olaf47: (writer)
[personal profile] olaf47
Title: Still Here
Fandom: Elementary
Characters: Sherlock Holmes, Joan Watson
Rating: R
Spoilers: None
Summary: She barely has time to think chloroform before everything is black.
A/N: Written for the Porn Battle. Prompts fear, first time, kiss, bruise, silence.
Disclaimer: The characters are not mine. The words are.



Joan’s yoga class finishes at 8:30 on Tuesday night. Spring is reaching toward summer; the days teasing at temperatures where you don’t need a jacket. It’s a clear night. Joan imagines if this wasn’t New York City, the stars would be beautiful. She starts her eight-block walk back to the brownstone.

Somewhere between blocks three and five—and normally she’d be paying attention but yoga is her personal time, her time off the clock, away from Sherlock, just her—a car, it’s a van, maybe, she’s not sure, and later she will be so angry with herself for not being certain, a car appears. It’s almost before she notices it that someone is there, behind her, with a cloth to her mouth that smells like sugar and she barely has time to think chloroform before everything is black.

-

When she wakes up, it’s still black. A bag over her head—she can feel the scratchy fabric against her cheeks. She is cuffed to the wall, spread eagle. No opportunity for leverage, no sense in struggling against the restraints, they are tight and cold at her wrists and ankles.

She tries to focus.

The wall behind her is brick, she thinks, or concrete. It’s damp, and cold against her shoulder blades. That means her coat came off at some point. She can tell her shoes are gone, too. She swallows.

She’s in a basement somewhere, probably. She isn’t big, but she still figures it took a man to string her up the way she is. She wonders if her kidnapper had the medical knowledge to administer the right dosage of chloroform so as not to kill her, or if she’s just lucky.

She wonders how long it’s been.

Wonders how long it took Sherlock to notice something was wrong.

-

The thing about being held in a basement with a bag over your head is you have no sense of time.

She doesn’t know if it’s thirty minutes or three hours before a door—to her left, she notices, and she didn’t hear anything unlock first—opens and someone comes in. One person. The footsteps are heavy. The person doesn’t say anything as they come closer.

And then there’s a gun, under her chin, pushing her head hard against the wall. It’s underneath the bag; the muzzle of the gun cold against her chin. Her whole body shakes.

Her kidnapper laughs—a man, definitely. Saliva floods her mouth and she prays she won’t throw up (it’s easier to think about than praying he won’t pull the trigger). She doesn’t and he doesn’t, but he does pistol whip her. The pain is—sharp, exploding, worse than she has words for. Her cheek splits; she can feel the warm sticky wetness of her blood against the fabric of bag over her head. She can barely hear the door close over the volume of her pain. The salt of uncontrollable tears stings in the wound.

She tries to press her face against her shoulder to stem the bleeding, but can’t get the angle right. Instead, she closes her eyes and considers what it will be like to die.

-

She doesn’t keep track of the kidnapper’s visits. They blur together, and while part of her is certain it’s been weeks, part of her knows it can’t have been. He hasn’t fed her, has only given her water through the bag. Like waterboarding, it seemed, until he stopped and she could gain her breath enough to suck the water from the fabric. So it can’t have been as long as it seems or she’d be dead already.

She’s just waiting for the day.

When the opening of the door is more rushed, when it’s followed by more than one person’s footsteps, she straightens her posture. Maybe today is her day.

She doesn’t even think rescue until the bag is pulled over her head. It rips open the scab beginning to form on her cheek.

It’s a SWAT team.

-

She’s saved and bandaged and fed and debriefed, it feels like, the amount of questions they ask her. They didn’t catch the guy—Moriarty, Captain Gregson says and she can still feel the gun pressed against her chin. Sherlock is there, beside her, and he shivers, too. She tries to be concerned for him—trauma, stress, this dredging up of his past, it’s all pointing toward relapse—but it feels like her eyes are still adjusting to the light. It’s been almost two days.

A uni drives them home like a chauffeur, Sherlock in the backseat with her.

She really wasn’t expecting what she finds when they get to the brownstone. She wasn’t suspecting anything, really. It’s the brownstone. It is what it is. And what it is, or what it’s supposed to be, is dirty dishes piled by the sink—or scattered throughout various rooms, more likely—and pictures, scraps of paper, sticky notes arranged in a manner only Sherlock can understand.

What it’s not supposed to be is a dirty bowl shattered on the floor next to a flipped over table. What was once Sherlock’s menagerie of evidence is half torn down, papers ripped and disorganized and everywhere.

