“The aftershave! His aftershave is the bloody key, Lestrade. Rosemary-scented aftershave is sold by precisely two companies in Europe, one of which is heavily indebted. Going by Luckman’s current financial status and the fact that he’s thrown away a bottle of aftershave right in front of an empty warehouse, it was the only logical conclusion. Anderson, don’t you dare open your mouth, whatever is going to come out will be a disgrace to the human race. Lestrade, you are getting slower every day, is it senility? Alzheimer’s disease? How old are you? Never mind, I don’t want to know. I have written an essay on the chemical composition of body wash and aftershave used by the average British male. There’s a very restricted target group for rosemary scent, and Luckman is definitely not in it. If you were reading my website on a regular basis instead of killing the few operative synapses you have left in your temporal lobe by torturing them with mainstream media and useless data…”
John buries his face in his hands.
“We’re not going to get any more useful information out of him, are we?” Lestrade asks, sounding surprisingly calm.
John makes a vague hmmm noise while Sherlock proceeds to list aftershave preferences, dependent on profession and number of siblings.
“I suppose not.”
Lestrade rolls his eyes. “Well then. I’ll be expecting your statements by tomorrow afternoon. Apart from that, he’s yours to deal with.”
John chuckles and watches the whirlwind that is Sherlock Holmes rant and deduce and pace restlessly.
Sherlock is by far the smartest and most eloquent person John has ever met. He delivers his deductions at light speed. He could make people question their own identity and manipulate them into eating their toenails just by talking to them. (Not that he’d want to. Dull. He just could.) It’s almost impossible to get the upper hand in a discussion with him(unless the topic of aforementioned discussion revolves around the solar system or accurate prostate stimulation. Those are John’s fields of expertise). Sherlock is the only person to have used the words “electrocution”, “romance”, “water-based lubricant” and “Anderson” in one sentence. (A sentence that actually made sense. John supposes one must be pretty damned eloquent to pull that off.)
The point John is mentally trying to make is that Sherlock is really, really skilled with words.
Sherlock’s also the nutcase that hides human collar bones between John’s pants and continuously makes sure to be the most annoying human being within a radius of ten kilometers.
John loves him madly. Because somewhere between the smug, infuriating genius and the sulking five-year-old, there’s the man he’s chosen to spend his life with.
John knows that their relationship lives off exceptionally intense emotions. One could argue that this is a bit odd, considering that they are two thoroughly emotionally repressed idiots. (It took them 6 years, countless life-endangering situations and, in John’s case, a failed marriage to work out that they were actually in love with each other. Surprise.)
John knows he is the person Sherlock would give himself up for. John also knows that a part of him constantly feels the urge to punch Sherlock for being the rude arsehole that he is. Another part is proud and amazed and exhilarated that Sherlock is his, wants to kiss him senseless, wants to make love to this strange man until he comes completely undone beneath him. Wants him to know just how much he is appreciated. This utter madness works better than any relationship John has ever had.
Anyways, that habit of Sherlock’s, the one where he opens his mouth and words come out, can be quite exhausting.
It may be unbelievable, but there’s something that reduces Sherlock’s communication skills/verbal escapades/ability to form sentences to a more… basic state. Said magical off-switch is called Sex. No, that’s not quite accurate. It’s Sex With John.
This evening Sherlock has deduced the location of a hostage from the contents of a dustbin, the head of a drug trafficking ring has gone to jail, adrenaline levels are still high and Sherlock is being difficult. So far, he has insulted Donovan’s intelligence, Gregson’s wife and Anderson’s existence, deduced the sex lives of two innocent passers-by and, most recently, voiced the suspicion that it’s about time for Godfrey Lestrade to pick a retirement home. That’s when John finally puts a hand on the small of Sherlock’s back, gently pushes him towards a cab and shoves him on the back seat.
Sherlock doesn’t stop ranting throughout the whole process.
“You are a git.” John says firmly as soon as soon as he’s seated next to Sherlock, then proceeds to place his hand on his partner’s thigh. “And you’re amazing.”
Sherlock stops mid-sentence, produces a non-committal grunting noise and eyes John suspiciously for approximately five seconds. After said five seconds, John makes a mental note to give the cabbie an extra tenner for ignoring two grown men snogging frantically on his back seat.
They barely make it into their flat. (In fact, they barely make it around the corner of Baker Street. It’s a miracle they leave the cab fully clothed.) After breathless kissing on the stairs, rather enthusiastic frotting against the door and a near crash into the coffee table, John practically manhandles Sherlock towards the bedroom, while the aforementioned is busy removing his belt. (“Let’s just do it on the floor.” – “No, Sherlock, not again. My back is killing…nnngh.”) As usual, Sherlock does an incredible job as far as getting-John-out-of-his-trousers is concerned. (It is later discovered that this time, they have ended up in the fireplace.)
