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One Day Like This

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John Watson was surprisingly heavy. Sherlock made the rather unpleasant discovery whilst half carrying John up the stairs in the middle of the night, at the B&B they were staying in, somewhere in the arse end of Kent. John was also drugged up to the eyeballs with codeine and about as cooperative as a limp noodle. A rather clingy limp noodle.

The case had been exciting but took far longer than predicted, and they had missed the last train to London. On top of that, John had had to perform a rather spectacular rugby tackle on the suspect they were pursuing, which wouldn’t have been a problem if not for the fact that John tackled the man with his left shoulder. The suspect had been apprehended, the case got solved, but John sprained his shoulder rather badly and for once Sherlock insisted on going to the hospital rather than enduring John’s stoic agony.

The A&E department had been swamped and it took several hours before John was seen by a doctor. John stubbornly denied being injured but the doctor didn’t seem fazed and simply went about examining John’s shoulder in silence. He did smirk rather smugly when John yelped in pain at being prodded and manhandled.

John grudgingly accepted ice packs, an arm sling, some prescription painkillers and a stern lecture about going to physiotherapy as soon as possible. Sherlock knew John disliked strong painkillers and would take the absolute minimum—he also knew John would be unbearably grumpy and snappish for the next few days—so in a fit of desperation he stole a blister pack of maximum strength codeine from the hospital pharmacy and gave it to John. Without John knowing, of course. Sherlock reasoned it wasn’t like drugging him at all, if anything he was looking out for his best friend and wanted to make sure he wasn’t in any pain at all.

John, it turned out, was extremely susceptible to codeine. The high dose turned him into a heavy, limp, clingy noodle who was at least high enough to not be in pain.

“M’know you gave me different pills,” John slurred into Sherlock’s shoulder. Sherlock readjusted his grip on John’s waist and dragged him up several steps.

“No idea what you’re talking about,” he huffed.

“Sh’lock. You drugged me,” John said. He stopped cooperating entirely and started giggling. “Y’drugged me.”

Sherlock sighed heavily. He was seriously considering simply picking John up and carrying him up to their room. John slid out of his grasp and melted down onto the stairs.

“No wonder you don’t like painkillers,” Sherlock muttered at the liquified John Watson at his feet. John giggled in response. “You’re going to thank me later for this.”

“M’not mad.” John curled around Sherlock’s legs and mumbled something indistinguishable to his ankles. Sherlock couldn’t help but smile.

“Come on, up you get.” Sherlock hauled John to his feet and pushed him up the final few steps to their floor. He half dragged the still giggling John to their room and dumped him on the bed.

John immediately began to pull feebly at his clothes and Sherlock felt something tug at his chest at seeing so John clumsy and uninhibited. Last time they had been blind drunk and a week away from John getting married, so Sherlock didn’t really like to reminisce about those times too much. He knelt down in front of his friend and gently helped him take off his shoes, jacket, shirt and trousers, leaving John in his boxer briefs and tshirt.

John stood up and wobbled dangerously. Sherlock, still on his knees in front of him, held him up by his hips. John steadied himself with a hand on Sherlock’s shoulder and Sherlock was suddenly painfully aware of his proximity to John’s crotch.

John’s boxer briefs really didn’t leave anything at all to the imagination. Sherlock couldn’t help cataloguing John’s penis size, something he’d been fantasising about for years, and he felt his face flush. John was impressive. Huge, even. Bigger than Sherlock’s already generous estimations. It made Sherlock’s mouth water.

John hummed above him and Sherlock looked up at him, his hands still on John’s hips. John smiled down at him, his mouth endearingly lopsided, and ruffled his hair weakly. Sherlock’s scalp tingled pleasantly where John’s fingers touched it, and he wished John would run his fingers through his hair more often.

“Thanks, Sh’lock.”

John wobbled away to the head of the bed and crawled under the covers.

“Are y’getting in?” He mumbled into the pillows.

Sherlock looked around the room, considering his options. There was only one, albeit fairly sizeable, bed. There was also the armchair but it looked tiny and fragile. Sherlock could just not sleep; he could stay awake and organise the conclusion of the case inside his mind palace, he could watch John sleep and catalogue his sleeping pattern. He could do all that even though he was exhausted to the bone.

