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Doctor meets doctor (7/8)

BBC Sherlock

Rating 18 (whole fic): slash, mental health issues, vomiting.

AU body-swap fic, set mainly during "A Study in Pink". Inspired by the Martin Freeman/Rachael Stirling comedy drama Boy meets Girl.

Betaed by kalypso_v, queen of the comma.

Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 8

John and Mike may have got together, but there are few more surprises still in store...


By the evening, of course, John knows that sleeping with Mike is bound to be a disaster. He's still nervous about his body and he's never had sex with a man before. Mike's never had sex with a man in a woman's body before. It's not if something's going to go wrong, but when. The awkwardness, when Mike gets home from work, is terrifying, and they somehow end up sitting and eating almost in silence, slumped on the settee with an episode of Star Trek on.

He needs to take the initiative, John decides, because Mike is always diffident around women. But they can't just pretend they're on a date, their friendship doesn't work like that. And he doesn't want to bring alcohol into the equation, either. They both have to be clear-headed about what they're getting into. For a moment he's tempted to leave it, wait for a better moment, but that may not happen. Even though it's going to be a disaster, Mike is the only person he can imagine having sex with, the only person who accepts him as he is. And he also wants to repay Mike in some small way for all he's done; give him the gift of Molly's body. So when the credits start rolling on Star Trek, he leans forward, and puts his arm round Mike's neck, and kisses his cheek, and says: "I think we should do this."

"Are you sure?" Mike says.

"Yes. So let's go up to your bedroom and get naked. Right now." The words sound odd in Molly's voice, but John hopes that that, and the quick brush of Molly's hand across Mike's trousers, as she stands up, will start firing Mike's brain in the right way. John sets off for the bedroom, and Mike follows in silence.

John's carefully tidied up Mike's bedroom, and he's made other preparations as well. He starts to strip, feeling he should be doing it seductively, but not sure how. But he has got Molly's crimson lace knickers and bra on, and even though they're rather uncomfortable, he wins an appreciative smile from Mike when he sees them. And another when John unties Molly's hair, and lets it hang in a shiny strokeable mass down past his shoulders.

"What do you think?" he asks, turning to Mike.

"You have a very...sexy body, Jay," Mike says, slightly nervously. "But perhaps, if you didn't keep your arms crossed?"

"Sorry," he says, putting his hands on his hips. He has no idea if that looks more alluring, but Mike doesn't seem to mind. He's sitting down on the bed, starting rather awkwardly to take his shoes and socks off.

"Would it be easier for you if we had the lights off?" Mike asks.

"No," John says. He's really not sure he can get the positioning right in the dark, and besides, Mike needs to see Molly, concentrate on her. "But would you prefer just the bedside light on?"

"Yes," Mike says, "and...um, maybe if we don't talk too much it would be easier."

It's Molly who's the real turn-on for Mike, John suspects, not Jay, let alone him. And Mike's also embarrassed about his own body, which isn't surprising. Once he's removed his shirt, there's a bulge to Mike's stomach that make him look vaguely pregnant. But there's also something strangely comforting about Mike's size, a sturdy unbreakable quality, someone to hold onto who won't slip away.

"If we just lie down together for a bit," John suggests, "that might help." Mike doesn't have much of an erection yet, but if anything is going to encourage it, it's going to be getting his hands all over Molly's body.

And when they're side by side on the bed, it is immediately easier. The soft, warm touch of Mike's skin against John's hands, the press of legs intertwining, even the strange new sensation of Mike running his fingers through Molly's long hair is comforting, good, flooding John's body with memories, sensations. For a while, this is all he wants, someone to hold, to let his body know that he's not alone any more.

What's he not sure about is the next stage. How to take this warm, gentle, safe pleasure and turn it into something urgent, dangerous. But then Mike breaks off their kiss and whispers: "Let me go down on you."

"OK," John says, because at least Mike will know what he's doing. It's just him who's suddenly panicked, not sure how his unfamiliar body will respond. Maybe if he thinks of some gorgeous, sexy girl...No, he can't do that, fantasise about someone else; it wouldn't be fair to Mike and there are already too many people involved here. Just lie down and try and relax Molly's body, let his mind drift away.

