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Even The King (Sherlock)

Title: Even The King
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: "Only a fool never doubts."
Historian's Note: This takes place during 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): Spoilers for "The Reichenbach Fall"




"And then, even the King began to wonder."
- Jim Moriarty's "The Story of Sir Boast-A-Lot," as told to Sherlock Holmes, "The Reichenbach Fall"

"Only a fool never doubts."
- King Arthur to Sir Lancelot, Camelot



He'd come to terms with the fact he wasn't infallible years ago, and he'd swallowed a great deal of black coffee and cigarette smoke and personal pride since then.

To Lestrade's mind, that was the beginning of… if not wisdom, then pragmatism: the humility to ask for help, to seek out others' insights when they might prove useful.

Any honest detective second-guessed himself.

Added to that, Lestrade had Sherlock's repeated word - and the Chief Superintendent's as well - that he was an idiot, didn't he?

When the objections first appeared, of course he wondered.

He was duty-bound to do so.

Never mind that the thought burned like ashes and bile. Never mind that discovering he'd been not only a dupe but an accessory to some murderous charade would break him, as surely as superiors' reprimands and a wife's betrayal and the daily sight of violent death hadn't done.

He stared down "what ifs," scrutinising his recollections of past cases, imploring the facts to speak clearly for themselves.

They vindicated him and his loyalty. Swiftly. No, he hadn't been mistaken.

Not about Sherlock, at least.

But the team Lestrade had assembled, the colleagues he'd respected, the very institutions he'd long served, all so readily manipulated, twisted: they were another matter entirely.

As for the promise of justice…

Oh, he doubted.

Bitterly.



THE END

Vital Stats: Originally written in April 2012.

Comments

( 46 comments — Leave a comment )
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thesmallhobbit
Apr. 11th, 2012 08:47 am (UTC)
So glad you're back. This is beautiful. And so sad, one part of his life vindicated, but the larger part, that he'd spent so long building up so quickly and forcibly torn down.
morganstuart
Apr. 12th, 2012 10:19 am (UTC)
Oh, thank you so much, my friend!

And so sad, one part of his life vindicated, but the larger part, that he'd spent so long building up so quickly and forcibly torn down.

I'm so glad this came through and that it works for you. It really is a tragic turn of events, knowing the system to which he's given his life has been used against his friend and ally. And there he stands, in the middle, between them. Woe!

I really appreciate your kind words. :)
fengirl88
Apr. 11th, 2012 08:51 am (UTC)
seconding what thesmallhobbit said - beautiful and sad, and right.

Edited at 2012-04-11 12:51 pm (UTC)
morganstuart
Apr. 12th, 2012 10:20 am (UTC)
Oh, thank you so much! I ache for Lestrade and the position in which he finds himself here. I'm so glad this worked for you. I appreciate your kindness!
melliyna
Apr. 11th, 2012 08:53 am (UTC)
LESTRADE AS KING ARTHUR!!!!

Apologies for the caps lock I just, apparently have A Thing for it and you write it so perfectly - genuinely Arthurian feel - sad, beautiful and hopeful.
morganstuart
Apr. 12th, 2012 10:20 am (UTC)
YAY!

Thank you so much. I'm absolutely delighted that this worked for you. You've put a huge smile on my face!
(Deleted comment)
morganstuart
Apr. 12th, 2012 10:22 am (UTC)
Oh, thank you so much, m'dear! *hugs you*
(Deleted comment)
morganstuart
Apr. 12th, 2012 10:39 am (UTC)
Thank you so much. Poor, poor Lestrade: my heart aches for him. It means a lot to know this seemed properly moving. I really appreciate it!
litlover12
Apr. 11th, 2012 09:15 am (UTC)
Fantastic!

("Camelot" quote FTW!)
morganstuart
Apr. 12th, 2012 10:40 am (UTC)
Oh, thank you so much! :D I'm so tickled you liked the Camelot reference, especially.
impishtubist
Apr. 11th, 2012 09:37 am (UTC)
Very beautiful and sad. Well done, as always.
morganstuart
Apr. 12th, 2012 10:40 am (UTC)
Oh, thank you, my friend! I really appreciate it.
bk7brokemybrain
Apr. 11th, 2012 10:23 am (UTC)
I love that Lestrade is as open-minded as any scientist, willing to revisit the evidence. And I'm glad he was able to believe in Sherlock and himself. Very cool moment.
XOXO
morganstuart
Apr. 12th, 2012 10:49 am (UTC)
Oh, this does my heart good! I'm so, so glad this worked for you. Thank you, my friend. :)
splix
Apr. 11th, 2012 11:23 am (UTC)
This is excellent. I don't read a lot of Lestrade POV and this feels very much like him - it has bite and soul to it. Thank you.
morganstuart
Apr. 12th, 2012 11:14 am (UTC)
Oh, this makes me so happy! It means a lot to hear that Lestrade's "bite and soul" come through properly here. I really appreciate your kind words. Thank you.
eanor
Apr. 11th, 2012 11:41 am (UTC)
So glad to see you're back! :-)