The bed looked so soft and inviting. John, already sleepy and ruffled, looked even more enticing. Sherlock could do this. He could slip under the covers, stay on the far side of the bed and get a decent night’s sleep. Chances were John would pass out from exhaustion and the codeine high very soon, and would stay dead to the world for quite a few hours.

Sherlock nipped to the ensuite bathroom to brush his teeth and change into his pajamas. He avoided looking in the mirror; he didn’t need to see the desperation and longing on his face at this hour.

When Sherlock emerged from the bathroom, the sight before him nearly took his breath away. The only light in the room was the small lamp on the bedside table. John’s skin shone like gold, his hair like the purest silver. He was on his side, facing the empty part of the bed, his outstretched hands ready to embrace whoever climbed in next to him. Sherlock could imagine, just for a second, that this was their shared bed and he was coming back to settle into John’s arms.

The vision was gone as quickly as it appeared. Sherlock couldn’t indulge himself too much in idle fantasies, it was a dangerous train of thoughts. He climbed into the bed, making sure to leave as much space between himself and John as possible.

John, however, didn’t seem to think that was necessary and shuffled closer to Sherlock.

Sherlock turned his back to John and moved further towards the edge of the bed. Any further and he’d fall off. He wrapped himself up in the duvet and buried his face in the pillow, determined to fall asleep as quickly as possible and get this sleeping nonsense over with.

Minutes ticked by in silence. Sherlock was close to nodding off when he felt John shuffle again. He assumed John was just getting comfortable, so when he felt a hand gently touch his hip he nearly jumped out of his skin. John moved closer, effectively spooning Sherlock, his breath making the hair on Sherlock’s nape stand up.

Sherlock’s heart was beating wildly, apparently attempting to escape his chest. He tried to get his breathing under control to no avail. He knew John was asleep from his breathing pattern, he knew it was an unconscious move to seek out the warmth of another body. But this was the most physical contact they’ve had in years, the closest they got to an actual hug, which was something Sherlock has been yearning for. The fact that John did this unconsciously made it a bittersweet victory; Sherlock wanted a hug to be offered and reciprocated in kind.

Sherlock did his best to ignore the warmth of John’s hand on his hip, the warmth of the body pressed against his back, and the soft breaths against his neck. He couldn’t tell how long he stayed awake, keeping himself as still as possible and cataloguing every second, before sleep finally claimed him.

:::

Sherlock woke up feeling groggy and a bit sore. Return to full consciousness was slow, not at all helped by how warm and comfortable he felt. It was only when he tried to bury himself deeper under the covers for a few more minutes of sleep that he realised his sleeping position had changed somewhat during the night.

Sherlock had turned around in his sleep and was now facing John. His face was mashed into John’s neck, his left arm slung over John’s hips, and their legs tangled under the covers. John had both of his arms around Sherlock, and he had his nose more or less buried in Sherlock’s hair.

All of that in of itself was a pretty alarming thing to wake up to. What was most disturbing, however, was the very prominent and frankly impressive erection John was rubbing gently into Sherlock’s abdomen, as well as Sherlock’s own hard cock pressed against John’s thigh.

Sherlock woke up fully in an instant. He could hear John breathing deeply above him, apparently still oblivious and completely dead to the world.

Sherlock tensed all over, too terrified to move a muscle. He had to get himself out of John’s embrace before John woke up to avoid any embarrassment for either of them. He knew John wouldn’t take it well and his painkillers would’ve worn off by now so this situation had the potential to end up in a complete disaster.

Unfortunately Sherlock’s tense abdomen seemed to provide more relief to John’s straining cock because John started thrusting his hips just a little bit harder. Sherlock panicked and tried to shuffle away but John tightened his grip around Sherlock’s torso. Sherlock was trapped.

Then John hitched up his leg and pushed his thigh against Sherlock’s cock, and all thoughts of escaping fled Sherlock’s mind. It was bliss. John muscular thigh pressed hard enough to provide blessed relief, and Sherlock couldn’t help but thrust his hips just a little. It had been days since Sherlock had masturbated and he desperately needed a release after the case.

Sherlock’s movement made John’s cock press against his belly even harder, and oh god he could feel the pulse in it. Sherlock’s mouth watered.

