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[personal profile] interpretthis
Title: Song of You and Me
Author: interpretthis
Fandom: Sherlock (BBC)
Pairing: Sheriarty (Sherlock Holmes/Jim Moriarty)
Rating: M
Summary: There was nothing sexual about it. Not in the important sense at least. It was a physical reaction, easily explained by the heady rush that came with each new deliciously intricate puzzle, by the thrill of the challenge, the chase. He had felt it even during their first games – not quite as blatantly then, but Sherlock knew what he liked, and the fact that Moriarty happened to be best at providing it was irrelevant.

Notes: I wrote the first two paragraphs of this story in late 2012 and came across them a few days ago. I'm guessing I originally intended for it to be a fun bit of smut, but it had a mind of its own and got a little more intense - I may have gotten slightly carried away with how in love I am with their love, haha. After four years away from fandom, I'm insanely thrilled that these two drew me back in, and I'm really excited to finally be contributing my first Sheriarty fic. Writing this story honestly felt like coming home - I'm so happy to be back. I hope you enjoy it! <3

Also posted on AO3, fanfiction.net, and Tumblr.

And sosososo many thanks to the makers of these videos for their fucking gorgeous inspiration, I cannot stop watching them: Don't Let Me Down & Clarity

Disclaimer: I do not own Sherlock or Walt Whitman's "Song of Myself" ("every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you").

P.S. Dear LJ, I missed you so much.
There was nothing sexual about it. Not in the important sense at least. It was a physical reaction, easily explained by the heady rush that came with each new deliciously intricate puzzle, by the thrill of the challenge, the chase. He had felt it even during their first games – not quite as blatantly then, but Sherlock knew what he liked, and the fact that Moriarty happened to be best at providing it was irrelevant. So each time he heard that taunting, breathy voice on the other end of the line and felt the blood surge to his crotch, he didn’t deign to pay the sensation any mind, writing it off as banal and uninteresting, not even bothering to be embarrassed or ashamed about it.

But if Sherlock was anything, he was an observer, and he hadn’t failed to notice that his…reactions had been getting more intense. At first it had presented as a stab of…of…he supposed in any other situation it would be called desire or longing, but both of those terms suggested an interest in the party inspiring them. Here it was chemical – heat, energy, hydraulics even; there was none of the horrid human aspect beyond the biological – no feelings or weakness or entanglement. No, he knew exactly what it was – a simple reaction – and knew exactly how to deal with it – by doing nothing at all. The only potential problem he had identified in recent weeks was the heightening of the phenomenon, and, in turn, the amount of brain space it was taking up.

He had not yet come up with a solution to this problem when late one night in the sitting room the jarring light of his mobile joined the glow of the crackling fire.

“That was a lovely sonata, darling,” his nemesis crooned with the sweetness of a lover, “were you thinking of me when you wrote it?”

As he tensed, his gut twisting at the word darling, Sherlock’s fingers jittered unconsciously over the bow he was still holding. He was not alarmed or even surprised to learn that Moriarty had been listening in, maybe even watching him. No, it was the truth behind his remark – a truth that Sherlock had not admitted to himself, even – that shook him.

“It’s just a distraction,” the detective replied in a low voice that fit in well with the smolder of the sinking fire, with the small hours of the night. In an effort that felt unnatural, he attempted to push away his observations of the circumstances he could not stifle otherwise – the way his gut grew taut with tangy heat and his pulse took off and his cock began to stiffen, ever so slightly. “Just like you are, yes.”

The man on the other end let out a comical groan of disappointment. “Just a distraction to the illustrious detective,” he drawled in that low-hanging lumber of a voice he put on. And then, in a higher voice, a voice that was more his own, “but you forget who you’re talking to, Sherlock, and I’m one-up on you. There’s no such thing as just a distraction when it comes to us. Distractions are all there is, and we both know that we’re each other’s best ones.”

Sherlock was clutching the phone more tightly than necessary.

“Why did you call?”

