Molly jumped, nearly upsetting the microscope she'd been setting up. Sometimes, Sherlock announced himself, but most of the time, he crept around corners like a housecat.
"Yes, Sherlock—Holmes?" She swallowed, smoothing out her lab coat so that her hands might stop shaking from the surprise.
"I need a favor." He swept over, eyes roaming all over the lab, though after years of watching him, she knew that this was a way to kill time. He wasn't looking for anything today.
"Yes, well, I was about to leave, and I'm really not supposed—"
"That's fine." He settled himself at the farthest end of the counter, opposite from the side she was hiding behind, and started fiddling with an egg timer. "I need your help with a personal matter."
Molly froze, swallowing the lump of something that was forming in her throat. "Oh?"
"You're not engaged anymore." He looked at her then, as if he had remarked on the weather and was waiting for a response.
"I—" She coughed. Sherlock Holmes did not make her run away in fear anymore. She had helped him fake his death. They were equals. "Yes, thank you for reminding me."
Sherlock cleared his throat. "Sorry."
Molly almost choked on her tongue. "Why are you apologizing?"
"Ah, because I seem to have hurt your feelings, and it was not my intention."
"Yes, but—" Molly drew her thin eyebrows together. "Why are you apologizing?"
"Listen, I need you to come back to my flat and have sex with me."
Molly laughed like a pot boiling over—everything about the encounter made sense now. It wasn't real—that was why Sherlock was acting so strangely. She had fallen asleep in the lab, or maybe inhaled too much formaldehyde, and was now hallucinating.
Sherlock's brow furrowed. "I'm sorry? I was under the impression that you fancied me. I mean, your fiancé was practically my clone, we even had the same—"
"What?" Molly snapped up, rubbing her neck when it protested the sharp movement. "What do you mean, Tom was your clone? He was not."
"Oh, come now, Molly, you're not a complete idiot, you had to see the similarities. Although, to be fair, he was a moron."
Molly reached around her front and pinched herself in the fleshy part of her elbow, wincing when it stung. Not a dream, then. Still possibly a hallucination. She walked over to Sherlock and pinched him on the neck while he stared down at her, eyebrows drawn.
"Ouch! Molly Hooper, what are you doing?"
"Oh my god, you're real." She skittered back, gripping the table like it might jet off into the night and take her with it. "Did you ask me to—to have—did you?" Where did her voice go? It must have jetted off instead of the table, leaving a squeaking sham in its wake.
"Don't make me repeat myself, you know I so hate it." He rapped his fingers against the countertop, not looking at her.
"It has come to my attention that there are things I can only know from experience, and while I have gotten by thus far just fine without having sexual intercourse, the idea of being pure and virginal has become less attractive to me."
"I don't really follow." He might as well have thrown her and a life vest off opposite sides of a boat on choppy seas.
"Will you or won't you, Molly, it's a simple enough question."
"It is not a simple enough question!" She wanted to punch herself in the throat, maybe get the squeak out of her voice, but all she could do was clutch the table.
"Oh, come now, it's my virginity that's in question. I should be the one going through existential crises or whatever it is that you normal people do, not you. You've had plenty of sex, you said so yourself."
She mouthed something that might have been 'what,' but she wasn't sure that she was forming real words. Sherlock rolled his eyes.
"You told me that you and Tom were having quite a lot of sex. I imagine he wasn't your first, you are getting a bit old."
Molly made a fizzy noise. "Just—just because I've had sex, doesn't mean that you can just waltz in here and expect me to have it with you! I mean, people just—they just don't do that, Sherlock, they don't just have sex with each other!"
Sherlock narrowed his eyes. "Don't they?"
Molly made another noise, and then sank to the floor. Standing was for people who could make decisions.
Sherlock stood for a full minute while Molly took the time to just breathe, and then he sank to the floor next to her, straight-backed and stiff.
"I am asking you because I am fond of you. You see me for who I am, and I won't have to put on an act. I'll just be learning."
Molly looked over at him, and his face was blank. Maybe he was being sincere.
The bedroom was so quiet, a butterfly landing on the windowsill would have been explosive. Molly hardly breathed, lying on the bed with her hands crossed over her heart like a corpse. She was in her mismatched underwear—daisy-print knickers and a plain white bra—while Sherlock laid next to her in his white briefs. Neither of them had removed their socks.
"Is Mrs. Hudson out today?" she asked. Why had she brought Mrs. Hudson up while they were almost naked?
"Right." She swallowed. Why was there so much saliva in her mouth? "So, um—what do you—what should we—" She looked over at him, but he was just staring up at the ceiling. "—Sherlock?"