Sherlock felt shame burning up his cheeks, he knew he should stop and leave the bed, at the very least wake John up and put a stop to this. He knew was doing something Very Not Good by taking advantage like this but he couldn’t help himself, not when John snuffled like that and tightened his grip around him, when he felt John’s thigh muscles flex under his cock, when he could feel the damp spot on John’s pants rub against his belly.

Sherlock wanted to stop, wanted to be able to stop, but his mind was conjuring up desperate scenarios where they were both awake and having lazy morning sex. Where any second now John would gasp his name and bend down to kiss him, where they would undress each other slowly and kick off the covers, where John would wrap his hand around Sherlock’s cock, where Sherlock would use his mouth to—

Sherlock swallowed his gasps and scrunched up his eyes, wishing the visions away.

“Shr’lock.”

Sherlock’s eyes flew open and his hips stilled. Oh god, no.

“Mmffs’good,” John mumbled into Sherlock’s hair. He kept thrusting against Sherlock’s belly. “Shr’lock, ah.”

Sherlock broke out of his mortified stupor and moved away just far enough to be able to look up at John. Who still appeared to be asleep.

John shuffled his lower body closer to Sherlock, seeking friction.

“Sherlo—Sherlock,” he sighed.

Sherlock stared up at John’s sleeping face in shock. John was dreaming about him. John was rutting against his belly and dreaming of having sex. With him. John wanted to have sex with him. John wanted him, the same way Sherlock wanted John.

Unless it was just a sex dream. Nothing more, nothing more significant than John’s brain conjuring up a sex fantasy with the first person who popped into his mind. Why wouldn’t it be Sherlock? They spend all their time together, live in each other’s pockets as far as anyone was concerned. It was perfectly natural and not uncommon to have sex dreams about your friends. It didn’t have to mean anything. It almost certainly didn’t mean anything.

Shame stained Sherlock’s cheeks red. How utterly stupid to even consider the possibility of John reciprocating his feelings. Dreams were not proof of anything, John had no control over dreaming about him, he might not even want to dream about him and wake up disgusted.

Sherlock couldn’t bear it any longer and shuffled away from John’s embrace. No matter how badly he wanted to rut himself to completion against John’s thigh, and regardless of how incredible it felt hearing John softly moan his name, he couldn’t let this go any further.

“John.” Sherlock held John’s hips firmly at an arm’s distance and gave him a little shake. John grumbled in his sleep and tried to pull Sherlock back into his arms.

“John, wake up. John,” Sherlock said more insistently and tightened his grip on John’s hips.

“Sod’ff,” John groaned, his voice raspy from sleep.

“John, please,” Sherlock said, desperation creeping into his voice.

John groaned again and opened his eyes slowly. He blinked several times before looking down at Sherlock. Realisation dawned in his eyes; it wasn’t a difficult deduction when presented with two erections and a clearly enjoyable dream. Sherlock didn’t want to give him a chance to even think about what had happened.

“I’m sorry,” Sherlock blurted out. “I should have woken you up earlier. I know this wasn’t good, I didn’t mean to—this is nothing, this is just a natural reaction to the proximity of another body. Dreams mean nothing, there are multiple variables influencing—”

“You heard me say your name,” John interrupted, his voice still gruff from sleep. His face was frustratingly blank. Sherlock squirmed under his unrelenting gaze.

“Dreams don’t mean anything, I was just a convenient—”

“You’re never convenient,” John interrupted again.

Sherlock felt as if he’d been dunked in ice cold water. There it was. John finally saying what he’d been dreading the most.

“I will not mention it again. Excuse me,” Sherlock bit out and started to extricate himself from John’s grasp. He was going to shower, dress and go downstairs to breakfast, and erase this whole incident from memory. He would bury his feelings in the deepest pits of his mind palace and never inconvenience John again. He only hopes John would forget it too so they could go on as before.

“No, Sherlock. Sherlock, wait,” John said quickly, before Sherlock managed to roll away and leave the bed. He grabbed Sherlock’s arm and tugged him back. “I didn’t mean it that way.”

