Hello everyone! I hope that this story proves as a nice surprise for you all, both to show that I'm not dead nor have I forgotten about Fanfiction. Life has just been busy and I had to make some tough priority decisions. But I'm back now and am starting things off with a new story from a new fandom I have come to love; BBC's modern Sherlock featuring the beloved pairing of Johnlock. This story also serves as one of the many contributions I plan to make on here for NaNoWriMo, or National Novel Writing Month. But I couldn't have made this story possible without the collaboration help from my dear friend WarriorNun. And now that the formalities are out of the way, please enjoy the story!


Sherlock stood like a statue as he read the date on the calendar coming up in three days.

August 8th.

The eighth day of the eighth month. It was a rather typical date. There was no great significance to it. Or at least, there wasn't until a year ago. For Sherlock it was a very important date now. It was the date of his and John's anniversary. In three days, seven hours and fourteen minutes they'll have been officially together for a whole year. Back then he would deem things like anniversaries as boring, even openly telling Lestrade his views on the topic whenever the Detective Inspector talked about celebrating his wedding anniversary with his wife. But ever since he first started dating John his views changed immediately. And anniversaries were proving to be not so boring, too.

Now the only problem is...what to give John? Since it would be their first anniversary...it would be considered paper. But that was dull. When Sherlock asked what his lover would want the day before John simply smiled and said, "Your love is enough for me". It was an inexpensive gift and simple enough to give as well. But from what Sherlock studied about providing a gift for the "little woman" of the relationship better cements the commitment and paves the way for possible marriage. It helps the significant other know that they're special and appreciated. And with how John has helped him in many situations, Sherlock wanted to show John he was special and appreciated. After all he wanted to assure John that he cared for him as more than just an assistant and prove he could love him more than Mary ever had. But how? Sherlock searched through his Mind Palace as he thought of ideas...

He was rather thankful that he placed anniversary tucked away in the deepest parts of his Mind Palace, he had Mummy to "thank" for. So far, as he pulled up the first year on cotton (UK division), he knew that John is more of a sweater and corduroy type, and he crossed out cloth toys completely. Although...the chair seemed to come to mind...

Wait...cotton...chair...By Jove, he got it! But first thing's first.

"I must call my archenemy."

In the posh residence of London, Mycroft paced his penthouse anxiously. He was waiting for Anthea to arrive. She went out to make an important pickup for him. The government agent would have gone out himself but he had another appointment. He only hoped that Anthea was able to get the package. Just then he heard three raps and a single kick to the door. His secret knock of the day. Mycroft briskly rushed to the door and peeked out the peep hole to see if it was Anthea. When he confirmed that it was he opened the door.

"Anthea, thank Queen you're here. Did you get it?" Mycroft asked.

"Yes sir, but I hope you realize it wasn't easy. This product is in serious demand." Anthea said as she walked in, taking off her extra shaded sunglasses and sat the bag with the package on the Duncan Fife table.

"Oh I am very aware, Anthea. And I greatly appreciate your efforts..." Mycroft paused and walked over to the bag and took out the package then ever so slowly opened it up...to reveal chocolate cream stuffed horns. "After all, these chocolate cream stuffed horns are the only diet treat that taste like the real thing. Even people in other states want them." Mycroft said.

"I still don't see why I had to go through so much trouble. I could have easily gotten you sugar free ice cream..." Anthea groaned.

"Oh details..." Mycroft pishposhed, earning an eye roll from Anthea before returning back to her smartphone.

Mycroft could almost taste the pastry just by looking at it, and just when he was about to pick it up, the familiar ring of his cellphone chirped. He let out a groan as he fished out his phone to see the caller id, groaning louder in frustration at who it was.

"This better be good." The government agent stated angrily.

"We're going to build a chair." Came the reply of Sherlock.

And an immediate hang up was Mycroft's reply.

"Was that Sherlly?" Anthea asked.

"Indeed it was." Mycroft said simply as he went to the kitchen to get himself a glass of vanilla almond milk. Just then another ting sounded, this time from Anthea's smartphone. Anthea blinked before answering it herself.

