He’s the kind of boy you want to take apart.
John Watson, clean-cut with his cardigans and glasses, hair like corn silk bronzing in the sun. White bread wholesome. The creases in his trousers starched stiff, ironed rigid and neat, straight as a knife’s edge. Clean pressed shirt and shoes spit-shined bright as new pennies.
Little square boy from Nowheresville, country bumpkin from a town where the people are vastly outnumbered by cows. You look at him and you think cornfields and open blue skies and goddamn sunshine.
All that picture perfect Americana - it’s enough to make anyone sick. How you want to destroy the perfection of him, everything that he is. He makes you want to paint your knuckles with his warm and dripping blood just to feel right again. You’ll lie awake in bed at night thinking about dirtying him up, crumpling his creases, smearing the wholeness of him in mud and blood, just to show he’s no angel after all, as if somehow that’ll make you, by comparison, less of a fuckup.
Sherlock wants. Simple as that. Full stop. In so many ways a mathematician would boggle at the calculations. And so he lies awake in bed at night and ponders how he wants to take John apart with his teeth, piece by piece, intimate and slow, to taste all his secrets and worry out his soul, separate tissue from bone with his tongue.
All the boss stuff.
John had transferred over in September; bright-eyed, bushy-tailed, cheeks pink with the first light chill of autumn. He had cube written all over him; joined the football team right off, made junior varsity at the tryouts. Predictable. Boring. Anyone could look at him and see that in a month or two he’d be dating a paper shaker, in three to four months they’d be going steady, and in six years or less they’d be married and ready to pop out a few dream-achieving anklebiters of their own.
They don’t see what Sherlock sees. The flicker of hunger lurking beneath the good-boy veneer; the lick of fire in dark blue eyes. Sherlock reads him real easy; in their shared glances in the hall, John’s lingering gaze on his leather jacket, his tight blue jeans. John’s face like a Russian flag when Sherlock catches his eye and smirks, knowing.
And so one afternoon he had tested his theory, the school hallway overly warm with the late rays of the day. Sherlock knows the anatomy of the school like a Bio lab dissection; its ins and outs, its organs and functions, its nervous and circulatory systems. He knows the schedule of its metabolism: what places would be empty and when, where one could disappear and where one could be alone. He had waited for John at his locker after football practice, where he knew John would stop to grab his books and homework, ever the good little student, before hightailing it home. And oh, what a vision, oh, worth the wait: John’s hair all wet copper-gold from his shower, his skin still damp and flushed pretty-pink-warm, the front of his cotton shirt gently cloying to all that damp skin.
It was enough to drive a man crazy. People call Sherlock crazy either way, and so he had done what came naturally, and slammed John up against the lockers and kissed him, full and harsh on the mouth.
The metallic clang rang down the hallway, the heavy thud of two bodies pressed against the locker door.
Satisfying didn’t even begin to cover it.
With both palms flat against the warmth of John’s chest, holding him still against the cold metal, Sherlock had been braced for any number of possible reactions. Nonresistance, primarily, due to the initial shock.
He could feel the stiffness of John’s body underneath his palms, the way his muscles tensed, contracting and coiling, the way his mouth was still and slack underneath the insistent press of Sherlock’s mouth.
With his tongue darting over the seam of John’s lips, he had tasted him, he had learned him. He had calculated the amount of time he had for maximum enjoyment before John pushed him off, and it had come out to an average of 86 seconds.
In truth it had taken 96, and Sherlock let him. He had expected this, and he knew there was a high possibility that John would attempt to throw a punch. He’d seen John fight, in the first week of school, after hours out on the football field where some of the jocks’ dull idea of entertainment was to test the mettle of the new kid. In the end, John had tested them.
He expected John to cut out with his heels on fire. “I’m not gay,” he expected John to say, eyes wide and rabbit-scared, hand trembling before it turned into a fist.
Men had killed for less. John was not the killing type, not with his hands, anyway.
Instead John had said, "I've never been kissed before," which Sherlock knew to be true, although he had seen the junior paper shakers' admiring glances at him during football practice. And then John had reached out, curled one hand in the lapel of Sherlock's leather and said, all in a rush, "Do that again," which Sherlock had not expected, but was well prepared for.
Sherlock had leaned in, had brushed their lips together, and whispered a soft "No," breath hot and pressed right up against the younger boy's mouth. He'd pushed himself back just long enough to enjoy the look of hurt, of shock and confusion, before he amended his statement. There had been fire in those midnight eyes. Fire, fire burning bright. "Not here, where anyone can cast an eyeball at you."
Sherlock had smiled at him then, with his wolf-bright smile. No pretence, no cover up, just open honesty. People often find his honesty frightening.
He held out his hand.
And John, the darling little lamb, he’d followed.
Sherlock teaches John how to kiss in the backseat of his 1952 souped up hot rod, white leather interior and royal purple exterior. They park at the passion pit and Sherlock shows him how their mouths fit together, teases out the soft slickness of John’s tongue, while Scarlett O’Hara, resplendent in her dress, runs around a razed plantation projected silver in the background.
John pushes Sherlock's hands away whenever they wander too far down south, and more's the pity. "Just kissing," he'll say again, with his mouth red and softly swollen from hard kisses, blue eyes nearly black with arousal, skin flushed and a boner tenting his pants that could clearly be seen from the next county over. "Just kissing," Sherlock will hiss, exasperation escaping in the drawn-out esses of each word, and then tug John's mouth towards his again, hands running over his back, rubbing down to cup and squeeze the curve of his ass.
“You’re real bad at this,” Sherlock had said to him after the first few times they kissed, at the insistent, eager press of John’s mouth against his. It was worth it for that sudden pull back, the shock and the affronted look.
“Well, we can’t all be an expert busylips,” John said, not just a little judgmentally, and then wiped his mouth with the back of his hand.
Sherlock had chuckled. “No, no. You misunderstand the finer points of the lingo. Bad means good.”
“Oh,” John said, and proceeded to be very bad at kissing indeed.
John Watson kills him.
Little earthbound John Watson, he has Sherlock so cranked, so flipped, so frustrated he’s constantly on edge, mind racing, body racing, every nerve of him singing with tension, gears humming, churning, engine pumping, working wild, bent eight, 225 horsepower plus, flooring it at 80 mph burning rubber a hopped up storming machine.
And so he drinks, and he smokes, and he drags, and even after winning five races in a row half-juiced on whiskey while chain-smoking cigarettes he’s still ready to tear screaming out of his own skin.
“Little flutter bum’s got you completely snowed, man,” Vic laughs, flicking his lighter open and closed, over and over again.
Sherlock snatches the lighter out of Vic’s hands and pitches it as hard as he can. It lands with a clatter on the pavement, too far away to be heard.
He kisses John on the neck, sucks hard to leave a bright red mark that will purple into the shape of his mouth.
“Sherlock, don’t,” John protests, and pushes at his shoulders, but not hard. Definitely not hard enough for him to actually mean it, or for Sherlock to take him seriously. When Sherlock catches his wrists and pins them, easily, John only moans softly.
“Not where people can see,” John says, the words stuttering as he’s begun to pant softly in the spaces between syllables. Sherlock bites him underneath the Adam’s apple in retaliation, worries the soft, vulnerable skin between his teeth, and sucks hard.
“So wear a turtleneck,” Sherlock tells him. He begins to work on a fresh bruise, at the pulse point of John’s left carotid artery.
John shudders and closes his eyes. “People will think I’m a beatnik,” he protests lightly.
“Mm,” Sherlock murmurs, humming into his kisses. “You’re not nearly hip enough.”
“I hate you,” John says, breath catching on the a of hate. His hot little body shudders underneath Sherlock’s, his fingers curling into the styled strands at the nape of Sherlock’s neck, arching up into the press of lips, of tongue, of teeth.
“Go on and hate me some more,” Sherlock says, so that John will push him back and kiss him.
John buttons up his collar tight at school, but the wine-red-violet bruises still peek through, incriminating, daring. He wears a scarf for a few days and then switches to a turtleneck and no one accuses him of being a beatnik. Sherlock catches him later, traps him between his body and the shaded brick wall, and sucks a hickey hard, above the edges of the turtleneck.
“Cool it, Daddy-o,” John says, and they both laugh, muffling their laughter into each other: Sherlock, with his face pressed into John’s hair, inhaling the golden hay-in-sunshine scent of him, John, face pressed into Sherlock’s leather jacket, tucked warmly against his chest, the fit of him perfect.
Sherlock leaves a line of bruises along his jawline, each one like a brand seared on with his mouth, defying the soft woolen security of a turtleneck. Let people look. Let people see. He wants to brand John all over, ruin that pretty silken skin until it is covered with traces and marks of him in bites and bruises, all that flesh worked over and maybe then that will be enough to satisfy that urge to sign him, to carve his initials into him, SH right where everyone can see.
Rumor has it that that new kid Watson is a real ladykiller; the evidence of it in passionate splotches on his skin.
“Three States Watson,” the dollies all titter, even the fast senior girls giving John eyes in the hallway.
Sherlock does not plan to live to see 40. Hell, he might even die before he’s 30. Brilliant mind, high intellect, mostly lacks motivation, his eighth grade teacher had written. Now he’s a senior, four years later, and his lack of motivation is complete. He’s going to live fast, die young, and leave a desiccated corpse, or so Mycroft says.
Mycroft is an Ivy Leaguer in every sense of the term, all rules and regulation and the perfectly-straight tie done up like a noose around his neck. Mycroft has always been taller than Sherlock, even after his growth spurt, and he has a way of looking down like you’re still that six year old child come crawling in from outdoors tracking mud on polished white tile and nothing Sherlock does will ever be good enough.