And then Mike's tongue, which has been tracing the inside of Molly's thighs, moves up, and John's brain shuts down for a moment.  Mike's tongue against his – clitoris, is it? Mike's stubby fingers teasing – a tiny part of John's brain is vaguely trying to remember diagrams of the female genitalia, even as most of it is just going wow! It's like receiving an electric shock, except entirely different.

"More?" Mike mutters, half-raising his head.

"More," John says, and then his mind gives up on forming words. Gives up on everything, practically, except pressure and warmth and pleasure – yes, yes, yes, that – nerve endings firing, sensations that he can't classify because they're all fusing into one huge blur of bliss. His body pushes into Mike's mouth, wanting this, the only thing in the world that matters. He's gasping, shrieking – he didn't know even Molly's voice could get that high – and by the time Mike finally stops, John is a boneless, inarticulate puddle of contentment. Bits of his brain have probably short-circuited irretrievably and he's not sure if he can move. But he'd be quite happy to stay in bed for the rest of his life, as long as Mike was there too.

"That was amazing," he says woozily to Mike. "Wonderful." In the dim light he can just see a broad grin on Mike's sweaty face.

"I'm short, fat and forty," Mike replies. "I have to give anyone who's prepared to sleep with me some incentive to do it again."

"You've certainly learnt something teaching anatomy all these years."

"I'm not allowed to do that kind of practical in lectures," Mike says, grinning. "Shame, because it might boost my student evaluations." They both end up laughing and it gives John a bit of time to peel himself off the sheets, get his brain back into gear.

"Your turn now," he says, "though I can't hope to match that."

"If you come on top of me," Mike says, "that's probably the most comfortable position for you, and I get to see you properly."

"OK," John says. Mike rolls onto his back, his hand pumping at his erection, trying to get it firmer.

"Need some help?" John says, and leans over and lowers his mouth to Mike's penis. He's had lots of blowjobs, but he's never given one, so it feels back-to-front and upside-down. But judging by the hitching gasps Mike's giving, the way his hips are starting to thrust up, it's working.

"Condom," Mike says abruptly, in a choked voice. John passes him one, and Mike puts it on, slowly, carefully, while John straddles him, grateful that he's been working Molly's thigh muscles in the gym. He also feels glad now that Mike's erection is only average size. It's still probably going to be uncomfortable, he thinks, as Mike looks up rather nervously at him, but he's almost sure he's not a virgin and vaginas are designed for this, after all. Basic anatomy, really, and Mike's good at that.

It takes a bit of manoeuvring, but then John's in position, and he starts to rock forward gently. He smiles reassuringly down at Mike and wonders if he ought to flaunt his breasts a bit, though they're not really big enough to flaunt well. And from Mike's look of concentration, not much is registering north of his waist. But John teases Mike's nipples with his fingers anyway, just for fun, and rocks a little harder, and Mike gives a soft groan, and comes with a shudder. Then he lies there panting, eyes closed.

"Don't die on me now, Mike," John protests.

"I'm just shamming," Mike says, without opening his eyes, "so I get given the kiss of life."

"Well, OK, then," John says, and he rolls off Mike, and brushes  Molly's hair out of his eyes, and goes back to a bit more snogging of Mike, just for good luck.

"Oh God," Mike says after a bit, shaking his head. "Just think how much easier it'd have been if we'd both worked this out in medical school!" And then they just lie there in a giggly heap for ages.

***

They may not be teenagers, but they manage a surprising amount of sex in the next few weeks, which cheers John up during the depressing process of job hunting. Molly's not qualified for all the jobs he could do, and vice versa, so it's a complete mess. And then a letter arrives from Barts marked 'Private and Confidential', and John knows this is the end of the line.

"I've got to go and see Personnel," he announces to Mike in the evening. "And you know I told the occupational health people the honest truth, that I can't go back to the path job, that I don't feel capable of it any more. So what can they do but sack me?"

"Don't panic, Jay," Mike says, coming over and hugging him. "I don't think that's what they're planning."

"What have you heard, Mike?"

"Nothing officially, of course."

"But?" The advantage of Mike having spent twenty years at Barts is that not only does he have access to everywhere, and offices at all the sites, but he also knows everyone in the system, from the cleaners to the trust board.

