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Hidden Treasure

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John ducked his head and eyed Sherlock askance. From the time John had woken that morning, the detective had been snapping at everyone and everything, more so than normal. No one had evaded his scathing tongue, not Lestrade, certainly not Anderson—not even John himself.

Realizing Sherlock was about to incite a mutiny, John started to walk forward—either to calm Sherlock down or pull him away, he wasn't certain—when his phone beeped. It was a text from Mycroft: Be patient with him.

John's grip tightened on his phone as Sherlock continued to harangue the entire London police force as well as their ancestry, but he did as requested and held back.

++++++++++++++

In the oppressively uncomfortable taxi ride home, John tried to remain immobile and appear as small as he could in order to avoid Sherlock's ire. He hoped Mrs Hudson was out, because she didn't deserve this kind of treatment from her lodger.

But Sherlock surprised him again when he greeted their landlady with a kiss to the cheek and a few kind words before running up the stairs to their flat.

John stood at the bottom, bewildered.

Mrs Hudson patted his cheek and said, "He'll be fine; don't you worry. Poor dear always has such trouble with the day." She disappeared into her flat before John could ask what she meant.

He spent the rest of the evening trying to stay out of Sherlock's line of fire, and ended up going to bed extraordinarily early.

++++++++++++++

John bolted upright, breathing heavily and trying to let the nightmare fade away. A cuppa sometimes helped, so once his breathing was under control, he slid out of bed and walked carefully down the stairs. As he passed the sitting room, he heard a violin.

Instead of the usual discordant scratching, the music was phenomenal. John was mesmerized. He'd never heard the song before, had no idea who the composer could be, but it was hauntingly beautiful.

Just as he was about to step into the room, John saw tears streaming from Sherlock's closed eyes. John slowly backed from the doorway and returned upstairs.

It took him a long time to fall back asleep.

++++++++++++++

The next day, John struggled to make it through his time at the surgery after his nearly sleepless night. He just wanted to put in his hours, go home, and collapse.

He wearily called in the next patient. "How can I help you?" John asked.

"You can give me a few minutes of your time."

John whipped his head around to see Mycroft Holmes. "Oh my God, what's wrong?" He jumped up as his body started pumping adrenaline, ready for whatever Mycroft threw his way.

"Don't worry, Dr Watson." Mycroft motioned for him to retake his seat. "Everything's fine. I merely thought you deserved an explanation for my brother's behavior yesterday. I probably should have warned you, but I'll admit, I was curious as to how you would react."

John clenched his jaw together. Of course, the Holmes' brothers would share that particular trait.

"I must say, you did admirably," Mycroft went on as if he didn't see John's flash of anger. "Sherlock can be a bit rough on his best days, never mind his worst."

"His worst?" John thought back to the previous day, and Sherlock's over-the-top reactions. He mused, "The violin music."

"Ah, yes." Mycroft smiled sadly. "A piece he wrote for my mother's funeral. He replays it once a year on what would have been her birthday."

The rest of the pieces fell into place.

Mycroft obviously saw he'd gotten the point across, and he stood. "I appreciate you taking care of my brother."

"I didn't do it for you," John snapped.

"And that," Mycroft said walking out the door, "is why you're so very good at it."

Before inviting the next person in, John made plans to pick up Sherlock's favorite takeaway on the way home. It was the best he could do knowing Sherlock wouldn't like being fussed over—even if he needed it.