The Lock to his Heart
"I am back! …what a day. How was you-… is that my laptop?"
The younger man looked up grinning and gave a nod.
"Where is yours?"
"Over there.", he said and pointed towards the sofa.
John gave a sight.
"Don't tell me you were to lazy to go over to the sofa."
"Nope. Not this time."
John approached with a puzzled look.
The grin became a bit wider.
"'Bout what?", John asked, still a few steps away from the desk.
"Well, you left it open."
"I was in a hurry, That is no invitation for you…"
The doctor stopped in mid sentence and went pale. He did remember what he was writing, when he forgot time and had to rush to work.
"Yes?", Sherlock asked with glistering eyes, about to laugh at his friend.
But when he looked up there was way more anger on Johns face then usually.
Without another word John took the laptop, slammed it close and was about to turn on his heel.
"Oh come on, I have read worse…"
"You were not supposed to read THAT!", John shouted immediately. "That… that was…"
"Just another poem for a girlfriend. I know. A very special one though. This is quite good. A lot of you in there. Not the usual masquerade to impress her. You are serious this time."
"Nice deduction. Now shut up!", were the last words John could press out between clenched teeth before he had to leave for his room. His eyes were burning. He leaned against the closed door, his breath was heavy when he threw his laptop onto the bed.
Meanwhile Sherlock was staring at the empty spot on the table. Of course he had memorized the document before his eyes. For now. He could delete it later. But even though the words were amusing to him, something about them was troubling his mind. He closed his eyes and rested his chin onto the tips of his fingers to think it through.
Two days went by without the two men meeting.
While Sherlock spend most of the time in the living room, John managed to sneak in and out without talking to his flatmate. After work he tried to spend as much time in the city as possible, but everything reminded him of Sherlock and made him angry. Even the homeless people that were watching him.
"Great, now I'm slowly turning paranoid.", he mumbled to himself. He knew it was nonsense. The people were not watching him, not following him in Sherlocks name.
"I wish…", he added and shook his head violently. A few passers by looked confused and moved on a little faster.
John just kept on walking through the city without really watching his steps. When he looked up again, his eyes were staring at the numbers 221b. He sighed and entered his home.
"You are back early today.", Sherlock said and made John almost jump back down the stairs he was about to ascend. The slim man was standing right before him on the steps. Smiling a weary smile, eyes still a little helpless.
"So what?", John asked maybe a little more harsh than indented.
"She turned you down."
"Not quite so."
"She did not read it yet?"
"She did… in some way."
"What? John there is only a "she did" or "she did not" as answer."
"Can I please go up to my room?"
John turned his head down in desperation. His friend had read the poem. He even read between the lines how important it was for John and how much effort was put in every word, to display the true John Watson. Yet he missed the most important thing. The title and it's meaning. But how could he say that. Saying 'I love you' might just be the same and as difficult for him.
"You read it."
"That does not mean she can't read it anymore."
"There is no need for anybody else to read it."
Johns voice was low, his throat very dry and he wanted to turn around and run. But his feet were as heavy as a lead weight and the hand that was resting on the handrail was holding on to it tightly.
There was silence and John took a careful look. Sherlock had disappeared and left the puzzled army doctor behind. Without a clue what was going on in the younger mans head, John made his way to the bedroom and locked himself. His fingers were shaking and a voice in his head screamed in agony.
-Go see him-Go talk to him-Go hug him-Just go-
He buried his hands in his blond hair and dropped onto his knees. The pain in his chest grew until it filled his whole body. When and how he got into his bed, he did not know. But even the sleep did not provided the necessary relief.
A week went by and now it was Sherlock who stepped out of Johns way. Not quite unpleasant, he had to admit. It gave him time to calm down. After all, he was sure that Sherlock did not understand, what the poem or his words really meant.
I turned out, he was mistaken, when the door opened so suddenly that it banged against the wall, leaving a mark there.
"Sherlock! You can't… I am… this… get out, I am bathing!"
The door was shut as loud as it was opened and two clear light blue eyes looked at John. The doctor was blushing immediately trying to pull as much foam over himself as possible. But the look on the younger mans face seemed to go right through it.
"What do you want?"
"Did Mrs.Hudson take your skull again?"
"What then?", John asked a little pissed already.
"I need to talk to you."
The self secure look disappeared and all of a sudden Sherlock Holmes looked like a schoolboy before his first class. John felt his own throat went dry and it slowly occurred to him, that he was wrong about his friend.
"You? Me? Us?", Sherlocks voice went even lower with every word until there was silence again. Neither of them dared to look at the other. Instead John watched the bubbles before him disappear one after another.
"Us?", John finally repeated after what seemed like eternity.
The detective gave a nod.
"The poem…?", he added with a lot of hesitation.
A nod again.
John tried to clear his throat. His cheeks were burning when he slowly turned his head. Sherlock had made a few steps and was now only inches away from the tub. John stared at his legs, unable to move or speak.
"If I don't get stuff like the title, it is not because I am stupid or don't understand sentiments. It is only because I never expected-"
Both men had trouble speaking. That was why John finally looked up. Looked directly into the troubled eyes of his dear friend. There was nothing he could say now. His only hope was, that Sherlock understood the meaning of this look.
And after another eternity of silence a small smile formed on the slim lips of the detective.
"Thank you, John."
It was now that he dared to smile as well.
"No need… I was just…"
"No, John. I mean it. Thank you."
The smile grew stronger.
"You are welcome."
The tall man slowly sunk onto his knees and being face to face, lost himself in Johns blue eyes for a moment. Since he was not used to sentimental outburst it took him some time, but eventually he lifted his arms and put them around Johns shoulders, leaning his face against the older mans neck and cheek.
Without thinking John put his wet arms around Sherlock as well, while he closed his eyes. He felt very light all of a sudden.
He did not know if Sherlock shared his feelings, but for now, knowing that he understood and appreciated them was enough for John.
"But you have to admit… "The Lock to my Heart" is a rather stupid title.", he said and John could feel the smile tickling his cheeks.
"As soon as you have a better idea, I change it.", he said and gave a laugh as well.