"They're trying to sort out an alternative job for you. I can't tell you more, Jay, but go along and you might be pleasantly surprised."

***

John's not just surprised but shocked at what Personnel offer him, and what with trying to remember to be Molly, he probably comes across as completely incoherent. He staggers off to Mike's office afterwards, clutching a pile of papers.

"What they're offering, I think," he tells Mike, "is a complete retraining package. But you have a look, because there must be a catch somewhere. It's too good to be true."

He hands the contract to Mike, who starts reading carefully through it at his desk, flicking back and through the pages. John half expects him to start scribbling notes in the margins.

"I knew they were planning to offer you a specialist training post," Mike says at last, "but I didn't know they'd say any specialism, because some of them are like gold dust. Extra support if you need it, and they keep you on Molly's salary..."

"It's absurdly generous," John says. "They say they have funding from a special charitable grant for the rehabilitation of staff with mental health problems. But even so, it doesn't make sense." Then he sees a frown appear on Mike's face. "What is it?"

"They're buying you off, Jay," Mike says, looking up at him. "Did you see the name of the trust?"

"No, they didn't mention it."

"It's lurking here in the small print. The Holmes 2010 Trust."

"As in Sherlock?"

"His family have given a lot of money to Barts over the years. It explains some of the...privileges Sherlock has here. And if you look through the contract, there's a clause about not doing anything that may damage the reputation of either Barts or the Holmes Trust."

He points to a clause that John hasn't previously registered, and John finally disentangles the verbiage enough to see that Mike is right.

"So what do I, we do?" he asks.

"You let yourself be bought off," Mike says quickly. "You sign on the dotted line and officially forget what happened to you."

"Are you sure?"

"What else do we do, Jay? No-one's going to believe us, anyway."

Mike's right, of course, and yet John's irrationally angry again, with the world, and with Mike for putting up with it. And then he has an idea.

"Can we go down to the morgue?" he demands.

"If you're sure you'll be OK."

"I want to see it again."

***

John hasn't been down to the basement since the accident, and when they get into the morgue he immediately feels uncomfortable. It's cold, of course, and though the staff down there recognise Molly and say hello, she doesn't belong down there anymore and they can sense it.

"It was over there, in that storeroom, or whatever it is," he tells Mike. "It was locked."

"It isn't now," Mike says, and opens the door. And it's a room. A tiny room, with a few bits of medical junk in it. It needs painting, and the vinyl in one corner of the floor is slightly scuffed, as if something heavy has sat there and then been removed hastily. All that remains of that afternoon, the only tangible proof he hasn't dreamt the whole thing. And Mike is right, of course, it's not enough, it's never been enough. He'll just make them both sound insane.

Mike's hand reaches out and touches his shoulder gently.

"Jay?" he murmurs.

"What do you think Sherlock was planning to build, Mike?" he demands. "And who was he planning to use it on?"

"I don't know," Mike replies.

"Molly?"

"I don't know."

"Do you think that trust fund, for helping people with mental health problems, was set up before or after the accident? Do you think it was a precaution, in case something went wrong, someone at Barts ended up with brain damage?"

"I think," Mike said, and there's an unexpected firmness in his voice, "that you have to let it go. Whatever Sherlock was planning, he's been scared off. It's over, Jay. We are where we are, and we have to make the best of it."

John turns to look at the plump, serious face of the man he loves. "You're right," he says. "OK, let's grab some coffee and talk about training programmes."

***

John spends the next morning poring over the College of Emergency Medicine's regulations, trying to work out if there's any way he can shave a year or two off the time to become a consultant. Mike will probably know who to talk to about that, he thinks. But when John gets a phone call from him at lunchtime, it's clear that something’s wrong.

"I'm sorry to spring this on you, Jay," Mike says hurriedly, "but I've just had a phone call and I'm really not sure what's best to do."

Given that Mike has a carefully considered plan for dealing with most things short of a zombie attack, that's more than a little worrying.

"What is it?" John demands, thinking: redundancy, cancer, Harry's liver has finally packed in.

"I got a call from Dr, from John Watson. Sherlock's flatmate," Mike says, and the fear in his voice is palpable. "He, she wants to come to Barts and talk to you."