1

I don't really know where to start. I guess I could start with how I felt. That's always how Gregson had told me to start any conversation. I never really listened to him, before taking pen to paper. This was different, though. I still don't know where to start as of the first paragraph, so I've decided I'm just going to tell you what happened and maybe a little of how I felt, which is strange because waking up from the fire and explosion, I don't really know how I felt.

My eyes were shut tight and whenever I tried to open them the overwhelming lights just blurred brighter and brighter, forcing me to shut them my eyes again. I wasn't really sure if I was standing or lying because of the fact that every attempt at opening my eyes sent my head throbbing and pounding and my vision blurring. Eyes still closed, my hands met the cobblestone pavement of the side street and I took a deep breath in trying my hardest to orient myself.

Lowell.

I was in Lowell, I thought.

Where in Lowell? What the hell had happened? My vision still blurred and my head still throbbing, I blinked a few times and my breathing started to quicken. I was lying. On the ground. The sudden cold gripped my and I shivered violently, causing even more pain to whatever wounds I had. Coughing once, I could feel the breath rattle in my chest causing a sharp pain sear through my throat, probably from dehydration. Still trying to orient myself I reached my arms out in front of my in the hopes of finding something to grab onto, anything, because if I didn't grab onto something soon the blurry vision and disoriented thoughts would take over.

Before I could comprehend anything, there was a sudden disturbance to the relative peace that I had found on the ground.

"Johanna! Johanna, open your eyes, come on, love!" My eyes blinked open in response to the frantic request. The blurring had stopped, but things were still slightly spinning. Detective Lestrade was looking down at me, his worried face creased into a frown, thin lips pursed in a line and rough hands, gripping onto my shoulder. I struggled to sit up and strong arms came around my back, helping me sit. Even as my vision cleared and as the coughing and shaking ceased Lestrade did not take his hands off of my shoulders, supporting me as I sat up slowly.

"Lestradeā€¦" My voice trailed off and I coughed again and gripping onto his arms like they were a lifeline, and at that moment, they were. Lestrade was the only one who knew anything and my only link to finding my friend and colleague in the debris and rubble of the abandoned textile mill. At least I hoped that was where he was. Better there, lost and confused, then with the professor or in the collapsed building.

"I'm right, here, Johanna. Right here, love. Stay with me, it's all alright. We'll have you alright in no time." The sharp pain in my shoulder and chest gradually increased as my vision cleared and my senses sharpened.

When it was evident that the shock from the explosion was taking over, Lestrade started gesturing to the medics to come over to where we were sitting. There were so many things that I needed to say. I needed to make sure that Sherlock was alright. I needed to see if the professor had been caught and most importantly I needed a reassurance that the body of the boy that they were going to find in the wreck of the building was really dead and that there was nothing Holmes and I could do to have saved him.

"Lestrade," I coughed, his arm still in a death grip. My words never came to me and I closed my eyes, trying to regulate my breathing to long drawn out breaths and not the short gasps that it was currently coming in.

"What can I do?" He asked, removing one hand from my shoulder to rub my back softly and then run it through my charred, blonde hair, before letting it return to my trembling back.

"Holmes," there was a pause before I could even go on to say; "where is he?" The detective took a deep breath in and that was it. I was a doctor. I had been to Iraq. I knew exactly what that breath meant. tears started to well in my eyes and I put both my hands over my mouth in a petty attempt to stop the sob from escaping my lips.

The breath was what caused the sharp pain in my chest to turn dull and the empathy I usually had for the wounded at the scene to completely abdicate.

"Johanna," he started calmly, keeping his voice even and swallowing, causing his Adam's Apple to bob. I looked at him, trying to pull myself together.

"So help me god, Lestrade, if you use your 'talking to children or crazy people' voice with me, I will make sure you and everyone in that god damn department-"

"Maybe we should talk about this laterā€¦" He trailed off, closing a hand around some of my hair, bringing it gently away from my scraped up and bloody face.

"Lestrade!" My voice was sharp this time and one word spoken in the harsh tone I used to use in the military was all it took. There was a sigh and his eyes darted around before he looked back at me, blue eyes staring up at him and still gripping to his arm, like a child to a parent. He must have seen exactly how lost and helpless I was feeling.

"Johanna, I'm so sorry, he's being brought to the hospital now, but there's nothing you can do. You need too-" I shook my head. Tears started to drip down my cheeks and land in the charred grass that Lestrade and I were sitting on. I tried to control myself as best as I could, reminding myself that I was a professional and I didn't need any other reason for the Boston PD to see me in anything less then the image I had created for them, but the thought of one of my dearest friend in the back of ambulance, clinging to life, alone, and hurt, probably scared, but too proud to admit it, was too much for me to take.

I couldn't hold it back any longer. A sob choked out of my mouth and the tears started to flow fresher and faster than they had in a while. My shaking hands tried to wipe them away but they were falling far to fast. It reminded me of the leaking faucet that I had been trying to fix in our apartment on Baker Street a few days prior. The thought of Baker Street, Ms. Hudson, and the leak only made me cry harder. I hardly noticed the medics that had approached us.

Before I could comprehend anything else, Lestrade had me on my feet, hands still firmly positioned on my shoulders and giving sharp instructions to the medics, using the authoritative voice that I knew Holmes despised. Before I could even connect A to B, I was sitting on the bed in an ambulance truck, a large blanket draped around my shoulders and a small women shining a light in my unfocused eyes.

"Miss Watson?" I didn't even bother to correct her. "Miss Watson, I need to know what happened." My head rolled back voluntarily and and kicked my feet onto the stretcher, staring at the white ceiling. I heard the men muttering about shock, but the women didn't take her eyes off of me. "Sweetheart?" Usually, pet names were irritating, especially from someone who seemed at least ten years my junior, but at the moment I just didn't care.