, before returning the large smirk. "Well, Mr Holmes, it would be my pleasure."

And with those words, both men turned their heads until their lips met in a hungry kiss.

Not even twenty four hours later, John was working at the surgery, already missing Sherlock terribly. Usually, when the consulting detective was not busy with a case, he texted John every three minutes with something ridiculous. The doctor had made it a habit to turn his mobile to mute, though he could never make himself put it away entirely. As a result, he felt its vibration every time the other man sent him a text, even when he was talking to patients.

Thankfully enough, he was well known through his blog. Ever since Sherlock had returned with a bang, his patients had been forewarned. Some of them even turned out to be former clients and all they ever did, when they heard the buzz of the mobile in the doctor's pocket, was give a wry smile and ask in dry fashion.

"Case again, Dr. Watson?"

This, more often than not, John answered with an equally wry smile and a shake of his head.

"Nope, boredom", before he added in a mutter, "At least I hope for his sake that's what it is."

If he was able to, John made certain that he was available during a case. For this reason alone he accepted a fellow doctor into his practice a week after he forgave Sherlock's stunt. The woman now working alongside him was just a bit younger than himself. Her name was Dr. Mary Morstan and she had been working at a clinic in Cardiff before personal matters forced her to move to London. From the beginning she was made aware of John's reason for accepting another doctor - that he needed someone to cover for him in case he was required to be somewhere with Sherlock.

Dr. Morstan turned out to be a big fan of his blog and Sherlock's case-solving. In fact, a week before she was supposed to start in John's practice, she unexpectedly became a client herself, when she started to receive anonymous presents of very big and very authentic pearls along with a small note informing her of a betrayal.

By the end of the case she was a rich woman who never needed to work again if she chose not to. However, John Watson had found a soul mate in her with her urge to help and to be useful, traits which he himself shared. She didn’t want to stop working as a doctor and so she became his assistant, taking over patients every time Sherlock burst into the practice or sent a text with details of a new case where he needed John's assistance.

Naturally John was supposed to accompany Sherlock to Germany but this plan was scuppered almost as soon as it had been created by a series of unfortunate events. At that time, their main case was on hold until they could get overseas so Sherlock had accepted another small case from a client to kill time. It was nothing too strenuous for the consulting detective's brain, but it required some legwork, which they both knew John liked.

Unfortunately, what both men did not foresee was the stupidity of one of the suspects in the new case who thought the best solution would be to break into John's practice. Sherlock later declared in a rather vicious rant that he could not fathom what kind of twisted idea had urged the man to think he would find important evidence in his partner's practice of all places, but that was where the man went.

Yet, the timing could not have been worse - at least for the criminal. As he was sneaking in, he failed to notice that both John and Mary were there, sorting through paperwork. ("A greater idiot I've not met", Sherlock venomously declared afterwards. "How did he fail to see the door was not tightly locked?") In the suspect's defence, their rooms within the practice were at the back of the house, so no light could be seen from the street to indicate their presence.

Both parties only realised their failure in noticing the other when Mary nearly stumbled over the man on her way from the kitchen, pot of hot tea in her hand. Unfortunately for the criminal, that was the moment of his second mistake. Thinking Mary was simply a helpless nurse who would serve very well as a hostage, he did not realise she was an army veteran. This was, in fact, one of the reasons she and John had got on so well. In the end, the suspect was taken into custody by the police, howling in fury and pain. His shoulder was still wet from where she had hit him with the scalding hot tea and one of his fingers was broken.

Regrettably for John and Sherlock, in a stroke of bad luck Mary had been hit by her attacker, straining her hand. Thankfully nothing was broken, but the hand was injured enough that John declared she was not allowed to use it for at least four weeks to allow it to heal properly. This, of course, was within the timeline when John was supposed to accompany Sherlock on his trip for Germany.

Mary tried to persuade John to go anyway as she knew how important the trip was to both of them but, as Sherlock grumpily declared, John was far too generous to leave her with an efficiently run practice, unable to perform to full capability. On the other hand, Sherlock was also unable to delay the journey as it was obvious the trail would get cold if he waited too long. In the end, they had to resign themselves to the fact that Sherlock would go alone while John took care of his practice and acted as contact to Scotland Yard, since it was Lestrade's case.

The former army doctor continued to be restless about Sherlock's departure. He couldn't help it, something about the whole case sat wrong with him somehow. He mentioned his worries to Mary as well as Greg, both assuring  him that maybe it was just because Sherlock hadn't done anything alone since his return from the dead over a year ago. That would make sense, because John had been furious when Sherlock had suddenly appeared in front of him, not to mention that he had fooled him with one of his many disguises. A simple, laughable disguise, to be honest, one that John would have seen through on any other day but he hadn't been expecting Sherlock to be alive so he had been easily fooled.

