Snowbouquet prompted me with tan-lines :)
John’s years were measured in the changing colour of his skin. The rose-faced innocence of youth gave way to a mellow tan: skin put on display for those who cared to look. Plenty did as he struggled into the first bloom of adulthood, growing strong beneath their infatuated gaze.
Hours of study, trapped inside, bleached the flesh as it brightened the mind, but it was Afghanistan that left the boldest marks – manacles of brown as the memory of the war held him captive. They dragged him down, invisible iron that dogged him through London’s chill: a bitter reminder of all he had been.
Long sleeves and high collars charted their frontiers. Under fabric, he remained touched with honey, while time – one brief year at Sherlock’s side, three of absence, a wedding, a return and a divorce – wrote its tale on hands and face alike: weathered skin telling its own story.
Now, full lips traced along his collarbones, whispering adorations where tan bled away to a golden glow. A hot tongue lapped the sweetness from his skin, and a deep voice catalogued every tint. Sherlock narrated the stories left behind, and his swollen heart thrummed with joy.
Once, in the distant past, a lover had said his body was a masterpiece. Now, decades later and beneath Sherlock’s abundant praise, he believed it.