[personal profile] wave_of_sorrow
Title: The Sinews Of The Sky
Author: [livejournal.com profile] wave_of_sorrow
Character(s)/Pairing(s): Holmes/Watson
Verse: '09 all the way, baby!
Rating: R
Word Count: 932
Disclaimer: Don't own. Don't claim. No money being made.
Summary:
The clear liquid sloshes back and forth, a small drop spilling over the brim and rolling down the side and onto the table and for just one moment the world narrows down to this: a glass of water, filled to the brim, about to spill over and burst.
Spoilers/Warnings: drug use
A/N: Written in response to a prompt by [livejournal.com profile] enkiduts over at [livejournal.com profile] worththewounds who wanted an explanation for this picture.

Feedback and comments of any kind will be drooled over. <3


The stars are hidden behind wisps of cloud and smoke, swirling, curling tendrils ever snaking upwards, twisting around the moon and shrouding the world in shadow and doubt. The fire crackles and flares up as Holmes prods the burning wood, sending sparks of red and yellow flying into the air, reflected in his eyes, their pupils blown and eclipsing the irises. Warm hands are on his shoulders, rubbing gently and pulling him back; the poker lands on the carpet with a muffled thud, burning a hole into it.

Watson’s worried face slips in and out of focus and then the world trembles and tips over, knocks him back onto the settee as the floor slips away and crumbles beneath his very feet. He gasps and shudders, fingers scrabbling to gain purchase on Watson’s arms, Watson who is speaking without sound as Holmes’s pulse thrums in his ears, dizzying and disorienting. Crazed and panicked, Holmes abruptly stands up, knocking over a side table, sending a lamp, several empty bottles and syringe clattering to the floor, glass shattering and bursting into a million sparkling shards.

Understanding and then anger fills Watson’s gaze and Holmes hisses as he yanks up his sleeve to inspect the crook of his arm, finding it dotted with red puncture marks, the veins tender and bruised all the way to his wrist. In a flash of sudden and blinding fury Watson shoves him hard, making him tumble to the ground and crash into the coffee table. Holmes whimpers and cradles his arm to his chest as he clambers back onto the settee and watches Watson grab his coat and hat.

The whispered stay makes Watson pause with his hand on the doorknob and he almost walks away, almost doesn’t look back, but then Holmes’s breath hitches and his eyes are wide and so very frightened and how could Watson leave him like that?

He slouches down on the settee as Holmes begins to pace, mumbling to himself in a litany of half-spoken promises and broken formulas, struggling for things not to say, all wild eyes and untamed hair. His hands form abstract shapes in the night, bathed in flickering firelight and dotted with ink and chemicals and shaking uncontrollably, their very bones  thrumming in time with Holmes’s pulse and throwing obscure shadows against the walls.

When the moon surfaces through cloud and mist and tints the world silver and blue Holmes presses close to the window, breath fogging against the frosted glass, and he shivers as he finds the moon naked and cold, shadows moving and shifting in its light. He watches the stars burn and fall from the sky, dying and decaying before they ever hit the ground, and he knows it’s only the moonlight playing tricks, but it scares him, makes him wait for the sky to crack and bleed bright, blinding light and

Holmes.

Watson’s voice pulls him back and out of the quicksand of his own thoughts, back into the orbit of the Earth and into the sitting room as the moon draws its curtains and the world is covered in darkness again and a glass of water is nudged into his direction with an expression that tries and fails to communicate indifference. The clear liquid sloshes back and forth, a small drop spilling over the brim and rolling down the side and onto the table and for just one moment the world narrows down to this: a glass of water, filled to the brim, about to spill over and burst.

Cold and clear and liquid and a lot like the moonlight, running down his throat and freezing his very lungs, staining his hands with sparkling, fluid crystals, ink blurring and bleeding black into his cuffs as it is washed away.

Watson frowns as Holmes sits next to him, cautiously, tenderly touching his wet fingertips to his boot and he wonders what it is that makes him do it, what thoughts run through that brilliant, insane head and whether he truly sees boot leather and spatters of mud or if, perhaps, all the secrets of the universe are hidden somewhere under the soles of his feet, invisible to that most rational, most tortured of minds until it is unhinged. Sudden, warm weight in his lap and cold fingers ghosting over his cheekbones, calloused thumbs stroking his jaw as Holmes stares at him with sad and knowing eyes, shifting as Watson’s cane digs into his right kneecap.

They slip into a familiar dance, their hips aligning and heads tilting, hands finding their way into tangled hair and onto tense shoulders; they taste water and smoke, a hundred other nights and the moon as an impossibly frozen tongue thaws its way into Watson’s burning mouth and he almost expects to see steam rise between their lips.

Questions and promises are pushed back and forth between their mouths, balanced on the tips of their tongues and spilling over as breathless sounds that might have meant something, in another world, a world that isn’t built on moonlight and ice.

Holmes wakes to a blinding dawn, bright sunlight, sharp and clear and nothing at all like the moon, filling the sitting room as Watson walks in with two cups of tea. The memories of the previous night are gone, cleared away with shattered glass and falling stars, and all that is left is harsh sunlight and circles beneath Watson’s eyes and though Holmes has all the clues before him, he can unravel the secrets of Watson's mind no more than pluck at the sinews of the sky and unhinge the Earth.
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September 2011

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