By Alia 2005

Disclaimer: The characters of Sherlock Holmes & Doctor John Watson were created by the late and great Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. They are not mine. No harm or disrespect intended.

Summary: Retribution for a multitude of sins and unkindness.

Warnings: PWP. M/M relationship. Dark themes.

Rating: R

Author's Notes: A darker look at the relationship between Holmes & Watson. This story is horribly undeveloped but it came to me as is and demanded to be written. Make of it what you wish. This story is also unbetaed and contains Australian spelling.

Comments: Are always welcome and can be sent to


"You go too far, Holmes..."

I have no doubt that he has more to say to me, but Watson's scolding on this occasion ends abruptly, too abruptly for either of us not to realise where it is leading. We have played this scene many times before, too many times for me not to recognise all the signs that precede one of our arguments. He turns from me suddenly, favouring a view of the street in preference to holding my gaze it seems, unwilling to admit that I have succeeded once again in goading him in direction where there can be only one end to our quarrel, and that he, no matter how unwittingly has allowed it, indeed has encouraged it.

I know what he desires, and have long since given up any fear that he will not take up my challenges when I issue them, or that he will simply tire of me and leave our rooms in search of more congenial companionship and accommodation. We are perhaps not two of a kind, but certainly we are equally matched in many regards. Left to his own counsel he will come to terms with his part in all of this and then all that will remain will be a settling of method -- a form of retribution that only he can demand and only I can fulfill.

I stand, forgoing the comfort of my chair and walk to the mantle, lighting a cigarette and smoking it while the clock there marks the passage of time. The moments, perhaps minutes it will take for him to decide if he will take what is his or walk away. I make a silent wager with myself that once his decision is made it will not be the latter he chooses.

Watson for all his weaknesses is not a man to act without careful consideration. Of course I have come to rely on his prudent nature as much as I have his presence in my life and for these reasons, along with others too numerous to name, I am prepared to wait for as long as it takes.

It is not very long as it turns out. I note movement behind me just as I am finishing my cigarette, the stub of which I toss into the fireplace before I turn to finally face the man whose very existence gives meaning to my own.

Although I am heartened to see the exasperation which had only minutes ago marred his handsome features has now been replaced with the familiar calm before the storm visage he adopts during these times when I press him so, I school my own expression to one of cold indifference to await his verdict.

"It is not that I do not wish to continue our discussion, Holmes, but honestly, your remarks this evening have been unworthy even of you."

It is just as I anticipated. The bait has been taken. However, I cannot waste even a moment on celebrating my victory.

I take a carefully measured step towards him. "That is your opinion, Watson," I say, waving his words away as if they had no more affect upon me than an insect in search of a place to settle.

The inherent calm keeping my friend's patience in check recedes almost immediately. His face flushes to a not unattractive shade of red and his strong surgeon's hands find purchase on each of his well rounded hips.

"You are the most infuriating man, Holmes," he informs me.

"Am I?"

Another step forward brings us within a hair's breadth of the other. I can almost taste the next retort on his tongue along with the bitterness that rises with each heave of his chest.

"If you think me unjust, Watson, then you are of course free to..."

I do not get to complete what has become the last in an evening of taunts and unkindness. Whatever else we might be, he is only human, and I, as I have so often been reminded, am barely a poor substitute for a man.

I close my eyes and allow the dry press of his mouth upon my lips and the hands that take a less than gentlemanly hold on my person. It has been some time since my friend has sought this unique method of retribution, but the memories of his insistent hands and eager tongue never quite live up to the reality of each as they once again seek to insinuate themselves into my clothing and to the very fibres of my soul.

It is not a surprise when one has a partner of equal physical strength to find that no quarter is given or having acted the part of the heartless creature for so long to be treated as exactly that. I know from experience that there is no escape, no way to forestall the submission he seeks from me and I move as I am guided, willing to submit if not assist.

The settee provides the most convenient place and I find myself forced down upon it, my face turned from his and what is necessary of my clothing removed.

Justice when it comes is swift, taken without mercy. It is not love after all, how could he ever love me when I have made myself so wholly unlovable, and so damnably unobtainable even to him.



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