- Nah, I would never go for someone like the Freak - you said, giggling, to Sally and Anderson. - I mean, he's gorgeous and all that, and I'm sure he has kiiiiller stamina, for all that jumping over roofs and chasing madmans, but I bet he's the most egotistical fucker in the whole world.
Anderson sipped from his Corona.
- I dare you to ask him.
- Nooooo... Asking him what? If he's a narcissist, even in bed? No interested. What if he tries to "demonstrate" he doesn't? No, I'll save my chances for someone very much more interesting for me, like his brother - you said, a rum and coke in your hand. The night is chilly but inside the bar is hot; hot enough that you feel your hairline damp and a little head of perspiration almost falling down the back of your dress.
You can see why the boss invited the Holmes and John to the end of year party; Lestrade and the team owed them a whole lot of cases solved, so ... Honorary cops, or something like that.
John was a sweetheart like always, chatting to everybody, a deep blue shirt that brought his eyes and as yummy as ever. And the older Holmes was busy flirting with Lestrade, a little smirk on his face... You know you have no chance with either of them, as enthralled that they were with one another, but dreaming is still free.
The other one was at the bar, sipping at a pint of lager, so out of place not because of his clothes (he had "the purple shirt of sex" on, like the girls at the Yard liked to say), but because of his sour face. He looked so, so done for, you didn't understand why he won't go home.
- How much for me to go to talk to the freak? - you asked Anderson. He looked at you like you were mad.
- I'll pay the next two rounds! - he says, opening his wallet and taking a twenty. You drink the rest of your drink, hoping for a little bit of that liquid courage, and hopped down from your bar stool.
Now that you are closer, you start to doubt yourself. What he says something nasty about yourself? (Very likely.) Is he the kind of person to get aggressive? (Maybe.) Would he laugh at you? (Of course!)
But you are decided and get next to him, using the chance of asking for another drink to stand as closer as possible.
He turns at you when he feels your hand grazing his sleeve; suddenly everything feels more charged. Of course he knows what you want, with him being a certified genius and all that, but you know make a bet with yourself: how many minutes can I stand him?
- Hey! - you say, feeling sweaty and getting a lock of your hair to his proper place - Would you mind to ask the bartender for my drink? He doesn't see me, I'm not tall enough, and I'll have...-
- A rum and coke? I think a gin tonic would suit you best, even if all wives tales said "don't mix drinks".
- Oh! I love gin tonics! But here don't make it like I like them, with the cucumber and lime... So... Please?
Sherlock assents, getting the guy behind the bar to mix your drink. When they finally deposit the glass in front of you, you try to give them the money, and the bartender says "he already paid!" As you give it the first sip.
- So, thanks for that, you shouldn't have! Just let me... I'll pay for your next drink! - You say, feeling perplexed.
- Not need, I know you are saving for going back home for the holidays, and transatlantic flights are not cheap - he says, as he drinks from his glass, with "that" look in his face.
You feel flushed. What he could deduce, you think, of your plus size dress (and your plus size body, of course), or the way your hair is styled? The shade of red of your lips? The smell of your perfume?
Your dress is not too revealing, but it has a deep cleavage, something you feel cute on. Your nice shoes, dressy but comfortable. Your ever present silver bracelet.
Clearing your throat, you feel a little bit like a monkey on a cage, being examined by the Big, Bad Scientist.
- So! Are you having a good time? - you ask, the most inane of questions.
- Not really...- he rumbles, low, so you have to get closer to hear him at all. - but getting entertained with all the flirting between my dear brother and Lestrade. I didn't know the inspector had so bad taste in men! - he says, making weird gestures. You giggle.
- I'm sorry, but your brother is as dishy as they come!- You say, close to his ear; he looks at you with a betrayed expression on his face.
- I’m sorry? My brother, dishy? Next thing you’ll say is that Anderson has a PhD? My brother is.. adequate, I presume, but «dishy» - he says, the gestures of his hands too ample - is stretching the truth a little too out of bounds.
Oh My God, you cant believe... this genius, this child is jealous of his brother?
- At least I’m happy you’re a little bit mortal - You say, drinking a little. It has been almost five minutes and he hasn’t insulted you, so maybe the Christmas spirit is infecting him a little. - Don’t worry, I think you’re gorgeous too - You said, mentally face palming at the next moment. Don’t give him more artillery, silly girl!
He looks at you for a moment, a confused expression on his face; then, he grabs you by the wrist, amused at you.
- No, let me go! - you said, trying to dislodge his hand - I know all about that trick, and is not going to work on me, mister! -
He laughs at you, a full, happy kind of thing. People turn to looks a the two of you, and you see how, from the corner of the bar, Sally makes faces at you.
- You really think there’s something I couldn’t know just from a look at you? - he says, all confidence. The low baritone of his voice does something to your insides, and you’re getting angry.
- What you «think» you know of just looking at me, doesn’t mean is the truth, Mr. Holmes. Now, let me go. I’m not a plaything for egocentric geniuses - you spat at him, finally getting your hand back, and leaving the bar. You feel weird, almost nauseous. You compose a message to Sally («I have to go, the Freak put me in a bad mood. Tell Anderson he owes me!»), collect your coat from the back of the chair, and get outside, to call a cab and go home.
The air is cold, almost freezing. Christmas will be here soon. If you work more overtime, maybe you can pay for those flights in cash; but if you work more hours, you probably go crazy too. What a conundrum...
Right behind you, a lighter flicked closed. Sherlock was there.
- You said «egocentric» again. I think you don’t really know what that word means - he says, a cigarette in his mouth.
Oh my God, he followed you. Why it always this kind of guy wants to have the last word?
- OK, tell me. Tell me how deeply, how wrong I am, that I don’t know my words, that I don’t know anything! Of course no one could be so smart and know so much as the great Sherlock Holmes! - You say.
The cherry of his cigarette is bright in the dark of the alley. He takes a drag, and offers you the thing. You refuse.
- What I’m trying to say is, I’m not an «egotistical fucker», I’m just a high functioning sociopath. One that doesn’t have your number, sadly.
You feel shocked.
- What that means? Do you...? - You ask, feeling like a fool.
He takes out of his coat a card and gives it to you, after scribbling something on the back with a leaking pen. It says «SHERLOCK HOLMES - CONSULTING DETECTIVE» and a phone number. Well, two phone numbers.
- The other one is my... more personal number - he says, that rumbling voice next to your ear. You close your eyes as his gloved hands close over yours. - And I can give you a demonstration about my «killer stamina», any time you want. Just call me.- he says, and goes back into the bar, not without giving you a heated look.
Oh my God! Maybe he is your type after all!