“What possible meaning could the phrase “you’re never convenient” hold apart from the obvious, do enlighten me,” Sherlock snapped. He was lying down again, facing John, a safe arm’s length between them.

“I meant—You’re not—.” John paused. He closed his eyes, took a deep breath, and when he opened his eyes again his expression changed to one of resolve. Sherlock knew this face meant John Watson was about to do something very brave. It could mean his heart would be shattered into a million pieces, or it could mean something he did not dare to hope.

“Whenever I dream about you it isn’t because you’re the most convenient choice. It’s because I—” John paused again and sighed. “I want you.”

Sherlock’s brain ground to a halt. The Earth stopped moving. The Sun stopped going round the Moon, or was it the Moon going round something else; gravity failed, all the laws of physics were irrevocably broken. Sherlock felt he was disintegrating and collapsing in on himself at once, his body ceased to exist and his immaterial form was tethered to reality only by John’s words.

“Sherlock? Sherlock, breathe. Sherlock!”

Sherlock woke up from his cosmic crisis to John shaking him vigorously. He took in gulps of air—when did he stop breathing—blinking away his dried out eyes. The shock of oxygen finally entering his lungs made him dizzy.

“I’m sorry, I didn’t think—I thought you knew,” John said as he soothed Sherlock’s side. He looked concerned but underneath the worry there was relief.

Sherlock was still unable to talk so he shook his head mutely. How could he make John understand none of this was a real possibility in his mind; how could he make him see how utterly unlikely any of this was?

“Sherlock, can I—can I kiss you?” John’s words were a hushed whisper. He brought his hand up to cup Sherlock’s face, his thumb caressing Sherlock’s cheekbone.

Sherlock had no idea how to respond without accidentally hyperventilating so he tilted his face up and closed his eyes.

John’s lips were soft. Softer than Sherlock had ever imagined. He kept them lightly pressed against Sherlock’s, not moving for a few moments, before ending the kiss. Sherlock couldn’t help making a desperate noise at the loss.

“Alright?”

Sherlock responded by scooting up the bed and kissing John. The angle was awkward, their noses bumped and lips met too hard. John stilled Sherlock’s head and adjusted the angle, tilting his head and moving his lips across Sherlock’s.

Sherlock could feel the rough scrape of stubble against his skin, John’s breath warming his cheeks, John’s hand caressing and tangling in his hair. Sherlock was grateful they were already on the bed because even those two simple kisses made his knees weak.

John moved his head again and slotted Sherlock’s lower lip between his own. He sucked on it lightly, while at the same time tugging on Sherlock’s hair, and Sherlock was powerless to stop the tiny moan tearing itself free from his throat. His cock, which had deflated significantly during their conversation, regained interest in the proceedings.

Sherlock tried mirroring John’s actions and opened his mouth a little further. John groaned and pulled Sherlock closer to him. Emboldened, Sherlock gave John’s lower lip a tentative lick.

John pulled away chuckling.

“Morning breath, Sherlock. I don’t think you’d want—”

“Don’t bloody care,” Sherlock interrupted. He pulled John back to him by the front of his shirt and kissed him, effectively silencing him.

Sherlock nipped, sucked and licked, and he was painfully aware he had no idea what he was doing. The kisses were sloppy, wet and a little bit uncoordinated; Sherlock poured all of his love into them instead, and John didn’t seem to mind. John patiently showed Sherlock what to do with his lips and tongue, occasionally adding a hint of teeth, and encouraged him with pleased groans and moans whenever Sherlock did something well.

Sherlock felt dizzy, his skin was tingling, his heart was racing, and Sherlock never wanted to stop. Once he got the hang of basics he let his hands wander a bit, caressing John’s chest and back. John’s own hand didn’t stay in Sherlock’s hair for long, he ran it down Sherlock’s side and under his shirt, making Sherlock gasp and moan at the skin on skin contact.

John tried to pull Sherlock even closer but broke away from their kiss groaning and wincing in pain.

“I got carried away, I’m sorry, we can wait—” Sherlock apologised immediately.

“Not your fault.” John smiled at him and pecked him on the lips. “Where are the painkillers?”

The events of last night’s painkiller disaster came back to Sherlock in a rush and he felt his cheeks darken with guilt. John ruffled his hair and laughed.

