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03 August 2011 @ 10:13 pm
Fic: Battle of Bakerloo (BBC Sherlock)  
Title: Battle of Bakerloo
Rating: PG
Wordcount: 1.5k
Betas: vyctori and fogbutton 
Disclaimer: Do not own.
Background info: Prompted here by a chat with [info]yourebrilliant wherein it was agreed that Sherlock probably snuggles John way too much.
Summary: The change had occurred, John had accepted it, and when Sherlock had asked, “You don’t mind, do you?”, John had answered, “No, of course not.”









“I’m missing something,” Sherlock murmured, a low rumble of frustration into his ear. “It’s staring me right in the face, why can’t I just see it....”

Resigned to his fate, John made a noncommittal noise. He’d long since given up looking at the web of information Sherlock had set up on their wall.

“There’s a crack in these alibis. There has to be. But where...?”

Long, pale fingers toyed with his hands, his wrists. Plucked at his sleeves and fiddled with his watch. John turned his hands over, caught him palm against palm.

Sherlock sighed out, a long, low breath, his chest relaxing only marginally against John’s back. His arms around John tightened and John sighed too, if for another reason entirely.

It wasn’t as if he particularly minded that Sherlock had turned out to be demonstrative. He’d been fully prepared to accept whatever little came: some snogging here, some sex there, and a reasonable amount of lunatic grinning. Which had all arrived, in less than reasonable amounts. Now when Sherlock treated him like furniture, he was a sofa rather than a table, something to sprawl upon and drape over (and occasionally sit on, in very nice ways indeed, but that was another story entirely). The change had occurred, John had accepted it, and when Sherlock had asked, “You don’t mind, do you?”, John had answered, “No, of course not.”

In hindsight, an obvious mistake.

With small secessions and gradual border crossings, Sherlock had invaded the entirety of John’s personal space. He had settled, set up base and clearly had no plans whatsoever to withdraw from his appropriated territory. It was Afghanistan all over again.

John went to sleep with Sherlock on him. He woke up with Sherlock on him. There were clear signs that there had been some period of time in between when John hadn’t been a mattress, but John never seemed to be awake for that interim.

The scalp massages were pretty nice, he had to admit. His shoulders were well-rubbed, his body seldom cold. And Sherlock never left him at crime scenes anymore, always with a hand on John’s back to steer him out. Which was a little embarrassing, but well worth it for the reactions.

The point remained that, like some sort of sexual Napoleon, Sherlock had claimed to be after Shagland only to take over the Republic of Cuddles on his way there. Except this was where the military metaphor of Portuguese sex and Spanish snuggling fell apart, because that would involve Mycroft being set up in Sherlock’s place as the King of Spain, and therefore hugs, and that was too disturbing to consider, umbrellas and all.

“Whatever you’re thinking about, stop.” Sherlock nipped his ear for emphasis. “It distracts me when you’re tense.”

“You could let go,” John suggested. “That’s always an option.”

“Is it?” Rhetorical, already not paying attention. Soft, half-mumbles now, Sherlock’s cheek pressing against the side of his head as the taller man scanned the information pinned up before them.

“I could buy you a teddy bear,” John added. “A great big one. It can keep the skull company.”

“Romantic cliché. Dull.”

“Sherlock.”

“You used the toilet an hour ago, you’re not hungry and your leg doesn’t hurt.” Sherlock tightened his grip on John’s hands. “Stay still.”

“This can’t really be helping you think.”

Sherlock shushed him, which didn’t do much, and bit his ear again, which did.

John didn’t mean to, but relaxing into Sherlock had been steadily trained into him over the past months. For all that chest was narrow, there was a solidity to it. Born of frantic exertion and too few proper meals, terribly hard, it was a chest that begged for something soft, for old jumpers against tight silk. It made John want to sink into him, fill him up. To wear him like a coat, arms buttoned around his front, voice wrapped around his throat like the softest scarf. It really wasn’t fair, the snug, warm intimacy Sherlock could generate without a thought.

Eyes closed, head lolling back on Sherlock’s bony shoulder, John felt himself drifting off. Even standing, it wouldn’t be the first time. It wasn’t all bad, sagging against his twig of a flatmate, wrapped up in his arms, his scent, breathing the same slow, gentle rhythm....

No, none of that was the bad bit.

The bad bit was the door opening. The worse bit was Mrs. Hudson cooing and then the worst bit was DI Lestrade’s dry, “Is this a bad time?”

“No,” Sherlock answered, a bored drawl, his absurd octopus arms a bloody vice around John’s middle.

John cleared his throat.

Sherlock shushed him again.

