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"Whenever a man does a thoroughly stupid thing, it is always from the noblest motives."

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It wasn't the stupidest thing he had ever done. Not even close. He knew John could rattle off a list of his top ten stupidest moments if asked, but John was fast asleep, curled up in the chair next to his bed. It was dark, still raining, as it had been when - damn. He held a hand up to his head and winced. He looked around and realized he was home. Somehow John had managed to bring him back to Baker Street. Then it couldn't have been that serious. Good. Right. He cleared his throat to test his voice, and realized it was a bad idea. It hurt. Everything hurt, as if he were just one giant bruise.

"John?" His voice was barely above a whisper, but John sat up with a start.

"Sherlock? Hey, how - never mind, I know, you feel like a lorry ran you down a couple times?"

"Damage report? Could you tell me on the way to the bathroom - I really need to go - how long have I been out?"

John rubbed his eyes, then untwisted from the chair and stretched, then eased Sherlock out of the bed. "Don't move too fast, couple of bruised ribs - you were lucky - you weren't in the Thames that long. This time. And it isn't winter. This time. And no. I'm not going to lecture you. This time. Why - you ask? No, you probably won't ask. But if you were at all curious, as to - hell." John sighed as Sherlock turned to look at him. "Thank you."

Sherlock's nose crinkled at him in confusion. "For?"

"I didn't see her, she caught me unawares, and I wasn't prepared -"

"It was a her. Damn. There's always something -"

"She had a knife, and you tackled her, knocked it from her hand. I don't even know how - I tried to hold onto you, but your momentum carried you into the Thames again -" John laughed as Sherlock sighed in relief, then struggled to pull up his scrub pants. "They were the easiest thing to get on you, everything you had on is beyond cleaning - I binned it all - it's unfortunate. I do - I always did love that shade of purp -"

"Aubergine, John."

"Auber- whatever. Come on, time to go back to bed, I promised to make you rest at least a few days before we bug Lestrade for a case -"

"A few days? John - you know I can't - "

"Donovan emailed me a couple of cold cases, but you will rest a couple more days at the very least." John helped Sherlock back into bed carefully, then sat on the edge of the bed, and took Sherlock's hand in his. "You will rest. For me. You - I know. I know why you - "

"John." Sherlock closed his eyes and tried to turn away.

"No. You will listen to me, please. I - I should have told you before. I know. Everything. When Lestrade pulled you out - I saw - I know why you didn't tell me. Sorry. Just know. I want you to know - damn. I really do stink at this."

"You really do."

John raised an eyebrow at him, then went on. "I've already lived with you, then without you, Sherlock. I know my life is better with you in it; hell, Sherlock... I didn't want to let another day go by before I told you that." He brought Sherlock's battered hand to his lips and kissed his knuckles softly.

"John. I -"

"Did I misread?"

"No. NO. John. I didn't - I do. I mean, I hadn't thought, considered - I had your friendship, our partnership - it was more than I ever thought I could have. More than I deserved. I - it may sound a bit not good, but, I wouldn't want to live in a world without you in it." He drew in a breath as he watched John's eyes darken, then glitter brightly at him. "How? John - you can't continue to sleep in that chair - there's plenty of room, if you wouldn't mind. Damn, I'm shite at this too."

John grinned at him and laid down next to him, then sighed as Sherlock rested his head on his shoulder and gingerly placed his hand over his chest. "I can't promise not to do everything I can to keep you safe - but I'll try to be a bit more careful in the future."

"That's all I ask, love."

Sherlock's breath caught and John swore under his breath."Too much?"

"No - it'll just take some getting used to."

"Go back to sleep, yeah?"

"You won't leave me?"

"No, I promise, Sherlock, I'm not going anywhere."

"I - John -"

"Shh, I know. I know, Sherlock."