"Hello?" Then she blinked again when the caller spoke. "How did you get this number?" That got Mycroft's attention, and he peeked out with his glass of milk to listen on the conversation. After a while Anthea's expression changed from shocked to a cross between irritated and exasperated. "...Fine. I don't want to know anyway. Here he is." Anthea handed her smartphone over to her employer. "Do not hang up."

It left no arguments, Mycroft sighed as he took the phone from her. "You don't know when to give up do you?" It was a rhetorical question.

"I don't program myself to do so, brother mine. Now, come to 221B Baker Street and I will explain the full details of my plan. I expect you here by three thirty, which should be long enough for you to indulge in your over priced dairy and pastries." Sherlock stated.

Mycroft stopped himself from growling. He hated how Sherlock knew him so well. Even right down to how long his Indulging Process takes.

"You are a true piece of work, Sherlock." Mycroft said.

"A fully functioning sociopath, Mycroft. Do not be late." Sherlock said and hung up.

"Fully functioning sociopath my arse..." He grumbled as he hung up as well, handing Anthea her smart phone back. "We're going to Baker Street."

"Yes, sir." Anthea responded, not at all bothered by the change of plans. It was just another day, working with the Holmes brothers. Nothing more, nothing less.

After putting his special package and glass of milk away in the refrigerator, Anthea drove Mycroft to Baker Street. The government agent tapped the grip of his umbrella in a rare form of visible irritation. He had no idea why Sherlock would call him for such a a plebeian and by all definitions ridiculous task. Building a chair? The man didn't even use the toy building blocks their grandfather gave him! He just gave them to the beavers to play with down by the creek of their country home.

Anthea stopped the car at 221B Baker Street and Mycroft got out of the car. Just as he got to the front door Sherlock opened it.

"You're here early, Mycroft. You usually like being fashionably late." Sherlock stated.

"Your call ruined my appetite, so my Indulging Process will have to wait. Now let's get this over with." Mycroft said.

"By all means," Sherlock stepped aside to allow his brother in, giving Anthea a brief nod to which she returned. He gave his landlady the heads up to prepare some tea, to which she usually responded "Alright, but I'm not your housekeeper." She kept on insisting that she's not his housekeeper but gotten used to it by now. He lead his brother up to his flat before closing the door and faced him.

"I need you to help me build a chair." It was more of a demand than a request.

Mycroft let out a sigh as he rolled his eyes. "YES...you have said that over the phone. The first time..."

"I wasn't sure if you could hear me through the fat in your ears." Sherlock said. Mycroft narrowed his eyes and finally asked,

"Sherlock, why on Earth do you want to build a chair?" Mycroft asked.

Sherlock merely pointed to the wall where the calendar was hanging. Mycroft looked at it and saw the date of August 8th circled with a heart. August 8th...

"Wait, that's..." Mycroft trailed off.

"Yes." Sherlock replied, knowing what his brother meant.

"And you want to build John a chair. By hand." Mycroft said.

"I do." Sherlock said.

"But why? The chair he has is good for at least three more anniversaries you may have, brother mine." The government agent said, looking at the chair in particular.

"That's the easy part of the plan, Mycroft." Sherlock said and went into the sitting room and took out a chainsaw and a blow torch.

...

"You can't be serious." Was all Mycroft said.

"The protective goggles and ear mufflers are in the drawer in the kitchen." Sherlock stated.

"My God, you are serious." The older Holmes brother groaned. Playing with dismembered feet...keeping eyes in the ice box...whipping corpses in the morgue with a riding crop...those quirks of Sherlock he would deal with. But this?! This is pushing the envelope! "You do realize that neither one of us has the experience in wood shop, do you not!?"

"That is where books come in, brother. Once we have disposed of this chair and staged the scene to make it look as if a disgruntled criminal John wounded did it, we shall get on with our main objective. Besides, one don't need experience to cause destruction. Now don't lolly about and get ready." Sherlock said as he took a hammer and went outside of the flat, then broke in the window. Possibly part of staging the disgruntled criminal John wounded scenario.

"...God help us," Mycroft muttered, not before fishing out the said protective goggles and ear muffs from the kitchen and following his younger brother out.

Well...it's just a chair...How hard can it be?

