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Vessels Sailing Prosperously

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It had been raining for days. 221B was washed grey with silky underwater light. Sherlock drifted through the rooms, aimless. Too long without a case, boredom threatening to tip over into the yawning abyss of depression.

Someone at the downstairs door. Lestrade’s distinctive knock pattern. A case? No, not urgent enough. Mrs Hudson’s footsteps, the murmur of voices. Then Lestrade jogging up the stairs.

“Sherlock? Brought you some cold case files. This rain, not even criminals want to get out and about. I cleared the worst of my paperwork, thought I’d take the afternoon off, bring these over. Know what you get like with nothing to do.”

Sherlock stretched out an imperious hand and took the files, flicked through the top one. Hmmm. They’d do, in lieu of anything more interesting. He dropped them on the kitchen table.

“Going to offer me a cuppa?” Lestrade asked.

Tedious. “No.”

Lestrade studied him for a moment. “John at the surgery today, then?”

“His shift should have just finished. He’ll be home in twenty minutes or so.”

“You okay?”

“Bored. Nothing to do and John keeps going out.”

Lestrade smiled. “Want me to try to entertain you until John gets back?”

Sherlock eyed him suspiciously. “What did you have in mind?”

Lestrade reached out and rested one broad hand gently around Sherlock’s throat. The vulnerability of that faint pressure over his carotid artery sent his pulse racing. It would be so easy for Lestrade to just squeeze, and Sherlock knew beyond doubt that he wouldn’t. That suddenly seemed a shocking thought. He already knew he could trust John with his life. When had that become true of Lestrade? When had he become a man with two friends? He was distracted enough that Lestrade had shifted his hand to curve around the nape of Sherlock’s neck and backed him against the wall before he realised what was happening.

Lestrade leaned in and brushed his lips gently over Sherlock’s.

Ah. Yes. This could be entertaining. Not as good as a crime, but definitely preferable to the boredom, and possibly better than the cold case files. More data needed.

Sherlock made an interrogatory noise and pressed forward to try to deepen the kiss but Lestrade ducked his head a little, dipping his mouth out of reach. Then he slowly tilted his face back up and pressed in with a slightly longer kiss, then tipped away again. His movements were all unhurried, deliberate, not really teasing, but definitely making Sherlock want more. He kissed Sherlock’s cheekbone, pulled away. Nuzzled up under his jaw, pulled away. Sherlock’s breathing was getting a bit ragged, and really, there wasn’t enough stimulus for such a response, but he couldn’t seem to get it back under control. Finally Lestrade covered his mouth with his own, and Sherlock parted his lips, silently urging him on. Lestrade responded with a gentle, dragging sweep of his tongue along Sherlock’s lower lip, then dipped inside his mouth, slow. Sherlock slid his tongue against Lestrade’s, sank into the leisurely rhythm he was setting.

They kissed for long minutes. Sherlock felt almost intoxicated, the lingering kisses pooling like warm honey into his veins, into the marrow of his bones, all the hollow places of his body. He had never been kissed like this, like kissing was an end in itself. It was not at all the same as the kisses from their previous… encounter… which had been about answering an immediate physical need, definitely foreplay, with the promise of something else ahead. These kisses were a world of their own. All his senses were drowning, kisses in his mouth and the white noise of rain at the window. It was like entering an altered mental state, with no chemical stimulus but what his own body was producing. He was very glad of the wall behind him; he rather suspected he would be embarrassingly unsteady if he tried to move away.

Some part of his mind registered the opening of the front door, then John's footsteps on the stairs, rather slower than usual. The flat door opened, followed by a long pause, then John’s voice, slightly husky, “Is this a private party, or can anyone join in?”

Lestrade drew back and smiled at John. Sherlock watched John’s eyes flicker between the two of them.

“I was hoping you would,” Lestrade said. “You okay? You look knackered.”