“Don’t worry, I’m not angry. I know you did it out of concern but there’s a reason I don’t like taking codeine.”

“They’re in my coat,” Sherlock huffed out, affronted. John smacked a wet kiss on Sherlock’s cheek and got out of bed giggling. He grabbed the pills from Sherlock’s coat and broke one in half.

“Not taking any risks,” he said by way of explanation and went into the loo for a cup of water. When he walked back out Sherlock was confronted with the fact that John was as affected by their activities as he was, the evidence of this perfectly outlined by John’s boxer briefs. Sherlock couldn’t tear his gaze away until John crawled back into bed.

“Now, where were we?” John half-growled out as he pulled Sherlock towards him. He reached down to pull Sherlock’s leg over his own and grabbed his arse. Sherlock’s delighted gasp was lost in John’s mouth.

They kissed like that for minutes or hours or days, hands wandering under shirts and across bums, kisses growing hungrier and rougher. Sherlock’s hips were moving in small circles of their own accord, seeking out friction. John reached down to press his palm against Sherlock’s cock, making Sherlock break free from their kiss, gasping and moaning. John took the opportunity to trail kisses down his neck, stopping to nibble and suck on particularly sensitive patches of skin, until he reached the collar of Sherlock’s shirt.

“Off,” John said as he tugged on the shirt. Sherlock scrambled to kneel on the bed to shed his clothes as quickly as possible. He threw them away in the vague direction of the floor and then helped John do the same.

When Sherlock turned back to lay down he stopped at the look on John’s face. John was leaning back on his good arm, eyes raking up and down Sherlock’s naked body, hungrily taking in every detail. John’s gaze stopped at Sherlock’s cock and he licked his lips. Sherlock shivered.

“You’re fucking beautiful, you know that?” John looked back up to Sherlock’s face. “Every bloody inch of you.”

John’s word were filled with affection and pure hunger. Sherlock crawled over John on all fours and straddled John’s thighs. John reached up with his injured arm and gently tugged Sherlock down by his hair, kissing him messily. He used right arm to reach down and wrap his hand around Sherlock’s cock. Sherlock shivered at the sensation, and settled down with his forearms framing John’s head before his arms gave out.

John’s right hand wrapped around Sherlock’s moderate length almost entirely. He held it lightly, smearing his thumb through the precome gathered at the tip. Sherlock whimpered into John’s mouth, very nearly overwhelmed by the simple stimulation. It was a culmination of years of longing, his body finally catching up to his brain, finally ready to give in to pleasure.

“John,” Sherlock gasped. “Joh—ah—ah—John, I’m not—oh god—this isn’t going to last.”

John kissed down Sherlock’s neck and along his collarbones, alternating between gentle pecks and wet, open-mouthed kisses. He urged Sherlock to shuffle up so he could reach his chest, all the while playing with Sherlock’s foreskin and stroking his cock slowly. John kissed his way to Sherlock’s left nipple and licked it with the flat of his tongue. Encouraged by Sherlock’s whimpers and near sobs he took it into his mouth and sucked, at the same time he used his other hand to tease and pinch the right one. Sherlock felt as if there was a direct connection between his cock and his nipples, if the growing amount of precome coating John’s hand and belly was anything to go by.

“So beautiful,” John mouthed into Sherlock’s skin.

Sherlock started thrusting his hips in earnest, pushing his cock further into John’s fist, the way eased by the copious amount of moisture. John moved across to his right nipple and lavished it with the same kind of attention. John’s left hand made it’s way down to grope and knead Sherlock’s arse.

Sherlock felt the telltale heat pooling in his groin, the first stirrings of his impending orgasm. He needed more, more of everything.

“Ha—ah—uh—uhh—harder,” he panted out.

John’s hand tightened and sped up on Sherlock’s cock. Sherlock reached down to thread his fingers through John’s hair and to make sure he didn’t even think of moving away from his chest. His other hand gripped the bedsheets so hard his knuckles turned white.

John added a twist of hand on every upstroke, and at the same time used his teeth and tongue on Sherlock’s nipple. His left hand wandered further down Sherlock’s arse, fingers just grazing the space between the arse cheeks. Sherlock kept pushing his cock into the tight space of John’s fist, his thrusts growing shorter and his hips losing rhythm.

