"Damn. This is getting ridiculous, Sherlock."
"You're not blaming this on me."
"I am. This is the third blackout this week!"
"I don't see how it justifies why I am responsible for this. You're not making sense, John."
"Well, it's still your fault."
"John, are you sulking?"
"You are. You're pouting, too. Never realized you were the dramatic sort."
"Shut up. Now go get candles. I'll open the windows. Oh god, it's so hot."
"Sherlock, the candles are right there. Light them up."
John fished his phone out of his pocket and randomly jabbed the buttons on the keypad. The light emitted from his phone allowed him to see why Sherlock was taking so long to light up the bloody candles.
The sight before him was unbelievable. Sherlock was holding a matchbox and had brought up the whole box to the candle wick, without taking out a single match.
"What the hell are you doing?"
John was about to launch into a lecture of how impossible Sherlock was 83% of the time, when he noticed the confusion on his best friend's face.
"Sherlock, are you okay?"
Sherlock gently set down the matchbox and nodded. He frowned at the necessary articles before him and took a deep breath. He wrapped his fingers around the candle, and struck it against the frictional surface of the matchbox.
The fear in Sherlock's eyes, John felt, was the most heartbreaking and terrifying thing he has ever seen.
Early-onset Alzheimer's disease. An uncommon form of Alzheimer's. Rare. Incurable. Degenerative. Incurable. Incurable.
"Oh thank god, Mycroft. Sherlock, are you alright?"
"I'm not a baby, I can take care of myself! God, idiots. You're all suffo— ugh, idiots.
What was that word he wanted to use? It's a good one. It's supposed to mean difficulty in breathing. They're making it difficult for him to breathe.
To think. They're not giving him space to think.
"Where were you going, Sherlock?"
Sherlock notices that John is not yelling at him for wandering off alone; rather, John just seems worried and... sad.
Sherlock doesn't like it when John is sad. John seems sad all the time now.
He figures that it's his fault. It's always his fault.
"A case. Lestrade has a case. And I'm... assi— helping."
Words are difficult. He wants to say he's sorry for worrying John, but he can't find the words to do so.
"Come on, Sherlock. Let's go."
Sherlock considers being defiant and protesting very loudly over John's suggestion. The Work. He can't abandon it like that. How would Lestrade and his incompetent idiots cope without him? Why can't John understand?
He turns to John with every intention of telling him off; but John's not looking at him anymore. He sighs.
"Lestrade, this case is not worth my time. Get Anderson to inv—," Sherlock swallows and closes his eyes to compose himself. Words. He can't remember the correct words to explain himself. Irritating. "Get Anderson to do it. Come, John."
John very nearly lets out a sob when Sherlock strides past him; unable to do anything more but follow his consulting detective as Mycroft Holmes stands on the pavement with tears in his eyes.
What do you do when your own brother doesn't remember you anymore?