When John returned from shopping he was more than a little shocked at the sight of his chair. It was split apart and smoldering from being torched. Sherlock had shown him the note from a purse snatcher he shot, saying this was payback.

"Good lord! I didn't think the man would go and do this!" John uttered in shock.

"Do not, fret, John. At least you weren't hurt." Sherlock said as he took his lover in his arms for comfort. Mycroft, meanwhile, was in the background rolling his eyes.

"We couldn't get any witness accounts. I guess the wanker ran off before he was spotted." Lestrade said.

"Honestly...who would actually go out and destroy a chair?" Anderson asked, looking rather baffled.

"Silence, Anderson, if you want to lower the IQ of the entire street." Sherlock rebuffed him in a rather nonchalant tone.

"It makes you wonder if he'll come back and try the same thing on you, Doc." Sally said.

"No way, he was only a purse snatcher! He'd never escalate to murder." John stated.

"Still, we can't take the risk. Maybe you should bunk in a hotel for a few days till we catch this guy, John." Lestrade said.

That was it, Sherlock thought. That was just the que he needed. Mycroft, on the other hand, was practically face-palming. How did he get roped into this? Oh right...Sherlock interrupted his Indulgent Time. Honestly, what happened to just getting either a clock or a label-maker as a gift?

"I don't know..." John uttered.

No, Sherlock exclaimed in his mind. John has to agree with Lestrade's idea! He can't reconsider or his plan will fail!

"John, I think the good Detective Inspector is right. Perhaps you should stay at a hotel for a few days." Sherlock said.

"But Sherlock, what about our anniversary?" John asked with that doe eyes look the consulting detective could never resist.

Greg, meanwhile, was amazed that Sherlock said he was right about something. And Anderson was imitating vomiting while Sally was imitating a violin.

"I promise I will make it up to you before 24 hours are up," Sherlock promised him before placing a chaste kiss upon his lips, picking up "My God, my Eyes!" from Anderson, to which Sally thankfully smacked him. From the upside of the temple according to his ears.

"I can't see how that is possible." John snarked.

"You underestimate me as always." Sherlock snarked back. It was a manner of jest between them, like how some couples call themselves idiotic cutesy names.

Mycroft was just shaking his head all the while.

"Well I'll take John down to a hotel, then we'll start looking for our lumberjack fire bug. See around, Holmes." Lestrade said and left the flat with Sally and Anderson.

"I'll see you when this purse snatcher is caught, I guess. Please don't give Mrs. Hudson a migraine." John said.

"I wouldn't dream of it. Take care, luv. I'll send your things to your hotel once you've settled in." Sherlock said and with one last kiss led John out the door.

"You know, brother mine, in another life you would have been a smashing criminal." Mycroft said.

"And Moriarty would be the best detective," Then Sherlock turned to Mycroft. "But time is of the essence, we must construct John's gift before the 24 hour is up!"

"And HOW, pray tell, are we going to do that?" Mycroft challenged him.

"DON'T...underestimate me." Then Sherlock whipped around as he pressed speed dial on his phone and waited.

"What are you...?" The oldest Holmes started to ask but was silenced by his brother's hand.

"Hush, Mycroft." Sherlock shushed him. He waited as the phone on the other end rang for a few minutes before the receiver was picked up. "Yes, it's me. About that favor you have mentioned."

Mycroft blinked as what seemed to be a phone conversation was being played in front of him. Just how many people owed his little brother a favor when he cleared their names from certain cases?

In a matter of hours a carpenter friend Sherlock helped in a drug bust came over with several tools, chair building materials and proper protective equipment. Sherlock thanked the man as he came in and wrote him a rather large check for his troubles.

"Thanks for your time, Carl. I hope this will cover everything." Sherlock said as he ripped off the check from his book and handed it to the carpenter. Carl looked at the check and nearly fell over at the amount.

"Blimey, Mr. Holmes, this is more than enough! I almost feel like I'm cheatin' you." Carl said.

"Not at all. You're doing me a big favor." Sherlock said.