Repayment for the consulting detective followed immediately. As they happened to be in his consulting rooms at the practice, John was able to hit Sherlock twice before one of his assistants came in, alarmed by the noise of the fight. She nearly deafened half the practise with her screaming because she thought John was being attacked.

"Why would she think I was attacking you, if there was no blood on you but plenty on me?" Sherlock asked in disbelief, white tissue still stuck to his heavily bleeding nose. John didn't answer the question, but threw him a rather dirty look.

It took him days before he decided to give Sherlock the benefit of the doubt over his actions and at least meet him to have an intense talk. Their reunion at Baker Street included a lot of shouting on John's side and a rather cold, furious declaration from Sherlock as he unravelled all the threats Jim Moriarty had thrown at him that fateful day on the rooftop. In the end, they declared a rather shaky truce. John's main condition had been that Sherlock, would never, ever again do anything like that without informing him. That he would never leave the former army doctor behind. If Sherlock wanted John in on cases, it would have to be as a partner, not a lackey only good enough to fetch the mobile phone or as a stooge, forced to make deductions just so Sherlock could tear them apart to his heart's content.

Sherlock agreed easily enough, much to John's surprise. It was only later, when months had gone by, that he realised, mostly through Sherlock's actions and some snippets of what happened during his absence, that the consulting detective must have been missing him nearly as much as John had been missing him. Of course, the younger man never admitted to nor denied that realisation, but his silence spoke volumes.

True to their agreement, after their debate Sherlock had never excluded John again. If they were unable to solve a case together, the consulting detective at least kept John informed by text messages, and he was willing to ask for backup, though only through John, never from Lestrade.

This was the first time Sherlock would be gone from London for a week or so, depending on how fast he was able to find the clues in Germany and solve the case. It was different from before, of course, because nothing was happening behind John's back, and every step was discussed. The former army doctor was being kept up to date nearly every hour by text messages from Sherlock. Most of them declared his utter boredom almost from the moment he stepped onto the plane to Hamburg. However, two messages bore requests for something to be checked with Lestrade: an English driving licence and the description of a middle aged man that Sherlock suspected of being an international criminal who was also wanted in Britain.

This was the message John received two days after Sherlock's departure. He had forwarded Sherlock's inquiries to Greg and met up with him two hours later to retrieve the results. Lestrade had been able to confirm the consulting detective's suspicions and John dutifully forwarded this information back to his flatmate. However, he received no reply after that last text. At first, he tried not to worry too much. Surely Lestrade's confirmation must have been a hot lead, keeping Sherlock busy enough that he was unable to use his mobile? Maybe he was already finished and on his way home, wanting to surprise John after the case turned out to be 'dull, just as expected'.

However, as the third day arrived and neither was there any message from Sherlock, nor the man himself back at Baker Street, John's unease grew and neither Greg nor Mary could deny any longer that this was unusual. Trying to keep himself from thinking too much, John busied himself with his patients in the morning. During his break, he read the paper, keeping up with events in Britain as well as the rest of the world, telling himself he was simply keeping an eye out for interesting cases for after Sherlock's return.

Unfortunately no new, strange cases caught his eye, either here or in Germany. The only noticeable event being reported in that country was the blowing up of an old building in a town in Eastern Germany whose name John could not be bothered to remember. However, nothing pointed to any kind of crime, simply a tragic accident which so far had cost the lives of three people.

Evening came and went. No further news from Sherlock. By now John was desperate enough that he sent a text to Mycroft asking for reassurance. If anyone knew how Sherlock was doing out of the country, it should be the elder Holmes. That he had received no reply was worrying the doctor even more than he was comfortable admitting.

John ended up spending a restless night. He was unable to sleep and the few times his eyes closed from exhaustion, he was awakened again by nightmares he could not even remember. Morning came far too soon and it was with dread that John checked his mobile phone - no new messages there. Of course not, it had been sitting beside his head the whole night. If a text or phone call had arrived, he would never had missed it.

Resigned, he got out of bed, contemplating what he could do to find out how Sherlock was. He was so immersed in his thoughts, that he did not realise there was a figure standing in the doorway to the living room until long after he started making tea in the kitchen.

