Dr John H. Watson is drunk. Completely, utterly, unmistakeably pissed as a prune in a plant pot. Or something like that.
He knows it and unfortunately so does everybody else at the party. It isn’t easy to hide or difficult to deduce. Lestrade and associates have practically poured the booze down him, and then not hesitated to take advantage of it, encouraging him to have a shot of tequila and another and maybe another, because no one witnessed the last one and that is cheating. Mind you, he isn’t the only one. Even Sally Donovan is swaying ominously as she weaves her way through to the ladies loo. Looking (squinting) around the pub, no one looks particularly sober.
Apart from Sherlock, of course. Perched elegantly on the edge of a bar stool, sipping at a large glass of red wine, conversing amiably (for once) with the young guy behind the bar, he looks at ease and in full control of his senses. Bastard.
John laughs at his internal bitterness. It is entirely unnecessary. He’s having more fun, he’s sure, even if he may struggle to remember it in the morning.
The room wobbles and slips precariously to the side as he stumbles across the polished wooden floorboards. Stupid room. John catches himself on the elbow of the nearest person (Lestrade apparently) and a supporting hand catches him back, accompanied by laughter, but no ridicule. The hand uprights him and shoves him back towards his original destination, which is... Ah yes, the bar.
“John. Having a good birthday?” Sherlock’s familiar smooth unslurring baritone sends shivers through him. It does at the best of times, but now his defences are down it is more obvious to him. Probably to everybody else as well, he guesses.
“I need another drink.”
“The one clutched in your hand does not meet your expectations?” A raised eyebrow. He is laughing at him, clearly.
John looks down to find a semi-consumed lager in his hand. He knows then that he really should stop drinking. He puts it on the bar and tries to cover his blunder without blending his words too much, “It’s half empty.”
Sherlock chuckles at that, “Or half full?”
Trust him to be the smart-arse. But John can’t keep the answering grin from his face. Close up, he realises through shifting vision, his friend does not look half as sober as he had originally assumed. He has a delicate flush slashed across those cheekbones and the surface of his normally pale skin is damp with sweat. The eye contact John is able to maintain is tenuous at best, but tells him that the sharp icy eyes are glossed and dilated and making an effort to refocus every few seconds.
He really should stop drinking, because that glassy look he is receiving is warming his stomach more than the tequila had. It has to be past midnight; all the other patrons of the pub have long gone and the door has been bolted. A lock-in, for John’s birthday. And past twelve means it’s not his birthday anymore. It is time to go home, he decides. Any more alcohol will put him firmly on the floor and in need of a fireman’s lift to get anywhere.
John leans forwards, intending to talk over the music into Sherlock’s ear. But his spacial awareness is decidedly inhibited and he pitches forwards a bit far. A deceptively strong arm catches him, before the floor actually jumps up to meet his face and he is crushed against Sherlock’s deliciously smelling but rather sweaty shoulder.
“Steady on, soldier,” the amused rumble is rather sexier than it should have been.
John giggles (no matter how much he denies it, it is definitely a giggle), knowing he looks absolutely ridiculous and mumbles into Sherlock’s pink ear, “I think I need to go home.” He heaves himself up, steadying himself with a hand on a slim thigh.
“I like it when you call me soldier.”
Sherlock’s eyes widen and John realises he must have said that out loud. Aw, crap. A hand slaps to his forehead. The mouth should just stay shut, he decides, until the morning. He moves the hand to cover it and keep the words where they should be.
“Glass of water for the birthday boy,” announces Sherlock, slapping a hand on the bar. He signals across the room for John’s coat.
John only removes his hand to take a sip of the wonderful cool water before replacing it firmly. Greg has appeared with his jacket and he gets one arm into it before being puzzled as to why he can’t get the other one in.
“You need to remove your hand from your face again to insert it into the waiting sleeve,” Sherlock hints gently. Greg is laughing loudly. At least Mike has the grace to conceal his amusement behind his drink.
John does as instructed and Greg slips it onto his shoulders, adjusting it just so. “Happy Birthday mate. Sleep well, don’t be too sick.” He looks to Sherlock, “Take care of him.”
“Oh, I will.”
Is John imaging the undertone of that reply? He must be. He is in no state to hear or attempt to decipher undertones of any sort.
