At last. Took me a bit, but there it is... I got snagged a little on one scene, but managed to bushwhack through it. Anyway, tried to slip in some adorable-ness with Nero... hope you enjoy :)
For How Now Meow. Check out her awesome story Against the wind, by the way.
It is with a profound sense of escaping death by choking that Sherlock almost jumps out of the car while it's still moving. He can feel Irene's contemptuous look burning into the back of his neck, but he doesn't care, not really – his intellectual sense of aesthetics was almost smothered just now!
John's cousin and her husband, with whom he and Irene had to catch the ride, are the most obnoxiously chatty people – chatty in that merry, warbling way of people delighted with their own silliness, and who have to rant, no matter what the subject. The sillier the better. And so he spent the last thirty-seven minutes and forty-three seconds of London noon Sunday traffic jams with his temple pressed against the soothingly cool glass of the backseat window while his brain was being drilled to death with absolutely cliché nonsense on marriage, reminisces of the happy couple in the front seats, anecdotes about people he didn't know, and occasional squeals of delight over his son. Irene clearly was having a good time pretending to be interested in some bits of conversation, but he failed to see the amusement or join into it – hence his disapproved disembarking from the vehicle as soon as it rolled onto the parking lot.
"God, where do idiots come from?" he hears Irene's weary growl beside him after she finishes trilling dishonestly enthusiastic thanks at the married couple.
"Usually, they're born," he growls, longing for a cigarette. He remembers he saw Mycroft smoke some earlier, when Irene spoke to him – and he's so annoyed by the silliness of chatter around him that he's honestly almost ready to debase himself, asking his older brother for a fag. Or a whole damn pack.
"I'm going to look for Mark," Nero declares, looking at Irene with a mixture of being informative and asking for permission, and for some reason Sherlock feels glad the boy inherited his eyes. It's strangely interesting and thrilling to see such a prominent feature of himself in his offspring.
"Go ahead," Irene doesn't add any warnings or instruction or other typically motherly jabber, because they both know it would be unneeded, if not offending, to their son. He knows all that, after all.
Nero is off, mingling quickly into the thickening crowd of guests, and Sherlock really wants his cigarette now. Where the hell is Mycroft when he's needed…?
"Speaking of idiots, where is John?" Irene asks with a small smile, and he smirks as well – John had long since gotten used to being called by that name. After all, practically everyone deserved it.
"Probably inside already… Irene?"
"Yes, my darling?" she's not looking at him, instead she's watching the people in the crowd, caught by their details and words and expressions, and he experiences an unexpected bout of jealousy over her attention. Usually, he has it monopolised when they're together (just like she has his, he must admit), and he finds he doesn't very much like any aberrations from that order of things.
"I'm bored," he complains.
"Please don't say that. I spent a ten-hour flight once with a four-year-old who kept whining the phrase, and I must say if there was ever any doubt he's your son, the manner in which he kept whining, erased it completely."
Sherlock scoffs, stuffing his hands into his trousers pockets. The ride with John's cousins strained his mental immunity quite severely, and he needs some entertainment to ride it out. He sees Irene glance at him, and he sees a spark dance in her eyes.
"Let's go inside," she says, brushing a fingertip under his chin, and it sends a cascade of tingling ache and delight down the skin of his neck. "Let's make sure the party is not so awfully dull…"
Mycroft felt he was watched – a cold sensation in the back of his neck – and he turned round, his eyes meeting empty space before darting down as he realised the height of his observer is much humbler than he'd instinctively expected. Much humbler indeed.
There is a pair of ice cold eyes, so bright blue that almost impossible to make a comprehensive contact with, and for a moment his breath stops. It's a moment of humiliatingly stupid weakness, in which he feels thrust back about thirty two or four years back in time, when little Sherlock used to look at him that way. But the brief moment of insanity is quickly waved away by the reality and also by the clear marks in this boy's facial features that take all of Mycroft's willpower not to scowl. He can see The Woman's forehead, eyebrow arches… the boy will have more of her nose than Sherlock's, too. And damn her, she combed his hair the same way Sherlock wears it – her idea of a joke, he supposes.
He looks at the boy, the frankly impossible child – the idea of the Holmes lineage continuing was so sheer an abstract for so many years that he still had embarrassing moments of difficulty to fully grasp the boy's existence. Well. Not that the boy's name is Holmes anyway, he reminds himself with surprisingly mixed feelings. But he prefers not to delve into those. Feelings never lead to anything good. In Sherlock's instance, they led to an elaborate ruse defying his brother, an almost real suicide and siring a child with the woman his brother loathes most of all.
