A/N: This is an angsty sex PWP set right before The Grass is Greener. Slash, people, slash. If that is not your thing, this is a good time to stop.
Sherlock had been agitated all day – snappish, short tempered, distracted. Jumping from project to project, unable to settle on anything, moving things here and there, fiddling with his equipment, muttering under his breath, rearranging things in the cupboards, driving John mad. The doctor dealt with it as best he could; his husband didn't need reprimands and all attempts at distraction had been dismissed – sometimes physically. Twice Sherlock had batted John's hands away, flinching away from contact, moving to pace the flat in long strides, fingers raking through his hair, lower lip caught in his teeth. John didn't take it personally – at least he tried not to. This wasn't about him. And no amount of soothing could help grief that just needed to work itself out.
It didn't help that Sherlock kept fighting it. He'd broken down when John had bought him the new violin, but now he was back to holding out against himself. John wanted to say something, to demand that Sherlock listen to him and deal with this, but he knew if he did so now, he'd be picking the worst possible time. Sherlock wouldn't listen and any attempts to make him do so would be seen as overbearing and controlling. In his current state, Sherlock was sure to save the memory, too, and blow it out of proportion.
But his edginess was making John edgy, which was causing some warning pangs in his shoulder. He wanted to go out for a walk but was worried about leaving Sherlock in this state – because he might light something on fire or blow something up. Deliberately.
To keep himself busy, he was cleaning the kitchen – not Sherlock's equipment, because he knew how that would go over – wiping down the fridge, tidying the cupboards, doing the pile of washing up. Sherlock was pacing in the living room, occasionally directing irate comments at the skull. John wondered how much had been moved and how much tidying up he'd have to do.
He was putting the last of the dishes away when he felt Sherlock's body collide with his suddenly, pushing them both backwards towards the fridge. John stumbled, fighting for his footing, and Sherlock's hands were around his waist, fingers digging into his skin through the cotton and denim, keeping him up. He barely had time to register that before Sherlock's lips were crushed against his and his tongue was forcing its way into John's mouth, giving him no chance to catch up or to breathe. He found Sherlock's waist instinctively, holding on for balance more than anything, and managed to suck in a deep breath through his nose. And then Sherlock had one hand on the back of his head, keeping John firmly in place, and was towing him backward into the living room.
John struggled to keep up, dimly aware they were being steered toward the wall, and felt a flash of shock when Sherlock spun them so that John was pressing him up against the hard surface. Sherlock caught his tongue, sucking hard, and John moaned, leaning his weight against his husband to keep himself upright. Sherlock's free hand caught John's left one and dragged it roughly between their bodies, pressing it hard into his growing erection. John caught the moan in his mouth and tightened his fingers instinctively, feeling Sherlock's hips buck toward his hand.
"Sherlock–" he managed when he could finally pull away for air. Sherlock moaned again, tipping his head back as John continued to stroke through the trousers, feeling him harden under the rough pressure. He tried to slow it down but Sherlock's fingers tightened in his hair, tugging painfully.
"Please, John," Sherlock gasped, head tipped back against the wall. John gritted his teeth against the flare of pain in his skull and Sherlock's fingers relaxed just enough that the discomfort abated.
"What do you want?" John asked.
"I need to stop thinking," Sherlock replied, a desperate edge in his voice. "Please. Shut it off."
John managed to raise his head and Sherlock struggled to open his eyes, meeting John's gaze.
"How?" John demanded.
"Hard," Sherlock moaned. "John, please."
John sucked in a deep breath, nodding. He closed his hand around Sherlock's cock through his trousers and the detective moaned again, dropping his head against John's shoulder, thrusting his hips to maximize the contact.
"Safe word," John said.
"Sugar," Sherlock whimpered as John stroked harder and the doctor nodded. That was their standard.
"Okay," he replied and caught Sherlock in another fierce kiss. Sherlock nearly slumped against him with sudden relief but John twisted his wrist sharply while stroking and pushed Sherlock back against the wall again, pinning him there despite the shudder that made the detective's knees buckle.
He stripped Sherlock quickly, slapping his hands aside as his husband tried to help, and shoved Sherlock back toward the sofa. John dug his fingers into Sherlock's backside, grinding their bodies together, and Sherlock moaned as the coarse fabric of John's jeans rasped over sensitive skin. John tightened his grip and thrust harder, releasing Sherlock's mouth to sink his teeth into the skin on his clavicle, twisting and nipping. Sherlock moaned again, scrabbling for purchase, fingers knotting into John's clothing, his skin, his hair. John sucked hard on his neck, dragging his teeth up to Sherlock's pulse point. He could feel Sherlock's breath coming in harsh little gasps and the hammering heartbeat against his lips and tongue.
