"A heterosexual man does not comment on another man's cheekbones."

This statement startled John out of the silence that had fallen upon the room after Sherlock had stopped playing his violin about half an hour ago. He tilted the newspaper he was reading down so he could look at Sherlock, sitting in his chair across from John.

"Sorry, what?" He asked, raising his eyebrows at Sherlock. It's not unusual for Sherlock to make random observations like that, but this one seemed irrlevant and out-of-place for the current case they were working on, with glowing rabbits and murderous hounds, so John didn't know where this observation was coming from.

"A man who is interested exclusively in women tends not to notice, and certainly does not make remarks regarding another man's facial structure," Sherlock explained, if you could call even call it that.

John nodded slowly, as this was an obvious statement, and asked, "Why—where is this coming from? Have you got a new case?" He lowered the newspaper further so that it rested on his knee. John hoped they had a new case, because the current one sounded like a disturbed man's hallucinations, originating from a traumatic loss in his childhood. He didn't understand Sherlock's interest in it, especially given how uninterested he was at first.

"No," Sherlock's fingers collapsed from their prayer-like position by his lips, and folded together beneath his angular chin. His gray eyes had been absently trained on the kitchen behind John's chair, but now they shifted to focus on John. "Don't you remember?" He had that perplexed "you-know-what-I'm-talking-about" face on, which drove John up the wall. Sherlock always assumed John could see inside his head, the same way Sherlock could see in everyone else's.

"Remember what?" John asked calmly, hiding his vexation with Sherlock's facial expression and tone.

"Yesterday, as we were leaving Baskerville, on our way to the car you made a comment about my cheekbones and the way I turn up my collar." Sherlock stated matter-of-factly, his eyes fixed on John.

"Oh," John dipped his chin and cleared his throat. "Yes, I remember. Now what's that got to do with my sexuality, exactly?" He narrowed his eyes inquisitively at Sherlock, but Sherlock could see the dangerous ice in that look, both daring Sherlock to make an invasive observation and warning him not to.

"As I said," Sherlock began impatiently, "A heterosexual man does not comment on another man's cheekbones."

"Yeah, I know, you already said that," John said, deflecting Sherlock's impatience with his own, "But what are you trying to say? You're not buying into all the gossip from the papers, are you?"

"I don't buy into gossip, John, as you well know. I'm making observations and consequently reaching conclusions."

"So you don't believe the gossip, but you're agreeing with it," John said, his brow forming into a firm, straight line.

"Really, John, don't be so childish. You know what I'm saying makes perfect sense."

"Me? Childish? I'm the childish one?" John demanded angrily, but stopped himself. Dipping his chin once again, he closed his eyes and took a deep breath. Opening them, he asked, "I can't say whether or not what you're saying makes any sense until I know what it is that you are saying, Sherlock."

Sherlock narrowed his eyes at John, as if he was examining a piece of art or a scientific specimen that he found interesting. Without even blinking, he said, "You're very much in denial about it, and your denial becomes more stubborn as the truth becomes clearer over time. You're both confused and intrigued by it, and these conflicting emotions are fueling your denial. Gossip in the papers may not always be true, John, but it is not always false either."

"Wait—" John shut his eyes and rubbed them with his fingers as if a massive headache had suddenly befallen him. "Are you—you really—you can't possibly be serious." He sputtered the words out, so frustrated by Sherlock noticing, given his complete obliviousness to Molly's affection, and embarrassed by the accuracy, some of which he himself had not even realized.

Sherlock's eyes had been closed since he finished speaking, and remained so as he said, "Yes, John, our friendship has caused you to question your sexuality and you have very recently realized that it is not what you thought it was. Oddly enough, a woman brought this realization to light."

"But I'm not—I'm not gay! And how could you possibly know—" John sputtered, flabbergasted at Sherlock's knowledge of Irene Adler's effect on him.

"I observe, John. Ordinary people like yourself see but do not observe. And I never said that you are a homosexual."

"But you just did, right then! You said—" John began, but Sherlock interrupted him again.

"I said that you questioned and recently realized your sexuality. I did not specify what exactly it is." Sherlock's eyes were still closed, and despite the nature of their conversation, he looked serene and distant as usual.

"Oh, right. Of course. Technically you didn't, no," John was angry now, his words coming out in short bursts, "So why don't you just go on and say it, then, since you're so observant and I'm so blind?"