Blinking, he returned to the living room, uncertain whether he had seen a person or not, but his eyes had not deceived him. Mycroft Holmes was standing in the doorway, silent and with rather the opposite of his usual appearance. John never thought he would see the day when the older Holmes showed anything but aloofness or indifference on his face. He could not have been more mistaken, but the doctor wished with all his might that he had because what he was seeing confirmed his worst fears.

Mycroft looked defeated. His shoulders slumped, his suit looked as if he had worn it for weeks, his hair was unkempt, dark rings decorated his eyes and there was no life left within them. Mycroft was pale and the gaze he directed at John contained a mixture of pity and deep sadness.

One look at that face was all it took for John to know what the man was about to tell him and he could not bear it. Not again. The elder Holmes seemed to know that, because he opened his mouth more quickly than the doctor himself could.

"John... I", was all he was able to utter in a quiet, broken voice before he was interrupted.

"No, no! I don't want to hear it. It's not true. It can't be true. Not again, please God, no!"

John had become louder with each word spoken, his speech more rapid, so that by the end he was obviously in hysterics. Not allowing Mycroft to reply, he turned on his heels and stormed back into the bedroom, the one he and Sherlock had shared since the moment they got together. Blindly he reached for his mobile, in his haste knocking it from the bed. It had nothing to do with the tears in his eyes, or the tremor in his hands, oh no.

Shaking hands grabbed the device from the ground and with trembling fingers he typed a message that seemed to take forever.


He hit 'send' rather harder than he needed to and waited five long, agonising minutes. He knew Sherlock, knew their relationship and the agreement they had. His friend, his partner, would never ignore a message as dire as this. Not now, not anymore, no matter what he was doing right then.

Five minutes ticked by. Then ten. There was a hesitant knock on the door. Mycroft. John took one last, desperate look at his phone before throwing it blindly across the room. He buried his face in his hands with a sob.


The Song "Marie" by Santiano this story is based on

Lyrics in German
Wir tanzten mit Marie,
du und ich, du und ich
wir tanzten mit Marie,
sie wollte mich.

Doch als das Meer mich rief,
erreichte mich dein Brief
das sie des Nachts entschlief,
teurer Freund, teurer Freund
das sie des Nachts entschlief,
mein teurer Freund.

Marie ist meine Braut,
sie war schön, wunderschön
Marie ist meine Braut,
sie war schön.

Marie ist meine Braut,
du hast sie mir geraubt,
doch ich hab dich durchschaut,
teurer Freund, teurer Freund,
doch ich hab dich durchschaut,
mein teurer Freund.

Seitdem war ich hier nicht mehr,
lang ist's her, lang ist's her
seitdem war ich hier nicht mehr
lang ist's her.

Beim Landgang heute früh,
da sah ich doch Marie,
ganz plötzlich sah ich sie,
teurer Freund, stell dir vor,
ganz plötzlich sah ich sie,
ja stell dir vor.


Sie stand vor deinem Haus,
ganz in weiß, ganz in weiß
sie stand vor deinem Haus,
ganz in weiß.

Es war ihr großer Tag,
sie sah mich und erschrak,
ich läg in einem Sarg,
irgendwo, schrieb man ihr,
ich läg in einem Sarg,
das schrieb man ihr.


Ich las in ihrem Brief,
Hundert Mal, Hundert Mal,
ich las in ihrem Brief
einhundert Mal.

Die Schrift war mir bekannt,
die Lüge, die dort stand,
sie war von deiner Hand,
mein teurer Freund.

Song lyrics English translation
We danced with Marie,
you and I, you and I
we danced with Marie,
she wanted me.

But when the sea called to me,
your letter reached me,
telling that she faded away at night
dearest friend, dearest friend,
that she faded away at night,
my dearest friends

Marie is my bride,
she was beautiful, gorgeous
Marie is my bride,
She was beautiful.

Marie is my bride,
but you stole her away,
however, I’ve seen through you,
dearest friend, dearest friend,
however, I’ve seen through you,
my dearest friend.

Since then I haven’t been here,
been a long time, been a long time,
since then I haven’t been here,
been a long time.

At shore leave early today,
I certainly saw Marie,
suddenly I saw her,
dearest friend, imagine that,
suddenly I saw her,
yes, imagine that.


She stood in front of your house,
all in white, all in white,
she stood in front of your house,
all in white.

It was her great day,
she saw me and got alarmed,
I would be lying in a coffin,
Somewhere, they wrote her,
I would be lying in a coffin,
that’s what they wrote her.


I read her letter
A hundred times, a hundred times,
I read her letter,
one hundred times.

The writing was familiar to me,
The lie standing there,
was written by your hand,
my dearest friend.

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