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"You ... what?"

"I want you to tie me up."

Watson stared at Holmes rather blankly. "You like being tied up?"

"Well," Holmes shifted, the glint of experimentation in his eyes, "we never know until we try, Watson."

"I - what - how would I even-"

"Surely you can manage a simple knot or two, Watson. Look, here, I've even gathered some rope."

Watson glanced at the rather thing brown rope coiled next to the bed, cautiously picked it up. It was coarse under his fingers; "This will probably leave marks, Holmes."

Not that that was particularly unappealing. Much as the general idea of tying Holmes down - tying him down and seeing that first startled realization of helplessness enter Holmes' eyes - oh, that was an exceptionally appealing thought.

"Nonsense. And even if it does, well. They can't be that hard to hide, should I even need to - who else would be seeing them?" He held out his wrists, together. "Come now, let's try this."

Watson sighed, though he doubted Holmes was entirely fooled by his supposed lack of interest. "Not like that," he said, rubbing the rope slowly between his fingers. "Lie down."

Holmes raised an eyebrow, but complied, lying back on the bed, and Watson took a moment to admire Holmes, naked and lovely and half aroused already. He climbed onto the bed, kneeling over Holmes' chest and ignoring the hitch of breath beneath him as he wrapped the rope around and around one slim wrist, sung - he knew all to well how adept Holmes could be at escaping his bindings - but not tight enough that he'd have to worry about circulation overly much. He leaned forward, drawing the wrist up to the post at the corner of the bed, and made a quick slip knot - then rethought his choice and wrapped the end around and through a few more times to foil Holmes' clever hands.

It'd be no good if he had the option of getting loose.

He repeated the process with Holmes' other wrist, then slid back to rest his weight on Holmes' thighs. "Tug, Holmes," he said. "Let me see if they are snug enough." Holmes very nearly rolled his eyes, but dutifully tugged his wrists against the ropes - and then, stilled, his breath caught in his throat, a faint flush rising in his cheeks. He rotated one wrist, back and forth in small little circles, tugging lightly at the rope, and his eyes half closed as a quiet sigh escaped him. He wrapped his hands around the rope leading to the posts and pulled, weight resting on his wrists, fingers merely loosely gripping the rope, nearly caressing it. "Watson," he whispered.

Watson smiled, and ran his fingers lightly up Holmes' sides.

Holmes jerked, startled, and then moaned, equally as startled, as his arms remained above his head rather than touching Watson as he'd undoubtedly meant them too, jerking against the rope.

"Enjoying yourself?" Watson asked, feeling every so slightly smug when Holmes drew a breath in to reply - no doubt with something cutting - and then let it out in a gasp as Watson leaned down and bit at one hardened nipple, causing Holmes to jerk - again, and sigh - again, and Watson to grin against Holmes skin - again.

Oh yes. This was most definitely enjoyable.

"Holmes," he said, his voice edging into something low and rasping. "Spread your legs." Holmes looked at him, a bit more dazedly than usual, which was a sight Watson could always appreciate - it was rare he held the edge over Holmes - and slid them open, the soft sound of skin on fabric utterly tantalizing.

Watson gave Holmes' nipple a final nip and half fell off the bed, his legs just shy of numb, and moved to the foot of the bed. He took one of Holmes' ankles in his hand; while he'd frequently wrapped his fingers around Holmes' wrists, for more purposes than simply sexual ones, he couldn't think of a single time he'd touched Holmes ankles, and there was something - terribly vulnerable about them. Ridiculous, to be sure, when Holmes had already been spread naked beneath him many times before - how much more vulnerable could he be? Yet his breath checked for a moment, his fingers tightening, and a sudden sense of the trust - call it foolhardiness, but Holmes was not naive enough to ask for this without considering how helpless he could be made - that Holmes was placing in him. Holmes always trusted him, even when perhaps he should not. Though Watson didn't always return the favor.

With good reason.

"Watson," Holmes started, in what could almost be called a whine, and Watson smiled at the sound.

"Hush, Holmes," he said, and began wrapping the rope around the ankle he held, fastening it to the bed post as well, and quickly moving on to the last limb. When it was secured, he stepped back, unable to resist staring at his handiwork.

Holmes was spread out on the bed, flushed, panting slightly, hard and very, very tempting. "Holmes," Watson said contemplatively, "if I left you like this, do you think you could free yourself?"

Holmes turned his head to Watson, open mouthed, and then tensed, all his limbs pulling against the ropes as he twisted and bucked and wrenched at the ropes, testing them, fighting them almost. After a long series of moments, he settled back, panting heavily now, and still - still - restrained. Watson smiled, and oh, there it was, that look, that expression so unfamiliar on Holmes' face - startled, shocked helplessness, the first biting edge of fear - and then Holmes closed his eyes, took a deep, shuddering breath, and when he let it out, the tightly wound tension in his body went along with it. Head still turned in Watson's direction, he tilted his chin back, hair dragging on the pillowcase and the soft lines of his throat exposed and presented.

"Watson," he whispered. "Please."

This had most certainly been one of Holmes better ideas.