The Blonde

Check Mate

This chapter is written in multiple viewpoints...I know some people don't like that sort of thing, but this is the final showdown chapter and I wanted to show everyone's reactions. :)

The cab pulled up next to 221B. John got out first. Sherlock leaned toward him.

"I need you to look through her flat. See if he left anything," the detective instructed.

"And what about you?" John asked.

"I'm going to look into something. I'll meet you back here in an hour," Sherlock lied.

"An hour. Right."

John closed the door. Sherlock waited until he was halfway to the stairs then he gave the cabbie the address on his phone. A warehouse in the low rent district. It was first owned by a biscuit company called Grandmother's Best. After they went out of business it was purchased by another company that sold cosmetics. Their best selling cosmetic was the lipstick in Rose's flat.

Usually he'd take John with him, but this was Moriarty and the last thing he wanted to do was give his nemesis two hostages. It'd be easier to do this on his own.

Moriarty's phone chimed. He pulled it out and read the texts.

He's on the move.

Moriarty smiled. He slid his phone back into his pocket. Then he stood up and offered Rose his hand.

"Come, my dear, our guest is about to arrive."

She ignored his offer.

"I'm not your dear," she snapped.

He grabbed her arm and pulled her up. She started to struggle.

"Ah, ah, ah," he warned. "Wouldn't want to get blood all over your shirt, would you?"

She glanced at the red dot on her chest and stopped struggling. Instead she shot him a glare and he returned it with a smile.

"If he doesn't kill you I will."

"Wouldn't that be interesting?"

He led her across the room.

"Where are you taking me?"

"To our mark, have to wait until everyone's in their place."

He ran over the scenario in his mind again. Sherlock would arrive. Moriarty would step out with Rose. A brief exchange between him and Sherlock. Then the trade and then the bullet. Moriarty would retrieve Rose and everyone would live happily ever after. He smiled.

The cab stopped next to the warehouse. Sherlock paid and then climbed out. He stood there a moment, assessing the situation. It looked deserted, but he knew that was a ruse. Moriarty would be waiting inside, no doubt with a trap, possibly meant to kill him.

He crossed the lot and stepped inside. The first things he noticed were the two chairs, about halfway in, side table, tea. Moriarty had been there a while.

"I'm here," Sherlock called, his voice echoing in the vast room.

Footsteps and then Moriarty was visible, his hand clamped firmly around Rose's arm. She looked furious and…there was a bit of fear, but she was trying to hide it. Sherlock resisted the urge to run to her and instead pulled the sonic from his pocket as he walked forward to meet his nemesis halfway.

"Where's your pet?" Moriarty asked.

"Otherwise engaged."

"Ditched him, did you?" Moriarty smiled. "I don't think he's going to take that very well."

Sherlock stopped a few feet from his nemesis. He glanced at Rose. She appeared fine…considering. His eyes moved to the red dot on her chest before returning to Moriarty.

"I have the device."

"All in good time, my dear."

"Don't give it to him," Rose insisted, struggling with Moriarty.

"Rose don't!" Sherlock insisted.

"Yes, listen to him. I'd hate to have to shoot you while we were just getting to know each other."

Rose continued to struggle. There was no way she was going to let that psychopath get his hands on her sonic.

"Then shoot me! I don't care, just don't…" she trailed off as Moriarty pulled a gun and pointed it at Sherlock.

Moriarty glanced from Rose to Sherlock.

"I don't know about you, but I'm getting this whole déjà vu feeling." He turned his attention to Rose. "Now, why don't you just stand there like a good girl while daddy has a little chat?" He turned back to Sherlock. "Now, where were we? Oh, yes, the…sonic."

Sherlock handed the device over. Rose tried to come up with a way to stop the exchange, but outside of something that might get Sherlock killed she couldn't come up with a plan.

"Who told you about it?"

"A friend."

Moriarty told her about his friend. The name wasn't familiar, but everything he knew…there were very few people who had that knowledge none of which should be there. On that Earth.

"Someone from her past?"

She glanced at Sherlock. He knew? No, figured it out. He was brilliant.

