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No Such Thing As 'Too Much'

Chapter Text

The dominatrix of Belgravia didn't consider herself a complicated woman. In fact, she rather thought of herself as quite simple. Well aware of her strengths and her weaknesses, she played her cards thereafter while living after one single rule, the only rule she knew she would be able to keep – that there were no rules applying to her. Nothing felt better than balancing on the edge of the acceptable, and actually falling over it. There didn't need to be a purpose or a reason. Just that it was fun. Indeed, she was a simple woman that really liked enjoying herself. Moreover, that didn't mean that others involved in her fun had just as much fun as she did. Playing over the edge with powerful people created powerful enemies but after all, there was a reason why she was a dominatrix. 

The autumn wind blew cold against her skin as she began to climb up the small ladder on the brick wall on the characteristic London property. She had heard rumours earlier during the morning that a cold front was going to approach the city during the evening. No one could have known that a vicious heat wave had decided that she wasn't done yet for the evening and was now moving quickly and unstoppably towards 221B Baker Street...

The woman could admit that the afternoon hadn't turned out exactly as she had planned. The interruption by the Americans at her house was unexpected but not unintelligible. There were indeed many people who wanted her gone because of the countless of secrets clients had given to her (voluntarily sometimes, most times involuntarily) and which were stored on the camera phone she now had strapped securely to her leg. The small device was her largest trophy, as well as her life insurance, and she would do whatever necessary to have it remain in her own hands. Playing fair wasn't really her thing. Why should it be, when it was so much easier to cheat? She enjoyed playing games but enjoyed winning even more and that was also exactly what she had done this afternoon against an unusually skilful opponent.

Her research had been profound as always. Webb pages, varying pictures and of course the tabloids’ increasingly more frequent accounts about involvements in criminal cases. This, and some particularly useful advices, had made her confident that she was ready to start a new game against the expected visitor on her doorstep.

The detective. The Virgin...

The first actual meeting had been more unpredictable however than she had expected but also much more amusing. Her plan had been to make a certain and proper impression on him and that she was sure she had succeeded with. The game had begun and was now fully in motion and she had decided that it was already time for the next step. The plan was simple. She would return some things which she had acquired during the day which belonged to him. After all, she was a cunning player, not a thief. Also, if an opportunity was thrown her way, she had always been exceptionally good at figuring out quickly how to make the best of it, both for the sake of the game and for her own constantly unsatisfied cravings after increasingly thrilling pleasures.

It seemed to be much easier to break into the room in the flat on the second floor than she had expected. With the increasingly famous (or infamous, depending on your preferences) reputation that the detective had gained in the city during the last few months, she had suspected that he would take equally much precaution. On the other hand, like in any other of the games she had played, this one had acquired her to learn explicit details about a wide range of players involved. In this case, she had not only found out a great deal about the younger brother through her research but also about the older one - the Ice Man. It seemed like little brother always had big brother's eyes watching him. They were indeed eyes that would be enough protection for anyone but not in the world she lived in. Even how much he tried, the Ice Man couldn't always protect his little brother, something that had been proved just a few hours ago and that she now became more and more tempted to prove again as she looked in through the window and saw the contours of a man's body lying on a large bed in the middle of the dark room she intended to enter.

Still the woman waited, even hesitated for a moment. It wasn't that she couldn't get in. That she could. She had broken in through a wide range of different windows during her career, into varying kinds of chambers owned by aristocrats across the world. No, she hesitated out of precaution, because of the only concern that was the other person living in the flat. The doctor. Dr Watson. An army doctor and she supposed he had the quick and attentive senses to danger thereafter. She didn't see it as a problem however. More like an obstacle that would make the challenge even more exciting, and the reward even sweeter to taste.

With a precise movement of the pin she had pulled from her hair, the lock gave away and the small window opened. Quietly, skilfully, like the viper she was, she crawled into the room on 221B Baker Street. The darkness had now begun to fall outside, making her entrance protected by the increasing lack of light. The woman closed the window silently behind her and she stood motionless with the back against it for many moments, listening to the different sounds that echoed in the flat and took in the environment. The room was plainly but eccentrically furnished with a large closet just to her right and a bookshelf with various smaller items that was placed by the wall vis-à-vis the bed in the middle. The imagery on the walls caught her genuine interest. Right by the main door to her left hung a large board of the periodic table and down by the bookshelf another older version of it, now accompanied with a picture of its Russian 19th century creator. Hmm… A chemist, just like she had heard, and clearly a dedicated one. What she found most interesting however was the traditional judo certificate right over the bed. Oh, I see where you got that fighting spirit. Good. I do like some resistance...