John nodded. “Early start, and delays on the Bakerloo line getting home.” He hunched his shoulders a bit, self-deprecatingly. “Um, I’m actually not sure I’m up for anything right now. I could just really do with a cup of tea and a sit down.”

“God, of course. No-one’s expecting anything.” Lestrade narrowed his eyes at John. “You know that, right? Seriously, if it ain’t fun, don’t do it.”

John punched him lightly on the upper arm, smiling tiredly. “Course I know that, idiot. I’ll put the kettle on.”

John made tea and took his cup into the living room where he collapsed in one of the armchairs. Lestrade followed him, dropped onto one end of the sofa and beckoned Sherlock over with a tilt of his head. When Sherlock settled beside him, Lestrade twisted towards him and licked slowly back into his mouth, resuming the deep kisses of before. Sherlock was acutely aware of John across the room. He was glancing at them from time to time over the rim of his mug, but as they gradually slithered more and more horizontal, his gaze was staying on them longer and longer. By the time they were sprawled with Lestrade almost fully on top of Sherlock, long legs tangled, John put his mug down and breathed a half sigh, half laugh. “Bloody hell, you two. I really wasn’t up for anything, y’know. But watching you is… god, such a turn on.”

Lestrade propped himself up on one elbow over Sherlock, and looked across at John. “Come on then,” he said, roughly.

John gave them a complicated look that Sherlock couldn’t fully interpret. There was restraint there, and something like… not reluctance, but… hesitance? Still, John crossed over to them and knelt by the sofa next to their heads. Sherlock reached out and drew John closer. Arousal bloomed in John’s eyes, blotting out whatever the darker emotions had been.

“You sure?” John asked.

Why would he not be sure? Did John think he was… unwelcome? Intruding? That would be stupid. Sherlock rolled his eyes and pulled John down into a kiss. The addition of a third person had the immediate effect of altering the chemistry of the encounter, the dreamy slowness igniting. Sherlock was reminded of the combustion triangle, fuel plus heat and now John providing the rush of oxygen needed to cause a conflagration.

Apparently the others felt it too. When John drew back he was breathing quickly, no trace of uncertainty now, not that Sherlock could see. Lestrade was watching them, eyes dark and hungry.

“So…” Lestrade said, “I think you said you wanted to try, uh… penetration?”

“Yes, it seemed to be an interesting experience, judging by John’s reaction.”

“It’s certainly interesting, but not everyone enjoys it, you know,” John said.

“I understand that. But without the data how would I know?”

“Have you ever… you know, done it to yourself?” Greg asked.

“No. But John performing fellatio on me was far beyond any masturbatory experience I have had. It is clear that the participation of a partner greatly intensifies the sensations.”

“Oi, stop looking so smug, John, I was involved too,” Greg said, laughing.

“Ha, I’ll give you a blow job this time, then you’ll see,” John said.

Greg leaned over to give John a hard kiss. “I’d like that. You looked fucking gorgeous doing it.”

John grinned at him, then stood up. “Come on then, bedroom. I’m too old to shag on the sofa."

Sherlock led the way to his room shedding clothes as he went. He understood the power of his body, and deployed it judiciously when necessary: rolled back cuffs baring the tender skin of his inner wrists, an extra undone shirt button to emphasise the creamy length of his throat. He was less certain of the impact of being completely nude, but the heated gaze from both Lestrade and John was gratifying.

They moved to sandwich him, Lestrade in front and John behind. Sherlock felt very exposed, caught naked between the other two, fully clothed. It sent another surprising shock of pleasure through him, further echoes of that trust/vulnerability dichotomy.

Lestrade’s arms circled him, big warm hands settling on his shoulder blades. John’s smaller hands, neat and competent, slid round to cradle his hips, until he was bracketed in a cage of four strong arms. Lestrade wasn't holding him close, leaving enough space between them that he could scan down the long line of Sherlock’s body. Sherlock’s burgeoning erection twitched under his scrutiny. Lestrade’s eyes flicked back up and he gave a lazy, devastating smile. “You’re enjoying this.”

