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Observed (Sherlock)

Title: Observed
Author: Morgan Stuart
Fandom: Sherlock
Disclaimer: This universe does not belong to me; I'm just an appreciative visitor. I make no profit from this fan work.
Description: He watches over the faithful.
Historian's Note: This takes place after events depicted in the second-series Sherlock episode "The Reichenbach Fall."
Author's Note: This is a 221b ficlet (221 words, the last beginning with "b").
Warnings (Highlight to Read): Implied spoilers for "The Reichenbach Fall"



The two men arrived separately within seven minutes of one another. Two hours and forty-six minutes after the latter entered the pub, they exited together.

Despite the layers they wore, he could read the familiar language of their bodies, trace the changes their shared fellowship had wrought.

The sag of the older man's shoulders spoke more of chronic weariness now, a bit less of punishing defeat.

The tense lines drawn by grief and anger in the younger man's limbs had eased slightly; his hands, no longer clenching into restless fists, gestured as he spoke. He nodded to punctuate a comment he made, glancing up at his companion with a wry twist of his lips.

This wasn't quite a proper smile; the answering gruff exhalation wasn't quite a proper chuckle.

It was as close to "fine" as either man had appeared in eleven weeks and nine days.

As the two parted, he deduced from past experience details he couldn't see: Lestrade tucking his chin into the worn folds of his scarf, the tips of John's ears turning pink from cold.

Each man setting his jaw, anticipating a new day.

They would meet again, not as mates sharing a few laughs, but as the last adherents of a dying faith seeking communion, reaffirming truth.

"Sigerson" would be watching.

His friends, they still believed.


THE END


Vital Stats: Originally written in April 2012.

In "The Adventure of the Empty House" by Arthur Conan Doyle, Sherlock Holmes explains that he used the name "Sigerson" as an alias while pretending to be dead during the Great Hiatus.

Comments

( 35 comments — Leave a comment )
impishtubist
Apr. 12th, 2012 03:49 pm (UTC)
Oh, this is so lovely. I like especially, They would meet again, not as mates sharing a few laughs, but as the last adherents of a dying faith seeking communion, reaffirming truth.
morganstuart
Apr. 14th, 2012 04:52 pm (UTC)
Oh, thank you! I'm especially glad you liked that line. I became smitten by that metaphor of the faithful and their fellowship, and that sentence sort of drew it all together for me.

I really appreciate this!
thesmallhobbit
Apr. 12th, 2012 04:01 pm (UTC)
At least they have each other to provide some comfort, someone to share what they know to be true. Lovely as ever.
morganstuart
Apr. 14th, 2012 04:52 pm (UTC)
Very true! And look, your appropriate icon is appropriate. :D

Thank you so much, my friend. I appreciate it.
litlover12
Apr. 12th, 2012 04:04 pm (UTC)
Well done!
morganstuart
Apr. 14th, 2012 04:53 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much!
(Deleted comment)
morganstuart
Apr. 14th, 2012 04:54 pm (UTC)
Aw, thank you! I'm so glad this seemed fitting to you. I appreciate it!
mazaher
Apr. 12th, 2012 07:39 pm (UTC)
"It was as close to "fine" as either man had appeared in eleven weeks and nine days". I am reminded for some reason of the old story, told and fretold innumerable times, of the dead soldier who asks Death for a short visit home to check on those he loves.
Thank you for the strange comfort of the image of Sigerson, watching.
morganstuart
Apr. 14th, 2012 04:54 pm (UTC)
Oh yes, that's a perfect parallel. Most fitting. Sigerson is something of a ghost, after all, isn't he?

Thank you so much for your kind words, my friend.
ascendant_angel
Apr. 12th, 2012 09:13 pm (UTC)
That's lovely. I like this one even better than your last one, which isn't to say I didn't enjoy that.

Edited at 2012-04-12 09:13 pm (UTC)
morganstuart
Apr. 14th, 2012 04:55 pm (UTC)
Oh, I'm so pleased to hear it! Thank you so much.
cookiefleck
Apr. 12th, 2012 10:18 pm (UTC)
So sad, we see that time has softened but not erased the effects of Lestrade's and John's ordeal. Poor Sherlock, hoarding details and seeking affirmation of their faith in him. I've always liked the literary device of observation because it illuminates both the observer and those observed. Well done!
morganstuart
Apr. 14th, 2012 04:58 pm (UTC)
Oh, thank you so much for this, my friend!

Poor Sherlock, hoarding details and seeking affirmation of their faith in him.

Indeed! I feel worse for him, in a way, than I do for them. At least they have each other's convictions as support. He's all alone with his secrets.

I've always liked the literary device of observation because it illuminates both the observer and those observed.

Yes, that's it exactly. Excellent point.