They’re tumbling backwards, still kissing, their lips only parting for quick, deep breaths (because death due to a lack of oxygen would kill the mood). Inevitably, they collapse onto the bed in an uncoordinated tangle of limbs. John starts to undo Sherlock’s shirt buttons, Sherlock reacts by locking his legs around John’s back to pull him closer until they’re effectively rubbing their crotches against each other. There’s a ruffle of clothes and an impatient “Quicker, John! I don’t have all night,” and then John’s jumper is gone, too. “In fact”, John pants, “we do have all night.” Sherlock chuckles and tightens his grip around John, and their embrace becomes even tighter. After a bit of awkward fumbling, John manages to undo Sherlock’s sleeve cuffs and finally, finally gets him out of his shirt. Sherlock groans when their naked, sweaty upper bodies are pressed up against each other. It’s a deep, guttural voice, and it sounds downright dirty. John huffs in exasperation, because there’s still too much fabric between them. He hastily undoes Sherlock’s belt and yanks his trousers down along with his pants.
And suddenly Sherlock is spread out beneath John, naked and panting and hard and vulnerable. The world switches to slow-motion.
There it is. The moment. Their moment. The we’re-actually-going-to-do-this moment. The after-all-these-years-it’s-finally-happening moment.
This is not their first time - of course it isn’t. They’ve been sleeping together for half a year now, but that moment still…happens. It’s the point where their dynamic changes. That’s what their lovemaking is like. It starts with frantic need and chuckling and teasing and breathless snogging and a desperate desire to touch whatever millimeter of skin is exposed. And then, all of a sudden, it morphs into something else… something slow and gentle and different. This moment is so powerful that it never fails to render Sherlock speechless. And except for one delicate syllable, there are no words left inside him. John is all that matters. John surrounds him, invades his every sense, makes his bottom lip tremble and his eyelids flutter and the heat in his lower abdomen expand. And it’s almost, almost too much, except that it’s not, because it’s John. John. What else could there possibly be left?
Maybe it’s the sudden realization that the only person he has ever cared for is going to prove his affection in the most human way possible. Maybe it’s the intimacy and closeness he still finds equal parts pleasant and frightening. Well, as a matter of fact, sex with John overwhelms Sherlock so much that words fail him.
John has to confess that he finds it a tiny bit funny. Mostly, though, he finds it incredibly endearing. He’s also fluent in Sherlock by now and knows exactly that there’s more to every “John” that leaves his detective’s lips.
John vividly remembers their first time, and the sensory overload Sherlock was unable to cope with. The line between not enough and too much to process is a thin one, and Sherlock’s is even thinner than average. That has not changed much. John has become very good at taking care of Sherlock, though.
“Alright?” John asks gently, planting a kiss on Sherlock’s left collar bone, smoothing a hand down his chest and belly until it rests in the soft trail of hair below his belly button. John’s smile is all soft and warm. His hand feels tender and solid and real. A soldier’s hand. A surgeon’s hand. A lover’s hand. Oh.
“John”, Sherlock gasps. And that’s where it begins.
John settles between Sherlock’s legs and slowly crawls up his body, trailing tiny kisses up his belly and chest.
“What do you want, love?” he asks, running his hands over Sherlock’s pectoral muscles. “What do you want me to do to you tonight?”
“J…John.” Sherlock says hesitantly and wiggles his hips a little. John understands. He kisses Sherlock’s neck, his chin and finally places a little close-mouthed kiss on his lips before gently reaching between their bodies. He closes his fist around Sherlock’s hard cock and gives it a few long, slow strokes, carefully pulling the foreskin back. The head of Sherlock’s cock is flushed red and already leaking drops of milky fluid. John shifts between his lover’s legs and cups Sherlock’s balls with his free hand while pumping his fist a bit more. Sherlock positively squirms. “John. J…John!”
The doctor smiles, kisses his detective's lips once more. He knows that he has to stop, unless he wants this to be over too soon.
“I need to prepare you, Sherlock. Flip over, hm?”
Sherlock complies. He flips over gracelessly, buries his face in his pillow and spreads his legs. John settles between Sherlock’s legs again, lightly trailing his fingers up his partner’s back. He traces the edges of Sherlock’s shoulder blades (that stand out a little too much for his liking) with his forefinger, caresses the little scars on Sherlock’s back, one by one.
“You’re beautiful like this. Brilliant and beautiful.”