“I think you like being looked at,” John murmured, “all that dramatic striding about, and posing in your posh coat.”

Sherlock thought about that, about the way Lestrade’s gaze felt electric, like a physical touch; about the pleasure of John watching him in admiration when he talked through a deduction, or played his violin. “I like you two looking at me,” he conceded. “And I’m finding this easier for being slower. It’s given me a chance to get used to how my body’s feeling.”

“Slow can be really nice,” Lestrade nodded. “Although… we should try hard and fast some time, see if that might… just short-circuit all that over-thinking you do.”

John made an inchoate little noise, fingers tightening convulsively, but when Sherlock twisted to look at him he just shook his head. He sleeked his hands up to Sherlock’s waist and back down again, distractingly, and then Lestrade moved his hands down too, and Sherlock was pulled back out of his head and into his body again.

As Lestrade stroked down Sherlock’s back, John circled the pair of them, stripping off his shirt as he went. When he got behind Lestrade he reached round to undo his shirt and helped him slip it off.

As soon as Lestrade’s arms were free, he resettled his hands so they spanned round Sherlock’s lower back, resting in the dip of his sacrum. Sherlock arched into the touch.

“Oh,” he said, interested, “is the lower back an erogenous zone?”

John trailed his fingers around where Lestrade was touching. “Mmmm, can be. Sacral nerve plexus, all linked up. But anywhere can be, whatever does it for you. Yours is certainly an erogenous zone to look at.”

“That doesn’t make sense, John.”

“You know what I mean. Makes me want to do filthy things to it.”

Lestrade looked at John over Sherlock’s shoulder. “Oh yeah? What things?”

“Ah, you know. Just picturing coming all over his gorgeous arse and back, and it pooling just here,” John said.

Sherlock shuddered. That sounded surprisingly erotic. “This was such a good idea,” he announced. “I’m learning so many new things.”

“Known for my good ideas, me,” Lestrade said, as he stroked downwards until he was cupping Sherlock’s buttocks in both hands. He squeezed gently, pulling Sherlock closer in to him, letting Sherlock feel the solid line of his erection against his hip.

“He's right, you do have a gorgeous arse,” Lestrade purred in his ear. “Just made for putting things in.” The side of his hand slid down between Sherlock’s buttocks as he spoke, his little finger smoothing down from his coccyx and across his anus.

Sherlock shivered. “Yes,” he said, “Come on.” He turned towards the bed, then paused. “How do you want me?”

“On your back,” John said firmly.

Lestrade glanced at John. “You sure? Be easier on him on all fours.”

“Yeah, but you know he’s a nightmare for ignoring pain. We need to see his face, get the feedback he won’t tell us.”

Lestrade nodded. “Yeah, good point. Nearly gave himself hypothermia once, you know, trawling through a snow bank for a murder weapon.”

John rolled his eyes. “Sounds about right.”

Sherlock decided he was bored of being ignored and crawled onto the bed and spread himself out on his back. The banter from the other two stopped abruptly. “Christ, look at you,” Lestrade breathed, “you’re like a fucking wet dream.”

“Kiss each other,” Sherlock commanded. One of Lestrade’s eyebrows shot up, but he turned readily to John.

“You heard the man,” he said.

“Yeah, and I’m good at following orders,” John smiled, and leant in to kiss him. Sherlock made an approving noise. It really was very arousing watching them kiss. He couldn’t see exactly what happened, but John growled and suddenly their hands were in each other’s hair, the kiss turned hungry and fierce. They broke apart briefly, gasping, then wrestled off the rest of their clothes, and surged back against each other. Sherlock propped himself up on his elbows to watch, observing how they were nipping at each other’s lips, hands roaming, clutching, stroking.

“You’re much less gentle with each other than with me,” he said, musingly.