The air is chilled outside, or he knows it should be, but he can’t feel it through the hot fog of his cosy alcohol blanket. There is no need for a taxi, they are only a few streets away from the flat and John shoves his hands into his pockets and whistles as he walks.
Firm fingers surprise him, tugging at his wrist. “Whaddya want, Shlock?”
“Hands out please,” Sherlock instructs, “You are more than likely to fall over at least once on this walk and you risk greater injury without your hands to break your fall.”
“Oh, piss off knob-end.” But he does as he is told. He has often said Sherlock is a wise man, and he’s not throwing away free wise advice just because it’s rudely delivered. Though that wasn’t that rude, to be honest. In fact it might have even been quite caring and thoughtful. Curious. But still irritating. “Just cause you’re my best friend doesn’t mean you can treat me like a child. Oh. Best friend, how nice. Did you know that you’re–”
“John, you’re incredibly inebriated.”
“Not so. So not.”
“You can’t even say my name, so let’s save this bonding discussion for another time when you are less likely to say something outrageously comical that you will no doubt later regret.” Sherlock says gently.
“Sher-lock. Sher. Lock.” John says quietly, listening himself for any errors. Nope, sounds fine to him. Of course it does, he is a grown man. A few pints and shots don’t change that. He isn’t some dozy teenager who loses all his faculties with a couple of beers. Who can’t say Sherlock? It is ridiculous. “See, there you go.”
Sherlock just smiles to himself and pats John on the shoulder, “Come on, let’s get you home to bed.”
John isn’t stupid enough to open his mouth now. He will most majorly put his foot in it. Instead he slaps his hand back over, ensuring that retort about bed will stay silent. For some reason Sherlock still grins, as though he has said it anyway. Oh, crap, to him he pretty much has, hasn’t he?
The streets are quiet, especially for London. Walking beside his friend, he is content. They are close, close enough for John’s unsteadiness to knock their shoulders together and for a steadying hand to easily reach to correct him. Neither of them speak, just think to themselves, listening to distant sirens and the echo of their own footsteps. The fresh air is helping clear John’s mind somewhat, though he isn’t stupid enough to think himself anywhere near sober, and he consciously tries to file away this moment for later. This is something he could look back on fondly. He isn’t quite sure how the filing of memories works, but he knows asking for a tutorial would end in him looking terribly ridiculous. They may be friends, but it doesn’t mean Sherlock won’t laugh openly at him.
“Stop trying to think, John, it won’t end well,” Sherlock smoothly interrupts his thoughts. The only outward sign that he might possibly be a bit wobbly as well is how many attempts it takes him to get the key in the door. John tries not to smile. It doesn’t work.
Mrs Hudson is long abed and John is conscious of trying to be quiet as he stumbles up the stairs. Sherlock had paused to close the door behind them with a quiet click and puts a supporting hand in the small of John’s back. John turns to say something, probably something very witty he liked to think, about dark hallways and such, but the movement is unwise and nearly topples the pair of them down the staircase. The taller man has to grab out wildly for the banister as well as his flatmate. They have probably woken their landlady with their laughter by now.
With a less than gentle shove from behind John is back on his way. They don’t even stop at the middle level, just continue straight up to John’s bedroom, still laughing. Sherlock pushes him in through the door. John is conscious of that hand still present at the base of his spine and the fact that it doesn’t really need to be there, and the fact that Sherlock doesn’t need to be here. There is probably some sort of hidden meaning to that that he should be able to work out.
“Come on, you pathetic drunkard, coat off.” Sherlock turns him around and tugs it off, chucking it on the chair in the corner.
“Really, Sherlock, these efforts at seduction leave a little to be desired.”
Sherlock chuckles merrily at him, “And shoes.”
John agrees. There is nothing worse than waking up hungover in the morning and realising you still have your shoes on. Well, there probably is something worse, but he can’t think of it right now. Sherlock backs him up, probably intending to sit him on the edge of the bed and assist in the footwear removal, but the side of the mattress hits John square in the back of the knee and sends him tumbling backwards. Split second (yeah, right!) reactions have him flailing and grabbing onto whatever is in front of him in an effort to save himself. It just so happens that Sherlock’s coat is what is right in front of him, and the detective inside that coat is a little less steady on his feet than he might have been in better circumstances.