Over the line came a string of hummed notes, the exact ones Sherlock had been playing on his violin five minutes before. He shivered, and not out of fear. After a few beats of heavy silence in which Sherlock could hear Moriarty breathing, the criminal spoke.

“I have a new puzzle, Sherlock. I’ve been very observant recently. Or perhaps it’s just that there have been more interesting things to observe.” Sherlock could almost see the smoldering twinkle in Moriarty’s eyes, could feel the magnetic draw of him through the phone. He noticed that his fingers were trembling. “There’s something I need to do, something that needs to happen before I can burn your heart.”

Every bit of Sherlock was tense. He was overcome with a fierce need to shift in his chair, to relieve his straining cock with a touch of friction, but he didn’t move. He wondered if Moriarty could see him and bit the sides of his tongue, needing desperately to release some pressure in a way that wasn’t too visible.

"I know you’re waiting for me, Sherlock. You’ve been waiting for me all your life. Don’t worry, I won’t keep you waiting much longer.” Over the line came a breath, an inhale and exhale that sounded as though their creator were right up against Sherlock’s ear. “A new puzzle, my sweet, I’ll always have a new puzzle for you. Mmmm, the dance and the release, I’ll never get enough of it. You can’t either, I know you can’t – I know you, love.”

Later, Sherlock would not be able to figure out what had made him do it. Had it been the words themselves? The specific volume and texture of them as they’d been delivered through the phone? Some combination of the two, or perhaps something else entirely, something he hadn’t caught? In any case, his reaction did not make sense. At first, he was not even sure that he had done it, but the facts after the fact all pointed to his memory of the moment proving true: he found that his eyes had slipped shut, in a manner that could objectively be described as ecstatic, and that his throat still tingled from the noise it had let loose, a noise that could only be called a moan.

Moriarty’s only response was a sharp intake of breath and the beep beep of a cellular disconnection, and Sherlock found entirely too much of his brainpower suddenly occupied in calculating how likely it was that the criminal had heard the utterance and determined what it had been. His conclusion was frustrating at best.


A new puzzle came the next day, and he was sure it was Moriarty (there was no mistaking the inevitable way in which Sherlock’s pulse ratcheted up, the sudden slip and fall of his gut, the flash of blood to his cock). Sherlock didn’t take anything that wasn’t Moriarty anymore, and mercifully (he hadn’t had to beg yet), his archenemy had been active enough to distract him fully in recent weeks. A deep part of him knew straight away, though, that this was not the same puzzle to which Moriarty had been referring on the phone.

They next met at the dénouement of that distraction within the distraction, opposite one another on Millennium Bridge beneath a clear sky and the star-white lights of the rails. The only sign that Sherlock could glean of the possibility that Moriarty had heard and interpreted the moan was the slightest increase in the fierce, delighted heat in those Thames-dark eyes and in his singsonginess, in the fuel behind his taunting tone. Sherlock was glad for the dark and within it placed the hope that Moriarty had not noticed what judging by the burn the detective was experiencing was a marked decrease in the pallor of his cheeks and – how he knew he wasn’t quite sure – self-betrayal flowing from his gaze like the gush of an unquenchable wound.

Where before he had tried to stifle his observations, now they were just going haywire.

“This isn’t over Sherlock,” came the Irish drawl with the searing eyes as Moriarty stepped forward to stand just in front of the detective, as close as he could be without actually touching him. And all Sherlock could observe was the immense, incredible heat of him – like that of a star in an otherwise frigid night – and his scent, a thing the detective could not describe in his usual logical, detached fashion. Moriarty smelled of rained-on graves and the hearts of fiery explosions. And of something that Sherlock couldn’t identify but which was making one part of him want to slam the criminal up against the rail of the bridge and close every one of the spaces between them and making another part of him want to collapse against the other man and hold on forever. Christ, he smelled like poetry, and Sherlock was going out of his mind for him. All he could do now was hope that it stopped at his mind.

“We will never be over, Sherlock,” Moriarty’s voice was low and lilting and fanned across Sherlock’s ear like magmatic fog. “Just you and me between the stars and the deep and the void of this ordinary city, this world. You and me, love. Thank. God.” It wasn’t an expression. It was a command.