John laughed a bit breathlessly against Lestrade’s mouth, then dropped onto the bed next to Sherlock and bent down to kiss him. Sherlock bit gently, tentatively at John’s lower lip, smiling as John grinned into the kiss. “Fast learner,” John said.

Lestrade settled on Sherlock’s other side and began running his hands up Sherlock’s thighs, over the ridges of his hipbones, across his belly and then back down, leaving tingling skin in the wake of his touch. He was deliberately avoiding Sherlock’s erection, Sherlock realised, but he did let his fingertips drift lightly over Sherlock’s balls. Slowly the lines he was tracing onto Sherlock’s skin moved lower and lower, smoothing over his perineum, gently down and back, flickering over his anus and away almost before Sherlock had registered the touch.

“Fingers first,” Lestrade said. “If you’ve never done this before we’re going to take as long as we need to get you ready.”

John grabbed the lube from the bedside table, and pumped some out onto Lestrade’s outstretched fingers. Lestrade returned to gentle teasing and exploring, but gradually focusing more and more on Sherlock’s anus. The coldness of the lube was startling against such an intimate area. Lestrade never settled into an obvious rhythm, the unpredictability of the touch keeping Sherlock’s nerves firing. It was astonishingly arousing for such a small movement. He suddenly remembered John’s reaction to Lestrade performing anilingus. He realised Lestrade was slowing his movements and when he glanced up at his face, he saw Lestrade was eying him quizzically.

“Alright then?” Lestrade asked. “Only you’ve gone all… distant.”

“I’m fine. Just… I am unsure of the etiquette of these things. I was thinking about what you did to John, and was wondering… uh, your tongue…?” He trailed off, feeling wrong-footed and hating it. But no, it was alright, Lestrade was pushing at his leg, getting his knee hooked over Lestrade’s shoulder, breathing, “God, yes,” as he dropped down between Sherlock’s thighs.

The rough wet velvet of his tongue was a shocking contrast to the cool firmness of lubed fingers. Lestrade used the flat of his tongue to swipe long licks across Sherlock’s anus, which made Sherlock’s hips jolt. Then Lestrade flickered the tip of his tongue all around the radiating creases of the muscle, and Sherlock could feel it relaxing slightly, softening. It was an odd, but not unpleasant sensation, making him feel open and empty, and the appeal of being penetrated was starting to make sense to his body as well as his mind. When Lestrade switched to pressing filthy, wet, open-mouthed kisses to his entrance, Sherlock couldn’t restrain a desperate, strangled noise from escaping him.

“Feels amazing, doesn’t it?” John said. “He’s brilliant with his tongue.”

“I feel like I want something inside me,” Sherlock gasped.

Lestrade pressed his forehead into Sherlock’s thigh with a groan, then pulled back and slicked more lubricant onto his fingers. He moved back to stroking along the cleft of Sherlock’s buttocks, circling erratically over his wet opening.

“Can we get on with it?” Sherlock said. He was aiming for huffy but even he could hear he just sounded breathless.

Lestrade smiled. “Oh no, we do this my way or not at all.” His fingers kept moving in that maddeningly distracting non-rhythm. Finally he eased one finger in and even as Sherlock was processing the sensation of being invaded, his body's reflexes were working to expel the intrusion.

“Relax into it,” John told him.

“Obvious,” he bit out.

“Yeah, might be obvious but it’s not always easy. Try to bear down.”

Ah, yes, that did help.

“We can stop any time,” Lestrade said.

No. I want to know. More.”

And Lestrade shifted his finger within Sherlock’s body, and suddenly there was pressure somewhere that sent a wild, electric jangle through his nerves, not unlike biting down on tin foil, but deep in his pelvis. He knew, in the corner of his mind that was always rational, that Lestrade was stimulating his prostate, but he’d had no idea it would feel like that. He twisted desperately, not sure if he was trying to move towards or away, but helpless to stay still.

