It started simply enough.
John had lost the physique he kept in Afghanistan to time spent eating out more than was probably good for either him or Sherlock, but he still considered himself fit. He figured the running after Sherlock evened it out in the end. At least it had up until now.
When it first registered that his pants were a bit tighter around the waist, he decided he might as well give up the biscuits and that was that.
Only it wasn't.
He started to become concerned when, instead of losing, over the following few weeks, he gained a bit more. Then the idea of anything but tea for breakfast started making him nauseous.
Sherlock was initially concerned in his own way, but when John didn't become deathly ill, his attention drifted elsewhere.
It became intolerable when John had to give up the opportunity of morning sex with Sherlock in favor of spending an hour heaving in the bathroom. By the time he was done, the last thing he wanted to think about was sex, and Sherlock's attention was focused on some experiment with bee venom.
John leaned back against the kitchen sink and sipped his tea, hoping it would settle his stomach.
"It's been six days since you've insisted on offering me toast when you make your breakfast." Sherlock didn't look up from his microscope.
"Do you want toast?" John tried to rub the feeling of sandpaper out of his eyes with the back of his hand.
"Then shut up, Sherlock."
Sherlock 'hmm'ed but didn't say anything else.
Later that morning it reached a head when he had to stop in the middle of getting a few groceries to nearly vomit in the canned goods aisle. It was mortifying.
A black car pulled up beside him on the walk home and John sighed when the window rolled down.
"Mycroft. I'm tired, is this something you can pester me with later?"
"Get in the car, John."
John's arms were tired from carrying the shopping. He got in the damn car. At least he wouldn't have to carry the milk all the way back to Baker Street.
"How are you feeling lately, Doctor?"
Mycroft frowned but quickly masked it.
"I see you've gained weight."
John bit his tongue to stop himself from making a cutting remark about Mycroft's own weight. Instead he leaned back further into the seat and crossed his arms.
"John, I feel it's time you know something important about Sherlock."
"He doesn't have another enemy running around that you've let loose, does he?"
A muscle in Mycroft's jaw twitched. "That was an unnecessary remark."
"No, I think it was perfectly necessary, to be honest."
"I apologized for that."
"You apologized after you let everything go to shit," John growled.
Mycroft folded his hands and took a deep breath.
"I'll ignore how testy you're being right now due to your condition. I only desired to enlighten you to your current predicament, though I hoped you would've recognized the signs yourself."
John narrowed his eyes. "The only condition I have is the flu."
"You're a medical man, John. Is this really the flu?"
"Stop the car."
John simmered the rest of the walk back to Baker Street.
"Mycroft is a bastard," John announced as he stomped onto the living room.
Sherlock raised an eyebrow from his place on the floor, then chuckled.
"Why are you upside down on the floor?"
"Recreating the position of a body in a cold case. I can't get my head in the proper position, though, without snapping my spine."
"Yes, well. Don't do that." John set down the bags in the kitchen and shrugged out of his coat.
"Don't be ridiculous, I wouldn't snap my own spine for something as uninteresting as a cold case," Sherlock huffed.
"I'd prefer you never snap it at all," John said as he put the milk away.
John ended up spending a good portion of the afternoon napping on the couch while Sherlock mumbled in the kitchen about laboratory rats and red dye. Even though Sherlock had been back for six months, sometimes John still wondered if he would wake up one day and it would all have been a dream, that Sherlock would still be dead. John shoved those thoughts away and focused on Sherlock's voice, letting it lull him to sleep.
When he woke up later, there was a blanket thrown over him and Sherlock was sitting at the end of the couch reading. He picked up a mug off the side table and held it out to John without looking up from his book.
John pulled himself into a sitting position and took it from him. It was his favorite tea, still just hot enough.
"Thank you." He smiled and took a sip.
Mycroft's words rattled around in his brain while he threw up the next morning. He'd tried to force himself to eat breakfast. His stomach would have none of it and was waging war against him.
A thought crossed his mind and he snorted at the very idea. A half hour of dry heaving later, he let out a slightly hysterical laugh.
