It had been a small affair; not even a dozen people, though Angelo had insisted on closing the restaurant for the evening. They’d told him they didn’t want any sort of decorations, but of course there had been candles. Lots and lots of candles. Angelo’s idea of romance, it seemed, didn’t go much further than candles and wine.
They’d managed to have a joyful dinner, accompanied by liberal amounts of alcohol, and without anything catching fire. Once or twice, John had caught that severe expression on Sherlock’s features, the one that meant he was trying oh, so hard to memorize something. Stubborn man. Even when he knew quite well that he needed time and intense repetition to form new cues in his mind palace and effectively create new memories, he still tried. And John loved him just a little bit more for it.
Video and pictures taken by the guests would help, as would the plain ring on his finger, a match for the one on John’s. But now that they were home, now that they were alone, now that they’d removed their dinner jackets, ties and shoes, and that they were dancing to the recorded waltz Sherlock had composed for this very occasion – for them – John could see that look in Sherlock’s eyes again.
The look that said he wanted, more than anything, to remember, and was terrified because he knew he wouldn’t. The same look he’d worn every time he’d said no in the past two years. That look that had become more and more frequent in the past four days, until John had been almost sure he’d change his mind.
He hadn’t; but now…
“Don’t,” John said quietly, one hand tightly clasped over Sherlock’s, the other just as strong at his waist. “Don’t start regretting it already.”
Closing his eyes, Sherlock rested his forehead against John’s.
“I don’t regret anything,” he murmured. “Nor am I going to. But I’m not going to remember either.”
“I won’t remember your vows, or even my own. I won’t remember the way you looked at me today. I won’t remember what the ring on my finger means.”
At that, John gave a very deliberate snort. With a frown, Sherlock pulled back and opened his eyes again.
“You proved to me when we first met that you can deduce the state of a stranger’s marriage from little more than a look at their wedding ring. Are you telling me you won’t be able to deduce what a ring on your own hand means?”
Sherlock’s lips settled on something that looked remarkably like a pout – not that he’d ever admit as much.
“As for my vows,” John continued, “I wrote them out for you. They’re already in our notebook. And every word of yours is recorded on video if you want to hear them again, but I don’t think you said anything that would ever surprise you.”
“True,” Sherlock conceded. “But that’s still not fair for you—”
“Don’t,” John said again, gently but firmly; he’d known this would come up again, the old argument that never seemed to go away however much John argued against it in their shared notebook. “I’ve waited two years to call you my husband. I knew what it’d mean. I had time to change my mind twenty times over, and you wouldn’t have known any better. But I didn’t change my mind. I did better than that. I changed yours. And I’ll be damned if I let you regret any moment of the second best day of my life to date.”
Sherlock raised an eyebrow at that. “Second best?” he asked on a mock-offended tone. “And what could have been better than today?”
The music had stopped playing a little while ago and still they were swaying together. John released Sherlock’s hand and looped both arms around his neck.
“September fifth,” he said quietly, and pressed his mouth to Sherlock’s in a kiss far less chaste than the one they’d shared after signing the register.
He could all but feel the tension draining from Sherlock as he leaned into the kiss, drawing John closer to him.
It was much too soon when Sherlock pulled back again and considered John intently. The corners of his eyes were tight, his eyelids heavy.
“Tired?” John murmured; he knew those signs, too.
Sherlock nodded. “The past few days have been long and busy. But before I forget it all I’d very much like to have my wedding night, husband.”
Was that a blush in his cheeks?
It was, John realized as he pressed a hand to the delicious heat. After all this time, Sherlock could still blush for him… and he always would.
He smiled. “One wedding night. Coming. And the pun is absolutely intended.”
A startled chuckle passed Sherlock’s lips, and John just had to kiss them again. They’d get to bed soon enough.