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The Art Of Bribery

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“Do you really need all that candy?”

Molly looked at the ten huge bags on miniature bars or candy and lollies and little packets of gum, and then at her expanding stomach, and then gave her husband a sheepish look. “Yes?”

Sherlock shook his head and then reached over for her, and she grabbed a bag of M&Ms and came over to join him on the sofa. She was feeding two little ones plus herself so he supposed that if they got any trick-or-treaters at all, maybe a third of the candy would go to them and another third would end up being split between John, Rosie and himself and the rest would be all hers.

At least Rosie wouldn’t have to deal with the tediousness of going door to door to get candy this year, though if she seemed happy about it, he had the feeling Molly would make her a goodie basket in a cheap plastic pumpkin for a few years, and then their children would join in on the tradition later.

Daughters. He had to keep reminding himself that Baker Street was about to be overrun by humans of the feminine variety and he would be the sole male in the place. Not that he minded, much; Molly had softened so many of his rough edges and he was forever grateful. She’d even agreed to marry him, much to his surprise, and Natalie and Dinah were the results of a vigorously spent sex holiday. Not even two years after the incident and his life was happy. Whole, even.

He had not imagined that possible.

“Blue M&M for your thoughts?”

He looked down at Molly and saw that she was holding up a blue M&M towards his face. He opened his mouth and she popped it in, and he chewed thoughtfully. Peanut M&Ms were his wife’s favourite at the moment. Generally, any American candy was because they were harder to find, so he supposed that was the pregnancy cravings talking on her behalf. “I was just thinking about how I’m happy.”

“Yeah? Me too,” she said with a smile, snuggling into him. “Just think, in a few years we could have another child or two and you could share all the love you have for me with all of them and...maybe the rest of your family?”

“You want to go to Mycroft’s masquerade party, don’t you?” he asked with a groan. He should have known her sharing one of her precious M&Ms was a bribe.

“Yes. I want to go as Ursula from the little mermaid and you could go as Prince Eric,” she said.

“Doesn’t that mean I stab you in the belly with the hull of a ship?” he asked, raising an eyebrow.

“Fine. You can go as Ariel and be silent the entire night,” she said with a smirk.

“Oh, Mycroft would have a field day,” he replied.

“Please, Sherlock? If my health doesn’t improve I’m set to be on bed rest November 1st and I want just one last hurrah before I’m forced to sit in bed and splurge on candy.”

“So I take it Rosie gets some, the trick-or-treaters get nothing and this is all yours?” he asked, moving a hand away to indicate the bags of candy.

“I might share with my marvelous, stupendous, smart, sexy arse husband if he dons a costume and lets me go to a party.” Her eyes were twinkling as she looked at him. “I’ll even share the peanut butter M&Ms. You can have two whole bags to yourself.” Then she leaned in. “The big ones.

That...actually sounded like a fair deal, considering he’d had to ply contacts in New York to get the five huge bags they had and he’d developed a liking for them, though not as much as his beloved ginger nuts. “Alright. But I’m not Ariel. I’ll go as Eric.”

“Perfect!” she said, leaning over and kissing his cheek. “I love you, Sherlock.”

“I love you too, Molly, even if you have me wrapped around your finger and you know the art of the bribe.”

“A skill I plan to pass on to our daughters,” she said with a smirk.

“Lord help us all.”