Mycroft was the one who found him, all of thirteen with his hands buried in another boy’s hair, his tongue in another boy’s mouth, the boy’s hands down his pants. Out in back of the house, behind the shed where even the servants rarely go, the afternoon lazy with midsummer heat and the cicadas buzzing around them. Sherlock remembers the sweet scent of freshly crushed grass, Mycroft’s look of complete lack of shock, the exact spot where his own skull connected with the ground -at the fusion of the occipital and parietal plates - when the boy shoved him off and the exact pitch where an adolescent voice broke as it proclaimed, “I ain’t no queer!”
He does not remember the boy’s name.
Mycroft was the one who found him, all of fifteen and sprawled out on his own bed with the needle still partially dangling out of the point of connection in his arm, into skin, into vein, Sherlock staring at the ceiling with pinpoint pupils - miosis, not to be confused with meiosis - taking in nothing, taking in everything. He had been proud of himself, briefly, having managed to score his first hit off of Maryanne’s brother who lived in the city, who had access to drugs but needed information more, needed to know which of his buddies was screwing him over (it had been Fred). He remembers Mycroft’s look of complete shock then, and that odd twist of satisfaction that Sherlock had felt at being still all full of surprises. He remembers not remembering anything at all.
He remembers not remembering his own name.
“You have got to be more careful,” Mycroft had said tightly, on both occasions.
“You’re going to get yourself killed one day,” Mycroft had said, on both occasions.
Now, Sherlock, when are you going to live up to your potential? his parents always ask, and how Sherlock hates that term, potential, because his energy is kinetic.
He’s a force of destruction, the natural tendency of things to go to chaos, dry summer heat wildfire burning too hard, too fast: spontaneous combustion.
Now, John Watson - there’s a boy you can hang your hopes and dreams on. Hitch a star to this boy and he’ll take you places. He wants to be a doctor, he tells Sherlock, as he bandages up the laceration across Sherlock’s knuckles, mindful of the bruising.
Respectable, decent white-collar job. Any parent would be proud. John, with his caring, careful hands that cover Sherlock’s and linger there.
“And what do you want to be?” he asks Sherlock. “When you grow up, I mean.”
“A pirate,” Sherlock drawls blandly. He looks down at their hands, John’s fingers intertwined with his.
John laughs, a sound so incandescent it sparks something terrifying, deep in Sherlock’s gut.
Out in the country, John says, you can drive for miles and miles before you see another person.
Sherlock reckons that that person you would see would still be an idiot.
Out in the country, John says, there are fields upon fields of grass, that go on forever, and when the wind blows it ripples through in waves so that it looks like the ocean.
Sherlock wants to know if he’s ever even seen the ocean.
“If fields of grass thrill you so inexorably,” Sherlock drawls, “then the ocean is going to blow your mind.”
John clutches at Sherlock’s waist, his whole body pressed to Sherlock’s back with the wind whistling past, the thrum of the motorcycle rumbling beneath them.
“Faster,” John will always be the first to urge, although Sherlock with his grip already on the throttle has never known what it’s like to take it slow. The world blurs past them in inconsequential streaks. John is a demon for speed. When all of him clutches to Sherlock’s body like this there is nothing that reminds Sherlock more of the fact that today could be the day that they die.
John is a crack shot. He picks tin cans off a fence with his rifle - 200 meters, 350 meters, 500.
He shot a coyote once, he tells Sherlock, and Sherlock tells him the rest.
It would have been done in two shots. First a chest shot, the part of the animal big enough to aim at from a distance and John going for a kill-shot but it would not have been fatal, not with the animal low to the ground, the probability of the bullet piercing the heart at the correct angle too low. The next shot would be the headshot, a quick kill, as much a mercy killing as it was to dispatch the animal. John does not hunt for sport. He would consider it cruel. If he kills he kills out of need, so some livestock had been threatened, perhaps, or even a family member.
“It was Harry,” John says - Harriet, of course, and John is the only one in their family who calls her the way she prefers. “That morning she had been out to collect the eggs, which she hated, and I made her do it because it was her turn, and if I hadn’t seen it in time then...I don’t know what, then. They get crazy when they’re that starved.”
“But you did see it,” Sherlock says. “And you took care of the problem. You’d do just about anything to protect your family, that much is obvious.”
John cocks the rifle and hefts it up to his shoulder, staring down the length of the barrel. “I’ll protect you, too,” he says, and pulls the trigger. A can flies off the fence with the hollow sound of a bullet piercing metal, 650 meters away.
Sherlock realizes that in that moment he has John’s loyalty, as easily and as deeply as if he’d cut their fingers with a knife as children and pressed the beads of blood that welled up together until it smeared crimson between them.
John is going to protect him, but who is going to protect John from him?
These are the questions that ought to keep you up at night, but they don’t. They don’t.
In July of 1953 an arsonist started a wildfire in Mendocino National Park in California. It burned for over two days, destroying 1300 acres and claiming 15 lives. Fourteen volunteer firefighters and one Forest Service employee had been burned to death, trapped by the dense brush and the steep terrain.
The wind was the unexpected factor, carrying the fire, roaring down the canyon where the men had sat down to eat their dinner; all of them unaware and placid until it was far too late.
Sherlock all of thirteen when this story was in the papers, clipping out the pictures of black smoke printed out in flat ink in shades of gray. There was one picture in particular that was quite popular, of an innocuous Shell station, sitting in the bright July sun, while smoke billowed and filled the background. No actual photographs of the fire itself. Sherlock had guessed arson as opposed to natural means, that summer not particularly dry and they had reported a smaller fire extinguished prior to this one. “Death in Grindstone Canyon” read the article in TIME magazine.
He had wondered about the conditions of weather on the fire and using his report cards as kindling brilliant mind, exceptional test scores somewhat lacks focus, discipline issues poor social interaction skills he’d built little nests in metal drums in the backyard. In the first set he made a miscalculation and built the kindling up too high, leaned in an inch too close as the flames shot up quick and licked at his face; he remembers the light, the intense heat. It had been an experiment; he was operating underneath controlled conditions, he was most certainly not a budding little arsonist, but this was difficult to explain to the screaming maid who had found him, a lit match in his hand and one brow singed off.
His parents had wanted to call in a specialist, and then again, they hadn’t. Like night and day they were trapped in a dance of opposites, never one in accordance with the other. An agreement was never reached.
“What’s wrong with you, son?” his father had asked.
“There’s nothing wrong with Sherlock,” his mother had insisted, which Sherlock all of thirteen had known meant there was something very wrong indeed.
Summer of 1953, summer of bruised lips and blood-stained teeth; of wrongness and wildfire.
John’s living room looks comparable to the set of Leave It to Beaver. It screams loud to Sherlock: painful, put-upon domesticity by a woman desperate to keep up appearances.
There are no family portraits. There are school portraits of John and Harry together and individually, and a few portraits of their mother when she was younger - a real looker, in her day. It’s hard to tell in the black and white photos, but Sherlock knows John has her eyes and her golden hair.
Sherlock hedges John against a wall and kisses him underneath a picture of an even younger John playing softball, presses him against a field of vinyl dandelions repeated over and over on buttery yellow. Sears catalogue 1949. When their hips press together John moans into his mouth and the heat in Sherlock’s body is so intense he is certain he could melt linoleum, set all the vinyl flowers aflame.
“John? Is that you, honey?”
They’re apart in an instant, a good four feet of empty space and guilt between them by the time Mrs. Watson finds them.
“Ah, mom,” John says, only slightly out of breath, fooling nobody. “I didn’t know you were home. Else I would have said hi.”
“That’s quite all right, honey,” Mrs. Watson says. She’s a faded version of the photograph. Eyes bloodshot from lack of sleep, tell-tale lines of years and stress around them. Her lipstick is still carefully applied, only lightly smudged from where they had been pressed up against a wine glass, no doubt. “I worked the night shift last night,” she says, patting her hair distractedly in the presence of company.
“This is Sherlock,” John says quickly. “He’s my study partner. We’re...working on a project together.”
Dark blue eyes look at Sherlock, at his leather jacket, his styled hair, his lack of books. Nicotine stains on his fingers and the faint smell of gasoline around them from his motorcycle outside. Sherlock had been wrong; John does not have her eyes, not these ones, tired and muted as stones deep in murky water. Sherlock imitates a polite smile, and says, “Pleasure to meet you,” as he is nobody’s fool, and even brushes a light kiss over the back of her hand.
She is a nurse, by her hands: the nails clipped short indicating one who works in a manner of physical labor when the fashion of the day is to keep them long and painted, the dryness of the skin inevitable when one washes them repeatedly throughout the day. Her mention of shift work - what other profession would require a woman to work the night shift? Combined with their economic situation, and John’s interest in medicine, it was all so obvious, the details lurid like the lack of ring on her finger.
“I wish you had told me company was coming, John,” she murmurs, withdrawing her hand. “I could have baked a pie.”
“I’m sorry,” says John.
Her hands come together, wringing out worry between them, twisting tighter and tighter.
“Do you drink coffee, Sherlock?” she asks. “I could put on a pot.” She looks at him then, her scrutiny stone-steady. “John’s too young for coffee.”
“Mama...!” says John, sharp but pleading. He is embarrassed but not for the right reasons.
“I’m all right, thank you,” says Sherlock evenly.
“We have to go do homework,” says John.
“Well, you boys let me know if you need anything,” says Mrs. Watson. She looks at Sherlock for another moment before letting her heavy gaze drop. Down his body, then to her own hands, down to her dress, down to the floor.
John has painted his room the blue of summer skies, and covered the walls with posters. There is one of boxer Sugar Ray Robinson. The rest of them make his room look like a budding mini-cineplex. The Day the Earth Stood Still. The Man Who Knew Too Much. The Lady Vanishes. Dial M for Murder. Rope. Vertigo. Paths of Glory.
