“What can of
worms?” Sherlock asked with knitted eyebrows.
“The fact that until last month I thought you had deleted our time in rehab from your ‘hard drive.’”
“Why did you think that? I acknowledged you when I saw you again in Bart’s. I said, ‘Oh, there you are.’”
“’Oh there you are?’ As in ‘Oh there you are the girl I was at rehab with and helped create a new identity’ versus ‘Oh there you are the pathologist I was looking for to help me with my current case’?” Molly pursed her lips together and crossed her arms.
“Of course it was the latter why would you think the former?”
“Because the DI came after you and said, ‘Oh you found the pathologist we were looking for.’”
“Ahh,” Sherlock squinted, “I can see how that might have caused some confusion. I wasn’t paying much attention to him as I was focused on deducing you.”
Molly blushed at his words. “Well, you could have acknowledged it later.”
“You could have too. You didn’t seem to want to rehash your past as you had settled in to your new life without me.”
They both stared at each other in silence for a moment neither knowing how to continue the conversation. They were saved when the TV started playing Why Can’t the English.
“I love this song!” Molly gushed seeming to have moved on from the topic that they had been discussing. She started singing along with Henry Higgins while she took her hair out of its turban and laid the towel across her shoulders. Sherlock observed her, as she seemed to lose herself for the moment and relax.
“He’s almost as insulting as you.” Molly said with her mouth twisted up in an impish smile.
Sherlock leaned over and yanked on one of Molly’s wet locks. She squeaked in response and pulled her hair away from him before giving him a smack on the back of his head. Sherlock scowled at her and rubbed his head.
“You’ve regained some of your old habits of violence. I thought you grew out of such nonsense.”
“Nope.” She popped the last letter, “Just now that I know you remember things I can be free to be more of myself and not just the mousy pathologist you flatter to get things.” She didn’t say any of it with malice but her words struck something inside Sherlock’s chest.
“I umm…do mean the things I say.”
Molly turned her eyes from the movie to the detective beside her, she sighed before speaking. “It’s okay Sherlock. I know you only do it when its important but perhaps we can move on from that. It was kind of nice hearing those things but it’s better if you just ask from now on.”
“Does that mean you will be more cooperative?”
Molly snorted, “Nope.” Sherlock noted she seemed to have permanently picked up his p popping habit. “What fun would that be for me.”
Sherlock crossed his arms and huffed. But little by little a small smile grew on his face. Yes, being in a relationship with Molly Hooper was going to be interesting. Molly seemed to have gotten involved in the movie more so Sherlock decided to take advantage of the situation and lay out on the couchand used Molly’s lap as a pillow for his head. Molly was startled at first by the head that suddenly landed on her lap. She just rolled her eyes and tried to find a comfortable place to put her arms. She giggled at some of the scenes and pointed out to Sherlock again that he was like Higgins and added that John was his Pickering. Sherlock just grunted at her in acknowledgement to express his displeasure.
After sometime had passed one of Molly’s hands had found it’s way to Sherlock’s hair. She often did something while watching telly to keep her hands busy and often had Toby to pet. She was unaware of her actions until a sound from Sherlock alerted her to her actions. She gasped and blushed.
“I am so sorry! I didn’t realize…I always pet Toby and-“
Sherlock was glad he could still make Molly flustered. He grabbed her hand and placed it back on his head. Molly froze out of confusion and could feel her blush deepen. Sherlock reached up and maneuvered her hand into making a petting motion. Molly hesitated and with wide eyes continued to play with Sherlock’s hair. Sherlock responded by snuggling further into Molly’s lap and smiling a smug smile that Molly could not witness.
Some more time passed and Molly’s hand had slowed down in its ministrations of Sherlock’s hair. He had thought she was falling asleep and was surprised when she asked the question that had plagued her for years.
“Did you ever get my letter?” Molly asked in a small voice.
Sherlock sat up abruptly. Sadly he did not pay attention to where Molly’s head had been placed and ended up coming right up into her nose. Molly quickly used the towel on her shoulders to staunch the flow of blood from her nose while Sherlock looked on horrified. Molly started laughing at Sherlock’s response as she found it very unlike him.
“I just bashed your nose and you are laughing.”
“Here let me see.”
“It’s fine, just a bloody nose. It’s not broken.”
“Just let me see.” Sherlock grabbed her chin his hand and looked over her nose. “It’s fine Molly you’ll be okay. There is nothing to make such a fuss about.” Sherlock got up and went to the kitchen.
Molly felt like her head was going to fall off. She couldn’t remember a day when she had to shake her head so often.
Sherlock returned with a bag of frozen peas. “Yes.” Sherlock said.
