John, Sherlock and Lestrade all stood in front of the fireplace at 221B Baker Street, studying the barrage of photos that Sherlock had pinned up on the wall.
"I just don’t see any connection, Sherlock," Lestrade declared. "I mean, if he’d didn’t do it, then why would he suddenly flee the country like that?"
"Because he had a crime to commit himself, check his records in Arizona, America. Out of our jurisdiction, though, we’re looking at the murderer."
Lestrade’s expression screwed up. “Huh? How the hell did you get that?” Sherlock rolled his eyes and narrowed them slightly.. “It’s so obvious..”
John chuckled to himself and turned to go into the kitchen. Just as he would have thought, being heavily pregnant did absolutely nothing to slow the great Sherlock Holmes from solving whatever crime that came his way (assuming it wasn’t boring of course). He carefully moved aside some of Sherlock’s experiments and prepared a kettle for tea. Just as the water was about to boil, there was a knock at the door. “I’ll get it,” John called out automatically, knowing that his flatmate would never pause to do something as boring as answer a door when he was -trying- to explain something to Lestrade.
"Didn’t you think it the least bit strange that the tail of his coat was wet from rain but the rest of his suit wasn’t? Clearly that means he had been in Ruthington earlier that day based on weather patterns…”
John pulled open the door and there stood Mycroft Holmes, wearing his typical I’ve-been-watching-you smile. “Hello, John.”
"Mycroft, what took you so long?" Sherlock asked from behind John, leaving Lestrade to inspect the crime scene photos more closely. He sounded incredibly bored. "You were expecting him?" John started to ask, but then thought it best not to bother with the Holmes brothers. "Oh never mind… the kettle’s boiling, would you like some tea?" "That would be lovely, thank you John," Mycroft replied, stepping into the threshold and looking at Sherlock.
"You forget that my deductive abilities are not as honed as yours are, baby brother. I do not have quite your level of obsession."
"Quite easy to make deductions when you have cameras plastered to every inch of the flat, Mycroft. You should have been faster." The elder brother smirked but said nothing, sitting down and nodding politely at Lestrade, who had turned to see who was at the door. John brought out the tea and set it on a side table to hand out the teacups and saucers. "Right, here we are." Everyone murmured their thanks to John and sat down. For a moment John felt how utter ridiculous the moment was, not only Sherlock and Mycroft behaving around each other, but everyone sitting around quietly with their tea as if the Queen herself had invited them to a tea party.
"So was I right?" Mycroft broke John’s thoughts, turning to Sherlock and glancing at his large rounded belly. Sherlock nodded but rolled his eyes again. "Only because I gave you specific visual cues. You’re 40 minutes late."
"40 minutes late for what?" John interjected, knowing he’d regret it.
"My water breaking." John and Lestrade both choked on their tea, sputtering.
"What?! Your water broke 40 minutes ago??" John yelped. "How come you didn’t tell me?"
Mycroft’s smile somehow became even more smug and he sipped his tea while Sherlock looked the father of his child square in the eye for the first time all day. “Was hardly necessary. I don’t have many contractions at all.” “Sherlock,” Lestrade started, looking anxiously at his friend’s belly. “You really should get to a hospital, you never know when the contractions are going to speed up. That’s what happened to my wife with our third, she barely got to the hospital in time.” Sherlock waved it away, putting his tea aside and folding his hands under his chin. “Boring.”
John inhaled and shook his head, not even knowing what to say. “Just… fine. Okay, fine, your water broke, you don’t have to go to the hospital now, but would you please let me check how dilated you are?”
"If you must." He stood and left the room, leaving John to follow to their bedroom.
"Jesus, Sherlock, you’re 5 centimeters dilated! You’re halfway to needing to push, are you sure your contractions aren’t getting stronger?" Even laying on his back, Sherlock Holmes did not look the least bit compromised, but his voice grew more serious.
"They’ve increased in the last 14 minutes."
