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Name: A Great Man
Author: [ profile] machshefa
Pairing: none
Rating: PG
'Verse: BBC
Warnings: none

Written for [ profile] thegameison_sh Round 2.


“Sherlock Holmes is a great man.”

Astonishing, she thinks, the way he makes it sound like a verdict. As if the fact of Sherlock’s greatness (and, fine, she won’t argue that particular point) matters.

Greg tilts his head and gives her that half smile, the one that deepens his eyes to the sort of blue that puts her in mind of the ocean. She watches him watch the consulting detective and the doctor leave; he turns to her only after the swish of Sherlock’s coat tangled in John’s shadow have passed out of sight.

A Great Man. As if it were a Medal of Honour. And John, then? Does this make John Great by Association? The junior member of the winning team?

Her jaw is sore from clenching; the pain radiates up up up and around until it feels as if she has a steel band squeezing her skull. She wonders if the migraine Sherlock typically leaves in his wake will wait to strike until she’s made it home.


Greg’s sitting on the kerb, heels of his hands rubbing at his eyes. The wrinkles in his suit and the creases in his skin can’t hide the energy that still crackles off him. She can’t imagine how worn out he must be; they’d got the call just before dawn and here it was, come ‘round again, pushing ochre streaks past the horizon into an indigo sky.

Another day. Maybe this one wouldn’t be awash in blood, or would be absent the sound of screams or the scrape of metal against flesh.

She sighs and looks at the man crumpled against the pavement. There’s that urge again, to scoop him up and hold him until the glint comes back to his eye. It rarely fades, but when it does, it makes her stomach lurch.

It’s like the North Star, she thinks, that glint in his eye.

She collapses next to him on the kerb and watches the forensics team pack up.

“Extraordinary is hardly the same as great, Greg.” Her voice echoes in the silence. The ambulance has long gone, off with its heavy cargo. The light spilling across the sky is suspended in that uncertain hue between night and morning as if it might stay that way forever. She can’t take her eyes from the sticky patch of blood staining the concrete—all that’s left from the blur of steel and skin that left a young man dead and an older one wounded.

“God help me, but I need him.”

Sally shivers at the crack in his voice, and she nods even though she knows she can’t keep the sadness from spilling out of her eyes.

“I know you do,” she says softly. “We all do.”

Greg looks relieved, too relieved, and Sally turns her face away from the warmth she feels, rolling off of him; rising inside her.

“And one day—” he says, but she cuts him off.

“We already have one,” she says, impatient.

He glances at her and then away, confused. Exhausted. Wrung out like the rags the paramedics tossed to the side when they failed to revive the man whose body they carted back to the morgue.

She watches him struggle with it and waits.

“One what?” He’s looking at her again and the warmth is back. It nearly chases off the chill of early morning and blood-stained pavement.

“A good man, Greg.”

He is silent, his eyes silver and bottomless in the muted light of today’s sunrise.

She hesitates, but it’s late and she’s too tired to prevaricate. Her hand finds his and she’s surprised that it’s still hot with the remnants of the night. Running, waiting, shouting, hoping. Failing.

No, not failing. Trying. Always, trying.

“I already see a good man, Greg,” she says again just in case he doesn’t understand her meaning. She squeezes his hand tight and can’t help her eyelids from fluttering shut when he squeezes back.

“Here,” she whispers. “Right here.”


Date: 2011-10-31 01:35 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]

You know... I LOVE THIS!


Date: 2011-10-31 02:00 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]

Thank you, darling.

Date: 2011-10-31 01:43 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
oh, my god--I loved this one--totally voted for it!
beautifully done--the mood is utterly perfect, as is the dialogue and the sense of camaraderie between them.

Date: 2011-10-31 02:01 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Thank you!


I think these two would have quite a close and important relationship.

Date: 2011-10-31 03:44 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Very nice! I never really thought about these two characters' relationship much before...

Date: 2011-10-31 02:07 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Thank you!

I hadn't given it much thought, either. :)

Date: 2011-10-31 04:54 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Oh, what beautiful Sally (and Lestrade) moments.

Date: 2011-10-31 02:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Thank you!

*hugs you for commenting :)

Date: 2011-10-31 06:50 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Understated and wonderful.

Date: 2011-10-31 02:09 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]

Thank you!

Date: 2011-10-31 01:57 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Oh, this is beautiful! Thank you for giving him the credit he deserves. I do love to see our DI through Sally's eyes, and you've done such an elegant and understated and powerful job here! I love your descriptions: "pushing ochre streaks past the horizon into an indigo sky." Lovely.

"Trying. Always, trying" put tears in my eyes. Yesyesyesyesyes.

A great man, indeed. *applause*

I feel foolish, but one question: why does she see his eyes as blue instead of their usual brown? Is it symbolic that she's seeing the best of Sherlock reflected in him, perhaps? That's what I get for reading before I've had my daily coffee requirement, I think... Don't mind me. ;) /cluelessness
Edited Date: 2011-10-31 02:08 pm (UTC)

Date: 2011-10-31 02:11 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]

You've used my favorite words to describe my writing. *beams

Thank you!

You've caught me in a canon error. I hadn't recently rewatched the episodes and didn't think to check the colour of his eyes. Ack. She may be seeing part of Sherlock... that's a nice interpretation. ;) Of course, she idealizes Lestrade and is irritated with Sherlock, in large part b/c he overshadows Lestrade...

Did I ever tell you that when my husband watched that episode his response to the "drugs bust" scene where Sally vents @ Sherlock is, "Aha, did she have a relationship with him that didn't end well?"


Date: 2011-12-06 04:57 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I. Love. It. The perfect thing for Lestrade to hear. The perfect moment. Swift and sure.
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