"You're my uncle," it's a statement, made calmly, not even a conversation starter. Mycroft wonders if either Sherlock or that woman told the boy who he is to him. Somehow, it doesn't seem likely.
"Yes," he replies therefore, because he doesn't really know what else to say.
"Why you don't visit? You don't like Mum, but why else?"
He's taken aback, to say the least. He doesn't often talk to children directly, in proper conversations (last time in 1998, he thinks), and to top it all the question isn't really an easy one to answer. He's not even sure how he should speak to the child… there's no idea in his head at all, concerning anything about the boy, and it scares him. Like a white sheet of paper, no plan, no strategy, no ideas. He clears his throat.
"I'm not really a visiting person," he replies.
"You're visiting John now."
"He invited me."
"So Dad doesn't invite you?"
Dad. For God's sake… the word clashes with the essence and idea of 'Sherlock' so much that he can't mentally digest it.
"No, he doesn't," he's getting strangely tired with the conversation.
"I think my Mum likes you."
"She thinks you're funny."
"Me and Mum will be with Dad for a while. You can visit."
"Could…" Mycroft corrects the boy on a reflex.
"Could," he can see the four-year-old mind absorb the correction like a sponge.
The boy keeps looking at him expectantly, and there is such unforced intensity in those eyes, that for the first time in his adult life Mycroft feels compelled to answer to an unspoken message.
"I'll see," he replies curtly. He suddenly feels the need to go away – this child awakes feelings in him, unpleasant sensations that he doesn't want to analyse and therefore preserve in himself.
The boy nods. And then, with excellent manners seasoned with charm he could only have learned from his mother, he extends his hand in a perfect gesture.
"It was good to meet you."
It takes Mycroft approximately seven seconds before he, at last, slowly, tentatively, closes his own palm around the small, warm hand.
"I'm not a great supporter of marriage."
It is, perhaps, the worst opening of a best man's speech that ever was invented, and John rapidly regrets his choice of Sherlock for the role. But it is too late now, the bloody man is standing beside him at the end of the table, ready to get his speech through to the end (oh, God, what else will he say?), so unless Doctor Who lands here in his TARDIS right now and offers John a trip back in time, nothing can be done. So with resignation he seeks solace by squeezing his newly wed, quietly laughing wife's hand, and counts the seconds of Sherlock's remaining inspiration. Unfortunately, Irene Adler stares at him with blazing, intense eyes, and that more than anything gives Sherlock the inspiration to top himself – John knows that with merciless experience.
"I don't see much point in it," Sherlock continues. "It doesn't make sense to me, especially seeing as, if not framed with the proper financial securities, it can lead to considerable losses in the future – one in three is the ratio of divorces, nowadays."
Most people laugh, luckily taking it all as a comedy stunt. Sherlock catches Irene Adler's flaming gaze, and John wonders that the tablecloth doesn't combust spontaneously at the (frankly disturbing) fire that flashes through Sherlock's own eyes.
"But I respect John, therefore I trust that he made the right choice and decision for the sort of life he wants to lead, and that suits his intellectual level."
"Yeah, thanks, Sherlock," John interjects, causing another salve of laughter. He and Sherlock exchange a grin. Apparently, people like what they do now.
"I won't talk much about John and Mary's love… to be frank, I don't recall when exactly was it that he met her," Sherlock puts on a focused face while people laugh again. The man could be a comedian, if it weren't for the somewhat sad fact that 99% of the time he's serious. "But I will say that they seem admirably suited for each other. Also, a lot says for Mary's good will and patience, for not dumping John as his many, many previous girlfriends because he helps me catch thieves and killers."
More laugh and John feels the urge to throttle his best man for the girlfriend mention. Mary, however, finds it funny and squeezes his hand, trying to lighten his murderous mood. She looks so beautiful in white… hell, right now he can't wait to get the reception over with and get ahead on the honeymoon.