A sudden louder noise made the woman freeze momentarily and look towards the door. The corner of her mouth twitched as she listened to the sound of an unaware person moving in the other rooms in the flat. Oh, the doctor... The honourable Dr Watson. As she had expected, by what she had learned about him, he had indeed been very loyal. Almost touchingly loyal. Even protective. Oh, yes, he was indeed protective she could tell. More that he probably realised himself.

The woman smirked. Oh, if he knew. She almost wanted him to know that she was here right now and what she would like to do with the man in the bed that she now had set eyes on and approached slowly, feeling the sense of power rise within her. Oh, this... This was what she lived for. The pleasure in the power of knowing that she had them completely in her grasp. This was an opportunity which practically had been served in front of her, an opportunity that she would never pass on. She had won the first round. Now she was going to collect her price...

Chapter Text

The woman felt her bare legs touch the white satin that covered the bed as she looked down with interest at its content. The detective was lying on his back while his legs were tangled up in the thin lose sheet which supposedly had been used as cover. He was still dressed in an expensive black shirt and trousers, the same clothes that he had worn earlier today with exception for the missing jacket. His breaths were shallow, the eyes closed and his face looked pale, even more so against the black clothes and the dark hair.

The woman tilted her head to the side as she examined him closer. She wouldn't call this sleeping. Sleeping was voluntary, peaceful. No, passed out was a much more fitting description. She would say even temporarily paralysed, both physically and mentally, by the drug she had forced into him.

Here he was, the great 'net detective'. The genius that the Royal family themselves had hired to incapacitate her. This man only believed in one higher power, the only one he truly trusted: himself. He was convinced of his own greatness, that he was better than everyone else, and he saw the people around him as checkers that he could move around just as he pleased on the game board of life. He had clearly assumed she had been one of these checkers. That was a mistake. Now he was unable to move, to speak, to understand what was happening around him. Completely defenceless...

The woman smirked again and as she did so, she leaned down and touched him, her soft fingertip slowly beginning to trace the hard features of his face. Oh, power... It was absolutely intoxicating to make powerful people small and subordinated. Having them right in the palm of her hand, ready to crush them if that was what she decided to do and without them being able to do anything about it. The power to do whatever she liked with them. With him...

The woman raised her chin superiorly and placed her fingers on the other side of his features. With them, she slowly turned the unconscious man's face towards her. No reaction was expected. It was two hours since she had stung him with the strong anaesthetic, which assumed that he would be out for another while. However, she knew that the haze could last shorter for some people than others and the result of the drug could therefore be slightly unpredictable. There was legitimate reason to believe that this could be the case with him, as the slave under heavy drugs which he once had been. The drug’s effect was… elegantly elaborated however, calculated to make the paralysation of the body stronger than that of the consciousness. Even if his mind would become clear enough to notice her touch, he wouldn't be able to do anything about it for a while. The malicious thought came to her that it would be very easy at the moment to simply remove the great detective from the story. Ending him and eliminate him, completely so to speak. Another obstacle in the way would be gone within just a few minutes with the help of a flawless alibi and one of the thick white pillows in the bed.

The woman looked back at his face wryly as she heard him take another breath. Yes, so easy indeed... Most of his opponents wouldn't even hesitate but she considered herself to be quite a bit better than the regular 'man' and more importantly, she knew it would in fact just be stupid. The detective had a function yet to fill in her game and also, that was one of the few things which the consulting criminal had been very strict about. He wheezed on the phone every time he mentioned the Virgin but never more than during the last sentence in the final call she had with him before she put the plan into action. His voice had lowered and he empathised every word with a menacing tone as he made the upcoming conditions perfectly clear to her.

I'm planning something... special for him... So don't forget, love... He's mine...

Well, no one said anything about not… enjoying some of the treats, she thought and smiled as her red fingernails traced the features of the detective's face again and followed them down to his neck. This time, she felt his muscles tense below the skin and his eyelids flickered but without the eyes opening. The excitement rose within her. Oh, she did want him to open them. She wanted him to know that he was entirely under her control and how utterly defenceless he was at the moment. The thought of seeing that realisation in his drug addled eyes did not only excite her. It aroused her... 

Suddenly her hungry thoughts were interrupted by the sound of somewhat uneven footsteps, footsteps which were clearly approaching the room…The woman's eyes darted to the door. She didn't spare another moment hesitating but instantly went to the floor and rolled in under the bed. Oh God, she would have laughed if she didn't need to stay quiet. This was something she hadn't done for a very long time. It was many years now since she had to hide away in a closet or under the bed when the spouses of her clients returned home early. Now it was different. Now it were them who came to her instead and she refused to do anything else, if they weren't willing to pay the right price for it. She might consider it, if they so begged on their bare knees in deep prostration to ask her to make them beg her for mercy, like the subjects they all were to her.