I really appreciate your kind comments. Thanks again!
fanbot
Apr. 12th, 2012 11:58 pm (UTC)
Very nice.
morganstuart
Apr. 14th, 2012 04:58 pm (UTC)
Oh, thank you! I'm so happy you liked it.
imachar
Apr. 13th, 2012 03:52 am (UTC)
Wonderful. I just watched The Reichenbach Fall this evening and was compelled to go in search of "aftermath" fic and this was a lovely find.
morganstuart
Apr. 14th, 2012 05:03 pm (UTC)
Oh, I'm so glad this was well-timed! :) I'm really tickled that you liked it. Thanks so much for your kind comments.

And look! What an appropriate icon you have!
(Deleted comment)
morganstuart
Apr. 14th, 2012 05:04 pm (UTC)
Oh, I'm glad the hope came through along with the sadness. Thank you so much!
maggie_conagher
Apr. 13th, 2012 02:27 pm (UTC)
I am puppy fostering and achy with weariness but this was so much more than a 221 B. It is a poem and a prayer.

The lack of relevant comment is my shortfall, not your excellent work.
morganstuart
Apr. 14th, 2012 05:23 pm (UTC)
Oh wow. This... your amazingly kind words... I sort of had to stop and do a "happy dance" for a few minutes.

"A poem and a prayer": you have no idea how grateful I am for this. It felt stylized and metaphorical to me, as I was trying to shape it into words, and this, what you've described, is how it felt in my head (if that makes any sense). I wasn't sure how much of that made it onto the page - or screen, as it were.

I'm so grateful to you for such lovely feedback. It means a lot.

splix
Apr. 13th, 2012 04:00 pm (UTC)
The mood here is perfect. Thank you.
morganstuart
Apr. 14th, 2012 05:23 pm (UTC)
Oh, I'm so pleased you think so! Thank you very much for this.
beledibabe
Apr. 13th, 2012 06:26 pm (UTC)
Hope is strong in them. ::cuddles all three::

Beautifully wrought, dear.
morganstuart
Apr. 14th, 2012 05:24 pm (UTC)
Yes it is! Indeed. ::cuddles them when you're done with them::

Thank you so much, my friend!
bk7brokemybrain
Apr. 14th, 2012 04:21 am (UTC)
So sad. When Sherlock cried on the top of Barts, I think he knew how much he was about to hurt John, and how much he'd miss him and his life. This drabble reminds me of that moment. He may be watching and observing, but he's really missing.
morganstuart
Apr. 14th, 2012 05:25 pm (UTC)
He may be watching and observing, but he's really missing.

Oh yes, that's it exactly! And just the way you describe it makes me get all sniffly. *hugs him and you*

Thank you as always for your lovely feedback.
archea2
Apr. 14th, 2012 09:55 am (UTC)
Oh, beautiful! As always, you catch the mood deftly in a few words.

(But, damnit, I'll be nagging you girls to write reunion fics long before S3 comes out!)
morganstuart
Apr. 14th, 2012 05:30 pm (UTC)
Oh, thank you. This puts me on cloud nine! I really appreciate it.

(Augh, reunion fics! Thus far, with the exception of Sofie's post-Reichenbach reunion with Sherlock, I've resisted. I don't see it happening, although I do have post-reunion material in the works, possibly. I'm just dying to find out how Moftiss handles "the scene"! So long to wait, though... so... very... long... *sigh* Woe! Your nagging, however, is always cherished and appreciated. ;))

Thanks again, my friend!
methylviolet10b
Apr. 15th, 2012 05:42 am (UTC)
Lovely and entirely believable. This is a great mashup between BBC and canon ideas.
morganstuart
Apr. 19th, 2012 12:28 am (UTC)
Oh, I'm so tickled that you think so! Thanks so much.
marysutherland
May. 6th, 2012 08:45 pm (UTC)
Clever and plausible observations by Sherlock of John and Lestrade: as if he can read all their body language, but still can't quite understand how they're feeling. I particularly liked the image of John's hands unclenching.
morganstuart
May. 14th, 2012 08:24 pm (UTC)
Oh, thank you so much for for this. I'm glad it seemed plausible, how much Sherlock did (and didn't) understand from his observations. I'm particularly pleased the description of John's hands unclenching worked for you. (I love how Martin Freeman uses his hands/fists when portraying John.)

I really appreciate your kind feedback! It's so helpful to know what in particular worked.
trishkafibble
Jul. 8th, 2012 10:30 pm (UTC)
Lovely, lovely, lovely, lovely, lovely!! That, and I ditto impishtubist on her favorite line. Perfection.
morganstuart
Jul. 9th, 2012 12:53 am (UTC)
Thank you!!! I've really enjoyed exploring the challenges posed by the 221b format. It makes me very happy to know that, despite its brevity, this spoke to you. I'm so glad that line about "the last adherents of a dying faith," in particular, seemed fitting. Your encouragement is most appreciated. I'm grateful to you for taking the time to read and comment!

Edited at 2012-07-09 12:54 am (UTC)
( 35 comments — Leave a comment )