A barely audible “John” is the response, muffled by the pillow.
“Relax.” John murmurs. He slowly guides his hands lower, spreads Sherlock’s buttocks and begins to circle the tight ring of muscle around his hole with one finger.
“Easy, love.” he whispers, whenever Sherlock shudders under his touch.
“John”, Sherlock whispers back.
John takes his time. He has always been a tender, patient lover, and he wouldn’t even think about going one step further before the last bit of tension has left Sherlock’s body.
Sherlock whispers his name over and over. John reaches for the tube on the bedside table and coats his fingers with lube. He leans forward and kisses Sherlock’s back once more, then cautiously eases the first finger in. Sherlock arches his back, John’s name still on his lips like an endless prayer. John carefully pushes deeper and gently probes the inside of Sherlock’s hole until he feels safe to add a second finger, and, shortly after, a third. Sherlock is open and pliant, and his body absolutely welcomes John’s touch. It’s almost heart-wrenchingly beautiful.
“John. John.” Sherlock’s face is still pressed into the pillow, the tiny gasps barely audible. His hips start to make desperate little motions, drawing John’s fingers in deeper. John strokes the small of Sherlock’s back, kisses every patch of skin he can reach. John. John. John.
“John.” Sherlock lifts his head a bit, hums his love’s name for what feels like the millionth time, and this time it sounds a little more demanding. John knows that Sherlock’s ready and the notion sends a jolt of desire through his body. He runs his hands over Sherlock’s back, strokes the inside of his thighs and kisses the skin just above the slackened ring of muscle. He feels Sherlock shudder again.
“J…John. John. John.” The please is unspoken. Naturally, John understands it nonetheless.
“Turn around, love,” he whispers. “I want to see you.”
Sherlock complies, drawing his knees up to his chest as John grabs a pillow and shoves it under his hips.
John reaches for the lube again and slicks himself up. He rubs light, almost soothing circles into Sherlock’s belly and the inside of his thighs before he positions himself and carefully aligns the head of his cock with Sherlock’s entrance. “Ready?” he asks.
A few months ago John would have thought it impossible for one tiny word to transpire so much. Trust, desire, vulnerability, a tiny bit of impatience. He’s overcome with love for this strange, impossible man. God, how he wants to utterly bury himself inside him.
With one slow thrust, he is there. They’re as close as two people can be. John gasps when the tight passage contracts around his cock as Sherlock is adjusting himself, getting used to the fullness and the delicious ache deep inside him. When it’s finally just right, Sherlock tilts his head back on the pillow, clutches at the sheet with one hand and cautiously reaches for John’s hand with the other. John immediately twines their fingers together and doesn’t let go. Sherlock opens his eyes and looks up at him, and all John can do is lean down and press his lips to Sherlock’s. “John, John, John”, Sherlock hums between kisses and slowly, gently, John starts to move.
“You feel wonderful, love.”
Sherlock begins to rhythmically move his hips. John speeds up a little, still pressing small, open-mouthed kisses to Sherlock’s neck and jaw line.
Beads of precome form a little puddle where the flushed head of Sherlock’s cock touches his belly. He throws his arms around John’s back, presses him closer against his chest, desperately trying to meet every thrust, because it’s not enough, and oh, still not close enough.
“So wonderful like this. So beautiful. So responsive.”
“I’m here, Sherlock. Breathe.”
“I’m here, I’ve got you.”
“I’ve got you, Sherlock.”
“John!” This time it sounds more desperate, and John knows Sherlock is close. He lets go of Sherlock’s hand and starts to stroke his cock in time with his thrusts, careful to lightly brush his thumb over the slit every time. Sherlock’s body seems to move completely uncontrollably now. He simultaneously thrusts into John’s fist and fucks himself on John’s cock, muscles twitching almost uncoordinatedly. John’s name comes out as a string of strangled cries. It’s going to be over soon, and, oh, isn’t it fucking good.
John grabs Sherlock’s hips and angles him a little and – oh – there it is. “Aaaaaah, John!” Sherlock’s mouth has dropped open, his eyes are rolling back, his whole body shudders, hips jerking even more vigorously in time with John hitting his prostate. John, John, John, John…
The endless litany morphs into a strange staccato, until Sherlock can barely breathe, until he gasps it like he’s drowning, as if the tiny word is his only source of oxygen. And John holds him tight, holds him through it, doesn’t let go, keeps up his rhythm because he knows that’s what Sherlock needs. And then, finally, Sherlock takes a huge gulp of air and falls silent.
The very last “John” never leaves Sherlock’s lips. He mouths it soundlessly when his muscles clench around John and his hips jerk almost violently. He comes with John deep inside him, John’s hand around his cock and John’s lips on his sweat-coated forehead. John. John. John.