"You tell me, John," Sherlock said, his eyes still closed with his fingertips pressed to his lips.

"Sorry, what?" John demanded, not only angry now but confused.

Suddenly, Sherlock's eyes snapped open and in less than a second he was out of his chair and leaning over John's. His hands were on the armrests, vacated by John's own arms when he'd crossed them angrily across his chest, and his face was inches from John's. He could feel Sherlock's breath on his face, which raised the hairs on the back of his neck. He could smell the plain soap Sherlock used in the shower, and just a hint of peppermint in his breath.

Staring directly into John's deep brown eyes, Sherlock said all in one breath, "Your pupils dilated once I leaned over, your breathing caught in your chest and quickened, your mouth opened slightly—not in a gasp, as you're not easily startled—but in yearning for something, and you did not lean away from me when I leaned towards you." Sherlock removed one hand from the armrest of John's chair and wrapped his fingers around John's wrist. They felt ice cold, but surprisingly soft, and after a moment of tense silence, Sherlock continued, "And your pulse is racing. What is your sexuality, John? You. Tell. Me."

They locked eyes, in a stalemate of silence for what felt like an eternity. As close as Sherlock was to John, he could hardly tell if the man was breathing or not. At any rate, he'd seen straight into John's head as if his skin and skull were transparent (or pried open for dissection, much like the current specimen in the fridge). But now he didn't know what to do. Was Sherlock leaning close to John to prove his point, or was he leaning close because he wanted something? If he'd done it to prove his point, he'd clearly succeeded, so wouldn't he have withdrawn and returned to his own chair by now?

Sherlock could practically hear the cogs turning in John's head, beneath the dirty blonde hair and behind the honest brown eyes. He could stand there all day, taking in John's musky scent and watching his brain ponder over the situation at hand, but he knew that John would never make the first move. He couldn't see into Sherlock's head the way Sherlock could see into John's.

Sherlock lowered his eyelids and leaned closer to John's face, hesitating only slightly before gently pressing his lips to John's. Pressing was nearly an overstatement, as the kiss was so soft that it was as if their lips had barely touched. John did not lean forward into the kiss, uncertain at first whether Sherlock was actually going to follow through or if it was a test. When their lips met, however, he puckered his lips into Sherlock's and leaned into the kiss.

They continued exchanging gentle, polite, quiet kisses until John remembered that Sherlock was standing over him, leaning on the chair. He reached his arm up and wrapped it around Sherlock's shoulder, pulling him gently down towards him. Sherlock complied willingly and almost timidly, as if a too-quick move would startle John and spoil the moment. Picking up on his hesitation, John reached up and pulled Sherlock towards him with both arms. Sherlock turned at the waist slightly so that he would be able to sit in John's lap, all the while never breaking contact with John's lips.

John shifted beneath Sherlock a couple times as their kisses became more firm, and when Sherlock shifted with him, he felt the source of John's discomfort pressing urgently beneath his thigh. Sherlock gasped at the unfamiliar contact, both delighted and nervous, and John grunted involuntarily. Pulling out of the kiss for the first time since they'd started, John gently nudged Sherlock to vacate his lap, and Sherlock looked confused and even slightly hurt. Seeing Sherlock in such a vulnerable, emotionally naked state was disconcerting while simultaneously turning John on even further. He glanced over Sherlock's shoulder, at the couch behind him, and before Sherlock could do the same to identify what John had looked at, John stepped forward and pulled Sherlock's face to his own.

He kissed Sherlock quickly and desperately, no longer holding back. This startled Sherlock, who had never done this sort of thing before with anyone, and he responded by following John's lead. When John opened his mouth wider, Sherlock did the same. When John's tongue slipped into Sherlock's mouth, Sherlock's rose to greet it. Remembering the couch, John stepped forward slightly, causing Sherlock to step back. He did it again, and again, until Sherlock realized that John was leading him to the couch. Sherlock stumbled backwards, in a daze from the rush of hormones, until the backs of his legs met the couch. He leaned back from John to fall back onto the couch, and John placed one leg between Sherlock and the back of the couch, and the other on the other side of him by the edge of the couch, before gently lying directly on top of Sherlock.

