Warning: This work has been rated 18+.
The red numbers read out 5:30 and caused a noticeable sigh.
Emily rolled over in the empty bed, a slight wondering if kicking Joe out was the right idea, but mainly glad she didn’t have to lie next to a liar. Maybe the vampire did feel something romantic for her but that wasn’t really going to outweigh his criminal position. And also, his ongoing intent to have her murdered by reckless musk rat smelling werewolves.
Plenty of good reason to start breaking things off.
This assignment was getting worse and worse. Being a bounty hunter wasn’t too bad and Joe wasn’t too bad when it came to their bedroom and work activities. The man was submissive enough to bare, willingly to go along with her certain demands, and always listening to her when a case didn’t directly involve the smuggling ring. It was always going so good until the moment when the pair was about to make a big break through. Somehow some mistake would be made, Joe would slip up in some manner not likely of an FBI agent, and they would lose a week of work.
Or even if Joe wasn’t the one in fault for the perp get away, Emily had found more than enough evidence to suspect him of wrongdoing. If only the client that had hired to undertake his seduction and displacement was the United States government. None of her evidence would ever go to trial. It would go directly into the hands of Joe’s grandfather in New Orleans and Joe would go, tied in irons with a stake through his heart, in a cement casket to the bottom of the ocean.
She pushed the thought out of her mind and let her shoulders slump as Emily slowly made her way out of bed. They would have to leave the house at seven anyways so that would only be an hour and a half more. A glance to the right revealed the blood that was still on the mirror, the splatter streaks the remainder of one of those experiments with the vampire bed mate.
"Shit, I should clean that today."
But it was avoided, for now.
The pain was still coursing through her gut as Emily slowly made her way down the stairs, death grip on the slick banister, and careful measurement of each step she took.
“Emily? Are you alright?”
She looked up to see Sherlock leaning over the edge of corridor railing, black curls flattened on one side and the other bouncing as he followed her down the stairs. Emily kept moving down the slippery staircase and continued on to the kitchen with the full knowledge he would follow.
Everything was not alright.
The lie earlier hadn’t fooled anyone, but it was so hard to word all of the issues flying through her head. Joe was at the top of the issue list and Sherlock barely knew about his presence in the household. He had started hanging around more, spending more time in her bed than anyone ever before, and Sherlock judging the hell out of her with each step she took.
Hearing the quiet footfalls come into the room, Emily kept her back to the doorway and said, “Sherlock, take a seat.”
Today she would go to church and see her brother. And probably her father.And perhaps her sister would be there too. Those people being there meant having to be nice to her family and the eventual discussion of Peggy moving in. The promise had been made to Jack months ago, but now it was nearing the time of how it may actually happen.
Not the best week.
He put his hands up in protest while saying, “Emily, if this is about money, I can dip into-”
“No, honey, it’s not about money. It’s just that our living situation might change a bit after today and you might hear certain things while we’re at church.”
Sherlock eyed her while sitting down in the chair over top the heating grate, leaning it back far enough so that it didn't quite hit the wall. From Emily's position at the stove, she could see the reflection of Sherlock sulking in the window and she took down one of his favorite teas from the cupboard. It was something with lots of fruit flavoring that he would just cover up with the taste of sugar, but he would enjoy it.
"If you're worried about a priest trying to exorcise me for being a homosexual, I swear I won't use my rainbow pocket square."
Emily sighed and turned around to him to ask, "Have you paid any attention at all to any church reforms in the past thousand years?"
"To be entirely honest I haven't paid attention to the Catholic Church at all. Is it going to be bad if I go and I don't know any of the prayers? Judging by the cross he wears and the tattoo right above his ass, John is still a devoted Catholic."
Emily wasn’t surprised that the tattoo still existed.
“You don’t seem surprised by that statement, Emily.” The chair clicked hard against the floor and Sherlock’s reflection moved in and out of her blind spot multiple times. “How intimately do you know John?”
“Please remember that I’m nearly twenty-five and your boyfriend, like my brother, is twenty-eight. So, the first time I saw John’s naked ass, I was fourteen and he was seventeen, and he was running down the hallway,” Emily spoke while turning around to find which corner Sherlock had slid into. “I lived across from my brother and his shitty attempts at hiding rowdy sex.”
She turned back to the stove, gently lifting the kettle and pouring the water into the waiting tea pot. Emily had chosen the loose raspberry and lemon tea with the exact purpose of Sherlock would never admit to liking. Maybe he did just care for the generous amount of honey that she laid into each cup, but the lemon was strong enough to pass over the sweetness. That was the detail that Sherlock always happened to comment on when it came to the tea in the house.
Sherlock spoke suddenly from his chair, “Raspberry and lemon but it’s not your usual brand. It’s the special one you keep in the back of the cupboard and has a personal significance to you.”
The tea tray dropped rather suddenly on the table, shaking the china and tea threatening to spill out of the pot itself. As she set the necessary parts out on the tray, Sherlock continued speaking.
He leaned over the table, looked her directly in the eye and asked, “Now why would a tin of tea have a personal significance to you?”
Emily didn’t like the look in his eyes.
Usually she could read his puzzling gestures as much as Sherlock could read her own. That was part of their mutual agreements within the friendship – they could continually read each other without explicit permission. But they could not outwardly comment on the matters that the other person was concerned with.
“You’re the detective, my dear. Why don’t you try and figure it out yourself?” She opened the cabinet door while she spoke, taking down the tight box of cookies that had been made a few days earlier. If the sweets turned out to be stale, then they would just have to dip the jam thumbprints in the tea itself.
She could feel Sherlock’s eyes in her back as Emily placed the cookies on a flowered platter.
“Yes, I am the detective, aren’t I? And as a detective, I would say that you don’t care so much for the tea contained within the container, as much as you care for the tin itself.”
The chair squeaked as it was pushed back on the linoleum.
“I’ve seen your sentimental connection to things multiple times before, but most of the things within this house are memories of your great-grandparents. It makes sense. This is their house and they spent a significant amount of time raising you as a child. But I know for a fact that your great-grandmother would have never kept such a frivolous tea around. The specialty teas that she kept were of her own design and had very particular effects.”
Emily had to question how he knew about the special tea and asked, “How did you know about her concoctions?”
The question was quickly cut off by his continuing monologue.
“I also know that you didn’t have a good relationship with your mother, but you once upon a time commented on her love for lemon zinger. I couldn’t see all of the tin that you were holding up today, but I did note that it was different in design from any of the raspberry and lemon zinger containers I’ve ever seen. So, tea was something that you could get along with your mother on, perhaps even something that you two could enjoy together when the moments were settled. Therefore, the container is hers and you keep it around as a reminder that you might one day find her, even though you have to know that she’s never returning or more likely she’s dead.”
Sherlock finished the statement with a huff, pulling one of his stray hairs back to the side of his head, and slicking it down quickly. The gray eyes had turned from their questioning deductions to particularly soft as he asked, “Do you think the tea has had long enough to steep by now?”
She couldn’t answer him.
She had given him explicit permission.
It was Emily’s own fault as she dropped the tea cup and ignored the shatter as she hurried out the door.