John curled down over him and slid the wet circle of his mouth over Sherlock’s flagging erection, and the sensations coalesced into a deep throbbing pleasure. That lasted until Lestrade withdrew his finger and pressed back in with two, and everything came apart again as Sherlock struggled to deal with the increased pressure and burning stretch.

Just as it started to feel good again, John came back up off his erection and said “Don’t want to get you too close, it’ll make your muscles tense up which it makes it more difficult.”

Sherlock nodded. John was watching him narrowly. “You okay? Not painful?”

“No, just… okay, I need a moment…”

Lestrade stopped immediately. “Too much?” he asked.

“No, not that,” Sherlock said rapidly, “more that the physical sensations are very intense and the position is very vulnerable and that combined with the mental awareness of what you are doing and my emotional reaction to that knowledge, I need a moment to assimilate…”

He was cut off by John kissing him hard. John pulled back enough to smile at him and said “It’s okay. Scary to realise you trust people, isn’t it?”

“Kissing helps,” Sherlock admitted, slightly surprised.

“Then I’ll keep kissing you while Greg keeps opening you up.”

It did help. It provided another point of sensation to focus on while Lestrade rocked a third finger into him, stroking his thigh with his free hand and murmuring about how gorgeous the pair of them were, how sexy Sherlock was, how good he felt; a gentle litany of compliments. Slowly the deep stretch eased, Lestrade’s fingers moving more freely.

“I’d like one of you to penetrate me properly now,” Sherlock said.

Lestrade glanced over at John. “Is it just me, or does it sound dead sexy when he uses all those clinical terms in that posh voice?”

“Not just you, mate,” John chuckled.

Sherlock glared. “What should I say? F-fuck me with your… cock?” It wasn't that he was unaware of the words, obviously, but using them like that, as an imperative, was unusual enough that his treacherous tongue tripped over them.

John laugh degenerated into a groan. “Jesus. That was dead sexy.”

“God, yeah,” Lestrade agreed. “Not sure which I prefer – posh and clinical or posh but dirty.”

“Well go on then,” Sherlock challenged. “Fuck me with your cock.”

Lestrade nodded. “Who’s doing the honours?”

“I believe John is more interested in – ‘bottoming’, is it? – than ‘topping’. I suggest you, Lestrade, penetrate me this time, and at the next occurrence of this experiment I can penetrate John.”

The other two stared at him. “You’re far too coherent for a man with three fingers up his arse,” Lestrade said, finally.

“Um, not the main thing I was taking away from that statement,” John said. “What do you know about bottoming and topping? Have you… oh god, you’ve been doing research, haven’t you. Of course you have. Well, I just hope you used your own laptop. Fine, if we do this again, we can try you, ah, penetrating me.”

Sherlock’s eyebrows drew together a bit at the use of the word ‘if’, but John was carrying on as though he hadn’t noticed. “So, do you want to use a condom? I know we didn’t last time, but it does have the advantage of easier clean-up, if you care about that.”

“No,” Sherlock said quickly.

“No, somehow didn’t think clean-up would be an issue.”

“Oh, very funny. No, it’s not that. It’s just – I want to experience everything this first time. I can always decide otherwise in future. Besides…” He stumbled to a halt. Damn. This sex thing was playing havoc with his ability to form coherent sentences, and he surely hadn’t blushed so much since he was an adolescent. “I liked feeling Lestrade’s ejaculate inside you when I put my fingers in you afterwards, last time.”

“Fuck,” John said, his voice rough. “Yeah. I liked that too.”

Lestrade was breathing fast. “If you two don’t shut up there’s going to be ejaculate all over the show before we even get to the penetration. Come on John, help hold his legs up.”

John looked thoughtful for a moment. “Hold on, sit up a sec, Sherlock.”