After weighing his options – surrender, escape, and death by mortification – John went with escape. Which Sherlock physically disagreed with and Lestrade laughed at. Mrs. Hudson resumed her cooing but thankfully did not offer a story about her late husband. John had to take his silver linings where he could find them.

“I’ve been trained in self-defence, you know,” John informed his captor. “I could flip you into the wall.”

“You’d feel bad about it.”

“You’d be surprised.”

“I would,” Sherlock agreed. He had the gall, the absolute cheek, to kiss the side of John’s head.

“If I’m not interrupting anything,” Lestrade said, “there does happen to be a triple homicide I’d like to ask you about.”

John fought down the urge to climb into Sherlock’s suit jacket and not come out until he’d finished dying of embarrassment. He settled for an irritated hum, which only made Sherlock’s thumbs press circles into his skin.

“I’m nearly there,” Sherlock huffed. It was his turn for a frustrated noise and then he – oh no, no – and then he rubbed his cheek against John’s hair like a great sodding cat.

“Oh, boys,” Mrs. Hudson gushed.

John dared a horrified glance to find Lestrade twitching down some sort of facial expression that should never be allowed to come to fruition. And he did not, John absolutely did not press back into Sherlock in defeat, not even a little.

Sherlock went right on with that absentminded nuzzling. He was like this ridiculous animal, something brought home on a terrible whim one Christmas that wound up growing stupidly tall and destroying the house. Crawling into beds and making messes and looking so heartrendingly sad when no one scratched him behind the ears.

“He says it helps him think,” John tried to explain. His escape plans, he could relinquish, but he wasn’t particularly keen to hand over the remainder of his dignity. A frankly minuscule remainder, but it was a matter of principle.

Lestrade, even more dryly than before: “Does it really?”

“I’m not-”

“Oh!” Sherlock exclaimed and hugged him tight, just shy of a Heimlich manoeuvre. “Oh! That’s it!”

Sherlock immediately released him and began whirling about the room, picking up papers, navigating his phone, chattering away the whole while.

John, stunned and oddly cold, could only watch him in amazement.

“Huh,” said Lestrade.

“Told you,” said John.

“...How long were you...?”

“I’d rather not say.” John caught sight of himself in the mirror and smoothed down his hair as best he was able.

“I have the address!” Sherlock announced, tearing a pamphlet off the wall and shoving it into Lestrade’s hands. “The killer’s address, it’s time for a house call. Mrs. Hudson, don’t wait up.”

“Have a nice date,” Mrs. Hudson bid them. “Be safe.”

“We will,” John answered, the response automatic. “I mean- I mean we’ll be safe.” Entirely meant for that second bit, not that first bit at all.

Lestrade didn’t even pretend to be coughing. “I’ll leave you two to your taxi, then,” he said by way of goodbye. All the way down the stairs, not pretending to cough.

“Sherlock,” John groaned, aggrieved and ill-used.

Sherlock bundled him into his jacket before hauling him out onto the street. At some point in the process, John was sure he’d heard Mrs. Hudson say something about young love. Sherlock flagged down a taxi, opened the door, and guided John into it, that ever-present hand warm on his back despite the many layers between.

The address rattled off, the car in motion, John wasn’t remotely surprised at the leather-clad fingers sliding through his own. He looked to his flatmate, perfectly ready to give the man a piece of his mind, and the words melted away like mist before the sun.

“Thank you,” Sherlock said, so soft, so simple. Sincere, even. As if it were John who had done something remarkable, performed some feat of brilliance.

John’s tongue darted out, across his dry lips. “You’re welcome,” he said, voice perfectly steady. The cab turned and John let inertia do what it would.

And Sherlock, leaning in but not quite sure: “You don’t mind, do you?” Gray eyes curious, half-guarded. As if it wouldn’t matter either way when, really, it did.

“Of course not,” John said, and was soundly, breathlessly kissed.

In hindsight, he’d made worse mistakes.
 
 
 