Downstairs, right now, Mrs. Watson will be making herself a coffee that is four parts Irish whiskey.
No pictures of family in John’s room, only movie posters.
Sherlock props his feet up on the bed and smacks the pack of cigarettes against the palm of his hand to get one out. “Your mother isn’t widowed, although she tells everybody so,” he observes. “She’s divorced. Being widowed is the easier story; it allows for more sympathy, less questioning. That’s why you moved here, isn’t it, to get away from him?”
The Lady Vanishes.
John’s mouth goes tight, but instead he says, “No shoes on the bed,” sternly, and pushes Sherlock’s feet off. “And no smoking in my bedroom.”
The Man Who Knew Too Much.
Sherlock scoffs, but does not light the cigarette in his hand. John puts a record on. He has an excessive amount of Elvis albums: all four of them. Who needs the Christmas album?
Corners of a book peek out from underneath the mattress. Sherlock reaches down and tugs it out: The Grapes of Wrath. Not exactly bedtime material. Then he opens the book and pictures of James Dean fall out.
East of Eden. Rebel Without a Cause.
John goes pink when Sherlock picks up the pictures and glares at them. Sherlock knows that look; usually he’s the one causing it.
“He was a really talented actor,” John says. “It’s tragic.”
“He was an idiot,” says Sherlock. “That’s why he’s dead.”
85 miles per hour on Rte 466 and near head-on collision. Failed side-stepping racing maneuver; any moron would have seen that they didn’t have enough space or enough time. Multitrauma: left foot crush injury, broken cervical spine, internal bleeding; hemorrhage likely. Nearest hospital 28 miles away, pronounced dead on arrival.
“Would you let James Dean get to second base with you?” Sherlock snipes. He means it a lot more scathingly and a little less catty than it actually sounds.
“Sherlock...” John says.
Sherlock shrugs and lights a cigarette. John reaches over and plucks it out of his mouth. Sherlock has the dignity to look irritated instead of immediately snatching it back.
“Don’t need to pout,” John says, voice warm even as he stubs out the cigarette against a ceramic pencil holder; he does it carefully, the way he does everything.
“I do not pout,” Sherlock bites out, not-pouting. He throws himself down onto the bed with his shoes on.
John slips into bed next to him.
“James Dean is cool,” John says, and Sherlock almost shoves him out of the bed.
Then John says, “But you’re the coolest.”
And then Sherlock is very, very glad John is in bed with him, and not shoved onto the floor.
They lie on the small twin bed facing one another, both of them gone quiet. Sherlock places a hand on John’s cheek.
‘Hold me close, hold me tight, make me thrill with delight,’ Elvis croons.
What was he doing with this boy, this boy who calls his mother mama sometimes, all soft and entreating to get what he wants.
Downstairs, right now, Mrs. Watson will be fixing herself another Irish coffee, hold the coffee.
And John says, after a moment, “...do you wanna get to second base with me?”
Sherlock feels a twisting, a tightening in his gut, wringing out tighter and tighter.
When the shirt comes off you can see the line of demarcation of the sun, bronzed skin of his arms fading into paleness at the shoulders from working outside. His chest is paler, Sherlock never having seen it but had deduced the tone and warmth of it.
There are few scars on John’s torso, on his back, and their sizes and shapes speak to Sherlock of a belt strap here, maybe a switch here; easy enough to see that there might have been marks of a heavy hand as well but those scars are invisible. John laughs at Sherlock’s insistent probing and says that he reckons most people take their fair share of beatings every now and again; Sherlock has for sure, fists and elbows and kicking boots, but never from someone legally bound to ensure his well-being. The twist inside gets tighter and higher and there’s a hot feeling in the back of his throat.
Dial M for Murder.
John shivers underneath his fingertips like touching a nerve exposed. His stomach is tight and concave when he sucks in a breath and holds it. He doesn’t flinch, doesn’t move away when Sherlock’s fingers curl tight and grip hard and hold him, holding onto him.
‘I want you, I need you, I love you,’ Elvis sings with longing. On the same record, on the B side: “My Baby Left Me.”
Sherlock settles himself over John, pinning him down with his weight and trapping him against the bed. John laughs and shoves at him now and they wrestle, half-playfully, half for serious, not knowing what’s at stake but Sherlock thinks that the stakes must be very high indeed, when he knows John always favors his left shoulder, when he looks at John flushed and laughing above him and when he hears himself say, “How about one day I take you far away from here.”
Lying wins him a wide-eyed look, over-eager kiss. No prospects for the future, the guidance counselor had said, but what was the future?
He pulls John's peepers off and sets them aside on the nightstand. "Do I look blurry without these?"
"No," John shakes his head. "I see you really clear."
Never kissed in a bed before and they revel in the luxury of it, soft surface beneath them and Sherlock lets John strip him of his shirt the way he can tell he’s always wanted to, slow and careful. Not like Sherlock, who wants to rip and tear, who’s delicate with his violin and his experiments but not the things he really, truly owns. John doesn’t know. John runs his hands over Sherlock’s shoulders and over his chest like the whole of him is a marvel. With his touch he strips Sherlock of other things, slow and careful, and John doesn’t know.
East of Eden.
The touch, the closeness makes them frantic, skin to skin with jeans still on and the bed beneath them. Heat like molten iron inside of him, starts up right between his legs and shivers in his stomach and in his core and the whole of him on fire, his prick hard enough to fuck through steel. John moaning against him when he feels it, not saying stop now when Sherlock palms him through his jeans, kneading and massaging his cock. Hand around Sherlock’s wrist like he wants to push him away but instead he just holds and squeezes.
Sherlock likes John on top of him, clutching and desperate, the weight of him slight and they fit into each other like one gear into another, working each other, each one making the other turn. He likes him underneath him, and that’s where he ends up next. John caged in by his arms and pinned down, struggling and wriggling, pushing back but never hard enough, never meaning it, and, like the little idiot that he is, never actually trying to escape.
Sherlock wants to rub out all those old scars and marks. He wants to cover them with his own. He would rub them out with hands and fingers, with mouth and tongue. With teeth. He would rub and rub at the skin until John forgot them, until all John would remember was Sherlock's touch on him.
He traces the shape of one with his tongue, tasting cleanness and the light sweat of excitement. One hand finds a pink nipple and gently circles, touches and presses until it's hard as a button. John moans softly and he looks at Sherlock with surprise that anybody can make him feel that way. Sherlock thinks about anybody else making John feel this way and sucks hard at the other nipple until John is pushing at his shoulders, whimpering.
With the heat of Sherlock's erection pressed up right between his thighs John quivers and spreads his legs. Never done it before but boy's got good instincts.
John right underneath him, clinging; this is the exact way he will look when he finally fucks him. The way his whole body shifts on the bed, the sound of the bed creaking quietly beneath them. John, his body trembling, his mouth hanging open, panting hot, humid breaths between them. His mouth. The inside of it red and wet, scrap of tongue peeking just slightly out. How it would feel, sweet lips wrapped tightly around Sherlock’s cock with his tongue pressing just right, rubbing against the glans and John hasn’t even learned any of this yet.
It’s just friction, layers of denim between them and not enough contact, but Sherlock’s 18 and any friction is good, hell, any kind of touch is good. Through the denim he can feel the shape of John’s cock hard against his, the heat of it, the heat of the thought: John is all hard like this because of him. John’s tight little body underneath his, rocking up to meet his, eager for the press of his cock thrusting against him. John’s mouth forming the shape of his name, panting softly Sherlock.
Sherlock slips a hand over John’s mouth, clamping down to feel his own name against his palm, the wet press of John’s open mouth against his skin.
“Be quiet,” he whispers, insistent, but right now Mrs. Watson is well into drink three or almost-four and he slots his fingers slightly to let all of John’s sounds leak out between, like sunlight sliding through Venetian blinds.
He wants to be the one to pull all of John’s sounds out of him, to tease them out with twists of his fingers on John’s nipples and his cock rubbing against John, rubbing inside him. He wants to be, and he will be, and he is, the first to hear the different types of sounds that John Watson can make.
Heady desire when he looks down at John writhing beneath him, rubbing up against him, desperate. John’s stiff nipples brushing against his when he lines them up just right, electricity sparking between them. John with cheeks flushed pink and skin hot, shivering and clutching at Sherlock’s back, fingers gripping tight. Arousal overwhelms him in dizzying waves; the blue skies of the walls are swirling and spinning around them.
It’s obvious when John is going to come, his movements more frantic, his breathing gone ragged, teeth scraping against Sherlock’s open palm. Sherlock presses down with his hand, his other hand sliding into the golden strands of John’s hair, fingers tangling, tugging. John squeezes his eyes shut and gasps, body arching up before he completely buckles like a bridge collapsing. Sherlock bites the back of his own hand when he comes, as if pressing a kiss to John’s open mouth that travels straight through the flesh.
The smell in the room is of heat and sex, heavy and alkaline.
Sherlock collapses beside John, panting still, the beat of his own heart loud in his ears, eyes wide but unable to focus. Saturn is above them. The whole solar system is above them. The mobile that hangs above John’s bed sways lazily in the breeze, the planets waltzing in slow circles, suspended from string.
It doesn’t make sense. He had thought for years that it was the sun around the earth; thinking on how overwhelming it would feel if one were constantly moving, constantly in revolution, thinking that this is how he feels; the noise and the stimuli of the world in constant revolutions around him, deafening, and nothing makes sense.
But now, right here, right now, in this space, there is only the sound of John’s panting breath and the warmth of John’s body pressed against him, shivering with the fervor of tiny earthquakes.
John nuzzles against Sherlock’s temple, the motion small and almost shy.
The Day the Earth Stood Still.
John passes for normal so easily. He looks right and decent.