The door opened. Even though the view was mostly blocked, she managed to see a pair of feet standing in the doorway, which when excluding the other options possible had to be the doctor's. The calm and steady sound of his steps as he walked around the bed reassured her that he didn't suspect a thing. He stopped on the spot where she just had been standing beside the madras and there stood motionless until the only sound that was heard was the shallow breaths of the detective. The woman controlled her own breath, breathing as quiet as she possibly could without actually stopping. The excitement had really gotten to her however and she felt her heart pound so loud in her chest that she did even imagine that Dr Watson could hear it. He clearly didn't however because his feet began to move again after just a short moment of immobility and she heard him sigh deeply.

"120... Still too high." he muttered.

Oh... The pulse... Yes, the doctor was quite right. That pulse rate was a little bit higher than should be expected by now. The woman smirked yet again to herself as she figured that her actions just a few moments ago might have had something to do with that.

The doctor didn't linger long. Soon after she heard him sigh another time before his steps echoed on the floor again and the door closed behind him with a low thud. The woman continued to listen closely to the steady creaking sound of the planks in the other room. Only when the sound had become inaudible did she risk moving again.

Hmm... That was interesting. Not only had it proved that it had been a good decision to consider Dr Watson an obstacle but she had also indeed been quite right about him in other aspects too. In fact, she found more and more that he was not only an important piece in the puzzle but also an interesting character in his own right. The first thing she had noticed about the doctor earlier today was his movements, from the way he walked and talked to where he focused his eyes. Every movement was entirely determined. Never a trace of doubt or a single sign of hesitation. He looked at the detective and then moved. He looked at him again and then moved again. Dr Watson trusted him, fully, totally, possibly against his better judgement which indeed could seem very strange on one hand but made perfect sense on the other. 

"Oh, he loves you, right." she said under her breath as she rose from the floor, turning her full attention to the man on the bed again. "Fallen head over heels for you. People do that, don't they? You know they do, because they keep coming back to you."

The woman snickered softly and leaned in closer to the man's face.

"You like it, don't you?" she whispered as she placed her finger under his chin and slowly tilted his head backwards. "Seeing people lose themselves around you, become dependent on you until you can do whatever you want with them. Oh, I understand. I do that too..."

The woman's gaze shifted from his face to her right hand and she followed it with her eyes as it traced the fabric of the shirt on his arm down to his hand. There she touched his wrist and studied it closely as her fingers softly wrapped themselves around it. She found it to be utterly refined and very delicate, like everything else about him. Oh, he truly was a beautiful specimen, from his sharp lineaments to his well-sculpted hands.

As she gently continued to trace the contours of his wrist, she began to visualise its ligaments and muscles being hard and tense while strapped tightly together with the other wrist behind his back with a black leather belt. Forced to obey her every command, he would stand on his knees on the floor as she brought her riding crop to him and caressed the skin of his neck and face with it for as long as it pleased her. Maybe infinitely, if that was all she decided to do...

The woman closed her eyes and breathed out slowly. You could make people dependent on you in different ways and one way didn't need to exclude the other. A combination did indeed give her the most accessible pleasure...

She leaned in even closer to the man until she was just inches away from his face, close enough to feel his exhalations on her skin.

"Admit, you can't resist it... They just keep coming back to you. All the time..."

Keep coming back...

The woman closed her eyes.

What keeps coming back? Yes! It really does, doesn't it? The hiker! Of course!

"Got it!" she exclaimed, a little bit louder than intended. Luckily, the sound of the doctor moving around in the kitchen didn't seem to change. What did change however was the sound of the detective’s breathing. He stirred and then, for the first time this night, his eyelids slightly parted...

The woman took this change with ease. As clearly visible in the way he couldn't focus his gaze, the sedative was still as heavy in his system as she had expected. To him this would seem like a peculiar dream, a nightmare rather than reality. Even so, even though she might just be a faint illusion, it was clear that his mind, even unconsciously, was trying to react to what it thought it saw. He tensed and attempted to move, even though the movement was so pathetically small that it could easily be mistaken for nothing at all, while his flickering eyes kept trying to fight against the drug infused haze. Oh, the poor man. That was something she couldn't allow... 

The woman hushed calmly and placed a finger over his lips.

"Shh… Don't get up." she said with a soft soothing voice as she put her other hand on his chest, just below the neck. She flexed her wrist and pressed down, stopping his attempted movement and forcing him to stay exactly where she wanted him; immovable against the sheets. His breathing intensified, and so did hers...

