Hello, dear readers! I'm not entirely sure what to make of this one...partly smut, partly drug use, partly character study. Essentially, I hope it is enjoyable.
Warnings: reference to drug use, sexual content, language. This chapter is relatively tame, but subsequent chapters are definitely darker.
My canon says that Sherlock and John are an established relationship, and that's what this story is operating on. Maybe one day I should do a "how they became a couple" story...but oh dear, there are a lot of story ideas clamouring to get out already, let's just try to focus on one thing at a time, shall we?
Reviews are welcome above all things.
He'd taken too much, again, he realised, as he heard the door leading to 221B close behind John, arriving home after another shift at the clinic. He knew it was John without even needing to look. Of course it was John. The tell-tale signs were numerous, and too dull to list on a conscious level. Anyway, he hadn't taken too much in regards to his level of health or tolerance to the drugs, he was far too conscientious to risk that, but he had definitely taken too much in regards to what John considered to be too much, and that was any at all.
There was a sigh as John surveyed the paraphernalia that Sherlock hadn't bothered to clear away yet, but there was no argument, no shouting. There was no point in arguing with an inebriate; it was an utter waste of energy. Sherlock grinned enthusiastically at his flatmate, and crossed the living room in a single bound (Well, a bound and a half, but almost a single bound. Maybe if he practised, he could make it in a single bound, how brilliant would that be? He decided to devote time to this skill, but not right now, John was here now, John was fun, John was great, he had to tell John things, show John things, do things for and with and to John, because John!), "Hello, John!" he greeted exuberantly.
"Sherlock." John replied in a careful monotone. "When did you shoot up?" He was treading on eggshells, trying to figure out what stage of the trip Sherlock was up to, trying to figure out what part of the emotional rollercoaster he had to prepare for, to contend with.
Sherlock grabbed John's hands and swung them to and fro. "When didn't I shoot up, John? It was a long time ago, really! But today...ah, now...the sun was up! There were people downstairs. I don't like them. Mrs Hudson always has such dull dull dull dull guests! Why does she invite them over when they are so painfully boring? They're just going to die soon anyway!" He stopped suddenly, and drew himself close to John's body, looking him dead in the eye. "Do you know what, John?" he whispered conspiratorially. "It's really yummy, so I had seconds!" he exclaimed, and danced away again, full of energy and inspiration.
John rubbed his hand over his face in tired frustration. "Coffee." he mumbled to himself, moving towards the kitchen, praying that his – relatively tame – drug of choice would make him capable of tolerating Sherlock's hyper antics for a little while, at least. That 'seconds' comment worried him. Hopefully Sherlock was vain enough to have been careful with the injections, and an overdose was not on the cards.
"Sherlock! I have a drink for you!" John called, while he waited for the kettle to boil, and was rewarded by 6 feet of excitement galumphing into the kitchen.
"A drink?" Sherlock asked, intrigued.
"It's a new one," John explained, holding the glass out towards him. "It has no smell, no taste, no colour, just like water – but, it's not water!"
Sherlock looked intently at John, pausing in his examination of the contents of the glass. "What is it, then?" he demanded, curiosity pouring out of him.
"They just call it, 'Miracle Drink'" John shrugged, his face a mask of hopelessness. "You should drink this one, and do an experiment on the next glass, to figure out what's in it!" he suggested, hoping that his voice portrayed the right level of encouragement, that Sherlock wouldn't become suspicious. Not knowing how affected the detective was made it difficult for John to know how easily he could lie to him.
Sherlock's reaction gave him a bit of a clue, however. His eyes widened joyously. "Miracle Drink..." he whispered, awed. "I like experiments!" he declared, and downed the glass in one slug.
Acceptance of obviously bollocks information, and severe dehydration, John noted. Not the best state to be in, but clearly Sherlock was handling things well: he was still maintaining conversation, coordination, and was able to drink without spilling. These were relatively good signs.
Sherlock placed the empty glass on the kitchen bench absently, and wandered off again, forgetting entirely about 'Miracle Drink' and the prospective experiments, and John ignored the fact, refilling the glass with more water/'Miracle Drink', and attending to preparing his coffee, while keeping an ear out for Sherlock breaking anything.
"Sherlock?" John called out, walking through the living room. The door to the apartment hadn't been opened, so he must've gone upstairs. With any luck, to bed, but probably not.
