It is the 29th of January, and I am eighty-nine years old, sitting in the garden of my Sussex cottage and watching the world’s only consulting detective play the violin. Her blonde hair is a mass of curls and the heels of her shoes are sinking into the grass as she sways and dances with the instrument. Sherlock has been dead for two years and missing him is an ache in my chest, except for those brief moment when I close my eyes and listen to Rose coax his instrument to life, and dream.
“I’m sorry, Daddy,” comes the soft murmur as the music stops. “I’m going to have to go soon. Miranda said she might need me to look at this really interesting murder she’s got.”
I nod and smile and get to my feet and-
I’m standing in a lab at Bart’s and the most unearthly man I have ever seen asks to borrow my mobile and I say yes, and I do not understand in that moment that I will never stop saying yes to this man.
under my cheek and Rose is crying as she turns me
I am strapped into a bomb and I am telling him to run, and I do not know that I have just carved out his heart and taken it for my own.
haloes her hair and tears fall on my face.
I am standing in front of a grave and asking
for another miracle, not knowing that my miracle is making his way toward me as
I stand there.
I try to
tell her not to cry. I am not sure if I succeed.
I am standing in front of the man I love with
tears on my face, and he draws me close and enfolds me in his boundless
at me and throws her phone to the ground and holds my hands in hers. The sky
behind her is fading to grey, and it occurs to me to wonder if I am dying.
I am wordless and at the end of my rope, and
Sherlock has mercy on me and kisses me and I know that I hold his heart in his
hands and he, mine.
speaking but I can’t hear her. There’s a sound like a train whistle, like a summons
bell, and I can’t hear her.
I am on my knees and I have just asked Sherlock
Holmes to marry me, and he falls to his knees with tears in his eyes and says
yes yes yes like a prayer or a song or the only word he knows.
her hand across my brow and smiles at me again, and the whistle fades.
I wake up every morning for a thousand days and
he’s there, sleep-rumpled and happy and smiling at me as though I’d hung the
“I love you,
Daddy,” she murmurs as her hand cups my cheek. “Thank you for staying so long,
I love you but it’s time to go.”
I’m watching my daughter get married and my
husband is at my side and we go home and cry tears of joy on each other’s skin
and make slow love in front of the fire.
Sherlock I love him, and I’ll see you again someday,” my daughter says and
kisses my forehead.
I’m standing at the foot of a hospital bed, and
monitors are screaming and doctors are shouting but they needn’t bother, he’s
already gone. Always rushing ahead, my beloved, leaving me to tag along behind
him. Well, no matter, I’ll catch up.
I am adrift in whiteness but there, there is a tall shadow in the distance. A man, perhaps, running. He has his coat collar up so he looks cool, and he’s shouting ‘Come on, John!’ and I follow. I will always follow. My legs are young and strong as they haven’t been in forty years or more, and the head of the man in front of me is dark as the midnight sky, and I am young and he is young and we are young here, together. Forever.
Oh, God, yes,” I say, and I run.
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