sethra2000sethra2000 on August 4th, 2011 02:39 am (UTC)
Awwwww, Catlock strikes again, he was so very feline in his way of taking over by stealth. Poor John, never stood a chance. Lovely.
fiction, fiction, fiction: BBC Sherlockbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:39 pm (UTC)
Thanks! And John seriously didn't.
(no subject) - chaucolaite on October 12th, 2011 10:43 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - bendingsignpost on October 13th, 2011 01:14 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - chaucolaite on October 13th, 2011 11:16 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - bendingsignpost on October 14th, 2011 01:04 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - chaucolaite on October 14th, 2011 01:35 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - bendingsignpost on October 14th, 2011 01:39 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - chaucolaite on October 14th, 2011 02:52 am (UTC) (Expand)
MV: Sherlock - rabbitsmrv3000 on August 4th, 2011 02:40 am (UTC)
This is perfectly adorable while staying totally in character. Loved it! :)
fiction, fiction, fictionbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:41 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
uwsannajaneuwsannajane on August 4th, 2011 04:06 am (UTC)
Oh, yeah. How sweet is this? And weirdly in character :)
fiction, fiction, fiction: BBC Sherlockbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:42 pm (UTC)
Thanks! And yeah, agreeing on the weird. Sherlock lends himself to extremes way too well.
jan_reajan_rea on August 4th, 2011 05:17 am (UTC)
Oh, this is just so sweet~! I love how much Sherlock needs to cuddle John, and John exasperation and willingness to be cuddled is just so adorable~

cha-langa-langa-lang: charlotteleenah on August 5th, 2011 02:29 am (UTC)
i need to know what that gif is from. really need to know. help?

( and bendingsignpost sorry for hijacking - thanks for the lovely story!!)
(no subject) - alex_lebeau on August 5th, 2011 07:39 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - jan_rea on August 5th, 2011 10:28 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - bendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:43 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - bendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:42 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Mamishka: sherlock johnmamishka on August 4th, 2011 05:23 am (UTC)
This is freakin' adorable! At first I wasnt' sure, but the whole put-upon nature of John, Sherlock really more using him than being specifically affectionate, which seems so VERY Sherlock. And of course Lestrade not buying a word of John's protestations. :)

A totally sweet and delightful scene. I don't know why poor put-upon John is so very appealing, but it really, really is. :)
fiction, fiction, fiction: BBC Sherlockbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:45 pm (UTC)
John is basically the white, fluffy cat that a cliche villain would be stroking, except instead of a villain, it's Sherlock. Not that John sees much of a difference when trapped in front of Lestrade.

Thanks!
acolyte33: Sherlock - Back to backacolyte33 on August 4th, 2011 05:23 am (UTC)
Aww that was wonderful. Poor John will never stand a chance against our languid in thought Sherlock.

Except this was where the military metaphor of Portuguese sex and Spanish snuggling fell apart, because that would involve Mycroft being set up in Sherlock’s place as the King of Spain, and therefore hugs, and that was too disturbing to consider, umbrellas and all.

Giggled myself silly there!
fiction, fiction, fictionbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:45 pm (UTC)
Thanks! I'm glad the historical reference is going over so well.
madder_badder: yummadder_badder on August 4th, 2011 05:28 am (UTC)
He was like this ridiculous animal, something brought home on a terrible whim one Christmas that wound up growing stupidly tall and destroying the house. Crawling into beds and making messes and looking so heartrendingly sad when no one scratched him behind the ears.

Such a perfect, vivid description. Very enjoyable read!
fiction, fiction, fictionbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:45 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
grimwafergrimwafer on August 4th, 2011 06:37 am (UTC)
Awwwww
I love aggressive!cuddler Sherlock, all those long limbs would be perfect for keep john right where he want him.

Wonderfully cute story, who wouldn't want something nice and cozy to hug while thinking?
fiction, fiction, fiction: BBC Sherlockbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:46 pm (UTC)
Re: Awwwww
Clearly, this is one of the uses John should be put to in the show. Thanks for reading!
not a morning person...tattoo_kink on August 4th, 2011 08:47 am (UTC)
This is all kind of adorable... and weird - cause all of them were totally in character. *g*

NICELY DONE!!!
fiction, fiction, fiction: BBC Sherlockbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:48 pm (UTC)
Again, seconding the weird. Totally with you there. Sherlock is really just made for over-the-top shenanigans, and John for putting up with them.

Thanks!
(Deleted comment)
fiction, fiction, fictionbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:48 pm (UTC)
Thanks!
mazaher: S/Jmazaher on August 4th, 2011 09:50 am (UTC)
"It was Afghanistan all over again."
Indeed =)
I love your writing and this in particular makes my day (...week?)
Thank you
fiction, fiction, fictionbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:48 pm (UTC)
Aww, really? Thanks!
what_alchemywhat_alchemy on August 4th, 2011 10:05 am (UTC)
Eeee I love everything about this, military metaphors to descriptions of absurd-cuddle-monster!Sherlock. Wonderful bit of reading and now my headcanon. :D
fiction, fiction, fiction: BBC Sherlockbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:49 pm (UTC)
Thanks! If this were canon-canon, we would probably all die of cute, but it'd be a nice way to go.
vix_spes: sherlock/johnvix_spes on August 4th, 2011 10:08 am (UTC)
This was fantastic ... adorable and in character at the same time! I loved the way that John compared Sherlock to one of Napoleon's offensives as well!
fiction, fiction, fiction: BBC Sherlockbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:50 pm (UTC)
Thanks! It seemed oddly appropriate for a former soldier.
doctor watson is my copilot: sherlock -- kiss him alreadykaalee on August 4th, 2011 11:38 am (UTC)
Oh, lovely. I like thinking about the two of them wrapped together so often. <3
fiction, fiction, fiction: BBC Sherlockbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:51 pm (UTC)
Really, who doesn't?