"Sherlock?" John tried again, carefully placing his coffee on the dresser in his room. It had to cool a little before he could drink it, and he could move quicker when he wasn't trying to keep two containers of liquid from spilling.
The bathroom door was open, light spilling through, and John felt a mix of relief knowing that this was where Sherlock had vanished to, and fear at what he would find inside – there were too many dangerous objects in the bathroom to even begin considering scenarios.
He needn't have worried. Sherlock was seated on the toilet, slumped over the sink, his hands and cheek pressed into the surface. What the hell? He'd only been unsupervised for a couple of minutes while John prepared his coffee! There was something covering the sink, something creamy and white and, from the overwhelming smell of the bathroom – minty. John couldn't help it, he laughed. Toothpaste! There was toothpaste squeezed out all over the sinktop, and Sherlock had fallen asleep in it. Oh, John was so making sure that Sherlock was cleaning this up tomorrow.
Sherlock stirred at the sound of John's laughter. "John!" he exclaimed, as though he hadn't seen the doctor in ages. He leapt up, and caught the other man in an embrace, clasping John's coat in his toothpaste-covered hands, and kissing him soundly with a 50% minty mouth. John continued laughing, and Sherlock joined in once they broke off the kiss, but John suspected that they were possibly not laughing at the same thing.
"Here, I got you a drink," he mentioned again, proffering the glass.
Sherlock's short-term memory didn't betray the familiarity of the situation. "Thanks!" he enthused, and downed it in large gulps. John took the opportunity of the distraction to grab a facecloth and wipe the toothpaste off both their faces, as well as Sherlock's hands.
Having finished the drink, Sherlock glared at the empty glass, as though it had wronged him. "John–" he began, holding the glass out, "What do I do now?" he asked in extreme consternation.
John took the glass from his hands, and placed it gently in the centre of the toothpasted sink. He clasped Sherlock's hands together, and leaned in close. "Bedtime." he whispered, with a hint of suggestion, and a great degree of 'I will not take no for an answer'.
"Oooh...!" Sherlock murmured in anticipation, gyrating his hips against John eagerly. John gave him a small peck on the lips, but moved away quickly, leading Sherlock towards his bedroom.
He ignored the coffee mug on the dresser as he walked in: change of strategy. Sherlock was clearly tired if he was falling asleep at the drop of a hat, it was just a matter of making him realise that.
John removed his coat and shoes before climbing into bed – he could figure out the rest of the clothes later. He propped a couple of pillows up against the head of the bed, and sat down leaning against them, his legs straight out in front of him. Sherlock clambered into his lap, intentions absolutely clear, although his messy kisses and erratically grabbing hands were a little less easy to follow. He plucked at John's clothes, but didn't actually succeed in undoing anything, nor managing any arousing strokes. John responded with slow kisses, and firm motions, guiding Sherlock's body, and eventually manipulated him so that he was reclined against John's body, Sherlock's back against John's chest. Sherlock was still breathing quickly with arousal, but was beginning to calm under the influence of John's calming, slow, movements, and the ever-reliable forgetfulness that came with the high.
"We are so getting you checked into rehab," John murmured, thinking aloud, and instantly regretted it. Sherlock tensed. The words had clicked him into a new emotional phase.
"Do you know why rehabilitation treatments are never 100% effective on the patients, John?" Sherlock asked softly, his voice dripping with menace.
John shivered, though he knew Sherlock's anger wasn't directed at him. "Why's that?" he whispered, trying to keep the interaction emotionally neutral, and not send Sherlock spiralling off into an emotional outburst. It really was just time to sleep now.
"They keep checking it on rats and mice – experimenting and studying – it's all with the wrong animals!" Sherlock was gesticulating to emphasise his point, and the frustration he felt with the scientific community, the world as a whole. John couldn't see the detective's expression in the darkened room, as he'd left the lights in his room switched off to reduce stimulation, but the motion of Sherlock's body where John was holding him against his chest was unmistakable. The man was clearly highly agitated.
"Sherlock, lab rats and mice have been proven to have approximately 85% matching DNA to humans," John murmured, gently rubbing Sherlock's far-too-tense trapezius muscle. "Besides, it wouldn't be ethical to conduct that sort of experimentation on humans." he pointed out.