"Well if you say so, Mr. Holmes. But...are ya sure you don't want any help with this?" Carl asked hesitantly. He had no doubt that Sherlock could do anything he set his mind to, but carpentry seemed to push even the consulting detective's skill limits. But Sherlock smiled at him with confidence.

"I'm sure that I have everything under control," he reassured him, patting him on the shoulder. "Please send Jerry my regards."

"I will," Carl responded before smiling at him genuinely. "A thousand thanks to you, Mr. Holmes." And with a hardy handshake Carl took his trolley and turned to leave.

Mycroft watched as the man left before turning to his younger brother.

"I am almost hesitant to ask HOW many favors that you have owed." The government agent said warily.

Sherlock just waved him off.

"Don't. NOW...let's get to work." He announced, picking up one of the tools.

"Good idea...though, one question, where do we start?" Mycroft asked.

"Well, a chair has to have feet to stand on. So let us start with the feet. Its only logical, brother mine." Sherlock stated condescendingly which made Mycroft look like an angry bird who's feathers ruffled.

"I was well aware of that, brother mine. I was just making sure you knew." Mycroft said.

"Of course. However, before we really start, you may want to change from your suit. Study shows that one must be in comfortable articles of clothing for laboring work." Sherlock explained.

"What? You expect me to take off my favorite suit and wear the pedestrian uniform that you prance about in?" The government agent asked with an appalled expression.

"Exactly. Think of it as a learning process, Mycroft. I took the liberty of going to the bargain bin for your working clothes. Don't worry, I got extra large for your flab." Sherlock said, pointing at a pair of suspender jeans, a long sleeved green plaid shirt and some old boots by the couch.

Mycroft was less offended by Sherlock's fat joke and more offended by the commoner clothing. They smelled like they had been washed but with a very domestic brand. There were several offending food and cheap alcohol stains on the suspenders that seemed decades old. Not to mention he HATED the color green with a passion. And don't get him started on those dried cow skin sacks someone dared to call boots.

"...I'm going home." Mycroft said and started to turn only for Sherlock to bolt to the door, slam it and lock it shut.

"You're not going anywhere, brother. Not until we finish this chair." The youngest Holmes stated adamantly.

"Sherlock, really..." He deadpanned. "Do you honestly think that you can keep the agent of the Queen hostage?!"

It was a rhetorical question but a question nonetheless.

"I don't think, I KNOW." Sherlock countered, sounding offended.

"What if something comes up that might be a danger to the Queen and the empire?" Asked Mycroft.

"I'm pretty sure that Doctor Smith would handle it just fine, no matter how mundane." Stated Sherlock.

Mycroft blinked. "Doctor Smith? Is he another one of your contacts?"

"Yes. And no. That's not important." Sherlock pushed the clothing into his hands. "Now, if you please. Change. The Loo is optional."

Mycroft groaned in agitation and grabbed the garments and shoes then left to change. Sherlock better be lucky that, while he doesn't often express it openly, his older brother cares for him so. Otherwise he'd shove his way past him and go home to his milk and chocolate cream stuffed horns. Eventually Mycroft came out in his work clothes, and the brothers went to work. They nailed, hammered, pressed and painted the chair materials for about six hours. By eight o'clock they were finally done with their project.

"At last! We're finished!" Sherlock exclaimed in accomplishment.

"Yes, we are indeed, Sherlock. Although...Just what did we finish?" Mycroft asked as he looked upon the 'chair'.

The legs were spread out too far, the seat was arched in a way that looked like a dog house roof, the back was horrendously chopped up and the paint and fabric was messily applied.

"Hmm...Perhaps we made a few miscalculations. I might have underestimated the effort this would take. We'll just have to try again." Sherlock said.

"Or, we leave it the way it is and for your anniversary Jonathan can have physical proof of your first failure instead." Mycroft suggested.

"Cute, Mycroft. But I didn't pay over eight hundred pounds for a blow torch and chainsaw, break in the window to the sitting room, vandalize John's chair, file a false constable report and frame a man for said vandalism just to come out with nothing for John's anniversary gift. All we need is to use a bit more elbow grease." The younger Holmes assured. At this the older Holmes looked at his brother with a sharp look.