He didn't respond, and Molly sighed. He did this sometimes when he was researching, and she knew there was nothing for it but to wait it out. It could be hours before he focused on her again, so she sat up, taking stock of the room.
Perhaps she should have suggested they go for drinks first. They didn't need to be drunk, but it might have helped things along if she didn't feel like her nerves were forming solid bricks in her stomach. Sherlock was still staring at the ceiling, fingers pressed together in a triangle. What the hell was he contemplating?
Molly sighed, and, on a whim, reached around to unhook her bra before laying back down. That would at least solve some of the awkwardness—no fumbling with the clasp for Sherlock. Of course, she was exposed now, but it was unlikely that Sherlock would make note of that. He'd be more emotional over the clasp.
She only waited fifteen minutes, amusing herself with jiggling her tiny breasts to try and line them up on her arm, and then Sherlock cleared his throat.
"She should be back in an hour."
"Who?" Molly stilled, turning to look at him.
"Mrs. Hudson." He turned to face her, and his gaze was drawn past her neck. "You took your top off."
"Yes." She swallowed, feeling like she was about to evaporate. "I did."
His eyes jerked back to her face, and then they met hers. If she had known that all of her dreams coming true would be like this, she would have picked different dreams.
"Do you want to be on top, or shall I?" Sherlock asked, and Molly turned to look at the ceiling, swallowing hysteria.
"I've never been on top before."
"Did you want—"
"No." She shook her head, clenching her hands together. "You can."
"Right." He shifted onto his side, and stared at her chin. "We should kiss."
"Right." She turned to face him, feeling like her breasts were a separate living entity sent just to get in her way. They were small, but as she lifted an arm to rest a hand on Sherlock, her left breast was moved forward, tapping him on the wrist. They both jumped.
"Sorry," she said, swallowing before placing a limp hand on his shoulder.
"Not a problem." His eyes darted back and forth across her face, like he was trying to solve a puzzle. "Should I kiss you now?"
"Yes—yes, that would be fine."
He pressed his lips to hers in a firm kiss, and then they watched each other, lips not moving. Molly knew how to kiss—she may not have been raking in men, but she wasn't a nun. She couldn't seem to remember what to do, though, and each second she spent looking into Sherlock's dark eyes made her less and less sure.
He pulled back, staring at her. "That was not good."
She shook her head, something inside of her wilting. "No."
"I'm going to try your erogenous zones."
Molly blinked. "I'm sorry?"
"Don't tell me you don't know what they are."
"Of course I know what they are, they're my erogenous zones, aren't they?" She swallowed, feeling her brick-nerves settling into her belly.
"Where do you want me to start?"
"Um." She swallowed. "Normally—normally I like to start with kissing. Um—and maybe you could—eh—stroke my side? Or something? With your thumb?"
"Well, we've already established that kissing isn't going to work, so I'll just stroke your sides, then?"
Molly blinked, unsure of how to tell Sherlock that the kissing was necessary for side-stroking to work. "Yeah—yeah, okay."
He put his hand on her hip, watching her with narrowed, focused eyes while he swept his thumb back and forth. Goosebumps raised on her waist, and Sherlock's attention was drawn downward. While Molly watched, still as a corpse, he bent until his face was at her hip, and pressed his lips over the gooseflesh there.
Molly felt dizzy, and when Sherlock looked up, he looked a fraction more pleased. "Perhaps I should kiss you everywhere, instead of just your mouth."
It could have been erotic—she'd had dreams of Sherlock wanting to kiss her everywhere—but it was just as clinical as when he asked her about dead bodies.
"Sure," Molly said.
"Lie on your back again."
She rolled over, swallowing more saliva—how much was her body going to make?—and let her arms rest at her sides. He shifted over until he was on his knees next to her, and then pressed a kiss to her lips. For a second, she thought kissing might work—since he'd surprised her, she hadn't gotten nervous for it, and it was almost nice—but then his lips had moved to her collarbone, and the tips of her nipples were so close to poking him in the chest.
"I read up on the female body," he said, kissing her sternum. "Not that I really needed to, but I figured it wouldn't hurt to have a refresher."
"Did you learn anything new?"
"Breathe." He kissed between her breasts. "Nothing new, per se. I did find an interesting article on the changing flavor of a woman's vagina."
"How—interesting." Breathing was starting to become difficult. She still felt like her body was overcome by nerves, but there was something soothing about Sherlock's warm lips and breath on her clammy skin, the edges of his curls tickling her breasts but not quite touching.
