Honestly, John didn’t believe it at first. He had seen Sherlock a lot in the past three years. Though those sightings tended to end with him fearing for his sanity. Often he’d see the tall man disappearing around corners, his long coat billowing out behind him. He’d run after him every time. It was never him, and it honestly still surprised John sometimes.
And when John wasn’t suffering from the regular nightmares, his stupid brain conjured up the same image of Sherlock falling from that building. Over and over. It was in some ways worse than the painful flashes of memories from Afghanistan.
But this… This was more realistic. And it wasn’t going away when he blinked. He stood from his chair, slightly frightened.
“Sherlock?” He couldn’t help his voice cracking, but he really couldn’t give a damn. Fuck you, his roommate was apparently a zombie.
Said zombie roommate just smiled—That fucking smile— and stepped in, coming closer to him without hesitation.
“John, just relax. It’s me.”
He was speechless. What the hell are you supposed to say to something like that? ‘Welcome back’?
“You… How?” He was starting to calm down, as much as one could in a situation like this, and now he just wanted some answers. Sherlock sighed, raising his hands in a show of peace.
“Look, can I say something before we get into this?”
John nodded slowly, wondering what the hell was so important that it had to forgo the explanation of how the hell this… Oh.
Were those Sherlock’s lips on his?
Well, it was convincing anyway. That soft mouth of his wasn’t just his imagination. And that tongue flicking against his lip had to be real—oh fuck. God, it was good to see him again. Or to feel him. Whichever. Did it matter? He was kissing Sherlock. He was kissing Sherlock and his tongue was coaxing his mouth open, and he was letting himself melt into him. He moved his hands up to grab at the stupid genius’s coat, that goddamn coat he had missed so much, pressing desperately up into those—fucking perfect—lips.
And then it was over, both of them pulling away for breath and—Goddamn it, bloody Sherlock Holmes!—all the anger from three years of sadness and frustration came rushing back and the next thing he knew, Sherlock was on the ground, his perfect, soft, lovely lips falling open in surprise, letting a small stream of blood spill over his chin.
He froze. They both did.
Had he just…
…Punched Sherlock Holmes?
And he still wasn’t satisfied. The anger raged on like a forest fire, threatening to beat that damned genius to a pulp.
But he settled for another kiss instead, sinking to his knees to level himself with Sherlock’s mouth.
Sherlock was smart. He knew how to conduct damage control. And he had had plenty of practice when it came to calming John down, knowing just how to do it even after having been gone for three years. It wasn’t something he’d ‘deleted’; it was too important.
He ran a hand through John’s hair, leaning back to pull away.
“John,” he murmured softly. John tried to follow him, but was stopped by Sherlock’s hand pushing back against his shoulder. “John, relax. We have the time.” John opened his eyes reluctantly, taking in the fact that it was Sherlock he was looking at.
Then Sherlock smiled in the saddest, most relieved of ways, and John realized blood coated his teeth at the same moment he realized all he could taste was copper.
“Jesus Christ, Sherlock, you’re bleeding like mad.” He stood immediately, tugging Sherlock with him and heading for the kitchen. “Come on, let me clean you up.”
Sherlock would never admit how much he had missed the feel of a cloth swiping across his skin, John’s face stern and focused as he worked.
Now they sat on the couch, John cuddled so close to Sherlock that he was nearly on his lap as they sipped tea.
“God, I missed you, Sherlock. It’s been three years, you asshole.”
Sherlock was petting his hair absentmindedly. John would have never thought him one to be touchy-feely, but then again, this was Sherlock. Sherlock, who’d never been in a relationship, had been gone for three years, and was still a virgin in his thirties.
Oh. Right. Let’s not dwell on that too long. Those thoughts had potential, and that was not potential for right this moment.
“Sherlock,” he murmured, relishing the name on his tongue, because finally, finally, it didn’t hurt to say it. “Sherlock, how did you—how?”
He couldn’t even say it. But that was alright. The lanky detective knew what he was talking about.
The man sighed and smiled weakly. Then began his tale of epic genius and extreme over-use of scientific words John didn’t understand and had to ask about.
Basically he had somehow figured out a way to clone himself. Years ago in Uni. He would break into the science lab each night and work on his experiments. He cloned his roommate’s pet canary, but accidentally killed the original in the process. Fortunately for Sherlock, his roommate couldn’t tell the difference between the original and the clone, and he got away with that one at least. He began to study more advanced animals and eventually worked his way up to humans. It took…babysitting…one of his younger cousins to finally achieve his goal, but by the end of the month, he was able to bring home, not one, but two baby cousins. His aunt didn’t seem as pleased about his achievement as he was, but everyone’s a critic, John.
He had grown clones of himself soon after his success. He normally kept them in the lab he grew up in—(“You mean the lab in the house you grew up in, Sherlock?” “…Sure, of course, John.”)—but when Jim Moriarty showed up on the radar again, he suspected the end of his life was near and brought a few into London. Molly had kept them for him.
“I wasn’t ready to die John. I knew you wouldn’t like the idea of me sending out copies of myself to be slaughtered, but you have to understand—I wasn’t ready to die. I had only just met you, John. There were just too many years with you for me to look forward to. I couldn’t give that up.”
Once he had explained as far as he could, and had given John a moment to digest the whole thing, he put his tea on the table and did the same with John’s. He wrapped his arms around him, burying his face into his neck. He pressed a soft kiss into his skin, pulling John onto his lap completely, maneuvering his legs to either side of his own.
“I missed you so much, John.” He was pressing kisses into the same small area, John wrapping his arms around his neck and closing his eyes tightly.
“I missed you too, you crazy moron.” He felt a baritone laugh rumble against his neck. John smiled. “What?” He felt the kisses move up his neck under his ear, mouth moving to latch onto his earlobe without warning. John gave a stuttering groan in surprise, but became completely still when Sherlock whispered to him.
“I’d love to see what would happen if I got you in the same room as both of me.”
John was quiet for a moment, the confusing pronouns making it a little harder to comprehend, especially since his best friend had just come back from the dead and greeted him with a kiss.
“You mean there’s another—” And then he groaned, realizing what Sherlock was suggesting. “Oh God, Sherlock…”
Sherlock hummed a laugh against his ear.
“Yes. Want to go wake him up with me and see what happens?”