"Your input, John, by the way, is of immense value, even if not always in the way you think or intend – thank you for that," only Sherlock's thanks can possibly be so thankless. "It was suggested to me that I read a Shakespeare sonnet as a part of my speech, but after browsing through the man's works I found none that was suitable enough. I think that a quote from the book of one forensic pathologist will be more adequate here, for he moves something that by simple minds might be considered the essence of life: When the head is severed from the spine and only the limbs remain-"
"Alright, that's it!" John snaps at last, standing up to brace his hands on Sherlock's shoulders and push him down into his chair, accompanied by the uproar of laughter from all the guests.
"You wanted me to make a speech!" Sherlock protests. "I'm making a speech!"
"You've said enough," John mutters while Mary's mother prepares to give her speech. "Here, take a snort and be quiet…" he pours some champagne into Sherlock's glass and takes his own seat next to a giggling Mary, and wishes she were a touch more severe on Sherlock. He only gets worse when he sees people approving of him.
Though in the field of approval, unfortunately none is more gratifying to the haughty detective than that of his lover, Irene Adler. And today she seems to be overfeeding him with it. John can see her leaning in to Sherlock and purring something sensually into his ear, and he looks away, trying to focus on his mother-in-law.
People are mingling, dancing and eating, and Sherlock is put off by the fact that Irene is away from him, currently dancing with someone. She congratulated him on his little mayhem during the speech, and promised to later, along with him, stir up some more of it. At least that much consolation.
A small hand touches his sleeve.
It's so surreal, unnatural and unfamiliar that he has to process the word from the biological angle to finally come to terms with the fact that it's a name for him, one of his functions now. He looks down from askance to see Nero looking back up at him, and he experiences a strange moment in which he thinks that it feels like exchanging a glance with himself.
"I asked Uncle Mycroft to visit," his son informs, good vocabulary for a four-year-old, but the pleasing fact is pallid and nonexistent in comparison with the sense of his words.
"Oh, wonderful," he drawls, looking ahead. "Tell me when, so I can get out of the country for a few days."
Still, rather pleasing that Nero recognised Mycroft as his uncle without ever been told he even has one. That definitely vouches well for Nero's intelligence and reasoning and deducing abilities, and (despite the looming threat of his brother's visit) Sherlock is pleased with it.
"Nice speech, Sherlock!" Lestrade's voice announces his arrival, but the inspector's eyes are mostly stuck on Nero, instead of the man he's addressing.
Sherlock doesn't see why they're all so curious and obsessed with Nero. True, he never planned to be a father, he never imagined the fact even, and had to take a few moments (or days) to come to grips with the situation, but he cannot see why it was such a sensation among the Scotland Yard inhabitants. Honestly, they keep following Nero or him or both during the party, and if that lot follows criminals as discreetly as they follow him and his son, then no wonder they keep needing his help.
Irene was a sensation as well, but that's rather her nature. She's a sensation wherever she goes, he thinks. To him, too. Though, in a whole different way, of course. He's nothing like those plain, simple minds she used to screw (quite literally) off knowledge for living… omitting the unfortunate jumbo jet incident.
"Hello there," Lestrade grins at Nero. "Aren't you going to introduce us?" he asks, looking back at Sherlock.
"What for, you already know who he is. Nero, this is inspector Lestrade. I help him out on his cases sometimes."
"Hello," Nero smiles in a way that is both sweet and charming – Irene's influence.
"Hello, young man," Lestrade shakes Nero's hand, and is treated to a dubious and almost contemptuous look – so much so that Sherlock feels proud.
"I'm a child," Nero informs the DI as if the man were biologically unaware. Lestrade looks perplexed for a moment.
"Right, right… of course you are," he looks up at Sherlock. "Well, you can rest easily, no doubt he's yours."
"I never had doubts," Sherlock frowns dismissively. "His appearance is a sufficient testimony to being related to me in a direct line of descent."
"Whatever. Anyway – hard to believe you're a father, I didn't see that one coming."
"He is my father," Nero puts his three cents in. "And Mycroft is my uncle," he shares his newly obtained piece of information.
"That's right," Lestrade grins. "He's your dad's brother."
"I know," Nero again looks at him as if he were an idiot – because Lestrade isn't aware Nero never was told he had an uncle, he has no idea that Nero was just presenting his newest deduction instead retelling a meaningless, conversationally misplaced fact.
"You like the party?" Lestrade asks, smiling in that particular way that most adults reserve for babies.
"Yes," Nero replies with a solemn nod of head. "It's fun, and people are very interesting. And the cake looks good," he adds, causing Sherlock to smile, while Lestrade chuckles in that strange delight people seem to become infected with around small children.