The girl at the pharmacy counter gave him a pitying look when he checked out, probably assuming he and his girlfriend were having a scare. If only his life were that simple.
Mycroft was waiting outside Baker Street when he returned.
"You always seem to appear when I least want you around, were you aware of that?" John asked.
"Sherlock refuses to open the door."
"I can't imagine why. You're always a delight to have over," John said with a smile and pulled out his key.
Mycroft just sighed and followed him up the stairs.
Sherlock was lying on the couch like a fainting damsel. No new cases meant Sherlock decided lying about like a lump would be the best use of his time.
"Why did you let him in?" Sherlock complained.
"I told you there was something important we needed to speak about, but you insisted on acting like a child, and now you have to find out in front of John," Mycroft said.
Sherlock moved his head just enough to see them upside down. He stared at the pharmacy bag in john's hand and narrowed his eyes.
"You have a pregnancy test. I would know if you've gone and shagged that cashier at Tesco who fancies you."
"Good god- I wouldn't cheat on you, Sherlock. Jesus."
"I know you wouldn't, but I don't trust her. She's an idiot."
"Everyone is an idiot to you," John said.
"Speaking of which, Mycroft say what you came here to say and get out." Sherlock waved a hand in dismissal.
"John is pregnant. Did the brilliant mind of Sherlock Holmes miss the telltale signs?"
Sherlock snorted and pulled himself up to fully face them.
"Impossible, he's male."
John crossed his arms. "There's no logical way I can be."
Mycroft just gave John a bland look, then very obviously lowered his eyes to stare at the bag in his hand.
"Says the man that just bought a pregnancy test after having very obvious morning sickness for nearly a week."
John gritted his teeth.
Mycroft turned to Sherlock. "I'm afraid I never enlightened you to the full nature of our kind's sexual aspect. Forgive me, but I didn't think it was necessary since growing up you had the sexual desire of a ball of twine."
Sherlock's face was doing some interesting things and he seemed to have developed a twitch in his right eye.
"What do you mean, 'your kind'?" John asked.
"Sherlock is a Holmes; our breed can impregnate anything," Mycroft said.
Sherlock made a croaking noise. Mycroft rolled his eyes and ignored him.
"Of course he didn't tell you. We're Extraterrestrial."
"We've been called that, yes." Mycroft's features tightened a fraction for a moment.
Mycroft let out a long suffering sigh. "Have you ever known me to joke?"
John rounded on Sherlock, who at least had the decency to look contrite.
"You never told me you're a bloody alien?"
"It didn't seem relevant." Sherlock wouldn't meet his eyes.
"The man you've been shagging for nearly six months is actually an alien that can get you pregnant isn't information you consider relevant?" John nearly yelled.
"I didn't know you could get pregnant," Sherlock mumbled.
"Technically we can't be sure until he takes the test so if you would, John." Mycroft looked practically gleeful.
John stared back and forth between the two for a few seconds then stomped off to the bathroom. Behind him he heard Sherlock hiss something at Mycroft but he didn't catch it over the sound of the bathroom door slamming shut.
John stared at the unopened pregnancy test like it would leap off the counter and bite him. The fact that he was even considering taking a pregnancy test was ridiculous. He was male, had been male his whole life. It was scientifically impossible.
Sherlock lurked outside the door, probably waiting to burst into the bathroom the moment he heard John stop peeing. He wasn't nearly as sneaky as he liked to believe.
"Go away, Sherlock," he growled at the door.
"Let me pee on the goddamn stick in peace, Sherlock!"
He waited until he was sure Sherlock wasn't skulking about then grabbed the test before he could think about it any more.
Sherlock jumped up from his perch in his chair when John finally forced himself out of the bathroom. He nearly launched himself at John and ducked in close to see.
John pushed Sherlock away and waved the test with it's terrifying blue line in Mycroft's face. Mycroft looked thrilled at the result, despite it being an inch from his nose.
"I can't be pregnant! I don't have a uterus or ovaries," John growled at him.
Sherlock was frozen, wide eyes following the stick.
"Insignificant details." Mycroft waved his hand. "However, now there are more important things to consider."