If Sherlock had any decency in him, he would leave John alone. He would excise this part of him like a cancer; parcel it away to somewhere where it wouldn’t taint anything, anymore. He would cut out the tumor of desire before it metastasized, before his need ate up every cell of his being.
Then he could agitate the gravel; tear off somewhere far away. Freedom and the miles upon miles of open road, the wind in his face. Three years and distance between them and John would heal. He would grow up, meet some blandly pleasant girl - name her Sarah or Jeannette or Mary. Settle down, son and daughter, cat and dog; mow the lawn on Sundays and enclose it all in white picket fence.
Sherlock practices the words, silent, but repetitive: I’m a fake. Or: It was all a trick. Or: I don’t have friends.
But when John smiles at him and says something like “You’re kookie,” because that’s the little bit of lingo that he’s hep to and so he says it a lot, Sherlock doesn’t know how to stop the endless meiosis, and all he wants to do is smear him with his DNA.
He looks at John the way a spark must look at dry, crisp kindling, while the kindling begs to be set aflame.
In New York, Sherlock says, the neon lights flicker all night, and the skyscrapers are tall in a way that reminds us that our ancestors once held a foolish desire to reach God.
In Boston, Sherlock says, they say that the cobblestone paths are the same that the founders of America walked upon, and when it rains in Government Center the air smells like the sea.
In London, Sherlock says, on Cannon Street, there’s a stone set in the foundations of the city and people say that if ever that stone moves, London will crumble to dust.
In John’s room, with the windows half open, the afternoon breeze wafts in. It gently lifts the curtains, so that it is as if they are performing imitations of ghosts. Sherlock has John down on the bed, laid out on fresh sheets that have dried on the line, summer smells of grass and sun.
Sherlock kisses up his neck and tells him about New York, about Boston, about London, all the places that John’s never been, while his fingers work on opening his shirt.
“Sh-Sherlock,” John stutters when he is completely exposed. The hitch of breath is delicious. He shivers although the room is warm. His eyes are nearly black when he looks up at Sherlock. It’s this kind of look that exposes a person, and so Sherlock covers John’s eyes with one hand when he bends down to kiss behind his ear.
“Nothing below the waist,” Sherlock promises. He is ready to promise anything, really.
John nods, reassured. Nothing below the waist and his purity’s intact; he really is an idiot sometimes. Sherlock doesn’t mind so much.
John’s body beneath him, his scars and his marks. The slim muscles of his arms, the soft flatness of his stomach, that sharp intake of breath when Sherlock nuzzles against his navel. Right here the umbilicus formed, a scar of separation from his mother, the severing that began at birth and has continued throughout John’s life.
Marvel of marvels, nature that made John Watson. How random the recombination of genes, the exchanging of alleles, the coding of DNA. One egg, one sperm, mother that sips alcohol even as she runs the Hoover downstairs, white-collar father whose hands get too heavy with the drink, the two of them who had exchanged curses and insults just as easily and perhaps with even greater passion than they had swapped bodily fluids. Both of them very ordinary, normal, boring, and yet: John.
Just for Sherlock, they had produced one John Watson. Not even science could have predicted the pitch of his laugh, easy and guileless, when caused by Sherlock’s words, or the expressive wonder of his features when he exclaimed, “Amazing!”; his admiration neverending and addictive. What was the coding for the flush of his skin, underneath Sherlock’s fingers, or the light taste of salt as Sherlock licked at his navel in reverence for this miracle, or the musicality of all his soft sounds as Sherlock’s tongue flickered in and out of the tiny little hole?
John, shivering beneath him, held down by his hands and panting, wanting to be pinned there. At once, small and slight; at once, vulnerable; at once, wanting. He could dislodge Sherlock if he wanted. Instead, the musk of arousal between them. John’s dick erect, trapped in his trousers. The head of him would be wet with precum if Sherlock reached his hand in and rubbed his thumb over it, but no, he’s not allowed to touch. Sherlock brushes against the bulge of it with his forearm, as if by accident, and the sudden sound John makes as he cants his hips up is all the evidence he needs.
John, with all his needy whimpers as Sherlock’s fingers find both his nipples and start by gently stroking, then plucking. How the tissue becomes erect between his fingers, stiffening and filling with blood. The nerves that can be stimulated by touch or strong emotion, pilomotor reflex - simple science, really, but what is the science of the scrunch of John’s nose when he moans? What is the science of the silky skin between Sherlock’s fingers, the feel of the hardened little nubs as he rubs them, and rolls them, and every now and then twists them? The way they look, pink and swollen and obscene. The way John looks when Sherlock latches his mouth over one and teases with his tongue before sucking hard, while his other hand strokes and plays with him. Sherlock wishes he could see. It must look obscene.
“Do you like it? Does it feel good?” Sherlock asks, pressed against the skin, although he, as a general rule, hates asking questions he already knows the answer to. John nods, motion frantic, white teeth softly indenting his lower lip. There is always an exception.
“Tell me you like it.”
“I like...I like it, Sherlock,” John says, the words panted out. Sherlock likes how John’s voice catches, just so, on his name. He likes how John arches his body forward, offering it up for the touching, the grabbing.
Sherlock sucks hard enough to leave a soft red mark right above John’s nipple as reward then; another over the xiphoid process -the bottom of the sternum; another over the manubrium, at the top, and another right in the middle, body of the sternum, body of John. Another hickey slightly to the left of the last, right over his heart. John’s skin will be splotched with reminders of him tomorrow. When John gets dressed in front of the mirror in the morning, he will see the marks of Sherlock’s mouth and teeth all over him.
“Some girls,” Sherlock says, “can climax from pure stimulation of their nipples alone.” John inhales sharply, his chest already caught in rapid rise-and-fall of his elevated respirations. Sherlock gives one nipple a sharp pinch to watch his mouth fall open, hear the sort of sound that pours out.
“The stimulation, the signals, they travel to what has been termed ‘the genital part of the brain.’ In girls, the nerves conduct a response directly to the area of the brain that is receptive to sensations from the vagina, clitoris and cervix,” Sherlock continues, rubbing both index fingers in slow circles over the sensitive tips of both nipples, stimulating the bundle of nerves there.
“It's a bit different for boys, obviously - isn't that correct?” Sherlock prompts, and squeezes when John nods by way of answering. John, writhing beneath him, teeth at his lip to keep the sounds from escaping him, but when Sherlock bites and sucks at his neck he moans anyway - instinctive response.
“In analogous response, however,” Sherlock says, voice pitched low and rough with desire, "I bet the sensations travel straight to your dick. When I touch and squeeze them, do you feel your body clench? Do you feel your balls tighten? You've gotten so hard for me that it almost hurts, doesn't it?"
"Sherlock," John whimpers, and his name sounds like a plea.
"Shhh," Sherlock shushes, and their lips brush together. Taste of John on his tongue already just from their closeness. Molecules of John Watson, the composite of him, underneath Sherlock, writhing and vibrating beneath him with desperate electrical energy.
"I wouldn't want to disrespect your wishes," Sherlock says. "Nothing below the waist, right? I couldn't do that to you. I couldn't wrap my fingers around your dick and stroke you just right, and squeeze and rub you until you come all over my fingers. I couldn't take your cock into my mouth and lick and suck on you as if you were the most delectable treat I've ever had. That would be unkind, wouldn't it, John?"
The keening sound that tears from John's throat is a single golden note of arousal and unhappiness. He arches his chest up into Sherlock's manipulative fingers, both hands clutching at Sherlock's back, his whole small body shivering violently. "Sherlock," he says, near tears, "Sherlock, just do it, touch me, please."
"Where?" Sherlock prompts, lightly tapping the tip of one erect nipple with his fingers. "Right here?"
John shakes his head, hair ruffling on the sheets. "On my..." he takes a shuddering breath. "On my dick." He flushes even more, blood filling capillaries in his cheeks, red under softness of skin, response to arousal, to embarrassment. The first time his mouth has formed that word, one little syllable dirty and at once innocent, forged in the heat of John Watson's mouth.
"Oh," says Sherlock, as if with epiphany. "Right here," he says, very lightly trailing his fingers over the obvious shape of John's erection through the layers of fabric. Very lightly he traces the shape of it, teasing, gentle brushes and suggestions of pressure, and then John gives a strangled little cry as he pushes his hips up and his whole body shudders hard as he comes with just that, the slightest touches from being so uncontrollably overstimulated.
Sherlock kisses him for it, teases out the soft sounds from his mouth, his hitches of breath. "Eyes on me," he says then, straddling John's hips, settling himself directly over where John's made a pretty little mess of himself. John blinks as if trying to focus his vision again, still panting from his orgasm. Sherlock pulls his own shirt off, over his head in one smooth move, and then he trails his hand down the smooth paleness of his chest. Both hands pop open the button of his jeans, pull down the zipper, his eyes on John the whole while, drinking in the look of wonder, of unabashed enrapturement on John's face. Pushes his jeans down, his briefs down, just enough so that he can take himself out, hot and hard in his own hand, hissing with the relief of the touch.
He gives himself a few strokes for the sheer pleasure of it, spreading his own precum down the shaft. John watching him, mouth slightly open - he’s never seen this before, not with Sherlock, not with anyone. Sherlock presses that same hand against the willing plushness of John's mouth, smelling of musk, tasting of his salt, his sex.
"Lick," Sherlock commands.
There's no hesitation, not from John, who - once a decision is made - throws himself full throttle into the fight, pulls the trigger with a steady hand. John's tongue, laving over his palm, wet and lush, warm and slick, wetting it with his saliva. Sherlock wishes he could see it better, catches only the tease of it between his fingers, pretty and red, hot wet velvet lapping up and down the digits.
Sherlock easily pushes two fingers into John's mouth to rub around on that perfect scrap of tongue. John looks up at him but he does not protest, only sucks lightly.