"Good. Very good, but then I expected as much."

"Where did you meet this friend?"

"Ever heard of Dr. Hastings?"

Dr. Hastings? She couldn't remember ever meeting a Dr. Hastings.

"No."

"You could say he introduced us."

"And he told you about the sonic? This friend."

"Among other things," Moriarty replied, glancing at Rose.

"He told you about her?"

"How much do you know about her, Sherlock? Really?"

"Enough."

"Enough? That's not an answer and a complete lie if I know you, and I do. She worked in a shop. Did you know that? Just a shop girl from Cardiff. Not very interesting. Until she met The Doctor. Not a doctor. The Doctor. That's his name…well, that's what he calls himself. Very few people know his real name, but that's not the interesting part." He gazed at Sherlock. "Ready?...He's an alien. From another planet."

"What?" Sherlock asked, giving Moriarty a you're completely mental look.

Sherlock stared at Moriarty. Mad. Completely mad. Parallel worlds were one thing…there was science to back that up…albeit unproven science, but the theories made sense. Aliens? That was an entirely different matter.

"I know. It sounds mad, doesn't it? But it's true. He's called a…" Moriarty glanced at Rose. "Time Lord, right?" She didn't betray any hint of recognition. "He has a ship."

"Let me guess…a flying saucer," Sherlock snickered.

"It travels in space, but…and here's the clincher…it travels in time too. Our girl here," Moriarty wrapped his free arm around Rose, giving her a sideways hug. Sherlock's fist clinched. "she traveled with him in space and time. He showed her the stars…literally," Moriarty released her. Wait…Sherlock glanced at Rose…traveled? No, there was no way what his nemesis was saying was true. It couldn't be. "In his TARDIS…T, A, R, D, I, S…Time And Relative Dimension In Space."

A red dot appeared on Moriarty's chest. Sherlock glanced at it, drawing the other man's attention. He looked down, then around the room. John? No, he had no idea where they were. Moriarty pointed the gun at Sherlock.

"Tell your pet to put down his gun," Moriarty insisted.

"He's not here. He doesn't even know about this place," Sherlock insisted.

"DON'T LIE TO ME!"

"He's not," the voice seemed to come from every direction.

PA system. Had to be.

"What're you doing?" Moriarty yelled.

He didn't ask who it was so he must know. His friend? Perhaps. Sherlock glanced at Rose and froze. She was pale, ghost white. Fear. She knew who it was too. It was either someone she never expected to hear again or hoped she never would.

"There's only room on this planet for one psychopath."

Planet? That was an odd choice of words.

"I freed you!" Moriarty shouted.

"Your mistake, not mine. I would say I'm sorry, but…we both know I'd be lying."

A gun fired and Sherlock dove for Rose. He pulled her to the ground. She was shaking. Who the hell could do that to her? He wanted to ask, but now wasn't the time. He waited for another shot. After a few seconds he realized there weren't any more coming.

"Oh, Rose," the PA system again. She lifted her head, but Sherlock was careful to make sure he was still covering her. "If you make it out of this, and we both know you will because you always manage to survive, I just want you to know, I'll be coming for you."

The front of the warehouse exploded. Sherlock pushed her down as wood splintered and flew towards them. Another explosion from the right side. They needed to get the hell out of there. He stood up, helping her to her feet. Her color had returned and she wasn't shaking, but he could see fear in her eyes.

"Come on," he said, grabbing her hand, but she stopped him.

"We can't leave it," she replied, pulling out of his grip and running over to Moriarty who was sprawled on the floor staring up at the ceiling with sightless eyes.

"Leave it," he insisted, trying to grab hold of her.

"No," she snapped, moving out of his reach and then bending down.

The sonic was still in his hand. She grabbed it and then, as if on second thought, felt for a pulse.

"He's dead."

"Good. Now, come on. Or do I have to carry you?" he growled grabbing her hand.

"I'd like to see you try," she said as they ran across the room, his eyes scanning for a way out.

The explosion had ignited a fire, not too bad at the moment, but it was growing. The front of the building…where he came in…was a mass of wood and metal. No way out there.