The woman listened once again to the noise outside, making sure that Dr Watson wasn't planning on making them another visit. It didn't seem like so as she heard his distinct footsteps echo in the staircase. So, the doctor was not even within close distance at the moment. Good... As long as no considerable sound escaped this bedroom then, she could do whatever she liked and without interruption. No devoted doctor to the rescue this time...

The look in her eyes intensified further as she gazed down at the man again who was still doing some occasional feeble attempt at moving. She pouted and shook her head in disagreement as she pressed down even harder on his chest while also caressing his forehead. She continued until any sign of resistance disappeared, when the haze overtook him again and he breathed out heavily as his eyes rolled back into his head and then closed.

Content with the confirmation that he was indeed completely unable to object to any of her actions, the woman sat down beside the detective on the madras. Her fingers enveloped around each one of his wrists again and one at the time, she slowly brought them up above his head and placed them crossed over each other just below the headboard. With her left hand holding them securely in place, she continued to caress his forehead with the other hand and stroke his jawline with a single finger, down his neck and to the first kept button of his black shirt. With a swift movement with two fingers, she unbuttoned it. A mischievous smile spread across her face.

"I'll do the talking..." she whispered softly into his ear. 

Chapter Text

"So the car is about to backfire and the hiker, he's staring at the sky."

With those words the woman began her explanation of the case with the invisible murderer which she had just hours ago discussed with the man that she now had completely within her power. She kept holding his wrists together above his head while she deliberately spoke very close to his ear, her voice hissing on every syllable and making sure that he could hear her but be unable in any way to answer. Some hours ago he had answered her quickly, confidently, absolutely sure in his own ability to provide the right reply to anything she would say. How very unfortunate for him that she used a wide range of different tools when she played her games. Words were of course useful during the process to some extent but she found them to be the most effective when it was time for the finishing touch, when she placed the cherry on top and crowned her masterpieces. The dominatrix knew their impact were the deepest when the opponents couldn't reply, when they already knew that they had been beaten. Then they hurt badly, possibly more than anything...

Like a stab in the back with a blunt blade for every letter, she thought and stroked the cleanly shaven skin by his ear with her fingernails as she continued her account.

"You said he could be watching birds but he wasn't, wasn't he? He was watching another kind of flying thing."

The woman fell silent and her gaze fixed on the man's hair. She scrutinised its structure closer, delicately touching the hairline before she slowly began to run her fingers through it.

"The car backfires and the hiker turns to look..."

The detective now suddenly stirred and jerked his head quickly to the side, away from her hand while she felt his wrists twitch anxiously below the other hand holding them down. The woman hushed tenderly and smiled softly as she carefully replaced her fingers in his hair and soothingly caressed his scalp, something that seemed to calm him slightly. At the same time however, she most consciously began to twist her caressing fingers tighter around his dark curls. Her hold of the thick strays of hair hardened even more as her hand retracted into a tight fist. With this solid grip, she not only firmly but harshly forced him to turn his head back into its former position and there held it relentlessly in place. The tension in his neck muscles rose quickly, as did the sound of his uneasy breaths, and when he momentarily squeezed his eyelids together tightly, that told her that he felt it and that it hurt.

"Which was his big mistake..." she breathed slowly, threatening, into his ear as she pressed his twitching wrists even harder down against the pillows. Only she decided what he could do and not do and what he would do now was listening to her explanation in just the way she wanted him to, or he would get punished. One more objecting movement and she would not only consider anymore to use something else than just her hands to restrain him... 

The woman's soft smile turned into another content smirk. More than content really, as the feeling of the subduing power in her actions against his feckless resistance stirred up a familiar, tickling sensation in her body that rushed the adrenaline even more frantically through her veins. She pressed her thighs together tightly and sighed audibly before she spoke again.

"By the time the driver looks up the hiker's already dead. What he doesn't see is what killed him because it's already being washed downstream."

The woman let out a long breath as she calmed herself from the latest adrenaline rush, closed her eyes and felt her mind temporarily leave the London flat and her defenceless subject below her. In front of her, she now saw the pictures from the crime scene that the rich and lonely policeman, which unconscious preferences she had come to know more than well during the last few months, had sent her during the morning. Pictures of the dead body, of the car and the calm stream. Every single one of them was packed with details that now made perfect sense. Down the riverside, there it lay, all hidden from view if you didn't know what to look for. The murderer and the murder weapon, probably still stained with the victim’s blood. Of course...

"An accomplished sportsman recently returned from foreign travel with... A boomerang." 