Sherlock shivered and Moriarty gave a laugh that shot up and broke against the night, shattering all over them. And then the heat of the other man was nothing but a well of cold, and Sherlock opened his eyes (when had he closed them?) to find Moriarty slipping off the side of the bridge like a dream melting back into the night. Sherlock stood watching the place where he’d been, a terror that he couldn’t identify coming over him.


Following that frustrating climax, Sherlock found himself in a week of despair, of mind-pounding boredom. The only things he had to analyze were the one thing he didn’t want to go anywhere near – himself – and the one thing he was afraid to go near lest he not find what he wanted (yes, alright, wanted) there – Moriarty. But finally, after a long day of pacing the flat, the screen of his mobile blazed to life on the arm of his chair, and moments later Sherlock knew both the relief of Moriarty’s voice and the thrilling horror that his moan had not gone unnoticed.

“I want you to pull that angelic bottom lip of yours into your mouth and give it a tug with your teeth, slow-like, so I don’t miss a thing.”

Sherlock froze. He thought: deep breath, conscious steadiness, focused calm, but he could not keep the quaver out of his voice.

“Why would I do that?”

“I could tell you that John Watson is not alone in his bedroom – and not in a sexy way – but I don’t think I have to. I told you, Sherlock, I’ve been observing. This is as much my puzzle as it is yours.”

Sherlock sat for a moment. Most people would assume he was plotting, appraising the web strands, fashioning a counter-attack, but he was not doing any of those things. The only question in his mind was why not?, and he was coming up with few reasons – John’s friendship, the messiness of sex, giving Moriarty a feeling of ownership over him (this last one made Sherlock shiver – it was terrifying and superb and ridiculous, for Moriarty already owned him, and he owned Moriarty – every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you). The reasons looked laughably weak and pointless beside his desire – yes, alright, desire – to do as Moriarty asked, to play the game. If that’s what it still was.

Even in the warm room, Sherlock’s tongue felt hot against his skin. His eyes slipped shut and the visions came and he let them – Moriarty watching him with those volcanic eyes, Moriarty’s teeth sinking into Sherlock’s skin in place of his own, Moriarty’s slick, demanding lips against Sherlock’s obliging yet equally hungry ones.

The criminal gave a drawn-out, utterly unselfconscious noise somewhere between a gurgle and a moan that made Irene’s text alert sound G-rated, and Sherlock’s eyes snapped open, a hiss escaping his lips. His grip on the arm of the chair was so tight his knuckle bones might as well have been on the outside.

“Goodnight, love,” came Moriarty’s breathless drawl over the line. A wave of disappointment slammed the detective. “Sweet dreams. I know mine will be.”

The phone went dark in Sherlock’s hand and he fought for breath as though he’d just run a marathon, shooting out of his chair to pace the flat, shaking madly. Alright, so as it turned out there had never been anything less sexual. He only hoped (weakly, some deep and galling part of him observed) that it would stop at sexual.

And somewhere in the back of his mind was a new image, prompted by Moriarty’s parting words: that of the criminal sleeping – curled in on himself, eyes closed, brow smooth. Sherlock felt as though something inside him were breaking, but he wasn’t quite sure what or how or why. He wasn’t sure of anything anymore.


Over the next two weeks, Sherlock got into a fistfight with a twelve-year-old, shouted at John so often that the other man refused to return to the flat until Sherlock had “had a wank” (if only John knew), and briefly considered becoming a criminal before realizing that knowing the puzzle’s answer from the start would be no fun and goddamn it he already had a criminal, where the hell had he gone? He did not go to bed for five nights, and on the sixth morning – when he lengthened the route of his pacing to include his bedroom – he inhaled once before stopping dead and sinking to his knees to bury his face in his sheets. They smelled of poetry.

He spent every night after in his bed, but Moriarty did not return, and Sherlock was beginning to wonder if he was hallucinating the criminal’s scent, which still came over him at times. He was having tremors, was spending years in his mind palace, and avoided the needle only by reminding himself that he couldn’t know when he would hear from Moriarty next, and he wanted to be clear for him – he had to be.