"Sherlock, I am the politician in the Secret Service that is tasked with coddling spoiled and corrupt elitists with vital information as well as paying people amounts of money that makes them develop amnesia when Agent 007 goes on another destruction kick. The only thing on my elbows are ink from signing diplomatic immunity documents and checks! You on the other hand have a professionally trained contractor on the phone in your pocket! Use him, and get us out of this laboring nightmare!" Mycroft ranted.

"Mycroft Holmes, isn't there a part of you that wants the satisfaction of knowing that we did this ourselves?" Sherlock asked.

"NO. Every part of me is reserved for going home, wearing my designer silk robe and enjoying my past due Indulging Time with my pastries and milk." Mycroft stated.

"Nonsense, Mycroft," Sherlock crowed as he brandished the hammer like it was a sword. "The game has just begun!"

"I wish it would end just as quickly..." Mycroft groaned.

This is going to be a long day...he wondered how John was feeling at his stay at the hotel?

Meanwhile...

"I wonder if Sherlock is alright?" John asked himself out loud as he turned the page of a best seller paperback novel that he had.

Back at Baker Street, the brothers worked tirelessly at the chair but with every attempt they seemed to make it work. The only successful turn out was when Mycroft took a hammer and emulated a perfect broken chair. Sherlock and Mycroft got so tired that they fell asleep and didn't even bother to change. Come the next morning they would be awoken by the smell of blueberry crepes, coffee, bacon and eggs. Both brothers went into the kitchen and saw Mrs. Hudson setting down the plates.

"Don't think this means I've taken the housekeeper role on. I just figured two hard working brothers would want something to eat. And Mycroft, Ms. Anthea came. She brought you a change of clothes, your robe, towels and your brand of washing materials." Mrs. Hudson explained.

"Thank God! I must give that woman a raise." Mycroft said gratefully.

"She left a note saying how much she wanted. I can't quite remember it but I believe there were six digits." Mrs. Hudson said.

Mycroft stared at her and let out a sigh, swallowing his pride in the process. "I'll be sure to wire it to her account." He said. "But for now...a shower..."

"Ugh...showers...how dull." Sherlock muttered tiredly as he sat at the table, still in a bit of sleepy daze.

"And you do realize that your 24 hour mark was up, yes?" Mycroft countered as he made his way to the bathroom.

It literally took two seconds for Sherlock to let that information sink in and his eyes snapped open.

"BLAST!" Before the consulting detective could panic further, his smartphone suddenly rang. It played the song "Al Improvviso Amore", which he set specifically for John. Sherlock nervously answered the phone and spoke. "Hello John..." Sherlock let out nervously.

"Sherlock, I have wonderful news. Lestrade has caught that purse snatcher. He was busted working with an ivory smuggling ring. The man isn't fessing up to ruining my chair but it doesn't matter since he'll already by away for a long time." John said.

Great, Sherlock thought sarcastically. Not only did he miss his deadline to finish John's chair but Lestrade caught the purse snatcher. He was supposed to do it and be John's night in shining amour. Its not fair! But Sherlock resisted the urge to stomp his feet like he wanted to. He was better than that.

"T-That's smashing John...Listen, about the twenty four hours..." Sherlock tried to say but John stopped him.

"That was actually what I wanted to tell you. Would you mind an extension? I was asked to help an old medical school friend with his speech for a funeral he's attending, and I couldn't say no. So I'll be gone a while longer. But I'll be home for our anniversary on the eighth." John said happily.

That immediately perked Sherlock back up. It would not only give him a time advantage but also calculate any possible way to make the chair better.

"Actually, I don't mind," He responded, smiling. "Please take all the time you need. I'll be sure that everything is prepared on the 8th."

"Thank you so much, I love you." John said, and Sherlock could just tell there was a smile on his face.

"I love you too." Sherlock said in sweet voice he only used for his John.

They both hang up at the same time. Sherlock stood there for a moment before grinning and started to jump up and down like it was Christmas.

"By Jove, I still got it!"

"As long as whatever you get doesn't involve more two by fours coming through here, I don't mind." Mrs. Hudson said.

"I make no promises, Mrs. Hudson!" Sherlock retorted.