"One day I'm going to teach you how to suck my cock," Sherlock says, two fingers rubbing in and out. "It might be uncomfortable at first. Most people have a gag reflex. But I'll teach you, and we'll practice until you can take it all the way down your throat. We'll go slow. Would you like that? My cock stretching your mouth? I'd like to see your lips wrapped around me."
John shudders, fear and intrigue in his eyes at the suggestion. No one has ever told him that was possible, no doubt; Sherlock himself had to learn it from fast girls and faceless adolescent fumblings. John's hips shift and rub beneath him, despite the fact that he's just come. John's mouth remains slightly open, inviting, even after Sherlock withdraws his hand.
Sherlock spits in his own wet hand now, his and John's saliva intermingled, impossible to separate. He wraps his hand around himself and begins to stroke, looking down at John, laid out on his own bed, on sheets soft from multiple washings. John's eyes on him, on the movement of his hand, on the pull of his dick. The flicker of tongue as John licks his lips, breathing heavy, watching. The glistening wetness of John’s mouth after he's licked his lips.
Sherlock moans, unabashed in his pleasure, hips pushing up into the warmth and grip of his own hand. He feels John's gaze like a caress over the arch of his own throat, the smooth, flat planes of his chest, the tightening of his abdominal muscles as he rolls his hips and thrusts up, rocking them both. The sight of John beneath him as he's rocked, the flush still in his cheeks and the panting rush of breath still in his chest, the mouth-shaped bruises forming on the skin of his chest and his nipples still swollen and rigid from Sherlock's manipulations.
"Sherlock," John breathes, hushed and reverent. The sound of his name on John's lips. Let the world be blotted out with silence and that be the only sound. His hand works expertly on his own cock as his thighs grip against John's hips and sides.
John, ever full of surprises, reaches out and rubs his fingers over the head of his dick. It causes Sherlock to curse softly and precum to spurt over John's fingertips, dirtying the cleanliness of his sweet hand with clear slick. John pushes himself up a little , and Sherlock shows him, how to wrap his hand around him, how to rub and stroke just the way he likes. John's small hand in his, their fingers intertwined, both of them working to bring him off.
"Sherlock," John says, eyes on their hands together. Sherlock’s hand covers his, practically engulfs it. Sherlock watching as well, the fascination of his fingers over John's, the size difference between them, John's small hand on his dick. John's eyes, wide and dark, flick up to his face. He is licking his lips again. "Sherlock, I want to...I want to see. What it looks like, when. When you come."
That last word, that dirty little word, nearly whispered, a secret between them. Those words in John's voice are all Sherlock needs, really, with the sight of John watching him so hungrily. He tenses, groans deep with satisfaction, and then spurts white over both their hands, splattering droplets on John's bare stomach.
He brings John’s hand to his own mouth, kisses each of the dirtied fingers, gently laps them clean. His own fingers reach out and he rubs the semen over John’s skin, staining the purity of him with white.
He brings his hand to John’s mouth, presses it against his lips.
“Lick,” Sherlock commands.
John closes his eyes and lets Sherlock debase the sanctity of his mouth, wet little tongue eradicating the sinful evidence of desire.
In London, Sherlock says, when the wind blows from the East, the river brings with it the smell of the sea.
In a paper published this year, David Ritz Finkelstein, P.h.D., discusses regions out in space where the gravitational fields are so strong that nothing, not even light, can escape.
Sherlock had read this in a document found in a manila envelope, left on the kitchen countertop labeled ‘confidential’ and with Mycroft’s name on it.
In 1939, Julius Robert Oppenheimer, who would one day father the atomic bomb, wrote that a star that has exhausted all its useful nuclear fuel can no longer support itself against the inward pull of its own gravity.
The stellar remains shrink rapidly.
If the collapsing star manages to hold onto a critical amount of mass, the material of the star is squeezed down into the singularity of one of these regions of impossible pull.
Around the area of nothingness in space there is a mathematically defined surface known as the event horizon: the point of no return.
The planets dangle from string above John's bed, arranged in nonsensical formation. John sleeps curled up on his side, half-hugging the blanket. Downstairs there is shouting and the slamming of a door: I wish you had never chased Dad away. Sherlock lights a cigarette and the night turns dark around them.
By the time Sherlock gets home, it is well past midnight. His father is still up in the study, the paper open in front of him, not reading, smoking his pipe.
"Just what are you doing with your life, son? You have got to start thinking about your future. Just look at Mycroft. Why can’t you be more like your brother?"
“Because I can’t unhinge my jaw and eat half my body weight in one sitting,” Sherlock drawls. "I’d rather not eyeball him, if it’s all the same to you.”
And, his father says, "You're never going to amount to anything if you continue on this way."
Not to amount to anything is easy - but to be nothing, now that was an ambition. To be negative space. To be the nothingness in space, consuming all.
"It's only a phase. Sherlock will settle down one day," his mother often says.
"He just needs to meet a nice girl, that's all, and he'll settle right down."
"Hey stud," Irene says; she catches Sherlock by the football field after school. She comes up to him, popping her gum and swaying her hips with sinuous grace. Her nails and lips are bright red, her jacket bright pink; she wears Chanel no. 5. "You haven't come around in a while. Where've you been? Do you have a new squeeze you haven't told me about?"
"Are you writing a book?" Sherlock says in reply. She smiles with her mouth and not her eyes.
"She must be something real special," Irene says, leaning in and inhaling, the tip of her nose brushing against Sherlock's neck. Sherlock holds himself stock-still. "You smell good. Like frustration. She doesn't even put out, does she? Never thought you'd stand for that, babe."
She trails her crimson nails up Sherlock's thigh. "C'mon Sherly, you're in orbit. Just tell her three little words, the easiest lie. You've done it before, haven't you? That's what all the little girlies say."
"Come off it, Adler," Sherlock says, taking out a cigarette and lighting it.
"Oh," Irene titters. "You are real gone, aren't you? Never thought I'd live to see the day. Who's the lucky lady? Not anyone I know, I would be able to tell by now."
Her hand squeezes Sherlock's thigh, soft and suggestive. "You know, if you need an idea of what to do with all that delicious frustration, I have a few creative illuminations."
This is how John finds them, Sherlock leaning up against his car, Irene all but curled around him.
"Oh," Irene says, openly giving John the onceover; his hair damp from his after-practice shower, the way his shirt clings to him, and for the very first time, Sherlock almost wants to shove her off of him. Her gaze flicks back to Sherlock, and she giggles, a sound both delicate and flirtatious, lips curling up in amusement.
“Oh, Sherlock,” she says, shaking her head. There’s a pity in her voice that makes Sherlock grit his teeth, just slightly. She slides an arm around his shoulders and gives him a squeeze. Sherlock tenses.
"Am I interrupting something?" John says tightly; in about .45 seconds his expression has gone from shocked to quietly furious.
"Oh, no, cupcake," Irene says. "I just stopped by to say hi. Mr. Holmes and I are old friends." She trails the tip of one sharp fingernail down Sherlock's neck, and this time, Sherlock does pull away. "I'll be cutting out now," she says, and presses a kiss to Sherlock's cheek, leaving an imprint of crimson. John makes a sound that Sherlock hasn't heard before, choked back in his throat. "Ta, darling."
She brushes up against John as she passes him, as if she means to smear him with her Chanel no. 5. “Three States Watson,” she says, teasingly, her eyes on a fading bruise at his throat.
"You have some interesting old friends," John remarks later, after Irene Adler has wiggled her black-clad curves away. Irene Adler, or as she is more infamously known, school-wide, and most likely, county-wide: The Woman.
"It was a long time ago," Sherlock shrugs.
"Seeing as how you're only 18, how long ago could it have been?" John points out.
"Seeing as how you're even less than that, how can you judge?" Sherlock points out.
John huffs. "I don't need a ride home today. I'll walk."
"You live at least 5 miles away from the school."
"I'll run. I'm a good runner."
"Get in the car," Sherlock says, opening the door.
"No," John says. "I don't want to. I'm fine on my own."
"Look," Sherlock says, casting an eye about; the parking lot mostly empty, but not entirely deserted. Practice has just let out, after all. "You want to do this, we'll do this. But not here. Not right now. Get in the car, and we'll talk."
"Fine," John says, throwing his bag into the backseat. "But you can't make me like it."
Sherlock thinks, privately, that he could probably make John like anything he wanted, but that is a terrible thing, and instead he turns the engine on.
"What does she mean to you?" John wants to know.
“Did,” Sherlock corrects.
“Fine, what did she mean to you?” John asks again, even more on edge with the grammatical edit.
John is thinking on her curves, her beguiling beauty, her sultry voice. What anybody thinks when they think on Irene Adler. The womanness of her, perhaps. The rightness, some might say. Her seductive allure.
Sherlock looks at John's face as he thinks on Irene, the openness of his emotion, the crinkle of his distressed brow, the flushing of his cheeks, the unhappy moue of his kissable, soft mouth. The smallness of him huddled in the passenger seat, but the smallness is not fragile, it is a volatile thing; vulnerable and explosive at once. The unknown chemical properties of John Watson. How wrong it is of Sherlock to want him, wholly, the wholesomeness of John. To take something so pure and contaminate it. He would be like water to pure sodium compound; exothermic reaction. He will consume him until there is nothing left. John does not know his own dangerous allure.
Three little words, Irene had said. The easiest lie. Sherlock can see himself saying them, can taste the words in his mouth. He has certainly said them before to get what he wanted. But he opens his mouth to say them now, and he can't.
Instead, “She meant nothing.”
John is silent. Sherlock says, “She means nothing.”
And then he says, "Hey," soft, coaxing. "She's a real cherry, but so are you."