It keeps coming back. Oh, you should indeed be careful with things that have a tendency to retort at free will. Keep your focus and it can be a source of everlasting amusement. One inattentive moment, and it might kill you...

It wasn't the actual solution to the mystery however that made her suddenly freeze in her movements. Her eyebrows nit together and she stared into the wall as her hands began to release their tight grasp of the man's dark curls and ease the pressure on his hands. She leaned back and gazed down intently at him, feeling for once truly surprised by the realisation that had come to her.

One computer screen, one doctor, one sheet and three minutes...

Stop boring me and think ...

"You got that from one look?"

The look in her eyes that just moments ago had scrutinised him as an entertaining object, like an inspection of a new toy, now visibly changed. The excitement was still left in them, as was the arousal, but now quite different in its nature. Curious and more interested than malicious, captivated rather than hungry. She had heard that he was really good but this wasn't clever. No, this was absolutely brilliant. He was even better than she had expected and he had proved it again. It was genuinely starting to become something she found to be even a bit... intriguing... quite attractive actually... 

The woman smiled.

"Definitely the new sexy..." she whispered.

It wasn't long after that the man began to moan quietly under his breath and she saw his eyes partly open again. It was obvious that the anaesthetic was starting to gradually lose its grip of him. He was looking more directly at her face now, almost meeting her gaze even though his dilated pupils' ability to focus were still pretty much failing him. 

"...I..."

His mumble became louder the second time he said the singular word, to the point that it started to become risky to allow it any further. The woman shook her head once more and took hold of his wrists again with her right hand. She then placed the cold palm of the left hand on his face and covered his mouth. The man's delirious eyes widened and he drew a sharp breath through his nose. She tutted in pretended sympathy.

"Hush now..." she whispered softly again as she released his arms and let her hand calmingly fondle the side of his face. "It's okay. I'm only returning your coat."

Yes, time had rushed away way too quickly and she could admit that she had already stayed longer than intended. The anaesthetic would soon lose its paralysing grasp of the detective and all the while the doctor could still decide to check up on him again at any minute. Both were reasons enough on their own to very soon do what she came for and then leave. Besides, she was starting to find herself quite satisfied in her fun. Well, at least for tonight...

The man's eyelids flickered as he slowly closed them again and the woman found it safe to remove her hands from his face. She brought a finger to her own lips and hushed inaudibly at him one more time as she began to lean in even closer towards him. This will be our little secret, dear, or well... mostly mine..., she thought and a wry smile formed on her face as she told him goodbye with a kiss on his cheek with open lips, making sure that her blood-coloured red lipstick made a clear impression on his skin.

The detective began to lower his arms and turn to the side as she backed away from him. This time she didn't stop his movement. Instead, she grabbed the loose sheet by his legs and covered him with it as she pushed him a little bit further over to his right side. His head came to rest deeply on the pillow with his arms close to him under the sheet and the dominatrix's eyes narrowed as her fingernails slowly pushed themselves into the soft textile by his face. Fabric was a truly useful material, especially when applied with relentless density and without any oppositional force. Its effectiveness lay in its softness. It could push itself into the smallest of openings and obstruct even the tiniest of vents, until there was no possibility of anything slipping out and definitely not in. The thicker the layers were, the harder the pressure, the faster you went out of oxygen and with no opportunity to fight it off, the more treacherously you died... 

The woman traced the texture of the white satin of the sheets back to the detective's neck again. She felt his pulse pound below her fingertips and the rapid beating intensified even more as she opened up her palm and pushed it down to increase its contact with his skin. The pressure of her hand made the man start to draw short wheezing breaths through open lips. More pressure now and his breaths would quickly turn into something quite different than just inhalations. Just a little bit more... 

She did wonder what he would sound like, gasping for air. Would the sound still have traces of the dark baritone voice she had heard him speak with earlier? Would it be completely covered up by the contractions of the muscles in his chest desperately trying to give him any amount possible of the eighth element on the periodic table which he valued so highly, the element essential to all life? On second thought, would his muscles yet be non-paralysed enough to have him manage to gasp at all...

The woman raised her head slowly. Just as slowly, she moved her hand to just below his jawline, to where she knew that the windpipe was the most exposed. She drew her fingers together and with a single delicate movement she then pushed his chin upwards on the pillow, opening up his airways further and minimising the risk of accidental suffocation on his own accord. She tenderly stroked his scared cheekbone with the back of her hand. The Virgin would still be a virgin in the morning and lucky for him, he would also not be dead. She agreed with the consulting criminal. If the detective's fate really was to die soon, she had very much begun to understand why he was too good to spend at a pointless death.

