Thank you again all for the great reviews. The story is clipping along at a very nice pace, so here's a bit more. Before I get to that, some responses to reviews:

Nocturnias: In answer to your question: Yes.

Nicky Jean: I certainly couldn't say no to Sherlock asking to stay in my flat.

Ella: Thank you so much. Sherlock's characterization is really the one I fret about the most. Molly is a bit easier, since we only saw little slivers of her and she's in a situation where she would grow and change a lot. But Sherlock is SO well defined and SO resistant to change.


Molly had never paid any mind to the innuendo that John Watson and Sherlock Holmes were a couple. Three weeks into living with Sherlock, she was starting to wonder if there was some fact in that rumour. One would have to be in love with Sherlock to live with him.

He kept odd hours- if he slept at all. He would carry on conversations with no audience save for Toby- when Toby felt like paying attention. Despite her continued protests that he would get himself caught, he persisted in leaving the flat in order to get a lead on Moriarty. He would also snoop in her things and become highly personal ("Molly, you must go to the chemist's to prepare for your upcoming menses."). He barked orders and told her things she was doing were dull or dim-witted.

He was more Sherlockian than normal, if that were possible. Molly knew deep down it was because he was frustrated by his inability to move around freely, to find Moriarty and- most importantly- to see John. But did that mean he had to take it out on her?

The day of Sherlock's funeral finally arrived. It had been delayed to let the furor of his demise die down. It was to be a small ceremony. Sherlock's brother had pulled many strings in order to keep it out of the press. Molly dressed in a conservative black dress, one she hadn't the heart to wear since her father's funeral.

When Molly stepped out of her bedroom, Sherlock looked up from applying another nicotine patch to his arm. "You look nice."

Molly turned red in the cheeks and quickly looked away. "Well... Umm... Th-"

Sherlock pulled himself to his feet and moved in close to Molly. "Why do you look nice? You are not advertising what little assets you have, so you are not going on a date. That dress style has not been popular in about five years, yet it's only been worn once. You have bad memories of that dress. It is black and very understated. You wore it when your father died. You think of it as your funeral dress. Seeing as the only person you know who has died recently is in fact standing in front of you, I repeat my initial question... Why do you look nice?"

After three weeks with Sherlock, Molly had gotten a bit better dealing with the copious amounts of information he liked to heap out in one dose. "You don't think I should go to your funeral?"

Sherlock nodded. "I am still alive. Therefore, you have no reason to grieve."

"I thought I was supposed to pretend you are dead," Molly pointed out. "Everyone's going to notice if I'm not there. They might start to catch on."

Sherlock shook his head, turning away from Molly and picking up a pile of paperwork she had brought home to work on, most likely looking for things she had missed. "Everyone knows you are highly emotional and had an infatuation with me. Call John in tears and tell her you were too distraught to attend the funeral." He tossed the papers down onto the kitchen table. "You did not take into account the puncture wounds between this man's toes. It was murder, not a heart attack. Given John's current emotional state, he won't check on you at home. I require you to do something that will be most easily accomplished while both John and Mrs. Hudson are away from Baker Street."

Molly was about to protest that playing with John's feelings even more was cruel, but she didn't feel like having Sherlock argue with her until she relented. "What do you need?"

"I need my violin," Sherlock replied. "As scintillating a conversationalist as your pet may be, my deductive reasoning has been handicapped by the loss of my instrument. While you are there, you can also retrieve some of my own clothes. The continued donning of clothing a former lover left here is getting to be quite tiresome, especially as he was at least three inches shorter than me."

"That's breaking and entering," Molly pointed out.

Sherlock shook his head. "Of course it isn't." He held up a key. "I still have a key. It is just entering."

Molly took the key from him. "You want me to go to John's flat without asking and take something that he has told me you play at all hours?"

Sherlock just stared at Molly. "I enjoy that our increased interactions have allowed you to stop stammering so much in front of me. You are almost interesting when you are not tripping over yourself." He reached into the pocket of his borrowed trousers- a pair of denim jeans that looked patently ridiculous on him. He pulled out a note. "While you are on Baker Street, I need you to find a boy. He lives on the street near the tube station. His name is Wiggins. Give him this note. It contains a stipend for the continued care of John and Mrs. Hudson I arranged prior to my death."

