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Fic: Whistleblower [BBC Sherlock]

Title: Whistleblower
Fandom: BBC Sherlock
Rating: PG
Characters: Sally Donovan, OC
Length: 680
Alternate Link: AO3
Author's Notes: Written for the watsons_woes JWP 2015 Prompt #10: What’s All This Then? Use the POV of one or more of the police for today's entry. Readers who want to know more about the Travers case and Sally's interactions with John can read The Ghost of Cases Past, but this story can easily stand alone. Season 2 spoilers. Unbeta'd.
Summary: Sally's dad was IA. Lestrade was the only DI she'd ever met that didn't hold it against her. Perhaps he should have.

When Sally's dad first moved to England, he got a job as a bus-driver in London. After the Stephen Lawrence murder, and that sham of a trial, he joined the Met. Sally's mum was worried about his safety, a black, an immigrant, in among all those white police officers.

"How can we expect this country to be a safe place for our little girl if we will not work to make it so," he argued.

Dad was on the vice squad a few years later when he testified against some of his fellow officers for taking bribes. In the wake of the Mcpherson inquiry he was 'rewarded' with a post in IAB.

It seemed like he was on tele every other day, giving interviews and making statements about how the Met was changing for the better. Sally was 18 years old. As part of the most vicious fight she ever had with her dad, she accused him of being nothing but a token. It was the only time she ever saw her father really, truly angry.

"If all I can do, when I go to work each day, is show what the police should be," he said, "then that is what I will do."

When Sally joined up, he was proud. When finally, after working twice as hard for it, she made detective, he was over the moon. And when Sally was assigned to DI Lestrade's squad, he was relieved.

"I believe Lestrade is a good man, Sally," he told her. "He'll treat you fair."

Lestrade was a good man, and a good cop. She learned a lot from him. There was just one problem – Sherlock Holmes.

It wasn't the drugs. Yeah, that'd been one hell of a first impression, Holmes nearly passing out on the victim during the Travers case, and having to be carted off to A&E. But Sally had known men to lose themselves to drugs and alcohol, get help, and come back strong. She would have been willing to give him another chance.

It wasn't the fact that every time Lestrade involved Holmes in a case, he was putting his own career at risk by breaking a dozen procedures and the chain of evidence. It certainly paid off, at least in the short-term. Their squad's solve rate was the envy of the Met.

It wasn't even his privilege, the public school accent, Holmes insulting them all and treating them like barely adequate servants. Sally had seen three separate drugs charges disappear the moment they were entered into the computer system, and could only imagine the corruption and back-door deals, the secret abuse of power that demonstrated.

She could have overlooked all that, because Holmes was clever, so fucking clever, and God knows they needed all the help they could get, if only Sherlock Holmes was there to help.

But he wasn't, was he? Holmes didn't care about the victims at all. The crimes were just puzzles, ways to pass the time. He would look at the corpse of a young woman brutally raped and murdered, and light up like it was Christmas. He loved it; got off on the violence and the death like a crow feasting after a massacre.

And in a man who could, quite possibly literally get away with murder, that was a terrifying thing.

Sally talked it over with her dad. Her father was a great believer in following the spirit of the law over the letter. He suggested that, since Holmes seemed to be doing more good than harm, she let things lie for now, documenting anything problematic.

"If you find evidence of true wrong-doing, Sally, do not keep silent," he said solemnly, "but you must act quickly. You bring it to Lestrade and to the superintendent. Tell anyone who will listen. The more people who know, the safer it will be for you."

So Sally kept her eyes and ears open. She tried to warn off Doctor Watson, not that he listened. And when she heard that little girl scream, terrified at the very sight of Holmes – she acted.



( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 11th, 2015 12:48 am (UTC)
Excellent Donovan backstory. I do not blame her for her actions.
Jul. 11th, 2015 12:53 am (UTC)
Sally gets a lot of hate in our fandom, and I don't think she deserves it. In hind-sight, after Sherlock's 'suicide', I'm sure she had her regrets. But none of her points about Sherlock are untrue.

Thank you for reading, capt_facepalm!

Jul. 11th, 2015 07:50 am (UTC)
Awesome backstory on Sally!
Jul. 11th, 2015 07:53 am (UTC)
Thank you, gardnerhill!
Jul. 20th, 2015 05:43 am (UTC)
Really nice Sally voice. You gave her a much more plausible backstory and reasons for acting as she did than the show. :-)
Jul. 20th, 2015 11:20 pm (UTC)
Well, given that the series hasn't shown ANY backstory or reasons for Sally's actions, that's not a very high bar. Frequently women or people of color are short-changed in canon, and I love that fanfiction allows them voice.

I'm really proud of this one.

Thanks for the comment!
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )