Fandom: Sherlock (BBC)
Characters: John Watson, Sherlock Holmes, D.I. Greg Lestrade
Pairings: eventual John/Lestrade
Rating: PG-13 (this part, higher later)
A/N: So, the first half of this is the part that was originally written as a quick fill for a prompt on part one(!) of the kinkmeme. However, the prompt is a spoiler, so you may want to leave it until after you read this part. When you're ready for it, it's here. All feedback welcome. (Also, I fully expect to lose some readers at this point - don't worry if it's not your thing - I understand.)
Summary: March 22nd, 2010, John is rescued from a tricky situation by Sherlock and an unusual assistant. One of John's questions about Lestrade is answered, but a lot more take its place...
Previous Chapters: ( One ) ( Two ) ( Three )
March 22nd, 2010
March 22nd, 2010
John shifted uncomfortably and tried to stretch his shoulder muscles; tricky manoeuvre when you're sitting on the floor with your hands tied behind your back.
"Oi, you - sit still!" The man watching him - a small-time crook by the name of James Paterson - looked up from his newspaper and scowled. He placed his hand meaningfully on the gun lying on the table beside him and glared at John for a minute before returning to the Sports page.
John shivered. It was a milder day than it could have been for mid-March but still a long way from warm and the bare concrete basement was unheated. His left foot felt like a block of ice. He'd tried to make a break for it when they'd arrived at the sprawling industrial site and during the struggle his shoe had come off. He'd also smacked the side of his head off the ground. He could feel the blood drying on his scalp, pulling his hair tight across bruised skin. At least he wasn't experiencing any signs of concussion so as soon as Sherlock got off his arse and found him, he should be good to go.
It was funny when he thought about it. It wasn't even two whole months since he'd met Sherlock but he had no doubt the man would show up. Probably at the most dramatically advantageous moment; Sherlock's love of doing things with flair had been apparent from day one.
Pity sex "wasn't really his area," he'd probably be amazing at it - but John had found he was quite happy to love being around Sherlock without being in love with him. They'd just... clicked. Which was fortunate really - no need to worry about sex mucking up a perfectly good friendship - and, more importantly, a nice cheap flat-share.
Now, if he could just stop wanking to thoughts of a certain grey-haired policeman, he'd be sorted... It was getting downright awkward. Despite what Lestrade had told him a few days ago, John couldn't stop thinking about him and, what was worse, when Lestrade had brought Sherlock this case earlier, the D.I. had given John several sidelong glances as if he could tell exactly what John was imagining when he was vigorously stroking himself in the shower.
Oh, a hot shower... John was really looking forward to one of those - with or without fantasies involving handcuffs.
He glanced up through the narrow basement window at the small patch of sky he could see above the opposite building. What's taking Sherlock so long anyway? It's getting dark already... Wait - what was that?
John thought he saw movement outside, a darker grey shadow against the rain-heavy clouds. He wriggled and tried to sit up straighter.
"I warned you." The man stood up and backhanded John viciously across the face.
The window exploded inwards as a large shape crashed through it and landed on the floor in front of John and his guard.
John only had time to register big, fur, TEETH as he ducked his head to avoid the flying glass.
"Christ!" The guard grabbed for his gun and fired blindly in panic as the animal snarled and leaped for him, knocking him backwards to the floor. The gun skittered away out of his grasp. He frantically scrambled to his feet and fled out of the room.
John looked up. He'd expected an Alsatian or something similar but there was no mistaking this creature for a dog.
A wolf! It's a bloody WOLF - in the middle of London!
And it wasn't chasing after the guard. It stopped, turned its head and licked at its shoulder a few times. John could see blood; a bullet must have grazed it or some glass from the window had cut it.
The wolf had thick silver grey fur which lightened to almost white around its muzzle. It was much bigger than John had imagined wolves to be, with large powerful shoulders and a long back. John inspected it from nose to tail and when he directed his attention back to its head, he found its dark brown eyes giving him the most intelligent look he'd ever seen from an animal.
Shit... John quickly broke eye contact in case the wolf saw him as a threat. He sat very still with his head bowed as the wolf slowly approached on John's left side. Its head came so close John could feel its hot breath panting against his neck - then it licked his face.
John gasped in surprise but forced himself to stay still. The wolf continued licking his face, cleaning off the blood from the cut to his head. After a minute the gentle rasping became quite ticklish, especially when it brushed across the top of his ear. Try as hard as he might John couldn't contain a quiet giggle. The licking stopped. John risked a quick glance up. The wolf cocked its head to one side, snorted out a breath through its nose and then carried on licking.
John's ear was already sensitised and the touch quickly became unbearable. "Stop it!" he gasped between laughs.
To his surprise, the wolf did. It turned and sat down on its haunches beside him then leaned its warm weight against him and nestled its head under John's chin. John closed his eyes and enjoyed the heat radiating from the animal's soft fur.