Sherlock was now on his knees in front of Molly where he had shifted to check her nose. He looked Molly in the eyes and answered, “Yes, I got your letter.”
Sherlock managed to get himself cleaned up before returning to the rehab center. He wanted to prove that the he was stronger than the drugs, that he controlled them not the other way around. By the time he had two consistently clean weeks he thought he was ready to face Molly again. He wouldn’t call her a friend, he didn’t have friends, but she was the closest thing he had ever had to one aside from Redbeard. He had grown accustom to her and he didn’t like to lose the things he was accustom to.
When he reached the center he was shocked to find she had been moved. When the orderly had told him she had been moved he waited for no further explanation and rushed to the Psych ward thinking that was the logical move. When he got there he was accosted by the Irish bloke asking where Jane was.
Sherlock ground out, “She’s not a Jane Doe! Her name is Molly!” Realizing the boy’s comment meant Molly was not there Sherlock turned to the desk to harass the staff into telling him where Molly was. He didn’t count on being followed.
“Oh, did Molly leave you too? She’s such a naughty thing. She really should be punished. I can help you find her and we could do so together.”
Sherlock eyed the boy with disgust but again brushed him off. “Someone put this psychopath back in his cage!” he snarled.
“I was just trying to be friends,” the boy pouted with mock hurt. “That’s twice now you brushed me off,” his eyes narrowed and revealed maliciousness.
In short order a staff member escorted the boy away from Sherlock but did not remove him from the room completely.
Mycroft had been keeping track of his younger brother and had reached the hospital in record time. By the time the interaction had finished taking place Sherlock was being intercepted by Mycroft.
“Hello brother mine.”
“Mycroft what are you doing here? I thought you were finished with me.”
“I could no longer help you with your drug problem. You had to make that decision for yourself. You are my brother and we will never be finished how ever you may wish it.”
“Where is she?”
“Caring is not an advantage brother dear.” Mycroft not receiving a response from Sherlock continued, “She has been moved to a children’s home but one of her counselor’s is making moves to adopt the child. She will be better off this way Sherlock.”
“You mean better off without me?”
“I said nothing of the sort, don’t read something into it that isn’t there. Neither of you could remain here forever. This way she will have a,” he sneered, “family.”
Mycroft made a move to retrieve something from his coat pocket. He handed Sherlock a plain white envelope.
Upon opening the envelope Sherlock found a short letter:
I am so sorry for what I said. I am sorry I won’t be able to tell you myself. Please don’t ever jump off any roof. I didn’t mean it. I just hate seeing you hurt yourself and the people who care about you. I’m one of those people. It is only because of you that I can survive here. I will never forget you and will always care about you. I believe in you Sherlock Holmes. Please forgive me.
It was signed 'Yours' with a heart around her name. Sherlock swallowed but was completely aware of his brother’s scrutiny, which affected his next actions. He crumpled the paper up and tossed it in the trashcan. He had every intention of retrieving the missive, as it was his last link to the girl who had affected him and changed his life for the better. When he was with her he was able to think of someone other than himself and for some reason believed in him. When he returned the letter was missing from the trash despite it not being the night for taking out the garbage.
Molly looked into Sherlock’s eyes as her own filled with tears. “Do you,” she choked out a sob, “Do you forgive me?”
Sherlock’s jaw dropped. He ran over Molly almost on a daily basis with his words and here she was torn up about words she uttered as a child. He got back up on the couch and drew Molly into her arms as she finally succumbed to full out crying. She had gotten through the night of revelations and the thing that brought her to tears was the thought that she hurt him. She was able to recount horrors of her childhood but at the thought of not having his forgiveness tore her up. He didn’t understand feelings in their entirety but he would try to puzzle through it. He owed this and more to the woman in his arms.
“I…there’s nothing to forgive.”
“I told you to jump off a building.”
“So you did.”
“Then years later you had to.”
His arms tensed around her. He had never given thought to that kid in the ward but apparently he had never forgotten Sherlock, or Molly for that matter. Sherlock breathed out as the realization struck him. Jim had been able to grab that letter that day. Molly was the heart he spoke about but aside from dating Jim hadn’t made any more moves against Molly. Sherlock breathed slowly a few more times to calm his racing heart. Moriarty was dead and no one came back from that. Well, besides him and Irene. Mary and Molly also escaped death but that was slightly different. What mattered was that Moriarty was gone. Now he just had to protect his heart from being found by Magnussen.
He realized he hadn’t responded to Molly’s last comment. “You were there to catch me.”
He felt her lightly punch him in the side. “What was that for?”
She mumbled something unintelligible into his shirt. He rubbed her back a little with the hand that was encircling her and dropped a kiss on her forehead. No more was spoken the rest of the movie as Molly eventually faded into slumber.