A lot of people are getting worked up about the Moffat interview, but I really don’t see anything wrong about it.
In my headcanon, Molly is always the mature, sane one, somebody who is emotionally healthy and independent from other people’s expectation of her. Come on, she works for a morgue, makes morbid jokes, has a very unique taste in clothes and has a healthy dating life. That’s not a person who is insecure. She’s someone who knows herself well enough to seek her own happiness. She has always been in control of her feelings, even towards Sherlock.
This is why I argue that her love for Sherlock will NEVER make her less of a person, because love that makes you a better person will never diminish you. She is not desperate, insecure or unhappy. She walks inside 221b with all smiles, head held up high and confident, Moffat commenting that she probably got over it and was shagging someone. They all point to one thing. This is a woman in control of herself.
Molly Hooper will not wait for anyone to make her happy, ladies and gentlemen, not even for Sherlock Holmes. She will find that happiness herself.
Now, what do we say about Sherlock? He is devastated, confused and out of his wits, and this just makes it so much more delicious. He is struggling around the enormity of his feelings. He is someone who has spent most of his life protecting himself from emotions. He has grown up believing that Emotions = Weakness. It will not take just a couple of days to get over it. There will be a lot of contemplation, a lot of fear and denial, a lot of doubt.
And finally, it is Sherlock’s turn to grow. Finally, it’s his turn to prove to Molly that he can take care of her. He needs to sort his feelings out and decide whether he wants to pursue the responsibility of having a relationship with Molly. So many lovely and yummy angsty questions surface: Is he going to chicken out from his feelings and just be friends? Is he going to take the leap and experience the painful transition to an emotionally available man? How will he do it? Who will he ask for advice? I can imagine Sherlock reading books about relationships, having mind-palace scenes with Mind-palace Molly, testing out theories, arguing the benefit between a red rose or a piece of candy… Ahhh so much material….
If anything, that Moffatt interview all but validates Molly as a strong, independent girl. A girl that (LO!) is in love, but still in control. Cos let me tell you one thing. I may ship Sherlolly, but Molly Hooper deserves the world. Molly knows it. Sherlock knows it. She will not settle for a tall, curly-haired ball of a man-child, sorry. If he won’t straighten up his life and fight for her, Molly will move on. Oh, she can still continue loving him as a friend. But how about Sherlock? What are you going to do about it, Mr Holmes? This isn’t like a case, is it? It’s a lot more challenging.
AN: Cinderella-esque drabble set in the 1800s (or thereabouts). Unbetaed because lately I’ve just been flying by the seat of my pants and it’s starting to show in research/quality. Will need to stop that soon. :)
Walking toward the enormous, ornate doors, Molly took a deep breath and pressed her hand against her stomach in hopes of calming the sudden fluttering of butterflies.
She could do this.
Her black gown fit her like a glove. She had spent the better part of three months sewing in what little free time she had to make the ball gown out of her mourning dress. After her father passed the year before, she was left with no more family; no one left to mourn. A black gown was surely a social faux-paus, but with the mask on her face and the silver chain threaded through her flowing, uncovered tresses, no one would recognize her as the morbid morgue mouse. And she couldn’t afford to buy even a third-hand dress. She’d had to scrimp and save for the silver beading she’d added to the sweetheart neckline. The fitted sleeves ended at her elbows and the skirt billowed out from the bottom of the corset, the fabric brushing the ground with every twist she took.
She couldn’t stop the excited and nervous smile from spreading across her face.
The manservants on either side of the entrance opened the doors to the ballroom. Music and laughter filled her ears and she pulled her shoulders back.
She was going to the ball!
He’d danced with seventeen women. And all of them were insipid little dullards. Sherlock caught his mother’s pointed glare over the head of his current dancing partner, a particularly arrogant duchess with nefarious designs on his crown, and forced an emotionless smile.
They whirled about the floor and Sherlock glanced at the line of masked ladies waiting for their turn with him. It stretched around the enormous room. He inwardly groaned. Why had he agreed to this?
Behind him, the doors opened and a subdued hush came over the attendees in a wave.
Latecomers were not an uncommon occurrence, so it was a surprise to Sherlock that the small orchestra trailed off in a discordant mess and the conversations around him come to a stumbling halt as everyone turned to look up.
Sherlock followed their gazes and turned around.
A woman stood at the top of the stairs, petite with soft brown hair. Her features were pleasing, if a bit plain. But was most striking about her was the black gown she wore. The silver beading along the neckline shimmered in the lights as her chest rose and fell. Already he could hear the snide comments from those around him about the audacity of the stranger for brash, inappropriate colour she wore, but he found himself admiring her for that alone. Her hair was loose and fell to her waist in a gentle wave and, unlike all the other women, her arms were bare of jewelry or gloves.
Sherlock quirked an eyebrow in intrigue.
At last, someone not concerned with ‘proper etiquette’.
Abandoning the duchess, Sherlock kept his eyes locked on the newcomer and slowly made his way toward her as she descended the stairs. A dark blush stained her cheeks at being the center of attention, but she kept her head held high. When she reached the bottom, Sherlock broke free of the crowd and stepped in front of her path.
She looked up at him and her brown eyes widened behind her mask in shock when she realised who was blocking her way.
'Your H-Highness.’ She belatedly remembered to curtsy and Sherlock cursed the ridiculous custom even as he bowed at the waist.
A small gasp escaped her lips when he took her hand and pressed a kiss to the soft skin. When she tried to pull it back, his fingers caressed the flesh of her palm and he felt the callouses on her fingertips and he glanced down to note the minute scars on her fingers.
This woman was most certainly not born of royalty.
A genuine smile creased his face and he held fast to her hand.
'May I claim the first dance?’
The blush traveled down her neck and spread across her collarbone.
'You may,’ she replied in a soft, but confident voice.
The gaping onlookers parted as he led her to the center of the dance floor. Sherlock turned and placed his free hand on her waist, tugging her closer. She had to tilt her head up to look him in the eye. He could see the pounding of her heart against her throat and, for the first time, found himself flattered to be admired by a woman.
The first notes of a waltz flowed through the air. With confidence, he stepped forward and they fell into the dance with ease.
'You are not royalty.’
Instantly, her red cheeks paled and fear crossed her features. Sherlock regretted his untethered tongue and rushed to reassure her.
'Do not worry, I have no intention of outing the one person in this room who has not made me wish to perish from boredom.’
She swallowed nervously and glanced over at the King and Queen, who watched them unabashedly. But then she looked up at him and suddenly Sherlock felt as if she was reading his very thoughts. How could this stranger see him so well?
'Then I have arrived just in time,’ she quipped with a mock serious frown. 'One cannot have the crown prince dying at his own ball!’
Sherlock chuckled and spun them in a quarter turn. The skirt of her gown billowed out around his legs and he found himself entranced by her smile. Though not as conventionally beautiful as many of the other women, with thin lips and a small figure, her gentle confidence and courage made her all the more beautiful in his eyes.
'What is your name?’
Her eyes twinkled mischievously. 'Now, why would I tell you that? It would rather spoil the anonymity of a masque ball.’
'True,’ he agreed. 'But I find myself at an unfair disadvantage. You know who I am, yet I must spend the evening wondering who you are.’
'I doubt that. Once our dance is finished, you will be on to the next woman and forget all about me.’
Sherlock sobered and slowed to a stop. 'I doubt that.’
Her cheeks darkened further and she lowered her eyes. But Sherlock could see the shy smile she was trying to hold back. Readjusting his hand on her waist, he pulled her just a bit closer and led them back into the dance.