It was as he was halfway out the door with Lestrade – who had arrived with the first vaguely interesting-sounding case in ages (a five, definitely not Moriarty, but Sherlock was going to explode if he didn’t do something) – that Sherlock’s mobile lit up with an unknown number. Swiping it on with the haste of an addict, he groaned shamelessly as the only voice he wanted to hear trilled, “hello darling. Gone through a bit of a dry spell have we?”

Surging back into his flat, Sherlock slammed the door in Lestrade’s face and didn’t even hear the detective inspector’s protestations as he gave himself over to the voice on the line.

“Moriarty.” He didn’t have to say anything – he was on the phone with the only person he truly enjoyed listening to – but he relished the way the man’s name felt in his mouth, felt all around him.

“I’ve missed you, darling. Glad you had the sense to skip that poor excuse for a case. We’ll have a lot more fun together.”

Sherlock sat without noticing, settling into the voice cradled against his ear, wanting nothing more than to have its owner before him, in the same room - to be looking into those eyes, eyes that could burn him in one glance, burn to the deep places that no one else could even see.

“What’s this about?” He wanted to push things, to hear Moriarty say it, but he didn’t quite know how. Every part of him that wasn’t made of all the longing and desire he’d been fighting to deny was terrified that Moriarty would hang up and leave him again.

The other man laughed, low and deadly. “Oh, let’s not play games, my sweet heart. You know what I do to you, Sherlock.”

Sherlock wasn’t breathing. There was a silence in which the entire rest of the world stopped.

And then Moriarty breathed –

Christ, you do it to me too.”

And then Sherlock wasn’t breathing so much as gasping, and he could hear Moriarty’s breath too – quickened, hot, Sherlock was sure, even through the phone – and neither of them said anything, anything out loud, for how long Sherlock had no idea.

And then -

“Do you want me to come over, Sherlock?”

Sherlock’s phone was trembling.

“God, yes.”

For the next two minutes and thirty-seven seconds, Sherlock sat completely still, listening to the criminal breathe through the phone. And then the knob turned and the door ghosted open and there stood Jim Moriarty. After three excruciating weeks away from him, his sudden presence felt mythic to Sherlock. He felt as though he’d been walloped in the stomach by something he wanted to be hit with again and again and again.

“You were close.” The new part of Sherlock that did not run on cool logic was surprised to find his voice still worked.

Moriarty threw his phone to the side, closed the door just as silently as he’d opened it, and glided through the oil-dark shadows and the flame light, his eyes never leaving Sherlock’s. He gave a small smile that might just have been genuinely shy.

“Yes. Is there anywhere else worth being?”

Sherlock came to his feet, a meter from the other man. He let his phone fall to the floor with a clunk and stood facing Moriarty with free, trembling hands. Moriarty’s eyes were alive with something that in any other man Sherlock might have thought to be the reflection of the fire, but with Moriarty Sherlock knew better – it was its own fire.

Moriarty’s gaze did not leave Sherlock’s, but the criminal saw all of the other man, from his unsteady knees to the tips of his shaking fingers to the truth in his eyes.

“It looks like you missed me, love.”

Sherlock could feel an entire world collapsing behind his own eyes and knew the other man could see it, could see him. And where the ordinary surface parts of Sherlock that had collapsed into rubble inside him had expected to see control and destruction in the other man’s eyes, Sherlock’s heart saw only need and understanding and the hope of being understood.

The two stood alone in a world of silence, and then Sherlock spoke -

“I’ve missed you all my life.”

They shattered at the same time, reached for each other in the same instant, crushed their lips together with a ferocity far greater than that of the fire raging beside them. Sherlock’s hands were everywhere, everywhere and Moriarty was gripping the other man’s head as though he might die if he let go and they kissed and kissed and kissed like a fire that can burn without fuel, like drowning men kiss the sky. And then lips were searing against cheeks – never parting from the other, not for a second – and their arms were around each other tight enough to hurt, to restrict respiration – but the only true pain would have been in holding any less tight, in saying to the universe of course I will be fine if I am not one with this man who is me who I am who I have been looking for since before I could observe.