"Right, we need to go. We’re going, now. Get dressed." John said tightly and left, the soldier in him settling comfortably into giving orders. In the living room Mycroft and Lestrade were waiting, the former looking almost serene and the latter looking frazzled, as if he were the father of Sherlock’s child, not John. "We’re going to the hospital now, you’re welcome to join us," John told them, grabbing his jacket from the coat hook.
"Mummy will be pleased," Mycroft said, taking out his phone to send a text, and then both men followed, waiting for Sherlock. He emerged from the bedroom and took his coat and scarf as usual. His calm manner sent a chill up John’s spine, reminding him of when Sherlock was preparing himself to be taken into custody during Moriarty’s Game.
Two taxis had to be taken to St. Bart’s. In John and Sherlock’s cab, Sherlock still looked mostly expressionless, but he grasped John’s hand in his, squeezing a little tighter than usual and holding his stomach. John’s mind spun, hardly able to believe that they would be holding their child so soon, perhaps before the day was out.
Two hours later, not only had Sherlock’s labor seem to completely halt, he’d sent 3 nurses from the room crying. Needless to say, he wasn’t taking being “held hostage” in a hospital bed in a thin paper gown very well. John stood by his bedside and held his hand, trying to distract him with cases whose trails had run cold years ago. Lestrade stood close by, still looking anxious and waiting for anything to be needed from him. Mycroft sat outside in the waiting room, and for whatever reason, the longer Sherlock was in labor, the paler he looked and the tauter his lips pulled. Even he was starting to get nervous.
An hour after that, the doctor had started Sherlock on drugs to move labor along, and the contractions really started to hit. Being a medical doctor helped John somewhat, but he hated knowing what it meant when the heart rate and bp monitor skyrocketed in each contraction. Sherlock became sweaty and frighteningly irritable, but through every contraction he would not let John leave his side. “John, please make it stop..” he pleaded under his breath. He had no other choice with no other nurses around- John immediately walked around the bed to check his dilation again. 9 1/2 centimeters. “Can we please get a bloody doctor in here?” He yelled into the hallway. “We have active labor starting here!” Lestrade sprung into action unexpectedly, reaching out into the hallway and grabbing a young doctor by the collar of his lab coat and nearly throwing him in towards Sherlock. “Do your damn job, kid,” he growled. John called Mycroft in, giving him a reassuring gaze, even a hint of a smile. “You’ll have a niece or nephew soon.”
Sherlock alternated between holding all his pain in during a contraction by keeping his eyes shut tight and squeezing the hell out of John’s hand and yelling out all sorts of horrid things at the doctors and nurses in the throes. “Didn’t they teach you anything at your damn medical schools?? My abdomen is elevated far too much, you morons!”
Thankfully for everyone in the ward, Sherlock’s labor was fairly quick. Every voice in the room was either cheering him on or trying to encourage him. John kissed Sherlock’s dampened sweaty curls before grinning. He could tell it was close. “Push, Sherlock, you’re almost done!”
Sherlock’s last splitting cry melded miraculously with the squall of a newborn. “Sherlock you did it!” everyone echoed each other gratefully, happily. John looked over and saw a healthy baby boy being rushed over to a table to be cleaned, weighed, and his throat suctioned. He couldn’t believe it. John was about to let tears overflow in relief, but he had to check on Sherlock first. His mate was slumped back against his pillows, looking like he had just run a very painful marathon and still wincing. He didn’t even have enough energy to insult the doctors as they tried to clean him up. John wanted to hold him, but knew it would probably hurt more than help, so he laced Sherlock’s fingers in his and kissed his lips softly. “We have a son.” Though he couldn’t move much from pain and exhaustion, Sherlock still grinned, one of those rare sunshine on a cloudy day smiles that made John’s knees weak. “How is he?”
"He’s perfect and healthy. You’ve done so well, love." John kissed him again and looked over to see a nurse approaching him with a bundle. Lestrade had left to give the men some privacy, but Mycroft still stood close by, actually beaming with pride for the first time John had seen. John took the bundle of blankets, lowering slightly so Sherlock could see the infant inside. He inhaled and his eyes widened.
From that moment on, John could swear he had never seen a better father in his life than Sherlock Holmes.