Sherlock’s orgasm hit him unexpectedly, a near shout escaping his lips. He tensed and shuddered above John, back bowed, his cock spurting over John’s fist. John stroked him through it, his touch growing lighter and gentler until it stopped when Sherlock shivered with oversensitivity. Sherlock kept whimpering and moaning softly, still trembling with the intensity of his orgasm. He couldn’t think, couldn’t speak, he could barely muster up the strength to keep himself propped up and not collapse on top of John.

Sherlock felt himself being pushed gently back onto the bed, on his side, and then gathered up in John’s arms. John peppered Sherlock’s face with kisses, running his hands reverently over Sherlock’s back and sides. He murmured praise and endearments, and Sherlock felt as if the love pouring out of John was filling him up and bringing him back to life.

Sherlock slowly surfaced from the post-orgasmic bliss to return John’s soft kisses. They spent some minutes kissing unhurriedly, taking their time to enjoy the quiet intimacy of it. When Sherlock finally opened his eyes John was looking at him with such tenderness he felt his face flush.

“You’re incredible. I can’t believe—” John paused to brush away the curls that had fallen on Sherlock’s face. “It’s been so long,” he said simply, and Sherlock didn’t need any more to understand all that was left unsaid.

“I love you,” Sherlock whispered, the words slipping out of his mouth before he had a chance to think about them. John’s eyes widened in surprise and his face lit up with a smile. The smile grew, until John was beaming at Sherlock, and the love and affection in his eyes was almost blinding.

“I love you,” Sherlock whispered again, voice growing thick with emotion. John gathered him close and kissed him, and Sherlock kept whispering it over and over again between kisses. The words had been stuck in his throat for years, and now that he’d said them once they poured out of him endlessly.

“Sherlock, I love you too, I love you so much, so much,” John murmured against Sherlock’s lips. He kept saying it until Sherlock couldn’t hold back the wave of emotions overtaking him. He hid his face in John's neck, hot tears finally escaping his eyes. He breathed in John’s scent and released it in a half-sob. John loved him.

John hugged Sherlock tightly, caressing his back and carding his fingers through his mop of curls, murmuring quiet words of love and affection into Sherlock’s hair. Sherlock clung onto him, his whole body trembling with quiet sobs. The pain of the last few years seeped out of him, melted away with the tears and the ragged breaths, replaced by John. John’s scent, John’s skin, John’s touch, John’s words, John’s love. It filled Sherlock until he felt whole again, until the last remnants of emptiness and loneliness were gone.

Sherlock slowly got his breathing under control and relaxed his vice-like grip on John’s back and shoulders.

John gently tipped his chin up and kissed his forehead.

“You’re beautiful even when you’re covered in snot.” John smiled down at him and Sherlock gave him a slightly watery smile in return. John wiped away the tears on Sherlock’s cheeks with his thumbs. “There, all good again, yeah?”

Sherlock grabbed the edge of the duvet and wiped at the mess of tears, drool and snot on John’s shoulder. John giggled when Sherlock found a ticklish spot on his neck, and Sherlock marveled by the easy intimacy between them. In a way it had always been there, even when they skirted around all the unspoken words between them.

“I’m sorry about, well...” Sherlock trailed off, glancing down at John’s entirely flaccid cock.

“Don’t worry about it. We have time to catch up.” John winked at him and Sherlock felt himself blush. Something in his belly fluttered pleasantly at the thought of what that would bring. He did, however, also feel a little bit nervous at the prospect of a relationship, and all that entailed, with John. Because it was John, and he couldn’t afford to lose him again.

“I’ve never done this. This,” Sherlock flapped his hand in the direction of their cocks, “Or anything else, really. I don’t—I don’t know what to do.”

“Hmm,” John hummed as he tangled his fingers in Sherlock’s hair once again. Sherlock suspected it was something he’d been wanting to do for some time, and was pleased to find he loved it when John did it. “We’ll figure it out.”

John smiled at him once again, the corners of his eyes crinkling. Sherlock couldn’t stop his own smile, until they were both grinning like idiots, dissolving into laughter. It was all fine. After all, they had the rest of their lives to figure it out.