"Good," John decides, and in an instant he's pulling Sherlock towards him, over the gear shift. He mashes their lips together with no coordination, click of teeth colliding at first, but then he finds his way, licking at Sherlock's mouth and demonstrating what an expert study he is.
"I don't want her...or any girl...or nobody to mean anything to you," John says, panting, small fists tight in Sherlock's shirt.
"Nothing," Sherlock says, nudging their mouths together.
"Promise," John insists, pulling just slightly away.
"I promise you, nothing," Sherlock says.
John is rubbing away the red stamp of lipstick on Sherlock’s cheek, he is smearing it with his thumb, he is kissing his own imprint over it, soft press of lips, shape of his mouth, one kiss after another, until his mouth finds Sherlock’s mouth. He holds Sherlock there and kisses him then, kisses him until they both have to learn again what it means to breathe.
John goes bright red when Sherlock whispers into his ear, in no uncertain terms, what he plans to do to him.
“But...but we’re both boys!” John protests.
“Right here,” Sherlock says, pushes him back and shows him, sliding a hand between his legs, fingers right in the crease of his trousers. He pushes in, dimpling the fabric, rubbing the pad of his fingers against the suggestion of his hole, that intimate, dirty place.
“That’s...but...but, no,” John says numbly, squirming away from the touch. “That can’t possibly work.”
“That’s how it works,” Sherlock explains, not pulling his hand away; if anything, fanning out his fingers, stroking over it through the material of John’s trousers. “You’d be tight, but I’d stretch you. Open you up with my fingers until you were ready. The hardest part is the outer ring, but that’s muscle, and, as is its nature, it contracts and expands. And then, right inside, there’s your prostate gland, which contains a bundle of nerves that are directly connected to your cock. When that part is stimulated, it reacts the same as to any sexual stimuli, resulting in sensations of pleasure and arousal. Right there, that’s where I would rub against when I fucked you.”
John shakes his head no but his breathing has increased, his pupils dilated.
“Right here,” Sherlock whispers again, gently pressing and massaging until John pushes his hand away.
He’s half-hard but Sherlock chooses not to call attention to it.
Approximately 60,000 to 80,000 wildfires occur in the United States every year.
A human body is completely consumed by fire; it burns to an unrecognizable state within 45 minutes.
Cremation takes place at 1800 to 2100 degrees Fahrenheit, 950 to 1100 degrees Celsius. Over the course of one to two hours, a human body is turned to ash; although some portions of the pelvis, skull, and teeth may remain recognizable as human.
Oftentimes it’s smoke inhalation and asphyxiation that kills a person before the flames. But not always.
A common legend is that they used to burn homosexuals at the stake, although there is no substantiated evidence for this claim. No one actually knows the origin of the derogatory term “faggot”; although people use it easily enough, in derision, in mockery, in fear.
Boys, BEWARE, warned the film they showed in PE. The contagious sickness of the homosexual lurks amongst you.
In London, Sherlock says, the fogs are thick, and dark, and oh, so very quiet. It is strange, like a muffled blanket dropped on the whole city, letting London keep its secrets in silence. They say anything can happen in London, in the fog.
In the school gymnasium, they have dimmed the lights and strewn up pink and purple streamers of cheap crepe paper. They are playing saccharine Top 40 tunes.
In the school gymnasium, at this very moment, John will be dancing with some girl named Clara. He will be sliding his hand to her waist, holding her in the way that the crooners sing about, the way that most red-blooded teenage girls dream of being held.
Clara: from the Latin clarus; meaning clear, bright, famous, renowned. Her name doesn't matter; name her Mary or Sarah or Jeanette.
What matters is the sweet sight of her in her pink or powder blue or lilac dress, the soft curves of her body as she presses it against John. Her breath will be fragrant against his skin. Her hands are small, and soft, and clean. She will wear a ring on her right hand and yearn for one on her left. She excels at Home Ec. The kind of girl who knows what that word future means: 2.5 children and white picket fence.
She will be placing her hand on his shoulder at first; later, right there is where she will rest her head. She will wrap her other arm around him; shelter the two of them in embrace.
Her cheek will touch his cheek. She will smell of lavender or roses. Her lips will be rouged red or pink.
At this moment the faint strains of “Tears on My Pillow” float through the parking lot.
At this moment, John will pull back to look at her, and she will part her lips in unconscious invitation.
The light will glint around them. And right then, right now, they will both suck in a breath and hold it.
At this moment Sherlock is down to the last cigarette of his pack, he has smoked it down to the filter, and he is pushing himself up off his car, his body vibrant with energy, illuminated, aflame.
He shoves through the double doors of the gym; tightness in throat and chest, tightness in muscles of arm coiled, ready to contract in burst of motion. To act. To separate. To cleave in twain.
It's a bit of wasted potential energy when he finds John at the punch bowl, solo, un-entwined, simply sniffing cautiously at the cup of punch in his hand.
"Yes, it is spiked," Sherlock says. "But not with very good alcohol. Come on. I'll get you much better stuff."
"Sherlock," John says, "I thought you didn't do dances."
"I don't," Sherlock replies. "So let's cut outta here."
John glances at his date, over by a darkened corner, giggling against the wall with Harriet. Her dress is baby blue; she wears flowers in her hair. Sherlock waits for John's hesitation.
"I thought you'd never ask," John says with a smile instead, and that’s when Sherlock sees that when Clara laughs she leans into Harriet, and their hands and skirts gently brush together.
Oh. There is always something.
"Come on," says John, cocking his head to the side. "Let's blow this pop stand."
Tonight was a favor to Harry, John says later, when they are back in the car and parked. This is fine.
"But what were you doing there?" John asks. This is not so fine.
"I walked in and spoke to you," says Sherlock.
"Don't be obtuse, it's not a good look on you," John says. At Sherlock's scowl, he adds, "Especially not on you."
"I told you I was going to the dance," John continues. "I told you I was taking Clara. Harry asked me to ask her. Tonight was a favor to Harry. I mean, you didn't actually think..." A little inhalation of breath. “Oh.”
Sherlock has turned away. He is spectacularly irritated at a world that allows him to run out of smokes. He flicks open his lighter and snaps the wheel with his thumb, running his other fingers through the flame. He can feel John’s eyes on him.
"Oh," says John again, softly, a world of realization in the sound. He scoots himself closer, close enough so that their thighs are pressing together.
"Sherlock," John says, tugging at his arm, his shoulder, trying to turn him towards him. "I...I promise."
Sherlock closes the lighter.
Two thoughts occur simultaneously: one, that John Watson, for all of a little idiot that he is, can have brilliant illuminations sometimes, can have the ability to see deep down to the cut to the quick, and two, that he must be shamefully, painfully obvious if he is so plainly read. Then there is no room for thoughts at all because he is pulling John towards him and kissing him on his sweet, promising mouth.
John laughs a little when they break for air, his fist curled and resting on Sherlock's chest, his fist the size of his heart. "Say, what’s Makeout Point actually called? I mean, really?"
"The true name of this sacred place has been lost to the annals of time," Sherlock deadpans, to hear John giggle.
He ranks that number eight, easily, on the Top Ten of his favorite sounds that John is capable of making.
John's eyes are dark like the hue of the skies outside, and if Sherlock were more foolish, or if he wanted to sweetly lie, he might say that they, too, hold the stars of night. But stars are useless gaseous balls millions of miles away that hold no significance at all and so Sherlock says nothing. Later, in the backseat, he kisses John's eyes closed.
He doesn't trust himself to speak. If he talks he might say something ridiculous, he might say let me, let me fuck you, he might beg. If he stops kissing John long enough to let him talk, John might say no.
Sherlock wants to delete the word no from John's vocabulary, and the word don't, and especially the word stop. He would replace them with new words, finer words, words like please, like Sherlock, and more.
John whimpers when Sherlock's hand finds his erection and lightly traces the shape of it through his trousers, fingers skating, teasing. John squirms as if unsure whether to push into it or to try and pull away, but one thing is for sure: he does not attempt to push Sherlock's hand away.
John arches and exposes the curve of his neck; Sherlock feels the rapid, skittering pulse of his carotid artery underneath his lips. A small sound, a sharp intake of breath, when Sherlock undoes the button on his trousers, the zipper hissing as he tugs it down. An uncertain “Sherlock...”; a twitch of his hips when Sherlock slips his hand inside. His need, his want obvious in the hardness and heat of his cock in the palm of Sherlock's hand, and Sherlock has been patient and understanding far too long.
“You promised,” he reminds him.
John does not deny it.
Sherlock loves the feel of John, small and slim beneath him, the way his little body wriggles when his thumb rubs over the head of his dick. John bites his lip, which does nothing to hold back the traitorous little whimper that leaks out.
"Tonight," Sherlock says, stroking John's prick hard in his hand, a slow up and down. John's breathing is shallow already and when he looks down at Sherlock's hand, Sherlock's fingers wrapped around him, a broken sound escapes him. All this reaction, only at the slightest touches, and Sherlock presses his erection hard against John's slim thigh. "I'm going to fuck you tonight," he promises John, he promises himself, the words whispered darkly against the delicate curve of his ear.
John only shudders at the words. "I'll make it so good for you," Sherlock says. "I'll make you love it." He can feel John's dick twitch in his hand, does not miss the quick intake of breath, not that he ever misses anything. "I could tell, the first time you looked at me, that you've always wanted this from me."
John shakes his head, teeth at his lip. How could he want without knowing? But he does not deny this, either. And when Sherlock slides down there is no room for ‘no’ but only a squeaked, "Oh god!" when Sherlock slides just the tip of his tongue over the pretty flushed head of John's dick, wetting it with both saliva and precum.
The want happens before the knowing, desire before logic, urge before reason.
