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fic: Unpredictable (final chapter)

Title: Unpredictable
Author: fengirl88
Rated: R
Word Count: 7114 in total
Summary: Sherlock wakes up with a strange bedfellow and finds that his brain is not working properly. Cue angst and confusion, amongst other things. Sherlock/John slash with interruptions by Lestrade. Spoilers for series 1 episode 1.
Disclaimers: the usual; BBC Sherlock


Chapter 5

 

 

He knows he hasn't been asleep at all. People say that sort of thing all the time and often it's nonsense, like most of the things people say. But he has been lying here in the dark, watching the numbers on the alarm change minute by minute, for hours now. It's 4 a.m., the dead time, the worst time. He keeps listening, straining for any sound that might indicate John's return.

 

It's not like him to be doing this. But then so much of what he's been doing for the last week is not like him.

 

He could get up, look up more cases, maybe do something about that new experiment he was planning.

 

He keeps looking at the text that just says

 

Fuck off

JW

 

 

It doesn't look any better than it looked the first time.

 

He doesn't think he will ever understand all the fuss about sex. It's really not that important. Even Lestrade is actually, as far as Sherlock can tell from his admittedly limited experience, quite good at it. But really -

 

No, it's not what he thought. Just someone walking past, not stopping. Not John. At least he hopes John would have stopped.

 

All this fuss about sex, and indeed love, is so illogical. It just gets in the way of everything.

 

Why can't he have sex with Lestrade and still be friends with John? It's ridiculous. Of course he has to apologise properly about that thing with the door. Both those things with the door. And the things he said. But really that ought to be it.

 

Why do people expect you to make such a song and dance about their emotions?

 

It's going to be a real nuisance if he has to look for another flatmate. Can't keep going through them at the rate of one a week.

 

He could get undressed and get into bed, rather than just lying on it. It's rather cold. But he doesn't feel like it. It seems somehow important not still to be in the same clothes as this afternoon when John comes back.

 

If John comes back. Though presumably he'll at least have to come back for his suitcase. It would be a pity not to have some chance to talk, at least to part on friendlier terms. If that's what's going to happen.

 

It's not what he wants to happen.

 

So what does he want?

 

He thinks about what he said to Lestrade, about waking up in bed with John.

 

I wanted him to be there. I liked it. Said it as if he was ashamed of it.

 

Thinks, too, about the other things he said. That he doesn't do this. Doesn't do people. Doesn't do intimacy. Doesn't do bed-sharing.

 

Sex, yes, though not often, these last years. Could be OK with someone like Lestrade, who is good at it and fun to play games with and might not expect too much. But that's different.

 

Letting someone in that close. He would have said that could never happen. Still doesn't know if it can. Or if he wants it to. But he wishes he was back there again, that morning after, waking up in bed with John Watson, and that it could just go on being like that, the warmth and the quiet of it.

 

Or if not that, then at least just to have him around. Doing the things they've been doing together. Like friends. Another thing Sherlock would have said he didn't really do.

 

A bit of that conversation in Angelo's comes back to him. John's voice saying People don't have arch-enemies. Not in real life and his own voice saying Don't they? Sounds a bit dull. What do real people have then? In their real lives? And John's reply: Friends.

 

Went on to say other things, too, including all that rather embarrassing stuff about whether Sherlock had a girlfriend or a boyfriend, and Sherlock had thought he was asking -

 

But he wasn't.

 

Lestrade doesn't know what he's talking about. You're in with a chance there. Meaningless phrase. A chance of what?

 

It's not looking like much of anything at the moment.

 

 

The footsteps are coming back down the street. At least, he's pretty sure they are the same ones. Stopping outside the house. Key in the door.

 

It's ridiculous to be holding his breath like this. Footsteps coming up the stairs, stopping outside his door. Sherlock gets up quickly off the bed, goes to the door, opens it.

 

John looks tired, and his coat is damp; it's been raining, though not hard. Looks as if he's been walking for hours, which he must have been.

 

I didn't think you were coming back.” Didn't know that was what he was going to say until he'd said it.

 

I didn't think I was either,” John says. He sounds numb, colourless; sounds the way he looked when he came into the room in Bart's that day, the first time Sherlock saw him. Still holding himself tense, like a soldier. But also as if he's bracing himself against something, or bracing himself to do something, Sherlock isn't sure what.

