Sherlock used the bottom of the shirt to wipe his lips as Jim tucked his now-flaccid cock back into his trousers.
"I feel I should tell you, Sherlock…if you and John get any closer, I will burn you. I will burn the heart out of you." Sherlock opened his mouth to protest, but Jim interrupted him. "Don't tell me you don't have one. We both know to what I am referring." Jim paused. Chuckled. "Or rather…to whom."
Sherlock paused. He was trying to phrase his next statement carefully, to not give anything away. "Why? Why would you do that? You know how it would upset me…how it would enrage me. What good would taking him away from me do you?"
Jim let out a long, exaggerated sigh. "Oh, Sherlock, Sherlock, Sherlock. Don't you understand? Your happiness…it means nothing. You can love me, you can despise me. You really think that matters?" He knelt down and put his hands on either side of Sherlock's neck, applying just enough pressure to make the detective uncomfortable.
Even though Sherlock was uncomfortable—the discomfort quickly turning to pain—his face remained stoic. He looked into Jim's black eyes and could see a sea of emotions in them. Anger. Excitement. Hatred. Intrigue. Jealousy. Arousal.
Jim raised his eyebrows, amused, and smiled. "Am I, now?"
"Yes. If you didn't care about my emotional state, you would have killed John already. You're jealous of him, but there is nothing you can do about it."
Jim pulled Sherlock's head down. Their faces were mere inches away from each other. "Explain. I'm curious to see how you came to that conclusion."
"It was simple. You want him dead, but you know that I would never forgive you if you hurt him. Somewhere in your black soul, you have feelings for me, and you want me to return them…something I would never do if you harmed John." Sherlock tried not to flinch as Jim began rubbing his bruised jawbone with his thumbs. The smile never left Jim's face.
"Feelings for you," Jim repeated, tilting his head back and forth as he contemplated the idea. "I've already admitted to it. Can you blame me? We were made for each other, Sherlock. I keep telling you that, but you don't seem to believe me."
"How could I? You are the bringer of death and destruction. You have no regard for rules, for order."
Jim pulled Sherlock's head down closer still to his. Whispering huskily, he said, "The devil incarnate, you could say. Don't worry, my dear. I'll make a believer out of you yet."
Sherlock's heart was beating fast and strong. He was excited, more excited than he had ever been in his life. He felt as if he were reading off a script. Jim brought death and destruction, yes, but he also brought something else—excitement. A challenge. A break from the normal, boring, everyday life that he trudged through. That was something that nobody else—not even John—could save him from.
Jim knew all this, and perhaps that is why he wasn't the least bit surprised when Sherlock closed the distance between and locked their lips in a warm, passionate kiss.
John returned to the flat about an hour after Jim left, which gave Sherlock just enough time to shower and apply make-up over his bruised jaw where Jim had punched him. As Sherlock had been bathing and dressing himself, he had gone over what he had done with Jim over and over in his mind.
I want him, he told himself, followed by, but who do I mean by 'him'? John…it must be John. I love John. I have always loved John. Jim…Moriarty…it's the excitement, only the excitement. There's no real feeling behind it. And even if there were, I still want John.
Sherlock left the bathroom wearing John's robe—untied—and nothing else. His body and hair were still dripping wet. He headed to the kitchen to start a cup of tea. When he saw John there setting the grocery bags on the ground, he froze on the spot and pulled the robe tightly around his body. Too late. John had already seen him head-on.
"John! I—I didn't hear you come in…" John's face turned ten shades of red as he cleared his throat and made it a point to look anywhere but at Sherlock. Even though they had lived together for a time, they had never seen each other naked, never seen each other's equipment. A few beats of awkward silenced ensued. "So, erm…I see you got the shopping."
John busied himself by digging through the grocery bags again, pulling items out and setting on the table. "Yes, well…I did tell you that was where I was going."
"No rows with the machine this time, then?"
Chuckling, John said, "No, no rows this time…where's Jim?"
"Gone," Sherlock said quickly, eagerly. "I…sent him away."
"Sent him away? You told him about us, then?"
For a split-second, Sherlock considered lying. He realized, though, that the lie would encourage John to take their relationship further, faster. Jim's reaction to that would be…unpleasant.
"I'm sorry John," he said, and he meant it. "I thought it would be best to end it over a short time, instead of surprising him with it. Also, I think it only appropriate to wait until we know how to label our relationship before making any rash decisions."
John nodded. "I think that's the most human thing I've ever heard you say. The fact that you don't want to hurt him shows that he means a lot to you."
"You mean a lot to me," Sherlock said quickly, in a lowered voice. He was fully aware that Jim—Moriarty, Sherlock, Moriarty! Don't keep calling him Jim!—was watching them, listening to every word they exchanged. "John, can you do something for me?"
Without hesitation, John said, "Anything. What do you need?"
"If you don't have anything planned for today, I was hoping you could visit Mycroft on my account. I still feel a bit under the weather." It wasn't a lie, not exactly. The truth was that he did still feel ill, but he didn't give a damn about visiting Mycroft. He just needed time alone, time to think.
"Yeah, sure," John was saying. "I had actually planned to go later on this afternoon."
Sherlock smiled, his eyes crinkling at the corners. "Great minds think alike."
Jim Moriarty sat in his limo, drinking from a bottle of black Guinness lager that he held in one hand and watching video feed from his phone that he held in the other. He was on his way to Paris for a meeting, of sorts. Sebastian had tried to persuade him to fly, but Jim wouldn't hear of it. He was ecstatic to have the opportunity to watch Sherlock, even though he knew the detective would do thing after thing to enrage him.
The strong, pungent taste of his lager reminded him of his childhood, his adolescence, of his days growing up in Ireland in a tiny home with an abusive drunk of a father and a cold, cowardly mother. They had never cared about him. They had never nurtured him, never encouraged his gifts.
But that doesn't matter now. I took care of them years ago.
"You mean a lot to me," he heard Sherlock say. Jim cursed loudly and flung the beer bottle at the window, effectively shattering it and sending both suds and shards of glass flying.
"Great minds think alike," Sherlock said, another line which made Jim's blood boil.
"Great minds are made for each other," he told his phone. "You'll learn that soon enough, Sherlock. You'll learn that soon enough."