Sherlock felt it all then, the heat and the lust and the terror and the staggering relief and the ecstatic joy and the heart – of him and of the man wrapped around and wrapped in him – one heart.

“Moriarty,” he rasped against the other man’s ear, “Jim.” The criminal was trembling in his arms.

“Sherlock,” Jim Moriarty whispered in his own voice. “Sherlock. Sherlock. Sherlo-”

In a flash, Sherlock had raked his lips back along the other man’s cheek to take his mouth again, fiercely, desperately, quite sure in an impossible way that he would simply cease to exist if their lips stayed apart any longer. There was heat – raging heat – and pressure and weight – comforting, wonderful weight – and the smell of damp graves and fingers seething through hair and Whitman’s fucking atoms and stumbling and gasping and then Sherlock had the other man’s back up against the wall beside the fireplace and his lips and nose were pressing into Jim Moriarty’s jugular and Jim was moaning in a way that some might attribute to a whore, his eyelids fluttering uncontrollably.

If Sherlock had been on fire for the man before, he was a fucking volcano now.

His hips flashed instinctively against Jim’s once and then Jim – whose ceaseless moaning had broken for an instant, catching in his throat – jerked back against him. Sherlock cried out and Jim pulled Sherlock in by the cheeks for a kiss that was wet and hot and felt like drowning in heaven and then Sherlock’s pale fingers were gripping Jim’s shoulders as though his life depended on it, and the kiss broke. They thrust against each other in a world beyond thought, Sherlock’s eyes dancing with fire as he watched Jim’s face – mouth parted, eyebrows high, cheeks flushed – and Jim watched him back through eyelids still drifting open and shut as though it was all he could do to stay conscious through the onslaught. The pace of Sherlock’s thrusts became feverish and his grip on Jim’s shoulders grew superhuman and then Jim’s hands shot down to the detective’s hips and wrenched him forward like a prayer and Sherlock’s head fell back with a groan that was almost a roar and Jim buried his face against Sherlock’s chest, his fingers curling into the fabric to pull him closer, closer, his breath gasping, gasping, almost sobbing.

They sank to the floor together, pressed up against each other, their breath intermingling. Jim still clutched Sherlock’s shirtfront. Sherlock hovered a palm over his lover’s cheek, and then caressed it, and Jim’s blown-out eyes found Sherlock’s. Jim gave a shaky breath and then a shaky smile. His voice came out soft and real. “Your heart was never my puzzle, not really. It was never a mystery to me.”

And Sherlock saw that same moan-inducing I know you, love in his Jim’s eyes and felt his own heart burn in a way he had never expected and realized that the scent he hadn’t been able to identify on the other man was home and knew the puzzle – the puzzle – had been his own, had been within him all along while he’d been rushing around observing everything on the outside.

And then the detective laughed – a great, booming, delighted and delightful thing – and the criminal smiled, with his lips and with his eyes.

“I was wrong,” Sherlock said then. This was all the things he’d tried not to let it be – sexual, brain-fogging, mind-bending, heart-wrenching, romantic, love it was love it was love. ”Thank God.”

Their lips met again and it was like the horizon against the sky, that kiss, them – inevitable and eternal and seamless and perfect. No matter where or when or how broken, they fit together exactly, always.

They eased their lips apart, just enough to be able to look into each other’s eyes, their hands still clutching at parts of the other as though they were the only two beings in an endless ocean. Sherlock’s eyes said I love you and Jim’s said I thought I knew but I had to be sure, thank you, you’ve saved me, I’m safe, I’ve always loved you, more than anything more than life, I love you, I’m home, I’m home with you.

Sherlock Holmes and Jim Moriarty kissed on the floor of 221B Baker Street and then Sherlock draped his coat over them and pulled Jim closer, and against Sherlock’s lips Jim said something that was going to be “goodnight, love” but just came out “love.”
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