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Title: A Certain Proposal
Rating: Explicit
Pairings: John/Irene/Sherlock
Word Count: ~3,300
Warnings: None that I can easily see.
Betas: mittenthief
Disclaimer: Not mine, just playing with them.

Summary: When Sherlock Holmes is out of his element, he consults an expert. Sometimes, the experts come to him.



When John returns from the surgery, the door to 221b is closed, but not latched. But that’s not necessarily unusual. Sherlock flounces out of the flat all of the time without properly shutting the door or Mrs. Hudson has her hands full when she heads back to her own rooms. Even with that knowledge, John pushes the door open slowly. 221b feels wrong.

And there she is. Sitting on their sofa, her shoes kicked off and feet tucked between the cushions, browsing through one of Sherlock’s forensics journals as calm as you please.

“How many times is someone going to tell me you’re dead before it’s actually true?”

Irene looks up when John speaks and smiles gently. Well, as gently as she can. Her eyes never lose that predator’s edge. “At least once more, I should think.”

“What the hell are you doing here Irene? Does Sherlock know you’re here?”

“No.” She drops the book on the floor next to the sofa and shifts slightly to better face John. “Actually, I just stopped by to borrow some handcuffs. I assume Sherlock has several pairs on loan from Scotland Yard?”

John leans wearily against their combined desks. “Get out, Irene. Get out and don’t come back.”

Irene shifts forward on the sofa and her voice changes, becomes harder. “Why don’t you go get the handcuffs, Dr. Watson?”

John pushes away from the desks, his shoulders squaring. “Don’t, Irene,” he growls out. “I’m not the man to try to dominate.”

“I thought military men were good at taking orders.” John clenches his teeth, causing his jaw to twitch, and she retreats. “Don’t worry, John. I only dominate those who enjoy it.”

“And you think Sherlock enjoys it? Is that why you’re here?” John keeps his voice under tight control, with only a hint of the anger he's feeling seeping through.

“I’m here because Sherlock doesn’t know what he enjoys. But I enjoy him and, selfish creature that I am, that’s enough for me.” Irene stands and moves toward John. “But that’s why I need you, John. Because Sherlock doesn’t know what he’s doing in this.”

John’s anger is rising. His hands tighten into fists at his sides, but his voice is still controlled. “You did a good job of educating him last time.”

Irene moves closer. Her eyes are shining and her voice drops in both volume and pitch. “Not the way I wanted to. Not the way you could.”

“No, Irene. You’re not doing this,”John’s voice is finally losing its control. “I don’t play these mind games, not like you and Sherlock do. “ He wants to shout, to grab her and shake her. The only thing stopping him is the knowledge that she wants him to.

She holds up her hands in a sign of surrender but takes a step closer. “What does Sherlock Holmes do when he is out of his element?”

“He’s never out of his element.”

“Yes, he is,” Irene smiles and John thinks it could be genuine, or at least as genuine as Irene gets. “He’s come up against scenarios he didn’t have the basic information or education to understand. What did he do then?”

John is confused. He doesn't know where Irene is going with this, but his anger is temporarily on hold while he thinks through what she's saying. These are questions he can answer, questions that he understands at face value. “He consults an expert.”

“Exactly!” Irene comes forward into John’s space and he steps back until he’s pressed against the desk again. “Do you know that a British man, on average, has sex with nine different partners? That's in a lifetime. How many women have you slept with this year, John?”

“Irene…” John's voice is low and meant to warn her away, but Irene presses on.

“We’re the experts here, John. We both know sex, and we both love him. He needs us to guide him in this.” John’s mouth has gone slack as Irene grips his biceps. Her expression is so close to Sherlock’s manic I’ve-just-solved-a-puzzle look that John’s heart clenches. Her grip tightens, blood red nails digging into John’s flesh through his shirt. “Think of what we could teach him. Together.”

John takes a moment to breathe heavily and wet his lips. He lets himself imagine Sherlock spread out between them. They could take care of him, body and heart. Of course, Irene's come here to cut right to the quick of what he's been trying to deny to himself for months. That he wants to be the one to take care of Sherlock Holmes.

Irene is still staring at him with that manic expression, her bottom lip caught between her teeth, when the front door to Baker Street opens and Sherlock’s voice calls out from below.