John lets out an ‘oof’ as Sherlock lands heavily on top of him. They would laugh, again, but instead they just make eye contact, significant and slow. And then, despite telling himself not to, John does what he has wanted to do for-absolutely-ever (or at least a year and a half) and lifts his head to press his lips onto Sherlock’s. And instead of pulling away, as John is expecting and hating the idea of, Sherlock moans, actually moans, and lets his weight drop back onto him, kissing him back.
In hindsight, John wishes he had been sober the first time he kissed Sherlock. It would have been nice to remember it clearly, and to know whether or not it was a good one, or a bit drunken and sloppy. It feels good. It feels like the perfect kind of kiss; warm and dry at the beginning, evolving to hot and wet at a steady pace. Sherlock tastes of expensive red wine and man and cigarettes and it is strangely... perfect. John lets his hands drift up from the lapels of The Coat and cup at Sherlock’s neck. There is a graze of nose on his cheek as the angle shifts and he softly flicks his tongue out against the bow of Sherlock’s top lip.
But then Sherlock does pull away. “John...” He appears hesitant to say anything else, but is obviously attempting to withdraw and put an end to this madness.
“I’msorry,” John’s words rush out all in one go, breathlessly. He can’t quite believe this is happening. Firstly that he had got the guts to try this again in the first place. Secondly that Sherlock had joined in. And thirdly that he has somehow managed to balls it up so badly his friend is regretting it already and trying to let him down gently. Or maybe he doesn’t even want it at all; that could be worse. “I’m so wasted and you’re so damn... I can’t help myself wherever you’re concerned, never have been able to, and oh, God, don’t hate me, aw shit, I’m so fucking wasted.”
“You said that already.”
“The room is spinning and I can’t feel my legs–“
Then Sherlock is pressing his lips onto John’s, cutting off his words and filling his head with all sorts of nonsense that has no right to be there. His tongue is tracing over John’s lips and then in his mouth, stroking and caressing and calling John’s out to play.
The Coat comes off first, falling to the floor with a rather ominous thud like there are things in the pockets that maybe shouldn’t be dropped so carelessly. But then Sherlock hands are sneaking under John’s t-shirt and he can’t find it in himself to care. As long as nothing explodes, it doesn’t matter. He tangles his fingers into Sherlock’s dark curling hair, tugging the silken strands to change the pressure of their kiss. The hands under his shirt push it up, yanking it off over his head, breaking them apart. Then the beautiful mouth moves down, kissing, licking, damn it biting at John’s skin, sucking a red weal at the juncture between neck and shoulder.
Oh God, what is happening? Could this actually be what he thinks it is? Is Sherlock really frantically trying to get John’s clothes off? He can feel the puff of breath against his throat as Sherlock pauses for a second, trying to get his breath back, to calm himself down. John, apparently, isn’t the only desperate one.
“You still have your shoes on.” A reasonable observation in an unreasonably husky voice.
John wastes no time kicking them off obediently, followed by his slightly less willing socks, somehow convincing his toes to wrestle them off so he won’t have to move (or keep them on, because really, there is nothing quite as terrible as having socked sex). There are two extra thuds where Sherlock’s footwear presumably join his, tumbled together under the edge of the bed. John reaches for him, pulling him back up for another kiss, reaching for the fastenings of his shirt. It needs to be off. Now. But Sherlock is far too distracting, spreading his legs and rubbing a very clear erection against John’s hip, and John’s fingers are still feeling the effects of ‘tequila and friends’ and seem to be refusing to listen to him.
“You might have to do these buttons,” John points out finally.
Sherlock is only too happy to oblige. He leans away, resting his weight back on John’s thighs, staring unblinkingly at him while he slowly slips the buttons open. Every single one is caressed free from its matching hole like some kind of lewd sexual act and, upon reaching the bottom, those divine digits slide slowly back up the previously concealed abdomen and chest, touching and stroking and easing the sides of the shirt to the side to reveal the body John has dreamed about. Frequently.
All the times John dreamed of this moment, he had known Sherlock would be like this. So strong and so confident and so gloriously... Sherlock. John reaches down and palms the fly of his jeans, arching up into his own hand and groaning with the overwhelming pleasure of just watching the exhibitionist take his bloody shirt off. The action is observed from under heavy eyelids, Sherlock biting indulgently on his bottom lip and then he is back, with his elbows either side of John’s head, plastering himself down on the hard body below him and pressing a hot kiss to his throat.
