“I know I should probably let go now,“ John whispers, still hovering near, breath ghosting along his damp skin like another soft kiss, making Sherlock’s insides melt into a gooey puddle. “I know I should remove my hands and step back, maybe even step across the room, probably leave entirely but…”
Sherlock holds his breath, still too afraid to open his eyes, too afraid to look, too afraid of shattering this entire moment and waking up from a beautiful dream.
“But I… I can’t,” John murmurs and another gentle kiss is dropped to Sherlock’s lips, as if John can’t keep himself from kissing him. “I can’t because if this is… if this is all that I get, I need it to last. I need to keep this moment for as long as you’ll let me have it. I don’t want to stop-”
“breath ghosting along his damp skin like another soft kiss”?
i get the “breath ghosting across his…skin” thing, that’s a common enough fanfiction trope, but his damp skin? somehow that makes his breath itself seem foul, and now i’m imagining everything all sticky and cold and gross. and now i’m thinking of a dead fish. so gross.
and what do you mean, “like another soft kiss”? sure, obviously they kissed prior to this passage, but breath doesn’t emulate even the softest kiss unless it’s really, really soft, like, teasing and unsatisfying kind of soft. on the surface i guess the image sounds romantic but at any review it completely falls apart.
“insides melt into a gooey puddle,” ew. just ew. that’s all i’ve got for that. ew.
but this is the thing that tipped me over the edge: “I know I should remove my hands.”
no one, literally no one, would ever say that in a sexual setting. i mean, no one. ever. ever ever. even “step back” is pushing it. the only way i can even hear a person saying that is as part of an instruction or direction, like “remove your hands from the heat shield” or “please step back.” no one says “step” in conversation. it’s not a thing that happens. “step across the room,” what kind of bullshit is that? that’s awful, awful dialogue, is what that is.
ugh, “another gentle kiss is dropped to Sherlock’s lips”? what the fuck is that? john’s now an ethereal being, is that it? kisses have suddenly taken independent physical form and become distinct objects? it’s not that hard, look:
“But I… I can’t,” John murmurs, dropping another gentle kiss to Sherlock’s lips as if he can’t help himself.
see? it’s shorter, it’s clearer, it’s easier, it’s better. it took me about three seconds to type the alterations.
also, “I need to keep this moment for as long as you’ll let me have it,” john can keep the moment forever because “keeping” the moment means fixing it in his memory. what he means (or she means, i guess, if we’re to give the author credit) is that he wants to keep the moment going for as long as sherlock will let him.