"Why do you think you can just order me around?" Molly asked desperately.

"Because I live with you," Sherlock replied, as if it was the most obvious thing in the world. He thrust the note into her hand.

Molly looked down at the note she now clutched. "Is this what John went through when he was living with you?"

"No." Sherlock replied. "He did not have a regular job. I can hardly rob Barts of its only competent in Pathology."

With a resigned sigh, Molly headed towards the door. As she left, she wondered how it took thirty-five years for someone to try to kill Sherlock Holmes.

221B Baker Street was in an absolute state. It had never been the most organized of flats. Sherlock always had numerous experiments in the works in order to keep himself from becoming bored. When he did become bored, things like the smiley face etched into the wall in bullet holes occurred.

It seemed Sherlock's absence from the flat was even worse than his occupation of it. Half-finished experiments had been tossed around the flat in a rage. Dishes and clothes were strewn all over. John had obviously not been taking care of himself properly.

Molly gathered a few items of clothing from Sherlock's room. She hoped they would go unnoticed. As smart as John was, he was not Sherlock and would not be acutely aware of absolutely everything, especially given his current emotional state.

Sherlock's violin was another matter entirely. It was sitting on the kitchen table, utterly pristine. The case was still open, as if it was just waiting for its owner to pick it up once again.

There was no way in the world John would not notice it had been taken from the flat.

Molly took out her phone and texted Sherlock at the new mobile he had insisted she buy for him. She wrote about the situation regarding the violin. A heartbeat later, she had received her reply:

Take it anyway.

Sighing, Molly shut the case and slipped the violin into the shopping bags she had acquired to carry out Sherlock's things. This seemed like a bad idea. Then again, very few things regarding Sherlock ever seemed like a good idea.

Molly clutched the bag tightly to her chest as she left the flat, careful to lock the doors behind her. She rushed towards the tube stop, keeping the bags close to her chest.

She stopped when she heard a melodious sound coming from the street corner. There was a young man sitting on the corner. He couldn't have been more than eighteen. He was rail thin and wearing an oversized, threadbare coat that bore a striking resemblance to Sherlock's own despite the many years of wear on it. He was playing a mouth organ, a ratty looking waxed paper cup in front of him. She knew she had seen him before but had never paid him any mind. Now that she thought about it, it seemed patently ridiculous she should miss him. He stood out, seemed somewhat out of his time, an almost Dickensian look to him.

"Spare change, Miss?" The boy asked as he took the mouth organ away from his lips. "Play you a pretty song for it."

"Are you Wiggins?" Molly asked, knowing what the answer would be before she even asked the question.

The boy looked around furtively before narrowing his gaze on Molly. "Who's askin'?"

Molly fished in her pocket and drew out the note. She placed it in Wiggins's cup. "That's for you." She rushed off, trying to get her Oyster card out of her pocket.

"You knew 'im then?" Wiggins had pulled the note out and read it, tucking the billfold included into his pocket. "Must've trusted you a lot."

Molly considered this statement. "I was his Pathologist," was the only answer she could give.

"I'll keep my boys on Missus, but we 'eard rumblings about the Doc. Might not be able to keep an eye on 'im."

When Molly returned to her flat, Sherlock was pacing the living room, hands clutched behind his back. When Molly entered, he stopped his pacing and turned to face her. "Going to your own funeral is something I suggest every person do. It provides the most honest reflection of the role you have played in the lives of those around you."

Molly shook her head fractionally. "You sent me to Baker Street and made me miss your funeral so you could go yourself and risk being seen by everyone?"

"Clearly I was not seen. It was far more important that I go to my funeral and gauge the wellbeing of my associates than for you to pretend to snivel and cry." He snatched the bags from Molly's hands. "Now I need you to go out, find John, have coffee and pretend to snivel and cry."

"Wh-" Molly brought a hand to her forehead. "But- I just got back from getting your violin!"

"It's irrelevant," Sherlock replied, tossing the bags aside haphazardly. "John told Mrs. Hudson he would not be returning to Baker Street. He will not notice the violin is missing."

Molly arched a brow. "You didn't want your violin. You just wanted to give John an oblique indication you're alive."

Sherlock quickly glanced towards Molly. "Oblique? Good show, Molly. I believe I am having an influence on you. I didn't want him to be certain, but I wanted to give him a sign. Anyway, I need you to find John and find out where he is going if he is not returning to Baker Street."

