Original Story Title: Fill #2 (listed as "Long Forgotten Marry/Shag/Kill Fill")
Original Story Link: http://sherlockbbc-fic.livejournal.com/4076.html?thread=10205420#t10205420
Original Story Pairings: none; John/Lestrade speculated
Original Story Rating: not listed / PG
Original Story Warnings: none
Remix Story Title: Marry, Shag, Cliff, Remix
Remix Author: f_m_r_l
Remix Beta: innie_darling, linguini17
Remix Britpicker: flying_android
Remix Story Pairings: John/Lestrade, Sherlock/John
Remix Story Rating: PG-13
Remix Story Warnings: none
"Marry, Shag, Cliff, Remix"
John was staring into space, supposedly working on the next article for his blog. Sherlock could tell from seven different markers that John was not, in fact, even thinking about his blog, but rather just taking a moment to enjoy a peaceful morning's wool-gathering.
Sherlock had observed—though it had obviously taken an oblique approach—that John only appeared truly relaxed when he thought he wasn't under Sherlock's observation. But that relaxation was obviously hurting John's observational skills; otherwise John would have said something about the fact that that Sherlock's web cam was on and aimed over Sherlock's shoulder at him.
Sherlock sat tapping away at his computer, back to John. He was cultivating the appearance of being completely occupied by his most recent study. He had been comparing men's social-profile relationship status with their police records and official records, if any, of their relationships. Sherlock's study comparing public acknowledgement of committed relationships to crime statistics among men did not seem to be going anywhere; that didn't mean that nothing had turned up.
"So, John, how many years have we been married?" Sherlock kept the question casual, resisting the temptation to look John in the eyes. There was nothing he could see there that he couldn't see from the webcam's display.
"Hmm?" John's expression switched to the kind of smirk that Sherlock thought only suited him well when he was aiming it at those idiots who existed outside their little family. "Oh, about seven years now. The wedding was lovely. You should have been there. No, wait, you were."
Sherlock considered telling John about the webcam. Maybe he'd hide that annoying smirk. But that answered his question; their marriage was at least enough in John's mind that he'd known instantly how long they'd been together. The records Sherlock had found online said seven years, three months, and five days.
"Were you going to actually tell me about it?" Sherlock tapped a key hard enough that the entire table shook.
"Not as such, no." John appeared unperturbed. "If knowing about our marriage were important to you, you wouldn't have deleted the memory. To be fair, you told me the morning of the ceremony that you'd be deleting it directly after."
That ruled out marriage for some atypically romantic motivation, Sherlock reasoned. He would have intended to remember. Or at least he would have to assume so.
"Did we get married for a case?" It seemed unlikely; Sherlock remembered things that were useful for cases.
"In a way. You made a bargain with Mycroft. He'd turn over some information; you'd make your mother a very, very happy woman. She was delighted. Organised everything Mycroft didn't. Cried all the way through it."
"Does she know you're sleeping with Lestrade?" Sherlock actually turned his head away from his computer to glance at John.
"Yes. She believes us to be a 'triad' and thinks we're all 'quite modern', whatever that means."
"Never ask Mycroft about my parents' journey through the '70s. He was a very observant child."
Sherlock shuddered briefly and continued. "What did you get out of marrying me?"
"I figured that I'd probably never notice a difference one way or the other. And the fact that one of the most observant men in the world didn't notice we were married until now means that I was right." That damn smirk was back again.
Pens bounced across the floor and scraps of paper drifted through the room as Sherlock abruptly stood, spun, and pulled John up from his chair. "I've noticed now. And this presents...possibilities." He made sure that by the end of that sentence he was very thoroughly in John's space and his voice was pitched in the register that so often obtained co-operation from the susceptible.
"Wait, what about Greg?" John squeaked. He was showing distressing signs of being about to wiggle out of Sherlock's grasp, defying all principles of leverage and mass.