Sherlock’s release spills over John’s hand and his own belly and five, six deep thrusts are all it takes to push John over the edge as well. Their hearts are racing in unison and it’s beautiful, so goddamned beautiful.
John collapses onto Sherlock’s heaving chest and together they try to catch their breath. Sherlock is still semi-conscious. He keeps making little huffy sounds of exhaustion and relief, which John is sure he is not aware of. John shifts reluctantly and grabs a random item of clothing (Sherlock’s pants?) to clean them up a bit before the wetness between them can grow uncomfortable.
He kisses Sherlock’s cheek, strokes his sides soothingly, murmurs sweet nothings into his ear until Sherlock seems to come back to himself. John rolls off him, props up on one elbow and watches him open his eyes.
“Hello there. Back among the living?”
“John.” Sherlock says. It doesn’t seem to be the word that was supposed to come out. He frowns and squints in annoyance. John laughs fondly.
“As long as you’re still looking for your standard vocabulary in some broom closet of your mind palace” - he tips a finger against Sherlock’s temple - “I can at least enjoy the peace and quiet a bit longer.”
Sherlock eyes him questioningly. John looks extremely pleased with himself.
“You were particularly insufferable today, love. It’s so bloody nice to know that there’s something that can silence you for a bit. You have an off-switch.”
A crinkle appears between Sherlock’s eyebrows. He closes his eyes, opens them again, takes several deep breaths and clears his throat. “You.” he rasps. “At the crime scene.”
“Yes, Sherlock, I was at the crime scene.” John has the guts to sound amused. Sherlock is having none of it.
“At the crime scene. You. Wanted me to stop talking.”
“Yeah. ‘Course. I mean, I seduced you and everything.” John giggles. “Everyone needs a break once in a while.”
“So, in fact,” Sherlock concludes, “you have sex with me to shut me up.”
“No, love, not usually, but today it might have been part of the…”
The look Sherlock gives him is absolutely deadpan. “You have taken advantage of my temporary verbal incompetence.”
John sighs exasperatedly. “Oh come on. That’s not what…”
“John, I was under the impression that we were entering something that could possibly be defined a romantic relationship in which sexual intercourse is not merely considered a means to an end. Apparently, I was wrong. This is extremely surprising as my mind is far superior to yours and, up to this point, I was unaware that your perception of this relationship differs significantly from mine.”
John sighs once more. Sherlock has just deduced his way through John’s motivations to sleep with him in a state of post-coital oversensitivity and John has fucked up royally.
“I’m sorry.” John pulls Sherlock into an embrace. Sherlock makes a half-hearted attempt to escape by dramatically wiggling his backside in the opposite direction. John ignores that and proceeds to stroke Sherlock’s damp curls. Sherlock absolutely doesn’t enjoy it. Well, at least he tries not to.
“Listen to me. You’re an insufferable arse at times, but I would never take advantage of you. Never. I bloody love you, you idiot, and that’s why I have sex with you. That’s why I want to kiss you and cuddle with you and shag you through the headboard. Do you understand?”
Sherlock contemplates this, then grunts and snuggles imperceptibly closer.
“Also”, John says, sounding a lot more sincere, “I love your voice. I love it when you say my name like it’s something special. I love that I am that person you trust enough to let them see you like this. Hear you like this. I love that it’s my name on your lips and that you are mine and I am yours. You’re a marvel, Sherlock Holmes, and I love you. And now I’d love to sleep because I’m absolutely knackered.”
Sherlock grunts again. John presses one last kiss to his cheek before pulling the duvet closer around the two of them.
“You know what, Sherlock?” John murmurs several minutes later.
“Ungh,” Sherlock grumpily informs the duvet.
“It’s not a shame, having an off-switch. A very smart man once told me that bombs have an off-switch, too. And everyone takes bombs seriously.”
Sherlock doesn’t honor this statement with a response. He doesn’t need to.
Eventually, their breathing evens out. John is already drifting off when suddenly Sherlock rights himself a bit. The sheets are rustling.
The addressed decides not to react. Because of reasons.
“Inflammat vox amantis lucem in nomine amandi.” Sherlock whispers.
John smiles into his pillow, still pretending to be asleep. Sherlock is a romantic in his own kind of way and John knows he would never say things like that to his face. And how do you react to Sherlock Holmes making soppy love confessions in Latin, anyways?
Sherlock snuggles back up to John, tucks his head under his chin, ear against his neck and hums a little.
Eventually the detective and his doctor fall asleep together. And that’s exactly how it’s supposed to be.