Sherlock Holmes did not trust. He did not trust and he shouldn't have trusted and he was never wrong. But, most of all, Sherlock did not feel.
"And what do you think?"
Sherlock raised an eyebrow when he didn't receive the answer he'd hoped for.
"Traitor," he mumbled, discarding the discussion with a wave towards the skull sitting next to him on the coffeetable.
He flopped around, turning his back on the empty, accusing eye-sockets.
"Well, what do you know," he mumbled into the queen-and-country pillow he'd movedstolen from that chair.
He sat up with a start and moved towards the window.
He'd thought it was a bluff.
He'd pointedly told him, too.
A bluff to scare him into submission, as it was all those times before, only Sherlock did not submit and this time he had not responded, for it was not in Sherlock's nature to care.
He'd been too confident and now he was stuck with an empty house he no longer called a home, for a house was not a home without himhimhim and what was he going to do now; he was stuck with answers he did not want from a skull that did not feel and this bloody pillow that only smelt like aftershave and knitted sweaters and that distinguished smell of tea he'd grown to associate with JohnJohnJohn.
Perhaps he should've done what he'd wanted to do from the start.
He should've pinned John Watson down.
Quite literally, indeed. Pin him down as he had that butterfly in his fourth grade or pin him down as he had his first ever pet mouse and force him to stayandneverleavehim.
But he'd expected John to never leave, to be different. He'd expected himself to be wrong, but no, he was never wrong and he should've known.
He didn't want to be disappointed. He didn't want to be, but he was.
Not in John. God no. That would be foolish.
No, disappointed in himself.
Sherlock Holmes didn't trust. He did not trust and he shouldn't have trusted and he was never wrong. But, most of all, Sherlock did not feel. He did not remember feeling and therefore, he had never felt.
Disappointed in those people who thought he could. And now he was alone.
He walked to the kitchen when he realised he couldn't do anything.
He didn't know how to do anything and he needed John. Needed. Needed.
But Sherlock didn't need or care. Sherlock did. But Sherlock could not do. What was he going to do if he couldn't do?
He attempted to make tea, but John's tea was always warm and most certainly did not taste like dishwater.
He drank it anyway.
Sherlock noticed he was not nearly as happy about a triple murder (all at the same time; strange, interesting-) but no, he couldn't be bothered because he was Sherlock Holmes and it seemed Sherlock did feel and could be wrong and yet still could not do.
Only now, he noticed, he did no longer want to do. He no longer felt the need to move, only thinkthinkthink.
He lay on the couch, his face pressed into that damned pillow that now smelt like mints and flowers and Christmas and John and that he'd tried to throw away, but those Goddamned feelings; oh how he hated them, uselesssillyfoolish.
Nearly seven hours.
It had been nearly seven hours since John left.
Sherlock had grown frustrated.
Frustrated at the skull because it did not speak or admire or accept or feel.
Frustrated for feeling too much. For not wanting to do. For lying there, in his God-ugly, horrible gown which he loved but John hated and he'd do anything, even throw the gown out, and sniffling into one of those itchy sweaters John'd worn so proudly, his eyes swollen from godknowswhat and his face blank.
His mind, however, was anything but, chanting a steady mantra of pleasepleasepleasepleasedon'tleavemealone, because Sherlock's mind was a scary place and it kept telling him, in between the pleasepleaseplease, that he'd already been left like all those others had left him and no wonder, because he was a freakwrongwrongwrong.
When John Watson dragged his suitcase back up the stairs after a childishly long fit of anger and annoyance and guilt and leaving, he expected the house to be empty.
He expected for Sherlock to be bouncing about a horribly mangled body and exposing their affairs by the size of their jeans without his help.
And he fully expected to be met with his amusingly arrogant mug when he'd solved it and he would return home and John would have gone crawling back like a sick puppy.
He did not expect Sherlock Holmes asleep on the couch in that hideous dressing gown he hated but Sherlock loved and he'd grown to accept as something that belonged, eyes red as his usually pale cheeks, clutching John's favourite sweater and having seemingly stolen his favourite pillow – the pillow Sherlock'd gotten him to make him feel at home.
And then he realised how stupid he'd been, for Sherlock would never want to get rid of him and could not get rid of him and always appreciated him, for here was where John Watson belonged and Sherlock would be lost without his blogger.
He put down his suitcase and ignored it because he had been sillystupidfoolish for leaving and he'd never do it again because Sherlock cared and felt.
John looked into the teapot for only seconds and noticed the bubbles regular tea was not supposed to produce almost automatically, pouring it into the sink, where it hissed and smoked.
Sherlock needed John to do and John needed Sherlock to be.
Yet, before he put the kettle on, he took the pillow from underneath the curly, sweaty hairs, because that pillow belonged on his chair and everything would be the same as before and home, for his house was not a home without his chair and his tea and his Sherlock and to John, Sherlock was irreplaceable.
And, when he looked at the discarded and ignored skull, John knew he was just as irreplaceable to Sherlock.