John Watson never expected to live a long life.
At first, he was just too young to understand. At ten, how could he understand that there are people out there that have lived his life eight times over, and he can’t even remember 40% of his life. He was ten years old and his life consisted of worries about the cute girl at school and sneaking past his bedtime with his sister.
In high school, he was just so depressed . But, that was before he really knew what that meant. During that time, his life consisted of today and the mountain that the rest of life seemed to be. So, by the time he graduated, he didn’t have a plan. He hadn’t expected to get this far. Someone told he should be a doctor, so that’s what he did. Someone told him he should go in the army, so that’s what he did.
And he felt so alive . His life consisted of today and saving the life at his fingertips. Everyday he bet his life and it was this time when he was flirting with death in-between the bullets and bombs that his body felt the most alive. A gun in his hand and uniform on his back, he was aware that he was living. Sweat dripping, ragged breathing, screaming muscles, aware of the blood pumping through his heart, pouring from his shoulder. Ready to lay his life for his fellow men; a kind of self-harm that was celebrated. Nothing quite compared to the high that came with saving a life.
Then he was discharged. Limp, shoulder wound, and scarred memories as his only mementos. A cane and a gun were his only friends. They went everywhere with him. Everyday bled together as he tried to convince himself that he wasn’t happier in the middle of the war. His life consisted of waking up, looking at the gun that seemed to get heavier everyday, and falling asleep and hoping that he didn’t wake up in the morning.
(He would later refer to this period and all that fell before that as Pre-Sherlock. He would learn that there was only this period of life and one other: With Sherlock.)
And then John met Sherlock Holmes.
A beautiful disaster of a human being. He was a volcano finally erupting after 500 years. A comet taking it’s time to wink at Earth as it flies by. An orchestrated car crash. A game of jenga played like it’s chess. He knew John better than John knew John but yet, he did not know himself. Would talk about a gruesome murder rather than feelings. Spoke about deleting memories like that was a normal thing. Always got around with the wrong crowd.
With Sherlock, John’s life consisted of trying to solve a murder in the late hours of the night in their shared flat and constantly having his life threatened. Sherlock was like a drug; John knew he was bad for him but John couldn’t stop. John’s brain has altered itself to depend on Sherlock and he was addicted. Sherlock was a warzone and John was the happiest he's ever been. Sherlock is the Sun and John is the Earth. Without Sherlock, there would be no life.
And then Sherlock kills himself.
It feels like someone just put a stop sign on the freeway that is John’s life. They slammed the brakes when they were going 100 but John wasn’t ready. He’s hurling head first into the abyss, falling faster, longer than before because he was higher that he’s ever been. Everytime he closes his eyes, he sees Sherlock dead in front of him and blood has never bothered John before but now it does. He sees brown curls and sharp features and his heart is hammering. His life consists of missing Sherlock and missing Sherlock and missing Sherlock and missing Sherlock and
Fuck, Sherlock made him so angry.Why did he have to go and die? Why couldn’t he bring John with him?
One year goes by and it feels like ten times that. John picks up his gun and aims it at his head. He pulls the trigger, but he’s always been (un)lucky.
John realizes that he loves Sherlock.
It’s dumb and obvious, he knows this, Sherlock is his life line. People could tell him that he’s obsessed and he wouldn’t be able to argue. John knows it isn’t fair to Sherlock to rely his own life on his but John misses Sherlock. He misses the war.
(Is it weird that John misses having to complain about the body parts in his fridge?)
Sherlock is an asshole and obnoxious and selfish and self-absorbed and John loves him. Loves him more than life itself. John knows this isn’t right. He’s lamenting about a dead man, blaming Sherlock at this sadness and depression that John can’t escape.
Then, Sherlock’s not dead and John is beyond mad.
He is beyond happy, too; but, the red seems to overpower everything.
(That bastard had let him grieve, tear up the flat, learn things about himself, try and live without him in the world.)
It’s the night when they are first talking to other. They are fighting more than talking. Sherlock knows just how to push John’s buttons.
“I don’t understand why you are so angry.”
“Sherlock!” Is all that John says at first, trying to fit an entire dictionary of meaning into the name. Frustration bleeds out of him and he balls his fists. John doesn’t even know what he wants to say but he knows he wants to say it.
And it’s spilling out before John can stop it, like it’s a pot of water boiling over the sides. “I fucking love you!”And it’s the most true thing he has ever said and he feels alive. He can feel the blood rushing to his face and swirling through his heart and buzzing in his fingertips.
Sherlock takes a step back, surprise painting his face, providing evidence that he can actually feel emotions. He seems like John just slapped him. John feels like Sherlock may be short-circuiting. “What?” He asks, seemingly wounded by feeling the emotion of confusion for the first time in his life, throwing the dictionary back at John with just this one word.
And John has already left his bleeding heart on the table in-between them, so he acts. He can’t pinpoint when he started feeling like this towards Sherlock but reckons that it started when he was born.
He kisses Sherlock.
The genius beneath his fingertips, a war zone around them, and John is splitting at the seams. He has been for a while, actually. Baker Street seems light years away and John is rocketing into the ninth cloud.
John separates from Sherlock, an apology on his lips. But, Sherlock grabs John’s head and kisses him and John’s life feels like it’s just beginning, a long, winding road in front of him.