Sherlock runs the flat of his tongue against the underside of John's dick, all wetness and heat but no actual suction, no actual relief. The tips of his fingers skim the other side of it, stroking along the glans, feather-light touches against the hardness of it. His other hand rests on the trembling plane of John's stomach, over the cotton of his pressed button-up shirt.
Sherlock licks until John is near-sobbing, writhing and whimpering and making the softest little broken sounds. John is arching up, body drawn tight. The leather of the seat crinkles beneath him, his carefully-styled hair ruffles against it, all his put-togetherness coming undone.
Sherlock licks until John is saying, "Sherlock, please."
Sherlock prompts him, "Please what?" and John only shakes his head, as if he doesn't know. Pretty little portrait of debauched innocence, erection hot and hard in Sherlock's hand, leaking wet against Sherlock's tongue, his cheeks flushed pink and legs trying to spread wide.
Instead of speaking, John’s own hands go to the collar of his shirt. His bowtie is already undone, his suit jacket in a soft heap on the floor, the pink carnation in the buttonhole crushed.
His hands are surprisingly steady as he undoes one button and then another. Sherlock helps him with the rest, popping open the line of buttons, until the shirt is open. Sherlock pushes the shirt off John’s shoulders with both hands, peeling back the layers of him like a chrysalis he had dissected once, his touch like a scalpel through membrane.
“You too," John insists, pushing himself up a little, fingers at the edge of Sherlock's shirt and tugging up. He lays his palm flat on the barest strip of skin revealed, pale flesh between hip and navel. His hand is so warm. "I want to see you."
They make quick work of his shirt, joining the suit jacket and Sherlock's leather jacket on the floor. John’s eyes upon him, on the long, lean lines of his body; the dizzying rush of being the singular point of John Watson’s attention. Sherlock cups John’s face on either side with both hands, blocking out peripheral vision, until all John can see is him.
John turns his face, presses a kiss to the inside of Sherlock’s palm. Sherlock sucks in a breath between his teeth.
Immediately then, he moves his hands down to the waistband of John’s trousers, fingers hooked. John’s hands come to rest on top of his for a moment. “You’re taking these off," Sherlock says, fact, not a question; order, not a request. John's breathing quickens, and he only gives Sherlock's hand a squeeze. John’s chest is gently marked with various bruises in the shape of Sherlock's mouth, his nipples erect with the night air and his arousal, his erection flushed and needy, particularly exposed against his best suit trousers.
"You promised," Sherlock reminds him, placing a kiss against a rib, and then on the soft flesh of his stomach. John nods and Sherlock works his pants off, underwear and all, fancy polished dress shoes on the floor and then John is completely exposed, for the first time in front of him, if not for his socks.
Takes John's peepers off and lets them drop into the front seat. Wouldn't do to get them twisted or broken; John might get in trouble with his mama.
"Gonna make you love it," Sherlock says, fingers curling expertly on John's erection again, John's small hand wrapped on top of his. He strokes him to hear those delicious noises, feels his own dick twitching inside of his jeans, untouched.
"I'll be careful," Sherlock promises, because pain is a factor that John doesn't really know about. I'll look after you, he doesn't say, but he will, if that's what John needs to hear. Sherlock will promise anything if it gets him what he wants. The easiest lie.
Next he has a small glass jar of Vaseline in his hands; he's always kept one in his glove compartment and he'd slipped it into his jacket pocket earlier, his intentions clear, unclean. It had been inevitable from the moment that John had left the dance with him. It had been inevitable from the moment John had kissed him and asked for it again. It had been inevitable from the moment he'd first laid eyes upon John Watson on the first day of school. Sherlock had taken a long drag of his cigarette as he watched John walked by, smacked Vic on the arm, and said, right then and there, “Dibs.”
The petroleum jelly warms to something viscous between his fingers. He presses just one finger against that tight little hole; a moment of resistance but one finger slides in easily, John's body hot all around him. John's brow furrows with the odd feeling, a look of confusion. "Sherlock, that's weird," he says, and then gasps when Sherlock bends to gently lap at the head of his cock as distraction.
"It's like I told you," Sherlock tells him, one finger moving in and out. "You're going to be tight," and he feels his own body shudder at saying those words, "So we'll take our time. Stretch you open, nice and wide, until you can take my cock."
John makes a little sound at that last word. That last word, especially.
Sherlock presses John’s thigh against the back seat, leans against it and pins him there, keeping him spread open like a specimen for Sherlock's hungry, inquisitive gaze. He presses kisses against the inside of John's thigh while he rubs his finger, searching out the spot inside of him that would make him burn with pleasure.
It takes time, and patience, but Sherlock is nothing if not methodical. One by one he could catalogue all of John Watson's responses, stimuli and response, cause and effect.
He watches John's face in the low light when he rubs against it, finally, the way his whole body arcs up as if trying to peel off the seat, the tremble in his thighs and the sound of his gasp.
"Right here," Sherlock reminds him, insistent, "That little bundle of nerves linked directly to your genital response. This is what it feels like." He rubs it again and John's breath hitches, he makes a fascinating little noise, and he squirms, and the seat creaks beneath him.
"Does it feel good?" Sherlock wants to know, torn between watching John's face and the sight of his own finger, rubbing in and out of the tiny little hole.
"It f-feels bad," John says.
Sherlock abruptly stops.
John adamantly shakes his head. "No, no, you misunderstand the lingo," he says. "Bad means good, remember?"
"Let's drop the lingo for now," Sherlock says, flush of irritation in his voice. And John, he actually giggles, Sherlock's finger inside of him and his legs pinned and spread, naked in the backseat of Sherlock's hot rod with his erection stiff against his soft little belly. Sherlock stares at him, shocked. Never laughed during sex before; sex always a rushed affair of hormones and need, down-and-dirty physical act to get off and then quickly cut out. And here John is, spread out before him and laughing, and it’s so weird that it makes Sherlock want to kiss him, want to touch him, to fuck him still. It’s so ridiculous that Sherlock laughs as well.
"We can't giggle, this is a sex scene," John says, laughing, body shaking, clenching and gasping with surprise when he clenches. "Stop it.”
Sherlock presses on the outside of John's perineum with his thumb, while his finger rubs insistently inside, direct pressure on the little gland.
John's entire body jerks on the seat with the sudden stimulation and he gasps for air. "Oh," he says, and "oh," again. "Go on, stop it some more."
Sherlock does, and he listens to the giggles flourish into gasps, with John’s little body clenching in waves around him.
“Two fingers now,” Sherlock says, other hand stroking the crease of John’s inner thigh to watch him shudder and twitch. “They’ll feel like a lot, but you can take it.”
He can feel the stretch of John's body around two slick fingers; watches, with fascination, the sight of the virginal little hole taking something in for the first time. John whines with discomfort, but no real distress.
"Relax," Sherlock instructs, "and breathe." He watches the obedient rise and fall of John's chest and belly in response, and licks the crease of his thigh as reward. His tongue catches the smallest drop of sweat that has formed, like evening dew in late summer. "One day," Sherlock murmurs against his thigh, "two fingers won't feel like enough."
The low moan that John lets out may have to do with that idea, or the fact that Sherlock has rubbed against the perfect little bundle of nerves inside of him. There are too many confounding factors to know for sure; he would have to isolate each stimulus, run a series of trials to discern the difference.
One day, John is going to beg for it; he will whine that Sherlock is going too slow. He has a voice for begging, a voice for tempting one into sin.
For now, however, it's all torturously slow, the coaxing of his body to open up for the first time.
"Think about how good it's going to be, when you're all stretched and ready for a fucking," Sherlock says, focused on the slide of two fingers, the tightness of John's body around only two fingers.
It is all madness.
"Do you like it?" Sherlock asks, the answer so obvious, easily deducible in John's shallow little panting breaths, the twitch of his hips and Sherlock rubs his fingers inside of him, the leaking erection against his belly.
"Yeah," John breathes, eyes closed, nodding.
Such awe in him. So much to be in awe of, in him.
"That's it," Sherlock encourages. "Spread your legs for me, just like that."
"Now," Sherlock says, "Do you think you can take three fingers? For me?"
Three fingers are much harder for John to take, he's so tight, tighter than anybody else Sherlock can remember or cares to remember. Three fingers bring John close to sobbing, the most exquisite expression on his face and the most delectable sounds tearing from his throat.
"Shh, don't carry on so," Sherlock shushes him, but is surprised when one of John's hands scrabbles for his. The way their fingers entwine, the way that John's small hand clutches at his, is nearly as fascinating as his fingers inside of John. He's never actually held John's hand before; John's palm against his, heated and damp with sweat, his fingers gripping tight, squeezing their knuckles together. He surrenders his hand over, their two hands clasped together, resting on the quivering flesh of John's stomach.
Three fingers inside of him, spreading, and stretching, and rubbing, and Sherlock loves and hates the pained sounds that John can make. He wants to make them stop, never wants them to stop. Bending down he takes the head of John's dick into his mouth and begins to suck in earnest, rubbing the flat of his tongue against it. He rubs three fingers against John's prostate, rubs and rubs and presses against it, until the little hitches of breath, the whimpers and sobbing sounds metamorphose into something beyond pain and beyond pleasure, something that is rather a mating of the two.
On the radio, the chords of "Love Me Tender" float out, background music for the stable-the-horses, backseat bingo crowd. Later on, the DJ will play, “Don’t.”
"Sherlock," John whines. "Sherlock, I'm going to-"
Sherlock pulls his mouth off abruptly. "You can't," he says. He gives the underside of John's pretty cock a lick, down to his balls. John gasps, shudders wonderfully. “You're not allowed. I'm not even inside of you yet. That's when you're allowed to come, when I'm inside you and fucking you.”
“Then hurry,” John urges, need pitched into two emphatic syllables, and it's suddenly the most beautiful word in the English language.