"On your hands and knees," he said, raising his head. Sherlock moaned again, nearly collapsing when John let him go, scrambling to do as ordered. John hissed out a hard breath and stepped toward the sofa, fighting the jolt of pleasure that came from moving in his now-restrictive jeans. He stripped himself down, dumping his clothes in a pile, and plunged a hand between the sofa cushions to unearth the bottle of lube they kept there.
Sherlock was waiting for him on his knees and forearms, legs spread, toes digging into the rug for balance, head turned so he could see John behind him. John bit his lip against a moan; even after all these years, the sight of Sherlock waiting for him like that made him almost painfully hard. He sank to his knees and flipped the cap on the bottle, not missing the twitch that ran through Sherlock's body at the sound. John coated his fingers but Sherlock was shaking his head.
"No," he managed. "No prep."
John hesitated but Sherlock's pupils were blown wide, his entire body tense, way past desperate. John could see him trembling, his shoulders heaving as he gasped for air. He held Sherlock's gaze for a long moment, seeing the fear creep in around the edges and that decided him – Sherlock wasn't worried about the pain, he was worried John wouldn't let him feel it.
John gave a curt nod and Sherlock relaxed minutely, exhaling a shaky breath, turning his head away. John slicked himself up before he could give himself too much time to think; he knew Sherlock was displacing his grief with physical pain – he also knew it might be exactly what he needed right now. With almost no warning, he gripped his husband's hips, lined himself up and pushed in with one hard movement.
Sherlock threw his head back, a cry escaping his lips before he had time to stifle it, and John ignored it, setting an unforgiving pace. Sherlock dropped his head onto the backs of his hands, splaying his fingers to help support himself against John's thrusts. John growled, releasing Sherlock's hips so abruptly they almost came apart, Sherlock managing to push back at the last moment just enough to steady himself. John leant forward, feeling Sherlock's moan shudder through him, and grasped Sherlock's arms, tugging until he brought them up. John pulled them back roughly, pinning both wrists against the small of the detective's back.
Dimly, he wished he had something to tie them with, but settled on gripping them in his right hand, giving Sherlock no way to support his weight easily. He was left trying to brace himself on his knees and toes, his thighs already trembling from the effort of keeping himself up against John's hard pace. His forehead and left cheek were pressed into the rug, sliding backwards and forwards with each thrust, tiny gasps escaping his lips with each scrape of the rough wool against his skin. John could see the right side of Sherlock's face shining with tears, see them delineating the sharp lines of his cheekbones, the contourrs of his nose, the soft edges of his lips.
He leant forward again, wrapping his left hand around Sherlock's cock, earning a startled moan as Sherlock tried to push back against him and thrust into John's hand at the same time. John set an uneven pace, keeping his thrusts and strokes out of sync so that Sherlock couldn't find a rhythm, couldn't keep himself steady without effort. The tremors in his thighs were working their way up his spine and his arms were shaking. John tightened his grip on Sherlock's wrists, pushing them higher up his back, and Sherlock moaned deeply, his hard-edged gasps bordering on sobs. John gritted his teeth and picked up his pace even more; Sherlock was already close – one, two, three strokes with a wicked twist of the wrist on the last one sent him over the edge, coming with a scream that was barely muffled by the rug. John groaned as every muscle in Sherlock's body clenched around him, pulling him in deeper. He pushed forward as hard as he could and sank his teeth into Sherlock's shoulder blade as his own orgasm hit him, registering Sherlock's cry only faintly. John's hips bucked and he moaned, fighting to keep himself from collapsing completely. He was suddenly done, everything drained out of him, and he dropped his forehead against Sherlock's spine, echoing Sherlock's quiet whimper as they shifted against each other, unable to move enough yet to pull apart.
John focused on his breathing until he could move properly and eased himself out, earning more faint whimpers of relief and protest. He turned them both so they were on their sides, slumping gratefully against the rug – which he supposed would need to be cleaned now – wrapping himself gingerly around Sherlock, who was still shaking. John held him gently, doing nothing else at first until some of the overstimulation of his own nerves wore off, then he moved his hands across Sherlock's body with slow strokes, pressing light kisses against his husband's back. Sherlock's trembling didn't ease and John couldn't tell if he was crying, because he was utterly silent except for slightly harsher than normal breathing. John didn't check, knowing it would not be appreciated. If he was crying, he needed to do it on his own terms. If not, he would only feel patronised by John's suspicions.
He didn't say anything, knowing that too would be unwelcome, but held Sherlock until the detective's body began to relax and his breathing slowed. There would be time for everything else later – talking, cleaning the rug burn Sherlock was sure to have on his face, slower, gentler love making. Right now, he let Sherlock take what he needed, offering only that and demanding nothing in return.