The early morning sun trickled past the blinds, caressing two sleeping bodies and peaceful minds. John Watson awoke to a face full of dark curls and his clock radio playing somewhere distant.
"You are my sunshine, my only sunshine..."
The morning was normal, but felt special. Maybe it was their dreams. Maybe it was their intertwined fingers. Everything was warm and calm and everything smelled of Sherlock. It smelled like early morning and his own brand of softness. In that moment, all was perfect. Johnny Cash played on from the Oldies station, and the sounds mingled with the sun. Sherlock's arms were draped over his sleepy frame, his shoulders, and his soft breath was mesmerizing. It blew in a very reassuring way; in and out. Inhales and exhales trailed behind each other in a docile rhythm. But the alarm... Work. He couldn't be late again.
Careful not to wake the detective and reluctant to break the spell hanging over them, he slowly made his way out of the warm haven of blankets. He took a hot shower, the steam waking him up, breathing through him. When he returned to their bedroom to get dressed, he was greeted by sleep riddled, blue green eyes. The last notes of a song were fading out. They held that warmth and pliability that only came with awakening to a slow ticking clock. When he spoke, his voice smiled, in his own discreet sort of way. Good mornings were handed out, tied with bows.
It was becoming routine, this six - in - the - morning bout of simplicity; normalcy. It was nice... More than nice. The waking up cuddled together, and the eyes and the the smiles. The faded line between sleep and awareness. The morning - breath peck on the cheek.
Then came the see you laters, which followed the breakfast eating - at least, it followed John eating whilst simultaneously failing to persuade Sherlock to do the same. The sun dragged itself across the sky. The song was stuck on repeat, in their minds. It played on silently.
London clouds were expectant as they drifted past, with the breeze brushing them away. The clouds were waiting, hoping for a better view. The crime scene photographs in John's hands were spotted with crimson, as the cab sped down a bustling street. The radio boasted only static, buzzing gently, until the station was changed.
"...You make me happy, when skies are grey."
John was the first to speak.
"This damn song again."
The words weren't angry, or annoyed. His lone sentence mused and chuckled. It was greeted by a fleeting glance, laced with a smile. Tentative fingers wrapped around his own, from across the cab. The clouds made room for the sun, and it illuminated the world.
He didn't mind the gentle reminder of the sun reflecting off of muddled blue green eyes at all; he welcomed it. He carried that with him out of the cab, tight in his left hand. It soothed the tremor. It lightened his heart. The corpse, oddly, didnt have one.
It was two weeks later when Johnny Cash made a reappearance, through the lips of a young girl. A pensive detective sat on a park bench, below a half hidden sun. The sun was watching, with one tired eye open. It was mid afternoon, and the flat was suffocating. Lonely. The skull wouldn't talk to him.
She sang each verse as it were her own. Her doll wore a powder blue gown, the color of a forget-me-not, and her hair looked soft, and warm. The doll watched her sing with painted porcelain eyes. The girl handled the lyrics and the doll with care. Her hair was braided and her fringe was growing too long. Her shoes were muddy.
"You'll never know dear, how much I love you..."
The man in the trench coat remembered that early morning. He remembered that he still didn't have a case. He lit a cigarette.
The storm kicked and punched at the walls. It howled in anger and hissed with rage. It was muted through the walls and subdued in the windows, but it was furious outside. It was late (or very early), and the moon and the stars drowned in the rain. The kettle boiled and test tubes clinked. It was the soldiers first nightmare in a long time, and the sociopath held him until he stopped shaking, then held him for longer.
The tea was poured and a song was hummed, through pursed lips and a tired mind. A simple melody. John knew he heard it somewhere before. The scientist breathed in the sounds. The springs of an armchair shifted and the pages of a book were turned. A pencil scratched out calculations.
"...So please don't take my sunshine away."
Bones scraped and a gun was reloaded. The only sound was the blood beating in their ears. A case, at long last, and a good one. A serial killer who worked on their feet. Their knuckles were white and their feet pounded onto the unforgiving pavement. The sky was dark and expectant. The moon was on the edge of its seat. Four seemingly unrelated deaths, four different countries. He was good - his mistake was minute, but fatal.
The stars gave way to a warehouses high ceiling. The pavement gave way to a cold concrete floor. The air was stale as their breathless lungs sucked it in, and their pace never altered. It all happened in slow motion. It could've been seconds, hours, or days.
John went left, and Sherlock went right. That was their first mistake. The warehouse was a maze of boxes, sprawling before them. They searched, on shuffling feet. A flashlight lead their separate ways. Their breathing was ragged. Their eyes were strained.
That was when he heard it. A single gunshot. It pierced through the darkness, from somewhere behind him, to John's right.
"Sherlock!" he cried. He tread on the silence, which lie in broken pieces under his feet. He ran... Oh how he ran.
A trench coat covered the detective and his shock of raven hair was already drenched in deep crimson.
The shooter had fled. The darkness was seeping in. John's panicked heart was desperately fighting its way out. He mumbled his name, over and over.
"Sherlock, Sherlock... Oh god, Sherlock..."
"I love you", he added in, as an afterthought. He said it a million more times, just in case.
The bullet hit the point of no return. He was bleeding out, and quick. Doctor-Mode took over; This wasn't Sherlock Holmes, the aggravating, amazing genius that John loved with all of his heart. It was a young soldier in Afghanistan, bleeding out under his hands. Dying on the cold cement floor. The one he dreamt about, when the storm threatened.
Sherlock pushed and pulled and fought his way through every second of consciousness. The waves crashed over him and he swam as long as he could. He couldn't go - not yet. The sun had only started to rise.
Dawn was breaking through the dingy windows, snapping off into bits and pieces of feeble sunlight. The ground was deceiving, and it welcomed Sherlock's withering soul with sharp, unforgiving fingers.
In his panic John couldn't help but realize that Sherlock wasn't going to survive. The doctor in him told him that, despite his pleas. Cold knees smacked against the ground, and their shadow stretched out long and dark. Sherlock was falling apart, and his flame was diminished. He spiraled up into a cloud of ash.
Three things happened all at once.
John held two terrified hands in his own, he looked deep into the straining gaze that held him still, and he began to sing. The start of the end. It was cracked and torn and splattered with teardrops. He was finishing the song.
"T-the other night d-dear, as I lay sleeping,
I d-dreamt I held you in my arms. "
His voice broke out from beneath him and his head fell. His deep blue eyes dripped a rich, desperate hue. A final brush of two pairs of lips. The rest came out in a strangled whisper.
"Wh-when I awoke d-dear, I was mistaken,
So I b-bowed my head and I c-cried. "
Sherlock never got to hear it. Brilliant, shimmering eyes darkened and fluttered closed. Skin slackened and hollowed. A pleading heart faded into nothing. With a final squeeze of tired fingers, John was alone. It was early morning again. The last notes of a song were fading out.