"Like what?" John crossed his arms and glared at Mycroft.
"Well, now I will schedule an appointment for you with our family doctor--"
"An alien doctor," John interrupted.
"Only the best, of course," Mycroft said.
Sherlock seemed to have spaced out where he stood and wasn't paying attention to either of them. John rubbed his forehead and grimaced at the headache that was creeping in. It wasn't even lunch time yet.
Mycroft wasn't joking about the doctor. He'd immediately scheduled an appointment for the next day.
John practically dragged Sherlock outside to the car when it pulled up in front of 221B. He refused to visit an OB-GYN with only Mycroft, who insisted on coming along. Sherlock only put up a token amount of resistance, and John was grateful. If Sherlock had thrown himself into a sulk then John had decided he would threaten to vomit on Sherlock's shoes until he complied.
Sherlock was unusually quiet and docile in general since the bomb was dropped. He spent the majority of the drive staring out the window with what John had dubbed 'his thinking face'. Quiet Sherlock was, more often than not, plotting Sherlock. John was too busy willing himself not to dry heave in Mycroft's vehicle to bother asking about what Sherlock was up to.
Once he was confident he'd ordered his stomach into a truce, he gave Mycroft the side eye. "Why do you have to come with us again?"
Mycroft just smiled. "It isn't every day that our kind decides to breed with humanity."
"We didn't decide to," John grumbled.
Then they passed a fast food chain and John spent the rest of the trip imagining Mycroft's face if he was the one who ended up with vomit on his shoes.
The doctor was a pleasant older woman named Rosslin who seemed completely at ease with the situation. John almost asked if this was a common occurrence, but he caught himself and decided he didn't want to know.
Mycroft and Sherlock stayed in the waiting area. The appointment wasn't unusual or outside the norm as far as doctor visits went, though it was odd being on the other side of the situation. He was usually the one asking about medical history. He had the feeling that Dr. Rosslin already had all of his information and was just asking the questions out of habit while she drew blood for the routine tests. She was barely writing anything down and what he could see upside down wasn't what he was answering. At least from what he could tell. She had truly amazing doctor handwriting that rivaled his own nearly unintelligible scrawl.
When he mentioned the nausea, she loaded a syringe with something and before he could protest or ask what it was she cleaned a spot and stuck it in his arm.
Almost immediately the nausea lessened.
"What did you give me?"
"Just something to take care of the morning sickness. It's often more severe in humans carrying Extraterrestrial babies. Don't worry, it's no different than getting a shot of vitamins," she said, smiling.
When that was over, she patted the table he'd avoided so far, then called Mycroft and Sherlock into the room. John never in all his life thought he would be on the receiving end of a bloody ultrasound.
"Tug up your jumper and lay back, Doctor Watson."
John sighed and did as he was told. "I feel ridiculous."
"Many feel that way, but that won't matter a bit to you in a minute or two," she said.
He glanced at Sherlock as she turned on the machine and pulled out the gel for the ultrasound. Ever since Sherlock had come back six months ago, it had become habit to check where he was every couple of minutes if he was out of John's line of sight. Sherlock was leaning against the back wall with a bored expression, not looking at any of them.
"You're about ten weeks," Dr. Rosslin said after a few minutes of prodding at his stomach.
John tried to remember what was happening two and a half months ago.
"What you called the 'mozzarella suicide' case ended ten weeks and three days ago," Sherlock said from his corner.
John coughed into his hand to hide his embarrassment when images flooded through his mind. Oh yes, that. That was very good.
"There's its little heart beating." Dr. Rosslin pointed at a moving place on the screen.
It took a second before John remembered how to breathe. It was really there. "Well I'll be damned."
John dragged his eyes away from the screen to see Sherlock's reaction, but he was gone.
"Where's Sherlock?" John struggled to sit up.
"It's fine, John. I'll catch him," Mycroft said and disappeared out the door.
John took a deep breath and laid back down, embarrassment settling in when he realized how he sounded. The immediate jolt of panic when Sherlock disappeared at random had grown less intense since Sherlock first returned, but John still couldn't help the trickle of fear that snaked down his spine.