Tentative, like a young boy trying a new food, Sherlock's tongue poked out and swiped across her breast bone, and Molly tilted her head back with a sigh. He paused long enough to look up at her, then slowly lowered his head to lick a little lower, trailing his tongue down to her belly.
"Licking—better than kissing?" he asked, hovering above her navel.
"It's more personal," she said, closing her eyes. "And warmer."
He flattened his tongue against her ribcage, and she wiggled at the feeling. His tongue trailed across her belly and then up, dipping into the hollow of her collar, but going nowhere near her breasts. She was starting to feel a pleasant hum beneath her skin—not quite arousal, but certainly better than the nerves.
Then, he closed his lips around her pulse, and Molly squeaked, nearly bashing her head into his.
"What? What happened?" Sherlock lifted his head, staring at her like he was trying to decode her face.
"Sorry, I don't like that."
He frowned. "Why not? It's one of the most common erogenous zones."
"I—I don't know, I just don't. It doesn't feel good." It tickles, she wanted to say, but that would probably open a whole new floodgate. He stared more, and she had the feeling that he knew, but then he shrugged, and ducked his head back to her shoulders.
"Is this working?"
"Yes." She should ask him about her breasts—he wouldn't think to do it unless she did. Or maybe he had thought of it, but was waiting for her to ask him. Did that make him a gentleman? "Sherlock?"
He propped himself up on his elbows, and trailed the tip of his index finger along the edge of her right breast, eliciting a shiver from her. That was the only warning she got before he flattened his tongue over the entirety of her nipple, and she yelped, arching her still-clothed pelvis toward him.
"Good?" He looked up. She managed a strangled noise of assent. "Tell me what you like. I don't—there was a lot of—information on technique."
"Um." What did she like? Most of her boyfriends took the obligatory detour at her chest, and then moved on to humping, but here Sherlock was, offering her the chance of a completely selfish and fulfilling sexual experience. "Maybe—maybe just like—rub them for a bit?"
She looked at him, color draining from her face, and he had on the grin he wore when he was particularly pleased with himself in a case. Asshole.
"Do you or don't you want me to rub your nipples?"
"Sherlock!" Her voice was back to its shrill wibble. "Please."
He brought his hand up to her left breast, running the pads of his fingers around her areola, and she felt her thighs tremble. Being high-strung before made each positive reaction that much more, and when he wrapped his fingers around her nipple, she lurched forward.
He played with just her left breast for three full minutes, and Molly almost bit through her tongue.
"Could you switch?" she asked, feeling faint.
"Hm? Oh. Yes, of course." He shifted to her right breast, giving it the same attention. Then, without her even mentioning, he closed his lips around her and sucked.
"Oh!" She arched into him again, and their still-clothed hips bumped, and for the first time, she could feel that Sherlock was enjoying this. A part of her had assumed he'd work with only his mouth and fingers, not feeling enough about the whole exchange to be able to complete the act, but the hard press of his cock—Sherlock's cock—against her thigh made her self esteem leap.
He sucked until she started to feel restless, rubbing herself against his legs where they touched hers, and then switched to the left, bring his hand up to continue fondling the right.
"Sherlock." Molly couldn't tell if she sounded like a sex goddess or a confused teenager, but she was going to pray that her breathy sigh was somewhat alluring.
"Do you want me to—you?"
He looked up, eyebrows drawn. "What?"
"Oh." He shook his head, returning to her breasts so quickly, she almost didn't notice the transition. "No. Just stay there."
If she focused on what he was doing instead of the sensations, she could tell that his licks were starting to lose their uniformity, becoming more erratic and interspersed with hot puffs of breath. The fingers holding her side were twitching, and Molly once again considered the fact that he actually liked this—that he was turned on by licking and touching her.
Sherlock Holmes was aroused by her. Her. Molly Hooper.
"Sherlock, kiss me again." Her voice trembled, but it wasn't squeaking, and Sherlock didn't even hesitate before bringing his wet lips against hers, eyes closed and hands clamped around one breast and one hip.
Molly wrapped her arms around him, pressing herself into his sweat-sticky chest. He kissed like he was conducting an experiment—thorough and slow—but there was something that made Molly feel like it was more real, like he had just slightly lost sight of what he was trying to do and was getting caught up in the moment.
He groaned when she raised her knees to clamp around his hips, biting at her lip like he wasn't sure what else to do.
"Do that again," she sighed, and so he did, sucking the flesh into his mouth.