“You’ve got seventeen steps to decide,” Irene whispers as she pushes herself away from John.

********************************

John doesn't watch as Sherlock enters the flat. His back is still pressed against the desk, with fists clenched at his sides and eyes focused on Irene. She has retreated to the couch and is sitting with her long legs stretched out in front of her.

The unnecessarily vitriolic complaint about Lestrade's latest perceived idiocy dies in Sherlock's throat as he looks between John's drawn face and Irene's predatory smile. He steps between John and The Woman, only slightly uncomfortable exposing his back to her.

Sherlock reaches out, his fingertips resting lightly on John's shoulders. “John? Are you alright? What has she done?”

Sherlock's eyes are searching over his face, his body, looking for signs of damage. That tiny V of concern is etched between Sherlock's brows and John wants to kiss it away. Before he can open his mouth to let Sherlock know that he's okay, Irene is speaking directly to Sherlock.

“I stopped by for tea. And to make John aware of a certain proposal.” She rises from the couch, standing behind Sherlock within arm's reach.

“A proposal or a proposition?” Sherlock sneers as he drops his arms from John's shoulders. He spins around dramatically to face her. He's without his coat and scarf and part of the effect is lost. John's view of Irene lounging on the sofa is blocked but he can hear her voice clearly.

“A bit of both, I think.” She's smiling. John can tell she's smiling even if he can't see her face.

Sherlock's shoulders are a tense line as he casually slips his hands in his trouser pockets.
“Things are settled between us, Irene. You were not to come back here.”

“I misbehave,” Irene says as she rises from the sofa. Her voice is soft and slow and John thinks that if he'd met her for the first time tonight, he'd be doing his best to get her into bed. She steps forward, not quite into Sherlock's personal space. Not yet, anyway. “We were mostly talking about you, actually.”

She moves another step forward. Sherlock holds his ground. “Taunting me didn't bring you here,” Sherlock responds, but the anger has slipped from his voice and John can hear confusion slipping in. Irene takes another step forward and Sherlock shifts half a step back, toward where John is still pressed against the desk.

Christ, she's herding him. Herding him toward me, John thinks desperately. I need to get out. I can get past him and out the door before she could stop me. Leave them here to tear each other apart and leave me out of it. Even as John thinks it, he knows he can't leave Sherlock to her like this. Sherlock’'s a grown man but he has no idea what he's doing. Irene was right about that and she'll exploit it if she can.

Sherlock's arse bumps into the cradle of John's hips as Irene's advance continues. John's hands come up automatically to wrap around the crest of Sherlock's hips, his thumbs pressing along Sherlock's spine. John knows he should let go, not hold him there, but Sherlock is pressing back against him and it's all John can do not to squeeze around his hip bones.

John still can't see Irene, but she's only inches from being pressed against Sherlock's chest. “I'm not taunting anymore, Sherlock.” Her hand curves around the back of Sherlock's neck. John watches the red of her nails disappears into Sherlock’s curls. She comes up on her toes, to whisper in Sherlock's ear, making eye contact with John. “The three of us could tear the world apart.” John wonders if Sherlock can feel her lips on his ear or just her breath. He's not sure which would be more erotic.

Sherlock's voice is strained and a bit breathless when he responds. “You and John have sex with women.”

Irene smiles, her eyes locked with John's, and he now he can see her lips touching Sherlock's ear. “Don't try to pretend you don't know we want this. Faking obtuseness doesn't work for you, my dear.” She slides down Sherlock's body to rest solidly on her feet again. John hears her nails tap on Sherlock’s belt buckle. “The only question is what you want, Sherlock. What do you really want?”

Sherlock shifts slightly, so his back is pressed to John's front and his weight is resting on John. His head rests on John's shoulder and John has to grip Sherlock’s hips hard to make sure he doesn't slip to the floor. “John?” Sherlock’s lips are even with John's jaw and John can feel Sherlock’s breath across his cheek. Definitely more erotic than lips.

John can see Irene clearly now, over Sherlock's shoulder. His fingers flex on Sherlock's hips but he keeps eye contact with Irene. “What do you want? I'll toss her out right now if that's what you want. If you want her to stay, you have to say yes,” John pauses to lick his lips, bringing himself under more control. “I need to hear you say yes to this.” His eyes stay with Irene's and she's still smiling.