Their erections met, and the ecstasy of the contact was almost painful. John was surprised by the vague sense of Sherlock's size that he felt, and Sherlock was seeing stars. What surprised John the most was how submissive Sherlock was; instead of taking the lead and being very demanding as he tended to be most of the time, he was clearly very uncertain regarding sexual things and followed John's lead, allowing him to be in the position of power. John had a moment just then, realizing that he was tongue-tied on top of Sherlock, and a quiet moan escaped him when the reality hit him. Sherlock's grip on John's shoulders tightened at the sound, and John withdrew his tongue from Sherlock's mouth, inviting Sherlock's into his. Sherlock took the bait willingly, and John fixated on the detective's tongue and began sucking on it. An alarmed sound came from deep in Sherlock's throat, that sounded both startled and very pleased.

John surprised himself by suddenly deciding he desperately wanted—no, needed—to see Sherlock's prick. He pulled away from Sherlock gently, and while they both caught their breath, chests heaving, John shifted slightly so he could see Sherlock's crotch. His pants looked to be near bursting from the desperate erection pushing against the fabric, and John looked from the protrusion to Sherlock, to see that his eyes were nearly black from the size of his pupils. His hair was already slightly mussed from being pressed into the couch pillows, and his gorgeous cheekbones were dusted a rosy pink from the excitement and stimulation.

Maintaining eye contact with Sherlock, John reached towards the bulge in Sherlock's pants and gently stroked it. He felt Sherlock's cock twitch anxiously at the contact, and Sherlock gasped, shuddered, and arched his back, pressing against John's hand. John immediately unbuckled Sherlock's thin black belt and unbuttoned his pants, pulling them down to his knees urgently. His eyes widened when he saw that Sherlock was wearing silky black boxer-briefs; he was expecting something much plainer and not nearly as attractive. However, he dismissed the thought quickly and tucked his fingers into the waistband, the brushing of his fingers against Sherlock's sharp hip bones causing Sherlock to shudder and suck in his breath, nearly hissing. John pulled the underwear down, and Sherlock's prick bobbed up eagerly. He was surprised to see that Sherlock shaved, but was very pleased by it.

Suddenly, John felt a strong wave of doubt wash over him. He had never done this to another man before. He'd done it for himself plenty of times, of course, but he was certain every man had his own way of going about it. He began to panic then, doubting his ability to satisfy Sherlock, despite the man's lack of prior sexual experiences.

"John," Sherlock's voice sounded nearly a whole octave deeper than usual, causing a rush of blood to leave John's head and urgently head south. Sherlock reached out and took John's hand. He met John's eyes before guiding his hand to his cock, nearly purring at John's touch. John moved forward so Sherlock could grasp his knees, and began gently stroking his lengthy member. Sherlock closed his eyes and continued to purr as John wrapped his fingers just under the head and began pumping slowly.

After establishing a rhythm, John gripped harder and twisted his wrist as he pulled upwards. Sherlock gasped and arched his back, thrusting his hips up. When he realized this added to the stimulation, he began thrusting in time to John's pumping. Sherlock's breathing quickened and he increased the frequency of his thrusts, pulling his shirt up to his chest, baring his stomach. John moved his hand faster to keep up, and soon Sherlock was grunting and thrusting harder, clearly approaching his climax. He started moaning when John was gripping harder and pumping faster, and John could feel Sherlock's cock twitching in his hand just as he cried out, squeezing John's knees as the hot liquid spurted out in earnest. As he came, Sherlock whined at an inhuman pitch, sounding almost like a young animal in pain, which was in high contrast to his normal baritone voice. John eased his pumping to stroking until he gently released Sherlock's glistening penis, which soon became flaccid and relaxed. Sherlock's eyes were closed and his smooth, bare chest was heaving. The dark curls along his neck and hairline were damp and looked jet black compared to the rest. The silvery-white streams of cum shone in the light as Sherlock's stomach rose and fell with his chest, his breath slowly evening out.

The detective opened his eyes, and when he met John's gaze, saw that his friend was strung out to the highest point of being turned on. Dropping his gaze, Sherlock saw that John's pants looked uncomfortably tight around his crotch, and suddenly the corner of his mouth twitched slightly. He grabbed a tissue from the coffee table and swiped it carelessly across his stomach, tossing it on the floor before pulling up his trousers and sitting up, eye level with John. He wrapped his long, slender fingers around the back of John's head and pulled him into a passionate, grateful kiss. Pulling away, he backed away from John, simultaneously pushing John's chest for him to lay back on the couch. He looked at John's hard-on hungrily, and met John's hungry eyes before gently undoing John's pants and returning the favor.