"Darling!" Irene's airy, fresh voice reaches from behind, and he looks over his shoulder to watch while she sashayed towards them, hips swaying in an elegant, almost energetically rhythmic way.
Lestrade stares, forgetting himself for a long moment, and even Nero running up to meet Irene halfway through, doesn't seem to break his focus. Irene picks Nero up into her arms and places an almost artistically beautiful kiss on his cheekbone. Sherlock thinks that surrounded with his mother's taste and elegance, Nero will certainly grow to be an aesthete.
"Hello, inspector," Irene smiles at Lestrade who takes a moment to realise that by convention, he should return her greeting.
"Hello," he says, and clears his throat, shaking her free hand. "I'm Greg. Greg Lestrade, DI… Greg is fine."
Irene smiles in that radiant way that leaves a tinge of predatory sharpness lingering about her features, and her eyes sparkle with all the clever, ego-destructive quips she could fling at Lestrade with absolute, coyly purring effortlessness. In that moment, Sherlock supposes that it's all the unsaid in her eyes that is one of the things alluring him the most.
"Very sweet to meet you," Irene replies in a voice touched with that tinge of mockery held at the ready, but not released just yet. She places Nero back down on the ground. "I heard a thing or two about you."
"And I'm very glad to meet you at last."
"Thank you. Darling," she turns to Sherlock, laying a hand on his shoulder. Her nails are blood red, matching her lips, the hue making a cutting contrast against the blackness of his suit, a contrast he for some strange reason deemed sensual. "John is looking for you."
"Apparently, he wants you on a photo, they're having a session."
"Wh- Sentiment?" he starts a question and then instantly drops it, issuing the answer in a tone of supposition, and Irene nods.
"There's a good boy, you learn fast. Off you go, and don't bite people next to you. Remember, I'm the only one privileged to that," she adds, pupils dilating as her eyes narrow in a suggestive smile, voice lowered to quietness. "Hmm. Hold that thought and be back soon."
"Oh, I will," he replies. "The photoshoot will be featuring John's sister, and since they don't get along, it will only take a few moments for them to start arguing, which John will be trying to keep quiet since it's his wedding, and which she'll be trying to expose, for the exact same reason. John is aware of that, as well as of the fact that she is already in the mild stage of inebriation, so not to let her make a bad impression on Mary and her parents, he'll be trying to wrap the photos up as quickly as possible, given her inebriation and his nervousness I'm giving it five minutes thirty seconds flat."
She smiles, slowly, predatory eyes fixed on him, and he feels his blood rush slightly hotter and quicker through his body. When she speaks, her voice is low and throaty, making the size of his pupils match that of her own.
"I swear, Mr Holmes, you'll get more action today than the groom."
John will kill him.
That was just about the last conscious thought Sherlock had, before her hot, hungry lips pressed against his neck, wiping his brain utterly, completely clean for a moment. So now he buries his face in her hair, trying desperately to control the rush of infinite impatience, and groans in unrestrained pleasure as her teeth expertly nip at his pulse line, before her hot tongue gently bathes the spot.
His head is beginning to spin, both from that sheer, physical lust that he'd never experienced before she breached his mental fortress with her intelligence. Almost ironic and yet also incredibly consistent, that his physical desire came from his intellectual fascination with her. Perhaps that was why it was only her that he desired in his whole life – because for that emotion to be awoken, his intellect had to be pleased and stimulated sufficiently first.
He returns her favours, her neck a long time point of focus for him, and he trails hot, hungry kisses, teasing her and rounding the spot he knows to be particularly sensitive, but not touching it yet. She moans, raising every single hair on the back of his neck, and slips her hand under his shirt, her nails digging into his back, sending a sensation of searing, pleasurable pain. When he at last licks her sensitive spot, collecting the inebriating flavour of her skin, she runs her other hand through his hair, pressing herself closer against him and breathing a quiet moan right into his ear, flooding him with sensual alert.
Her fingers work on the buttons of his shirt with electrifying skill and ease, and he backs slowly, step by step, kissing every spot of her face and neck that is within his reach right now, until soon he's backed up against a wall. More precisely, against a row of coats hanging from the ornate hooks on the wall. The cloakroom was Irene's idea of mischief, and if he had any objections to that, he certainly forgot them when she nibbled on his ear.