"I wouldn't try. I'd succeed," he replied.

He needed to talk to her about Moriarty's friend. Find out who he was and who he was to her, but that could wait. He ran towards the only fully intact wall. Window. There had to be a window somewhere. The smoke was beginning to thicken making it hard to see.

"I think there's a window over there," Rose said, pointing, as if she could read his mind.

He couldn't help smiling. She was clever.

As they neared the wall he spotted the window. They raced for it. He grabbed the latch and swung it open. Smoke began to billow out. She coughed. He helped her out and then followed. As soon as his feet hit the ground she grabbed his hand and they were running. Another explosion almost sent them tumbling, but they both managed to stay upright.

When they were a safe distance away he pulled her to a stop. He glanced back at the warehouse, the fire had spread. The building was completely engulfed in flames. She started laughing. He glanced at her and then he started laughing too.

She stopped him with a slap to his arm a moment later.

"You gave it to him," she admonished.

"You wanted me to let him kill you?" he asked.

"You know what he could've done with it?"

"Nothing much since I made sure it was inoperable before I made the trade."

"You what?" she asked, pushing the button. Nothing happened.

"You think I'd let Moriarty get his hands on a weapon like that?" he asked.

She gave him a smile and a moment later jumped into his arms, pulling him into a hug.

"You're brilliant."

He wrapped his arms around her.

"Yes, I know."

She pulled back a bit. He gazed into her eyes.

"And arrogant."

"And brilliant."

"I already said that."

"Yes, but I like hearing you say it."

She rolled her eyes, but she was still smiling. She was beautiful. Even after being kidnapped and escaping an exploding warehouse, maybe more so because of it. The flush of pink in her cheeks. Her wild main of blonde hair. The way she could barely escape death and laugh about it.

"You realize your danger prone activities are going to drive me mad," he said.

"It's called jeopardy friendly," she replied, laughing.

He wasn't this man. Had spent his entire life telling himself and everyone who would listen that he wasn't. He never wanted something as boring and tedious as a relationship, but this woman who rushed toward danger as if it were a game, who laughed after escaping death, she was anything, but boring. As he gazed into her hazel eyes he realized that for her he was that man.

Rose stared into his bluish yellow eyes wishing that they could stay like that forever. That all was right with the world and it was just her and Sherlock and nothing would ever come between them. Wishing she could pretend that she hadn't heard that voice in the warehouse, but she had. Wishing and pretending wouldn't alter that.

Things were about to change because she couldn't hide her past. Not anymore. He had to know the truth. The whole truth and, after seeing his reaction in the warehouse, she knew there was a very good chance he'd walk away. They leave. They always leave.

He tightened his grip on her waist, pulling her close. She put her hand on his chest to stop his progression.

"I can't," she said.

There was a question in his eyes accompanied by a flicker of pain, which was replaced a moment later by that coldness he wrapped himself in. He was bringing down his defenses. She knew that look. Had seen it in someone else.

"I see," he replied in that cold, calculating voice.

He loosed his hold on her waist and she stepped back, regret lancing her heart. Regret and guilt that she was the cause of his pain, but she had to lay herself bare. He deserved that.

"I want to. I do, but there are things you don't know," she explained.

"About him. The voice in the warehouse," Sherlock deduced, still with that calculating voice.

He was still hurt and he wasn't about to let his defenses slip.

"Him…and other things."

"Tell me."

"Not here. I'll tell you when we get back."

She turned to walk away, but he grabbed her arm, not forcefully, but with purpose.

"Tell me now," he insisted.

She put her hand on his.

"This doesn't just affect us." For a moment his defenses slipped and she saw…hope?...it was gone in the next instant, the walls of ice crashing down, and she couldn't be sure it was ever there. "It affects John too."

He released her, but she could see him trying to work out what was going on. He'd find out soon enough and, most likely, she'd be on her own again. She shouldn't have let him in to begin with, but unlike Sherlock, she never did have control over that sort of thing.

Standard Disclaimer.

Thank you to all my brilliant readers!

If you have time reviews are always welcome. :)

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