Under the Downs: The Otter Part

A/N: Ok, people, the last part. Sorry. Can't string it out anymore. I hope the Sussex tourist board thanks me for all my hard work!

COMING SOON: The long-awaited sequel to 'The Case of the Cuddle', a massive blockbuster of emotion and shagging called:


Plus: New stories exclusive to my account at evenlode1967 dot livejournal dot com and at AO3 – search for Evenlodes_Friend.

He steps back from me then, and starts unbuttoning his shirt. I watch his slim hands work the mother-of-pearl elegantly, mesmerised. It takes me until he has divested himself of shirt and started on trousers to actually realise what he is about.

'What the hell are you doing?'

'It's hot,' he says.

'Sherlock, it's a public footpath!'

'And exactly how many members of the public did we pass on our way up here?'

I hate to admit that he as a point.

He kicks off his shoes and tugs at the toes of his socks.

'It only takes one posh housewife walking her Labrador,' I point out, but my mouth has gone dry because his skin glows in the afternoon sun.

He tugs off his boxers. His cock is flushed pink and half hard.

Okay, that's it, I'm done.

I am pulling at the buttons on my own shirt when he grins impishly and turns away.

'What the- ! Sherlock, where are you going?' I call after him.

He takes a couple of loping strides through the long grass, and slithers down the river bank.

'I already pointed out how hot it is,' he calls over his shoulder. I can see his shoulder blades, the dimples in his lower back, just above his buttocks, the muscles in his shoulders supporting a head held high. His posture is perfect, I reflect, for about the millionth time.

He wades in.

I stumble to the river's edge and watch him feeling his way, edging up to his knees and then thighs. The hairs on his legs squiggle flat with water, droplets making crystal globes on the pale flesh. I detect goosebumps on his forearms from the shock of the sudden cold.

'What are you doing, you madman?' I shout after him.

'What does it look like? Cooling down!'

He hesitates, takes a lungful of air, expanding his ribs, and then plunges forward. The muddy water foams up like cappuccino froth, closing over his head, and then he bursts through the surface again, slick and lithe and wiping his wet ringlets back from his face. He rolls onto his back and skulls a little, and I can see his gorgeous cock floating, ghostly white under the brown water.

'Come on in, the water's lovely, as they say,' he laughs, shivering with the cold.

'Oh fuck,' I say to myself, knowing I either have to jump in too, or look like a total wimp. I peel the rest of my clothes off and inch my way in, stubbing a toe on a rock, taking time to swear and nearly lose my balance, sploshing about hopelessly, and then managing to take the plunge.

The bastard laughs.

'Water isn't your favourite element, is it?'

'Fuck you,' I cough.

I paddle towards him with all the elegance of a hedgehog on a cork. My teeth are chattering, so I clench them. Just to make matters worse, he frolics about me, sleek and easy, undulating through the water like an otter. His body is a blade, perfectly shaped for ease of movement. He ducks and dives, twisting corkscrews around me in circles while I frantically struggle to stay afloat.

Suddenly he bobs up right in front of me, his belly brushing against mine, his cheeks beaded, his eyelashes spiked. Water streams from his pointed chin.

'Why didn't you just tell me you can't swim?'

'Of course I can bloody swim,' I snap at him. 'What does it look like I'm bloody doing, carpentry?'

'John, you are barely swimming,' he says with a fond smile. And his hands slither around my waist.

There is a frisson about this that I remember from days when I used to go swimming with a girlfriend as a teenager. It was the only way you could touch a girl's skin, the only way you could see her almost naked in a legitimate way. There was that strange, cold, jelly-like texture of underwater contact, white thighs entangling, the sneaking arousal that comes from a sanctioned boundary being pushed to its limit.

Sherlock's arms encircle me, but under the surface he is kicking to stay afloat.

'Don't worry, I won't let you go under,' he says.

'I'm perfectly capable,' I tell him. But his body is already against mine and it is intoxicating. We stare into each other's eyes as we tread water, so much going on under the surface, of both the river and our skins. He is breathing raggedly. His eyes have taken on a deeper hue, a seriousness that I am starting to associate with desire.

'I want you,' he breathes in my ear in a hot gust. And just to seal the deal, he tips his hips up and his erection pokes my thigh.

'Oh, fuck,' I gasp and my voice echoes off the water.

