Breaking Down

Sherlock is afraid and confused, and John doesn't understand.

Takes place in HOB (Hounds of Baskerville).


1. There is nothing wrong with me

John sat down in the chair with a sigh. Thank god THAT was over, honestly, what a waste of time. He chuckled and shook his head slightly, enjoying the feel of the fires heat on his face. Turning to the left, John's blue eyes took in Sherlock's dark curls and steely eyes as they stared forwards into the fire. Not that they actually /see/ the fire; most likely going through all the images he undoubtedly saved from Baskerville. John smiled in fond amusement. He spoke up, not really expecting Sherlock to reply, not really caring if he did. But when his friend did reply, his answer caused John's world to tilt.

His voice shook, the normally deep rumbling baritone turning into an unrecognizable whisper. "Henry's right. I saw it too."

John started, his entire body freezing in shock. He managed to choke out a "What?" in response, and it came out more mangled than he would have liked. But honestly, Sherlock couldn't be saying what he thought he was saying...

Could he?

"I saw it too, John."

Apparently yes, he could. But what...what did that mean. "Just....just a minute, you saw..." He swallowed, trying to dislodge the lump in his throat that had appeared with Sherlock's response. It didn't work, and John was left nearly choking at his friends next sentence.

"A hound, out there, in the hollow. A gigantic hound!" Sherlock's knuckles turned white as his grip tightened, and John could see the sweat beading on his forehead in visible drops.

John was aware he was speaking, but he had no idea what he was saying; all he could hear was Sherlock's words going round and round his head. He finally snapped out of it in time to see his friends shaking hands, and hear the very audible tremor in the normally composed voice.

"Look at me: I'm afraid, John." John watched as Sherlock gestured towards himself. His face twisted into a modicum of a snarl as he spat out the word,  "Afraid!" But the snarl disappeared in a second, and his anger along with it, leaving only fear in his eyes. "Always been able to keep myself distant. To force myself from feelings; but you see? Body's betraying me." John could no longer feel the fires heat, or hear the other peoples chatter in the room; all of his senses were focused on the man in front of him, as he tried so desperately to take in what he was saying.

'What's WRONG with you?' He thought, and winced when Sherlock answered with, "Me? There is nothing wrong with me!"

Apparently he hadn't only thought that, but actually said it out loud. He wants to apologize, he really does, but he can't. Because despite how rude it was, it is exactly what he wanted to say, and honestly? He isn't actually all that sorry. But watching his best friend grasp his head with what looks to be a painful grip, and close his eyes and SHAKE, John can't help but worry that something is seriously wrong.

But Sherlock didn't have breakdowns; it just didn't happen. He solved murders for a living, he analyses dead bodies for just wasn't possible!

"THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH ME, DO YOU UNDERSTAND?" Sherlock's voice rose to a nasty shout, his eyes crazed and his skin flushed. Whether in anger or desperation, John didn't know.

Sherlock Holmes didn't do desperation either. 

"You want me to prove it, yes?"

John wanted to be able to say, 

"No, of course not. Of course there's nothing wrong with you." But he couldn't, not now, not when it would feel like a lie on his tongue. Because right at this moment, with the glistening sweat, and the heated crazed gaze, and the shaking limbs...John couldn't help but wonder.

He tried to listen to Sherlock's deductions, catching something about the woman behind them, her and her dog, and the hair on her pants or something. But all he could think of was Sherlock. Thinking he had seen a...a gigantic hound.

"I use my senses John, unlike some people. So you see, in fact never been better; so just Leave. Me. Alone!"

Sherlock Holmes, where the only thing that matters was logic, seeing something that was completely IMPOSSIBLE...that shocked John into silence. Shocked him, and terrified him, because if Sherlock could go crazy like this, seeing things that weren't there...then what hope was there for someone like himself? Merely mortal, ordinary, boring little John Hamish Watson?

The answer? Absolutely none.

The soldier in John bristled at Sherlock's tone, even while the doctor wanted to placate, and the friend, panic. He responded to the detectives snarl, trying to mask his panic and concern with anger, because Sherlock never received worry or concern well, and John thought his friend was panicking enough for the both of them at the moment.

But his heart froze when he heard Sherlock's next four words, and anger was the farthest thing from his mind.

Now pain, pain was a close companion, and John let his military training control his movements as he tried to wrestle down his automatic emotional response. The military wasn't good for everything though, and his training hadn't prepared him for dealing with this. As he left, his back straight and his head high, his mind flooded with the words, and Sherlock's face as he said them.

"I don't have friends."

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