Mycroft rolled his eyes, still amazed at the fact that she hasn't thrown him out on the streets yet. But then again...he did save her from her ex-husband...which he made sure to place to death...

"You are truly on the side of angels, little brother." He didn't know it was his usual sarcasm or not...but in a way, it held some truth.

Sherlock gave him a small smile.

"Perhaps...but don't expect me to be one of them." Then he clapped his hands loudly. "COME! There is much work to be done!"

...Oh the joys of brotherly bonding. This is going to take a while...

Once again the brothers took to building a chair, and this time with the magical use of instructional YouTube videos. They also got the wooden frame of a chair already made from the contractor Carl. Mycroft, at first, smugly asked if this was cheating but the smugness evaporated when Sherlock asked if he'd rather try again at making the frame. Thanks to the YouTube instruction video the brothers learned how to apply the paint and fabric evenly on to the chair frame. It took some time well into the evening but at last the brothers finished their project. It looked every bit as wonderful as a factory made chair...But it had on unique little add-on from Sherlock.

"Sherlock, why did you write on the last part of your name with John's on the front of the chair?" Mycroft asked as he looked at the stitched calligraphy that read 'Johnlock', John written in yellow and lock written in purple.

"Because, that way when I'm not here John will have a part of me around. It'll be as if I'm wrapping my arms around him." Sherlock said.

"...Right. Well I'm just glad we finally finished this thing. I'm going home now. I have seven chocolate cream stuffed horns with my name on them." The oldest Holmes stated as he took out his smartphone and called for Anthea.

"Mycroft." Sherlock said.

"What?" Mycroft asked. The youngest Holmes looked down a bit in slight embarrassment before he looked back up at his brother.

"Thank you for helping me." Sherlock said.

Mycroft stared at him in astonishment, despite hearing his attendant's voice on the phone. After a moment, he smiled, genuinely, as he shrugged.

"Don't mention it." Mycroft said.

And with that, he made his way out of the flat, leaving Sherlock alone with his creation. He stared at the chair, still amazed that he managed to create something with his own hands. And also proving that a number of chances didn't stay on three along the way. But still...the thought of the look on John's face when he sees what he made for him...made his heart beat at least 10 times per millisecond. He could just imagine the proud, joyful look on his face. Then he would hug Sherlock, at which point the consulting detective would have to bend down since he was so much taller and John detested being picked up with his feet showing a great deal of daylight. And finally he would give Sherlock the most passionate kiss ever. Of course all of John's kisses are the most passionate ever but still, it all amounts the same. Come tomorrow, John Watson would be in for a great surprise.

That only left him with one problem to deal with for now though...

"I'm bored." Sherlock groaned as he flopped on the couch.

Thankfully, sleep would make Sherlock's boredom a matter taken care of. Which was a good thing for Mrs. Hudson because she ran out of filling material to plug the bullet holes Sherlock would make in the wall. The eighth of August came with a bright sun and a happy Holmes. Sherlock woke up early in the morning to make the flat perfect for his and John's anniversary. Mrs. Hudson had gone to visit a friend as to give her dearies some alone time. The curly haired man even cleared out his experiments from the kitchen. It took him most of the day to finish but it was well worth it in the end, and John's taxi soon pulled out and the doctor stepped out. He walked up the stairs leading to the flat and rang the door bell once. Soon he heard footsteps rushing and was greeted by a smiling Sherlock answering the door. And John returned his smile in kind.

"Hello, love. Happy anniversary." John said as he walked into the flat.

"Happy anniversary indeed, and may we have many more to come." Sherlock said and closed the door so that he could give his doctor a kiss. While he didn't care if anyone else saw John had a pet peeve for exhibitionism.

"I certainly hope we do. Now then, I was hoping that exchange gifts right now and then have dinner afterwards. What I have to show you can't wait any longer." John said.

"It must be a rather large surprise then, as you have a reasonably sized box." Sherlock said and looked down at the purple gift box with the black ribbon tied around it.

"It certainly is a big one." John affirmed as he looked at the box with a smile.

"I am certain its very special. Now, let me show you my gift." Sherlock said and led John away to the sitting room and gestured to the new chair. "Ta-da!"

