Tuesday, 21 February 2012
09:08:50 AM (GMT)
And, for the first time in his life, Sherlock thinks, he has sat next to someone at
He and John don't get on all the time, and more often than not, the latter resorts to
sitting with Anderson and his cronies, but he can never stay angry for long. Not
when he looks over and catches the grey eyes swiftly dart back to his book, picking
at the dull sandwich in front of him.
They remain this way for some time. A tenuous friendship, dependant on John Watson's
patience with Sherlock's "smartassery", as he puts it. And, of course, his tolerance
at being called "idiot".
Sherlock sat at the side of the pool, his elbows resting on his knees, with his
fingers steepled beneath his chin. Swimming. Once a week. He'd managed to get out
of the last three lessons, but the teacher wouldn't have it this time. The other
students filed slowly into the pool, filling up the wooden benches. He glanced over
to John, and quickly back again. With Anderson. Typical.
A voice came from the deep end of the pool, a female's voice that Sherlock knew, even
with the echo, belonged to Mrs West. With an audible groan, everyone stood up and
slid into the cold water, Sherlock included. A wall of water hit the side of his
face, plastering his dark curls to his face. He turned, looking to where the splash
had come from.
"Sorry freak!" A girl laughed, extracting a fit of giggles from the crowd
surrounding Sally Donovan.
Sherlock let out a slow breath, and faced the wall again, looking up at Mrs West.
Although glaring would be the more accurate word. The class set off in their various
pointless exercises, finishing (finally) with relay races along the length of the
pool. West split them into 'fair and even' teams, which somehow managed to land
Sherlock with Anderson, Donovan, and another boy, going by the name of Carl Powers.
The whistle blew, and Anderson pushed away from the wall, swimming with strong
strokes towards Carl, who would be taking over. The rest of the class had erupted
into loud shouts and cheers, encouraging their team mates while Sherlock just
watched, trying not to get splashed too much. Anderson reached the end, and Carl
pushed off underwater. He was a regular swimmer, about to compete at the weekend, if
the assemblies were to be believed. Sherlock watched, waiting for his turn so he
could get it over with. It's not that he was bad at swimming, per say, he just
Longer than was necessary.
All the other teams had finished, and he and Sally were still waiting for their
Finally, as the ripples settled, all eyes settled on a figure floating face down in
the centre, exactly midway between Sherlock and Sally. One of the girls screamed,
and Sherlock waded forwards at exactly the same time as John started swimming. John,
obviously, reached the body first, and rolled Carl over, checking his pulse.
Sherlock's frown deepened as he reached Carl, the boy's eyes wide open.
"He must have had a fit."
John looked to Sherlock, unable to tell if it was the lighting in the pool that made
him appear even paler, or if it was the fact that one of his classmates had just
died. "How do you know?"
The taller boy shot him a look, as if to say 'Isn't it obvious?' and when John's
expression remained clueless, he let out an exaggerated sigh.
"His fists are clenched. They wouldn't be like that from swimming. So he must have
been in pain. His eyes are open, too, which indicate shock." He explained, the words
rolling from his tongue almost before he could think them, "The only explanation of
all the facts is a fit, and drowned."
John stared, "That's incredible..." He breathed, oblivious to Mrs West who'd just
dived in and was dragging Carl out of the pool.
Sherlock looked to the boy in shock, "Really?"
The police arrived in less than five minutes, allowing the majoity of the class to
move to their next lessons in a state of shock. Sherlock and John, however, got
changed, but didn't leave the pool. Sherlock spent a few moments in the changing
rooms after John had left to talk to Mrs West, but he emerged a few minutes later,
walking purposefully over to the two of them, plus the corpse.
"Where are his shoes?" He asked, completely irrespective of the state their teacher
"They're- His what?"
"His shoes, John. Where are they? He didn't come to swimming barefoot."
"Sherlock, what the hell does that matter?! He's just died! Maybe someone cleared
his stuff up?"
"The rest of his clothes are there, why aren't his shoes?"
Sherlock glared, turning to speak to the police officer who just came in, but was
brushed aside with a quick, "It's alright, kiddo. You're bound to be in shock if
you're friend's just died." A kind faced paramedic draped a bright orange blanket
over his shoulders, which Sherlock hastily pulled off, only to have it replaced.
After another attempt, he walked back over to John and the policeman with the blanket
over his shoulders.
"They keep putting this blanket on me."
"It's for shock, Sherlock."
"I'm not in shock! I want them to listen!"
John shrugged, putting a hand between his shoulderblades and pushing him away from
Carl's body and out of the pool. "Maybe they want to take pictures."