John takes two handfuls of that delectable arse and uses it as leverage to grind up into him, drawing a moan through flared nostrils. Yep, and that is pretty damned hot too.
Favouring his stiff shoulder (although, to be honest, who is thinking of old war-wounds at a time like this?), John rolls them over. His fingers lace themselves through Sherlock’s and he tugs their hands up, over that head of now rather deliciously dishevelled curls, pinning him down into the pillows.
“Oh, it’s like that, is it?” Sherlock is challenging, slightly drunkenly, nipping at John’s swollen lips. John just rocks his hips in reply and watches those beautiful blue eyes roll back in their sockets.
The slender body beneath his writhes and wriggles as he kisses and licks his way down, his teeth tugging on a sensitive nipple or two and earning a breathless gasp. It’s like learning a whole new subject, ‘how to pleasure Sherlock’. And instead of a certificate at the end, he’ll get...
John groans at that thought, flicking a mischievous tongue out at his navel. Trembling fingers thread through his cropped hair, encouraging and urging and pleading. The trousers are much simpler than the shirt and he masters the hooked fastener with no problems. A low growl echoes the metallic rasp of the zip and Sherlock bucks against him as he presses his face between the sharp edges of the open fly. His skin is scalding silk beneath the soft cotton and he is rock hard, nudging against John’s cheek.
“Faarrrking hell, John...” Sherlock pushes up into John’s face. He does not elaborate, but they both get the idea.
He tugs them down now, the crumpled confines of black cotton and tailored wool, and watches in fascination as the wildly anticipated subject of his fantasies springs to life right in front of him. “Oh.” What else can he say? Nothing else seems willing to come out of his mouth or even his befuddled brain. How exactly have they got here? John has consoled himself about how this would and could never happen – the effort he has made to stop fantasising about Sherlock may have been wasted, but he has never dared to believe it might edge into reality.
“Are you going to lie there and stare at it all night or–“ Sherlock’s sharp question is cut short as John flicks out an expert tongue and tastes at the salty drop of fluid welling at the tip, before sucking the head into his mouth greedily. “Oh. Holy. Jesus. John.”
John wants to laugh and mock him for his exclamation of religious exultation, but there are no words in his mouth, only cock. And he much prefers it that way. He hungrily licks and sucks and grazes with his teeth until the hands in his hair are clutching and tugging.
“Fuck, oh, fuck.” Swearing has never been so sexy. Normally John is the curser; Sherlock simply points out that resorting to swearing is a sign of a limited vocabulary. John can’t help loving the fact that he has limited this vocabulary. “Please, yes, John.”
Another memory to add to his collection; Sherlock Holmes begging. The words are a breathless gasp and moan that shivers straight to John’s cock, heating and twitching it against the fabric between them. Sherlock is obviously a vocal lover, and John finds he suddenly likes nothing better. He gives him what he wanted, to a certain extent, popping his lips off with an obscene noise, sucking a soft ball into his mouth, before stroking fingers back to a place he can’t help but fear he has no right to be stroking. If there was ever a moment his flatmate was going to back off and ask him what the hell he was doing it is now.
Sherlock presses his hips down, searching blindly for a pressure that is teasingly not there, “Yes. Are you going to fuck me, John? You are. Please. You, yes, me, now.”
It is almost babbling. A mumbled jumble of words and pleas. It works.
The nightstand feels miles away across the mattress as John heaves himself towards it. He needs lube, that much is clear. What about condoms? Will they get that far? John isn’t exactly confident in his coordination, though the alcohol doesn’t seem to have affected the sensations, so he can’t be that bad, can he? But then, would he even be doing this, risking this, if he wasn’t?
In his seconds of wondering, Sherlock has rolled over, and is climbing him, pressing those hot wet kisses over his shoulders, down the curve of his spine. John’s eyes shutter closed as his jeans are eased down over his buttocks and those kisses move lower. Hungry teeth sink into the firm flesh, immediately followed by a soothing sweep of tongue. Firm hands urge John’s hips up, pulling the jeans down at the same time. John can see where this was going and, though he may have surrendered his control for a moment, he is not complaining. Not at all.
