"Sherlock's on his way to the auction house to have a look round," John said, taking a seat in the chair as Mycroft leaned against his large wooden desk. "I've filling him in on all the-"
"That's not why I wanted to see you," Mycroft interrupted.
"It's not?" John asked in confusion.
"Why did you want to see me then?"
When Mycroft sent him a message saying he was sending a car John assumed it had to do with the stolen painting. Was the elder Holmes still worried about Sherlock being ill?
"Woman?" John asked.
He had no idea what Mycroft was talking about. This was the first he'd heard about any blonde.
"John, don't toy with me."
"I'm not." Mycroft narrowed his eyes as he folded his arms across his chest. "Honestly. I don't know what you're talking about."
"The blonde woman my brother was seen having dinner with last night."
The blonde woman that…Then he realized who Mycroft was talking about.
"That's what you called her."
"That's her name."
"Is it?" Mycroft asked, raising his eyebrows.
What the hell did he mean by that? That was her name. At least, it's the one she'd given him and Sherlock.
"Yes. That's what she said."
"Rose what, exactly?"
"Rose Tyler," Mycroft mused. "Where did you meet her, and this time the truth."
"Why?" John asked, but the elder Holmes didn't answer. "What does she have to do with anything?"
"I'm merely interested in my brother and his…relationships."
His flatmate wasn't in a relationship and, even if he was, John certainly wasn't going to discuss that with Mycroft.
"Sherlock isn't in a relationship."
"No. They went to dinner. That's all."
"I've seen the picture, John."
Wait. The picture? The one that Sherlock found at that crime scene? Was Mycroft the one who set that up?
"It was you," John deduced, shooting an accusing finger at the elder Holmes.
"Me?" Mycroft asked, taken back.
"You said you've seen the picture. I know Sherlock didn't show it to you so you must've been the one…How could you do it?"
"I assure you I have no idea what you're talking about," Mycroft said, putting his hands up in surrender.
"The crime scene. The picture in that bloke's pocket."
"The picture. You said you've seen it."
"A picture my security detail took last night. They sent it to my mobile."
"Let me see it," John demanded.
Demanding things wasn't something he usually did, at least, not with Mycroft, but he had to know if it was the same picture. There wasn't much he wouldn't put past the elder Holmes, but he didn't want to believe that Sherlock's brother would stage the comeback of London's most infamous criminal.
Mycroft shot John a reproachful look, but obliged by pulling his mobile out, bringing up the picture, and then handing his phone to John who then gazed at the picture. The angle was different, but it must have been taken at about the same time as the one in Sherlock's flat.
"Now, what is this about?" Mycroft insisted as John handed the mobile over.
"Moriarty," John said.
"But…" Mycroft's eyes widened. "He's dead."
Mycroft leaned his hands back against the desk and eyed John.
"There was a bloke holding a gun to a woman's head. He said he was told to kill her to send a message to Sherlock."
Mycroft pondered John's explanation for a moment.
"Why her? Who was this woman to my brother?"
"Just a server in the restaurant they'd been to," John dismissed.
"Then what happened?"
"Rose disarmed him," John said.
"The blonde?" Mycroft asked, in surprise.
"Yes, but someone shot him. Sherlock thinks he was being watched."
"And the picture?"
"It was in his coat pocket."
"What makes him think it was Moriarty?"
"The word Burn was written across the picture."
"It's something Moriarty said when he strapped that bomb vest on me. He told Sherlock that if he didn't leave him alone he'd burn him."
"If Sherlock thought he was dead then why is Moriarty going after him?"
And here was the bit John didn't want to get into. Sherlock had made it a point to leave Mycroft out of his fact gathering, but there was nothing for it.
"He's been accumulating evidence that Moriarty's alive."
Mycroft seemed lost in thought for a few minutes, then he caught John's eye.
"The blonde…Rose…She was with Sherlock when he found the picture?"
"Yes, but I don't think she has anything to do with it," John defended.
"Why?" Mycroft asked.
"If she did then why would she have disarmed that bloke?"
"It could've been part of Moriarty's plan."
Part of Moriarty's plan? He planned on having the man he hired killed instead of the woman? That didn't make any sense.
"What do you mean?"
"As long as she's close to Sherlock she could keep an eye on him."
So, having Rose disarm the man would make Sherlock trust her? Okay, he could see that, but not with her. Mycroft was making assumptions without having met her.
"I don't know," John said.
He had some suspicions about Rose, but working with Moriarty? She didn't seem the type. Plus she'd shown them the device she used to disarm that bloke. There was something off about her, but he decided to talk to Sherlock before revealing more information to Mycroft.
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