A/N: Yes. I know. I need to stop dillydallying with stories like this and finish "Truths About Prophecy" so that I can write the sequel to "Never Again". I know. Sometimes I just get... distracted. And by 'distracted' I mean that I'm procrastinating. Hope you all enjoy this anyways.
Warning: Slash, Foul Language, Questionable Content
Disclaimer: Well, obviously if I owned it, I wouldn't be sitting here writing this, would I? No, I'd be out, trying to figure a way to get the actors to shag.
It was an understatement. An extremely vast understatement. His day had been worse than bad. Worse than terrible. Worse than awful. Worse than the worst day of his life. Which was saying something. Especially considering the fact that his worst day involved getting shot at before nearly dying in the blistering heat of the Afghan desert. Even taking all of this into consideration, this very day had been worse. Much, much worse.
Of course, the man now sitting across from him was certainly not making it any better. John could only imagine that he was there to make his dreadful, awful, terrible day even shoddier than it already was. John was pretty positive that the only reason he'd supplanted himself in the same booth, two tumblers of scotch in hand, was to mock him. To rub the proverbial salt in the wound. To make him squirm.
In which case, John decided quickly, he would need the liquid courage. He tended to avoid alcohol, but in this case he figured he deserved to drown his sorrows. He deserved a little deadly retribution. Particularly if the man across from him decided to do something more or less without morals. Which, John assumed, would be a very safe bet to make.
"Horrid day," he replied, reaching over to take the offered drink. "As I'm sure you know."
He smirked at him, a familiar tilt of his lips that made John's insides twist as he thought of pools and bombs and heart-stopping threats and lies of lies and Sherlock falling and Moriarty bringing them both back to life. "That I do. Still can't catch your man, Johnny boy?"
John grimaced, knowing the psychopath was thinking of that day too, and he took a pull from the scotch, enjoying the way it burned down his throat. "Yes, well… Not like I expected much. He may be bloody brilliant, but he's still a self-absorbed prat with massive intimacy issues."
"Perceptive of you."
"Not really," John scoffed, glancing up to see Moriarty's eyes glinting playfully. Oh, he was getting quite the kick out of this whole ordeal. Watching Sherlock push away the only person who would truly die for him. Watching John flail about witlessly, trying in vein to catch the Consulting Detective's attention. Even after all of the time that had passed, the efforts were completely fruitless.
"Don't sell yourself short, Johnny boy." Jim said comfortingly, but there was that hint of condescension. "You're the key in all of this, you know. Without you, the game's just not the same. Without you, Sherlock's just playing a role."
John gave him a dry look. "And what role am I helping him to play?"
"Wrong, Johnny." His eyes narrowed dangerously as he took a swig of his own drink. "It's not a role if he believes it. You make him believe it."
Moriarty shot him a winning smile, and the doctor could see the attraction Molly had felt so long ago. "That he's a hero."
His voice was breathy. Light and full of admiration. Awful. John could've shot himself. Of course, Sherlock's little fan boy had a thing for him. Of course, he had a hard on for Britain's one and only Consulting Detective. Of course, Moriarty had an affinity for the only other man alive who could match his intellect. Besides Mycroft. But John wouldn't swoon over Mycroft, either. No matter how smart he may be.
But John still couldn't quite believe it. He didn't make Sherlock into a hero. He couldn't make that thick-headed cur believe anything. Couldn't even make him learn the solar system. The idiot.
However, he wasn't going to tell the dangerous man across from him otherwise. "And I'm the hero's faithful mutt?"
"No," his face scrunched up in distaste. "Not the mutt. Not even the sidekick. You're much more, Johnny. So much more."
John gave him a doubtful frown, taking another drink. "What am I then?"
"The thing that keeps the hero sane. You give him his humanity, if you will." John sniggered at the disgust laced within that word, and Moriarty shot him a bemused grin. "You're the one thing he can't lose. You're his Mary Jane."