Sherlock hurtled through the door moments later. He completely ignored the wolf and bent down to untie John's hands. "Are you alright?"
John rubbed his wrists and stretched his back as Sherlock untied his feet. "I'm fine. Where on Earth did you get a tame wolf?"
"I called in a favour. They're not quite as good at tracking as dedicated breeds like the bloodhound but I didn't have time to be picky. There were hundreds of places they could have been hiding you near here. He was able to find you using this." Sherlock held out John's missing shoe.
"Oh, brilliant - thanks. I like these shoes." John slipped it back on and Sherlock helped him stand. "What happened to Paterson and his brother?"
"Got away - for now. Lestrade's got all the details though. They won't get far."
John reached down and scratched the wolf's head. He smiled as the wolf pressed its skull up into his hand. Its thick tail banged happily against the floor.
"Stop that," Sherlock snapped.
"Why? I think he likes it."
"I wasn't talking to you," Sherlock replied.
The wolf sat with its tongue lolling out, looking for all the world like it was laughing at Sherlock.
John almost laughed himself when Sherlock produced a collar and leash from his coat and attached them to the wolf. He was sure that wouldn't fool anybody.
Strangely though, despite a few second glances, most people did seem to be as unobservant as Sherlock always accused them of being. They were able to walk to a busy street without any incident. To John's complete lack of surprise however, the first three black cabs that passed them didn't even slow down.
The wolf whined as the third one headed away.
"No, we go all together or not at all," Sherlock said.
John looked at him curiously. Sherlock was giving the wolf more attention than he gave most people - yet another black mark against his claim to be a sociopath.
Finally a cab stopped and a short while later they were all safely ensconced within the Baker Street flat with a large box of fried chicken Sherlock had insisted they stop for on the way.
John grabbed a couple of plates from the kitchen while Sherlock threw himself onto the sofa. The wolf stretched out on its stomach in the middle of the floor, with its head between its paws. It looked strangely fitting amidst the random clutter that Sherlock and John lived in.
"So how long are you keeping him for?" John asked, tilting his head towards the animal as he sat down.
"Don't worry about that. He'll be home before morning." Sherlock flipped the lid off the chicken, lifted some of it onto his plate and started picking out the bones.
John grabbed a few pieces onto his own plate. "His owner's coming to pick him up?"
"Something like that."
John waved a drumstick in Sherlock's direction. "You should eat something too."
"Maybe later." Sherlock set the bones aside and started picking apart another piece.
John made short work of his share of the meal. As he finished he realised that now he was no longer hungry, he was incredibly tired. "I think I'll just head to bed. I'm done in."
"Good idea." Sherlock put John's pile of bones into the empty bucket along with the ones from his plate.
The wolf sat up and looked intently at the plate of meat but made no noise or move towards it. He was very well-trained.
"OK." John stood up and stretched. "Thanks again for finding me."
"You're welcome," Sherlock replied.
"And you... good boy." John patted the wolf on its head and it gave a small growl of acknowledgement as John turned to go up the stairs.
John checked the cut on his head, got changed into his pyjamas, brushed his teeth and headed for bed. He reached the door of his room when he realised he wanted a glass of water - the saltiness of the chicken had made him quite thirsty.
Sherlock's voice drifted up the stairs as John trudged wearily back down to the living room. Must be calling the wolf's owner. Or maybe he was using the wolf as a substitute skull since John wasn't there?
"Stop whining, Lestrade."
Lestrade? The wolf's named after Lestrade? I wonder if he knows... John grinned at the thought but the grin vanished when he heard the actual Lestrade's voice answer from inside the room.
"I'm not whining. I'm just tired... and I'm still hungry. I could eat a horse right now."
"Really?" Sherlock sounded interested in Lestrade's offhand remark.
"No. Not really. I suppose if I was hungry enough a whole sheep might be possible but... No. I know that look. You're not feeding me a sheep. The chicken was fine. Now get this thing off..."
John pushed the living room door open.
"...and then you need to find me some clothes so I can go home," Lestrade finished.
John had started to think there was nothing he could see in 221B Baker Street that would shock him any more. He should have known better.
Oh. My. God... What the hell happened to 'not really my area'?
Lestrade was standing in the middle of the room, facing the door, stark bollock naked apart from a leather collar.
Sherlock was standing immediately behind him, fully clothed, his long fingers working at the buckle on the collar.
It was probably one of the most arousing things John had seen in his entire life. He gasped and the attention of both men was instantly on him.
"Shit!" Lestrade turned scarlet and clutched his hands together over his privates. He made a wild lunge for the Union Jack cushion on John's chair and held it in front of him.
"Hello, John. Did you forget something?" Sherlock smirked at him.