He tows me to the bank, and we stagger up through the grass, legs like jelly from the chill. Then he turns and takes my hands in his, and begins to walk backwards, tugging me behind him.

'Sherlock, we can't-'

But the look in his eyes says, 'why not?'

We snatch up our clothes and I follow him into a little glade of silver birches. The grass is long and thick here, but there are mercifully no nettles. He drops his bundle on the ground and turns to me, eyes brazen.



'I want you to fuck me.'

It's like being kicked in the solar plexus. 'What?'

'I need you inside me. I want you to take me. Will you? Could you bear to?'

'It's not a case of bearing it,' I tell him as I pull him against me. 'I've never done it before.'

'I know.'

'We don't have anything with us.'

At that, he gives me a wily grin, bends down and pulls something out of his abandoned trouser pocket. It is a small box made out of recycled cardboard, the kind with non-toxic ink that rubs off on your fingers when you touch it. The kind of box that comes out of a vending machine in a public lavatory.

'Oh, you bad man!'

Inside there are three condoms and three sachets of lube. All that bladder trouble this morning in town? Not bladder trouble at all. The bugger was searching for a condom machine! He planned this all along.

He takes the box from me. 'We only need one of the condoms, but we'll use all the lube,' he says. 'Do you want me to put this on you?'

'It's not that I'm not enthusiastic at the prospect, but can we have a pause for a bit of affectionate foreplay first?'

He kisses me. 'Sorry, sometimes I get so turned on, I forget the niceties.'

'Well, that's always worth knowing,' I grin.

And then we stand there, stark naked under the shivering leaves, snogging passionately.

I give myself a moment to step back mentally. Here I am, about to have sex with my best friend for the first time – I mean penetrative sex. I've never had anal sex before; it's something I have never wanted to do. I've never wanted to have sex with a man before, either. And I can't remember the last time I did it outside. I look at him now, at his beautiful eyes, his voluptuous mouth, his lightly muscled chest, and I want him so badly it is actually a physical pain. I don't know how this has happened.

I have watched the sunrise in the desert, and seen the monsoon in the Himalayas. I have made love on a Cypriot beach at sunset, and flown over the Grand Canyon. I have witnessed many of nature's great miracles, as well as the horrors this world has to offer. But I swear I have never seen anything more beautiful, or romantic, as Sherlock Holmes at this moment, his pale skin dappled with sunlight, the brilliance of love in his eyes.

He lies down on his back in the grass, his head circled with a halo of daisies and campion, and holds his hand out to me. I kneel down and slide my hand up his open thigh. So smooth. I want to tell him how much I love him. I want to tell him how beautiful he is, what he means to me. But there are no words for this. I understand him now, his greed for union. He has no words either. When I look at his face, I see his eyes are brimming. He feels it too. This overwhelming thing that we have, that we share. Only death can ever part us now. And even that won't be for long. For how can I live without this? How could either of us?

I lie down across his body, taking my weight on my elbows, feel his belly and chest under me, feel him moan and undulate. His hands skim my back, stroking tenderly. We kiss, slowed by emotion. I want this to last, I realise. Forever, if I can make it. I want it imprinted in my memory, this perfect moment when we are finally joined. Who needs a bloody ceremony to prove they are One? We have this. Alone together under the sun, with a warm breeze on our skins, and the rest of our lives to share it.

'Take me, John,' he whispers, his voice breaking a little with emotion. 'Paint my insides with your name, carve your love on my soul.'

And I do.


Enormous thanks to the dedicated readers and commenters herein mentioned: The incomparable Mirith Griffin who makes the world a better place to live in, yourlovelylandlady, Telulah13, Dannie Tomlinson, the awesome Kida, Witch Nova and WitchRavenfox (a terrible twosome who have been keeping me sane a lot lately), Zelide (especially as a first time commenter – I'm so thrilled it was me that provoked you), NATWEST, power0girl, librarianmum, phantomsquid, Ju Lara, Maria Ortiz, bloodsoakedleather, Kertfu, staceuo, Qualyn, maur4mee, idso, Bookwoman17NerdyMom (hope there was enough smut in it for you, darling), Electryone, Cakebook, Tiyako Toudaiji, I'llbeyourPatronus, ronneygirl, Spark17, Soapiefan, SmutySherlockian, Stormlover113, neverintendedtoexist, Jodi2011, shygirl9683 and booda77.

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And of course, special thanks go to Khorazir for her beautiful fanart.