John went completely still, staring at the Criminal Consultant from across the table. He was dumbfounded. Gobsmacked. Completely at a loss for words. He was fairly certain his mouth was hanging open. A bit like fish. A very stunned fish.
Moriarty rolled his eyes. "Shut your mouth. You look ridiculous."
"Hold on," he finally found his voice again, his hands coming up in a gesture that said to freeze, pause, wait for him to catch up, as he tried to comprehend the situation. "First off, did you just make a Spider Man reference? And secondly, if you did, did you just say that I'm Sherlock's love interest?"
"Don't be daft, John. Of course you are." Moriarty informed him primly, swirling his drink.
John choked on a laugh. "You seriously believe that tripe?"
He pinned him with a very sharp glare.
"Listen, Mr. Moriarty—"
"Jim," he scowled, fixing his suit of imaginary wrinkles—a nervous tick John recognized as worry or anxiety. He couldn't understand why Moriarty would be the one feeling anxious all of a sudden. "Mr. Moriarty makes me sound old."
Ah, vanity. Of course. The narcissistic prick. John had to bite back a laugh, hiding it behind another drink. It was, frankly, one of those adorable quirks that the geniuses' seemed to share. As well as odd fashion taste, if not far too high-end. John could still recall the tiny skulls that had speckled Jim's tie—silk, naturally—when he'd first made his identity known.
"Okay. Listen, Jim…" John glanced at him pointedly, causing the other man to grin in that predatory way he always carried about with him. "I'm not his Mary Jane. Never have been, and I doubt I ever would be. You should know that after today. He doesn't care. Not like I do."
A silence overwhelmed them for a long moment. A moment where Moriarty took the time to look over the doctor—taking in his every flaw. A moment where John squirmed under its intensity—or wanted to, but resisted valiantly. He had no doubt that, by the time the moment had passed, Jim knew his every trait. His every tell.
Clearing his throat, he ended the silence. "Besides, Mary Jane isn't Spider Man's biggest love. Gwen Stacy is."
At the question tilt of his head, John almost groaned.
"Really? You're only basing your comparisons off of those crap films? Not even the comics?" John shook his head, clearly disappointed, and pointed a scolding finger. "If you're going to make a reference, at least do it properly."
A fine brow rose on Jim's pale face. "Closet comic book nerd? You never cease to surprise me, Johnny."
"Well…" A pretty pink dusted his cheeks. "Didn't have much else growing up. Just comics and my studies. Which I'm sure you know."
Jim gave a noncommittal hum, sipping at his scotch. John knew, though. Knew that Moriarty had plowed through his past. Knew all the secrets that simple deduction couldn't unearth. And on that gloomy note, John decided to lighten the mood before it got dangerous—or, worse yet, personal.
"Well, if Sherlock is Peter Parker," John peered up at him through thick lashes; his initial tension had been eased long ago by the expensive alcohol. "That makes you the Green Goblin, right?"
Jim made another face, shaking his head. "Nonsense. I'm that attractive fellow. The one played by James Franco."
"That's silly," John tried not to focus on the screaming fact that Moriarty knew the actor's name. "Harry Osborn is Peter's best mate in the movie. And he's after M.J. too."
Jim let this observation sink in. He watched silently as it hit the good doctor square in the face. John's blue eyes widened, almost comically, as he finally understood, and the psychopath smirked lecherously. Like a snake. A wicked, brilliant snake.
"Catching on?" He laced his fingers under his chin, tone pleasant and conversational.
"You haven't got a thing for Sherlock," John stated, voice slightly hysteric. "You've got a thing for me!"
"Would I be sitting here otherwise?"
"I assumed you were here for some nefarious purpose!" He snapped back, feeling uncomfortably hot in his jumper. "Trying to get under Sherlock's skin through me somehow! I don't bother to try and understand that mad mind of yours."