He feels Sherlock's head moving against his shoulder, curls brushing against his neck. John looks down to see Sherlock's eyes, opened wide and slightly glassy looking, his lips parted with shallow breaths slipping between them, and the beginnings of a flush rising up his neck. He's nodding his head.

John's thumbs rub along Sherlock's spine. “No, I need to hear you say it. A nod won't do.” John presses his lips to Sherlock's cheekbone, pushing the dark fringe aside with his nose. “Tell me. Tell me you want this, with her. With me.”

Sherlock pushes up to press his lips against John's jaw. “Yes. Her, you, us, but don't make me say it again.”

John looks to Irene and sees that she's wormed her way between Sherlock's knees, pushing them apart, causing him to rest more of his weight on John. Irene sinks to her knees in front of both of them, hands working quickly on Sherlock's belt and flies. She pushes his trousers down his thighs. He's not wearing any pants and his cock springs free.

“Christ,” John pants out and his hips press forward into Sherlock's arse instinctively. Irene keeps eye contact with John as she works Sherlock's cock into her mouth without using her hands, pressing the foreskin back with her tongue. It looks far more graceful than it should.

Sherlock and John are both watching Irene now. Watching her lips slide halfway down Sherlock's cock and then back up. She stops to suck and tongue the head before taking his cock in again. John can imagine what her tongue must be doing by the way Sherlock's hands clench on his own thighs.

Irene takes him deep in her throat then, and Sherlock's hips buck forward with a cry. He slips down John's body, no longer able to hold himself up in such a position. John's right arm shoots across the top of Sherlock's hips and pulls him closer, anchoring them together. John's left hand shifts to rub along Sherlock's ribs. “I've got you. We've got you Sherlock.” John presses his lips to Sherlock's temple.

Irene’s eyes slip closed and she's moaning quietly around Sherlock's cock. John watches as Sherlock’s cock disappears into Irene’s throat, until her nose is pressed to the nest of curls above the root of his cock. She breathes in while she holds his length in her throat, swallowing and around him.

Sherlock's hands unclench and rise to rest on Irene's shoulders. His thumbs press just above her collar bones and slide as close to her throat as he can, then back again. She pulls back, until just the head of Sherlock's cock remains in her mouth, and raises her eyes to meet John's. Her hand slides up Sherlock's chest and grips John's left hand, still rubbing Sherlock's ribs. She squeezes John's hand before pulling it away from Sherlock's body, guiding it down and pulling John slightly forward, until his hand is resting on the back of her head.

“Jesus Christ, fucking Christ.” John is breathless as his fingers twist in Irene's carefully coiffed hair and his erection presses hard into the space where Sherlock's arse meets his lower back. She makes no move to take him back in her mouth but John can see her tongue working over the head of Sherlock's cock. John tightens his hand in her hair and pushes her forward. A moan slips out around Sherlock's cock as her mouth slides down. Sherlock's hips jerk up against John's arm as he moves her head down further. Slides her down slowly until Sherlock is in her throat again. John lets her rest there for a few moments before pulling gently on her hair to move her back up Sherlock's cock. Irene's hands are wrapped around the tops of Sherlock's thighs, red nails leaving marks on the sensitive flesh beneath his arse cheeks.

When John pushes Irene's mouth down Sherlock's cock a second time, Sherlock is shaking. John can feel the muscles in Sherlock’s back spasm and arse tighten against his thighs and prick. Irene reaches the base of Sherlock's cock again and is swallowing around him. Sherlock's knuckles are white from the pressure of pushing into Irene's shoulders. Sherlock is still watching Irene but panting “John, John, John”, while his body begins to become undone.

John pulls Irene's head back until Sherlock's cock is resting comfortably in her mouth. Sherlock's hips are attempting to push forward, against John's arm, and there are broken moans coming from deep in his chest. Irene gives John a small nod, and her cheeks hollow as she sucks hard on Sherlock's cock. John loosens his grip on the back of her head so she can pull back if she needs to.

John uses his chin to knock Sherlock's head sideways, his lips and teeth coming to rest at the top of Sherlock's ear. “Come in her mouth, Sherlock. She wants you to. She wants to swallow you down and I want to see it.”