Rising silently from the madras, the woman took the detective's large expensive coat from her shoulders, revealing her exquisite battle dress in all its precious beauty. She walked back on her toes to the white door and hung the garment on a spike that suitably had been placed on it. Seductively, she stroked the fabric down to its left pocket and picked up the bonus that so conveniently had been thrown her way.

The plain black smartphone. His phone…

Again she was surprised that he must have forgotten about it being in the coat when he gave it to her and that it hadn't been provided with a lock code. Well, the easier it had been for her to play him a little 'innocent' prank that would remind him why lock codes were effective and why he had been thrown before her in the first place; because mobile phones could do many different things. Taking pictures for example, or capture the sound of the most private moments just as they were sounding in the moment of their happening.

Happening indeed... She never faked... Now his own phone would help her make sure that she lingered further in his thoughts, more that she already had made sure tonight that she did. Even if she unfortunately couldn't have him restrained physically all the time, at least not yet, he would give him no other possibility to escape her in any way. 

She put the device back into the coat's large pocket, now checked and all ready for her upcoming intentions, and then walked back promptly around the bed to the chest of drawers beside it. Soundlessly she opened the top drawer, now with the intention of finding something to wear. After all, it was becoming a little bit chilly outside. Why risk catching a cold? 

The drawer's content was sparse but significantly diverse. A dozen well folded garments were lying in two even piles to the left, mostly in plain dark colours or in white. The zealous order of the clothes contrasted gravely with the uncountable amounts of paper sheets to the right, scrabbled with musical notes all over them. Scattered over the sheet music were also a handful of CD-records with classic music by Bach, Händel and Wagner among others, as well as a few books in different sizes and shapes. Well, maybe I should have told him that I was German, the woman pondered as she picked up a beautifully framed copy of von Goethe's Faust that lay at the top of the eccentric pile.

Hmm… The story of a doctor that made a dangerous pact with the devil in a desperate attempt to conquer more knowledge. The woman raised her eyebrows. It seemed like the only thing people ever did in her world. They wanted knowledge about others, knowledge about themselves and knowledge about just how arousing it felt to stimulate their most inner fantasies to the highest price possible. The woman definitely knew who she considered herself to be in that story. She could make dreams come true and destroy them just as quickly while making her own come true in the process. The dominatrix had never doubted that she had chosen the right profession for her elaborate talents.

Smiling amused, she put the book down and started to look through the clothes. In the middle of the left pile she finally found something of interest; a plain shirt in a dark purple colour. After gently unfurling and scrutinising the fabric closely she smiled again, contently, at it. Perfect.

Maybe he wouldn't notice that it was gone? Well, he would. Did it matter in the long run? Probably not. It might even give her one more excellent reason to do another unannounced visit soon again, something she was already starting to look forward to. She would very much like to hear him do one of his famous deductions and explain an intricate case to her again, maybe while she decided if she was entertained enough to release him from the restraints she had created with this purple shirt. Imagining quite visually herself slapping his face hard to the side before securing the ripped pieces of fabric that pulled his limbs together even tighter, she draped the garment around her shoulders and buttoned it up in front.

Just when she was about to push the drawer shut again, her eyes suddenly caught sight of something else lying behind the clothes and the sheet music. It was something that made her stop and immediately open the drawer again. For the second time that night, the woman found herself absolutely captivated by what she saw...

Chapter Text

The woman stood completely motionless with her hands still on the wooden edge of the old furniture as she stared down at the content in the drawer. The only exception was the movement of her red lips when she pursed them. This day was seemingly not done with giving her new exciting realisations about what she was up against and this... This was a clue that was, to say the least, more familiar than she would have expected. She reached down and quietly picked up the unmistakable item from the drawer's wooden bottom. Her gaze swept slowly over it as she took it in both her hands and her fingers wrapped themselves around the fine black leather, an action creating the very familiar creaking sound that emerged when forcing the stiff material to move. The woman's eyes narrowed. Well, look at that...

The riding crop was in very similar style to her own with its fiberglass body leading down to a well-shaped handle, covered in finely cut leather and sewn together with exquisite precision. The woman's lips opened as she slowly raised the whip upwards from her left hand and then struck it down swiftly into her palm again, creating a muted but still very satisfying sound to the ears of the dominatrix. Even more so was the fact that when looking at the wrinkles and scratches in the black teeper at the top, it was clear that the item had been made usage off before. Not just that. Used multiple times...

