Synopsis for 4×23: Sherlock and Joan track down the man who took up Moriarty’s organization after she was incarcerated.

Rating: ★★★★☆

After the previous episode, when Sherlock realized it was the remnants of Moriarty’s organization behind the feud with his father, he amended his original belief that it could have been Moriarty herself. Instead, due to her incarceration, he believed someone else had taken up the helm.

He’d hoped that removing her would have destroyed the organization; cutting off the head of the snake, as it were. Yet what had happened was someone assumed her place as head of the organization and currently worked in the shadows, pulling the strings of the organization’s agents. They had to chase a shadow.

Moreland increased his security detail, which was a smart move considering the fact the stakes had risen. He was clearly in a bad mood about the situation and snapped at one of his workers before eventually leaving the building. The employee he’d snapped at, once he left, noticed that there was a gentleman delivering water without an escort.

She made the mistake of asking him where his escort was and earned herself a bullet in the head. After the mystery man laid the water cooler containers down he made a quick exit out the building, got to his car, and then set off the bomb he’d just left behind. He blew a hole in Moreland Holmes’ operation, literally.

Stashed away at a safe house in light of the explosion, Sherlock visited his father and offered to help him figure out who did it. He believed that the escaped Russian, Krasnoff, had probably orchestrated the bombing and that the NYPD was currently searching for any leads on his whereabouts. He promised to keep his father appraised of the investigation.

Joan returned home to find Sherlock hard at work, Moriarty’s painting of her set up in the Brownstone. She asked why, and in a lengthy way Sherlock explained his findings. He believed Rixsar Energy was the company which had helped Krasnoff escape from Russia, so he looked to their board of directors for clues as to who could have been behind it.

Most of the board wasn’t worth looking at; they were old, rich, but not nefarious. There was one gentleman though, a Joshua Viknar, that Sherlock believed to be the head of Moriarty’s organization. As well as being on the board with Rixsar energy, he was on faculty at a university nearby, and had a painting that Moriarty had done behind him on the dust jacket of his book.

They went to meet him, and he wanted to know what took them so long to find him. He’d been expecting them. There were no pretenses in the resulting conversation. He, coyly, admitted to being exactly who they thought he was. His reasoning? Moriarty had told him when he took over that Sherlock was off limits, and by extension Joan was, too. There was nothing he’d be able to do to harm them, and he didn’t appear to believe they were much of a threat themselves.

They left the meeting somewhat enlightened, however weird the exchange had been. They purposely kept it under wraps that they knew about Krasnoff, in the hopes that it would keep the assassin from being burned, so that they might be able to connect him to Viknar.

Thanks to some quick work by the team, they were able to find a solid lead on Krasnoff. They tied together the water jug rig with the bombing and went looking for the truck that was stolen. From there, they found a newly purchased hand cart, the purchase of which led them to Krasnoff.

Sherlock’s father approached him, pissed off due to the fact Sherlock had been keeping the facts of the case from him. Sherlock insisted that it was because of his father’s desire for revenge. He wasn’t about to give him the whereabouts of a man he wanted to capture, torture, and pull information from.

Moreland turned around and blamed Sherlock for everything, claiming it was ultimately Sherlock’s fault for not fully dismantling Moriarty’s organization after she was arrested. He didn’t clean up after himself, and as a result the organization pushed forward and went after Moreland and Sabine.

During Krasnoff’s interrogation he pretended he didn’t speak English, until Sherlock called him out on it using Russian. It didn’t matter what language he wanted to speak in, he needed to speak. He finally told them that since he hadn’t committed a crime they could prove on American soil, they would not be able to hold him for long.

Yes, he was a wanted criminal in Russia, but there was no extradition treaty for that. He would be free to go shortly, and Sherlock insisted that he be detained and his belt be removed. When Detective Bell asked him why, since Krasnoff did not appear suicidal, Sherlock said he was looking for evidence of a chemical used in the bomb on the belt buckle. They would be able to link Krasnoff to the purchase of the chemical used to make the explosion bigger than it would have been without it.

Viknar requested a meeting in a church, and Sherlock met him there. He wished to offer peace and make a deal with Moreland Holmes, to stop the madness and the collateral damage being done. He wanted Sherlock to be the one to mediate it, and Sherlock promptly turned him down. His father was not one to make peace, and he would not rest until Viknar was either dead or incarcerated. It would be a fool’s errand to request a peace treaty. Viknar allowed it to be. There would be no peace, the quarrel would continue between them.

The NYPD found where the chemical came from and had a direct link to Krasnoff. They’d be able to charge him and use it as leverage to get him to flip in Viknar. Except things didn’t go as planned. As they took him to booking, a young officer stopped them along the way. He looked nervous, verified who the person was, then proceeded to shoot Krasnoff and shoot himself. He’d clearly been hired to take Krasnoff out, and Sherlock later found the young officer was one of the psychopaths identified by the Dante survey.

On the way home from all the madness, Sherlock made Joan take a back way into the Brownstone because there had been a light on in a neighbor’s flat, but the neighbors were on vacation. He admitted to being paranoid, but when they arrived in the Brownstone they both realized he had a right to be paranoid. Sitting on the desk was a bomb, identical to the one that had gone off in his father’s building, just waiting to be activated.

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