This ending is a bit gooier than I intended, but I am satisfied with it. I wish I enjoyed writing my college papers as much as I like writing silly fan fics, maybe then I would have finished the narrative assignment I was supposed to be working on rather than this. But oh well, procrastination is a blessing as it is a curse.
Warning: No smex in this chapter, but there is extreme amounts of man-on-man fluffiness
Disclaimer: I don't own the Sherlock Holmes series or any of its characters. Although I like to imagine that I own RDJ.
It was in the dead of night when Watson finally returned to the apartment on Baker Street. He had spent the entire day tending to a patient who, despite being near death, had pulled through in the end. The patient was stable now, and in the hospital, so John could at last relax.
His back hurt from sitting propped up in the chair the night before. He walked over to the couch, dropping his cane, hat, and coat along the way, but was devastated to find when he reached it that the sofa was covered in files and books and lab equipment. Sherlock had either been trying to straighten up for once and had failed, or had run out of floor and table space so had started using various pieces of furniture as substitutes. John presumed it was the latter.
The fair-haired man sighed heavily. He had nowhere comfortable to sleep, at least not in this apartment. It would, perhaps, be easier if he just went back to the house that he and Mary shared. She had not yet returned, after all.
Watson was on the verge of gathering his things from the floor when he heard a thump, and then pattering footsteps on the floorboards. A moment later, Gladstone appeared before him, and after regarding him with a disgruntled snort, went to lay on the rug before the fireplace.
It was then that an idea struck Watson. Gladstone was sleeping out here. That meant there was an entire half of Sherlock's bed that was not being used. But did John dare? It was only a bed, after all, and John had no other intention than to sleep.
Watson crept to the back of the apartment, where the bedroom was, cringing slightly every time a board creaked too loudly from beneath his foot. He pushed the door to Sherlock's bedroom open enough to slip inside, and then shut it solidly behind him, not wanting the dog to get in later that night- or morning, he should say.
The bed with its plush red covers looked welcoming from across the room. A head of tussled dark hair could be seen poking up from the blankets on the far side, so John pulled back the covers on the nearest side and slid in. He sighed contentedly at the warm mattress that awaited him, and the all-too-familiar scent of Sherlock that emanated from the pillow and blankets. It was paradise.
John froze up when Sherlock's soft snores halted suddenly, and felt his heart stutter when the other man rolled over. But then Holmes shifted closer, his arm searching for warmth and finding purchase around Watson's waist, and the detective snuggled into his side and began breathing deeply once again.
The doctor turned into Sherlock's embrace, allowing himself to cherish that closeness that would probably never be experienced again from the reclusive man. After a few moments of sheer content, Watson drifted off into a deep slumber, thoughts of Sherlock dancing in his head.
Sherlock awoke in the morning feeling refreshed for the first time in a long while. He felt warm in his bed, and for once was not so eager to leave it.
But then he started assessing things. He assessed the fact that it was still dark outside, so the sun could not have been the thing to wake him. He assessed the arms that were wrapped around him, that were clearly not his own. He assessed the deep snores that could be heard above his head, emanating from a face that was buried in his hair. At last, he pulled back and assessed the face of his best friend, John Watson, who had apparently snuck into his room, and had seen fit to sleep in his bed.
Holmes tried to slip from the arms that held him, but any way he moved caused an uncomfortable amount of friction. He did not see any way of getting out of this position without waking Watson, so he threw caution to the wind and pushed the other man's arms from around him and leapt from the bed.
However, John did not awaken. There was a hitch in his snores, but he merely rolled over to take up the entire bed and resumed his peaceful slumber.
With a sigh, Sherlock crept around the bed. He was tired. Not just sleep-deprived tired, but also tired of being foolish. Seeing John in his bed, by the light of the moon, looking beautiful and vulnerable in a way that Sherlock had never seen before, really made the detective realize that there was more to their relationship than friendship. He was not a man to let others take advantage of him, after all. The other night had been an insight into the feelings that he harbored for the other, that were now being uncovered, and it scared him a little, how intense they were. Sherlock was not accustomed to loving things, especially not people.
As carefully as he could, Sherlock maneuvered his way onto the bed, shifting John's sleeping form so they were tangled together again in the middle of the bed, with John's arms once more wrapped around Sherlock and his chin resting on top of the shorter man's head. Sherlock heard the other man sigh happily.
"I'm glad you came back to bed," John mumbled, his voice thick with sleep.
"Goodnight, Watson," Sherlock replied. "And... I love you."
Holmes felt Watson smile into his hair. "I love you too, you strange, strange man."