AN: So sorry for the delay in updating! I've recently taken up new hours at work and am still adjusting to the change. Again: So sorry!

And Chapter Warning: Torture, but nothing graphic. And only to the man that had tried to kill John, so we all know he deserves it.

By the way: Brownie points to anyone who can name where I got John's boss's name from! And if you can't figure it out I will feel sorry for you.

Disclaimer: Absolutely nothing but the plot idea is mine.

It wasn't pain that finally awoke John Watson, it was the lack of it that did so. That and the steady- and annoying- beeping of an EKG machine.

The sound of a door opening made him open his eyes and turn his head towards the intruder, but he only managed to open his eyes.

He realized that he couldn't move his head.

What was more was that he couldn't seem to move any other part of his body either.

Panic started to set in just as his visitor stepped into his view, instantly calming him just by being there.

It was Sherlock, Sherlock looking vaguely concerned.

"Calm down, the paralysis is only temporary- at least that is what your doctors are all saying- and you should regain tour full range of motion over time." Reassured by Sherlock's clinical reassurances of his situation, John asked a question with his eyes and hoped that the detective would bother with answering it.

"I assume by your look that you want to know how you were rescued?" When the bedridden doctor only blinked up at him patiently the tall brunette rolled his eyes and gave a huff.

Taking a seat on the edge of the bed he began.

"Moriarty, John, really? Couldn't you have found someone else to alleviate your physical urges with? A nice assassin, perhaps?" If he could have laughed he would have.

Only Sherlock would think dating- well, sleeping with- an assassin would be an improvement over a psychopathic genius who was hot as all hell and twice as interesting.

"Though considering that your 'relationship' with him is what has saved your life I'm willing to over-look it this once, but don't think for a moment that you'll be getting out of having kept your full skill-set a secret from me. Thieving skills could have come in very handy in several of our cases, you know." The glare that Sherlock leveled him with would have been intimidating if John wasn't able to see the child-like excitement behind it.

The doctor just hoped he would recover fast enough to be able to sate Sherlock curiosity on the subject, and the inevitable training that would be demanded from him.

"But that is for later once you're able to start talking again, right now you want to know how we found you. Well, we began by identifying your old boss that you had so callously neglected to name in your note- poor form, that. It would have made things so much easier if you had just given us his name to begin with." This time the glare really was intimidating, but John just rolled his eyes and was mildly pleased when he felt his lips twitch in a slight smirk.

"Doyal, your former boss, was fleeing the country when we finally tracked him down; Mycroft was kind enough to pick him up for me once I had explained the situation. Once delivered to a certain warehouse that I'm almost positive I'm not supposed to know anything about, Moriarty managed to... persuade him to tell us your location. And now here we are." A dismissive wave of his hand signaled that he was done explaining and John managed a slight shake of his head and a wry smile.

He could read enough between the lines to see just how closely Jim and Sherlock must have worked together to find him.

"Now that you are fully informed you should sleep. The doctors have all been rather insistent that you should sleep as much as possible until you've regained your greater motor functions." Now that the idea had been planted, John found that he could barely keep his eyes open.

"Rest, John. You're definitely going to need it once I'm able to start questioning you." John drifted to sleep with a sigh, knowing that Sherlock was definitely right about that.

His last thought before consciousness left him was to wonder how ole' Arthur was getting on with Jim at the moment.


Jim stared down at the ashen and fear filled face of the man strapped to the table next to him. Manipulating the control box in his hand he watched with mild satisfaction as the bound man arched upwards with a blood curdling scream as the electrodes that had been embedded in his muscles earlier that day came to life.

A scowl crawled across the Consultant Criminal's expressive features as the door behind him opened and he was forced to stop his new pass-time earlier than expected.

"I said I wasn't to be disturbed!" He yelled at whoever had been foolish enough to interrupt him without turning to face them, choosing instead to study the new tear tracks running down his captives face.

"Oh, I didn't know." Jim froze at the sound of that voice.

"You see, I've been in the hospital for the last month and you hadn't come to visit to tell me anything like that." Jim slowly turned to see the man that he had almost lost, and who had once again snuck up on him.

He really needed to figure out how John kept doing that.

"John..." He whispered, he just didn't know what else to say as the short blonde began limping towards him.

Every uncertain step, every heavy lean on that hateful cane that was once again being used, gave Jim a new idea to tryout on the man who had caused it.

"Jim." The doctor said as he came level with the table.

Giving a single glance at the unconscious man who had once been his boss, and who was now strapped to a table and being slowly- ever so slowly- tortured to death, he turned to face Jim directly.

"I should be very upset that you're capable of this level of sadistic cruelty- but I'm not. Do you know why, Jim?" At Jim's confused and uncomprehending look John just smirked.

"Then I won't tell you. You'll just have to figure it out for yourself." John leaned forward and dropped a quick kiss on Jim's partly parted lips.

"Maybe over dinner? Pick me up at eight." Giving a stunned nod, Jim watched as John exited the same way he had entered.

Turning a blank stare onto the table bound man, Jim let a wide smile overtake his features as he realized what had just happened.

He had a date with John! He had to get ready.

Sending a text to his minions to come and take his personal project away for storage, Jim headed out to get cleaned up. It wouldn't do to show up to a first date wearing old, blood splattered cloths now would it.


Once home from seeing Jim, John sat down in the quiet of the empty flat with a cup of tea and decided to relax a bit before getting ready for his date.