“Look at you,” Sherlock exclaims gently, running his hands all over John’s arse, worshipping him, “I have spent many an hour staring at this fully clothed and imagining it like this. Damn, John.”
He trails off as John arches his back, pushing his rear higher in the air. Sherlock gives it a good hard slap, relishing the echo of flesh on flesh, watching his handprint bloom in shades of pink on the surface. And then his mouth is on it again, and John is fisting his hands in the duvet as the soft lips and hard teeth inch towards somewhere he suddenly really needs something to be. But Sherlock is even more of a tease than John and he brings a hand up, brushing a thumb between John’s buttocks, followed by a quick darting tongue, but only for an instant. John isn’t sure words even exist anymore and he certainly can’t form them if they do. He wants to call Sherlock a dirty bastard, filthy, perfect, for even thinking of doing this so soon in their... relationship? Whatever it is. He wants to call him a tease. He wants to urge him on. He just makes a noise that sounds suspiciously like ‘nnngghrrrnn’ instead.
And then those talented hands are spreading John’s cheeks and that mouth is... Oh God, John isn’t sure if he could even move to reach the lubricant and who the hell would be applying to whom anyway. Sherlock’s tongue is tracing around the edge of John’s arse, dipping and squirming into his tight entrance. John forgets his own name for a second. Fluttering fingers reach around to grasp at his cock, testing and exploring, wringing a shudder from him.
With a burst of control (or need, if he’s honest) he grabs the bottle and flips the pair of them back over, wrestling Sherlock down into the mattress, restraining greedy fingers a bit too firmly with one hand and using the other to shove the suit trousers down long limbs and fling them across the room. He runs the hand up the inside of a hair-roughened leg, feeling the lean muscles bunch and quiver under his palm. He has to release his grip to master the lubricant, but Sherlock obediently keeps his wrists together, invisibly bound on his chest, waiting submissively for his return. It takes John a second, more than one, maybe two or three or nine or ten, to tear away his gaze, fascinated as he is by that revelation.
They kiss as his eager fingers slickly search, if this desperate mating of tongues and lips can even be called a kiss. Sherlock is writhing and moaning under him and upon the slow penetration of one finger he pants John’s name in a breathless chanting mantra. John teases him for a while, before easing back out, and pressing two fingers in together. Sherlock’s eagerness makes up for any period of abstinence he may be in the midst of and the warmth around John’s fingers yields welcomingly. He twists his wrist unnaturally, attempting to explore a little with his digits and feeling in the hot tightness for the one place that he hopes could make Sherlock scream at some point that night. Shaking hips arch off the bed, and Sherlock blindly reaches out, his patiently still hands now clutching at the corner of a pillow.
“If you don’t get between my thighs right now,” Sherlock bites out, tipping his head back as John grazes his prostate again, “ So help me, John Watson, I will do something unforgiveable to you and you will never...”
But John has immediately obeyed, taking back his hand a little too quickly and levering himself over a leg. He fumbles with the foil packet he has only just remembered to reach for, his slick fingers suddenly drunk again. In a fit of frustration he swears loudly and throws the bloody ridiculous thing across the room.
Stupid, he realises, because he has no idea where it has landed and that is completely not helping the situation. Sherlock closes his eyes in exasperation and John has to agree. Luckily, it’s not his only condom, and he crows in triumph when he finds another, waving it in the air victoriously.
“For Christ’s sake, you imbecile, give it here,” Sherlock snaps, sounding more like his usual self. He rips it open easily and applies it easily with a smooth motion and a sweeping caress of John’s cock. Cool gel swiftly follows, and then Sherlock is impatiently tugging him down, guiding him between his legs.
Part of John wants to pull back and make him wait. But the other part, the stronger wilder part, wants to push forwards and sink himself home. So he does. Sherlock hisses as they settle against each other, but it’s a good hiss, supported by his heels digging into the back of John’s thighs. He clutches at muscular shoulders, wriggling, begging John to move.
After a second of adjusting (on his own part; Sherlock shows no such need or desire) John withdraws a few inches before rocking back in.
“Don’t take it slow, come on, I don’t need slow.” Sherlock is demanding as ever.
