The characters and situations in this story belong to Village Roadshow Pictures, Wigram Productions, and other entities, and I do not have permission to borrow them. No infringement is intended in any way, and this story is not for profit. Any errors are mine, all mine, no you can't have any.

Thanks to Cincoflex, who was enthusiastic!

Please note, this is NOT slash.

John had warned her about him. Flushing a little, he'd explained that his friend, while brilliant, was prone to rudeness and careless behavior, and that he hoped she wouldn't take it as insult, because most of the time Sherlock Holmes was just too preoccupied with his own ratiocinations to remember to be polite.

Mary had listened, and agreed, and then she'd actually met the man.

Oh, she had no doubt John was right, often. But while Mr. Holmes had seen right through her at first glance, she'd seen through him as well, because he was correct--she was good at her job, and a governess had to be able to read someone quickly and accurately, or suffer at the hands of her charges. And she'd seen what John had been too loyal to admit--that his friend feared to lose him.

It was understandable, really. Mary didn't approve of his methods, but she could imagine how the thought of losing someone as dear as John would strike fear into even so cool a heart as Mr. Holmes'. Bless the stubborn pair, it took John almost getting killed for her to straighten them out.

After all, she was no naive girl fresh from the schoolroom. Mary had spent two years working on the Continent, far from her family, and had been engaged for half that time. She could see how strong was the bond that lay between them; and she was not so jealous, or so foolish, as to try to part them. John might have more responsibilities now, and could not go haring off after Sherlock at the drop of a hat, but they were friends, and should remain so. Women had their own spheres and men had theirs, and while it was a little difficult to imagine asking Sherlock over for tea, for instance, Mary could see John off to visit his friend with perfect serenity--bar her fears for her husband's safety, of course.

The two of them did get into some dreadful scrapes.

Nevertheless, the dream was...disturbing.

She never thought of it deliberately. It was bad, wicked, and had no place in the mind of a proper, upright, Christian woman. The merest hint of it was promptly banished, sternly.

But sometimes it returned, on the edge of sleep when she was no longer thinking clearly; or when she got one of her megrims and had to dose herself with laudanum, and the aftermath of pain had her wandering strange landscapes from the shelter of her bed. When she had no defences.

And it had all sprung from one chance question. They had been collecting John's old rugby ball, turned up after all beneath a discarded invention of Sherlock's, and the latter had rambled on about how they'd shared everything, even clothing before John "grew too stout".

It had been impulse, wicked impulse, to lean over and tease her husband with a whisper. "Everything, darling?"

The blush that had heated John's ears had surprised her. And set her unconscious mind down paths it should not travel...

She loved her husband, had almost from the moment she'd set eyes on him at a charity tea. She'd loved her dead fiancé truly, but it had been a girl's first passion, and the love she bore for John was that of a woman who knew what she wanted. Her gentle, golden John, who loved her just as deeply, who was gallant and protecting and yet loved her saucy too, who never treated her as if she were a child or a doll.

She adored lying in his arms, loved the touch of his hands and all the marvelous things he did with his body. Her mother had warned her that the ways of men could be disgusting, even painful, but Mary had not found them so; instead, John had brought her to a new appreciation of the Song of Songs, one that would have made the rector blush.

She was very happy in her marriage.

But occasionally, in those vulnerable, half-dreaming moments, she would wonder...just how much had they shared?

It wasn't that she wanted to turn from her husband, not at all. But on occasion--in the best dream--Mary was lying in bed, waiting for him in her finest lace gown, sleepy and warm. And when the door opened and John came in, another followed him.

She would watch from the shelter of the pillows as the two of them shed coats and shirts, boots and trousers, joking quietly with one another. John always finished first, in her dream; joining her in the softness with a long kiss, his mustache tickling her nose, his flavor sweet and familiar. Sherlock would take his time, revealing a body leaner and paler than than her husband's, though equally strong. Where John bore golden fur, intriguing to her touch, Sherlock's skin was nearly bare, with just a scattering of wiry hair; below...well, she didn't even have words for the differences, though they were clear enough.

And when he was unclothed, he would slide into the bed behind her, pressing up against her back as John embraced her from the front, two hard, hot, masculine forms enveloping her. Two low voices murmuring praise, two sets of scarred hands pulling away her gown...that was the most shivery moment. Her husband's hands were warm and smooth, while Sherlock's cooler, rougher fingers raised goosebumps in their wake as they explored her skin together.

If she were still awake enough to go on, but not so aware as to stop, Mary would keep dreaming, her desire daring more. Hands and mouths all over her, the tickling stroke of a mustache and the faint prickle of stubble; John's hot deep kiss, Sherlock's slower and more languid. Her own hands finding two different textures beneath her seeking fingers, two eager responses different and yet so similar. Lost beneath them both as they competed to make her squirm and gasp, teasing her and laughing together. The two of them taking turns pleasing her, a shared gem, a joy, a prize; Sherlock watching with a fond smile as John found groaning bliss in her arms, and John's eyes crinkling with pleasure as Sherlock wrapped himself around her and reduced her to trembling, ecstatic helplessness.

And falling asleep afterwards, so tangled together that they could not tell themselves apart, replete and safe and warm...

No. It was bad, it was wicked, it was shocking, and she would never allow herself to dwell on it, let alone breathe a hint of it to her husband. Never. It was a thing of the subconscious, and must remain there. It was impossible.

But every once in a great while, she couldn't help thinking...what a pity.