She finishes undoing his shirt and pushes it off his shoulders, revealing his chest, and he moans when she leaves what tomorrow would surely be a red bite mark. Her hot breath washes over his exposed skin, causing his flesh to crawl and tingle with reinforced lust and desire, and he pushes the straps of her dress down, hungrily claiming the exposed pale skin, while his hands slide down the curve of her spine, only to come back and tug the dress lower, exposing more of her collarbone. Her breathing increases, pulse hammering as hard and fast as his own, and it is his turn to groan as her hands reach his belt buckle.
He slides a hand under her thigh, hoisting her up, and she wraps her legs around his waist, eyes ablaze as she smirks at him smugly from above. He turns around to seat her on a chest of drawers that is just the right, perfect height, and hisses in impatience as she takes mercilessly long to teasingly undo his belt.
Each time they have sex it is a blend of power struggle and slightly paradoxical consideration, and it brings thorough, deliberate pleasure, the torturous sort that he enjoys so much on some surprising, primal level.
And this time, he thinks, brain and body white hot with onslaught of sensations, it will be no different.
"Yeah, shut up, Harry, I'm doing it, look!" John's angry voice muffled by the door makes Sherlock freeze briefly and look at Irene, only to meet a look of sheer, mischievous glee spread across her features.
The door opens with a rapid yank, and it is the groom who freezes now, seeing his best man right in the middle of tucking his much ruffled shirt back into his trousers, while Irene is doing her hair up again, both straps of her dress still off her shoulders. John gapes for approximately four seconds, and Sherlock uses that time to finish dealing with his shirt.
"Oh, for God's sake…!" John hisses, the words barely coming through his clenched throat, and Sherlock can see the wild enjoyment on Irene's face. He looks away, because in his current, still heated state, that expression on her face is more appealing than ever. "What the hell do you think you're doing- No! Don't!" he holds up a finger as Sherlock draws a breath to answer.
"Come now, Johnny, don't be so shocked," Irene smiles, finishing with her hair.
"Don't call me that," John scowls, which only heightens her amusement.
"Very well. Your sister wants you to give her… her purse," Irene speaks her deduction, and Sherlock instantly turns to the row of purses laid on the low bench below the coats, tensing as he races against Irene, but he loses by a second – Irene snatches a purse (of course it's Harry's, look at the strap, the buckle and the small mascara smudge!) and hands it to John. "There you go."
John lingers, staring at her, then at Sherlock's annoyed pout caused by his loss, and hesitates, slowly taking the item from Irene.
"Is there some special place where you come from, you… blue-eyed, black-haired, cheekboned, freakishly intelligent creatures?" he finally asks.
"Don't be absurd, John," Sherlock scoffs, trying to do his bowtie again. "We're not a separate species."
John shakes his head, before turning around to leave.
"I wouldn't be so sure about that."
John is happy and tanned as he returns from his honeymoon. Three weeks in the south-most corner of Portugal with his newlywed wife were the most relaxing and happy twenty-one days of his life, to be absolutely honest. For a rest and holidays, Mary prefers charms of peace and quiet and village life to the show-off-y splendour of hotels, hence they rented a small house in a small village, very close to the Atlantic.
As they return, John gets a text from Sherlock – Come at once if convenient. If inconvenient, come anyway. Not dangerous. SH
So he does, while Mary busies herself deciding where to place the mementoes they brought, and which photographs to have framed. He climbs up the steps of 221 B with a sunny sense of familiarity, and without announcing himself by any knocking or stuff like that, he walks towards the living room. While most people find Sherlock's apparent detachment and coldness deterring, John always feels welcome in the flat he and his best friend used to share.
"Sherlock?" he calls out.
"Ah, John, right on time," the detective's deep voice flows with mild contentment as John moves to the door. "Give me your thumb."
John unblocks himself from the momentary shock, and enters the room, blinking in surprise at the scene he's met with. At the table sits Sherlock, with an open laptop pushed away to make room for some official stack of documents. Curled up comfortably in his favourite chair, sits Irene, dressed in her lover's robe and wearing only some small make-up.
There's a third person in the room – an official looking man in a dark grey suit, standing beside Sherlock in a businesslike stiffness, with a briefcase in his hand. John frowns, only now noticing a healing bloody gash on Sherlock's right cheekbone (Irene was probably dismayed), and as he looks to Irene he sees her left wrist wrapped in a thin, discreet brace – because he's a doctor, he instantly knows it's a brace specially designed to support stronger fractures. He doesn't need to be the world's only consulting detective to figure out those two had gotten themselves into some dangerous case lately.