It's the first time Sherlock has fumbled with his jeans in years. His erection has been trapped for so long that it feels like years. It’s been aching all this time and he’s forced it into a state of almost numbness by ignoring it. If he didn’t ignore it he’d have come already. If he didn’t ignore it he’d be inside John already, never mind the cries and protests.
This is much better, John aching for it, begging and compliant.
Sherlock shoves his jeans down halfway, too frantic and hormone-suffused to be graceful about it, to take them off properly. His dick throbs with fresh near-pain when he has it out in his hand and he looks at John panting beneath him, eyes wide and half-stunned, watching Sherlock with both nerves and anticipation.
He makes a mess of it. Heat licking beneath his skin and he's waited too long to be careful, slathering his dick with the greasy jelly and smearing it over the crack of John's round little ass, spreading it over his hole. One hand on John's hip to hold him in place, the other hand guiding his dick. "This is going to be a bit more difficult," he warns. "But you can take it. For me. Deep breath now."
He lines himself up and pushes forward, the little hole unyielding at first. John lets out a whimper of genuine distress for the first time and Sherlock feels heat coil up tight inside of him. He drapes himself over John now, slips an arm underneath his small body to hold him. His dick presses forward, insistent, unyielding. John wraps his arms around Sherlock's shoulders, blunt fingernails of one hand scratching at the back of Sherlock's neck. The little hole is tight, it tries to keep him out, and John squirms beneath him, trembling but not fighting. He’s trapped and this is as inevitable as the setting sun. For then there's a sudden give and Sherlock’s pushing inside, slow and steady, inch by inch, heat all around him and John whimpering in his ear.
He's inside John Watson for the very first time.
"Extraordinary," Sherlock praises, pressing kisses against John's face, kisses against his neck. Soothes him with press of mouth against heated skin as he forces him open, stretches him with his cock.
"Sherlock," John says; he's balled up tight, his muscles tense, fingers undoubtedly white with the way he grips Sherlock's body. "Kiss me," John says; both a plea and a demand, and Sherlock kisses him twice, once for each meaning of it. He slides his tongue into the wet heat of John's mouth; John's soft tongue slipping against his, just the way Sherlock has taught him to.
John guides the kisses then, while Sherlock works on keeping his hips still, buried to the hilt inside of perfect tight heat and his dick throbbing with frustrated desire.
Their bodies fit together obscenely well. His body covers John's smaller one so easily; the size difference between them is obvious, and it's wrong how that observation makes Sherlock's hips rock involuntarily. But only a fool would mistake any of it for fragility. John can take anything Sherlock can give him and more.
The neurons in his nervous system light up with electrical impulses in the dark; each axon firing off the same message: pure need.
His muscles sing with the tension of contraction, of holding still; he is a coil of potential energy. It seeps out against his will in little shifts and rocking motions, shifts that turn into shallow thrusts. cradling John's body against his as they rock together.
The pads of John's fingers dig into his shoulder, into the back of his neck. John's blunt nails bite half-moon crescents into his flesh. Let him. Let John mark him with the smudges of his fingerprints, uniquely John, unlike any other set of prints in the world. He wants John to dirty him up with his prints, press them in all over while Sherlock claims him, pushes inside deep where no one has ever been before.
Let him be a crime scene; let John be the criminal. Let John be the body and the blood; let Sherlock be the examiner and the murderer. Let him worship at the altar. Let them be sinners both.
John does not protest the little motions, instead his breathing comes fast and shallow. His body jerks with sudden stimulation when Sherlock rubs his inner walls just right, and his mouth opens to let out a sharp little cry.
"Be as loud as you want," Sherlock breathes. "Your mama's not downstairs."
There, right there is where Sherlock has him, where John needs him. Thrusts right up into him and John clenches, spins out a sound that is half-whine and half moan. "Ready?" Sherlock asks, hips moving in teasing, rubbing motions, pulls out just enough so that the head of his dick is rubbing against John's prostate so that he can watch John shake.
"Yes, oh god yes," John says, nodding frantically. His eyes are squeezed shut with the sensation of it, eyelashes dusky against his cheeks.
The next thrust is hard because Sherlock needs it and John does too. John yelps in response but his dick twitches and drools precum between them. Sherlock builds up the next several thrusts, simply enjoying the slide in and out, John hot and tight all around him, the idea of it nearly overwhelming in itself. He wishes he could pull back to watch, to see his dick sliding in and out of the tight little hole for the first time, but John is clinging too tightly to allow for that. He watches John's face instead, the crease of his brow, his panting, open mouth, fluttering lashes and flushed cheeks.
"Open your eyes and look at me," Sherlock says, suddenly overcome with irrational need. He needs John to see him, to know who was fucking him, taking him, claiming him. As if it could be mistaken. As if it could be anybody else. But he cannot allow for even that miniscule improbability, the tiny margin .0001% of doubt.
John's eyes are so dark and so wide they could swallow up a person's whole being. The type of gaze that absorbs a person. He looks dazed, barely able to focus, breathy little sounds of pain/pleasure spilling out from his parted mouth. How to love that look. A million ways to love that look.
“You’re...you’re inside me...” John breathes, as if he can hardly believe it.
Sherlock’s whole body shudders at the vocalization of it. “Yes.”
Yes, yes, always yes.
Sherlock fucks him properly now, the thrusts hard the way he's always wanted them. The thrusts jerk John's small body against the leather seats. The car rocks beneath them. Their flesh smacks together.
When Sherlock shifts his hands to John's hips to yank him down into the thrusts, John only rolls hips with a needy whimper. Like he's made for this. Just that thought makes Sherlock thrust harder, himself panting open-mouthed, beyond words for the moment. All for the best. Who knows what obscenities or atrocities or endearments could tumble out.
"Baby," he hears himself say, body covering John's again, hands tilting his hips, his hips colliding with the soft flesh of John's tight ass. So that is the kind of obscenity that tears out of him in this awful all-consuming passion. It's because John is whimpering the most beautiful broken sounds, and every now and then moaning loud and shamelessly. He looks so lost, taken over by pleasure. The sight of him is mesmerizing.
"Baby, it's all right," Sherlock hears himself say, deep inside of John, right where he wants to be. Where he's wanted to be the moment he laid eyes on him. He’s not one for pet names. Not sure the origin of that damning phrase. Never wanted to call anyone that before, not even the girls he’s had, fragrant, experimental subjects who had swooned and sighed in his arms as he lied. John inspires some new and frightening feeling, the curiosity of warring dichotomies: a desire to nurture as much as a desire to destroy.
Wishes he could stay in this place forever, spend his days and nights like this fucking John over and over. He can't last. He can't. All things come to fruition. Eventually the reagent is used up. He sucks a harsh kiss against John's throat, his thrusts speeding up, forceful and greedy, consuming. He fills John with his cock, over and over again.
He mouths other things, unspoken, silent things against John’s skin.
"Sherlock," John moans out low, scratching hard down the flesh of his back. "I wanna...can I?"
He looks at John abruptly, hissing with desire. John licks his lips, tongue pink and gesture obscene on sweet, innocent face. "You said I could," he says, "with you inside me."
Sherlock nearly comes on the spot and he grits his teeth against the flood of arousal. "Say it," he growls, voice gone low and rough with lust.
"Sherlock," John says, voice desperate, full of sex and as much begging as it is cruel and teasing, "Make me come."
That's all it takes, really; it's like everything that has been holding him together up to this point shatters. His hips thrust in brutal, punishing rhythm, fucking John into the seats, rubbing, grinding his cock into him hard, into the spot that makes John fall apart with pleasure. It's a miracle in itself that he has the semblance of mind to find John's erection between them and give it the few harsh strokes it needs before John is shuddering and shaking, against him and around him, coming hard with a bright, keening sound.
John's body clenches around him in waves of sensation, milking his cock. He's faintly aware of the splatter of warm semen on his skin, smearing between them. It's all too much and it's like nuclear fission inside of him, the splitting of the atom, exothermic reaction and all behind his eyelids is flames and light and his body surrenders and he's coming with a harsh shout, spilling his seed deep inside the tight, perfect clasp of John’s little body.
His body is a wasteland in the aftermath, drained of all its energy. It is working on remembering the basic biological functions, his breath hot and heavy on John’s skin, John’s breath against his. He collapses on top of John, blanketing him with his body. His mind is blissfully quiet for the first time in a very long time, and he closes his eyes to enjoy the silence, his forehead pressed to John’s cheek, both of them slick with sweat.
“I’ll move eventually,” he mumbles, voice rumbling deep in his chest. “Let me stay inside you for now. For the next day or two.”
“Okay,” John hums agreeably. “Maybe then you’ll have time...to get hard and we can do it all over again.”
Sherlock’s head snaps up and he meets John’s smile. John kisses his nose.
It’s horrifying. John looks filthy and debauched, Sherlock’s cock still inside of him, Sherlock’s semen leaking out of him; he’s lost his virginity in the backseat of a car, he’s all used up, and he’s smiling and flushed and happy and perfect.
Sherlock realizes, with swift and agonizing perspicuity, that John Watson has him all taken apart.
"Tell me," John says, "about London again."
In London, Sherlock says, in the morning the sun glints off the river like it's tipped with crystal.
In Glastonbury, in England, Sherlock says, there is one high hill, the Tor, and it's said that this was the place that King Arthur built Camelot.
“One day,” John says, warm and content, curled up on top of Sherlock. “One day.”
And so this is event horizon. There is no return. And the sun could spin in backwards rotation, for all Sherlock suddenly does not know.
In the United States, wildfire destroys three to ten million acres of land each year.
As for Sherlock, he is all gone to ashes, incinerated, with only pieces of bone and teeth recognizable.
John sucks a bruising kiss on Sherlock’s throat, above the collar line; a visible mark in the shape of his mouth.
“Promise,” John says.