The Distracting Blonde
Sherlock glowered at John's back as his friend made a hasty retreat. The joke about the sofa aside he knew his friend had a point, even if he didn't want to admit it. The moment he'd seen that look in her eyes. The one that told him she was saying one thing, but intending another he knew. She was going after Moriarty. Whether it was to retrieve her phone or to put an end to his games Sherlock couldn't say, but the idea that she was going to put herself in that kind of danger again made all rational thought flee his mind and that was something he wasn't used to.
Why? Why did she have to be this? The woman who drove him to distraction. He knew he was overreacting. He should be helping her not holding her prisoner, but his heart. That dreadful thing that had remained silent for years wouldn't hear of it.
John was right though. In her position Sherlock would escape the first chance he got and go after Moriarty alone. That thought was enough to change his attitude. He couldn't let that happen. It didn't matter that she'd been in dangerous situations before. He knew what Moriarty was capable of and the last thing he was going to do was let her walk into a lion's den alone.
The door opened and she stepped into the living room wearing pink plaid pajama shorts and a tank top. Her damp hair hung loose. She crossed the room toward him.
"Where's John?" she asked, distracting his attention enough to make him realize he hadn't been breathing.
"He's…um…" He shook his head. "Gone. Upstairs. Bed I think."
"I…um…" He looked away because she was distracting all rational thought from him mind. How could she walk around her flat looking like that when she knew he was there? Was she trying to drive him mad? He focused on the wallpaper. "Can we…talk?"
"Talk?" she asked.
He chanced a glance at her. She appeared to be trying to figure out if this was some sort of game. He gave her a smile.
"Okay," she said, slowly, as if she wasn't entirely sure what was going on.
She sat down next to him, which was the exact spot he hoped she wouldn't choose because now she was sitting near him, looking like that, and he could smell the strawberry shampoo in her hair. She faced him, one bare leg on the sofa, knee bent, the other hanging off the side. He turned in her direction and as he did she absentmindedly brushed her hair back, exposing the side of her neck.
"What did you want to talk about?" she asked.
"IthinkImighthaveoverreacted," he mumbled as his eyes trailed down the side of her neck.
"Sorry…what?" she asked, an amused smile creeping across her lips.
"IthinkI…um…" He shook his head to clear it. What the hell's wrong with me? He focused on the wallpaper over her left shoulder. "I think I might have overreacted…a tad."
"A tad?" She turned her head to see what he was looking at. "What're you-"
"Nothing. Sorry. Yes," he said, turning his attention to her eyes.
He could do this. Just focus on her eyes. Not what she's wearing…or her damp hair…or her skin…or Bloody Hell! He stood up.
"What're you doing?
He began pacing.
"Exercising my legs. Now, as I was saying…I think I may have overreacted."
He ignored her question, which he was sure would lead to an argument, which would lead to, he glanced at the broken door. Yes, anyway…
"I never meant to take away your choices or make you feel inferior. That was never my intention."
"I know," she replied, stopping him in his tracks.
"You were worried."
"I could see that and with the break-in and all…" she trailed off.
"Yes," he said, "precisely."
He watched her, trying to work out if she was playing some kind of game, but he didn't see that. No, she was being sincere.
"I should've told you about Moriarty getting into my flat. I'm sorry."
Apologizing? Maybe she'd come round, decided not to foolishly put herself in danger.
"But…" she eyed him.
"Could you sit down? It's kind of hard to have a conversation with someone who's pacing." He paused. Sit down? Near her? That was definitely not a good idea. "Please?"
Oh, bloody hell. He intended to sit in the chair. Had every intention of sitting as far from her as he could, but his body didn't want to listen. Instead, he found himself sitting back on the sofa, not as close to her as he'd been, but close enough.
"But," she continued as he tried to focus on her eyes, "That doesn't mean I'm going to let someone else make decisions for me."
"I'm not going to…" She put her hand on his and for a moment words ceased to exist. His eyes that had been doing a fine job of focusing on hers suddenly dropped their attention to her lips.
"I know you care about me." What? His eyes snapped back to hers. How…oh, right. "And…if I'm honest I…care about you too." Wait. Really? What did that mean? As a friend? More than a friend? Where the hell was John when he needed him? "But you can't be this man. The one who tries to make me do whatever he wants because I'm not that girl, all right?"
His hand shifted, not so he could feel her pulse, but her skin instead, because this wasn't a game. This was truth. Honesty. Something foreign, but with her it felt right.
"Agreed," he said, his voice lowering an octave.
"Can I…trust you?" More than a question and it was accompanied by a flicker of fear in her hazel eyes. He wanted more than anything to extinguish that flame.
"Yes," he replied because in that moment he would never hurt her, would never let anyone hurt her.
He'd fought like hell against the current that was pulling him to her, but, even a genius knew when he'd been bested. She pulled her hand away and reached into her pocket. He hadn't even realized her shorts contained pockets. She pulled the sonic out and handed it to him.
"Why?" he asked, realizing what her actions met. That she was putting her trust in him.
She wrapped her hand around his. The one holding the sonic.
"We'll go together, yeah?" she asked, giving him that distracting smile.
He gave her a smile in return.
"Together," he replied.
Her eyes lit up. He immediately committed the sight to memory. He'd rather remember her in that instant than anything else in any universe.
"Night," she replied, leaning in and kissing his cheek.
It took every ounce of willpower he contained to keep himself from reaching for her, but he maintained his composure…barely. After he watched her disappear into her room, closing the door behind, he slid her sonic into his pocket, lay down, and retired to his mind palace to gaze at the picture he tucked away.
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