The Watsons' Care

Chapter 22

Sherlock had run out of clean clothes. He refused to let Lizzie wash them. No matter how much she begged him, or how dirty his trousers got from playing in the surrounding fields, he would not let her touch them. He wouldn't even explain why he didn't want them washed. When he came home from school on Thursday night with mud streaked across his jeans and t-shirt, Lizzie gave up. She collared him from his game of soldiers with John and took him upstairs. They sat down on the bed, and Sherlock looked at her, expectantly.

"I need to wash your clothes." She said plainly.

"You can't." He replied, sounding almost obstinate, crossing his arms in protest.

"Why not, Sherlock? They're getting smelly, and you need them to go home with on Monday."

"No! Don't wash them, I don't want you to!"

"Why not, sweetheart?"

"Because... I don't know!" His lips pulled sharply downwards, and he started to sob.

"Oh baby! It's okay, don't worry." She pulled him closer to her, and he stayed locked up, cross-legged, his back straight and his head bowed as tears blossomed on his trousers. "Tell me what's wrong, Sherlock, please? I can help".

"I-I don't want to go h-home! It smells different! I want my clothes to smell of here!"

"Sherlock, I understand, really, I do. But your father-"

"I want Kevin to be my father!"

"Sweetie, he can't be. I'm so sorry. Your real father has appealed to the court. He gets to take you home."

"I don't want to go home. I'm frightened. Everyone keeps saying I don't understand what happened to Mycroft, but I do! I don't want to go back!" He looked up at her with tear filled, bright eyes full of terror.

"I'm so, so sorry. I hope that you can come back here soon. But for now, you have to stay with your mother and father. You have to be really, really good for them. We will fight for you, Sherlock Holmes. We will make sure you come back to us." She held both his shoulders and looked him right in the eye.

"Do you promise?" Lizzie hesitated. How could she promise him something that uncertain?

"I promise I'll try, Sherlock. I promise I will fight."

"You can wash my clothes, if you like. As long as you use your smelly detergent."

"Okay. Thank you." She put her arms out, and Sherlock crawled into them, wrapping her around himself, content in his cocoon of tight, warm love.

Monday arrived without the Watson's really realising. By the time it got to four thirty and the social worker had knocked on the door, Sherlock was only just packed and ready. Kevin took the lady into the kitchen for a cup of tea while Lizzie helped Sherlock gather his belongings.

"I got you this" she said, keeling down in front of him. She handed him a teddy bear, very similar to John's. It was dark brown, large sewn in eyes staring lovingly out, a lopsided smile beaming up at the carrier. It looked just like Sherlock when he was happy.

"What's his name?"

"I don't know, you get to decide."

"He can be Harry, because that's a boy's and girl's name."

"Okay, okay" she smiled through tear filled eyes. "You be good for your dad, won't you?"

"I will." He looked frightened all of a sudden, and clutched tightly to the new bear.

"Good boy. Remember, Sherlock, that you are a strong, brave, good boy, and that we love you. We'll try and get you back, I promise!"

"Bye" he whispered, putting his arms around her neck.

"Goodbye, baby."

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