This was very poignant as usual. Poor Lestrade - but then one could say he's the wisest for allowing doubt and testing it scientifically. I really liked that he wasn't so easily fooled. And the first sentence is my favourite! :-)
morganstuart
Apr. 12th, 2012 11:15 am (UTC)
Thank you so much! I'm so happy that this seemed moving and properly in character to you, and I'm particularly thrilled that you liked the first line. :D I really appreciate your kind comments.
mazaher
Apr. 11th, 2012 02:19 pm (UTC)
Sometimes one's honest best is simply not enough, and fighting against something as impersonal as institutions and public opinion is the hardest of tests. I still hope that Lestrade will be vindicated in S3-ep.1. Meanwhile, this short story is as masterful as usual for you: welcome back, and thank you!
morganstuart
Apr. 12th, 2012 11:16 am (UTC)
Oh, well said! I couldn't agree more. I'm so happy that this worked for you. Thank you for your encouragement, my friend!
lastwordy_mcgee
Apr. 11th, 2012 03:05 pm (UTC)
Love this.
I see it as a beginning-- this sounds, to me, like Lestrade preparing for war. He has come to some painful realization, but he also can fall back upon knowing his own integrity is pure and that he was right. That's a place of great power, for someone who knows how to wield it.

And he does.
morganstuart
Apr. 12th, 2012 11:19 am (UTC)
Re: Love this.
He has come to some painful realization, but he also can fall back upon knowing his own integrity is pure and that he was right. That's a place of great power, for someone who knows how to wield it.

Oh, well said indeed! And you're right: he does know how to wield it. I love how you describe this, and I love the idea of him preparing for war. And if he and John join forces... God help their enemies. I'm just sayin'.

Thank you so much for this. You've made my day.
Re: Love this. - lastwordy_mcgee - Apr. 12th, 2012 12:56 pm (UTC) - Expand
Re: Love this. - morganstuart - Apr. 14th, 2012 12:47 pm (UTC) - Expand
freya_fsc
Apr. 11th, 2012 04:19 pm (UTC)
OMG... here you are. With a Lestrade POV 221b ficlet. *faint*
I just love it. And I especially like this sentence: "He was duty-bound to do so." It's his job. I even started to wonder if Lestrade had Sherlock arrested and brought into the Yard, he probably would try to prove that the other man was innocent.
Thank you for this! Welcome back!
morganstuart
Apr. 12th, 2012 11:24 am (UTC)
Oh, thank you! I'm so thrilled that you enjoyed this! Especially the line about his duty.

I have no doubt that, by the time Lestrade was arresting Sherlock, he was certain of his innocence. (I don't think he'd ever have called and warned Sherlock what was coming if he still harbored any doubts.) I imagine he saw the official channels as the only way Sherlock could clear his name - but, like everyone else, Lestrade didn't have the "big picture" that Moriarty was painting in view. I can't imagine how Lestrade felt afterward, knowing the last time he saw Sherlock, he'd put the detective in handcuffs. Woe!

I appreciate your kind and encouraging words so much. I have another 221b ficlet coming up soon. :D Thanks again!
mijeli
Apr. 11th, 2012 04:44 pm (UTC)
This is a very good and plausible Lestrade characterisation. He's duty-bound to doubt and to accept weakness - both things that make him anything but a fool indeed. I also really like this scene in the Reichenbach Fall, and I like what you did with it.
morganstuart
Apr. 12th, 2012 11:25 am (UTC)
I'm so glad you found the characterisation believable here. I'm really happy that this worked for you!

I loved your insight here: "He's duty-bound to doubt and to accept weakness - both things that make him anything but a fool indeed." Well said indeed. I agree wholeheartedly.

Thank you for your lovely feedback! I appreciate it.
ascendant_angel
Apr. 11th, 2012 05:07 pm (UTC)
Beautiful and sad.
morganstuart
Apr. 12th, 2012 11:26 am (UTC)
Oh, thank you so much for this!
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( 46 comments — Leave a comment )