Thanks for reading!
kunju: a great intelligenceinnie_darling on August 4th, 2011 12:13 pm (UTC)
This is fantastic, particularly the Sherlock = Napoleon bit.
fiction, fiction, fictionbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:51 pm (UTC)
Thanks!
most excellently twisted: Holmes - John bluefanbot on August 4th, 2011 12:45 pm (UTC)
John as teddy bear. I love it.
fiction, fiction, fiction: BBC Sherlockbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:51 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
Morgan Stuart: Sherlock/Sherlock and John smilingmorganstuart on August 4th, 2011 01:26 pm (UTC)
Great writing. I love Sherlock as Napoleon. And this: "He was like this ridiculous animal, something brought home on a terrible whim one Christmas that wound up growing stupidly tall and destroying the house." Great stuff!
fiction, fiction, fiction: BBC Sherlockbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:52 pm (UTC)
Thank you!

That bit: so based on Donovan's "Did he follow you home?" line. He's the terrible decision pet you can't bring yourself to get rid of.
batgurl10batgurl10 on August 4th, 2011 02:41 pm (UTC)
This is TOO adorable and yet strangely understandable that sherlock would be that tactile.
fiction, fiction, fiction: BBC Sherlockbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:53 pm (UTC)
Heh, thanks! The way I figure it, a man unafraid to talk to a skull in public wouldn't hesitate in using his partner as a squishable thinking aid.
tartan: John/Sherlock -tartancravat on August 4th, 2011 04:05 pm (UTC)
I love the idea of Sherlock being so Sherlock (i.e., obnoxious) even when he's cuddling, but the cuddling is adorable anyway. Lovely fic.
fiction, fiction, fictionbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:54 pm (UTC)
Sherlock should never stop being obnoxious. How would we recognize him?

Thanks for reading!
Mushroommushroom18 on August 4th, 2011 04:34 pm (UTC)
cat!Sherlock and octopus arms/legs are my favourite type of Sherlock. :D
fiction, fiction, fiction: BBC Sherlockbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:55 pm (UTC)
I'm certainly a fan. <3

Thanks for reading!
Shannonlbmisscharlie on August 4th, 2011 06:28 pm (UTC)
This is adorable. I'm not sure which is better - John's complete and utter inability to deny Sherlock or Lestrade's reactions, heh.
fiction, fiction, fiction: BBC Sherlockbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:56 pm (UTC)
Thanks!
red_chapelred_chapel on August 4th, 2011 07:51 pm (UTC)
"The point remained that, like some sort of sexual Napoleon, Sherlock had claimed to be after Shagland only to take over the Republic of Cuddles on his way there."

Please do not put lines this funny at the beginnings of your work. Some of us risk dying of laughing before getting to all the rest of the good bits. Thank you.

Splendid, really splendid!
fiction, fiction, fiction: BBC Sherlockbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:59 pm (UTC)
While I apologize for whatever discomfort you have endured while reading my fic, I must make the case that keeping Shagland and the Republic of Cuddles to myself would have resulted in giggle-induced injury for me. I did not mean to put my well-being before yours, but needs must. I hope you understand.

Thanks for reading!
Bizarity: Ravenclawbizarity on August 4th, 2011 07:55 pm (UTC)
The ending of this is just adorable! I love when Sherlock and John do the whole unspoken but understood important / romantic bits thing. Which was really badly expressed, but I hope you understand what I mean.
fiction, fiction, fiction: BBC Sherlockbendingsignpost on August 5th, 2011 11:59 pm (UTC)
No, I totally get it. The best relationships are the ones where you can look and just know.

Thanks for reading!
(Deleted comment)
fiction, fiction, fictionbendingsignpost on August 6th, 2011 12:00 am (UTC)
Thanks!
rabidsamfan: bbc johnrabidsamfan on August 5th, 2011 02:18 am (UTC)
Wonderful fluff. I don't know whether to pity poor John or be envious!
fiction, fiction, fiction: BBC Sherlockbendingsignpost on August 6th, 2011 12:00 am (UTC)
Thanks! Maybe a bit of both?