The worst thing about it, Lestrade thinks, is that John doesn’t cry.
When they show up, him and his team, John Watson is standing beside the water, blood stained and sopping coat in hand and Lestrade can feel the bottom fall out of his stomach so fast he feels the tingle it leaves behind in the bottom of his feet. John’s eyes are dry as winter and the report he gives is succinct and detailed to the point where Lestrade doesn’t think to ask are you sure, doctor? because John’s giving him the facts like he himself would and John Watson, now so long with Sherlock Holmes, would never forget a fact.
The hand clutching a very recognizable black peacoat is shaking. It’s not the injured one.
Lestrade listens as someone he counts as friend tells him how he watched Sherlock Holmes go over the side of a cliff and never come back up again. Lestrade watches as the walls he hadn’t known his friend had come up and seal over, stark, strong and unyielding steel, but Lestrade saw it. He managed a glimpse and he has to swallow, glance down at his pad and blink the tears from his eyes.
Because the look on John’s face had said He’s gone now.
And I’m all alone.
I loved him.
I love him, still.