John's form was a lumpy shadow in the darkness.
Sherlock shuffled his feet uncomfortably. "I need your bed," he said. "The couch is too lumpy and the floor is much too hard."
"You put an experiment in your bed?" John mumbled.
Sherlock forewent the obvious answer.
"Well, if you want my bed, you'll have to sleep with me." Sherlock said nothing. "Oh, you know what I mean! I'm not moving, Sherlock."
Sherlock sighed. He gingerly lifted one corner of the covers and got in. The pillow was cool and fluffy, and his eyes were drooping instantaneously.
"And no funny business."
The first night had been all right, John thought. He had slept soundly after a case well solved, and Sherlock had done the same. Except for that one painful kick to his shin a few hours after Sherlock got in, he had hardly noticed that he'd had a bedmate.
John almost hadn't minded. It had been a while since he'd shared a bed with anyone. It could be sort of nice, actually, having someone else warm and breathing nearby. It was the only explanation for why he hadn't said no the next night. Or the next night. Or the next.
"Sherlock!" Someone was shoving him. "Sherlock, I swear to God! Wake up." Sherlock shoved back. "Ow! Bloody-- Ow!"
A sharp pinch to his arm made him sit straight up. "John? What the hell are you doing?"
"What the hell am I doing, what the hell are you doing? I can't get a wink of sleep. You're tossing and turning, you mumble and you kick. You even punched me once."
"Nonsense," Sherlock huffed. "I was sleeping."
"And you snore!"
"I certainly do not."
"Yes. You do. Sounds like a bloody piece of farm equipment."
Sherlock gave another huff and rolled away.
John had finally managed to fall asleep. He'd only had to roll Sherlock onto his side twice tonight to make him stop snoring. The room was blessedly quiet.
Now, suddenly, a heap of blankets was attempting to suffocate him. He gasped and thrashed his arms to get free.
"They're your blankets, take them!" Sherlock said petulantly beside him. "One minute you're shivering and the next you're burning up. You keep pushing your blankets onto me, and I'm already too hot."
John was livid. He heaved the blankets up and threw them at Sherlock. Sherlock smacked a pillow into his face.
Sherlock was lying on the couch in his pajamas. John was fixing tea, closing and shutting the cupboards as he did so with rather a lot of force.
"John?" John slammed a cupboard. "The headlock was merely self defense." Something hit the kitchen counter with a thud. "You were about to suffocate me with a pillow, you imbecile."
The kitchen was quiet for a while. Then John came into view in the doorway, leaning against the doorjamb. His face looked oddly contorted and ruddy, and it took a moment for Sherlock to realize he was laughing soundlessly. Sherlock smiled reluctantly.
John came awake to an odd sensation. It was not unlike the feeling he frequently had just before he fell asleep, a jerk as if he was trying not to fall. He opened his eyes in the dark and stared into Sherlock's face mere centimeters away. For one short second he balanced precariously on the very edge of the mattress. Then gravity did its job and he dropped onto the floor like a sack of potatoes, jarring his wrist and elbow as he landed.
He did not scream. He sat up lightening quick. Then he shouted. "That's it. You're done."
"You haven't cleaned your own bed yet? But it's been a month!"
Sherlock shrugged carelessly. Why should he clean his bed when another perfectly serviceable one had been available to him right upstairs?
John narrowed his eyes. "You were trying to steal my bed. You thought if you were obnoxious enough I'd give up and go take yours, and then I would be stuck with the cleaning."
Sherlock would certainly never admit to any such thing.
"You..." John straightened his back and folded his arms. "Sherlock. Go clean your room."
Sherlock debated whether it was worth arguing over. It wasn't.
"Are you sleeping in different rooms again, dear?" Mrs. Hudson sounded quite worried.
John sighed. "Yes, Mrs. Hudson. You know, we're not..."
"Oh, dear. Did you have a fight?"
"Yes, actually. One involving pillows." Mrs. Hudson tutted. "He snores, you know. He snores like a freight train."
"Oh, Mr. Hudson did the same. You get used to it. Just flip him on his side, you know." She poured the tea. "It's not for normal healthy couples to sleep in separate bedrooms. That's the step right before divorce, that is."
John smiled. "Sherlock and I aren't a normal couple, Mrs. Hudson."