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Title: A Thousand Threads of What-Might-Have-Beens
Author: Wordstrings
Pairing: Holmes/Watson
Fandom: Sherlock Holmes (BBC ‘Verse)
Rating: NC-17
Note: This is the final story in the Paradox series which is 98,000 words.

Summary: When John does finally leave, Sherlock is the last one to be surprised by it. But so much leading up to the event was Good by their eccentric standards, even Immeasurably Good, that the timing does seem wrong. Well, mildly wrong. As wrong as any trivial detail can feel when one’s bones have been removed, for example, or one’s blood drained out of one’s veins.

Why You Should Read This:
Because Sherlock is  real and honest and horrible and great in this fic. The character work in this story speaks to his inability to be “normal” and the true beauty that can be found in his mind. This author ROCKED my world and I’m a very jaded reader. The honest and stunning craft work in this this piece is highlighted beautifully in this quote:

“Please come home,” Sherlock requests.  “That’s all I can think of.  It isn’t very good, but then neither am I.  I can’t promise to be safe nor not to hurt you, but I can promise to be amazing, and beautiful–that is, for the time being, until I get too old, and then I’ll have to think of something else.  You can leave me when I’m not beautiful any longer, I’ll quite understand, but that’ll be at least ten years thrown away if you leave now.  For the moment, I’m still beautiful, and yours.  And that’s…that isn’t as much as I once thought it was.  Me.  But I’m all I have.  It’s too quiet without you, and it’s freezing in that flat, and even when I was alone, I wasn’t alone like this.  I know it’s selfish to want you back, but I can’t help it.  At least you could own something beautiful, if only for the time being.”

“You’ll always be beautiful, you daft bastard.” John isn’t breathing right either. “Beautiful like white tigers, and really expensive guns.”

“Beautiful like things you think will hurt you.” Sherlock nods in quiet despair.