"Wiggins said something about that," Molly reported. "Said he didn't think he'd have to keep an eye on John."

"He would," Sherlock said distractedly, beginning to pace anew. "He was always one of the most useful in the Homeless Network. Well? Go!"

Molly shook her head. "Sherlock, you can't just... Well..."

"I can't what?" Sherlock asked.

"Well... Umm..." Molly looked down and wrung her hands.

Sherlock rolled his eyes. "I rather thought we had past your stammering when you yelled at me for testing trajectory patterns using your brassiere as a makeshift slingshot."

"You can't expect me to run all over London doing things for you!" Molly suddenly exclaimed. "You already had me commit a felony for you today!"

"I hardly think retrieving my things at my request will get you sent to prison."

Molly huffed out a breath. "Well... You had me fake your death."

"Faking your death is not a crime in of itself in the United Kingdom unless one fraudulently collects insurance," Sherlock pointed out. "I did not have life insurance. I wanted to make sure Mycroft would be forced to foot the bill for the entirety of my funeral."

"My part was illegal!" Molly protested. "At the very least, I could lose my license! Get sacked!"

"Fine." Sherlock smiled tightly at Molly. "Don't do this for me then." He spoke through gritted teeth. "Do it for John. You like John and if you were in his position, you would feel bad, wouldn't you? Make sure he is all right."

Molly nodded. "Fine. I'll do it for John." She picked up her phone and sent off a text message. Five minutes later, there was a response. She looked at it. "He wants to meet me at the café now."

Sherlock threw himself down onto the couch. "I will see you when you return."

Molly turned towards the door.

"You know," Sherlock's deep velvety voice drawled, causing Molly to look over her shoulder. "If the situation were reversed, I'd ask him to look in on you."

Molly sat in the café across from John. He looked absolutely wretched, dark circles under his eyes, his mouth curved down in a permanent frown. She wanted to jump up and tell him that Sherlock was still alive, was fine and bothering her something awful in her flat. But she knew she couldn't.

"I'm sorry I missed the funeral," Molly murmured softly, throwing in a couple of sniffles. She had forced herself to think of the worst things she could in order to produce some tears. In the end, she hadn't needed to try so hard. The fact she was lying to John and Mrs. Hudson was enough to make her cry. "I just... I lost my head a bit. Was all ready to go." She gestured to her black dress. "I just couldn't... Get out."

"You didn't miss anything," John replied listlessly. "It was only Lestrade, Mrs. Hudson and Mycroft. Mycroft didn't even let their mother attend. Too worried about her. His headstone was revealed. They told stories about him. That was it."

Molly reached across the table and grasped John's hands. "Are you all right, John? Is there anything I can do?"

There was a strange spark in John's otherwise deadened eyes. "Tell me there was something odd about his autopsy. Something you hadn't expected. Something... Out of the ordinary."

Molly pulled her hands away. "John, he jumped from a roof." Her stomach twisted even as she told the half-truth. Sherlock had jumped from a roof, but his autopsy had been out of the ordinary for being completely fictitious.

John sighed. "I know. I wasn't expecting you to say anything different." He looked down. "There's nothing else you can do. I'm afraid I won't be here for you to help."

"What do you mean?" Molly asked. "Where are you going?"

"Africa." John replied. He let out another sad sigh. "I have joined Médecins Sans Frontières. I need to get out of London."

"But John-" Molly started.

John shook his head. "I need to get away for now." He leaned in and pressed a kiss to Molly's cheek. "Thank you, Molly. I'll write you."

Maybe living with Sherlock had influenced her. She could read behaviour better now. She could tell he had no intention of coming back, no intention of writing to her. And as John left the café, Molly noticed he was walking with a slight limp.


The the Holmes books, Wiggins is the head of the Baker Street Irregulars, which is the equivalent of the Homeless Network. I'm sorry they didn't use the original name. I think it's an awesome name (although I understand why they didn't, as most of Holmes's support would come from outside of Baker Street).

Médecins Sans Frontières is the French and original name for "Doctors Without Borders", a humanitarian organization that provides medical relief in warn-torn and developing countries. Save for the United States and Canada, it is mostly referred to by its original name.