"Hang Lestrade, you're married to me!" Sherlock took a moment to reposition himself into a more secure hold. "Besides, what did you think I could possibly mean? Have you ever known me to suggest we do anything legal to which he would object?"
"There was that decomposition study with the..."
"Doesn't count," Sherlock interrupted.
"Oh. I thought you were suggesting... what did you mean, then?"
"You have learned nothing of my methods in all this time?" Possibly drawing John close up against him and murmuring into his ear wasn't quite the best way to obtain objective and well-reasoned results, but Sherlock wasn't giving it up.
"Well, I know you're always in my space. You end up touching me more often than Greg does, but never the way he does. For example," and here Sherlock could feel John grin, a unique sensation, "you're not grabbing my arse just now. You're looking for... snuggles?"
"Human contact. I wish to research the effect of sustained and repeated human contact upon my observational skills and feelings of well-being. Preferably on a comfortable horizontal surface such as a mattress."
"Let me call Greg."
Sherlock let John loose just enough so he could get into his pocket for the phone. He was still close enough to hear the entire conversation, but John recapped. "He thought we were, anyway. We end up falling asleep next to each other on a regular basis. And he says we cuddle in our sleep. Look, he took a picture for blackmail." John showed Sherlock the picture and Sherlock made a note to hack Lestrade's phone and computer later. Such blackmail material should not be floating around.
John's recap had left out Lestrade's comment, "God help the idiot who decides to stand between Sherlock and you, anyway." Lestrade's powers of observation were growing better all the time. Perhaps it came from his association with John.
In the end John cooperated thoroughly with Sherlock's experiment, even in his sleep. Sherlock found he was fine with the fact that John started nodding off fifteen minutes into the study. It was all fine.
Several hours later, in a tangle of bed sheets, Sherlock stretched a little and considered letting John go for a second, possibly, in the interest of obtaining tea. But he'd had food and tea just thirty-eight hours ago, and he hadn't had someone to just hold close, without any messy expectations of sex, for... decades, really. Why hadn't he thought of this when he had first proposed? This was beyond relaxing. Perhaps he'd take a little nap himself.
It was nine hours after that when John woke him with breakfast and a cuddle. Oddly enough, he was able to enjoy both tremendously despite the fact that he'd just allowed himself an inordinate amount of sleep. He quickly justified it to himself. It was an experiment. For science. It would need to be repeated, of course, and tested with different variables. Perhaps he could do an on-going study of the topic.
So Sherlock was in a particularly mellow mood when he received an email from Mycroft 'reminding' him (telling him—he'd deleted it) of the texts he'd sent so long ago about the Marry, Shag, Cliff game, the texts that had started this all. Given that it had worked out so well in the end, he merely texted Mycroft the reply "Go jump off a cliff", then went to enter his observations in his notes and spread sheets.
It had been a wonderful wedding. Mycroft had done everything in his power to assure that, even before John or Sherlock had possessed the slightest serious idea of marriage.
"Miranda?" His assistant looked up. She always did, no matter what transitory name he gave her. "Miss Morstan is becoming seriously attached to John despite his previous commitments to Sherlock. Do send along Percy to distract her, will you? And give him a rugged cover name like 'Rex' or 'Jake' or 'Cliff'.
With Miss Morstan headed off, John was so smoothly guided into marrying Sherlock that he probably thought he'd done it of his own free will. (Mycroft firmly believed in predestination—for others, upon his arrangement.) The wedding was held at the country estate, attended by family, close friends, and—Mycroft was very careful about this—absolutely no assassins. Irene had caused a minor stir, but there was never any telling whom Mummy would bring as a date. The wedding proceeded apace with meticulously arranged flowers; impeccably selected, tuned, and pressed chamber orchestra; and John staring affectionately into Sherlock's eyes with Sherlock gazing impatiently back.
The reception went off without a hitch as well. The merriment was only briefly interrupted when Sherlock, John, and Greg rushed off to a crime scene.
And they lived happily never boring.
(In case you were wondering, the title of the 221b was "Mary shags Cliff".)
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