"Oh, I don't know, John." His voice dipped a bit lower on the side of seduction, and John felt his mouth go dry. "I think you are… delightfully observant. Not nearly as dull as you pretend to be."
John swallowed thickly and then jumped when he felt a foot slipping up his calf. "Jeezus. What is it that you want, Moriarty?"
"Why don't you tell me, Johnny?" Jim smirked, voice husky and wanting. A delicious shiver ran up the doctor's spine. "Tell me what I want, Johnny boy. What am I thinking… right… now?"
John's breath caught in his throat as a foot slid between his knees clad undoubtedly in the most expensive of Italian leathers. All he wanted to do was press forward. To be the victim of such an intimate and dirty touch. To let Moriarty play his body like a finely tuned instrument. Which made him quake because this was Jim fucking Moriarty. A man who had tried to kill him on multiple occasions. A man who committed more crimes than Sherlock could solve. And John should most definitely not feel attracted to him.
"Very good," he purred, eyes glinting, looking nearly black with want as he licked his lips. "Tell me more."
That foot inched higher, caressing the inside of his thigh. His body snapped into action an instant later, hand falling over that foot and squeezing in warning. Jim laughed in delight, and John's jaw clenched.
"I can take a hint, darling." He chuckled, pulling the offending limb back and eating up the way the veteran flushed at the pet name. "But, just so you know, I'd very much like to see how far that blush of yours spreads."
John's eyes narrowed, the pink darkening on his features, as he withheld what he very much hoped was a need for violence and not crazy, wicked hot sex with an equally wicked psychopath. "I think you should leave."
"Ah, yes. I'd almost forgotten about those delicate sensibilities of yours. The morals of a good man," Jim stated, taunt clear as he stood and tossed a few bills down to cover their drinks. "My treat."
Nope he definitely wanted to punch him. No desire for kinky public sex. None whatsoever.
The Consulting Criminal leaned in, one hand by his head and the other on the table; he had the most enticing leer there ever was. "And Johnny? You make the best M.J."
Who was he kidding? He wanted to shag the hell out of him. In new, filthy, fantastically fun ways.
He reached up on autopilot, catching a sinfully red tie in his hand. He briefly enjoyed the shocked look on Moriarty's face—because, no, he hadn't expected this at all—before their lips met, and he kissed the look away. It was demanding and rough and he was fairly certain there were teeth involved. When the blonde finally ended it, they were both breathless and aching for more.
John expected some sort of mocking retort, but all the well-dressed man could manage was lick his lips, as if trying to hold onto the taste of him. As if he wanted to savor it. And, really, it made the doctor quite proud of himself. Plus rather hot under the collar.
"Finally shut you up, did I?" He teased, and Jim looked about ready to growl and pounce. "Well, not to worry. Can't really blame you for being a bit out of sorts. They don't call me 'Three Continents' Watson for no reason."
Moriarty would have laughed if he weren't so busy leaning in, fully prepared to make John eat his words. There lips were a breath apart when his phone went off. Sighing, his shoulders drooped in annoyance. John released his tie and watched as he pulled back. Flipping open the cell, he hissed something seething and then froze. Grimacing, he snapped it shut again.
"Let me guess," John grinned, all cheek and amusement. He was almost relieved for the interruption. He couldn't imagine what he would have let himself do. What he would have let Moriarty do to him. How far he might've taken it. "People to kill? Crimes to commit?"
"Sorry, Johnny boy." John glanced up at the truly regretful and apologetic tone, eyes wide. "Duty does call."
"I'm sure," he murmured, brow furrowing.
Jim leaned back in, pressing a heated but chaste kiss to his lips. "Until next time, Doctor."
John watched him leave. His mouth tingled, and he was unbelievably hard. A stupid grin spread over his face, and he shook his head. The whole thing was ridiculous. Jim Moriarty had a thing for him. And John didn't mind one bit.
Granted, he did tend to go for the mad, brilliant, and undeniably dangerous ones.