At the moment, as most of you know, I am researching the British involvement in the current Afghanistan conflict and thus am reading everything I can lay my hands on about our solider’s lives and experiences on the front line. On my way to Paris last week I read Callsign Hades by Patrick Bury (which I wholehearted recommend to anyone wanting an insight into Afghanistan) and I came across this passage:
And this, to me, encapsulates the type of love that Sherlock and John share in the show.
I’m aware that, since all my fic about them is most definitely Johnlock of the romantic kind, that this might sound a little strange but I genuinely believe that this form of love – the simple platonic kind as Patrick so rightly calls it – is what Moffat and Gatiss have been trying to convey in each episode.
It is the love of one person for another that is selfless, almost inexplicable in its intensity and can transcend almost anything thrown at it; bonding people together far more tightly than any other form of love can.
For John, as a former soldier, this sort of love would come easily with the right person – someone he believed in whole heartedly, felt kinship with and cared about almost to exclusion of all else; you just have to look at how his attempts at “romantic” love are pushed aside again and again by his bond with Sherlock, his need to protect and care for the man he loves from his very soul to see how powerful it is.
For Sherlock I think it is the only kind of love he could sustain, given his views on sentiment. He feels the bond with John, he feels the care, the love and the belief and he mirrors it because he can see that is not a love that seeks to change him, not a love that asks him to deny his nature but rather one that nurtures it, accepts him for who he is and offers support in a way he has never received before. It is this sort of love that will make a man step off a roof to save another.
This passage is beautiful, it touches me deeply every time I read it and, if I’m honest, represents the kind of love I think more of us need in our lives.
Please note that I intend no copyright infringement by posting this passage here and am happy to take it down and quote directly from the book if requested to do so.