When Sherlock wakes from an unusual full night's rest— five hours of solid sleep, though the strenuous sexual activity beforehand may have contributed to his laziness— the first glimmer of sharp winter sunlight has just begun to filter through the curtains. They've had a few dustings of snow since Christmas, but the house is comfortably warm; sleeping chilled makes John's shoulder ache, and Sherlock simply won't abide that.

It is especially warm under the duvet, lying with his cheek pillowed on John's other shoulder and his arm thrown across John's chest. Sherlock is content, for the moment, to count John's slow, even breaths against the crown of his head. His mind is relatively placid, most of the activity dialled down to a low hum in the back of his skull. It feels a bit like his hives: dormant in the bite of winter, but still buzzing softly with potential.

He is not bored, and he is certainly not numb.

It is only ever this peaceful with John.

Then, eventually, John stirs beside him, stretching. Familiar fingers card through Sherlock's hair, gently ruffling dark curls ever so slightly streaked with grey, just at his forelock. Humming his agreement with the very welcome petting, Sherlock shifts closer, hooking one leg over John's knees.

"Mm, morning." John presses a kiss against his hair, and Sherlock tilts his head up to see the smile he heard in those hoarse words. It is a crooked little grin, deepening the lines at the corners of John's hooded eyes, and Sherlock can feel an answering expression spread across his own face. "Happy birthday, love."

"Thank you." John hadn't bothered with secrecy in years; Sherlock knows about the small chocolate cake in the refrigerator, and the exact contents of the neatly wrapped packages waiting on a shelf in the linen closet. It is more than a little delightful that John is giving him a new set of volumetric flasks— apparently, he's been sufficiently forgiven for The Incident.

And the absolutely beautiful glass dildo, swirled deep blue and violet and flared perfectly at the head, is even more exciting than the flasks. Sherlock had been hard-pressed not to ask (beg) for it the night before, but John had done an excellent job of distracting him with his hands, his mouth, and then his cock drilling Sherlock expertly and mercilessly into the mattress.

The thought of cool glass pressing slickly into his still tender arse sounds like a very promising start to the day, and John's grin curls wide and indulgent when Sherlock suggests it.

"God, you're still such a brat," John sighs, and Sherlock doesn't think to argue when he's rolled onto his back, though his joints are a bit stiff. There are still certain traditions to observe, after all, though nothing so stodgy as cake on the fine china and presents after tea.

Among the many things Sherlock has learned in the last twenty years, one of the most rewarding discoveries has been that birthday blow jobs are never, ever dull.