Sherlock cries out and one of his hands comes up to grasp at John's arm wrapped around his hips, while the other stays on Irene's shoulder. Irene pulls back so just the head of Sherlock's prick is in her mouth. She sucks enough to make her cheeks sink, while one hand pumps his shaft. John thrusts his hips forward against Sherlock's back, his teeth grazing Sherlock's ear. He watches Irene's throat work as she swallows everything Sherlock's giving her. John hasn't come in his pants since his early teens but it's a close thing now.

Irene guides Sherlock's softening cock from her mouth. John can see a drop of come at the corner of her lips. John is sure it's intentional. His hand wraps around from the back of her head and swipes his thumb across the sticky corner of her mouth. Irene tilts her head and catches the finger between her lips, sucking away the last of Sherlock's orgasm. John pulls his thumb back slowly and Irene's bottom teeth scrape the length of it. He drags the tip across her bottom lip, finally smearing some of her lipstick across her cheek.

Sherlock is furiously pulling up his trousers and tucking himself back in. “You and John now.” Sherlock speaks rapidly and breathlessly. “I want to see you and John.” He steps around Irene, leaving her facing John's obvious erection straining against his trousers.

They look at each other for a moment, both breathing heavily. Irene's tongue traces the lipstick smudge John left at the corner of her mouth.

“Not here.” John pushes away from the desk and reaches out to catch Sherlock's hand. “Bedroom?”

“Bedroom,” Irene answers, pushing herself from the floor and entwining her fingers in Sherlock's other hand.

********************************

It's several hours and no fewer than five orgasms later that John wakes up in Sherlock's bed. Sherlock's legs tangle with John’s, half under the duvet and half over it, his upper body angled across the bed away from John. Irene is no where to be seen, but John can hear movement in the kitchen.

He slides out of bed and pulls on  his dark green shorts left conveniently by the bedside. Sherlock rearranges himself on his side, facing the door, but doesn't seem to wake.

When John steps into the kitchen, Irene is placing an empty mug in the sink. Her hair is perfectly placed, her make up flawless once again.

“What are you doing?”

“I told you.” Her smile isn't predatory anymore. It may even be genuinely friendly. “I came for tea.”

John will not let himself be distracted by her avoidance of the question. “Were you going to leave while he was sleeping? Without even saying anything?” John doesn't mention that he was sleeping too. John knows this isn’t about him, and he’s happy with that.

“Yes.” She's matter-of-fact, but not cold. “What did you think this was, John?”

“Oh, no. No. You don't get to try to paint me as foolish. That's a diversion and I'm not going to fall for it.”John's anger is rising again. So much for post-coital relaxation.

“It may be a diversion, but that doesn't mean it's not true. How long do you think it's going to take him to realize how you feel about him?” Irene sounds like she already knows the answer to that question. “He may know already.”

John’s thumb and forefinger rub together as his hands ball into fists and his soldiers tense. “You need to leave.”

She holds up her hands in surrender once again. “I'm leaving. My business here, and in London, is concluded. Not finished though.” She moves toward John but he refuses to give ground. “I will be back. And you won't toss me out then, either.”

She presses her lips to John's. He doesn't kiss her back, but his eyes fall closed. The front door to Baker Street closes behind her before John opens his eyes again.

He goes back to Sherlock's room. Just to get my clothes. I'll get my clothes and leave. But John's met by a pair of cold, pale eyes watching him from the bed.

“It can't always be this way.” Sherlock's voice is deep and slightly hoarse.

John bends to pick up his trousers from the floor before Sherlock's words truly sink in. “Not always, but sometimes?” John tries to keep his voice as neutral as possible, despite the bubble of hope rising in him.

“Yes.” Sherlock pulls the duvet over his legs. “I'm still tired, John. Come back to bed.”

John drops his trousers back to the floor and slides under the duvet. He curls on his side facing Sherlock, but not touching him. “Irene will be back, at some point.”

“Yes, I know.” Sherlock's eyes are closed. His hand comes up to wrap around John's neck, thumb resting against John’s Adam’s apple and fingers dipping into his hair. “Go to sleep, John.”

So John does.




Date: 2013-06-05 12:45 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] billiethepoet.livejournal.com
Thank you! Keeping things in character is always difficult.

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