Joan’s voice doesn’t make it past her throat in her absolute panic that Moriarty has been here, too, that maybe he is here right now, coming to finish the job. She clutches at Sherlock’s arm instead, tries to convey that he should signal to the cop who drove them home, but when she looks at his face, it is embarrassed, not scared.

He did this.

He puts his hand over hers, still on his arm, and weaves them through the mess. Everything is out of place, it seems, and if they didn’t need new bowls before, they certainly do now, she counts at least four that are now in pieces.

Sherlock takes her to her bedroom. When he lets go of her hand she stays where she is, in the doorway. Her room, at least, is exactly as she left it before yoga class. Her glass of water is on the bedside table, next to the book she’s been reading—a mystery involving a kidnapping she guesses she’s now never going to finish. Her bed is hastily made; the habit is left over from her mother’s insistence when they were growing up, but she only throws it together, as much rebellion as she can muster, even now.

She just looks at the room, this testament to her normal, everyday life. It’s still here, all the same, like nothing has happened. Like she’s just getting back from yoga. It honestly perplexes her.

She doesn’t have much time to dwell on it, though, as Sherlock is in front of her now, right in front of her, very close actually, which is strange. He’s not usually one for invading personal space but here he is and—oh.

He kisses her.

She doesn’t know—this is all so—she does kiss him back, out of surprise or habit or desire or confusion, she’s not sure. What else is she supposed to do? He is almost violent in his kissing, all teeth and so much tongue, pressing into her mouth. It makes it hard to breathe, and she thinks about suffocating, about drowning, and pushes him backward, gasping. Doesn’t push him too far, though, just to arm’s length, her fingers clenched around his shoulders. She hurts, from the tip of her tongue all the way into her chest, and she has to swallow gulpfuls of air before it gets better.

Sherlock watches the entire time, neither moving away nor coming closer. When she finally has her breath and looks at him, there’s something in his eyes she’s never seen before: fear. More than fear, it’s terror.

“I—” He doesn’t blink. “I thought—Moriarty—like with Irene...”

He looks helpless and Joan knows the feeling. She tries for some control, holds him exactly where he is, and kisses him, gently, gently.

They seem to finally understand each other.

It’s slow, and silent, and strange. Strange because Sherlock is not what she expected. She won’t lie and say she hasn’t thought about this, because she has, not often, but she has. She figured he’d be a control freak about it, that he’d kiss like she was just another mystery for him to solve, that he would talk, the whole way through. But he’s silent, and just as gentle as she is, not asking for anything she hasn’t first offered. He doesn’t push her toward the bed, but when she takes a step in that direction, he lets out his breath in a way that sounds—grateful, almost. They don’t really stop kissing in the few steps to the bed, or even as she reaches blindly backward to steady herself and lie down.

They stop then, take a moment to just look at each other. When she started as his companion he was a total enigma, but over time she’s learned his tells—a quirk of an eyebrow or a little something in his eyes. Here, though, he reveals nothing, and everything. He is open to her, completely, yet she still doesn’t quite know what that means.

Sherlock presses his forehead against hers, his breath falling over the cut on her cheek. He kisses the air above it. She wishes he would press his lips to it instead, maybe the sting would bring her some clarity.

He kisses her again. They kiss and they kiss and they kiss and all she can think about is how safe she feels.

She’s the one to take off her shirt, and his, actually, and though his hands keep drifting toward her waist, he doesn’t do anything until she takes them in her own, puts them against the button of her jeans. He breathes against her lips.

He is good. As all of her other assumptions about Sherlock in bed fall away, that remains. He’s not methodical, not fucking her to figure her out. He does seem like he’s trying to prove something, though she’s too lost in the way his hand cradles her cheek—the one that’s not bruised—to know what, exactly.

Joan would not describe herself as vanilla, but tonight, maybe she is. She doesn’t want anything more than Sherlock on top of her, her legs around his waist. It’s simple, and good. She likes him over her, likes him close. Everything—everything—is different, but he is here and she is here. Where he goes, she goes, and when he breaks—he’s trying so hard not to, she can tell, rubbing his thumb over her as fast as he can and burying his face in her neck—she follows.

She clutches him for a while after, keeps his weight on her. It feels like the only thing she’s certain of. When he does move off of her, he stays close, holds her, her head tucked under his chin.

Everything is different, but he is here. And she is here.


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January 2013

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