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Silent Night

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Prompts: Christmas Carols, Violin, In Front of the Fire, Winter Wonderland, Naughty or Nice

 

It was still not so very late as we entered into 221B. Although we had no doubt consumed sufficient drink for one night, I suggested that we might change from our evening attire and have a brandy in front of the fire, which the good Billy had tended to earlier. I resolved to place an extra coin or two into his Christmas box. Holmes was agreeable to my suggestion, so we parted ways to our respective bedrooms.

I donned my best linen nightshirt and then covered it with my favourite warm dressing gown. While not a vain man [hopefully] I did pause long enough to neaten my hair. It seemed important, although I was somewhat embarrassed to admit that, even to myself. Finally, I slipped my feet into the soft slippers which Mrs Hudson had so kindly embroidered for me the previous Christmas and went back down the stairs to the sitting room.

Holmes was there already. Like me, he wore his nightshirt and dressing gown. Unlike me, his feet were bare, as was his habit, no matter the season. I no doubt spent a few seconds too long staring at those feet, before shifting my gaze to note that he had locked the door. Meanwhile, he moved to stand in front of the window, picking up his violin as he went. That fact did not surprise me, as I knew very well that playing the precious instrument helped him often to settle his mind. Given our conversation all evening, I could easily understand his need to reflect a bit. As for me, I poured us each a snifter of brandy, took my seat in front of the fire and filled my pipe. We each have our methods of reflection.

Rather than one of his favoured classical pieces, Holmes began a soft rendition of Good King Wenceslas that made me smile, as it is one of my favourites. From that tune, he moved easily through a repertoire of carols. As he continued to play, I finally stood and carried his brandy to him. Instead of stopping the music, he merely turned his head towards me a bit. I held the crystal snifter to his lips and he drank.

As we stood there, Holmes circling his impromptu concert back to where it had begun and myself sharing the brandy with him, what had been a mere dusting of snow during our journey home from Simpson’s, became a real flurry. The sparkling white crystals quickly coated every surface, turning Baker Street into a winter wonderland. {My fanciful mind playing up again.]

Finally Holmes put the violin aside. Still standing at the window, watching as the snow swirled ever more fiercely, I braved to wrap an arm around Holmes’ waist. After a fleeting moment of startlement, he relaxed into the embrace. I did not want to press him too fervently, but at the same time I ached with the desire to caress him.

It was my turn to be surprised when, suddenly, Holmes turned his head to look at me and then bent to press his lips to mine.

I remember that his lips were a bit dry and, like my own, tasted of the brandy we had been drinking.

He pulled away just a bit and smiled at me. “My first kiss,” he said, stating it as blandly as if he had been speaking of the weather.

I blinked at him. “Truly? I assumed your experiences at university…”

He shrugged. “Kisses were not included. I believe such gestures were considered unbefitting the young gentlemen of Cambridge. I suppose such a thing was considered too sentimental.”

By now I had gained the courage to stroke his face. My fingertips traced his cheekbones, possibly risking a laceration from the sharpness. “I shall delight in sharing the pleasures and sentiment of kissing with you, Mr Holmes.”

Apparently in no mood to await either the pleasures or the sentiment promised, he pulled me over to the divan and we settled down next to one another. The next kiss was mine and I felt confident enough to probe a bit with my tongue. His lips opened to admit me and there was a brief duel of tongues. It was several moments before we pulled back from one another.

I have seen many things in my life. Some were ugly [sickness, death, war] and some were lovely [a sunset over Kabul, a new-born babe held in its mother’s arms, a young bride walking towards her beloved] but I will go to my grave knowing that the most beautiful thing I ever saw was Sherlock Holmes’ face at that moment. His eyes were glowing, a slight flush had risen in his face, his lips were parted and just a bit swollen from our kisses. Best of all, in my mind, was the untidiness of his hair, which was all curls now instead of slicked back.

“John,” he whispered. There were volumes in that single word. Unexplored universes lay within his silver gaze. The rest of my life was in the way his hands clutched at mine. No one had ever desired me so much nor had I ever known true desire until that moment.

There is no way of recalling which of us instigated the next kiss. Or kisses. Lack of experience on his part was no handicap and it was not long until he had moved from sweet innocence to something much more base, something heated and wet. “My naughty boy,” I whispered to him, without knowing where those words even came from.

He gave a low and raspy chuckle. “Be nice,” he chastised me teasingly. And then, without so much as a word of warning, he was suddenly straddling me, pressing me into the divan, covering my face and neck with kisses.

I just let him have his way.

The entire evening had already been extraordinary, but what happened next was above all else. I had known Lust in my life and I knew exactly where it led. But this new territory of Love was a quite different creature. We simply carried on kissing for some endless time, as the fire popped and crackled and outside the snow continued to fall upon London.

Then, as suddenly as it had begun, his attack upon me with kisses and caresses ended. Holmes rolled off of me, although he did not move far away. Indeed, he cuddled close and I wrapped him in my arms, planting only a single kiss in his unruly curls. Like that we stayed, watching flames and snowflakes, barely speaking save for an occasional bit of whispered foolishness.

And, like that, we eventually drifted into sleep.

***