The woman slowly turned around and stared at the man in the bed. He was lying more still now and breathed calmer, indicating that his mind and heart had also calmed down after her... well, let's say private treatment of him. The same couldn't be said about her own mind that was now starting to twist itself around its vivid speculations as her gaze shifted between the item in her hands and the detective. With all that she had seen during the day, it had started to get very interesting even before she found this; a well-used riding crop in the drawer next to his clothes. Now she felt the irrevocable curiosity starting to grow with furious speed inside her. It wasn't interesting anymore. It was getting irresistible.

Oh, what did a man like him use this for? As a weapon? As a device? Well, riding crops had been created with one obvious purpose. You beat objects with them, whether they were dead or alive, inanimate or human, whether it was with consent or without. He had clearly beaten something, so what did he beat? Or better; who did he beat? For work or for pleasure? Well, was there even a difference between the two?

People wanted to think that pleasure was complicated, probably to legitimise their own wicked minds behind the boring facades.

It wasn't.

It was simple.

Very simple, in fact.

People did things because it felt good. People did good things because it felt good to think that you somewhere inside actually were a good person. People also did, what they would call it, bad things because it felt good to screw other people over and hurt them, whether it was physically or mentally, and whether people tried to make themselves believe that they regretted it afterwards. Pleasure was never complicated; always simple. Either you liked it or you didn't and if you didn't, you didn't do it voluntary. People might say that they felt bad about what they liked but it never changed the fact that they did like it and acted upon that desire. Pleasure was in either case immensely motivating, so why not use it? That was why it was her primary guiding star, both for the purpose of her work and for herself.

She wanted to think that this man was as simple as everyone else in that sense, in his own way at least. Well, minds like his however weren't satisfied by just simple pleasures. They wanted more, craved it most times even more than life itself. Oh, she if anyone would know how that felt. Nothing was too much. They could continue for ages, constantly crave more until their bodies couldn't handle the consequences of those desires anymore. The detective was well aware of what he could do, how far he had to go to find stimulation and exactly how he would find it. Had he followed these impulses that she knew he must have, he would definitely not have been staying on this side of the law. What was really the fun in being good, especially as a genius? The other side could always offer so many more options for brilliant unsatisfied minds.

Stepping over the edge was so easy.

Very simple.

Always simple...

Just ask Dr Faust.

But he didn't. For some reason the detective balanced on the edge but he stayed on the safe side. The good side, the boring side, and that... That did confuse her. What was it that stopped him? Was it the good doctor? In that case, what stopped him before Dr Watson? The Ice Man and his concern concealed by well-formulated threats? Or was there even more to him than they could ever see, not even the brother? In fact, had they really been able to stop him at all? Oh, what was actually going on in his mind, behind the polished facade, behind everything that was supposed to be law and order, or at least organised chaos? An excruciating mess of brilliance too large for all ordinary people to understand. A conundrum, a case, one that she was becoming eager to solve.

The woman's eyes narrowed again as her fingers caressed the black leather in her hands.

Oh, you dirty boy...

Who are you?

What are you?

Do you beat for a purpose or just because it feels good?

Is it both?

Why is that?

Why don't you choose?

The woman breathed out heavily again as her shining eyes widened. This game was starting to turn into the most intriguing one she had played in a long time. She was not only prepared but also excited to play it fully, totally, with all the resources that she had. She wanted to beat him at his own game. Beat him badly (certainly metaphorically, literally at best) and break him down into a million pieces if necessary and dissect every single one of them. The purpose was clear. The victory in itself against a worthy opponent and then the reward of the solution. Oh, she wanted to know, so eagerly wanted to solve the mystery of this complex construction of a human being and understand what he really was.

Her eyes closed again and she was back in her detailed fantasies. It wasn't the same picture as before that now appeared however. The detective was no longer on the floor below her, prostrated under her compulsion. He was standing opposite her, staring at her as she stared back at him, both outdoing each other with just their gazes, just like they had this afternoon. She kept wondering: How ruthless was he really? How wicked? Maybe even more than he was clever?

He was a mystery.

He was her equal...

Not a plaything.

A playmate...

Suddenly she found that she wasn't standing anymore. She was on the floor, on her knees and she was unable to move, locked down by restraints that she couldn't see or feel. The detective was now staring down at her, his grey eyes scrutinising her with all their sharp focus and burning intensity.

Stop boring me...

He was the one holding the riding crop now...

In reality, the woman was still clasping the item tightly with both her hands. Her grasp hardened, her fingers were now almost shaking from the pressure. When she opened her eyes again, there was no excitement left in the looks she sent the still unconscious man on the bed. Not even arousal. Only raw and untameable desire...

Thud!