 

I'm not very good at this sort of thing,” Sherlock says. One of his rare understatements, he recognizes wryly.

 

He tries again to find something to say that will stop this man from leaving. Because he really doesn't want him to leave.

 

I'm sorry,” he says. “About this afternoon, all of it. Not good.”

 

No,” John says. “Not good.”

 

I don't want you to move out,” Sherlock says.

 

He feels he should say something else but he's scared of saying the wrong thing. Something else that's never happened to him before.

 

The thing with Lestrade - ” he begins.

 

None of my business,” John says.

 

Which isn't exactly what Sherlock was looking for.

 

I'm sorry,” Sherlock says again. He could just stand here all night saying that, but he has a sinking feeling it won't make any difference.

 

It's nothing to me who you have sex with,” John says. Which strikes Sherlock as slightly different from None of my business and almost like something a jealous person might say. For a moment he wonders if Lestrade might have been right after all.

 

It's only sex,” Sherlock says helplessly. “I've never understood why people think it's that important.”

 

No,” says John. “I don't suppose you have.”

 

Sherlock isn't sure whether this is a factual statement or a not very disguised insult.

 

I should have shut the door the first time,” Sherlock says. “Locked the door the first time.”

 

Yes,” John says. “You should.”

 

Sherlock wonders if John is just going to carry on agreeing with everything he says. It's all a bit uncomfortable.

 

Shouldn't you take that coat off?” Sherlock asks.

 

John stares at him. Sherlock's actually quite surprised at it himself, because he hadn't known he was going to say that either. John takes the coat off but doesn't put it down. Stands there holding it.

 

Sherlock looks at John, who looks absolutely exhausted: “Would you like some tea?”

 

John winces.

 

I”m not doing very well with this, am I?” Sherlock says.

 

John shakes his head. Doesn't even say anything.

 

I don't really know how to be with anyone,” Sherlock says.

 

John's still standing there holding the coat. He looks puzzled, which is an improvement on looking just exhausted and tense.

 

What do you mean, be with?” he asks.

 

I don't do people,” Sherlock says, falling back on the only form of words he's come up with so far that makes sense to him.

 

You bloody well did Lestrade,” John says, accusingly.

 

Sherlock doesn't know why that makes him laugh, or whether laughing is going to make things worse. But apparently it doesn't, because now John is laughing too, for no good reason, and the relief of it is almost more than Sherlock can cope with.

 

Are you going to stand there holding that coat all night?” Sherlock says, suddenly exasperated. He takes the coat away from John and hangs it on the back of the bedroom door. He's gone past trying to work out why he does anything any more.

 

It's nearly morning, or haven't you noticed?” John says. So it is.

 

Do you want to come and lie down?” Sherlock says.

 

Not sure which of them is more surprised by that.

 

Are you - ” John begins. He stops. Tries again. “Is this - ”

 

I don't know,” Sherlock says. “But it's late, and we're both exhausted, and you're all wet and it really is quite cold in here.”

 

John still looks confused, which is hardly surprising.

 

Sherlock finally finds the thing that he wants to say, something he would never have imagined saying, but which is at least a factual statement:

 

I like waking up with you.”

 

John looks as if a lot of different things are going through his mind. Sherlock knows he isn't good at reading facial expressions or emotions, but he thinks he can identify, in the following order, sad, thoughtful, and if you have sex with Lestrade on the sofa again I'll wring your neck.

 

He's not sure what his own expression looks like to John, but he's feeling hopeful, so perhaps it's that.

 

All right, then,” John says.

 

 

 

They lie down together, clothes on at first under the covers because it's so cold. It's a very strange thing for Sherlock to find himself doing, but it feels good just the same. Eventually it's warm enough in the bed for some of the clothes to come off, and they do.

 

Don't start thinking I'm going to do this every night,” John says.

 

No, I won't,” Sherlock says. And he doesn't. This is enough for now. Lying here close, hearing John's breathing, breathing him in. John's arm lying across him. Face to face this time, which is different from last time, but makes some things easier. Kissing, for example, which seems like quite a good idea right now. Tentative, but nice. Stroking John's back, which also seems a fine and appropriate thing to do. Though there could be more.