"That happens to more fathers than you would think. He'll be okay." Dr. Rosslin patted his arm and handed him a wet cloth to wipe the gel off his stomach.
He felt better once he was de-slimed and his jumper was fully covering himself again.
"How is this possible?" John asked, "I can accept Sherlock apparently has magic alien sperm, but I don't have a uterus to protect the fetus as it grows."
Dr. Rosslin looked amused. "We're bound by different laws of nature than what run your kind. Don't worry about either you or the fetus being harmed, you'll both be fine."
That wasn't helpful at all, but she didn't offer anything further.
"Okay. I don't have a birth canal?" John tried again.
"We'll just do a Cesarean when it's time."
John was relieved at that. He didn't even realize how worried he was that there would be another surprise in the form of a magically appearing vagina. Even he had limits to what he could accept.
John wondered if Sherlock had some kind of alien speed. According to Mycroft, Sherlock was out of the building before Mycroft even made it to the ground floor. He beat them back to Baker Street and was back in his robe by the time the car dropped John off. He didn't even look up from his laptop while John hung up his coat.
"You could have waited, you know. The visit was pretty much over anyway," John said as he sat down in his chair.
Sherlock made a noncommittal noise in the back of his throat. John studied Sherlock's face as he resolutely set on ignoring him.
"Do you have alien speed?"
"I'll take that as a no. Dr. Rosslin gave me a recording of the sonogram if you wanted to see it, since you ran out so quickly."
"I'd rather not."
"That's the most you've said to me all day," John said. "Is this... not okay?"
Sherlock stopped typing and folded his hands, tapping them against his lips. "If you decided not to keep it, I wouldn't blame you."
John took a long look at Sherlock. His shoulders were hunched and he was staring so hard at the laptop screen it was obvious he wasn't focusing on it.
"Are you saying you don't want it?"
Sherlock still wouldn't look at him. "What I want is irrelevant. You weren't prepared. You shouldn't feel obligated to keep it."
"Sherlock, the whole situation is making me question my sanity a bit, but I'm not going to throw away something we made together."
Sherlock's eyes closed and John saw his shoulders relax just a bit.
"If that's what you want."
John watched him start typing again. He may not be able to read a person's life story in the way they cut their hair or the state of their sleeve cuffs, but he was fluent in Sherlock. Right then, Sherlock was trying to hide his relief. It hit him that Sherlock had every right to be concerned. John had never outright said he would keep it. He had just assumed Sherlock would know.
John realized he'd been so focused on dealing with his own shock that it didn't even occur to him how Sherlock must be feeling. He never even got a proper alien sex education, from what John gathered. This whole time he'd been more removed than usual to protect himself. Suddenly his behavior at the doctor made more sense. If Sherlock was expecting him to ask Dr. Rosslin about aborting it...
John stood up.
"I'm going to take a nap."
"Might get a bit lonely by myself," John said.
He made it halfway up the stairs before Sherlock's footsteps followed. A pair of arms wrapped around him from behind and Sherlock's forehead pressed to the back of his neck. One hand carefully spread over his stomach and John covered it with his own.
Fuck anyone that said Sherlock had no heart. John knew better.
They stood like that for several moments, Sherlock on the step below his. John let Sherlock take his time, he wasn't going to interrupt whatever this was.
"I honestly didn't know we could breed with humanity," Sherlock said into the collar of John's jumper, muffled.
"Your reaction pretty much told me that. Even you can't fake that kind of bug-eyed shock," John grinned.
Sherlock snorted but didn't pull away. John waited.
"I don't want children."
John frowned but didn't say anything.
"I don't, but now that it exists, the thought of it not existing is unacceptable. I've tried every line of reasoning but I always come to the same conclusion. It's as if this one doesn't count. Ugh. Emotions are tedious."
John smiled and laced their fingers together. "You could think of it as an experiment. One for both of us, since I've never had to experience this either."
"The effects of an Extraterrestrial pregnancy on the human male?" Sherlock sounded amused but there was an undercurrent of interest.
John wondered what he just got himself into.