"Oh Sherlock, its beautiful! Where did you get this? It must have cost a fortune." John said.

"Not quite. The materials were fairly cheap but I gave Carl the carpenter a few extra pounds for his help. And Mycroft actually helped me build it." Sherlock explained.

"Mycroft Holmes? The poshest man in London who's idea of hard labor is carrying two suitcases of paperwork?" John asked in surprise.

"The very same. It took a bit of arm twisting but I managed to convince him to help me." Sherlock said.

"I wish I could have been a fly on the wall for that." John said with a grin, then turned back to look at the chair and noticed the embroidery on the front. "Wait, is that our names combined written on the chair?"

"Yes. It seemed symbolic that way. Do you like it?" The curly haired man asked.

"I love it Sherlock. I couldn't have asked for a better gift, especially after my old chair was completely annihilated." John said.

"I'm glad to hear that. So, do I get to see my present now?" Sherlock asked.

"Oh yes, of course. And I think that you'll really enjoy what I got. But you'll have to hold the box while I unwrap it." John said and handed the box to Sherlock who took it in his hands.

Sherlock held firmly onto the bottom of the box and watched with a mix of excitement and curiosity as John unwrapped the black ribbon. So many ideas ran through his mind as he tried to deduce what it was. Once the ribbon was completely untied John slowly removed the lid to give Sherlock a look inside the box. What he saw almost made him drop the box out of shock. Inside was...

"...A puppy?" Sherlock spoke softly as he stared at the sleeping basset hound puppy laying on a blue towel in the box.

"That's right. You see, once when I talked to your mother she told me about your old Irish Setter dog Red Beard. She spoke of how much you adored him, how you played pirate together and even showed me pictures of you both. Then when he died it seemed like your world went along with Red Beard, and you never got another pet after him. So I thought that I would go to the pound and find you a new four legged friend." John explained.

"Then...That friend of yours who needed help with his speech...?" Sherlock trailed off in question.

"I made that up as to buy myself more time. I forgot to get his tags and set up an appointment with a vet to check him out. And during his examination it turned out that this little chap, who was the runt of his little, is actually the son of a retired K9 dog from Scotland Yard. I figured that we could use a new little helper on cases, and what better one than a sniffing dog detective?" John asked with a smile.

The doctor looked at Sherlock's face and saw that it was still frozen in shock. For a while Sherlock said nothing and John began to worry that his lover didn't like the puppy. Just as he was about to apologize John noticed something on Sherlock's face. It was a tear that came running down his eye. Soon another tear followed after it, and then another after that one and so on. Sherlock Holmes, consulting detective and possibly the most stoic man you will ever know, was actually crying over a puppy. But they weren't tears of sadness. The smile that started to grow proved that the curly haired man was crying out of joy. He then looked at John and tenderly pressed his forehead against his.

"Thank you so much, John. You have no idea how much this means to me." Sherlock spoke sweetly. John smiled and pressed back against his lover's forehead.

"You're welcome, Sherlock. Would you care to do the honor's of putting on his tags? I hope you don't mind, I already picked a name." John said as he took out a classic red leather collar with two silver dog tags, one with the address of the flat and the other with the puppy's name.

"Toby..." Sherlock said slowly as he tested the name, then smiled again and took the collar. "It is a very fitting name. Wake up, little Toby."

The puppy, Toby, slowly awoke from his slumber as Sherlock gave him a gentle shake. Toby gave a small yawn and licked his lips, then looked at the two humans that were staring at him. The puppy immediately rose to his small feet and started barking in a friendly greeting and wagged his tail in joy. John and Sherlock chuckled then the latter proudly put on Toby's new collar and, for the first time since he was a child, hugged a dog. And soon John himself joined in the hug.

Mrs. Hudson would return later that night from visiting her friend to find her dearies and their new puppy asleep on John's new chair, the doctor curled up in Sherlock's arms and Toby likewise in John's arms. Mrs. Hudson smiled at the sight and fetched a blanket then laid it on the couple and Toby. After giving each of them a motherly pat on the head Mrs. Hudson went to her room, but not before turning back to the sitting room and whispering;

"Happy anniversary, dears."