Title: You Shall Drip Red Rubies

Author: Erin Giles

Rating: PG

Characters: John, Sherlock

Summary: Sherlock tries to shave after a case without much success.


'It's fine.'

'Sherlock, I don't-'

'John! I said, I'm fine, will you go and hover somewhere else.'

'Sherlock, you're shaking.'

'Dammit, John!'

Sherlock threw the razor in the pool of water in the sink, causing pink ripples to slosh over the side of the basin and onto Sherlock's bare feet. Blood welled on the side of Sherlock's neck where he'd nicked himself for the third time. He had a white knuckled grip on the edge of the sink now as he averted his eyes from the concerned reflection of John in the bathroom mirror.

'Sit down.' John was in the room now. Sherlock could feel his warm presence just out of reach behind him. Sherlock tried to ignore him, tried to regain enough control to finish shaving himself without slitting his own throat but he couldn't even let go of the sink.

'Come on.' And then John's small but strong hands were shifting him onto the toilet seat and looking down at his half shaved face and his shaking hands.

John pushed his jumper sleeves back and picked the razor out of the basin, shaking it a couple of times to rid it of any excess water. Sherlock let his head be manipulated as John slowly swiped the razor over Sherlock's left cheekbone. He tried to hold himself still but he could feel his hands still juddering where they gripped his knees. It didn't scare him that John was holding a sharp blade to his throat while he was shaking like a leaf. Sherlock trusted John far too much to be frightened.

'Anyone would think you were trying to finish the job that Weber started.'

Sherlock didn't say anything, he was thinking of red rubies dripping onto the bathroom tiles as John tipped his head back so he could do the side of Sherlock's neck he hadn't tried to mutilate. John's right hand was in Sherlock's hair as he shaved round the contours of Sherlock's jawline. Sherlock closed his eyes as the razor trimmed round his sideburns and Sherlock could feel the tremors easing slightly.

John's thumb wiped against one of the cuts on Sherlock's neck near to his Adam's apple, the pressure increasing as Sherlock swallowed. He opened his eyes with the clatter of the razor being put down and the glug as John let the water out the sink.

'Wait,' John said as Sherlock readied himself to stand. John pulled a towel from the rail – his towel – and cleaned the excess shaving foam from Sherlock's face. He paused, towel against the side of Sherlock's face, trying to stop the blood from another cut, Sherlock presumed.

'You need to stop doing this, Sherlock.' John sighed and removed the towel, drying his own hands on it. 'A cup of tea and a biscuit every few hours, that's all I'm asking. Just enough to sustain you.'

John's eyes fell on Sherlock's right sideburn, clearly discovered shaving foam that he'd missed. He reached out with a corner of the towel and rubbed at it. Sherlock's trembling hand caught John's wrist as he pulled away, his glassy eyes meeting John's tired ones.

'Thank you.'

John nodded and folded the towel before putting it back on the rail. 'I'll go put the kettle on.'