Lestrade had outright panic in his eyes. "John - it's... it's not--"
"Of course it's not!" Sherlock snapped. "John can work it out for himself."
"I... can?" John dragged his eyes away from Lestrade's body to Sherlock's face.
Sherlock was looking at him expectantly. "Think it through, John."
"I'm not sure I want to know what all... this... is." John waved his hand at the pair of them.
"I should really go." Lestrade took a step forward but Sherlock grabbed his shoulder.
"No wait - he'll get it."
"I don't want him to get it, Sherlock. Let me go."
"Let me go!" Lestrade snarled. He tore his shoulder away from Sherlock's grasp, his teeth bared in anger.
Sherlock held his hands up and stepped back.
John saw the shape of the answer forming in his mind - but it was so outrageous... "No." He shook his head and laughed at himself.
"Come on, John. When you've eliminated everything else, then whatever remains..." Sherlock encouraged him.
"That's a bit more than improbable, Sherlock."
"But?" Sherlock's eyes were boring into him, willing him to make the connection.
John stared at Lestrade. "Sherlock came back here with the wolf and it hasn't left but it's not here now and you are... and you're wearing a collar like it was... and its fur was the same colour as your hair... and it got injured on the shoulder, and you've got a cut there... and..."
Lestrade looked pained. "You can say it, John. It's alright."
"You're the wolf?"
"You're the... You licked me!" John suddenly remembered.
"It helped, didn't it?" Lestrade winced as he shrugged his shoulders.
"Let me see that." John strode forward and grabbed Lestrade's upper arms. The graze was long but not deep. "Oh. I thought it was worse than that."
"It'll be fine by tomorrow. I heal very quickly."
John scanned the rest of Lestrade's body for any other injuries. Lestrade's feet and hands were filthy and he had a strong musky smell, presumably from running when he was tracking John but there were barely any marks at all, not even scratches. He also had an extremely nice arse...
"Uhh, John?" Lestrade prompted.
John realised he was inspecting the Inspector. "Sorry." He stood back and let his arms drop to his sides.
"It's fine. Some clothes would be nice though. Mine are locked in my car." Lestrade looked pointedly at Sherlock.
Sherlock resumed his attempts to unbuckle Lestrade's collar. ""If you let me have a spare key--" he started.
"I'd never expect to find my car where I left it. No chance," Lestrade finished.
"Fine - I'll see if I can find something baggy enough," Sherlock dropped the collar on the table and headed for his room, leaving Lestrade and John standing in a very awkward silence.
John couldn't take his eyes off Lestrade.
Lestrade looked everywhere else but at John.
Eventually John cleared his throat. "Couldn't you just... y'know... go home like you were and then get changed there?"
Lestrade shook his head. "Too much hassle. I'd have to change back to open the door and, knowing my luck, one of the neighbours would come out just as I was standing there in the hall completely starkers."
"I could come with you and let you in..."
"No, they don't allow animals in my building. Thanks, John - but I really don't want to have to change again tonight. It's quite tiring. I'll just go home as is. Besides, you need to rest too."
"Right, yes, sorry, I didn't.. I mean... Yeah." John lapsed into silence again.
Sherlock came back through with a pile of clothes which Lestrade hastily snatched from his grasp and pulled on.
"Right. Thanks, Sherlock. See you tomorrow.... Night, John."
He was almost out of the door when John caught his arm. "Lestrade..."
Lestrade stopped but he still refused to meet John's eyes.
"I would never tell anybody. You know that?" John asked.
"Yeah... I know... Thanks"
And he was gone.
John turned to Sherlock. He drew breath trying to decide which of the four hundred questions he had he should ask first, but Sherlock shushed him with a swift motion of his hand.
"Unless it's about the case and the particularly clever way I worked out where they'd taken you, I have nothing to say."
"But you... He..."
"I told you. I won't say anything. You'll have to ask him. Don't expect many answers though."
Sherlock went back into his room and closed the door.
John stood in the living room staring at the pile of chicken bones, the licked clean plate on the floor and the collar on the coffee table. If it wasn't for the faint scent in the air that he'd come to recognise as being uniquely Lestrade's, he'd have easily persuaded himself the whole thing had been an hallucination brought on by his head injury.
This hadn't even made the list of all the possible explanations he'd come up with for Lestrade's shyness but it made perfect sense now. Of course - he wouldn't get involved with someone in case they found out his secret.
But now, John knew his secret - and the more he thought about it the more OK he was with it. If that was all Lestrade had been worried about, then problem solved. John Watson, danger-junkie, meet Greg Lestrade, a whole level of dangerous you never even knew existed. It might scare other people off but John prided himself on not being "other people".
John closed his eyes and breathed in deeply, catching the last lingering traces of Lestrade's scent. God help me - it just makes him more attractive.
I am so fucked...
If I'm lucky anyway....
( Chapter Five )