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It had started out simple enough, just the beginning of another day. It started out dull, painfully so. Neither of the inhabitants of the upper floor of 221 B Baker Street knew what to do with themselves. John stared into a cup of tea that was steadily growing colder while Sherlock stared at the ceiling, trying to gather the energy to get up to find the skull or the gun or both.

John broke the silence first. "I'm going out with Sarah tonight." Sherlock grunted in reply. "What, no smart comment, no snarky remark?"

"Would you listen if I gave one?" he asked quietly, sounding exhausted.

"No," John answered truthfully.

"I'm not exactly into futility so I'll keep my comments to myself, if you don't mind." John was oddly pleased.

"Thank you," he said, smiling. However, part of him was waiting for the other shoe to drop. He knew this was Sherlock he was dealing with and nothing was as simple as it seemed.

"That being said, I do not want her here anymore. Ever." There was a note of finality in the last word, even as he continued to stare unblinkingly at the ceiling.

"What?" John squawked, outraged. Sherlock deigned to shoot him a glare that brooked no further comment or contention. John let it drop, knowing the more initial fight he put up, the more likely Sherlock would dig his heels in and never rescind this decree.

"Fine," was his only reply. Sherlock shot him a sidelong glance then went back to his ceiling.


"All right," John said, shrugging on his jacket. "I'm headed off to Sarah's."

"Why?" Sherlock asked sulkily from his place by the kitchen sink. Had they been in any other flat in the world, it would have seemed as if the tall man hunched over the sink was doing dishes. John knew better. He may not have been a scientist but he knew where exactly that occurrence would fall on a Bell Curve.

"Because," John replied, "most people enjoy having intimate relationships outside of with their flatmates." Sherlock's head snapped up at the word 'intimate' but John didn't notice.

"Oh. So this is about getting your leg over."

"No! No, of course not, I'm not expecting— Normal people want normal, not always sexual, relationships with other normal people." John sputtered before finally saying what he meant to.

"Oh, you're hardly normal, John, don't sell yourself short." John fumed a little before shaking his head and turning back towards the door.

"It's none of your business whether or not I sleep with Sarah."

"Isn't it?" Sherlock asked in a hard tone that John had rarely ever heard him use. While John had moved towards the door, Sherlock had vacated the kitchen and moved into the living room.

John turned back towards him. "No," he told him, "it isn't. Why would it be?"


"Because is not an answer. Put your ridiculously large vocabulary to work." Sherlock had turned his back to John at this point and was slowly, deliberately shaking his head back and forth. When Sherlock finally turned back to his flatmate, John was unprepared for what he saw.

For some reason incomprehensible to John, Sherlock was furious. There was a look in his eyes that made John's stomach drop (but this was a good drop, a familiar one, but not one he usually got looking at his flatmate).

Sherlock's lip snarled as he looked down on his shorter comrade. Fire blazed in his stormy-gray eyes as he snapped, "You're mine! Doesn't she understand that?" He quickly ripped his gaze away from John's and turned again from him. If John had been paying attention, he would have caught something in Sherlock's face that looked remarkably like guilt.

John was not, in fact, paying attention because he was too busy being indignant at being objectified and raised his voice. "I'm not something to be owned! I'm not yours, or hers, I am me!"

"But you are mine! How can you not understand that? You are mine and she is taking you from me!" Sherlock had turned back to John at this point and had even taken a step toward his, shrinking the distance between them from five feet to three. He was visibly keeping his distance, as if afraid of what would happen if he got too close.

Incredulous, John laughed. "Oh," he said, "I get it. This is one of your tantrums!"

"Tantrums!" Sherlock yelled. "Tantrums? I am not a three-year-old and I will not be treated like one!"

"You are a three-year-old!" John replied, matching the taller man's volume. "You've been told that you have to share your latest toy and you don't like it! So you'll scream and yell and make everyone else miserable until you get your own way, but you won't this time, I promise you!"

Sherlock strode forward, closing the distance between them. He fisted his hand in John's collar and yanked John to him. The tall, thin man was stronger than he looked.

John was mad but his anger compared to Sherlock's was like comparing a lawn sprinkler to Niagara Falls. The stomach-dropping look was back, only far worse. John did not know when, how, or why but it had gained a predatory edge that made him want to start running and not look back. Or it should have. He didn't want to think about what it made him want to do.

"I. Am not. A. Child," Sherlock seethed out between gritted teeth. Hand still wrapped in a death-grip on the shorter man's collar, Sherlock moved them backwards. John let out a small grunt as his back hit the wall and he heard Sherlock's free hand slap the wall beside him, effectively pinning John between the wall of 221 B Baker Street and Sherlock's body. John squirmed to try to get out of his grip (he knew he was, in all honesty, stronger than the taller man) but accomplished nothing. Whether adrenaline had made Sherlock preternaturally strong or he didn't honestly have a problem with his position, he didn't want to think about it.

"Oh, really? What are you, then?" he asked cruelly, trying to keep a handle on the situation, expecting a smart remark. He was disappointed. Instead of hearing a snarky reply, he watched his flatmate's pupils dilate dangerously. It was dangerous because he didn't have to be a doctor to realize what it meant… and what would come next.

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