“Lovely night, isn’t it?” As if that’ll work.
Sherlock gave an insincere grunt of agreement, lips consecrated and eyes emotionless. He’d been like this for Godknowshowlong. It was a perpetual struggle John sustained against the other’s quirks and moods, but as the two marched through the park (yes, a long shot, but Baker Street wasn’t particularly improving his emotional state either), the doctor couldn’t help but notice something different. This was new. More serious. Not boredom nor mere disappointment — over the last few days, Sherlock had encountered a terrible depression.
What could have brought this upon him? The man’s emotional bastion could withhold nearly anything, or so John thought. (Remembering a glimpse he’d been offered of a more human Sherlock, as eloquent as it was provoking — “Genius is nothing else than an infinite capacity for taking pains” he’d sighed, staring up at the ceiling, godlike, yet tangible.)
John gave a huff of exasperation. Beating around the bush didn’t work with the world’s only consulting detective, so he’d have to be more forward. His gait came to a sudden halt, letting the other take a few steps before calling after him. “Sherlock.” He waited as the other turned. “You’re not okay.”
“What makes you say that?” replied Sherlock, voice only barely masked in that of his former self’s.
Licking his lips, a habit of his only augmented when concentrating, he moved towards the other, city streetlights at his back. John smiled up at Sherlock. “I’m your doctor. And I’ll help you if it’s the last thing I do.”
This proclamation took its effect on the taller man’s features, his face now reflecting bits of hidden guilt. “But I don’t deserve you.”
In lieu of a spoken response, John’s hand traveled to find the other’s. “Let’s go home,” he spoke, with the most sympathy and genuine care Sherlock had ever been endowed.