"What's going on…?" he asks slowly. An absurd swirls in him. "Oh, god. Are you two getting married? What did Mycroft say about that?"
"Sun doesn't serve your intelligence, John," Sherlock replies in a voice of boredom. "Now come here, I need your fingerprint. And your signature. And Mary's, when she gets the chance."
"Sherlock, what the hell is going on?"
The detective sighs and finally turns to look at him properly.
"We're drawing up a security measure," Irene explains as she rises from the chair, stretching like a cat, and slinks over to Sherlock, running a hand through his curls.
"Care to develop that for me?"
"As you probably can see, we both have recently had a bit of a… dangerous situation," Sherlock makes a vague gesture with his hand. "And we've come to realise that our jobs, habits, as well as the defect of… sentiment," he wrinkled his nose. "Can leave Nero without both parents in one go."
John's eyebrows rise high on his forehead, his throat instinctively going dry as a sick feeling grips his gut at the very idea of losing Sherlock. And Irene, too, he thinks. He's gotten to like her, rather.
"In face of that eventuality, custody of Nero would fall to Mycroft, since he'd remain his closest blood relative," Sherlock continued.
"And no one wants that," Irene's lips stretch in a small smile that Sherlock's face mirrors.
"Yes. So we've decided that we'd… like you and Mary to have Nero, should we both die before he's eighteen," Sherlock finishes.
John gapes. His head is empty in utter shock for a moment, possibly bigger than the one he'd been hit with when reading the email announcing Nero's existence. When at last any thought comes to his head, it's that only Sherlock could give him such a welcome.
"Knock-knock," Mrs Hudson's voice unexpectedly breaks the silence, the landlady standing in the doorframe, holding Nero's hand in hers. "Darlings, if you don't mind, I'll take the little one for a bit of a walk in the park. Oh, hello, John, dear, so good to see you! How was the honeymoon?"
"Lovely, thank you, Mrs Hudson…"
"Go ahead and away," Sherlock replies almost simultaneously. "We're busy."
Mrs Hudson huffs, but without anger, and walks away with Nero, gushing over the child and promising him a pony ride. John clears his throat, the episode helping him to shake off the shock.
"Right… right… well, thanks, that's an honour, really…" he fumbles for the right words.
"A calculated choice," Sherlock corrects with a dismissive wince.
"You're both what's normally called pleasant people, and you'll provide him with emotional stability and thorough care," Irene explains, hand slowly running over Sherlock's head, ruffling his hair, and John is a bit surprised to see his friend not only doesn't look bothered, but actually almost looks pleased. "He knows you both already, which also is a plus, and he likes you."
"And you're both loyal," Sherlock adds.
"Quaintly so," completes Irene. Somehow, in their mouths, that doesn't really sound like a compliment, but John is long since used to that. "Also, we've both settled a fund for his support, in case of any emergencies, so the financial issue is practically nonexistent, believe me," she winks.
He can. Sherlock certainly has some sources of family money stashed away somewhere, and Irene… well, she probably has even more than he.
"But you'll have to promise to grant Mycroft a steady, regular access to Nero," Sherlock adds, somewhat surprisingly.
"What do you mean?"
"Well, you and Mary are both good for the emotional security, but in the intelligence department… Mycroft's influence would help develop Nero's mind."
"Right, yeah, thanks. Okay…" he blows out a breath of air, scratching his head. Everything is still whirling a bit in his mind. "Right, I'll… talk it over with Mary… but I think she'll say yes."
"Good. So sign and press," Sherlock taps the pen against the lined spot on the document.
"God, Sherlock… give me a minute, would you? I said, I need to talk it over with Mary…"
The next day the notary is at 221 B again, and John and Mary officially place their signatures and fingerprints on the documents. Mycroft pops by, as always when his little brother is up to something official, and isn't entirely pleased, especially since he's now adamant that Sherlock and Irene will get themselves both imminently killed trying to do something stupid, like save each other. Sherlock gives a small cough that sounds distinctly like Karachi, while Irene coos about uncle Mycroft's concerns.
John still feels honoured, no matter how stupid Sherlock would probably think it is. But as he signs the document, he does it with the deepest hope that it will never, never have to be acted upon.
I hope you liked it! :) Reviews are beautiful and loved! :D