Feeling brave for the first time all day, Molly started to wriggle his briefs down with her toes. Sherlock raised himself so that she would have an easier time, and then he was naked save for his socks and his actual cock was pressing against her thigh.
"I don't know how to proceed," he whispered against her mouth.
"Get my knickers," she said, because for once, she had the upper hand on Sherlock Holmes and she knew what to do with it.
He shifted so that he could use his hands to drag her underpants off, giving Molly space to raise her knees so that he didn't have to shimmy down her body to remove them. Then, his hand was between her legs, and his finger ran along her curls, and Molly pressed her head back into the pillows.
He watched her face as he traced her pussy lips with the tip of his index finger, and Molly felt like she was going to burst from anticipation. Her whole body quivered, and she felt like she should have been embarrassed for being as undone as she was, but Sherlock was looking at her like she was one of his case files, and she'd never felt so adored.
"I'm ready," she said, drawing her knees up again.
"How do you want to do this?" he asked. "Do you want to put your legs over my shoulders?"
She shook her head. "I'll just—wrap them around you?"
"Okay." He removed his hand and she bit back a whine, and then he crawled around until he was looming over her, arms shaking where he was using them to hold himself up. "Now?"
He reached forward, and his cock bumped against her. After a few more failed attempts, Molly snickered, reaching down to wrap her hand around him. He hissed, squeezing his eyes shut.
"I'm going to guide you in. Are you ready?" she asked.
She took a deep breath, and as she exhaled, she pushed Sherlock inside of her. Both of them made a strangled noise, looking down at where they were joined.
"Right," Sherlock said, sounding like he hadn't breathed in awhile. "So, I'm inside of you, then."
"Yes." She wrapped her legs around his waist, socks resting on the curve of his backside. "Now you have to move."
"Should I rock back and forth? Up and down? In and out?"
"Um—in and out."
"Wait." His arms were shaking even more, but he remained still, watching her. "Protection. I didn't put a condom on."
"It's okay." She bobbed her head up and down.
"It's not okay, I don't want to be a father—"
"No, I mean, it's okay, I'm on the pill. Better to be safe than sorry and all that." She swallowed.
"Oh." He stared at her for a few seconds, and she stared back, and all at once he started moving within her. Molly made a noise that sounded like pot clanging onto the stove, and Sherlock took this as indication to move faster.
"Oh my god," she said, digging her nails into his shoulder blades. Sherlock arched toward her.
"How long is this supposed to last?" he asked, words broken up by his labored breathing.
"It doesn't matter. However long you want. However long you can." 'More than a minute' was the answer she wanted to give, but it was Sherlock's first time and it was with her, and she didn't want to ruin it for him by making him feel like he needed to give more than he could—not when he had already given so much.
"I think I'm going to orgasm."
His thrusts sped up, and Molly clutched him close enough to feel his heart pounding against hers, and then he came inside her with a garbled groan, burying his face in her neck. She stroked his back, kissing his hair as he panted.
After a minute, he looked up. "You didn't orgasm."
He disentangled himself from her, and a rush of cold air hit her stomach, but that was replaced by blazing heat when all Sherlock did was kneel before her and plant his face between her thighs.
"Sherlock!" she cried, bucking against his tongue as it worked its way through her folds like a slippery ice cube. He spread her legs further apart, and she assumed it was an accident when he nudged her clit with his nose because he looked surprised at her tiny scream. Taking it in stride, he flicked his tongue against it, then pressed his whole mouth over her and sucked until she clenched her knees around his head and muffled her scream in her wrist.
When she had calmed to just heavy breathing, Sherlock crawled up the bed and laid next to her, flat on his back and staring at the ceiling. Neither of them spoke. Molly clasped her hands over her belly, resisting the urge to curl up in a ball—this was how things would be now, she supposed. They'd had sex, but nothing had changed, except her entire heart.
"Are you cold?" he asked, and Molly jumped.
"A bit, yeah."
He reached over the side of the bed, pulling up a discarded fleece blanket. Expecting him to shroud her in it like a cadaver, she was surprised when he threw it over both of them.
"That was nice," he said, putting an arm on the bed between them. "I enjoyed it."
"I also enjoyed it." She laid her arm next to his, and their elbows bumped.
"We could do it again sometime."
Molly blinked up at the ceiling. What did that mean? Did he like sex now, or just sex with her? Was she expected to only have sex with him? Was this her life now—fuckbuddies with Sherlock Holmes?
His hand curled around hers, and Molly's words caught in her throat. He was holding her hand. Holding her hand. He was holding her hand.
"Yeah. Yeah, we could."