Sherlock propped himself up, and John manoeuvred behind him, legs wrapped around Sherlock’s hips. He settled Sherlock back down against his chest and reached down to hook a hand behind Sherlock’s right knee, drawing it up and out. The warm solidity of John’s chest, the pressure of John’s erection against his lower back, the exposure of being spread open, all ratcheted up the anticipation until fine tremors began running through his torso and the long muscles of his thighs.

John nuzzled a kiss into his neck. “Bring your other leg up a bit. That’s it. You okay? Keep talking to us. Go on, Greg.”

Lestrade positioned himself between Sherlock’s thighs, slicked himself liberally with lube and then Sherlock felt the smooth, broad head of Lestrade’s… Lestrade’s cock, against his entrance. It was very different from fingers, even three of them, and he had a moment of alarm that this wasn't going to work at all. But Lestrade pushed forward steadily and Sherlock sucked in a breath as the momentary resistance of his muscles released and Lestrade breached him.

“Okay?” Lestrade asked, tightly.

Sherlock nodded, speechless.

“Tell us how it feels,” John said.

“Interesting,” Sherlock managed. “There is pleasure in the… mental aspect of bodies being joined... uh, come on Lestrade, more…”

Lestrade nodded. “You’re really tight, I don’t want to hurt you,” he said, even as he pressed in further. He was taking it achingly slowly, letting Sherlock feel every tiny increment of stretch and fullness.

“You still with us? Come on, keep talking to us,” John said again.

Of course he was still with them. He couldn’t turn off thinking, however intense the physical input. “Feels full. You feel so big inside me. Just, just pressure at the moment, the enjoyment is to do with being so open to you, being held between you both, but I can feel the potential for physical pleasure as well.” Talking through his observations was making him feel more settled; clever of John to know that it would help him, as well as being useful for John and Lestrade to hear. Useful and arousing, judging by their ragged breathing.

“We can do better than just potential,” John said, and stroked his hand down over Sherlock’s belly to curl around his cock. As John’s touch brought him back to hardness, Lestrade pulled out almost all the way. He paused a moment, playing his swollen glans around the hypersensitive ring of muscle there, making Sherlock squirm, then drove back in. He built up a rhythm of long, deep thrusts, pushing heat into Sherlock’s pelvis, caught and amplified by the stroke of John’s hand.

“Tell me when it feels good,” Lestrade said, angling his hips up a little, and oh, there, Sherlock’s breath left him in a rush, a whine-edged exhale. His head shifted restlessly against the sturdy support of John’s shoulder.

“Is that it? God, you’re lovely like this.” John said, rocking his erection up against Sherlock. “I can feel you getting harder, is he getting you close?”

“You both are,” Sherlock gasped, writhing, as each beat pulsed through him, pushing him up and up towards the peak. He tipped his head back, blindly searching for John’s mouth, but it was more of a messy smear of breath and tongue than a proper kiss. John’s hand tightened, and that was it, everything exploded apart; muscles clenching down on the solid intrusion of Lestrade deep within him, shocking sensory feedback on how hard he was coming, rippling back and feeding on itself.

“Can’t hold on,” Lestrade said on a sobbing breath and then Sherlock could feel him throbbing and throbbing inside him. Lestrade finished with a groan, easing down on shaking arms to kiss Sherlock and then John over Sherlock’s shoulder.

“Give us a sec,” he said to John, “and we’ll get to you.”

“Ah… um, no need,” John said, sounding slightly embarrassed. “Sherlock writhing like that, set me off. Came all over his back, just like we were talking about. Christ, you two are fucking gorgeous, you know?”

Lestrade eased out of Sherlock, which made him wince slightly, although the slick rush of come that followed was shiveringly sensual. Sherlock shifted over to release John, who got up on wobbly legs and went to fetch wet flannels.

When they were cleaned up, Sherlock turned to John. “So. What are you holding back?”

John stared at him. “What do you mean?”

“You’re holding out on us. You’re thinking about something you don’t want to say. You don’t have to tell us now, but John, you know me.” He smiled at John. “I will find out.”