Sherlock sighed, but in frustration, not relaxation, John noted. "Ethics. Ethics is boring. There are that many "unethical"" – the disdain was only too obvious in the way Sherlock pronounced the word, "activities occurring in the world every minute of every day, both sanctioned and unsanctioned. What difference does it make if a few more occur? Particularly if they're for the apparent betterment of mankind. Do you know how many cases I would not have been capable of solving if I hadn't conducted some supposedly "unethical" research beforehand? Besides, there are plenty of people out there who would be willing to abuse their bodies and partake in drug trials purely for the financial reward or whatever other paltry motivations can be conceived. Why not just do it? Don't scientists want to know? Don't they have any urge to find the answers?"
Sherlock was getting riled up again, and began pulling out of John's grasp, as though he were going to head out and find some scientists straight away, and command them to conduct their research differently. On himself, most likely.
"Uh-uh." John negated the movement, wrapping his arms around Sherlock's chest, and twisting his ankles around Sherlock's calves. If Sherlock wanted to stand now, he'd have a hell of a piggy-back accompanist – a military-trained one. The fact that they were reclining on the bed was an added bonus to John's mission – Sherlock couldn't gain the leverage to stand now, with John clasped on to him, and leaning backwards.
They struggled for a couple of minutes, it was terribly inelegant, and completely unlike Sherlock's usual smooth, coordinated movements, which usually led to people questioning whether the detective was a dancer in a past life.
Sherlock gave up shortly, and lay back with a huff. "You are most obnoxious, John," he pointed out petulantly, but his body was relaxed, as though he was no longer interested in getting out of the bed. John refused to trust this indication, and though he slackened his arms, did not unfasten his hands from their monkey-grip in the centre of Sherlock's chest.
His instinct proved to be right, momentarily, when Sherlock made a start, and attempted to dart out of John's embrace again. John was jerked upwards slightly this time, caught up in the momentum, but his arms didn't separate, meaning that he was still able to garner some control over the situation. He tipped his weight sideways, sending them sprawling over the bed, and now Sherlock had tangled bedcovers to contend with as well as John. Neither of which were likely to give up anytime soon.
Sherlock whined at the defeat, an honest sound this time, despondency emanating from his entire being.
John allowed himself a small smile of triumph, but shushed Sherlock comfortingly, letting go with one hand to run his fingers through the other man's wild hair. "Settle down, now...you need to have some rest, okay?"
Sulkily, Sherlock continued to protest, "You're not fair, John. I want..." he trailed off, seemingly incapable of identifying what exactly his scattered intentions were.
"You're high, Sherlock," John pointed out. "Think about it, you're wanting to go off in the middle of the night and recruit a whole bunch of people as lab rats!"
Sherlock giggled at this – it rapidly escalated into hilarity, and John couldn't help but join in with the glee, although not to the same manic degree. "Little mousey lab rat people!" Sherlock gasped out. "Squeak squeak!" he did a ridiculous impression, and now John really did laugh. Oh god, if only he was able to record the crazy, squeaking detective right now – he'd probably swear right off drugs, he hated to be anything but the personification of dignified.
"Do you know who looks like a mousey lab rat person, John?" Sherlock demanded, and John took a deep breath to compose himself, wiping tears from his eyes.
"Who?" he asked.
"Lestrade!" Sherlock declared triumphantly, and descended into another fit of giggles.
John cracked up. Oh no, now he was going to have that image in his mind the next time he saw the detective inspector, and it was going to be absolutely torturous not to laugh. For fuck's sake, Sherlock, the things you make me deal with...
"Okay, okay..." John soothed, as Sherlock's laughing fit died down. "Going to sleep now, yeah?"
Sherlock yawned and spoke at the same time, making his words completely indecipherable.
"What was that, Sherlock?" John prompted.
"Said, 'I'm not tired,'" Sherlock explained, snuggling into John's chest.
John rolled his eyes. How this man was the world's most brilliant detective and yet such a child, he would never understand.
They shifted together on the bed for a moment, while John rearranged himself so that he was lying down, not propped up against the headboard, and so that he wasn't partly trapped under Sherlock's body. Finally, they settled, lying on their sides facing each other: John lying on his right side, and Sherlock lying on his left. Their free arms reached over each other's waist, holding the other close, legs tangled together. Sherlock sighed contentedly, and his breath tickled John's hair, who chuckled gently, enjoying the familiar sensation of Sherlock's heartbeat, perceptible against his own chest. It was reassuring, calming, and a regular beat. The doctor part of John put to rest any concerns that Sherlock was going to have an adverse reaction to the drugs tonight.