Violate, part 10 (John’s POV):
“Why the hell didn’t you tell me this earlier?” John whispered, scrolling down until he could see Lestrade’s name on Sherlock’s phone screen. On the inside he was about to burst out in anger. He wanted to scream. Sherlock just bit his lip, apparently he did not know what to say. John clenched his teeth. He felt so… Angry and shocked and frustrated all at the same time, he didn’t know what to do. This afternoon a bloody police man would actually come and pick them up; this afternoon! And Sherlock had known about this and not told him!
“If you think I’m in any way alright with this-“
“I know you’re not, you’re irritated. Your ears turned red again,” Sherlock replied, pointing at John’s ears, then immediately looking down at his feet again as if he had already regretted what he had just said. John’s eyebrows dropped even more downwards than they already were. He felt like yelling and cursing in Sherlock’s face. Yet he still managed to more or less control his voice as he spoke:
“Is this a joke to you? The police have…” he aggressively gestured with his arms as if he was searching for words:
“Lestrade has nothing on her, they haven’t found anything and now they just… Want her anyway for no reason!” he finally exclaimed. Lestrade had been so sure that her real parents would confess but that wasn’t the case now. No one had called up the police and mentioned her. What had the police planned out as a plan B?
“Meeweeee…” they could hear her babble from down on the floor where she was lying on her belly with her arms and legs spread out, doing the “airplane”.
“Sherlock, they can’t take her away like that. They can’t, it will… It can damage her to be kept away from the people who take care of her, she is in a development state of selective behavior, they should know that…” he continued in a low whisper. Sherlock just looked at the little girl, nodding absent-mindedly. His gaze was distant. What was he thinking about?
Sherlock’s phone was vibrating in John’s hand. Another text from Lestrade:
“The policeman is waiting outside. A black Volvo; be descreet. Lestrade.”
”It’s time,” Sherlock simply mumbled, looking at the doctor. His eyes seemed more icy than usual. John just stood beside him in complete shock with the phone in hand, dropping his mouth, wanting to say something; protest, argue, discuss all the reasons why she should just stay there with them. But he couldn’t do that. The authority was the one deciding all the rules of this game. A policeman was waiting outside. They could not escape the situation. So John just shut his mouth, clenched his teeth and picked up the little baby instead, doing his part of the job. Sherlock followed right behind him, carrying the suitcase they had filled up with all her things.
They looked at each other one last time. Then the doctor opened the door, gazing around, protectively covering the little girl’s warm head. She did not seem to mind.
“There it is. Come on,” Sherlock mumbled, walking quickly towards the black car parked about a quarter of a mile down the road. John tried to keep up with him and walked faster. He opened the back door, sliding in at the same time as Sherlock did from the other side of the Volvo. A blonde-haired man in sweater, pilot shades and jeans nodded a silent “hello” at them. John raised his eyebrows in response, placing Violet in the baby seat that had been placed in the middle of the backseat. Sherlock just nodded back once at the man, then looked out the window, shutting them all out of his sight.
“The baby seat should have been placed next to the guy driving, how come they don’t know something like that?” John whispered to Sherlock, as his head leaned in to get a better view at the seat belt strap placed between Violet’s legs.
“They probably just want to be discreet ,” Sherlock whispered back sarcastically, still looking out the window. John grunted, holding a seat belt strap in each hand. He looked hesitantly up at Sherlock again, who slowly turned towards him, for some reason understanding that the doctor could need some help with this. And so he placed his hands on top of John’s and systematically guided him through the fastening of Violet’s seat belt.
“The one in the middle first, and then this metal thing through here…” he said, moving John’s hand, which still held on to the strap. His hands were surprisingly warm, John noticed. How on earth did Sherlock know how to do this? he wondered. He looked at Violet, who suddenly started squealing very high-pitched, curling her mouth into a little happy smile. Then she started clapping the back of Sherlock’s hand as if they were playing a game where everybody should place their hand on top of each other’s. Sherlock smiled lightly down at her as he finally pushed the metal gadgets together until they could hear the characteristic “click” sound come from it. He let go of John’s one hand and let his palm face Violet’s. She seemed even more entertained by this; the little clapping sound that came from it when she punched down on it. Then he grabbed John’s wrist and placed the doctor’s hand next to his own, turning John’s palm upwards as well. Violet squealed once again, almost laughed, and saliva started drooling down her chin. She started clapping John’s hand as well, her little round fingers lightly pressing against his skin. John smiled lightly, fishing up a handkerchief from his pocket and started carefully wiping the little baby’s chin. Her eyes grew big as the cloth touched her face, and she instantly tried to look down at John’s hand wiping, squinting her eyes during the process. It made John smile even more. Her adorable innocence was so consoling.