“I’m not doing it for you, you arrogant git.” John’s teeth are glued together and he cracks open an eye to glare. It amuses him that they behave exactly the same in bed as they do out of it. They grin absurdly at each other for a moment, appreciating the irony, until John moves again and the grins fade in favour of open panting mouths and gritted teeth.
They literally only last five minutes, but it is a damn good five minutes. It is so hard and fast that John has to grab the headboard for leverage to maintain the pounding rhythm they have started. Sherlock has a hand between them, jerking himself off roughly and the other rakes trails in John’s back, and he is making the most delicious whimpers with every thrust. Then he is moaning John’s name, shouting it, positively roaring it as he rears up off the bed and he clenches so hard around John’s cock that he could swear they both see stars. Hot ribbons of stickiness paint across both chests and that is it, John plummets over the edge and damn near blacks out as he forgets how to breathe. The only thing his mouth can do is shape Sherlock’s name.
There is no relaxing post-coital come down cuddles. John has only enough energy left to withdraw slowly and relieve Sherlock of his dead weight before he actually passes out. What happened to that soiled condom he has no idea.
Somewhere in the blackness of his dreamless abyss someone is stroking his hip and kissing gently at his scarred shoulder, tangling their feet together nicely. A low husky voice rumbles through his back, “Happy birthday, John.”
John wakes with the distinct feeling that something is... off. But nothing he can put his finger on, especially with the distraction of the disgusting flavour in his mouth and the heavy ache at the base of his forehead. Hangover. Not quite fully set in, but far enough that he just wants to roll over and sleep it off a bit more.
There is where he hits the problem. Rolling over places him face to face with a face that he shouldn’t be facing. And while that face is half hidden by a plump pillow and a cloud of mussed hair, there is no mistaking who it belongs to. Unfortunately the instant it all comes flooding back to him, and before he gets a chance to figure out what the hell he is going to do and what is likely to come next, the closed eyes flash open. John is once again distracted, by the contraction of pupil and shifting colour of focussing iris, but only for a second before a searing hot twist of anxiety blooms in his belly.
He wants to say ‘Good morning’, casually and easily, pretending he is comfortable with this kind of development, but he daren’t actually open his mouth, knowing what it tastes like inside.
Sherlock, predictably, reads this in a second and raises an eyebrow, most likely designed to be antagonistic or at the least irritating, “You’ve been snoring and drooling on me open-mouthed all night, John.”
“Oh.” Is that an admission that he doesn’t mind? Or a hint that he does? Could he somehow, in his own twisted way, be intimating that everything is ok, he is not bothered by any of it? Or that he is? Who knows what he means? Certainly not John.
“It doesn’t bother me.” Sherlock is looking right at him.
“Oh.” Again, exactly what does he mean? It doesn’t matter, because it suddenly doesn’t bother John either. Sherlock’s hand has crept slowly across the gap between them and his knuckles are tickling at John’s slumped thigh, his fingers are unfolding slowly, cautiously stretching out over John’s skin, sweat-dampened from their shared heat beneath the duvet. It is such a careful movement, as if for once Sherlock is unsure of how it will be received, that John can’t help the smile spreading on his face.
“Does it bother you?” Sherlock murmurs seriously.
“My morning death breath? Or... everything else?” John tips his hips forward, leaning into the tentative caress, urging Sherlock’s hand further onto him.
“That’s a no.” Not even a difficult deduction really. “Good.”
“Are we... going to do it again then?” There is no way to phrase that without it being awkward, but John still winces as the words leave his mouth.
“Repeatedly. Often. As soon as possible.”
“When I’ve brushed my teeth and had a glass of water and some painkillers?” John suggests, but Sherlock is already closing in, grazing his nose along John’s jaw. John’s head tips back of its own accord, baring his throat. His morning erection, originally diminished into semi-existence by his impending hangover, is rather swiftly resurrecting. He’s not going anywhere, he knows. “I really need a shower too. And some breakfast might be nice. Cup of tea.”
“You are not leaving this bed.” Sherlock’s teeth bite bluntly at the tendons at the side of John’s neck. His fingers dip into the flesh below John’s hip, gripping and pulling his body closer. “There is a glass of water and some paracetamol on your bedside table. That’s all you’re getting.”
“Not all, I hope.” John grins cheekily for a beat before Sherlock kisses him.