Just as he began to fully relax- he would be oh so happy when he could put that godforsaken cane away, and his aching muscles agreed with him- he heard a measured tread on the stair and he braced himself for some, hopefully, quality entertainment.

"Slipped your net again, has he?" John called out before the door could be opened.

"Dr. Watson, I must ask you to refrain from teaching my little brother any more of your little 'tricks'. He has absolutely no business either knowing or practicing such things." Was Mycroft's rejoinder as he entered 221b, and John had to take a quick sip from his mug to hide his sudden grin.

"I really don't know what you're talking about." John denied, but knew that he hadn't kept the humor fully from his voice.

Thankfully Sherlock returned at that moment and unwittingly saved John from further ineffectual intimidation from the elder Holmes brother, but only because he held in his hands something that would distract just about anyone.

"Sherlock, please tell me that that is not THE Crystal Skull and that you only decided to pick up a replica." Mycroft's tone was the closest John had ever heard the posh man come to whining.

Sherlock just smirked and set his new, shiny prize next to the old skull on the mantel.

"I didn't think you were one to encourage lying, Mycroft." Before an argument could get underway the door was pushed open once more by a distressed looking DI Lestrade.

"Sherlock! There's been a theft..." He trailed off as he caught sight of what was on the mantel.

"Right. Well... give it back and we'll just say that you recovered it for us." The DI said without missing a beat.

"No." Was Sherlock's simple answer.

The next couple of hours were pleasantly spent- by John at least- watching a three-way argument between an irate Detective Inspector from New Scotland Yard, THE British Government and an increasingly stroppy Consulting Detective.

The doctor didn't think it could get any better, but then Jim arrived for their half forgotten date and added his opinion to the growing cacophony.

"That isn't even the real skull you've got there, I've been using the real one as a paper weight for the last few years." That just added fuel to the already burning inferno that comprised the yelling match in the sitting room, and so John made himself another cup of tea and ordered take-out for all five of them while watching the show.

It wasn't the dinner he'd been hoping for, but he wasn't about to pass up quality entertainment when it was dropped directly in his lap.

"You heard him! It isn't even real! Why should I have to give mine up if it isn't even the real one?!"

"That isn't the point! You stole the one on display! I could arrest you for that- I should arrest you for that!"

"The Detective Inspector is correct, Sherlock, you need to stop letting your little thief of a flatmate corrupt you like this."

"Hold-on! You didn't just insult my Johnny, did you? Oh, bad move!"

By the time dinner arrived various death threats had been issued, and possibly one third-world government had been over-thrown, but John simply ignored it all and started passing out the plates he had loaded up and pushing the argumentative men into seats.

"Eat first and then continue yelling, I don't want anyone dropping out due to hunger." He leveled his best Captain's glare at them all and they began to eat in silence.

The peace lasted all of ten minutes, and the doctor was amazed by that. He would chalk it up to Sherlock having actually been hungry for once.

"So Jim, where did my replica Crystal Skull come from? It's very good and I may need to have another one made in order to satisfy the Yard and media." Jim just smirked and leaned into John who was seated between the two consulting geniuses on the sofa.

"I got it from the gift shop, they have a lot of them there." That, of course, started John laughing.

Jim joined in quickly, and when Mycroft began to glare at them Sherlock added in his deep rumble.

Giving up on reasoning with his little brother- and not wanting to have to deal anymore with a dangerously, and insanely, possessive Master Criminal who flew off the handle at the slightest perceived insult to 'his Johnny'- Mycroft flounced out with the DI close at his heels sans skull.

Once the two older men had left the two remaining geniuses took up glaring at each other over John's head.

"No fighting in the flat or I'll send you each to a corner. And the two of you were doing so well before now to." Jim snorted at that while Sherlock simply rolled his eyes.

"I guess I'll just have to have Mycroft come over more often if that's what it takes to get the two of you to play nice together." The two consultants shared a look of mutual horror at the thought of spending more time than necessary with the pompous arse Sherlock had the misfortune to call brother.

Standing swiftly, and grabbing both of his skulls, the only Consulting Detective in the world went to his room to do some heavy thinking(ie: pouting) on the problem John had presented him with: Who did he loath more and want to spend less time with, Mycroft or Moriarty?

Jim on the other hand was just glad to finally have John all to himself after the unexpected turn their first date had taken.

"So. Are you going to tell me why you aren't upset with me yet?" Jim asked once John had finished clearing away all of the plates- he had insisted he do it himself or else Jim would have just trashed it all for him to save the doctor's still stiffish limbs the trouble.

"What?" John's fake shock face was nearly as good as Jim's had been.

"Don't tell me you haven't figured it out yet!" John teased with a wide grin.

Putting on his best 'big puppy dog' eyes, Jim looked up at the standing blonde.

"A small hint would go a long way to helping me figure it out." He wheedled cutely, causing John to lean in for a deep kiss.

"Not on my sofa!" Came the shout from behind Sherlock's closed bedroom door.

Laughing, John finished the kiss and pulled Jim to his feet.

"I've been in a couple of your bedrooms now and I think it's time you were in mine, don't you think? And if you haven't figured it all out by the time we're done then I'm giving up all confidence in that genius brain of yours." Jim grinned like a madman as he let himself be pulled up the stairs to John's bedroom without any protest.

Of course he had it all figured out, and though he felt the same neither of them were quite ready to say those three simple words yet.

Besides, tonight would be his turn to top.