“Ma? Mawawa?” She said, reaching upwards with her arms as if she wanted a hug. John looked up at Sherlock, who elegantly stroked her cheek with the back of his fingers. He still smiled down at her, but the smile had turned a bit… Sad. It did not reach his eyes anymore, John noticed.
“Momowomooo…” Violet continued, reaching her hand up towards the detective’s face. Sherlock just leaned forward and grabbed her little palm, placing it around his jaw, letting her explore his face. Her breathing turned heavy in a combination of excitement and concentration and she looked so focused as she followed his jawline, pointing and pressing her finger down on his bottom lip, babbling quietly as if she was conversing with herself. John found himself staring at them. He immediately turned his head a bit, pretending he was looking out the window when Sherlock looked (suspiciously?) at him. He couldn’t help it, it was such an incredible experience, observing the two interact with each other. The bond was undoubtedly there, even though the detective would not admit it.
The car parked right outside the police’s headquarters and the blond guy got out of the car, showing his ID card to one of the guards, who were marching around nearby the building.
“Here, let me,” Sherlock said, unclicking the metal buckle so that Violet was free of the seat belt.
“Alright, should I take…?” John asked, gesturing towards the suitcase. Sherlock looked at it.
“I’ll take the suitcase,” the dark-haired man simply replied (hesitantly? John wondered), leaving the girl for the doctor to carry. He nodded, lifting up the little baby girl, who looked at him with an open - drooling - mouth. He turned around and looked up at the large tower block, suddenly feeling overwhelmed by the whole scenario. He was somewhat happy about the fact that he didn’t work in a place like this; too many offices, too much white designer furniture, too many fancy suits and serious faces. Not really his cup of tea.
“Alright, come with me,” the blonde man said. He had placed his shades in his hair and guided the two men into the building through what seemed like some sort of “backdoor”, into a lift, where John instantly slid himself inside right behind the blonde man, next to Sherlock. What now? The detective just placed the suitcase on the floor, then stretched his long frame until he stood upright with his arms placed on his back. John tried to do the same, not really sure of how he should behave. Looking confident and tall and strong seemed like a good idea, though.
“Heee! Hiwawa! Lababooo!” Violet suddenly squealed, as she recognized the mirror walls inside the elevator. John almost jumped and automatically looked up at Sherlock, who just gazed discreetly down at her as she tried to point at the wall behind John. The blond police man did not seem to bother turning towards them, fortunately. John just gestured questioningly with his free hand, shrugging as discreetly as he could at Sherlock. Should he just ignore her? The little girl started her babbling again, doing some sort of waving with her hand. That made the detective turn 90 degrees around towards the mirror, looking over his shoulder into it, while he just smiled lightly and waved back at her. Her eyes got bigger and she waved even more uncontrollably violent, her eyes now fixed on John, who silently followed Sherlock’s lead, still keeping an eye on the police man though, even though he didn’t seem to notice anything. It took a moment before John realized that he was actually rocking her calmly back and forth, tilting his head towards hers as she widened her eyes even more, moving her limbs while staring into her own reflection as if it were a stranger looking back and responding to her.
It somehow felt like, for a long second, that everything froze in the little dark, cramped room. Suddenly the policeman was gone, and all John could see was Sherlock and himself, holding Violet, staring into the mirror walls around them. He looked around, stared into all the reflections that showed off their bodies from different angles, feeling the same overwhelming sensation rush through his body as he had felt it before when he had regarded the building. He blinked and the image of the policeman returned, now followed by other policemen in uniforms. The mirrors disappeared and before John could react he felt Sherlock’s back pressing against his own, as the doctor realized that they were completely surrounded by the police. He turned his head in horror, pressing Violet’s head protectively towards his chest as he watched the policemen approach them from every angle. He tried to breath but his lungs felt like they were already filled up with air, and he could feel a wave of panic hit him hard as he tried to find a way out of there, tried to escape the authority that was facing them and wanted to take her away…
A warm hand pressed against his forehead and John’s eyes were immediately drawn to Sherlock’s in front of him, as he managed to focus his gaze again, feeling dizzy.
“Hey, calm down, breath slowly…” Sherlock whispered, scowling shyly at the policeman next to them. John just nodded confusedly, looking around. They were still in the lift with the policeman. Sherlock’s pupils turned small in concern, as he stared at the doctor, who just kept nodding, looking up towards the ceiling. Nothing strange there either. What on earth had just happened, he thought, finally looking down at little Violet, who was still in his arms, gazing at him and Sherlock in turns.