The sudden loud noise echoing from the kitchen made the woman snap out of her thoughts and her gaze darted towards the door again. She could hear the doctor curse under his breath but the sounds soon died out again. They were replaced instead by the sound of the detective's increasingly distressed movements and deep breaths. The signs of impending consciousness weren't hard to recognise. Realising immediately what it meant, she frowned grimly. Time was running out.

The woman urgently put the riding crop back in its place and closed the drawer with a swift but soundless movement. Just as quietly, she ran over the floor towards the window again, opened it and started to climb back out into the now pitch black London night. The window felt smaller now than before, totally unreasonable as she of course had entered in a much larger garment than she wore now. The difference was that back then she hadn't felt the seconds slipping away from her in a pace she couldn't control, possibly like the detective must have felt when he gradually felt himself loose sense of his muscles and consciousness on the floor in front of her while she took the opportunity of having her way with him.

She reluctantly admitted that this time it had been more down to luck than skill. Just when she started to climb down the ladder again, she suddenly heard the dark voice belonging to the man that she had visited quite thoroughly loudly yell the doctor's name. He still sounded delirious, agitated in his confusion, pitifully small in his screams after "mummy" after the scare of the very realistic nightmare which he had experienced. But he was awake, his incredibly observant mind finally starting to re-establish its connections with his previously numb senses. It would be utterly foolish to underestimate his skills, even in this state. The woman was many things. One of them was not a fool. She needed to act quickly.

The woman immediately let go of the ladder and dropped towards the asphalt. The distance to the ground was slightly higher than she had expected but she didn't have time to be taken by surprise by this or feel the slight pain in her legs that the impact caused. Instead, she instantly ran on her bare feet to behind the wall of the neighbouring property. Making sure she hid from any possible view, she pressed her back against the rough bricks and listened to the indecipherable murmurs heard from inside the room she just had left, as well as the pounding sound of her racing heart beating furiously in her chest. The woman breathed deeply and let her head fall back against the wall. She closed her eyes and snickered soundly. Well, wasn't this a successful day? What now was waiting was work behind the frontline, plotting in the shadows and wait for the next confrontation. When that was, when it was time to meet him in person again, possibly with him actually aware of her presence this time, that only time could tell. Yes, until then, she just had to wait. Except, she didn't want to wait...

The woman released a breath which she now realised that she had been holding. Had it been tempting? Oh, yes... Almost too tempting to stay a while longer and finish what she had started. Crossing the line was what she did and had done many times. So why did this feel different? Why did she feel that she hadn't had control over her loss of control, the dominatrix with her subject below her, always well aware of which boundaries she consciously chose to step over? The beating of her racing heart continued to echo in her ears. The feeling now in her chest was strangely unfamiliar. Malicious and at the same time shy, both satisfied and completely starved, daring but still absolutely terrified. Only one thing was she sure of; that she wanted more.

The dominatrix took out her phone from the strap on her bare leg, chose the number to the other phone in the pocket of the coat she had left in the room and typed the text quickly. Six words, one sentence, the content just a slight tease of what might have happened and what was to come... Till the next time... She pressed 'Send'. The other phone would have received it within a matter of moments and with that, she had sent the first of many reminders that he would not be allowed to stop thinking about her. Oh, definitely not now when she had started to enjoy thinking about him, finding herself locked again in the thought of how their game of wits would play out.

The woman glanced down again to her thigh, looking at the camera phone whose hard material felt cold against her skin. Her invaluable resource, her protection, her life... She removed it and opened the start screen reading the message of its status of security.

 I AM

[][][][]

LOCKED

She snickered as the idea came to her. It was as ridiculous as it was brilliant and therefore perfect for this particular game. They say that you should keep your friends close but your enemies even closer. People were always more willing to see what they liked, saw this over everything else, and the detective liked enigmas, just like she did. Therefore, she had to play with what he couldn't understand in the light of this: that the most difficult mysteries always had the simplest of answers. Place the solution too close and the observer has no possibility to set the right focus to see clearly. He was going to try to make his focus be as sharp as a diamond shard. He could try, she would make sure of it, wanted to make sure of it. What was possible that she could do to him the next time they met, and what could he do to her? Delusion, humiliation, locking the handcuffs and throw away the key.

Everything...

In the end, she was a woman that foremost liked to enjoy herself and pleasure was what she always desired and craved. She desired this game and craved the solution to the enigma that was his existence, locking her down until she had found satisfaction.

Yes... Locked...

She looked at the device in her hand again. It wasn't a lie. Just a disguise spiced with a bit of truth.

Irene Adler laughed. She could already see it. One day... One day, when this was over, they were going to stare at each other and one of them was going to beg the other for mercy. That would be the day when she would have solved the mystery that was Sherlock Holmes.