 

He's not sure whether the look on John's face as Sherlock presses hopefully against his thigh means I want you now or You really are impossible. It might be both. With luck, there will be time to learn these things.

 

It's enough for now to know that this morning he's waking up with John Watson. This morning, or possibly this afternoon. Because it really has been one hell of a long day, and they're not asleep yet.

 


thanks to everyone for comments; special thanks to crocodile_eat_u

Comments

( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
et_cetera55
Sep. 28th, 2010 09:00 pm (UTC)
Ok so I haven't read this 'verse in the most logical of orders!
It is absolutely brilliant!

Oh and Sherlock reading if you have sex with Lestrade on the sofa again I'll wring your neck. on John's face made me lol so hard!
fengirl88
Sep. 28th, 2010 09:10 pm (UTC)
thank you so much! really delighted with your comments on these stories.

*blushing happily*

(I confess I am fond of that line as well.)

the disorder is largely my fault for posting the early stuff on fanfiction.net and not on here because I was frightened by lj-cuts and didn't understand how to do them...
et_cetera55
Sep. 28th, 2010 09:12 pm (UTC)
Wasn't just me then that was completely confused by them to begin with!
fengirl88
Sep. 28th, 2010 09:20 pm (UTC)
no, seriously not... and then there was the time when I had a massive lj-cut FAIL with /of course/ the only fic I'd ever posted that included BDSM, and became (for a very short time) a menace to the morals of the young on sherlockbbc until one of the mods alerted me to this. oh woe.
et_cetera55
Sep. 28th, 2010 09:25 pm (UTC)
Oh hun *hugs in sympathy*

This is why still all of my stuff is posted on my own journal and initially viewable only to friends - I figure they will forgive me when I mess up the htmling again!

*goes to find said BDSM fic...*
warriorbot
Nov. 13th, 2010 08:13 pm (UTC)
Lovely fic - not only lovely in itself (as always) but a delightful trip down memory lane to the earliest days of the Fandom. Those initial, sharp impressions of both of them come over beautifully.



I want them to be new to each other like this forever! I'm glad you reposted.
fengirl88
Nov. 13th, 2010 10:02 pm (UTC)
thank you very much! *hugs you*

it was a bit strange looking at this again, but I know what you mean about wanting them to be new to each other forever. feeling a great attraction to writing first times at them moment.
autumn_frosts
Nov. 13th, 2010 09:27 pm (UTC)
This is very lovely and well written.
fengirl88
Nov. 13th, 2010 10:02 pm (UTC)
thank you very much! I'm so glad you enjoyed it.
lilyfarfalla
Dec. 29th, 2010 03:39 am (UTC)
Mmm, this was so full of angst and confusing and the longing!!! So much confused longing. Truly wonderful
fengirl88
Dec. 29th, 2010 06:33 pm (UTC)
thank you very much! I'm fond of this story, partly because the first chapter was the first piece of fanfiction I ever wrote and came as a complete surprise to me. I'm very glad you enjoyed it.
(Deleted comment)
fengirl88
Mar. 13th, 2011 11:53 am (UTC)
thank you very much! it always makes me happy to get comments on this piece because I'm fond of it - I think I was nearly as surprised as Sherlock when it appeared in my life.
maggie_conagher
Jul. 1st, 2011 09:52 pm (UTC)
Re-reading everything, third of fourth time. Trying to fill in places where i didn't comment.

One thing I'm noticing is how well you write progressive tension and a very organic, incremental progress toward a relationship. It feels so very real to me.

I got squirmy at the awkwardness, and very sad for John's exhaustion. Quite the roller coaster over a few days time. Even with knowing how it will end now, it's still powerful.

Love your work, come back to it as one of my hideouts/safe places. Thank you for providing it.

Your stories are so fun to comment on because I know comments mean something for you and that's enough, but then you are so gracious to reply and quickly.

Thank you for that too. I crave validation.
fengirl88
Jul. 2nd, 2011 11:49 pm (UTC)
thank you very much! I have a soft spot for this early story - the first chapter was a new beginning for me in lots of ways, not only because it was the first time I'd written fanfiction - and I'm very glad you like it. I'm really pleased with what you say about the relationship and how it feels to you.


( 14 comments — Leave a comment )

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