The elevator stopped, and the doors opened, letting in a large beam of light. What a relief. Mr blonde-hair finally turned around towards the two, who immediately stepped away from each other, acting like nothing had happened. He nodded slowly, sending them both a fake smile:
“Off you go. You jus-“
“… Walk down the hall, then left. We know already,” Sherlock interrupted, not even looking at the policeman, who seemed both surprised and a little offended at the same time by this. The doctor and detective both held their breaths, waiting for the guy to leave. He disappeared into another room down the hallway and as if on cue, Sherlock turned towards John again, eyebrows wrinkled downwards.
“…Are you alright?“ he asked in his low voice.
“I’m… fine, I just…” John closed his eyes for a second, trying to let the cramped, trapped feeling escape his mind.
“It looked like you were gone for a second. And you started hyperventilating, more or less,” Sherlock muttered quietly, as he walked out the elevator, waiting for John to catch up with him so that they could walk side by side. John nodded again, lifting Violet upwards a bit. What should he say? He didn’t know what was going on, but whatever it was it was gone now.
“I guess I just felt a little… a little bit angsty in there…” he said, looking down at the linoleum floor in front of him, trying to control his still sped up breath. Sherlock did not reply, though John could surely feel his icy irises resting on him as they turned left and a moment later stood outside the door to Lestrade’s office. Sherlock didn’t hesitate but simply opened it up and was instantly met by four shocked faces that just stared at them in surprise. Two women and two men, including Lestrade, were sitting around his office table, clearly in the middle of some sort of discussion, sipping on coffee and holding some papers in their hands. Lestrade glared at Sherlock, miming “excuse me” to the others, before he stood up and literally dragged Sherlock with him out of the door again, closing it a little too roughly behind him for it to sound casual.
“What on earth are you doing?,” he hissed at the taller man.
“You said we should come!“ Sherlock muttered, wrinkling his nose at the police officer. Like an unsatisfied child, John thought.
“Yeah, but don’t just burst in there, for Christ’s sake! Sherlock, I’m in the middle of a serious meetin-“
“What about her case-“
“This is about her case!” Lestrade hissed impatiently.
John looked back at Sherlock, waiting for him to answer. He felt like he was watching a tennis match, turning his head from one side to another.
“… Perhaps we should just wait out here then…” he finally suggested himself. The other two just looked at him, Sherlock narrowing his eyes.
“Yes, there are chairs right here for you,” Lestrade said, pointing at three fancy wooden chairs with satin cushions that were placed up against the wall on the other side of the hallway.
“Right, then we’ll just…” John said, lightly smiling at Lestrade, who just nodded, grabbing the door knob again. Sherlock hesitated though, standing with his arms crossed and the suitcase placed on the floor between his long legs.
“Look, I’ll call for you, when we’re ready, you’ll come in here in a bit,” Lestrade added, raising his eyebrows at Sherlock as if he wanted to imply that he really meant it. Sherlock did not react, but John nodded in response, biting his lips. Lestrade seemed satisfied with this and let himself inside his office.
It took three minutes. John just sat with Violet, moving her arms up and down and to the side while she seemed incredibly excited about this, discovering new ways to move her limbs. Sherlock stubbornly refused to sit down, walking back and forth with his arms crossed in front of him like a shy teenager instead. The door knob rustled and both men looked up at Lestrade, who stuck out his head. Behind him the other man and one of the women walked out with a briefcase in their hands, bowing their heads in a silent “goodbye” before they both turned in the direction Sherlock and John had come from; towards the lift.
“You can come in now. No, no, just bring her with you, that’s alright,” the police officer mumbled, when John stood up with the little girl sitting on his arm. They hurried inside, Sherlock first, then John, who felt like a student walking into an examination room. Lestrade gestured towards two other chairs identical with the ones outside that were placed next to each other by the end of the table, across from Lestrade. John gazed at the other woman in there; she was sitting with her legs crossed in a uniform not unlike the ones stewardesses usually wear on board an airplane, he registered. Both Lestrade and the other man who had just left were in suits. John started wondering if he should have been wearing a suit as well, discreetly looking down at his own black, worn-out jacket. Nah, he shook it off his mind again. That was completely irrelevant.
They all nodded a quick “hello” to each other (apparently that was the way these people greeted each other out here, John thought) and then Lestrade simply cleared his throat and started explaining everything before anyone could open their mouth and protest.